> Azure Flames « The Four Strands

The Four Strands Modeling, Painting, Gaming and Storytelling


Indominus Assault Intercessors part 1, and 1st Squad 3rd Company Tactical retouch and decal

I chose to split the Assault Intercessors in two. The first half, including a custom Thunder Hammer conversion is complete!

Following that, I went back to the very first Tactical Squad I ever painted to do some quick touch ups and add decals.

They were a mess.

I've touched up squads, especially for Big Games, but never this one. This had a 19 year old paint job. Details were ignored, mould lines were still around, and paint was a bit cakey.

I did what I could. They look much better now, especially with the new decals.

Long time Fourstrands veterans will recognize Brother Jonathan as the lone Tactical marine who stood against a heavily armed Guard commander and Commisar for THREE ROUNDS of close combat, holding up their army and turning a loss into a win. He was the first Marine I named.

He used to be in 4th company, but this squad is now clearly part of the 3rd.

Well... the 4th Company is going to have something bad happen to it. You'll see in future updates to the Big Game VI storyline.

Next: The final two Tactical Sergeants and another Tactical squad update! Hopefully this one will be less... intense.


9th Edition Debut! 1000 Azure Flames vs. Deathwatch – Ransack

AFK Games is now doing game night with limited tables! Masks and social distancing are required, so fear not all three readers, because I am playing it safe.

This game was played on 10/9/20, which prevented me from using the newest Marine codex. Therefore my list was drawn from the old 8th Edition codex. However, my opponent Thomas and I agreed to use the stats for models and weapons released in FAQs so we were sort of close to a 9th edition game! Sadly my list would have been illegal due to using Scouts as troops (they are now Elites) and Double Heavy Flamers on Land Speeders (not an option anymore, even in Legends!)

Despite the inconveniences, Thomas and I made do. Here's the Batrep!

Bozeman - Azure Flames (counts as Salamanders using 8th ed rules with modifications to copy leaked 9th ed rules) 1000 points

  • Battalion Detachment
    • Captain Khalil on Bike, Warlord, Miraculous Constitution, Forge Master (Exemplar of the Promethean Creed), Drake-Smiter (Thunder Hammer), Storm Shield
    • Lieutenant, Jump Pack, Power Axe, Combi-Melta
    • Intercessors x 5, Bolt Rifles, Thunder Hammer
    • Scouts x 10, Bolters, Missile Launcher
    • Tactical Squad x 5, Storm Bolter, Lascannon
    • Land Speeders x 3, 2 x Heavy Flamers
    • Thunderfire Cannon

Thomas - Deathwatch (using 8th ed rules with bolter-crippling FAQ)

  • Patrol Detachment
    • Watch Captain in Terminator Armor, Combi-Melta, Chainfist, Warlord
    • Deathwatch Kill Team x 5, 5 x Combi-Melta
    • Deathwatch Kill Team x 5, 4 x Heavy Bolter
    • Corvus Blackstar
  • Vanguard Detachment
    • Venerable Dreadnought, Twin Lascannon, Missile Launcher
    • Venerable Dreadnought, Power Fist, Storm Bolter, Assault Cannon
    • Contemptor Dreadnought, Multi-Melta, Assault Cannon
      • (Note: I believe this detachment had an HQ but it got forgotten during setup)

Mission - Ransack

6 objectives. +5VP for controlling 2 objectives, 3 objectives, or more objectives than your opponent (cumulative) at the end of your Command Phase.


Turn 1 - Azure Flames

Khalil roars ahead, and charges the Lascannon/Missile Dreadnought, killing it in one combat! The Land Speeders accompanied by the Jump Pack Lieutenant wipe out the Heavy Bolter squad.

Turn 1 - Deathwatch

The Corvus Blackstar flies all the way across the board and kills 4/5 of the Intercessor Squad. Fire from the Corvus and a well placed punch from the Dreadnought kills one Land Speeder and wounds another.

Turn 2 - Azure Flames

Land Speeders fall back and the Dreadnought is killed by the Lieutenants Combi-Melta. Khalil charges and damages the Contemptor Dreadnought.

Turn 2 - Deathwatch

The Corvus drops off the Watch Captain and Melta Squad. Poor rolls leave one Land Speeder alive, but remove the last Intercessor. The Watch Captain bakes the Techmarine. Poor rolls by Khalil damage the Contemptor further.

Turn 3 - Azure Flames

Land Speeder kills one of the Melta squad while the Lieutenant meltas and then CHARGES the Corvus Blackstar, causing medium damage! Khalil slays the Contemptor.

