Magnus the Red – Project Change XXI

A Thousand Sons has just been released by Black Library. So to celebrate I will focus on the Thousand Sons for a little. This is Daemon Primarch Magnus the Red, commanding his legion of Epic-scale Tzeentch minions.

Magnus the Red Daemon Primarch of Tzeentch

Magnus the Red was one of four Daemon Primarchs released by Games Workshop in 1992 in Epic scale. Each of the four major Gods got one – Khorne got Angron, Slaanesh Fulgrim and Nurgle Mortarion. Pertarbo and Lorgar are the only other two Traitor Primarchs surviving in the present game setting, and both have been elevated to Daemon Prince status too, though neither have seen models. (And while I’m on the subject of Primarch models, Leman Russ is the only Imperial Primarch to have had one. Oh, and Lion El’Jonson’s Lion Helm comes with the Azrael model. Oh, and one of Horus’ Lightning Claws now belongs to Abbadon. I digress.)

The classic ‘Eavy Metal Magnus the Red is of course blue. It was painted blue by Jay Tanner presumably because blue is Tzeentch’s singature colour, and Mr. Tanner decided that the Red meant that in fact he was a ginger. Cap’n Facebeard of Warseer beautifully points out the 1992 studio colours “made him look like a 90s cartoon villain. You were always waiting for the Ninja Turtles to foil him.” It is so bizarre that during Games Workshop’s Red Era they decided not to paint Magnus the Red actual red.

Magnus the Red, Daemon Primarch of the Thousand Sons of Mangus

With the Horus Heresy series of books it’s stated that Magnus the Red had red skin. And instead of being a goofy Harryhausen Cyclops he has a one normal eye and an eyeless sockect. I will explain away all these differences by saying Tzeentch changed Magnus’ appearence when he elevated him to daemonhood.

I decided to paint my Magnus with pinky red skin akin to some of my Pink Horrors, as I felt bright red skin would make him look Khornate. And I decided my Magnus would also be a redhead with matching orangey wings. I wanted to do his vambraces copper, but that was too many similar colours on one model.

And, to be honest, goofy as this model is it’s also sculpted in a cockingly awful fashion. See his right leg? It’s just a weird amorphous blob I despaired at painting. The back of the model looks like an afterthought. And what’s going on with his giant head, and gibbon arms? It’s either a Jes Goodwin or Colin Dixon sculpt, and I’m hoping it’s Colin Dixon as he’d just started out at the company. I fancy doing one in the blue scheme at some point.

Micro Flamer of Tzeentch – Project Change XX

Yellow is an interesting colour. Doubly so when shaded with the gaudy Warlock Purple. Would you experiment with that combination? I have. Here’s a 1990 Epic Tzeentch Flamer adopting the guise of Maynard Flux‘s Daemonic Familiar.

Epic Flamer of Tzeentch

Interesting? Lurid? Psychedlic? Well, I’m a little glad I didn’t do it on a larger model. Maybe a more sophisticated approach is called for. And now I realise that going forward I should avoid painting any of Tzeentch’s bird minions in yellows to avoid comparisons with Sesame Street.

I noted with the Epic scale Pink Horror that this generation of Chaos models were laughably out of scale. Let me explain this a little more. Epic is nominally a 6mm wargame, meaning the average trooper measures in at about 6mm. Here’s the Epic Flamer next to an Epic Dark Angel Hunter.

Epic Flamer of Tzeentch and Dark Angel Hunter

Why this hideous scale fail?

Theory One – the Epic Chaos Daemons were done at a time when Games Workshop were simplifying the amount of detailing on their Epic-scale models for ease of mass production. This meant chunkier details, less details, and bigger models (all the better to put big chunky details on).

Theory Two – Epic is out of scale with itself. People complain about not being able to fit ten Marines inside a Rhino in 40K. Well, try putting thirty 6mm Marines inside a Thunderhawk only 10mm long. Epic models were more abstract counters representing the troop types present on the battlefield, rather than being scale models.

Theory Three – Chaos Daemons should be this big all the time, it’s the 28mm ones that are scaled wrong.

