13 Nov 2008

Relictors Background Fluff Pt.II

This is derived, without permission, upon the Warhammer 40K intellectual property of Games Workshop Ltd, from articles by Graham McNeill and Andy Hoare from White Dwarf WD 281(UK) and WD 295(UK).

My Relictors Paint Scheme. (SM Painter by Bolterandchainsword.com)

Combat Doctrine and Organisation

The Relictors are known to follow the Codex Astartes as far as overall organisation is concerned, but it has been noted that they have strayed from approved doctrine in a number of other areas. The major difference between the Chapter’s combat doctrine and that of any other is in its use of captured enemy weapons. Many Chapters indulge in trophy taking, but the Relictors have in the past gone out of their way to capture, master and utilise weapons taken from the forces of Chaos. Despite the evident consequences of Inquisitorial sanction, they are thought by some to be continuing this practice.

Another notable feature of the Chapter’s organisation is the inclusion of more Librarians than is usual, a feature some observers have attributed to the Relictors’ homeworld proximity to the Eye of Terror.

In terms of battlefield tactics, many Imperial Commanders who have fought beside the Chapter have voiced concerns about its behaviour. It has been noted on many occasions that the Relictors will only embark upon specific courses of action if it meets their own criteria and will only fight alongside Imperial Forces if that agenda can be furthered.

The Relictors conform, at first appearance, to that of a standard codex Chapter, with ten companies divided into a standard mix of Battle, Assault, Tactical, Devastator and Scout Companies. But, it is at the higher echelons of the Chapter that many differences become apparent. The Chapter’s command ranks are gathered together in a group known as the Conclave and every decision concerning the Chapter’s deployment and operational doctrine is made here. Only those proven in combat and of guaranteed purity are permitted to rise to become members of the Conclave. As a warrior rises through the ranks he is gradually initiated deeper into the Chapter's mysteries and when judged ready, told of the truth behind the weapons wielded by the Conclave. It is these warriors who, after many days in prayer, are permitted to carry the Chapter's Daemon weapons into combat. The Chapter's Librarians meticulously screen potential initiates, rejecting all but the strongest candidates.

In battle the Chapter fights with a balanced mixture of forces and deviates little from standard battlefield operations. Only when members of the Conclave take to the field do the Relictors become something much more sinister. Senior members employ the weapons and individual squads can carry unholy artefacts utilising the power of Chaos against its foul minions.


Central to the Relictors belief system is the tenet that Chaos is not inherently evil, that it is merely a power that may be turned against those who wield it for evil. This manifests most commonly in the Chapter's use of captured Daemon Weapons but also extends to their increased reliance on Librarians. As a relatively new Chapter, the Relictors display a confidence of youth that borders on arrogance, as they believe that they have the strength of will and faith to resist the corruption of Chaos. They disdain those who do not have the courageto use such artefacts, claiming that the power of Chaos is a weapon like any other and that the evil that threatens to engulf the galaxy merits the use of such weapons.


The source of the Relictors geneseed is largely based on gene stock taken from the laboratorium on Mars and is thought to be composed of that grown from the Ultramarine and Dark Angels. If this is the case, then it would appear that the High Lords of Terra's reluctance to sanction the use of Dark Angel geneseed in the creation of new Chapters has relaxed somewhat. There are no recorded instances of unacceptable mutation in the Relictors' geneseed, though given their close working with the powers of the Warp, the Apothecaries and Librarians maintain a close watch on the purity of their Battle Brothers for any signs of aberration. It is rumoured that those zygotes that display mutation are allowed to mature before implantation into a host organism in order that the Apothecaries might better study the workings of Chaos on the flesh and how to defeat it. The source and veracity of these rumours are unclear and in all likelihood false.

Battlecry of the Relictors Chapter

Using the Relictors in 40K

Rules can be found in WD 281(UK) and 295(UK) but are basically Codex SM with the addition of one Daemon Weapon for an independant character, one per army, and one Chaos Standard in lieu of either a Chapter Banner or Company Banner. See Codex CSM for points and descriptions and please ask your opponent if these special rules are okay to use. Relictors cannot have Imperial Allies (for the fact that they are deemed Excommunicate Traitoris) except Radical Inquisitors. No Assassins, Deathwatch, Priests or Witchhunters and especially no Grey Knights!

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