Tuesday, 28 March 2023

Combined Arms Unit

 You say you want a revolution?

Let's go thirty years back. Late Eighties, when I'd just started playing Space Hulk, and the Genestealer supplement arrived in the stores. There were some hideous models that caught my eye.

It's okay - I'm not doing those models again. They're hideous in the wrong way. I'm talking about these bad boys. 

Let's not get into the specifics of precisely how I got hold of these (organ donation), but I managed to get a full set of these fine bodies. And some of the original arms, and even the original heavy weapons sprue, the finest sprue GW ever made. 

They never made those guns to be actually carried by the models in the range at the time, let's be frank. Most of us had at least one with the gun balanced awkwardly on one shoulder, fist gently propping it up as it pretended to hold a handle. 

Well, time has provided a cure for those old wounds - specifically the new plastic kit. It comes with a ridiculous amount of spare options, and I was very happy to go nuts with it, slapping on chopped up Neophyte and Acolyte parts with gay abandon. 

They're a bit more spindly than the modern ones, and there's a lot less repetition in the sculpts. The details are all there, though - space suits with backpacks, belt equipment on straps, ridged armour. Great stuff!

He's the unit champion. Because he's holding a thermal detonator!

The faces are just the best. So serious yet so deformed - great fun to paint.

Best of all, I've finally got all the weapon options I was missing thirty years ago for the hybrids you need in the Genestealer Space Hulk expansion!


He knows Kung Fu.

He loves his spaghetti.

Utterly classic miniature. Love it.

A few Necromunda bases here and there, just in case.


Tenth Ed will make Webbers great again.

The other stone cold classic.

Damn kids! Get off my lawn!

He's so excited to have a hammer and a flamer, he's put his oxygen pipe in his eye.

Those old Bob Olley sculpts stand the test of time, I find. Yes, they've clearly been done with a toothpick in places. Yes, they are some of the ugliest faces art has ever held a mirror to. Yes, their boots are well nineties, mate. But just like their gene-infected mother, I love them all dearly. 

Conversion Beamer! Even he's surprised he can carry it.

Missile Launcher! With classic awkward shoulder carrying pose!

Autocannon! Now with actual handles, courtesy of various Acolyte weapon options!

And the unit needed a banner, which is an old Chaos Knight standard with some reasonable freehand and a plastic icon stuck on.

Great fun building and painting them, and the Cultist army (now standing seventy four Neophytes deep, thank you very much Stylus for pushing me off that particular cliff) is finished! Wonder if I can get a game in with them before the new edition...


  1. Oh wow, they are beautiful! I mean, they're horrible, but given it's GSC any bulbousness about the sculpts can be passed off as entirely deliberate (one reason why I like Death Guard and Orks - very forgiving to paint as clearly it was meant to be like that). Both those classic casts had me going "yes!" and I too have several (Orks) with oddly posed arms pretending to support some of those very same heavy weapons.

    1. They're also the best set of Space Innsmouth Fishermen you could wish for. The new models are great, don't get me wrong, but they also look like they're trying too hard to be cool kids next to this shapeless throng.

    2. Brilliant - love the idea of Space Innsmouth!

  2. Excellently painted models - they are so delightful!