Latest news:

[all news]

nurgle.stelio.net

ModelsLoreSourcesInspiration ]

Imperial Armour Volume Seven - The Siege of Vraks - Part Three

This is the third book of three covering the Siege of Vraks. Links for all the books are:

p4 — Introduction

The army list within this book is the Nurgle worshipper's version of the Renegade and Heretics list. Should your preference lie with the Plague God's minion, for pestilence and disease, or should you already have a Plague Marine army and wish to expand it, then the Servants of Decay are those renegades that have been drawn into Nurgle's grasp.

For interest, Inquisitor Thor Malkin is an early Warhammer 40,000 character, appearing in 1988's Chapter Approved: Book of the Astronomican (p109). Rogue Trader Joff Zuckermen is also mentioned in passing, another character from the same book (p47).

p9-13 — Closing the Ring

"But to wrestle with the Daemon and emerge from the battle unscathed, we must maintain Purity of Purpose. We must each conquer ourselves in order to win a thousand battles."
— Brother Captain Stern of the Grey Knights, prior to the Cleansing of Vraks

At 101827.M41 the fast strike cruiser Honour-Amentum arrived in the Vraks system, speeding into orbit directly from its home base on Titan. Amongst the swiftest vessels in the Imperium's fleet, heavily armed for its size and equipped with enough powerful teleportation chambers to allow multiple squads to teleport to the surface at once, the Grey Knights striek cruiser was the cutting edge of the Imperium's fleet, and only available to the Ordo Malleus' elite Chapter. Each ship's navigator was the best the Navis Nobilis houses could provide, tied to the Grey Knights by ancient pacts signed when the Chapter was founded. These strange mutants could find their way through the Warp by instinct and make longer warp-jumps than any other, guiding vessels safely through the unpredictable currents of the Immaterium. With their aid a Grey Knights strike force could speed to any location in the galaxy faster than any other forces available to the Imperium. Now the first of the Daemon Hunters had arrived in Vraks system under the command of Brother Captain Stern.

The first major tactical problem the Inquisitor Lord and his newly emplaced staff had to tackle was no different from that which Marshall Kagori had already been wrestling with. One look at the strategic holo-map would show even a first year student of an officer cadet training academy that the siege could not be completed while the eastern flank remained wide open. The encirclement of the citadel was incomplete and whilst it remained so the enemy would have an escape route. Even the capture of the Citadel might not see the war end if the enemy could withdraw to fight again another day. Also, the current position meant that 30th line korps was tied down having to act as a rear guard to the 1st line korps against attack from behind. Useful regiments and guns were being tied down on the defensive.

Inquisitor Lord Rex gave orders that the ring was to be sealed. The four regiments of the 30th line korps would be ordered to go on the offensive and attack in echelon, with the northern 263rd regiment first, followed in turn by the 262nd, 269th and finally the 261st regiment in the south. They were to swing round, pushing southward then south-westward to close the ring about the Citadel by meeting up with the 308th regiment in sector 57-44, where they were the southern-most unit in the front currently held by the 34th line korps. The offensive should swing like a door hinged upon the 1st line korps' positions. From the north this offensive would have only sixty kilometres to cover, and from the reports of Death Rider patrols, Nurgle warbands and their allies were still infesting the entire area. In order to hasten the attack, the 7th and 11th tank regiments were ordered to attach themselves to the 30th line korps, becoming the armoured fist that would conduct the left hook and smash through the enemy.

It would take time to get organised for the offensive, but for the time being it was to be the priority for 88th army's staff. The other regiments were told to hold their positions and conduct nothing but nuisance raids and patrolling whilst the Citadel was sealed within a ring of guns. Expecting fierce fighting and counter-attacks by the Nurgle followers, Inquisitors would be assigned to support the offensive, and the Grey Knights strike force under Brother Captain Stern would act as a rapid reserve, awaiting in their strike cruiser Honour-Amentum, ready to intervene wherever the enemy seemed strongest or daemonic activity was encountered. The time set for the opening of battle was 273827.M41.

In the wake of a successful offensive, two more major operations were also in the pipeline. The first would see the 1st line korps' three regiments push to the curtain wall, tightening the noose around the Citadel and hemming the defenders in. The second would see the 48th line korps, the least experiences of the army's major units (its three regiements had seen a mere six years of service on Vraks so far), push down from the north, to take the high ground and hills and the vantage point at point 202. With these two operations complete, the ring around the Citadel would have closed up to the curtain wall and the enemy would be sealed in an ever-shrinking pocket.

A Green Hell

Only a faint glow of sunlight glimmered through the grey clouds hanging low over the 30th line korps' positions. Soon one of Vraks' regular rainstorms would break and turn the battlefield into another sodden quagmire, but the Krieg guardsmen had become well adapted to the conditions. This time their offensive would not be attacking any fixed enemy positions, there was no constant enemy defence line to break, instead ahead lay a battlefield littered with the remains of previous fighting. The old rusting hulks of tanks and guns lay half buried in the mud or abandoned in shell craters alongside the smashed remains of old trenches and fortifications and seemingly random sprouting of rusted razorwire, which had once protected something, but now were abandoned to the elements. It was ground that had been fought over, to and fro, for years. Worst of all, under the surface might lie long forgotten mines and unexploded shells that could detonate with massive force without warning after years lying dormant in the mud.

It was 273827.M41 when the guns opened fire, a rolling barrage of shells from the guns of 30th line korps, mixed with smoke shells to obscure the 263rd regiment's first lunge forwards. With terrific force the barrage slammed down, battering the already tortured landscape as the leading infantry companies clambered up the ladders and out of their trenches. The tanks were close behind, tank companies combining with the infantry to form armoured battle groups. In the wake of the artillery, the steady, well-ordered advance began.

At first progress was good, but then the enemy counter-barrage began to land. Wherever a rolling barrage was falling, then an attack would not be far behind. First mortar shells were impacting, soon followed by heavier artillery rounds. They were exploding all around, but mingling with the grey smoke plumes was a green-tinged fog - chemical shells releasing their lethal payload of TP-III. The acidic gas clouds were soon billowing across the 263rd regiment's front. Casualties were high, throwing the attack into confusion. Units became lost in the thick smoke and chemical smog. Squads that blundered into a concentration of gas were quickly wiped out; nothing remained, they simply vanished as the acid ate away their flesh and bone.

Through it all the tanks rumbled on. Within their sealed hulls the crews were safe from the gas, and they now formed the point of the attack. It had become a hellish battlefield. Visibility was reduced to just a few metres by the acid clouds, tanks were becoming bogged down as they blundered into large shell craters or long forgotten tank traps. Several Leman Russ hit mines. Then, through the green haze, the enemy counter-attacked. The resulting battle was a series of messy skirmishes fought inside gas clouds. Enemy armoured vehicles fired blindly, or closed in to point balnk range. Unable to co-ordinate tanks, infantry and artillery, the enemy scored quick victories, blasting tank squadrons into burning hulks before withdrawing again. But, despite their successes, the enemy lacked the numbers to halt the advance. The local counter-attacks might stall the offensive for a while and cost men and machines, but by its sheer weight the offensive was still pushing forward. Where the gas cleared the Krieg guardsmen pushed ever onwards against sporadic enemy resistance. By the end of the first day they had made ten kilometres of ground. Tomorrow would see the 263rd lunge forwards again. To the south the 262nd regiment would also join the battle.

For the first few days the offensive continued with the enemy throwing their forces in piecemeal to hold up the attack wherever they could and with the Krieg armoured battle groups thrusting forwards. On the fourth day enemy resistance stiffened. They had now had time to organise a more effective defence. The warbands of the Plague Marines had moved into place, with their own armoured vehicles in support. Worst still, all manner of hideous mutants and slimy, plague-ridden creatures were now unleashed upon the battlefield. Amongst the chemical smog these beasts howled and wailed in pain and fury. Ogryns, now barely recognisable as such. Chaos spawn in all shapes and sizes. Unnamed, tormented creatures that oozed acidic slime. All were thrown into the fighting.

As it joined the battle, the 269th regiment reported encounters with plague zombies. These were hordes of creatures of ragged flesh and bone which shambled through the mud and smoke armed only with teeth and nails, but hungry for the taste of warm flesh and blood. They were the remains of the long dead, risen from their graves to fight again by some blasphemous art unknown to the soldiers of Krieg. The dead of both sides now fought for the enemy, mindless and unarmed they were cut down by the Krieg guardsmen in their hundreds, but still they came on, heedless of losses. Some died once, only to rise again, and were cut down time and again until nothing was left of their once human forms. Inquisitor Thor Malkin came to the 269th regiment's aid. Here was some blasphemous witchcraft that must be punished but if the dead fought for the enemy, then their manpower was all but inexhaustible - you could not fight a war of attrition against an enemy that would not stay dead! Soon the 262nd regiment, then the 263rd regiment were also reporting encounters with plague zomebies. The old battlefield had come back to life below their very feet.

