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Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths


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#1
Sticklefront

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Hi!

 

So... I've been out of the hobby for a little over 6 years, and although I've kept up to date with reading Black Library material and pretty much everything produced by Forge World, I've not so much as picked up a paintbrush or rolled a die. Some of my old acquaintances have started painting up new armies for the Gathering Storm event, and I got hooked in via Facebook to join in.

 

Initially, I had planned to start with Khorne Daemons, mainly because I would be able to dabble with 40K and AoS with the same army! However, one of the group is making huge inroads with a Daemon army already, so I instead found myself drawn back to Space Marines.

 

I've started off with a colour scheme, and a first draft of an IA article. I'll add fluff and ongoing history as it unfolds on the table. The creation and painting of the army is proving to be a great motivator, and I've written reams of stuff: for the first time in a long time I'm finishing models on the painting table too.

 

So... this is very much a work in progress; any criticism and feedback from you guys would be very much appreciated! 


Edited by Sticklefront, 27 February 2017 - 09:01 AM.

Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths: http://www.bolterand...-flame-wraiths/

WIP Flame Wraiths Project Log: http://www.bolterand...hs-project-log/

 


#2
Sticklefront

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Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths

 

“Doom. That is our gift to the xenos and the traitor. Nothing else.

Destruction. We live only that our enemies may die. Nothing else.

Duty. You are the instrument of the Emperor’s Will. Nothing else.”

- Captain Vorghar, addressing aspirant-recruits aboard

the strike cruiser Apparition

 

 

 

The Flame Wraiths are an isolationist Chapter of the Adeptus Astartes that for many centuries has  maintained a watch over an area of the Ultima Segmentum known as “the Dominion of Storms”. However, with no one planet as their fiefdom, they are increasingly willing to pursue their wars and Crusades further afield as they see fit; stories are told on a thousand worlds, across every Segmentum of the Imperium, of the sudden appearance of the Flame Wraiths, and the doom that they wrought for the enemies of mankind.

 

 

 

ORIGINS

Although records regarding their creation are simultaneously scarce, confused and sometimes outright conflicting, within the monolithic infostacks of the Administratum the Flame Wraiths are listed as one of twelve Chapters founded at some point during M37; depending on the source, they were intended as an effort to shield the galactic north-east following several costly xenos invasions. In some records they are listed as being born of the same Founding as the Celestial Lions, the Golden Spears (defunct), the Promulgators and the Brazen Fists.

 

 

 

GENE-SEED

The gene-seed samples that have been supplied by the Flame Wraiths show little mutation or instability. They are almost certainly drawn from Ultramarine gene-stock, and records show that they share many genetic markers with the Marines Errant, likely making them the parent Chapter to the Flame Wraiths.

They are susceptible to anomaly of their Haemastamen which, despite extensive testing by both Chapter Apothecaries and Magos-Biologis specialists, has shown to have little effect other than making their blood so dark as to be almost black.

 

 

 

DOCTRINE & ORGANISATION

The Flame Wraiths adhere to the organisational structures of the Codex Astartes, with a Veteran Company, four Battle Companies, four Reserve Companies and a Scout Company. They have always favoured the flexibility that this provides, allowing mission-specific battlegroups to be formed on an ad-hoc basis and counteracting the numerical disadvantage that the Astartes commonly face in battle.

Tactically, the Flame Wraiths practice a balanced approach to war that largely complies with the tenets of the Codex. They do, however, display a willingness to accept any number of casualties in the prosecution of their mission, paired with a preference for face-to-face, unflinching close assault that makes a Flame Wraiths combat action unlikely to end in a stalemate.

 

Livery10

Brother Zimas

Flame Wraiths Tactical Marine

Indethu Massacre, 833.m41

 

 

 

CULTURE

As a fleet-bound Chapter the Flame Wraiths do not share a common cultural identity, and in its place has risen instead a belief in individual deeds and hero-figures. Warriors from the Chapter’s past are remembered with fierce pride; it is not uncommon for individual Astartes to adopt a patron from the Chapter’s Rolls of Honour, usually a warrior whose deeds or accomplishments resonate with them in some way. It is believed that the warrior honours his patron by his actions, and in this way pays homage to those that have come before him. This veneration forms the central tenet of the Chapter cult; unusually, while there are rituals that all members of the Flame Wraiths must observe, it is for each battle-brother to decide for himself whether they are simply honouring the fallen, or if there is any deeper spiritual meaning to the practice.

