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Lightning, Cast From the Stars: An Ultima Refounding WIP

space marines primaris battle company successor chapter homebrew

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#1
FinalCookie

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“When you are beset on all sides, and hope sieves through your fingers, look to the skies. During these hours of darkness storms will gather to blanket the Emperor’s realm, and from them, he will cast down lances of lightning upon the unrighteous. Look to the skies, from there comes salvation.”
-16th Canto, the Saga of the Tempest
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    Welcome to the beginning of a new Saga. This blog will be a record of my ongoing project to create my own little corner of the Warhammer 40,000 universe; The Storm Lancers chapter of Adeptus Astartes. It will be a repository for the lore and writings I've come up with in support of this hobby project, as well as actual progress pictures of self-same project. The goal is to eventually create a full Battle Company of the Storm Lancers, specifically the 2nd Company, led by Captain Olyndicus.
 
    I'm hoping that posting this stuff, both pictures and fiction, will help keep me motivated to actually finish it, as I have a terrible habit of leaving my projects half-finished, both in this hobby and in other creative pursuits.
 
    The original inspiration for this project comes from a deep love of one of the core features of the setting: the existence of feral and low-tech worlds. It is one of the ideas that just drips with the grim-darkness that the setting is built on; that in a vast interstellar empire the lives of any great mass of it's citizens are so unimportant that they will allow entire planets to live in ignorance of such wonders of technology as gunpowder or sanitation, while others are granted access to life extending wonder drugs and other science fiction miracles. And to top it all off, apparently the genetically engineered super soldiers that help safeguard this horrible institution prefer to recruit from these places? It boggles the mind! It's such a ridiculous concept that it has been lampshaded in-universe, notably by the returned primarch Roboute Guilliman. 
 
    So of course I have wanted to do something with this concept since roughly 4th edition. And this is what I have come up with:
 
The Storm Lancers, Eternal Guardians of Taloth and Megiddo
    An Ultima refounding of a chapter wholly lost in the defense of the Imperium centuries ago, who now stand guard on the far side of the Cicatrix Maledictum against the ravages of the encroaching night. They seek glory, the currency of heroes, in order to work themselves into the never ending Saga as the galaxy burns around them. Those that benefit from their salvation would care little for the motivations of these Angels of Death, nor would they know the enormous cost of such martial zeal. Not since the crusade fleets of Indomitus deposited the Storm Lancers on the fortress-moon of Andunor has the chapter been at full strength, and the urge to take the fight to the enemies of mankind threatens to undo every strategy undertaken by the chapter.
 
   So far, I have completed a fair number of the core of the battle company, the Intercessor squads. I am waiting on some custom transfers that I have had commissioned, so none of these models have any transfers or markings on them yet. There are also quite a few details that need to be finished, as only one of the Sergeant's Thunderspears are fully painted.
5wbwyaW.jpg
 
Due to the curious nature of the chapter’s history, the culture of the Storm Lancers is one that owes much to the world from which it recruits it’s warriors. The original chapter did have a culture that reflected the founding progenitor it hailed from and millennia of service, but that has been almost entirely lost. The primaris marines who formed the initial core of the refounded chapter were similarly only barely affiliated with the culture of the White Scars from whose gene-seed they were forged, being that they had been created in the gene-foundries of Belisarius Cawl on holy Mars. And once removed from the fleets of the Indomitus Crusade, that influence was gone. The only one left was that of Taloth, and the determined aspirants and later astartes that once called that world home.
 
