Category Archives: Painting Guide

Soviet Airborne Squad – Warlord Games

Credit: Warlord Games

You may have seen our post last week where I mentioned that Dave and I had bought a box of toy soldiers each for use in Warlord Games’ Bolt Action.

For those who haven’t heard of Bolt Action, it’s a tabletop wargame aimed at skirmish level games set during World War 2. It has a unique turn sequence where a blind draw is used to determine who acts with their unit.

Our aim was to build and paint the squad over the course of a week and then have a couple of very small games to see if we liked the ruleset.

Background to Soviet Airborne Squads

The Soviets were visionaries in the development of airborne troops and tactics, first forming a brigade-sized airborne unit after successful trials in December 1932. More units followed and by June 1941 five Airborne Corps existed in the Soviet order of battle, undoubtedly the strongest airborne force in the world. However in the desperate fighting of the early campaign these formations were pressed into service as regular infantry and virtually consumed.

Airborne troops were finally dropped in battalion strength during the defence of Moscow during December 1941 and January 1942. An entire corps (the 4th) was dropped operationally in February 1942 but while it survived for six months in the German rear, it failed to achieve its objectives. The crisis at Stalingrad then pulled in all available airborne troops to fight as regular infantry again.

Soviet airborne troops always fought with tremendous courage and elan, but lacked heavy anti-tank weapons and were badly supported in every operation they attempted.

Warlord Games

How Much?

If you’re buying this set through Warlord Games, then it’ll set you back £25. Which works out as £2.50 per metal model.

However, you can get them cheaper through our affiliate link with Element Games, where they’ll cost you £22.50.

What’s in the Box?

Inside you’ll get 10 metal miniatures consisting of:

  • NCO with SMG
  • 4 Paratroopers with SMG
  • 3 Paratroopers with rifles
  • 2-man LMG team
  • Plastic bases

Model Quality and Ease of Build

These couldn’t be easier to build. All the models are single piece metal models. There are no additional parts to glue on, such as heads, arms, or legs

They are metal, so you’ll find quite a bit of flashing that you’ll need to remove, and there were some heavy mould lines that I had to file down.

Other than that, it was just glueing them to their bases and priming.


I tried to follow the box art as closely as I could with Citadel paints and used the below recipes.

To save a little time I used Geek Gaming Scenics Base Ready Patchy Plains.

Overall, the unit took roughly 5 hours to build and paint.

Painting Mephrit Dynasty Necrons

I wasn’t planning on starting the new year with a new army, but I wanted to test out a colour scheme before I started work on the Hierotek Circle Kill Team and then Games Workshop went and teased the rules for Boarding Actions. Thus I found myself gluing together the Necrons from the astonishingly good value Warhammer 40,000 Recruit Edition and picking out a colour scheme which started out by selecting the shiniest of metals to really push the Terminator vibe.

I’m pretty happy with the result, which took me about a week of short bursts in the evening and then a chunk of my Saturday (which was mostly devoted to edge highlighting). Here are the paints I used:

I started by priming using the Gloss Black, and then base coating the entire mode with Chrome. I used an airbrush or both of these stages. It’s a tool that lets me prime indoors and without fear of problems from temperature or humidity, and apply the Vallejo Metal Color range as a base coat quickly and smoothly. Substitute your preferred rattlecan or brush on black primer and then brush on the Chrome if you don’t have access to an airbrush.

Next up, give a light coat of Nuln Oil to the whole model to give it some depth. You can skip over the gun and other parts where the metal will be painted over.

Paint the gun Black, then gently dab White Ink into the recesses where the orange glow will come from. This is to give a bright colour to apply the orange to. Ink flows very easily so you can use capillary action instead of carefully painting the tiny gaps. Just add more ink until it flows into the next chamber. Do the same thing with the recesses between the ribs.

The various bits of wiring (such as the connection between the gun and the body and some damaged cables hanging from some of the torsos) also needs a white coat as do the scarabs’ central balls, but they don’t lend themselves to the ink method; use the regular White paint instead.

Once dry, apply the Fire Giant Orange to the white areas. It’s a speed paint, so use the same capillary action method for the guns and use a generous amount elsewhere. Finally use a tiny dot of Flash Gitz Yellow to create a point highlight.

Use Emerald for the face masks, the scarab wings, and the shoulder plates as well as the panels that make up the Royal Warden’s cloak (take care to leave the connectors in plain metal). Apply a tiny amount of Nuln Oil to the masks to shade the eyes and mouths so they have definition. Then go in and edge highlight with the Pale Blue. Use the Pale Blue to paint the stripe up the Royal Warden’s face too.

All the remains are the bases. I used Buff to base coat them, then applied Apothecary White to the rocks before covering the surfaces with Armageddon Dunes which I then highlighted by dry-brushing with Buff. Watch out for the single, tiny scarab that one of the warriors has perched on their tactical rock. Use the same paint scheme as the rest of them for that little fella’.

Add your preferred varnish to protect your paint job, and magnetise the bases for storage and transport if you are so inclined and you can call these Necrons done.