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IA: Broken Arrows

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#26
Octavulg

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As a rule, stories in 40K are meant to be true (to at least some extent).

That said, I'm not sure I see what the problem is. They're the Broken Arrows now. If they were something else before, well and good, but that's not really the issue. And it's perfectly possible for them to have been serendipitously named. It happens. A LOT.

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#27
NightrawenII

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So the story is not accurate account of history but an artificial story made to enlighten. Therefore the challenge here is to convey the artificial nature of story to your reader.

 

...this is what I've been doing all along.  blink.png

 

If I have to make it more fantastical and exaggerated to make it a clearly fictional account, I can do that.  But I did explicitly point out several times that I was dodging this exact issue in that exact way. wacko.png

Not exactly.cool.png  Observe:

I didn't mean for them to be Broken Arrows before the campaign hit Lacrum.

 

+++++

So the DE portal under their F-M is also fictional?dry.png


It may seem counterintuitive but in ancient warfare, fleeing from battle was usually a good way to get oneself killed.
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Give the peasants neither life nor death.

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#28
Firepower

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No, Night.  I meant to say (and have already pointed out several times now) that the issue of them being something aside from the Broken Arrows prior to Lacrum was ignored on the grounds that the story, the oral tradition of their origins, were more concerned with the lesson and meaning of the narrative on Lacrum than what they were before the events themselves.  I did not quote the suggestion of having Broken Arrow be a Chogoris metaphor because that was not what I was replying to.  Ergo, those two quotes you point to are not at all in contradiction to themselves.

 

The point of framing it as an oral tradition, aside from making it a more interesting read, is to demonstrate an understanding the Chapter has of itself.  I mention before it starts that the story is something of an introduction to Chapter initiates, because it conveys this point.  They do not say what they were called before coming to Lacrum, and they shouldn't.  Even though they were not called Broken Arrows until coming to Lacrum, the story shows it is who they are in spirit from the beginning.  The recognition of that attribute and the preexisting title in Lacrum's tongue encapsulating the metaphor is being used to demonstrate that the Chapter and the world were a natural, even predestined fit.

 

The answer of what they were called before, in their mindset, in shortest, simplest terms, is 'We don't care.'  That's why it isn't in their story.  If that's a huge issue, I can squeese in one or two dull matter-of-fact sentences in the analytic part prior to the narative.  But that seems to invite more harm than good.

 

Octavulg- I've come to pretty much agree.  It's an irrevelevance, a minor issue that doesn't have to be explicitly addressed.  I've spelled it out here, but I think it should be easy enough to read between the lines with the original Origins entry.  But if it really cheeses enough people off I will try to find a way to incorporate the second paragraph of this post into the entry itself.


Edited by Firepower, 13 February 2013 - 07:30 PM.

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#29
Firepower

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Got another section written up.  Much more basic and analytic than the anecdotal nature of the Origin section, as promised. smile.png

 

HOMEWORLD
 

                Lacrum is an inhospitable planet, but not of the caliber of a true Deathworld.  Fourth from the sun in a binary star system of six worlds, it is given to a temperate climate but oppressively constant and erratic winds.  There is a single super continent covering roughly one fifth of the globe, composed chiefly of high altitude mountain ranges and sub-sea level valleys that crisscross the continent with waterways.  The planet’s vegetation is largely limited to lining these waterways, comprising of densely packed forest with several layers of canopy.  Risks of flash floods and avalanches, both frequent products of Lacrum’s tumultuous air pressures and winds, force the native population to follow a nomadic lifestyle, living primarily in the mid to low altitudes of the mountain ranges with periodic foraging into the forests.
 

                The Broken Arrow’s fortress monastery, the Howlhalls, resides under the dilapidated remains of Lacrum’s presumably Old Night era civilization, and atop the Dark Eldar gateway that first brought the Chapter to their homeworld.  The ruins themselves were pilfered, eroded and crumbled into empty husks long before the Broken Arrows’ arrival.  The labyrinthine tunnel complex underneath them, built by unknown hands (and subtly reinforced into a formidable fortification by the Arrows), has proven much more useful as a home for the Chapter.  The winding caverns exit out from dozens of cave mouths peppering the neighboring mountains’ rock faces, each guarded by the impaled skulls of the Arrows’ chosen foes staring inward: a ritual shield against any evil escaping the threshold of the world’s former tormentors.

 

                The base earned its title from an otherworldly howl that can be heard echoing through the adjacent mountain range for dozens of miles, with pitch, timing and duration changing with Lacrum’s mercurial winds.  The complex of caves serves as an enormous wind instrument, creating a constant dull vibration throughout the center holds before building to an unnerving and deafening pitch at the exits.  The Arrows’ regard the phenomenon as a sort of communion with Lacrum, interpreting wills, moods, omens and portents of and from the world through the breath that passes through their home.

 

                Wildlife is predominately of avian and reptilian nature.  In both cases, the typical adaptation to Lacrum’s environment is either an evolution of bulk and strength to resist and push through the turbulent winds, or an evolution of nimbleness and grace to flow with it.  Many species, such as the segmented centipede-like Whipbird and hulking Mammogoth of the lowlands supply the majority of raw materials Lacrum’s native humans use to survive, in bone, pelt, sinew, meat, scales and feathers.
 

                The human population has adapted over the millenniums in its own subtle way, a combination of the smallest of mutations lending them an evolutionary edge known colloquially as Lacrum’s Whisper.  Primarily a product of an altered inner ear, a slightly enlarged nasal cavity, and a general heightened sensory sensitivity, the Whisper has allowed Lacrum’s natives to effectively function in the turbulent environment.  Specifically, the population shares an abnormally acute sense of physical balance and sensitivity to temperature and barometric pressures.  Aside from traversing the landscape, the most dramatic demonstration of the Whisper is in the archery based hunting of the Tribes. The humans have what looks outwardly like an unnatural talent for not only overcoming, but utilizing the Lacrum’s winds in their marksmanship, using a combination of advanced fletching techniques and the natural sensitivities of the Whisper to curve shots along crosswinds, updrafts, downdrafts, hot and cold air pockets, etc..  Although no marksman can ever hope to have a flawless record, it is not uncommon for a Lacrum arrow to change course several times in flight before striking the intended target.

 

                The natives consider it a spiritual matter, given the lack of scientific measures or incentives to understand the phenomenon as a product of natural selection.  It is known as the Whisper because Lacrum’s people, particularly the hunters, are taught from childhood to focus on the subtlest sensations to effectively utilize their higher capacity for sense perception.  Or, in native terms, to listen for Lacrum’s Whisper.  This is often done with assistance from natural fetishes and totems, typically in the form of whistles carved from bone and rare or spiritually significant feathers.

 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

 

In terms of the Whisper and the marksmanship theme, I'm thinking I will tone it down from the initial concept.  Basically, the physical evolutions of Lacrum's tribes would in all likelihood be trumped by the advantages gained by geneseed implantation, rendering them moot.  I'm thinking that instead of the whole Chapter being super-marksmen, instead only a small percentage of initiates' original anatomies react in a significant way to geneseed implantation.  They would form a corps d'élite of super marksmen, with a cool name that I am yet to think of biggrin.png

 

Besides, having a whole Chapter of marines that are better shots than nearly any other marine Chapter would just be hokey tongue.png

 

So then, thoughts?

