I’m also planning an unofficial 40K mod of Spheres of War. The focus will be on the Space Marines, using modified rules used for the Legionary power armoured troops. Rules play-tested for the Marines can be transferred over to the Legionaries, and vice-versa. Killing two birds with one stone, or bolt in this case. (Though a exploding bolt would take out several!) Of course you can use Marines as stand-ins for Legionaries. I’ll be targeting the ‘true-scale’ gamer.
Power-Armour will be handled the same for both, and I’ll introduce a couple of variants for the bolter, including my Philverse ‘Octo-bolt’ which is a multi-mode ammo for the bolter. A bit like Judge Dredd Lawgiver but it does not use different ammo. It is not the gun that has modes, it is the ammo.Read the rest of this entry »
Fellow Bolter & Chainsworder Gust0o painted up one of my Aquamarines for his ambitious Deathwatch 40K – Every Chapter Project. I posted the paint job below, which I’m sure you will agree is superb. Very crisp and professional. Gust0o plans to paint up one example of all the canon chapters and a select few fan chapters, and I am honoured he has chosen one of my chapters to include in his project. I’m hoping he works his way through the entire 1,000 Chapter Project, or at least the Primary List (canon+DIY) :)
Fan projects like this are the life-blood of the 40K community. So why not pop by his FaceBook page and show support, lobby for your (fan made) chapter to be included (also swing by B&C for it to be included in the 1K Project), and if you have plans for a crazy project of your own then why not start today?
I’ve added alphabetical listing to the one thousand chapter project. Now you can quickly sort through all the chapters. I’ve also threw in first and second foundings on the canon listing. Since I’ve been away, GW has released a lot more information about many of the canon chapters found in the gallery, along with some new chapters (which I’ll be adding). I’ll be working through them all in my spare time, creating all the new images, which is time consuming so it may take a while. I’ve already sneaked in a couple of updates, adding in bolters for chapters we now know the bolter colours of. I’ll post an update here for the canon chapters once done: a little mini-gallery of all the new chapters and changes made. In the meantime here is the Crimson Castellans, an update for one of the ‘blanks’.
After that, I’ll ask the mods over on Bolter and Chainsword to re-open the old submission thread. If they cannot do that I’ll sort out a submission form here. Then I’ll be able to take on new chapter submissions – I’m sure the Space Marine fans have been very busy while I’ve been away!
It’s been a long time since I last looked at the 1,000 chapter project thread over on Bolter and Chainsword, and the last official update was back in 2012! Has it really been that long? I guess it has. So I had a read through the last part of the thread and collected all the updates, basically 5 new chapters (Dancing Scythes, Ghosts of Retribution, Helios Guard, Praetorians, and the Thunderbolts), and a few updated images (Black Guard, Libators, Patriarchs of Ulixis, and the Emperor’s Shadows).
It was a lot of fun updating this, and reading about some interesting chapters!
Here is a link to the updated project: 1,000 Chapters
This post follows on from the previous post: ‘Space Marine Capabilities’. The concept is to extrapolate the battlefield role of Space Marines using the capabilities defined in that post, and drawing in other concepts and definitions defined in ‘Philverse’. Where possible I will add a link to any concepts referenced. Now we have an idea of what a marine can endure, it clarifies what their role on the battlefield really is – or what it should be.
Now we have an understanding of what a Space Marine’s Power Armour can physically resist, it seems glaring obvious that they are vulnerable to fixed weapons and heavy weapons. Space Marines may be small in comparison to an APC or IFV, but they are not going to want to be caught out in the open. This means they will have to use cover like everyone else. However using cover is not really ‘shock troop’ enough for Space Marines, we need a way to get them into combat far quicker, yet with the element of surprise (the whole idea of shock!). One of the fluff heresies I introduced was the idea of active camouflage.
This means the outer ablative layer is going to get an application of active camouflage material (rather than a Predator like cloaking field – which would be great but a bit too high-tech). This material will mimic the surrounding terrain and materials. In combination with this active camouflage surfacing, the armour also needs a way to manage it’s heat signature. This can be done with a thermoelectric layer to recover heat energy and convert it to electricity for storage. Therefore the armour would emit very little heat and this would counter vision enhancement gear that scans for IR (infrared) and T-rays (Terahertz radiation).
