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Index Astartes - The Black Scorpions
The Black Scorpions are a Space Marine chapter based on the planet Arcturus in the Eastern Fringes. Their creation remains a mystery and no record of their founding is available. Some vague and cryptic tomes indicate that they were founded at some point during the later years of M36. Their close ties with the Ordo Xenos is evident based on the amount of missions they accomplish at the behest of the Inquisition. A record number of Black Scorpions have served in the Deathwatch.
Their organisation is similar to that of the black templars albeit on a smaller scale. Numerous small detachments of Marines are constantly on missions around the galaxy hunting Xenos or using their experience to instruct newer chapters or Ordo Xenos stormtroopers in the art of killing the Alien. Recent inquisition investigations put their numbers at approximately 1600 fully trained marines. Such a deviation from the codex astartes is a worrying concern for more conservative inquisitors but the Black Scorpions' close ties with several high ranking inquisitors offers them some degree of lee way from sanctions or investigations. The large numbers of viable recruits is due a warp incident. During the first war for Armageddon The Black Scorpions sent a large force to aid the Imperium's efforts. The fleet was lost and assumed to have been destroyed in the warp. The chapter assumed it had lost 400 space marines, a grievous loss. The chapter slowly rebuilt it's forces and eventually returned to full strength. Almost 400 years later the lost fleet appeared in orbit over Armageddon.
The marines were immediately quarantined and screened for chaotic corruption but were found to be clear. The fleet maintained it only spent 3 weeks in the warp. Such is the nature of the ebbing tides of the warp.
Arcturus is a dangerous death world, a dusty barren mountainous planet with large equatorial jungles and forests full of man eating plants and fearsome predators like the Cytus Swallower or the gigantic Black Scorpion (after which the chapter is named). There are also a number of fearsome feral Ork tribes that reside in the dangerous jungles, kept at bay by the thousand mile deserts and mountains that isolate them. The bone chilling ice caps, blistering deserts, huge mountains and fetid jungles provide excellent training grounds. The warlike and aggressive people live a harsh existence in feudal walled cities and towns. Inter clan warfare was rife until the founding of the Arenas, huge gladiatorial spectacles in which warring factions could not only settle their disputes and gain honour but also profit from.
The Black Scorpion base is a huge fortress on the Northern ice caps of Arcturus simply called The Stone. It is in this facility that the chapter houses it's armoury and training facilities. The Chapter also operate out of a gigantic space dock in orbit which manages and maintains their space fleet. Arcturus is also home to a large inquisition research installation. The strange weaponry and dangerous captured creatures the Black Scorpions bring back are studied here under the watchful eye of the Ordo Xenos and Magos Biologis.
It is within the great arenas of Arcturus that the strength and will of humanity is tested. Arenas that can fit half a million people bear witness to horrific gladiatorial combat. The greatest honour an Arcturian can accomplish is victory in the Arena and the glory of being selected by the Black Scorpions to join their ranks. Thousands of young citizens join the ranks of gladiators hoping to become a great warrior and prove their worth to the emperor. Glory and Fame await those who can triumph. However most meet a grisly end at the hands of captured creatures from the far corners of the galaxy. The great crowds bear witness to the ferocity of Orks, Eldar pirates, Tau, or even, on a rare occasion, Tyranids.
Thousands of individual fights take place every day in the hundreds of smaller arenas and millions watch these ferocious battles. The culture and war like nature of the people of Arcturus is sated by these violent and bloody spectacles. Those warriors that have that rare strength can move up the ranks and are eventually allowed into the most prestigious and dangerous arena of all. The Praelium. It is here where the finest young warriors will meet their most dangerous and difficult task. The Master of the Arena will dictate the challenge which must be undertaken. It will never be easy and the young warriors will almost always be outnumbered or outclassed. They will fight to death against captured orks, gangs of hardened criminals, eldar pirates or even on occasion a deadly tyranid courtesy of the Magos Biologis installation.
It is from these deadly battles that the Black Scorpions chapter select it's candidates for their ranks.
Only the most naturally talented and skilled men will survive the tests of the Praelium and thus the
Black Scorpions can ensure that they only get the finest, bravest and deadliest men to join their
ranks. The gladiators on Arcturus spend hours crafting and specializing their blades and weapons. They take pride and honour in fighting with crafted works of art. Because of this tech marines in the chapter are often skilled artisans. It is not uncommon to see Black Scorpions wield modified bolters or master crafted swords. Arcturan weapons are highly sought after objects and is the basis of the off world trade economy.
The recruitment process is a rare one among space marine chapters in that it has access to an
extremely large amount of viable recruits. The popularity of the Arenas has led to a huge number of
young champions fit for recruitment. It is this steady stream of exceptional subjects that as allowed
the Black Scorpions to not only grow despite their dangerous specialty but also allow for a highly
trained planetary defense force.
The Black Scorpions favor the use ambushes and terror tactics against their enemies. The Black Scorpions prefer to use surgical strikes and lighting fast attacks which then dissappear leaving the enemy confused and terrified. With each Alien comes a different tactic and mode of combat. Each race poses it's own problems and the Black Scorpions are trained to adapt to them using tried and tested tactics along with rare and effective technology. The Black Scorpions have an unnatural hate for the Alien and their ferocity and unflinching brutality has gained them a reputation amongst the enemies of the imperium. The Black Scorpions have also used their skills against rebels and insurgents and are known to capture rebels and pirates for use in the Arcturian arenas. The Black Scorpions are highly skilled hunters and trackers and often find themselves in small teams under cities, crawling through ducts and shafts in search of deadly aliens. While most warriors prefer open combat the Black Scorpions revel in the thrill of the hunt and their relentless pursuit more often that not results in capture or destruction of their prey. The Black Scorpions have fought many aliens over many years. The veterans of the Black Scorpions are grizzled, experienced and highly capable fighters. Often they will be distinct by the large amount of bionic replacements they have, an inevitable result of fighting Aliens.
