Ideas for a new army theme

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Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Dogmar » 26 Apr 2012, 17:39

Hello guys,

I haven't been on here for a while due to having other things to do and my general dislike for 8th edition fantasy. I mainly focus on my 40k Dark Eldar army at the moment as they seem to be closer to the true guerilla style I loved so much about my woodies. They really are the aggressive and mobile force I like to play - outplay your enemy and make your army work like a clockwork and lose almost nothing in return, or miscalculate and get punished for it. I like that playstyle. But enough rambling about 8th edition and 40k, after being halfway through my DE I needed some distraction in form of different colours and saw my WE on the shelf which made me sad, so I decided to give them a new scheme. They were my very first army when I started years ago and my painting skills have improved hugely since then so I figured it would be good to bring them up to a current standard.

Right now they are painted mainly in summer colours meaning dark greens and browns, nothing special. I added a few highlights of Ice Blue as an eye-catcher but generally I'm not satisfied with simply green any more. This is why I started this thread, I like thematic armies and I need a new theme.

Here are some of the options I considered:
Autumn theme - idea mostly dismissed, but listed for the sake of completion. Everyone seems to do autumn and while the colours are nice and vibrant that's not enough for me.

Jungle/Guerilla theme - something along the lines of the famous Guerilla Elves stickied in the hall of fame. Generally though I think they are too dark for my taste. I figured that most things that win competitions are painted in very strong colours and with harsh contrasts. While I'm absolutely in love with the camouflage style of this theme it would need some alteration to make them stand out more. Perhaps some glow effects or striking freehands on cloaks with colours like poisonous animals (which are very colourful to say "stop, I'm poisonous, don't say you haven't been warned!").

Airborne theme - would go alongside a slight alteration in my lists using many flyers and generally converting models to have feather cloaks and the like. This would be very cool but I'm lacking ideas for some foot troops without cloaks and regular cavalry. I'm not sure on colours to use either.

Aquatic/swamp theme - would include some heavy converting, again not sure how to incorporate cavalry, in terms of infantry I could think of harpoons and scaly cloaks. Tree spirits could be water elementals or jungle plants / mangrove trees. Very cool idea, but unsure how feasible it is for some unit choices. I also have 2 blue-ish armies already and need something else.

scorched woods theme - ashen greys, reds, scorched tree spirits, burned / burning cloaks, burnt off clothes, flame scars... sounds good on paper again but I'm not sure how good it will look for a whole army as a burned wood elves army basically is a defeated wood elves army, still the post-apocalyptic idea sounds some kind of cool in a way.

and last but not least...

assault at midnight theme - dark colours, maybe dark purples and blues together with camo colours, faces hidden, glowing eyes.conversions: archers hiding in fallen trees, cloaks with leaves, lanterns haning from scenery on the bases. everything done in OSL, tree spirits would be painted half physical, half spectral with the spectral half glowing, unit fillers like a carried magical light of elves hanging heads down from a tree in shooting position. Colours for OSL would be Orange preferably, but may change to green or blue depending on the cloak colour.

These are the most important of my ideas. I'd like you to give me some feedback to the concepts. I'm always open for improvement. If you have a fancy idea for a theme you may as well post it here. In terms of material and painting techniques there is almost no limit.

Cheers and thank you for reading,

Dogmar
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Baardah » 26 Apr 2012, 18:12

You have some great themes thought out. I can imagine it would be hard to choose.

I myself really wanna do a winterthemed wood elf army. I walk around with this idea in my head of wood elves who have emigrated in search of the wychelm trees. These is some mentionings of wood elves living in kislev.
In this theme I would like to exchange all horses for wolves (using the new fenrisian wolves). Dryads for werewolves or regular goblin wolves ( if only one could fit them on the bases)
There is a mythological creature called a moon-wolf which is a wolf with wings. These would be subs for warhawkriders.

All cloaks on GG would be changed for the pelt capes that the white lions of crache use.

For great stag I would use the thunderwolves

Privateer press have some nice walking wolflike big guys who would be treekin.

Dunno what I would do for a treeman.

I would use whites pale blues and greys in the paintscheme.

This is atleast an idea. If you like it feel free to use it.