 

EDIT: In a spectacular brain fart, I forgot to include the Fortress Monastery details here tongue.png  I'll get right on that.

 

EDIT 2: Got it. smile.png


Edited by Firepower, 14 February 2013 - 01:34 AM.

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#30
Octavulg

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Sounds pretty good, as I skim it.

Also, bear in mind that sitting on top of a Dark Eldar gate doesn't prevent large parts of the chapter from roaming.

Also also, it could be worth hinting that the DE are just biding their time before wiping out the chapter from other gates nearby. That, or have the chapter be paranoid about exactly that happening.

Edited by Octavulg, 14 February 2013 - 04:58 AM.

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#31
Firepower

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Sounds pretty good, as I skim it.

Also, bear in mind that sitting on top of a Dark Eldar gate doesn't prevent large parts of the chapter from roaming.

Also also, it could be worth hinting that the DE are just biding their time before wiping out the chapter from other gates nearby. That, or have the chapter be paranoid about exactly that happening.

 

The first bit I covered earlier.  The common practice of having rotating reserves is also used by the Arrows, which means there's always the equivalent of a Company at home, watching the gate.  I still have to figure out the Chapter's organization methodology before pen gets put to paper on that though.

 

The second bit, very intriguing.  I will ponder and fiddle with the idea with devious joy smile.png  It's no fun if the nemesis is well and truly beaten, after all.


Edited by Firepower, 14 February 2013 - 05:31 AM.

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#32
Octavulg

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No IA is complete without some kind of horrible doom or threat hanging over the chapter. Fact.

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#33
Brother Anvilus

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Must say I'm impressed by the work put into this Chapter.A unique theme with several ways to play it out. regarding the whole name-before-the-name-thing, maybe they weren't a new chapter before they encountered Lacrum, just a company/taskforce of the WS, of wich some brave/heroic commander/sergeant/group get's the honour of starting up a new chapter on the planet in recognition of their work done?Just throwing it out there, hopefully not stepping on any toes here :)

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QUOTE (Giga @ Nov 21 2012, 11:04 AM)
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#34
Firepower

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So, something I've fumbled about in my head, which I could use some advice on.

 

A current theory for imminent threat over the chapter:  Dark Eldar have a not so good relation with Slaanesh.  Slaanesh prays on sensory stimulation.  Lacrum's Whisper is largely a result of heightened sensitivity in Lacrum's population.  So, potential quirk, Dark Eldar played with natives' DNA long ago as some way of bringing Slaanesh's attention to them.

 

I know the DE are not on good terms with Slaanesh to say the least.  On the one hand, poisoning the population of the Broken Arrows' recruits with a potential allure to Slaanesh sounds like something sick, vengeful sadists would do.  On the other, giving souls to Slaanesh would be prety contrary to the Dark Eldars' position on the Pleasure God.

 

Mostly I'm just asking for advice on whether to abandon this train of thought outright, or a way to twist and refine it into something sensible.  It just seems like a route with an interesting potential, rather than a more direct DE threat like adjacent gateways.

 

A second idea I have is that the gate under the Howlhalls has been functioning a while now, letting Mandrakes sneak into the fortress monastary as sneaky shadows that avoid notice.  The Arrows would only know something was up when Tribes were found in the mountains killed in unspeakable ways, creating a schism between the Chapter and the native population that regards them as saviors from the invaders.  It has some fun to it, but having DE sneak through the gate right under the Chapter's collective nose makes them look pretty inept.

 

*bops own head Pooh style* think think think.....


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#35
Brother Anvilus

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I like the first idea, as I think I read somewhere that Dark Eldar in a way provide souls to slaanesh in order to "bargain" their way out ( ultimately doesn't work, but hey...) so it does have an already written fluff-way in :) if I'm not mistaken it's in the BL novel about a word bearer getting captured by DE? someone helpe me out here :s

 

second idea not so much, indeed makes the chapter ( and probably serfs who are still natives, and therefore have heightened senses ) look rather inept and prone to getting wiped 1 company at a time ( the one that stays at the keep )

 

 

just my 2 cents :)


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QUOTE (Giga @ Nov 21 2012, 11:04 AM)
The helmet needs to be pink. As per the codex astartes. There is no other option, sorry.


#36
Firepower

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While I ponder and fuss over potential looming threats, I felt I should crank out some more nuts and bolts material. Enjoy, and pick apart as you might see fit.  Also, I'm not really sold on the name 'Squallsons.'  I tried Zephyrson but it sounds too much like Jefferson tongue.png.  Wisps, Zephyrs, Squalls, Fletched, Huntsmen, I even thought of Feathermen!  Lotsa names, but nothing really feels 100% right yet.  wallbash.gif

 

I need something that ideally blends wind and archery motifs.... my brain hurts from thinking on this for too long. wacko.png

OGANIZATION:

The Broken Arrow’s organization falls largely along Codex guidelines. There are only two notable divergences. Firstly, the Arrows employ a larger than normal number of aircraft and Speeders. Flying in Lacrum’s environment creates pilots of a unique caliber, and the ability for rapid deployment and hit and run assaults is a valuable tool for their preferred style of warfare. They do not, however, share their parent Chapter’s affinity for bikes. Lacrum has no beasts of burden or truly open flatlands for Tribes or the Arrows to ever develop a love for life in the saddle.

The most unique divergence from Codex organization comes in the form of individuals known as Squallsons. These Marines are the rare few for whom the geneseed interacts in peculiar ways with Lacrum’s Whisper. The phenomenon never quite expresses itself the same way, though generally the subject’s senses, dexterity, coordination and balance are heightened to a state superior even to fellow Astartes.

They form a corps d’elite of the Arrows, separate from structures of company and squad, and often under direct command of the Chapter’s highest ranks. Given the variance in effect of the phenomenon, the Squallsons almost never work in tandem as a singular unit, but rather play to their individual strengths. Some may exhibit extraordinary reflexes and situational awareness, and choose to follow the path of an Assault specialist or master pilot. Others exhibit remarkable intuition and synchronicity with environmental conditions, making for marksmen of incomparable caliber which may perform duties as anything from a Scout sniper to a Devastator. Regardless of specialty, they typically deploy alongside the rank and file of their brothers, joining units of their choosing and acting as force multipliers. They also function as spiritual icons: living vessels of Lacrum’s gifts and spirit on the battlefield. Combined with their rarity- hardly ever existing in numbers greater than 50 at any one time- to serve alongside a Squallson is an enviable privilege.


TACTICS

The Arrows utilize tactics not far removed from the hunting traditions of their homeworld, expanded to accommodate tools not available in their former lives among the Tribes. The most common tactic is one of dividing the enemy forces, as a huntsman or predator would scatter a herd to pick off prey at leisure. Airstrikes and deep striking assaults, as well as inserted Scout squads are normally given the role of dissecting enemy formations, creating disorder and chaos. Outriders typically in the form of aerial support funnel any panicked or separated targets into kill zones, where they are bracketed by the ranged firepower of Devastators and Tactical squads.