6Y2OTRe.jpg
 
Now, almost two hundred years since the end of the crusade and the refounding of the Storm Lancers, this cultural shift has taken many forms, and has reshaped much of the chapter. New forms and rituals are undertaken in addition to the rites laid down in the Codex Astartes. New battle formations and honorifics have been devised and bestowed based on ones common to the proud warriors of their native world.  The most obvious examples of this change are the chapter’s approach to warfare, the importance of records and rituals, and the spiritual links between tribe and chapter.
 
w3yk9gG.jpg
 
On Taloth, war is mostly waged through the use of cavalry and chariots. Most warriors are deployed at least initially on the backs of beasts of burden, with even infantry using mounts to redeploy rapidly in the manner of ancient dragoons from cultures on old Terra. Large six legged creatures serve as fast moving support platforms for all this cavalry, with large howdah perched on the back crewed by multiple warriors. When these natives became aspirants and eventually astartes, they brought with them this love of mounted warfare.
 
fwpK8Uw.jpg
 
They descend into war like a thunderstorm. Fire support obliterates enemy emplacements and pins the foe in place, allowing grav-transports to surge forward and rapidly deploy squads into the deadliest portions of the assault. Their eager cargo then surge forth and put the gene-wrought might of the adeptus astartes to singular use by tearing out the heart of the enemy in brutal close combat. And all the while, this brutal charge is carried forth by the sheer martial joy exuded from these ceramite giants. Songs carried by gene-enhanced lungs, great booming bursts of laughter and prose, all of this sounds as a clarion trumpet while the astartes of the Storm Lancers set about their righteous butchery.
 
In addition to the intercessors, here are some models that I love the look of, but sincerely wished had better rules in game:
PMgpyeS.jpg
 
Mythology and superstition even shapes how the marines view certain duties. On Taloth, spirits and creatures are said to haunt the world. Some of them serve Dyeus Pahter, serving as his servants and equerries, while others act in their own interests, both malevolent and benign. Of these, the most dreaded and feared are the furious dead, the Ve'co Marvos. Tales describe them akin to flocks of screaming razors, spirits stalking the dark and lonely places of Taloth searching for those who would be made dead, or are about to die. Their frightful keening and fury heralds the final end for anyone unfortunate enough to come across them, and it is said that those who hear the cries of the Ve'co Marvos while in the wilderness are marked for death. Wards and charms are worn by those who travel between the tribes to keep them away, while specific runes are carved and stones are raised to draw them to the places where the dead should dwell, like cairns and barrows.
 
7J6mo2P.jpg
 
Now, when Storm Lancers dawn the armor and death masks of Reiver squads, instead of wearing their normal livery, they have come to paint their armor black, and cover themselves in the runes and hexes of death. They call to themselves all the spirits of death and fear that they knew when they were merely frightful children on Taloth, for they have become fear; They are the Ve'co Marvos, and their vox-screams of rage mark the bloody end for any enemies of mankind unlucky enough to hear them.
 
Thank you very much for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it, for there will be more to come!

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#2
BadgersinHills

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Nice lore and wonderful painting, looking forward to seeing more. :)


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Maybe you could model TWC-sized "were-templars" who's inner Templar took over in the fury of battle transforming them into a giant half man - half templar?

gallery_62972_14467_9630.jpg. gallery_48988_16228_1694.png gallery_48988_16228_15684.png      

My Works in Progress

Profile picture by Julie Hang as part of Mermay. 


#3
FinalCookie

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@BadgersinHills thank you very much for the kind words!

 

I've been working on some vehicles for the company, and have gotten two of them to a pretty good state. Redemptor Dreadnoughts! I love these models, the size of them feels so much more correct than the old boxnoughts.

 

I also have a little bit more lore written up, this time about the first named character I came up with for this chapter. I have always loved the mythology behind lost heroes and ancient kings, especially those who are prophesied to return in the hour of greatest need. It's such a wonderful narrative that can be found in many cultures around the world, it seems to reflect a sense of yearning for ancestors and salvation that permeates our species. 

 

In trying to capture some of that feeling and magic, the idea for this character emerged very quickly, and was one that has inspired many other facets of the chapter's lore.

