Saturday, 16 September 2017

The Lost and the Damned Retinue Table Challenge

After a few years of collecting, converting and painting, I've completed the original goal of this blog - to create an entry for each of the possibilities of the Lost and the Damned retinue table. One of the great outcomes of this project was that I could choose some of my favourite models to paint in relatively small batches and combine this with my love of converting if their were not any models that captured my imagination. Thankfully Citadel kindly provided a whole raft of characterful models in the 80's so these were my go-to choices.

To celebrate this feat, I've eventually gotten all of the models out that I painted for the challenge (whilst the family were out) and photographed them all together (some task - as was writing this post) and then taken a photo for each of the individual groups too. So here we go:

All 19 possibilities for creating a retinue for my Chaos Warbands

There's minotaurs, orcs, a chaos sorcerer, mercenaries.

A Shaggoth, Nurgle Beastmen, brigands, harpies, a troll and some (generic) Beastmen.

Some Elves, Chaos Warriors, Goblins.

Centaurs, Chaos Dwarves, Skaven and Human Runaways.

Ogres and Cultists.
The retinue options all posed together like this almost create an army, which of course is one of the next steps in my quest. But I do like the chaotic, rabble-like and disparate factions here and the fact that they aren't ranked up units as such, more a collection of individuals who have banded up with other racial and like-minded peers and formed an uneasy alliance together.

In case you are unfamiliar with the Retinue Table (quite obviously my favourite aspect of the whole Realm of Chaos project), here is the table from which you can roll up your Chaos Champions followers:

And here's each of my interpretations of the text:

1. 2D4 Human Mercenaries and Captain.

I had to go for the classic Citadel fighters - although these are the Foundry version, I love their rag-tag appearance and the model for the captain was an obvious choice, with his imposing broadsword and authoritive pose. This posse have a future role in my project work, a larger mercenary group named Rasham/s Forgotten Bandits (The Blotted). Expect to see additional models and the start of a baggage train..
2. 2D6 Human Runaways.

From the same stock as above, but choosing the less well armed models for this group. Painted in the same colour scheme as above so that they can eventually join the Blotted, I like the idea of how these thugs have deserted a larger group (perhaps a unit of an army), cobbled together some possessions and weapons and made their way through the lands as minor bandits. They probably all hate each other and are desperate to be a part of a larger movement. Easy pickings for a Chaos Champion to recruit them.

3. D4 Minotaurs.

Proper Chaos now. These beasts are all from Citadel's Minotaur Lord range and have all had a range of conversions and adaptions made to make them slightly unique. These add to the chaos attributes they are likely to have and are deliberately painted to have a variation of bright and pale skin tones.

4. Dragon Ogre Shaggoth
There was a lot of converting and re-sculpting on this beast. Based on a more modern GW model, I Nurglified him with a Plaguebeareresque head (horn and one eye), re-sculpted a rotten old belly, gave him a rusty flail and of course added a carrion crow companion. This model was heavily influenced by the converted Dragon Ogre as found in the Lost and the Damned book.

5. Troll
Such a cool Citadel troll, he didn't need any converting but did deserve to be raised a little higher to make him more imposing and add a bit of swamp around him. I can't imagine his aim will be impressive with that rock, but certainly enough to squash anyone who comes to close. His stupidity is somewhat tempered by his little Nurgling advisor.
6. Chaos Sorcerer.

A whole range of  models that I could have chosen for this entry, but went with the most obviously Nurgle in appearance, complete with brand Nurgle logo on his forehead. I can easily imagine him pledging allegiance to a Champion of Nurgle and bringing his own stench and range of sorcery to the proceedings.
7. D6 Orcs:
Orcs were my original collection as a young teenager and I re-visited some of my favourite models to warband together. I knew these would eventually be part of an allied force so I went with a command and a couple of lackeys for now.
8. D6 Bandits.

