From Iron, cometh Strength.
From Strength, cometh Will.
From Will, cometh Faith.
From Faith, cometh Honour.
From Honour, cometh Iron.
Unbreakable Litany of the Iron Warriors, the IVth Legion
The Iron Warriors, sons of Perturabo, could have been the greatest of humanity's heroes; they alone of the marine legions had vision beyond war, seeing themselves as architects and statesmen fit to rule the Imperium that they had built, the bricks cemented with their own blood. It was not to be. Driven to beyond breaking point, and caught in the Warmaster's fold, their loyalty to all they had fought for shattered. Backbreaking labour in the most grinding and brutal of all the Great Crusade's warzones to achieve insignificant victories, distrusted and belittled by those they would have called brother, they became pariahs within their own empire.
Now, seven thousand years since the failed Heresy, they endure. Their primarch an immortal daemon prince, with a world to call their own within the swirling maelstrom that is the Eye of Terror. Medrengard is a veritable hell, its rocky surface forged and reforged by the relentless iron men who call it home, bristling with impassable defenses, unbreakable fortresses and guns that seem to roar out to the white skies themselves to dare to face their fury. The Warsmiths conduct assaults into Imperial territory, fight wars among themselves to enhance their own strength or win their father's favour, everywhere there is entropy and madness, overshadowed by the cackling of dark gods.
One Grand Company, the XIXth, known as the Unbroken, stands defiant to this; within the walls of their fortress, the Eisenschloss, they continue in the Olympian way, needing help from no man and requiring no patron. This is their story, from the end of the 7th Black Crusade until the day the last man drew his last breath, cursing with it the Imperium that had betrayed him so long ago.
The XIXth Grand Company were one of the few that retreated to Olympia after the battle of the Iron Cage, holding out against the combined might of the Ultramarines and the heavily-depleted Imperial Fists - it was at this time that their current Warsmith, Pelegon, seized command by killing the incumbent Warsmith, Endymion, and his First Captain, Krotas. Under their new commander, the XIXth dug in, driven to new depths of bloody-minded refusal to accept their inevitable defeat. Despite losing half their men, every metre that the Imperials gained was paid for more than twice over. Defeat inevitable, Pelegon and the other Warsmiths withdrew from the surface and detonated the nuclear weapons left on the planet, ensuring that any victory that the Imperials drew from the campaign would be considered pyrrhic at best.
Seven thousand years of life within the Eye have not altered the XIXth, for they do not allow it to do so. They have seen their battle-brothers fall into the corruption of the chaos gods, the purity of their hatred besmirched by their loyalty to fell masters. Though most Iron Warriors are horrified at the idea of corruption, they allow themselves to be manipulated and used by the Chaos Gods. To the XIXth, their loyalty lies only to themselves, and to the dying ideal that was the Iron Warriors. Their legion falls apart around them, its members driven to new depravities and depths of betrayal by paranoia, greed and avarice, the XIXth see it as the result of a thousand secret whispers from daemonic mouths. The Iron ages, rusts and degrades to the point of uselessness.
They refer to themselves as the Unbroken, in recognition of their refusal to bend the knee to the Chaos Gods, a name mocked by other Iron Warriors who do not hold purity so high. As a consequence of their adherence to the old ways, they often find themselves joined by Iron Warriors wishing to return to simpler times and other renegades and traitors who want to find themselves part of a unified whole once more. If their aptitude proves sufficient, all are welcomed into the fold, sometimes to the chargrin of those who comprised the original XIXth during the Heresy. On the whole, it is one of the most stable Grand Companies, keeping good relations with their Primarch and rival Warsmiths through sharing and exchanging recovered technology. Their largest point of contention is gene-seed; due to their constant refutation and excising of corruption, the XIXth have one of the largest stockpiles of stable Olympian gene-seed of any Grand Company, a resource they guard jealously and keep secret from those who would wish to have it for themselves. Unique among the Iron Warriors, the XIXth do not make use of human slave labour. Human slaves are often used as cannon fodder, but any menial task, no matter how small, is carried out by Iron Warrior or servitor.
