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About this blog

AoS Moonclan Grot Army Project

Da Bloo Moon Forest Fungus Boyz

 

 

I will be documenting the progress of this army here and will post WIP pictures more regularly on Twitter via @Bishmeister1.

This army was commenced early last year but enthusiasm for it waned when Age of Sigmar was released and round bases became standard. After much deliberation I began to rebase the army and now love the round base aesthetic and its potential for more base embellishment.

Beware this is a long introduction.

Background/Fluff
Located in the Realm of Life
DBMFFB inhabit the deepest darkest depths in the fantastical forests of the Realm of Life. This band of Forest Moonclan Grots spends most of their existence in perpetual darkness due to the thickness of the tree canopy.  Light rarely permeates to their dingy domain; this darkness is compounded by the eerily enveloping mists that saturate everything in the forest during the warmth and closeness of the day giving it a dank, dingy, dreary atmosphere that drips from every leaf, bough and lichen. This dark and damp atmosphere combined with the continuous cycle of rot and growth is the perfect environment for the grots main source of sustenance, fungi.

 

The Bloo Moon Fungus
The fungus of the forest grows everywhere and the DBMFFB are fungus connoisseurs without rival; from brewing potent blue death cap tea to stewing the popular ten plus one toadstool hotpot. DBMFFB take their name from the unusual bloo moon fungus. The mighty mushroom is a giant of the forest and is worshiped as a deity. This mushroom appears seldom, once in a blue moon in fact, but grows to gigantic proportions compared to the other fungi. It is light blue in colour and has a luminous quality to it making it appear as if it is glowing. When discovered these are treated with great reverence and shamans will carry out necessary sacrificial rituals to extend the existence of this fabulous fungi.  As like all fungi its life is limited but this can be extended by feeding it rotting flesh, this is usually the flesh of victims which is placed around the mighty mushroom where it will feed the soil and sustain the fungus. The main stem of the mushroom is as thick as a large tree and the ground around it is covered with smaller bloo fungus spawning from the main plant. The appearance of these terrific toadstools seems to coincide with the appearance of the bloo moon which in rare circumstances permeates to the forest floor. This usually occurs through glimpses in the canopy within the tribe’s shamanic burial grounds where the forest vegetation thins and struggles to grow.
 

Shamans
The shamans particularly covet the bloo moon fungus as consuming its flesh enhances their magical potential. The shamans harvest the offshoots of the main fungus to produce their hallucinogenic homebrews and thus preserving the dominant blue fungus. Consuming this fungus would be fatal for any other Moonclan grot but the shamans have built up a resistance to the toadstools toxins over many years of regular consumption. This long and often fatal path of the shaman begins with fermenting the bloo moon fungus to brew potent ale. This is same ale given to fanatics although in much larger quantities where the fanatics are encouraged to ‘skull’ a five pints. Over time the shaman will increase his consumption brewing all manner of fungus ales and eating regular helpings of the half life hot pot towards the end of his shamanic journey. This hot pot so named as shamans lives tend to be cut very short soon afterwards. The shamans begin to turn blue as they gradually succumb to the fungi's finger of death. The shamans consider this terminal transformation as a ritual self-sacrifice which guarantees them the elevation to a deity. In consuming the bloo moon fungi the shaman is able to tap into the collective knowledge, experience and sometimes powers of the previous shamans that have been assimilated by the fungus in its perpetual cycle of consumption. Shamans will often go mad before they are overcome by the fungi's finger of death due to the crazed and incessant rambling murmurs of the assimilated shamans. Only the strongest willed and most powerful shamans survive to experience deity hood. Eventually the shaman’s body will be more fungus than grot and the shaman’s body will stop responding to his commands. The shamans mind and soul become locked into the fungi and has to compete to be heard with all the other locked in shamanic souls. At this point the shaman is buried in the shamanic burial grounds where the fungus will lay dormant until it is charmed out of the ground by a future bloo moon.
 

Squigs
DBMFFB fascination with everything fungi has led them to keep a disproportionate number of squigs in their army. From the tiny squiglings to the giant forest squigs, squigs are everywhere. Many regiments see the squiglings as good luck charms and actively encourage them to join their regiment by feeding them fungi. This can be dangerous as some squiglings can increase in size very rapidly if given too many fungi and end rampaging through the regiments' ranks causing havoc. DBMFFB will harvest all the blue squigs as they consider them to be the most ferocious and distantly related to the blue moon fungus, therefore prized and sacred.
 

