The Chapters of Legend Part 1
For some of you, the Chapters of Legend may be very well known to you, but for others
these chapters may just be common names in the background of Warhammer 40k. For the later group wishing to learn more, this
is an article to explain the key characteristics of the various Chapters of Legend, and shortly discuss their tabletop differences.
I hope those of you who are not very familiar with these chapters find this useful, and perhaps others can learn something
The First Founding Chapters
Legion #: XIII (13)
Rules: Codex Chapter
Battlecry: “Courage and Honor!”
13th Legion of the Adeptus Astartes in the days of the Great Crusade and the Horus Heresy, led by the Primarch Roboute Guilliman
and based in the great fortress of Hera on Macragge the Ultramarines have a history going back more than 10,000 years. It
was Guilliman who wrote the Codex Astartes, the holy tome of the Emperor’s Space Marines for the last ten thousand years
of the Imperium following the Horus Heresy. The Ultramarines are the epitome of the codex faring chapter. Yet that does not
mean they are without character. It was the Ultramarines that blunted and then defeated the Tyranids in the Battle for Macragge
that saw the entirety of the 1st Company fall fighting off Hive Fleet Behemoth. In the few hundred years since that war the
Ultramarines have been at the forefront of every major conflict with the Tyranids. The Ultramarines are also fairly unique
in that they control and protect the sector known as Ultramar, a system controlled by Roboute Guilliman before he was even
found by the Emperor and still in the Ultramarines hands today. The sons of Guilliman form a bulwark of the Imperium against
the threats it faces in the eastern fringe. Aliens such as the Tau, Orks and Tyranids all seeking to take over or eradicate
Imperial worlds in the east of the galaxy face the wrath of the Sons of Guilliman, the Ultramarines.
Patriarchs of Ulixis, White Consuls, Black Consuls, Libators, Inceptors, Praetors of Orpheus, Genesis Chapter.
The Ultramarines also possess a number of Special Characters and units for use in the game of 40k or
as characters in the background alone.
Chapter Master Marneus Calgar
The current Lord of Macragge, the Chapter Master
Marneus Calgar goes to battle in an ancient and ornate suit of Tactical Dreadnaught Armor and wielding the Gauntlets of Ultramar,
an ancient relic of the chapter, twin power fists of masterful design with built in bolters. A dedicated and driven warrior,
Calgar has led his chapter through several near disasters and defended the Imperium against impossible odds. Calgar’s
rules are not what many players would wish, the Initiative 1 from the power fists causing problems, but with careful use Calgar
can make an impressive impact on the field.
Chief Librarian Tigurius
Arguably the most powerful Librarian in the
Imperium, Tigurius possesses psychic abilities of impressive power. Serving the chapter as one of its chief officers Tigurius
has guided the Chapter in many victories over the Orks of Charadon. Furthermore Tigurius was an important factor in the Ultramarines
many victories over the Tyranids, his ability to predict the Aliens movements and tactics suggesting that he has been able
to tap into the Hive Mind directly, a feat that would kill any but the very strongest psykers. On the tabletop Tigurius is
a ridiculously strong psyker, able to pick his powers before the start of the game, and possessing double the usual range
of his abilities, Tigurius is a psychic artillery above and beyond that most other armies possess.
Master of Sanctity
One of the few survivors of the First Company from the Battle for Macragge, Cassius is zealous in his mission to
eradicate the xeno scum. It was Cassius who came up with the concept for the Tyranid Hunter Veterans that make up much of
the Ultramarines rebuilt 1st Company, a change from the standard practices of the Codex Astartes. On the tabletop Cassius
is not much different from a standard Chaplain, he helps ensure the morale of nearby units and any squad he leads is instilled
with his hatred of the Tyranids, however how useful those abilities are depends on the player and his or her enemy.
Uriel Ventris of the 4th Company
Ventris is the hero of the Ultramarines series written by Graham McNeill. However many
fans do not hold the books, or their characters very highly. It certainly seems that the books are not well written and their
plot could use a great deal of work. Ventris comes off as a random, spontaneous character, who makes a poor example of the
Captain Ardias of the 3rd Company
Ardias is one of the heroes of the game and book Firewarrior. Ardias
led the Ultramarines 3rd Company in facing, and defeating a horde of Chaos Marines and daemons working in conjunction with
the Tau. Working with the Tau champion Shas’la Kais, Ardias puts on a very similar image as Uriel Ventris, working outside
the box of the codex Astartes Ardias manages to obtain victory in a hopeless situation.
Galatan was the bearer of the Ultramarines standard during the Corinth Crusade, the most recent invasion of the Ork empire
of Charadon to blunt the Ork numbers and prevent another devastating Waaagh. During the breach of the walls of Corinth Ancient
Galatan fell in battle, but even in death he did not allow the Chapter’s Banner to fall, mortally wounded or not he
carried the standard through the fighting and ensured the victory of the Ultramarines.
