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Made in gb
Nimble Glade Rider

So I am planning on building a Thunder Warrior's Unification Wars era army using Primaris Astartes rules to represent them. I am looking for some information pertaining to the weaponry/vehicles they use and potentially some ideas for modelling them e.g. applicable existing parts that could be used for conversion.

I am aware that the Thunder Warrior's used Mark I 'Thunder Armour' and I've drawn up some basic concept art of what I would like to recreate. However, I have no idea what type of bolt weapon it is that they use, it doesn't look too difficult to recreate but their rifles do look much larger and more unwieldy than traditional space marine bolters.
In terms of modelling I was thinking of building up primaris torso's using green stuff to reflect the larger powered suits that they wore and putting emphasis on cables snaking from the powerpacks into the armour itself. I was considering leaving the armour bare and scratched reflecting the rough and ready feel of the models. I've noticed a lot of the artwork of the commanders draws on samurai themes which seems interesting. Any ideas or suggestions would be much appreciated
[Thumb - Thunder Warrior Captain.jpg]

[Thumb - Thunder Warrior Concept .jpg]

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2020/03/29 18:08:14

Made in gb
Tough Traitorous Guardsman

I've been thinking of doing a similar thing for a while so I'll share some of my own ideas on thunder warriors - hopefully it will be of some help...

There's reference in a few places to the MK1 thunder armour being heavily protected at the front but quite vulnerable with a lot of exposed workings at the rear. Extra pipes from the power pack would go some way to addressing this, but I've also always thought to use cataphractii terminator legs - they've got quite a chunky design which works nicely, and the rear of the armour looks less bulky and more crude.

Backpacks are another thing; I think you want them to be mucb bulkier to refelect their more crude nature. Wulfen backpacks I think are a nice size for this, though you'd have to replace the wolf head vents - probably swap them out for Mk3 iron armour style ones.

For the guns I think a big and chunky muzzle would go a long way to making them look the part. The Karadron Overlords range has some nice little muzzle parts that look great transplanted in place of normal bolter barrels.

Death guard miniatures might be a better starting point than primaris - they are similar in height but much bulkier, and there are some Mk.3 iron style chest plates that would be perfect for this.
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Castellan of Dol Guldur


Definitely go death guard for your base models. Primaris are too new and Sci fi looking with all their round edges. I'd try and get some 2nd ed bolters too, and adjust them so the mag is right at the front (for some reason) you could bulk them out too. For heads I'd use goliath heads. Because they look sick. You could also use goliath weapons too.

Heresy World Eaters/Emperors Children

Instagram: nagrakali_love_songs 
Made in gb
Nimble Glade Rider

Thanks for the replies/advice, I appreciate it.

 queen_annes_revenge wrote:
Definitely go death guard for your base models. Primaris are too new and Sci fi looking with all their round edges. I'd try and get some 2nd ed bolters too, and adjust them so the mag is right at the front (for some reason) you could bulk them out too. For heads I'd use goliath heads. Because they look sick. You could also use goliath weapons too.

Do you mean the GW range of DG or the Forge World Heresy range? The DG are right size-wise but their armour is covered in chaosy bits and mutations. I'm going to go for a batteworn, brutal look to my TW's but I think it will be hard to remove all of the chaos tentacles, rents and iconography.
In terms of FW the MKIV assault squad: https://www.forgeworld.co.uk/en-GB/MKIV-Space-Marine-Assault-Squad
and MKIII Despoiler Squad: https://www.forgeworld.co.uk/en-GB/Legion-MKIII-Despoiler-Squad have nice chunky torsos. I would probably aim to build up the shoulder pads with the same layered feel as in the pictures to add some bulk and give a more retro feel and change the legs completely but I am worried they will be too small. Thunder Warriors should be at least the size of Primaris.

I was thinking of using either Justaerin legshttps://www.forgeworld.co.uk/en-GB/Sons-of-Horus-Justaerin-Terminators-2019 because they look more aggressive and I like the spiked studs or https://www.forgeworld.co.uk/en-GB/Iron-Warriors-Legion-Tyrant-Siege-Terminators , the bulky, segmented armour and plated tabard fit the TW aesthetic

In terms of the hair I was thinking of modelling my own, I wanted the top knots to be large, reminiscent of the John Blanche pre-Heresy artworks as in the image I've attached like in the old style.

