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(40K) Imperium of Man [Discussion]

PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:55 am
by Matapiojo
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General Information

- 16-storey Governor's palace:
“Union city Governor's palace was like many colonial estates on Baston, or any other remote Imperial outpost. It stood in stark contrast to the environment, floating pale and sharp against the sea of green. Rising above the warren of shanties and concrete hab-blocks that spilled down the harbour side, the palace was a sixteen-storey artifice of Latter-Orient Gothic architecture. Wide, open-aired mezzanines and over a hundred interlocking balconies afforded a panoramic view of Union Quay harbour.” / Flesh and Iron, p.341 - **

- The industrial power of Mars:
“When the time came to leave Terra, it was a great moment. Not even the triumph at Ullanor can compare with the moment of grief as an entire world wept to see the architect of Unification depart. The alliance of Terra and Mars was complete, and the Mechanicum had outdone itself, building fleets of ships to allow the Emperor to take to the stars and complete his Great Crusade of Unity. The skies over Terra were thick with starships, hundreds of thousands of them organised into more than seven thousand fleets, reserve groups and secondary, follow-on forces. It was an armada designed to conquer the galaxy and that was exactly what we set out to do.” / A Thousand Sons, p.383 - **

- Ancient Merica and Tribes of Franc:
“'This is an old game,' Memed said, 'which I’m sure you will enjoy. It dates back a long way, its origins lost in the very beginnings of Old Night. I have researched it, and I understand it was popular amongst the peoples of Ancient Merica, and also the tribes of the Franc.'” / Horus Rising, p.129 - **

- Awe inspiring chart of Terra:
“'One last story, then? A short one, perhaps? Something that filled you with awe.'

He sat back and thought. There was a thing. 'No more than ten years ago. We found a dead world where life had once been. A species had lived there once, and either died out or moved to another world. They had left behind them a honeycomb of subterranean habitats, dry and dead. We searched them carefully, every last cave and tunnel, and found just one thing of note. It was buried deepest of all, in a stone bunker ten kilometres under the planet’s crust. A map. A great chart, in fact, fully twenty metres in diameter, showing the geophysical relief of an entire world in extraordinary detail. We did not at first recognise it, but the Emperor, beloved of all, knew what it was.'

'What?' she asked.

'It was Terra. It was a complete and full map of Terra, perfect in every detail. But it was a map of Terra from an age long gone, before the rise of the hives or the molestation of war, with coastlines and oceans and mountains of an aspect long since erased or covered over.'

'That is… amazing,' she said. He nodded. 'So many unanswerable questions, locked into one forgotten chamber. Who had made the map, and why? What business had brought them to Terra so long ago? What had caused them to carry the chart across half the galaxy, and then hide it away, like their most precious treasure, in the depths of their world? It was unthinkable. I cannot feel fear, Mistress Oliton, but if I could I would have felt it then. I cannot imagine anything ever unsettling my soul the way that thing did.'”
/ Horus Rising, p.278 - **

- Terra as the sole resource for the Great Crusade:
“The delegation was led by a high administratrix called Aenid Rathbone. She was a tall, slender, handsome woman with red hair and pale, high-boned features, and her manner was exacting. The Council of Terra had decreed that all expedition and crusade forces, all primarchs, all commanders, and all governors of compliant world-systems should begin raising and collecting taxes from their subject planets in order to bolster the increasing fiscal demands of the expanding Imperium. All she insisted on talking about was the collection of tithes.

'One world cannot support and maintain such a gigantic undertaking singlehanded,' she explained to the Warmaster in slightly over-shrill tones. 'Terra cannot shoulder this burden alone. We are masters of a thousand worlds now, a thousand thousand. The Imperium must begin to support itself.'

'Many worlds are barely in compliance, lady,' Horus said gently. 'They are recovering from the damage of war, rebuilding, reforming. Taxation is a blight they do not need.'

'The Emperor has insisted this be so.'

'Has he?'