Fully half of the Ultramarines current first company consists of veterans who earned their status through
the many wars against the Tyranids. This naturally led to increased experience and knowledge of battling the Tyranids than
the codex Astartes allows for in a first company veteran. Promoted and incepted by Cassius, the Tyranid Hunters were eventually
sanctioned by Chapter Master Marneus Calgar after several days of meditation. Expanding on an area not covered by the Codex
Astartes, the Tyrannic War Veterans came into being and are now a common image of the Ultramarines. Possessing unique equipment,
different than the rest of the Chapters marines possess and with additional capabilities in fighting the Tyranid menace, the
Tyrannic War Veterans are skilled at dispatching Tyranids of all shapes and sizes.
Ultramarines Honour Guard
Ultramarines Honour Guard is a specialized command squad, comprised of several Honour Guards, a Chapter Ancient bearing the
Chapters standard, and a Chapter Champion. The Honour Guard accompanies notable officers and the Lord of Macragge into battle.
The Champion wears ancient artificer armor and wields the Honour Blades, a matched poniard and broadsword. The Ancient bears
the Chapter Banner, and wears artificer power armor. The Honour Guards are specially selected Veterans of the Chapter who
each wield an Axe of Ultramar, weapons forged from rare ores by the Chapters Artificers and are a powerful symbol of honor
to the Ultramarines. The Honour Guard is a special unit to the Ultramarines but its cost is not always made up by its abilities.
Rarely is the Honour Guard fielded in a game of 40k for its lack of efficiency, but forming the Guard of Marneus Calgar in
mega battles and other events the unit can be a very potent force.
The Ultramarines wear
a regal blue armor with trim varying on the company, the symbol is a white U, veterans wear white helmets.
The Ultramarines (or SMurfs as derogatorily known) are the standard Codex Chapter, they have a simple
paint scheme and a few special rules that can be fun to use for those vets tired of standard codes units all the time. However
they also tend to be a chapter largely played by new players with little experience and veterans tend to view the chapter
with contempt, the recent Ultramarines series of books has not improved the chapter’s reputation either. However their
background is still interesting and heralds all the way back to the Horus Heresy, they can be a fun and fluffy army to play
for even the most experienced gamer.
Legion #: IX (9)
Rules: Supplement Codex
Battlecry: “By the Blood of Sanguinius! or For
the Emperor and Sanguinius! Death! DEATH!”
The Sons of Sanguinius, the 9th Legion of
the Adeptus Astartes. The Blood Angels possess an honored history dating back to the founding of the Imperium. Along with
the seventeen other Legions of the Adeptus Astartes, the Blood Angels helped forge the Imperium from the darkness of the galaxy.
Yet their efforts almost came to naught when Horus betrayed his brothers and the Emperor. Defending the Emperor’s palace
on Terra beside the White Scars and the Imperial Fists the Blood Angels helped protect that which they had helped create.
Sanguinius soaring above the roaring battlefield dueled dozens of powerful daemons, suffering terrible injuries yet prevailing.
Sanguinius took part in the teleport assault on Horus’ flagship and was the first to meet the traitor Primarch and Warmaster
in his sanctum. It is said that Sanguinius possessed farsight, if those legends are true he must surely have known he was
doomed. Nevertheless fighting through his injuries, outmatched by the fresh, rested, and chaos empowered Horus, Sanguinius
fought. Yet the duel came to its inevitable outcome. Broken by the Warmaster, Sanguinius died, yet in his death his legion
was imprinted by his psychic death cry, the very gene seed of the legion forever carrying the moment. Enraged beyond belief
by the death of their Primarch the Blood Angels attacked with an unbelievable ferocity and strength, beating back the forces
of the traitor legions in a vicious struggle. To this day the Blood Angels on the eve of battle meditate, overcome by visions
of their Primarchs final battle, those who cannot overcome the visions are taken by the Chaplains and formed into the Death
Company, a cadre of black armored berserkers whose only goal is to seek death in battle and to crush the enemies of the Emperor.
The Blood Angels call the barren and harsh world of Baal their home, led by Chapter Master Dante, a veteran of over a thousand
years of war, the Chapter continues to fight the enemies of the God Emperor with a fervor matched by few other Astartes.
Angels Encarmine, Angels Sanguine, Angels Vermilion, Blood Drinkers, Fleshtearers.
Chapter Master Dante
At over 1100 years old Dante is the oldest living marine in the Imperium that
does not live on in the sarcophagus of the sacred Dreadnaughts. Wearing a Death Mask of Sanguinius and bearing wargear both
ancient and terrible in its power, Dante is an image of the Emperor’s divine wrath, descending on the enemies of the
Imperium with 10,000 years of hatred, carving down Heretics, Aliens and Traitors with equal fervour Dante leads from the front
of the battle as is the way of the Astartes and the Blood Angels, swooping into the fight on twin jets of flame from his jump
pack and leading his battle brothers in the eradication of his foes. On the tabletop Dante caries a number of powerful relics
and abilities, protected by an Iron Halo and a masterful suite of artificer armor, Dante wields a master crafted power axe
and an Inferno Pistol, a weapon utilizing technologies not largely lost to the Imperium, a melta gun drastically downsized
but no less powerful. Dante strikes fear into the hearts of his enemies with the Death mask of Sanguinius, driving his foes
before him. Dante is a powerful character on the tabletop but is priced accordingly and he is not invulnerable. Nevertheless
the Chapter Master leading his honour guard is fully capable of turning the tide at a critical juncture.
