I’m pretty sure I’ll like the basing recipe I’m using for my Deathskulls Orks, which comes straight from White Dwarf #161 (also the source of the recipe I use for my Blood Angels), but a bit less certain about the tufts. So I figured I’d do up a test base and see how it looks.
Armageddon Dust base coat
I use the skinny end of the Citadel texture spreader for Astrogranite Debris, which is much thicker than this stuff. For Armageddon Dust, I’m liking the wide, flexible end — it smears on really easily.
No surprise, I guess, but this stuff dries much faster than Astrogranite Debris. There’s a chunky version of the Armageddon color, Armageddon Dunes, but I wanted the flatter bases on these guys to contrast with the hillier ones on my Blood Angels. With less aggregate in the mix, it dries faster.
Agrax Earthshade wash
It looks much too dark now, but I remember that stage from my “plains of Armageddon” bases. Until it’s drybrushed, it ain’t gonna look right.
This dries quickly, too — so quickly that I think I might be able to take a base from bare plastic to finished in a single day, rather than needing 1-2 overnight drying sessions like I do with my Blood Angels’ bases.
Tyrant Skull drybrush
Mine looks a bit darker than GW’s, but close enough — and I like the look.
Right after I took this photo, I realized that I’d never primed this base. D’oh! That probably explains why it looks darker: it’s riding on black, not white.
Baneblade base edge
Ignoring the crappiness of the edge (no primer…), that looks solid! Same tonal step-down as the grey-to-grey shift between Astrogranite Debris and Dawnstone on Sergeant Dolos’ base, which is exactly what I was after.
Army Painter tuft options
My brain said swamp tufts would look good; kind of a mix of green and brown. I like the contrast between my Angels’ gray bases and pale brown tufts, so brown/badlands bases with green tufts — though deliberately not bright, heavy, or totally green — seemed like a good route.
But I also wanted to try Army Painter’s winter tufts, which look more badlands-y — and look like they could pair well with swamp tufts. A mix of grasses could be nifty.
They’re quite similar, as both are pale brown and black — just with the swamp tuft replacing some of the winter tuft’s brown with a splash of green.
I showed this test base to my wife, Alysia, and she said she had trouble telling the two tufts apart at arm’s length. I totally agree — in fact, I routinely forgot which one was which while writing this post.
Gun to my head, I’d pick the swap tufts — my original idea — because they do stand out more clearly from the terrain.
But I like them both, and I like them together. Unlike my Blood Angels, who are fighting their way across a plain that has been leached of all life, my Orks are on a normal planet — so it makes sense that the grass might not all be the same color. Unless one definitively looks better with an actual Ork standing next to it, I’ll probably just use both types at random.