'Malcador the Sigillite, beloved by all, has impressed this upon me and all of my rank. Tribute must be collected, and mechanisms established so that such tribute is routinely and automatically gathered.'”
/ Horus Rising, p.580 - **

Biological Weapons
    - Incubated virus making short work of Obliterators and Possessed Marines alike:
    “'Warsmith,' came Velthinar’s chittering buzz of a voice. 'Ionis was a Castellan of the Phalanx, millennia ago. For three hundred years he served, until caught in the virus-bombing of Golgothix Superior and slain.'

    'Virus-bombing,' spat Shon’tu. 'Lysander! I owe you a betrayal! I owe you a death by deceit! Iron Warriors, retreat! Back to the Dreadclaws!'

    The order did not have time to register in the minds of the Iron Warriors before the detonation charge mounted on the sarcophagus exploded. The detonation threw members of the possessed Choir off their feet, throwing chunks of statue everywhere. Normal troops would have been killed and thrown into disarray, but not the Iron Warriors. That wasn’t the aim. Shon’tu could see, through the billowing dust and smoke, the side of the sarcophagus blasted open. The grinning skull of Ionis, resting on a bed of golden silks now tattered and blackened, rolled onto its side as if fixing Shon’tu with its eye sockets. Super-cooled air misted and rolled from the ruptured sarcophagus. One of the Choir was loping through the ruins, falling behind his fellow possessed. He slipped to one knee, faceplate breaking open into a tangle of gnarled mandibles like a fist opening and closing. The possessed’s body convulsed and a yawning mouth opened up in its chest, a fat purple tongue lolling out and coughing out stringy red gore. The Iron Warrior’s joints were eroding, some corrosive substance finding purchase in the joints of the armour. One of his arms fell off, crumbling bone and flaking muscle pouring from the exposed socket. The ceramite was becoming pitted and discoloured, the exposed flesh drying and flaking off as if ageing centuries in a few moments. The possessed toppled to the ground and came apart, armour cracking like dropped pottery

    'Virus attack!' yelled Shon’tu. 'Mhul! Koultus! Get them back to the Dreadclaws in good order! Move!'

    One of the Obliterators had been caught in the invisible tide. The virus leaking from the ruptured sarcophagus had infected the thick bands of muscle wrapping around its deformed armour. The muscles contracted, the armour plates warping and splitting under the pressure, spiny growths bursting from exposed flesh. Malformed gun barrels cycled, lumps of fused ammunition thunking to the floor. The Obliterator’s face burst into a clutch of eyeballs, each one swelling and bursting to dribble red-white gore down the torn armour. It took a long few moments to die, its body deforming until it was turned almost completely inside out, metallic organs split into fans of bloody steel and loops of articulated entrails clattering around its feet.

    The warning systems built into Shon’tu’s cranial augmentations were sending pulses of alert hormones through him, and setting off microscopic klaxons and strobes in his ears and eyes. Every bio-alert was going off, his armour detecting the presence of pathogens, his augmetic organs fending off the voracious strains of virus which mutated into new forms with every moment. Shon’tu made it to the rear of the tomb. Twin blast doors had descended, cutting off the Tomb of Ionis and turning it into a biological containment zone. Shon’tu ripped through the first door with his power claw, punching through the front and ripping the door off its mountings. The second lasted no longer, and he was through, the cavernous outer hull voids reaching ahead of him. Steelwatcher Mhul and the remaining possessed had made it through too, and Shon’tu could feel the impacts of the Obliterators stomping behind him. The virus incubated in Ionis’s ancient corpse was voracious enough to kill a Space Marine, but not a warsmith of the Iron Warriors. Most of the Iron Warriors of Shon’tu’s own unit, veterans with multiple augmetics and enhanced physiologies, had also made it, their altered immune systems rapidly adapting to the virus’s assaults. Most of the possessed were gone, left behind among the ruined statuary to writhe and deform as they died.


