So it was six years ago (give a month or so) when I was excited to get the brand new Empire of Dust mega-army set ( From Dust They Arise ), but it took me 10 months to finally get it painted and ready for Gencon 2017 ( The Empire (of Dust) Strikes Back ).
Well the brand new NO METAL version of the Empire of Dust army is currently being released. I pre-ordered another mega army, expecting to arrive via Royal Mail (as a side note - I understand the change to free shipping - however if we have to pay for shipping - can we at least be able to pay for the upgrade to courier shipping? I'll gladly pay for the FedEx upgrade to get it in two days vs Royal Mail for two weeks). So I was pleasantly surprised when it showed up last week - the Thursday before Gencon.
I have actually FINALLY gotten back into somewhat of a groove with painting - I have finished my new demo armies for both Halflings and RiftForged Orcs, and even plan to have several new Coral Giants for my Trident Realm army ready for Sword of Kings over labor day (the first weekend in September) (plus some frogs from Hellboy). (Yes, I need to post pictures of those, plus the Knucker I just added to my Trident Realm demo army).
So last time it took me 10 months - could I paint up a mega army in 6 days (I will have to be packing and driving on Wednesday, so it has to be done by Tuesday night). Well, it actually isn't the entire box, but I do want to add some cavalry to my demo army, and get rid of the awful metal/plastic hybrid models.
Ok, let me elaborate a bit there. I remember back in the before times, when the first Uncharted Empires came out to help refugees from the old world transition to a new, better rank & flank experience. When the Tom Kings were 'squatted' (though can we still use that as a term, since I hear that Squats are back in 40K?) Mantic quickly sculpted metal conversion bits for their existing skeleton range. It was a great way to get something out quickly, and I liked the look of the models.
However if you have ever had to assemble metal/plastic hybrid models (old Abyssal Dwarf, Twilight Kin, Empire of Dust) they are more 'challenging' to put together, and even worse for staying together. Now I'm used to having to do repairs to my demo armies - it is just part of having demo armies (Undead are the first 'real' demo army I did, back in 2013) (using my Abyssal Dwarfs, which date back to 2012 before Kings of War 1st edition even came out, doesn't count). However the Empire of Dust has required more repairs than ALL other armies combined. Some of the metal bows have been attached 3 or 4 times. Last year when packing for Gencon, I dropped a couple of army boxes. The top two had a few models that needed fixing - the EoD practically exploded (and I never did find one of the arms for the Cursed High Priest). I was just really looking forward to them not falling apart all the time, as well as showing off the new models.
I'd figured out a new list - replacing the horde of skeleton spearmen with a regiment, removing the revenant regiment and the desert swarm and standard bearer. Then adding in a troop of revenant cavalry, a troop of skeleton archer cavalry and a revenant champion on horseback. The regiment of spearmen and regiment of archers would be replaced with the new plastic versions. I hadn't planned on replacing the enslaved guardian archers, until I saw the difference, so those metal models would be swapped out as well.
The only thing from my old version left was the cursed high priest (with a new arm!) and a regiment of mummies. However the mummies are soon to be gone as the demo needs some chariots! (C'mon - does anyone field EoD without any Chariots?).
Six days - all I truly HAD to finish before then was the two troops of cavalry and the mounted character. The rest is just gravy. Luckily I had last Thursday and Friday off work as well.
But I know you are here to see pictures of the new models.
The first is the brand new skeleton sprue. When I first opened these, it appeared to me that there was just two copies of the same sprue. But there were pictures of a naked skull on the box and web site - and the sprue did not have one. Did they use an old skeleton skull? Then I noticed the writing at the top - 2 of 2. Looking at the sprues, I then found 1 of 2, and there was the bare skull. The ONLY difference between the sprues are the heads - sprue 1 has 7 heads, while sprue 2 has 6 (for a total of 13 different heads for 10 models).