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The Great Crusade > The Great Crusade Display Case > SEPTEMBER 2010 - The Dark Mechanicum

Title: SEPTEMBER 2010 - The Dark Mechanicum
Description: From the twisted forgeworld of Whitehorn

ShroudFilm - September 6, 2010 01:46 PM (GMT)
With less than a week to go until the fourth and final 'Age of the Emperor' event at Warhammer World, we thought we'd whet everyone's appetite for pre-Heresy carnage with a look at an army which has received nominations for the Display Case almost every time the blog was updated! Since the project was first started specifically to take part in the Tempus Fugitives' campaigns, it seems only fitting that it showcase some of the best that TGC has to offer.

With amazing conversions and great interpretations of the background fluff, Whitehorn's Dark Mechanicum army stands out as a truly impressive thematic force, in a storyline field otherwise filled with M41 repaints and powergaming army lists!

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Receiving a nomination for 'Best Army' at the previous AOTE in May, Whitehorn has high hopes for this lot next week - his new army lists are apparently far more competitive, and early responses to his new units have been positive all round.

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Taking time to refresh his organic components before a hard afternoon's soul-forging, Whitehorn is happy to chat a little more about the technological terrors he has unleashed:

This project is foremost amongst my gaming armies, because it's actually met success rather than the shelf and continues to hold my interest. The army was inspired by my experiences at the first two Age of the Emperor weekends and somewhat kick-started by a 'Tale of' project at my local club. I wanted to explore the concept or robotic daemons and possessed constructs and later introducing some aspects of the Dark Mechanicus.

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My venture into the robo-daemon world was inspired by reading Graham's novel Mechanicum - there's a mention of "feral servitors" attacking a refinery and it really grabbed my attention. I liked the concept of lobotomised servitors reverting to their primal nature, perhaps influenced by daemon or machine to malevolent ends. I sought to get hold of every servitor model available, several times!

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Daemons aside, the first true Mechanicum model I built was the Magos. It was a very rewarding conversion to undertake, incorporating a lot of components and some greenstuff sculpting. I based this piece, like many others, on artwork from Collected Visions. I quite often take the book to bed to generate ideas for other models!

A lot of time went by without giving much attention to the army as it stood. I toyed with various forms for the Skitarii and played around with custom Chimera builds, but it wasn't until the urgency of the next campaign approached that I got back up to speed and dived into production. As part of my drive, I started up a project to fully build and paint one model a day. This worked very well to motivate me and it was a lot of fun, and also really helped with my choice of colours. I wanted to tie the models together somehow, despite being extremely varied in form.

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The Hypaspists are perhaps my favourite. They're fairly simple conversions, initially replacing Death Korps heads with sculpted hoods. As the quantity of models grew, I started adding renegade and servitor parts, sometimes wholly sculpted bits to add more variety. I am working on a third squad of Hypaspists, bringing the total to 36 models!

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I also love the simplicity but effective look of my menials. Having a huge Goblin army built from Skull Pass sets, my bits box was full of spare musicians and standard bearers - they formed the bulk of the conversions, adding Graveguard skulls as face plates. The new Skaven range has also begun to provide some much needed variation in the group - hopefully the Island of Blood boxed set will provide a few more slaves to the grind!

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A few models were added purely for having a legal and whole force for the Age of the Emperor events. My assassin, Athena, was a suitable, cheap choice for the required named character slot. She's an unconverted Callidus assassin, painted half black, half white, with a death mask.

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My Myrmidons are also inspired by the rules from Tempus Fugitives. Combining the Defiler kit with a Penitent Engine pilot gave these walkers a very dark, enslaved feel to the machine. They're also very powerful on the battlefield, hogging a lot of attention from anti-tank weaponry across all my games!

The creation of this army very much coincided with me starting my gaming blog website and so almost every model seen here has been explained and in some cases a tutorial written. However, I am always happy to answer questions about anything in my army or offer tips as I continue to expand and develop it.

I've been working to adapt and expand this army for the final Age of the Emperor campaign and in the future I hope to make it usable within normal army lists for 40k, such as Imperial Guard. I've plenty of unfinished models to address and am always investing in more. You will definitely be seeing more crazy conversions from me over time!

- Whitehorn


...and with a shriek of Stormraven engines, he is off to war! Congratulations to Whitehorn, and best of luck at the AOTE weekend. :)

As always guys, keep those nominations for the Display Case coming! It doesn't have to be a full army - it can be just a single squad or miniature that you particularly like, or that you feel sums up the essence of the PH hobby. Just use the 'Report Post' function to bring it to our attention, and add a note about why you think it should be included in the case.

Iacton - September 6, 2010 01:54 PM (GMT)
A fine, fine effort, sir.

Congratulations to you indeed.

Now, do you fancy a quick rubber of croquet and Pimms on the lawn before tiffin?

Whitehorn - September 6, 2010 02:30 PM (GMT)
Thanks for the award and making use of my 'never-complete' article text. Already the pics are outdated, but such is life.


I have strived to make a competitive force as well as a heavily themed army. It's often a struggle when you know you can be facing Primarchs, Spartan Land Raiders, squads of 10 Storm Shield Terminators, but it's been a damned fun challenge.

Magnus Myrmidons are, IMO, broken. They're not un-killable, but if left alone, they cause horrific damage to Astartes forces with the Sonic Cannons. A few of you have seen their devastation first hand.

I quite often take the book to bed

Proof reading is awesome. Yes, I sleep with this book and it whispers to me in my sleep.

