Vintage Silver Tower Tzaangor

Back into Tzeentch’s Silver Tower! But this is not just any Silver Tower, this is a Silver Tower stuck in the past – when metal miniatures reigned supreme. I’ve painted six Citadel Tzaangor from 1990 – the greatest of all times. (Ha! Sly goat reference!)

Left to right: Ougoatlas, Rameses, Lambeses, Hornus, Iry-Horn and Phuroah.

These are all wonderful Bob Olley sculpts that are packed with weird and flamboyant details like the exotic head-dresses, ornate armour, and bizarre codpieces. Two of the Tzaangor in the range didn’t see release as their obscene helmets were spotted in time. (You can see the notorious unreleased versions at CCM.)

Tzaangor kidding about in the ruins of a Chaos Temple.

Tzaangor have “brightly colured or exotically patterned fur” according to Realms of Chaos, so I went for an unnatural turquoise colour. I’m unsure if the combination of bright colours and smiling anthropomorphic animal fuzz pushes them into My Little Pony territory, but hey ho! Their armour is blue and gold to give off an Egyptian-cum-Tzeentch vibe, and two have horns in alternating stripes like a pharoah’s head dress. There’s some minor weapon swaps to bring them in line with the Silver Tower game requirements, and one has a Light Acolyte sword to show they’re part of the same force. The Marauder shield with the serpent motif (thanks to Mr. Saturday for sending me them) further echoes the Light Acolytes whose staffs and belts feature a snake motif. Chaos Snakemen will have to be part of this force in the future!

A herd of bray with a bird of prey.

That’s twenty-six of the vintage Silver Tower denizens now painted (Skaven here, Acolytes here, Light Wizards here and Horrors here). Now I can convert a classic Ogre into the Ogroid Thaumathurge – watch this space!

Dirty advertisement. Ninjabread continues below.

Curis

Curis has painted for Games Workshop, Forge World, Warlord Games, Mantic Games, Avatars of War, Wargames Foundry, Studio McVey and many others. He's won at Golden Demon and Salute. He publishes monthly painting tutorials on Patreon.

34 thoughts on “Vintage Silver Tower Tzaangor

  • February 19, 2019 at 1:11 pm
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    This is a fantastic unit Chris !
    It takes talent to have blue armour on blue skin and keep tings easy to read as you did here.
    The warmth of the leather parts is just perfect to add contrast and that gold is just perfect, striking but not stealing the show.
    Top marks !

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    • February 19, 2019 at 2:22 pm
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      Thanks JB! It’s not talent, it’s six months of trial-and-error with the colour scheme. These have been done on and off since last June and I still don’t quite think they’re all there – but they’re good enough to have on the table. I’d like to do some more to flesh out the unit and improve on the scheme in the future!

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  • February 19, 2019 at 1:40 pm
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    The lurid blue is enchanting, and somehow doesn’t evoke MLP, which I’ll put down to the essential goatliness of them all. And the codpieces.

    This unit is perfect, just perfect!

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    • February 19, 2019 at 7:15 pm
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      Phew! And do you think its clear of furry territory too?

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  • February 19, 2019 at 1:40 pm
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    Really enjoying seeing your Oldhammer take on the Silver Tower, these are some lovely looking beastmen

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    • February 19, 2019 at 10:36 pm
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      Thanks Jimmy!

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  • February 19, 2019 at 2:19 pm
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    Oooh, so gorgeous. I bet they smell like goat musk and lemon sherbet. Your photos are so crisp, I need to up my game considerably.

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    • February 19, 2019 at 10:30 pm
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      I imagine they smell like Panda Pops and wet sheep.

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  • February 19, 2019 at 4:26 pm
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    A truly amazing unit Curis. Love that you went with the blue fur, I did the same thing with my 4th ed Beastmen a few years back. ;)

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    • February 19, 2019 at 10:31 pm
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      Excellent! Great minds think alike! You’ve got the later fiercer beastmen, which look far less cuddly than these when rendered in blue.

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  • February 19, 2019 at 5:45 pm
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    For many years I’ve viewed the Bob Olley beastmen as inferior to Jes Goodwin’s. The 1991 red catalogue certainly does them no favours in that regard. But these are revealed to me now as being interesting, characterful figures. I can imagine them speaking in gentle melodious voices, whilst the very topic of their conversation is uncomfortable, unfathomable and dangerous! They might well brain you with their maces, but they’ll distract you with a delicate symbol traced in the air first!

