Saturday, September 29, 2007

Fear my Fimir!


Well crud - it is Saturday night and I have only just realised that I didnt post up the article that I wrote on Friday - must have hit "save" instead of "publish" sorry for the delay y'all :P

So when last we left our intrepid hero (me!), I was in the process of building an entire army in  the span of a single month.  Since last week I have done the majority of the painting on my 20 Fimir models! I still have a tiny bit of detailing to do though not much as these are meant to be a good looking table top army and not a grouping of display or competition pieces. The next step will be to change their one piece molded bases and to put them on proper 40k 25mm round bases. I intend to add lots of great details to these bases in a fashion similar to the larger bases that I posted last week (which I have also primed black this week).

 Once I have finished the gems and any other little details I will be "dipping" them.   Now for any who do not know, the "dip" method is a way of expediating miniature painting  by literally dunking a figure into a translucent product to blend and shade a model. In this case I will be using Minwax Polyshades Antique Walnut woodstain and varnish. [Note: I will actually photograph up a "dipping" tutorial for the site in the near future  so stay tuned!]

 The Good: This allows me to shade a whole bunch of models in a very short amount of time. It gives a really great warm  tone to the model and can really unify the overall finish.

The Bad: There is very limited control when you use this method so you really have to trust in what you are doing

The Ugly: Im honestly not sure how well this stuff strips off If i ever decide I want to reclaim/repaint the models I am doing.168997_front200.jpg
I have used the minwax dip before when I was painting up my Battle for Skull pass boxed set and I think they turned out all right. Many of the models in my set were painted by beginner painters (several by a child under the age of ten who was trying for his first time!) at demos that I ran,  and so were of really varied quality. The minwax helped to really unify them and made them look pretty good on the table. Here is a picture of a few of them.


 Now for my next step I will need some bigger crazier and some would say sillier models(though sillier than the Fimir is reasonably tough) to fill out my army and to be perched upon those big round bases you saw me working on a week ago. Feast your eyes on this!


Aside from being the most naueseatingly orange model I have ever owned, it is indeed a Zoat. The classic Warhammer and 40K xenos race of the Zoats will be the true backbone of this army. It has taken me some time now to collect the nearly 30 zoats that are in my collection (bits and pieces of which you can see in the background and below). Nearly all of those that I have collected are/were coated in thick paint of varied hues but this orange one was my favorite (or at least the most memorable!).

So with the Fimir well in hand it is time to strip away the paint and begin these Zoats anew breathing new life into some of GW's most unfortunate models.  I intend to show the world that the tyranid "slaves" connection is a falsehood and/or a mistake on the part of the pig headed Imperium of Man.  They are gentle protectors of the deepest secret woodland areas on the Warhammer world - that doesnt sound like any tyranid Ive ever encountered!
The Zoats were introduced in the first release of the 40K game Rogue Trader where they are described as one of the Tyranid's genetically engineered slave races. At the time the Tyranids described were only the "hunter slayers" now known as Termagants. They were discontinued by Games Workshop in the second edition of Warhammer 40,000, and have since disappeared completely from the mainstream. They were elite fighters, forming the warrior-corps of the Hive Fleets. Although naturally a psychic race, they could not develop psychically under Tyranid dominance. It is stated that the "Xenobiologers of the Administratum" believed Zoats to have been created purely for combat.

The Zoat's exact links to the Tyranid race are lost outside of the Warhammer 40,000 galaxy, but what has been gleaned from ancient encounters is that the Tyranids did not assimilate the Zoats as per the norm, but instead enslaved them to do their bidding. They were large, strange, powerful creatures, centauroid in appearance, with two powerful arms, and a lack of oral organs. The Zoats communicated telepathically, and had a prodigious ability to assimilate the cultures (language, customs, practices) of other races, thus acting as diplomatic conduits for the otherwise uncompromising hive mind. [1]

Though used for communicating with other races and other diplomatic tasks, the Zoats were proficient fighters, said to be savage, ruthless and ferocious in battle. Even so, all out war between a small sub-part and the rest of the Tyranid race could have only one outcome, and the majority of the Zoat race fled from the Hive fleets.

As such, they were one of the first Tyranic organisms to reach the Eastern Fringe, and have been the only Tyranic organisms so far to have actually established contact with the Imperium of Man. The Zoats were regarded with great curiosity by those they encountered, and were said to travel in fleets of "great, conch-like ships". However, their general nature and frequent contact with other alien races in the sector, as well as frequent attempts to settle on worlds caused the Imperium to declare them "Xenos Horibillis", sparking the violent Zorastra-Atilla war in the 38th millennium, which lasted fifty years, culminating in the destruction of the last of their strange colossal ships over the planet of Zorastra. As there were no subsequent records of contact with the Zoat, it is assumed that the Zoats have been purged from the galaxy.

Well we now can clearly see as the story line of 40k has developed and the tyranids have been explored more in depth  - they do not genetically engineer anything. I propose instead that perhaps the tyranids are a genetically bred weapon of the old ones - a true biological opposite to the mechanical servants of the c'tan - and in the absence of the greater "Old Ones" that they may have  got out of the controll of their zoat herders/handlers or may have been sent out as an act of war against the awakening remanents of the Necrontyr. 

I propose that the Zoats were not ambassadors of the Tyranid race but rather Harbingers bringing warning to the lesser children of "the Old Ones" (humans of the oncoming tide of woe and destruction that would follow behind. The Zoats were not purged but rather went to ground stepping outside the barriers of our reality and into the webway (created by the old ones though now used primarily by the Eldar) until the initial tide of Tyranids passed and in doing so reawakened or pointed out clearly where the Necron servants of the C'tan had been hiding. - More about all of this next week - in the meantime I have to get my butt in gear and paint up some Zoats!!!!

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