After eight days of fighting, the 34th line korps' offensive had become embroiled in a green hell. Progress had now stalled. The initial gains were being held, but the 263rd regiment's long attack had only reached midway towards its objective. The number of enemies facing them was now almost a match for the Krieg forces. The offensive was at deadlock. To break the stalemate the Inquisitors leading the battle authorised th counter use of chemical weapons, adding to the poisonous landscape with chemical shells, and in the process coating sectors 59-45 and 60-45 in a toxic soup that would make them uninhabitable for hundreds of years.

Warp Rift

Nurgle was delighted with the poisoning of Vraks; more of the landscape was becoming the deadly infectious quagmire that his children most loved. At 298827.M41 he released his children to play.

The first warp rift on Vraks opened in sector 59-44, detected by the Honour-Amentum's warp-augurs, at the summoning of Nurgle sorcerers of the Lords of Decay and the Apostles of Contagion. Their long poisoning ritual was complete, and now they brought forth Nurgle's own daemonic servants.

The Daemons they summoned came from the Blighted Pit - the legions of Scabeiathrax the Bloated. Swarms of cyclopean Plague Bearers and mischevious Nurglings. Amongst them came cavorting Beasts of Nurgle, running amock like playful puppies, spreading disease wherever they touched. In the midst of them all came Scabeiathrax himself, Papa G'aap, a great corpulent mass of virulent decay, his body rank with every disease known to Mankind, and many others as yet unknown. Where his feet fell the ground turned black beneath them. Nurglings sprouted from his leprous skin as large pus filled boils exploded, birthing the many mites of Nurgle that followed in his wake, constantly fighting amongst themselves for the scraps of rancid flesh that shed from their master. Scabeiathrax hummed his happy tunes to himself and his children, pausing on occasion to belch a stream of blood, bile and vomit to fill a shell crater so his children might have a pool to bathe in. His daemonic legions seemed endless, thousands upon thousands of Plague Bearers now wandered Vraks seeking fresh victims to infect.

For Captain Stern and his battle brothers the true enemy had arrived. The Honour-Amentum quickly manoeuvred into position as Captain Stern's squads assembled for the final rituals of warding before entering the teleport chambers.

The Battle for Armoury 59-44

Armoury 59-44 was the last of the great underground storage facilities still in enemy hands, except for that beneath the Citadel itself, and for the 30th line korps it was the key to their offensive. The korps' commanders believed it was this armoury that the enemy were using as their main base for the battles now being fought. The offensive drive had stalled, but the attack upon the armoury would be the battle that would decide this offensive's fate.

Already subjected to repeated heavy artillery bombardments, the fire now intensified with the addition of three of the independent companies, which would pound the area night and day. A fresh armoured force, composed of units from the 61st tank regiment and attached heavy tanks units, alongside infantry of the 262nd regiment, all led by Inquisitor Elias Vokes, had been given the task of attacking and overrunning the armoury. They would have additional air support and anything else that Inquisitor Vokes felt was necessary. It was here that the backbone of the enemy would be broken.

The battle began at 311827.M41, with Inquisitor Vokes and his retinue leading the way in his personal Rhino, whilst the Leman Russ and Macharius heavy tanks fanned out. They were climbing up the slopes towards the armoury just three kms ahead. The remains of a strongpoint, once one of Vraks' many defence laser silos, was the first objective to clear. The ruined silo was infested with enemy soldiers, no longer the simple human renegades of the earlier war, but now a host of mutants and degenerate sub-humans, backed by Plague Marines of the Traitor warbands - and now also by Daemons.

As the artillery shells fell, the Krieg armoured vehicles moved into battle, a cluster of brown-clad guardsmen gathered behind each tank for cover as they advanced. The enemy counter-attacked, pouring out from the armoury came a tide of possessed and daemonically-powered war machines that lumbered and pewed filth from their weapon barrels, havoc launchers firing more shells filled with chemical and biological agents. With them came the Plague Bearers, chanting a name from drooling lips. "G'aap! G'aap! G'aap!" they called upon their leader as the stinking host of Nurgle attacked. The fighting was ferocious as the battle cannons roared back and forth. Inquisitor Vokes was in the very centre, fighting alongside his accompanying Storm Troopers, directing fire and issuing orders, his own bodyguard around him.

Then the Great Unclean One came. A four storey high bloated sack of filth, his rusted Blade of Decay dripping poisons. The enemy cheered his coming, Plague Bearers called his name and danced with glee. Scabeiathrax pushed a Leman Russ onto its side, flipping the sixty tonnes tank as if it were a child's toy. He spewed out the wind of Nurgle, and before him guardsmen died, screaming in its lethal noxious stink or fled. Inquisitor Vokes raced to meet the beast, leaping from his still moving Rhino, his bodyguard behind him. Even the Ordo Malleus Inquisitor stood no chance in the face of the Greater Daemon. Beset by swarms of leaping Nurglings that gnawed at his armour, Vokes waded towards his foe. Scabeiathrax smiled warmly to this new enemy and waved him come closer, so that he might inspect the little 'man-being' who sought to challenge him.

A swipe of the Blade of Decay saw most of Voke's bodyguard die, men withering into dust before the Inquisitor's eyes. In return he emptied his bolt gun into the beast's belly, each bolt psychically charged. Where the shells exploded, offal and bile spilled forth from the wounds, which the Nurglings lapped up at the daemon lord's feet. Scabeiathrax gave a hearty laugh and paused to pat his little pets fondly, then as Vokes reloaded, smashed down his iron blade with unnatural swiftness and power. On impact the Inquisitor's armour rusted and crumbled. Inside, his flesh wrinkled with age then began to shed from his bones. Scabeiathrax watched amused as the Inquisitor quickly decayed into nothing before his eyes then, still chuckling to himself, moved on again to find his next plaything.

In a flash the Grey Knights arrived. A patina of blue lightning energy playing about them as the squads teleported into the thick of the fighting. With psycannon bolts flailing the daemons and nemesis force weapons flickering with psychic energy, they cast the foe back into the Immaterium. Squad after squad of the silver-armoured Space Marines appeared, raking the enemy ranks with fire, and then plunging into the foe to cut them down. Brother Captain Stern was at their head, his own force halberd glowing white hot with energy as he exerted his carefully honed mental powers through the weapona nd into the daemons, who vanished shrieking.

The Grey Knights teleporter attack slashed a swathe into the enemy ranks. None were spared the holy wrath of the Grey Knights as the Honour-Amentum began to bombard the area with searing lance battery impacts and barrage bombs. Scabeiathrax saw the massacre of his children and was no longer so amused. His mood suddenly changed from contented happiness as he wandered the battefield, killing on a whim, to one of wrath. He bellowed out in anger and lurched towards the Grey Knights. Who were these little men that were hurting his children and interrupting their play? He charged like an angry guardian whose wards had been unfairly attacked.

But the Grey Knights stood their ground and fired their weapons into the corpulent beast's body. Several brothers died, swept away in a tide of vomited bile. The Blade of Decay cut more down. Then Captain Stern charged, his brow furrowed with the power now being directed into his nemesis force halberd. With a cry he unleashed its power in a blast of light that flickered and burned across the beast's body. The Great Unclean One writhed in pain, and staggered backwards, its sorcerous blade snatched from its grip. All around Scabeiathrax, Nurglings suddenly exploded, popping like ripe fruit in a shower of slime. Scabeiathrax roared in anger and lurched forward, trying to break Stern's psychic grip, but the Captain's will was too great. He redoubled his efforts, pouring every particle of his soul's enerhy into the attack, which had grown into a swirling vortex of power now lashing everything it touched. Unable to escape and feeling his power draining, Scabeiathrax began to laugh, a loud booming sound that reverberated across the battlefield, but it could not break Stern's iron-concentration. A few more seconds and the Great Unclean One was gone, his laughter still booming but his physical form disintegrated. The holocaust of power unleashed about Stern and his victim died with the daemon. Where once the Great Unclean One had stood, now there was just black scorched earth.

The defeat of Scabeiathrax by the Grey Knights turned the battle. The enemy saw their master vanquished and fled the field. The daemons that remained were soon exorcised by the Grey Knights, with their reinforcements now arriving from orbit in Thunderhawk gunships. Captain Stern was spent, his duel having exhausted even his formidable powers, but his surviving battle brothers continued the advance.

By nightfall the Grey Knights were leading the Krieg units against Armoury 59-44 itself. Without pausing for respite, the Adeptus Astartes squads plunged into the armoury's subterranean chambers and galleries, clearing room-by-room, corridor-by-corridor. What they found down below was a nightmare of twisted creatures and men driven insane by possession. With psycannon and incinerator the Grey Knights cleansed the armoury of their taint in a to day operation. Meanwhile, above ground the Krieg troops, now reinforced, established a perimeter and hunted down the survivors.

