Thursday, 31 December 2015

Devastator Squad Orestes

'The thrice-accursed Tyrant of Badab once said that big guns never tire. However, he forgot one thing. It is not the size of the gun that is fired, but where the gun is fired from. That is what your enemy should truly fear.'

Sergeant Velo Orestes, III Company, Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes.

The Crimson Shrikes' famed guerrilla techniques throughout the Shrine War were not just limited to the more adaptable units such as Tactical and Sternguard squads, but were taken on board by all Chapter brothers engaged in the conflict, even spreading to the heavy weapon specialists of the Devastator squads. With the Shrine Worlds being sprawling urban megastructures encompassing millions of inhabitants, long range weaponry such as the lascannon and missile launcher were less effective due to rate of fire and limited short-range armour penetration. This led to Squad Orestes utilising a mix of multi-meltas and grav-cannons. Notoriously short ranged, the weapons could be brought to full effect due to the infiltration of Squad Orestes into the various shattered buildings and facilities found during battle. Indeed, the only sign of any imminent attack for rebel forces was the sight of the squad's armorium cherub, a fact that led to the construct being known as the 'Child of Vengeance'.

Equipped with targeting devices and extra armour plating, heavy-weapon carrying Marines are capable of delivering accurate and withering amounts of firepower to a localised area, suppressing enemy movement and breaking apart armoured columns. In the case of Squad Orestes, various members can be seen with extra-sensory equipment such as pic-cams and auspexes to enable total superiority over an area.

Squad Orestes's most notable achievement during the War was to hunt down the Daemon Engines known as 'The Scarlet Octennial'. Believed to be eight ++Redacted++ of the War God, Khorne, the Octennial tore through civilian centres on Kerishian Alpha-Seven, their rampages killing and maiming hundreds at a time. Squad Orestes were deployed into a vast urban maw wherein the Octennial and the Shrikes were involved in a Terran-month long hunt for each other. The Octennial were finally destroyed, but at great cost to the Shrikes, as seven brothers were killed during the action, including Orestes himself.

Monday, 28 December 2015


'Four years since the death of Calth. Four years. Many have been the nights in Arcology XIX where the words of horror Lorgar's bastard get scream into our comm-net have invaded the thoughts and dreams of both Astartes and mortals trapped down here in the darkness and grime.

I hear them, the cries drowning in blood and ruin. I do not tell the mortals what my warriors and I know, that the screaming is of our fellow Ultramarines being tortured, mutilated and offered up to beings that break all sense of what is possible.

Four years of this. No loyal Astartes ever truly resting, but always guarding against the dark.

This ends today. Their raids for flesh to commit their crimes against the celestial order have decreased. Slowly, of course. But over days, over months, over years, they have slowed. The Urizen is not coming back, and these wretches, these base curs, they know.

Theoretical - I think they've known since the first day. For them this is death.

Practical - Let them die knowing that what happens from here until the end of days and the stars dying is our retribution.'

Praetor Tyron Auxentios, LCVII Company, XV Chapter, XIII Legio 'Ultramarines'

Thursday, 3 December 2015

'Sibilant In Jade'

'The death of mortal flesh is not enough in these times of celestial horror. The only assured victory is the annihilation of the soul'
Biblio of the Culex, Chapter XX, Verse CVII.

'Knives in the night are one thing. But to deploy this monster, this aberration of Humanity, is not a step even I would have considered. This is the work of the Culexus, and that which it hunts will die screaming as the darkness reaches out with cold, dread hands.'

Inquisitor Judia Isut.

Subject Theta-Theta-Kappa, 'Sibilant in Jade', as seen in the hive city of Doonwrech.
Deployment order ++Classified, level Alpha-Epsilon++
Targets ++Unknown++
Notable kills ++Black Legion Traitor Psyker - Code Name 'Vermillion Hexatude'++
Current status ++MIA, believed curren....


Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Legio XIII

'The theoreticals always spoke of overwhelming Legio superiority, of war fought glorious, bright and gleaming under the swords of the righteous. The practicals of Calth have taught us that war against a brother can only be won by blood, bare hands and loss. The Legio will survive this. Must survive this. But the Thirteenth will be forever changed.

 Praetor Tyron Auxentios, LCVII Company, XV Chapter, XIII Legio 'Ultramarines'

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

A Chaplain and his Flock

'There is only one way to see that a war is truly won, and it has ever been thus since the first time Man picked up weapon against Man. It is the brutality of close-combat, of sword against sword, that confirms the kill.

The Asymmetrical - Julion Griess, M30.

'The noise those jump-packs make, well, it goes through you like wind on a cold Hel-Winter night. Course it does, it's got to get an Astartes into the sky. The first few times, you could hear the platoon collectively shudder. They started shuddering to different sounds soon enough though. The sound of sorrowful chants and chainblades. The lads were scared, because they knew they'd yet again witness what the Shrikes had done to the rebels...

There are some things that you don't ever leave behind'

Platoon Commander Yeter Kysadrix, Itenyrs IV PDF, post Shrine-War.

Above and below can be seen pic-capture of Assault Squad Veun of the Crimson Shrikes III Company, led by Sergeant Oris Veun.

Even within the role of the Adeptus Astartes as shock troops, Assault Squads have a reputation as line-breakers beyond compare. That close-combat is still the most effective way to cripple enemy morale in an age of planet-killers would be shocking if one had not witnessed the ferocity of transhuman melee. Jump-packs are routinely used to speed the Astartes into close-quarters engagement, and also to provide attack vectors that would ordinarily prove impossible without prior planning and execution. Most Chapters use chainswords, although some of the more ferocious (cross-ref Flesh Tearers) will use the heavier, less-common chainaxe. Regardless, the effect is the same - weapons ,that when used by mortals, are notorious for lethality become terrifying in gene-enhanced hands.

Squad Veun was joined throughout the conflict by III Company's Chaplain, Ptesr Beserides. The honour of being accompanied by such an esteemed figure within the Company, along with the hypno-suggestive, almost mournful chants of Beserides resulted in Squad Veun becoming almost unstoppable within their assigned role. Mortal enemy combatants would either retreat, or be slaughtered under the blades of Veun. The squad had the highest kill ratio of all Shrike units until the insertion of Traitor Legion elements into the War, after which they dropped into guerrilla warfare methodology, using rapid Stormraven deployment to decimate supply chains and sow confusion within enemy lines.

Friday, 21 August 2015

Squad Veun, Chaplain Beserides

Time for some quick WIP's

Meet Squad Veun and Chaplain Beserides

I found my old metal jump pack Chaplain and decided he needed to go into the army as it's such a lovely, evocative model. I also threw in some mark IV jump packs from the Sanguinary Guard kit as they look great, but didn't want to go overboard. The new Assault Marine kit is really nice, and really had a blast putting these guys together.

The Knight twins are getting there too. The shoulder plating is much further on than when this was taken, but I've put them aside for a little while so I don't burnout. They're very straightforward to paint, but they just take ages get nice flat coats of colour.

And finally, I do actually get some games in with the Shrikes. This was back in May against my friend's very red Tzeentch daemons. Was a cracking game, and he had me on the back foot for most of it. The Shrikes fought hard, but fate was not to be on their side this day (I lost by 2 vp's!). Always fun to have a close game though. I really must get the Rhinos and Drop Pods painted as well!

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

House Erritian Progress

Time for a small update on my two Knights I'm currently painting. Cerulean Invective's carapace is comeplete, while I'm chopping through Celestial Indigo's at the moment. The painting's been stress free, which is always surprising for a model of this size. I've shaded the metal on the carapace of Celestial with Nuln Oil, but Cerulean has been shaded with both Nuln Oil and a subtle point wash of Typhus Corrosion, for reasons that will become clear...

Cerulean Invective. I really enjoyed painting the window port and it's the best gem effect I've ever cranked out so pretty chuffed with it!

