|The future belongs to the mad.
Somewhere between the Skitarii, Eldar, Imperial Knights, and Cult Mechanicus, Games Workshop released the stand alone game Execution Force to showcase new plastic versions of Jes Goodwin’s classic Imperial Assassin sculpts from the mid 90s. Although the metal models have held up really well over the years, I was still excited to hear that plastic versions were being released, as it would allow the designs to be updated a bit and put them in the more conversion-oriented plastic.
Unfortunately, when they were ultimately revealed, I could not help but feel a little disappointed. The new plastic variants of the assassins failed to add anything new to the range, and in most cases look worse than the original models. The Vindicare looks too short and has balloon feet, holding an oversized rifle which has a scope that is not mounted properly. Instead of having a menacing skull visage, the Culexus has an awkward looking Necron face. Worse than this are his anatomically incorrect legs, where his lower legs (tibia & fibula) is longer than his upper legs(femur), making for a very awkward looking model. The Callidus actually looks pretty nice, aside from her gigantic neural shredder (possibly a nod to Mark Gibbon’s classic piece of artwork) and overbearing hair. The only one of the four that actually improves over the original Goodwin sculpts is the Eversor, with a suitably grim skull mask, a wicked set of talons, and a dynamic pose.
Instead of purchasing the game, I opted to buy the Eversor off of ebay, considering my reservations about most of the plastic assassins (I also did not really want a truckload of additional Chaos cultists, a few snap-fit Chaos marines, and a Chaos Lord). While I am a big fan of the Eversor model as it is, I felt that with a few modifications it could be made even stronger. If you have been reading this blog for a while, you probably have a good idea what aspect of the model that I wanted to convert, his Executioner pistol!
|Some WIP images of how his pistol evolved over time, in chronology 1-5.
|I have converted the assassin a new Executioner pistol, one more reminiscent of an IWI Uzi.
The assassin’s pistol, similar to the one on Goodwin’s old Eversor, is impressively large, much bigger than even a Space Marine bolt pistol. I wanted to rework the entire pistol and transform it into a smaller sub-machinegun along the lines of the Uzi or Mac-10. Fortunately for me, the release of the Sicarian Infiltrators provided the perfect foundation for the weapon, the Flechette Blaster. To start, I cut off the drum and the Sicarian’s hand from the blaster and flattened it so that it could serve as the top of the Executioner pistol. I also removed most of the rear sights of the blaster such that I could recess it snugly against the Eversor’s hand. This also required that I remove the previous Executioner pistol the assassin had been holding; the only thing I kept was the trigger guard. At this point, I had to start adding small details to make the pistol more convincing. First, I trimmed down the suppressor and filled the slit on the side of it with green stuff. I also replaced the pistol's magazine with the slightly smaller sickle one from the Flechette Blaster. The next order of business was to add a collapsible wire stock. I searched through my bits box for something that would aid in the conversion and ended up finding what I was looking for in the Sicarian kit again. I was able to use the top piece of one of the forked antennas as the base of the stock. Then with a little plasticard and greenstuff, I was able to create the stock that I had envisioned. The remainder of the antenna was used to create a charging bolt for the pistol and an under-slung needle pistol. The ejection port of the weapon was taken from one of the Sicarian Stubcarbines (carefully cut off with a new x-acto blade) and integrated with a little greenstuff.
|The completed Eversor assassin, ready to save the Imperium!
|In order to rebase the Eversor, I needed to reposition the model's foot, head, and hand.
The only other aspect of the Eversor that I wanted to change was how the model was based. The stock model is posed such that he is lunging off of a steel bulkhead. While this is exciting and dynamic, it is not very suitable for games of 40k (a model bringing along its own terrain is a setup for confusion). I therefore set out to remove this cumbersome bulkhead and simplify his base. This proved to be more involved than I had originally anticipated, because the model’s pose is so integrated with his contact with the bulkhead. To make the model look natural, I needed to reposition both his foot planted on the ground and also his head. This involved a reasonable amount of cutting and greenstuff work, primarily on his foot.
I am quite pleased with how the Eversor turned out. I am particularly happy that, although a lot of small changes were made to the model, his original spirit and theme was retained (I still may need to trim off those three bullets on his chest...). With this assassin complete, I am half tempted to try to create ones from the other Temples. I think I would work from the ground up on them, if I do try to create them, however. The sinister psychic nulls of the Culexus Temple have always intrigued me...
- Adam Wier