Foreword: This is a project I have always wanted to do for the last 3 years when I decided that I would do one more space marine army after working on Blood Angels, Black Templars, Chaos Space Marines (Night Lords and Crimson Slaughter) and more recently Dark Angels.
The Helion Legion is DIY chapter created by games workshop staff member Steve Cuminskey. This chapter was featured in an extensive article about his chapter's history and how he used the then newly released space marine kit to update his collection. This article came from the very first White Dwarf magazine I owned (issue 297, released on September 2004) which I have enjoyed reading for the last decade and now I want to create at least one entire company of this chapter and expand its fluff with my own little additions as homage and to mark a 10 year milestone of clipping,painting and playing Warhammer miniatures.
Now with out any further delay...
THE HELION LEGION
▪ GENE-SEED: Ultramarines
▪ FOUNDING: Unknown
▪ CHAPTER MASTER: "Liege Maximo" Aegletes Rex
▪ FLAGSHIP: Gladius of Guilliman
▪ MAIN COLOURS: Charcoal Black and White
▪ BATTLE CRY: "Praise the sun for it is the Emperor's light!"
▪ CURRENT STRENGTH: 700 Marines (7 Companies)
▪ KNOWN DESCENDANTS: None
▪ ALLEGIANCE: Loyalist
Officially, No record of the Helion Legion's exact origins exist due either a clerical error made by the Adaptus Administratum or that their records were expunged by the High Lords of Terra for unknown reasons. The only things that were known about this chapter was that they were named as a successor of the Ultramarines and they were created to provide guardians to the furthest reaches of the galactic east. However recently uncovered documentation have given rise to further speculation among the administratum about the chapter's true beginnings.
These recovered documents provided information pertaining to the Siege of Helios of 857.M38. The same campaign which later introduced the Land Raider Helios to the imperium's arsenal. At this time the planet was engaged in a full scale war between the invading force of WAAAGH! Grimgut and the the defending Imperial guard. Several decades were spent on a planet-wide war where as time went on more imperial guard forces were deployed to the forge world to quell this threat but failed to turn the tide of battle. It was not until the arrival and aid of the Red Scorpions chapter had the war eventually ended in imperial victory.
What was found on the recovered datapads and ancient texts was that not long after the war had ended, a large number of the planets civilians had been conscripted by the Imperial guard on the authority of the Departmento Munitorum to replenish losses made in the war. Among these many civilians were children all under the regular conscription age of 14 and it was only these children who were singled out and taken aboard separate transport vessels from the others to be taken away to places unknown. What fate befell these children are not known to anyone. But the most popular theory was that they would become the first recruits of a new chapter which could explain why the Helion Legion were named as such after the planet they originated from. Though until the authenticity of these documents are proven genuine we can only assume this is the chapter's origins.
As of 999.M41 it has been noted that due to their chapter's deployment to the furthest reaches of the galactic east, The Helion Legion are among the most isolated of all operating chapters, having to constantly rely on scarce supplies and even scarcer reinforcements. However despite their current situation it has been reported that the chapter have managed to hold several worlds together through their efforts but they find even more challenges ahead as a they are still preventing several worlds from breaking away from imperial rule, Fighting off wave after wave of Ork raiders seeking to plunder what worlds they can and now even signs of Necron activity have begun to emerge in a few of the furthest planets in their current sector. Only time may tell of their eventual fate.
Like many Ultramarine successors the Helion Legion were originally a fully codex compliant chapter of 1000 marines broken into 10 companies as the Codex Astartes dictated. However after many years of being on active duty the chapter number's began to dwindle faster than they can recover, eventually resulting in losing 3 companies worth of astartes and aspirants.
To better safeguard their sectors from impending attacks and to ensure the survival of their chapter. The master of the Helion Legion, Aegletes Rex and the remaining leadership of the chapter decided to go against the teachings of the Codex Astartes and reorganise their chapter into self sufficient companies. Each one acting as a mini-chapter by itself with it's own scouts, veterans and support.
The Chapter Master and his company consisting of the chapter's best warriors would travel between his far-flung domains in the chapter's Flagship "Gladius of Guilliman", monitoring his chapter's actions and to provide tactical support to his space marines based on planet.
