Showcase: Dreadfleet Swordfysh

Showcase: Dreadfleet Swordfysh

Published 2021-08-13

The Swordfysh is a mighty square-rigged galleon, antique in design but no less lethal for it. Around its hull are swirling designs of waves, razorshells and tritons, and upon its prow is a giant ram in the likeness of a saw-shark's blade. The Swordfysh's every timber and plank is engraved with symbols of the Seafather Manann; its sails fly the crossed tridents of the sea-lords, and its hundred-plus cannons are decorated with carefully placed barnacles and knotted latch-eels.

Miniature Review

The Swordfysh is a pirate ship with a strong fishy theme with crown shells and teeth of sea monsters decorating the hull, seaweed pennants and the addition of a large fin in place of a rudder. Other defining details include Unicorn Whale horns on the masts, a ram made from a massive sea beast, and a Sea Giant skull figurehead with colossal jewels set in its eye sockets.

The iconography on the sails is also great and adds a lot more character to the ship, as well as the shark or other beasts swimming alongside. All put together it's obvious that it's a pirate ship but still fits in with the rest of the fleet.


Painting Techniques


Abaddon Black
Eshin Grey
Skavenblight Dinge
Nuln Oil
Administratum Grey

Sail Icons & Flags

Corax White
Nighthaunt Gloom
Corax White


Runelord Brass
Brass Scorpion
Screaming Bell
Canoptek Alloy


Nuln Oil
Runefang Steel
Necron Compound


Dryad Bark
Rhinox Hide
Nuln Oil
Steel Legion Drab


Morghast Bone
Rakarth Flesh
Seraphim Sepia
Ushabti Bone
Screaming Skull



Kantor Blue
Caledor Sky
Teclis Blue
Ahriman Blue
Biel Tan Green
Drakenhof Nightshade
Ahriman Blue
Lothern Blue
Etherium Blue
Corax White

Ghost Shark

Corax White
Hexwraith Flame
Corax White

Diseased Shark

Corax White
Druchii Violet
Nuln Oil


Using brass rather than gold was definitely the right choice, it drops some consistency with the other ships but creates more of a gloomy pirate feel than bright gold would.

I was also careful with the black sails, as I wanted to add a lot of highlighting, but it's easy to go overboard and end up with a much lighter grey. With the ghostly icons I think it works together well and still looks dark but with a decent amount of highlights to bring out the 3D effect.

The cog was painted in the same way with a freehand fish as the symbol on the sail.