Sanguinary High Priest
The apothecaries of the Blood Angels forever seek to cure the Black Rage that haunts the chapter
through the ages. Corbulo bears the Red Grail, an ancient relic of the chapter filled with the Blood of Sanguinius himself.
As an Apothecary and an inspirational character Corbulo can aid the Blood Angels forces in battle greatly, but not possessing
an invulnerable save or a power weapon of any kind, his individual potency is not assured.
Chaplain Lemartes, Guardian
of the Lost
Lemartes is a famous Chaplain of the Blood Angels, leading the Death Company into the heat of battle with strength
and skill beyond that of a normal chaplain. His abilities help ensure the Blood Angels units are more reliable and less likely
to go charging off, if that is even a problem for the Blood Angels player and Lemartes may also be accompanied by between
four and six Death Company along with any marines from the rest of the army that succumb to the Black Rage. Lemartes has some
nice abilities and is fairly cheap compared to the new Chaplains in the Codex Space Marines.
Chief Librarian Mephiston,
Lord of Death
Mephiston is one of the few Sons of Sanguinius in ten thousand years to have overcome the Black Rage and
in doing so he emerged as the powerful Librarian now known as the Lord of Death. Mephiston is an icon character of the Blood
Angels in their background and makes an appearance in the book Deus Sanguinius. Mephiston nevertheless possesses no invulnerable
save, despite his immense offensive abilities, he is therefore vulnerable to being quickly eliminated. Nevertheless Mephiston
is a characterful individual for a Blood Angels army.
Brother Captain Tycho, of the Blood Angels 3rd Company
fell in the Campaign the Third War for Armageddon, he does however have some of the best fluff Games Workshop has ever produced
and carries some rather unique wargear that is normally not seen on marine characters. Tycho has no form of power weapon but
he carries some interesting gear and is not extremely overpriced for his equipment. Nevertheless the efficiency of Tycho’s
rules on the tabletop is up to individual preference.
Moriar the Chosen, Death Company Dreadnaught
Moriar is a
Dreadnaught who is also a member of the Death Company, having succumbed to the Black Rage once entombed in the sarcophagus
of a Furioso Dreadnaught. His cost is not terrible and he can have as many as 8 attacks with his pair of dreadnaught close
combat weapons and also wields both a heavy flamer and melta gun. Well armed and skilled Moriar can gun and flame down enemies
as well as tear them apart ruthlessly in close combat, impervious to all but the strongest attacks due to his armored shell.
Sanguinary High Priest
Sanguinary Priests are the Apothecaries of the Blood Angels,
they possess some interesting special abilities and of course gain the equipment carried by normal apothecaries. Helping to
keep their battle brothers alive and guide them through battle.
Blood Angels Honour Guard
The Blood Angels Honour
Guard is special in that the Blood Angels may take Jump Packs, roaring into battle on jets of flame to bring the wrath of
the Emperor upon their enemies. The honour guard is in essence the Blood Angels command squad and has similar capabilities
The Death Company is randomly selected before the battle, drawing marines from all
the other squads of the Chapter and joining any Chaplains the army has taken. The Death Company form a special unit that is
in essence a shock squad of blood maddened berserkers. Roaring into battle on jump packs and accompanying the Chaplain the
Death Company is fearsome in close combat and many an enemy has fallen before their blades and guns.
Veteran Assault Squad
The Blood Angels may take Veteran Assault Squads unlike normal marine armies, the veterans and have
a few extra equipment options that normal marine assault squads lack though their additional cost should be considered.
A special model of Dreadnaught used by the Blood Angels, the Furioso is equipped with a pair of Dreadnaught
Close Combat weapons over the normal armaments of other chapters Dreadnaughts.
The Baal predator
sports a turret equipped with twin assault cannons and sponsons mounting heavy bolters or heavy flamers. Spewing a storm of
fire and bullets upon the enemy the Baal is an excellent fire support tank and still possesses some anti armor capability.
The Blood Angels wear a bright blood red color on their armor, veterans wear yellow helmets
and honor guard golden helmets, veterans also wear black shoulder pads and the chapter symbol is a black blood drop between
With new rules already being released the Blood Angels are in the
middle of their newest stage of growth. Very offence oriented and with a well known background and reputation the Chapter
is about as close as you can get to the khornate wave of death as Loyalists can go. With stubborn and potent Death Company
and some interesting and powerful special units and characters the Blood Angels certainly pack one heck of a punch. A fun
army whether one chooses to cheese them or not.
