Taboo on using non GW models?

Last week a reader left a comment on a post about using Max Mini Models for ork conversions. He said: "I am on the fence really (about using those bitz), I am such a GW fanboy so my opinion is biased".
His comment got me thinking. Are there a lot of people out there that are fiercely loyal to Games Workshop and their models so they might feel bad using other companies as a source for their creativity? I know I am not, but John is definitely more focused on the GW line. Of course there are lots of shades of grey: some modelers will never use non-GW stuff, I am at the other side of the spectrum; it's pretty much my goal to find great models from different companies that can infiltrate our games and become part of the hobby.

Part of my urge to find other models is that other companies simply do a better job: less expensive and visually more arresting sculpts. I am often disappointed with new GW model lines. Enough has been said about IG, my greatest bane I have with the plastic Dwarfs, those releases were just without any character. They look nothing like their metal predecessors and other companies like Avatars of War do so much better....why? why? GW has all the talent do do a great job on any new model but doesn't seem to have the will to go all the way.
Mind you, once in a while some great stuff comes out, the 40 Ork characters are splendid. But my feeling is they simply seem to have different plans for the hobby. Thank goodness there are little, creative companies that fill in the gap, first mostly for fantasy and now also for 40K.

Starting today I will show you 3 models that look splendid, are cheaper and are easily importable into 40K as long as you keep an open mind. Today I want to show you a French resin sculpt of a Chaos Demon, made by Fenryll

This model is hard to get online but possible right here. I purchased my model at GameKastle in San Jose. It cost me 14 dollars...and look at the detail and quality of the resin model.

My plan was to make a replacement for a GW Nurgle Demon Prince, which actually looks super cool but is hard to find and kind of expensive. The Fenryll model needed a little work: I had to convert the arms and give it a close combat weapon. I liked a scythe and made one from plastic card.

I always imagined it on a big base and decided on it chopping down a bronze statue of Emperor's finest as an ultimate sign of disrespect for Space Marines.

Here's it is painted:
look at the detail on it's back, a lot of fun to paint..

Then I figured that base was a little big for transport and games and made another one, purely for gaming. Some magnets were inserted and voila: it's all done.

Of course I respect everyones opinion on this matter, it's all up to you. But for me it's clear: I only want to use models that I like and respect and definitely don't want to give a company my money, simply because. They have to deserve it; for that I ask only for quality and creativity.

On the photography: used a BW background from the Apocalypse book which seemed like a nice contrast between the fore-and background.


  1. I think it's that specter of 'what can I use in a tournament?'

    I belive most tournies have at least some stipulations about how much of something has to be GW (I think more than half, at leasT?)

    On the other hand, I'm fine with dragging in some toy bitz, other company's stuff, and the like to get a good conversion on.

  2. Finding non-GW stuff that is cheap, looks good, and works with the GW models is half the fun of Warhammer...keep it up!

  3. I play Tau, so it's a bit harder for me to go non-GW. I am always on the look out though. Have any of you put together a Hammerhead/Devilfish/Skyray? You would think if GW was going to keep raising the prices, it would be really nice if the models actually fit together...(/rant)

    I think, unless you are playing tournaments, if a model is the right scale and has the right 'flavor', build what you think looks cool and have some fun.

  4. i have nothing against using non GW stuff as long as it is playable and looks good in acordance with your other models.
    so if i could get a hold of stuff other than gw i would but that is a bit of a challenge to me since i live a bit off in nowhere, but i do play ork so in that area i have an advantage.

  5. well man, clearly he's a "hater"'s 3rd definition says:

    "A person who feels anger and/or jealousy for someone who has succeeded in something they have worked hard for.
    A being who speaks badly,and/or takes negative actions in attempt to create problems for a successful person. "

    you worked hard.

    he does not have it.


    keep up the good work. fuck haters.

  6. Those minis really look great.
    My own position is similar to yours (although my creative abilities don't stretch to conversions); if you can use another mini or something else to make a particular GW mini look better or tell a better story, great. GW don't do themselves any favours by not releasing bitz for customisation. I recently wanted to make my own Vulkan He'stan and aside from buying about 5 different minis and cannibalising them, there was no way that i could do it (and even then there is no guarantee that it will not look like a pig's ear).
    However, GW do get mighty fussy about conversions that involve using bits of other (non-GW) minis with theirs. I found this out, for an article that I wrote on fanfilms. If you check out their IP Policy, you will see that aside from forbidding you to have a W40K tattoo, they are also not keen on conversions involving non-GW models:
    Conversions are a major aspect of the hobby, although in intellectual property terms, they also constitute a major infringement. However, we are certainly not about to stop people making cool conversions of our products, although, there are certain things to keep in mind:
    Please do not combine our intellectual properties with IP owned by any third parties."
    and so on

    I'm not sure how strict they are about enforcing this (or the tattoo rule). I can't see a GW shopworker breaking an sword-arm or a weapon off a mini because its not GW-IP-Pure, but I'm not sure how things would pan out in, say, a GW-Sponsored Competition.

    It *is* an interesting and odd situation though: the whole GW hobby is based on fan creativity, but - if you look at the IP Policy - that creativity has to exist within very clearly defined borders (at least in principle)

  7. I'm all for using non-gw models. I'm not a tourney player and I rarely play in stores, so I can use whatever I want and the same goes for my opponent. I've used Pig Iron heads for my penal squads, and I have all sorts of non-gw models for my necromunda and INQ28 games.

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  9. yeah, also - how tall is it?

  10. I agree regarding tournaments. I love looking at the various models out there - some of these lines are so amazing and stunning with their comparative level of detail. It's nice to play with other styles of sculpture also. But, with the limited time I have, I always have to ask myself "Is this figure I am about to invest hours into something I will be able to play with, or will it just be an exercise?

  11. Love the model. Looks very Nurglish.

    I am interested in picking up one of these but I can't get your link to WarPath to work. Can you post the name of that model so I can search for it on their site? Fenryll makes a ton of models and I can't seem to find it.

  12. To all of you: I fixed the link to the Fenryll model. It's name is Putrid Horror. Have fun and let me know if you will do something with it.
    Mike at Santa Cruz Warhammer

  13. Pangloss hit it on the head, I think. Games Workshop has put a lot of effort into making people terrified of touching non-GW models. It's important to remember that they can't stop you. All that legal bulls**t they throw around is just that. Once you've paid for a GW mini you can convert it any way you please, you can turn it into a porn diorama if you like, and GW can't legally do a thing about it other than keep it out of official tournaments. And let's be honest, it's a small minority of GW gamers who will ever play in official tournaments.

  14. What I guess I'm saying is, don't let the bastards intimidate you. :)


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