One of the most famous Alien hunter's is Sergeant Verlaine. Disliked by many for his reckless tactics despite the fact that he completed the most missions and has one of the highest kill ratings in the deathwatch. He was cut in half by a scythed hierodule at the battle of Praxis IV. His body was reconstructed with special bionics and continues to increase his already impressive kill rating. His favored weapon is an ancient powersword given to him by the governor of Praxis IV for his services.
The Black Scorpions do not venerate a primarch. They venerate the Emperor and fight in his name. They believe firmly in the purity of humanity and will endeavor to destroy any Xenos that threaten humanity's future. While they hate the Alien they will not hesitate to use Alien technology delighting in the irony of destroying the Alien with it's own weapons. They have close ties with the Ordo Xenos but still view the Inquisition with some suspicion. Inquisitors that fight along side the Black Scorpions have often fought hard and long to earn their respect which has lead to the Black Scorpions having many powerful allies within the Inquisition.
The Black Scorpions are named after a ferocious beast that lives in the equitorial jungles. The Black Scorpions believe it to be the apex of deadliness. It's speed, strength and resilience are immensely respect by the chapter.
Although there is no record of their founding it is thought that it was founded using Ultra Marines gene-seed due to the purity of the Black Scorpions. The gene-seed of the Black Scorpions remains extremely pure except for a small mutation of the betcher's gland. Normally the betcher's gland allows space marines to produce a deadly acidic poison. The Black Scorpions mutation allows them to produce and extreme version of this poison. The poison produced is a virulent neurotoxin that can kill a grown man in seconds. The toxin paralyzes the victim and causes tissue to decompose rapidly leading to massive internal bleeding and blood loss, essentially liquefying the victim from the inside. Where this mutation comes from is unknown but it is hypothesized that the Black Scorpions tradition of exposing new marines to black scorpion poison as a right of passage may have somehow, over the years, caused this strange mutation. Black Scorpions often coat their blades with this poison before battle to deadly effect. (tests have shown that upon entering the bloodstream a man will die within 8.8 seconds and fully grown ork will die in an average of 27.5 seconds after this poison enters it's bloodstream. While of little combat use given the speed and ferocity of close combat it does ensure that if wounded the victim will not survive the battle.
The Black Scorpions do not have a standard battle cry.
Last edited by Rorymcl; April 4th, 2008 at 01:46. Reason: wrong picture link
In a couple places when you talk about the arenas you say men, you do know that they choose kids usually around the age 11-14. The implants wont work on men. THought you should know that.
Erik Moraki's Great Company 16/4/7
Borgut "SBD" GreatStrider's Ogres 6/1/2
An'Gorath's World Eaters 3/0/2
Sigurd GreatFang's Wulfen Host 7/4/3
A really good read. I like how they aren't overpowered to ridiculous levels.
And as I really like Deathwatch, I like these guys too. The Arena stuff is pretty interesting too. Although the intelligence off bringing Tyranid Organisms to your homeworld is pretty low.
Dark Eldar get away with it cos they are hidden in the web way.
By the looks of their paint scheme they are easy to paint..
Arch Overfiend & Grand Despot
I currently play:
Doom Eagle Space Marines
Hive Fleet Omega Tyranids
Goff Ork Boyz(dead)
Tau of O'me
Inquisitorial Xeno Hunters
and my attempted foray into fantasy
'Dark Angel Green' Dark Elves in need of fluff
I think you need to work more on justifying the use of alien technology, as it's a big leap. I assume they still have techmarines trained by the Adeptus Mechanicus, and in mechanicus doctrine Alien machines are blasphemous, they cage and torture the machine spirit through improper construction and maintenance, and they can corrupt and defile anyone who uses them. The machine god chose humans to carry the spark of technology. Aliens are just parasites sucking on human knowledge.
It can be done.. But even the deathwatch don't do it for fun. They do it because they often have to, the irony is an amusing sidenote to utility.
The close ties with Inquisitors could also use more explanation, as so much hinges on it.. Even radicals don't like marines to be terribly unorthodox, and besides, the vast majority of Inquisitors in general are relatively puritan or neutral. They will therefore tend to view things like using alien weapons as a sign of moral decay and improper practice.
Also, they seem to have a lot of contact with humans. That's generally frowned on. Marines are supposed to love humanity in an abstract way, but ties with individual humans can be a fatal weakness.
Otherwise, really interesting fluff.. It all works, I think some things just need more explanation.
And as mentioned, men can't be implanted.. Only pre-adolescent boys could hope to become marines. Don't laugh, childhood is a 19th century invention..
Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; April 4th, 2008 at 12:17.
Thanks for the feedback!
all valid points that I will take into account.
Wow you should go back and read my post about my space marine chapter the Night Spiders.
ALot of similarity between our two chapters, but also alot of differences.
Just found it Ironic.
2500pts Emperors Children
1000pts Dark Eldar Cabal of Agony Eternal
There are some similarities indeed. I wouldn't call it ironic though... just a co-incedence.
Indeed I ment nothing by it, just than great minds think alike;Y.
2500pts Emperors Children
1000pts Dark Eldar Cabal of Agony Eternal