 

Flame Wraiths marines have been observed to be taciturn, sombre individuals, with little time for conversation and aught but contempt for outsiders… even other Astartes. Their surly demeanor changes, however, the moment they are engaged in sacred combat with the enemies of mankind. Laughter, roared challenges and battle-songs fill the air, as individual warriors strive to outdo their brothers in feats of skill and courage. Their allies are left to look on, as the Wraiths set about their bloody business, caring little whether their erstwhile comrades-in-arms are keeping pace.

 

The Chapter also has a reputation for isolationism and aloofness that often sees communications from allies go unanswered. Even in the heat of battle, any attempt to co-ordinate with the Wraiths is likely to be met only by vox-silence while they set about the destruction of the foe according to their own, private war-plan.

This stems from a deep distrust of other Imperial institutions; the Flame Wraiths were created, according to scattered records, after both the Nova Terra Interregnum and the Age of Apostasy... some of the most dire schisms ever recorded by humanity. Even Astartes from other Chapters fall short of the exacting standards set by the Wraiths, and they reserve a special disgust for the Ecclesiarchy, which they see as wholly mistaken in their belief in the Emperor-as-Godhead. The Wraiths instead honour their gene-father as the pinnacle of humanity and as an unattainable ideal worthy of emulation.

Their beliefs also differ from many Chapters in their attitude towards their Primogenitors; the Ultramarines. They do not hold the Ultramarines to be any more or any less than any other Chapter, deeming them to have been simply fortunate to have been created first. If anything, the Wraiths see the realm of Ultramar as an inexcusable distraction from the sacred purpose of the Astartes- unending war and the destruction of mankind’s enemies.

 

They fiercely maintain their sovereignty from the wider Imperium. Forces of the Imperium must tread carefully even when pleading for their aid; something as simple as a badly-worded request or an improper gesture during negotiations is easily construed by the Wraiths as a heinous insult to be avenged or, at worst, an attempt to subvert the Chapter’s independence. Rank or title impresses them little; indeed, agents of the Inquisition have not been welcome aboard Chapter vessels following the Carnaga Incident in 402.m39, when alleged procedural violations during an attempt to induct Chapter warriors into service resulted in the summary execution of Inquisitor Trida Goernal and her entire staff. Further requests, later escalating to demands, from the Inquisition for the Chapter to explain its actions were met with no response, and the matter remains contentious whenever representatives of the two institutions encounter one another.


Edited by Sticklefront, 27 February 2017 - 08:59 AM.

Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths: http://www.bolterand...-flame-wraiths/

WIP Flame Wraiths Project Log: http://www.bolterand...hs-project-log/

 


#3
Draakur

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Very much like both the writing and its contents.

They're fairly subtle in their nuances I would say, almost to the point of being plain, but you skirt just shy of them veering into boringness very effectively, and I found myself enjoying everything the whole way through. Far from Mary Sues, just enough detail to give them character. I admire your brevity here, you've communicated their flavour effectively in a pretty short span of text, something I'm working on but am overall pretty poor at.

Bravo :tu: I'll be following along as you expand them.

Some questions out of curiosity/to assist:

- is that grey or silver in their scheme?

- do they have a Chapter symbol yet?

- how did they manage to quell the conflict with the =][=? This sort of thing would often times have a Chapter hunted down to the ends of the galaxy and purged with great prejudice.

- does the black blood have any significance?

+edit+
Just found your thread in the WIP forum, that's two questions answered...

Edited by Draakur, 27 February 2017 - 02:22 AM.

ATTACK is the only order worth remembering

#4
Zhiv

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Very much like both the writing and its contents.