Due to the unique organisation of the Helion Legion, A typical Helion Legion company can consist of the following:
0-1 Captain, 0-1 Librarian, 0-1 Chaplain, 0-1 Command Squad
0-1 Terminator squad, 0-1 Dreadnought, 0-2 Veteran Squads
0-3 Tactical Squads, 1+ Scout Squads
0-2 Assault squads (Only one squad is equipped with jump packs), 0-2 Scout Bike Squads, 0-3 Land Speeders, 0-1 Land Speeder Tornado or Typhoon
0-1 Devastator squad, 0-2 Predators, 0-1 Land Raider, 0-1 Whirlwind
As a fleet based chapter the Helion Legion have no planet they call home. In their ongoing mission to protect the galactic east, several planets had been chosen to build chapter keeps which act as the chapter's recruitment post and as a resupply station. Normally a squad of 5 astartes would be stationed there to help maintain and protect the keep with whatever serfs and servitors they have stationed there,
As many fleet based chapters do. The Helion Legion's main recruitment source is from the many planets they have liberated and built chapter keeps on. Every year a Helion Legion vessel arrives to a planet in search of new recruits. Like their primogenitor the Helion Legion runs their aspirants through a series of trials to see who among them are worthy for geneseed implantation. The trials are as follows:
- Trial of Exposure - In this first trial each aspirant is sent off into the wilderness of their home planet with nothing but the clothes on their back. There they must survive and proceed to reach their goal however far it may be. Some of these trials expand over entire continents or aspirants may even be stranded on a island and will only succeed if they managed to return to the mainland alive and in time.
- Trial of Combat - After proving that they can survive the wilds and be resourceful doing it, The final trials consist of each aspirant duelling each other. Aspirants succeed not by winning the duel but how they win the duel. Once each aspirant squares off against each other, they will then proceed to bare knuckle fight an astartes without their armour and weapons. Again its not about winning but how you will fair against those stronger than yourself.
Once aspirants complete their trials only then do they begin the process of becoming a space marine.
Due to their limited resources and inability to call in other chapters for reinforcements, Members of the Helion Legion have learnt to make the most of their wargear and environment when fighting the enemies of man. While astartes wargear is always properly maintained and ready before any conflict it is not rare at all to see the space marines fashion crude repairs on their armour and weapons during a prolonged battle in order to keep on fighting. These battlefield repairs can range from welding scrap metal onto damaged armour panels to incorporating armour pieces and weapons once belonging to the enemy. In one noted event during the defence or Arkalli some members of the Helion legion were reported using Ork weapons when in the middle of a long siege when their own weapons ran out of ammunition or simply broke. These items would eventually be scrapped or discarded in favour of imperial technology after the conflict.
Pic: Helion Legion Tactical Squad: Vinicius on combat patrol. Escorted by a Rhino class transport.
Pic: Live Servo-skull feed depicting the Helion Legion battling one of their most hated enemies, The Orks.
- The Liberation of Foraois
One of the earliest campaigns the Helion Legion participated in was the liberation of the agri-world of Foraois from Dark Eldar pirates that frequently raided the settlements for resources and slaves. Retribution was hard and swift as within less than a years worth of fighting had the xenos turned tail and fled allowing the planet to recover and began trading operations again. It was this planet that the Helion Legion would build their first chapter keep for recruitment purposes and to act as a watchpost for any further Dark Eldar raids.
- The Mystery of Last Bastion
"Last Bastion", Once a world named Cithara, This planet was one of many ravaged by the horror that was Hive Fleet Behemoth, However unlike the many others that fell to the great devourer Cithara somehow had survivors. Approximately 2% of the planet's population still survived albeit barely by hiding in underground bunkers and tunnel systems. No one on the planet knew why the great devourer was halted and all they could say was that the aliens simply stopped midway through and fled. As if something on the planet, or the planet itself scared them off. After evacuations off planet were made. Members of the 4th Company deployed onto the planet and scoured the surface to make sure all signs of Tyranid activity had been wiped out. As mysteriously as it sounded, there were only a few stragglers left on the planet for the chapter to kill and no signs of other xenos activity were found on the near dead planet. At least. Not above ground.
- The Defence of Arkalli
While many of the Helion Legion's heroic deeds have not been fully recorded. It has been known that the "Defence of Arkalli" is regarded as the worst yet important event in the chapter's history. The planet Arkalli is the industrial heart of a cluster of imperial worlds at the limit of the Astronomicon. Predominantly desert, there are relatively temperate jungles along the coasts, but the sea covers less area than on Terra, and much of the world is barren, revived only by occasional rains. Most of the population live in the cooler areas but the buried remains of the worlds industry are in the wastes (the sea level was once higher and the deserts were once forests teeming with life.) The people who live in the deserts now are diverse groups of scavengers, living off the decaying relics of the original, dark age inhabitants and the hardy vegetation that survives there.
