Finishing your own army or battlegroup is core to the hobby. In our Army Showcase series, Goonhammer contributors take a look at the labours of love that people in the community have been collecting for years, and the new ones that have been just finished – what drew us to them, why we keep building and painting, and how they play on the table.
Rich, also known as “Diseased_Paint,” is one of the London Titanicus lads who Bair and Soggy had the pleasure of meeting at a Titanicus weekender before the world ended. Eagle-eyed Warlord Wednesdays readers will recognise some of the engines, which have made an earlier appearance in our Legion Focus series and are an incredible showcase of what a Legio Fureans force can look like.
In the beginning…
This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill – you stay in the year 30,000 and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes’.
I should admit, I was never into titans. I mean, the seven year old me who got an incomplete charity shop 40k second edition knew that sci-fi was superior to fantasy, knew that post apocalyptic tanks were way more deadly than dragons, and that hypermen shooting missiles at each other were far far cooler than wizards and goblins. However the extent of my interest in genocidal mega robots stopped there; I was firmly a 40k (only) person, and the specialist games that I saw in GW Bromley shop window circa 1998 were obviously for adults, silly. I painted. I collected. I read. I played a LOT of Armoured Core and Mech Warrior. I ate so much Haribo. Life was perfect.
‘I’m trying to free your mind, Richard. But I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it’.
Then I went to secondary school, and like perhaps many in the wider hobby, I flirted on and off with models and soaked up the lore for many years, but never fully committed. That was my dirty secret, and the burden was mine alone. That is, until I discovered the joys of the opposite sex and alcohol, which put a stop to any warhammer based dreams immediately. Long night came. It was an age of darkness and strife. It was only once I had a partner and a house of my own did I think, hang on, a huge part of my life is… missing! Straight to Games Workshop, and 6th edition 40k is in my hands. Damn it feels good. I bravely admit to everyone that I’m a massive nerd who loves to paint and play with toys, and made up for a lot of lost time. Now that I was a freed adult, I could also look at specialist games too. Lucky me! I start playing 40k and BFG weekly and all my free time then goes to hobby.
‘You have to let it all go, Rich. Fear, doubt, and disbelief. Free your mind’.
Playing Chaos in that epoch was naturally a gateway into Heresy gaming (where you may recall near all the disgruntled 7th ed players went), and with Heresy came the sense of community I had been severely lacking from 40k. People weren’t just chasing meta or practising for the latest competitive tournament. This new crowd were playing narrative games, were deep into the lore like me, and were painting models to a standard that just blew me away. I started going to both painting and gaming events and weekends, getting involved with the local gaming club and listening to heresy podcasts, and it seemed they were all saying how excited they were for the AT relaunch.
I am ‘Titani-curious’ at this point, but do not commit to the grandmaster box.
Sometime later, after my favourite podcasts hammer home how great the game is and how different it is to when it launched, an opportunity to buy a heavily discounted, unpainted and unloved maniple comes up. I pull the trigger and what a great decision that was! I immediately convince fellow Goonhammer writer, @lordtwisted, to play with me. We play our first game, two warhounds a side. Hook, line and sinker. The ship sailed. The train had no brakes. The banquet was set, and we then feasted on the delicious titan goodness. Then we invite everyone we know locally to the party, merge with another group, and our local London AT scene is born.
‘You have to understand, most people are not ready to be unplugged from 40k. And many of them are so inured, so hopelessly dependent on the system, that they will fight to protect it’.
