Saturday, September 17, 2016

Gecko Mk12 Rifle: "The Blackjack"

The proxy Blackjack.
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"Following the now infamous Taft Police Action it has become clear that our lack of advanced power armour technology is proving decisive in our engagements with off-world agencies. It is a priority that the technical knowledge for power armour construction and power supply be researched as a priority if we are to dominate the battle space…."

- Director of Defence Science Technology and Materials Bureau
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With no model out for the Blackjack yet- and me franticly painting to get ready for an upcoming tournament- I had to find a stand in model.


Luckily, I had a box of Geckos I had bought a year ago.  I'll never play Nomads, but I loved the models... and very importantly, they were on special!


And... in a fortuitous coincidence, I entered a painting competition a few months ago and I penned a little fluff piece for my Ariadnan spec-ops model which turned out to be rather fitting for this "Blackjack".


For those out there that can stand a bit of heresy, read on.....



The Emperor Protects!
Infinity Australia FEB2016 HOBBY COMP: Special Agent- Friedhelm



+++++
"Following the now infamous Taft Police Action it has become clear that our lack of advanced power armour technology is proving decisive in our engagements with off-world agencies. It is a priority that the technical knowledge for power armour construction and power supply be researched as a priority if we are to dominate the battle space…."

- Director of Defence Science Technology and Materials Bureau
+++++

There are some missions that must be deniable. The men that do them must be able to disappear- into the wilderness or into the teeming populations of enemy cities. 

Echo Team was one such team and Freidhelm the only name linked to it.

Their mission was to ‘secure and recover’ a technological treasure trove from the Freja- a mercenary barge en route to The Wall from Dawn Orbital- the O-12 space station circling Ariadna. 

The prizes were two suits of Gecko heavy gear and five suits of Mobile Brigada armour. The enemy was a platoon of mercenaries from the Bad Company Group starting their tour battling luckless USAriadnans from The Wall. 

The details of the mission are still classified. The public O-12 logs on Dawn Orbital show there was a catastrophic engineering failure in environmental control systems aboard the Freja fifteen minutes after decoupling. The barge began to rapidly lose altitude before leveling out for twenty-seven minutes in Ariadna’s atmosphere. The Freja’s course became increasingly erratic before its signal was lost in a severe blizzard typical of the Ariadnan mountain ranges. The wreckage of the Freja, her five crew and the thirty two mercenaries onboard have never been recovered. 

Friedhelm was decorated for bravery in a blank citation after this incident. 

A veteran of the commercial conflicts he was a skilled marksman (BS +1) and excellent with his fieldcraft (CH: Mimetism). He was Echo team’s pilot- trained in space faring, zero-g flying and of course- crash landings (Specialist). Expecting possible resistance from power armoured infantry, the team was equipped with light and disposable panzerfausts and tesseum blades (AP CCW). 



So that's my fluffy explanation and I'm sticking to it.

PAINTING THE GECKO

Disregard airbrush, acquire old school brush
It should have been simple.  I had Angel's book, my trusty airbrush, lots of thinner and a tonne of enthusiasm.

The small fly in the ointment was that I was using a bent airbrush needle.

U wot m8?!
I know, I know.  I shouldn't have even tried.

The basecoat went on just fine.   Putting on the highlights however was like turning on a garden hose!

Note so self: never use a bent airbrush needle.

NMM by hand is not enjoyable.
Right, with that exercise in frustration out of the way, it was back to painting with a brush.  I tried to keep the colour scheme as similar to my existing Ariadna miniatures.  There are some pretty distinct stylistic differences between the model ranges and I hoped to gloss over it with the same colour palette.

Streaks for interest.
One thing I noted was that the bigger scale on a TAG make broad flat surfaces quite noticeable.  Painting faint streaks across those surfaces adds a bit of interest and makes it look better.  See those little round things and back pack for reference.

More streaks for interest.
That also prompted me to have a go at doing some free hand on the shoulder pads.  Without an airbrush to do wonderful subtle highlights, I'd have to cover up my crude brush work with some distractors.

Free hand.
I wasn't all that happy with the left shoulder pad- it just looked too bright.  After some research looking at the tail art of various aircraft I tossed up between between painting a hoplite helmet, a scorpion or an eagle over the badge.

Diving eagle wins out.
Now that he's done- I can't wait to play with him on the table!

T2 sniper of AP HMG variant.
.
BlackJack
.
Crude but muted NMM.
Much nicer emblem.
Scales worked out quite well!
The final summary photo.

Ready for battle.
Until next time, happy hobbying!





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