When the Helion Legion heard news of a large Ork WAAAGH! that had made it's way to Arkalli to steal it's machinery and resources for their own twisted mechanics. It was with haste that the chapter deployed to halt this menace and free it's people from Ork occupation. Fighting on the planet began simple enough as the chapter had divided it's companies to various areas on the planet to combat the threat on multiple fronts with the aid of the planet's local populace while the chapter's fleet and first company stayed in orbit to combat the Orks in the void. After several months of fighting the Helion Legion were on the brink of victory when the unexpected occurred.
Around the same time when the defence of Arkalli was well underway, A Nurglite cult had been forming in darkness of the planet's hive cities. With the Ork invasion providing a distraction for the imperium's finest an uprising soon began which allowed the planet's defences to fail and further allowing the Orks to overwhelm the planet. With the spread of death and despair across the planet, foul rituals were enacted by the cults to summon forth the curse the unbelief. A spiritual plague that rots the mind, body and soul of a "unbeliever" until the victim becomes nothing more than a mindless zombie hell bent on spreading the plague onto others. As the fighting carried on, So did in influx of chaotic reinforcements as not only did the human populace succumb to the plague but the invading Orks also fell victim to it, further exacerbated by the arrival of a Death Guard warband.
Though the Helion Legion fought valiantly, it's Astartes sustained sever losses due to having to fight on two fronts, against Orks and Nurglites alike. To this day the chapter has never forgotten nor managed to replenish the losses they had made in that war. Now and forever they burn with an even more intense hatred for the Orks and the followers of Nurgle.
Not a lot is known about the Chapter's fleet and it's current strength. However It has been known to include the following Vessels
- Gladius of Guilliman (Battle Barge)
- Sun's Respite (Heavy Cruiser)
- Saul's Sacrifice (Cruiser)
- Xiphos (Cruiser)
Created for the purpose of providing guardians to the galaxy and it's imperial citizens. Members of the Helion Legion are among the more humanitarian of chapters. Usually aiding the people they save rather than leaving them to their own devices once the fighting is done. Usually this aid comes in the form of helping them rebuild civilisation after war torn it all down and providing tactical advice to the new planetary defence forces to prepare them from future attacks.
Also being proud sons of Roboute Guilliman a custom came about where chapter veterans would paint a part of their armour in Ultramarine blue as a symbol of their genetic heritage. No one knows who had started this custom but those among the chapters ranks who earn the right to wear the colour do so with great pride.
However behind this face of goodwill and tradition, lies a deep and bitter hatred for Orks and Chaos especially followers of the plague god Nurgle. Ever since the fall of Arkalli members of the chapter would excessively study their foe's tactics and it is often noted that chapter fleets often respond to Ork and chaos attacks with utmost priority over other, sometimes more important duties such as patrolling planetary trade routes or even recruiting more members to the chapter.
As they are of Ultramarine decent , The Helion Legion have a very pure gene-seed. These are carefully maintained and preserved by the chapter's apothecaries and their apprentices to ensure they are not mutated in slightest so that they are ready for transplant into new initiates once they were ready. In the entire history of the chapter so far there has been no sign of mutation or taint that would bring worry to the chapter's future.
- Helions' Wrath: Worn by the chapter master of the Helion Legion Aegletes Rex. This relic powerfist from the Horus Heresy was forged using lighter alloys to allow the user to deliver more faster, but just as devastating attacks.
- Armour Invictus: The very same terminator armour worn by the captain of the Ultramarines first company: Saul Invictus. Following the battle of Utramar against the tyranids of hive fleet Behemoth, His damaged armour was recovered and repaired by the chapter's finest artificer's before it was bequeathed to the Helion Legion for use once more on the battlefield. Currently worn by the Helion Legion's Chapter master as his badge of office. Why the chapter was given what is essentially the armour of one of Ultramar's greatest heroes has never been explained and as such has earned the chapter some ire from members of their primogenitors.
- Sun's Radiance: A unique plasma blaster once belonging to Captain Saul Invictus of the Ultramarines. This age old relic fires superheated plasma at a rapid rate like that of a stormbolter delivering twice as much firepower than that of a regular plasma gun. It's plasma heat is so intense it is said to burn through Carnifex chitin effortlessly though it is also known to overheat very quickly after a a few bursts of fire. Like the Armour Invictus this was also given to the chapter for unexplained reasons. Only Marneus Calgar, Chapter Master of the Ultramarines knows why.
Liege Maximo Aegletes Rex - Chapter Master of the Helion Legion.
