Saturday, February 14, 2015

Finished Shokk Attack Gun

I finished this guy a while ago (2014 in fact) and his pictures have just been sitting on my desktop waiting for me to write a post about him. Since then, a new Ork Codex has come out so maybe it was a good kind of procrastination.

When I got this mini, there were cheaper plastic Shokk Attack Guns available, But I was used to the metal mini and initially liked it better. I got a great deal on Bartertown for this mini because it was missing the left arm, the chains and the pole. None of that really mattered to me so I was down. I started by stripping the awful paint job (wish I had taken pictures of this train wreck) and re-priming. I must have not washed the brake fluid off because the primer did not want to stay on the mini. I had to re-strip the primer off because it was rubbing off. The second try was much better.

Painting went ok. I decided that he would not belong to any particular Ork Clan so there is red, green, blue and even some purple mixed in there. I was still hammering out how I was going to paint my Orks at this point but stumbled across a technique that helped me out in the future.

Orks differ from other armies in that they have a lot of different colors and textures right next to green skin tones. What I did is lay down my base coats for all the colors at the same time and then apply a Devlin Mud wash to all areas. Then, to brighten things up and make things easier to paint, I do a drybrush of Mythril Silver over the whole model, even the flesh and colored areas. I found that this brightened the silver and gold areas up in general. With the other colored areas, like yellow and red, it did not matter as I would have to touch up and paint them later. It saved a lot of time and did not affect the end product.

Assembly got interesting, I had to reconstruct the entire left arm. The person on Bartertown (I wish I could remember their name) sold it to me painted but neglected to mention that the left arm was not metal but plastic. After stripping, I was not able to get the plastic arm back in position when it came time to reassemble the model and had to create the left arm out of spare bits. I had to include the shoulder armor, which is a Fantasy bit, to cover the joint. It was disappointing and if I had known this beforehand and had not gotten such a good deal, I would have reamed out the person on BT over it. Not acceptable.

As a function of the janky arm and needing to replace it, the left arm and the goblin intake vent was at an awkward position very far from the body. As a result, I had a difficult time placing the Goblin getting sucked into the vent properly and not at an awkward angle. The result is a Goblin getting sucked in sideways. I tried my best to get it at a natural angle but the claw marks in the ground made it hard to position the mini on the edge of the base. In hindsight, I would have just trimmed off the claw marks int he ground and made the Goblin gripping on to the edge of the base of the mini.

As far as painting, I don't think that I did anything out of the ordinary. I really tried to apply simple rust to the silver areas and Nihilakh Oxide to gold areas. I did extensive chipping and weathering on all surfaces as is warranted by the detail required by an single-model HQ unit.

I wanted to go for a blue ghostly glow on the spheres but fell short. I was inspired by the paint on the new model but did not put the effort into doing the lighting effects or serious highlighting required to make the effect succeed. I think that the end result of blued silver metals worked on to make the spheres stand out but not overwhelm the model.

I also went all out painting the feeder tube on the back of the mini. There were lots of different textures and areas that I wanted to paint different colors. I did a light tan and dark tan alternating color scheme but still wanted more variety. I added in some red (because I know how to paint red very well at this point having painted a Battle Company of Blood Angels). I also used some Snakebite Leather to add some extra depth and variety to the leather stitching.

Back to modeling, I had to convert a Bosspole from scratch as it was missing from the mini. Luckily I had a metal Ork face glyph. To make it distinctly Big Mek, I added in a wrench. No idea where I got this bit from but this was a great use of it. My only concern is that if this mini is handled roughly, that pole is going to bend or break.

I also swapped out the metal Mek head for a plastic one from the Loota kit (I think). I like the Orky-gizmo-whatzit sticking out of his head rather than the screaming metal Big Mek head. It had blue spheres that I feel fit the mini better and tie into blue spheres on the SAG as if maybe his brain is wired into the device too.

For the weapon itself, I tried to do as many different types of metals and weathering I could to add to the modeling effect of a cobbled together weapon. I have limited paints and limited skill but I got a lot of mileage from washes and layering paint. After applying my base colors, initial wash and dry brush, I would reapply a lighter wash like Gryphonne Sepia to an area to give a different tone to a section.

Some things that I like about this mini are the variety of tones that I got out of the metals, how it can fit in with any Ork Clan and how I was able to reconstruct the left arm covering most of my my mistakes.

Some things I dislike are how fragile this is for a metal model, how the ammo/Grot tube on the back is not perfectly aligned and the Grot on the ground at an awkward angle. All of these problems are results of the person that I traded with supplying me with an incomplete mini. If the left arm had been part of the original kit, then all of these problems go away. Also, if I was a little more skilled in assembly, I could have intercepted and overcome these problems.

As far as value, this mini in plastic is $37 retail. The metal mini is harder to come by and goes for $25-$30 which is a little surprising. Older metal models usually go for more when they are out of print. While I would want to place the mini's value at $37 or higher, I can not honestly do that so let's put replacing the mini at $30. For that price, I could get a good deal on a new plastic kit or replace it with a metal kit. The paintjob is pretty damned good for me and I would rate it about 8/10. I know a little more about painting Orks after painting doing it a few dozen times over. If I had to repaint this mini, I feel like I could do a much better job. Replacement value of the paintjob if about $45 for a total value of $75 to replace this mini. I think I could trade it for a large kit of $80-120 depending on how bad someone wanted this mini. The thing working against that is that this has been a popular model that has been around for a while. There are lots of them out there for cheap.

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