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Ramellan

Loyalist Traitor Chapters

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I'm suddenly reminded of the Eldar Solitaires. Rarest of the rare, these unique members of the Harlequins undergo some unknown process that renders them souless. They don't seem to negate psyker powers like real Blanks do, but the similarities between them and the Exorcists seems to be there. With the Harlequins being the Eldar version of the Grey Knights (their race's greatest weapon against Chaos) the Exorcist and Solitaire parallels seem even more apparent.

 

Ehm, Solitaires aren't soulless- it's even so that their souls belong to Slaanesh when they die.

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The idea that there is no canon is, at the same time, both freeing and hurtful. On the one hand, I can have my own idea of warhammer in my head and that is the setting to me, as valid as any other. On the other hand, it's kind of hard to find books and novels that share that view, so sometimes I get a little depressed by the setting, especially with all the bittersweet endings (I hated The Death of Antagonis so much I read it once and returned it for a refund, while the Legion of the Damned remains my favorite novel so far.)

 

Oh, I can relate. It certainly has upsides and downsides. I'd prefer a more solid approach like Battletech, too, but at least this way we can pick and choose for our personalised vision. The biggest problems arise when you discuss the setting with others and discover that there is little common ground.

 

All that said, I can't recall any chapters that have been corrupted by the Third great threat to the Imperium: the Xenos. How bout you guys? Anyone ever hear of Space Marines joining the Tau, or something similar? Don't say Enslavers, that's too easy, and mind control isn't the same as radicalism.

 

WD #303 might be of help here. Specifically, its "Rogue Sons" article of the Index Astartes series:
 
"[...] The same is true of those fighting against aliens. The spore of the Xenos is a threat taken extremely seriously by a chapter's Apothecaries, who must monitor the physiology of their charges throughout their exposure to alien environments and creatures. Countless alien species exist within the galaxy, despite the measures taken by the Imperium to cleanse the stars of their presence, and each has a biology unique to itself. Natural defences, poisons, native bacteria and viruses all threaten human dominion of the Emperor's domains. Some races have unique methods of attack or reproduction that may threaten the spiritual and physical integrity of a chapter, such as psychic or genetic domination of a battle brother exposed to the aliens. Such instances can prove as dangerous as daemonic possession, and cause the tainted chapter to pursue goals utterly inimical to its duties to the Imperium.
 
Such an incident was uncovered by the Ordo Xenos, when Subjugators chapter fought a protracted campaign against the alien cell-kin of the Technetium Belt. The unique reproductive cycle of the species made their complete eradication very difficult to achieve. The cell-kin reproduced by viral dissemination, their DNA infecting the body of another creature where it would literally reshape the host in its own image. The Space Marines' enhanced genetic make-up proved largely resilient to this threat, but 20 of the brethren of the 3rd Company were lost in the early stages of the campaign as they were slowly mutated into new, hideous forms. The chapter's Apothecaries identified the threat, but too late to save those Battle Brothers affected by the cell-kins' infection. The infected Brethren that survived the conflict escaped and are assumed to be at large in the galaxy to this day."
 
[...]
 
"Upon declaring such a chapter Excommunicatus, an Inquisitor will attempt to determine the root cause of the rebellion in order to gauge the potential obstacles to neutralising it. Should he suspect that Chaos as the reason for the chapter's fall from grace, the Grey Knights may be mobilised. Should doctrinal heresy prove the immediate cause the elite of the Adepta Sororitas may be the only force considered capable of prosecuting a War of Faith against the wayward chapter. On rare occasions, alien intervention may be suspected, and the highly skilled servants of the Ordo Xenos brought in to investigate. Such an event is of such import as to attract the attention of the High Lords of Terra themselves, and no Inquisitor would bring such accusations without very convincing evidence indeed."
 
Certainly sounds like a potential Deathwatch campaign, no? ;)
 
Sadly I don't know of an actual case of "xenos radicalism" amongst the Astartes, but that's not to say that it should be considered unthinkable - personally I believe it would be exceedingly rare, much more than Chaos subversion or ideological clashes, but ... perhaps you could just come up with a Chapter that has been hard-pressed on a certain front for decades (vs Orcs or Nids perhaps), without support from the Imperium at large, and is forced to enter into an alliance with the Tau or Eldar? And then some Inquisitor goes and denounces them for it, enraging the Chapter Master and further driving them away from the IoM? Just as an example!
Edited by Lynata

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Probably wouldn't be Tau. Too localized for the most part - and any mutual threat is likely to be a Tyranid fleet, which is likely to draw in support or grind through. And not really that isolated. Be a bit tough to make it work.

