I was lucky to receive the new Aeldari Guardians kit early and painted a handful as Craftworld Ulthwé. In this post, I share my thoughts about the new kit and provide you with a complete painting guide for my take on the iconic black, bone, and red of Ulthwé the Damned.

Cinematic shot of three Eldar Storm Guardians from Craftworld Ulthwé

The new plastic kit is pretty great and packed with options. We have updated proportions, sharper detail and more dynamic poses. Guardians also switched from 25 mm to 28 mm bases, as you can see in this scale comparison:

There are ten different bodies, six male and four female. Some of them are the same sculpts but mirrored, but it’s hardly noticeable when assembled. We have ten plain helmets, ten helmets with topknots, and 11 bare heads with all kinds of elven hairstyles. Wow. There are enough shuriken catapults and shuriken pistol arms, two flamers, two fusion guns, as well as 5 Aeldari blades, 2 power swords, and 2 chainswords. Rules-wise, the new Codex distinguishes only between generic melee weapons and power swords. We also have a weapon platform with all five heavy weapon options, which can be built as a defensive shield platform for Storm Guardians.

There are also 2 right-handed chainswords, but for some reason no matching left-handed shuriken pistol arms. The pieces in question, numbered 63, are shown as left-handed in the assembly guide, so it seems that this is a design error? You could combine at least one of the right-handed chainswords with the pointing arm though.

Three Aeldari Storm Guardians of Craftworld Ulthwé painted by Stahly

Anyways, the models were a blast to paint, thanks to Games Workshop for sending these. I decided to assemble them as Storm Guardians and paint them as Black Guardians from Craftworld Ulthwé to go along with Eldrad Ulthran I painted a couple of years ago, as I already painted an old Guardian Defender Squad for my Iybraesil collection. And they’ll also look great next to my plastic Howling Banshees. Here is a little tutorial on how I did it:

How to paint Craftworld Ulthwé

Primer: TAP Matt Black Colour Primer (bodies), Corax White (helmets)

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Bases
Basecoat sand: XV-88
Drybrush sand: Wraithbone
Wash: TAP Strong Tone Ink 
Trim: Steel Legion Drab

Crimson topknots
Wash: TAP Speedpaint Slaughter Red (over Corax White primer)
Highlight: Pink Horror
Highlight: VGC Squid Pink

Eye lenses
Basecoat: Wazdakka Red
Highlight: Emperor’s Children
Dot highlight: P3 Carnal Pink

I primed the helmets with Corax White so I could paint the topknots with Speedpaint, then painted the eyes, and the rest of the helmet black, and glued it to the body. Speedpaint can reactivate when you paint over it, but I found that it’s not an issue when just adding a few thin highlights.

Black armour & details
Basecoat: VMC Black
Highlight: VMC Dark Grey
Highlight: Dawnstone

Back view of three Ulthwé Storm Guardians

Grey undersuit & hoses
Basecoat: Dawnstone
Wash: Basilicanum Grey

Wraithbone weapons & bone details
Basecoat: Rakarth Flesh
Recess wash: Wyldwood
Highlight: RMS Polished Bone
Edge Highlight: VMC White

Oxidised fusion gun barrel
Basecoat: VMechaC Steel
Wash: Akhelian Green / Contrast Medium 1:1
Edge highlight: VMC Air Steel
Glaze the end of the barrel with multiple coats of Magos Purple thinned 1:1 with Contrast Medium to build up a gradient.

Bronze details
Basecoat: VGC Brassy Brass
Wash: Seraphim Sepia
Edge highlight: VMC Air Steel

Turquoise gems & ribbons
Basecoat: Stegadon Scale Green
Layer: Sotek Green
Highlight: Temple Guard Blue
Highlight: TAP Royal Cloak
Highlight & dot highlight: VGC Wolf Grey

An in-depth guide for painting gems can be found in this tutorial, you just need to change the colours:

Turquoise ribbons
Basecoat: Stegadon Scale Green
Layer: Sotek Green
Highlight: Temple Guard Blue
Highlight: TAP Royal Cloak

Yellow runes
Attach a white Guardian rune transfer and apply multiple coats of Microsol. Cutaway a corner to make it fit if needed. Then paint over with Yriel Yellow, shade with Troll Slayer Orange, and highlight with Dorn Yellow

Abbreviations: VGC = Vallejo Game Color, VMC = Vallejo Model Color, VMechaC = Vallejo Mecha Color, P3 = Privateer Press Formula P3, TAP = The Army Painter Warpaints, RMS = Reaper Master Series

So far I’ve only painted three Black Guardians but I can’t wait to complete the squad soon. Did you pick up any of the new Aeldari models and what are your thoughts about them? Leave a comment or reaction below.

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