(Note: I used to have links to the mentioned GW kits in this post, but Games Workshop has a very nasty habit of changing their URLs without implementing redirects, leading to broken links in my posts. As such I’ve removed all links. Sorry).
Similar to the Marauders that were discussed last post, the stock Chaos Warriors pose a number of problems for me. Specifically:
- VERY limited arm poses. In fact, apart from the unit command there is only one way for a model to hold its weapons or shield without fairly extensive conversion work, that being a sort of rigid “at the ready” pose that I find a bit lame.
- All models posed pacing forward purposefully. This is great for modelling a unit with a sort of coordinated, implacable advance look, but not at all what I need to model a brutal, mid combat slaughter.
- Only two cloaks, so from the back the models look even more similar.
- Small, unmanly weapons – not at all what I’d generally expect from Games Workshop it has to be said!
The Warhammer Chosen models were my next port of call, but they are great weapon armed so possibly difficult to work with and again not very varied or barbaric in their poses. They are also expensive at £25 for 5 making an armies worth of them quite cost prohibitive.
Then there are the Avatars of War Warriors of the Apocalypse. In many ways the mission of this company seems to have been to fix some of the ills within the Games Workshop range, thus you get these guys – Chaos Warriors, but more dynamic, more dangerous, and with great weapons. They remain on my shopping list.
In the meantime though I did something possibly a little crazy and actually picked up a bunch of 40k models instead, specifically the Chosen from the Dark Vengeance box set. You could call these the polar opposite of the Warhammer Chosen because picking up 6 on eBay costs just £7-£8, the result of there being so many unwanted models from one or the other half of the starter set. After imagining the potential conversions I possibly went over the top and immediately ordered 24. Today I feverishly unpacked everything and laid it all out (with 6 still to arrive in the post).
What a treat. These are stunning models, incredibly detailed for a “starter box”. It seems almost sacrilegious to cut them up and I may reserve one of each model to use for actual Chaos Marines at some unspecified point in the future.
Obviously they bear more than a passing resemblance to Chaos Warriors in basic form – unsurprising considering the first Space Marines were, in form if not in function, Chaos Warriors in space. And if you look carefully, there isn’t really anything that is incurably “40k” about them. Sure, there are some pipes and grenades to remove, and of course the guns and backpacks, but with judicious use of cutting, hacking and bits I think this can be resolved fairly easily. A shield and cloak can hide a multitude of sins. And they have many features that you’d expect a Chaos Warrior to have, including chain mail and baroque plate armour.
Below are the results of some initial playing around with bits and blue tac. As with the Marauders, they are pretty loosely assembled and not always great ideas!
The haft of the power maul on this Chosen is fine for Warhammer, so with the top lopped off I’ve switched in a Warrior axe. The Chosen already has a cloak and I also left the head the same. A shield finishes the Chaos Warrior.
This Chosen already has a bloody big axe that only needs some pipes and gizmos removing to make it suitable for Warhammer. I paired it with a Chaos Warrior axe and added a Space Wolf cloak and a Marauder Horseman head. Come get some.
A cool pose from the basic bolter armed Chosen. Space Wolf cloak, Chaos Knight lance, Chaos Warrior shield and Marauder Horseman head.
Space Wolf cloak, Gor champion axe and Chaos Warrior shield on the running Chosen torso.
A couple more attempts with this Chosen torso. It is the most common as you get 2 of them per set of Chosen so good to know there are various options. Both have Space Wolf cloaks and Chaos Warrior helmets. The one on the left has a Marauder flail and on the right a Chaos Warrior shield and sword.
The walking Chosen torso (usually armed with lightning claws), with twin Chaos Warrior swords, cloak and a Chaos Knight helmet. My least favourite of the experiments. I feel this torso (and these legs specifically) will be the hardest to make something of.
Conversion wise the main job will be to swap the lower greaves and boots for Chaos Warrior style boots, I believe this will go a very long way to disguising the origin of the models and give them an Old World feel. The pauldrons (shoulder armour) are considerably larger than those normally worn by Chaos Warriors but this doesn’t bother me in the least. Other work required besides the obvious arm/head/weapon swaps includes replacing the ribbing between armour plates for chain mail or cloth. Let the games begin.