Fellwater Troggoths
DBMFFB also have a disproportionate number of Fellwater Troggoths which tend to avoid running water with a preference for the dark, dank, stinking bogs of the forest. These Fellwater Troggoths prey on the unfortunate creatures that fall into or stray too close to the forest bogs. They will often eat grots although they find them stringy and tasteless. Like DBMFFB the Fellwater Troggoths covet the blue moon fungus, not in a sacred way but the fungus enhances their metabolism enabling them to grow larger and regenerate quicker. Fellwater Troggoths are able to snuffle out the bloo moon fungus through their amazing sense of smell.  The Fellwater Troggoths have light blue skin which is probably caused by their consumption of the bloo moon fungus and the fact that they spend most of their time in perpetual darkness. They have scales of varying shades of green and dark lank hair. DBMFFB believe the Fellwater Troggoths to be the physical manifestation of the bloo moon fungus' anger and malice and see them as a gift, albeit reluctant, from the fungus deity for their army. The Fellwater Troggoths are reluctant participants in the army of DBMFFB and have to be carolled from their bogs by the brave and the stupid; the stupid use fishing rods, hooks and nets whilst the brave use tempting treats, such a bloo fungus ale, long spears, and the stupid to temp the Fellwater Troggoths out of their bogs and into the army. The Fellwater Troggoths will often join regiments of grots as they are attracted by the smell of fungus ale. This can often have adverse effects causing the regiments to break down into a seething pit of animosity as the Fellwater Troggoths makes a beeline for any fanatics in the regiment that have consumed the bloo moon fungus ale. The shamans of the army are particularly wary of the Fellwater Troggoths and will not join any regiments containing Fellwater Troggoths for fear of being devoured.

 

Bog Momma
Bog Momma is an exceedingly large female Fellwater Troggoths. It is thought that she has managed to grow so large as she is very long lived and by consuming vast quantities of bloo moon fungus and other male Fellwater Troggoths who are attracted to her because of her magnificently pungent body odour. She is a less reluctant member of the army as she has the wit to understand the feast which ensues following a battle which goes some way to sating her gargantuan appetite. She is continuously eating and is never without her net hand bag which is stuffed full of tasty titbits. Whilst being a formidable monster she is easily distracted by the opportunity of an easy meal, fungi or pretty wild flowers. These distractions along with compliments are often used by the Moonclan Grots to guide her to the enemy.

Forest Spiders
The forest has many creepy crawlies and DBMFFB make extensive use of the forest spiders within their army. These are mainly used as scouts due to their ability to travel silently though the forest canopy and their ability to use webs to ensnare enemies. DBMFFB will use spiders of all varieties and sizes within their army, the largest being the mighty Araknarok spider.
 

Creepy Crawlies & Beasts
Distributed throughout all of DBMFFB ranks are various creepy crawlies and beasts, including boars, wolves, spiders, sprites, squigs, bats and rats. Some of these are not really part of the army but end up getting caught up amongst the commotion.
 

Iconography, Equipment & ‘Ethics’
The emblem of the blue snarling moon and or forest fungus are used extensively throughout the army. DBMFB wear the traditional black garb of the Moonclan grots but decorate their hoods with bloo moon fungus patterns on the rims although these patterns are usually white as light blue cloth is extremely rare to the Moonclan grots.

The army struggles to make any metal weapons as they do not have access to the raw materials required so they have a preference for wooden spears and clubs. If a grot is lucky enough he will have scavenged a metal weapon from a dead enemy. Metal weapons are considered a status symbol within the army, although some grots, particularly the not so clever ones, take this to the extreme and believe the larger the weapon the greater the status. This doesn't always work so well in battle when the owner of the giant weapons cannot fight effectively and is easily slain by their opponent. However there are always plenty of stupid grots ready to pry these weapons from their dead comrades’ hands in the pursuit of elevated status in the form of a big choppa. The grot bosses are usually the most intelligent grots and do not fall into this 'arms race' so are usually modestly armed.

The grots are natural scavengers and are armed and equipped in a rather eclectic fashion with little uniformity. DBMFFB have no qualms in using the weapons and equipment of other races and do not favour any particular races weapons but generally end up with the weapons of the foes they come into contact with the most, these being Men, Beastmen and Duardin. DBMFFB are particularly spiteful and relish the chance to vanquish a foe with a weapon from that race, particularly if it’s a Duardin. DBMFFB will not however have anything to do with any form of Aelven equipment or weapons seeing them as dirty, tricksy baubles that stink of Aelven malediction.

 

The Army (eventually)

Grot Warboss (Skarnik and Gnobbla)
3 x Grot Warboss on Great Cave Squiq
2 x Grot Big Boss on Gigantic Spider
Lots of Grot Shamans

Forest Moonclan Grot hordes
4 x Grot Units (32)(128)
3 x Archer Grots (32)(96)
2 x Sqiug Herders (32)(64)

2 x Units of squig hoppers (18)(36)
2 x Cave Squig Units (32)(64)
6 x units of spider riders (10)(60)

2 x Squig Gobbers
1 x Mangler Squig
12 x Fellwater Troggoths

1 x Colossal Cave Squig
1 x Giant Fellwater Troggoth (Bog Momma)
1 x Araknarok spider
1 x Giant

This army is missing big chunks of units i.e. artillery, I have yet to decide on how to model these as I don’t want to use the current models.

Initial army project will be centred on the squig units with accompanying Fellwater Troggoths

The Squig Battalion

Grot Warboss (Skarnik and Gnobbla)
2 x Grot Warbosses on Great Cave Squiqs
Lots of shamans

1 x Grot Unit (32)
1 x Archer Unit (32)

1 x Unit of Squig Hoppers (18)
1 x Unit of Squig Herders (32)
1 x Unit of Cave Squigs (32)

2 x Squig Gobbers
10 x Fellwater Troggoths

1 x Colossal Cave Squig
1 x Giant Fellwater Troggoth (Bog Momma)

The Plan for the Moonclan Grots Army

To create units that appears animated with lots going on.  Moonclan Grots will be at different angles and heights using landscaped bases to give the impression of a disorganised rabble.