 

Brother Brennus, The Librarian, The King-in-the-Mountain
In the years since the refounding, Andunor has once again become a bastion of the Imperium. New excavations and repairs to the vast undercroft of the Fortress-Monastery have led to some startling revelations, the most incredible of which was the discovery of the Tomb of Brennus.
Inside a sealed and forgotten chamber that lay behind a collapsed tunnel, Brother Brennus had slumbered in the stasis of his sarcophagus. The last survivor of the Storm Lancers, he had laid dormant since the opening salvo of the greenskins, unlucky enough to be immediately cut off from the rest of his brothers, and cursed to lie idle while the chapter died around him. But through the nurturing guidance of the Omnissiah, the machine spirits that inhabited the life-sustaining apparatus of the sarcophagus kept Brother Brennus alive, slumbering through the centuries until he was found by the astonished chapter-serfs in charge of excavation.
 
jKsSc5X.jpg
 
Through the ministrations of the techmarines and the machine-adepts under their command, Brennus was slowly returned to consciousness, the damage of time and neglect repaired as only the mysterious ways of the priests of mars and their students can accomplish. Ocular sensors sent images to the remains of his cranium for the first time in 1,000 years, and Brennus beheld brother astartes once again.
Since then, Brother Brennus has served as a living link to the ancient past of this reborn chapter, regaling his newfound brothers with tales of their glorious forebearers, while also learning of the mighty deeds that have been accomplished while he slumbered. He assists the seanchaí in their efforts to reconstruct the ancient records of the chapter, when he isn’t taking to the battlefield himself in the sacred chassis of a Dreadnought.
 
rBVsjA0.jpg

 

 

Brennus himself is not incredibly over-ostentatios for a dreadnought, but I wanted his model to reflect that he stands slightly apart from his newfound brothers. He represents a link to a more streamlined, traditional marine aesthetic, while his brothers will become more and more enmeshed in the talismans and tokens of Taloth.

 

This other dreadnought doesn't currently have a name, and needs more work to get up to Brennus' level. Neither one is fully finished though, as there are some significant details, including decals, that I haven't done yet.

 

2t94ePG.jpg

 

And thanks again for reading!


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Kozhivan Imperial Guard - 5th Infantry Division


#4
Aarik

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Really lovely stuff, can't wait to see more!


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#5
BadgersinHills

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Looking really nice. The lore for Brennus is great, loving it so far. :)


Maybe you could model TWC-sized "were-templars" who's inner Templar took over in the fury of battle transforming them into a giant half man - half templar?

gallery_62972_14467_9630.jpg. gallery_48988_16228_1694.png gallery_48988_16228_15684.png      

My Works in Progress

Profile picture by Julie Hang as part of Mermay. 


#6
FinalCookie

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Hey all, back with another update! 

 

I took a break from working on tanks and vehicles, as the possibility of getting games in again made it important I get some more core units done for the Storm Lancers. I was able to get 2 HQ units painted up, as well as a counts-as Justicar.

 

First up, some of the command elements of the 2nd Company!

 

Captain Olyndicus, The Sarissa, Commander of the Second Company
Since the refounding of the chapter, the astartes who wear it’s heraldry have wasted no time in attempting to return it’s name once more to the honor rolls of the righteous. Every call for aid from the Megiddo Sector is answered, even if it only requires the attention of a handful of battle-brothers. There is a mighty need for salvation in times such as these on the far side of the Great Rift, and the Storm Lancers will do all they can to provide. Glory is there for the taking, and every plea for help is seen as an opportunity to add to the saga of the Lancers.
 
But there is a price to be paid for all of this righteous zeal. For all of the worlds they have saved and the heretics they have purged, the chapter attempts to be everywhere at once; to answer every prayer for aid uttered from the lips of imperial citizens. This has meant that the chapter has been continuously under strength, and struggles to commit more than a Battle Company to any given theater. And while the might of the Angels of Death means that it is rare for any threat to require more than this, when truly dire times come the Storm Lancers often find themselves facing seemingly insurmountable odds. Such is the culture of the chapter that for many Lancers, they would have it no other way.
 