Now they prepare to depart Medrengard and wage war once more. From the highest tower of the Eisenschloss, Warsmith Pelegon summons his captains and other senior members of the Grand Company.
HIERARCHY OF THE XIXTH GRAND COMPANY
HIERARCHY OF THE XIXTH GRAND COMPANY
The Warsmith Pelegon, known as the Ironheart due to a mechanical heart gifted to him by the primarch Perturabo himself, has commanded the XIXth grand company for seven thousand years; a towering figure in artificer armour, more than one insubordinate or insufficient captain has met his end at the Warsmith's hands. A commander who uses logic as his primary tool whenever resolving any situation, he judges his men and junior commanders based not on their origins but on their actions, and metes out reward and punishment accordingly. An able politician as well as tactician, he has managed to secure peace for the XIXth with other more powerful Grand Companies through trading the technology salvaged during the XIXth's forays, and currying favour with their father. His views on corruption are rigorously enforced, and he is particularly scrupulous of any psykers that join the XIXth's Librarium.
The First Captain - Tyranus, The Hand of the Warsmith The Hammer of the XIXth, commander of the 1st Company, the Tyranthikos, the XIXth's core of the most capable and hardy veterans. Line-breakers beyond peer, they are as adaptable as they are brutal. The honour of any first or vital assault usually falls to the 1st Company. Though normally the first among equals, the First Captain is the de-facto commander of the XIXth in the Warsmith's absence. Second only to the Warsmith in tactical acumen, he must be a peerless combatant and able to keep his men in line. He must be able to perform flawlessly, for with the level of responsibility that he has and the price of failure, there is no room for error.
The Second Captain - Kunzhardt The Immovable The master of arms, many say that the Second Captain is truly the most powerful of the commanders, for he has at his disposal nearly every piece of artillery in the XIXth's arsenal. At his fingertips he has the primary weapon of choice for any Iron Warrior; murderous firepower. In the breaking of sieges, co-ordinating fire missions and artillery strikes, the Second Captain must be a master of multi-tasking, of calculation and fire arcs and patterns. He must know the ins and outs of the architecture of a fortification, to know where to land the fewest shots with most effect, and how to make the most use out of as many guns as he can at any given time. The Iron Havocs, the masters of counter-battery and anti-tank fire, and the Destroyers with their forbidden arsenal, also answer to him.
The Third Captain - Lucian Kalistarion, The Shadowed The master of deception, though third in rank he often finds himself in a unique position of power; knowledge. It is the task of him and his men to reconnoiter any prospective target, to retrieve intelligence and to work out the strengths and weaknesses of any foe. Though he finds that many of his tasks are to be done before the battle, during a siege his workload does not lessen. It is his task to infiltrate and sabotage, to silence guns before they can fire, to undermine the crucial structural point of a building, or decapitate the command chain of an enemy force. The Third Captain has the ear of the Warsmith, and his advice is often held in higher regard than that of his peers, often to their chargrin.
The Master of the Forge - Adriun, The Titan Breaker Though all Iron Warriors are technically gifted, the Master of the Forge is a paragon of technical and intellectual aptitude. Responsible for the production and maintenance of the XIXth's equipment, he must be more logistically gifted than his peers, as well as capable of running unknown hundreds of computerized servo-systems simultaneously. At his disposal he has the mechanised units of the XIXth; drone-like servitors, outfitted both for menial labour and combat, Thrallax cohorts and even Thanatar siege-automata. Without a force of human slave labour, he finds that his work is never done.
