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Praetors of Calth


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'The Word Bearers thought they killed us on Calth, just like the greenskins thought they killed me on Hypon, and the Nekuli thought they killed me in the cold, cold void above Sirius.'

'It is a curious pleasure to prove your enemy wrong.'

+ attr. Lieutenant Holion, 190th Company Ultramarines +

Edited by Apologist
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Well, too kind!

At the risk of having too many project logs on the go (I assume it's olay to have multiple if they're all being worked on separately?) I thought it was a shame I didn't have a current one for my Ultramarines, particularly since they're coming to a stage where they'll be complete. I say 'complete', rather than finished, as I expect to carry on with them for at least another eight years. 


So, onto the meat of the project...




+ Lieutenant Holion +

This chap will be leading a combined force made up of vengeful 15th Chapter veterans (The Praetors of Calth) alongside recruits newly-ascended to the ranks from the 190th Company. He's thus a hybrid in style of my older and newer approach to painting Ultramarines.


I'm pleased with how he's come out, as he uses a few new techniques; notably gold leaf for his helmet stripe (an over-the-top addition that seemed appropriate for a rejuvenation of my favourite army).












What can you expect from this project? In no particular order:

  • New Ultramarines (yep, this isn't just a boring retrospective).
  • A closer look into the Underworld War.
  • Painting techniques for Ultramarines.
  • Some of those villainous Word Bearers.
  • ...and one or two heroic victuallers.
Edited by Apologist
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Dramatis Personae

XIIIth Legion 'Ultramarines'


Primarch Roboute Guilliman, the Avenging Son


+ Pict-capture unresolved +

Tetrarch Eikos Lamiad, Tetrarch of Konor


Captain Remus Ventanus, 4th Company


Captain Lucretius Corvo, [Company records corrupt]



Lieutenant Holion, Commander-elect 15th/190th.



Sergeant Selaton, 4th Company



Sergeant Tulian Aquila, 20th Chapter 'Eagles'



XVIIth Legion 'Word Bearers'

+ Pict-capture unresolved +

Captain [Redacted], Chapter of the Unspeaking


+ Pict-capture unresolved +
Sergeant [Redacted], Chapter of the Twisting Rune



Brother [Redacted], Chapter of the Blasted Cedar



VIth Legion 'Space Wolves'

+ Pict-capture unresolved +

Faffnr Bludbroder, Pack Leader



The Honoured Dead

+ Pict-capture unresolved +

Gren Vosotho, Lord Commander 'War-Born'



Imperial Army

General Ynginel Howl, [service records corrupt]



Sergeant-at-Arms Ionson, Calth IVth Rifles




15th/190th Ultramarines



The Shattered Legions




Edited by Apologist
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YES!!! Some of my favorites all compiled:)!

Love that your guard are now the Calth IVth

The ott gold stripe on Holion is grand,the marbling on the shield is sublime, the fact the shattered legions are included lends hope for more glorious yellow to appear:)

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+ Mark -1.57 sidereal +


The column's footfalls crunched as they marched through the snow. Lieutenant Holion's breath misted in the air.


'Forces at our disposal, sergeant?' 


'I've taken the liberty of preparing a dataslate, sir.' Sergeant Santiagon frowned as he handed it over. 'It's far from complete, but all told we've got the best part of a demi-company here, plus auxiliaries.' The column continued marching over the deep snow, warily scanning the ridgeline to the east and bare trees to the west. 'Not all in fighting order, I'm sorry to report.'


Holion nodded, absorbed in the slate.

'Until we get a solid practical on what's happening here, we've got to make to the Muster. This doesn't feel like orks...'



It's easy (and quick) to compose a snap of an individual model, but I find getting shots of a whole army is always a pain – so I'll be working up to it. I thought I'd collect together a list of what's what in the army. Not exactly an army list as, owing to the changes to the rules and restrictions, there are a number of odd models that don't quite fit. This project is going to (hopefully) resolve this, and step one is to work out what's what:


Warriors of the line

  • The Apaesians (Sergeant Epipatros) – Rhino carrier Spear of Iax [seeker squad]
  • The Ciconians (Sergeant Mox) – Rhino carrier Quadriga [seeker squad]
  • The Locrians (Sergeant Santiagon) – Rhino carrier Odius [seeker squad]
  • The Carnassans (Sergeant Ordustin) [Tactial support squad?]
  • The Corinthians (Sergeant [REDACTED]) [Heavy Support squad]
  • 190th Squad Secundus (Sergeant [REDACTED]) – Tactical squad
  • 190th Squad Quintus (Sergeant [REDACTED]) – Tactical squad
  • 190th Squad Duodecimus (Sergeant [REDACTED]) – Assault squad
  • 190th Squad Viginti (Sergeant [REDACTED]) – Breacher squad – Land Raider Proteus carrier Legacy of Armatura
  • Shield of Sinon, Predator

Command and Specialists

  • Captain Paesentius Eupid Orpheus 'Orkbane'
  • Lieutenant Holion
  • Ancient [REDACTED], Chapter Standard Bearer (15th)
  • Lieutenant Pullo, Master of Signal
  • Brother Yppocampon, Apothecary
  • Brother [Redacted], Apothecary
  • Brother Arius, Techmarine
  • Brother-dreadnought Avulus
  • Brother-dreadnought Strix
  • Brother-dreadnought Cestus*
  • Brother-dreadnought Telcion*
  • Brother-dreadnought Icelus – Deredeo pattern
  • Brother-dreadnought {REDACTED] – Leviathan pattern

Expect a few edits to this over the course of the project, as I dig out models or change my mind and pull bits apart!


One of the great benefits of a long-term project like this is that you can follow up on little seeds of background sown years before. Lieutenant Holion, for example, started out as a line marine in the Locrians. The Dreadnoughts marked with * were previously marines of the 15th who were killed. Little touches like this help bring an army to life for me, and make it something a bit more than just a collection of models.



Anyway, while all this is useful for me, it's probably a bit boring and self-indulgent, so I thought I'd do a gallery of a few old faces now that my photography skills have improved and I've got a better idea of how to use my camera. 



Brother Eumon, Locrian



Brother 'Young' Holion, Locrian – reproducing the heraldry on his later iteration (see first post) was a fun challenge, given that the tilt shield is less than half the size!



Cassie, Mother to worlds



Brother Atlion, Corinthian – a new role for this member of the 15th, each of the original Praetor of Calth squads had a heavy weapon. As I'm now using them as Seekers (for vengeful veteran goodness), this has required some jiggery-pokery and reorganising. This means that some of the older squads are now understrength – a perfect excuse to paint the occasional new member of the 15thm resplendent with their archaic heraldry :)



Brother [REDACTED], Squad Secundus



Squad leader [REDACTED], Squad Secundus (the head and torso of this model were formerly Sergeant Tercion – he 'died' in the background after I used the remainder of the squad elsewhere. The figure got a new lease of life in the 190th, and the character got reincarnated as a Dreadnought).



Brother [REDACTED], Squad Quintus – I do love these helms. 




YES!!! Some of my favorites all compiled:)! Love that your guard are now the Calth IVth The ott gold stripe on Holion is grand,the marbling on the shield is sublime, the fact the shattered legions are included lends hope for more glorious yellow to appear:)


Cheers! It's funny, I've always considered myself a Guard player first and foremost, even though I haven't played with them in ages. The Steel Legion sculpts are some of my very favourite, so it'll be fun to come back to the Guard – or Imperial Militia, in this case.

I won't make any rash promises about the VIIth, but never say never.



Wow, amazing stuff :ohmy.: My own Calth veterans will be nothing compared to yours :tongue.:

Nope, won't hear it said – every Ultramarine is glorious! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with, frater :)



Well... I'll be following this thread for inspiration for my own Ultramarine legion force. Apologist: Even after years, you continue to be an inspiration.

Very kind; always very pleased if my stuff helps someone else with theirs :)



The new guy looks brilliant! I look forward to what is to come!

In short, lots! Glad to have you alongside us in the Arcologies.


Don't forget your Sons of Horus and Alpha Legion! I look forward to seeing more from you, frater.

Alas, the Sons of Horus and Alpha Legion have long been sold (well, aside from one), but keep an eye out for one of my friend's So– wait, I've said too much ;)



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+ Army concept and visual philosophy +

I'm a big believer in Tactical Marines – not particularly from a gameplay perspective, but simply because they're iconic. For every weapon specialist or elite trooper in the art or background, there are dozens, if not hundreds of Space Marines with boltguns.


Armies stop looking like artwork and start looking like army lists when the balance is not right (not necessarily a bad thing; but the background feel was at the core of this project). In order to keep that conceptual anchor, I make a point of starting with Tactical marines (or the equivalent troops) in my armies.