    'A stroke of cunning, do you not think? To contain a sample of such a dangerous bio-predator within the body of the last man it killed, and disguise it as his resting place? How many men and women who served here knew it was beneath their feet? I would imagine it was sealed there so it could be recovered and employed as a weapon by the Imperial Fists. Perhaps that purpose was forgotten. In any case, it will not be fulfilled now.'

    'Ionis decreed with his last breaths that he be used as such a weapon,' replied Lysander.

    'Some would call it a violation,' said Vaynce, 'of the venerated dead.'

    'Then let them say it,' said Lysander. 'I have answers for them.'”
    / Endeavour of Will, p.36-40 - **
- Data storage devices:
“Sixteen separate memory tablets slid from the main cogitator’s data sockets. Each one was the approximate size and shape of a human palm. Each contained a century of recorded lore, right back to the ship’s founding decades. And each was priceless—an artefact of unrivalled possibility.” / Fear the Alien, p.321 - **

- Imperium limits:
“In its hubris, mankind claims dominion over the galaxy. However their realm is nought but a few flickering candles in a vast and hungry darkness.” / Black Crusades Core Rulebook, p.12 - **

- A lavish border settlement:
“The Imperial party was over five hundred strong and included Astartes officers, escort troops and iterators, as well as a selection of remembrancers. Horus had authorised the latter’s inclusion. This was a fact-finding mission, and the Warmaster thought the eager, inquisitive remembrancers might gather a great deal of supplementary material that would prove valuable. Loken believed that the Warmaster was also making an effort to establish a rather different impression than before. The envoys of the interex had seemed so disdainful of the expedition’s military bias. Horus came to them now, surrounded as much by teachers, poets and artists as he was warriors.

They were provided with excellent accommodation in the western part of the city, in a quarter known as the Extranus, where, they were politely informed, all ‘strangers and visitors’ were reserved and hosted. Xenobia Principis was a place designed for trade delegations and diplomatic meetings, with the Extranus set aside to keep guests reserved in one place. They were handsomely provided with meturge players, household servants, and court officers to see to their every need and answer any questions.

Under the guided escort of abbrocarii, the Imperials were allowed beyond the shaded compound of the Extranus to visit the city. In small groups, they were shown the wonders of the place: halls of trade and industry, museums of art and music, archives and libraries. In the green twilight of the galleried streets, under the hissing canopy of the trees, they were guided along fine avenues, through splendid squares, and up and down endless flights of steps. The city was home to buildings of exquisite design, and it was clear the interex possessed great skill in both the old crafts of stonemasonry and metalwork, and the newer crafts of technology. Pavements abounded with gorgeous statuary and tranquil water fountains, but also with modernist public sculpture of light and sonics. Ancient lancet window slits were equipped with glass panels reactive to light and heat. Doors opened and closed via automatic body sensors. Interior light levels could be adjusted by a wave of the hand. Everywhere, the soft melody of the aria played.

The Imperium possessed many cities that were larger and grander and more cyclopean. The super-hives of Terra and the silver spires of Prospero both were stupendous monuments to cultural advancement that quite diminished Xenobia Principis. But the interex city was every bit as refined and sophisticated as any conurbation in Imperial space, and it was merely a border settlement.”
/ Horus Rising, p.596 - **

    - On units:
    “Lieutenant Barcham did not let this slight go unnoticed. He requisitioned inflatable Riverine assault landers for his platoon and, with Inawan leading the way, they propelled themselves deep into regions that had been lost to Imperial control. Again the enemy fought a game of hit and run but, this time, the 31st Riverine took the fight to them, strafing the enemy in their motored boats with guns blazing. The insurgents melted into the wilderness and issued no more leaflets. Barcham's platoon equipped all subsequent patrols with either inflatable landers or swift boats - ten-metre-long shallow draft vessels that housed a crew of six and one precious pintle-mounted bolter. They made many forays into the heartland with their flotilla of swifts. At night, they drew their vessels into a protective circle, like the frontiersmen of Old Terra with their steed-drawn wagons. They slept in cramped bunks in the vessels' bellies, and ate their rations cold so as not to light fires and draw the attention of insurgents.” / Flesh and Iron, p.4 & 5 - **