They're fairly subtle in their nuances I would say, almost to the point of being plain, but you skirt just shy of them veering into boringness very effectively, and I found myself enjoying everything the whole way through. Far from Mary Sues, just enough detail to give them character. I admire your brevity here, you've communicated their flavour effectively in a pretty short span of text, something I'm working on but am overall pretty poor at.


- how did they manage to quell the conflict with the =][=? This sort of thing would often times have a Chapter hunted down to the ends of the galaxy and purged with great prejudice.

 

Plain is in a way, good. The chapters GW have established don't have anything particularly outlandish about them, as far as chapters go. They share some aspects and are mostly influenced by their home worlds and progenitors. 

 

However...

 

 

 

resulted in the summary execution of Inquisitor Trida Goernal and her entire staff. Further requests, later escalating to demands, from the Inquisition for the Chapter to explain its actions were met with no response, and the matter remains contentious whenever representatives of the two institutions encounter one another.

Stuff like this tends to lead to chapter being declared excommunicatus. Killing rogue inquisitor is.. probably fine. Flipping a bird at Inquisition would not be taken that well and would likely lead to chapter or three sent to bring the Wraiths to justice. 


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#5
Draakur

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Agreed, plain is good :) Plain with just enough character to feel "believable" and like they might actually have a place in the grimdark future is even better too, and is just what we have here I think.
ATTACK is the only order worth remembering

#6
Sticklefront

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Thank you both for taking the time to read through my stuff! I'm glad that you both seem to approve of the "vanilla" nature of the Chapter; that was very much my intention from the start- to take a "normal" Chapter and make it interesting. My first draft had all kinds of craziness scattered throughout... gene-seed spliced from two Chapters, chunks of the Chapter that had gone renegade in previous years, and so on and so on. It all just came across as too much, so I stripped it all back to bare-bones.

 

To answer a few questions...

 

1) Draakur- does the black blood have any significance?

 

At this point, not specifically, no. I felt like having a minor, cosmetic varience would do two things; firstly, it just hints that these aren't nice people, due to the connotations of darkness, wrongness and general ickyness that black blood brings to mind. Secondly, it leaves a plot hook that I can use for future events. Even if such a variance -is- harmless, maybe it makes someone else suspicious enough to come after them...

 

 

2) Zhiv- Stuff like this tends to lead to a chapter being declared excommunicatus

 

I'd like to spend more time answering this than I can at the moment (Grrr, work!) but in a nutshell; I've taken my lead from sources such as the Badab War sourcebook, specifically with regards to the Astral Claws and even the defeated Renegade Chapters such as the Mantis Warriors and Executioners, because it was surprising to me just -how much- an Astartes Chapter can get away with before the Hammer of the Emperor falls on them. Of course, in an organisation as varied as the Inquisition, there are also examples (the Celestial Lions on Armageddon, for one) where in fact very LITTLE is needed to prompt a crushing response... I suppose it depends on whether your case is assessed by a moderate, sensible space-detective like a young Gregor Eisenhorn, or a frothing loony with a pyre fetish like Karamazov!

 

 

3) Draakur- how did they manage to quell the conflict with the =][=?

 

In short... they haven't. It is intended, again, as a plot hook for future shenanigans... and also because my local gaming group has floods of Imperial players, and this gives me a reason to be drawn into battle against them without being Relictors-level renegades. As Zhiv said in his post, it may lead to a Chapter or two being tasked with bringing the Wraiths to heel at some point... modern 40K seems littered with examples of in-fighting amongst otherwise loyal Chapters, and that's an angle that interests me quite a bit!


Edited by Sticklefront, 27 February 2017 - 11:46 AM.

Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths: http://www.bolterand...-flame-wraiths/

WIP Flame Wraiths Project Log: http://www.bolterand...hs-project-log/

 


#7
Zhiv

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2) Zhiv- Stuff like this tends to lead to a chapter being declared excommunicatus

 

I'd like to spend more time answering this than I can at the moment (Grrr, work!) but in a nutshell; I've taken my lead from sources such as the Badab War sourcebook, specifically with regards to the Astral Claws and even the defeated Renegade Chapters such as the Mantis Warriors and Executioners, because it was surprising to me just -how much- an Astartes Chapter can get away with before the Hammer of the Emperor falls on them. Of course, in an organisation as varied as the Inquisition, there are also examples (the Celestial Lions on Armageddon, for one) where in fact very LITTLE is needed to prompt a crushing response... I suppose it depends on whether your case is assessed by a moderate, sensible space-detective like a young Gregor Eisenhorn, or a frothing loony with a pyre fetish like Karamazov!

