12 January 2012

Painting Tutorial - Khurasan Space Demons using Metallic Sprays

One of this year's stocking stuffers from my wife was a small order from Khurasan Minis.  There were a few new items inside (including some Control Battalion that I'm dying to paint), but mostly it was reinforcements for my Space Demon army.  I already had two packs of Assault Warriors, one pack of Hammerheads, and a Queen.  This order gave me a pack of the second-pose Assault Warriors, a pack of Nymphs, and for my larger games, my first Colossus.

Since we're having a very warm winter here in Iowa, I broke out the Testors Metallic sprays and got my new bugs onto the battlefield.  Just like my previous Space Demons, I'm using the ultra-quick paint scheme pioneered by Cacique Caribe over on TMP.  Here's a breakdown of the process.

Step One - File, Assemble, and Base

As usual, Khurasan's minis require very little cleanup.  The Nymphs just needed a bit of filing on the bottom, and the Colossus went together quickly.  I spent a bit more time on the Assault Warriors.  One of the poses has a cast base which is larger than my 3/4" fender washers, so it needed a bit of trimming.  I also took a little time to make sure the heads went on at a few different angles, and I reposed the soft tails to add some variety.

Step Two - Undercoat

Honestly, this step is optional.  But I've found that it does help to get an even coat out of the metallic sprays, so I used my white Armory Primer on the figures.  It also helps me to find any small bits of flash or mold lines that I missed the first time around (in this case, there was just a little bit of flash in the armpits of a few Assault Warriors). It also helped to seal the Colossus together - my superglue was old, and the legs kept falling off when I first assembled it.

Step Three - Metallics

The fun part - giving some life and distinction to the Space Demons without any real effort.  When I painted my last batch, I used Testors Arctic Blue for the Hammerheads, Burgundy Red for the Queen, and Turquoise for the Assault Warriors.  I wanted the Nymphs to be "extensions" of the Queen herself, so they received the burgundy paint. The Colossus has some little recesses in the shoulder that could be some type of acid spray, so I tied it together with the Hammerheads.  

A note on the metallics: I learned that they have a much longer drying time than other Testors or Tamiya sprays.

Step Four - Wash

Once the sprays were dry, I set the figures out on some Universal Painting Trays (those mockup credit cards that keep showing up in my  mailbox) and, working in groups of six, brushed an undiluted wash over the entire figure.  I used GW Badab Black on my earlier models, but this time I used Secret Weapon Heavy Body Black.  The Secret Weapon washes are very good for this sort of work, as long as you remember to keep shaking them.  The Heavy Black is also a bit stronger than the GW wash - it only took a single coat to finish the Nymphs and Assault Warriors.  The Colossus took a few coats to get all the recesses on the belly, so I worked on the Nymph and Warrior bases while the larger model was drying.  

Step Five - Base and Seal

Nothing fancy on the bases - painted Model Master Euro Gray onto the bases, flocked them with dark gray gravel, sealed with thinned Elmer's glue, and drybrushed with Vallejo Heavy Bluegray.  The figures themselves were sealed with Wonder Wash Black, which gave them a nice and glossy finish.  

That's it - a quick, painless, and fairly inexpensive way to make a Space Demon army.  There are plenty of colored metallics on the Model Master brush-on range, if you don't want to spent the extra cash on spray paints.  And the army would work just fine with a single color - I just like seeing the difference between an Assault Warrior and a Hammerhead from tabletop distance. 

Play a game already!

I've played a couple quick FUBAR games with the Nymphs and Assault Warriors since painting these.  But I still haven't used the Colossus in a game.  I plan to run a scenario where a Colossus is hiding underground and ambushes a passing convoy.  When the convoy is stopped, other Space Demons will converge on the damaged vehicles, and the convoy personnel must hold out for extraction.

So what's next for my Space Demons?  Well, I really like the Nymphs - perfect little swarming bugs.  I thought about mounting three per 1.25" base, but singles on 3/4" washers will work better on my Space Base tiles.  I might try to add one to my Queen's base, just for decoration. 

The Colossus is a terrific mini.  A second one would make my Space Demons into a pretty formidable opponent, even against tanks and mecha.  

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