Bases
Each model will have homemade sculpted forest bases with additional toadstools, trees and shrubbery. Each unit will be mounted on a magnetised scenic regiment base. This base will contain lots of scenic features to enhance the forest/jungle theme. This will be integrated with the models round bases to give a seamless effect and the regiment base will be recessed into the final display board.

Conversions & Kit-bashes
Fanatic models will be used with squigs, Fellwater Troggoths to give the impression of grots being dragged along and generally abused. I will kit-bash and sculpt to create different arm positions, poses and use different weapons for the grots and trolls to create an eclectic look to the army. I would like each grot model to appear to be an individual with no other model the same.

Bog Momma will be chasing a Squig Hopper carrying flowers.

Painting

The Boyz
The Moonclan Grots will be painted in the classic colour scheme of black cowls and green skin. All Moonclan Grot models with have freehand toadstools painted on their cowls. The moon emblem on shields and banners will be painted light blue. I have chosen blue as I want it to be different from the majority of Moonclan Grot armies out there.

The Beasts
The squigs and Fellwater Troggoths will be painted in light blue, this will match the blue on the banners and shields. I chose blue to tie in with the Moonclan Grots but also as I wanted to paint the squigs and trolls in a non-traditional colour scheme. The blue on both the squigs and Fellwater Troggoths will graduate from almost white to dark blue from top to bottom. The Fellwater Troggoths have scales and hair which will be painted green to match the colours of the Moonclan Grots.

I have yet to decide on the colour of the spiders and other creepy crawlies and beasts. This section will be updated in the future.

Painting Recipes

Moonclan Grots
Black Cloth: (base) mechanicus standard grey, (wash) nuln oil + lhamian medium, (h1) MSG, (h2) base + dawnstone, (h3) dawnstone.
Skin: (base) Scorpion green x2 coats, (wash) Biel-tan + lhamian medium, (h1) goblin green + scorpion green + bleached bone, (h2) h1 + more bleached bone, (h3) bleached bone, thinned red ink for nose.
Leather: (base) Baneblade brown, (wash) agrax earthshade, (h1) baneblade brown, (h2) base + rakarth flesh.
Wood: (base) mournfang brown, (wash) agrax earthshade, (h1) base, (h2) baneblade brown.
Shield: (background) Necron abyss, (Moon) (base) ice blue, (wash) drakenhof nightshade, (h1) base, (h2) base + white scar 50:50, (h3) base + white scar 25:75, (h4) white scar.
Metal: (base) boltgun metal, (wash) agrax, (h1) base, (h2, edge) Mithril silver.

Squigs
(base) ice blue, (wash underside) drakenhof nightshade, (h1) base, (h2) base + white scar 50:50, (h3) base + white scar 25:75, (h4) white scar.

Fellwater Troggoths
Same as for squigs although their hair, ears, spines and scales are given a biel-tan green wash instead of drakenhof nightshade but still highlighted with blues.

I undercoat and base coat all my models with an airbrush. For highlighting I pre mix paints in spare pots to achieve consistency and to save time. I always thin paints for highlighting and tend to build up the highlights using several thin layers of the same paint wet blending where needed.

Inspiration

Inspiration for this army has come from many sources. Firstly I love Moonclan Grot models and have models from all eras of the Games Workshop releases. I intend to incorporate all of these models within the army although I will be mostly using the Moonclan Grot models from The Battle of Skull Pass range. I have hundreds of Moonclan grot models and have been itching to start a project with them.

There are some really amazing Moonclan Grot armies which can be easily found on the internet. Special mention must go to Ricky Fischer’s Moonclan Grots which was the army that really convinced me that I should have a go at Moonclan Grots. I love the overall look that he has achieved and the consistency in his painting style. These can be viewed here:
http://flickrhivemind.net/User/revolution8/Interesting

and

Mousekiller’s Moonclan Grot army is full of great conversions
http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?113993-Moonclan-Grot-Army&s=72d3f731b1d93b8742fa608b02488abb

 

Entries in this blog

Bishmeister

Skaven Blood Bowl Pitch & Modular Sewer Terrain for AOS

 
This blog will document my progress in building a Skaven Blood Bowl pitch which will also be part of a larger modular sewer complex for Age of Sigmar.
 
I will also  discuss some of the model making techniques, tools and materials used during this project.
 
I find the idea of building a Blood Bowl pitch incredibly appealing. It's a relatively small project that has the potential to look great. It can also be extended with the addition of a stadium with grandstands and scoreboards. In choosing to build a sewer themed pitch for Skaven this also lends itself to be the initial part of a larger project to build a sewer themed 4'x 6' AOS board.
 
I first played Blood Bowl way back in '88 when I first became aware of Games Workshop and tabletop Wargames. It was actually the Blood Bowl miniatures in White Dwarf 108 that started my interest in the hobby. I had a few games with a friend and subsequently purchased Dungeon Bowl but never really amerced myself into the game. This latest release has piqued my interest as it has a lot of nostalgia for me, it's easy to get into  and has the potential for lots of cool updates based on previous incarnations of the game.
 