Following the battle, the enemy would fight on, but there was now no stopping 30th line korps from completing its mission and linking up with the 34th line korps in sector 57-44. This they achieved at 366827.M41 when the 269th regiment made contact with 308th regiment. The ring had been closed, and the enemy were again trapped inside. Those that escaped the trap's closure would have to be hunted down, and this task was given to the Korps' Death Rider companies. These fast moving troops would continue to sweep the surrounding sectors for miles around, seeking enemy stragglers and destroying them, but for now any organised and effective enemy resistance was at an end.

p14-15 — Sorcerer of Nurgle

1. Armour

Necrosius' armour is a corrupt relic; although incomplete it appears to incorporate elements of MK IV and MK V Astartes power armour along with augmetic modifications of unknown origin, including what appears to be a dangerously unstable power core venting contaminated blackish-yellow vapour. Necrosius himself appears to have partly fused with the armour as it has been damaged or burst in order to accommodate his mutated form, to the point where it is impossible to know where the sorcerer ends and the armour begins.

2. Mutated Form

Fallen far from the glorious form of mankind and the sacred triumph of the Adeptus Astartes physiology, Necrosius' body has become subject to the warping effects of Chaos. This has manifested in horrifically bloated necrotic mutations, swelling of flesh and what appear to be numerous cancerous lesions and the stigmata of uncounted diseases and infections.

The gifts of Nurgle usually take the same form, disfigurement and contamination with diseases of the skin. These often (but not always) cause bloating of the flesh - as seen clearly here.

Such a severe case of neurofibromatosis, with attendant tumours should induce chronic pain, but it seems not to affect Nurgle's followers in any way. Subcutaneous tumours have caused the flesh to expand. Cysts have formed and then burst, spewing blood and pus. Skin lesions of this severity would be fatal to any mortal, but Necrosius and his ilk welcome such infection as a sign of their god's favour. To their corrupt minds such insightly dermatosis simply adds to the warband's fearsome appearance and acts to intimidate those that must fight them.

Despite its seemingly decayed and rotting state, Necrosius' body appears able to shrug off extremely serious injuries, with unconfirmed reports of his flesh almost instantaneously healing the damage done to it by las-fire and bolter rounds. In addition the sorcerer appeared able to withstand any degree of ambient pollution, including the deadly toxins and gases employed by his own side in the conflict without additional protection.

3. Weaponry

Force Glaive. As encountered on Vraks, Necrosius appeared to be armed with a heavily modified force weapon, based or perhaps converted from an Imperial design of the kind favoured by Space Marine Librarians. The psycho-responsive metal of the force weapon allows a psyker such as Necrosius to focus murderous energies into the blade, rendering it able to cleave through even hardened ceramite and directly sever the life force of an individual wounded by it.

Bolt pistol. Not visible here, but Necrosius is known to be armed with a bolt pistol, which he has personally adapted to fire 'plague bolts'. The warheads of each bolt are converted to contain biological warfare agents, which are scattered when the bolt explodes. These are believed to be adaptations of the psyker's own invention.

Blight grenade. Also known as a Death-head of Nurgle, these are highly effective improvised grenades. Each is made fro mthe head of a conquered enemy. The more powerful the enemy the better, so enemy champions are highly prized. The head is sealed with wax and then filled with infectious blood, pus, acid and other putrid creations and allowed to rot down. The result is a missile which will burst upon impact, the internal pressure throwing out infectious liquids and gsaes in all directions.

4. Nurgling

The tiny, impish daemons of Nurgle are called Nurglings - each is a small replica of Nurgle himself. Their small size should not be mistaken for any lack of threat. They are vicious creatures, attacking in swarms that bite and claw with infected fangs. Their festering bites will quickly make a minor wound turn dangerously gangrenous. Nurglings attach themselves to the most powerful and favoured servants of Nurgle.

5. Psychic Manifestation

The use of warp-power will often incur physical manifestations of power, summoned from the ether. Most commonly this might be lightning or flashes of energy, but the use of psychic activity has been noted to cause all manner of other manifestations, from rapid temperature changes, sudden winds, disembodied voices, screaming or howling, unexpected levitation, to inducing fits or uncontrolled psychotic episodes.

Necrosius is also adorned with the blasphemous and macabre trappings of a sorcerer, including shrunken heads, fetishes, glyph-carved icons and a personal banner bearing the foul symbols of Chaos, harvested body parts and the like. These totems are thought to have use in ritual practices providing a psychic focus for the sorcerer's malign energies as well as fulfilling other symbolic functions.

Plague Ogryns

"The corrupted face of the enemy. The 34th line korps' offensive fought Nurgle spawned horrors for eight days as they attempted to close the ring about Vraks' Citadel."

p22-23

Minotaur super-heavy artillery

Minotaur super-heavy artillery. This renegade vehicle, dedicated to the service of Nurgle, was destroyed by counter-battery fire by artillery of the 269th siege regiment.

Valdor tank hunter

Valdor tank hunter. A rarely encountered vehicle, armed with the dangerously temperamental Neutron laser. As the Krieg forces closed in, more Valdors were encountered - the last remnants of Vraks' dwindling armoury.

Internal conflict amongst the renegade forces led to the Khrone-worshipping Zhufor, Lord of the Skulltakers, taking control of that side's leadership. Arkos the Faithless remained independent but tacitly supported the coup by allowing Lord Zhufor to capture the Citadel and hold Cardinal Xaphan prisoner as a sacrifice. Deacon Mamon and some of his supporters managed to escape and joined the Tainted, a Nurgle warband.

Meanwhile the Imperial forces suffered a logistical setback as parts of the army were ordered to withdraw to be redeployed in other conflicts elsewhere in the galaxy. Still, they breached the curtain wall through continued efforts and doggedly pressed forward to the Citadel. They were fighting also against Daemons, newly summoned via warp rifts put into effect by the Sanctified, a group of Khornate daemonancers.

Apostles of Contagion

"The Apostles of Contagion advance through the chemical smog"

p32

Land Raider of the Lords of Decay

Land Raider of the Lords of Decay, a warband of the Death Guard. Note it carries extra 'spaced' armour panels.

p35

Blight Drone

Nurgle Blight Drone, encountered in sector 592-440 and banished by Grey Knights squad Mattan.

Blight Drone

Nurgle Blight Drone, engaged during the battle for Armory 59-44. Swarms of Blight Drones infested the area through which the 30th line korps advanced.

p58

Predator Annihilator of The Purge

Chaos Predator Annihilator of the Purge identified in Sector 596-442.

p75

Valdor tank hunter

Valdor tank hunter. Note its very poor state of repair. It is unlikely that this vehicle was still mobile, and it may have been deployed as a static 'bunker' position.

It was 18 years into the siege that the assault on the Citadel finally began, but that too was a hard-fought battle of attrition. The Imperial forces were bolstered by more Space Marines besides the Grey Knights: the Red Scorpions answered the call to arms and, later, the Angels of Absolution were sent by the Dark Angels. An'ggrath, the mightiest of the Bloodthirsters, was successfully summoned, but ultimately defeated by Inquisitor Lord Hector Rex. Most Traitor Marines (including Zhufor) escaped by leaving Vraks (probably via the warp portal), but the Alpha Legion warband the Faithless remained and were killed or captured by the Angels of Absolution, Arkos himself being taken prisoner. The last remaining Chaos vessel in orbit, the Anarchy's Heart was crippled by the Repentant, an Angels of Absolution strike cruiser, and destroyed.

p85 — The Priory of the Argent Shroud

As the Angels of Absolution were fighting for the Basilica of St Leonis and the Red Scorpions were clearing the Cardinal's Palace, Lord Hector Rex led his Storm Troopers and the Grey Knights into the Priory of the Argent Shroud. A squat, solid fortress in its own right, it had once been a base for the Sisters of the Argent Shroud, and the Inquisitor's mission was now to clear the priory and if possible find evidence of the missing Sisters. It was here that the Inquisitor Lord found Xaphan, the Apostate Cardinal, cowering - the man in whose name so many had fought and died. The man who had, by his misplaced ambition and twisted faith, set in motion the series of events that had led to a daemonic incursion on Vraks. The man who had proclaimed himself the messiah of the apocalypse. He was a man no longer.

The was as good as lost, Zhufor had departed but not before he's had his final vengeance upon the Cardinal. Zhufor despised Xaphan as a weak mortal and so he had personally dragged the Cardinal from his wretched dungeon and left him to the Sorcerers of Nurgle. They in turn had visited a terrible end upon the Cardinal. Screaming in terror, Xaphan had been offered to their god and for Nurgle's pleasure he had become spawn - a giant mass of tentacles and claws, drooling and jabbering nonsense. Insane, the last of his reason and self-will torn away, the Cardinal was now an idiot-creature. Such was the fate of those that strayed too far from the Emperor's light. The Grey Knights now unleashed that purifying light to purge the spawn from the galaxy forever. Thrashing and wailing, the spawn that had once been Cardinal Xaphan was blasted apart by lightning cast from their nemesis force weapons.

