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Rainbow Warriors Tactical Squad Showcase and Paint List

This weekend I completed the Rainbow Warriors Tactical Squad for the charity raffle and am happy with how they turned out. And really happy I’m not painting a whole army of them.

Rainbow Warriors Tactical Squad Showcase

For those who haven’t heard anything about the #RainbowWarriorsProject yet, it is a new charity raffle a group of us started up on Twitter. The idea and funds are directed to supporting diversity and inclusion within the gaming community.

Out of a discussion on this topic, the idea to paint the Rainbow Warriors, a Chapter based on the Mayan and Aztec cultures, was born. I jumped in and volunteered a tactical squad; others donated kits, others time to paint.

The finished models are then being sent to Dan (@TheLonelyHavocs) who is painting the bases donated by Dragon Forge and applying decals from Fallout Hobbies. Details are still in the works for purchasing tickets and all that, but check out the signup page at

Building on a Theme

To build upon the Aztec theme, where better to grab bits than from the Lizardmen Seraphon. While most of the bits are over-the-top, I found a couple that worked nicely for the sergeant. I also scavenged my bits bin for other nifty touches.

A shoulder pad with feathers from the Dark Angles, a storm shield from the Space Wolves, a winged shoulder crest from the Blood Angles, and a cool head from the Death Watch. Yeah, I have a bits problem.

Rainbow Warriors Tactical Sergeant

Some cleanup later, and I have a characterful, but not overboard Rainbow Warriors Sarge.

The rest of the squad received a few special bits here and there but kept fairly minimal. I did use more beakie helmets to harken back to their Rogue Trader days.

I also used more bare heads than I would normally do. In part, because painting that rainbow was going to be hard work (it was) and second to emphasize the diversity of the army.

Later, there was a call out for adding an Ancient (the new Company Banner Bearer) to the army. I happened to have an extra banner in my bits box as well as an old metal Master of the Arsenal.

Rainbow Warriors Company Battle Barer

The banner top was built from the Coldone Riders standard. I had lost/used the arm for the banner pole, so I built a new one from brass rod. At the local hobby shop, they had 1/16″ rod which fit perfect, and 1/32″ piano wire that slid into the rod. This gave the rod extra strength as well as provided the pin for holding the Lizardmen bit.

The Ancient is off to Chris, who also painted the Librarian, to paint up.

Rainbow Warriors Tactical Squad Showcase

I listed out the paint recipe created by Scott (@ryglore) but painting the Rainbow Warriors tactical squad was fairly straight forward – well other than the rainbow.

Completed Rainbow Warriors Tac Squad

While they do look a bit naked without finished bases and decals, the bases from Dragon Forge look sweet. Really looking forward to Dan finishing them off.

Rainbow Warriors Tactical Squad top

Since the Sergeant didn’t have a helmet to paint, I added some color to his back banner and feathers. I looked up pictures of South American parrots like the Scarlet Macaw, who have brilliantly colorful feathers.

Rainbow Warriors Sergeant with Power Weapon and Storm Shield

To give the back banner a painted-stone look, I dry brushed Steel Legion Drab and then Ratharth Flesh over the colors.

Paint List

Here is the paint list that Scott put together, so we create a consistent look across the diverse set of painters on the project. Since I had switch away from Games Workshop paints awhile ago, there were a few I needed to pick up, but it helped that we could all talk the same colors.

  • Blue: Kantor Blue -> Nuln Oil -> Caldor Sky -> Lothern Blue
  • Chest Crest: Ratharth Flesh -> Seraphim Sepia -> Ushabti Bone -> White Scar
  • Shoulder Rims: Steel Legion Drab -> Agrax Earthshade -> Rakarth Flesh
  • Eye Lenses: Caliban Green -> Warpstone Glow -> Moot Green
  • Rainbow:
    • Caliban Green -> Warpstone Glow
    • Yriel Yellow -> Flash Gitz Yellow
    • Khorne Red -> Evil Sunz Scarlet
    • Ushabti Bone
    • Order: green | yellow | red | bone | red | yellow | green

The rainbow on the helmets was a time-consuming experiment in patience. I started by painting the white stripe down the middle to center the stripe. I then painted each band as neatly as possible before going back with the highlight colors. It’s not often I break out the 00 size brush, but this called for it.

Get Involved

As I mentioned above, this army will be up for raffle, with the proceeds supporting diversity inclusion within the gaming and hobby community. With the talented pool of hobbyists working on the project, this will be something you will want to keep an eye on.

You can do just that by signing up at the temporary landing page: It’s a rough page right now, but we will be adding pictures of the finished units and how you can participate over time. Signing up for the email updates will keep you informed.