Turn 3 - Deathwatch

Fire from the Melta squad reduces the Lieutenant to 1 wound.  Corvus Blackstar's weapons bounce off of Khalil's Storm Shield.

Turn 4 - Azure Flames

Khalil turbo boosts to an objective. The Lieutenant charges the Melta Squad, kills one, and is slain! For the 4th time this game, the Tactical Squad Lascannon misses! The Scout Missile Launcher reduces the Corvus Blackstar to one wound, and then Bolters finish it! Turn not pictured. Game ceded.


Azure Flames: 54 VP
Deathwatch: 10 VP


9th edition is going to play a lot differently! It's now about scoring LOTS of points in LOTS of ways! Choosing good Secondary Objectives is key. For example, I chose the mission-specific secondary Ransack, which didn't score me any points at all because I didn't hold objectives on the opposing board edge enough!

I rolled very well except for the Lascannon shots from the Tactical Squad. Thomas had quite a bad night, with Las-Talons on the Corvus missing more often than they hit! Thomas also had too few boots on the ground to take advantage of mission objectives.

All in all, I think 9th is going to be good. However, we played on a board much bigger than the new minimum. Games may be played in much smaller spaces! This will give assault armies a leg up, but also prevent hiding and require a lot of terrain.

Bonus, a new player, Ben, showed off his sweet Indominus Necrons! Check 'em out!

Next: Assault Intercessors and more batreps!


Indominus Primaris Lieutenant Sandeep, leader of the Lightguard, and Shotgun Scout touchups with decals

My Primaris lieutenant is complete! Formerly Sergeant Sandeep of the Lightguard, now Lieutenant of the 4th Company, seconded to Captain Antonius.

In addition, I spent a while fixing up my old shotgun scouts! I used them all the time in 3rd where they were the superior choice to Bolter scouts. Indeed, in Antonius' backstory, he used a Shotgun as a scout, meaning these august and weary models represented him and his squad!

These were some of the first models I painted and it shows. Almost two decades of wear made them a challenge to touch up. In addition, some of their faces made them look like they had just seen the Ark of the Covenant open. Why didn't they get a touch up until now? Guess I just didn't think about it.

Now, however, they have a nice touch up and snazzy decals! Next: Sniper Scout Sergeants!


Scout Sergeants and Close Combat Scout Touchups with Decals

First, five new Scout Sergeants to round out the weapons options for Scout Squads. As I use Scouts a lot, these will be a way to maximize a squad's effectiveness and possibly spend 5 extra points. These were kitbashed from plastic scouts and bits from the Vanguard and Sternguard veteran sets. I normally hate the Vanguard bare heads, but they're perfect for scout sergeants! They look so 2nd ed!

...that was the easy part. The hard part was updating my old pewter close combat scouts. Earlier, when I touched up the Sniper Scouts, I barely had to do anything because I had already stripped and re-painted them for Big Game V. As such, their paint was much closer to my current standards.

I haven't touched these close combat models in 19 years.

Their paint jobs were not only riddled with mistakes, missed details, and irregular colors, but were also severely damaged. All had at least some pewter showing thanks to chips.

But no more! They're ready to rumble, complete with new decals!

The close combat scouts have 5 poses. Two of them have the pistol up, obscuring the right shoulder pad. I had to trim the decal for effect, which worked well thanks to Micro Set/Sol.

Next: the Indominus Lieutennant, the last of the reborn Lightguard!


Indominus Bladeguard as Lightguard Reborn, and Sniper Scout Decals

The next part of my Indominus project is complete! The Lightguard are reborn as Bladeguard Veterans!

Formerly the Honor Guard of Chapter Master Perseus, the Lightguard sought permission to cross the Rubicon Primaris en route to the besieged world of Altea, where Captain Antonius, Scion of Atrus, held with the remaining Primaris recruits from the Indominus Crusade. Arriving just in time to save Antonius, the Lightguard pledged loyalty to him, and officially joined the 4th Company (shoehorned into the 20th squad slot).

Also, as part of the ongoing decal project, I added decals to my old pewter sniper scouts. They required almost no touch ups! I've been using them pretty regularly for all of 8th, so they've really toughed it out!

Note that the kneeling version of this model has its right shoulder covered, and didn't need decals.

Next: a bevy of Scout Sergeants to round out Scout Sergeant weapon options, and some close combat scouts get some TLC and decals!


Firstborn Lieutenant, Tactical Sergeant, and Bolter Scout Overhaul

Two more models from the gray pile to the done pile!

