So now we continue our series of interviews with the people who took part in the first Dreadnought. This week we have Dan, a great hobbyist who has always been a pleasure to play a good game of Warhammer with. Dan won the award for the Best Themed army with an incredibly converted Eldar mixed force.
Tom: So Dan you were at the first Dreadnought, what were you thoughts on the event?
Dan: First of all, thanks for picking me as one of your victims, I mean- interviewees.
This was my first time at a singles tournament of any sort (I’d previously only done a doubles tournament up at Warhammer World 7 or 8 years ago) and I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed it! I’ve always had this idea that tournaments only had ultra-competitive people who would wrangle every last interpretation of the rules to their advantage in the most ridiculous combo-forces you could imagine in order to win over having fun but, everyone at the Dreadnought was super-friendly and enthusiastic about the hobby and games (even as our collective stamina began to drain at points!). As this was the inaugural Dreadnought event it was also nice to see it wasn’t just our usual group of friends as I didn’t know half the people there. Getting to meet new people and share in this wonderful hobby together was an unexpected bonus.
Tom: That’s great to hear Dan, meeting a range of new hobbyists is such an important part of this hobby for so many people, and the Stockport Dreadnought looks to be putting a whole range of different people together, it’s certainly a growing event. No as mentioned you won the award for the Best theme for your army over the weekend, so perhaps you could tell us more about how you wrote that Army and how it came together?
Dan: As you might of guessed, I am not the most tactically-minded of players (I much prefer Narrative play to any other) so I decided to aim for theme over any other considerations (I was overjoyed to walk away from the weekend with a certificate for Best Themed Army!). I’ve been a Craftworld Eldar player since I began the hobby almost 20 years ago but the arrival of the Ynnari faction in last year’s Gathering Storm really got my creative juices flowing so I decided I wanted to take an army of them to the Dreadnought and, more than that, include all the various Aeldari factions in it. My little narrative for The Phoenix Host was to have Yvraine as my Warlord in my starting 500 points (along with her little force she escaped with from Commorragh) and have her gather one of the other factions at each points leap as she converted them to the cause. This led to Craftworld then Drukhari, a converted Exodite force (with The Visarch joining the fray) and squeezing in a Solitaire to represent Harlequins along with the Yncarne in the final 500 points. The astute amongst you will notice I didn’t manage the Corsairs but then points didn’t allow it, unfortunately!
Tom: Now I know this force has been an ongoing project for you, especially since the “Fracture of Biel Tan” came out, and with so many different Eldar factions banding together, how did you find the challenge of getting the force painted?
Dan: In an ever-increasing panic! I’d given myself plenty of time knowing that I’d have to paint the vast majority of this 64-model army (and convert up a number of units as well) but then I had the misfortune to get a seasonal job in a chocolate factory (BOO HOO Dan BOO HOO)! This led to me painting everything in the weekends and evenings of just over a month (and finishing one model off on the very morning of the competition). At least I learned to organise my time better and it did force me to pick up batch-painting as quickly as I could.
Tom: Well given your limited timeframe in which to get it finished were there any particular miniatures you struggled to get finish, but if there was a miniature you enjoyed painting least that must mean there is one that you enjoyed painting most, what was that?
Dan: This is a bit of a tricky one. I don’t think there was any model I didn’t like painting, it was more that I didn’t have enough time to enjoy every unit as I wanted to. Starting with the positive, it’s a close call between the Exodite Dragon-rider conversion I did to stand in as a Crimson Hunter (I based it on the Age of Sigmar Dragonlord) but I think I’ll have to go with The Visarch. I’ve only really got into painting my models properly this last year (before that I always said they’d been attacked by an intergalactic paint-stripper) so when the Triumvirate of Ynnead came out, he was my least favourite model to look at but painting him was an absolute joy and made me appreciate there are some models that are just fun to paint. My least enjoyable unit is probably the Drukhari Hellions. The models are lovely but they came at the tail end of my painting time (I think 3 days before the event) and I was struggling to come up with a paint scheme for them that fitted in with all the rest of my army but still felt Drukhari (it was also one of my first times painting large sections of skin).
Tom: So now that you are clearly a Dreadnought veteran, is it safe to assume you will be joining us at the Stockport Dreadnought?
Dan: Of Course! The first one was such a blast and it’s going to be great to be in a new venue where we can have even more people joining in. Although I’d love to start a new themed force for it, I don’t think I have the time to do so. However, this has made me double down on tidying up my existing Craftworld Aeldari army and, what with their new codex having so many builds and tricks to play around with, you may see Craftworld Mihr-Hiim showing the upstart mon-keigh how it’s done!
Dan seems just as keen for the next dreadnought as Matt did and already from seeing the current list of attendees we can tell this is going to be a spicy event!