The Fast and The Fureans
Why did I choose Fureans? Look at them! Look at their gigantic balls (and Battlebling accessories!). Truth is, I picked them solely for the colour scheme – I wanted something tricky but rewarding, that would always stand out. Bonus points that I was already familiar with their lore from the heresy black book, ‘Extermination’ p154 onwards. And yes, I picked the legio before I read the rules, thank you very much (we will get to that shortly). For those unfamiliar, Fureans operated somewhat differently to other legios, they were always under constant attack pre-unification, and due to a weird dynamic of resources, often the only people around to pilot the things were the local feral tribes. This led to a lot of superstition overlooked when they join the great crusade, and of course easy to become corrupt via this occult practice. Bad guys have way more fun. The final argument for yellow paint torture was that there would be plenty of opportunity to convert models if I wanted to. In the end, I went more subtle, but many of my titans have had a few modifications here and there. Check out the nose ring made from a paperclip on the warhound ‘Agurzil’.
Throughout human history, we have been dependent on machines to survive. Fate, it seems, is not without a sense of irony’.
It’s not easy being this cheesy. No seriously, I operate on a ‘if its not broke don’t try fix it’ policy. The colour scheme is long, convoluted and can probably be achieved in 23 fewer steps. But I will try my best to explain if anyone would like a similar result. First, worth mentioning that I don’t paint on sprue. After priming, I blue tack all the armour to the skeleton. I airbrush the armour on skeleton and do the flame stencils at this stage. Then I remove all the armour and then I paint the skeleton. Why? This ensures all my light gradients are consistent across the model – I typically have light coming from an off centre position if that helps in any way. Now the armour is painted, I leisurely do the trim and weathering, before a final re-assemble. If you want to see how a master painter paints, be sure to check out Peter Martin’s Atarus machines.
Adapted from a recipe by @x2painting with a few tweaks – in real life this is very saturated and rich banana yellow.
- Zenithal preshade going from a warm red brown (Rhinox Hide for example) going up to Ivory. Do not use white – this will make the yellow feel sunburnt. Do not use a cold brown, or the yellow will look green in the shadows when we want a nice orange colour. Warm brown to Ivory.
- Vallejo game air gold yellow (our main colour)
- Vallejo Moon yellow (where our light is brightest generally over the ivory)
- Magic step, very carefully use thinned fuegan orange sparingly to create and orange fade on areas you want more interest. You can see this effect particularly well on my warhound’s heads and torsos.
- Gloss Varnish (an important step)
- Sourced from Anarchy Models ‘hotrod flame’ set
- Apply the stencil over the dry gloss and spray your black. I used Vallejo model air black. Do this very lightly and apply thin, relatively dry coats. We do not want wet paint bleeding under the stencil.
- Another black. Something that’s more interesting – I added a little French Mirage Blue to my Model Air Black, but Incubi Darkness mixed in or even Corvus Black would work here. We just want the black to be more interesting where the light hits.
- Carefully peel off the stencils and pray there was no bleed. If you have bleed, you will need to be creative with weathering and decal placement to hide this later on. Gloss varnish the flames – this sets the flames into the yellow, and ensures a nice smooth surface for decals. Once decals are on, we can move to weathering.
Nothing outrageous here, while the model is glossed I do oil work. This would be burnt umber oil paint pin washes on all the armour grooves and generally a black on any metal parts. Once fully dry, I matt varnish the model to seal it all in, and then go to town with different techniques I’ve learnt. I paint on scratches – usually French mirage blue onto the black and moon/ice yellow on the armour. I sponge on Thypus corrosion and silver chips. I make some oil streaks. I airbrush some smoke on the vents and dust around the feet. Just do what feels right but keeping the damage for the most part on the legs and lower body, while trying to remember the scale of these behemoths.
- All trim is basecoated in Scale 75 Decayed Metal. Try your absolute hardest not to spill into the yellow areas. If you do, cover it up with some brown or corrosion of some sort.
- First layer Scale75 Dwarven Gold
- second layer of Scale75 Elven gold (cover most of the previous)
- third layer Scale75 Peridot Alchemy (very small amounts and edges)
- Wash – I use a homemade wash of brown and purple mixed together
- Re-establish highlights with elven or peridot, pick out rivets and edges etc
- Light sparks using Scale75 Citrine Alchemy (be sparing)
- Thinned GW Nikalh Oxide around some bolts and corners.
