On the face of it, painting a war band for Saga shouldn’t really take a month. After all, around 40 figures is all that is required. I suspect that some painters out there could knock these out in a couple of days, if not faster. I know of some wargamers who will paint in concentrated bursts to complete an army and then spend a month or so without painting anything. For me it is a case of slow and steady gets there and so having completed my band of levy, the next job was to paint 8 Fiana or hearth guard. I tend to paint in short sessions of just an hour or so but manage to get at least three of these sessions in a week. My method means that there is always something on the painting table and when I get a spare 10 minutes, I move a project on. So although I have been spending time on the Fiana, whenever I have had a spare few minutes I have been preparing and researching the next batch of models.
So back to the painting table and my unit of Fiana. As you can see, they are all armed with Dane Axes, which makes them pretty lethal in combat, reducing your opponents armour by one. Used at the correct time in a game, these boys will crush the opposition with their ferocity. There’s just one problem, their own armour is reduced to 4, making them a bit of a one hit wonder when faced with equal opposition. As with my Irish Levy slingers or ‘Kerns’ I have used a fairly limited palette of earthy and drab tones. As these figures represent Hearth guard though, I have painted them with a bit of decoration on their clothes. The basing followed my usual practice of using the Vallejo Dark Earth paste, painted and dry brushed to bring out the texture. I then added some green scatter. I have also made some movement trays for my saga units. I wont be using these in the game but it makes a convenient way of storing and transporting the models. They also look a bit more organised in the figure display cabinet. ( refer to my previous Blog post ‘Round Base, Square hole’ )
Of course I also added some tufts to the bases to give them a bit more texture. Again, I have kept with the Javis Tufts to give the army a cohesive look.
I have also completed work on the Sarissa Dark Ages A frame hut. You can see it in the background of the top picture. Here is a better picture of my Irish Warband, based and in their movement trays defending their one and only hut!.
You will see that I have painted 8 Fiana to count as Hearth guard, these will count as two points in my Saga band. However, the plan is to paint at least two other Hearth Guard, that will serve as Curadh. These are used as single warlords and are detatched from their parent unit of Hearth guard to operate as ‘Champions’, generating their own Saga dice, benefiting from the Warlords ability and generally able to cause mayhem! The Footsore pack of Irish Heroes with Dane axes look like good candidates. Although I will use them as ‘standard Curadh’ armed with javelins in the actual game, these models look like they are the Champions that they are supposed to represent. Here they are undercoated and ready for painting.
You can see that I have use a black undercoat for these figures as the chain mail will be easier to paint by simply dry brushing with Vallejo steel. There are three figures in the photo. The one on the far right will be my Pack master for the wolf hounds that I intend to use as one unit of warriors. Now as regards the Wolfhounds, I am going to take a bit of a liberty and use the Irish Wolf hound from my own DeeZee range. He comes as part of a the ‘Large Dogs’ pack and is a very big model as you will see from the pictures below. I realise that he is out of scale but I don’t think that this will matter for the purposes of the game. I wanted my dogs to look like they really could pull down a fully armoured warrior! You can just imagine the warriors of the time talking about their encounters with the wolfhounds…’You should have seen them Aeflaed, they were as big as ponies, ‘orrible great things that would rip your throat out!’
I’ll have to do a bit of conversion work on these as I would like to have at least three different poses. If they look the part, I’ll see about getting them cast as a pack as part of the DeeZee range, so it might be a while before these are ready. In the meantime, I have plenty more to paint!
A final note. Last weeks blog was an account of my day at the Saga Ironman Day at Wargames Illustrated. There is now a very nice video that shows how the day went and as I am in it, it seems appropriate to include a link here: