Tuesday 20 June 2023

Kroot Fastalker Kinband

The Killiest Kill Team!

My finished Kroot Killteam - a happy bunch of flesh eating Avian Mercenaries! 

I've had the Kroot Farstalker Kinband for Kill Team sat in my to do pile for a while and after completing a couple of other projects I decided that I'd like a small self-contained project that I could complete in a couple of weeks.  I also intended to finally learn the Kill Team rules and have a game!

I started by assembling the whole whole squad building all of the specialists in the kit (these form the backbone of the Kill Team game so I'd need all of them!).  I have to say that I'm very impressed with the kit and highly recommend it - I'm sorely tempted to pick up another set just so I can use the 'regular' kroot warrior options as they're all in distinctive poses and look fantastic even though they're intended to be line troops.

Before I started painting the team I textured the bases as I wanted to paint them in a similar style to my recently finished Necromunda Ash Waste Nomads (just in case there's scope for a cross over in my Necromunda games!).

I wanted to try a new technique that I haven't used before, so I sprayed all of the miniatures black then did a two step zenithal highlight in preparation for base coating all of the Kroot with contrast paints.  To explain in a little more detail, a zenithal highlight is intended to give you a grey-scale highlight over the miniature before you start adding colours - this means that you get a nice pre-shade by putting contrast paints over the top.

I'll be honest and say that I don't think I did the best job of it - you're supposed to airbrush a mid-tone from above, then repeat with a brighter white from the same angle.  This should mean that your raised areas are highlighted prior to adding contrast paints by hand.  Although it wasn't perfect it definitely has potential for speeding up batch painting and I intend to try it again in the future!

I tried to use more contrast paints than I normally would to get a better grip on their properties when compared to traditional paints, shades and washes.  My conclusion is that they are very useful for strong base colours, but their usefulness diminishes in my hands after blocking out colours as I'm not a massive fan of colours that are so high in pigment that they drown out everything else.  I'm not saying they're bad; it's just a personal preference!  I daresay more skilful painters will find more uses than me, but I'm happy to use them like this for now!

I didn't really document the painting process as there's not really much I can say outside of the fact that I tried very hard to make each of the Kroot subtly different by changing their skin tones - the bases and frequent use of leather browns marries them all together nicely, so I ended up using the skin tones to differentiate members of the team!  I think they turned out pretty well in the end and I certainly learned a few things along the way! I hope you enjoy the pictures!

The first of two the Kroot hounds has a nice sandy skin tone

These little guys are probably my favourite minis in the kit!

Kroot hound number two was painted a deep olive green

As the Kroot hound's beak is their primary weapon, I emphasised this by painting them with a cooler grey tone to imply sharpness

The Kroot Cold-blood was an absolute joy to paint - the level of micro detail on these miniatures is unreal

The white bionic 'stump-leg' stands out nicely and the corresponding shin pad on the other leg balances it out 

I didn't really convert these miniatures as such, but I did swap and add parts here and there.  I loved the wrapped chainsword so much that I just had to add it to this grizzled old veteran!

You can just see the bionic eye peeking through his leather mask - a great detail that I almost missed!

These were the first three members of the team I finished and they helped set the tone for the rest

I like to think that the hounds are most loyal to the scarred old Cold-blood, racing off after prey on his command!

The next three members from left to right; Pistolier, Kroot Warrior and Bow-Hunter

Although the clothing is patchwork and different on each Kroot, I stuck to a limited range of colours but applied them onto different pieces of clothing.  This helps tie the team together  

I continued to vary the skin tones from olive green to mustard yellow and even a pinky white albino scheme on the Kroot Warrior
The mustard yellow skin on the Bo-Hunter contrasts nicely with the white and blue-grey of his bow 

The bionic eye and scarring on the Pistolier shows up nicely against his olive skin tone

I painted the Kroot Warrior (the only non-specialist in the team) with an albino skin tone so that she stands out - I kept the clothing dark to give a hard contrast next to the skin
At this point I was getting really excited as the team were looking fantastic together!

Next up was the Heavy Gunner equipped with a Londaxi Tribalest which I believe is some kind of heavy bow caster

I used red on the goggles, barrel glow and power pack to add a little colour pop

Although I used white and blue-grey as I did with the Bow-Hunter's weapon, I painted the surface of this weapon to be chipped and weathered as it had large flat areas to break up

The Xenos Suspects...
With the team halfway finished, I played my first game of kill team! I lost, but I very much enjoyed it and am keen to have a rematch some time soon! (Thanks Ryan, you were a very tolerant opponent as always!)

The highlight of the game for me was gunning down a bomb squig with my Pistolier which then detonated annihilating the nearby Ork boy! :D

The Kroot Kill-Broker, leader of the team - I enjoyed painting his cloak which I painted in a lighter leathery skin tone implying that it might not have come from a regular animal...

I painted the Pulse Rifle in the classic Tau Ochre so the leader of the team stands out

The little details such as the bone pommel on his sword and skull scrying / anointing cup are some of my favourite parts of the model
I tried to keep the Kroot Long-Sight's colours to fairly muted browns as thematically he would want to stay hidden in terrain as much as possible

I used the head with goggles on the sniper as I thought they went well with his role in the team

I particularly like the leather wraps on the barrel of the hunting rifle - they just make the weapon more 'Kroot'

You can imagine how well this hunter blends in with his surroundings when viewed from the back

As the most stealthy member of the team, I gave the Kroot Stalker very dark skin and a dark blue cloak

I offset the dark tones of the model with some ochre leather around the legs and midriff 
Even the Shotgun on his back has a black stock and dark leather holster - perfect for hiding in the shadows!

The bloody knife blade implies there's been a recent victim...

I decided to remove the Pech'ra bird from the Tracker's rifle and make it into a separate miniature so I could use it as a marker for the bird in-game

The Tracker is very earthy and worn to represent his 'outdoorsy' nature!

The Pech'ra was painted in vivid parrot-like colours so that it's easy to spot in game and adds a little colour to the team.  I did make sure that I stuck to colours used elsewhere in the group though so that it didn't stick out too much!

Although the split was functional, I also quite like how these two can be displayed together!

The final member of the team is the Cut-Skin who I intentionally painted with a more ostentatious green skin tone.  He doesn't care about camouflage, just how quickly he can reach the enemy!

I added a backup pistol to the rear of the Cut-Skin even though it's not used in the game!

I love the lion-esque silhouette that the spines give the model from the side - it cements his role as a savage close quarters fighter 

I don't normally like Kroot heads with an open mouth, but it worked well for this character!

To round off the team for gaming, I painted the plastic Kill Team templates in a bone colour

I was pleased with the final colouring of the templates - they compliment the team well

As they can be used by any team, I painted up a few mobile barricades from the set in a nice rich red so the Kroot stand out against them!