- Finally, cry self to sleep
Other details and basing
Any details are tackled last, things like lenses, freehands, plasma coils etc. I will happily direct anyone to my laser tube recipe, here:
- Abbaddon black
- Vallejo Model Colour black red
- Vallejo Model Colour Magenta
- Vallejo Model Colour Magenta Fluro
- Vallejo Model Acrylic white
- Final glaze of Vallejo Model Colour Magenta Fluro again
And finally basing. I hate basing. I’m going to add more Epic models to my bases going forward, and maybe some back banners on the machines.
By doing most of the above things, you should have some pretty cool, super saturated Fureans titans! However, I am very much of the opinion that we should all experiment on old tanks and spare parts to find what works for us. I’ve been to a fair few painting courses from different studios and take what I like from each. Highly recommend courses by both Cult of Paint and Lil Legend studio.
‘Do you believe that my choice of colour or being faster, has anything to do with my muscle memory in this place? Do you think that’s air you’re breathing now? ‘
Fureans Play Thoughts
First, let me direct you to Goonhammer’s own analysis here.
I can only run the maniples that I’ve got the titans painted for. For a long time I was using a Venator with support warlord, and obviously no corruptions. Maybe 30 games? Who knows, a lot anyway. The idea here being that the hounds could strip shields for a melta laser laserhat Hunting Auspex reaver in the same turn that I play offensive surge stratagem (the 3sp, extra shot per titan alive in maniple in exchange for heat strat). I don’t think it was necessarily a bad idea, but I typically had a 50/50 win ratio and generally struggled with heat getting the warhounds to stripping range early for the trap. The rare chance that you’d roll machine spirit, and then fail command check, adding another shot perhaps once per game. Hardly groundbreaking, but satisfying when it worked.
So when the traitor book came out I used this opportunity to tweak my list and try out corruptions. I’d heard that they were very strong and I was keen to see what they could do for me. So my new list, and the one that I took to recent events including the Maximal Fire Beachhead event was as follows:
Fureans 1750 (Traitor)
Warlord (Princeps) ‘Schadenfreude’ 495pt
- Apocylpase Missles
- Macro Gatling Blaster
- Mori Quake Cannon
- Hunting Auspex
- Tracking Gyros
Warhound ‘Audacious’ 220pts
- Vulcan Mega Bolter
- Plasma Blast Gun
Warhound ‘Atrocitus’ 220pts
- Vulcan Mega Bolter
- Plasma Blast Gun
Warhound ‘Agurzil’ 200pts (Squadron)
- Vulcan Mega Bolter
- Vulcan Mega Bolter
Titan of Legend Warhound ‘Iben Faruk’ 270pts (Squadron)
- Plasma Blast Gun
- Plasma Blast Gun
- Bastion Shielding
Reaver ‘Isten Kardja 345pts
- Laser Blaster
- Turbo Laser Destructor
- Overwhelming Rage (base mutation)
- Singular Purpose
How did it do? Hard to say, I played three of the top four opponents (Krytos Corsair, No legio ferrox and Psi titan, custom legio ferrox) , so that right there was three pants pulling down losses. However, the other games were a narrow win on points vs an Astorum Extergimus, and a narrow loss vs a Presagius Arcus. Can honestly say, corruptions don’t seem to do much here. Fureans traditionally want to fail command checks, which happens more often when corrupt, but you don’t get to use the old machine spirit table and neither can you pick result on the new table, which makes the Fureans USP kind of pointless with corrupted titans. So you take singular purpose, but anyone can do that. Similarly, I’m not going to be putting expensive shooting wargear (auspexes) on a close combat reaver, and sitting outside the maniple its not going to benefit from offensive surge either. A nice distraction perhaps, but its expensive, got hot very quickly and was really just a missed allocation of points. I’m giving this corrupt reaver an overpowered rating of … 4/10. Nice try Internet. Good when it makes it across the board, but its never getting there against a competent player.