In addition, I broke out my old pewter Bolter scouts. They were in rough shape, lots of paint chips and many details left un-detailed. I fixed them up, added detail, and replaced the hand-painted squad designation with a decal.

I actually had a bit of trouble this time! One of the decals mysteriously vanished. I had to use another. Luckily I had a few spares, but not many.

Next: The Lightguard return as Bladeguard Veterans, plus some more decal action! I'm keeping to my promise of one decal upgrade per finished new paint job.


Bladeguard Ancient – Return of the Lightguard! Freehand Banner and Conversion

I've been hinting at the return of some old friends. Long ago I ordered some Forge World Mk V armor to make a custom Honor Guard for Chapter Master Perseus: The Lightguard.

I never got to use them. They were too expensive. Now, honor guard seem to be an Ultramarines thing. Boo.

But they're not gone. In fact, they've crossed the Rubicon! Behold, my Indominus Bladeguard Ancient, the first of the Lightguard Reborn!

What's this? That's not the Bladeguard Ancient from the Indominus box! Where's his creepy skeleton banner and useless bone hand?

They've been removed. I drilled into the helmet, removed the skeleton hand, and carved the fingers so he can hold the helmet instead. I've replaced the head with a Sternguard Veteran head. I chopped off the skeleton banner and replaced it with the regular banner from the old Command Squad box set (I had a spare). Finally, a Black Ark Corsair cloak was green-stuffed onto his back, under the backpack.

Because the previous Lightguard had my first freehand banner, I could do no less for this venerable gentleman. The only part that is not freehand is the "IV" decal. I added the Lightguard Chasma Spica Constellation logo to both the banner and the heraldry shield on the chest. These stars represent the 11 star systems in the Azure Flame's home sector, fought over in BG V.

The cloak had each scale highlighted on both top and bottom for a nice 3D effect. The flame up top was started with Enchanted Blue and coated with contrast paint, then highlighted all the way to white.

Next: a squad gets their decals, and some Tactical Sergeants get finished!


Firstborn Tactical Sergeants and Intercessor Decals

These Sergeants have been in and out of my lists for the entirety of 8th ed, but it's only now I'm getting them painted up.

For efficiency, I also added decals to my Intercessor squad, so I could varnish them all at once. It went well, so instead of making each decal squad a project, I'm going to do a squad worth of decals for each paint job I do from now on.

Next: back to Indominus! No more cookie cutter by-the-book models, it's time to bring back some old friends and make the Indominus sculpts fit the Azure Flames more closely!


New Major Project: Decal Squad Markings

Thanks to Josh Muma of Bedlam Creations, I am about to do something that I've always wanted to do.

I'm completely re-doing the shoulder pad squad markings for the entire Azure Flames army.

Bedlam creations helped me to set up a very large decal sheet with roman numerals 1-20 in all of the colors of the companies except orange and purple (they wouldn't fit).

Due to the complete coincidence of Bedlam Creations being so close to me, they shipped incredibly fast. I got them today and took them for a spin on the new Indominus models I've already painted.

Only the green is shown so far because all of my Primaris marines are going to belong to the 4th company. Soon, though, I will intersperse labeling the other squads in my box. Once done with my current Firstborn Sergeants, I will now work on alternating between Indominus and already painted squads to replace shoulder pads.

On a more practical note, even in a good case, paint jobs and models suffer wear and tear. I haven't done a full-case maintenance job for half a decade and it's long overdue. This is the perfect opportunity.

If other things go well, Firstborn marines may even get a base size upgrade, if that seems like a good idea. It doesn't now, but it may in the future.


Next: Firstborn Sergeants and then a special Indominus surprise! Some old friends are coming back!


Indominus Primaris Chaplain

One more of the Indominus box set done.

This chaplain proved to be a bit of a challenge. First, when clipping the backpack from the sprue, the back of the skull at the top snapped off! It was not able to be bent back or repaired, so I had to completely remove the pole that held the crowned skull and replace it with plastic rod. Mine will be a bit taller than a normal Indominus Chaplain as a result.

During painting, my sub-assemblies were:

  • Base
  • Legs, head, and Crozius
  • Front torso and bolt pistol
  • Backpack

Next: Firstborn Sergeants for Tactical Squads. After that, if I get a shipment from my LGS, I'll do Bladeguard Veterans. If not, probably the Lieutenant with the Volkite Pistol. Stay tuned!

Lightword Theme by Andrei Luca Go to top ↑