Buildings, Buildings, Buildings! (Part 2)

This is a continuation of my earlier post.  Actually this has turned into part two of a three part series in which I’m showing pictures of the various buildings Brandon and I worked on for the last Apoc game (and for basically every game that I’ll play at my house until the end of time).

For those that are interested in how I achieved the various effects, you can find out more about them at the following links:

Otherwise, I’m just going building by building, giving them a kitschy name and telling a little story about them.  So, here goes…


The White House:

Wh39kBuildings (42)This is honestly one of my least favorite of all of the buildings.  When I was basecoating things, I wound up doing a lot of them in drab colors (like silver and black) and wanted to mix things up a bit.  When I got to the Shrine of the Aquila, I tried a light beige, and really liked it.  So, in an attempt to mix a little extra variation into the buildings, I painted this to match.  It just didn’t seem to work as well with this as it did the shrine.  To resolve it, I went a little heavier on the black airbrush for some extra depth.

I guess it doesn’t look bad, but I’m definitely not in love with it.

Wh39kBuildings (43)

The Fuel Depot:

Much like the ammo depot, I wanted to consolidate the fuel casts into a single building to give it a sense of purpose.  Part of my thought process was that I wanted to be able to use these buildings thematically in games to give them some benefit.  Wh39kBuildings (38)For example, in an Apoc game, maybe you could reroll misses or overheats if you were in the ammo depot, or maybe the fuel depot might have rules similar to the promethium pipes?

This was also the only building that I didn’t have a hand in assembling.  While it’s true that Brandon assembled a fair number of these buildings with me, I was at least in the room doing some brainstorming and such.  This particular building came as part of a purchase I did back in 2012 (along with the rusted out ruins–see below).  I wasn’t particularly happy about how it was assembled because it’s pretty small and tight, but what the heck–it’s a building right?

This is also the first building I wound up painting up to completion (well, aside from the rusted one).  I think the mindset was that I could experiment on these because they weren’t really mine.  In doing so, I toyed with painting the various floor tiles in different patterns, but ultimately scrapped that because I didn’t feel it added enough to justify the time spent.

Wh39kBuildings (37)  Wh39kBuildings (36)  Wh39kBuildings (35)

The Shrine of the Aquila:

Wh39kBuildings (32)What can I say about this one?  I’ve already done a fairly extensive post on the stained glass work, so I’m left with a bit of a void here.  While I did use some other techniques around this model, most of those have already been explained in the other buildings.  Other things I think that stand out nicely are the NOD recruitment poster and the use of a little bit of blue on the model.

In most of the buildings I stayed with relatively drab/dark colors.  I forget who suggested this, but they told me that your buildings should fade into the background and not draw your attention away from the models.  I’m not sure I agree with this 100%, but I do think the primary focus should be the models.  To address this, I tried not to reduce the overall quality of the paintjobs, but rather to tone down the color palette.  As a result, many of the buildings are very drab.  This building was looking particularly so, and I was running out of colors to use in it, so I opted to through a little blue beneath each of the large windows.  That little color really seems to help liven the piece up.

Or maybe it’s the giant stained glass windows…

Two other things worth mentioning are that the marble effect was done by Brandon (his first attempt at it), and the windows, although really cool looking, are quite hard to shoot out of.  Because of that, it isn’t exactly an ideal piece of terrain to have in your deployment zone.  Sure, guys can go on the top, but anyone on the second level really has very little they can shoot at (assuming you use true LoS).

Wh39kBuildings (26)  Wh39kBuildings (30)  Wh39kBuildings (33)  Wh39kBuildings (29)  Wh39kBuildings (28)  Wh39kBuildings (27)  Wh39kBuildings (26)

Rusted Ruins:

Wh39kBuildings (25)This was the first building I completed because I was wondering how much rust would be too much on a building.  I also wondered if I could do the rust effect in reverse (ie. paint the building silver, salt it, and then paint rust over the top).  I’d say that it worked out pretty well.

I’m not sure that I’d do it again on something quite this large, but it would be a great effect on something like a barrel or a tank that had been abandoned in the woods.

I’m also fond of the “Warning: Xenos Infested Area” poster, but I can’t say why.  I think I like the yellow background and it seems to show that even though the building has been neglected, they still care enough to put up relatively new warning signs to keep the populace safe.

The emperor protects.

