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Eldar Exodite Plans

exoditeBlanche
I am working on Exodites at the moment.  None of the project elements are fully finished yet, but progress has been made.  This post is an exercise in getting a number of my thoughts down in one place, so it might meander a bit.  Here goes…

I want to put together a small force of Exodite Eldar that is symbiotically linked to elements of its tech.  This notion has been percolating since I painted L’Oreal a few months ago:

L’Oreal Wangst: in touch with nature 24/7

I like the idea of a slightly creepier, more alien take on the Exodites than the familiar lizard riding variety.  If I feel inspired, then lizards may become part of the project, but for now they are not top of the list.  I do want weird, scary and preferably creepy creatures though, probably primarily insects, a bit like Sectaurs.  Bionic eyes – an absolute must in any miniature sci-fi project in my opinion – will likely be faceted.

Uniformity in model design is not a goal.  I plan to tie models from various sources together via common palette.  Rather than go with the traditional Wood Elf colours that many Exodite forces lean towards, I plan to go with the lurid scheme used on L’Oreal.  That will actually tie the models into my alien jungle terrain rather well, so it even makes a sort of sense.  All the models with have little bugs and some lurid foliage on the bases.

 Obviously Trakeena here is an extreme example, very far out on the edge of my list of influences that I will likely not copy too exhaustively, but there are elements to this design that I quite like (as well as a few that I do not).  Dont run screaming though, this isnt really what the plan is aiming for… much.  I do however think that the character design is quite entertainingly over the top.
The Eldar Exodites wont necessarily have to be fused with their associated planimals like L’Oreal.  In all likelihood, some will and some wont.  I am being deliberately vague about this so that I dont figuratively paint myself into a corner.  I have a number of miniatures lined up that fit the vaguely insectile and/or vaguely wooden ideas in my head, like these two.
Liralath above has a massive honking spider sitting on her shoulder: ideal for my purposes.  Her tight fitting outfit is plenty sci-fi enough for me too, despite technically being a fantasy figure.

This EM4/Grenadier “Ghost” is model suits what I am looking for very well.  Note the symbiotic thing attached to the left thigh.  Thats the sort of look that I am after.

The rest of the Eldar aspect of the force will be largely composed of a few Rogue Trader era models with an occasional Tyranid part stuck to the armour or weapons (or perhaps flesh) in places.  It wont really be green stuff work as I have little appetite for it.  It will literally be a “pasted on theme” to use boardgaming parlance.

The other significant (and growing) element of the project is a strongly Wood Elf concept: namely treemen and some fey/fairies.  This is close to turning my Sci-fi into Fantasy, but I like the idea of indulging in some vaguely fairy tale, vaguely Pans Labyrinth, vaguely Brian Froud influences here.  I probably wont get another suitable opportunity, so I might as well get some broad strokes into the Exodites.

The Dryads and Treemen in the Wood Elf armies are now more or less direct translations of Wraithguards and Wraithlords in the modern Eldar army, in rules terms if not in background terms.  That interests me a bit, even though I dont feel a need to adhere to it in any way.

I painted “Stumpy” – last year.  It was a quick, largely drybrushed job and I like it, so I figured that a largely drybrushed project using the same process would be just the ticket to get my painting mojo back after recent haphazard output levels.  Obviously inspired by Groot in Guardians of the Galaxy, I decided to use this model in a recent Pulp Alley game.  Groot is the main reason why this project has got some traction recently.

I am currently halfway through painting this troll sized, very chunky Reaper Spirit of the Forest figure.  Its quite cartoony and I really like it.  The scheme will be as per Stumpy above with the foliage and fungus matching L’Oreals pink, turquoise and green.
I am concurrently painting this Ramshackle Humoid.  Another fun figure, its a lot like something out of TMNT I think.  I struggled to justify why the model has boobs and high heels.  I figure that its a plant person that lures humans to their doom by looking vaguely like something that the prey desires while pumping then full of spores or pheremones or equivalent, like a Daemonette.  Its probably preferable to it resembling a plant that looks and smells like rotting meat I guess.
Lastly, Mr Saturday supplied me with four plastic Dryads in a trade that arrived this morning (thanks Mr. S).  Although I have been planning to attach Tyranid parts to Eldar and Elf miniatures for this project, it had not occurred to me to attach Tyranid weapon arms to Dryads until David mentioned it.  This is what a rough, blu-tack test fit looks like.  Its the sort of kitbash that I like, with a very minimal amount of slicing before poly cementing to make a sturdy, unique model.  I like how they look and I think that they will paint well.  What do you guys reckon?
DryadBash1
This look has me thinking about adding the larger Tyranid weapons to one of the new plastic Treemen.  I quite like the treeman model, but I think that thats because it looks more like a sci-fi creature than a fantasy one to me.  Which means that its perfect for fitting in here
So there you go, pretty meandering as expected.  Any thoughts?
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15 Responses

  1. I say break this “no wip shots” rules for once and give us some shots of the dryanids ! For once a kitbash is not made up from space marine bits, you have to share !

    Exodites are an excellent concept and the fact it was not used much is a pity and a blesisng at once. The opportunities to make it ours from the very limited art available means people can come up with very different ideas.
    Can’t wait to see how yours turn out !

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    • I already broke all of my self imposed “No WIP” rules with this post JB! Those Dryanids (that name might stick) are held together with blu-tack for the love of Isha! I had to do quite a bit of soul searching before I published, but a couple of other justification coincided, so I did it anyway.

      I have been a fan of Exoditrs since I first read about them. My version strays quite a bit from the basic concept, but its a big universe out there.