The Grey Knights then performed the final strike agsinst the warp portal which the Sanctified had opened. It was guarded by the Khornate Daemon Prince Uraka Warfiend and his legions, but they were ultimately despatched.

Final losses were reckoned to include fourteen million Krieg guardsmen and eight million renegade defenders of Vraks. The surviving six sisters of the Argent Shroud were sentenced to merciful execution by the Ordo Malleus for their exposure to daemonic activity. Zhufor the Impaler, the Butcher of Vraks, escaped and remained one of Abaddon's strongest lieutenants.

p88 — Epilogue

The fate of Necrosius is also unknown. His warband, the Apostles of Contagion, are still considered to be at large. Like Zhufor, he would re-emerge to plague the Imperium, and his warband were also identified amongst the traitor ranks of the 13th Black Cruasde.

p88 — Epilogue

Of the other traitors to the Imperium, most were killed, including the Apostate Cardinal Xaphan himself. Deacon Mamon, the Cardinal's closest advisor was also assumed killed on Vraks, although there has been no official confirmation. If, as rumoured, he actually did attain the honour of daemon prince, then it may be that he is now a creature more 'of the Warp' than of the material universe. His name has been added to the Grimoire of True Names in the event of a subsequent summoning.

The planet itself had no remaining value and, although won, the entire Vraks system stayed under Inquisitorial interdiction.

Minotaur super-heavy artillery

p141-142 — Forces of Chaos

Lords of Decay

Lords of Decay
Large Deathguard sub-faction. Multiple encounters with the warband over past millennium. Have formerly been led by the Primarch Mortarion.

The Purge

The Purge
Nurgle worshippers. Infamous for genocidal campaigns and indiscriminate use of chemical weapons. Post-Vraks campaign location unknown.

The Tainted

The Tainted
Large Deathguard sub-faction. Now connected with the daemon-prince Mamon.

Apostles of Contagion

Apostles of Contagion
Led by Necrosius, the self-proclaimed 'Hand of Nurgle'. Thought to be responsible for plague zombie infestations across Vraks. Heavy losses inflicted upon the warband during the Vraks war.

The Dark Tongue runes on the shoulder pad of the marine from The Purge read: 'Plague' "Purge".

p143 — Necrosius

The Hand of Nurgle
Master of the Apostles of Contagion

The bitter and twisted sorcerer known as Necrosius is an ancient foe of the Imperium. A sworn servant of Nurgle, the Chaos god of pestilence, despair and decay, Necrosius is the master of the plague god devoted warband known as the Apostles of Contagion and a powerful sorcerer whose dark arts can awaken the dead to a nightmarish half-life.

Once an Apothecary in the Death Guard Legion whose true name has long been purged from all records. When the Legion's fleet was becalmed in the Warp and invaded by the corruption of Nurgle, the man who would become Necrosius and his fellows turned their every art and skill against the plagues sweeping their ranks but it was to no avail. The decay and disease that ravaged the Death Guard was a thing of Chaos, no mortal science or cure could hope to counter and the whole legion had been betrayed to its damnation in suffering at Nurgle's hands. Necrosius would not stop trying however, and even as his fellow Astartes died around him, succumbing each in turn to despair and the macabre blessings of Nurgle's touch, he struggled on against all hope, obsessed with finding the answer, even though the halls of the strike cruiser on which he was stationed began to unnaturally twist and corrode around him, and in the shadows daemons capered and mocked his efforts. Though his dead comrades staggered back into unholy life and his own body had become a bloated and rotted husk, he continued past reason and past the bounds of sanity. It was only when he heard the voice of his new father in corruption chortling and whispering to him in the murmerous wings of carrion flies and the sibilant gurgling of rotted, decaying organs, that Necrosius embraced the full nightmare truth of what he and his fellows had been damned to become, and embraced the service of his vile god.

A true convert to Nurgle's cause, Necrosius cast aside his past learning and cherished role as a healer of his battle brothers and gave himself, blighted soul and rotted body to the lore of death and the pursuit of Daemoniac sorcery, excelling as a master of the dark arts. With the zealous conviction of a true convert, Necrosius quickly gathered a following among his fellows with this baleful oratory and vision of granting the gift of eternal 'life' through death to all mankind, and these first disciples among the corrupted Death Guard would become the first Apostles of Contagion. His bitter heart would allow him to bend the knee to no master save Father Nurgle, even his former lord Mortarion he obeyed only grudgingly and long has he harboured a resentment of Typhus, whose betrayal sent the Death Guard to its final damnation. It is a resentment that has festered into a hateful rivalry and open conflict down the years between his faction and that of the former Death Guard Captain and now Host of the Destroyer Hive.

Soon Necrosius' Apostles parted company from their fellows and went their own way, spreading disease and walking death wherever they went, heedless to whom they brought their blighted 'gifts' be they servant of the Emperor or follower of the Ruinous Powers. As a result he and his Apostles have made many enemies and participated in great atrocities down the long centuries since the days of the Heresy, from the horrors of the Dorisca Genocides to the blighting of the Eldar Maiden world of Cth'rawl. During these many years the power of Necrosius and his Apostles of Contagion has waxed and waned many times, and indeed dources both Imperial and within the forces of Chaos have believed him destroyed on numerous occasions, whether at the blades of Imperial Assassins or in the flames of Ahriman's sorcerous fires, but always he has returned, earning him the sobriquet "the Undying" among his devotees.

When Necrosius arrived on Vraks as part of the Chaos counter-assault, his presence was at first unsuspected and unlooked for by ally and foe alike, for once again his enemies had believed him dead, and he and the fruits of his occult arts had not been seen for more than a century. His 'new' Apostles of Contagion are a relatively small but powerful warband, among them are numbered rotting and corpulent Plague Marines, Nurgle devoted renegades of uncertain origin and many dark acolytes, apostate preachers and lesser sorcerers, each apprentice to Necrosius's own nceromantic craft. Although he would accept no master, least of all the heretic Cardinal Xaphan nor indeed the mighty Lord Zhufor who soon gathered the allegiance of the bulk of the Chaos Marines on Vraks, Necrosius and his followers soon busied themselves with their own nightmarish work. Like the viral infections they embraced to corrupt their own bodies, the Apostles of Contagion passed among the ranks of the renegades of Vraks like rotting spectres, spreading their poisoned words and infecting the degenerate and the despairing with their bleak and unholy creed. Meanwhile Necrosius and his sorcerers travelled the long fought-over battlefields of Vraks, conducting rites of the darkest sorcery over the killing grounds, mass graves and the unburied dead, preparing the way for the horror to come.

As the slaughter began again in earnest, from the relentless hammering of the artillery and the thunder of the Titan's stride, to the carnage of the Khornate Berserkers' onslaught and the poisoned fumes that accompanied the Purge's assaults, the corpses of the fallen began to stir in Vraks' blood-soaked earth. Nurgle's dance of the dead had come to Vraks and Necrosius was calling the tune.

 PtsWSBSSTWIALdSv
Necrosius1605545353103+

Wargear: Bolt pistol with plague bolts, Force Weapon, Frag grenades, Krak grenades, Blight grenades

Psychic Powers: Nurgle's Rot, Gift of Chaos

Special Rules

Independent Character, Fearless, Feel No Pain, Mark of Nurgle (already included above), Master of the Dead

Master of the Dead
Necrosius is a powerful sorcerer who has learned many terrible secrets from the suppurating lips of Papa Nurgle's daemon-kin. Whilst Necrosius is present on the battlefield, all Plague Zombie units gain the Furious Charge special rule.

Plague Bolts
Attacks from Necrosius' bolt pistol count as poisoned and always wound on a 4+ unless the weapon's normal strength would make the result needed lower.

p151 — Blight Drones: The Bilecysts of Nurgle

During the final, mightmarish stages of the Siege of Vraks, many dark and terrible engines of war were unleashed by the Chaos forces to contest this benighted world. Staggering in their diversity and blasphemous in their malignant design, many were old foes of the Ordo Malleus, while others had been considered nothing more than fearful rumours until they appeared on Vraks. A few had never been encountered before (or at least none had lived to tell the tale of meeting them), and of this latter category on Vraks amongst the most unique and horrific were the Blight Drones.

