Corehammer Armies – Mark Pearce’s Morat Aggression Force

gContinuing on with the coverage of the Corehammer Facebook group‘s armies, as well as combing the new found love (fad?) for the new edition of Infinity, this time we have Mark Pearce’s Morat Aggression Force.

Hey Mark, give us a quick intro about yourself, how you got involved in the hobby and how you ended up on the Corehammer Facebook group.

Hey! I want to start by saying thanks for choosing my figures for this! I’m a 35 year old geek from Weston-super-mare in Somerset, UK. I got into miniatures when I was about 9 years old. A friend’s older brother had a few games. Space Hulk, Dark Future, Space Marine, stuff like that. We used to play with the epic scale tanks from Space Marine with our micro machines haha, then I got given a plastic Genestealer and that was that. I was hooked. I didn’t start painting until I was about 11 or so, when my English teacher kindly gave me her son’s old paint sets. I was introduced to the CxH page by a mate.

fHow long have you been involved in the hobby? Is this the first full army you’ve painted?

I’ve been into it for about 25 years probably, since 1989/1990 if memory serves. Although when I hit my late teens I lost interest for a while. I started college, discovered girls and death meta,l haha. This is far from the first army I’ve completed. I’ve done Chaos for WHFB, Genestealer Cult and Space Wolves in 2nd ed 40k, several Necromunda gangs, Blood Bowl teams, Sons of Orar Space Marines and Nurgle Chaos Marines for more recent editions of 40k, and this is my 4th Infinity force, having done regular Combined army, Panoceania and Nomads, before doing these Morats.

How long have you been working on your Combined Army?

I think these took me about a month to 6 weeks. I didn’t really keep track.

cWill these be hitting the tables for games or are they just a painting project?

They’ve already seen a bit of action, and I’ve not lost with them once, although I’ve come close. They’ve already seen off JSA, Nomads, Ariadna and Aleph. The Feuerbach toting Sogarat is so much fun. Most opponents run away from him, or spend an entire turn blasting at him.

Do you intend to stop there or continue on expanding the force?

As far as Morats go, I’ll get the Witch Soldiers and wait to see what else comes out. I’m going to get the new CA starter and the other stuff as it comes out, keeping it the same colour scheme as these guys. I love the new figures, probably the best stuff Corvus Belli have done in my opinion.

What was it that attracted you to the Combined? Was it pure hobby or fluff choice, or was it something you wanted to play in games?

A combination of models and fluff. I’ve had a CA force since long before the current Morats came out. I wanted an excuse to use the Caskuda and anathematic models. Also I’m not exactly a big fan of Humanity either, so the idea of a sinister alien intelligence deciding we’re arseholes, and to wipe us out really appealed to me!

dCan you talk us through each of your models, and give us an overview of why you chose them?

Well firstly, when the Morat starter set came out, I was instantly drawn to the Sogarat. I loved the old model anyway, but when I saw the new guy I had to get hold of it. The fact that he’s more or less a light TAG helps too. Starter boxes are always a good choice. You get a good selection of models from across the scope of your chosen army. The vanguard infantry are obviously the grunts, but use them right and they can be more than just cheerleaders for your order pool. they also have a number of options available to them, such as hackers, missile launchers, forward observers etc. The Raktorak packs a nasty up close surprise with his flamethrower and the Oznat plays a really interesting part, as she can take control of a pack of Hungries, which work great as a cheap link team. She’s got a smoke grenade launcher, which is extremely handy to cover their advance. The Suryat with HMG is a nice chunky bit of back up, while not as much of a tank as the Sogarat, he’s a good deal cheaper to take. The reason I decided to take a TAG is pretty much because BIG ROBOT WITH BIG GUN!

Can you talk us through your approach to painting these guys?

I started with a black undercoat, as that was the colour that the majority of the model was going to be. Then I painted the raised areas and edges with Regal Blue and then Mordian Blue and finally Space Wolf Grey on the very edges. The weapons are black, with Eshin Grey on the raised areas and a mix of Administratum Grey and white for the very edges. The same goes for the trousers. once those steps are complete you give the whole model a decent black wash, which once dry, takes the highlights down and really blends all the greys and blues with the black. The hair is Lich Purple mixed with Tentacle Pink, and the skin is Administratum Grey mixed with white. Shade both with a Druchi Violet wash. Once dry, water down the grey mixture and highlight the skin. The hair is left as it is. The green highlights are Putrid Green with white highlights then a Biel-tan green wash. That’s more or less it.

eOne of the most striking things about your Combined are the bases. They are quite unusual, talk us through why you chose to do them in that way.

They are based roughly on the bases that Angel Giraldez does for the studio CA. Although, It’s a rough approximation. I chose to do them like that to make the figures pop out, I wanted them to look as if they were on a completely alien world. The recipe is Temple Guard Blue with a white drybrush, then Waywatcher Green glaze and Guilliman Blue glaze straight after, before the green has a chance to dry. It’s finished with a piece of red lichen which I got from eBay. One of my mates commented that the ichen reminded him of the red vines from War Of The Worlds, which I thought sounded cool. Another mate said they look like they’re standing in a fish tank. He got a slap.

Do you have any tips for the less gifted amongst us who struggle with achieving acceptable results?

Lots! The most important ones are thin your paints, keep your lines neat, washes and glazes are your friends, take care of your brushes and PRACTICE. I’d also strongly urge everyone to use high quality synthetic brushes instead of sable. While sable is excellent, it’s also incredibly fucking cruel. Your toy soldiers are not worth the suffering of living creatures.

b

You have a sweet converted TAG in your army, how do you go about planning that and do you find the plans always work or do you end up improvising? Any reason you didn’t use the existing model?

The reason I didn’t use the actual Raicho model is simply because I don’t like it. I was really dissapointed when it came out as I’d be hoping for it for ages. It’s all legs, the proportions look all wrong and it looks gangly to me. It really doesn’t do the artwork justice. On the other hand I love the Scarface model so the choice was simple. I had some ideas floating around in my head so I picked one up, dry fitted it and from there it was simple. weapon swaps are easy enough, then I just added some typical Morat features, namely plastic horns from a Chaos Marine sprue, and hair which is green stuff. It was largely improvised by dry fitting bits.

Considering the use of dark shades, the models really pop and it seems you’ve adopted the Infinity style and made it your own. Was this a style you developed yourself or do you have any influences that you would like to share? Do you paint other models in this way too?

Thank you, it’s nice to hear that. it took me a long time to get used to painting Infinity figures. The jump from painting your typical Space Marine to Infinity figures is vast. I pretty much had to retrain myself, there’s not much room for laziness where the figures are concerned. as much as I love Citadel figures, the level of detail, on Corvus Belli figures, even on the most basic trooper, far surpasses anything GW make. It wasn’t easy. As far as influences go, Angel Giraldez is the fucking man. My painting style is nothing like his really as I grew up using painting guides in White Dwarf and that, but I still take lots of pointers from his step by step guides. Luckily I managed to get a pre-order of his upcoming book. I can’t wait to get my tentacles on that!

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