Since they were first teased last year, at Gencon I think, I have been salivating at the prospect of there one day being Yànhuǒ Invincibles in my collection. Whilst it was the HRMC profile that raised eyebrows, being I think the third sighting of the weapon in game, and the first not attached to a TAG, the 2x Missile Launcher variant was bestowed upon us first. Sometimes overlooked due to it’s comparatively low B value, rare indeed are profiles with the potential to cause more than 6 wounds with one short skill. If it ever happens in game I will be sure to make a post.
Visually, it’s a stunning sculpt to behold. I had always wanted a centrepiece unit for the collection and this definitely looks the part. I can only imagine how dangerous Nomad Geckos must feel in your hand. I’m also very happy to start seeing the future Invincible Army Sectorial taking shape.
When I painted the Hac Tao, I felt like I was painting a big model. When I painted the Yànhuǒ, I felt like I was painting a small statue. I primed and painted him all in one piece, but looking back I wish I did the backpack assembly with the weapons as a separate bit. I managed not to snap them off but it was quite fiddly working around the launchers and by the end of it I was so fed up with them that I rushed highlighting on them. Other than that you get some lovely smooth surfaces that even an amateur like me could get a good finish on. That said, for the time being I am too chicken to put the freehand green markings on it. Besides, while the number of models for the Invincible Army is small, I’d rather he look coherent with the Zúyǒng. When they release more Yànhuǒ models, I will hopefully be skilled enough to pull it off.
As I do with almost all models, I painted this one section by section. I find this gets me more excited for the finished model and keeps me motivated. It also skips that pit where the unfinished model looks worse than it did with just the primer.
Being such a big model, it naturally took longer to finish, but I also never got a decent stretch of time with him and basically had to fit in a quick session wherever I could. Not my favourite way to paint for sure but it did mean more WIP shots to share than normal. In the following photo you can see the different stages involved. I followed my usual recipe for orange very closely with the exception that I have started highlighting with bleached bone rather than skull white. You can’t really see a difference in the side by side shot of the two Invincibles earlier in the article, it’s just that I have more Bleached Bone left than Skull white at the moment.
This ought to build the confidence of aspiring painters out there. It’s hard to believe the difference between the crude looking torso and the finished legs is a thin layer of Scrofulous Brown. It truly is the best paint in the world.
Now let’s look at the name. CB did most of the work for me this time, and a good job at that. From the website:
Any who have seen the Yan Huo Regiment in action, unloading their terrifying firepower, know just how fitting their nickname is. The regiment’s name means “fireworks” in Chinese, written with the characters for “smoke” and “fire” (烟火) although the latter also means “rage, anger”.
…Yep, that about covers it.
It’s also pretty easy to pronounce compared to some of the other things I’ve written about. “Yàn” rhymes with “Pan”, as in “Pan-Oceania”. The ‘uǒ’ sound is pronounced as “war”, so just put a ‘h’ in front of “war” without taking anything away and you’ll have “huǒ”.
If you look closely at the characters themselves, you’ll notice some interesting things; The 火/huǒ character for fire is a fairly non abstract (by Chinese Character standards) pictogram of a flame, and that it is also present on the left hand side of the 烟/yàn character for smoke. It turns up in several characters related to fire. You can also see both characters in the logo.