Thursday, December 5, 2013

What's on My Desk: Black Legion Oath-Broken

This week I'm working on another Black Legion project for David D.'s 40k army.  In October I did a twelve-hour paint on his Abaddon, the centerpiece for his army.  David has a really great theme to his army, and wanted to have a squad that complemented his Abaddon.  After doing some digging, he came up with the idea to use the story of the Oath-Broken, a group of Black Legionnaires who are trying to return to their master's favor.  As the story goes, a member of the Oath-Broken failed Abaddon in some task or exhibited a lack of loyalty and was cast out for their crime.  Being the kind-hearted and forgiving person he is, Abaddon is uncompromisingly unforgiving in his view towards them.  No Oath-Broken receives any support from the Legion, but is allowed to act on the fringe, taking the most dangerous roles, desperately hoping to regain their master's favor.  They probably won't, but that won't keep them from trying...

This was the fiction I was tasked with bringing to life, and with all due haste I dove right in!

Above is a member of the squad (who will ironically represent a unit of Chosen on the table top) about 95% completed.  My goal with each completed model was to depict the iconic nature of the Oath-Broken: vicious, pragmatic, and on the ragged edge.  Many of the members' armor is sparse, lacking lots of horns or trophies, but all are packing as much heat as possible for both ranged and melee combat.  

You may be wondering what's going on with the armor of the model above, why is it green in some places?  Each Oath-Broken still wears the original armor of their legion, The Sons of Horus.  Chipped away by chainsword cuts, bullet wounds, and ricochets, the original sea-green paint of their birth legion can be seen beneath the more current layers of black and without legion support and fresh coats of paint their old colors are starting to show through!

There's still more painting to be done on the rest of the squd, and I'll go deeper into those details later, so in the meantime, let's take a look at the converted models!

The Squad is ten strong, led by a champion wielding a plasma pistol, power sword, and one heck of a bad attitude.

This guy is eager to regain Abaddon's favor and totes around a banner for the Black Legion wherever he goes.  It makes sure his dark exploits are in full view of those he's trying to impress, but it also makes him one hell of a target on the battlefield.  No guts, no chaos glory.

Three distinct kits went into the Oath-Broken conversions: chaos tactical marines, Necron warriors, and fantasy chaos warriors.  The chaos warrior box kit is great for adding a rugged look to the space marines, where gauntlets were damaged they've been replaced with simple leather gloves and fur lined capes supplement for just a little more meager protection.  The champion here has seen better days, and his bionic leg (from the Necron warrior kit) proves it.

Going back to the chaos warrior bitz box, I used the lower half of one to convert a cool striding pose on the model above left.  Both of these guys are firing their bolters one-handed, and a simple weapon swap on a couple of pistol wielding arms gave me the extended arms I needed to pull it off.

Having the marines firing one-handed also allowed me to put a combat weapon in their off-hand.  You can tell by the battle-scarring on this OB's chainsword above that he's not afraid to get in the thick of things!

Like all Oath-Broken, these two have taken some punishment on the battlefield.  The marine on the left has fared a bit better than his counterpart on the right, only losing an exhaust vent from his backpack and having to salvage a basic steel helm in place of his ceramite one.

His buddy has done the best he could to bandage up his bum right leg, a bandage I'll be sure to paint as blood-soaked!

These three were all of the same shoot-from-the-hip style, a great look for marines laying down a hail of gunfire.

One member has the torso of a chaos warrior and a bionic right arm, his fellow on the far right has even fashioned a crude bayonet to his bolter.

Sometimes an Oath-Broken gets lucky and is able to scavenge from a fallen loyalist marine, as the one in the center certainly has, though the backpack he found is a little worse for wear.

These final two Oath-Broken are the hot headed members of the bunch, rushing headlong into the thick of melee combat.  Obviously such rash tactics haven't served the one on the left so well, and he's paid the price with an eye!

The other one has some serious battle-scarring on his helmet, chest, and shoulders (not to mention a bionic leg), a testament that he's taken it as well as he's given it out!

That's it for this week and a look at what's on my desk.  Come back next time to see the painted and finished members of David's Oath-Broken squad!

Until then, happy hobbying and good gaming!


  1. Great models, Matt! Can't wait to see them painted!

  2. That's a really nice accent color. Those should look really good grouped together.

    1. Thanks Aaron! It's the first time I've done a nod to the Sons of Horus, and I have to say, I like it.

  3. I really love the way Matt can bring what i have in mind out on the models they are 97% what i pictured in my head when i was thinking of the oath-broken squad of chosen. Cant wait to see this project be finished on killing some space marines on the table top.

    1. Thank you David, that is really really awesome to hear. I've got the best job in the world when I hear things like that.

  4. Since I am delving into the realms of Chaos for the first time with my DV Chosen I can appreciate your work in this post. Very inspirational!

    1. I know loyalist marines have a lot of personality, but it's hard to beat how individual a chaos marine can be. Good luck!


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