Celestial Indigo. I liked the idea of a diagonal stripe running across the top, and hopefully the effect's not come out too bad. It's a little ropey in places, but nothing that distracts the eye so I'm tempted to leave as is instead of constant neatening and potential for mistakes.

These guys should really be painted by the end of next week or the start of the one after. Then all I'll need to do is transfers and weathering with powders.

Wednesday, 29 July 2015


A little preview of what is coming next.

'A hunter creates the conditions for the kill. But a killer will only concern himself with the slaughter. We do not hunt. We prey.'

Knight-Gallant Yudzen Korbas, Midnight Hurricane, The Great Attractor, Jackylwalker. Pilot of 'Cerulean Invective'.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Chief Librarian Brern Wehial

'A buttrflight flaps its wings in Neu-Tukyo and a hurricane devastates L'Angelos'

- Ancient Terran saying, based on the teachings of the Mathematica Chao, M2

The Crimson Shrikes Librarius is known for its ability to affect battle and war through the psychic influence of information, using their powers to disrupt enemy deployments and supply lines into a state of chaos before a single bullet is fired.  However, among this powerful cabal the head of the Librarius and Chief Librarian of the Crimson Shrikes Brern Wehial is famed for his ability to directly attack the enemy though information alone.

All wars create a local infosphere of orders and commands, movements and reports known to the Adeptus Mechanicus as a noosphere. The method of the Librarius is to insert information into this noosphere, mimicking original orders and commands with subtle differences, whereby it will be picked up by enemy forces and misinterpreted. Uniquely, Wehial's powers allow him to pull information from the noosphere and directly change it. Kill-code and hypnotic controls are weaved in and placed back as a Trojan Horse, working its way through the higher echelons of the sphere until it reaches an intended target. When the time is right, Wehial will trigger the info-bomb, causing untold damage to the local enemy noospshere and anything wired in.

The most famous of these events during the Shrine War is the death of the enemy Reaver Titan 'Severius Gamus' and its slaved Warhound pack. Wehial plucked a small piece of scrap-code from the noosphere whilst in orbit above the planet of Urexes VII, changing only two letters within the code and returning it to the sphere. The code hunted for seven days until finally meshing itself within the info-spine of 'Severius Gamus'. During the battle for the capital of Urexes VII, Wehial triggered the hidden code, immediately off-lining all of Severius Gamus's systems and Warhound slaves. This opportunity was not passed up, and Knights 'Cerulean Invective' and 'Martyr Blue' of the house Erritian made their first Titan kills of the campaign.

Wehial can be seen above. A towering Astartes, even for someone clad in Terminator Armour, he wears a a 'Crusader' type helm and wields his force staff 'Star-Render'. His armour is the colour of the Shrikes' Librarius as per Codex tradition. However, unlike his brother Librarians, both of Wehial's arm are coloured black in instead of the standard left, an honour only afforded to the Chief Librarian due to his place and importance within the Chapter.

Friday, 17 July 2015

Some thoughts on painting

I read a topic recently on Bolter and Chainsword about painting motivation, and felt that I wanted to have a  say in how to keep it. I then realised that the advice I gave might be useful just generally. I'll post it here verbatim, and hopefully someone will take something from it :)

'Honestly, my motivation is paint whenever I feel like it. Everyone has days when they aren't going to be feeling that hobby bug itching, and that's fine.

Fit in what you can, when you can. Never force yourself as your work will be half-hearted. I tend to paint for 20-30 mins at a time, four times a week...maybe 5 if I really have something I want to do. You'd be surprised what you can complete in 30 mins, and with a burst at the weekend of 2 hours you can finish a whole unit.

Find out what's not motivating you. If the model you're painting bores you, switch it up. I painted a techmarine with Thunderfire Cannon recently, and let me tell you. Dull. Dull dull dull. So I painted a five-man Tactical squad at the same time, switching between the two as and when. It took a little longer, but it pushed me through and now I have two units done.