When enemy numbers are too great for such an approach, the Arrows instead harass enemies from exposed flanks by way of high speed hit and run attacks. Those that break off to pursue are led into predetermined kill zones made by overlapping fields of heavy firepower.

When on the defensive, the Arrows will often employ forward elements which remain hidden until in the midst of an advancing enemy, springing ambushes and crippling the enemies’ momentum and targeting the highest priority enemy assets while reserve forces attack from without to exploit the confusion. It is a dangerous tactic, and creating an escape route for the advance elements by weight of fire is as high a priority as elimination of the enemy. The Arrows will also employ deep striking Assault squads when available after a trap is sprung, landing far from the entrenched forces to increase the disruption and confusion before falling back to friendly lines.

In all circumstances, commanders are expected to perform as a Broken Arrow is meant to. Enemies of overwhelming numbers are can be bottlenecked and fractured. Enemies of small and elite forces can be overwhelmed with focused targetting. Mobile forces can be crippled by traps and terrain. Slow and ponderous forces can be harassed with speed. An entrenched enemy can be outflanked. Any ill fortune is an opportunity, and any strength of the enemy is a potential weakness.

The culture of Lacrum's huntsmen carries over into the Arrows' philosophy in the form of armaments as well. Tribesmen use elaborate fletching techniques to craft specialized arrows, made with extremely specific purposes; arrows for cutting through crosswinds, for distance, or strength, heads for penetration, or bleeding, or delivering poisons, etc. The Broken Arrows obsess over customizing their own arms and ammunition in turn, in order to have the optimal weaponry on hand for any target. Special weaponry such as melta and plasma guns are employed as they are in most Chapters, but a typical Arrow would readily boast that his personally customized bolter and ammo can kill most any target just as well.


Edited by Firepower, 16 February 2013 - 06:19 AM.

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#37
Octavulg

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Don't indent paragraphs and use line breaks. One or the other.

I'd expect a windy world to have a lot of flatlands and be terrible for aircraft, but fair enough.

Otherwise it all looks sensible enough, though Zephyrsons is unwieldly and sounds like a weird Scandinavian surname.

Also, 50 is five per company. That's not that rare. If they were assigned one per squad, half the chapter would serve with one.

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#38
Firepower

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I'd expect a windy world to have a lot of flatlands and be terrible for aircraft, but fair enough.

Yeah, I'm still unsure whether to go with the aircraft bit or not. It would be terrible, but I'm debating whether it would be too terrible to fly at all, or just bad enough to make some really good pilots. The terrain however has few proper valleys, as I've sort of designed Lacrum as the most extreme mountainous terrain possible; very very jagged, and nearly straight up and down. If it's lowlands, in all likelihood it's a river and super dense forest.

Otherwise it all looks sensible enough, though Zephyrsons is unwieldly and sounds like a weird Scandinavian surname.

Yeah, still beating my head into a wall trying to think of a better name. Suggestions there would be very welcome.

But now that you mention Scandinavian, I suppose it could be helpful to point out that the culture is meant to be something of a pseudo-native american theme. Not full blown X-in-space like space vikings or space romans, but the image should be forming if I'm writing well enough.

Also, 50 is five per company. That's not that rare. If they were assigned one per squad, half the chapter would serve with one.

I meant for it to be an exceptional rarity to have 50 at a given time, but didn't do a good job at writing it that way. An appropriate average would be more like the mid twenties. Two or three per company seems rare enough.


Edited by Firepower, 16 February 2013 - 04:27 PM.

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#39
Octavulg

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Really high winds are really rough on trees. I suppose they might do OK over time, but I wouldn't have thought so. Really high winds are also rough on mountains (and vice versa, to some extent).

Sons of the Zephyr would seem an improvement. Sons of Lacrum an obvious reference to it. Lacrii, perhaps.

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#40
Firepower

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You are right, of course. High winds would erode mountains quite a bit.

I didn't get too into it in the Homeworld section because I felt getting more complex would open up too many holes given inveitable inaccuracies, but I've already been caught it seems. I guess I should've known better given the Liber's patented fine mesh screening process :D

The original idea included a continuous convergence of Lacrum's tectonic plates into a single direction, creating a continuous upward thrust of the mountain ranges. So while mountains are getting rounded out and withered by wind, more mountain just keeps coming up to replace it. The pressures at work would turn the land into krinkled tin foil, pusing in form the edges to create jagged forms going to the extremes of up and down. But like I said, I'm sure I'm getting a lot more wrong here than I originally was. But at least some tectonic instability would make it a tad more interesting as a pseudo-deathworld, without having to elaborate on all the mean and nasty wildlife.

Naming them Lacrii is an interesting idea. Instead of calling them Zephyrsons or Sons of Zephyr I thought of just simply calling them Zephyrs. It's a very cool sounding word, but it literally means a soft breeze, which doesn't seem wholly appropriate. The one other semi-palatable idea I felt I had was calling them Thriceborn. They are human, they are astartes, and then they are something higher still. But Thriceborn doesn't sound appropriate for the culture. Maybe calling them Threesouls or Threehearts instead, given they carry the soul of the Tribes, the Chapter, and Lacrum itself.

Another possibility would be something more akin to a term that would originate from the Tribes and mean something akin to a warrior who defends the homestead, a high ranking hunter, a pathfinder during nomadic journeys- basically anyone who would be counted on to have a solid grasp of the Whisper.

To try and show what I'm going for in terms of their sense of diction or speech or poetry, I'm trying for something blunt and simple, but slightly clever. As an example, newly inducted Marines or Scouts are referred to as Newhearts. It can be seen as having symbolic meaning for their new nature as a man with a different purpose and soul than he used to have, but it's also bluntly literal: he has a new heart. I'm finding that's not an easy sort of thing to make into a linguistic trend in every title that comes along. In fact, Broken Arrow and Newheart are the only two I've come up with so far :teehee:

Edited by Firepower, 16 February 2013 - 06:02 PM.

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#41
Octavulg

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Speaking as someone currently in Western Canada, open, windswept plains aren't much fun to live on. tongue.png You don't need much horrific wildlife or tectonic instability when bleakness and a lack of resources can do the job instead.

Lacrum's Listeners is another name possibility, but just saying it makes me feel dumb.

Don't go too crazy with the titles. Simple is not necessarily bad.

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#42
Firepower

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Can't believe I didn't think of Canada when I was trying to imagine a proper deathworld... :D

 

I'm thinking it might be smart to go with the best of both worlds (Get it? Worlds...anyway). Having a world dominated by a singular geographical feature is pretty odd anyway. Jagged mountain ranges and wide, flat, barren valleys. Tribes would still be mountainfolk, as there's even less to live off of in the valleys, it always made them easier targets for predators and the Dark Eldar, there is no cover from Lacrum's winds, etc. I can work something up around that.

