Shadowsun Art

January 11, 2009 ·

January 11, 2009

When someone posted anime inspired Warhammer 40K Tau artwork of Commander Shadowsun on the web, it seems that anime and 40K have gone hand in hand in the wide world of geekdom ever since.

Due to the Tau's obsession with giant robots, it's hardly surprising that the Tau are regularly compared and styled in reference to popular anime with many Tau battlesuits being converted to resemble the Robotech fighters, Mech Warrior battle meks and even more outlandish battlesuit designs, including Gundam and Escaflowne. My own Tau battlesuits are loosely based around many anime mecha designs I have found online.

Commander Shadowsun in all her anime glory.

A poplar belief on the internet is that Games Workshop designed the Tau Empire as a means to break into the Japanese hobby market. To do this, Games Workshop did the opposite of early anime, which was to take a Western concept and feed it back to the West. Instead Games Workshop took the concept of anime inspired technology combined with the designs of feudal japan, then fed it back to the Japanese.

How true all of this is, I can only speculate. But it's clear to see the similarity to the samurai warriors of feudal japan in the Tau Firewarrior and battlesuit miniatures.
In many ways it was the subtle anime styling of the Tau miniatures that caught my attention, having been inspired by old video game favourites like R-Type and Turrican, which both drew their concepts and visual style from anime and manga influences -especially Turrican, which was developed by a bunch of German geeks. But geeks who could produce some awesome tunes.

A quick google search has brought up all kinds of anime inspired 40K artwork, including this dynamic eldar versus tau art by Warp-Zero.

Hopping on the cute anime approach to the Tau that reflects the abundance of Mecha pilot anime shows from Neon Genesis Evangelion to Gundam Seed and Gurren Lagan, this Tau crisis battlesuit art is by Vampiredo.

And last, but not least is a comic style of my own Tau battlesuit commander comissioned by Firebase Magazine and penned by professional illustrator Nachomon.

There's a growing gallery of Warhammer 40K artwork on the web. So if you're seeking inspiration for your army, or you'd like some brighter Warhammer 40K themed backgrounds for your desktop that isn't dark and dreary, do a google search and see what you find!


Anonymous said...
April 12, 2009 at 6:21 AM  

For what it's worth, the first round of Tau advertisements featured an interview in which the GW staff bragged that the leg armor for the fire warrior infantry was inspired by feudal Japanese spear infantry.

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