I decided to use Chaos Thugs for the Bandits as I already had the models and didn't want to have too many humans as per the first two entries. Two of these have been converted - the leader was an orc and given an ogres's head and the ogre given a more grisly horses head totem for the banner. I like having added height in a rabble like group so I think the ogre model fits in (and adds muscle to the group of bandits). I imagine these bandits to be pretty successful at their trade.
9. D4 Harpies.
A deviation from the collection of classic Citadel miniatures here. After much thought I realised that I just did not like the classic Harpy models and also struggled to find any modern ones that worked for my aesthetic. So it was to the conversions I turned - Lord of the Rings goblins with a variety of wings from Reaper bones and randoms from my bitz box. I also wanted to try and create some height for a flying unit, so perched three of them on rock formations.
10. D4 Ogres.
The ultimate mercenaries, Ogres are a mainstay of a chaos retinue. And of course I knew exactly which models I would choose for this. These classic Jes Goodwin sculpts were a dream to paint and they just ooze character. The gaudy nature of their clothing was to represent their obvious skills as money-earners, but perhaps not the best taste in attire.
11. D4 Centaurs
Again I found the classic Citadel centaur models a bit weedy and bland, so I went and converted some chunky Nurgle versions. I had to cut up a fair few good models - a plaguebearer from the palanquin set, a warrior, beastman and Bob Ollet Black Orc to be precise and marry them to some plastic lizardmen of all things. Heresy of lead and plastic combined! Loads of other additions were applied and this group may be one of my favourites - they look pretty dynamic.
12. Culists and Magus.
One of the great things about this project was that it gave me the chance to collect some models that I've longed to paint, without having to paint too many at once (this can easily turn me off). These Red Redemptionists always turned me on and fitted in perfectly with the similarly masked sorcerer. Paint jobs to match and a homage to a Fighting Fantasy illustration on the banner and the job was a good-un. 
13. D6 Goblins
I must have painted about 17 million Goblins in my lifetime, so it was quite refreshing to only have to paint six for this group. Although I think Goblins generally like to band up in bigger numbers, these Marauder Goblins have enough attitude to be short on numbers and have even drafted in a shaman to aide them. The leader is known as Blag.
14. Chaos Thug/Marauder/Warrior.

I like the concept of the path of chaos and how a relatively lowly thug can catch the eye of his patron through his battlefield endeavours and rise in prominence and performance. From thug to marauder to the ultimate fighting machine, a chaos warrior. From left to right: thug, warrior and marauder. The further progression along the path, the better the armour and the more mutated you become. Perfect. 
15. D8 Skaven.

The last group I painted for this challenge, I chose some of my favourite Jes Goodwin Skaven sculpts. Seer, slaves, leaders, bombadier; they're all in there under the leadership of a larger and more modern (and slightly converted) Skaven warlord model which I quite liked. Again a bit of extra bulk and height makes it visually and narratively more interesting.
16. D8 Chaos Dwarves.
The classic Maruader troll slayers were used for the Chaos Dwarves, largely because I wanted a unit of beserkers and also because the models have a lot of character (the Citadel Chaos Dwarves are expensive too). I went for gaudy and pale colours again to tie in with other units and also to create a less uniformed look; the colourful hair creates an impression of chaos anyway.
17. D6 Beastmen
A nice little collection of disparate models, a chaos hound has joined some traditional beastmen models and a Marauder minotaur has been re-purposed as a leader. He needed some zebra stripes too.
18. D6 Dark Elves

This unit again gave me the opportunity to choose some of my favourite elf models and re-purpose a few other models I had lying around. A couple of old Citadel wardancers were my first ever elves to be painted and then I added some more modern witch elves. Great poses all. I then found a Mordheim elf who had the appearance of an assassin and also found a vampire model who was given a couple of new weapons and seems to ft right in with the others.
19. D6 Beastmen of the Patron God (Nurgle obviously)

The final group are a real kitbashing of plastic models. I went to town on the converting of these as part of my BitzBox Challenge and these are all made up of a variety of parts and kits. The paint scheme helps them tie in with the rest of the retinue, but they are by far the lightest group to carry as the only ones without a hint of lead.

Thanks for reading! Oh and I'm intrigued - what's your favourite?