Seemingly a weird conglomeration of insect larvae, flying machine and daemonic entity, the Blight Drones quickly became a terror in the poison-choked skies above Vraks. The maddening, incessant droning buzz of their rotor disks echoing from the murky fog of war quickly became recognised as an omen of death by the Imperial Guard troops. Stories from the maimed and rotting survivors of Blight Drone attacks quickly spread through the ranks. The fear of the negative effect on morale from these rumours was such that it became a serious concern for the commissars. Such rumours were judged to be a morale threat in-and-of themselves. By the end of the campaign those found to be repeating such stories faced arrest and transportation to penal units.

Unfortunately for the Imperial forces, the Blight Drones' macabre and deadly reputation was more than matched in dreadful fact by their effectiveness on the battlefield. Armed both with rapid-firing light cannon and a maw-like weapon capable of spewing jets of corrosive toxic bile strong enough to eat through metal and liquefy flesh in seconds, they proved deadly both to entrenched infantry and light vehicles, while troops caught in the open stood little chance against their swooping assaults. The Blight Drones' squat, bloated form also proved unusually resilient to weapons fire for a skimmer of their size, a factor attributed to their seemingly 'living' flesh and rusted armour plating, as well as the will of whatever dark intelligence guided them.

When first encountered, after action reports by scattered and often terribly maimed survivors led to misidentification of the Blight Drones either as conventional flying vehicles of some kind, or indeed huge Warp-mutated insects, but as the Inquisition's savants and intelligence staff pieced together the evidence, the truth that they were facing some new form of Daemon Engine became abundantly clear. The Blight Drones themselves were often encountered in clusters and swarms, acting much in the manner of carrion flies and ambush predators, drawn it appeared to ongoing bloodshed and concentrations of the dead on the battlefield as much as they were 'ordered' into combat by any directing force. Imperial psykers and Inquisition seers could readily detect the decaying spoor of the Daemons of Nurgle in their passing. Where ever they were encountered, the air grew thick with poisonous fumes and the soil of Vraks blistered and rotted beneath them as their corpulent flesh wept continually with dripping ichor.

Unconfirmed reports spoke of these Daemon Engines coming down to rest on piles of corpses seemingly to 'feed', liquefying the carcasses of the dead and the dying, and sucking up the decaying sludge, perhaps to fuel themselves or maintain their presence in the physical universe. But others claim that no evidence could be found of the Blight Drones landing or needing any form of mundane maintenance or base of operations.

Although the war on Vraks was the first confirmed encounter with the Daemon Engines codified as Blight Drones by the Imperium, and their origin remains unknown, it was not the last. Since the Vraksian conflict Blight Drones have been encountered in several battles, notably fighting alongside the renegades known as the Purge and several Death Guard splinter factions. Additionally, unconfirmed reports have placed these obscene weapons as part of the daemonic incursions in both the pongoing conflict in the Charadis Rifts and during the Thirteenth Black Crusade.

Blight Drones

Blight Drones

p153 — Blight Drone of Nurgle — Points: 125

 Armour
 BSFrontSideRear
Blight Drone2121110

Unit Composition:

Unit Type:

Wargear:

Options:

Special Rules

Explosion of Pus

When a Blight Drone is destroyed, it invariably detonates in a shower of bile and pus. Treat all Destroyed - Wrecked results on the Vehicle Damage table as Destroyed - Explodes results instead.

WeaponRangeStrAPSpecial
Mawcannon
– VomitTemplate64Assault 1
– Phlegm36"83Assault 1, 5" Blast
Reaper Autocannon36"74Heavy 2, twin-linked

Fast Attack: A squadron of Blight Drones is a Fast Attack choice for a Chaos Daemons army or a Chaos Space Marine army that includes at least one unit of Plague Marines.

Blight Drones

Jibberjaw

p159-160 — Jibberjaw: Giant Plaguespawn of Nurgle

With the arrival of the reinforcing renegade factions on Vraks, the servants of Chaos brought with them numerous bizarre and dreadful war engines and the heinous taint of the Warp to the conflict. But neither Daemon nor machine encompassed the limits of the nightmarish weapons they employed. A terrifying case in point was the foul creature named 'Jibberjaw' by those Imperial forces who survived a confrontation with the beast.

Believed to have been brought to Vraks by the renegade Adeptus Astartes faction known as the Tainted, Jibberjaw was a gigantic Chaos Spawn, a creature so afflicted by the horrors of mutation as to be unrecognisable in origin and no longer subject to the bounds of physical laws or sanity. This foul creature, whose flesh constantly bubbled with necrotic wounds and fanged mouths which sagged open and sealed shut from moment to moment, and that ceaselessly gibbered and cackled with an almost human madness was the size of a tank, and proved able to rip apart the heaviest armour with its huge claws. Blessed by the Plague God, those near it often died without even touching the creature, succumbing either to sudden diseased contamination or driven to immediate despairing suicide by its continuous insane prattling.

The Tainted were myserious in origin, and seemingly obsessed with both the worship of the Lord of Decay in his aspect as the Father of Despair and the occult corruption of flesh. They quickly became prominent for their engagement with the Vraksian renegades. It is believed to be the whisperings of their leaders that worked on the misery and horror of the war and converted so many of former Cardinal Xapahan's followers into forswearing themselves body and soul to Nurgle. The Tainted are believed to have brought a 'rotted circus' of befouled creatures to Vraks with them, of which the Jibberjaw became the most infamous, as well as the baleful means to create more twisted Chaos Spawn and other decaying mockeries of life. For this reason, those savants of the Ordo Malleus who have studied the closing stages of the Siege of Vraks also attribute the vile Plague Ogryns to their arts.

Jibberjaw — Points: 150

 WSBSSTWIALdSv
Jibberjaw4-6662D6+210-

Unit:

Type:

Weapons and Equipment:

Special Rules

Transport: Jibberjaw may not be transported inside a transport vehicle.

Heavy Support: Jibberjaw is a Heavy Support choice for a Chaos Daemons army.

The Tainted's 'rotted circus'

Forces of the Blighted Pit

p166-167 — Scabeiathrax the Bloated: Papa G'aap, Lord of the Blighted Pit, Maggotspore, the Wind of Nurgle

Amongst the most favoured of Nurgle's daemons is the ancient and terrible Great Unclean One named Scabeiathrax in the Ordo Malleus' Grimoire of True Names. He is a great bloated sack of contagion and disease, the size of a house. Down the millennia, Scabeiathrax has also been known as Papa G'aap, the Lord of the Blighted Pit and Maggotspore, whilst the Eldar call him the Wind of Nurgle. His home is the Blighted Pit, one of Nurgle's great spawning pits, hidden upon a plague planet deep within the Eye of Terror. From within the pit everything from fat flies to Plaguebearers are spawned and released to plague the universe.

From his home in the Warp, Scabeiathrax can only be summoned forth by Nurgle's most dedicated followers. He appears briefly to spread disease and decay amongst Nurgle's enemies before returning to wallow in the lovely filth of the Blighted Pit, where he sits and plays with his little Nurgling creations. Mercifully, Scabeiathrax has not been encountered since the Contagion of Virlath over 900 years ago, that is until the Vraks incursion.

When appearing in the corporeal universe Scabeiathrax is a horrible sight. Lumbering along, merrily whistling and humming to himself, surrounded by clouds of large black flies, with Nurglings clambering over his skin and scampering at his feet as they fight for a choice morsel of dead flesh or a juicy pus-filled boil.

Wherever Scabeiathrax treads vegetation turns black and rots away to slime, ferrocrete cracks and crumbles into dust and pools of toxic goo lie in the wake of his passing. He carries the Blade of Decay, a massive, crude rusting cleaver imbued with the power to rapidly age and decay all that it touches. Those hit by the Blade of Decay find their armour rusting away and their wounds instantly becoming infected, quickly rotting away the flesh.

On Vraks Scabeiathrax was summoned by the Traitor legions along with his many followers from the Blighted Pit, including Plaguebearers, swarms of Nurglings, Nurgle beasts and all manner of other foul Chaos Spawn and Daemon Engines. Once freed they scattered across the surface, seeking to spread their infection and turn Vraks into a new plague world for their god.

Scabeiathrax himself was stopped by the Grey Knights hero, Brother Captain Stern, but only after he had reduced Ordo Malleus Inquisitor Vokes to a puddle of slime with the Blade of Decay. The loss of their Greater Daemon did not stop the Nurgle daemons from rampaging scross Vraks, seemingly at random, causing havoc wherever they went.

Daemon Lord - Scabeiathrax — Points: 777

 WSBSSTWIALdSv
Great Unclean One Lord9389103510-/4+

Unit:

Type:

Weapons and Equipment:

Special Rules

HQ: Scabeiathrax is a HQ choice for a Chaos Daemons army of 2,000 pts or more. The army must include at least one unit of Plague Bearers to include Scabeiathrax.

Fearsome: The Great Unclean One is terrifying, disgusting and very stinky! If an enemy unit has to take a morale check after losing a close combat with him, they do so at -2 Leadership.