Unless they found a warpgate of their own or something to somewhere else in the galaxy. Then anything goes.

 

 

Eldar are hugely likely/probable as potential allies of convenience/necessity. Could be against any threat, really. Then too, any Inquisitor meddling and trying to mess things up is probably going to be assassinated.

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I might disagree, javcs. True, the Eldar are more likely to ally with Space Marines anywhere in the galaxy, but they're also far more arrogant and dismissive of other species. Their farseers will do whatever it takes to see their craftworlds survive, but I don't think space marines would have a place with them after the immediate threat was ended.. Unless one of them had a big vision saying the world would end if they didn't, and even then the common citizens would probably give them the cold shoulder like they do their exarchs.

The Tau are in an ongoing expansion campaign, so that's a big obstacle, but they also have a sense of honor, And are the only species in 40k that isn't out to kill/use everyone other species for their own ends. (Well, the Ethereals might be) Space Marines might also adjust easier, with other humans in the Empire to interact with. Oh, yeah, that's another thing to consider: a source of new aspirants.

Hmm, I can see why Xenos radicalism would be an even rarer phenomenon than Chaos. Still, that only makes me want to make a chapter like that even more! Give me a while, I'll figure something out.

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I always figured the easiest way for marines to end up as part of the tau would be if the tau reversed engineered the hypno-doctrine methods of the imperials. Grab some marines, slap them into the happy chair, let bake for a few weeks, and presto...marines who are all about the greater good!

 

But since even chaos marines refer to them as dirty xenos, can't really see it happening.  

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But since even chaos marines refer to them as dirty xenos, can't really see it happening.  

 

We asked a bunch of random traitor marines about their opinions of the tau:

 

Khorne berzerker: "Raaaagh! bloody tau! no klose kombat! only shooting! bloody kowards! BFTBG!!"

Noise marine: "Oh i know, love! So dull! and clean, and hiding behind their toy drones, hated it!"

Night lords marine: "Bah! They use diplomacy and propaganda, not terror tactics and chaos runes carved into corpses!"

Chaos sorcerer: "barely any warp presence and no psykers! Atleast the eteherials got a good thing going."

Iron warrior: "And they are so **** soical, "lets all get along and join our empire!" happy happy happy!"

Plague marine "Meh, i like them, they get sick and die like everyone else."

Black legion marine: "Why are their vehicles named after fish? Now loxat'l brood, those are proper xenos!"

Word bearer: "Do they even worship anything? bloody heretics! we need to show them the error of their ways!"

Alpha legionaire: "FOR THE GREATER GOOD!"

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If rumor (ie, 1d4chan) is to be believed, the Silver Skulls are supposedly a Loyalist splinter of the Iron Warriors given cover by the big G.  That would have some interesting implications.

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Maybe I got it wrong, but are not the Exorcist the ones that the malleus founded by daemonhost all the noviciates, and the Exorcist them, rendering them inmune to daemonic possesion? There´s even a reputed "sucessor" or something in the ones that couldn´t get exorticed and run away. ("The death od antagonis")

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Maybe I got it wrong, but are not the Exorcist the ones that the malleus founded by daemonhost all the noviciates, and the Exorcist them, rendering them inmune to daemonic possesion?

 

More or less immune, yeah.

 

I think most of their fluff comes from an old article that was written for the Armageddon 3 Global Campaign - the website is still archived and you can check it out here!

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Well, yesterday I finished my third Horus heresy novel (and my favorite so far), The Unremembered Empire. Bringing it up here because part of the reason I liked it so was that it had not one but Two loyalist traitors in it. I already knew about Warsmith Dantioch, but now I have an official Word Bearers loyalist too: Narek of the Word. He's a bit different than the other loyalists, since in a way he's still loyal to his Legion as well, in that he's obsessed with purifying them by assassinating Lorgar. Feel so bad for the guy; I know he fails, but i hope he doesn't get corrupted in the process. So let's see, that's Garro, Qurze, Dantioch, Narek... I think there was a world eater too, but his name escapes me. Oh, and Revuel Arvida, the Thousand Sons guy who'd go on to found the Blood Ravens. Anyone I'm forgetting?

