Sunday, 4 May 2014

Product review and showcase: Astra Militarum Ogryns/Bullgryns - Savlar Chem Dogs

In today’s post I’m going to review the new GW Ogryn/Bullgryn plastic kit.

I’ve always been a big fan of the Ogryns – although rather in models than rules. The concept of hulking abhumans fighting for the Imperium is an intriguing one, and has been around since 40k Rogue Trader days.

The Orgyn model range has gone through a few versions:

  • ·      Bob Olley’s original Rogue Trader sculpts – I still like these models, and some have stood the test of time well: especially the “shades” Ogryn with ripper gun. The limited range seems to have been a crossover from Warhammer Fantasy Battle, as most of the models were equipped with axes and maces (reflecting the IG army list of the time);


  • ·      Third edition “goofy” Ogryns – including Ogryns with Viking style horned heads, disproportionate limbs etc – better consigned to history… Included an equally crude Nork Deddog sculpt;


  • ·      Fifth edition “Cadian” Ogryns – I have four of these models, and I really liked them. There were four sculpts available, in a variety of poses. These guys were criticised because they looked too much like Cadians (unsurprising considering most Guard armies are Cadian, or at least use the models as a base!), because they were metal, and because they were expensive…


So, as part of the new Astra Militarum range GW has released a plastic 3-figure boxed set.  

First impressions are that the box has two relatively small sprues, and rolls in at around £28.50 (although as ever I’d advise checking out Dark Sphere for a much better price). The box makes several possible models:

·      3 Ogryns with ripper guns, with parts for Bone ‘Ead;

·      3 Bullgryns with slab shields and grenadier gauntlets;

·      3 Bullgryns with shields and power mauls;

·      1 Nork Deddog.

The sculpting on these models is good, but detail is shallower than I’d have liked. They don’t seem  “sharp” like the recent Tempestus Scions, but rather “soft” like the bigger Tyranid creatures released earlier this year. An example is the tattoo detail on some of the Ogryns’ arms and heads: in photos this seems really crisp, but in reality it’s quite difficult to bring this out in the way that the GW pictures show.

I made 3 Bullgryns for my Savlar Chem Dog army…



Overall, I was impressed with the designs. It seems GW have had this “using tank parts as armour” idea in mind for some years: I remember a conversion article years back in which GW canvassed using tank armour as protection for Ogryns, and the Bullgryns are an extension of that idea.


I don’t like the Bone ‘Ead parts at all. These include two moustached heads, which look rather refined – not Ogryn at all! I like the bare head much better. I went with the Goonies “Hey, you guys!!!” head – this got a lot of flak on the forums due to the pose GW put the head in, but once positioned properly and painted up I think it looks good.

The set also includes three “Bane” style gasmask heads. Great for making Savlar or Steel Legion Ogryns.



Here’s a scale picture showing an older Ogryn with the newer one. I actually prefer the poses of the older Ogryns, but I guess the plastic medium prevents this level of dynamism.


You can also see in this photo exactly why GW has chosen to make Ogryns “Very Bulky” (taking up 3 transport slots) – the model is much bigger than a “Bulky” Terminator…


What about the rules? I’m not sure GW will ever get them right! The standard Ogryn has lost Furious Charge, and last edition’s reduction in Leadership makes them a risky assault option with Commissar and/or Priest support. I’d be really wary of launching an assault with Bullgryns, unless they were loaded up with power mauls – in which case your investing 60 points per model… I’m planning on buying another two to create a five model squad of Bullgryns, to shield tanks and artillery.




However, would those points actually be better spent on more tanks? I guess only playtesting will tell!

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for all the great comparison shots. It's nice to see the actual sizes of models. Love all the detail you put into your ogryns. The various chips and detail really elevate the paint jobs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you found them useful, and as you can see the Ogryns are really big models. I think there is a lot of opportunity with the armoured carapace torsos - if I buy any more, I think that I will add some freehand like graffiti or battle mottoes, maybe even WW2 style pin-up decals...

      Delete