    “Persepian Poseidon-class patrol boats, off-shore combat vessels forty metres long from bow to stern, were released into the river systems under orders to ''reclaim the waterways''. Beyond that, orders were flexible and the Persepians rampaged in the coastal estuaries, volleying broadsides into river villages. Their destruction was only restricted by shallower waters further inland.” / Flesh and Iron, p.298 - **

    “Closing the distance, a Persepian Orca-class patrol boat broke away from the picket. Long and lean with a towering cluster of vox-masts and auspex sweepers, it was larger than five swift boats in length. A trio of twin-linked autocannon turrets was tiered on the vessel's short streamlined superstructure.” / Flesh and Iron, p.306 - **

    - Argo-Nautical attributes:
    “From those frothing waves rose the towering might of an Imperial Argo-Nautical, a warship of distant Persepia. From its forward-jutting ram prow to its stern, the Nautical was a vast floating gun battery. The solid, blue-grey sheets of its hull towered over the water like a fortress, sloping up on an incline towards the deck. The Argo-Nautical dominated the ocean, eclipsing the horizon as it drew astern with an offshore platform. Its sheer bulk made the support girders of the platform appear frail and dwarfed even the Vulture gunships roosting on the landing pad.” / Flesh and Iron, p.11 - **

    “He crossed the long grey strip of the flight deck, small and insignificant under the shadow of towering vox-mast antennas. On board the Argo-Nautical, two thousand Persepians were at rest, oblivious to the turbulent fighting many kilometres away on the mainland. The Iron Ishmael carried two battalions of Nautical Infantry, a squadron of Marauder bombers reinforced by four Lightning strike-fighters, as well as a crew of seven hundred sailors, crewmen and logistics units. But for now, the only man who could make a difference to the distant fighting was Lieutenant Duponti. As Duponti made his way towards the ''iron-box'' - a four-storey superstructure on the deck that housed the ship's officers - it occurred to his flight-addled mind that the operation was at a crucial point now. It was a climax. They were at war for real.” / Flesh and Iron, p.164 - **

    “From behind the gun-barges came a flotilla of brown water vessels. Some were Riverine combat boats but many were the improvised Archenemy spikers. They spread out and around the Argo-Nauticals like shoals of carnivorous fish. The Persepian main cannons were not meant for tracking such small and fast-moving targets. Instead, deck gunners sprayed the ocean with waves of smaller calibre weaponry. Hundreds of men died within seconds, their corpses swallowed by undulating crests of water. It seemed the enemy attack was suicidal. Their small-arms could not penetrate the 280mm skin of the Nauticals. Commander Stravach gave the order to conserve ammunition and 'pick the bastards off in our own time.” / Flesh and Iron, p.349 - **

    - Argo-Nautical firepower:
    “Six minutes after initial contact, Admiral de Ruger, aboard the Emperor's Anvil, ordered all personnel of both ships to their respective stations. In anticipation of impending attack, gunners peered from behind autocannon turrets, while torpedo crews and deck gunners gathered at their battle stations.


    The deck-mounted storm bolter batteries drammed out a salvo of ranging shots, throwing glowing tracers over their heads. Both Argo-Nauticals opened up with broadsides, 254mm naval guns sending a curtain of shell-splashes into the sea. The gun-barges sailed on in a widely dispersed formation, the heavy shells crashing between the skirmishing Riverine vessels. Yet the ordnance which found their mark tossed gun-barges upwards on towering geysers of steam. In a futile effort, gun-barges bounced heavy bolter, autocannon and bursts of flak off the Argo-Nautical's thick hide.”
    / Flesh and Iron, p.348 & 349 - **

