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Saturday, September 11, 2021

Converting Upright Termagants for the Viridian Stalkers Tyranid Killteam - #StandaGaunts

So just in time for the release of the new edition of Kill Team, I've become completely enamoured with a new take on the humble termagant. Namely: making them stand upright!

This dude was my proof of concept for the idea, and I honestly liked him so much that it wasn't long until he was joined by a friend...
...and then a whole bunch more!
I really liked how this new pose seemed to give your average gaunt more agency and individuality, but I didn't really understand it until a particularly brilliant person on Instagram pointed out the difference.

"Gaunts were kind of white noise in an army before. Not anymore."

And they were absolutely right. I don't know if it's because they're so close to the ground, or because their posing screens each other, but I honestly never looked too closely at anyone's gaunts. And it's not their fault since the awkward way they attach to the base and their lack of poseability made it really difficult to make gaunts stand out. 

No more!

The Viridian Stalkers of Casavant Prime

So I never set out to create a Tyranid killteam when I converted that first upright gaunt, but it singlehandedly sold me on the idea of a killteam (maybe partially influenced by the recently released new edition of Killteam). I was also a bit jazzed by looking back at Hive Fleet Moloch's classic Tyranid Killteam and thinking about how I could do something similar with my own. In fact, the name I've chosen for them—The Viridian Stalkers of Casavant Prime—is also a nod to Marco's team, which were called the Crimson Stalkers of Tenebra Prime.

In addition to making them look more individual and sentient with their upright poses, I also made sure to give each gaunt different armour or subtle biomorphs to further differentiate them.
I also dusted off the idea of sticking a warrior head on a gaunt to represent a Hive Node mutant from 3rd edition codex, except I think he works WAY better with this pose.
He's the teams communications specialist, and I echoed the synaptic antennae on his back (stolen from a Trygon Prime) on the heads of the other squad members to make it look like they had synaptic headsets, which I'm ridiculously pleased with!
I've also made a start on a couple of special weapons beasts for them, including a strangleweb trooper:
...and a deathspitter weapons beast that takes inspiration from the shoulder mounted venom cannon weapons beast I did up.
And there will be one more special weapons trooper wielding a spikerifle to join them soon!

I honestly can't stop with these upright gaunts. My fire is burning so brightly for this idea that I figured I had to share it in the form of a new How To Sculpt video, focused on how to convert standard gaunts to stand more like warriors. Hope you find it helpful, and if you try your own StandaGaunts, be sure to share a link to them in the comments here or on YouTube!

14 comments:

  1. Those look absolutely fantastic dude. You've improved the models massively

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    1. Thank you! Since I never cared about gaunts before, but now I dearly love every one of these weirdos, I'd say I agree with improving the model massively. And now you can, too!

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  2. Wow, amazing! I have not really appreciated the 'Nid range, as it seems like a carpet of small bugs with the huge monsters doing all the work, but THIS is great stuff, and really takes the figures from "unimportant bug" to "character". Particularly like the heavy weapon and comms specialists!

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    1. Thanks! And though there's a definite swarmy benefit to the carpet look, and the way that the size steps up from gaunts to warriors to TMCs, I agree that it can sometimes be boring when all your troops look. Like happy little doggos ☺

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  3. Oh these are looking great! I will definitely be referencing for my upcoming builds.

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    1. If you make some, please share a link to them here or message me on Instagram as I'd love to see them 😍

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  4. It’s a great take - I have started my own conversions. Looking to mix up the Termagants and Hormagaunts a bit as well.

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    1. I'd be really interested to see how you apply this to hormagaunts 👀

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  5. Oh man these look good! I just recently bought a whole box of assorted bits of tyranid stuff from a buddy who is out of the hobby, including like 40 gaunts in various states of disrepair. Did you need to chop the bodies much to get them upright?

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    1. Thanks!
      And to answer your question: there's totally a tutorial video linked at the bottom of this post 😂

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  6. I was mulling over a Tyranid killteam and, by jove, you've giving me some ideas. Incredible work!

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    1. Sweet! Glad to hear it! Make sure to check out the tutorial at the end of this article, and just a heads up that part 2 of that tutorial will FINALLY be publishing this weekend on my YouTube.

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