Not that the source isn't canonical, but I have a feeling that after such an incident the Inquisition would have tightened their protocols. Cases with Celestial Loins*  and Soul Drinkers got big fat I attention much more quickly than Astral Claws, potentially suggesting that protocols regarding Space Marines might have tightened since Badab war. Hence I feel like it would make sense to tone down number of ignored demands / summons and simply note that Inquisition is investigating the actions of chapter. This already sets the mood and allows all the nosy Inquisitors to poke at them.

 

*misspelled intended, running joke from 2008 when I was here under different name.


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#8
Conn Eremon

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One thing to remember about the Inquisition is that it is not a single, monolithic organization. The Inquisition are only Inquisitors. In fact, Abnett's Eisenhorn/Ravenor series might be the only examples of organization that we have seen, and it's very localized.

 

So it's never a matter of what the Inquisition would do, but a matter of what a particular Inquisitor would do. With all the varied baggage of philosophy and authority that each Inquisitor would bring. This Chapter ended the life of one, and isn't telling those who noticed why. It sounds like what is wanted is that their philosophy puts them against the Chapter's actions, but their authority isn't great enough to do something about it. So it remains a point of contention that should have consequences, even if minimal, down the line.


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#9
Zhiv

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One thing to remember about the Inquisition is that it is not a single, monolithic organization. The Inquisition are only Inquisitors. In fact, Abnett's Eisenhorn/Ravenor series might be the only examples of organization that we have seen, and it's very localized.

 

So it's never a matter of what the Inquisition would do, but a matter of what a particular Inquisitor would do. With all the varied baggage of philosophy and authority that each Inquisitor would bring. This Chapter ended the life of one, and isn't telling those who noticed why. It sounds like what is wanted is that their philosophy puts them against the Chapter's actions, but their authority isn't great enough to do something about it. So it remains a point of contention that should have consequences, even if minimal, down the line.

 

But even if singular Inquisitor is not the whole organization, there was a mention of Inquisitorial demands. I would imagine most Inquisitors taking some kind of action if their demands were not met. Of course, if said inquisitors had no such authority / power, why would the rest of the Inquisition as an organization care about any possible transgressions? I.e. to have beef with an organization the organization has to be organized (duh). Alternatively you have only issues with few select members or perhaps a small sect. But if you manage to piss off (the whole) Inquisition, you ought to be be screwed.


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#10
Conn Eremon

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But even if singular Inquisitor is not the whole organization, there was a mention of Inquisitorial demands. I would imagine most Inquisitors taking some kind of action if their demands were not met. Of course, if said inquisitors had no such authority / power, why would the rest of the Inquisition as an organization care about any possible transgressions? I.e. to have beef with an organization the organization has to be organized (duh). Alternatively you have only issues with few select members or perhaps a small sect. But if you manage to piss off (the whole) Inquisition, you ought to be be screwed.


An Inquisitor's demands are Inquisitorial demands. Transgressing against an Inquisitor is transgressing against the Inquisition. Each Inquisitor is the Inquisition. It's a group of agents affiliated by creed and authority, not a structured system.

Running afoul of an Inquisition has extremely varied results, depending on the Inquisitor(s) involved. The authority they bring, the actions they choose to take, the other institutions and/or peers they involve. Plus the authority and power the Chapter holds in comparison.

Which is why the end result can range from destruction or excommunication, to a penitence crusade, to a shaky period of unfriendly interactions, disfavor and paranoia. Leaving a range of possibilities for the DIY's creator to choose from. As long as the result is interesting and believable.

Edited by Conn Eremon, 28 February 2017 - 05:34 PM.