    Wonderful colours, wonderful painting, wonderful result.

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    • February 19, 2019 at 10:35 pm
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      I think Citadel regarded the Bob Olleys as inferior to Jes’ (and Kev’s, he did some too). All the Olley Tzaangor lost their power alignment in Citadel catalogue one, while the Jes ‘n’ Kev ones mostly kept theirs. And I don’t think any Olleys made it onto Combat Cards or the later studio armies.

      I think the reason people think Olley is inferior is because the style is so disctinct, and it disappears from Warhammer and 40K early on in their development, so it always stands apart. If Bob had continued at Games Workshop then I think his style would have fed into what becomes the modern GW house style much more and people would find it more palatable.

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  • February 19, 2019 at 8:56 pm
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    That blue combo just can’t be BLEAT. Etc.

    Definitely the best take on those funny old models that I have ever seen. Axiom described it well above, they look otherworldly and sinister, even though baby blue.

    Not BAAd work at all (sorry).

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:51 pm
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      Your punning really gets on my goat.

      Reply
  • February 20, 2019 at 12:17 am
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    Oh, my. I can’t believe how wonderful they look. They are superb. Blue fur is quite a risk, whenever I’ve tried it I’ve only ended up achieving a ‘muppet effect’ that ruined the whole paintjob. Seriously, this is outstanding.

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    • February 22, 2019 at 11:06 am
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      Thanks Suber! I kept lightening the blue until it stopped looking like Cookie Monster. I’d like to paint the next batch with paler fur though, see if I can get the milky albino look nailed.

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    • February 22, 2019 at 11:06 am
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      Thanks Warburton!

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  • February 20, 2019 at 4:18 am
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    I really liked the old style beastmen from the time when I was first getting into GW games.
    That is some killer work with the different shades of blue setting each other off so well.

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:27 pm
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      Thanks Wodin! I was inspired by the song “Blue” by pop legends Eiffel 65.

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:27 pm
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      Thanks Papa!

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  • February 20, 2019 at 9:45 am
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    Brilliant, Curis! Such a nice unique take on them as well. They’re a wonderful range to work on; some cool weapon alterations in there too.

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:37 pm
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      Cheers Ed! I want to push them further with some other Ironclaw additions – I’m thinking a stone thrower (repurposed from the Goblin range) with unarmoured goatman crew might be really fun…

      I was a bit nervous about doing the weapon swaps, as taking intact figures and switching their weapons to bring them in like with later editions feels a bit like iconoclasm.

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  • February 20, 2019 at 11:27 am
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    The blue Roc touch is absolutely divine! Well done Sir!

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:47 pm
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      Thanks Nico! I’m really keen on a different type of exotic fur on a future batch of Tzeentch followers – black and white stripes.

      Call them “Tzebra”.

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  • February 20, 2019 at 11:48 am
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    Beautiful work Curis! Such a unique take on them as well! They’re lovely figs to paint with all their weird and wonderful details.

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:48 pm
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      Thanks Ed! I spent a while going back to see how you’d done yours – spesh as you’ve got some of the same castings. I like how you’d picked out the individual elements of the helmet to make it look painted, and the more natural skintones.

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  • February 23, 2019 at 4:21 pm
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    Love these, and this whole project, it’s a fantastic idea. I now want some beastmen with vaguely penile horns. It occurred to me while reading this, have you considered doing a photography and post processing tutorial/s? You have a distinct style that looks great.

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    • February 26, 2019 at 5:50 pm
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      Cheers Sean! A photography tutorial is definitely on the cards. I think it would work best as a video reverse engineering one of the shots. Watch this space!

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  • March 5, 2019 at 6:19 am
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    Wow – double points to you for both owning these models and also having painted them! You don’t see the Bob Olley-era Beastmans too often, that’s for sure!

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    • March 11, 2019 at 3:21 pm
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      Fanks! I’ve got a few more of them thanks to the generosity of a friend – they should see the unit taken up to 10 minis. They’re frustratingly rare and expensive though – guess they didn’t sell that many of them back in 1990.

      Reply
  • March 7, 2019 at 8:49 pm
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    cool! have just discovered this blog, lovely work!

    Reply

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