Table Ready: Invictarus Suzerains

[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 very models that made me wanna build a Heresy Ultramarines army

Almost no one familiar with Warhammer 40k and Warhammer in general would argue that Ultramarines are, for a lack of a better term, fairly generic and boring. Seemingly chosen to the be poster boys of 40k because the color blue is inviting to consumers, the Warrior Kings of Ultramar were seen as the vanilla way to play Space Marines for a long time. Sure, they had plenty of named character models. But, really that was it.

I know, I know. I can hear you from where I type this. “But Tyson, you fool, you have an nine-thousand point army of Ultramarines” (it’s actually closer to 8k now that the 2023 points are out and Armor of Contempt is gone) and to that I reply: Shut up! Then you look at me with that expression and it’s a thing.

Ok, Yeah. I did do that. The terminus of 7th Edition Warhammer 40k gave us a returned Loyalist Primarch, and 8th Edition gave us some fairly decent rules which set the Ultramarines apart from the other Space Marine Chapters. Plus, I like Space Marines. So, I built a new army to rival my long-term Dark Angels army, and I don’t apologize for it.

Warrior Kings

It was soon after I had leapt face first into the Ultramarines like Scrooge McDuck and his pile of fuckin gold that I discovered the Horus Heresy line of models. Moreover, I found the Invictus Suzerain Squad. Damn, did these guys have an actual unique visual style and had the Warrior Kings of Ultramar look like nothing in 40k, save the two Victrix and standard Honour Guard had. Their golden glory hit an 11 out of 10 and I was in love.

The Suzerain were the first squad I bought that could only be used in Heresy. Eventually I would realize that I could use them as Company Veterans, although they would eat up a lot of points with those storm shields and power axes.

The Invictarus Suzerains are the super elite warriors of the Ultramarine Legion. Each Suzerain is a warrior that outshines almost all warriors around them and are destined to for great things within the XIII Legion. Armed with a Legatine Axe and presenting an Argyrum Pattern Boarding Shield, they are equipped for both offense and defense like no other. Toss in a few plasma pistols to soften up the target before they engage in melee and a few thunder hammers to break through any target to level up their lethality.

On top of that, they have the line rule, which allows them to score victory points. Armed and armored as they are, they are capable of taking an objective from nearly any normal scoring unit. Each member of the squad is a character unto themselves, capable of fighting one-on-one challenges with ease. This is particularly useful when the Suzerain Squad is taken as a bodyguard unit for a Praetor, keeping the Warlord safe while dealing out death in the name of Guilliman and the Emperor.

Some (sub) Assembly Required

These ten Invictus Suzerains took nearly two weeks of hobby time, almost double the amount of time a normal 10-man marine unit will require of me. Looking back, it should be obvious with the level of detail the ForgeWorld models bring to bare.

There is gold all over the fuckin place: trim on the armor, trim on the shields, lettering on the goddmaned axe head, because of course, and don’t forget the gold Aquilla mask across their helms. With a little pre-thought in how I was going to get this done, literally months in advance when I was building and priming them for the winter painting projects, I was able to get them done relatively easily, if not a bit tediously.

The heads were still on the gates, so were the backpacks. The pistol and forearms were glued to the Shields and painted that way. The Legatine Axes and the arms were glued to the legs and torso, and attached to bases.

I painted these guys much like I did the rest of my XIII Legion infantry in Project Ultramar. To start they were primed in Macragge Blue Spray, followed by an airbrush of the same color to make sure I got every nook and cranny. A thinned down layer of contrast was applied all over and given ample time to pool up a little in the recesses and dry thoroughly.

All gold, silver and white details were done completely with base, wash, layer and highlight. I did this to save time, as once those colors were set I then applied Caledor Sky to the armor panels as a broad layer in sketch-like hatch marks below thick highlight areas. This process covered up all the fuck-ups, removing the need to clean up after each other color before. Lastly, a little edge highlighting of the brighter blue was done in small amounts. The models were bright enough.

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Obsessive and neurotic collector of little plastic men, novels about the same little plastic men and paints to make the little plastic men pretty. Married to Kera, who puts up with him and pretends that she doesn’t hear him speaking to the little plastic men in between making pew pew noises in the hobby room. Requires adult supervision. A menace to himself but rarely to others. More beard than man

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