We’ve been furiously grinding away at our painting desks here in Goonhammer Towers getting the Leagues of Votann built and painted from the boxes Games Workshop provided us to review. While the rules team had some very interesting reactions, which you can see here, things were much simpler here in painting land. We had a uniform reaction of “damn, these are incredibly cool” and pretty much immediately got started. If their style at all appeals to you, you will not be disappointed.
Across the board it’s clear these are modern GW models. Mold lines are pretty well hidden, and aren’t very large. Details are distinct. Assembly is quick and easy. Here are our more detailed thoughts on the various models.
Jack: I love them both. They’ve both got at least a few build options between weapon choices and different crest options, so they won’t all be completely identical on the battlefield, but they will be pretty hard to convert (more due to the lack of other Votann models to source parts from than any real issues with the sculpts). I grabbed one of the space helmets from the Hearthkyn to put on my Khal, as I don’t like the leader of my army running around a battlefield bare headed!
Rockfish: I will call out the lack of feminine heads on either of these sprues despite there being a bit of free space, its not too bad since you can just go and grab one from your troop box but it is a miss. Otherwise these are excellent HQ models, dynamic poses and distinct silhouettes will prevent them from getting lost in a army despite pulling in lots of design elements from the other kits.
Something I do find funny is how much of a hero rock the Khal/Ûthar the Destined is on to get them up to the height of the Einhyr.
Colin: I was really pleased with the options for the Kahl, though I would have liked a wizened female head for the kit. That being said, I did use one from the Hearthkyn sprue and it worked great, so it’s a minor inconvenience. I had to go with the Power Fist and Storm Bolter, though! A classic combo. For the Einhyr Champion I used the helmeted head from the Kahl model and I think it looks even better on the Einhyr. The models painted up just as efficiently as the rest of the box. Overall two great offerings!
Jack: As your base (and only) troops choice you’re going to have a lot of these running around your army, and good news is that this kit will support it well. There are 10 distinct poses, and I don’t think the weapon arms require being paired with specific torsos, so you can mix and match parts for variety. There are enough heads for everyone to be either bare headed or wearing helmets, including a few extra partially opened ones. My only complaint is that there’s only one robot head per 10 kin.
Rockfish: Its bullshit there is only the one robot, otherwise this is a really fantastic troop box that GW has put together. There’s a good level of detail on everything but its simple, there aren’t a million little fleshy bits or doodads on each of these so you aren’t going to exhaust yourself while painting your fiftieth basic dorf.
Colin: I love this kit. This is one of the best troop kits in recent memory. It’s characterful, easy to assemble with different head and weapon options to give variety, and well proportioned. For me, one of the real strengths of this release is that the models are not overdesigned or overwrought with detail. They are utilitarian without being dull to paint. There is plenty to stay busy with, but you won’t get bogged down in a ton of detail. I will happily paint 20-30 more of these, no problem.
Rockfish: While this is a really nice kit visually, with the caveat there’s quite a lot going on for their points value so you might find them a lot to paint after a while. I will admit I didn’t find it that fun to build as stuff didn’t quite want to fit, but I do like how well they managed the hover effect.
Something worth noting is that sub assemblies will be annoying on this kit, the coat of the driver goes under the rear suspension so you will need to leave both sides of those off if you want to do them separately. This also means you are looking at a minimum of five subassemblies as the hand is molded onto the steering column and you would want to leave the gunner off too. You will also find this means that the main trike body will be separate from the base too, which is going to make holding it to paint a bit annoying.
Colin: I can’t decide if these are my favorite models in the army yet, but they certainly are the leader in the clubhouse! I love the size and the balance of the sculpt. The riders have a ton of character and who doesn’t love a space Dwarf in a 3/4 length coat! I painted the bikes in subassemblies with the riders and gunner separate, which made the airbrushing on the bike a lot easier. I was pleasantly surprised by how efficient the bikes were to work on as well. In fact, I painted the entire army box at once! One of the things that helped a lot is that a lot of the extra rope and stowage options for the bikes are optional. I chose to leave them off for ease of painting. An added bonus is now I have a ton of those bits.
At the end of the day, this is a release I am really impressed with. I wasn’t excited about it until I got the models in hand, but now I can’t wait to expand on this army box. It’s a home run. Wouldn’t change a thing.