I've chosen Skaven as I've wanted to paint them for a long time and I think they look so cool. This also gives me a chance to make a start on a project that I've been thinking about for some time. Whilst at the Realms at War AOS event in Cambridge I had the opportunity to catch up with @Wayne kemp, the Skaven Master, and discuss what would be the ultimate AOS table/terrain. When I posed this question Wayne was very eloquent in saying that the ultimate AOS table doesn't exist as everyone has a different idea of what would be the ultimate. His ultimate table would be a Skaven theme, probably sewer themed whereas he said @Dan Heelan would probably prefer a Lizardman theme.
 
I really liked the idea of a modular sewer themed board for AOS as this has the potential to be a multi-system board, possibility of being used for other games, say 40k. I'm not a 40k player but have been collecting Genestealer Cults which lends itself to this sort of environment. I've also wanted to build an urban board for some time. I came across this amazing blog, http://privateerpressforums.com/showthread.php?176894-Magnetized-Modular-Sewer-Cavern-Board-(WIP) , some years ago and have wanted to do something similar ever since. Unfortunately the blog seems to have stalled but there's plenty of great inspiration in there. Building a modular sewer themed board also gives you the potential to build a multi level board which seems to quite popular in AOS at the moment.
 
So my initial plan is to build a sewer themed Skaven Bowl Bowl pitch. Fortunately each half of the pitch fits into a 2'x2' square allowing me to use the two halves as separate modular AOS terrain. The design will be based upon a Victorian style brick sewer with lots of arches and pipes for added Steampunk Skaveness. The pitch will be elevated on a plinth that rises out of the surrounding sewer which contains industrial pipe machinery. The bottom half of the drawing below illustrates the brick and pipework design to be used on the sides of the plinth whilst the top shows the top of the plinth with the pitch squares.
 
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I always use squared paper to draw designs for model making projects. I find it makes it a lot quicker and easier to draw, particularly when drawing buildings.
 
I next had to decide what materials I would use for the construction. I wanted the model to be lightweight and durable as it would need to be transported from place to place. I construct nearly all my architectural terrain pieces using sheets of expanded pvc. I have used this for decades, it is lightweight, strong, easy to cut, glue and sand. It also comes in various different thickness from 1mm to 30mm. You can also score texture into it's surface to create different textures such as wood grain, brick or stone. However for this model I would he using it soley for the structure and the paving of the model. The base / flooring is 5mm, the walls are 3mm and the buttresses and pipe shelf are 8mm. I wanted to give the sides, which would be made up of brick arches, more texture and depth so I opted for blue foam (styrofoam).
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The tools I use for working with expanded pvc are; technical pencil, cutting mat, Swann Morten scalpel, engineeers square 7" & 5", steel rules 6" & 12", sanding block 400 grade, superglue and zip kicker. For expanded pvc thicknesses greater than 5mm I use a circular table saw for cutting.
 
I've not used blue foam much but understand the principles of the material. When creating brickwork in foam I would usually use a biro and draw the brickwork straight on causing the brick work to be engraved. Whilst this can look good it can be inconsistent and can look untidy. This is a reasonably lengthy process due to hand drawing each piece and I wanted to have identical brickwork on each arch. So I came up with the idea of printing each styrofoam piece. I can't imagine this is an original idea as it seems so obvious however I have not seen anyone else doing this. The idea is based upon the original printing process of block printing developed in the middle ages. 
 
Styrofoam is a soft material that can be indented, so I created a 'negative' brickwork mould in which a piece of styrofoam can be pressed into using a press. The mould was made from a base of 3mm expanded pvc, the brick design drawn on then the mortar was added using 1mm styrene strips. 1mm expanded pvc was used to build up the sides to hold the styrofoam in place. 
 
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The styrofoam was cut into strips 9mm thick using a bandsaw which were then sanded smooth to a depth of 7.5mm and cut to size to fit the mould. As you can see from the pic below I used two blocks of wood and some clamps to create the press for the mould.
 
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To create depth to the walls I printed smaller pieces of foam to be added to the arches.
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The printed pieces were then cut and glued.
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This worked incredibly well, was very quick to use and I was churning out brickwork styrofoam like a Victorian workhouse. This was helped massively by @Mitzy for supplying me with a massive chunk of blue foam. I created another 'generic brick' mould to use for any plain areas of brickwork I would need. To add a little variation to the brick depth I depressed some of the bricks using a piece of plastic. 
 
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For the pipework I used Hirst Arts pipe moulds 320 & 321 which are fantastic quality. These are quite expensive but having a mould means you can have as much pipework as you like. I used 'low odour' fast cast polyurethane resin as I wanted it to be very durable and Quick to produce. Fast cast resin has a de-mould time of approximately 30 mins. I would need a lot of pipework so I ordered 1.5kg of resin. The two moulds would give me a variety of pipe pieces in two different pipe diameters. This should give me enough variety to make the pipework sufficiently interesting.
 
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Here's a wip pic of half the pitch. The space to the right of the pitch will be the dug out area. The squares on the pitch will be paving and the different zones are divided by gutters recessed into the pitch. The pitch will also have drain covers.
 