Of your themes I like the one where you plan on using blacks and purples for a ninja assassin look.
But will that break you up from dark eldar paintscheme??
My summer night wood elves
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby ItsaMario7 » 26 Apr 2012, 22:29

Love the airbourne idea, shame we can't have airborne core of some sort. Highly considering starting this army at the start of the next WE army book. Only reason I'm not starting now is incase they come out with plastic eagles/ warhawk riders or something similiar. Might start planning now :)
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby dusk1983 » 27 Apr 2012, 06:36

Dogmar wrote:
scorched woods theme - ashen greys, reds, scorched tree spirits, burned / burning cloaks, burnt off clothes, flame scars... sounds good on paper again but I'm not sure how good it will look for a whole army as a burned wood elves army basically is a defeated wood elves army, still the post-apocalyptic idea sounds some kind of cool in a way.

and last but not least...

assault at midnight theme - dark colours, maybe dark purples and blues together with camo colours, faces hidden, glowing eyes.conversions: archers hiding in fallen trees, cloaks with leaves, lanterns haning from scenery on the bases. everything done in OSL, tree spirits would be painted half physical, half spectral with the spectral half glowing, unit fillers like a carried magical light of elves hanging heads down from a tree in shooting position. Colours for OSL would be Orange preferably, but may change to green or blue depending on the cloak colour.

Dogmar


I love both of these ideas.

Scorched woods theme Positives: "a burnt army is basically a defeated army"- you say this like its a bad thing. The idea of Asrai and forest spirits rising up out of the flames of the part of their forest that was their home, and stringing together a vengeance force to strike back is very theatric, and fluffy. They might have lost their home, but they still have anger and revenge to live for. Straight away it conjures images of resolute Elves, desperate, scarred and implacable hunting down their enemies for one last massacre to end it all one way or another. Love it.

Scorched woods theme Negatives: Will require heavy conversion, but from the description of your prowess this may not be a problem for you. Big problem for me is the fact that I adore the wood elf models, and to show them as being burnt and ragged, may take away from the nobility (for lack of a better word) shown in the sculpts.

Assault at midnight theme Positives: This could very well be beautiful. The twilight paint job and lighting effects could really capture the "dark fairy tale" essence of the Wood Elves which has always been one of the draws for me to them. If anything it would possibly the most difficult to pull off from your list of potential themes, but it would easily be the one with the most potential to enchant your entire army with a unique and fey feel.

Assault at midnight theme negatives: besides conversions and paint, none. None whatsoever. Please do this. I am a mediocre painter, but your description alone has set my imagination on fire, and I love to see the magic that others with far more skill (and patience) than I can do with these models.

Well thats my two cents.

EDIT: Also whilst i don't feel the swamp elves would be quite as cool as the above options you mention that you're not sure what you'd do instead of horses for cavalry, you could always modify salamanders or razordons from the Lizardmen army (although this could prove an expensive venture) and terradons instead of warhawks and modify some river trolls a bit to look like swamp elementsals for treekin
...So if you're addressing me direct, just call me Lance or Dusk, no 1983 please.
Chaos dwarf tactica: http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=23535
Chaos dwarf plog: http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=23159
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Yuri » 27 Apr 2012, 09:58

I have army similar to mr. Baardah mentioned. It's good looking, but you might have troubles on tournaments because they could forbid proxies/non-GW models, and privateer's press is not GW. Anyway, if you'd go for that theme, here's some links: http://privateerpress.com/hordes/gallery/circle-orboros. Also, you'll find Warpwolf Extreme there. Model is quite big and it could be your treeman. In addition to that, I can suggest Confrontation Wolfen as a substitution (I use them; models are awesome).

Also, your midnight theme sounds like my color scheme. Only drawback is that your army/units gonna look too dark, almost unfinished.
Interested in Sylvan Elves (9th Age)? I'm your guy.

Yuri's little corner
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Dogmar » 27 Apr 2012, 15:02

Wow, so many comments in such a short period of time! Let me take some time to reply to each of you in depth:

@Baardah:
Your Kislev theme with wolves and pelt cloaks sounds very nice. I'm definitely conserding this idea and I hope you won't mind should I steal it. White, pale blues and greys comes very close to my VC army though that is themed around a frozen wasteland with a royal blue and white as main colours, alongside snow bases. Still, I'll think about it. In terms of my DE I'm not too worried, they are turquoise with purple eye-catchers and the bases are themed more around a destroyed imperial world. I'll include some pictures to show you what my current projects look like. That should give you an idea of what I can do and might alter the way you look at one or the other idea. It would be perfectly fine to tell me I'm over-estimating myself as I have not painted any models in the schemes I suggested, this is purely fictional at the moment.
The "ninja assassin" theme, as you call it, definitely needs some more thought in terms of colours. I'll post some colour wheels once I get around to it. :ninja:

@Itsamario7:
thank you for your comment. The idea of an airbourne army is indeed cool, but I'm still lacking ideas for units like glade riders, wardancers and wild hunters. The colours to use are still a problem as well. Do you have any ideas for that, because I'm struggling to find something consistent and still eye-catching enough?!