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#11
Claws and Effect

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There is also the possibility that the wider Inquisition is unaware of the Flame Wraith's actions.

If they've refused to communicate with any other Inquisitors since then, then the disappearance of the deceased one might still be in question rather than confirmed that they killed her.

#12
utilityzero

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Maybe instead of being straight forward, mention that the disappearance of said inquisitor while meeting with the chapter has become a major source of contention and the chapter has been less than cooperative. Calling into question their honor and ability to protect imperial agents.

Also inquisitors act more or less on their own. That's how they get away with being renegade so long. A disappearing inquisitor would take a considerable amount of time to be even noticed let alone investigated.
1% of people know that answer to, "What's the F.T.W. stand for?" You're not one of them.
8% of teenagers dont listen to rap and 2% havnt tried pot OR drinking... and an even smaller percentage of people actually feel the need to bolster their own self-esteem by putting a spin on being rhythmicly challenged and having no social life.
100% of your base are belong to us.
50% of marines apparently get lost in the warp. If only the guy who came up with that plot had gotten lost in the warp first.

#13
Sticklefront

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I realise it's been awhile, but the big reveal of 8th and the new world order has essentially driven me to put this project on hold.

 

I really don't want to paint 100 marines to open up the new rulebook and be, like, "Eeew, they're so ugly. All Flame Wraiths are Primaris now."

 

In the meantime... I'm going to knock out a Thousand Sons warband.

 

To be continued...


Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths: http://www.bolterand...-flame-wraiths/

WIP Flame Wraiths Project Log: http://www.bolterand...hs-project-log/

 


#14
Sticklefront

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Okay!

 

So, after getting my hands on the new 8th Ed books, I've started to digest the new fluff and think about how I want to progress with the Flame Wraiths in this new Dark Imperium.

 

They are, true to character, going to entirely shun this "pretender" Guilliman, the traitor who consorts with filthy xenos animals and the Primaris plague that he has released upon the Imperium of Man. How dare he presume that he and his Martian pet would EVER be able to improve on the genetic perfection of the Astartes form?!

 

Heh.

 

So the Wraiths will continue on as they were before; I'll develop more fluff here, and push on with more painted examples over on the WIP thread.

 

In a way, the main point of contention in the current Index article above, that is, the conflict with the Inquisition, is neatly handled by the eruption of the Cicatrix Maledictum. I mean... who is gonna have time to worry about the Wraiths at a time like this? Their stomping-grounds are in the Galactic North, meaning that they are most likely cut off from the larger Imperium anyway...

 

So yeah. Good stuff. My motivation is back with a vengeance, and I'm looking forward to getting stuck in to the new edition!


Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths: http://www.bolterand...-flame-wraiths/

WIP Flame Wraiths Project Log: http://www.bolterand...hs-project-log/

 


#15
SickSix

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I really like these guys. As others have said, not special snowflake but interesting enough to give them character.

Looking forward to more and to seeing models.

#16
Sticklefront

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Added some pics of custom shoulder pads and vehicle doors that I've ordered for the Wraiths to my project log (linked in my sig).

Also have a bit of a fluffy write up of my last Kill Team game before 8th landed, but that'll have to wait til tomorrow, as work has me in a hotel room in Bristol...

Index Astartes: Flame Wraiths: http://www.bolterand...-flame-wraiths/

WIP Flame Wraiths Project Log: http://www.bolterand...hs-project-log/

 


#17
Captain Mike

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Went searching for fluff after I saw the models and boy was I not disappointed.

I really like the idea of patron worship, it's the kind of ritual and cultism that could reasonably evolve in a secular group of super humans.

Honestly I see little problem with them killing an Inquisitor. All they'd have to do is say they suspected they were heretical and the Inquisition would be miffed but no excommunicate traitors miffed. As has been pointed out, the Inquisition is inconsistent and very much a product of individuals.

Also good idea to have them reject Primaris and Guilliman. 8th edition is going to give us some interesting plot hooks. What are you doing about the big warp rift that might be running through their territory?


(My lot call it the "all you can raid buffet", I'm curious to see how other DIY chapters are responding)