Living Icon: Such is the power of Scabeiathrax that he counts as an Icon of Nurgle, so Lesser Daemons can be summoned adjacent to him.

Nurgling Infestation: Scabeiathrax is infested with Nurglings, in fact they grow within him and burst through spores in his skin to feast upon his rotten flesh and oozing pus. Whilst in close combat the Nurglings will swarm over Scabeiathrax's enemies. He gains an extra D6+3 attacks at Strength 3 and Initiative 3 against enemies in close combat.

Blade of Decay: Forged in the Blighted Pit using Nurgle's most potent disease, every wound caused by the Blade of Decay is doubled, so if the Great Unclean One causes 1 wound then this becomes 2, if he caused 2 wounds this becomes 4, etc. Note, this only affects creatures with wounds.

Master of Sorcery: Scabeiathrax is a sorcerer and has the following psychic powers: Doombolt and Nurgle's Rot.

Aura of Decay: Scabeiathrax is constantly surrounded by an aura of corruption, clouds of flies, disease and filth. Any enemy model in base contact with Scabeiathrax has his attacks reduced by -1 (to a minimum of 1).

Toxic Discharge: Scabeiathrax may spew forth a stream of stinking filth over his enemies. He may attack in the Shooting phase as a normal shooting attack.

WeaponRangeStrAPSpecial
Toxic dischargeTemplate54Assault 1

Scabeiathrax the Bloated

Daemon Prince Mamon

p170-171 — Mamon: Arch-Corruptor of Vraks

When Mamon first became corrupted by the powers of Chaos is not known, but it seems likely that he was already a secret agent of Chaos long before he found favour within Cardinal Xaphan's organisation. As a Deacon on Thracian Primaris he managed to infiltrate into the hierarchy of the Ministorum, and when Cardinal Xaphan arrived, the Deacno worked his way into the Cardinal's favour. It was Deacon Mamon who first sowed the seeds of corruption and turned the inexperienced Cardinal's religious ambitions against the Imperium - fuelling his desire to launch a War of Faith and raising the Cardinal's paranoia against agents of the Inquisition spying upon him. It was the Deacon that recommended the Cardinal move to Vraks, from where he could best plan his war.

After his arrival on Vraks Deacon Mamon was instrumental in all that Cardinal Xaphan did, and it was he that first brought the Alpha Legion warband of Arkos the Faithless to the planet. This has been taken as evidence that the Deacon was already an Alpha Legion sleeper agent, and that Vraks was his (and Arkos') target all along. Mamon also organised and equipped Xaphan's personal guard of Disciples, no doubt always acting under the orders of his true master - Arkos.

Mamon was the principal agent provocateur behind the Vraks uprising, and as the Vraksian war progressed, he became ever deeper involved with the heretical daemonic worship cults, driven by a need for the support that they offered. But despite this, the war turned against him and Arkos, until the World Eater champion Zhufor the Impaler led a bloody coup against Xaphan's regime. Xaphan was deposed, Arkos ousted and Mamon, hunted by Zhufor's bodyguard, was lucky to escape with his life.

Driven by desperation Mamon sought refuge from Zhufor's vengeance by siding with the Nurgle warband of the Tainted. In doing so he offered himself to Nurgle. The Plague Lord was delighted. In return for his efforts in creating a world to entertain Nurgle, full of infection, death and biological weapons, he was granted the rank of Daemon Prince and was soon possessed by the potent spirit of a Great Unclean One. Mamon's new task was to turn Vraks into a Plague world.

Once a brilliant and cunning spy, Mamon was soon transformed into a great corpulent Daemon Prince and unleashed upon Vraks. Once, he had been the Disciples of Xaphan's supreme commander; now, in his new form, the survivors worshipped him as their messiah, the bringer of destruction to their enemies, the arch-corruptor of Vraks. In his new horribly bloated form, Mamon fought alongside the Tainted until the end of the war. Since then his whereabouts or fate are unknown.

Daemon Prince - Mamon — Points: 185

WSBSSTWIALdSv
7567554105+

Unit:

Type:

Daemonic Gifts:

Wargear:

Special Rules

Daemon: Mamon is a Daemon. All the special rules for Daemons apply.

Feel No Pain

Slow and Purposeful

Contagion Spray: Nurgle has decreed that Mamon must infect as much of Vraks as he can. To this end he carries the Contagion spray, pouring forth a stream of foulness from a large tank upon his back.

RangeStrAPType
Template13Heavy 1, Poisoned (2+)

HQ: Mamon is a HQ choice for a Chaos Daemons army.

Note that the "Mark of Nurgle (+1 A included above)" should probably be "+1 T". Either way, the profile does not need amending.

Daemonic forces of Nurgle

p172 — Chaos Space Marines

Eleven Traitor warbands were identified during the Vraks campaign:

p175 — Renegades and Heretics: Servants of Decay

Renegades and Heretics

As the Siege of Vraks escalates and the merciless war of attrition grinds on with no end in sight, the malign influence of the Chaos gods on the Vraksian renegades grows. Daily exposure to the horrors of the Vraksian battlefields takes its toll on the psyche and morale of the defenders. Even those who were once reluctant soldiers, forced to fight, begin to accept their fate - that with an implacable enemy arrayed against them their only hope is in ultimate victory. To secure that victory they turn to the only aid they can - that offered by the Chaos gods.

Trapped in a seemingly never-ending war, many renegades are led by their preachers to worship Nurgle, with offers of greater rewards for the daily slaughter. The Lord of Decay demands little, except that you place your flesh under his control. Nurgle loves the decay of flesh above all else, and is free with his blessings of virulent diseases that bloat the body and infect the brain.

The renegades that dedicate themselves completely to Nurgle's cause are in turn reinforced by other oath-sworn followers of the Lord of Decay. Led by Exalted Champions of Nurgle and with the aid of his favoured Plague Marines from the many Nurgle-worshipping Chaos Space Marine warbands, they surge into battle, seeking more victims to infect...

Why collect a Renegades Army?

This army list is for a Renegades and Heretics army where the influence of Chaos has grown stronger. After years of warfare, many renegades will have been unhinged by the bloody battles and constant artillery barrages. Driven by desperation or by despair, they have (in many cases unwittingly) embraced the worship of Nurgle, for decay is inevitable and only Nurgle can offer protection against the entrophy of the universe.

This list allows you to theme a Renegades and Heretics army to the worship of a single Chaos god and include the appropriate troop types for that god. This is a Renegade and Heretic force that has fallen deeper into Chaos worship than that represented in Imperial Armour volume 5. Hence the inclusion of a few new troop types and the modification of a few of the existing ones. As yet this force has not fallen so deeply into the worship of Chaos as to be summoning daemons or the Chaos god's Daemon Engines. Nurgle provides aid in the form of his favoured Chaos Space Marines. One change is the inclusion of an Exalted Champion of Chaos to lead the renegades. This is a champion who has already proved himself to Nurgle but as yet lacks the followers to become a full Chaos Lord. Still, to these mortal followers he would appear a powerful and frightening individual, who commands by awe and fear.

The army offers a broad selection of troop types, from the heavy firepower of captured Imperial Guard tanks and artillery to the tough and versatile Plague Marines. Despite the changes, this is still in essence a variant of the Imperial Guard army list.

Renegade and Heretic models

For most of the units in this army list, the models remain unchanged from the Renegade and Heretics list in IA5 and the worship of Nurgle can be reflected as a painting solution, with a predominance of green and brown clothing and rusting armour, along with Nurgle icons. Added to the Renegade and Heretic models will be Chaos Space Marines from the main range - Nurgle's Champions and Plague Marines. Armoured vehicles will mostly be Imperial Guard vehicles with the Imperial insignia removed and Nurgle equivalents added. We have provided many examples of Nurgle colour schemes throughout this book for you to use or as inspiration for your own colour schemes. The mutant rabble can be represented by various models. As a rabble they would have no standard issue equipment and models from the Necromunda range such as Scavvies, Redemptionists and House Cawdor all make good 'scum'. Also, the plastic Orks sprue can provide legs, bodies and arms for mutants, used in conjunction with the mutant parts from the Chaos plastic sprues. Again, turning them into Nurgle worshippers is a simple case of using an appropriate colour scheme. Plastic Zombies are available from the Warhammer range for the Plague Zombie hordes.

p176 — Renegade and Heretic Troop Types

Plague Marine Exalted Champion

Champions of Nurgle are the chosen of the Lord of Decay, great warriros who have risen from the ranks to become a leader by dint of their prowess and strength. Exalted Champions are Space Marines, the lieutants of the Chaos Lords and one day they may rise to replace their master at the head of a warband of Plague Marines.

Enforcer

Enforcers are strongmen, appointed by the Cardinal's hierarchy as overseers within the ranks, forcing men to fight and follow orders, often at gun point. All are chosen for their loyalty and brutality.