#: VI (6)
Rules: Supplement Codex
Battlecry: Varies between companiesBackground
The Space Wolves,
the Sons of Leman Russ and the VI Legion of the Adeptus Astartes, the Space Wolves make their home in the fortress known as
the Fang on the icy deathworld of Fenris. The Space Wolves are widely known as not following the tenets of the Codex Astartes,
instead organized into packs of marines fighting together as long time brothers and led by ferocious and powerful leaders
known as Wolf Lords. The Sons of Fenris fight in the same way as their ancestors and in the same way as their Primarch Leman
Russ, favoring close combat with axe and sword over gunfights the Space Wolves are renowned as extraordinary warriors. Led
by the Great Wolf Logan Grimnar the Space Wolves hold to the honour of their chapter and their legion before them, facing
the enemies of the Emperor with all the fervor of Russ himself. The Space Wolves are seen as feral and savage by other institutions
of the Imperium, however the Space Wolves are honorable warriors. Their ships and fortresses are not manned by slave laborers,
servitors and criminals as are many of the Imperial Navy ships and Imperial Guard regiments, or even other chapters of Space
Marines. Instead the Space Wolves maintain a significant number of Chapter Serfs, men trained extensively and mostly made
up of those warriors who could not be made into Space Marines but who passed through the trials nevertheless. Others are the
descendents of aspirants who were incompatible with the gene-seed, raised to serve the chapter from birth. Armed and well
trained, the troops who crew the Space Wolves ships and work in the Fang are fighters to match the best of the Imperial Guard
and Navy, defending the Space Wolves ships while the Sons of Fenris board the enemy ships and tear them apart from the inside
out. Clean and well maintained the Space Wolves fleet strikes an odd contrast with the image of the feral and uncivilized
savages that the Wolves of Russ cultivate. Successor Chapters
Wolf Brothers.Notable Characters
The Great Wolf Logan Grimnar
The current Chapter Master of the Space Wolves, Logan Grimnar holds a grudge with
the Inquisition and fiercely upholds the independence and honor of his chapter. Grimnar is probably the most headstrong of
the Chapter Masters and it shows in the background of the Space Wolves. Following the events on Armageddon Logan Grimnar is
openly hostile against many of the agents of the Emperor’s most holy Inquisition. Wearing a powerful suit of Terminator
Armor and wielding Morkai, an ancient Frost weapon, unique to the Space Wolves. Logan Grimnar’s rules are respectably
powerful and he makes a characterful addition to a Space Wolf army, leading his marines against the enemies of the Emperor,
and especially the hated Thousand Sons.
Wolf Lord Ragnar Blackmane
Ragnar is the youngest Wolf Lord in the Space
Wolves history, wielding a unique Frost Blade, he served in the Wolf Blade, the honor guard of the Navigator House Belisarius
whom the Space Wolves have an ancient alliance with. Ragnars history is outlined in no less than five novels in the Black
Library. Ragnar’s rules are also fairly powerful and decently balanced. Known for his curiosity and intellect above
and beyond that of the average Space Wolf, Ragnar is known for displaying a cunning unusual for a son of fenris which marks
him out as an effective and extremely deadly commander.
Wolf Priest Ulrik the Slayer
An ancient member of the chapter,
Ulrik chose Ragnar as an initiate into the chapter and tutored him in his growth as a Space Marine of the Space Wolves chapter.
A skilled warrior and wise Ulrik has a rather old but still quite cool model and not terrible rules either.
the Fell Handed
An outdated character of the Space Wolves rules wise, Bjorn is the oldest Dreadnaught in the Imperium,
a Wolf Lord from the time of the Horus Heresy Bjorn remembers the days when the Emperor walked the stars and the Primarchs
led the great crusade.Special Units
The wolf priests fill the dual role of Chaplain
and Apothecary in the Space Wolves, able to take medicinal herbs that function in the same way as an Apothecary and also bearing
the arms and armor of Chaplains the Wolf Priest is a formidable opponent and a capable battlefield leader.
Space Wolves form of Librarians the Rune Priests eschew the standard of sticking cables and stuff in their heads and thus
do not have psychic hoods, however they do have decent psychic powers and can be extremely effective on the battlefield. The
Rune Priests are also irreplaceable in the elite and mysterious 13th Company forces.
Space Wolf Venerable Dreadnaught
Space Wolves Venerable Dreadnaughts are more commanders than simple powerhouses as they are in other Chapters, allowing the
Space Wolves an advantage in choosing first turn and bearing all the benefits of normal venerable Dreadnaughts. Fire magnets
and powerful combatants they are a sign of power for the Space Wolves.
Blood Claw Packs
Unlike in other chapters
the Space Wolves do not follow the Codex Astartes in nearly any sense at all. Their squads are called “packs”
and they are larger in size than standard Codex Astartes squads. The Space Wolves also do not put their new warriors into
scout squads, instead putting them straight into service as battle brothers, however they form them into Blood Claw packs.
These young and eager warriors are desperate to prove themselves, armed for close combat and bearing a few specialized and
powerful weapons the Blood Claws are devastating on the charge, making up for what they lack in skill with raw brutality.
Grey Hunter Packs
Those Space Wolves who survive their time as Blood Claws and learn to control their eagerness
form Grey Hunter Packs, the backbone of any Space Wolf forced, armed with bolters they are nevertheless powerful close combat
specialists, with True Grit the Grey Hunters can lay down devastating sheets of bolter fire while still being able to hold
their own in almost any assault.
Long Fang Packs
The oldest Space Wolves carry the heavy weapons, skilled gunners
the Long Fangs are marked by their huge canine teeth and their long grey hair. On the battlefield they are each able to target
a separate enemy as long as their grizzled leader is alive, able to pour accurate suppressive fire forth to protect their
younger battle brothers as they attack the enemy.