That said, with seventy of them in the list, these Ultramarines are ready to spread their wings with some specialists. The overall look can 'hold' some accent specialists. First amongst these are Squad Viginti...


+ Squad Viginti WIP +

Theoretical – What's cooler than Space Romans with big tower shields? 

Practical – Space Romans with big tower shields and power gladii




Breachers didn't exist when I first built the army, but they're my favourite addition. Imagine my glee when I found that Ultramarines could upgrade to use swords as well. :)

These chaps you see here will be led by Lieutenant Holion, and there are three more sitting primed but unstarted. In addition, I'm going to add a vexilla and vox-man, then round it off to twenty to make them full strength.






Really like the way you're incorporating the history of your own collection into the evolving background of the force and its personalities, it's genuinely fascinating to see and not one whit self-indulgent.

Thanks (not least for the reassurance) This army really is a labour of love, so I am a little concerned that I get a bit over-zealous with it! Don't be afraid to tell me to just get on with it :)


With that said, here's a boring ol' wall o'text :P


+ The Lessons of History +
I ummed and erred about whether to try and integrate the new marines with the older ones (including toying with the idea of repainting the older marines) but ultimately decided to hang a hat on the difference and emphasise the difference. This had a number of practical advantages, not least that I wouldn't have had to repaint a lot of models that I really liked. In addition to this, it also provides a visual difference that makes the veterans of the 15th stand out. Since I'm intending to use them as Seeker squads – to represent both their veteran status and their thirst for vengeance – this has a benefit for gaming, too, making them more easily identifiable for the other player.


In-universe, the 190th are part of the new Legion, having grown under Guilliman's steadying influence. In contrast, the 15th Chapter have a broader history that extends back to Terra, and are thus granted a little leeway. Doubtless over time their inherent desire for conformity will win out, but for the moment, there's a slightly different feel to them – think of the 15th as Ancient Greek heroes and the 190th as Roman Legionaries after the Marian reforms. The former exalts heroics, adventure and being part of the phalanx; the latter sees itself as much as cultural exemplars as a military one. I think the differential helps visually suggest veteran status without altering the silhouettes of the models (for example, with lots of additional equipment or different weapon load-outs).


This is part of why Squad Viginti (Latin/High Gothic for 'twenty'), as part of the 190th, have a very different naming scheme to the Praetors of Calth, whose squads are named after famous founding heroes. Identifying the newer force with simple numerals echoes the simplicity of purpose of the Unification War Legions, which creates a nice closed loop. :)

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I am so happy to see these guys back in some shape or form. Love the idea behind this newest incarnation in mixing the new and old, too.


I will say that the purple of the Legatine Axe pulls the eye away from some of the more subtle, but equally appreciable, details on the model. Admittedly, I never paint the disruptor fields. Maybe my complaint is that it's a little heavy-handed, and the effect would look more convincing if some of the metal underneath shown through.


Now, the black marbling on the shield and the dark cloak are freaking spectacular. Good calls for a more sinister look.

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+ Chains of Command +


A couple of work-in-progress officers for the 190th today. First up, a Chaplain:


Epulone Tiberial Highheart


Roboute Guilliman was famous for encouraging the close study of all the Legiones Astartes; with the intention of encapsulating and refining successful approaches within his own Legion. Several innovative tactical and strategic structures and squad types pioneered by their cousin-Legions were fielded – both broadly and in more limited test-bed structures – by the time of the Calth Atrocity.




The Chaplaincy spearheaded by the Word Bearers was one such office. Lorgar and his closest advisors were zealous in the dissemination of the post across the Legions. Rejected by some, the post was taken up by the Ultramarines on a limited scale. In truth, the office sat poorly within the Ultramarines Legion, where zeal and passion were firmly subsumed beneath a structure of logic and analysis. As a result, some historians suggest that the adoption was a personal sop to Lorgar on Guilliman's part – an extended hand of reconciliation.


Nevertheless, while not widespread in the XIIIth Legion, the Chaplaincy was no useless appendix. The post was stripped of duties distasteful to the ruthlessly sceptical and fact-focussed Ultramarines; and grew the morale-shoring role of inspiration through demonstration. Selected as exemplars of duty and honour, Chaplains operated across the Chapter command structure, such that any Legionary, from Aspirant to Tetrarch, could seek their advice and wisdom. They thus formed an underpinning web across the Chapter that bound the warriors together as brothers.


