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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well I decided to put my money where my mouth is and create a background for my army- now you all get to rip into me for once :)
[This is a work in progress so forgive me that it's rather sparse, I certainly wouldn't turn away any C&C as I add to the background though]
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Battle-Brother of the 5th Company (986.M41)


Index Astartes: Iron Champions

Origins and History

A Codex Chapter with a lengthy history stretching back to the beginning of the 35th Millennium and the 8th Founding, instigated in response to Abaddon's devastating 4th Black Crusade, the Iron Champions are a fleet-based force that has travelled the dark and treacherous borders of the Imperium for millennia uncounted. For such a relatively ancient Chapter little is known for definite regarding their history or even strength of arms in the wider Imperium, an ignorance exacerbated by the secrecy of the Iron Champions and their somewhat unconventional organisation. Only the task all Astartes of the 8th Founding were set is known for sure: Seek out the Enemies of the Imperium and purge them from existence where ever they may be found.

Despite the stated purpose of their Founding, and the events prompting it, the Iron Champions have rarely been sighted near the Eye of Terror or Cadia, the Eastern Fringe too has also rarely known their presence as the Chapter has restricted its activities in recent centuries to Segmentum Tempestus and the border regions of the neighbouring Segmentum- with the notable exception of a handful of campaigns (see-The Third War for Armageddon)

Secrecy aside, the Iron Champions are staunch allies always ready to come to the aid of any servant of the Emperor and unlike many of their brother chapters they do not differentiate between aiding the Guard, Inquisition, Mechanicus or indeed any Imperial petition- truly there are few Astartes not of the first founding who have built such a foundation of esteem with the myriad organisations of the Imperium. Yet there is a grim aspect to this 'selflessness', the Iron Champions see this collation of good will as a means to an end and ensure that those they aid are fully aware of the obligation they owe, and that one day their dark saviours will return to see the debt repaid in full.
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The Chapter participated in the Third War for Armageddon, dispatching close to seven full companies of Astartes to the Hive Volcanus region. During the War, the strike forces launched an uncharacteristically massive drop-pod assault to support the Celestial Lions and were it not for the two chapters, Hive Volcanus would have remained in Ork hands.
In the latter stages of the campaign, in the regions surrounding Hive Volcanus, the Celestial Lions were crippled by overwhelming Ork numbers due to the faulty intelligence provided by their allies with only ninety-six Marines surviving the breakout back to Hive Volcanus and, to make matters worse, the last Apothecary was slain within hours of arriving at the Hive. Their gene-seed lies unharvested on the surface of Armageddon and the remaining brothers have sworn to die alongside their fallen brothers, fighting to the last.
Vile rumours, brutally suppressed by the Iron Champions themselves, hint that it was no mere Ork sniper that ended the life of the last Apothecary, and that when the Lions are finally annihilated their ships and war gear will be redistributed to other, more 'deserving' Chapters...

[To be continued...]

Home World

The Iron Champions have no home world and instead they live amidst their nomadic fleet, aboard the numerous battle barges, strike cruisers, training vessels, and gigantic forge ships as well as a varied array of other craft under the Chapter's authority.
Unlike some Crusading chapters, such as the Black Templars and Imperial Fists, the Iron Champions neither establish permanent keeps on worlds they recruit from nor do they have a prescribed selection of worlds from which they select aspirants, rather they recruit from any world that they deem may provide promising neophytes.

Organisation

The Chapter conforms to the standard Codex pattern of ten companies, though there are minor divergences from the Codex Astartes in a number of the companies:

There is a preponderance of Power Armoured squads in the 1st Company with only a score, or so, of Tactical Dreadnought suits utilised by the Chapter at any one time.

2nd-5th are 'Companies of the First Line' and adhere to the standard Codex pattern, though 1st Squad (Tactical) of each Company consists of the most experienced Astartes who act as an example for their less experienced or skilled brethren and often are the Marines to have fulfilled the Chapter's oaths of service to the Deathwatch.

6th-9th are the 'Companies of the Second Line' organised as dictated by the Codex, though the manner in which the 6th and 7th Companies deploy is markedly different from most Chapters that follow Guilliman's Tome.
The 6th is tasked to serve exclusively as ship-board Marines on the various large tonnage vessels of the Armada, to support and reinforce the Fleet's Servus Guard. The 7th Company is equipped to deploy its Astartes with Landspeeders, as well as providing lengthy training in the piloting of the fleet's complement of Thunder Hawks and other atmospheric craft utilised by the Chapter.
The Iron Champions operate extremely few Combat Bikes squadrons as they do not complement the Chapter's preferred theatres of war, void assaults and urban warfare; in contrast Landspeeders are prevalent in every company's personal armoury.

The Scout Company is, with the exception of its officers who are all former members of the 1st Company, made up exclusively of aspirants who can expect to remain neophytes until their Sergeants have recommended them for promotion to the 9th Company.