‘Welcome… to the real world’
The future is bright, the future is yellow
So how will I tweak the list going forward (outside of building a Warmaster with a tribal headdress)? Well I like the mandatum maniple, especially when giving Schadenfreude the Warlord ‘Swift Killer’ trait in combination with the Hunting Auspex. It makes it very difficult to be flanked. I’m probably going to drop the reaver altogether, and replace it with knights of some kind. Lancers, outflanking armigers, even a swarm of questoris seem tasty right now. Something to buy more board control and activations but can still be a credible close combat threat. On that note, I think I’m going to drop Offensive Surge. 3SP is so expensive for what it does. Sure you get more shots in exchange for heat, but typically you are waiting until turn 2, usually 3 for the maniple to be ready. By then, you might have lost a titan or have weapons blown off, so it becomes a lot of points for three or four extra shots. I’d sooner outflank some armigers, take Vox Blackout, take Concealment Barrage etc etc.
‘What are you waiting for? You’re faster than this. Don’t think you are, know you are… Come on. Stop trying to crit me and crit me’
This leads me on to my rant. I just dont think Fureans are that strong … any more. Hear me out! When the game came out and Titandeath was all we had, sure easily up there with the then Astorum. Hunting Auspex is no doubt an expensive but utterly amazing upgrade to take on larger class titans. But the game has moved on so much since then. I went to the Warhammer world Legio Walks event just before the pandemic hit, and that felt like the last big event for a lot of people. I feel that many people are still stuck in that perception of the state of the game, despite since then we have had a FAQ and five or six expansion books bringing all kinds of power legios and combinations. The recent Maximal fire Beachhead also seemed confirmed that hypothesis.
Fureans are still good, they just aren’t the power legio they once were. You can do some very nasty things with Vulcanum (ask Bair), Ignatum and Presagius for example, and I still think Astorum rock. The guy who came top at Beachhead played Krytos! Krytos! No-one pre pandemic would have ever dreamed of such. So in short, do I need to get better at the game? Yes, yes I do. Do I need to get a full corsair or extergimus? Yes, yes I do. It might just be painted as Vulpa, though.
Here I shall end my segment with my thoughts on the game right now. They may be outlandish and may offend you. You may not like them. If that is the case, publicly challenge me to a duel at the next event and we will settle this like Princeps!
‘Remember, all I’m offering is the truth. Nothing more.’
- Gentleman’s agreement says no Acastus knights. If you do take, I wish you perpetual athlete’s foot. Similarly, all knight armies kinda suck to play against.
- Dominant Strategist is a zero sum game. If you take it, I’m going to take it, and we cancel each other out. It’s just too good, too reliable, when one person has it and the other doesn’t. Be cool, don’t take it.
- Battlebling is an amazing place to get cool heads, nameplates and alternate weapons for your Titans. It’s not the only place however, I’m always amazed by the 3d printing community that give away files for free.
- Fureans are the coolest looking legion, closely followed by the other flame legio, Surturvora. You can see examples that I’ve painted for both at my shameless plug @diseased_paint on IG.
- Warp displacement is fine as an interrupt action, doesn’t need changing. Fite me.
- Corrupted titans are nothing really to worry about, in any configuration I’ve played as, played against or seen.
- Maniple and stratagem choice seems to be far more important than which legio you choose.
- Magnetise everything, even heads. I use x-wing style ball magnets for my heads.
- Titan Hunter infantry drive me nuts.
- If you are in London and want to play AT, hit me up and I’ll introduce you to our group. You could play me or one of the Goonhammer superstars. If you have read this far, you should feel obliged to spread the word of our cult to all the minds who need to be freed of vanilla 40k, and introduced to the utterly amazing game of Adeptus Titanicus.
‘Closing Morpheus quotation’.
Author’s note: Yes, that last quote was intentional. Don’t @ us