Apostate Preacher

These are the corupt priests of the Apostate Cardinal, preaching heresy and building the rank and file troopers' belief in their cause, in the process unwittingly corrupting their souls into the worship of Daemons and Nurgle.

Disciples of Xaphan

The inner circle of Chaos worshippers are fanaticals dedicated to the cause. These are the Disciples of Xaphan who form an inner circle of guards around the Apostate Cardinal and his commanders. The disciples will fight to the last, with fanatic zeal for their new messiah! They are superbly trained and have access to the best weapons in the armoury.

Plague Marines

The chosen warriors of Nurgle are the Plague Marines - warriors who have dedicated themselves to death and decay for their master. They seek only to corrupt the galaxy and spread Nurgle's diseases to all. Their rotten bodies are only kept alive by Nurgle's dark sorcery.

Plague Ogryn

The Vraks Labour corps contained a large number of Ogryns to perform heavy manual labour. These large, brutish creatures are well adapted to hauling heavy loads and smashing rocks, but are not very bright. An Ogryn will pretty much do whatever it is told by whoever is in charge of its daily rations! Many Ogryns have been subjected to hideous mutation by Nurgle; drive insane by the pain, they are a horrible mockery of their former selves, drooling and noxious with diseases.

Renegade Militia

Most of the Cardinal's renegade army has retained the vestiges of its former command structure, with officers being replaced by loyal champions; men who have embraced their new gods and are seeking to win their favour.

The vast bulk of the Apostate Cardinal's army are Renegade Militia. These are men that once served the Emperor as Vraks' garrison, its labourers and frateris militia. Many have basic military training, and retain their weapons and equipment, as well as having access to Vraks' vast stores.

Mutant Rabble

After the cash landing of the Aharon's Bane transport, vast numbers of mutants and degenerate scum were unleashed onto Vraks' surface. Although lacking military training or equipment, these degenerate worshippers of Nurgle attack as a rampaging horde.

Plague Zombies

Nurgle has mastery over the dead and decayign bodies that litter Vraks' battlefields. Through his sorcery he can raise and re-animate the corpses, bringing them back to life to fight again and again and again. Hordes of these creatures shambled over Vraks' toxic landscape, seeking the warm flesh of the living to feast upon.

Chaos Spawn

Mindless and violent, Spawn are the hideously corrupted and mutated followers of Chaos that have displeased their god and been turned into Spawn. Their lives are worthless but they can still kill.

Tanks and Artillery

The Renegades are well supplied with tanks and artillery from the storehouses.

Hell Blade and Hell Talon

Small, fast and deadly, Hell Blades fly in constant support, harassing the enemy with strafing runs and attacking enemy aircraft.

Turret Emplacement

These are small bunkers mounting a single heavy weapon and crewed by three men. They are commonly mounted in the Vraks defence lines, forming strong points and providing excellent protection for the heavy weapons.

Artillery Strike

An artillery strike is indirect fire from artillery units well to the rear, called for by commanders or forward observers at the front. There are many forms of artillery available to the Renegades, from mortar teams up to large Manticore missiles and Bombards.

p179 — Rogue Psyker of Nurgle

Psychic Powers: The Rogue Psyker has a random psychic power. Roll a D6 and consult the table below.

D6Result
1No Usable Power
The fickle whims of Father Nurgle have not seen fit to gift this Psyker with a power.
2Protection of Nurgle
This power is used at the start of the enemy's Shooting phase. It requires a Psychic test. If successful, one squad (not a vehicle) within a 12" range ganes a 6+ Invulnerable save for that Shooting phase. Note that models which already have an Invulnerable save use that one instead.
3Quagmire
The ggound at the enemy's feet turns into a stinking quagmire of mud and guts. One enemy unit (including vehicles) within 24" of the Psyker counts as moving through difficult ground for the duration of their next turn. This power has no effect on Jump Infantry.
4Wasting Disease
This power is used in the Renegade player's Shooting phase instead of other shooting attacks. Pick a single enemy model within line of sight and 24" of the psyker. On a roll of 2+ the target takes a single wound, with no armour save allowed.
5Battle Fury
This power is used in the Renegade player's Assault phase. It requires a Psychic test. If successful, one friendly squad (not walker or other vehicle) within 12" gains +1 WS for that phase. If unsuccessful the squad suffers -1 WS instead.
6Destroyer Plague
Virulent plagues erupt amongst the enemy. An enemy unit within 12" of the Psyker takes D6 hits with Str D6. Armour saves may be taken as normal against these attacks. This power cannot be used on enemy units in close combat.

p182 — Plague Marine

1. Ancient Corroded Armour

Although this ancient suit of Power Armour has been corroded and corrupted almost past recognition, its structure still bears the hallmarks of the older style MkIII 'Iron' Pattern suits favoured by the Death Guard legion during the pre-Heresy era. Even though more modern suits had become available to them, the Death Guard retained a large stockpile of this heavier pattern, preferring it for both its durability and the ease with which they customised it to better handle the rigours of the toxic battle zones in which the Legion excelled. This armour suit has clearly suffered severe corrosion and structural breaches over its millennia of service and has been further modified with a heretical pattern 'open vent' reactor backpack, blasphemous iconography and has swelled to contain the monstrous bulk of its occupant.

At some point this armour has suffered catasrophic damage to the belly plate. The extent of armour penetration would indicate it was caused by a power weapon, most likely a raking blow from a lightning claw. The damage would have been terminal even for a Space Marine's enhanced physique, but to this Death Guard Marine the damage was merely superficial.

2. Bloated and Decaying Flesh

The flesh of the Plague Marine is bloated, distended and corpulent, seething with organic corruption and decay and terrible to look upon. The stench alone given off by them is enough to incapacitate. This seemingly dead and decaying flesh however makes the Plague Marine almost impossible to stop with conventional small arms fire, and they are able to shrug off injury and damage that would commonly defeat even the superhuman physiology of the Adeptus Astartes. In combat against these horrific servants of Chaos, mass concentrated firepower or weapons more commonly employed to deal with armoured vehicles are recommended as the key to a successful confrontation.

The decaying flesh also attracts maggots and flies. These creatures commonly accompany all Nurgle's forces, and some even cultivate them, considering them sacred creatures. Blistering through the armour's shoulder pads are maggot hives which constantly produce large fat black flies.

3. Plasma Pistol

In contrast to the Plague Marine's other equipment, this plasma pistol appears to be a more recent Imperial model, probably a Mk XI or XII 'single core' pattern, likely taken from the spoils of war on the battlefield. Already showing signs of corruption and ill-repair, the tortured machine spirit of this weapon will likely make it prone to catastrophic magnetic field failure and hazardous thermal flashbacks which would likely kill a human operator. However, given the Plague Marine's unhallowed tolerance for injury and pain, the dangers are likely to prove inconsequential to this malignant warrior.

4. Contaminated Blade

Of unknown origin and design, the Plague Marine carries a 'cleaver' type combat weapon of the sort often, and not inaccurately, named a "Plague Knife" by Imperial observers. Wielded with the superhuman strength and speed of these creatures, these unpowered blades can pierce most forms of body armour, and can breach the protection of ceramite powered armour if a vulnerable location is struck. If the skin of a victim is cut, the contaminated and necrotic slime that covers the blade will almost invariably infect the wound and poison the bloodstream, leading to a slow and agonising death in over 90% of cases. Even the augmented metabolism of the Astartes is not entirely immune to this effect. As yet the Adeptus Biologis have no antidotes that have any effect on the toxins. Rumours persist that some of these weapons are further empowered by the dark taint of the Warp against which no flesh can be spared. Only the Ordo Malleus know the truth.

5. Blight Grenades

Also known as a 'death head' grenade, it is made from a conquered foe of Nurgle. Constructed by Nurgle sorcerers, the severed head is covered with a waxy mix of slime and blood until it is watertight. The brain cavity is then filled with pus and left to fester, becoming a poisonous gas. The result is a missile which bursts on impact, releasing a deadly acidic gas.

Plague Marine

Plague Ogryns

p189 — Scenarios

Blight Drone

Nurgle Blight Drone, vanquished during the second assault upon the Citadel. Note the advanced state of decay and unknown leakage.

p190-191 — Scenario 18 - The Battle for Armoury 59-44

Warhammer 40,000 Apocalypse

The Battle

The 34th line korps' offensive to seal the ring around the Citadel had stalled amidst heavy fighting against the traitor forces of Nurgle, across a battlefield stained by the green fog of chemical weapons.

Ordo Malleus Inquisitor Tobias Vokes led the attack, with the Grey Knights of Brother Captain Stern awaiting to teleport in as support. Against him were arrayed the hordes of Nurgle, chanting the name of the their lord, Papa G'aap, Scabeiathrax, a mighty Great Unclean One. Inquisitor Vokes sacrificed himself in the battle attempting to banish the Great Unclean One, but Brother Captain Stern's brothers turned the tide and won the day.