This means it is quite hard to detect a stationary Space Marine while their active camouflage is on. This would depend on surroundings. While in soft cover they would be very hard to make out even when directly looking at them, but they would be much easier to see in desolate terrain like a desert (for some missions they may need an active camo cloak to breakup their outline). In the dark they would be virtually impossible to see (even if lookouts are equipped with IR gear, and other advanced scanners).
Colour of fear?
The use of active camouflage does require some justification. There is a famous quote in 40K that camouflage is the ‘colour of cowardice’.
It is also true that the Marines primary aim is to kill the enemy. If camouflage allows them to circumvent heavy weapons, avoid looses, allowing more marine to survive to kill the enemy behind those heavy weapons – the Marine may accept this as necessary. In effect their camouflage allows them to get to enemies ‘hiding’ behind heavy weapons.
It may be that camouflage is frowned upon only in certain situations. Standing up and getting your head blow off with a heavy weapons is worse than sneaking about. Camo is the lesser of the two; sneaking about trumps having no head. A Marine may not like sneaking about, but they console themselves that any dishonour they feel will be taken out on the enemy – ‘How dare you force me to sneak about!’.
Another areas where active camouflage really shines in counter guerilla warfare. Guerilla fighters will flee from marines, often with the aim to leading the Marines into a heavy weapon kill zone, so the marines have to sneak up on them. In this instance ‘camouflage’ allows the Marines to engage enemies who will flee. In this instance it’s a lot like hunting. Though for this role I imagine the Scouts would cut their teeth.
The idea is for the marine to get across open ground and behind enemy lines without detection. Once behind enemy lines they are clear of most fixed weapons and can resort to shock tactics. The first is changing the active camouflage layer to their chapter colours, which makes then highly visible (most marines have very bright chapter colours). For an enemy to suddenly be confronted with massive 7-8′ Space Marines, encased in small arms resistant armour, in and amongst their number is going to be quite a shock and the resulting combat is going to be chaotic (this is a big reason for my notes in the bolter, as having Power Armour be bolter resistant would greatly reduce the casualties of friendly fire: so the Marines can really let rip). The enemy are probably armed with small arms and this is not going to affect the Marines. This means the enemy is likely to rout as the marines can mow them down with impunity.
Another way to get into the enemy complex would be via drop pod. Using the ideas I put forward in my drop pod article, they marines can smash into the enemy complex at high speed, creating a huge blast crater on impact, and deploy. They could use the edges of the crater for cover and many bunkers would be damaged.
Taking all this into account a Marine would remain hidden for the most part until they are behind enemy lines. Once behind enemy lines they would change back to their chapter colours and let rip. This would be extremely shocking to the enemy, and disrupt enemy lines. Being attacked by Marines from behind, while all your heavy weapons are facing the other direction, is going to cause chaos.
Table top game
I suppose if you translated this into the table top game, the marines can be ‘teleported’ in. This ‘teleport’ is not a real teleport, it merely accounts for their stealth abilities. Such an attack would force psychology tests and most likely make many opponents flee (or at least move away to regroup).
Looking at this type of attack, it would seem appropriate to allow the IG to deploy Marine allies in this manner as a surprise attack.
In the open Marines would be harder to target, and modifiers would apply. Renegade humans would be very vulnerable to Marines, but aliens may be far more capable.
I suspect the Eldar could track them (through psionics), so could the Nids and Necrons, maybe even the Orks have an idea where the Marines are by instinct. In these instances perhaps the Marine player could use ‘blips’ from Space Hulk to disguise the true nature of his units.
Small arms would be less effective: so uprate their armour value in some way. There would also be a few special rules – like weaker values when facing power weapons. I’m not too keen on the Armour mechanics, perhaps simply added the value to the T score? Another debate for another time.
It seems a few fans are suspicious of the 1,000 chapter project, or rather the intent behind the project. It seems a common misconception that the project is attempting to set everything is stone. If this were the case it would indeed stifle creativity in the long run, and deny many fans a name of their choice because it is already in the list. This is not the case. Below is a reply to a post made on Warseer (it references the Warseer threads relating to the 1,000 chapter project).
