It's nice to see others using some of the tricks I've posted and then doing their own thing with them. WeeMen posted pics of his WIP Mortis pattern dreadnought that uses what looks like the same approach I used to make mine. We all wonder sometimes if other people are actually using the stuff we post. I know I do. It's definitely cool to see someone build or paint the same thing we did by using our approach and having it work for them.
Giving credit where it's due
With the good comes the bad though. On a different blog, there was a pic of my Deathwing dreadnought and the Author couldn't be bothered to at least say where it came from. That kinda bums me out a bit. I like to think of us being a closer knit community than that where we won't even give each other credit for what we do.
I appreciate the fact that WeeMen took the time to link to my blog so that others can see what he used and give credit for the idea. I think sometimes that people fear it may take readers away from their site if they tell the reader where the original idea came from. I think it's quite the opposite. In fact, I'm almost sure I'm no the first person to come up with the idea to use the Aegis guns and had I seen it done elsewhere, I would have given credit where due myself.
I'm not going to stop reading your article and go running to the site you linked to. I may check it out, but I stopped by to see what you've done and it lends some credibility to your blog when you credit your sources. No man is an island in the 40k blog world.
Deciding on the Mortis Dreadnought
When you field a Mortis pattern dreadnought, you're committed to it. You're willing to go all in on that guy. There's no other way to use him since you've basically said to the world that this guy has one purpose and one purpose only.
I think just about every Marine chapter can get one of these (except Dark Angles). I'm not bitter about that, I've made my peace with it. Blood Angles got a fancy new plastic kit for their long standing Furioso Dreadnought. You've got to hand to them, they're willing to play a dreadnought with only CCWs and make it work. That's hard core.
I should start by saying that you almost have to magnetise or make it so your dreadnought arms are interchangeable in this day and age. I used to just glue mine in place and call it a day, but now that I've taken the time to go the magnet route with other models, I'll never go back. Just knowing I have the options makes me feel better even if I never use them.
A pair of the tiny rare earth magnets will do the trick too. One in the torso where the arm stud would be (once you cut it away) and one in the arm in the hole that is already there. I just use greenstuff to fill in around it. Sometimes the heavier arms may want to rotate downward, but most will stay just as they are when you attach them.
But building one can be tough. There's the Forge World route where you order the appropriate resin arms, but it can cost a good bit of money going that route.
It is worth mentioning that going the Aegis route for autocannon arms like this will result in the arms being slightly different in length. I'm not sure how to solve that without sinking a ton of work into the model and that seems a bit counter productive to using the short-cut route in the first place. The difference is so slight, that even I forget they are not the same length sometimes.
You can do the same thing for dual lascannon arms (you don't need the Aegis terrain piece), but I could see some problems trying to do a dual missile launcher arm set up.
On the battlefield
Using these guys is another challenge all together too. I run two dreadnoughts with one as the Mortis pattern dual autocannon spec. That guy somehow manages to end up in hand to hand almost every time he hits the table. I don't know how it works. He walks out there, everyone sees this guy and they decide it's far better to get into close combat with him than have him shredding their lines with autocannon fire.
Even if I try to keep him out of combat by moving him around and positioning him (read run backwards like a little girl), enemy units still find a way to tie him up.
I think if you're going to field these guys and you've committed to their specialized weapon loadout, they you've got to be willing to do whatever it takes to make them most effective and use them to their potential.
Dual long range guns... shoot like there's no tomorrow (and stay out of combat).
Dual close combat weapons... get into hand to hand on turn one somehow.
Storm Raven Gunship... check. Wait a minute, how did that get in there?
My upcoming Deathwing dreadnoughts
Since I finished that Howling Griffon terminator earlier this week, I'm really excited about getting to work on my new Deathwing dreads. Now that my paint scheme will work (for the most part), I'm dying to see how these guys are gonna to turn out.
My heavy handed weathering should make them look the part for sure.
I can tell you one thing, no matter how I load them out, they'll be used to the best of their abilities... even if it means running away so I can keep shooting each and every turn until the enemy catches up with me.