Table Ready Feature: Perturabo, Primarch of the Iron Warriors

[This post was originally posted to Otherverse Games & Hobbies as part of a series called Plastic to Painted, or P2P. You may see logos or references to this site and series]

The Hammer of Olympia

When the Primarchs were scattered across the universe, Perterabo found himself on Olympia, where he would for one year roam the wilds. With rumors passing from town to town of a child wandering the wilds and killing beasts, he was found by the royal guard of the Tyrant of Lochos. The Tyrant, recognizing his special traits, took him in. The Lord of Iron, as he would later be called, grew up surrounded by bitter politics, and hated just about everything about Olympia. Except his new sister, daughter of the Tyrant, Calliphone. Perturabo recognized her wits and intelligence.

Perturabo, became a tower of a young man compared to the Olympians, was very interested in science and technology, and would become a master artisan and unrivaled in combat. When he came of suitable age, he went to war to fight in the name of the Tyrant of Lochos. In these battles the Hammer of Olympia moniker was born. Perturabo was designing new war machines that no one could rival. Acting as the warlord for the Tyrant, Perturabo was unstoppable.

When the time came that the Emperor of Mankind sought his sons out, Perturabo followed him. Something had been calling him deep in space. Some powerful force. And so he would be introduced to his legion and join in the crusades to unite the worlds. The IV Legion, when Perturabo arrived, were quite flawed in his opinion. However, when they were helmed by Perturabo, the Iron Warriors became a ruthless force of siege masters. They destroyed many worlds in an effort to bring them to the Imperiums “light”. Their assaults and sieges would bring these worlds to their knees, leaving only ruin behind.

Perturabo’s orders were to be heeded, no matter how brutal, and the Iron Warriors saw them through to the letter. These orders would eventually include the complete destruction and genocide of Perturabo’s home planet of Olympia.

Olympia had rebelled against the Imperium of Man, and word had reached Perturabo. Upon his return to the planet, on threat of enslavement or destruction, he demanded that the city-states submit. Most did not. This drove a disgusted Perturabo and his Legion to go from city-state to city-state and destroy everything and everyone in their path. Men, women, and children. None were spared. During this conquest, the now aged Calliphone would also be killed at the hand of Perturabo. She blamed him personally for the ill that had fallen Olympia. Perturabo strangled his ‘sister’. The only person on Olympia that he had cared for.

The actions on Olympia were commended by Warmaster Horus. Whom was slowly sowing the seed of Civil War amongst the Legions Astartes.

The Eternal Fortress and The Iron Cage

Following the events that initiated the Horus Heresy, particularly Istvaan V’s infamous Drop Site Massacre, Perturabo set his sights on bigger things. Notably, a rather personal vendetta:

Making Rogal Dorn and the Imperial Fists bend a knee to Perturabo and the Iron Warriors. The true siege masters.

Prior to the Heresy, Warmaster Horus had declared Perturabo and his Iron Warriors the true siege masters. Not Dorn and his VII Legion. No doubt another subtle act to help sow the seeds of Civil War. Nevertheless, Rogal Dorn and the Imperial Fists were charged with the fortification of the Imperial Palace. A fact that incensed Perturabo.

Now well after the Drop Site Massacre, and betting on this rage, Horus tasked the Iron Warriors with laying siege to the Imperial Palace. To which Perturabo and his Legion took great pleasure in. Getting to dismantle the cocky Rogal Dorn’s defenses, piece by piece. However, after the IV Legion was forced to withdrawal, when Horus was slain by the Emperor, Dorn would embark on a personal crusade to eliminate the Iron Warriors for good.

Perturabo, enraged that Dorn was targeting his Legion, as well as still being upset from having to pull out of the Terra campaign, in turn devised an elaborate trap for his “brother”. On Sebastus IV, Perturabo created what was dubbed the Eternal Fortress. A massive field of death designed to draw in the Imperial Fists enmasse, ensnare them, and devastate the entire Legion and Rogal Dorn.

The fortress was 20 square miles in size, and the defenses resembled an 8 pointed star, from overhead. There were lengthy tunnels, towers, trenches, minefields, tank traps, and many more elaborate tests designed to ensnare and squeeze the life out of the Fists. At the center of the massive field of death was a large bunker that served no purpose other than to be a decoy. It looked very tempting. Everything was carefully thought out and prepared.

Upon hearing that the Iron Warriors were hold up on Sebastus IV, a no doubt salivating Rogal Dorn stated that he would go there personally and drag Perturabo back to Terra in an Iron Cage.