Headwise the Goliath Stimmers are great models but I think I would like to recreate the traditional goggled Thunder Warrior helmets predominantly. I actually think I will use the entire Goliath Stimmer models for a different purpose, model some more armour plates on while keeping the heavily muscled arms and stimulant banks bare, give them another large chainsword or chain axe and use them to represent thunder warriors who has succumbed to battle rage.

Automatically Appended Next Post:
shmvo wrote:

For the guns I think a big and chunky muzzle would go a long way to making them look the part. The Karadron Overlords range has some nice little muzzle parts that look great transplanted in place of normal bolter barrels.

Death guard miniatures might be a better starting point than primaris - they are similar in height but much bulkier, and there are some Mk.3 iron style chest plates that would be perfect for this.

Thanks for the reply. Could you possibly link the models you are referring to? But speaking of fantasy, maybe the barrel of an Empire Outrider's blunderbuss might work?

The weapons are a bit of a sticking point for me, all of the artwork displays them as significantly larger than traditional bolters but idk whether I fancy building my own from scratch. Maybe just building up the muzzle as you say and adding the distinctive holes would make them feel more authentic. I'm wondering whether Ogryn Ripper Guns with different amo belts and some greenstuff work might look good, they may be a little too large though https://www.games-workshop.com/en-GB/Militarum-Auxilla-Ogryns
I'm also looking for more brutal looking close combat weapons that fit the whole proto-astartes theme, the Goliath Stimmers have nice weapons but ideally I'd like to find some nice, large chainswords or chain axes. Hopefully larger than traditional space marine weapons. Ideally I'd like to find a happy medium between a normal chainsword and an eviscerator and paint on some hazard stripes/gore to give a really brutal feel

As you can see from the images I've posted , the TW generals seem to be far more ornately armoured, almost reminiscent of samurai armour with almost mongol/barbarian themes bleeding through with the heavy fur cloaks. Not too sure how I would recreate that
[Thumb - Thunder Warrior Hair.jpg]

This message was edited 6 times. Last update was at 2020/03/30 18:45:39

Made in gb
Nimble Glade Rider

So this is what I have atm:

Basic Thunder Warrior (Primaris Intercessors):
- Shoulder pads: https://www.forbiddengaming.co.uk/cataphractii-terminator-shoulder-pads-11164-p.asp
- Space Marine body: http://www.bitzbox.co.uk/index.php/death-guard-plague-marines-c-23_28_307_310 (Dark Imperium Death Guard)
- Melee Weapon: Large Chainsword/Chainaxe with hazard stripes. Other brutal weaponry?
- Head: Model Glasses and Helmet with Green Stuff, Include large, red pre-heresy-like top knot
- Powerpack: http://www.bitzbox.co.uk/product_info.php/horus-heresy-mkiii-tactical-squad-backpack-p-7375?osCsid=11063002e9c57308c7e08c9d3adf6bec – Add wires/Cables
- Bolter: Ripper Gun minus Amo Holder: http://www.bitzbox.co.uk/product_info.php/astra-militarum-ogryns-ripper-gun-p-3378
- Combat Knife: Ogryn Knife: http://www.bitzbox.co.uk/product_info.php/astra-militarum-ogryns-ripper-gun-p-3378

Thunder Warrior Berserker:
- Main Body: https://www.games-workshop.com/en-GB/Necromunda-Goliath-Stimmers-And-Forgeborn-2020 - Maybe add a heavy chestplate? https://www.forbiddengaming.co.uk/goliath-stimmers-496-c.asp
- Cataphractii Shoulder Pads: https://www.forbiddengaming.co.uk/cataphractii-terminator-shoulder-pads-11164-p.asp - put spikes/studs on
- Legs: Green Stuff on more plate
- Build some with eviscerator chainswords? Some with Thunder Claws (Pre-Heresy design power fist with bladed fingers)
- Big vat tanks on some jetpacks, tubes directly into muscles
- Head: More evil: https://www.forgeworld.co.uk/en-GB/Goliath-Heads-with-Masks-Upgrade-Set

