Sci-fi Minutemen in the Age of Darkness – Solar Auxilia Veletaris Storm Section first impressions

DSC_05533“I beg pardon, sire. Won’t we hit our own troops? Yes… but we’ll hit theirs as well. We have reserves. Attack.”
I just received a package of resin that will make my 30k force playable for 1500pts games. Besides some more Legion tacticals and a Destroyer squad for the third company elite, I ordered some Solar Auxilia to go with my Valdor superheavy as an allied detachment. The haughty Emperor’s Children legionnaires couldn’t care less about these human militiamen but their loyalty during this heresy could prove useful nonetheless. I plan on using these neo-steampunk stormtroopers as some sort of close defense troupe for my vehicles to throw in the way of dangerous assault units. They can also be used as a screen for the more expensive Astartes units to bog enemies down before unleashing a barrage or three with some quad mortars! In this article I will unbox (or perhaps unbag) the Veletari Storm Section and give you my initial impressions of the kit.

Forgeworld leveling up
Besides the regular Forgeworldesque assembly guide (which is more like a sheet of individual pictures of the bits) and the bag of 25mm bases you get 11 sprues with resin parts in the bag. Every frame holds two Auxiliaries stuffed with equipment and an almost finical attention to detail. These are without doubt some of the best resin figures I have seen to date: all clean cast and without a single mould line. There are some minor flash but that is to be expected when working with resin models that come with sprues, and all of it was either easily removed during the washing of the parts, or by gently scraping them with an exacto blade. The Auxiliaries all carry grenades, wrench tools (why?), water cans and their respective rebreather gear – which is designed almost like old bronze diving helmets with mechanical geared backpacks. In battle the Auxiliaries carry ‘Void hardened’ carapace armor which is represented by heavy plates of steel worn over a thick jumpsuit that almost matches the one on the out-of-print tank commander that I used for my Valdor. Overall the Storm Section looks like a cool crossbreed between 1950s soviet cosmonauts and steampunk engineers.

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I purchased the unit that comes equipped with Volkite chargers and even the weapons are crisp and highly detailed. Not a single bit was bent, curved, or broken when I opened the bag. In my opinion the best part about this kit is the fact that all bodies come single cast, meaning that you don’t have to spend hours trying to fiddle small parts together. Coming from a guy that has spent his share amount of man hours assembling Elysians, and knowing the tedious work of Death Korps of Krieg-collectors, this is a huge improvement on Forgeworld’s behalf. I hope they do more kits like this in the future even though it narrows the possibilities to pose your models individually. But after all they’re mere meat shields and not the center pieces of the army.

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Speaking of posing each model has it’s unique pose with a lot of dynamic movement to them. Some are running, some are standing and firing, while others bend down or twist their torsos to check their corners. Two of the bodies also come without heads which allows you to build either a sergeant, a vox operator (both with their visors open) or regular helmeted troopers.

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The rest of the sprues hold weapon arms or upgrade bits that allows you to customize the command models of the squad. Bits for the vox operator includes an arm that holds a telephone-like gadget and a shouldered Volkite charger. The sergeant can be equipped with either a carbine, a pistol and/or a mechanical powerfist. Just look at those high-tech chains that make out it’s mechanism! Even an alternate head is provided with a sculpted cigar in the mouth if you feel like going extra badass on your veteran sergeant.

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As I’m travelling out of town tomorrow I only had time to build two Auxiliaries in order to show you the final result of this build, but they should give you an impression of what the Veletaris Section looks like when they’re all assembled and geared up.

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The only dissappointment with the Solar Auxilia models (in my opinion) is the size of the models. They’re almost as tall as their power armored brethren of the Astartes which looks kind of silly when the models are standing side by side. I think this is due to the fact that the Void armor is sculpted to look extremely thick and clumsy, since the unvisored heads reveal a much smaller face than those of unhelmeted Marines. If you take into consideration that these guys need to haul a shit ton of armor across the battlefield to not get blown off their feet by bolter rounds, it makes some sort of sense or excuse to the large scale of the models. I whish they would have at least made them a tiny bit shorter.

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Overall I’m super excited about painting these guys up and playing them next to my Emperor’s Children, as the variety and look of the Solar Auxilia will contrast the otherwhise monotonous look of an Astartes Legion. I hope you found this article helpful, or at least that the pictures made clear what to expect from the Solar Auxilia infantry kits povided by forgeworld. Make sure to check back for future updates on my heresy progress.

Cheers!

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