 

As for the name, the latest one I've come across is Zephyrcraft. Zephyr continues to be the coolest wind synonym I can find, and the fact that it means a gentle breeze actually kind of fits considering the source is called a Whisper. It sort of plays off that whole fractal/double entendre theme of their speech, in that they would be both products and producers of the anthropomorphized winds of Lacrum. I kinda like it...

 

'Don't mess with Bob. He is Zephyrcraft.'

 

'This will be arduous. Summon a Zephyrcraft'

 

'Bob used Zephyrcraft. No normal man could shoot like that.'

 

On a separate note, I've been tossing around ideas in my head on the whole Dark Eldar threat, and this is what I've come up with so far. I could use some help filling in gaps or correcting errors. Particularly, whether the narative's understanding and use of gates is actually accurate.

 

The Kabal that the Arrows drove out of Lacrum go back to Commoragh after their defeat, wounded and dwindled. It takes a whole lot of time to rebuild while fending off rivals from their turf. A couple thousand years later, it's proper time for some revenge.

 

The Kabal starts popping up again in adjacent systems and wreaking havoc. They make very deliberate shows of force and leave very big, grizzly calling cards in their wake. This serves to taunt and goade the Arrows, as well as destabilize their protectorates, making for twofold distractions. The Arrows end up chasing shadows in hopes of finding the other gates while also putting down insurrection brought on by terror.

 

Question is, how far into the conflict should I write? Would it be better to leave the guillotine hanging, with the full assault on the lone company left at Lacrum an unresolved inevitablity? Or would it be good to write it all and just make it an epic sort of war. Having the Arrows wounded and vulnerable in the aftermath could be the point to leave the narrative then.

 

Also, a plothole. Why would the Dark Eldar have ever made a conclusive stand at their gate on Lacrum if they had others in the neighborhood? Maybe instead of just holding on to their turf in Commoragh, they expand for the express purpose of gaining new doors into the galaxy? It would ceratainly help explain a few thousand years of relative absence from the area.


Edited by Firepower, 17 February 2013 - 02:54 AM.

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#43
Nomus Sardauk

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If I might be so bold, I have a few suggestions for possible names for the Zephyrcraft;
Listener
Windweaver/Windwalker
Whisperchild

Hope these help. :)

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#44
Firepower

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By all means, be so bold. That's what peer review is for. They're all good suggestions.

It's a bit of a silly thing to get hung up on really. But imagine if the Death Company were called Angry Angels, or Blood Claws were called Rabid Pups. If something is gonna be iconic, it should be catchy too.

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#45
Octavulg

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Makes sense on the terrain.

I'd go with Zephyrcrafter, if you're going to do Zephyrcraft.

The Kabal starts popping up again in adjacent systems and wreaking havoc. They make very deliberate shows of force and leave very big, grizzly calling cards in their wake. This serves to taunt and goade the Arrows, as well as destabilize their protectorates, making for twofold distractions. The Arrows end up chasing shadows in hopes of finding the other gates while also putting down insurrection brought on by terror.

Grisly. Grizzly means hairy.

Question is, how far into the conflict should I write? Would it be better to leave the guillotine hanging, with the full assault on the lone company left at Lacrum an unresolved inevitablity? Or would it be good to write it all and just make it an epic sort of war. Having the Arrows wounded and vulnerable in the aftermath could be the point to leave the narrative then.

Always better to have doom lurking. Always. Resolution is for stories, not for IAs.

Also, a plothole. Why would the Dark Eldar have ever made a conclusive stand at their gate on Lacrum if they had others in the neighborhood? Maybe instead of just holding on to their turf in Commoragh, they expand for the express purpose of gaining new doors into the galaxy? It would ceratainly help explain a few thousand years of relative absence from the area.

The wind was against them.

Seriously.

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#46
Aqui

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I think I might have a plausible way of explaining the Chapters' name and how they got it.

 

The Chapter was formed as White Scar successors specifically to hunt the Dark Eldar and find their Primarch.  Lacrum was chosen as their homeworld due to the amount of activity in the system nearby.  Early on the Chapter had formed tenuous bonds with the Tribes on Lacrum noting their ideals and superstitions.  The Chapter Master had heard rumours of evil creatures that raid the planet taking humans away, never to be seen again was subject of much discussion, but the natives did not know how these aliens come and go, seemingly appearing and disappearing at will.

 

At one point, the Chapter Master had visited one such tribe and that night, the DE attacked, not knowing the tribe had visitors.  They pressed their attack anyway, desperate as they were for slaves etc.  The tribes leader was attacked by one alien and had been cut down, his bow and quiver broken by his opponent.  As the alien warrior closed in, the tribe leader, in a last ditch attempt to fight back grabbed the nearest thing to him to fight back.  A broken Arrow.  Leaning forward to torture his captive, the DE had allowed his guard to fall, the arrow head piercing his throat.  The tribes leader had died, his wounds too severe, but he had managed to kill his attacker.

 

Previously, according to Tribes lore, a broken arrow was a bad omen, the inability to fight, to defend ones self.  But after that night, the meaning changed to mean that a warrior can change even a bad omen and still win.  The Chapter in recognition of this was named the Broken Arrows.

 

Not sure if that makes sense or is viable, but feel free to use or disregard ^_^


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#47
Firepower

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Also, a plothole. Why would the Dark Eldar have ever made a conclusive stand at their gate on Lacrum if they had others in the neighborhood? Maybe instead of just holding on to their turf in Commoragh, they expand for the express purpose of gaining new doors into the galaxy? It would ceratainly help explain a few thousand years of relative absence from the area.

The wind was against them.

Seriously.


Wait...what?

I like a good pun, I just don't quite get your meaning.

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#48
Octavulg

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Chapter finds gate. Sits a company or two on it, goes after the DE with the rest of the chapter. Winds are blowing in such a fashion that DE transports can't function well (they do fly, after all).

So the DE charge the gate. Some make it through (and they do manage to drag through some of the wounded and dead. But the chapter takes out a lot of them (for all that they probably lose a lot of Marines, too).

The wind was against them.

Edited by Octavulg, 17 February 2013 - 08:44 PM.

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#49
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OK, this is the first rough draft.  It's gonna be a wall of text.  Like, a big, big one.  Fair warning.  I can't seem to find the BBCode guide for formatting, headers, that sort of thing.  Once I do and get the hang of it, I'll throw up a better organized and much prettier version in place of the original post.

 

ORIGIN


The Broken Arrows’ history is almost entirely a matter of oral tradition.  Issues of exact specifics are seen to have value in planning, not retrospect, and stories are considered tools for imparting lessons rather than simple information.  Consequentially, pinpointing exact years, locations, and even names from the chapter’s vast collection of narratives is often a herculean task.  Were anyone to take the time to actually attempt such an endeavor in interest of finding the Broken Arrows’ founding, the date of their arrival on their homeworld of Lacrum, or the date on which they took up their namesake, best estimates would put all three somewhere in the early 34th millennium.


Chapter lore has it that the Broken Arrows, successors to the White Scars, were founded on the purpose of hunting the ancestral enemies to all sons of the Khan: the dark kin of the Eldar.  Illusive as the quarry was, the Arrows’ oldest stories speak of a successful campaign of detecting, repelling, and running the xenos raiding parties to ground from system to system, until the hunt brought them to a nexus of their foes activity, the world of Lacrum.


