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The Palmyrene Spears - Homebrew Primaris Chapter


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#1
Gen.Steiner

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It was inevitable, really. No matter how many Spess Muhreens I have (and I have at least two, honestly the sheer number of power-armoured figures I own is outrageous) I knew that I would probably certainly end up with Primaris Marines.

 

I tried not to. I really did.

But then I went to Games Workshop with my son, and we left wit Know No Fear (and a Start Collecting! Orks, because my son is actually a Chaos Ork but I digress). Equally inevitably, he demanded the Death Guard because he is a fan of all things twisted and zombie-like, and I ended up with the Primaris.

 

But what to do with them? I have white Marines, black Marines, green-and-ivory Marines, I'm going to have blue-grey Marines and void-grey Marines and I even have a few yellow Marines and some blue Marines. I didn't really want to paint more block colours.

 

So this happened:

 

gallery_16610_13533_7294.jpg

 

Here's the story behind her.

 

The Palmyrene Spears – a short history

 

Per Actum, Victoria

 

Created in the early years of the 42nd Millenium by Roboute Guilliman during the Ultima Founding, the Palmyrene Spears are a Chapter of ‘Primaris’ Space Marines. Their Founding was ordered by the High Lords of Terra as a response to the fluctuating warp storms of the Cicatrix Maledictum; in particular the discovery of a relatively stable route through the Maledictum to the ‘dark’ Imperium. The region, known as the Palmyrene Cluster, was otherwise an average area of Imperal space. However, despite its generally unremarkable nature, the warp transit route needed to be protected, and as such a Space Marine Chapter was to be based within the Cluster as part of the Ultima Founding.

 

The initial Chapter was created out of whole cloth from Primaris Marines from Belisarius Cawl’s biologis manufactora on Mars. Cawl’s Marines, officially, were of Ultramarine genestock. However, unbeknownst to the High Lords, the Lord Protector, or even the Holy Ordos of the Inquisition, Cawl had, following an argument with Guilliman, decanted Marines that were unusual in two major respects.

 

Firstly, they are all female. As part of an experiment within an experiment, Cawl had successfully recreated some of the earliest Space Marines which have since passed from history. Tithed from a mix of girls from hive slum sweeps, orphanages, and a top-secret programme abducting children from military families within the Terran Defence Force, Cawl, with access to the Emperor’s own data, managed to do what no others had done since the earliest days of the Great Crusade. Given the rarity of Space Marines, no-one within the Cluster knows that the Spears are anything but normal.

 

Secondly, their genetic legacy is not, as all official records maintain, that of Guilliman. Rather, some originate from the Alpha Legion, and others still from the lost XI Legion. The split is roughly half, and Cawl experimented – successfully – with blending the two together as part of the attempts to utilise children of all genders as recruitment material. It is probably worth noting that the Techmarines have all been trained in Cawl’s own manufactora on Mars, and are markedly more secretive and reclusive than usual within most Chapters.

 

However, not even the Chapter’s own officers are aware of their genetic legacy, and consider themselves to be one of the many Chapters that draw their line of descent from Guilliman – a view shared, indeed, by the wider Imperium.

 

Despite this, the Chapter is decidedly not Codex-compliant. Whilst the Codex Astartes is indeed required reading for the Chapter’s members, it is seen as a set of guidelines, advice, and historic tactical and strategic problems with the solutions used at the time. The Chapter’s divergence is most clearly seen in its members’ battleplate, which is almost always obscured with warzone-specific camouflage. Officially, the Chapter’s colours are quartered yellow and blue, with silver or white insignia, and standard Codex colours for companies, rank and so on. Additionally, the Chapter makes extensive use of ambush, guerrilla, and sabotage tactics, and prefers to fight with overwhelming localised superiority where possible.

 

In its short life, the Chapter has fought Orks, Chaos raiders from the Death Guard Legion, and Eldar pirates. It has been as successful as any Space Marine Chapter, suffering its share of defeats as well as glorious victories against the odds.

