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Codex: Chaos Space Marines (2017), p68 — Obliterators

Though cadres of the mysterious Obliterators are thankfully rare, they have an alarming tendency to suddenly appear wherever the fighting is thickest, manifesting in a storm of light before laying waste to their foes. Several theories have been put forward by agents of the Imperium regarding the exact nature of these abominations - some members of the Inquisition believe they are the by-product of a heretical Dark Mechanicum quest to embody the Omnissiah, whilst others proffer the notion that Obliterators are infected with some kind of Daemon-created technovirus. Opponents of the latter theory say that a technovirus could not exist in the way it is claimed, and that simple daemonic possession gives Obliterators their frighteningly powerful abilities. Only the truly learned realise that the term 'technovirus' is a misnomer; it is Chaos itself that mutates and corrupts the machine, just as it moulds and changes the flesh of men.

The Technovirus Rampant

An alliance struck deep in the Eye of Terror has seen a strange machine-plague boil across the worlds of the Imperium. The Cults of Destruction - those warbands consisting of Obliterators, Mutilators and the Warpsmiths that strive to control them - have always acted as seething hotbeds for the Chaos technovirus that infects them. Since the Daemon Primarchs Perturabo and Mortarion combined their genius in the Eye of Terror, however, this affliction has been weaponised. Instead of slowly and organically claiming the souls of those who obsess over their wargear, this curse now spreads in the form of an airborne info-virus, often referred to as 'scrapcode'.

Scrapcode can be seen as the machine equivalent of the Dark Tongue, seemingly nonsensical at first, but harsh upon the ear to the point of causing physical pain, and possessed of an anarchic power that can cripple a machine spirit and pervert a war engine to the cause of Chaos. Some say that even battle tanks and mighty Imperial Knights have been brought low by this ravening, self-replicating scourge, sprouting clusters of oil-slick gun barrels and forests of lashing cables from their adamantium hulls as they indiscriminately kill and destroy.