Friday, 10 February 2012

Dark Angels on the way?

I have never really "got" the space marines thing. For the first 10 years of being involved in the hobby, it was purely Warhammer Fantasy Battle for me. The background, the game, the miniatures, it all slotted nicely into the things I was into, like Tolkien, mythology and fantasy art. The pictures in White Dwarf of all the space marines and related stuff, I flicked past. If I'm honest, I found it childish and toy like, which is quite ironic when you consider I was drooling over elves, dragons and skeletons!

In the past decade I have picked up a fair bit of the background on the WH40K universe, mostly through my painting. It helps to know your stuff when you are painting marines, some people can get very uptight if you suggest straying from the prescribed colours. Eventually I started playing the game, though in choosing orks I didn't really stray too far from my fantasy roots. I have looked at the space marines a couple of times, I did think about collecting Space Wolves at one time, but the powder blue or grey armour always deterred me. I think that's been the biggest obstacle all along, the bright primary colours that I associate with Lego blocks. Even with de-saturated and weathered paint jobs, they still look like little red, yellow or blue space robot toys.

However, there's no denying the appeal of the dark gothic imagery of the artwork, which never fails to impress. If I could get the models on the table to look anything like as impressive as the artwork above, then I reckon I would be set to go. I think the colour scheme is appealing because it's true to real life, in that the allies of World War II used green armour extensively. So I can easily get past the "toy" barrier in my mind. The Dark Angels also employ white armour, which again I find appealing because of my interest in WWII armour of the Eastern Front, where winter camouflage resulted in white tanks. There's also a medieval vibe to Dark Angels models, in their use of robes and iconography. It's this marriage of the true to life colours, the gothic imagery and the medieval/fantasy connection that has finally allowed me to "get" space marines.

Recent rumours have pointed to Dark Angels being a part of the starter set for the new version of 40K. If this is true, then I really will be getting space marines later in the year. It's took me nearly 20 years, but I am maybe ready to fight for the Emperor!

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