The Colours of Treachery

The Sons of Horus were the first amongst the Traitor Legions. Today we take a look at an epic army for The Horus Heresy that would be the pride of the Warmaster himself, put together by Jess and Daniel.

Daniel: We’re sometimes known as He-Who-Builds and She-Who-Paints, which sums up our hobby dynamic perfectly, for together we make one functional hobbyist.*

It all started when Jess asked to help me with a Daemon army I’d been working on. Suddenly she’d painted five models in the time it took me to finish one. With a bit of practice, we learnt how to hobby together – I build and convert the armies, and Jess paints them. After this long, we’re not sure who’s in charge anymore!

Encouraged by the support of the local Horus Heresy community in Adelaide, South Australia, we decided to dive deep into the Age of Darkness with the Legio Custodes. We both loved the new models, and pretty soon we had over 5,000 points of these shiny gold Emperor-protectors. When it came time to start another army, the community pushed us hard to pick a Legion this time.**

Jess: We’ve always been driven by aesthetics, so rather than read the lore or the rules we looked at the Legion colour schemes. The bleak sea-green of the Sons of Horus won us over; we think it perfectly captures the depressing reality of the ultimate betrayal of the Horus Heresy.

I wanted to be able to generate that feeling with paint. We searched the internet for inspiration and had many circular conversations about which green was too green, too blue, or too saturated, or if a given colour was even green anymore.*** Since our choice of Legion was based on a single colour, this was something that we had to get right.

After all that research, the only thing to do was to start experimenting. Some hapless Space Marines were glazed with green over blue, then blue over green. Custom paints were mixed, and many recipes were tried. Finally, our local Games Workshop manager recommended the Citadel Tint Set. These concentrated pigments provided finer control over the saturation and tone of the paint, resulting in a series of custom colours that Jess was finally satisfied with. Incidentally, the recently released Sons of Horus Green paint matches one of the custom colours almost perfectly.****

Daniel: With the colour scheme nailed, our small detachment of Sons quickly snowballed out of control from a small allied detachment into a fully-fledged army. Our unit choices followed our personal ‘rule of cool’ and my preference to take things in pairs, because when you put a single tank on the table, there’s no guarantee you will get to use it, especially with our dice (damn that ‘Explodes!’ result).

Although we share the army, we each have our favourite units. For me, it’s the two Xiphon Interceptors – they’ve underperformed in every game, but they add verticality to the army and I’m proud of how well the massive freehand eyes on the wings turned out. 

Jess: For me, it’s the Justaerin terminators – the sculpts are just plain awesome, as well as the red and black scheme being a joy to paint and a welcome break from the endless green!

We’re not done with Sons of Horus yet, we’ll be adding more infantry units soon. At the moment, we’re working on the Warmaster himself, Horus Lupercal because when you’re playing the ultimate bad guys, you need to have THE ULTIMATE bad guy. That said, we can’t help starting new projects and we’re looking at starting a small Blood Angels force – clearly going for something a bit less grim this time.

Thanks, Jess and Daniel! Kick-off your own Horus Heresy army with a squad of Space Marines in Mark III power armour. Meanwhile, if you want to see more of Jess and Daniel’s work, check out the Creative Micromanagement page on Instagram and also the South Australia Horus Heresy Community, Heaps Good Heresy on Facebook.

* Belisarius Cawl is working on similar experiments to increase hobby efficiency.
** Legio Custodes aren’t “Legion” enough!
*** Don’t worry, they’re definitely green.
**** The Citadel Tint set is no longer available but, as Jess and Daniel say, the new Sons of Horus Green paint is ideal for your traitors and requires a lot less experimentation with colour.


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