Model Showcase – HG Barbatos

What up dogs? So last weekend I was absolutely rammed, going to MCM on Friday, Warhammer World on Saturday, and Guildford on Sunday, I was like some kind of nerd superstar travelling up and down the country, so naturally I didn’t have time to do a post. However, we are fixing that today, with a look at the High Grade Barbatos!

Here he is, the big bad man of the latest Gundam Series, Iron Blooded Orphans (I know, could it be more metal?). The reason we have gone back to the world of High Grades after all the gushing over Master Grades is simply that the graphite technique I used was simply no good on white, and I only realised this after making the MG Sinanju Stein look like utter arse. He is currently in intensive care, and might be able to be saved. In the meantime, I have gone back to HG’s in order to learn how to do things properly, and after watching the first season of IBO, I was simply looking for an excuse to pick up the Barbatos.

After working with MG’s for so long, the number of stickers on this thing is shocking, however I have no problem painting all the details, like the eyes, shoulders, other bits of the shoulder, calves, knees, chest… Jesus it is bad isn’t it?

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At MCM I picked up something called an MS Option set, which essentially are extra accessories, and since I majorly binged on IBO HG’s, we will be seeing quite a bit of them! But in set 1, you get the Smooth Bore Cannon for the Barbatos, which is super rad!

You may have been getting De Ja Vu from this kit, and that is because it is the same inner frame (mostly) as the Astaroth Origin, which I did way back in November (oh my gaaawd), since in the series there are 72 Gundam frames, which are identical, and a big theme of the show is that what sets them apart is the armour placed on top of them, which is why there are 11 million forms of the Barbatos, which we will get to later.

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The first thing I wanted to improve on was the battle damage look. Since at the time of the Barbatos’ first appearance it has spent the last 300 years being a power generator for a paramilitary organisation (getting some serious 40k vibes here), I wasn’t too worried about going overboard, since this Gundam should look straight fucked. So I looked up paint chipping techniques, which involved manually dabbing on paint with a brush. No sponges, no drybrushing, just a detail brush and some patience. I tried to copy the colour for the inner frame, to try and give the impression it is made from the same material. On the darker sections (ie, not white), I applied it over a light grey to look like the primer was exposed in places too.

Next was the shading, which was the main issue. I have seen lots of great methods using enamel paints, but unfortunately I don’t quite feel comfortable doing that yet, so instead I used Tamiya Smoke, watered it down, and used it as a more liberal wash in the recessed areas. Although I doubt this would scale up well to MG’s, I am quietly pleased with how it turned on the Barbatos. For the non white or yellow areas, I did the same thing but using Tamiya’s semi gloss black. And yes, there is no reason for the Citadel Air paints to be there.

The last strut down the cat walk before he puts his clothes on.

I went for a matt top coat this time, and I don’t know how well it comes across in pictures, but I think I almost got it just right this time, and he looks delicious!

There was so much to paint, but it was well worth the effort, since I have fallen head over heels for the Barbatos’ many, many designs, and it just wouldn’t be right to leave anything off!

So yes, the whole forms thing. Basically, throughout the show the Barbatos acquires new parts, either through scavenging them off fallen enemy suits, or actually getting them, you know, legally, with money and stuff. The 1st form (on the left), is how he originally appears, and after nicking a few parts, it gets a total refit, and becomes the 4th form (on the right). This translates into the IBO kits being mostly compatible with each other, so you could recreate the 2nd form by giving it the Graze’s shoulder pads, or the 3rd form with the Schwalbe Graze’s gleipnir (I would be impressed it anyone understood even one of those words). Naturally I do not have either finished yet, so we will have to check back later to see the other forms.

Another staple of IBO is the lack of beam weapons, so everything is just good old fashion lumps of metal moving at unsafe speeds. All of the Barbatos’ gear give me a serious Monster Hunter vibe, and it is so refreshing to see a protagonist’s favoured weapon be a goddamn mace for once!

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So here he is with the last HG I did, the Mega Shiki, and although I was pleased with the Shiki when I did it, jesus does it look terrible compared with the Barbatos, so I guess mission accomplished?

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Just for teh lulz, the MG RX-78-02 Origin for scale, and to get an idea of how different 40 years of Gundam designs look!

And again, the Astaroth Origin, although one of my more successful kits, really doesn’t look so hot next to Big Daddy B, so I think I am onto a winner for now!

Well, that’s it, thanks for joining for what feels like the third generation of my Gundam model kit addiction! What’s that? 8th edition you say? I was in store on Saturday, didn’t get to play it, and I wasn’t really feeling the rules when I read them. Done. Thanks for attending Antagonists Anonymous!

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