Warhammer 40K – After helping my cousins build and teaching them the basics of painting Orks and Space Marines, I was once again bitten by the 40k bug. After digging out my Twilight Raven marines I realized that I pretty much abandoned the project and have quite a bit of work to do before the company is completed.
My goal with this army was to build a complete company of marines and eventually move on to build the entire chapter. Given the skyrocketing costs of new GW product, building the chapter is probably a pipe dream however I have most of the raw material to complete the company and have a few additional elements.
Currently between commission work I'm sorting through what I have built and what needs to be painted. Each marine has a scroll on the base for their name. The names were chosen using the scientific names of various bird species. Looking at the decal sheet I made ages ago it shouldn't be a problem to have 150 or so marines each with their own unique name.
Once I have them sorted into 10 man squads the next step is to denote squad numbers and markings. Not only is this helpful for keeping track of them on the table but it's also useful for building lists. I keep a composition book with multiple lists built out so when it's time to play a game I just look for what I'd like to play and am ready to go. I've also gone through and built numerous 750 lists that can be combined together quickly and easily to create a 1500 point list.
The great thing about a DIY chapter is you can pull from whatever marine codex you'd like reusing the basic building blocks that are consistent throughout the various marine codexes. I've loosely based my chapter on the Raven Guard, however if I feel a different codex will fit the feel for a force I'd like to build I can easily adopt that into my own canon.
For example Raven Guard used to be able to do a jump pack heavy list with a special command squad. The current generic marine codex doesn't allow that option. The Blood Angel Codex does however allow you to take assault squads as troops so I will use that when I'd like to play all my jump pack marines.
The next challenge, besides painting the remaining models I have will be to right an Index Astartes article detailing the background of my chapter. I'll need to put a lot of thought into how I'll write the background information, so they remain as flexible as I want (ie would marines riding giant birds as a proxy for thunder wolf calvary be ridiculous...)