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More progress soon.
Thanks for reading.
Bish

 

 

Bishmeister

Hi Folks,

I've been working on this model for quite some time, possibly a year or so. This is often the case with me in that I am very good at ideas and starting projects/models but struggle with completing them.

I like the idea of the Squig Mangler but felt that it didn't quite look crazy enough. So I started to add fungus brew laced fanatics to the model. The fanatics are in perfect poses to add greater dynamism and movement to the model. As you can see from the picture below these were mostly metal models which increased the models weight considerably. I added an additional seven fanatics and some weapons on ropes and chains for some additional carnage.

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Painting this models was a real challenge mainly because all the fanatics were glued into place prior to painting, which is why I procrastinated for so long in painting it. I rarely do 'sub assemblies' because I like to have the models built, it can take years before I paint them, and the glue bond is much stronger without paint on the model.

Firstly like all my Squigs I use an airbrush to add the blue basecoat, this consists of three shades of blue. The whole model is sprayed a mid tone, the a lighter zenith spray then a darker nadir spray giving the model natural highlights and shading. I then base coated and washed all the other elements to the model, this was an enjoyable challenge.

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Next I started with highlighting the blue areas and realised that the Squigs have a lot of detail on their skin, a bit like reptilian skin, so these 'scales' were individually shaded and highlighted which took an age. After the blue areas were completed I took a break for a few months and worked on other models.

Finally I tackled the rest of the model and added a blue toadstool to the base. I wanted to give the model a bit more height to make it comparable to the other large monsters being released for other armies. Painting the toadstool blue was a deliberate nod to the origins of the Squigs and keeps the blue theme dominant. Aquarium foliage was added to tone down the blue of the toadstool and continue the jungle these.

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I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of painting this model and am pleased with the final result. Just one more Mangler to paint for my army.

Thanks for reading.

Bishmeister

Converted Squig Gobba

With this model I wanted to make it as different from the original Forgeworld model as possible. So it seemed obvious to have its mouth filled with squigs at the point just before spitting. Looking at the original model it is based on a frog or toad with a lot of loose skin around its throat, which when full would be greatly expanded. So I set about converting the model buy chopping away the mouth and resculpting the lower half of the face.

I am happy with how the squig turned out and thought that it still needed some converting so I cut the grot off the top and added him to a flying squig, something that I had wanted to built for a long time after seeing Ricky Fischer's conversion years ago.

Sculpting the throat asing lots of  balls of green stuff to ensure an even sculpt.image.jpeg

Comparison with the original model. Squig faces yet to be sculpted.

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The finished model with a crew of four which were included on the scenic base as the crew and squig are counted as one model. This was great as it facillitated the narative.

Squigs sculpted to look as if they are trying to escape from the squigs maw. I used green stuff to make press moulds from the squigs' faces supplied with the model, these were then cast in green stuff and blended into the Squig Gobba's throat.

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Thanks for looking.

comments and feedback always appreciated.

Bishmeister

I've always loved the Forge World Colossal Squig model and it seems to me to be an absolute must for the Moonclan Grot Squig army.

After building the model I felt it seemed a little bland and it didn't seem to fit with the hectic rabble that I envisioned Moonclan Grots to be. I like the idea of the crazy grots eating too many mushrooms and trying to out do each other in dangerous shows of bravado.  

I also find it difficult not to kitbash/convert models to individualise them to my army, so I set about adding on some bits and pieces. The old metal Fanatic models are perfect for adding a bit of humour and momentum to any squig. I also added some grots  from many different decades as a bit of a homage to the Moonclan Grot/ Night Goblin range. With the addition of lots of chains & balls and chains I was slowly building a narrative that hinted at the method of controlling and directing the movement of the Colossal Squig.

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Total weight of the model so far is 368g, a true heavyweight Squig.

 

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and with base coat, washes and some highlights on the Squig itself. This is a real challenge to paint albeit very enjoyable. A very old fanatic model becomes the proverbial carrot on a stick.

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Some work on the base. The idea is that the Squig has just landed on a massive mushroom and has broken it, I had planned to have a grot fishing sitting on the mushroom being catapulted in the air but not sure now. I also wanted the base to be very robust to support the weight of the Squig. The Squig, mushroom and base are all pinned with coat hanger wire.

 

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This is currently where the model is at, plenty of work left to do. I will upate this post as progress happens.

Thanks for looking.

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Bishmeister

 I just thought I would add this in here as it is hidden away in the blog title page.

I will be documenting the progress of this army here and will post WIP pictures more regularly on Twitter via @Bishmeister1.

This army was commenced early last year but enthusiasm for it waned when Age of Sigmar was released and round bases became standard. After much deliberation I began to rebase the army and now love the round base aesthetic and its potential for more base embellishment.

Beware this is a long introduction.

Background/Fluff
Located in the Realm of Life
DBMFFB inhabit the deepest darkest depths in the fantastical forests of the Realm of Life. This band of Forest Moonclan Grots spends most of their existence in perpetual darkness due to the thickness of the tree canopy.  Light rarely permeates to their dingy domain; this darkness is compounded by the eerily enveloping mists that saturate everything in the forest during the warmth and closeness of the day giving it a dank, dingy, dreary atmosphere that drips from every leaf, bough and lichen. This dark and damp atmosphere combined with the continuous cycle of rot and growth is the perfect environment for the grots main source of sustenance, fungi.

