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Thread: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

  1. #1
    Brother Sergeant
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    A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Hello everyone.

    I've had an undead army in progress since I was about 6, where I got into the hobby thanks to my older brother. My first models were stuff like Nagash, the old bone chariot and the old, old skellies.
    Since then, through Undead and Vampire Counts, I've had a glacial pace at creating an army, barely getting to about 2000 points when really pumping the magic items. And as the army was collected over such a long time, it had quite a range in quality and I was not satisfied with it. And I also burned out converting some Black Knights.

    But I finally got back into it last year, again thanks to my brother and some lucky deals on second-hand undead.
    And dang, my pace has been great. At least by my standards.

    When I started, there were a few things I didn't think needed updating. 40 zombies, a corpse cart, a few dire wolves made from old chaos hounds and the Black Knights I mentioned:



    In more detail, here is the Corpse Cart, obviously inspired by plague doctors and with less of an mad scientist vibe to the pulling zombies:





    And the Black Knights, made from the sadly defunct Knights of the Realm and bits from the giant skellies of old and some skellie horses:




  2. #2
    Brother Sergeant
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    The zombies and the dire wolves quickly got some company when I got going again, helped along by the fact that some absolute madmen sold me cheap, cheap zombies and fenrisian wolves.

    I ended up with two nice hordes of zombies and to shake things up, the 40 new ones got some bits from the well-stocked box to shake things up a bit, and I ended up mixing the old and the new for variety after the painting.

    Before painting, the new ones:


    And then I got these two blocks:

    Block one:




    And block two:



  3. #3
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    And finally, I roughed up my new wolves, with some more horse skeleton bits. Those do really come in handy and I have more of them than I know what to do with.




    And after painting, they mingled nicely with the old wolves, in my opinion:

    Wolf pack one:





    Wolf pack two:




    As you have probably noticed, there are already characters among the dead. More detail on those are coming up next, as well as vanilla skellies and Nagash, but those posts will have to wait till tomorrow. Like my pretties, I will be back soon.

  4. #4
    Chapter Master Little Joe's Avatar
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Looks like you are off to a great horde! Very nice conversions on the wolves.
    my general project thread

    [2020] painted: 3

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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Thanks, Little Joe.

    Now for the next post.
    First of all, I have to point out that I just realized that using a curled horn for the beak on my corpse cart plague doctor makes him look kinda like Gonzo the muppet. So I guess that's his name now.

    But now, for the meat of the post. The characters seen last time are the first necromancer I got ( the old guy with the topknot) and a conversion my brother made for me.

    While I love the old piece of art that the necromancer is based on, the model was a little too boring for me and I'm not a fan of topknots on my models. Thus, I cut quite a bit away before digging into the hundreds of zombie arms I have and using a bit of green stuff. Thus, he got a "rise!" pose:

    Testing:

    Modelling:

    Painting, a paint job I am very happy with:

    Though the green stuff on his cape could have used a bit more smoothing:



    The vampire, the blue guy, was made by my brother, inspired by the vampire-turned-wraith Raziel, from the old, old game Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver. My brother and I loved that game, even though we were stuck in a cathedral full of spider vampires for ages. That game was one of my first introductions to truly dark and weird stories, other than Warhammer and it had some of the most gloriously over the top, Shakespearean writing, performed wonderfully. If you don't know of the game, find the game's intro on youtube, it sets the tone beautifully.

    So when my brother gave me this conversion, also painted by him, I was thrilled:





    To those whom it may interest, it is based on the one-winged vampire, with genestealer hands and a skull and green stuff instead of the usual head.

  6. #6
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    And, though you can see the blurry form of a leaning Nagash in the background of my necromancer, first here are my skellies, 60 new ones, straight from the box, though I am very happy with them and their corroded metal:

    First block:





    And the second block:





    You probably haven't missed the variously converted characters. Details on those will follow.

