Shards of the Space Gods: Alternative C’Tan Miniatures: Part 2

Last October, I did a little post about the C’Tan, the fearsome space gods that once fed upon and enslaved the Necrons in Games Workshop’s Warhammer 40,000. As the lore goes, The War in Heaven drew to a close and the Necrons turned on the war-weary and weakened C’Tan and broke them into shards. Now, ambitious or foolish Necron Lords use these shards as weapons, unleashing these avatars of once-mighty stargods upon their enemies. You know the gist, I’m sure.

As I explained previously, there are a few C’Tan models already available for use in your Necron armies. The first two of these are The Nightbringer and The Deceiver (now known as Shard of the Nightbringer and Shard of the Deceiver, respectively). Both of these are interesting character but the miniatures are quite dated, being released with the 3rd edition Necrons codex back in, what, 2002? Judge for yourself:

Still cool, of course, but a little underwhelming when compared with the rest of the new Necron range. This is what prompted me to have a hunt for good miniatures to use as proxies for the C’Tan in my own Necron army. I actually ended up taking one of my own suggestions and picked up The Star God by Master Crafted Miniatures:

The quality and price were both really enticing and I ended up putting in an order. It arrived pretty quickly, but I’ve yet to do much with the miniature aside from clean off the small amount of flash. I’ve been preoccupied with other projects.

In addition to the two named C’Tan above, there’s also the Void Dragon. We don’t bother talking about him because, frankly, he looks awesome and there’s no need for an alternative mini! There’s also the more generic Transcendent C’Tan. One problem with this mini is that it is only available in the Tesseract Vault/Obelisk kit. If you build the kit as a Tesseract Vault, the Transcendent C’Tan forms part of that model. If you build as an Obelisk, then you are left with the Transcendent C’Tan and can base him up and field him as his own wee unit. The problem here is that if I were to buy this kit, and it’s an expensive kit, then I would probably build it as a Tesseract Vault, and so would not have the model spare to field on its own. Also, take a look at the model…

Transcendent C’Tan

No. Just, no. I mean, okay, it’s not absolutely terrible, but the fact remains that it comes with an expensive kit and, even if I were to buy it, I’d build that kit in such a way that I would not have this chap spare to base individually.

So, with the current miniature situation recapped, and my previous recommendations still available, let’s look at some more alternative C’Tan miniatures! Some of these might be a bit more left field, just because some of the most obvious ones were covered last time.

More Alternative Miniatures

The C’Tan represent a fantastic opportunity to bring very different miniatures into your Necron army. In fact, given how old two of the miniatures are, and how ugly a third is, there are pretty good reasons to pick up a proxy miniature or two. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some potential options. In each case, I’ll share the link, an image, and then my thoughts on the miniature.

I should say that not all miniatures are quite the right height and may need some elaboration on the bases to bring the height up.

Star Reaper by Taro Modelmaker:

This is one that I picked up for myself. Taro Modelmaker is a really good store for Imperial Knights and Necron players. The discerning Necron player can find textured parts to add to classic Necron Warriors and destroyers to get rid of those green acrylic rods and bring them into line with the more modern design. This miniature is a no-brainer as a Nightbringer proxy. It’s clearly intended as just that. The height is good. The Aesthetic is spot-on, and at a mere £18, this is an absolute bargain.

Syll’Esske: The Vengeful Allegiance by Games Workshop:

Okay, so let’s say right away that the lady riding on his back will be going. Those very Slaaneshi bladey, tentril-like things coming out of his back will likewise go. The main body of this miniature is perfect as the base for a number of different conversions. I’ve seen some really cool Deceivers and Transcendent Shards based on him. The weapon will need swapped out for something more suitably Necron, of course. The head is also worth swapping out. I reckon that if you have bought a Void Dragon, this would be a good use for those alternate heads. That would tie it further into the existing C’Tan aesthetic, and remove that Slaanesh-branded head. The skin would look great with a coloured-metallic paint. I’ve seen a really cool one which had mechanical tendrils coming up out of the ground, raising him up and giving him that extra height that he needs to be a solid proxy. The tendrils were from the Maulerfiend/Forgefiend kit and really did look pretty dope with him striding across them as they seemingly rose to support him.