Initial scouting of the world revealed unexpected results.  Remnants of seemingly human civilization from an age before the Imperium itself were centralized towards the middle of the world’s single supper continent, dilapidated and skin-stripped by the planets unrelenting winds, but whole.  The Arrows’ investigation also turned up a sizable native human population, though far from the ruins and spread thin amongst nomadic tribes.


The story of first contact with Lacrum’s tribes is among the closest to the Arrows’ core philosophy and identity, and the first that aspiring initiates into the Chapter learn.

 

‘The Tribes explained that the ruins were to be avoided. They played host to dark hunters that had plagued the world for as long as anyone knew: life was harsher hunting and wandering in the mountains, but nearing the ruins would awake the demons. The Tribes had oracles and shamans with stories of their own, one which sounded of unsettling potential truth; stories of saviors from the sky, of sons of lightning and thunder, steel men that brought both doom and salvation for Mother Lacrum.  But oddest of all was the title the Tribes used, each and all calling us broken arrows, a term they considered self evident and would not clarify.


The hunters came the first night on shrieking wings and screaming airboats, and we knew we had found the quarry’s beachhead.  The Tribes fought beside us, using their world’s winds to bombard the skiffs and knock wingriders from their mounts with dancing arrows, and our heavier guns met their tally tenfold.  The night ended with bloody losses on both sides before the xenos fled.  The Tribes tended to their fallen and wept for those less fortunate, those dragged off to the hunters’ homes, and we felt the term the Tribes used suddenly came with a venomous edge.  Our presence brought the devils out, and we learned the meaning of a broken arrow- a sign of ill omen, a symbol of failure.


But we had a hunt to complete, and our guilt sharpened our anger to an executioner’s edge.  We set off for the ruins, and the bravest of the Tribes convinced us to allow their hunters on the gunboats.  They guided us to the targets, and we walked side by side into the ruins, into the caves beneath.  The aliens burst forth to defend their foothold, slipping through their ghostdoors, and Tribesmen fought with us to put them into the ground for their trouble.  We sought to crush the tunnels when the pray fled again, to bury their lair and seal off their ghostdoors forever.  The hunters, busy in taking trophies from the dead, smiled and laughed at our plan.  They had a better plan for the filth’s purged home. They called us broken arrows again, but through warm smiles of brotherhood. 


Understand now.  A broken arrow cannot fly.  To have the quarry in sight and reach into the quiver for an arrow with its shaft split is a sign of ill fortune.  But the warrior does not see a broken arrow.  He sees a dagger.  To be a Broken Arrow is to find victory in the face of failure. It is to turn ill fortune on itself.  It is to meet a doomed fate and beat victory out of it.  If there is nothing left of you but blood and hate, use it to drown your enemy.


It is why we live in these tunnels now.  We live in the archenemy’s former lair, and we wait with smiles and blades.  We are the patient hunters of Mother Lacrum now, letting the foul devil kin keep their foothold. We took their own fortress, their pathway into our galaxy, and turned it into a bulwark against their return.  They must come up to feed, and we are here to punish them for their wicked hunger.’


The narrative is archetypical form for the Arrows’ oral traditions.  Whether they adopted their name on the spot, who they were before they found their new home, and likely many of the events themselves are considered irrelevant or have been subtly altered over thousands of years to serve as a lesson far removed from the need for historical precision.  It teaches that their union with Lacrum and her Tribes was predestined, that all three are of a single purpose: the punishment of the Dark Eldar for their uncountable sins.

 

BELIEFS


Unlike most Chapters, the Arrows have a familiarity and rapport with their mortal kin, and unlike most mortals the Tribes are largely aware of the true hostility of the galaxy.  By mutual respect and frequency of contact, it is little wonder then that local customs and the Chapter’s customs have gradually come to mirror one another. Bone whistles and tokens of feathers created from their homeworld’s most revered and spiritually significant fauna are common fetishes among the Arrows. Iconography and symbols that adorn the Arrows’ armor and flesh are echoes of the tattoos seen among the Tribes. Even common methodologies and tactics are loosely analogous with fundamental strategies of hunting that Arrows learn as humans.

 

The identity of the Broken Arrows lies in a philosophy of relentless determination in the face of the impossible.  The Chapter’s core mission- the eradication of the Dark Eldar- is ultimately unachievable.  The Imperium which they are sworn to defend is indisputably in its twilight years.  For every enemy of man put to the sword, a dozen more wait to fill its place.  Anyone who thinks otherwise is considered a fool, an unthinking zealot, or delusional.


In spite of this, a human who dies without blood on his hands is a wasted life.  Station and place within the hierarchy of the Imperium, training and background, the weapons and armor available, all are seen as irrelevant. If an opportunity to fight in defense of the Emperor’s domain is presented, the Arrows accept no excuse to do otherwise.  Even as child savages, the Arrows learn that life is won by taking it from others, be they beast or man, and those who cower in the face of such a reality are best left to the terminal rewards of their own inaction.


This uncompromising credo has led to ‘diplomatic issues’ on more than one occasion.  The Arrows have a particularly notorious tradition with which to browbeat allies that they find wanting, rooted in another piece of Chapter lore pertaining to a war waged alongside a brother Chapter, The Throneguard, against an Ork incursion.


‘They fled.  They saw that battle turned, that their strategy unfolded sour and flawed, and showed their backs rather than face fortune down and do their duty.  We fought on and repelled the green tide from the field, but with losses that should not have been nearly as grave.


Our Chapter Master, Cayowakan the Stonesoul, to be Cayowakan the Redeemer in soon coming days, approached the Throneguard at battle’s end.  He sought their Champion, and threw dispersions and curses at his feet, each one with a piece from his holy bolter.  He named them cowards, fools, weak and unworthy of His blessings, until he stood with nothing but a receiver rod in his fist.


Their Champion met the challenge to their honor, blade in his white knuckled fist, anger in his eyes.  Cayowakan speared that single fragment of his sacred weapon through those glaring eyes and into their greatest warrior’s skull.


They stood twice shamed, by themselves and by our lord, but Cayowakan offered them redemption.  A final assault, with not a step backward, until either they or the Orks were dead, or all who know us would know the shame on their fraternity.  They accepted, and we saluted with pride over their dead in the days that came.


And so we make the same offer to all those that forget their purpose. We teach them of the Broken Arrow in honorable combat.  If shame does not find their spines for them, then let them find instead the hollow welcome of a coward’s grave where He does not see them.  We do not share the glory of the battlefield with those who cannot appreciate it themselves.’


To be completely accurate, the contingent of Throneguard present was only 30 Marines strong, dropped into the thickest of the warzone by misdirected Drop Pods, and performed a fighting withdrawal in hopes of finding a more defensible position from which to continue the attack. 


Similar circumstances throughout the Arrows’ history have invariably been met with an honor duel challenge, with more than a few champions and generals killed by shattered knifes, bits of splintered and savaged detritus from the field, and on one particularly infamous occasion the victim’s own discarded rations tin. 


