Dystopian Wars – Painting Prussian Empire's Pflicht Class Scoutship

Dystopian Wars Prussian Airship Box Art
Usually I’m the last guy you want painting tips from. My skills, or lack thereof, will NOT help you to receive a Slayer Sword. If that is your aim, well…I wish you luck and suggest you chat with Natalya Melnik. What I am is a chap that enjoyes painting different models.

This time around I painted a Pflicht Class Scoutship (aka zeppelin) for the Prussian Empire in Dystopian Wars. The rules, models, and accompanying accessories are in my possession. Yet, I have no intention of playing the game. The models won me over with their looks. Seeing pictures of them made me think “those would be fun to paint!”

Awhile back I painted some frigates and cruisers for the Prussian Empire. I decided to use something different with the airship. I had to know how Army Painter’s Quickshade impacted the process.

The airship was painted with the following Games Workshop paints after spray priming the model with Chaos Black (note, please SPRAY prime the model because the models are resin and/or pewter making hand priming almost impossible):


  • Citadel Foundation – Adeptus Battlegrey
  • Citadel Colour – Tin Bitz
  • Citadel Foundation – Calthan Brown

Drybrushed Highlight

  • Citadel Colour – Space Wolves Grey (I wanted to use Codex Grey but ran out)
  • Citadel Colour – Burnished Gold
  • Citadel Foundation – Khemri Brown

The first step in the process was determining my paint scheme. They’re Prussians so that means gray. There are wooden parts on the airship denoting a brown. The final option was the machinery. My previous ships were painted with a Tin Bitz basecoat followed by either a Burnished Gold or Shining Gold highlight. I went with the Burnished Gold.

With that complete, I raced outside to spray prime the model with Chaos Black. A few passes were needed to get every nook and cranny without caking on too much primer.

Once dry, the model needed its base coat of paint applied. I painted the Adeptus Battlegrey first because that is the largest area. Then I did the Tin Bitz. My thinking was it would be easier to paint over a metallic color with a brown than worrying about keeping a metallic paint from going outside the lines onto the brown painted areas. All weapons, the cone of teh ship, engines, exhaust, and control room were painted with this metallic paint. Finally, Calthan Brown was applied onto the horizontal band around the ship, and the rudders.

It didn’t take long for the model to dry. So, I donned my latex gloves for the messiest part. After shaking my can of Quickshade to thoroughly mix the contents, I pried off the lid, and dunked my airship into the concoction. Some people prefer to paint on the Quickshade instead of dipping and shaking off the excess. Proponents of that method feel that too much Quickshade gets onto the model when dunking. I like both methods. This time I chose to dip because I was running out of the Ultrabrushes, by Microbrush International, that I used to apply the Quickshade by brush. If you do use a brush it is important to pick one you don’t care about because the bristles get ruined unless you use a paint thinner afterwards.

Anyway, the excess Quickshade was shaken off and the model sat down on paper towels to dry. It takes a full 24 hours for the model to completely dry, and be sealed in gloss varnish, before anything else can be done. With some help from my wife I removed my gloves, that Quickshade gets EVERYWHERE, and waited.

Almost 18 hours later I realized that I wanted more Quickshade on the model. Using that handy Ultrabrush, mentioned above, I applied more product to the model. Finally, 6 hours passed and the model was workable. Unfortunately, I realized the second application of Quickshade didn’t work as planned. The model was glossier than anticipated and some recesses had a thick layer of varnish. That stuff is as hard as a rock. Time to soldier on.

The final step is to highlight the model. For this I like to drybrush. The gray areas were drybrushed Space Wolves Grey. Originally I wanted to use Codex Grey but I ran out of that paint. The blue tint in Space Wolves Grey is ok because my Prussian ships have a blue tint to their metallic paint. All parts that were painted Tin Bitz were drybrushed with Burnished Gold and all wooden areas were drybrushed with Khemri Brown.

The particularly glossy areas, y’know…the ones with the thick layer of varnish, took several coats of drybrushing for the paint to adhere. All that remains is to spray the model with Testor’s Dullcote to seal it in a coat of matte varnish.

I’m not as happy with the outcome as I would like. I messed up with the second application of Quickshade. The model should NOT have that much gloss varnish on it. Additionally, there was a concern that the Quickshade would not mesh well with metallic paints. That concern was unfounded.

Below you will find pictures of the airship throughout the process. Maybe you’ll be inspired to paint some Dystopian Wars too!

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