Painting the Skeletal Accountants

Dom takes his brush to the Ossiarch Bonereapers

A new army in a brand-new system has its challenges. How do I go about selecting my units? I already have my paint and base scheme all thought out, but I now needed to actually put together a coherent army. The first question I needed to answer was how do you make a legal army in Age of Sigmar? A quick look through the AoS rule book and I need Leader and Battleline units, so I reference the Ossiarch Bonereaper Battletome and a Leige-Kavalos is a leader and Mortek Guard plus Kavalos Deathriders are battleline – I guess that makes them a good place to start!

I was relatively inefficient when buying my toys (unlike Ross who was able to buy a start collecting set) so I bought 1 of each from my local gaming store, Bristol Independent Gaming, and got assembling.

AoS is not as granular as Warhammer 40k, so there are less options to arm your toys with, so I didn’t really give it a second thought when I armed troops with swords over spears. Will I regret that? Maybe – I don’t know how good it is to have an extra 1” reach from spears for slow moving troops compared to the extra rend on the swords. That’s the way the cookie crumbles when diving right into a new system with some basic theory knowledge but almost zero practical experience in playing the game.

Do Leige-Kavalos, Mortek Guard and Kavalos Deathriders all fit into 500 points? Well yes, but not that efficiently, so I took the opportunity to swap out the Deathriders for another unit of Mortek Guard and I had points left over for an endless spell – something which could be fun to play around with and I can take advantage that my combat orientated general can have a command trait which makes him a wizard as well, superb!

One of my aims for this journey through Epic Level Hobby is to find some joy in painting and to improve my skills with the brush – step in contrast paints, which I have been a revelation to me! I’ve learned that, especially for the bone, I need to be a bit careful with the contrast paints otherwise it’ll drip everywhere and I’ll get huge pools in the recesses of the model that don’t look too good. Also, I needed a darker shade on the weapons, as what I used originally wasn’t quite what I was after.

Part-painted Ossiarch Boneraper miniature
Initial issues: Pooling around the top of the shield and the weapon colour not quite right 

Once I had fixed these minor issues, painting became more enjoyable. I was able to get results quickly and the army was starting to look coherent; all excellent news! One thing was made painfully clear to me – I am not a session painter. What I mean by that is I can’t sit down and paint for a few hours at a time. I’ll do a little bit here and there and just keep plugging away at it and then I’ll stop when I’m starting to feel a bit tired or frustrated. That way it stays fresh and I then don’t start to connect painting with these negative feelings. This system is working well for me and I feel good about it. I hope that the duration I can stay painting in one go before needing a break will increase as this project progresses.

I did make quite a major mistake with a Mortek Guard banner; I used Shyish Purple Contrast directly onto the banner over the Wraithbone undercoat, then just placed Nazdreg Yellow Contrast straight over the top. This made the centre of my banner black with no detail showing – oops!

Mortek Guard with banner
Bit of a contrast mishap on the banner icon there…

Some to note for the future, detail in banners don’t work so well with contrast paints – especially if you paint straight over it trying to mix paints on a model with no blending. Lesson learnt. I managed to fix it and did the detail on both banners with traditional paints and highlighting techniques.

Fully painted 500pt Ossiarch Bonereaper army
The Bone-Taxmen Cometh: My fully-painted 500pt army!

The bases were fun to do, I simply used some textured paint, washed it then added grass and lovely flowers. I’ve used the flower colour to help denote which squad is which, with the general having all the colours as he is in command of everything.

What’s next? Well the Deathriders and an actual Wizard to help raise more skeleton tax-assistants so I can grind the enemy down through attrition.

By Dom

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