@dusk:
big thanks to your for taking time to write such an in depth comment on my suggestions. The scorched forest and the midnight assault theme were my two personal favourites so far closely followed by Baardahs Kislev idea.
Your point about a vengeance army of outraged elves and forest spirits fighting to make up for their lost home made me rethink the idea and not dump it alltogether. It's true though that the army would not look as martialle (not sure about the spelling but I think that's what you were aiming for when talking about nobility) as an elven army at the highest of their power. On the other hand it could be possible to make the angry elves intimidating enough through fire effects and some war trophies maybe. Getting the theme work would be really hard though. Burnt clothes and scars are one thing, but how do I paint the remaining clothes to resemble ember or burnt leaves and the like? I really have to reconsider the doability of this as much as I'd like to do it.
As for the midnight assault, I'm very glad that you like it. The only negative thing I can think of is that they'd look too dark and "non-painted" from a distance, but that's why I wanted to add light sources in form of lanterns and magically glowing stuff. That would certainly be in line with the fluff. In terms of conversions and colours I'm not yet sure entirely and as I said before I'll have to get through some colour theory to work out something feasible.
The jungle/ swamp idea using lizards is great, but I'm afraid that this would cost me a fortune (which I don't have). Thus I'm considering it but the idea will probably be out.

@Yuri:
The PP models are beautiful but also very costly. I might incorporate some of them in my army regardless of the theme I'll go for. I'm not that much into the tournament scene and I hope my local GW won't notice :D

Finally here go some pics of my existing armies. First the Dark Eldar which are still partly WIP (see the raider) and the Vamps who are currently being frosted up, meaning I got myself some stuff for better weathering effects and I decided to add a blue-ish thing to the bones to make them look frozen.
Hekatrix:
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... C_1806.jpg
Wyches:
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... C_1799.jpg
WIP Raider:
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... 010296.jpg
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... 010294.jpg
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... 010293.jpg
Counts as Varghulf:
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... istake.jpg
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... C_0140.jpg
Some more VC:
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... 000794.jpg
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... 000825.jpg
http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz34 ... 000865.jpg

The forum tells me the pictures are too big, hence the links. Sorry for that.
I hope you guys like it.

Cheers
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Moose123 » 27 Apr 2012, 16:50

You could put glade riders on some kind of small hawk for the airborne theme. Just an idea because glade riders move almost as fast as fliers and they are mounted so... No idea what models to use maybe some converted warhawks but they could be too big.

Love all these great ideas. My army is just a light autumn theme, kinda boring.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby dusk1983 » 28 Apr 2012, 00:37

Love your work very detailed. Thanks for the positive reply, and i cant wait to See which theme you go with. Ill keep an eye out for your name in the meadow of arts. :-)
...So if you're addressing me direct, just call me Lance or Dusk, no 1983 please.
Chaos dwarf tactica: http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=23535
Chaos dwarf plog: http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=23159
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Tenaka » 28 Apr 2012, 18:31

Given how crisp and detailed your Dark Elves and Vampire Counts (really impressive work), I really looking to seeing what you will do with your Wood Elves. If it were a vote, it'd be Midnight Ambush all the way for me. The liberal use of sprites on your models as the objects for your lighting should give you enough artistic licence to make the models look suitably painted from a distance.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Dogmar » 30 Apr 2012, 14:29

Thanks for your feedback. I think I have decided for the midnight assault theme as most of you favoured this. Thinking about it I'd find the scorched woods theme even more challenging than the light effects because I know I'd need to pull some heavy and difficult conversions off to be satisfied. With burnt wood it's hard to differenciate between fire and your regular autumn theme from the colours alone, which is why you'd need to represent the theme on each model. Some army list problems such as the debate about cavalry would remain with the airborne theme. Sure smaller warhawks sounds feasible, but everything with wings is far too big to properly rank up on 50x100 mm bases.

So the midnight theme it is: I think this captures my image of wood elves best, because it looks magical, mysterious and dangerous. As far as conversions go I already have some nice ideas:

Heroes:
glowing magical weapons and little (magical) lanterns modelled onto the bases or into the hands of the models. The colour (normal fire or magical light) would depend on my colour palette which I have not yet decided on.
Forest spirits: Painted half physical half spectral with the spectral half glowing (again, colours depend on my palette which I try to limit to as few different colors as possible to keep coherence)
Regular Infantry and cavalry: same as heroes without the magical weapons of course
Wild Riders: Dryad centaurs or Dryads riding horses to get the most out of the spectral forest spirit idea
Wardancers: Glowing talismanic tattoos (not sure if I could really pull that off but the idea sounds damn nice imo)

Specials: Warhawks and Eagles as giant Owls (I might sound dumb asking this but do you know other night-active birds?!)
glowing spites and scenic wood bases for all models
unit fillers with bigger trees and diorama like things (some more concrete drafts soon-ish)

My current problem is colour selection. I think that dark blues and purples fit a midnight theme best. The most neutral colours to make the viewer focus on the glow effects would be dark greens. Browns for leather is mandatory. Glow effects are easiest to do in bright blues and greens. Fire would also be cool, but not very wood elfy. Is there anything in the fluff about how they light their houses? Complementary colours to the aforementioned are reds and yellows, but apart from fire (which is more orange to be fair, glows in these colours are quite hard to pull off and are not too wood elfy... I mean honestly, orange glowing dryads?! I'll read more about colour theory to solve this problem, please make some suggestions in how I could combine these colours best.

Some colour concept pictures will then follow before I go for a test mini (or two).

Cheers,

Dogmar
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Rowena » 30 Apr 2012, 15:06

I really love the midnight ambush idea and am very curious what you come up with. I'm sure it's going to be awesome.

Since you mentioned lights so often, I remembered this army... but I guess that would be too difficult to do. :( I know I wouldn't dare to try it myself, at least.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Dogmar » 07 May 2012, 13:16

Thanks for the post Rowena, that army is indeed stunning, but recasting everything in clear resin and then putting a little battery in every base is too much of a hassle for me. I mean I could do it but it would take forever to figure out how... that guy says it took him about a year to get them to this quality.

I was inspired more by this http://www.vampirecounts.net/Thread-New-Style-Moonlit-Undead?highlight=curse+of+beers Of course I'd aim for a different set of colours for the lighting. I was thinking about giving the greyish areas a matte green (a bit like the site background) or dark brown glaze. Lights would then be done with either bright greens, blues or oranges... Purple would be an option as well but is hellishly difficult to get right. Tell me what you think, I honestly don't know which light colour to choose.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Rowena » 07 May 2012, 14:28

Wow, the lighting (and everything else, especially the fog) on that army is lovely.
I can't wait to see how you pull off a similar effect, wood elf-style. :)
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby laribold » 09 May 2012, 11:42

Dogmar wrote: I was thinking about giving the greyish areas a matte green (a bit like the site background) or dark brown glaze. Lights would then be done with either bright greens, blues or oranges... Purple would be an option as well but is hellishly difficult to get right. Tell me what you think, I honestly don't know which light colour to choose.


I wouldn't stick to just one light colour, I'd use a mixture as I think it gives several benefits.

Firstly, monochrome spites just don't sound quite right, the fickle and chaotic nature of spites would seem to lend itself quite well to different coloured spites across the army. Just one colour of spite just seems to regimented.

You could also use the different colours to differentiate the units. For example, all Glade Guard have bright green spites, all wardancers have blue spites etc... etc...
It sounds like the army will already have a quite dark palette that will help tie the theme together, I'm not convinced you need just one colour of spite light as well.
Last of the Wythelkin - Woodland Indian Wood Elves
http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=20221
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby saearath » 10 May 2012, 22:12

I too was tossing up between a nocturnal or bushfire theme, but have settled for fire myself so it will be nice to see the other embellished upon. I suggest mixing up the sprite colours as well but keep to cool colours so they don't clash with each other. If you're set on purple as a single glow colour across the board I'd suggest adding bright pink to the final highlights to make them stand out a little more.
The architect of fate may want to revisit his basic design principles.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby saearath » 10 May 2012, 22:23

Oh almost forgot other nocturnal birds of prey include nightjars and frogmouths. The former would make for some nice war hawks, the latter are just awesome and really do look like branch stumps, perfect camouflage.
The architect of fate may want to revisit his basic design principles.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Dogmar » 11 May 2012, 23:53

Thanks for the replies. Unfortunately I've been sick the past week and still trying to recover, but it's getting better. Thus I don't have anything to present you as of yet, I'm sorry.