 

The Bloo Moon Fungus
The fungus of the forest grows everywhere and the DBMFFB are fungus connoisseurs without rival; from brewing potent blue death cap tea to stewing the popular ten plus one toadstool hotpot. DBMFFB take their name from the unusual bloo moon fungus. The mighty mushroom is a giant of the forest and is worshiped as a deity. This mushroom appears seldom, once in a blue moon in fact, but grows to gigantic proportions compared to the other fungi. It is light blue in colour and has a luminous quality to it making it appear as if it is glowing. When discovered these are treated with great reverence and shamans will carry out necessary sacrificial rituals to extend the existence of this fabulous fungi.  As like all fungi its life is limited but this can be extended by feeding it rotting flesh, this is usually the flesh of victims which is placed around the mighty mushroom where it will feed the soil and sustain the fungus. The main stem of the mushroom is as thick as a large tree and the ground around it is covered with smaller bloo fungus spawning from the main plant. The appearance of these terrific toadstools seems to coincide with the appearance of the bloo moon which in rare circumstances permeates to the forest floor. This usually occurs through glimpses in the canopy within the tribe’s shamanic burial grounds where the forest vegetation thins and struggles to grow.
 

Shamans
The shamans particularly covet the bloo moon fungus as consuming its flesh enhances their magical potential. The shamans harvest the offshoots of the main fungus to produce their hallucinogenic homebrews and thus preserving the dominant blue fungus. Consuming this fungus would be fatal for any other Moonclan grot but the shamans have built up a resistance to the toadstools toxins over many years of regular consumption. This long and often fatal path of the shaman begins with fermenting the bloo moon fungus to brew potent ale. This is same ale given to fanatics although in much larger quantities where the fanatics are encouraged to ‘skull’ a five pints. Over time the shaman will increase his consumption brewing all manner of fungus ales and eating regular helpings of the half life hot pot towards the end of his shamanic journey. This hot pot so named as shamans lives tend to be cut very short soon afterwards. The shamans begin to turn blue as they gradually succumb to the fungi's finger of death. The shamans consider this terminal transformation as a ritual self-sacrifice which guarantees them the elevation to a deity. In consuming the bloo moon fungi the shaman is able to tap into the collective knowledge, experience and sometimes powers of the previous shamans that have been assimilated by the fungus in its perpetual cycle of consumption. Shamans will often go mad before they are overcome by the fungi's finger of death due to the crazed and incessant rambling murmurs of the assimilated shamans. Only the strongest willed and most powerful shamans survive to experience deity hood. Eventually the shaman’s body will be more fungus than grot and the shaman’s body will stop responding to his commands. The shamans mind and soul become locked into the fungi and has to compete to be heard with all the other locked in shamanic souls. At this point the shaman is buried in the shamanic burial grounds where the fungus will lay dormant until it is charmed out of the ground by a future bloo moon.
 

Squigs
DBMFFB fascination with everything fungi has led them to keep a disproportionate number of squigs in their army. From the tiny squiglings to the giant forest squigs, squigs are everywhere. Many regiments see the squiglings as good luck charms and actively encourage them to join their regiment by feeding them fungi. This can be dangerous as some squiglings can increase in size very rapidly if given too many fungi and end rampaging through the regiments' ranks causing havoc. DBMFFB will harvest all the blue squigs as they consider them to be the most ferocious and distantly related to the blue moon fungus, therefore prized and sacred.
 

Fellwater Troggoths
DBMFFB also have a disproportionate number of Fellwater Troggoths which tend to avoid running water with a preference for the dark, dank, stinking bogs of the forest. These Fellwater Troggoths prey on the unfortunate creatures that fall into or stray too close to the forest bogs. They will often eat grots although they find them stringy and tasteless. Like DBMFFB the Fellwater Troggoths covet the blue moon fungus, not in a sacred way but the fungus enhances their metabolism enabling them to grow larger and regenerate quicker. Fellwater Troggoths are able to snuffle out the bloo moon fungus through their amazing sense of smell.  The Fellwater Troggoths have light blue skin which is probably caused by their consumption of the bloo moon fungus and the fact that they spend most of their time in perpetual darkness. They have scales of varying shades of green and dark lank hair. DBMFFB believe the Fellwater Troggoths to be the physical manifestation of the bloo moon fungus' anger and malice and see them as a gift, albeit reluctant, from the fungus deity for their army. The Fellwater Troggoths are reluctant participants in the army of DBMFFB and have to be carolled from their bogs by the brave and the stupid; the stupid use fishing rods, hooks and nets whilst the brave use tempting treats, such a bloo fungus ale, long spears, and the stupid to temp the Fellwater Troggoths out of their bogs and into the army. The Fellwater Troggoths will often join regiments of grots as they are attracted by the smell of fungus ale. This can often have adverse effects causing the regiments to break down into a seething pit of animosity as the Fellwater Troggoths makes a beeline for any fanatics in the regiment that have consumed the bloo moon fungus ale. The shamans of the army are particularly wary of the Fellwater Troggoths and will not join any regiments containing Fellwater Troggoths for fear of being devoured.

