Today, I'd like to explore a fun aspect of the Hobby (my personal favourite!): Conversions.
So, what exactly do we mean by Conversions? It's a phrase you may have stumbled along before; that essentially means putting your own personal stamp on a miniature by changing an aspect of it.
This can be as simple as a head swap, or as convoluted as sculpting entirely new features for a miniature, but the overall idea is that you add that personal touch to really make that character pop.
For me, nothing beats making your HQ a totally never-before-seen miniature that make people stop and go "Hey...cool!". That level of creativity, even with just a head or a weapon swap, makes me do a double-take. If you're a fan of modelling, you've likely done this yourself - stopped for a second, and tried to deconstruct someone's awesome work in to its component parts, and probably making some mental notes!
It's one of the many facets of the wonderful world of gaming that really keeps me interested, and gets those creative juices flowing. I first saw kitbashing and conversions on the Bolter and Chainsword, where a chap named Doghouse used to make true-scale marines using plasticard, modelling putty, and plastic GW terminator components. There are some seriously next-level modellers out there, and if you ever have a spare 5 minutes, I highly suggest you Google around a bit. It might give you that bolt of energy you need to finish off that squad!
I had a recent surge of creative juices when our upcoming narrative campaign, The Doom of Valerephon, was announced. I knew that, to represent my First Legion forces in this epic struggle, I would like to make a new Praetor to lead my army.
This chap is made from a few components:
- One of the Space Marine 'Masters of the Chapter' minis (the one in ornate Mk.III armour!), a lucky eBay win!
- A Forgeworld Dark Angels helmet
- Helmet wings from the DA Veteran set
- A sword and plasma pistol from the DA upgrade sprue
- A spare Mk.III backpack from 'Burning of Prospero'
- A bionic forearm from Anvil Industries
- A steady hand for some scalpel and file work (or a strong drink!)
I like to spend a good few minutes immersing myself in 40k artwork and snippets of fluff to get me in the mindset for a character. This bit will sound silly, but for a leader, spending a bit of time thinking about that characters backstory will help you shape the pose (and even help out on the paintjob!) to hopefully breathe a little life in to your work...even if you're not a great painter, like me!
For this guy, I wanted a Terran-born Astartes - perhaps one who fought alongside the Emperor during the Unification Wars, earning himself a few motifs and markings for his service. I imagine a leader who gets in the thick of it, not unlike a Brother-Redemptor, who psychs up his men with speeches and cries of valour. My hope was that the mini conveys a man who just yelled "Chaaaaaarge!" more for the benefit of those around him than for himself!
So what about you, do you have any favourite conversions (yours, or someone else's!)? Perhaps some weird modelling rituals? Let us know in the comments!
See you next time,