White Dwarf 456 – Designing Indomitus

One of the highlights of September’s issue of White Dwarf is an in-depth Designers’ Notes article all about the creation of the incredible miniatures that featured in Warhammer 40,000: Indomitus and the three Starter Sets. We were so blown away by the insights that we couldn’t resist sharing some with you. If you’re a fan of reading how luminaries such as Jes Goodwin and his fellow designers go about bringing these awesome miniatures to life, then we assure you that issue 456 simply cannot be missed!

In addition to a holistic approach to how the miniatures in the set were first conceived, each unit gets a thorough breakdown of its design, both in terms of what their creators wanted to achieve with the finished model as well as describing their thinking behind the nuances of pose and wargear selection. These sorts of insights are always fascinating to read, and have unsurprisingly been a popular feature of White Dwarf for many years.

One of the brand-new Space Marines units, the Judiciar, was the work of Ed Cottrell, and here’s what he had to say about the design of the menacing executioner.

Ed: The Judiciar is essentially a holy executioner. He has deliberately removed his right shoulder pad and taken off his surcoat on that side to leave his sword arm free to deliver a decapitating strike. The hourglass – the tempormortis – is a traditional symbol of death. It’s basically saying ‘your time is up’ to his enemies. The mask over his mouth and nose reinforces the idea that this Chaplain preaches his beliefs with actions rather than words.

The Necrons had their own team of designers working on them, bringing life to miniatures both new and old. Design legend Aly Morrison was responsible for updating the Necron Warriors, and he reveals that there was much more behind the new miniatures than simply replacing the classic green rods on their gauss weapons!

Aly: Something the previous incarnation of Necron Warriors lacked was individuality. They basically all looked the same. Obviously they would have been identical sixty million years ago once they were stripped of their organic bodies and entombed in metal suits, but time has taken its toll on them. They’re bound to look a bit different now. When we designed the Necron Ghost Ark a few years back, we took the opportunity to add a load of damaged Necrons to it. They felt like they had real character to them – you could imagine how each of them had been taken out of action. To get across that individuality on the new Warriors kit, the heads all feature subtly different degradation. While this isn’t an expression as such, it does give each of them a different face. Look carefully and you could be convinced that some of them are frowning, grimacing, or even speaking. We also added in a new weapon variant – the gauss reaper – to add more flavour and character to your units.

Whether you’re interested in miniatures design, or simply wish to know how such a ground-breaking project as Indomitus got off the ground, the article is a fascinating read. White Dwarf issue 456 is available to pre-order soon, but remember that you can subscribe to never miss an issue and (where possible) receive your copies early!

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