If you really find yourself at a loss, ask your friends what they're working on and what has them excited. Enthusiasm is infectous. You'll find yourself getting excited and motivated.

And lastly, never ever look at what you have left to do. Look at what you have done, and think how awesome the rest will look once done.

That works for me anyway smile.png

PS - Failing all that, start a plog. You'd be surprised how much getting your stuff on here, building a background and having people comment helps with everything.'

Monday, 13 July 2015

The Laniidae

'Legend would have it that the Astartes know no fear. A funny tale, almost as if our transhumanity was not enough to intimidate. I feared something once, the same thing most of us would tell you. A small death on some forgotten hellhole, my deeds unremembered. When I was pierced upon the thorns, I saw the manner of my end.

I do not die inglorious.'

Rylo Zelaange, Sargeant, I Squad, I Company, Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes

'Within the first company of the Crimson Shrikes, informally known as the 'Thorn Wreath', there exists a distinct group of elites. Warriors that turn the tide of wars, turning certain defeat into outright victory. They fight exclusively clad in Terminator armour, teleporting into the heaviest fighting in a battle. We know them as the Laniidae.

When the Crimson Shrikes were founded, a cadre of twenty-nine neophytes were initially trained by three veteran warriors of their parent chapter, the Raven Guard. In honour of this, the Laniidae number exactly thirty-two Astartes at all times, never more, never less. They do not fight as per Codex structure, but in loose brotherhoods of between five to eight Astartes. To join the Laniidae is to become almost legend within the Shrikes, and rare is the Captain who was not directly promoted from their ranks.

When a member of the Laniidae is killed, the rest of the First Company will meet and nominate one brother from each squad of the company, for a total of seven potentials. These seven are taken by the Laniidae squad they potentially will join into the wilderness of the Shrikes homeworld. There, the potentials and Laniidae will begin a great hunt for one of the great araknowyms that live within the megafauna. Immune to weaponary that would level a Baneblade, the hunt is long and arduous, and allows the Laniidae to decipher who will be the best fit for the unit. This will not only be at a physical level, but spiritually as well. When the hunt ends, the Laniidae will choose a successor for their fallen brother. The remaining Shrikes (if any survive) will return to their squads, never speaking of their ordeal. The new Laniidae will bcome a darker, morose soul, and some believe that the visions that take place during the First Company initiation ritual are somehow enhanced, telling the Laniidae of his eventual death. Whatever the truth of this, the Laniidae are shock troops beyond compare, willing to throw themselves into battles that even other Shrikes would consider unwinnable.

Squad Zelaange were foremost within the fighting during the Shrine War, taking on missions that other would have considered suicide. The fact that not one brother of the squad was killed is testamount to both the strength of Terminator armour, and the skill and self-belief of the Laniidae wearing it. It is however rumoured that Squad Zelaange were somehow aware that none of them would die during the conflict, and this resulted in their almost suicidal attacks, knowing this would not be their time to meet the God-Emperor. Whatever the truth, the Laniidae are heroes all.'

'Rituals of the Raven Guard and Successors' - Tominas Rotajz

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Celestial Indigo and Cerulean Invective walk!

After telling the tale of Martyr Blue, and exploring the strange history of House Erritian, I've been toying with the idea of making more Knights. Specifically, the other two Knights mentioned, Cerulean Invective and Celestial Indigo. With the release of the new Knight kit, and after a bit of internal Back and forth, I took the plunge, and now have two extra Knights to paint! I'm looking forward to really getting stuck into these, and they should be done quite quickly thanks to having painted Martyr Blue first.

Quick family photo in the meantime! Cerulean is the Gallant, while Celestial is going to be a Warden. That pot of Nuln Oil was full when I started, so it's lucky I had a spare!

Monday, 22 June 2015

A horizon is nearing

With the new Space Marine Codex out, I thought about what I'd like to have in my Shrikes in the future. And, well, this happened...

Short of a couple of Vindicators and a unit of Vanguard Vets, this will be the last major purchase for the Shrikes. There will be little units of things as and when after, but it seems a natural ending is very well in sight. There's still loads to do, so it's going to keep me going for a good long while yet.

