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> [40k] The Dance Without End (has ended... for now!), 9/2: Arc40k wrap and some army photos
morsla
post Feb 17 2015, 02:56 PM
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I've always been a fan of GW's Eldar models, but thought I'd probably painted my last space elf when I sold the last of my Eldar last year. Then photos showed up of the new Harlequins, and I started thinking "maybe I could make them a bit more spiky, and combine them with some Dark Eldar as well..."

And so here we are. To keep things interesting and provide a bit of motivation to finish an army of models, I've called out a hobby challenge to some other people who plan to bring Harlequins to Arc40k next year: Cam Auty and Andrew Long. Both have been painting up fantastic armies over the years, and I look forward to seeing what they come up with this time wink.gif This diary will cover my part of the challenge.

The army is based on a performance of The Dance Without End that takes place on one of the Eldar Maiden Worlds. The world's Exodite guardians fell long ago, and now the jungle has reclaimed the crystal and wraithbone city. Bases, display board and objective markers will reflect that - it's a lush green planet, with the remnants of an Eldar society evident from their fallen statues and ruined buildings.

So, what's The Dance? It's the story of the Fall of the Eldar, and the birth of Slaanesh. Here's a version from the Lexicanium:
QUOTE
"The Dance" is the greatest of the Harlequins' works, telling of the Fall of the Eldar. It is performed only rarely as only a Solitaire (who often stay distant from even the rest of the Harlequins) is capable of playing the role of Slaanesh. Nine troupers dance the part of the old race, while three Avatars dance the part of the Fallen gods. As the dance reaches the climax of the Fall, the Solitaire leaps into view, appearing as Slaanesh. One by one, seven figures appear behind Slaanesh to mingle with the old race. First, four Mimes, appearing as daemons who pass their sensual and disturbing movements to the rest of the dancers. Secondly comes three dark figures, the Death Jesters, their suits displaying skeletons as they leap and slay among the Fallen gods, bringing their inert forms to the feet of Slaanesh. As the last god falls, the Warlocks emanate a psychic scream which echoes through the minds of the audience. The scream becomes a laugh of madness and depravity. As the High Avatar enters, there is within the laugh, another, ironic laugh. As the Laughing God, he strolls casually onstage, laughing at the cosmic folly of the Fallen. For a moment he is lost among Slaanesh's servants, but leaps clear of their tumbling to face them. One of the dancers he drags free of Slaanesh, the writhing figures on the dancer's suit dissolving and taking on the lozenge pattern of the Laughing God. The rest of Slaanesh's servants fall or flee, at which point Slaanesh confronts the Laughing God. The battle which seems to go on forever, ends suddenly, unresolved.

There are a few elements in there that I want to capture:

She Who Thirsts is central to the Dance, and I want something different to a regular Solitaire to play that part. She needs to appear suddenly, accompanied by a psychic shockwave that heralds the birth of a new Chaos power.

Mimes aren't "junior Harlequins" as the old Citadel Journal list portrayed them. They're harbingers; scouts and infiltrators. They should be sneaking out ahead of the army.

Avatars of the Fallen Gods and Members of the Old Race will be my main units and unit leaders. That way, each unit can be converted and painted to reflect their role as the court of a specific god. That helps me tell them apart on the tabletop during a sprawling melee, and also gives me even more reasons to convert things...

Death Jesters should be leaping about and killing things, bringing fallen bodies back to She Who Thirsts. I liked the old Death Jester models with heat lances, and have an idea for how to represent these without using the solo Elites characters.

The list will be hammered out in more detail after I pick up my copy of the Codex, but this is the rough shape of what I'm planning at the moment:


Harlequin Masque detachment

TROOPS
The Court of Light. Troupe Master (Avatar of Asuryan) with Cegorach's Rose. 5 Harlequins: 2 x Harlequin's Kiss, 2 x Harlequin's Embrace, 1 x Harlequin's Caress. Starweaver transport. Total: 226 points.

