Miniature Games, Painting and Modeling, Tabletop Games

The Claws of Man: Competition Progress

Why do I leave things so late? I got off to a good start with this contest, but it’s really fallen away. It’s only been today that I’ve returned to it and actually put brush to miniature. Here’s what I have so far, in term of a colour scheme:

A bit bland, perhaps, but it fits with the club colours, which is kind of the point of the contest. I’m enjoying painting something different, too. I’m really not used to power armour and am slightly dreading the next stages of the model.

For me, the more interesting part of the contest is coming up with background for your chapter. I decided to model mine after the old Index Astartes articles from White Dwarf. Here are a few section that I have finished:

ORIGINS

In the aftermath of the Second Founding, in the early 31st millennium, Primarch Roboute Guilliman tasked Archmagos Belisarius Cawl of the Cult Mechanicus with creating a new breed of transhuman. The Primaris Space Marines represent an improvement over the original Astartes design, being physically larger, more resilient, stronger, and faster. Crucially, being designed in the wake of the great civil war that had set brother against brother, they were also more resistant to mutation and corruption.

It was 10,000 years before the Primaris would be deployed as a military force. Their arrival was preceded and heralded by the shattering of material space and the rebirth of a Primarch. As Guilliman took up the mantle of Imperial Regent to be the head of the Imperium he serves, so the Primaris Space Marines are his fists.

Guilliman’s Indomitus Crusade blazed across the stars, cleansing the Imperium of Man of the encroaching threat of Chaos and incursions by Xenos forces. He was accompanied by a number of Imperial forces, including nine special formations of Primaris Space Marines, known as the Unnumbered Sons.

The Primaris Space Marines of the Unnumbered Sons fought in legion-sized armies where Astartes of different lineages mingled in mixed squads and companies, all the better to foster future cooperation between Space Marine chapters.

Eventually, in the waning days of the crusade, the remaining Primaris who had not already been formed into new chapters or used to reinforce existing ones would form yet more new chapters. Among them, 700 Primaris descended from the geneseed of Guilliman were given a fortress monastery on the planet of Calth and formed into the Claws of Man. Led by Chapter Master Davan Yeomid, the Claws of Man were tasked with the solemn duty of protecting the north and eastern reaches of Ultramar from the extragalactic threat of the Tyranids.

The Astartes of the Claws of Men had known nothing but the Indomitus Crusade since their deployment more than a century before. On the day that the crusade fleet departed Calth, every Astartes and every human naval officer stood vigil on their freshly painted Strike Cruisers and Battle Barge, watching until the fleet faded out of view and their new mission began.

LORE BOX 1: GRATITUDE OF THE CULT MECHANICUS

Calth is a subterranean society that relies heavily on significant amounts of archeotech to survive. Vast air processors form the lungs of each city. Ancient generators power the lights and keep the factories running. All of this lifegiving technology is maintained by the tech priests of the Adeptus Mechanicus who, in turn, rely on the Astartes of the Claws of Man to protect them – particularly in the deepest and darkest of tunnels.

In addition, Calth sits in close proximity to the industrial world of Ravishol, the mining world of Lamane and the Mechanicus asteroid mining outpost of Veridia Force. All of these have a significant Adeptus Mechanicus presence, and all have benefitted from nigh-on a century of protection from the Claws of Man.

In gratitude, the Cult Mechanicus have been willing to induct a slightly higher number of battle brothers into the secrets of the mechanicum and, as they see it, into the service of the Omnissiah. Accordingly, it has become customary for the captain of the 9th company to be drawn from the chapter’s Techmarines. The current holder of this position is Captain Chimden.

HOME WORLD

The world of Calth sits in the north-east of the realm of Ultramar, itself situated deep in the galactic south-east In the Ultima Segmentum. Unusually for the home world of a chapter of the Adeptus Astartes, the the Chapter Mater does not have full administrative authority over Calth. Instead, Calth is adminsitered by Tetrarch Severus Agemman, ruler of Konor and of Ultramar’s northern territories.

Calth itself orbits a brilliant blue sun, the radiation from which renders the surface utterly uninhabitable. Whilst the men of many of Ultramar’s worlds walk under the broad skies, the men of Calth inhabit a vast network of subterranean tunnels. The barren surface of the world should not lead the reader to assume that the world holds no value, however. Calth is, in point of fact, one of the most productive planet within the realm of Ultramar, maintaining massive underground factories and vast orbital shipyards.

A major battleground of the Horus Heresy, the recent history of Calth has also seen significant turmoil. In 745.M41, the extragalactic beings known as Tyranids launched an incursion into Ultramar. The majority of the Tyranid Fleet, known as Behemoth, assaulted the world of Macragge, a small splinter fleet landed on Calth, unleashing the sort of vicious beasts that were once confined only to the nightmares of children. The Ultramarines managed to eradicate these beasts at significant cost and small pockets of their kind still inhabit long-forgotten tunnels to this day.

In 854999.M41 Calth suffered another devastating attack as the Traitor Astartes of the Iron Warriors legion assaulted the world. Their leader, the self-style Warsmith Honsou, came in search of the tomb of a long dead hero of calth. Thankfully the Warsmith’s machinations were thwarted by Captain Uriel Ventris of the Ultramarines and his brave Astartes.

Today, Calth has been placed under the protection the Claws of Man, a newly formed chapter of the Adeptus Astartes, consisting entirely of Primaris marines. They are tasked with protecting this important world, rooting out any and all remaining traces of Behemoth, and ensuring that nearby systems are similarly protected from the extragalactic threat of the Tyranids.

LORE BOX 2: THE CHILDREN OF THE TYRANNIC WAR

The initial 700 Astartes of the Claws of Man first served the Primarch Guilleman as his Unnumbered Sons. When the chapter was first formed, it was clear that further Primaris marines would be required. In recognition of those who died on Calth and the dedicated purpose to which the chapter would be put, Guilleman allowed Cawl to adapt a stock of Geneseed harvested from fallen veterans of the Tyrannic War.

It has been noted that Astartes of the Claws of Man seem particularly aggressive in the prosection of any campaign against the Tyranid menace. Whether this is physiological response to their particular geneseed, or merely a psychological one remains to be determined.

Today’s job is the get the miniature finished up. Tomorrow, my intention is to move on and finish off the lore. I’m far from being one of the better painters in the club, but I’m reasonably happy with my scheme, and I’m enjoying putting together some background.

Once the whole club have finished up their entries, I’ll be sharing them all here as well. So that’s something to look forward to!

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