HOMEWORLD


Lacrum is an inhospitable planet, but not of the caliber of a true Deathworld.  Fourth from the sun in a binary star system of six worlds, it is given to radically polarized climate and oppressively constant and erratic winds.  There is a single super continent covering roughly one fifth of the globe, composed of desolate, scorching hot flatlands surrounded by punishingly cold mountain ranges.  Between the two, only the mountains have sufficient resources to support human life, and even then only in enough quantity to allow for a nomadic lifestyle.  Foraging for food in shrubs and hunting the specially adapted predators of the mountains is preferable to a slow death by heatstroke and starvation in the utterly empty flatlands.


The Broken Arrow’s fortress monastery, the Howlhalls, resides under the dilapidated remains of Lacrum’s presumably Old Night era civilization, and atop the Dark Eldar gateway that first brought the Chapter to their homeworld.  The ruins themselves were pilfered, eroded and crumbled into empty husks long before the Broken Arrows’ arrival.  The labyrinthine tunnel complex underneath them, built by unknown hands (and subtly reinforced into a formidable fortification by the Arrows), has proven much more useful as a home for the Chapter.  The winding caverns exit out from dozens of cave mouths peppering the neighboring mountains’ rock faces, each guarded by the impaled skulls of the Arrows’ chosen foes staring inward: a ritual shield against any evil escaping the threshold of the world’s former tormentors.


The base earned its title from an otherworldly howl that can be heard echoing through the adjacent mountain range for dozens of miles, with pitch, timing and duration changing with Lacrum’s mercurial winds.  The complex of caves serves as an enormous wind instrument, creating a constant dull vibration throughout the center holds before building to an unnerving and deafening pitch at the exits.  The Arrows regard the phenomenon as a sort of communion with Lacrum, interpreting their world’s wills, omens, and portents by her breath passing through their home.


Wildlife is predominately of avian and reptilian nature.  In both cases, the typical adaptation to Lacrum’s environment is either an evolution of bulk and strength to resist and push through the turbulent winds, or an evolution of nimbleness and grace to flow with it.  Many species, such as the segmented centipede-like Whipbird and hulking Mammogoth of the lower slopes supply the majority of raw materials Lacrum’s native humans use to survive; bone, pelt, sinew, meat, scales and feathers.


The human population has adapted over the millennia in its own subtle way, a combination of the smallest of mutations lending them an evolutionary edge known colloquially as Lacrum’s Whisper.  Primarily a product of an altered inner ear, a slightly enlarged nasal cavity, and a general heightened sensory sensitivity, the Whisper has allowed Lacrum’s natives to effectively function in the turbulent environment.  Specifically, the population shares an abnormally acute sense of physical balance and sensitivity to temperature and barometric pressures.  Aside from traversing the landscape, the most dramatic demonstration of the Whisper is in the archery based hunting of the Tribes. The humans have what looks outwardly like an unnatural talent for not only overcoming, but utilizing Lacrum’s winds in their marksmanship, using a combination of advanced fletching techniques and the natural sensitivities of the Whisper to curve shots along crosswinds, updrafts, downdrafts, hot and cold air pockets, etc..  Although no marksman can ever hope to have a flawless record, it is not uncommon for a Lacrum arrow to change course several times in flight before striking the intended target.


The natives consider it a spiritual matter, given the lack of scientific measures or incentives to understand the phenomenon as a product of natural selection.  It is known as the Whisper because Lacrum’s people, particularly the hunters, are taught from childhood to focus on the subtlest sensations to effectively utilize their higher level sense perception.  Or, in native terms, to listen for Lacrum’s Whisper.

 

OGANIZATION


The Broken Arrow’s organization falls largely along Codex guidelines- ten companies of 100 battle-brothers each, regularly rotating one into reserves to remain on Lacrum and defend the Howlhalls.  There are only two notable divergences.  Firstly, the Arrows employ a larger than normal number of aircraft and Speeders.  Flying in Lacrum’s environment creates pilots of a unique caliber, and the ability for rapid deployment and hit and run assaults is a valuable tool for their preferred style of warfare.  They do not, however, share the White Scars’ affinity for bikes.  Lacrum has no beasts of burden, and so the Tribes never develop a love for the saddle to extend into the Arrows, as Chogorins do for their parent Chapter.


The most unique divergence from Codex organization comes in the form of individuals known as the Whisperkin.  These Marines are the rare few for whom the gene-seed does not override, but rather interacts with the anatomical evolutions collectively known as Lacrum’s Whisper.  The phenomenon, known as the Whisper’s Ghost, never quite expresses itself the same way, though generally the subject’s senses, dexterity, coordination and balance are heightened by varying extremes to a state superior even to fellow Astartes. 


They form a corps d’elite of the Arrows, separate from structures of company and squad, and often under direct command of the Chapter’s highest ranks.  Given the variance in effect of the phenomenon, the Whisperkin almost never work in tandem as a singular unit, but rather play to their individual strengths.  Some may exhibit extraordinary reflexes and situational awareness, and choose to follow the path of an assault specialist or master pilot.  Others demonstrate remarkable intuition and synchronicity with environmental conditions, making for marksmen of incomparable caliber which may perform duties as anything from a scout sniper to a heavy weapons expert.  Regardless of specialty, they typically deploy alongside the rank and file of their brothers, joining units of their choosing and acting as force multipliers and icons of the Chapter.  On average, there are no more than twenty to thirty of these individuals, and service alongside a Whisperkin is viewed as a great privilege.

 

TACTICS


The Arrows utilize tactics not far removed from the hunting traditions of their homeworld, expanded to accommodate tools not available in their former lives among the Tribes.  The most common tactic is one of dividing the enemy forces, as a huntsman or predator would scatter a herd to pick off prey at leisure.  In the most ideal circumstances, airstrikes and deep striking assaults as well as inserted Scout squads are normally given the role of dissecting enemy formations, creating disorder and chaos.  Outriders typically in the form of aerial support funnel any panicked or separated targets into kill zones, where they are bracketed by the ranged firepower of Devastators and Tactical squads. 


When enemy numbers are too great for such an approach, the Arrows instead harass enemies from exposed flanks by way of high speed hit and run attacks.  Those that break off to pursue are led into predetermined kill zones made by overlapping fields of heavy firepower.


When on the defensive, the Arrows will often employ forward elements which remain hidden until in the midst of an advancing enemy, springing ambushes and crippling the enemies’ momentum and targeting the highest priority enemy assets while reserve forces attack from without to exploit the confusion.  It is a dangerous tactic, and creating an escape route for the advance elements by weight of fire is as high a priority as elimination of the enemy.  The Arrows will also employ deep striking Assault squads when available after a trap is sprung, landing far from the entrenched forces to increase the disruption and confusion before falling back to friendly lines.


Under any circumstance, it is an extraordinary event when a Broken Arrow commander deems a situation a lost cause.  Unless there is an immediate and far superior use for their resources elsewhere, the Arrows are loathe to quit the field of battle while the enemy remains.  This is not simply a matter of pathological stubbornness.  Commanders avoid retreat at all costs not to just sell their lives dearly, but because the Arrows consider it an obligation to practice what they preach to allies- that duty as a human of any sort or station demands ill fortune be met with firmly planted feet and ready fists.