I have some interesting ideas for these guys though...

Want a hint? Why not? Everyone loves hints. Which unit could this be about?

'Three. There are always three. They are the Equilateral, and we are witness to their wrath.' - Attributed to Zaidan Shraane, Captain, III Company, Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes.

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Terminator Squad Zelaange, First Amongst Equals WIP

'Power Armour will win a battle. Terminator Armour will end a war.'

 - Unattributed

So, I've been working on Squad Zelaange for a little while now. They've been one of those units where I've been concerned that they might not look as great as I'd hoped, but when I painted the silver they all seemed to click nicely. The black and silver needs highlighting, and the other few details such as eyes and purity seals will need doing, but they're rapidly getting there.

As for the guy in black at the back, well, Deathwatch Terminators are cool, right...?

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

A Bigger World

The Shrikes are getting some work done, but not what you might think...

Only sixty more to do, and all worth it.

Thursday, 28 May 2015

The Black Hammer

'The true prize of any war is to be able to write history to the terms of the victor. The truth of it ends up in the gutter with the bodies of the vanquished.'

Inquisitor Judia Isut, known as the Black Hammer.

'That bastard Isut used us as a scalpel, a tool to exise the cancer that was the Ethnarch. Only he knew that the blade would break in the process.'

Olunis Varajaisn, Chapter Master, Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes.

'The Fourth Shrine War. An event that resulted in the loss of millions of lives, the death of two planets and the destruction of an ancient Knight house. All of this can be attributed to one man, Judia Isut. His ruthless pursuit of the Ethnarch led the heretic to seek refuge upon Kerishian Alpha-Seven, and Isut played this fortune like a viola.

Knowing that the Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes used Alpha-Seven as a recruitment world, Isut let the Ethnarch take root within the shrine-cities of the world, building his forces and spreading his taint throughout the sector, concealing this from the larger Imperium. A heinous crime indeed, but one that was undertaken as a matter of need. The shadow war had been fought between Isut and the Ethnarch for over a decade, and Isut believed that the time to escalate the conflict into an outright war was now. The Shrikes, elements of Knight Household Erritian and various Astra Militarum regiment were sequestered, while the Scions of Harlens World were requested as the personal combat force of Isut himself.  Indeed, Isut was to be seen as an active combatant, leading from the front even in the heaviest of the fighting, free of the need for secrecy and knives in the night.

The initial strikes against the Ethnarch crippled the rebels high command and ability to co-ordinate assets. However, this first wave of success was blunted by the arrival of a Traitor Legion force drawn from the Black Legion, the Sons of the Arch-Heretic. Their guidance and leadership helped the Ethnarch to begin a strong and lasting counter-battle, one that would lead to the death of the Shrikes Chapter Master and massive losses to House Erritian.'

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Squad Akkirion

'To hear a citizen of the Imperium talk of the Astartes is to hear tales of descending angels, wiping away the heretic, the xenos, the traitor. These fairy tales suit the majority well enough, and for that they should be grateful. I've seen Space Marines fight up close, and to watch the Crimson Shrikes wage war was to gaze upon Death in its purest form.' 
Attributed to Scion Tempestor Uli Honanson, 62nd Harlen World Regiment, post-Shrine War.

'The Ursine...A simple enough epithet do you not think?'

Brother Gyn Wesm, III Company, Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes

Here can be seen pic-capture of Squad Akkirion of the Crimson Shrikes IIIrd Company, led by Loe Akkirion. A giant of an Astartes, Loe was deployed in situations where high-level rebel targets were required to be intercepted and captured where possible. A patient hunter, Akkirion would track his targets for weeks remaining undetected. At the right moment, quickly-adapted ambushes would be undertaken by the squad to secure assets, while leaving a trail of devastation in their midst before melting back into the shadows. However, it has been noted that towards the end of the War, these assets would be more likely than not killed during these extractions. This can be attributed to enemy friendly-fire to prevent rebel plans falling into Imperial hands, however with the horrors the Shrikes endured throughout the war, it cannot be ignored that this may have been retaliatory from Sqaud Akkirion for their lost brothers. 