The Wargame

This is a large battle, but only part of the entire attack. Play the game on as large a table as you can manage. Set the board up as described for an Apocalypse battle. The Chaos player chooses a short table edge then sets up his bunkers. All forces should be deployed using the Apocalypse deployment system.

Special Rules

The attacker gets the following strategic assets: Scheduled Bombardment, Strategic Redeployment, Tank Riders

The defender gets the following strategic assets: Ambush, Bunkers, Chaos Altar

Objectives

The attacher's objective is to destroy the enemy. Use the kill points system from the Warhammer 40,000 rulebook to decide who is the winner.

Attacker - Forces of the Imperium

Inquisitor Lord Tobias Vokes
Daemonhammer, power armour, icon of the just, purity seals, storm bolter. Psychic power: Hammerhand
Retinue
4 Veteran Guardsmen, 1 Hierophant, 1 Familiar
Transported in a Rhino with storm bolter, smoke launchers, sacred hull
Inquisitorial Storm Troopers
Squad - 10 men - flamer, plasma gun
All have krak grenades
Transported in a Rhino with storm bolter, extra armour, smoke launchers
Krieg Grenadier Squad
Squad - 5 men - melta gun
All have frag and krak grenades and melta bombs
Transported in a Centaur with searchlight, smoke launchers, extra armour, rough terrain mod.
Commissar
With laspistol, powersword
Krieg Infantry Platoon
Command Squad - Snr Off + 4 men - Heavy bolter
Infantry Squad - 10 men - plasma gun
Infantry Squad - 10 men - melta gun
Infantry Squad - 10 men - flamer
Infantry Squad - 10 men - grenade launcher
Infantry Squad - 10 men - plasma gun
Infantry Squad - 10 men - grenade launcher
All squads carry frag and krak grenades. Each squad has one Guardsman with a vox-caster. The Senior Officer carries a laspistol and a powersword
Leman Russ
With dozerblade, pintle-mounted heavy stubber, smoke launchers
Leman Russ
With pintle-mounted heavy stubber, hunter-killer missile
Leman Russ Demolisher
With dozerblade, pintle-mounted heavy stubber, trackguards
Hellhound
With dozerbalde
Macharius Heavy Tank
With pintle-mounted heavy stubber

Strategic Reserves

All arrive via Deep Strike

Brother Captain Stern
Grey Knights Terminators
Grey Knights Brother Captain
8 Grey Knights Terminators
1 Grey Knights Terminator with psycannon
The squad has the Holocaust psychic ability
Grey Knights
1 Grey Knights Justicar
7 Grey Knights
1 Grey Knights with psycannon
1 Grey Knights with incinerator
Grey Knights Purgation squad
1 Grey Knights Justicar
5 Grey Knights
2 Grey Knights with psycannons
2 Grey Knights with incinerators
Grey Knights Dreadnought
With twin-linked lascannons, smoke launchers, sacred hull
Grey Knights Dreadnought
With psycannon, smoke launchers

Defender - Forces of Nurgle

Necrosius
Plague Zombie Horde
20 Plague Zombies
Plague Zombie Horde
20 Plague Zombies
Mutant Rabble
40 Mutants with 2 flamers, 1 grenade launcher, 1 heavy stubber
Plague Ogryns
5 Plague Ogryns
Death Guard Terminators
1 Terminator Champion with lightning claws
8 Chaos Terminators
1 Chaos Terminator with Reaper autocannon
Plague Marines
1 Plague Champion with powerfist and plasma pistol
8 Plague Marines
1 Plague Marine with plasma gun
Plague Marines
1 Plague Champion with power weapon and melta bombs
8 Plague Marines
1 Plague Marine with flamer
Chaos Predator
With twin-linked lascannons, extra armour, daemonic possession, havoc launcher
Defiler
With twin-linked lascannons
Nurgle Dreadnought
With twin-linked lascannons
Herald of Nurgle
Chaos icon, Aura of Decay, Cloud of Flies
Plaguebearers
15 Plaguebearers with Chaos Icon
Blight Drones
3 Blight Drones

Strategic Reserves

All arriving via Deep Strike

Scabeiathrax the Bloated
Nurglings
3 bases
Nurglings
3 bases
Plaguebearers
15 Plaguebearers
Beasts of Nurgle
3 Beasts. One has Noxious Touch

Imperial Armour 7 was published in August 2009, so the 5th edition Warhammer 40,000 rules were in force at the time. But the forces listed above refer to earlier publications using 3rd and 4th edition rules. Specifically, 2002's Codex: Daemonhunters (3rd ed) for the Inquisitorial and Grey Knights attacking force, 2003's Imperial Armour 1 (3rd ed) for the attacking Leman Russ tanks, 2004's Imperial Armour 2 (4th ed) for the psycannon option for a Grey Knights Dreadnought, and then the remainder of the attacking force comes from 2007's Imperial Armour 5 (4th ed); meanwhile the defending force uses some Imperial Armour 7 units, but mainly 2007's Codex: Chaos Space Marines and Codex: Chaos Daemons (both 4th ed).

The forces are deliberately out of balance in terms of points values, in favour of the Imperium:

p199 — Arkos the Faithless

On Vraks, Arkos is thought to have been the real power behind Xaphan's rebellion. Deacon Mamon may well have been an agent of Arkos long before the Cardinal was corrupted. His warband's long commitment to the war is seen as proof of this theory. Until the rise of Zhufor, Arkos was the de-facto general on Vraks, running the war whilst using Cardinal Xaphan as his puppet-ruler. It was Arkos that summoned the other Chaos Space Marine warbands to the planet and Arkos that almost slew Grandmaster Azrael in personal combat. In the end, besieged and trapped, the Angels of Absolution arrived to take him prisoner and destroy his warband. It is assumed that the Angels of Absolution's mission was successful, although the Ordo Malleus has received no confirmation.

Amongst various other formations presented in the book, two are directly related to Nurgle units:

p209 — The Purge

Points: 150 + Models

Even among those mortals who serve the Ruinous Powers, the name of the Purge is spoken of in dread whispers. A Chaos Space Marine faction of uncertain origins, for more than three millennia this numerous warband, ever growing in number, has brought death and catastrophe to dozens of worlds, and in their wake poison, famine and pestilence follow. This bleak company is known to be waging an avowed genocidal war against all life, and whether their target is human or xenos they care not so long as they are destroyed. In battle a Purge warband advances with steady, implacable hatred, systematically exterminating anything caught in their path. Caring little for any pretensions of martial glory, they favour the use of poison gas, deadly toxins and other indiscriminate weapons to decimate their foes.

Formation:

1 Chaos Lord
1+ Plague Marine Squads
0+ Chaos Terminator Squads
0+ Chaos Space Marine Squads

The Purge may only contain models and squads with the Mark of Nurgle.

Special Rules:

Extermination Force: All Squads in the Purge formation must be deployed within 18" of the Chaos Lord and may not Deep Strike, or if coming on from reserve, they must enter the table within 18" of the point entered by the Chaos Lord. Squads in the Purge formation may also purchase normal unit transports as per their entry in Codex: Chaos Space Marines.

Weapons of Mass Destruction: The Purge are infamous for their use of biological weapons, poison gas and other fiendish devices of death. The following rules appy to the Purge formation:

WeaponRangeStrAPSpecial
Chem-burnersTemplate-5Assault 1, Poison (3+), Pinning

p210 — Blight Drone Infestation

Points: 100 + Models

The horrific Blight Drones of Nurgle are like daemonic carrion flies to the carcasses of the dead, drawn to death and suffering; they swoop down to rain death upon the feeble mortals that oppose them. During the Battle for Vraks and in many major incursions by Chaos forces since, the skies have choked and bled to the colour of a rotting wound and incessant droning as if from a million insects has presaged these nightmarish creations' attack.

Formation:

3-5 Blight Drone swarms, each of which must comprise three Blight Drones, one of which must be designated as the Command Cluster.

Special Rules:

Strike Force: All units in the Blight Drone Infestation must be deployed within 12" of the Command Cluster or, if coming on from Reserve, they must enter the table within 12" of the point entered by the Command Cluster.

Death from the Skies: If, at the beginning of your turn, all the models in the Blight Drone Infestation are within 12" of the Command Cluster, the entire infestation can choose to become Flyers until the beginning of its next turn. However, the Blight Drones in the swarm may not fire their weapons in the turn they fly.

Baleful Presence: The swirling mass of daemonic energies that empower the Blight Drones gather and twist around the governing intelligence of the Command Cluster at its heart like a malign vortex. As a result, unless they are counted as Flyers for that turn, the Blight Drones of the Command Cluster count as having Personal Icons (see page 81 of Codex: Chaos Space Marines) which may be used by their allies.