I've also been giving some thought to a Xenos radicals chapter. Since Xenos influence doesn't necessarily warp a Space Marines mind like Chaos does, it'd probably be better to have them wind up a bit like the Soul Drinkers; declared heretics and hunted by the Imperium, but still trying to fighting for it in their own way. Emperor knows there's enough things out there to kill to keep any space marine chapter busy for a while. There are even other factions in the Imperium that could help them in that regard. Everybody knows about the Xanthites, right? Who think that Chaos can be harnessed and used against itself? (Nutjobs) Well, how many of you know about their pseudo-parallels, the Xeno Hybris faction? Much smaller, but much saner than trying to summon DAEMONS to fight for you without being corrupted.

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I also really liked The Unremembered Empire. It's Dan Abnett but it's not written the way he usually writes.

The Alpha legion are badass, (I loved that bith with Guilliman seeing a three headed hydra in a cracked window)

Lion el johnson is his usualy dickish self (that bit with the space wolves ritual dual made me laugh) and Nighthaunter is uber badass as some kind of daemonic batman.

 

The xanthites (and the Kabal for that matter) are doomed to failure. They will turn chaos against chaos, but they fail to notice chaos already fights chaos. (slaanesh vs khorne etc...) In fact chaos is so used to fighting itself that it can't be properly turned against itself or win so hard it ends up destroying itself. (I think that's the main reason why most of tzeentch plans disrupt each other) You can't turn what already has been turned.

 

This is possibly the reason GW retconned Mallal out of the chaos pantheon. There is no need for a chaos god who fights the other four, when those four are already fighting amongst themselves...

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This is possibly the reason GW retconned Mallal out of the chaos pantheon. There is no need for a chaos god who fights the other four, when those four are already fighting amongst themselves...

 

Out of curiosity, where exactly did the idea of Malal as a Chaos God come from? All I can find on the interwebs is a single short story in a Black Library publication, mention of two comic artists who supposedly came up with the concept and posted it as a fan submission, and a whooole lot of discussion on Lexicanum where people are like "he was in this source", followed by "actually I have that book and he's not in there" etc.

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He is mentioned in WHFRP 1st edition (page 210) : "Malal is a renegade chaos god, who turned against the others and is dedicated to their destruction. His followers, sometimes called the Doomed Ones, seek out and destroy the followers of the other chaos gods wherever they may be found."  Malal has a draconic face with curved horns and a humanoid body.

 

Where the idea of Malal came form is, i think, a few notes scrawled on a coaster after the GW guys had a few to many drinks in the pub. It is intresting that the WHFRPG book mentions both Khorne and Nurgle aswel but not Slaanesh and Tzeentch.

 

That concept of the Doomed ones would make a great cult in DH: the acolytes on a mission to destroy a chaos cult, run across another cult trying to do the same... will they team up or wipe both cults out?

 

Nobody expects the Chaos Inquisition!

 

 

A renegade chaos god? So he's chaos Lorenzo Lamas? :)

Edited by Robin Graves

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That concept of the Doomed ones would make a great cult in DH: the acolytes on a mission to destroy a chaos cult, run across another cult trying to do the same... will they team up or wipe both cults out?

 

I believe the Phaeonite mentality encapsulates that motto in the Inquisition at least. I believe their the ones with the alternate rank in Radical's Handbook where you **** yourself to steel your body and mind against the Archenemy. Sin Eater I believe they're called.

 

Never team up with the enemy, they're the enemy for a reason. - Puritian motto

 

The enemy of my enemy can be an ally, for a time. - Radical motto

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He is mentioned in WHFRP 1st edition (page 210) : "Malal is a renegade chaos god, who turned against the others and is dedicated to their destruction. His followers, sometimes called the Doomed Ones, seek out and destroy the followers of the other chaos gods wherever they may be found."  Malal has a draconic face with curved horns and a humanoid body.

 

So this stems from back when the WHFB and the 40k worlds were supposed to exist in the same setting (I still like that idea btw) and information would carry over? Hmmh. Who made the link between Malal and Malice, though? Did anyone read that Black Library short story, by chance?

 

At times it's difficult to back-trace things like these as there's a lot of hearsay in the fandom...

 

Where the idea of Malal came form is, i think, a few notes scrawled on a coaster after the GW guys had a few to many drinks in the pub.

 

Allegedly it was two comic book authors, though that is just hearsay as well. But I assume they might have had a hand in the WFRP (I see lots of non-regular names in the credits), as this would explain how it got in there yet was forgotten when they changed teams?