The leaders of the Great Companies the Wolf Lords
are experienced warriors, they lead their company into battle with the grit and determination of veteran warriors, skilled
in close combat and equipped with ancient weapons and armor unseen in any other chapter the Wolf Lords are not to be taken
The most veteran and skilled warriors of the Company are chosen by the Wolf Lord to join his
Wolf Guard, a core of hardened warriors that lead smaller missions that the Wolf Lord cannot attend, lead squads on the battlefield
and protect their Wolf Lord in the heat of battle.
The Space Wolves have access to a variant of the
Leman Russ known as the Exterminator, requiring some conversion to make the Leman Russ can nevertheless support the Space
Wolves in their battlefield missions and it of course sports the name of their Primarch.Appearance
Space Wolves wear a light blue grey armor with yellow shoulder pads. Symbols vary but the Chapter symbol is a black wolf head.
Space Vikings drinking bear, telling tales and carousing whenever they aren’t
splitting skulls, what’s not to like? One of my favorite chapters and one with some of the most extensive backgrounds
of any GW chapter the Space Wolves are character-full, unique and simply all around fun.
Homeworld: Caliban (destroyed)
#: I (1)
Rules: Stand Alone Codex
Battlecry: “Repent! For Tommorrow You Die!”Background
amongst the mighty Adeptus Astartes, the Dark Angels were the 1st Legion Astartes and their battle honors and victories were
second only to the Luna Wolves, Horus’ own legion. Nevertheless the Dark Angels never knew of the cancer growing at
their heart. In the fires of the Horus Heresy, Luther, comrade of Lion’el Johnson turned on his battle brother. Ancient
ties of friendship broken over time by jealousy and inaction, discontent growing in silent brooding the Dark Angels homeworld
was torn asunder, Caliban destroyed almost utterly, leaving only the vast Space Station known as the Rock. On the surface
of the Dark Angels shattered home lies the remains of Caliban’s greatest fortress monastery, where not even the Dark
Angels themselves dare tread. With their Primarch missing, and the dark halls of their home shared by the strange and mysterious
Watchers in the Dark the Dark Angels continue their hunt for the Fallen, those survivors of that ancient treachery. With their
honor stained their great deeds undermined the Dark Angels are the unforgiven, constantly searching for redemption in the
stars in the purging of their fallen brothers.
The Dark Angels now travel the Galaxy on board the Rock, loosely following
the Codex Astartes. Possessing technology ancient beyond measure and largely lost to the rest of the Imperium the Dark Angels
boast plasma technology in greater quantities than most chapters and possess other technologies not seen in number since the
Horus Heresy. Unlike other chapters the Dark Angels 1st Company is known as the Deathwing, while the chapter’s 2nd Company
is known as the Ravenwing. The Deathwing is charged with the responsibility of capturing the Fallen once they are located,
as the only members of the chapter knowing their secret and dark past the Deathwing bears the terrible secrets and sins of
their past heavily. The Ravenwing operates as a rapid scouting force, ever on the lookout for the Fallen, finding their lost
brothers though ignorant of their true identity before calling down the Deathwing to deal with the traitors.
the hunt for their fallen an ever present concern the Dark Angels have earned a less than commendable reputation in the last
10,000 years. Known for leaving desperate battlefields on the eve of the deciding battle, condemning worlds to die for the
mere possibility of knowing their secrets and more there are those among the Imperial Forces who will not fight beside the
Dark Angels. Nevertheless their prowess remains legendary and the Dark Angels continue to serve the Emperor while they seek
Of all the chapters of the Adeptus Astartes the least friendly to the Dark Angels is the Space Wolves.
After an ancient rivalry between their two Primarchs, Lion’el Johnson and Leman Russ the Dark Angels and the Space Wolves
are reluctant to work together and whenever they meet in their battles they conduct an honor duel, re-enacting the ancient
conflict between their Primarchs. Successor Chapters
Angels of Absolution, Angels of Redemption, Angels
of Vengeance, Disciples of Caliban, The Consecrators, Guardians of the Convent.Notable Characters
The current Chapter Master of the Dark Angels, Azrael hails from a feral world but nevertheless possesses
a brilliant and ruthless intellect. Rising through the chapter with impressive skill Azrael bears the most powerful of the
Chapters relics. The Sword of Sercrets, forged from a mysterious metal in the chapters past, armor and weapons of ancient
complexity and potency and the Lion Helm, the legendary headgear of Lion’el Johnson himself. His personality and past
a secret Azrael knows most of the chapters ancient secrets but there are things even he does not know.
Master of the Librarians
A potent psyker and master of the Dark Angels secrets it is he alone who decides who may enter
the Deathwing’s most inner circle. Ezekiel carries the Book of Salvation, the Dark Angel’s most holy tome, recording
the hunt for the fallen. Possessing psychic power beyond any of the chapters other Librarians and armed and armored in the
best the Dark Angels armory can provide Ezekiel is a force to be reckoned with.
Beliel, Master of the Deathwing
Captain of the Deathwing, Beliel is a potent warrior, capable of carrying a number of armaments it is he who conducts the
hunt for the fallen once they are located. Teleporting into battle the Deathwing are fearless in battle and Beliel is the
best of them.
Sammael, Master of the Ravenwing
The Captain of the Ravenwing Sammael rides into battle in two ways.
He can take to the field astride a jetbike, ancient and lost technology and the last recorded bike remaining in the Imperium.