  7. #7
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Now, as mentioned, I have owned the old Nagash model for over twenty years. Remarkably, it has only endured three paint jobs, one clumsy and too thick before I was ten, one sometime later that was alright and finally, after the extensive conversion, the current one.

    I thought the main problem was his head, but then, with an extensive bits box, I really got into making Nagash an intimidating figure. I was inspired by the idea of a blackish metal crown, so I built one on top of a modified banner-pole skull. That I was quite happy with. The arms are from a crypt horror and an orc, with the banner hand of an ogre and then skeleton breast plates for armor on top. And as anyone collecting undead, I had a ton of skulls and stuff to update the kinda wonky skeletons on the original model.
    The hangy stuff on his shoulders are an assortment of chains and some mail skirts from the skeletons.

    Finally, my first idea was for him to have a staff, a huuuuuge custom-built staff:



    My brother wisely advised against it and though I was hesitant, I ended up putting his sword onto the ogre hand, with the handle of an ogre blade. Thus, he ended up as much improved:



    Finally, it was just painting, and luckily, by this time, I had already practiced black armor on several vampires, so he came out great. And thus, the being who has been teased for a while, the one, the only, the inventor of Necromancy, the Supreme Lord of the Undead:





    I am very, very happy with this one. I think l redeemed a quite bad model and that is always a huge satisfaction. Surprisingly often, the head is the main problem, just like with the old chaos ogres.

    Next up: The teased models from the regiments from before and then, more converted units.

  8. #8
    Chapter Master Little Joe's Avatar
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Quite a story and what an upgrade, he actually looks GOOD! No more Mr Clown there.
    my general project thread

    [2020] painted: 3

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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Thanks again, Joe. Now for some characters.

    The necromancer here, I got him from a friend of my brother and I only now got around to making him my own. Like many of the older model, he suffered from "my weapons are so heavy, they push my arms to my sides"-syndrome. So I did a bit of cutting and reposing and draped green stuff over it to make him more dynamic:


    I'm pretty pleased with the result, though it isn't perfect. It would take a really strong wind to press the wolf tail to his staff like it is,, just below the metal ring, but you'd only notice it on close inspection:


    And the zombie hand may be a biiiit too big. But I'm fine with it.


    Now the lovely vampire lad I'm really pleased with. He was inspired by the artwork of Konrad von Carstein, the one where he actually looks dignified.
    He's made from a jumble of bits, most of them from a "mix your own bits" stand.
    A variant head from the corpse cart, an elven sword arm, an elven sword on a beastman left arm. The torso of a dragon prince, I think. And the legs of an ooooooold dark eldar, with the mail skirt from skeletons.
    Then a cape and hair of green stuff and some sculpted mail on the beast man shoulder.
    Oh, and the wings from a terrorgheist riders helmet for shoulder pads, inspired by the "Sigvald-to-vampire" conversion of Pete the Wargamer. I've somehow ended up with three of those helmeted heads, so I have plenty to spare.




    And painted:


    Last edited by Loki Ragnarok; 01-06-2021 at 11:38.

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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Now, Kemmler has also been part of my collection for years and years and in my opinion, he is one of the old sculpts that truly still hold up.

    He does have a bit of a flasher pose, however and I never understood what he needed that mini cauldron for. So I took a deep breath and grabbed my clippers, a zombie arm and my green stuff. Luckily, it was a success, though the cloak was hard to sculpt:




    And the painting was a joy:





  11. #11
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Like many nerds, I've dabbled in more than one fandom. From Dungeons and Dragons, I got inspired for an alternate take on the Crypt Horrors, which was lucky, because the vanilla models lack something, in my opinion.

    So I drew on the image of the Famine Spirit:


    I bought some horrors, because their heads are awesome, though unfortunately, those horrors lay lost and forgotten for years. But I finally got back to them and when I also got hold of some ogre bulls. Thus, I made these abominations:





    They are messy eaters.

