Monday, 13 November 2017

The Real Steel Shady

Warhammer Underworldss: Shadespire must have had a good launch: all my social media has suddenly been filled with images of the same three models.

Angharad Brightshield, Steelheart's Champions for Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire
"You have a WOMAN'S Stormcast, my lord!"

So here they are again!

The first of my Shadespire warbands (and I'm not going to rule out collecting all of them) are Steelheart's Champions.

I painted these as Hallowed Knights, the same colours as my yet-to-be-started Stormcast chamber. Serverin Steelheart, the Liberator-Prime. Same colour scheme as my Knight-Questor, and just as quick to do.
  • Armour: Leadbelcher base, Drakenhof Nightshade wash, Ironbreaker drybrush, Stormhost Silver drybrush
  • Skin: Bugman's Glow base, Kislev Flesh highlights
  • Hair: Skavenblight Dinge base, Celestra Grey highlights, White Scar highlights
  • Sword: Skavenblight Dinge base, Abbadon Black/Dawnstone layering.
  • Gold trim: Retributor Armour base, Reikland Flesh wash, Golden Griffon drybrush
  • Kilt: Wazdakka Red base, Nuln Oil wash
  • Plume: Khorne Red base, Nuln Oil wash, Mephiston Red drybrush
  • Shoulderplate & Shield: Macragge Blue base, Drakenhof Nightshade glaze
  • Cloak: Calgar Blue base, Drakenhof Nightshade wash, Calgar Blue drybrush
  • Sash: Flayed One Flesh base, Seraphim Sepia Wash, Flayed One Flesh drybrush

As a change of pace I eschewed my usual ink-and-drybrush for the skin, and went with straight layering, which came out very well (it helps that he's got a heroic jawline and massive cheekbones). I did the same for his hair, which I went for steely veteran, rather than golden boy.

Then for some reason, I had a bash at painting his sword as non-metalic metal (not sure why, as there's so much other metallic paint going on). Not awful for the first attempt, but I could use more practice.

Serverin Steelheart, Steelheart's Champions for Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire

The next Stormcast is their first female model (or would have been if Blightwar hadn't jumped ahead in the release schedule): Angharad Brightshield (or "Anger-Rod" as I've heard every American - and quite a few English - reviewers pronounce it).

It's a good sculpt - what I like best is how unremarkable it is. Angharad doesn't have a ponytail or missile weapon, or anything else normally assigned to a fantasy female. She's just a Stormcast Liberator, like anyone else. It would have been awesome to have had these models mixed in the Starter Set, but given the vitriol the Stormcasts received at the start of Age of Sigmar, I can see why GW weren't keen to add that can of worms to the mix.

Angharad Brightshield, Steelheart's Champions for Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire

Finally, Obryn the Bold. He doesn't get to be the leader, or the woman, so they gave him the best base to stand on, so we'd still take notice.

And a good base it is. I painted them in the 'Kraken Sandstone' (copyright pending) I'm using for my Order units, and it comes out very well (I know Shadespire is all grey stone, but I'll take my chances with the hobby police).

  • Base: Steel Legion Drab base, Reikland Flesh wash, Deathclaw Brown drybrush, Karak Stone drybrush, Eldar Flesh drybrush, Terminatus Stone drybrush

Obryn the Bold, Steelheart's Champions for Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire

And that's the unit. I've had a few games with them so far (mostly learning ones) and they've not done well against the Reavers. Their low numbers count against them, as they don't have anywhere to go once they've taken a couple of losses.

But I think their defeats have been mainly user-error: in the first few games, they tried to match the Bloodbound's aggression, which really plays into their hands. I think the Stormcast are more of a counter-punch unit, and they seemed to improve when played in that style.

Steelheart's Champions for Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire

Anyway, they're be more games of Shadespire - and more gangs to compete against - coming up soon, so we'll see how they fare.


  1. I look forward to leading them into battle tomorrow night! When I'm sure their apparent high skill ceiling will immediately become unnoticable as I show you how it's done. (Spoiler - I will totally lose)

  2. Honour was satisfied as Kraken led Steelheart's Champions to a 3-0 victory over Garrek's Reavers.

    There was some confusion as we incorrectly interpreted the rules that turned Angharad into a dragon-punch ninja (now FAQ'd), but this was clearly a triumph of painted models over undercoated ones (take note, kids).