 

Currently, the first Chapter Master (chosen from amongst the Chapter’s officers by ballot), Zenobia Bat-Zabbai, has the bulk of the Chapter split into reinforced company groups, roving the Cluster on wide patrol sweeps. It is through these sweeps that most of the Chapter’s combat actions have taken place.

 

The Chapter’s homeworld is the death world of Sidon, populated by semi-feral tribal humans whose girls are routinely tithed in a series of deadly games – as part of their ascent into adulthood, children of the tribes are expected to perform a series of tasks. Some of those who succeed are taken by the Chapter’s Librarians to their mountain-top fortress-monastery, where they begin the long process of alteration, induction and training to become Palmyrene Spears.

 

As with any Space Marine Chapter, the Chapter has access to a small fleet of ships, mostly Strike Cruisers and Gladius-class frigates, with a small number of Sword-class destroyers for picket duties and escort.

 

Its relations with other Imperial bodies and authorities within the Palmyrene Cluster are generally good, although the Lord Militant of the Cluster and much of his upper command echelons do feel rather piqued that the High Lords felt that a Space Marine Chapter was required to assist in the defence of the Cluster and its all-important transit routes. Some consider this little more than an insult to the proud martial traditions of the local Defence Forces and Imperial Guard Regiments. Those whom the Chapter has aided, however, be it against marauding Orks, reaving Eldar or the malodorous warriors of the Death Guard, have a somewhat different and more positive view.

 

As a new Chapter, with just under a century’s campaigning, it is still bedding into the Cluster, and developing its relationships with the Navy, Guard, local Defence Forces, planetary governors, and other assorted structures. Some friction is inevitable, but the Chapter tends to remain largely unaware of the ripples its presence has caused within local political structures – primarily because most unaugmented humans tend to quail in the presence of armoured eight or nine foot tall superhuman warriors. A tentative bond of reciprocal support has been made with the Knights of the feudal agri-world Hegra Come, whom the Palmyrene Spears assisted in the repulsion and destruction of an Eldar pirate band that had plagued that world for several centuries.

 

The Chapter’s motto, Per Actum, Victoria (Through Action, Victory) underlines their aggressive approach to combat – to always be acting, to be in a position of aggressive offensive dominance that overwhelms the enemy, leaving them unable to respond or to take or regain the initiative either tactically or strategically.

 

With such an important role as gatekeepers and wardens of one of the few relatively stable transit routes from one side of the Maledictum to the other, the Palmyrene Spears will undoubtedly become a storied and experienced Chapter over the next few centuries.

 

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Thoughts on my heretical heresies welcomed! smile.png


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#2
Lysimachus

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Blimey, you don't do things by halves, do you? :P Female Space Marines with mixed, Traitor and Lost Legion geneseed!

Of course, if you're going to get away with that kind of stuff, the Ultima Founding is clearly the one to go with. I can definitely see Cawl playing about with all of the above (although I slightly question whether even he would've rolled them all up in one Chapter?)

I do wonder slightly about the idea of a clear channel between the halves of the Imperium, it seems to me that something like that would be more important, probably under constant attack and therefore guarded by far more than one Chapter. I'm thinking multiple Chapters, Fleets, Fortress worlds (a la Cadia), etc. The point being, if it was there and that important, why wouldn't we have heard of it in official fluff?

All of that said, I absolutely love the idea of them using battlefield specific camo, it very much fits with how I see the Primaris as new, professional soldiers not bound by traditions. And your painting of the scheme is just excellent, really nice work!

Edited by Lysimachus, 28 July 2017 - 02:45 PM.


#3
Gen.Steiner

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Doing things by halves is the work of Traitors!!

Actually, I'm in two minds about the Lost Legion bit; it's often overdone. I might stick to one or t'other... I only threw in the Lost Legion bit because I was doing gurl Marines.

Which do you think is the better option; Lost Legion genetics or Alpha Legion? I quite like the Alpha Legion option because they're super sneaky and Cawl is absolutely going to do something silly like use them.