Captain Olyndicus and his Second Company are just such warriors. Called, "The Sarissa," for his legendary decapitation strike against the Arch-Tyrant of Cinder and his Mutilation Hosts, Olyndicus has never failed to answer an Astartes-level threat in his tenure as company captain. Small strike teams from the 2nd spread throughout the battlezones ahead of the main fleet like raiders and outriders, striking key targets and installations across entire star systems before the main thrust of the astartes assault occurs at the focal point of the entire campaign. Olyndicus is always found at the formost point of the fighting, and it is often his direct actions and those of the battle-brothers under his personal command that bring a swift end to the conflicts he seeks. But in the face of the Age of the Dark Imperium, these respites from the din of battle last only a moment, even for those who are saved by the actions of the 2nd Company of the Storm Lancers. No world knows peace for long in times such as these.

rT5GOjs.jpg

 

Seanchaí, Those Who Speak With Thunder
History and relics are precious things to any chapter of the adeptus astartes, and the Storm Lancers have taken this to heart. The Reclusiam and Librarius pooled their efforts in preserving artifacts, records, and relics to the point that there are no longer any divisions between these two orders. Now they are known as the Lorekeepers, or seanchaí in the Talothi tongue.

All seanchaí carry with them the deep knowledge of the sagas of the Storm Lancers, using them to urge their fellow astartes to victory in the name of the Emperor. The deathmasks worn by this order mark them out, as does the sable coloring of their plate. Those among them touched by the power of the warp can be further identified by the storms of lightning they fling from their hands.

rwzJSSA.jpg

 

And finally, something that isn't exactly a command choice, but is a pretty cool character all the same. I've always loved the Emperor's Champion in both the lore and on the tabletop, and it sucked that there wasn't a real Primaris version of one for so long. Obviously, with the release of Indomitus, that's no longer a problem. And while I've gotten my hands on a box, I'm not super sold on the sculpt of the Judicar, and wanted something that hearkened back to that awesome Emperor's Champion model that everyone with eyes loves.

 

The Oathsworn Champion
Upon the commencement of battle, a strike force will gather together to observe many rites, the most important which is the Ritual of Oaths. During this ritual, the sable clad seanchaí will move among the assembled astartes, witnessing the promises of the assembled warriors to execute their duty in the name of the Emperor and the Imperium. Of these, there will be those who wish to take the ultimate oath, to personally deliver the wrath of the emperor upon the enemy's greatest champions. The lorekeepers will gather the warriors who wish to compete for the honor to take this oath, and make their choice of who will bear the burden of wielding one of the chapter’s few existing relics in the pursuit of glorious destruction. For the Oath they take is to slay the enemy’s leaders and warlords in singular combat, or die trying.
W8XeCqx.jpg
When these chosen battle-brothers stride onto the battlefield, wielding weapons of ancient and terrible fury, they become like warriors of legend. Called Oathsworn, they can be found where the fighting is the thickest, rallying their brother astartes and calling challenges to the most fell champions of the enemy arrayed before them.
n6uYvEC.jpg
Bonus shot of his other side because I'm very proud of the highlighting on his holster.
 
Hope this was as fun to look at as it was for me to create! Thanks again for reading.

Edited by FinalCookie, 04 August 2020 - 10:49 PM.

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#7
Bjorn Firewalker

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You're an incredibly skilled painter.
Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)

Warhammer 40,000+ Star Wars- Rian Johnson- Reylo= AWESOME! (Knights of Renaissance)

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement) or the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

#8
KBA

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This is fantastic. Great fluff and models. I particularly like Captain Olyndicus’s weapon conversion :)

#9
FinalCookie

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Looking really nice. The lore for Brennus is great, loving it so far. smile.png

 

Thank you! He's a personal favorite of mine as well. If there's every any sort of "Venerable" upgrade for Redemptors or something like that, I have a feeling I will be having another go at his model.

 

You're an incredibly skilled painter.

 

Thank you very much for the kind words, I'm glad you enjoy my work!

 

This is fantastic. Great fluff and models. I particularly like Captain Olyndicus’s weapon conversion smile.png

 

You'd be very surprised how long it took me to find something suitable for that. The closest stuff I found bits wise were difficult to source, so I ended up scouring the internet until I found a 3D model for resin printers, and had a friend of mine with a printer spin a few of those up for me. I was really worried about the resolution of the model, so I'm glad to hear that it stands up to scrutiny!