The Iron Champions enforce a strict progression from company to company; every Astartes in a Company of the First Line will have served in all 4 Reserve companies as well as the the Scout Company- undertaking duties with both the 7th and 6th companies that last no less than 8 years in each.

The Chapter utilises the Codex Company heraldry and colours but takes the Codex's insistence on altering company iconography occasionally to the extreme, with the First and Second Line companies regularly altering their cuirass' chest eagle in a successive and, seemingly, random pattern- so at any point an Astartes with gold ornamentation who might usually be presumed to be of the 2nd Company, could equally be of the 9th or 5th.
Coupled with a deliberate lack of squad markings this methodology serves to bemuse the Iron Champion's allies as often as it does their enemies, creating an air of evasiveness about the Chapter that is not entirely deserved.

Geneseed

The geneseed of the Iron Champions is taken from Guilliman's stock, though it's genetic markers suggests that it was not taken directly from the Ultramarines but more likely that of a second or third generation Primogenitor.
Martian records show that the Chapter's geneseed is remarkably pure, with a notable exception; the Catalepsean Node and Sus-an Membrane have mutated over the millennia, retaining their original function but becoming irreversibly linked months after implantation, deadening the Marine's ability to process emotional responses. Anger, joy, hatred, grief and every other emotion that humanity endures are but a pale shadow of their vibrancy for an Iron Champion, they have become more than human yet much less so as well.

[In recent millennia, working closely with the Forge Masters, and Librarium, the Apothecaries of the Iron Champions have constructed a cybernetic implant to counteract this deficiency. Testing on Battle-Brothers who were no longer combat able revealed an alarming trait of the implant, rather than simply allowing the natural processing of emotional stimulus the cybernetic construct removed any impediments to the inflow of stimuli.
The Astartes subjects felt everything without the ability to supress these new found experiences, a truly alarming prospect for Marines who had 'felt' little for decades or centuries- most fell into an irreversible homicidal insanity within days if not sedated.
Further testing allowed for a refinement of the cybernetic implant, only certain memnotic chants would activate the device and it would automatically shut down after a few hours of usage if the counter-memnotic chant was not used.

So began a new era in the Chapter's history as the Chaplaincy- once a rare specialization within the Iron Champions- took it upon themselves to weave these memnotic chants into their Battle Hymns, inciting the Astartes under their command to embrace hatred and rage, releasing a brutal wave of berserkers when necessary.]

Combat Doctrine
 

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nice start mate, looking forward to where you take this, im not so sure about the not knowing where their gene-seed comes from seems like alot of people do that these days, however i like the nomadic idea.
 

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I too like the nomadic feel of the chapter, the idea of basically picking a world at random to recruit from helps to add to their secrecy, since there will be no established lore of 'Giants from the Sky' or anything that would enable an enemy to set a pattern.

As far as the 'not knowing from whom their geneseed came,' I don't think I saw you mention that at all. If this isn't the case, I'd say state it specifically one way or another (although my natural assumption is Iron Hands).

Definitely good stuff though, Baron, and I look forward to seeing more.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I will be mentioning what geneseed they're from, and it's not secrecy like the Dark Angels or Blood Ravens- the Iron Champions are just not in one place for long enough for any single organisation to collate a complete data bank on them, plus as I will explain in the Organisation they deliberately make it hard for their enemies to gain any concrete info on them and that just happens to have the side effect of it being difficult for their allies too.

I'm sure if all the Imperial institutions were to pool their info they'd have as complete a knowledge regarding the Chapter as on most crusading chapters.
 

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makes sense mate, didnt think you would exclude it just wanted to make sure
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Updated with Organisation- I'm absolutely shattered so I've undoubtedly done something very silly and implausible, so please feel free to point out what it is because I won't learn if you don't.

[I will be going over everything again tomorrow as well as I never write something the way I really like it until I've tweaked it about a dozen times at least]
 

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i can't see anthing wrong with it mate but then i too am pritty much typing with my head on the desk :lazy2:
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Re-edited the Chapter's Organisation and added Geneseed.


Just in case anyone is wondering- the link to The List still exists, you just have to click on my sig image and it'll take you right to it.
I do suggest you don't comment on there if you want me to take a look at your Homebrew stuff though as I don't check it too frequently, it would be quicker to just PM me with a link to your stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Added a tad more regarding geneseed- the stuff surrounded by [] will always be the newest additions each time I update.

I started procrastinating when it came to continuing this, but if I'm going to be taking part in the Army Painting Challenge these guys deserve a finished background.

As always C&C is very welcome, I can never seem to take my own advice about plausibility so please feel free to rip me a new one.
 

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Hey, nice work, glad to see you're not just all bark and no bite.

*Winces* Don't Kill Me!

Anyway, rather than PM you I think it'd be easier to post here, can you have a look at my own Fluff for the XI Legion? It's in the sig, and being updated.

Cheers.

~Bane of Kings
 
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