Wh39kBuildings (24)  Wh39kBuildings (23)

The Spire:

Wh39kBuildings (20)Ok, I think earlier I said that “the White House” was my least favorite building, but I could be wrong about that.  This one I find particularly offensive as well.  The sad part, is I sort of did that on purpose.

The thing is that when we were assembling things, it became very clear that most buildings would be 2-3 stories tall (in hindsight, I’m not sure I even considered a 1-story building, but that could’ve been cool).  Anyway, I wanted to put in some tall buildings for clear line-of-sight across the table.  The problem with that is that it takes up A LOT of building pieces to make a tall building.

The way to avoid that?  Well, make it really skinny.

So now I have a five-story building that is indeed really skinny, but the top floor or two really aren’t big enough to put many units up there.  Furthermore, the building is just too tall to store with the rest of them, so it’s always in the way.

That aside, I don’t mind the overall aesthetic of the building.  I also took the time to paint OSL on all of the little lights (at least those on the ground level), and then decided that was going to be too much work to repeat on the rest of the buildings.  And, like the Shrine of the Aquila, I threw a splash of color into this by painting the doors blue (and even a bit of red on the Adeptus Mechanicus symbol).

Wh39kBuildings (22)  Wh39kBuildings (21)  Wh39kBuildings (19)

And we’ll call this here as well, allowing me to put exactly five building summaries in each of the three posts.  So, for those of you who are annoyed with these: you only have to endure one more!

14 comments on “Buildings, Buildings, Buildings! (Part 2)

  1. Not many units…but having a tall skinny building makes a perfect spot for a sniper :).

    Buildings just look amazing. What lovely work. You put more time into them then most people put into their whole armies!

    • Yeah, that building would make a great spot for a Vindicaire. It’s been so many years since I’ve used an assassin though… maybe it’s time I busted one out again!

      On Mon, Nov 17, 2014 at 5:51 AM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


  2. Yeah, tall skinny buildings are awkward where full units are concerned, but they’d be pretty sweet in a skirmish-level game (kill team, perhaps, if you wanted to keep it GW).
    And even if you’re not using it to place units on, it should still do a great job of breaking up line of sight from other tall buildings…

    • That’s a good point. It certainly does break up the terrain/line of sight.

      In other news, your comment makes me long for the days of Necromunda. Does anyone still play that game?

      On Mon, Nov 17, 2014 at 7:48 AM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


  3. Another great post.

    Whether it was me you were thinking of, I don’t know, but I’ve certainly said to you that I think terrain should fade into the background (or perhaps compliment your army rather than grab as much attention as your army). Though I was only repeating something I’d seen elsewhere (and very much agreed with).

    I very much like the coloured tiles on your first building – I think they actually add a lot. Partly because they make the floors look like they’re made of something different to the walls (as you’d expect), and partly because it makes the building look less like a typical terrain piece. i.e. Something that’s been bought, sprayed and plonked on the table. It looks deliberate, in other words.

    The white house is okay… I quite like it… I think the trick is to avoid the white looking like an undercoat. Which probably means painting an off white rather than a plain white?

    And I still love the shrine – the stained glass is fantastic and really makes the whole set something special. I would rule that you could shoot through the windows though. It’s only stained glass, after all!

    • You know, it probably was you.

      I really do like the premise that buildings should be painted well, but not overpower the models. So, for whatever part you had in shaping that opinion of mine, thanks.

      As for “the white house,” that’s not actually white. For sure, I agree that stark white would’ve gone badly. This was some cheap Krylon that was on sale and is more akin to a bleached bone color.

      On Mon, Nov 17, 2014 at 3:45 PM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


  4. Interesting… The photo actually makes it hard to tell what exact colour the white is, although it doesn’t look like there’s actually very much showing! In any case, I still like it.

    As for having buildings that are painted well, but don’t overpower the models, I think your terrain set has met this goal to perfection. They’re eyecatching, but not overpowering. They look very impressive.

    I much prefer these ruins to the “bloo!” fortresses! Although I understand that your goal was different there and that for you those forts are part of the army.

    Still, can’t wait till the next batch!

    • Thank you for the kind words. And I don’t read blogs anywhere near enough anymore, but that’s a nice site you have there. I’m always flattered when someone with your skills stumbled across my work–let alone compliments me on it. Thanks a ton.

      On Wed, Nov 19, 2014 at 11:21 PM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


Have something to add?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.