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#10
FinalCookie

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Back again with a small update:

 

I was able to finish up both the dreadnoughts from the 2nd Company! Both Brother Brennus and his big buddy are finished up and ready for the table. I still need to work on the Heavy Onslaught Gatling Cannons, but that's not a top priority right now.

 

0gutojf.jpeg

 

I was also able to get my hands on a copy of the Indomitus boxed set, and have set about making some small alterations to key units. Here's some bonus pics of the first two squads I have started in on! Obviously these pics are WIP.

The Bladeguard Veterans:

O1rGyY4.jpeg

 

And the Outriders:

 

ryts5bl.jpeg

 

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The origins of the chapter are shrouded in mystery. Originally a 6th or 8th Founding chapter, the force was created in response to a call in the Emperor's Tarot that seemed to indicate a vast and potent threat that would arise in the Megiddo Sector. It is known that the chapter served in several notable actions throughout those years of its existence, and maintained a proper gene-tithe to the adeptus mechanicus. Beyond that, imperial records range from secondhand sources to outright fabrications, due to the ultimate fate of the Storm Lancers; with the invasion of an ork Waaagh! at the end of the 39th Millennium, the chapter, along with much of the sector, was lost. The fortress monastery on the moon of Andunor was destroyed and looted, the only victory being that the sacrifice of the astartes caused the greenskins to ignore Taloth, a feral world inhabited by primitive humans and the source of the chapter’s recruits. The gene-seed vaults on Andunor were destroyed, and the samples sent to Terra became lost somewhere among the detritus of millennia.
Centuries after this disaster, the Megiddo Sector was returned to the Imperial fold; though it took a holy crusade and an ocean of martyred blood to do so. And while the citizens of the sector contended with the triumphs and tragedies that come to all servants of the Emperor, the halls of the Fortress Monastery on the moon of Andunor remained cold and silent. Nothing stirred save ghosts and old glories, the bodies of the astartes and their foe alike entombed in stone halls. 
But neither Chaos nor the Emperor worry little for something as small as time. And it came to pass that a doom eons in the making cracked the very sky in half, and ancient gods of war strode again in a galaxy of unending carnage. 
The Megiddo sector was confirmed as remaining in imperial hands when the fleets of the Indomitus Crusade reached it, though only just; The imperial defenders were beleaguered and bloodied, and teetered on the edge of oblivion. No space marine chapter of any strength survived within it, and the nearest ones would be unable to render effective aid with the light of the astronomicon blocked by the Great Rift. They would need reinforcement. They would need the Storm Lancers.
 
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Thanks again for reading!

Edited by FinalCookie, 12 August 2020 - 08:28 PM.

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#11
Doghouse

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I like these a lot. The Captain with the spear is especially nice and I like how much thought you'd put into who they are.


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#12
KBA

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Nice work on those WIPs! Loving your fluff. You’ve got a great handle on the paracosm. Man, those Outriders are growing on me— in no small part to your conversions.
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#13
Bjorn Firewalker

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Your models are well-painted.
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Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)

Warhammer 40,000+ Star Wars- Rian Johnson- Reylo= AWESOME! (Knights of Renaissance)

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement) or the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

#14
FinalCookie

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Nice work on those WIPs! Loving your fluff. You’ve got a great handle on the paracosm. Man, those Outriders are growing on me— in no small part to your conversions.

 

Thanks for the new word, and thanks for the complement! I've found trying to write for them while still trying to pay respects to the meta-narrative of the setting is surprisingly difficult, but rewarding.

 

I wasn't sold on space marine bikers for a long time, not even the classic guys, until these models. They take to even simple conversions and deviations very well. I took a look at some of your work-threads, and I have a feeling you'd be able to do some pretty amazing things with them!


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#15
FinalCookie

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A smaller update, just because lots of projects are starting to jump for attention on my painting desk. That Indomitus box is an embarrassment of riches, it's the best problem to have!

