Last month saw the release of the new Dark Elf book, and along with it came the a monstrous new kit in the form of the Hydra and Kharibdyss!
The kit is an utterly stunning one, assembly is quick and easy, mould lines are hidden (as we’ve come to expect with recent GW kits). The detail on the entire kit, mostly in the form of scales and wrinkles in the skin, is so well sculpted that you could easily drybrush and wash this kit and produce a fantastic result in literally minutes.
I took the long route, as usual, and decided to magnetise the kit so that it could be used as both models in different games. I also made the decision to highlight the scales individually….. I’m a bit of a drybrush-hater.
I magnetised both head options, but also both of the tail options .
You can see in the image below the main magnet which joined the large Kharibdyss neck (or the split Hydra neck) to the body. This is simple a 4mmx2mm magnet. I use a 4mm drill bit to make the holes for my magnets, as its much safer than gouging a hole with a hobby knife and you get the perfect fit every time. I actually don’t even own a drill- if you start the hole off with a pin vice you should be able to hold the 4mm drill bit in your hand and cut the rest of the hole. If you cant- man up! This does start to take the skin off your hands after a while though….
If you need a stronger join, you can put multiple magnets in the same hole and the polarity will get slightly stronger. You just need to drill deeper.
I also added one of the 4mm magnets into each neck and every head, so they could be removed.
Painting was simple. The dark area was basecoated with a mix of black and dark blue to get that very deep tone. Each scale was highlighted three times, in shades of grey getting steadily lighter up to almost pure white. To give some variation in scale colours, the areas closes to the middle of the scales, along the back of each neck and along the models back, were glazed with dark blue to tone them down. That way, the scales vary in colour across the model and they are at their most bright where the dark scales meet the pale fleshy skin.
To make the Hydra look different from the Kharibdyss, I went for a bright purple plumage- this tiny change alters the whole scheme of the model and really separate them as two different monsters. I took care not to highlight the scales around the mouth of the hydra in a way which makes them look like teeth (which is the problem with the Games Workshop paint job IMO). I also took care to make the real teeth (very tiny snake like fangs) and bright white as possible so they stood out. Having painted the Hydra I actually really like the heads.
The pale fleshy areas were based on a very light turquoise and simply highlighted up to pure white. A glaze with Agrax Earthshade (water down) before the final white highlight gives the skin a slightly more neutral and realistic tone.
Overall, its a lovely kit. I have some great conversion ideas for the future- the first of which is to remove the extra heads and add wings were the necks would sprout. If you used the thicker Kharibdyss neck and added a dragon head, you could make a fantastic Dragon conversion….. I reckon the Chimera/Manticore wings would fit this model perfectly.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post, and there’ll be another along in the near future to look more closely at the Bloodwrack Shrine/ Cauldron of Blood kit.