Star Wars: Imperial Assault – Han Solo Painting Guide

Posted: August 11, 2015 in Fantasy & Sci-Fi, Films, Gaming, Painting

I’m keen to cover some more fantasy and sci-fi stuff in Suppressing Fire, so when this little chap arrived in the post:


I decided to set myself a little challenge, and see if I could get him painted up to gaming table standard in a single evening.  From opening the blister, to the finished item took me four and a half-hours.  So here’s how I did it:

The box for this Han Solo Ally Pack for Star Wars: Imperial Assault contains the figure (which’ll replace the rather lacklustre “pog” in the main game) as well as another – yet, oddly identical – deployment card for use in both the campaign and skirmish modes.  Seems weird to just reprint the same card, when a subtle variation would have been nice.  There’s also a rulesheet and cards for a new Campaign mission centred around Han, as well as two Skirmish missions, set around gambling gone bad in a seedy Cantina.  You also get a reward card for the campaign (Han’s quick-draw holster), and six original Command cards for use in Skirmishes.


So, here’s everyone’s favourite Corellian straight out of the box.  The first thing to do is to run a file round and clear up the mould lines.  These aren’t too bad.  There’s a slightly difficult one on the right ear, but otherwise they came off fairly easily.  After that, it’s a quick scrub in water and washing up liquid, dry off on kitchen towel, and then spray undercoat.  For this I used Citadel Skull White, mostly through force of habit, because it’s what I’ve always used.  I generally don’t like using a black undercoat, as my eyes struggle with the detail when it’s too dark.  If you’d prefer to undercoat black, go for it.

After that, Han looks like this:

IMG_2655[1]The scrub in the sink and the white undercoat really helps to bring the detail out when painting, and also helps the paint to adhere to the model easier.  After this, the first things I painted were the skin tones (Citadel Kislev Flesh) and the hair (Balor Brown):


The skin tone’s brought out the facial features nicely. The hair is a little more Dash-Rendar-Red than Han-Solo-Brown at the moment, but that’s because the ink wash at the end will darken it significantly.

Next, I used a generic Revell blue for the trousers, and a Revell light-grey/off-white for the shirt.  I don’t generally like painting pure white or pure black unless I have to, as it’s very easy to lose detail.  A grubby grey is good for a Corellian smuggler anyway.  Again, the trousers are a lot brighter than Han’s are in the movies, but I want to go bright, because the ink-wash at the end will make everything a lot darker.


The next steps were the body-warmer/jacket, for which I used Citadel Mechanicus Grey (again, a little lighter than the movie, but the ink wash will darken this), and Citadel Rhinox Hide on the holster and belt.

IMG_2664[1]Next, I did the boots, and the DL-44 blaster in straight Revell Black, but you could use any brand black.  Black is black is black.

As I said earlier, I don’t like painting pure black unless I have to, but here I’ll be highlighting the blaster with some chrome later and…well…there’s no getting away from the fact the boots are simply black:


Now, he’s starting to look like Han Solo!  I decided to add a little detail, as while he looks okay at the moment, it’s the detail that really allows a figure to “pop” and look good.  And detailing is rarely as hard as you think it’s going to be. For the detailing here, I picked out the buckles and ammo pouches on the belt in Citadel Runefang Silver, drybrushed the blaster with Citadel Leadbelcher, and added a Corellian Bloodstripe down the trousers in Revell Red.

Drybrushing is a really simple technique to get some great highlighting results, and you should be able to easily find a tutorial online if you’re not already sure how to do it.

Once the detailing work was done, he looks liked this:


The good news is that we’re nearly there.  Now, for the ink wash I use Citadel Agrax Earthshade, and I use it liberally.  You want to get the ink into the crevices and shaded areas, which will highlight a lot of the detail on the figure.  After applying the Agrax Earthshade, my Han looked like this:

(Before and After Agrax Earthshade Ink Wash)

                            (Before and After Agrax Earthshade Ink Wash)

As you can see, the Agrax really gives the figure depth and detail with a minimum of effort.  After this dried, I added a second ink wash to the trousers and the blaster, but this time using a black ink (Citadel Nuln Oil).  This darkened the trousers even closer to the film version, and also prevented the blaster from looking too “shiny”.  We want Wars and not Trek!

Finally, I did a solid black base.  I prefer to just use solid black for Imperial Assault, but you can do whatever you like.  It really is personal taste.


So there, it is, from blister to a game standard paint job in 4.5 hours, including drying time.  Let me know if you’d be interested in seeing me do any of the other figures as well.


  1. Ed Coss says:

    Any and all! Well done!

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