 

One thing that always stands out with the best space marines chapters, both official and fan-made, is the focus on culture, and the downsides of that culture. All of the most iconic chapters have some kind of hook, an elevator pitch that both defines their heights and illuminates their lows. The Blood Angels are filled with glorious purpose, and marred with a terrible darkness. The Black Templars embody the fearless crusader, but their zeal is as much a hindrance as it is a help. And so on. I've always thought this narrative angle should be the core of an astartes chapter, a theme that oozes over them like Agrax Earthshade.

 

For the Storm Lancers, their driving focus is an obsession with mattering. To make a mark on a dark and violent canvas, to prove that guttering flames still burn brightly, even as they are snuffed out forever. Their entire history is a question mark, providing the fleeting chance to forge something sharp, and bright. So each marine strives as hard as they can to earn glory, to test themselves in the crucible of conflict; to earn immortality, even if only for a moment. So great trophies of war are sought, weapons usually, from the most dangerous of foes. They are broken in ritual gatherings at the end of a battle to show how futile resistance to the Emperor truly is, but always, too few marines are present for this. Because for every saga that is forged through glorious heroism, many more Lancers lose their chance for immortality, dying in pursuit of a goal the Emperor never charged them in chasing.

 

But I was able to put some finishing touches on a couple of models this week, one that was preview earlier, and one that I just never took any WIP photos of.

First up, an unkillable floaty box! Impulsor transports are amazing and while I currently have two, I think I need more.

HDlQz3E.jpg

 

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The chapter was once the model of codex compliance, but in the years since being cut off from the wider Imperium, the Storm Lancers have steadily diverged from this mindset and have made numerous concessions to the reality of life in the Megiddo Sector. The largest divergence is in company organization, as the 2nd through 9th companies are all organized as independent battle companies. In the Imperium Nihilus, without the light of the Astronomicon, having inter company squad level support is an impossibility. Thus it was decided that each company would need to be as self-sufficient as possible, each company commander given the latitude to roam the starways chasing increasingly desperate calls for aid.
The 10th company exists purely as a training detail. Newly ascended marines aren’t deployed to the field until their Black Carapace has finished maturing and they can interface with Mark X Power Armor. Once able to join the fighting, these newly minted Astartes are quickly assigned to squads in one of the battle companies. This is so that they will begin to learn directly from veteran battle-brothers, as well as form bonds with the rest of the warriors in the company. The goal is to foster the creation of tight knit company relationships; to become ambaxtoi, a phrase in the native language that roughly translates to, “warrior companions.”
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And next up, I was able to finish up the Bladeguard Veterans I've been working on. I didn't add any greebles to these guys, I'm going to wait on the full box to start heavily converting them. I wanted to have a few of them as a baseline to compare the other veterans to.
 
AyesrWF.jpg
 
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In some ways though, the chapter has not diverged much since it’s refounding. The first company is made up of only the elite veterans of the chapter, just as the codex dictates. They are known as the Fianna, named for a mythical band of warriors that legends say killed the most dangerous creatures of Taloth and tamed the first beasts. In every major engagement, veterans of the first company are deployed at the forefront of the fighting, used as a thrusting spearpoint into the most deadly engagements. To become a member of this elite group a warrior must show a mastery of war in all its forms, then prove it by taking major trophies and composing stirring sagas. Every member of the Fianna is an accomplished warrior-poet who has both the skill to best the greatest of enemies and the heart to compose a song of their fall.
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That's all I have finished up right now, but hopefully I'll be getting those Outriders finished up here quick. Thanks for reading! 

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Raptors - 5th Company

Storm Lancers - 2nd Company

Kozhivan Imperial Guard - 5th Infantry Division


#16
Bjorn Firewalker

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Your models are well-painted; their backstory is competently written. Good job.
Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)

Warhammer 40,000+ Star Wars- Rian Johnson- Reylo= AWESOME! (Knights of Renaissance)

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement) or the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: space marines, primaris, battle company, successor chapter, homebrew

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