White Scars Xiphons

I purchased these flyers almost exclusively for use in epic. So when Legions Imperialis was announced painting White Scars Xiphons was just the start of a ‘far’ bigger project.

Just like the Imperial Fists legion strike fighters, the White Scars Xiphons are a small part of what I hope to grow into a significant Siege of Terra themed force once the game launches. At the time of writing, I don’t know how many aircraft compose a detachment. Historically in second edition Epic flyers (other than the really big stuff) came in wings of two, so I’m hoping the same will be true in Legions Imperialis and these can be formed into two formations. If not then I can always adjust.

Painting White Scars white

Let’s get one thing out of the way immediately; my White Scars palette isn’t white, it’s blue-grey. I almost never paint anything white as a final colour because there is no way to highlight it and the miniature will lack contrast. This is especially true with anything as small scale as Legions Imperialis, in ‘epic’ scale I really have to exaggerate colour contrast to make any of the models look anything like miniature versions of their larger scale counterparts.

So with that in mind this is my process for the Xiphon’s and in fact all of my fifth legion flyers. I prime black, then base coat Blue Horror mixed with Ulthuan Grey over entire miniature. The two stage highlight is the base mix with more Ulthuan Grey and then finally a top highlight of Tamiya flat white. Details and edges I pick out with a brush in pure white at this stage.

I then gloss varnish at this stage to protect the paint from the masking that comes next.

Masking the red

For the iconic fifth legions markings, I masked out the shapes in tape and airbrushed Game Colour Scarlett Red. To create contrast I highlighted in Mephiston Red and finally used Drakenhof Nightshade for the shadows.

More Xiphons?

I have plans for at least one further White Scars Xiphon; an ‘ace’, but I’m going to leave that until after the games launch when I know more about the army formations and rules. Instead, I’ve painted formations of the larger Fire Raptor and Storm Eagle as I’m almost certain some gunship support and aerial transports are going to come in handy.