Thunder Warrior Terminators:
Based on this: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bzh8FTNH2kg/?igshid=f3n6lxm8g5pw
- Main Body: https://eggheadminiatures.com/products/warhammer-40k-forgeworld-iron-warriors-tyrant-siege-terminators-legs-e (legs), https://www.skywillsh.com/forgeworld-iron-warriors-legion-tyrant-siege-terminators-torso-d-bits-p-484946.htm (Chest)
- Fur Cloaks like Angron’s (Mongol Style)
- Head (Normal TW Glasses Helmeted head with large, ornate red hair plume)
- Shoulder pads: https://www.forbiddengaming.co.uk/cataphractii-terminator-shoulder-pads-11164-p.asp (but with a 3rd layer made of Green Stuff)
- Arms either Goliath Stimmers or normal terminator arms

Thunder Warrior Primarch (Captain):

Thunder Warrior Genebeast (Represent Assault Centurions):
- Main Body: https://www.forbiddengaming.co.uk/goliath-stimmers-496-c.asp
- Head from a Goliath Stimmer: https://www.forgeworld.co.uk/en-GB/Goliath-Heads-with-Masks-Upgrade-Set
- Armour Plating
- Enormous Power Claw (Heresy style with bladed fingers)
- Enormous Heresy-style, Hazard stripped powered drill

Made in gb
Tough Traitorous Guardsman

In addition to those:
- A couple of the Blightlord Terminator bubotic axes have basically no NURGLE on them and are massive, brutal-looking chainaxes:

- The new repentia have Eviscerators, but due to the scaling of the sisters their weapons will be a little smaller than the SM version, so could be used as chainswords

- Another possible source of chainswords is the FW Cawdor weapon set. I've used one recently for a chainsword conversion and I like it a lot:
...You have to cut the blade off the top and do some cleanup, but you can make a slightly shorter but much more chunky and brutal looking weapon out of it.

- Heads, there's a few with glasses on already that would be an easier base to sculpt on:

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2020/04/04 17:53:30

Made in gb
Nimble Glade Rider

Awesome! Thanks so much dude, really appreciate it. I really like the first axe and that Cawdor chainblade is sick. Do you reckon the heads you suggested would fit? I'm worried that might be a bit small. Also, I found guardsman heads with glasses and sort of applicable helmets https://www.games-workshop.com/en-GB/Astra-Militarum-Heavy-Weapon-Squad-2019
How big are guardsmen heads in relation to space marines? I don't want it to look too small, although I would also like to make the body look even more bulky

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2020/04/04 22:21:00

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Tough Traitorous Guardsman

I've used guardsmen heads of space marines a lot - they're exactly the same size. That sentinel head I linked is actually kinda large. The only thing is that guardsmen have no neck, whereas the astartes heads have quite a thick and chunky neck attached to them. Cut the neck part off a space marine amd transplant it onto a guardman head and you get the right fit.

That being said, the helmeted cadians are a little... weird scale-wise. I don't think they'd work particularly well because they have such a round shape and the actual face part of the head is quite small.

Might be worth looking at some AoS stuff - Chaos Marauder horsement have some decent helmeted heads that might work (lacking goggles of course). The same thing applies to them scale-wise as the with rhe guardmen: they will fit just fine but uou need to build up the neck.
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Nimble Glade Rider

I'll have a look around and see. I'm not a big fan of the marauder heads just because they are little too wild and chaosy. I'd like to try and stay fairly true to the artwork. I'm still undecided on the heads, tbh I'm leaning towards using the sentinel head/GSC ones and modelling the helmets myself, as you say the faces on the guard helmets look really small.
I was actually considering using the angron model as a base for my thunder warrior HQ, carrying different weapons and changing the head ofc

Automatically Appended Next Post:
Scratch that, I think I'm going to be using these heads and creating my own plumes https://puppetswar.eu/models-and-bits-50/sci-fi/mankind/shade-troopers-heads.html

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2020/04/05 11:50:24

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Neophyte Undergoing Surgeries

I am doing mine now.

Automatically Appended Next Post:
Sorry wrong model....

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2020/04/05 18:47:11

Made in gb
Nimble Glade Rider

Very cool! Is that a 3d print?
Made in it
Neophyte Undergoing Surgeries

Yazima wrote:
Very cool! Is that a 3d print?

3D done in Zbrush, but will print them and have them cast in resin to make my units.

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Been Around the Block

Here is my attempt at building a Thunder Warriors army. Larger figure is Ghota, second to Arik Taranis. The other guy is a sergeant.
[Thumb - 5445DF79-497E-4DBB-9D2F-0148DD3F8CBA.jpeg]

Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut

Firstly, I want to say that those two look amazing! Are you sculpting them yourself?