The Ultramarines attempted orbital bombardment of the the area failed, as the Iron Warriors were safe in their tunnels. Dorn, was eager to get to work at destroying the Iron Warriors once and for all and committed his entire Legion to an uncharacteristically haphazard ‘boots on the ground’ siege of the area. Exactly what Perturabo had wanted. Using his orbital defense turrets, he forced the Imperial Fists hand in terms of where they would make their landings. Soon after, he would detonate the defenses sending massive amounts of debris into the atmosphere, effectively cutting off the Imperial Fists ground force communications with their orbital fleet. This was also the trigger for the orbital battle above the planet. The Iron Warriors fleet was laying in wait and brimming with Chaos Marines preparing for ship to ship boarding. While the Imperial Fists ships had committed just about their entire legion to the siege of the Eternal Fortress. These vessels were sitting ducks.

From here Perturabo was in charge of everything, and the Fists were his toys. He would bolster defenses here, and reduce them there. Thus driving the Fists exactly where he wanted them. Perturabo would repeat this tactic numerous times. In doing so the Imperial Fists numbers were spread out and weakened. This all lasted for almost 4 weeks. The Iron Warriors were well fortified and well supplied. The Imperial Fists, spread too thin and with their supply lines cut off, were largely left to fight with their combat knives only in the mud and murk. It took an intervention by the Ultramarines to break the Iron Warriors systematic cycle of killing of the Imperial Fists Legionnaires.

Now contending with two Legions, Perturabo would stubbornly concentrate on the Fists, and making sure that their retreat was a painful one. He also made sure that the Imperial Fists could not reclaim their fallen Marines gene-seeds. In fact, some 400 dead Imperial Fists were not recovered. A massive win for the Iron Warriors, and major source of shame for Rogal Dorn.

It has been theorized that Perturabo could have ended Dorn at almost any time, but he was enjoying himself too much playing with his captive toys. This sadism caused him to miss his chance to finish the Imperial Fists off for good as they were able to make their withdraw. Conversely, Dorn had to live with his failure in ending the IV Legion, and the humiliating fact that 400 of his fallen Marines were not recovered. Their gene-seeds used as tribute to the gods of chaos.

In the aftermath of the Eternal Fortress/Iron Cage, Perturabo earned ascension as a Daemon Prince. What was left of the Imperial Fists, though, would be bolstered, in a sense. They would also splinter into a handful of new chapters.


The Lord of Resin

As I have mentioned before, I fell in love with the Iron Warriors well over 20 year ago. I loved the lore and their whole mantra. Iron Within, Iron Without. When the time came, and I decided to restart my Iron Warriors army, I bought Perturabo. Seeing as Forge World actually had a model for him now. And then I… promptly relegated him to the storage drawers at my hobby desk. Where he would sit and stew in his bitterness for over 3 years.

The whole concept of painting a Primarch was daunting to me then. I was just returning to the hobby, and my painting skills were nowhere good enough. Even though I had easily painted around 100 Iron Warriors models in just about 1 year’s time. It was definitely all mental. When I finally worked up the courage to dig his box out, the intimidation was still there. But I was much more prepared for the task.

This is not a toy.
Why would you NOT model him with Ferrus Manus’ hammer?

Building Perturabo

Forge World resin kits and I don’t get a long well. This is documented in multiple places. But this one wasn’t too bad. The pieces of Perturabo and his armor went together quite easily. This was in large part due to my painstaking cleaning of his bits. A lot more than usual. I soaked this kit for almost 48 hours in the sonic bath. Then scrubbed the pieces really well. This was all before I even trimmed the gates off. Once I had cut off the gates I ran him through the sonic bath again for 24 hours or so. To get any leftover resin dust and oil off of the pieces. Resin and my sinuses don’t play well together. I have to wear my super particulate mask when building resin. It’s annoying, but better than yet another sinus infection.

The most trouble I had while building this kit was with the base. For starters I could not get the small diorama setting that Perturabo is attached, to adhere to the base. For whatever reason, my glue was not adhering there at all. I had no problems anywhere else but there. Not even on the larger diorama base. I ended up having to break out the pin-vice and wire to pin the base to the diorama base insert. From there I had some small issues with getting the smaller base to actually fit properly into the larger diorama base. I ended up having to trim some of the molded resin design away from the slot area.

Dry fitting.
The model base is supposed to slot into here.