This is an overview of what a Space Marine can do according to the ‘Philverse’ explanations of 40K technology. The aim is to provide a framework that re-enforces the heroic image of the 40K Space Marine. As 40K matures and pushes more and more into new media like computer games and movies, it seems the capabilities of the Marine changes to match the new medium. I know the Black Library’s position is to take 40K and make it ‘real’, and therefore bring 40K to life, and that approach yields very different Marine compared to the table top game. The same holds true for computer games like Dawn of War. None of these various media versions of Marines seem very compatible with each other, and often each new expansion seems to drift towards Marine mediocrity.
This can lead to Marines being portrayed in a way that does not seem to match what they are. Often they seem to acting like trigger happy ‘mooks’ or ‘cannon fodder’, and end up being killed off in droves. This popular image jars with supposed tactical prowess, robustness, and fire-power of the Angels of Death. It makes even less sense when we consider their rarity, and the difficulty of the conversion process of man into marine.
Either they are the ‘elite of the elite’ (and should act like it) or they are not (and should not be purported as such). It would be nice to have an overview of what a Marine can actually do, and how they act. To define their abilities and character in a ’40K cheat sheet’. This could help to avoid the Marines ending up in roles that make little sense for a Marine – often nothing more than new clothes to wrap up the same old mooks.
The idea of this post is simple enough: work out how marines can function on the battle field if they really are as good and smart as they are said to be. To close the discrepancies between what they, and their gear, is said to be able to do – and how it ends up being portrayed. I’ll start with my ideas on Power Armour, and how effective I think weapons should be against it. When I get the chance I’ll follow up with some more ideas. Remember this is ‘Philverse’ version of 40K, and while I’ll try and match 40K canon as I see it, I may diverge in my musings…
I had the pleasure of watching the Ultramarines movie thanks to a friend. To cut to the chase I did enjoy it, but overall it did not hang together as a Space Marine movie. I had to use a bit of mental gymnastics to deal with the ‘logic bomb’ at the heart of it (that may be a bit strong, I’ve only just watched it, and I may mellow in the days to come :P ).
Please do not read this if you have not seen the movie as what follows may spoil your enjoyment. I have tried to stay away from the actual story and concentrate on the underlying premises. This is very nerdy, and only really applies to fans who take 40K far too seriously to be healthy. Most will not care one jot about what bugged me. If you can forgive the taint of nerd rage, please read on;
The Space Marine Morphology page has been updated with an expanded ‘Growth and Maturity’ section. This is a mix of old material with additional explanation. I’ve denoted it as ‘optional’ to make it clear it can be separated out from the main concept, as the main Marine design concept is closely based on canonical information and Jes’ notes, while the growth section is wild speculation.
This section deals with the variations in marine size found throughout Games Workshop publications. It’s entirely possible for such variations to be natural. Some marines may simply grow taller than others. This does raise an interesting curiosity should this be the case: that in 40K marine heroes tend to be depicted as being taller than 7′ and more often 8′. It could be that the larger marines are more heroic? This would further plays into Western ideals of heroes being exceptional by bloodline, and there is nothing wrong in that interpretation, but on its own I find it a little ‘narrow’ in vision. It could do with some more variations added into the pot. What follows is an additional way to explain why marine heroes tend to be taller. It can be used in conjunction with the first.
Read more @ Space Marine Morphology
The 1,000 chapter project has hit 1,001! This means there are some changes coming in the way it is organised. There are 474 MIA chapters in the gallery, and these all need to be claimed (converted to a DIY) or replaced. Dazzo and myself take the view that we should sort out a new ‘prime’ list (or whatever it will be called) that will display only canon and DIY chapters. At the moment this would yield a mere 525 chapters – so quite a way to go before this prime list gets up to 1,000!
The MIAs are not going to be discarded, instead they will be included in a massive ‘all’ list. I want to keep them about as a fan may yet spot their chapter among the MIAs, it may also inspire some, and some may want to claim and take over MIAs.
There are plans to deal with double ups. At a later date I’ll add some code that will add clickable asterisks next to the chapter name that will denote alternative versions. These alternate versions could be fan made IA for official chapters that have not be developed by GW, or later versions of fan made DIY chapters with the same name (generally the oldest version gets the picture in the gallery and later version get the asterisk).
Both Dazzo and I hope you will enjoy our efforts, and you are always welcome to add your chapter to the list ;)
For more information please visit the main gallery of the project.