There's a lot more to the army and it keeps growing and improving/ Hopefully, I'll get some kind of organised gallery sorted out at to some point before I move onto my Iron hands fully.

ShroudFilm - September 6, 2010 02:33 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (Whitehorn @ Sep 6 2010, 02:30 PM)
Magnus Myrmidons are, IMO, broken. They're not un-killable, but if left alone, they cause horrific damage to Astartes forces with the Sonic Cannons. A few of you have seen their devastation first hand.

Yes, I have had two of my armies liquefied by these monstrosities...

Kidjal - September 6, 2010 03:10 PM (GMT)
Spot a in Ross' menials from your model range coming soon - Goblins, skaven..what next? Stunted high elves? Gnoblars?

Well done though, itd be a shame if you wernt nominated this year, at the very least.

Whitehorn - September 6, 2010 03:13 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (Kidjal @ Sep 6 2010, 03:10 PM)
Well done though, itd be a shame if you wernt nominated this year, at the very least.

No doubt my army looks better this year as I've painted what was unpainted last time, but have I made enough new material to be nominated again?

My worry is a new 'wow factor' to grab attention. I have none.

Kidjal - September 6, 2010 03:31 PM (GMT)
Its not that kind of army, though. If it was glossy and wow, with vivid colours and stunning freehand - it wouldn't look like the Mechanicum.

My personal view is that you were nominated for an in progress army in May - you wern't looking for the attention. That army is new, you're finishing it for this event.

ShroudFilm - September 6, 2010 04:02 PM (GMT)
I think the Stormraven being painted will add a lot of "wow" factor. I've yet to see your super-heavy though...

Iacton - September 6, 2010 04:04 PM (GMT)
Storm Raven and that defiler thing have punch. The gobbo conversions are possibly my favourites though...

Hero of Istvaan - September 6, 2010 04:18 PM (GMT)
congrats dude, really well deserved!

i hope u get nominated again, though im not making a decision for who i want to win as Dargor will be there too with his equally stunning Blood Angels, so yeah, good luck to you both :rolleyes:

Whitehorn - September 6, 2010 04:23 PM (GMT)
It'd be nice if they brought back an award for each faction again, last leg seemed a bit limp compared to part 1 and 2 awards.

Magos Explorator - September 6, 2010 04:37 PM (GMT)
This is a great force--this Magos approves! :)

army310 - September 6, 2010 07:29 PM (GMT)
congrats man cant wait to see what you do next.

Dargor - September 6, 2010 09:40 PM (GMT)
I have frequently(as in daily) confessed my admiration for your work mate.A well deserved Display Case entry,congratulations and i hope my Blood Angels will meet the Dark Mechanicum in the fields of the battle next weekend! :)

Whitehorn - September 6, 2010 09:49 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (Dargor @ Sep 6 2010, 09:40 PM)
I have frequently(as in daily) confessed my admiration for your work mate.A well deserved Display Case entry,congratulations and i hope my Blood Angels will meet the Dark Mechanicum in the fields of the battle next weekend! :)

Thank you!

I am now painting up 3 Land Raiders and A Stormblade in case I have to shoot you!

Brother Handro - September 6, 2010 10:24 PM (GMT)

This army (amongst others) really sums up the essence of what Great Crusade/Heresy modelling is all about. The character, the care, quality, (often tho' not exclusively to the benefit of those with powergaming lists) all add up to something that stands out from the M41 crowd.

Well done sir.

Armorum Ferrum - September 7, 2010 10:47 AM (GMT)
Congrats Horn ! A well deserved entry in the Glass Cabinet, you inspire us all.

Vinnie - September 7, 2010 01:58 PM (GMT)
Well done dude, this army has looked several kinds of awesome since I've been part of TGC, and now as it nears completion I can safely say it did not disappoint :P

Can't wait to see your Iron Hands now!

fritzagelmann - September 7, 2010 05:46 PM (GMT)

BigWill - September 9, 2010 07:13 PM (GMT)
This a great army an I hope it is only still in progress.

Wolf Lord Mjolnir - September 16, 2010 06:39 AM (GMT)
A truly awesome army. It is very evident that a lot of work has gone into making it truly unique.

Well deserved entry into the case.

Congratulations mate.

Bjorn - September 22, 2010 05:34 PM (GMT)
A bit delayed but congratulations mate, trully well deserved to feature here. I love this army you've made, your imagination combined with your skill and a lot of hard work have produced an army that is of the most caracterful and unique i've seen so far.

Keep up the good work mate!

Kriegersen - November 7, 2010 08:28 PM (GMT)
sorry for the thread necro guys

Wow dude, its great to see this army finally get the recognition it deserves, Can't wait to see your next project due, no doubt it will be as inpresive as this or better
:D :D

Whitehorn - November 11, 2010 10:24 AM (GMT)
Some newer shots of various models:

Storm Hawk:

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Land raider + Superheavy added:

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Another group shot:

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There's more updates since AOTE (notably what I did for Open War), but I'll be bringing them and camera(s) this weekend.

King Fluff - November 12, 2010 03:08 PM (GMT)
An awesome army and really catchy concept - love it.

Can't wait to finish my 'light' Mechanicum for a machine off?!?! :P

KRUG_666 - November 23, 2010 08:04 AM (GMT)
gorgeous army, well done !

Loken - December 1, 2010 03:22 PM (GMT)
Amazing stuff! Truly beautiful.


Pip - December 18, 2010 01:07 PM (GMT)
Utterly awesome army. I salute you, good Sir.

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