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ok, the sisters of battle have power armor, inquisitors have power armor, lots of non-space marines have power armor, and that's fine. But I have one question.
In the index astartes, it mentions the implants a space marine must have and so forth. The last one being the black carapace, which is apparently the key to using it. A space marine, according to this, needs the black carapace to use anything of his armor. It even goes to say that without this implant, his armor is quite useless.
So, how can inquisitors, sisters of battle, and other characters in the Imperium outside the Adeptus Astartes use power armor? Do they all have the black carapace? Are they wearing a "power armor lite"? Or is that why a space marine is tougher then a sister of battle?
Also, when new chapters are founded, obviously they need to be issued suits of power armor, where do these come from? Do forgeworlds still produce power armor? Is there some vast imperial stockpile hidden somewhere?
Hmm, as to your first question I believe you are right, "power armour lite" is pretty much what they wear. This is power armour without all of the crazy life-support systems that space marine power armour has built into it. It is just heavy armour with electronically motivated fibre bundles to help the wearer move while wearing it.
SM power armour has a whole bunch of other stuff in it, and I think you could say that part of the SM's abnormal toughness is his black carapace.
Presumably techmarines make marine power armour? I don't know about that one.
If I had to garner a guess, I think the Index Astartes means that all the fancy gadgets don't work on Space Marines without the Power Armour. Space Marines have many... well... gadgets incorporated into their armour - self sustaining life support systems, bio monitors, etc. I wouldn't think that the power armour given to Sisters of Battle and Inquisitors have all those fancy upgrades, therefore don't require the Black Carapace.
Edit - Darn you Robotnik!
Your both right though for inquisitors:
Notice that they do not have the powerpack of normal astartes power armour. Without that all power armour does is provide great protection and slightly enhanced strength.
Sisters of battle power armour:
heavy difference between the average sized femal and the average sized super-human male. Dont forget that astartes armour is built around a seven-foot tall superman and is required to further enhance each and every one of their senses. The sister armour is just made for protection and faith, none else.
Other power armour variants probably have something similar to the above two as to why they are different to astartes armour.
To the last question, only one forgeworld remains the creator of power armour and that is mars. Other forgeworlds did this but that was stopped in the aftermath of the Horus Heresy. They realized how bad an idea it was after he had gotten enough of them for spare supplies. (Kinda scary that astartes use more mark 5 and 6 armour than the up to date mark 7 armour...)
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Whats the difference in armor variants?
where'd you find this out? is there a completely different power armor variant for sisters of battle?
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Yes, the Orders Militant have their own type of power armor. Its scaled down, made form fitting (oh thank god) and doesnt have the advanced life support or strengthening servos. Thats in the front of the Daemon Hunters codex right there, on pg 19, where it describes the sister's battle gear.
There are many different types of power armor. Many Inqusitors wear power armor, but normally this has been constructed for them by a master artificer of the Ad Mech. Inquisitors get custom jobs. In fact, Inquisitors can even sport Terminator Armor if they want. Theyre Inquistiors after all. These can get made all over the place. Adeptus Sororitas and Adeptus Astartes are all manufactured on Mars, but I think there are a few forgeworlds that make small amounts of it elsewhere. Adeptus Sororitas power armor is a type unto itself. Space marines, however, have 7 different types of armor, Marks I-VII.
Actually, darkreever, Mark V Heresy Armor is almost completely gone and is rarely present in space marine armies. Approximately 20% of SM power armor is Mark VI armor, Corvus armor, with the beak.. but even then many of the pieces have been reworked to be Mark VII. The vast majority of SM armor is MK VII. Even amongst Chaos marines.... hmmmmmm...
There's also Adeptus Custodes power armor, which is even larger and more advanced than Space Marine armor.
There are a lot of different types of Dreadnought armor, Terminator Armor, Rhinos, Land Raiders, Land Speeders, and Predator tanks. Many, many different kinds actually.
Hmm I dunno about inquisitors being able to field terminator armor... after all, terminators are allowed to wear the armor because it is precious and in extremely short supply since nobody can make it anymore. Hell some space marines don't even field terminator squads due to that fact, so I don't think that anyone, including inquisitors with all the backing of their Ordo could get a suit of terminator armor made for 'em.
Ordo Malleus Inquisitors can get terminator armour in the rules, so there's no real doubt that it's possible.
The Inquisition is a very important Imperial organization, and Inquisitor Lords have as much if not more influence and access to wierd wargear than even the oldest space marine chapters. Inquisitors can use digital weapons for example, but these are classed as "too rare" to just be handed over to any space marine, even a chapter master.
Inquisitors have better access to tech than marines, not worse.
To ellaborate on the diffrences not only does space marine power armour moniter and allow apothocarys to see the life signs of thier brother marines, space marine power armour helps to monitor and control certain implants releases combat drugs to deal with extremes of stress and combat, also if nessecary it can release pain killers to deal with injurys that even thier enhanced bodies find hard to deal with plus anti toxans to deal with poisons that even the ollitac kidney can't handle. Without the black carpace none of this would be possible.