Armed with potent weapons and armored in ancient and powerful relics Sammael bears the Ravensword, one of the blades forged
from the ancient meteorite that also produced the Sword of Secrets and the Sword of Silence. Sammael also can ride into battle
with a heavily modified Land Speeder, protected by an immensely powerful shield making it as durable as a Land Raider and
armed just as heavily Sammael’s Land Speeder is a unique craft.
A now outdated character Asmodai
used to be foremost amongst the Dark Angels interrogator chaplains but it appears he is now obsolete. Special Units
The Deathwing squads can be taken as troops if Beliel is in the army. Only capable of being
5 men strong and with only a single heavy weapon they lack the punch of normal Terminators however any combination of assault
and ranged Terminators can be in the same squad and the Deathwing are fearless.
may include up to 6 Space Marine bikes, an Attack Bike and a Land Speeder and can be deployed into 4 separate combat squads,
each an independently functioning squad. If Sammael is in the army than Ravenwing squadrons can be taken as Troops.
Rules wise these Chaplains are not much different from normal chaplains except in their background.
Capable of taking a number of different weapons options not available to normal marine Dreadnaughts, Mortis
dreads are available only to the Dark Angels. They may even carry the potent Plasma Cannon should they chose. Appearance
Dark Angels armor is in a deep green. They wear robes of off white and their symbol is a white sword between outstretched
wings. The Ravenwing wear the original black armor of the legion and the Deathwing wear white in honor of past battles and
adorned by feathers. Summary Thoughts
The Dark Angels have quite a dark background that doesn’t
appeal to everyone. However they have a unique look and feel that is far darker than most marine chapters and really emphasizes
the blacker aspects of the 40k universe. Coupled with some great rules and special units the Dark Angels can be a very fun
and fluffy army to play in their perpetual hunt for the fallen and their redemption in the eyes of the Emperor.
Legion #: XIX (19)
Rules: Codex Space Marine Traits
Battlecry: “Victorus aut Mortis”
(Victory or Death)
The XIX or 19th of the Adeptus Astartes Legions the Raven Guard specialized
in rapid surgical strikes, breaking the back of the enemy before the other Imperial forces came into mop up the scene. Based
on the moon of Lycaeus orbiting around the world Kiavahr, he grew up on a world benighted by slave labor and industrious waste.
Rebelling against these conditions Corax led the people in a revolt that toppled the corrupt regimes of Lycaeus and freed
the slaves. Naming their moon refuge Deliverance in honor of their triumph. When Corax was found by his father and took command
of the 19th Legion he made Deliverance their home and struck out for the stars with the Great Crusade. However the good times
could not last. In the Istvaan system the Raven Guard were betrayed. Along with the Iron Hands and Salamanders the Raven Guard
joined an offensive against the traitor Horus, never knowing that fully half their comrades were traitors. When the Alpha
Legion, Night Lords, and the Iron Warriors turned against them they were slaughtered. Brother against brother the three loyal
Legions were decimated. Ferrus Manus, the Primarch of the Iron Warriors was lost and there was despair. Whittled down to dangerous
levels the Raven Guard’s strength was all but broken, unable to assist in the major fighting of the Horus Heresy Corax
had to try and re-build his legion. Desperate to help his father and save the Imperium he had helped to carve out of the war
torn stars Corax sped up the process of creating new marines. But what he got was horrors instead. Barely one in a hundred
recruits could become an actual marine, maybe one in ten actually able to hold a bolter. Horrified Corax nevertheless herded
the abominations into battle. When the Horus Heresy finally reached its end, when the seduced traitors ground to a halt and
their machinations of glory and conquest were defeated Corax could take no more. Leaving his legion to re-build over time
Corax killed the abominations personally and disappeared saying only a single word: “Nevermore…”
this day the Raven Guard maintain their tradition of rapid and surgical strikes attacking from the shadows rapidly and devastatingly
with assault marines at the forefront of their combat formations. Despite their rough past and the fires of the Horus Heresy
the Raven Guard continue to fight in the major conflicts of the Imperium and set examples for all other Chapters to see, their
combat doctrine required study for many of the Chapters astartes.
Black Guard, Revilers,
Captain Kayvaan Shrike
Captain Shrike of the 3rd Company is known as
the hero of Targus VIII, after successfully completing a mission behind enemy lines Shrike and his forces were trapped when
their Thunderhawk was shot down en-route to extract them. Stuck behind the green skin lines Shrike led his men in a guerilla
war, attacking vital supplies and staging areas of the green skin war effort and bringing the Orks to their knees. He was
awarded the Laurel Imperialis upon his return to his battle brothers for exemplifying service and upholding the chapters honor.
Shrike also carries the Raven’s Talons, a pair of master crafted Lightning Claws of archaic design. The Talons are said
to be unbreakable, having been forged on Deliverance by Corax himself after the Istvaan V massacre. These claws have the Rending
special rule which lets them tear through even the heaviest armor with contemptuous ease.
Shrike’s Wing is the specialized bodyguard of Captain Kayvaan Shrike. A core of veteran warriors, each an assault
marine armed with a pair of lightning claws, Shrike and his wing can infiltrate ahead of their lines and then scout into position
allowing them to attack the enemy the instant battle is met with devastating force, though extremely expensive points wise.