GENE-SEED


The Broken Arrows’ gene-seed is relatively stable, with only the slight degradation to be expected after hundreds of generations of recipients.  The one exception, being the mutation responsible for the Whisper’s Ghost, is neither strictly a product of Lacrum’s genetic pool or the gene-seed itself.  Those in whom the mutation manifests, however, are left with a heavy burden.  As a result of the unique biochemistry involved, the gene-seed over adapts to the individual’s body, and is consequentially unsuitable for implantation in a successor.  As a result, Whisperkin strive to utilize their gifts to the fullest in acts of insane bravery and prowess, driven by the determination to gain in legends the legacy they are denied in flesh.


CURRENT EVENTS  >>Gotta think of a better header for this bit


In recent centuries, the Arrows have witnessed an unnerving trend within their protectorate.  Unknown to them, the Kabal of the Scarlet Ire which they originally banished from Lacrum spent millennia rebuilding their territory in the shadow kingdom of Cammorragh.  Crippled and weakened by their loss to the Chapter, it took generations of strife to hold off usurpation attempts by rival Kabals.  When they finally regained their former strength, they turned their attention on their neighbors.  The Scarlet Ire seized realms of their rivals, and weaved webs of tenuous alliances, all with a specific goal:  to gain new gateways into their former hunting grounds around Lacrum.


The first sign of the enemy’s return came from Lacrum’s immediately adjacent systems. The worlds of Taravar, Simul and Raa were attacked within the span of a single year.  The Guard forces stationed on Taravar sent urgent distress calls, and were found disordered and crippled after a lightning raid of the Dark Eldar.  Civilians on the agri-world of Raa were discovered horrifically mutilated across their fields and homes, flayed, butchered, dismembered and violated in unspeakable ways to form unnerving alien sigils and symbols.  Simul’s population rose up in panicked revolt when they heard the news of their sister worlds’ fates and suffered a costly raid of their own.


The attacks became a pattern.  Steadily the regularity of raids increased, pulling the Arrows farther and farther from their home.  When a foothold was discovered and purged, attacks would come from yet another as yet unseen.  Moments that should have provided periods of respite and reorganization were punctuated with revolutions and crumbling governments born by the terror the dark menace left in its wake.


Not a single company aside from the reserve forces stationed in the Howlhalls remains within a year’s travel to Lacrum now.  The Scarlet Ire’s allies are given free reign to sate their horrid thirsts using the mysterious webway beachheads that dot the neighboring systems, sowing discord among vulnerable worlds and drawing their protectors ever farther from their stronghold.  The Kabal itself hungers for a reckoning nearly six thousand years in the making.  They’ve gathered their strongest slave-freaks and torture masters, shadow men and gladiators, the strongest and most lethal beings Commorragh can send flocking to their banner.


A hundred marines and tenfold that in serfs are all that stand guard to meet the coming legion of murderers and sadists.  Dark claws scratch at the ethereal skin of the Howlhalls, probing for purchase and weakness, lending a haunting wail to the breaths that thrum through its arteries and devil-grins to the shadows that dance along its walls.


The challenge made six thousand years hence has been answered.

 

SIDEBARS > For when I get the formatting down

 

The Perfect Weapons
Among Lacrum's Tribes, the art of crafting the perfect arrow is an ageless past time.  Arrowheads for bleeding, for piercing, for splintering within a hide or rending innards with every movement are matched to fletched feathers specialized for every type of crosswind, air pocket and turbulence imaginable.  The Broken Arrows in turn labor over their own weaponry in those precious few moments of peace, modifying range, recoil, and sights of their guns, and the payload, rifling and warheads of their ammunition.  For every prey there is a perfectly suited weapon, and the Arrows’ battle-brothers take great pride (and no small amount of amusement) in slaying opponents that most would deploy special and heavy weapons against with their lovingly modified standard issue Bolters.

 

 

Whisperkin Taeo-Tahako, the Gargoyle
Although his fellow Whisperkin have always strove for glory and a place of their own in the Broken Arrows’ stories, Taeo-Tahako was a grim and distant soul from the moment his unique gifts manifested.  He saw himself as different and disconnected from the fraternity, an infertile genetic accident, a mutant given honors by convenience of his uses.  He deployed and fought alone rather than with his brothers, acting as an unparalleled sniper, and more than a few times assassinating enemy commanders before the main force could even catch sight of the target.  It was on Haratus Hive that he earned his moniker, where he stalked the rooftops and pillars of the ravaged infrastructure in a private hunt of invading Orks.  Forays and assaults out from the defensive lines of the Hive came across his handiwork regularly-  pockets of greenskins slaughtered by pinpoint shots.  After a campaign of two weeks, the Orks were scattered and culled.  Taeo-Tahako was found perched on a broken wall well behind what were moments before enemy lines, idly tossing spent bullet casings into the brainpan of the WAAAGH’s slain Warboss below while waiting for retrieval.  Not once throughout two weeks of stalking the warzone did Taeo-Tahako touch the ground or make contact with the main Broken Arrows force, and much to his discomfort, he found himself the recipient of a multitude of laurels and praises. The title of Gargoyle was the only one to earn even a fleeting smile.
 


Edited by Firepower, 24 February 2013 - 04:37 PM.

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Octavulg

Octavulg

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Chapter lore has it that the Broken Arrows, successors to the White Scars, were founded on the purpose of hunting the ancestral enemies to all sons of the Khan: the dark kin of the Eldar. Illusive as the quarry was, the Arrows’ oldest stories speak of a successful campaign of detecting, repelling, and running the xenos raiding parties to ground from system to system, until the hunt brought them to a nexus of their foes activity, the world of Lacrum.

Elusive means ducksy dodgy and tricksy. Illusive means illusory. Illusive would imply the DE don't actually exist.

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‘The Tribes explained that the ruins were to be avoided. They played host to dark hunters that had plagued the world for as long as anyone knew: life was harsher hunting and wandering in the mountains, but nearing the ruins would awake the demons. The Tribes had oracles and shamans with stories of their own, one which sounded of unsettling potential truth; stories of saviors from the sky, of sons of lightning and thunder, steel men that brought both doom and salvation for Mother Lacrum. But oddest of all was the title the Tribes used, each and all calling us broken arrows, a term they considered self evident and would not clarify.

The language here doesn't sound like that of a story handed down from generation to generation amongs the somewhat tribal White Scars/Broken Arrows.

I'd just have the chapter named by its first master after a Tarot vision. Simple enough. Then when the tribes hear that these are the Broken Arrows, they nod approvingly and refuse to clarify. You could even have it be seen as an ill-omened name by the chapter before they landed, but then they come to realize what it means. Especially if the hunt against the Dark Eldar has had its losses.

