A while ago I finished this drop pod for my Ultramarine army. Drop pods are quite possibly the most boring model to assemble and paint in the entire Games Workshop collection so I was looking to do something fresh and keep myself motivated to finish 3 of them. I got a lot of nice reactions on Dakka Dakka for this one, so here’s how I went about creating my “Veteran” drop pod.
I thought it would be nice to add a thematic feel to the drop pods, allowing myself some interesting modifications and details. With he Ultramarines’ classic archenemy being Tyranids, my imagination was sparked. I imagined a drop pod that had seen countless battles against Tyranids and looked beaten, very beaten, in fact bearing the marks of countless vicious Tyranid creatures lashing away at it with their ravenous claws. Also I thought it was a nice idea to have a drop pod be assigned and looked after by Veterans, who over the course of the years decorated it with trophies and other markings of their victories against the Tyranids.
Adding battle damage is fun and greatly helps break the brand spanking new look of the plastic models. Simply use a hobby knife to blunt some of the straight edges on the kit. It doesn’t matter what you do really, just cut away some chunks and edges randomly all over the model.
I also make some “cuts” or “scars” on the surface of the model using the Games Workshop clipper tool. This gives a nice, wider indent than making a cut with a hobby knife. I cut off a big chunk of the top as well, which I think makes the biggest impact on how the model looks. Finally I drilled bullet and venom spit holes in the door, using a blunt drill. Combined with a poison green paint effect this looks really neat.
Tyranid Trophy & Lettering
The trophy on one of the doors is made from various bits. I cut a Genestealer head in half, and added stuff around it to create a sort of “emblem” looking composition. The chainsaws are from a regular marine kit. Nothing too fancy, but it looks great when painted and gives a lot of flavor.
Many people have asked how I did the lettering. Well it’s free hand painted, with no real planning ahead. The trick is to use heavily watered down paint and then build up the letters in layers. Start with a very thin and light color so you can sort of “sketch”. Gradually build up by adding layers, tightening up the shape of the lettering. It is quite forgiving and quickly looks good. It does not have to be picture perfect by any means.
So there you go, I hope this gives you some ideas to spice up your own drop pods. If you have some pics or thoughts leave them in comment section!