The Raven Guard wear all black armor. Their veterans wear white helmets and their squads
are shown by differently colored trim on the right shoulder pad. Red for Assault Marines, Green for Tactical Marines and Yellow
for Devastator Marines. Their symbol is a white raven.
The Raven Guard have some great
background, I love the line Nevermore, a great line from Poe. Their traits also make them a very fast, very hard hitting assault
oriented army and for those who love assault marines, but aren’t a fan of the Blood Angels than the Raven Guard are
a good way to go. Shrike has a great model and excellent background as well.
Legion #: XVIII (18)
Rules: Codex Space Marine Traits
Battlecry: “Into the Fires of
Battle! Unto the Anvil of War!”
The Salamanders chapter is famous for the skill of it’s
smiths, the forge of the Salamanders chapter able to produce many more suits of Terminator Armor, Artificer Armor, Thunder
Hammers and Master Crafted weapons than most other chapters. Living on the volcanic world of Nocturne, the Salamanders Primarch
Vulkan grew up sheltered by the people of the planet. Early in his youth Vulkan witnessed the people of his village hide when
Eldar raiders attacked, scoffing their cowardice Vulkan took his simple smiths hammer and fought the Eldar back, sending them
fleeing from the planet single handedly. From that moment forth the people of Nocturne hid no more. When the Emperor came
to find his lost son he challenged Vulkan to a test, each would forge the greatest weapon they could and go out to kill the
largest of the massive Salamanders the populated the planet. Vulkan found and killed an enormous and powerful beast but was
caught in a lava flow, unable to save himself while carrying the carcass of the great salamander Vulkan hung from a precipice.
The Emperor saw him and came to his rescue, carrying a salamander even greater than the one Vulkan had killed, yet the Emperor
discarded his trophy to haul Vulkan to safety. Awed by the honor and prowess of the Emperor Vulkan joined the Emperor in his
great crusade, taking command of the eighteenth Legion Astartes.
The Salamanders and Vulkan were present at the Istvaan
V massacre however little other than that is known of the Legion’s involvement in the fighting or the fate of Vulkan
as the fluff is contradictory and sparse regarding the Salamanders. There are also no known second founding chapters from
the Salamanders Legion.
The Salamanders do not remain aloof and mysterious to the people of Nocturne, there are even
indications that battle brothers of the chapter maintain families on their homeworld. Known for their smiths and their higher
than average use of flamer and melta weaponry the Salamanders battle tactics tend to get them up close and personal in short
ranged and furious firefights, unleashing hales of bolter fire and infernos of flame and melta blasts upon their foes. The
Salamanders are also the only one of the First Founding Chapters who’s marines have black skin, there is no indication
as to why this is as a Marine’s implants normally give them controlled pigmentation however it would seem that this
is a idiosyncrasy of the chapter.
There is not much background
for Chaplain Xavier and he does not have any current rules, however he was a special character in the 3rd Edition codex Space
Marines and he still has a model, carrying a crozius arcanum and a forge hammer, wearing a salamander scale cloak Chaplain
Xavier’s model is a favorite among converters even if his rules are now obsolete.
How the Mighty Have Fallen
Salamanders used to have rules in the supplementary Armageddon codex, however they have now lost both their special rules
and their special character, there seems to be no love for the Salamanders anymore to the detriment of those who play them.
Nevertheless their traits are not bad and those who play them love them.
The Salamanders wear
light green armor with black shoulder guards and green trim, their chapter symbol is the head of a salamander and they tend
to adorn their armor with flame symbols.
The Salamanders are an interesting chapter,
black skinned and flamer wielding their green armor with flame motifs is simple and effective. They are a characterful chapter
although they lack any special characters or units and have no special rules anymore. Still they are a fun chapter to play
and who doesn’t love flamers en-mass.
#: V (5)
Rules: Codex Space Marine Traits
Battlecry: “For the Khan and the Emperor!”Background
fifth Legion Astartes led by the Primarch Jaghatai Khan the White Scars are expert bikers and legendary for their swift maneuvers
on the battlefield and their lightning attacks. Fierce warriors hailing from the feral planet of Chogoris, the White Scars
were present during the defense of the Emperor’s Palace on Terra during the Horus Heresy. However Jaghatai Khan was
lost when chasing the Dark Eldar into the Maelstrom, some legends say that he was captured by the Dark Eldar and fights in
the arenas of Commoragh though this has never been proven. Jaghatai Khan followed the very same mobile tactics of Gengis Khan,
rapid cavalry attacks using compound bows and then retreating, drawing the enemy into an ambush and then repeating. The rapid
combat maneuvers of the Primarch were easily adapted for use with Space Marine Bikes and the prowess of the White Scars was
demonstrated on countless battlefields during the Great Crusade.
Despite this there is little background of the White
Scars in either the current fluff or in the recent Horus Heresy series and the White Scars have no special units or rules
and no characters of note. A sad state for one of the first founding chapters. Successor Chapters
Rampagers, Destroyers, Storm Lords. Appearance
The White Scars live up to their name, their armor is
white with red trim and a stylized thunderbolt symbol. Summary Thoughts
The White Scars have little
to them which is sad, their traits allow them to operate as their limited fluff suggests but they have little else going for
them. Their white armor is also troublesome for many to paint, probably an aspect of their limited popularity. Too bad for
such an interesting chapter.