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Vril Medium Ascendant by Battle Yak Miniatures:

This is the first of several 3D-printed options that I’m including in the list. One of the advantages of a 3D-Printed miniature is that it is really easy to adjust the scale of the miniature, allowing you to scale it up or down as required to fit on whatever base you need it to go on. I think you’d be aiming to put it on a 60mm base as it is probably bests fits as a Transcendent C’Tan, themed after The Burnng One, a fiery C’Tan from the lore. I do think that, as many of the miniatures form outside the Necron Range, you might need to add a part of two to make it fit better. You could add an Ankh somewhere, or maybe have tendrils bursting from the ground around her.

Queen of the Void by Celestial Miniatures:

This is a really cool miniature for a couple of reasons. First of all, it’s just damn nice to begin with and, at a glance, it has the beautiful humanoid form that the Deceiver, Nightbringer and Void Dragon all have. At closer look, you can see the more mechanical nature of the mini, with ball joints at the ankles, knees, elbows, and wrists. You also have the slightly disturbing, unhinged mouth. The slashing claw that sticks out as an extra limb also fits the Necron aesthetic, being reminiscent of units like the Flayed Ones and Canoptel Wraiths. I’d probably look to add some Necron terrain to the base but would be minimal on any additions to the miniature itself. I wouldn’t want to ruin the line or take away from how satisfyingly sinister it is. Given the size, I’d probably use it as a Transcendant C’Tan and try to pick some characterful powers.

C’Tan Shard by HPBOTHA:

Another STL, this is a beautiful mini. Again, it has that humanoid aesthetic that the current C’Tan range has, but feminises it. The miniature is really simple, and I love how minimalist the headpiece is. My once concern about printing and using this miniature is how fine that piece of fabric is that holds the whole thing together. I’d be somewhat paranoid about the potential for the relatively brittle resin to snap. The base piece is cool as well, keeping the Necron theme and showing perhaps how and where the shard is stored. We I using this, I’d probably use it as either the Deceiver or a Transcendent C’Tan. It’s a great mini, but lacks that overtly threatening feel that the Nightbringer should have.

The Great Deciever by Ghamak:

A straightforward Deceiver proxy released by Ghamak for you to print at home. Ghamak makes a lot of really cool miniatures and I do quite like this one. The body seems a little doughy, and might lack definition, but I often think that with these minis and am quickly reassured when I see them properly printed off. I like the the designer has started with the core elements of the original miniature – the twisted fabric and the humanoid form – before bringing in some elements that we have seen elsewhere in the Necron range. The backpiece is reminiscent of that of the Void Dragon, and I love the puzzle cubes, like the ones held by the Chronomancer. The alternative heads are pretty interesting too. You have a traditional single-faced head that is similar to the of the original miniature, but there’s also a cool, multi-faced alternative that I think captures the theme of The Deceiver beautifully. Again, I love those cubes…

Dark Age Elementals (assorted) by Dark Age:

Dark Age is a line of beautiful miniatures that I’ve never quite brought myself to purchase. With some of the projects I’m looking to start (more on this in a future post), I might pick up a few at some point. I remember a post a while ago about someone using the Dark Age Ice Elemental as a Trancendent C’Tan and, yeah, this is a lovely mini and I could see it looking pretty good in this role. The thing is, to me, there are better options from within the same product line. The Umbra Shadow Elemental, for example, is a gorgeous miniature that would work well as a Nightbringer or a Transcendent C’Tan. It’s so threatening and sinister, but still ultimately humanoid. It doesn’t have the sculpted beauty of many of the other C’Tan minis, but it has that same quality of not touching the ground, as its legs disintegrate into tendrils of some sort of mist before hitting the floor. As with the Shadow Elemental, the Storm Elemental has that same quality of being mostly humanoid in shape, but blending into elements as it reaches the base. It’s also a bit more bestial in the head than the Shadow Elemental. Again, it could be a Transcendent C’Tan, but I could also see it as a Deceiver just with the wispier, less overtly sinister vibe. Of the three, I’d happily pick up either of the Shadow or Storm Elementals. I don’t think the Ice Elemental works quite as well.