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The hunters came the first night on shrieking wings and screaming airboats, and we knew we had found the quarry’s beachhead. The Tribes fought beside us, using their world’s winds to bombard the skiffs and knock wingriders from their mounts with dancing arrows, and our heavier guns met their tally tenfold. The night ended with bloody losses on both sides before the xenos fled. The Tribes tended to their fallen and wept for those less fortunate, those dragged off to the hunters’ homes, and we felt the term the Tribes used suddenly came with a venomous edge. Our presence brought the devils out, and we learned the meaning of a broken arrow- a sign of ill omen, a symbol of failure.

"Using their world's winds" makes it sound like sorcery/psykery.

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But we had a hunt to complete, and our guilt sharpened our anger to an executioner’s edge.

I'd be amazed if Space Marines felt guilty over this.

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Understand now. A broken arrow cannot fly. To have the quarry in sight and reach into the quiver for an arrow with its shaft split is a sign of ill fortune. But the warrior does not see a broken arrow. He sees a dagger. To be a Broken Arrow is to find victory in the face of failure. It is to turn ill fortune on itself. It is to meet a doomed fate and beat victory out of it. If there is nothing left of you but blood and hate, use it to drown your enemy.

You should probably stick something at the front of the story about how the term is no longer in use among the tribes (dressed up in more appropriate language, of course). Otherwise, your Space Marines is explaining a metaphor the recruits already know.

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The identity of the Broken Arrows lies in a philosophy of relentless determination in the face of the impossible. The Chapter’s core mission- the eradication of the Dark Eldar- is ultimately unachievable. The Imperium which they are sworn to defend is indisputably in its twilight years. For every enemy of man put to the sword, a dozen more wait to fill its place. Anyone who thinks otherwise is considered a fool, an unthinking zealot, or delusional.

They think this, right? At the moment it's a little unclear if this is their view or the omniscient narrative view.

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This uncompromising credo has led to ‘diplomatic issues’ on more than one occasion. The Arrows have a particularly notorious tradition with which to browbeat allies that they find wanting, rooted in another piece of Chapter lore pertaining to a war waged alongside a brother Chapter, The Throneguard, against an Ork incursion.


‘They fled. They saw that battle turned, that their strategy unfolded sour and flawed, and showed their backs rather than face fortune down and do their duty. We fought on and repelled the green tide from the field, but with losses that should not have been nearly as grave.


Our Chapter Master, Cayowakan the Stonesoul, to be Cayowakan the Redeemer in soon coming days, approached the Throneguard at battle’s end. He sought their Champion, and threw dispersions and curses at his feet, each one with a piece from his holy bolter. He named them cowards, fools, weak and unworthy of His blessings, until he stood with nothing but a receiver rod in his fist.


Their Champion met the challenge to their honor, blade in his white knuckled fist, anger in his eyes. Cayowakan speared that single fragment of his sacred weapon through those glaring eyes and into their greatest warrior’s skull.


They stood twice shamed, by themselves and by our lord, but Cayowakan offered them redemption. A final assault, with not a step backward, until either they or the Orks were dead, or all who know us would know the shame on their fraternity. They accepted, and we saluted with pride over their dead in the days that came.


And so we make the same offer to all those that forget their purpose. We teach them of the Broken Arrow in honorable combat. If shame does not find their spines for them, then let them find instead the hollow welcome of a coward’s grave where He does not see them. We do not share the glory of the battlefield with those who cannot appreciate it themselves.’

Better if a bit shorter, I think. Good name use.

Also, threatening to tattle about their dishonor sounds kind of childish. The Emperor would know. Surely that's enough.

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To be completely accurate, the contingent of Throneguard present was only 30 Marines strong, dropped into the thickest of the warzone by misdirected Drop Pods, and performed a fighting withdrawal in hopes of finding a more defensible position from which to continue the attack.

Not afraid of making your guys dicks, are you? tongue.png

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The base earned its title from an otherworldly howl that can be heard echoing through the adjacent mountain range for dozens of miles, with pitch, timing and duration changing with Lacrum’s mercurial winds. The complex of caves serves as an enormous wind instrument, creating a constant dull vibration throughout the center holds before building to an unnerving and deafening pitch at the exits. The Arrows regard the phenomenon as a sort of communion with Lacrum, interpreting their world’s wills, omens, and portents by its breath passing through their home.

This does slightly imply they don't have any doors in their fortification. That seems unwise.

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The Broken Arrow’s organization falls largely along Codex guidelines- ten companies of 100 battle-brothers each, regularly rotating one into reserves to remain on Lacrum and defend the Howlhalls. There are only two notable divergences. Firstly, the Arrows employ a larger than normal number of aircraft and Speeders. Flying in Lacrum’s environment creates pilots of a unique caliber, and the ability for rapid deployment and hit and run assaults is a valuable tool for their preferred style of warfare. They do not, however, share the White Scars’ affinity for bikes. Lacrum has no beasts of burden, and so the Tribes never develop a love for the saddle to extend into the Arrows, as Chogorins do for their parent Chapter.

I really do think flying and Lacrum don't mix, but that's as may be.

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They form a corps d’elite of the Arrows, separate from structures of company and squad, and often under direct command of the Chapter’s highest ranks. Given the variance in effect of the phenomenon, the Whisperkin almost never work in tandem as a singular unit, but rather play to their individual strengths. Some may exhibit extraordinary reflexes and situational awareness, and choose to follow the path of an assault specialist or master pilot. Others demonstrate remarkable intuition and synchronicity with environmental conditions, making for marksmen of incomparable caliber which may perform duties as anything from a scout sniper to a heavy weapons expert. Regardless of specialty, they typically deploy alongside the rank and file of their brothers, joining units of their choosing and acting as force multipliers and icons of the Chapter. On average, there are no more than twenty to thirty of these individuals, and service alongside a Whisperkin is viewed as a great privilege.

Elite corps, dude. It's not like the words don't exist in English. tongue.png

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The Broken Arrows’ gene-seed is relatively stable, with only the slight degradation to be expected after hundreds of generations of recipients. The one exception, being the mutation responsible for the Whisper’s Ghost, is neither strictly a product of Lacrum’s genetic pool or the gene-seed itself. Those in whom the mutation manifests, however, are left with a heavy burden. As a result of the unique biochemistry involved, the gene-seed over adapts to the individual’s body, and is consequentially unsuitable for implantation in a successor. As a result, Whisperkin strive to utilize their gifts to the fullest in acts of insane bravery and prowess, driven by the determination to gain in the Chapter’s legends the legacy they are denied in flesh.

What about the ferocity that is part of the White Scars' genome? (I'd say you have two options - have it be replaced by the tenacity/other trait of the locals, or have it be present).

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The challenge made six thousand years hence has been answered.

This is good, but if you can make it a little less omnipotent I think that would be good. A bit more hinting at what's going on, a bit less obviousness. Cutting the Kabal history while leaving the rest (and the line about claws scratching at the walls) would get the same thing across, I think, while being a bit more ominous.

Making it a sidebar would avoid the issue of what to title the section. That, or make it a Later History section after Origins.

No Battle-cry?

* * *

This is awesome. Honestly.

Edited by Octavulg, 24 February 2013 - 10:35 PM.

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