Thursday, 23 August 2018

I apologise unreservedly

...for getting bored, changing my mind and pressing 'pause' on my Oldhammer Mordheim project. Sometimes these things have to be done. In this case it's because I have a good reason.

I have a better idea.

Occasionally you hear a throw-away comment and it sparks something profound. And, like Don John's canker in a hedge, it festers. This happened to me a few weeks ago and its not just taken root, its entirely displaced my initial plans. So here it is...

Ostermark. Twenty years after the comet struck Mordheim. The city is a no-go zone. The State officials know it's bad. Damn, even the Emperor knows its a catastrophe. Warpstone contaminating the area for miles around, fuelling mutation and inciting corruption. Dust-borne residue is killing peasants and livestock. On the fringes of the infected area Imperial scholars gather. The best minds, you would think? Alas no - they are mad, bad and dangerous to know. They scheme and plot. How can they study the carrion-city? These days, none who enter return sane. Their records show this was not always the case. In the short years following the impact, mercenaries could seemingly get in and out, smuggling warpstone as if it were gold. So they scheme and plot ad nausium. This takes time. Time. If they could send men back in time. So they enlist Chronomancers. And convicts (expendable, you see). And thus were born the Creepers. Forgotten and despised, they risk their bodies and souls to travel back and gather samples from the city just after the impact. Samples that will help the Emperor, they are told. Samples that are vital, they are told. Samples. Bring us samples. We need warpstone...

I want my warband to be a dystopian hybrid of the Strugatsky brothers and Marker - a fusion of Roadside Picnic/Stalker and La Jetée/Twelve Monkeys. Desperate men dragged through time into a mind-bending 'zone'. The temporal distortion of looking back 20 years to the edition of Mordheim released in 1999 will be articulated through these miniatures. I want them to appear strange, fusing the Franco-Russian influences of the two key works with the likes of Patrick Tatopoulos' Silent Hill costumes, Ian Miller and Jean-Pierre Jeunet's first film The Bunker of the Last Gunshots. More post-apocalyptic and out-of-time rather than slavish to the look of the world of 20 years ago.

Here is some of the visual material I've been mining:

I hope you'll forgive me this abrupt change of direction, but it seems like too good an idea to pass up. And good ideas need to be respected, else they will fester. As the Stalker says in Tarkovsky's film:

The Zone wants to be respected. Otherwise it will punish.