 

Anyways, thanks for shedding some light onto this!  :)

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I have heard that the Sons of malice renegade chapter were suposed to be follower of malal, but that's probably fan stuff.

 

WHFRPG was made late 80's around the time of warhammer 3'd edition (pre-army books, so very early stuff) You know, now i think of it, Malal could be mentioned in one of the old white dwarfs , they had comics like Thud the Barbarian. I'll have a look at them see, if i can turn anything up.

 

 

Glad to help. :)

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Okay so i checked http://warhammer40k.wikia.com/wiki/Malal, atleast they stated their sources. Btw i think the whole lexicanum discussion about Malal not apearing in said sources is because they mostly deal with his champions.

 

The way i see it, wikia is correct:  The concept of the Chaos God "Malal" was created by comics writers John Wagner and Alan Grant along with Malal's champion, Kaleb Daark. Allegedly the comic was canceled because of "creative differences" between the creators and Games Workshop. The first story was produced in 85 while WHFRPG was released a year later in 86. So as far as i'm concerened Malal is their baby.

 

I've checked some of the sources myself: whfrpg, white dwarf 83 (white dwarf 79 seems to be wrong somehow even tough WD83 mentionts it!), third citadel compendium. and they mention malal but mostly his champions. I don't have access to the other mentioned sources. Reading the comic does make it clear why Malal symbol is a black and white skull: it is actualy taken from kaleb daark's armor.

 

PS I've found the kaleb daark comic online:

http://www.solegends.com/citcomp3/index.htm

http://www.solegends.com/citcomp3/citcomp3077-01.htm

 

citcomp3077-01.jpg

Edited by Robin Graves

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Thanks, the effort is appreciated! :)

Always glad to see someone else with reaaally old WD's, too! ^^

 

[edit] Hey, that website seems to be rather cool in general...

Edited by Lynata

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That concept of the Doomed ones would make a great cult in DH: the acolytes on a mission to destroy a chaos cult, run across another cult trying to do the same... will they team up or wipe both cults out?

 

I believe the Phaeonite mentality encapsulates that motto in the Inquisition at least. I believe their the ones with the alternate rank in Radical's Handbook where you **** yourself to steel your body and mind against the Archenemy. Sin Eater I believe they're called.

 

Never team up with the enemy, they're the enemy for a reason. - Puritian motto

 

The enemy of my enemy can be an ally, for a time. - Radical motto

 

Nope. Phaenonites are the techno-heretical offshoot of the Xanthites. Their exclusive alt rank is the Maletek Stalker, and they've a unique elite advance as well. The Phaenonites do not believe in worshipping gods - any gods, be they of Chaos/the Warp or the God-Emperor. They are more opposed to Chaos gods and the worship thereof than the God-Emperor and worshipping him, but that's largely because the Chaos-worshippers would destroy mankind.

They are Excommunicate Traitoris.

 

 

Sin Eater is the alt rank of the Oblationists. They accept damnation upon themselves to wield Chaos artifacts and sorceries.

The difference between Oblationists and Xanthites is that the Xanthite believes he can utilize certain powers and types of artifacts without automatically condemning himself and his soul if he is sufficiently strong-willed, careful, and deliberate in their use, whereas the Oblationist believes himself condemned before he starts (they go through a ritual and everything), dead before the eyes of the Emperor, and so uses those same powers and artifacts in the service of Mankind, and believes anyone who thinks they can use such things without automatically condemning themselves in the Emperor's Sight is a fool.

The Oblationists have not been declared Excommunicate Traitoris.

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They should be, if you ask me. People like the Xanthites and Oblationists will always do more harm than good. Yes, technically, it Is possible to harness the power of Chaos and, through supreme willpower and unwavering faith, turn it to your will. BUT, the number of people who can actually manage to do this even once, not to even consider those who do it repeatedly, is so small compared to the number of those who attempt it. 9 times out of 10 (or is that 99 out of 100) such attempts will backfire on the person, and backfire horrifically, sometimes creating whole new threats to the Imperium that must be dealt with. Worse still, every Xanthite who actually succeeds in their efforts will only inspire more people to try and do the unthinkable, most of whom will never be able to handle the unreal attentions of those they call forth. In short, it is not worth it.

I'm no Puritan, but I know the slippery slope of justifying madness when I see it.

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Something to think about:

Both the leader of the space wolves and ultramarines wield weapons taken from chaos champions. And that's just the ones i know of! How many more chapters or individual marines wield reporposed chaos weapons? How long will it take for them to become corrupted?