  12. #12
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    As you can see from the converted Black Knights, I once had the idea of going for a Brettonian theme. I never really got enough into that, but I did make some converted skellies from men at arms. But eventually I decided to reconvert them into Grave Guard, while using the regular skellies as my core troops.

    This had the added benefit of the Grave Guard then being extra beefy compared to the skellies.

    First, I tested the idea:


    I wanted them to have great weapons, but I had no real great weapons and didn't care to buy a whole bunch of them. So I put together great weapons from things I had lying around, mainly the weapons from the oldish, enormous skellies. Having the weapons over the shoulder was surprisingly difficult and made the GG a little samey, but I really ended up liking the look of heavy troops marching. The heads were all the most armored of the newish skellies.





    And painting them was pretty fun. I tried for some green glow on the weapons for the wight blades rule, and I think it works pretty well.





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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Now, the characters from the Grave Guard are those wonderful models Vlad von Carstein and Krell.

    Krell was a painted present from my brother. Great model and I like the paint job, so nothing much to say, other than the obligatory "dang finecast" because the axe has gotten bent somehow.





    With regards to Vlad, I was actually really lucky. I had been planning on making a Vlad conversion for years, but finally got spurred to action when some of the other VC models began going out of stock. I panicked, ordered one and got it maybe a month or two before they were discontinued.

    Again, Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver gave me inspiration, this time Kain himself. I thought Vlad's face had some of Kain's looks and as I already disliked the sword of Vlad, I knew what to do. Make an attempt at the Soul Reaver.

    I carved the sword myself and added skulls from some tomb kings shields. And I removed some things from Vlad, the screaming faces, the big spike and the pelt paws, because the model was a little too busy for my tastes. Below you can compare with the paws and without:



    I am really, really happy with how the model ended up after painting, even if he ended up with very wide eyes:




    I might make a new sword for Vlad, because I put a blob of greenstuff on for safety and it is a little... blobby. But only maybe. And luckily, I later got my hands on another Vlad, this time in metal.
    Last edited by Loki Ragnarok; 01-06-2021 at 13:37.

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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Now for another old model, slightly modified.

    The old, old, possibly lead, zombie dragon, is a model I also got very early and I have always loved it. But as things have gotten bigger, it is a little small.

    The solution? Plastic wings. So my dragon has more presence and her "rider" is not on her neck but on the ground, slightly hiding how small the dragon is in comparison to the vampire.



    Also, I really, really dig the round shields with wings from the skelly box, all of my shield-bearing vamps will get one if I have enough.

    So, without further ado:






    Thus, I am out of actually finished models. But fear not, I have more stuff in the works and these actually make the log a "live" project log rather than just an archival of already done projects.

    Mostly vamps.
    Last edited by Loki Ragnarok; 01-06-2021 at 13:36.

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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Now, remember back when characters often came in blisters with one mounted version and one version on foot? Well, I had one of those from the later blood dragon days. The walking version is on the zombie dragon.

    The mounted one is great, though using him as is would make it look like he was yelling at the rider beside him. So I cut off his head, turned it and put some green stuff on it.





    I have now primed it, so this just needs painting.

    Back in the blood dragon days, I also got this Brettonian, because how could I not? He's awesome and I look forward to painting him:



    He will be put on a Brettonian style horse, he's just on the Imperial horse for painting.

    And once more getting my hands on some second, I got the two below. Originally, both had a skull chalice in their left hand, but I am not a huge fan of the vampire drinking from a skull in the middle of a battle, so a bit of chopping was necessary.

    An Isabella with a nice big blade instead of her dainty stuff. And she will be painted as if she has a full breastplate instead of cleavage, because I prefer that.



    A vampire from somewhere. I just gave him an angry fist, some hair and made sure to pin the hands, because they kept falling off.




    Annoyingly, the blade is so thin that it bends if you breathe too hard on it, but I'm keeping it, because I like the blade. Also, I look forward to painting those abs.