The Primus Medicae - Lugerev Due to the XIXth's large stock of stable, high-quality gene-seed, Warsmith Pelegon assumes that they should never want for men. It is the duty of the Primus Medicae to ensure that this remains the case. Aside from tending to the injured, seeing that Iron Warriors hurt in the line of duty be brought back to fighting condition, the Primus Medicae must oversee the implantation of gene-seed into new recruits, as well as the retrieval of gene-seed from fallen Iron Warriors and those who they fight. Due to the XIXth's precedent for fighting Imperialist space marines, he must be always ready to swoop down on the battlefield like a gallows crow and retrieve what material he can. Whenever on another world, it is the duty of him and his men to scan the indigenous human population, should there be one, for recruits suitable for conversion to space marines.
The Epistolary - Coeus The Seer As most of the legions who turned away from the Imperium during the Heresy have fallen to chaos, and their psykers with them, the librarium has become an all but defunct branch of any legion. Not so with the XIXth; their refusal to accept corruption has given them the strangest psykers. They are of unmatchable will, capable of living within the Eye of Terror and resisting the temptations of chaos, yet also do not use that power for their own gain, preferring to work for the good of the Iron Warriors in the stead of their own goals. The Epistolary often finds himself the least trusted of the senior commanders by the Warsmith. Despite his immense strength of will and capability, it is a position for which he must constantly strive to earn respect and recognition. It is also his responsibility to scan the psykers under his command for signs of corruption, often done with assistance from the Primus Medicae's apothecaries.
Captains 4-10 The other captains are of equal rank to the others, but have no given speciality; their composition is entirely up to the player, though should aim to comprise mostly of marines of the XIXth Grand Company. They have not been included in the tree for the time being. All commander characters must be, in addition to being talented at their chosen discipline, extremely capable logisticians, in order to manage their resources and men both on and off the field of battle. Without serfs or any other support system, it is the responsibility of the commanders to ensure that what they need is where they want it when they want it.
The Seventh Captain - Iapetus The Shipwright Master of the XIXth Grand Company's fleet.
The Tenth Captain - Vargus The Old
Kindly fill this out and post it in the thread. The commander positions in the tree have been left without an avatar or name/title so that they can be filled by players. Provide these for me separately so that I can fill out the hierarchy tree.
Name: (this may include titles, though their origin must be included in your backstory)
Age: (the years since your birth, in real-time, may be different to how many years the character has experienced due to Warpish time-fluctuation)
Homeworld: (as a Iron Warrior, you may not necessarily be Olympian by birth)
Gene-seed: (if one born into the XIXth since the Heresy, you may have been given the gene-seed of another legion or chapter; the exception to this is that of the Blood Angels, Space Wolves and Imperial Fists, which is seen as too tainted to be considered for use)
Physical Appearance: (rather you didn't use pictures)
Armour and its appearance:
Weaponry and equipment: (what do you never walk around without? Bear in mind that your arsenal may well be exchanged or altered as you see fit for different situations; no-one expects you to take a combat knife for tank-hunting)
Biography: (if I could have at least two paragraphs, please)
If there are any details that you would like to remain secret from other players, please PM me with them.
This roleplay is going to pan out with RTS aspects, if things go to plan. There will be updates as I, as GM, lay the land for you, and it is up to you the players to see how your characters react. Positions going on a first come first serve basis. Players may have as many characters as they like, though only one character in a position of senior commander (so, perhaps one as Fifth Captain and another as Legionary Bob of the Fifth Company).
My aim is to make this as immersive as possible; I will do my best to draw and provide maps, where possible, as I want to give all those participating that really gritty (read: brütal) Iron Warrior experience. I will put a lot of effort into this, and would like to ask the same back of my players. Be considerate; if you can't post, or want to quit, please tell me so I can account for this and the RP doesn't die out due to flaking. In-character rivalry is all well and good, but don't start shitting on other players. I don't want arguing, and I don't care who started it. Commander characters will be very powerful, but likewise the situations they are put in will be challenging; no-one is permanent, and character death does happen. Be aware of that.
If there are any questions, or anyone wants any more details, please feel free to PM me or add me on Skype (my email is [email protected] which I made when I was 13, if that excuses it). I likely left some vital detail out when writing this - but hopefully not.
Otherwise, I look forward to running this. I'm hoping for at least six players, but the more the merrier.