The Imperial Armageddon-class Battlecruiser was developed in an attempt to rapidly increase the number of Battlecruisers available to the Imperial Navy. Almost without exception, Armageddon-class warships are built from the recovered hulls of crippled Imperial Lunar-class Cruisers, making them one of the easiest Battlecruisers to construct, though many Imperial fleet commanders have proved unwilling to sacrifice large numbers of their main front-line Cruiser to this conversion process.
The Armageddon-class is a relatively recent innovation within the Imperial Navy. They are constructed from the hulks of ruined Lunar-class Cruisers, upgunned, upgraded and recommissioned into battle anew. The Lunar-class is ubiquitous amongst all Segmentum fleets, and frequently involved in shattering conflicts, so the opportunity to construct these Battlecruisers arises often. Given their extensively redesigned power relays and enhanced weapon systems, they are more demanding in terms of manpower and resources than the Lunar-class, and so are rarely constructed from scratch, but hard-pressed battlefleets are quick to utilise them where they are available. When converting a Lunar-class Cruiser into an Armageddon-class Battlecruiser, power relays are re-routed from the starship's main plasma reactors to provide significantly increased range to its existing weapons batteries and Lances, and additional long-range Lance turret arrays are added to a reinforced dorsal spine. The result of this transfomation is a warship with a powerful medium-and-long-range punch, though at the cost of adding over three thousand more crewmen to man the new Lances and maintain the short-lived relays that power them. Given their large crews and the fact that Lunar-class hulls were never really designed to carry such heavy weaponry, Armageddons are surprisingly cramped and uncomfortable vessels for their size, making them poorly suited for long-term exploration, but few Rogue Traders can argue with the raw firepower they bring to bear if they are lucky enough to get their hands on such a powerful warship.
Notable Armageddon-class Battlecruisers
- Ex Cathedra - The Ex Cathedra was the first Armageddon-class Battlecruiser to be created. Originally named the Orion as a Lunar-class Cruiser, the Orion was converted at the extensive St. Jowen's Dock in the Armageddon System when the decision was made to upgrade, rather than repair, the venerable ship after it had been badly damaged by Chaos raiders above the world of Pyran. The resulting Battlecruiser, renamed the Ex Cathedra, went on to distinguish itself in the Third War for Armageddon.
- Belicosa - The Belicosa participated in the Dark Marches Crusade that would lead to the foundation of the Orpheus Sector.
- Hammer of Light - The Hammer of Light fought and earned renown in the Third War for Armageddon.
- Thunderchild - The Thunderchild fought in the Third War for Armageddon. It was the first Imperial Navy warship destroyed by the Ork armada during the first major fleet action of that conflict, the Battle of Pelucidar.
- Unbreakable Might - Former flagship of Admiral Velkarrin of Battlefleet Hecuba, the Unbreakable Might was the leading vessel of the Ephisian Prosecution-Crusade led by the Inquisition to end the threat of a powerful Chaos Lord of the Alpha Legion only known as Phocron.
- Hull: 5 kilometres long, 0.8 kilometres abeam at fins approximately.
- Mass: Approximately 30 megatonnes.
- Class Armageddon-class Battlecruiser.
- Crew: Approximately 98,500 crew.
- Acceleration: 2.5 gravities maximum sustainable acceleration.
- Battlefleet Gothic Armada, pg. 17
- Rogue Trader: Battlefleet Koronus (RPG), pg. 23
- We are One by John French, in Treacheries of the Space Marines (Anthology)
- Imperial Armour Volume Twelve - The Fall of Orpheus, pg. 18