#4
Olis

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Yes to the dropping of the Lost legion stuff. Got no qualms about that. However, making them Alpha Legion does set you up for some terrible clichés (such as them being sneaky purely because they are of Alpha Legion geneseed). I'd recommend them not being sneaky but relatively normal for now - the potential for an 'I am your father' moment with actual Alpha Legionnaires (well, less 'father' more 'brother') is a much richer source to tap, I believe.


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#5
Gen.Steiner

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The idea behind them isn't so much sneaky as pragmatic, so if wearing their Chapter colours and wading through a mob of screaming cultists, impervious to their fists and bullets, will aid them in victory, they'll do it; equally if victory will come from lying in ambush for three days in all sorts of camouflage, that's fine too. Generally they operate like a 41st Millenium version of, say, the SAS, or SOCOM troops, or whatnot - but are (being Spess Muhreens) quite capable of also operating like Russian Spetsnaz - that is, as ultra-trained professional soldiers with superb equipment and esprit de corps fighting conventional battles against comparatively much less well equipped and less well trained enemy forces.

I'll certainly drop the Lost Legion stuff; the Alpha Legion geneseed is just because I like the Alpha Legion (who are everywhere mwahahahaa) but they could just as easily be, say, World Eaters or Death Guard - after all all the genetic material really does beyond provide the base on which all the implants, modifications and chemical boosts sit, as far as I know, is influence the Marine's appearance a bit. After all having a bit of Angron's genes doesn't (as we see with the War Hounds) actually automatically make you a frothing nutcase. Right?



#6
Olis

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Indeed. Nature vs nurture plays a good part of just exactly what to expect from marines, and the dichotomy of the two can act as a good foil to question the Chapter's existence, motives and character with.


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#7
Gen.Steiner

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It's the sort of debate that is played out between Guilliman and Cawl, wherein Guilliman protests that there are Primaris Marines who, like the Spears, are created with 'traitor' geneseed - nevermind the Grey Knights - and Cawl replies that it is not the Marines at fault but their gene-parents...

 

I shall have a mutter and a mumble and a re-write of the background above shortly. Off to paint some more Palmyrene Spears now.



#8
Servant of Dante

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Interesting stuff biggrin.png I like the colors.

 

 

Edit: But the symbol on their knee definitely looks like a dollar sign ( $ ) to me


Edited by Servant of Dante, 30 July 2017 - 01:24 AM.

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#9
Captain Mike

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Only qualm I had was with traitor gene seed too. Not in principle, just in combination with female space marines. Why would Cawl try two experiments at once when he has so many primaris chapters to experiment on? But seems youre taking that out anyway?

Rest of it is good fluff, good sense of purpose of the chapter as well. It's nice to see chapters having a role or territory.
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#10
Gen.Steiner

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I see the traitor geneseed as Cawl being pragmatic - he has to make these new Marines, he has this material to work with, let's use it. Definitely removing the Lost Legion bit but I will keep the 'bad' geneseed as the nature/nurture debate is a good one to riff off of. I just don't know if I want to do Alpha Legion or something more esoteric given their style of operation - maybe Death Guard or perhaps Emperor's Children or even Night Lords?



#11
Wargamer

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Well the Codex doesn't say anywhere that Marines of either stripe must be male...

Personally, I'm not a fan of a Primaris Chapter being non-Codex, especially one posing as an Ultramarine successor. They just haven't been around long enough to wander away from doctrine. But that said, the Codex does have a section on camouflage, albeit one most Marines consider unimportant.

"Taekar!" - Supernovan motto, battle cry, insult and general-purpose word.

 

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#12
Gen.Steiner

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Ah, but they never followed doctrine in the first place. ;) They've always considered the Codex to be a handy document that gives lots of historical examples of battles fought and tactics used - and campaign strategies and so on and so forth.

 

When 'on parade' they look like a classically Codex Chapter, but their battlefield appearance is very much at odds with what the Codex decrees. Pragmatic practicalities trump parade ground obedience, as far as they're concerned.






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