TROOPS
The Court of Twilight. Troupe Master (Avatar of Lileath) with Harlequin's Caress. 5 Harlequins: 2 x Harlequin's Kiss, 2 x Harlequin's Embrace, 1 x Harlequin's Caress. Total: 146 points.

TROOPS
The Court of Shadow. Troupe Master (Avatar of Morai-Heg) with Harlequin's Caress. 5 Harlequins: 2 x Harlequin's Kiss, 2 x Harlequin's Embrace, 1 x Harlequin's Caress. Total: 146 points.

ELITES
The Laughing God. Shadowseer, Mask of Secrets, Mastery Level 2. Total: 100 points.

FAST ATTACK
Starweaver: 2 x Shuriken Cannon. 70 points.

FAST ATTACK
Starweaver: 2 x Shuriken Cannon. 70 points.

HEAVY SUPPORT
Void Weaver: Haywire cannon, 2 x Shuriken Cannon.


Dark Eldar allied detachment

HQ
She Who Thirsts. Archon, Agoniser, Shadowfield, Archangel of Pain, Webway Portal. Total: 185 points.

TROOPS
The Court of Isha. Hekatrix (Avatar of Isha), Agoniser, Haywire grenades. 10 Wyches. Total: 160 points.

ELITES
Mimes. 5 Mandrakes. Total: 60 points.

FAST ATTACK
Death Jesters. 5 Scourges, 4 x Heat Lance. Total: 120 points.


Total: 1348 points


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morsla
post Feb 17 2015, 03:01 PM
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Bases seem like a good place to start. I'm using the new 32mm bases for these, and have been really impressed with them so far. They don't look as ridiculous as the 40mm bases for slender infantry models, but still give plenty of room for adding details to the models. I bought a few packs of Scibor resin parts from The Combat Company and have started experimenting with Instant Mold to copy some of the textures.

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Haven't tried Instant Mold before, but I've had a packet sitting on the shelf for years. It's excellent, and does exactly what it says on the packet. I'm using ProCreate putty with it, and have had best results so far from mixing up a bit more of the white component than the grey - that makes a harder putty that can be sanded when it cures.


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morsla
post Feb 17 2015, 03:06 PM
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This is the first test model I've built for the army: it's a Mime, and will use the Mandrake rules. They carry melee weapons and don't have pistols, which will help to distinguish the unit from Wyches and Harlequins. I figure that their Balefire attack could come from some very accurate throwing knives wink.gif

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There are a few different parts used here. Legs and head are from the Wych kit; torso is a press mould from a Harlequin. The backpack is from a Scourge, helping to break up their outline compared to the other infantry units, and representing some kind of stealth field generator.

If anyone has spare helmeted heads from the Wych sprue, please let me know! I'm currently chasing three more of them to finish off this unit.


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marius
post Feb 17 2015, 03:13 PM
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Ben, look forward to this, your stuff is always amazing.
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dragonphoenix
post Feb 17 2015, 03:17 PM
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Ghetti
post Feb 17 2015, 03:24 PM
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This will be interesting, and generate pages of comments I'm sure biggrin.gif


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Warburton
post Feb 17 2015, 03:39 PM
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I like Harlequins but the new models are, for the most part, not good. I look forward to seeing what you can do with them - the test figure bodes well smile.gif


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Chaplain_Fortis
post Feb 17 2015, 04:22 PM
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Longy is still in the game?


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morsla
post Feb 17 2015, 04:54 PM
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Ghetti - you're still welcome to join in on this one!

Warburton - I wasn't very impressed by the standard poses for the new figures either. Between the Dark Eldar and Harlequin kits that I've picked up for this army, I have a lot of respect for GW's sculptors and production team though - I think these are the best plastic kits I've ever worked on.

Fortis - Yep, he's back in the game smile.gif He brought a Knights / Legion of the Damned army to Arc40k this year. I don't think it worked for the comp system, but it looked amazing.


