[40K] Hive Fleet Níðhöggr – BEETLES!

Someone couldn’t spell…

So, after a spot of soul searching (it was down the back of the sofa, along with half a chocolate orange cookie and the spare key to my bike lock) and deciding which of my now-too-numerous-to-maintain projects was going to go and which was next up for some hobby love, it dawned on me that I still hadn’t picked a colourscheme for the Tyranids.  Determined not to use the stock colours – after all, I’ve gone to the trouble of finding a cool name for a Hive Fleet, might as well put a bit more effort in and make them look different as well – I fired up the Googlematic and spent a profitable half hour looking at pictures of insects.


I’d resolved to avoid red or green if possible – the Skorne are very, very red and the Cryx have turned me off painting another green army for a while – which left me with a few more limitations.  I started clicking on anything not red, not green and vaguely comparable to the Tyranid anatomy in its looks.

This Japanese Beetle was picked out largely for the interestingly woody texture on its wing cases.  Too green, though, so the search was on for something that looked similar but with a different secondary colour.

This colourful fellow had an interesting metallic sheen about him, and made me wonder if I could get away with using that old pot of Citadel Polished Blue, with some inks to bring it away from ‘this is made of metal’ and towards ‘this is made of EMPEROR KNOWS WHAT but it’s scary’.

These chaps are pretty but I’m not sure I have the patience to blend colours and extreme highlight every single model in a Tyranid army.  Definitely edging towards blue and something bright, though…

Hercules beetle.  Scary son of a bitch and looks quite Tyranid already.  Hark stepped in at this point and mentioned she quite liked this one.

Christmas beetles: something similar, but in three colours, and thus more interesting (and qualifying as ‘painted’ under most tournament rules).  Woody brown, purple, and a bronzy green… green and bronze are, of course, my Cryx colours, but I reckon I could trade that out for a sort of turquoisey colour that’s a long way from the lurid greens and metallics of my Cryx force.  As a bonus, it also reminds me of my other favourite fictional bugs:

(No, I can’t actually go five minutes without thinking about WoW.  It’s getting to be a problem.  Might go cold turkey for a bit in the New Year, actually.)

So, I’m torn between a simple, two-tone dark blue with yellow details (classic Tyranid) or the slightly more complex brown/purple/turquoise (I think brown for the carapaces and claws, turquoise for the weapon-symbiotes, and purple for the squashy bits in between).

Working out where all those colours are going to go is a bit awkward, as the Tyranids have things like guns that the Christmas beetles don’t.  It’s probably a good job I have those spare Hormagaunts to mess around with: I think I’m going to ruin a few of those with colour tests.  I’m also going to experiment with gesso undercoating on the Nids – partly because I like to experiment and partly because it’s too damn cold to spray prime anything, and likely to remain so for some months.

3 thoughts on “[40K] Hive Fleet Níðhöggr – BEETLES!

Add yours

  1. >My vote is for 3rd beetle down with the blue with yellow ochre parts. Contrast seems to be the name of the game. Anything opposite pairs or thirds of the painting wheel at max colour saturation. I can talk some BS when I want :-D

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