In this week’s article we will take a look at another ‘Doom-reavered’ Circle heavy beast: the Doomhorn (aka Riphorn satyr).
We started this article series with the Warpwolf Doomstalker, that was basically an up-sized furry Doom reaver; a fairly straight forward application of the ‘Orgoth’ theme to my Circle and that mainly works because of the very recognizable shape of Fell blades and the soul storm pattern on the weapons, but what do we do with a warbeast that doesn’t wield any hand weapons? Well, in most cases we would have to settle just with the Doom reaver mask (their second most recognizable feature), but the Riphorn satyr does have Bladed gauntlets, which open up a few options. At this stage I knew I would not be using the Riphorn’s stock shoulder pads and arms, because I already used part of the shoulder pad for the Stalker conversion and I wanted different blades for the gauntlets, so I ended up combining the remaining arm/shoulder bits to pin down the final pose and added some ‘Fell sword shaped’ blades to the forearm armor (mainly because the stock blade shape doesn’t have enough flat space for the soul storm pattern) and ended up with this sketch:
You might notice in the concept art, that my Riphorn has more armor plates than the standard models, mainly because it annoyed me that each Satyr in the kit has a different armor value, but the only visible difference is the size of their shoulder pads (and even then the Shadowhorn’s pads look heavier than the Riphorn’s…) so I beefed up the helmet and legs’ plates, since the Riphorn has the highest base armor of any living Circle beast.
Let us start from the ground up, with our custom base:
As you can see in the pictures, I covered a large base with my usual cobblestone pattern and, since I have learned how to cast resin copies of my work, made a ‘quick’ mold and cast it resin (mainly so I won’t need to sculpt the same pattern every time). Anyway in the Stalker article I mentioned my intention of giving all living beasts (and warlocks that usually take them) a checkered tiles floor pattern on their bases to tie them all together, so I added another layer of green stuff on top of the cobblestones and made a small section of ’tiled sidewalk’ to finish it off (and cover up a section that had a few noticeable bubble holes).
When the base was ready I pinned the model on it and used the Riphorn’s original bladed gauntlets bits as thigh armor plates (just cut off the blades) and sculpted some leather straps (looking like the bandages doom reavers have on their exposed arms and legs) to ‘hold them in place’.
The next step was sculpting the new blade, following the recipes presented in the last article (Circle of Doom 02 – Orgoth blades) and resin casting it to get an identical copy for each arm. Now as to why I picked this shape: it is basically the top half of the usual Fell blade, with a rounded cutting edge on the lower end, since this looked like a sensible weapon for a wrestler/pit fighter-styled beast, that still uses its open fists to grab and smash opponents (at least that is how I envision the Riphorn in action).
With my resin custom blades done, I turned my attention to the arms. As you can see I used the Shadowhorn’s shoulder pads and the Gnarlhorn’s forearms. Obviously the pegs did not fit, so I had to saw them off, shave off some bumps that were in the way and then I pinned the bits together and used green stuff to fill in gaps and repair scratches and dents that occurred during the ‘chopping up process’. While that layer of putty hardened, I used the leftover putty to give the supports that connect the blades to the beast’s bracers a nicer/more rounded shape and finally pinned them to the forearms.
For the head I picked the Shadowhorns’ option, mainly because it is the bulkiest of the three (the other two are smaller/narrower by almost half size) and it is again a ‘blank slate’ on which I can sculpt my own helmet. Again, the first step was to cut and shave off the pegs both from the head and the horns, so that I could pin my chosen set on. After that I used green stuff to fill in the gaps and eyes, to make an even surface to later sculpt on…
Next I sculpted the doom reaver mask, let it dry, added some armor on its mug and some leather straps, let that cure and then added some ‘armored sideburns’ and more armor going up to the horns… At this stage you have to be very patient and do each armor plate separately and let it dry before going to work on adjacent details, or you will mess up your previous work by accident, which is particularly annoying when sculpting ornate armor like Circle or Skorne.
After that I added armor to the mug and gradually expanded the armor plating to cover more of the face/head (since it is a beast that does a lot of Head butt attacks due to its chain attack Grab and smash), trying to keep it symmetrical. Anyway in this process I ended up giving it some armor on the back of the neck, a goatee and some more leather straps keeping the helmet and assorted armor plates in place.
Sculpting Circle-styled armor:
For those that want to sculpt the armor plates with the typical Circle pattern, here is a ‘mini tutorial’ on how I do it on my models:
To make the explanation easier, the picture above shows the tools I use for this specific process; going from left to right: 1. Ghetto custom sculpting tools (I refer to them by the made-up names in the sketch), 2. Lace-Knitting tools (you can use hard pencils with a rounded down point or ball-point pens without ink instead), 3. Silicon tipped color/clay shapers.
With that sorted, let us sculpt: First you flatten a layer of fresh sculpting putty on the area you want to cover with armor and then use a small Beveller (custom ghetto tool) to press in the rough outline of your armor pattern. Then you have to push down the ‘depressed’ areas with either a Square flatter (if the ‘target area’ is large enough) or some ball point tools (for the tight spots), which will inevitably deform the outline you first traced (since the putty you are pushing down has to go somewhere) so in the last stage you have to go back and straiten up and sharpen all the edges of you raised details, using ghetto tools and/or silicone tipped shapers, until you are happy with the results.
After pinning the arms on, we can finally see the ‘Doomed-up’ Riphorn Satyr in all his armored glory! In spite of the fact I used all the ‘wrong’ bits from the satyr kit (as in I used the head, shoulders and arms from the other variants), I think the horns and armored head make it clearly recognizable as the Riphorn (after all the horns are the main distinguishing feature).
Lastly here is the undercoated finished conversion, so we can see more clearly the details and overall look of the model (compared to the initial concept, if you want). Hope you like it:) The next article will be about using all the tricks we have learned so far to expand this ‘Doom reaver theme’ to more of my Circle models, like unarmed light beasts and an infantry unit…
That concludes this article, but if you have any comments, questions or suggestions, check out this article’s thread and leave a reply. Until next time, Cheers:)