Malign of Alum Tomb and Hateful of Mordain Grave by Mierce Miniatures:

There are bound to be more miniatures from Mierce that fit the bill, but let me share these ones for now. These should be roughly the same size as Morghasts. Ish. Maybe. The more undead looking ones give that Nightbringer look and give some lovely, billowing robes to play with. As usual, I’d suggest maybe swapping out a weapon to make it seem more Necron. The other, more amroured miniatures are quite different to the other available C’Tan but are ultimately humanoid in shape. You have some cool robes that obscure legs and connect with the base. You have some nice spears that can be cut up, their blades being replaced by some from, say, a Lychguard set. Cool minis. Would make nice Transcendent Shards with minimal effort.

Pumpkin Monster by Ragin heroes:

Ok, so this will need a bit of work. Obviously the pumpkin will need to go. I mean, it’s really cool, but it’s more campy Nightmare-Before-Christmas-style horror than C’Tan. I’d also consider getting rid of all the skulls. Skulls are key motif in Warhammer 40,000, but they’re not used as heavily by the Necrons (except, obiously, their skull-like mechanical faceplates) nor the existing C’Tan miniatures. So, ditch the pumpkins, remove the skulls and find something else to use for a head and you’ve got a really cool, dramatic Transcendent Shard or Nightbringer. I just love how dynamic this model is, with the long, sweeping cloak and the big, beautiful, curving claws. Breathtaking. I’ve got some Raging Heroes miniatures myself, and I can attest to the quality of the miniatures. Definitely worth considering if you fancy a project.

Sauron the Necromancer by Games Workshop:

This is one of the weaker suggestion on this list, but I’ve heard about people using it, so let’s include it. I mean, it’s mostly robes with a chestplate and helmet. I might, if using this, try to get a nice ankh piece to put in the chest, hopefully obscuring the symbol of the Eye of Sauron. Yeah, it’s a really simple mini that could, with a minimal amount of work, be a decent Transcendent Shard.

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The Death and The Liar by Doomsday Kitten:

These 3D-printable offerings from Doomsday Kitten are pretty cool. They are clearly direct proxies for the Nightbringer and the Deceiver, and they both feature based that tie them firmly into the Necron Aesthetic. Of the two, I much prefer The Death. He is a beautiful miniature that incorporates a lot of the aesthetic of the original Nightbringer miniature. I love the new scythe, which is very Necron, and the cool, textured hood. I’m not so keen on The Liar. He just doesn’t look finished, if that makes sense. His detail is quite blurry and not well defined. Design-wise, he’s cool, incorporating elements of the original Deceiver miniature, but that stomach and chest, as well as the legs, just are not defined well enough. He head, likewise, just feels like a textureless shape. So, yeah, this a very hit and miss pairing for me, with a great Nightbringer proxy and a lacklustre Deceiver one.

Alarielle the Everqueen by Games Workshop:

Finally, here’s a pricey option from Games Workshop in the form of Alarielle, an £85 miniature. Now, I should quickly say that even if you pick up this miniature, you wouldn’t really use the whole thing. It’s Alarielle herself rather than her beatle pal that you’d use. I include this one, which I could see acting as a Transcendent Shard, because I’ve seen it in some Youtube videos over at Guerrilla Miniature Games:

One of Ash’s guests uses this rebased Alarielle as a Shard of the Deceiver and I actually really like it. You can click here to watch the video and I do suggest that you subscribe to Guerilla Miniature Games as it’s really good. It’s my favourite channel for battle reports by far. On the miniatue, I would say that it doesn’t need much in the way of conversion, but I’d do the same as the example above and swap out the weapon. The Scarabs on the base is actually a good way to base any of these proxies.

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So that’s our second list of C’Tan alternatives and I’m sure that there are yet more out there. if you’ve found some miniatures that I’ve not covered here or in part 1, let me know! This is becoming a bit of an obsession…


  1. I really liked the look of the Dark Age models you showcased here, but unfortunately they seem to be long OOP now, and even Miniatiremarket who hovered up the remaining stock from CMON have none left…


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