Warhammer 40K – cheap and cheerful.
I’ve been very busy at work recently and what painting and gaming time I’ve had has been dominated by Warhammer 40K, which I play with my ten year old son Duncan. It’s a long way from being my favourite game, I much prefer almost anything historical, but Duncan likes it a lot and I want to get him into wargames. Over the years we have built up two painted armies, Space Marines for him (4,000 + points) and Tyranids (2,000 + points for myself with the same again waiting painting).
We manage to keep the financial investment within reasonable limits by buying stuff second hand on Ebay and limiting new purchases as far as possible. My wife’s ability to find useful models at jumble sales and car boot sales also helps here. I aim to get things for under a third of retail price though Duncan sometimes saves up his money and buys full-price models from GW.
We started on these armies about three years ago when I thought Duncan was too young to paint and I’m still doing them now.
Fortunately I had the foresight to choose colour schemes that are extremely easy to do, what one of Duncan’s friends father calls Echo Papas or Easy Paints. He’s taking the piss but I don’t care as he’s spending hours painting Tau for his son and Space Marines for himself while 90% of the painting I do comes straight out a spray can and the things are completed in minutes.
Here’s how I do it.
Space Marines (Dark Templars a variation on the approved Black Templars) – spray black, base neatly, paint a few details add transfers from GW or Veni Vidi Vici.
Tyranids – Spray white, wash with a mixture of Water, Citadel brown ink and Johnson’s Klear floor polish then base nicely. I’ve spent only a few minutes per figure, assembling and painting, and they’re now quite usable on a wargames table. Go back later paint on some red bits and then add another wash as above.
Major bargains – Over the years my wife has bought a couple of second hand copies of the old MB Games Space Crusade at jumble sales. These have given us two marine tactical squads and two rather strange looking Dreadnoughts for £2. Sitting unpainted in the cupboard we have squads of Orcs, Gretchin, Androids and Chaos Space Marines.
A jumblie copy of Space Hulk, bought for 50p, is an excellent game in itself and supplied twenty Genestealers and ten Terminators all of whom have given good service.
Duncan wants to paint his next army himself and I’m trying to get him to do Necrons as they can be put on the table after a coat of black spray, a silver drybrush and some basing. The first squad will be formed by the androids from Space Crusade.