 

Bog Momma
Bog Momma is an exceedingly large female Fellwater Troggoths. It is thought that she has managed to grow so large as she is very long lived and by consuming vast quantities of bloo moon fungus and other male Fellwater Troggoths who are attracted to her because of her magnificently pungent body odour. She is a less reluctant member of the army as she has the wit to understand the feast which ensues following a battle which goes some way to sating her gargantuan appetite. She is continuously eating and is never without her net hand bag which is stuffed full of tasty titbits. Whilst being a formidable monster she is easily distracted by the opportunity of an easy meal, fungi or pretty wild flowers. These distractions along with compliments are often used by the Moonclan Grots to guide her to the enemy.

Forest Spiders
The forest has many creepy crawlies and DBMFFB make extensive use of the forest spiders within their army. These are mainly used as scouts due to their ability to travel silently though the forest canopy and their ability to use webs to ensnare enemies. DBMFFB will use spiders of all varieties and sizes within their army, the largest being the mighty Araknarok spider.
 

Creepy Crawlies & Beasts
Distributed throughout all of DBMFFB ranks are various creepy crawlies and beasts, including boars, wolves, spiders, sprites, squigs, bats and rats. Some of these are not really part of the army but end up getting caught up amongst the commotion.
 

Iconography, Equipment & ‘Ethics’
The emblem of the blue snarling moon and or forest fungus are used extensively throughout the army. DBMFB wear the traditional black garb of the Moonclan grots but decorate their hoods with bloo moon fungus patterns on the rims although these patterns are usually white as light blue cloth is extremely rare to the Moonclan grots.

The army struggles to make any metal weapons as they do not have access to the raw materials required so they have a preference for wooden spears and clubs. If a grot is lucky enough he will have scavenged a metal weapon from a dead enemy. Metal weapons are considered a status symbol within the army, although some grots, particularly the not so clever ones, take this to the extreme and believe the larger the weapon the greater the status. This doesn't always work so well in battle when the owner of the giant weapons cannot fight effectively and is easily slain by their opponent. However there are always plenty of stupid grots ready to pry these weapons from their dead comrades’ hands in the pursuit of elevated status in the form of a big choppa. The grot bosses are usually the most intelligent grots and do not fall into this 'arms race' so are usually modestly armed.

The grots are natural scavengers and are armed and equipped in a rather eclectic fashion with little uniformity. DBMFFB have no qualms in using the weapons and equipment of other races and do not favour any particular races weapons but generally end up with the weapons of the foes they come into contact with the most, these being Men, Beastmen and Duardin. DBMFFB are particularly spiteful and relish the chance to vanquish a foe with a weapon from that race, particularly if it’s a Duardin. DBMFFB will not however have anything to do with any form of Aelven equipment or weapons seeing them as dirty, tricksy baubles that stink of Aelven malediction.

 

The Army (eventually)

Grot Warboss (Skarnik and Gnobbla)
3 x Grot Warboss on Great Cave Squiq
2 x Grot Big Boss on Gigantic Spider
Lots of Grot Shamans

Forest Moonclan Grot hordes
4 x Grot Units (32)(128)
3 x Archer Grots (32)(96)
2 x Sqiug Herders (32)(64)

2 x Units of squig hoppers (18)(36)
2 x Cave Squig Units (32)(64)
6 x units of spider riders (10)(60)

2 x Squig Gobbers
1 x Mangler Squig
12 x Fellwater Troggoths

1 x Colossal Cave Squig
1 x Giant Fellwater Troggoth (Bog Momma)
1 x Araknarok spider
1 x Giant

This army is missing big chunks of units i.e. artillery, I have yet to decide on how to model these as I don’t want to use the current models.

Initial army project will be centred on the squig units with accompanying Fellwater Troggoths

The Squig Battalion

Grot Warboss (Skarnik and Gnobbla)
2 x Grot Warbosses on Great Cave Squiqs
Lots of shamans

1 x Grot Unit (32)
1 x Archer Unit (32)

1 x Unit of Squig Hoppers (18)
1 x Unit of Squig Herders (32)
1 x Unit of Cave Squigs (32)

2 x Squig Gobbers
10 x Fellwater Troggoths

1 x Colossal Cave Squig
1 x Giant Fellwater Troggoth (Bog Momma)

The Plan for the Moonclan Grots Army

To create units that appears animated with lots going on.  Moonclan Grots will be at different angles and heights using landscaped bases to give the impression of a disorganised rabble.

Bases
Each model will have homemade sculpted forest bases with additional toadstools, trees and shrubbery. Each unit will be mounted on a magnetised scenic regiment base. This base will contain lots of scenic features to enhance the forest/jungle theme. This will be integrated with the models round bases to give a seamless effect and the regiment base will be recessed into the final display board.

Conversions & Kit-bashes
Fanatic models will be used with squigs, Fellwater Troggoths to give the impression of grots being dragged along and generally abused. I will kit-bash and sculpt to create different arm positions, poses and use different weapons for the grots and trolls to create an eclectic look to the army. I would like each grot model to appear to be an individual with no other model the same.