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post Feb 17 2015, 07:38 PM
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I have never been an Eldar fan and I've never been a great painter. Having said that, the release of the Harlequin codex is going to be amazing for me just because I get to read all the awesome painting and modeling diaries from people who CAN paint and really love their eldar smile.gif

Watching with interest.


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post Feb 17 2015, 09:56 PM
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Mmmmmm yesssss


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Ghetti
post Feb 18 2015, 07:56 AM
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QUOTE(morsla @ Feb 17 2015, 05:54 PM) *

Ghetti - you're still welcome to join in on this one!


I know, just trying out some ideas before I jump in armata_PDT_34.gif

Also, your text under your avatar is possible a misprint? "Mostly here for the panting..."??? Didn't know heavy breathing was your thang laugh.gif

G


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morsla
post Feb 18 2015, 08:08 AM
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Ha smile.gif That would be modtrolling by Krefey, who perhaps doesn't realise that I can pull activity logs on everything done in the WAU Admin panel...

Try those ideas out and join in - the more the merrier!


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post Feb 18 2015, 01:38 PM
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QUOTE(morsla @ Feb 18 2015, 09:08 AM) *

Ha smile.gif That would be modtrolling by Krefey, who perhaps doesn't realise that I can pull activity logs on everything done in the WAU Admin panel...

Try those ideas out and join in - the more the merrier!


Oh no, I knew you could pull the logs wink.gif You've done it before to see who locked certain threads by accident wink.gif

If I wasn't so money conscious right now, I'd join in on this. I've always loved the Harlequins.


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morsla
post Feb 18 2015, 04:04 PM
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This is the second test model for the army: one of my flock of Death Jesters, armed with a Heat Lance.

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Most of the sources for the parts are fairly obvious: there's a Scourge head (with a press-molded skull masque), Scourge legs and front of torso. The back of the torso is a long coat from the Harlequin kit. This one has a "normal" heat lance - I think I'll need to kitbash some other lances from Talos or Reaver parts, as I hadn't realised that you only get one of each weapon in the box.

I've also tried to make some more subtle changes. Some of the (many!) Dark Eldar spikes have been trimmed off and filed down, particularly on the Mime figure. That helps to blend the parts in with the Harlequin ones, though there's still obvious armour on the models. The DE knee pads are particularly angular, so I've also filed them down to a more "Craftworld" rounded curve.

I'm considering adding some transparent warp rifts to the back of each Scourge base, helping to explain how they move so fast. I think I can cut through the trailing cloak to make it look like the model has just stepped out of a small webway portal, mounting the rift there so it appears to float in the air. I think I'll build a few examples with clear plastic card and acrylic gel medium to see what they look like - if they seem to work, I can paint them with some translucent paints.


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post Feb 18 2015, 05:50 PM
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damn this is exciting, the first inaugural morsla V mousemuffins masque-a-thon!

the models look tops mr Ben armata_PDT_01.gif and i love that youre shaving down the dark eldar sculpts, theres some great poses in the range and shows them in a new kind of light
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Colonel Doctor
post Feb 19 2015, 04:42 PM
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Looking good. A happy medium between high and dark space elves should be cool.

also, since when is 32mm bases a thing?


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Forik
post Feb 19 2015, 09:37 PM
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these could get me back into 40k maybe, this or the upcoming new mechanicus army.

This post has been edited by Forik: Feb 19 2015, 09:37 PM


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Stinkingyeti
post Feb 20 2015, 12:17 AM
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Looking good. Can't wait to see more.

Btw, when you mold something with instant mold, what do you use to cast it? Just greenstuff?


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post Feb 20 2015, 06:33 AM
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QUOTE(Stinkingyeti @ Feb 20 2015, 12:17 AM) *

Btw, when you mold something with instant mold, what do you use to cast it? Just greenstuff?


That is kind of the norm instant mold/Oyumaru/polymorph pellets and the other reuseable thermoplastics are generally used with the various easy to use 2 part press moulding epoxy putties.

Although sometimes people use air drying or baking clay for details on other 'hobby' projects like beading and pottery.


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