Monday, February 6, 2012
MK "Old" Pattern
Hey everyone! So it's been a little while, but I'd like to put up an observation that has me a little distressed. It's the Space Marine Box set. While our good fellow gamer B at the FLGS would say that marines don't need anything, I might interject that they could use a new box. I have been looking at the same looking marines since they came out in late 3rd edition, followed through in 4th, and have continued to be the exact same box no in 5th. One of my biggest hopes for the armies of the Adeptus Astartes with the coming of 6th edition is the hopes of maybe getting some new models. So why call for this new box? Lets have a look.
First off the sprue here is a little bland. There is very little on it, with large gaps of space that are just empty. The bitz we do get are pretty much 10 copy pasted arms, shoulders, legs, torsos, helms, and backpacks with a little swap here and there, and a "command" sprue with some options... mostly pertaining to the sergeant. Almost every bit looks identical to another in the kit and there is little to no differentiate the models if build without doing some hefty conversion to it. This is what kinda throws me here.
The Space Marines are supposed to stand as being the best of the Imperium. The Knights as compared to the peasants as it were. So where is this detail? When you look at the art from GW and fans out there... marines are steeped in iconography, seals, and even battle damage. So where is this detail? Surely with these being the poster child models of the game, GW would like to make them shine a little more?
We've seen some of the work that GW has done to make other marine boxes really stick out. Take a look at the death company sprues from Blood Angels. While they still wear the bulky flat surfaced power armor, they have raised iconography, ceremonial ropes, and even blood drop medallions hanging off of them. The sprues themselves come with a large surplus of extra bits and pieces that can make these models really stick out. So why not the good old space marines box?
I am fully aware that the Space Marine box is designed to be vague so that any of the many chapters covered in the vanilla codex or even home brews can be represented here, so placing "chapter" icons is not really doable. However, there are multitudes of general iconography that could be added. Aquilas. skulls, more embossing in the armor to make it feel a little more 3 dimensional, and even just some arms and legs that make the models feel a little more dynamic. There is an element of having an army of similar models that can be kinda cool... but the Marines are supposed to the heros spanning hundreds of years sometimes. For a juxtaposition, look at fantasy. The Guardsmen would be very similar to the ground troops of the Empire, where the Space Marines should feel more like the Knights of the Bretonnia. Maybe I'm a little bias given my Templar background, but you get my point.
I just feel like the box is showing its age pretty heavily. GW has done a fantastic job in raising the bar in terms of creating new beautiful models. The Blood Angels, Space Wolves, the entire new line of Dark Eldar, and some of the newer additions to all of the 5th armies out there have been spectacular. I think that this box could really do with an update. I know I'd love to see some more detail in all of GW's models, but I feel like these guys could defiantly use some love from the sculpting department.