I’ve always liked the pre-heresy Emperor’s Children, like the Lunar Wolves time is spent in the early Horus Hersey novels establishing the legion as flawed but deeply proud and honourable. Fulgrim finds beauty in the arts and strives for perfection, he also loves, Horus, his brother deeply and is the first to try and sway him from his path into chaos. We also see the best of the legion in the staunch Saul Tarvitz and the legendary Ancient Rylanor who both watch in despair as their legion is slowly corrupted and then there’s Lord Commander Eidolon who is pretty much a dick all the time.
With this in mind I’ve decided that my next project will some pre-hersey Emperor’s Children, who are at the point in their history where they are proud, perfectionist, a little arrogant and they alsoappreciate a good poem so I’m thinking pre the “Murder” campaign. What I don’t want them to be is at the point in their history where they are knobbing everything that moves, incorporating musical instruments into their bodies and generally being sick puppies. In short this will mean no Kakophoni models.
To capture the feel of the Emperor’s chosen legion I want a really deep and rich purple, an imperial purple, a purple that is so deep you could sink into it. *My plan is to prime firstly in black and then from there airbrush with a thin deep purple colour – Scale 75 Violet, Army Painter Alien Purple or P3 Beaten Purple come to mind as prime purple candidates. After this I was thinking of a small highlight something along the lines of Scale 75 Sunset Purple followed by P3 Carnal Pink for the edges. Hopefully, if I can keep the black primer creating the shadows and successfully blend in the base purple the highlights will only need to be at a minimum meaning that I should retain the deep, darker purple I want.
*As an aside I really need to thank @teabreakgossip – an inspirational Ultramarine painter and all round nice guy – as a Twitter conversation with him really focused my mind on how to achieve the look I wanted for my ECs. If they end up looking sub standard then it will be down to my ability and not the advice I’ve been given.
As most people are now doing I decided that the easiest way to get the Astarte would be from the Betrayal of Calth set which is an exceptional deal if you want a good number of models to kick start your legion. I decided to stay away from the forgeworld legion upgrades for heads, torso, shoulders (knees and toes, knees and toes) and instead opted for two sheets of transfers. I may, at a later date, pick up some heads and shoulders to intersperse them into the legion for variety but I’m not Scrooge McDuck swimming in a vault of money so I can’t afford to do it for every model.
In terms of the forgeworld transfers they are fantastic, it’s great that you get the standard iconography as well as the Warmaster eyes which links in with the Emperor’s Children lore and the shared history between them and the Lunar Wolves. In terms of the quality of the transfers the gold is really rich and vibrant and I can’t wait to get them on some painted models.
If I’m honest there is one model in the Betrayal of Calth set that I’m not overally impressed with. Perhaps I’m being a little harsh as the rest of the plastic models are excellent but the contempator dreadnought just looks really static and lifeless from the hips down. Now I know the Astarte encased in the dreadnought no longer needs functioning hips but I’d still like to see a little motion there. It looks like he’s been turned off which takes the soul out of the model and a model like the contempator dreadnought needs soul as they are the living heart and history of a legion. I think that I’ll either try and add some life to the model myself, with some motion in the hips and legs, or failing that just flog the model and put the cash towards a forgeworld Emperor’s Children contempator dreadnought….at the moment the later option is winning and you can understand why when you look at those hips!
For the white pauldrons, which some of the models will have, I wanted them to obviously looks white but not too white and with a soft shadow around the edges. To archive this I’ll probably put a base layer of Scale 75 artic blue and then find an appropriate dull white to finish it off. In terms of the gold on the Emperor’s Children I want an antique feel to the gold, that deep rich colour that you get from pure gold, so again I’m thinking something along the lines of Scale 75 Viking Gold as a base then probably GW Retributor Armour as a highlight.
So this, at moment, is my plan for a pre-hersey Emperor’s Children force that contains dark shadows and rich, deep, purples and golds. Hopefully, I’ll be able to realise the vision laid out in this post. I plan to document the journey here from start to finish so watch out for future updates and please feel free to comment with suggestions and feedback.
Until the next time.
‘Children of the Emperor! Death to his foes!’