“Men of Tanith, do you want to live forever?”-Colonel Commissar Ibram Gaunt
The men and women of the Tanith 1st and Only hold a special place in my heart. When I was just getting into Warhammer 40k, I purchased a copy of The Lost, the third omnibus, on an impulse. The gritty, realistic, yet strangely noble take on the Imperium’s cannon fodder, the portrayal of the life of an Imperial Guard regiment during a crusade was fascinating, and has colored my perceptions on how the Guard operate significantly
Like many before, I sought to emulate the famous “Ghosts” on the tabletop, but hamstrung by the lack of models, I ended up simply making my custom regiment a part of the greater Sabbat Worlds Crusade, using the Cadian models to do so. However, an opportunity arose. During my usual eBay crawl, I found a seller for the original splash release of Tanith Guardsmen. While GW still sold the Ghosts as a stripped down version with just Colonel Corbec, Gaunt, Doctor Dorden, Mad Eye Larkin and a Ghost with a plasma gun of all weapons, as the Ghosts are never seen to have used them. But the eBay listing offered the FULL range, including a rare female guard model, a smattering of regular Ghosts with camo-cloaks.
I purchased them immediately, but the level of detail scared me off painting them. And so, they languished in my to-do pile for almost 6-8 years, occasionally coming out to act as ratling snipers.
As always, feel free to click the picture if you want my thoughts on a specific model.
I’ll admit, I’m not 100% percent happy with them. Trying to emulate the book description and the artwork is difficult work, and with my natural hand tremors, any hope of the detailed blue tattoos they bear was almost impossible. But really, could anything I painted hope to match my minds eye?
Another model on the painting table was a Lord Solar Macharius model, an absolutely ancient piece of Third Edition nostalgia. He is a historical figure in the modern day, long since dead in the current timeline. His fame precedes him; conquering almost 1000 worlds in the span of 7 years, until reaching the edge of the galaxy and his men would follow him no longer. Yes, he is a blatant homage to Alexander the Great, but such things were common back in the halcyon days of Third. He even got a super-heavy tank named after him, the Macharius pattern.
I got his model on pure luck; He was being sold on eBay as a Vostroyan officer, and this was when Vostroyans were easily available. I snapped him up for a song, far less then his usual asking price. Again, like the Tanith, he languished, as I knew I wouldn’t be able to do such a legendary figure justice. But, finally, I have since come to terms with my painting plateau, and figured, as a metal model, if I was truly unhappy I could always strip it and start over.
As with the Tanith, I’m unsure if I did a good job or not. However, feedback from friends and family has said that he looks great! He certainly is bling and swish, and stands out from a sea of normal Guardsmen.
I did varnish all the models here with Krylon Matte, which is a nice hard varnish, but certainly not matte! I’ll be hitting them again with Army Painter’s Anti-Shine, so I will post an update then to show the difference, if any.
So my ending comments are this; If you have models you are afraid to paint, totally give it the old college try, as your opponents on the tabletop will certainly appreciate the effort! For my part, playing with painted miniatures has really upped my enthusiasm for the hobby, as the spectacle of painted armies going at it is something to behold.
But, until the next update, Ave Imperator, and happy war-gaming!