In a recent facebook poll run by Shimond Amsterdam, Kristian Delaney’s Dust Reapers were voted best painted unit. Using a mix of techniques (with a quick tutorial here), Kristian based them up on a snow theme and gave us a run-down on how he did it – as well as a background on his Algoryn force!
Kristian: What drew me to the Algoryn first was their militaristic aesthetic and their armor design incorporating a lot of sharp edges and a no-nonsense approach. In most of my armies I gravitate towards this design philosophy and so when I selected them for my starting point into Gates it was just a natural fit. I love winter as a season and it’s my preferred palette of colors, so it only made sense to make the Dust Reapers an ice-based fighting force!
For the color scheme I wanted something blue without being well known smurf-like in intensity. I went with series of basecoating dark blue over a dark blue-gray and then finally to a light bluish-gray. With a sharp edge highlight I washed it down with a dark blue wash and then went to work on some of the details and working out the weapons. The lenses and other special areas, like the triangles on my Intruders, were done with a layering series of dark red > red > orange > yellow. This was my first army using corkboard so once I did the coloring there (blue > light blue > white) I used a dropper to put water effects on the base and sprinkled model snow on top. It ended up with the effect I wanted and it works as a decent enough adhesive on its own.
The Dust Reapers were formed as part of an initiative conducted by the Special Division’s need for organizing military level security forces for their black ops research stations. With the ever increasing threat of the Ghar empire, and the combined cultural threats posed by the Concord and Isorians, the Prosperate’s response has been to ensure that they are well-equipped to handle these threats at any given time. The Special Division’s Research and Development teams are pulled from some of the most intelligent and inventive members of the Servile caste and are tasked with developing new weapons, armor, tactics, and technology in order to counter threats to the Prosperate. In some cases these research projects are questionable at best to the Prosperate at large and so the need for clandestine security became greater over time.
Thus the Dust Reapers were born, officially on paper serving the Founder caste as tasked with research station garrison work but in reality ensuring that the secrets of the SD are not leaked to the general public. The Dust Reapers take their orders directly from the SD and Optimate caste (from those who know the true purpose) and have thus far served admirably. Their dedication to the mission is absolute and on many occasion the Dust Reapers have been “formally charged” with failing to aid their Algoryn brethren in combat when operating in occupied territories.
Currently the Dust Reapers have been operating in the Altarf system on a planetoid designated Mote 218, where the SD have been researching on new biological agents designed to act on Ghar DNA by using Algoyrn DNA strands. Unfortunately the Ghar are also active in the system and have been disrupting the Dust Reaper’s operations for their own nefarious purposes, while a Boromite Guild has been active and moving ever closer to the Dust Reaper’s “action required” zones. The nearby Algoryn stationed forces have been hailing for aid, but with no return answer the requests for aid have been turning to threats of action. With these threats looming around the Dust Reapers only time will tell if they will be able to keep the SD’s secrets or if they will spill out into the nanosphere…