Deathwatch (Warhammer 40,000) - Chapter Structure - Loyalist Legions

Loyalist Legions

Name No. Primarch Homeworld Current base of operations Fictional characteristics Factual roots
Dark Angels I Lion El'Jonson (The Lion).

Status: Missing, assumed dead. Actually sleeping in a hidden chamber in The Rock. A secret known only to the Emperor and the Watchers in the Dark

Caliban (Destroyed by the Dark Angels in a civil war after the Horus Heresy) The Rock (mobile asteroid base) Recruitment varies from generation to generation as depicted in the novel Angels of Darkness. The Dark Angels' combat doctrine is centred around a tactically versatile force favouring the use of heavy plasma-based weapons. They also maintain two specialised Companies, one of Terminator-armoured veterans named the Deathwing, and one of fast-attack, vehicular raiders known as the Ravenwing. The fictional depiction of the Dark Angels is heavily based upon the Knights Templar and the poem The Dark Angel by Lionel Jonson. However, the novella Deathwing bases them upon Native American tribes.
White Scars V Jaghatai Khan.

Status: Missing. Vanished after the Horus Heresy while pursuing Dark Eldar into the Webway.

Mundus Planus Mundus Planus The Chapter follows a fast-attack doctrine, and makes extensive use of hit and run tactics using Space Marine bikes. The Chapter organisation of the White Scars reflects their home world's tribal culture. White Scars recruit from a single planet, Mundus Planus. The steppes of the world are inhabited by feuding tribes, from which are chosen the best and most promising young warriors, regardless of tribe. Once a warrior becomes a White Scar, loyalty to his tribe is replaced by loyalty to the Chapter and the Emperor.

As their Primarch does during his campaign to unite the steppes, recruits from different tribes are mixed together in squads. Each squad becomes part of a Brotherhood, roughly equivalent to a standard Company.

The fictional depiction of the White Scars is based upon medieval Mongolian culture.
Space Wolves VI Leman Russ (The Wolf King).

Status: Missing. Left Fenris with his Wolfguard after the Horus Heresy, vowing to return "no matter what the laws of life and death, for the last battle, for the wolftime".

Fenris Fenris (The Fang) The Space Wolves are fierce warriors with an organisation that differs strongly from other Chapters. They are known for their fierce independence, and are the only loyal Chapter never to adopt the Codex Astartes.

The Space Wolves are noted for their hyper-acute senses caused by the implantation of the Canis Helix, which, as well as enhanced senses, causes elongated canines, leathery and hardened skin, making the Space Wolves literally wolf-like; but unless a marine can control his feral side he risks becoming a savage monster.

It is hinted in Prospero Burns and A Thousand Suns that the Space Wolves were viewed as the Emperors executioners during the Great Crusade, and that the unleashing of the Wolves upon another legion was the Emperors ultimate sanction, and was used not only to destroy the Thousand Suns but also the two legions deleted from Imperial archives,

The fictional depiction of the Space Wolf behaviour and culture is based upon the Vikings and werewolf mythology.
Imperial Fists VII Rogal Dorn.

Status: Missing, assumed dead. As one of the last remaining Primarchs, Dorn was urged by some to become Emperor. Last seen boarding a Chaos warship, it is speculated that he may have faked his own death and secretly leads the Emperor's Custodia guards, as only a hand was recovered.

Holy Terra Phalanx (space-borne fortress ship) The Imperial Fists are known for their skills in siege warfare. They have a rivalry with the Iron Warriors since prior to the Horus Heresy as they both are exceptional at siege warfare. They are one of the most loyal chapters in the Imperium and second only to the Ultramarines in Codex adherence. They manned the walls of the Imperial Palace during the defence of Terra, where their siege skills contributed greatly to the battle, bringing an end to the Horus Heresy, and allowing them to survive a brutal trap set for them by their traitorous rivals, the Iron Warriors. The fictional depiction of Imperial Fists duels follows the Prussian Junker system, with honour duelling depicted in the novel Space Marine. It has been acknowledegd that a few original Terran recruits introduced the Junker system into the Legion during the Great Crusade.
Blood Angels IX Sanguinius.

