Now, five years later, I have a fully realized IA article, numerous pieces of story fluff ranging from several paragraphs to the mini-novel "The Hunt for Veck" (Still in progress), dedicated pieces of high-quality artwork of the Chapter, and a half-completed codex I once worked on a couple years ago, trying to make them more distinct. The Chapter's character has essentially become numerous facets of my own personality made manifest, mixed with a little bit of Daggerfall-inspired lore behind the Dremori. As is another of my personality traits, I'm always looking for ways to stand out or make myself more unique. After reading over a lot of the HGR projects undertaken here (Especially the Iron Hands and Salamanders HGR army books), and not being overly satisfied with any of the current SM army books truly capturing my Chapter's character, I've decided to go ahead and give things a shot with possibly developing a HGR codex for them.
This project, if I can get enough support for it, will be broken down into several phases, not unlike the Astartes Reform Project.
- Identify notable fluff characteristics for the Lords of Oblivion that would affect table-top representation of the army.
- Analyze the current traits used to represent the Chapter, and see if these truly align with the characteristics indentified in step 1, as well as discuss shortcomings in current army books which prohibit me from properly representing my army as it's evolved in the fluff.
- Propose alternative "traits" or rules which could provide a more "fluff-accurate" representation of the Lords of Oblivion.
- Analyze these proposed rules, and attempt to balance them properly, so as to allow for a distinctive, but not over/under-powered, army. Steps 3 and 4 will likely be semi-merged as rules are proposed, discussed, and tested.
- Finalize the proposed codex, write some more spiffy mini-fluff stories, and publish an "official" army book for all to read and use as they desire.
Obviously this project will require extensive input from me in all matters of fluff, as a lot of what I have is only available to myself (Though I'll likely make a number of my other pieces available for this project, I'm currently trying to decide what among my stuff I've written over the years I'm going to keep as canon fluff and what to discard. Also, I don't have access to my archives at the moment, they're somewhere on a boat on its way back to the US, and I won't be able to get at it until next month). I will, however, happily answer any questions, provide additional commentary, and generally try to be as helpful as possible. In the meantime, if you're interested in helping out, feel free to read up on what I do have available here at the B&C.
Step One: Identifying notable fluff characteristics
In a nutshell, the Lords of Oblivion are a Chapter a little over 3,000 years old, with the gene-seed of the Iron Hands. Their homeworld is a feudal world where warfare is constant, and virtues such as honor and duty are valued above anything else. Therefore, the Chapter has an above-average proficiency level in close-combat. They also place a strong emphasis on strength of mind, and undergo extensive mental training to resist negative psyker influence in addition to having an above-average number of psykers of their own (Possibly as a result of the initiation trials triggering numerous otherwise latent psychic powers). The following is a list of all the items of note. I don't expect all of these to get rules, but I wanted to bring them up to be discussed so we could identify which ones would work best, and which are just being redundant.
Proficient in close-combat - Even without becoming Space Marines, the humans of Firien are reknowned for their martial prowess, due to living in a near-constant state of war with themselves for the sake of staying ready to fight for the Emperor at any time. Therefore, adding on the training of the Space Marines, the Lords of Oblivion are extremely skilled at close-combat.
Stubborn - Combining the strength of will of the Iron Hands with the martial pride of Firien's culture, the Lords of Oblivion are particularly driven to accomplish their goals. This was most evident during the Salvation of Firien campaign, when they steadfastly refused to abandon their homeworld to the daemonic invasion, despite the odds being almost overwhelmingly against them, and with pressure from other Imperial elements constantly growing for them to withdraw and face accounting for their actions during the campaign.
Strong in mind - The Lords of Oblivion place strength of mind as important above all other characteristics, for the mightiest gun in the universe is useless if one does not have the will or determination to use it. They also feel lack of mental fortitude is what causes so many humans to turn from the Emperor's light and follow the paths of the heretic and traitor. Their initiation rites include Librarians attempting to violate the minds of aspirants, forcing them to learn to defend themselves from mental attacks. Whether due to this or other unknown reasons, the Lords of Oblivion boast a higher than normal amount of Librarians, and many officers in the Chapter, while not full psykers, and thus unable to become Librarians, have some form of latent powers they can harness.
Devastated - The Salvation of Firien campaign (Which took place after the 13th Black Crusade) was the greatest and most desperate battle in the history of the Chapter. Their homeworld was invaded by daemonic legions under the command of K'laernik, a Lord of Change, and supported by numerous elements of Chaos Space Marines and other renegades. The Lords of Oblivion emerged triumphant, but with their numbers and resources devastated. Half the surface of Firien was ravaged, and over 2/3 of the Chapter had fallen in battle. Therefore, while the Chapter attempts to rebuild, they can no longer call upon the resources of a full Chapter.
Contempt for the Codex - Prior to the Salvation of Firien, the Lords of Oblivion were a primarily codex-oriented Chapter. However, following its tenets during the campaign saw their Chapter nearly wiped out. The senior leadership of the Chapter, as it rebuilds itself, has begun to consider breaking away from the Codex in certain areas, most notably the Chapter size restrictions, as well as some of the organizational edicts. While the 3rd and 4th Companies, the only two Companies restored to full fighting strength since the Salvation, still resemble Codex Battle Companies, the Chapter as a whole may wind up looking entirely different when brought back to full size.
Unique Awards - The Lords of Oblivion have several decorations unique to their Chapter. Among them are the Samurai's Robe and the Tabard of Fortitude. The Samurai's Robe is given to winners of the Commisum Legare, a literary competition used as the Chapter's primary means of recording its history. It is generally considered an unofficial mark of veteran status, due to the difficulty of winning the competition. The Tabard of Fortitude is another decoration given to officers who attain Veteran status without losing any limbs in battle or requiring any kind of bionic augmentation. It is basically considered a mark of a Marine's ability to survive under any conditions, and obviously runs highly counter to their primogenitor's belief in constantly replacing biological parts with bionics.
Feel free to discuss.
Edited by Allerka, 16 September 2008 - 03:07 AM.