Secondly, there's some bad news that may make you reconsider this project but I want to preface this by admitting that I am far from an expert on the Unification Wars. One, I have not yet heard of any vehicles being used by the Thunder Warriors for combat and I can't imagine there were that many around after so long. Thusly, there are not really any vehicles to use for them. Two, according to everything I have read ranged weapons in general were in very short supply and the main focus of combat was melee. However, the Emperor's Thunder Warriors were armed with an early bulky predecessor of the modern Boltgun when available. It is unlikely they ever produced any other ranged weapon and so anything else would have been scavenged by it's owner if it existed at all on Terra during the Age of Strife. Three, the majority of what is now know as Mk 1 Thunder Pattern Power Armor were produced regionally and varied from user to user. This means you can essentially make them look however you want, which is a major plus in my mind. Four, Thunder Pattern armor had only the upper body powered and was not sealed for use in space. In addition, most suits did not include armored leggings and boots, instead using primitive padding or simple steel plate armor. Very Medieval. Allows for more individuality in your army for sure. Five, they were also much smaller groups, Thunder Regiments containing no more than a few hundred men each. On the other hand, they did not tend to be split up into smaller groups like modern Space Marines, so you don't really have to worry fielding too many troops to be true to lore. Especially since the general lack of elite and heavy choices in a cannon Thunder Warriors army will keep you to small battles for the most part.

Make of this what you will, but the base line is that the Thunder Warriors of the Unification Wars were close combat focused infantry for a number of reasons. Mostly because they were limited to what resources and production capacity remained on Terra from the Dark Age of Technology, the exceptions being small things like the Power Armor and early Boltguns produced in small numbers. All of that aside, I encourage you to keep this up and build a small Thunder Regiment force. What you have looks very good and I imagine it will only get better as you continue. It's also nice to see that you are making models for the named Thunder Warriors that have lived on in legend. Also good to keep in mind is that Space Marines initially used the same arms and armor for the conquest of the Solar System, so if you want to expand into the full range of possibilities, you can just use the named characters as generic SM officers and call it a pre-Great Crusade legion.
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Been Around the Block

Thanks for the encouraging words. I am not focusing on the unification war as much as I’m trying to create a thunder warrior army set now in the current timeline... this will be very hard to do and I have heard so many ideas.
If I were to build a unification style army, Arik Taranis would be the leader and they would have the weapons you describe as well as proto dreadnoughts and maybe a flyer Like the storm bird or its precursor. Troops would be the equivalent to guard infantry with rhinos and chimaeras. Bell of lost souls has released a good codex lite to represent them in the past. They have said more is on the way.
We know that Arik Taranis fixed Ghota and himself with no ending released by GW, so the possibilities exist to write some fluff and play them as Custodes IMO. Where did they go and who do they owe allegiance to now? Not the current emperor and custodes for sure. The thing is thunder warriors are not evil and I’m sure there was much pain felt by them when they were betrayed by their leader and creator. If my suspicions are correct then Arik Taranis is a Prototype Primarch and brother to the later twenty. He is described as being brilliant, and cunning. He is such an interesting character and I can see absolute devotion towards him from Ghota. Talk about a guy who would take a bullet for someone.
I will be releasing more pics as I finish building them.
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Regular Dakkanaut

I recently discovered something that might be of interest to you. Take a look at the Kromlech Space Legionary Legs and the Cyber Samurai Heads and Backpacks. I assume they have arms in the Legionary style, but I haven't delved into it too deeply yet. The Space Legionary legs in particular look like they were modeled specifically after the Mk1 Thunder pattern.

Edit: Here's a link https://bitsofwar.com/18-legionaries

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2020/05/23 15:42:52

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Regular Dakkanaut

Southern California

A gentleman by the name of TheTrans is currently putting together a Thunder Warrior army for 30k over on B&C. His work may be able to provide some inspiration.
Hope this helps!

1 Tim. 4:12 - Don't let anyone put you down because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.
Leigen_Zero wrote:
nectarprime wrote:
Um, isn't styrene + gasoline = napalm?

More or less yes...Great, we've gone from cheap resin substitutes to weapons banned by the geneva convention...

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Fresh-Faced New User

Guy on the far left is a thunder warrior.
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Been Around the Block

I decided to run them as primaris instead of Custodes. The project is moving slowly but surely.
[Thumb - C5BF5FC7-EE58-46A8-83A9-FD37BCEEF694.jpeg]

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