Status: Dead. Killed by Horus during the Battle of Terra, his body is kept in the Blood Angel fortress monastery.

Baal Secundus Baal The Blood Angels and their successor Chapters suffer from various genetic flaws, primarily the 'Red Thirst' and 'Black Rage' (also 'Red Fury'), referring to a constant drive to shed blood and a psychological state of rage. Those who begin to suffer the 'Black Rage' strive to attain death in battle; 'Black Rage' is caused by suffering the psychic echo of the death of their Primarch, Sanguinius, at the hands of Horus during the Battle of Terra. The appearance and abilities of the Blood Angels are heavily inspired by vampire mythology and angels in Judeo-Christian scriptures.
Iron Hands X Ferrus Manus.

Status: Dead. Beheaded by Fulgrim during the battle of Isstvan V. As the body was not recovered, it is rumoured that it may have been taken to Mars by the Mechanicum. Hinted on several occasions in more recent Black Library books that he may have somehow survived his decapitation.

Medusa Medusa The warriors of the Iron Hands display a high incidence of cybernetic modifications to their bodies; as their motto proclaims, "The flesh is weak!". All recruits have their left hand removed and substituted with a cybernetic replacement. Their combat doctrine is conventional but extremely brutal, making extensive use of powerful war machines (with special reverence for Terminators and Dreadnoughts as machines which replace or radically augment the human body), while their Chapter philosophy emphasises the importance of unremitting trials and struggle. The need for constant self-perfection and purification is tied to their predilection for bionic modification.
Ultramarines XIII Roboute Guilliman.

Status: Mortally Wounded. Has his throat cut by Deamon Prince Fulgrim after the Horus Hersey. The poison on Fulgrims blade prevented the wound from healing and so his body was placed in a stasis field on Macragge. It is believed by many that the wound is slowly healing.

Macragge Fortress of Hera, Macragge The Ultramarines are one of the finest Chapters of the Space Marines. They have had countless victories, mainly due to the expertise of their Primarch Guilliman, who is also the creator of the Codex Astartes. The most famous of the battles that they win is the Battle for Macragge where they prevail over Hive Fleet Behemoth, becoming the first Space Marine Chapter to defeat the Tyranids. They carry a boltgun and a short sword (Gladius). The Honour Guard of the Ultramarines carry very powerful close combat weapons known as Axes of Ultramar. The fictional depiction of the Ultramarines is based upon ancient Rome, though imagery relating to Classical Greece is also utilised.
Salamanders XVIII Vulkan.

Status: Missing. He vanished during the battle of Isstvan V, but his chapter believe he may still return.

Nocturne Prometheus (moon of Nocturne) The Salamanders are technically adept warriors with a preference for short-ranged combat, particularly with flame- and heat-based weaponry. The Salamanders have thick, coal-black skin and red eyes as a protective adaptation to the high levels of deleterious radiation on Nocturne. This chapter associates with their home planet's people (and civilians in general) more than any other chapter, and are trading partners with the Adeptus Mechanicus, trading weapons for the natural resources on Nocturne. Their name and background is based on the legendary salamander.
Raven Guard XIX Corax.

Status: Missing. Vanished into the Eye of Terror one year after the Battle of Terra.

Deliverance (Moon - previously named Lycaeus) Ravenspire Tower, Deliverance The Raven Guard specialise in hit-and-run attacks on high priority targets to maximise their ability to cripple a larger enemy force. Guerrilla warfare using jump packs and extensive use of Scout Marines is common. Due to a genetic defect, their skin fades to pure white while their hair and eyes turn night black. Their fictional basis and depiction draws upon elements of Edgar Allan Poe's poem The Raven.

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... during the Great Crusade, and that the unleashing of the Wolves upon another legion was the Emperor's ultimate sanction, and was used not only to destroy the Thousand ... been acknowledegd that a few original Terran recruits introduced the Junker system into the Legion during the Great Crusade ...

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