"No matter how many times darkness comes, The light will always soon follow"
Rumoured to have served as an Ultramarine sergeant before the chapter's founding, Aegletes Rex has led his chapter to many victories and through many defeats. With each failure he meets, he greets it with optimism for there is the chance he will aspire to do better. Seen as a Inspirational leader, brilliant tactician and fierce combatant it through these qualities that the chapter still retains hope that their mission is not for nothing and that their leader will bring them to everlasting victory.
Many great feats had been recorded of Aegletes Rex ranging from being able to beat down Ork leaders in close quarters combat to his use of tactics used by multiple different chapters such as the Raptors and Salamanders with great effectiveness but none had been more impressive than then he went engaged in single combat with a Tyranid Warrior and ripping one of its own scything talons off to use as a makeshift sword to slay the beast.
Liege Centuro Aelius Crastinus - Captain of the Helion Legion's First Company.
"Praise the sun, For it is the Emperor's light!"
A recent bearer of the title and a position he feels undeserving in, Crastinus achieved the rank of Captain after his predecessor and mentor, Captain Pious Augustus fell in battle on Arkalli against the forces of chaos. Ever since Arkalli, Crastinus has had a vendetta against the Death Guard Legion and wishes to avenge his fallen battle brothers only then would he feel he can properly accept his role as first company captain. Despite his misgivings his actions on the battlefield are nothing short of impressive and his ability to read the battlefield and deploy countermeasures against immediate threats makes him perfectly capable of leading the first company.
Pic Left: The basic uniform of an Helion Legion Tactical Marine The silver shoulder trim designates this astartes as a member of the chapter's 1st company
Pic Right: A Helion Legion Tactical Sergeant of the 1st company, 2nd Tactical Squad: It was not uncommon for those within the chapter to employ the use of parts if not whole sets of older Mk.VI "Corvus" power armour as wargear. As such some astartes will paint a stripe down their helmet to denote their company colour as Mk.VI pauldrons do not have the necessary trim required to denote company colours like the later Mk.VII "Aquila" power armour.
Pic: The basic uniform of a Helion Legion Neophyte.The tactical markings on the left shoulder denote what weapon loadout each neophyte marches into battle with. In this case this tactical neophyte would fight with either a Bolter or Shotgun.
Pic: The basic uniform of a Helion Legion Terminator. Note that the blue colouration on the left pauldron is a customisation made by the wearer in accordance to chapter tradition.
The Helion Legion primarily wear charcoal black power armour with skull white displayed on their right shoulder and left knee, A white coloured squad speciality symbol is located on the left shoulder pad and a black speciality symbol is located on the left knee. white gothic numerals are etched or painted into the corner of the left shoulder pad to indicate squad number. The colour of the Aquila or Imperialis on the chest is in a shining gold and company is normally designated by shoulder trim colour in accordance with the codex astartes. (1st Company-Silver, 2nd Company-Yellow, 3rd Company-Red, etc.).
While the colour scheme is standard for most of the chapter there is an exception to the rule. Due to the relic nature of their terminator armour and that most of the chapter's first veterans were trained in the Ultramar sector, a custom came about where all terminator and veteran power armour would have at least one or more armour panels unpainted or repainted to display the original Ultramarine blue as a way to honour their genetic forefathers.
The Chapter badge of the Helion legion is that of a black cross overlaying a red sun on a white background. On Squad Sergeants the right should remain black,just like his left and a cross on the chapter badge changes to white and the shoulder pad is instead painted black.
While modern chapters have their chapter icon located on their left pauldron and their squad speciality symbols on their right. The Helion Legion keeps to the old method of displaying their iconography as if they were wearing Mk.VI power armour. This is because most of the power armour in use by the chapter are either complete sets or mixed parts of Mk.VI "Corvus" power armour where the chapter badge was commonly located on the right hand side during it's use throughout the Horus Heresy.
While all other chapter markings are of a clean, angular design, The Helion Legion's markings have a more stylistic, rounded look to them. The red sun motif would also carry over to the chapter's tactical markings in a similar fashion.
Captains and the Chapter Master's tactical marking is a skull overlaying a Yellow Sun, on a dark red background.
With their unique chapter organisation, All scouts also receive tactical markings depending on their role given. Sniper rifles or heavy weapons are given the Heavy Support marking, Scouts equipped with close combat weapons and pistols are given assault markings and finally scouts with bolters or shotguns are given tactical squad markings.
Edited by Empurata, 18 July 2017 - 12:52 PM.