Well, anyway, Games Workshop corrected it in 1998 with the Epic 40K plastic Chaos sprues. Here’s a comparison shot.

Giant Epic Daemons

This is one of the few examples of Games Workshop’s models getting smaller over time.

Micro Flamer of Tzeentch – Project Change XX

Yellow is an interesting colour. Doubly so when shaded with the gaudy Warlock Purple. Would you experiment with that combination? I have. Here’s a 1990 Epic Tzeentch Flamer adopting the guise of Maynard Flux‘s Daemonic Familiar.

Epic Flamer of Tzeentch

Interesting? Lurid? Psychedlic? Well, I’m a little glad I didn’t do it on a larger model. Maybe a more sophisticated approach is called for. And now I realise that going forward I should avoid painting any of Tzeentch’s bird minions in yellows to avoid comparisons with Sesame Street.

I noted with the Epic scale Pink Horror that this generation of Chaos models were laughably out of scale. Let me explain this a little more. Epic is nominally a 6mm wargame, meaning the average trooper measures in at about 6mm. Here’s the Epic Flamer next to an Epic Dark Angel Hunter.

Epic Flamer of Tzeentch and Dark Angel Hunter

Why this hideous scale fail?

Theory One – the Epic Chaos Daemons were done at a time when Games Workshop were simplifying the amount of detailing on their Epic-scale models for ease of mass production. This meant chunkier details, less details, and bigger models (all the better to put big chunky details on).

Theory Two – Epic is out of scale with itself. People complain about not being able to fit ten Marines inside a Rhino in 40K. Well, try putting thirty 6mm Marines inside a Thunderhawk only 10mm long. Epic models were more abstract counters representing the troop types present on the battlefield, rather than being scale models.

Theory Three – Chaos Daemons should be this big all the time, it’s the 28mm ones that are scaled wrong.

Well, anyway, Games Workshop corrected it in 1998 with the Epic 40K plastic Chaos sprues. Here’s a comparison shot.

Giant Epic Daemons

This is one of the few examples of Games Workshop’s models getting smaller over time.

Tzeentch Doomwing – Project Change XVII

Another foray with the teeny-tiny aircraft. I think it’s because I saw Top Gun recently.

Doom Wing - Daemon Engine of Tzeentch

The Doomwing was one of the three Dave Andrews Tzeentch-specific Daemon Engines released in March 1993 – the other two being the Fire Lord and the Silver Tower. The concept of welding technology and warp creature together was never introduced properly into 40K-scale until a decade later with the plastic Defiler kit in 2003.

The Doom Wing was a small interceptor armed with a Flame Cannon. Quite how it shot down other aircraft using forward-firing gouts of fire puzzles me, but both fire and flight are Tzeentch’s trademarks. It also carries over the horse skull vibe from the earlier Tzeentch-aligned 40K and Fantasy models.

The colour scheme was inspired by the cover artwork for Queen Rocks.

Queen Rocks Cover

It would have been perhaps more fitting for the larger Fire Lord model which has more flat surfaces to have fun blending, and also the word “fire” in its name. Oops.

Thunderbolt Fighter Squadron

We’re faster than evil! We’re faster than crime! We’re faster than love! We’re faster than tiiiiiime! Oops. That was Ring Raiders. I always get flashbacks when I play with Epic aircraft. Especially with those transparent stalks.

Epic Thunderbolt Squadron

So, these Thunderbolts are the 3rd and 4th aircraft from C Squadron from the 1337th Imperial Navy Fighter Wing, in the colours of the 1st Ager Hominis campaign where they famously supported the Grand Master Obtusius of the Dark Angels Chapter (DEFFWING COMPANY).

These guys are glued to the stalks, but the stalks aren’t glued to the base so I can swap them between standard flying bases, retro hex flying bases and Aeronautica Imperialis bases. Heck, I should go scour eBay and mount them on actual Ring Raider rings. Though sadly I doubt they’d fit my adult fingers.

I also decided not to base them to match the army (like my Ork Fighta Bomberz) so I could recycle them for other Imperial armies.