Sunday, May 10, 2009

Origins of Loyalist and Traitor Backpacks

Here's one for you: Why do chaos space marines have different style backpacks to loyalist space marines?

I'm lead to believe that all the original space marine legions would have had similar backpacks / power plants in the pre-heresy time frame. Indeed, most of the illustrations I've seen in this time period (e.g. cover art of the Horus Heresy book series) picture the traitor legions with loyalist-style backpacks. Hence, I've concluded that the modern style traitor backpacks are a post-heresy innovation.

There's also an interesting wording on the illustration of a renegade marine in codex: chaos space marines: "expanded venting required for stacked cell power plant" (page 86 of the codex). What is a stacked cell power plant? Did a traitor legion invent it after fleeing to the Eye of Terror? If so, then how did the technology spread to the other shattered traitor legions that didn't retreat to the Eye? What was wrong with the original pre-heresy style backpack? This might also go against the more usual "in-world" explanation that the backpacks were simply mutated by chaos.

So many unanswered questions shrouded by the mists of time!

6 comments:

Admiral Drax said...

That's funny:

I've always hated the traitrous scum, but I have to say my biggest beef has always been that their backpacks are so decidedly unchaotic.

You see one CSM backpack and you think "Coo - that's a warped and evil-looking backpack you've got there, matey," then you realise that despite their fickle masters and their so-called chaotic tendencies...they all get their backpacks from the same camping shop.

No fun.

Chaos? - Pooh.

Good observation, mate.

- Drax.

Raptor1313 said...

I think back in the day, all the Legions had the same wargear.

I figure past that, they had different tech-teams working on it. The loyalists had the AdMech working on it, inasmuch that the AdMech EVER does anything to advance tech. But, they've got one source.

The Chaos Marines? Different story. They get resupply off of corrupted Forge Worlds and piracy, and have no coordinated source. There's no telling what kind of equipment they'll lay hands on, other than the fact it is (or at least originally came from) power armor.

eriochrome said...

I think you are giving to much credit to GW. I was skimming through some of my old stuff recently and learned the the Imperial Fists were not originally a first founding chapter and are in fact originally a Loyalist Titan Legion.

Evernevermore said...

Its not quite as simple a matter. I actually have 2 of the very original Chaos Traitor backpacks from Rogue Trader. These backpacks have the original tiny Loyalist backpack with the now familiar branching exhausts added on - leaving you with 4 exhaust ports.

The current backpacks actually arent as identical as you think - there are atleast 3 seperate variations of the backpacks in the current boxed set.

@erichrome - hate to rain on your parade but Imperial Fists have always been a first founding legion, however you are right, there was/is a Titan Legion called the Imperial fists. In fact in its original incarnation it had identical color with the Space Marine Legion, though not any longer. I say always because Rogue Trader predates anything Titan related and it has the Imperial Fists in it, along with the Space Sharks and the Rainbow Warriors.

eriochrome said...

Thanks for the correction. I was going by my Heresy era epic stuff that does not mention the Imperial Fists as far as I recall but does have the titan legion.

Evernevermore said...

Continuity is one of the areas that GW has improved upon with each edition - though sadly some of the really cool ideas have either wandered off or been written out of canon, for the most part.

I have to say the Sensei got a decent shot in the arm with the Horus Heresy art books fluff.

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