Heresy at the Gates

Age of Darkness Box (copywriter Games Workshop)

The launch of the massive Age of Darkness Box as well as an ongoing load of new Horus Heresy kits might be an Arc40k game changer...

Everything that’s been released so far can also be fielded in a Warhammer 40,000 Space Marine Army of every flavour. And there’s conversion and modelling opportunities for the forces of Chaos too!

Arc40k armies, particularly the ones I’ve created, usually come together more strongly thanks to a strong theme. Let's face it nothing has more theme to it at the moment than the Horus Heresy era and the equipment that comes from that historical time line within the 40k Universe!

So there’s a chance to stamp uniqueness on your own legion or create a strong backstory for a specific Chapter, or Company within an existing one. Simply start with the reason why so many ancient Armour, Vehicles or Relics have survived or been bestowed up your force.

For a Chaos Space Marine force - well the army you choose might be closer to a post Heresy time. Have they been propelled thousands of years into the future, jumping across time and space to emerge just as they left, because of the vagaries of the Warp?

World Eaters Praetor - or Captain?

The theme you choose and why you make the list choices you will make is up to everyone's own personal take on the reasons behind my army. But hopefully there's something there to get you started.

So, let’s look at what’s landed so far and been revealed as coming soon to see what options are on the table. I've collected and personalised some Heresy era marines over the last few years to add to my Blood Angels collection.

And as I wanted to keep things as plastic as possible I've already explored converting and making the Horus Heresy miniatures represent different units than they were intended to be.

Why can’t there be the influence of master artisans who I have kept ancient relics in service? A little licence to create more detailed and artistically touched versions of the basic kits is part of the overall flavour of my collection.

Let's start with Space Marines… MkIII, MkIV, MKVI. Pick your flavor and you’ll find it fairly easy to create 40K lists that include - Tactical Squad, Devastator Squads and Company Veterans.

The there's Cataphracti Armoured Terminators which can be fielded as a Relic Terminator Squad.

However, if conversions and expending the range of potential units appeals. Then with a generously well stocked bits box you might make Sternguard Veteran Squad and Assault Squad on foot are simple conversions. Sacrifice other kits to the bits box and you might harvest jump packs for Vanguard Veteran Squad or Assault Squad. And at a stretch Space Marine Bike and Assault bikes are body swaps.

I've found as a Blood Angels collector that the Sanquinary Guard box can be sacrificed to provide more than just weapons. It gives you access to unique and detailed shoulder pads; Veteran and Sergeant Heads; and those MkIV jump packs that turn a regular squad into Vanguard or Assault units.

Preators are also easy fits to represent Captains or Lieutenants - weapon swapping to fit the load out you like for your game play.

Contemptor Dreadnoughts and Rhinos have Space Marine Codex entries. As does the Predator tank which is on the way. Those Demios Pattern Rhino chassis look great with very different aesthetic to the Mk2 version which has been in play for quite a time. And for Chaos Players, even with out spikes and bits added will look great for Thousand Sons, Alpha Legion and other less corrupted forces.

My favorite kit so far in the Horus Heresy range is the Kratos Battle Tank.

It's a hobbyists kit. Engineered to fit together so well. And with a few magnets you can ensure you've got the right weapons load out to face opponents in whatever era you choose to play in.

It's a large kit that will put a real stamp of Ancient Armour into any army and it will dominate the Battlefield and Parade grounds with it's presence.

I’m excited to see who will take up the challenge of turning 30k models into 40k Army. If someone takes the theme route and fields an exclusively armoured Horus Heresy era force it should be impressive to see.

At the very least there’s likely to be more Leviathan Dreadnoughts, Spartans and new Kratos taking to the field and they will all look awesome - in Loyalist as well as Chaos forces.

And being available in some stores or an online order away for most hobbyists - well they are plastic and far more accessible than previous the Forgeworld versions have been - easy!

Every year we see a load of Space Marines - so seeing some from a different era is definately not an unlikely outcome. I think some Heresy flavored armies will definitely breach the gates and assault the tabletops at Ark40k in 2023.