Tiberial Highheart holds the honorific of Epulone, a role whose duties extended to organising feasts, festivals and events of martial and physical competition within the Ultramarines, providing the Legionaries with a close focus for their peacetime role.

The role of Chaplains fell under suspicion after the events of Calth, with many being withdrawn from front-line roles, but this was never a general rescindment.




Lieutenant Pullo, 190th Signals corps




This model is built from a variety of unusual parts including a Space Hulk powerfist (from Brother Omnio), the helm from the FW Master of Signal and – probably my favourite bit – the rod of command from an Alpha Legion special character.


Both figures are WIP. While the metallics are largely complete, the blue armour is midway through the process. I start from a midtone blue (Mordian blue) which gives me tonal range to both shade down and highlight up. At this point, you're seeing them with just the shading added (a variety of blue and purple washes applied topically, plus a glaze of Liche purple paint). The next stage is to add the highlights, and that's when they start to 'pop'.

I am so happy to see these guys back in some shape or form. Love the idea behind this newest incarnation in mixing the new and old, too.


I will say that the purple of the Legatine Axe pulls the eye away from some of the more subtle, but equally appreciable, details on the model. Admittedly, I never paint the disruptor fields. Maybe my complaint is that it's a little heavy-handed, and the effect would look more convincing if some of the metal underneath shown through.


Now, the black marbling on the shield and the dark cloak are freaking spectacular. Good calls for a more sinister look.



Cheers, and those are very good points. I may well come back to the axe and add some metallics – thanksfor the feedback :smile.:

Edited by Apologist
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+ Upilio Constantine Pullo +




+ The XIIIth, perhaps more than any other Legion, relies on smoothly interlinking command and control, with orders percolating downwards for swift enactment. Some Ultramarines excel at particular roles – the strategic leadership of the Legion falls to those most able to command; while line sergeants provide staunch tactical direction. +


+ Being equal in ability does not necessitate heterogeneity, of course. While some Officers of Ultramar achieve their rank through skill at arms – we think of Tauro Nichodemus, or the glittering blade of Salvio Fenn – others, like Constantine Pullo, possess some of his gene-father's genius for organisation and administration. +



+ The post of Master of Signal is the official designation for the post known to the Iron Hands and Death Guard as Watchmaster, to the Raven Guard – unofficially at least – as Whisperchief, and to the Ultramarines as Upilio, a specialist designate equal in rank to an infantry Line Captain. The role varies slightly, but all who wish to master it must possess an ability to parse, sort and filter a tide of often conflicting information, acting both as filter and codifier of the ebbs and flows not just of battles; but of entire theatres of war. +


+ Owing to their multi-levelled thinking and superlative calculatory abilities, most Signal Officers excel at void warfare, and many are drawn from void-captains and Astartes fleet staff. They are commonly placed in charge of Expeditionary sub-fleets, a responsibility far above most Centurions' duties. +



+ Never the most fearsome in combat, nor the most charismatic, nor yet the most indomitable, Constantine Pullo is nevertheless a terrifying man to make your enemy; as he has the ten thousand arms and ten thousand eyes of the Ultramarines beneath his command to turn against you. +



+ Decked out in artificer-adapted Mark V hybrid (II/IV) plate with inbuilt cognitive-memhancer, arm-mounted augur-board and multi-spectrum vox-beading, Pullo is capable of directing an entire battlefront; as indeed he demonstrated during the Syrinx Annihilation, the closing events of the Hypon campaign, and the Nekuli void-war. In addition to this equipment, he carries an eminently practical boltpistol sidearm and the vitis, a short, sturdy staff that serves as mark of office and as visual directional tool when his high-tech equipment fails him. It also, in extremis, operates as a serviceable bludgeoning weapon. +



+ The Master of Signal is a role that sits at the heart of the Ultramarines' way of war. Serving in the 15th for nearly three decades, Constantine Pullo's experience and knowledge saw him promoted after the Nekuli campaign to a new role with the Evocati, overseeing the training of future Ultramarines on Armatura. This was a role he took on with characteristic seriousness. Redeployed to Calth alongside the final intake of Inductii before the Ghaslakh campaign muster, Pullo was caught alongside the warriors of the newly-created 190th when the Word Bearers attacked. He was lost on the surface prior to the Underworld War; just another of the 160,000 or so Legionary casualties of the Atrocity. +

Edited by Apologist
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