    - Argo-Nautical taking damage from suicide Spikers:
    “Five collided simultaneously into the hull of the Emperor's Anvil. Explosions bloomed with such force that tonnes of seawater crashed onto the decking. The silver corpses of fish floated up for a hundred metre radius. After the clouds melted away from the ocean surface, two gaping wounds were exposed in the Nautical's midship and several minor scars opened her blunt-nosed bow. Water filled the wounds, listing the great ship to port. Into the breach, assault landers and spikers surged along with the flooding tide.” / Flesh and Iron, p.350 - **

    - Radar:
    “On the one hundred and eighty-second day of the Baston Insurgency a bridge operator on board the Emperor's Anvil noticed a suspicious blip on his radar. The blip soon turned into two, then a dozen, then several dozen. Within a minute, the radar screen showed a mass of several hundred green pixels sweeping in on Union Quay.” Flesh and Iron, p.348 - **
    - Passion of a Star Fortress's machine-spirit:
    “Deep in the heart of the star fort, infernally hot and lit by the winking green lights that studded the menhirs of black datamedium, Techmarine Korgon waited for the machine-spirit of the Bastion Inviolate to unfurl. The intelligence was encoded in the millions of sheets of datamedium, untold trillions of calculations in every fraction of a second weaving together to create a sentience as old as the Imperium. Forged in the age before the Emperor had united humanity, the Bastion Inviolate had accumulated more battle-wisdom than a whole Chapter of Space Marines could boast. From a well lined with black crystal a swarm of flickering motes rose, glowing blue and green. They coalesced into a shape that could have represented something alive, perhaps a serpent squirming in knots or a colony of polyps. Or it could have been an expression of something mathematical, a fractal constantly splitting and turning in on itself. 'Bastion!' called out Techmarine Korgon. 'We are at war!'

    'Who,' demanded the machine-spirit, 'is the enemy?' Its synthesised voice filled the datacore of the Bastion Inviolate. The spirit was known to be curt and crude, constantly angry about something.

    'The Iron Warriors,' replied the Techmarine. The servo-arm on his armour’s backpack inserted a dataprobe into a socket on the crystal wall behind Korgon, inputting the data the star fort’s sensorium had collected on the enemy ship. 'The Ferrous Malice, known to be the flagship of Warsmith Shon’tu. Less than half an hour ago it emerged into real space within striking distance of us.'

    'Filth-licking dogs!' spat the machine-spirit. 'Would that I had hands to wring their necks! Would that I had bowels that I might void them on their corpses!' There was a reason Techmarine Korgon tended to converse with the machine-spirit alone. He was used to its temperament, but the same could not be said of the other Imperial Fists and Chapter crew who staffed the Bastion Inviolate.

    'You echo our own sentiments,' he said. 'The Ferrous Malice is a Castigation-class grand cruiser and is a formidable foe. We ask that you lend your wisdom to the battle sure to come.'

    'My wisdom?' snapped the machine-spirit. 'Wisdom counts for nothing against such a foe! No, it is hatred that will count! Rage! They stew in their filth and imagine our heads on spikes. But I’ll split their hull open with my lance fire and turn them into frozen mist! My servitors will string their entrails on my battlements! Whatever foetid data festers in their systems, I’ll delete it zero by one and scrape that ship bare! Long ago the Ferrous Malice opened its machine-spirit up to traitors and daemons! Whatever’s left, I’ll kill. You’ll be lucky if there are any Iron Warriors left on whom to practise your aim.'

    'Then I shall cede the primary weapons to you, machine-spirit,' continued Korgon.”
    / Endeavour of Will, p.7 & 8 - **
    - 140m tall Titans:
    “Black, humanoid figures paced slowly in across the limits of the palace sprawl. They were shaped like armoured men, and they trudged like men, but they were giants, each one hundred and forty metres tall. The Mechanicum had deployed a half-dozen of its Titan war engines. Around the Titans’ soot-black ankles, troops flooded forward in a breaking wave three kilometres wide.” / Horus Rising, p.19 - **