      The next thing associated with this to be posted will almost certainly be the finished Spirit of the Forest. NO MORE WIPS! 😉

      Thanks for the feedback.

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      • I don’t know if I am a moron not to have seen teh pics at first or if you just kindly added them afterwards (in which case big thanks).

        Yes, it looks good and the treeman will probably look better on a sci-fi board than on a fantsy one from my POV. It screams “japanese big robot” to me and hence will totally fit with space elves.

        You can stop spoiling now we now this is heading towards a real nice place.

        To bounce on Jon’s comment, I would be digging mor ein the Jes Goodwin sketeches too and maybe, MAYBE some kitbash could planned to make a force of 5 or so exodites errants.

        Cool stuff ahead for you (and therefore for us).

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        • I had some formatting issues with this post for a couple of reasons JB, which probably meant that the kitbash image was not visible when you last looked, which means that I am the moron. I tweaked it when MrSaturday mentioned it.

          The proportions on the Tyranid parts are about right, or at least very close. I will trim the ball joints at the shoulders to make the arms fit better, which will also make the shoulders narrower, which I thinks looks better on those dryad models. Nice and simple.

          Im not terribly precious about adhering to the Exodite background, I like to keep that sort of thing vague, plus I dont think that each Maiden World would have the same society or wildlife – loads of wiggle room. I could definitely see myself adding some saurian cavalry (I may even have vestigial plans already…) but that will be phase three of this project, so may not happen for years. First things first.

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  2. Exodites are a very interesting concept; as JB says there’s lots of room for interpretation. To date I haven’t seen a project deliver my own personal vision of what Exodites look like…which is pretty strongly influenced by Jes Goodwin’s unpublished concept sketches which have a strong ‘Braveheart’ look to them (pre-dating Mel Gibson in woad of course!).

    I’m not sure this take will meet my vision either, but it will certainly be a great project and I am sure you’ll have some lovely, distinctly unique figures as a result 🙂

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    • The post-Knight Exodite concept is great. If the right opportunity presents itself at some point in the future then I may well put a few space elf dino-riders together, but for now its a project that is too labour intensive for my tastes.

      Although its convenient to lump this project under a catch all “Exodite” heading, it isnt based on any Exodite canon. As such, its is unlikely to match up with any classic image of the concept. Its just about some space elves who happen to live in the woods with their weird pals 🙂

      This project isnt really born out of an urge to realise the core Exodite concept, more a desire to turn a group of models that I own (plus some add-ons) into a force of sorts that can conceptually comfortably gel with ideas from existing canonical concepts, with minimal effort. The art of the possible, if you see what I mean.

      I would love to add a Towering Destroyer to these guys…

      Thanks for the feedback 🙂

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  3. There’s lots of potential for a great force here. I really like the idea of making the tree folk roughly equivalent to the wraith constructs, both in theme and utility. I’m keen to see how the dryanids turn out, but I can’t see the WIP image! Argh!

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    • Try the image now Mr.S. They are just blu-tacked together to check relative scale of the parts, its not a work of art 🙂 I do want feedback before I commit though.

      Are the rest of the images working?

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      • That’s better, all working.

        The arms work great, especially the one on the left. A little trimming around the shoulders to make the arms a little leaner and and you’re sorted.

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        • The Tyranid arms are ball and socket, so the blutacked version shown is literally a ball shaped shoulder stuck to the body. I plan to reduce that in size dramatically when I get working on them properly this evening.

          As for Dryads = Wraithguard, I was surprised (and pleased) to see how tall the Dryads are, making them even more suitable for that sort of thing. If I planned to use them as a “counts as” force in 40K games then I would mount them on 40mm bases too, but I dont, so I wont. They might warrant 30mm circular bases though.

          If these guys work out then the plastic treeman is a definite purchase.

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  4. The Liralith (B) figure has been on my coveted miniatures list for some time. I wish someone on this continent carried Hasslefree in a store so I could make a proper impulse purchase and buy these things in dribs and drabs and not job-lots. Interesting project. I look forward to seeing where you go with it.

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    • I have owned the clothed Liralith model for a few years but never found the right motivation to paint it, despite it being such a beautiful model. I think that she will look rather fetching in an outfit similar to L’Oreals.

      Trans-Atlantic shipping is a drag whatever way you look at it and Hasslefree are far from cheap. They do make top notch miniatures though.

      Its a weird project really, but it will be fun I think.

      Thanks for the feedback.

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  5. The Exodite project looks great so far. I wouldn’t be at all concerned about “adhering to the fluff” since you’re doing exactly what the Rogue Trader ethos suggested over and over again. Take the background, change what you want and make it yours. An army of groot and insects makes perfect sense to me – just as I can’t accept that all 40k buildings are now made of skull-encrusted skulls, I can’t believe that Every. Single. Exodite. World. is populated by giant raptors and dragons. Eldar would adapt to any environment that they were able to. They’d ride, eat and live with whatever animals were around them. Just like humans. Real ones, even. 😉

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    • I tend to complete projects inspired by specific miniatures. I tend not to complete projects inspired by concepts that I have to modify miniatures to fit in with. Therefore I do the former and avoid the latter. Its a simple as that really.

      After almost thirty years of thinking about toy soldiers for hours every day, I am more interested in getting ideas and projects finished, rather than agonising about matching another persons concept. This approach works better for me.

      I do 100% see the appeal of making a project look as close as possible to original artwork and concepts. There definitely isnt a “wrong” approach to these things. Matching concepts with miniatures is too time consuming for me though. I did it for long enough and now I know that it isnt the best way for me to get the results that I want.

      Thanks for the feedback Azazel.

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  6. […] Eldar Exodite Plans […]

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