Bog Momma will be chasing a Squig Hopper carrying flowers.

Painting

The Boyz
The Moonclan Grots will be painted in the classic colour scheme of black cowls and green skin. All Moonclan Grot models with have freehand toadstools painted on their cowls. The moon emblem on shields and banners will be painted light blue. I have chosen blue as I want it to be different from the majority of Moonclan Grot armies out there.

The Beasts
The squigs and Fellwater Troggoths will be painted in light blue, this will match the blue on the banners and shields. I chose blue to tie in with the Moonclan Grots but also as I wanted to paint the squigs and trolls in a non-traditional colour scheme. The blue on both the squigs and Fellwater Troggoths will graduate from almost white to dark blue from top to bottom. The Fellwater Troggoths have scales and hair which will be painted green to match the colours of the Moonclan Grots.

I have yet to decide on the colour of the spiders and other creepy crawlies and beasts. This section will be updated in the future.

Painting Recipes

Moonclan Grots
Black Cloth: (base) mechanicus standard grey, (wash) nuln oil + lhamian medium, (h1) MSG, (h2) base + dawnstone, (h3) dawnstone.
Skin: (base) Scorpion green x2 coats, (wash) Biel-tan + lhamian medium, (h1) goblin green + scorpion green + bleached bone, (h2) h1 + more bleached bone, (h3) bleached bone, thinned red ink for nose.
Leather: (base) Baneblade brown, (wash) agrax earthshade, (h1) baneblade brown, (h2) base + rakarth flesh.
Wood: (base) mournfang brown, (wash) agrax earthshade, (h1) base, (h2) baneblade brown.
Shield: (background) Necron abyss, (Moon) (base) ice blue, (wash) drakenhof nightshade, (h1) base, (h2) base + white scar 50:50, (h3) base + white scar 25:75, (h4) white scar.
Metal: (base) boltgun metal, (wash) agrax, (h1) base, (h2, edge) Mithril silver.

Squigs
(base) ice blue, (wash underside) drakenhof nightshade, (h1) base, (h2) base + white scar 50:50, (h3) base + white scar 25:75, (h4) white scar.

Fellwater Troggoths
Same as for squigs although their hair, ears, spines and scales are given a biel-tan green wash instead of drakenhof nightshade but still highlighted with blues.

I undercoat and base coat all my models with an airbrush. For highlighting I pre mix paints in spare pots to achieve consistency and to save time. I always thin paints for highlighting and tend to build up the highlights using several thin layers of the same paint wet blending where needed.

Inspiration

Inspiration for this army has come from many sources. Firstly I love Moonclan Grot models and have models from all eras of the Games Workshop releases. I intend to incorporate all of these models within the army although I will be mostly using the Moonclan Grot models from The Battle of Skull Pass range. I have hundreds of Moonclan grot models and have been itching to start a project with them.

There are some really amazing Moonclan Grot armies which can be easily found on the internet. Special mention must go to Ricky Fischer’s Moonclan Grots which was the army that really convinced me that I should have a go at Moonclan Grots. I love the overall look that he has achieved and the consistency in his painting style. These can be viewed here:
http://flickrhivemind.net/User/revolution8/Interesting

and

Mousekiller’s Moonclan Grot army is full of great conversions
http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?113993-Moonclan-Grot-Army&s=72d3f731b1d93b8742fa608b02488abb

Bishmeister

In the beginning

I made some resin forest bases (these have now been made into 25mm round bases)

forest bases.png

 

I painted some test models, Grots and  Squigs and these turned out okay.

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I cleaned all the mould lines from the models prior to carrying out a mass undercoat and base coat using an airbrush. To do this efficiently I pinned each model (I will be using homemade forest resin bases) with a long paperclip to a cork to create a cork spraying carousel. See image below.

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I love the Fellwater Troggoth models but wanted greater variation in them so I set about converting them. I also sculpted hair onto the backs of their necks with greenstuff to tie them in with the original metal models and to cover up the smoothness of the neck. I added fanatics being molested and changed some of the weapons and arms.

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I have completed five Fellwater Troggoths so far.

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I also set about converting the Giant Troll Hag from Forgeworld. I added branches to the tree walking stick and added some ornaments to it. Hair was added from the Gorgon kit. The idea with this piece is that Bog Momma is chasing the squig hopper who has a bunch of flowers in his hand. This is to lure Bog Momma to war through the forest. All the forest creatures flee before her as she tramples her way through the forest leaving a path of destruction. They are also fleeing from her stench. She craves 'pretty things' and things which may make her smell nicer but she inadvertently kills everything with her foul odour. Pictures are of the finished model although this requires rebasing.

Bog momma 005.jpgBog momma 001.jpgBog momma 002.jpg

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I have completed the Squig Hopper unit with its scenic regiment tray. This maybe used during games of Aos to speed up unit movement so I have added a leaf litter insert into the bottom of the tray for when models are removed. I intend to do this with all the massed infantry units.

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I am currently working on the Forgeworld Colossal Cave Squig which I have converted. WIP mages will be posted on Twitter @bishmeister1 and here once completed.

Thanks for looking.

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