 

Tought for today: Trust no one, not even yourself. It is better to die in vain, than live as an abomination.

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Don't want this page to die, so I'm gonna add a little something I just learned about the Exorcists. Finished reading the Deathwatch book by Steve Parker, and I noticed some irregularities between the effect of the Exorcist in that book (named Rauth) and the listed properties of Blanks in general. I mentioned earlier that I thought the Exorcists were an Imperial experiment to make Blank Marines, and their lack of a warp signature seemed to support that. But there does seem to be something missing. As I recall, Blanks, Pariahs, Untouchables (whatever you want to call them) are supposed to disrupt the psychic abilities of nearby psykers. But the Librarian who first noticed Rauth's unique trait didn't seem to have any adverse reaction to his presence. He never has. Furthermore, Blanks are supposed to have this feeling of "wrongness" about them, that puts everyone around them on edge. Rauth is certainly an off-putting character, but looking through the book again, that seems more the result of his personality rather than some innate quality of his condition.

I think it was Lynata who said that manually producing Blanks didn't seem to be possible. And maybe these guys aren't true blanks. The book described Rauth's use as more towards an invisible soldier, who no psychic foe could see coming, than some natural counter to psychics. But if that's the case, it does leave one more question on my mind:

If Blanks are so rare, and can't be artificially created, then where the heck did the Sisters of Silence come from? Y'know, that small army of all-female Pariahs the Emperor used in the Great Crusade? What's up with them?

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The Pariah Gene is an aberrant mutation of the human genetic code which results in the existence of beings colloquially known as "Blanks" and "Pariahs," for those individuals in whom the mutant gene is dominant. These mutants have little to no psychic existence in the Warp, thus lacking what others would consider a soul. As a consequence, these individuals radiate a sense of unnaturalness and unease that is unnerving to other living creatures and can be painful or even lethal to psychically-sensitive beings. The Pariah Gene is usually passed on naturally through reproduction, but also occurs through random mutation, just like the gene or gene complex that produces psykers. The Pariah Gene is, however,much more rare than the psyker mutation and Blanks make up an infinitesimal proportion of the human population galaxy-wide. It is estimated that in the population of a medium-sized planet populated by billions of people, there may be only a half-dozen or so Blanks. Most of those affected by the gene die young as the palpable aura of revulsion that surrounds them makes them reviled by others, outcasts within their society, or leads to their outright murder long before they reach full maturity.

 

You said it, small army (do we even have numbers for them?). The Emperor, with him being the alpha psyker of the entire human race would have little problem in scouring the segmentum solar (and later the rest of the galaxy) for pariahs. (kinda like proffesor X with cerebro) My bet is he just went around collecting them.

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My bet is he just went around collecting them.

 

Technology may have also been much more advanced back then, allowing for widespread detection equipment. I recall a rare (by M41) "psyocular" mentioned in the WH codex as a means to detect psychic activity without being a psyker yourself, so perhaps it or something like it might also be capable of finding Blanks?

 

Although it's still a bit strange in that the Emperor only had Terra and the Sol system at the beginning, and certainly it would take a lot of time to collect all those Blanks and train and equip them as an army. So another possibility could be that perhaps they were cloned, much like the Primarchs? Back then, perhaps the Emperor might have thought he did not need more Blanks than these - whilst later, the ability to produce them artificially got lost during the chaos of the Heresy (explaining why the Imperium does not "build" them anymore).

 

Also, it should not be forgotten how, over time, a lot of "alternate" uses for Blanks popped up. Whilst perhaps back then all those who were discovered were funnelled into the SoS, nowadays you have orgs like the Adeptus Assassinorum and the Inquisition recruiting these individuals for their special ability.

 

 

... well, or the author who came up with these Sisters of Silence just didn't care a lot for the rarity bit. Consistency isn't Black Library's strong suit, and it is notable how, to my knowledge, Games Workshop has to this day ignored the very existence of this army for any products beyond the Horus Heresy novel series, not even providing a hint about them in studio material like rulebooks and codices. This may very well be a hint to a certain resistance/reluctance to "include" this idea into the interpretation of the setting pushed by studio fluff.

Edited by Lynata

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Frankly, I'd almost rather the Exorcists really be an Alpha Legion front - all those supposed extra casualties aren't actually dead, they're just quietly inducted and transferred into Alpha Legion proper.

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