"Vostroya. Smoking chimneys belch toxic clouds of pollutants into the sky and blast furnaces fend off the bitter chill as vast workforces toil unceasingly for their Imperial masters. These smoke clogged edifices are the only places where heat can be found, choking oases of light and warmth amidst the perpetual icey gloom. Few folk stray from the Manufactoria without good reason.
Vostroya was colonised long ago, when mankind ruled the stars. During the Age of Strife and the breakdown of the galactic empire, Vostroya swore their loyalty to the worshipers of the Machine God who ruled over Mars.
Vostroya is governed by the Techtriarchs, a curious committee of Adeptus Mechanicus administrators and traditional Imperial planetary government, who's primary duty is to ensure that the tithes and production quotas placed upon the Vostroyans are always met.
Vostroyas great shame has its roots in an age long past, when the Master of Humanity strode amoung the stars and when His empire was sundered by the Horus Heresy. As the legions of the traitor Warmaster carved a bloody trail to Terra, a pertition from the Emporer requested that Vostroya raise regiments of soldiers to stand in Horus' path. Every worker that toiled in the great smelteries of Vostroya was already engaged in the imense war effort and the Techtriarchs determined that such a sacrifice in manpower would render the production quotas unattainable. They reasoned that the people of Vostroya were better expended making guns than firing them. Reluctantly, the Techtriarchs refused the request.
It is probable that their actions may have gone unremarked, for in the violence of war many records were destroyed. Unfortunately for the people of Vostroya such anonymity would be denied to them. When the Heresy ended and Exactor Tributii Advocates began to count the cost, Vostroyas refusal to raise arms came to light. The Techtriarchs were called to account - a task that the Primarch of the Ultramarines, Roboute Guilliman, oversaw personally. Faced with the ire of the Ultramarines Primarch, the people of Vostroya entreated the Techtriarchs to negotiate a settlement that would allow them to make amends for their percieved disloyalty. Robuote warned that their pennance might never end but even when he stated the grievous terms of Vostroyas reprieve the Techtriarchs willingly accepted.
The proposal that Guilliman and the Techtriarchs agreed was simple, but has shaped Vostroyan society ever since. To repay their dept to the Emporer, the Vostroyans have, for the last ten thousand years, have given up the firstborn son of every family for service into the Imperial Guard. Thus the Firstborn were raised.
Unlike other Imperial Guard regiments that are raised en-masse, the Firstborn are regularly furnished with a steady influx of new recruits from their homeworld. To the Vostroyans it is a matter of pride that the Firstborn have exsisted unbroken since their first creation.
Vostroya continues to labour unceacingly to meet the production quottas of their Mechanicus masters, but their repaiment of their dept to the Emporer comes first. Attached to each of the thousands of manufactoria that blot the planets surface is a sacred workshop, where the weapons and wargear of the Firstborn are produced. Every labourer on Vostroya is expected to give one hour in every ten to the upkeep of the Firstborn. With stoic resolve, the Vostroyans steadfastly sacrifice their time, and the weaponry they produce is of the finest quiality, for the Firstborn are their sons and brothers and their only hope of redemption."
(taken from White Dwarf 317)
With such a rich and interesting background, how can any Guard player not have a Vostroyan army in their collection! A background like this perfectly compliments the great models that GW have produced for these guys: beautifully detailed and extravigant Guardsmen. The only problem is painting them.....
Well, i say 'problem' but its not really, it just takes FOREVER! I spent nearly twelve hours on these guys yesterday, which did finally see this squad completed. The problem is that im not gonna get many days like that in before the tournament in Exeter at the end of June. So for future sqauds i'll just address the problem areas on the old paintjob, rather than strip the models completely. Hopefully this will save me a bit of time in the future.
A few points that you've probably noticed. I haven't painted the eyes, This is because I really can't do it properly! I coped-out and just relied on the wash to do the work for me!! The stocks of the lasguns and special weapons are also missing the 'wood grain' effect that can be seen on the GW paintjobs. I did give it a try, but figured that less-is-more here. As the models are so busy with other colours, having another set of details ruined it a bit for me. As for the bases, well i purposely left the bare for the moment. When all the models are done, i'll embellish the bases a bit. This is mainly to preserve my sanity during this project!
So straight onto the next squad!