#: VII (7)
Rules: Codex Space Marine Traits
Battlecry: “Primarch, progenitor – to your glory and the glory
of him on Earth!”Background
The Imperial Fists have an honorable history. As one of the three
Legions present at the defense of the Emperor’s palace it was the Imperial Fists who formed the Emperor’s Praetorian
Guard and built the fortifications of the Emperor’s palace. Led by the Primarch Rogal Dorn who’s origin is unknown
the Chapter has a sketchy history in the fluff, honored yes but not well laid out. The chapter homeworld is sometimes put
at being Terra and other references state they have no homeworld and are perpetually Crusading, much like their successor
chapter the Black Templars. There is also conflicting history as to the end of Rogal Dorn, he survived for quite some time
after the Horus Heresy and disappeared from the Imperium following one of Abaddon’s Black Crusades. Some history puts
that event as his death, other sources say that only his hand was discovered. All that is agreed upon is that the Imperial
Fists display a hand of Rogal Dorn, reduced to skeletal form in their mobile Fortress Monastary the ancient warship the Phalanx.
It is also said that each Imperial Fist Chapter Master writes his name minutely on the bones of Rogal Dorn’s hand, physically
connecting them with their honored Primarch. Successor Chapters
Black Templars, Crimson Fists, Soul
Drinkers. Notable Characters
Originally a sergeant in the 3rd Edition Codex Space
Marines, he was upgraded to the Sergeant of the Imperial Fists 1st Company in the 4th Edition Codex. Lysander wears Terminator
armor and caries the Fist of Dorn, a Master Crafted Thunder Hammer, and a Storm Shield. He also has some great background
and rules that allow a massive and coordinated Terminator Assault, meaning that Lysander is used best with as many Terminators
as possible, all Deep Striking into the heart of the enemy to shatter their foe with gun and hammer.
At the time of the Horus Heresy Sigismund was the First Captain of the Imperial Fists. During the defense of
the Emperor’s Palace Sigismund was named the first Emperor’s Champion and following the Heresy he became the Chapter
Master of the Black Templars, taking the most zealous of the Imperial Fists with him on a never ending Crusade across the
stars in the Emperor’s name. Appearance
The Imperial Fists wear bright yellow with red chest eagles
and a black closed fist for a chapter symbol. Veterans are marked by a red helmet stripe unlike the standard Codex white helmet.Summary
The Imperial Fists are a very fun army to play, as the siege and defense masters of the Loyalist Legions
the Imperial Fists can easily be tailored to a themed and fluffy list build and are also excellent for doing Terminator Heavy
or 1st Company lists with just a few scout or Tactical squads as support.
#: X (10)
Rules: Codex Space Marine Traits
Battlecry: “The Flesh Is Weak!”Background
Iron Hands Primarch Ferrus Manus was legendary for his augmetic hands/arms of living metal. Ferrus gained his metallic arms
when he fought the Silver Wyrm Asirnoth. Not able to defeat the creature Ferrus drowned it in a lake of Lava and when he withdrew
his hands they were sheathed in the same living metal as the Wyrm had been. Some speculations say that the creature was a
Necron construction, perhaps guarding a Necron tomb or the resting place of a C’Tan. But there is no concrete evidence
in any direction. Little is known of what happened when Ferrus Manus confronted his father, only that lightning filled the
sky for eight days. Finally Ferrus Manus returned to his tribes with the Emperor and took on the stewardship of the tenth
Legion Astartes. During the Great Crusade the Iron Hands showed great prowess across the Galaxy until Horus showed his hand.
Fulgrim, Primarch of the Emperor’s Children, tried to turn Ferrus Manus against the Emperor but failed and barely escaped
with his life. Filled with rage the Iron Hands joined the force to attack Horus on Istvaan V, along with the Salamanders and
the Raven Guard the Iron Hands were caught in the treachery, their veterans decimated and Ferrus Manus beheaded by Fulgrim
in single combat. Following the Horus Heresy, having failed to protect their Primarch and their Emperor the Iron Hands began
to stamp out all weakness, especially that of their own flesh, which has led to the extreme augmentations of the chapter to
this day. It is said that the current Iron Hands Chapter Master is completely bionic save for his brain alone. Successor
Red Talons, Brazen Claws.Notable Characters
Venerable Dreadnaught Bannus
warleader of the Kaargul Clan Company and a member of the Great Clan Council.
Iron Father Paullian Blantar
of augmetics and bionics and a hero of Kaladrone. Appearance
The Iron Hands wear black armor with a
white open handed symbol. Summary Thoughts
The Iron Hands have some great models that, while not new,
are still quite well done. Their extreme bionic augmentations and their use of Iron Fathers instead of normal sergeants is
a unique aspect that gives them a distinct character of their own and when modeled well create a visually stunning army far
different from the average marine force.
Well I hope this all proves useful to someone, I started it months ago and never got around to finishing it. But tonight
I did and it's taken quite some time to write, being 19 pages long on word and posting it has taken longer than I like too.
So comment away if anyone wishes, comments, criticism and the like, if anyone sees something glarring missing or something
I would do well to add.