Presented here is the squad's heavy weapons trooper, Gyn Wesm. Brother Wesm can be seen carrying a cut down version of a Multi-Melta, a favoured weapon within IIIrd Company tactical squads. With the role Akkirion were to play, a Mk49 Ryza-pattern short Melta was preferred due to the ease of firing on the move. The pattern is notorious for its extreme short range, even for an melta-class weapon, however this was offset due to Squad Akkriron's tactics allowing for short-range engagaments.

Loe Akkirion, seen carrying a large power maul crafted from the wood of the mega-fauna of the Shrikes' homeworld. For such a large Astartes, Akkirion was famed for his stealth, and indeed was remarked by his brothers to have been a true scion of Corax. Indeed, Akkirion himself would spend many hours in both silent contemplation of his Primarch's teachings, and within the training grounds of the Chapter honing his squad's gueriila tactics. After the War was finished, Squad Akkirion had lost six brothers during operations. However, the bravery and determinism of Akkirion himself was duly noted by his Captain, and he undertook the ritual of 'The Piercing', a trial which he passed. He is currently deployed with the fourth squad of I Company, under the leadership of Sargeant Qilan.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Waltz in Jovian Red

'Machine, heal Thyself' - The Emperor of Mankind.

'The Omnissiah knows all, comprehends all' - Eighth Mysterie of the Cult Mechanicus.

'Below can be seen pic-capture of Techmarine Sehn Muhindos of the Crimson Shrikes Adeptus Astartes with the Thunderfire Cannon 'Waltz in Jovian Red', Muhindos typically supplied short range bombardments during urban warfare in the Shrine War, allowing Shrike kill teams to close range with suppressed rebel forces.

Muhindos was naturally gifted with an eye for the workings of machines, and was an ideal candidate to be sent to Mars for training as a Techmarine. There, he learned the nature of the Emperor-as-Omnissiah and the sacred rites of the Cult Mechanicus. After his return to the chapter, Muhindos was noted as a solitary figure, working alone deep within the Shrikes' fortress-monastery, finding communion with the wargear and vehicles of the chapter.

Muhindos was deployed under the command of Uhre Kutyet, Pater Mechanicum or Father of Machines, the head of the Crimson Shrikes Techmarine order. After Kutyet's death on the Second Day of Woe, Muhindos took nominal control of the position, and continues to lead the tech-order to this day. Rumours speak of a deepening belief of the Cult Mechanicus within the Techmarines of the chapter, and an almost fanatical hatred of the resurgent Necrontyr dynasties due to Muhindos's leadership and influence.'

Intercepted report sent by 'Tristan Ravewind', Inquisitorial agent, under direct command of ++REDACTED++

Monday, 9 February 2015

The Murder WIP

Well, that was a slightly longer break than I expected! Still, time to get back into the swing of painting Shrikes. I'm currently working on...

Demi-Squad Akirion, yet another Tactical Squad. Something about painting these guys really chills me out. I know people dislike painting troops, but to me they're the core of your army, and having thirty of these guys all standing together on a battlefield will look amazing. (Not as cool as forty will look though...:P)

Techmarine Sehn Muhindos. I really dislike Finecast, and couldn't quite understand why my paint jobs on the material looked worse to my eyes than plastics. Of course, when my friend pointed out the rough surface it made a lot more sense. Shame really, as I have another one of these to paint, complete with Thunderfire cannon. I haven't put the first one in this picture as it's just a big silver lump at the moment, but hopefully two will look great side by side.

And finally, as so many people have been asking...

Ancient Joud Friwn, the Murder, Third Shrike-Lord.
I've got a few more things I want to work on after this little lot is painted. Looking at a couple of Bike Squads, another Sternguard unit and maybe a Terminator or ten. Also vehicles, as that's the one thing I need more practice on really. So many decisions...