When the time came to finally paint this model, I swallowed any intimidation I had left over and just jumped in. I generally prime my Iron Warriors with Army Painter’s Plate Mail Metal. But this time I opted for the much darker Army Painter Uniform Grey. With hopes it would give a more aged look to the Iron Warriors color I would give it later. Did it? Perhaps.

To prove my painting resolve, the piece that I chose to work on first was my absolute weakest point in painting miniatures. Flesh. I went straight for Perturabo’s head. I have a tendency to overdo it when it comes to faces. Seriously, some of my poor Sisters of Battle are in need of a helmet… I used very thin layers of Kislev Flesh here, and some watered down Fleshshade, before doing some very light color correction with Kislev Flesh again. I took extra care not to screw it all up while painting the metallics on his head as well. To which of course, I screwed up. Luckily it came out pretty well, i think.

Perturabo’s head on a pike. I’m sure there are many that would love to see that come true.

Next up would be his torso. Which meant the Iron Warriors trademark armor. Even though I was thinking of harebrained ways of painting this model, I ended up following my usual Iron Warriors pattern here. Well version 2 of said pattern. Version 1 was Leadbelcher and Nuln Oil. That was before the arrival of the Iron Warriors base paint. This is seriously one of my favorite metallics. I am quite aggressive with the Nuln Oil for my Iron Warriors. I just love how it looks in the details and on the dark metal paint.

I warm up the golds with Fleshshade and then Nuln Oil the bronzes. Lastly I do some light highlighting. Usually with a drybrush. I glued the bottom parts of the legs to the diorama base, after dry fitting at least 12 times. I painted them alone before I moved on to the diorama base itself.

I was really enjoying painting this model.
This larger model with the Iron Warriors livery just looks so good to me.

Once I was satisfied with Perturabo himself, I began work on the fallen knight diorama. I also glued his painted bolter feed-belts on. Then I dry fit him to see how we were looking. I was loving what I saw, but didn’t have much a a clue how I wanted to paint the knight. Somehow I ended up on white and blue. Which I think was the colors on the box art. But that would not be the final look, for sure.

I ended up losing my damned mind and going crazy with the weathering on the diorama base. I coated almost the whole thing with Typhus Corrosion, before going in with heavy amounts of AK-Interractive’s Light Rust Deposits. My insanity paid off in the end, I think. I am really happy with how the diorama came out actually. Even though the rust comes out as yellow on camera…

From here, all that was left were touch ups, detail work on the base and diorama, and to paint the actual base. Perturabo, after more than 3 years, was finally done.

Iron Within, Iron Without

So it turns out, my trepidation’s about painting this model were kind of silly. I ended up having a blast. I honestly didn’t think I would like this kit, as a whole. I wasn’t exactly sold on the diorama base. But it grew on me. I loved Perturabo’s pose from the start though.

Diroama Base

He has a very imposing pose
The Knight has a lot of damaged details in it. It really is a great piece.
It kind of looks like Perturabo is falling. But he is modeled that way. Perhaps he is shooting before/as he jumps down?
The back profile is actually my favorite.
I love the bolter shells all over the place.
Perturabo with his Siege Terminators(minus the missile launchers*), Leviathan Dreadnought, and a squad of CSM.

*I bought these terminators for use in 40K. In that rule set terminators could not take those missile launchers. I ended up giving the launcher bits to Tyson.

In-game Base

The in-game base does not exactly just slot in to the diorama easily. It requires some muscle, so I honestly don’t think I will be separating the two very much, for fear of harming the model and paint job. Even with the clearcoat on top, paint is still rubbing off where the two bases connect. I prefer the look of the whole model together anyway. From what I understand, the newer wave of character models are much easier to detach from they diorama’s*.

*I can at least confirm that is true with Jaghatai Khan

Future Iron

Looking forward, I want to model the Iron Circle, Perturabo’s robot bodyguards. Also Tormentor, his massive/heavily modified Shadowsword. I would like to model all of this with some kind of diorama some day. I have some ideas, but who knows. That would be a massive diorama. One that would probably rival my Titan.

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All of these are true except for one:

Robert is: a Hobbyist, a Music Lover, an RPG Gamer, a Mustard Lover, Chaotic Neutral, a Japanese Speaker, a Veteran, an Otaku, a Table Tennis Player, an Anime Fan, an Aviation Professional, a New York Rangers Fan, a Chaos Lover With Loyalist Tendencies.

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