On the topic of birds: I'll definitely have a look into those, especially the nightjars look like they could be the perfect warhawks. Not sure if people would recognize them as such, but they're definitely cute. The Frogmouths look quite familiar to owls and are incredibly fluffy from what I can tell looking at some pictures on google. I'll definitely consider both as warhawk replacements, my great eagles are definitely going to be owls converted either from the High Elf Griffon or from the regular Great Eagle Kit. Should be doable with the new 36 inch strip of Green Stuff that arrived today :D

Back onto the colours. Of course I'll try to imitate the birds' feathers, but in a darker shade than regular to stay in line with the night fighting theme. The clothes and leather armor parts are going to be in a dark shadow grey with glazes of dark green/camo green and brown tossed in. Skin will be fairly pale to give a nice contrast to the otherwise dark colours. Wardancers will get some dark green warpaint / tattoos and I'll generally try to shade them with zenithal highlighting in mind (not sure how "zenithal" is spelt in English, it means from above). That means I'll have the recess areas shades with the higher areas being highlighted as normal, but in addition to that I'll imagine a pale grey-ish light source (the moon) from above and then highlight the areas in the light a bit more than the areas that are not touched by the moonlight. So much on the base colours. Dryad bark is going to be similar to leather just shadow grey but with a glaze of a different brown.

You really got me with the idea of several light colours I'm thinking of mainly brighter greens, blues and some purples (but not pink, but more pale, I think pink would be a too harsh contrast). I might have a chance to try out some orange light sources as well depending on my mood and how well it goes with the other colours. For ranked up units I could get away with very few light sources that are so bright that they illuminate more than one model. I'd then have to put numbers under the bases so they always can be put back into the right order. Skirmishers, being spread wider could each have their own little light sources - not that bright of course. I somehow like the idea of specific colours for specific units, but that would be just as un-wood-elfy as having every sprite in the same colour so I guess I'll mix the colours within a unit but only colours that go well with each other.

How does that sound for a start? I'll paint a test mini once I feel like holding a brush without shaky hands again.

Cheers,

Dogmar
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Rowena » 12 May 2012, 08:44

It all sounds great, I'm looking forward to the test mini. Also I hope you'll fully recover soon.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby saearath » 12 May 2012, 12:21

Always glad to be of help. Owls are by far and away my favourite animal I was suggest frogmouths though as a possibility to eagles to help differentiate between them, after all you will have many more eagles than warhawk units in reality. Cannot wait to start seeing some of those fantastic models, good luck.
The architect of fate may want to revisit his basic design principles.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby Baardah » 13 May 2012, 18:27

On the topic of birds: I'll definitely have a look into those, especially the nightjars look like they could be the perfect warhawks. Not sure if people would recognize them as such, but they're definitely cute. The Frogmouths look quite familiar to owls and are incredibly fluffy from what I can tell looking at some pictures on google. I'll definitely consider both as warhawk replacements, my great eagles are definitely going to be owls converted either from the High Elf Griffon or from the regular Great Eagle Kit. Should be doable with the new 36 inch strip of Green Stuff that arrived today


Its doable, but it takes an extreme amount of time. Atleast it did for me…

http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=21679
My summer night wood elves
Drstrangelove wrote:Imagine a magic item. For 20 points you get +4M, Vanguard, extra +1 to your armour save, unlimited free reforms, and an extra S3 attack at I4.
That item would be in every list.

That item is a horse...
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby saearath » 14 May 2012, 21:10

That is an amazing job there, well done! I wish I had skills like that, maybe someday.

Not to take anything away from your model but felt I should impart some knowledge. All owls have two forward facing and two rearward facing talons on each claw. It's just one of things that make them special (or maybe that's me).
The architect of fate may want to revisit his basic design principles.
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Re: Ideas for a new army theme

Postby dusk1983 » 04 Jul 2012, 10:45

Matter of interest Mr Dogmar, is there any test models done yet? Would love to see some pics.
...So if you're addressing me direct, just call me Lance or Dusk, no 1983 please.
Chaos dwarf tactica: http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=23535
Chaos dwarf plog: http://www.asrai.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=23159
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