    In addition, I got the Crimson Court in the mail a couple of days ago. It really weirds me out how they are red plastic, how big they are and how they just slot together. But they are great models and after just a bit of conversion, they will be awesome, even if they will be a bitch to rank up. The enforcer guy in particular will be a great battle standard bearer.

    They might make poor Vlad a little Napoleonic, but I doubt I will be using them all at the same time and even if I do, it is fitting, seeing as Napoleon specifically made his bodyguard of massively tall dudes and that is why people think he was short. He was actually average for his time.

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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Now, I know I was talking about the Crimson Court and stuff, but I've been at something else for a while:





    I've always preferred quadruped dragons. And for that, surprisingly, river troll arms came in handy. And I'm modelling a bunch of scales and exposed muscle to make the bits fit better together.



    I've also painted the riding vamp:







    I am considering changing the symbols on the horse, but I might keep them.

    Finally, the beefcake vamp is also done:









    The blade is inspired by the description of Oathkeeper in A Song of Ice and Fire, where it is described as having smoky black and red in ripples, kinda lika Damascus Steel. I thought that was a great idea and I think it came out great.

  17. #17

    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Some absolutely fantastic conversions in here!
    My 6mm fantasy Plog: Goblins!
    Warhammer Goblin Plog: Goblins!


    http://www.taccmd.tacticalwargames.net/index.php
    6mm gaming. Apocalypse, but for grown ups!

  18. #18
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Thanks to Mallo for the kind words.

    Now, I've gotten two lady vampires converted and painted.

    For Isabella, I didn't like the goblet and I didn't really have any good hands to just get rid of the single goblet. So I thought it would be interesting to have a lady vampire who wasn't all dainty in her weapon choice. I also covered her cleavage in an effort to have her look a little more battle ready. Thus:




    Yes, I know the sword handle is bent, but that's how it turned out in the end. It's still alright to me.

    Now, some sad news about the Crimson Court. Because of the blasted scale creep, I was considering cutting them down to size with some very strategic cutting, but by now, I've mostly soured on them. The winged guy is not that interesting. Big guy is simply too big, taller than an ogre. And the leader will be a huge hassle to get to a reasonable size. I'm probably going to end up selling them off.
    But the lady was manageable and I'm quite pleased with the result:




    With this, I'm down to three vampires left to do. The last horse-mounted one, one for my zombie dragon and then converting the one-winged one to a battle standard bearer.

  19. #19
    Chapter Master Ragsta's Avatar
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    You deserve more comments, there is some fine work indeed here, mate. Great conversion work throughout - the revamped Nagash looks excellent and your converted characters in general are really nicely done. I must say I love the start of that latest Zombie Dragon! The head looks awesome on that build!

    I like your painting style. The greenish glows on different pieces and general palette, very good indeed.

    Keep it up!


    Ragsta

  20. #20
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    Re: A lifetime of raising the Dead (VC for 9th Age, featuring un-clowned old Nagash)

    Thanks, Ragsta, the kind words are very nice.

    Now, I've slowed down but gotten a few more things in the works.

    First, I made a battle standard bearer from the one-winged vampire from a generation or two back. I always like the idea of the vampires being kinda noble looking, but with a savage edge. As such, skulls were added to a banner that will hopefully turn out somewhat elegant.
    Also, I had to switch out the sword, because finecast sucks. And I like hair on my vamps, so got that too.

    Without further ado:





    In addition, I've been doing wraiths. Takes some weighting to make them stand on 20 mm bases, but luckily, I got plenty of old lead xD
    Got these two almost done and 8 more ready for painting.





    Finally, as I realized that I will need some extra zombies for raising as new zombie units in some cases, I took the classic idea to make some zombies springing up like daisies. Quite happy with the result and I might model another ten to make sure I have enough zombies:


    Now for some more painting and finally, the zombie dragon is getting more work soon.

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