"To meet our enemies in full panoply upon the field of battle is the Minotos way, not hiding behind defence lasers and missile silos."
- — Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos
House Minotos is a proud House of Imperial Knights that hails from the Knight World of Adrastapol. Unlike Knight Houses of the Questor Mechanicus, House Minotos is aligned with the Imperium of Man directly as a member of the Questor Imperialis, thus escaping the strict requirements of the Adeptus Mechanicus' Sidon Protocols.
Immensely proud of its independence and history, House Minotos has always possessed a reputation for great martial skill, and even among the other Knight Houses of Adrastapol it is said that none may match a Minotos Knight in close combat. Despite its fearsome military reputation, House Minotos has always stood in the shadow of the greater Houses such as House Chimaeros and House Draconis, largely as a result of the inhospitable and poorly populated lands House Minotos rules over. Throughout its long and illustrious history, House Minotos has always faithfully served the High King of Adrastapol, although it has never held the title itself.
One of the House's hallmarks is custom of waging war to the sound of great Imperial arias which House Minotos Knights will play at full volume through the Vox-speakers of their steeds, sowing fear in the hearts of the enemy and courage in those of their allies. The current ruler of House Minotos is the young Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos, whose father was slain during the infamous Donatos War.
Following this lesson in treachery, House Minotos chose to isolate itself from its remaining allies of House Pegasson and House Draconis, an isolation which very nearly sealed the House's fate in the Second Ork War when the Orks of WAAAGH! Killfist overrun House Minotos' meager orbital defences and besieged their fortress, the Iron Maze. Had the Knight of Ashes not led a sizable force of House Pegasson Knights and troops to Minotos' rescue, the proud House Minotos would likely have gone extinct.
Finally seeing the error of his ways, Grandmarshal Kurt pledged his surviving Knights to come to the aid of House Draconis, then beleaguered in their own fortress. In the decisive Siege of the Draconspire, the full wrath of House Minotos fell upon the Orks. The havoc they wreaked upon the Greenskins was enough for the combined might of the Adrastapolian Houses to slay the horde's Warlord and eventually defeat the WAAAGH! that had invaded their homeworld.
As with the other Knight Houses of Adrastapol, the origin of House Minotos is lost to the mists of Imperial history. The only accounts of those long-lost days now reside within the Thrones Mechanicum of the most ancient suits of Knight armour still in service. For most of its long history, House Minotos has enjoyed a reputation for martial excellency, but where the Scions of House Draconis are fierce and those of House Wyvorn were callous, the Knights of House Minotos are both courageous and noble. Together with House Chimaeros, House Draconis, House Manticos and House Pegasson, House Minotos fought and ultimately defeated the Renegade Knights of House Hydrax and House Medusos during the Horus Heresy, thus keeping Adrastapol within the realm of the Emperor.
When the Warboss Skarjaw led his Ork WAAAGH! to the Knight World, this ancient alliance of the Knight Houses of Adrastapol was reformed, for even mighty House Minotos could not hope to defeat Skarjaw's savage Greenskins and the towering Squiggoths they brought with them alone. Although House Minotos fought valiantly, the ultimate victory was claimed by House Draconis, whose Knights managed to slay Skarjaw and his personal guard, putting an end to the invasion.
Yet the feral descendants of Skarjaw's horde proliferated across Adrastapol, giving way to what was later called the Ork Wars -- conflicts that House Minotos prosecuted with its customary zeal. It is commonly believed that it was during the Ork Wars that House Minotos developed its tradition of charging the foe to the sound of great Imperial arias, each Knight of the House blasting classic masterpieces from its built-in speaker systems to sow fear in the hearts of their enemies. The bombastic Imperial music proved as invigorating for the Nobles of House Minotos as it was debilitating to their enemies.
Given its reputation, House Minotos has been at the forefront of every battle and war launched by the Noble scions of Adrastapol, including the Galhorm Crusade in whose wake the crown of the High King passed from House Chimaeros to House Draconis. Attrition levels in this particular campaign proved to be high, but House Minotos still had the numbers and resources to cope. As a firm friendship developed between the new High King Tolwyn Tan Draconis and the ruler of House Minotos, Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos, both Houses became staunch allies. A wise ruler, High King Tolwyn sought the support of the other Houses, elevating House Minotos alongside House Chimaeros and his own House into a central, ruling triumvirate that dominated the alliance formed by Adrastapol's knightly Houses.
A Lesson in Treachery
More perhaps than other Houses, the Nobles of House Minotos were enthusiastic when news reached Adrastapol that the Imperium had ordered High King Tolwyn to launch the reconquest of the rebellious world of Donatos Primus, thus sparking what would quickly become known as the Donatos War.
Having secured a bridgehead and forced the enemy back to its central stronghold, it seemed that the Imperium would soon achieve victory. Unfortunately, during that fateful first attack on the Valle Electrum, House Minotos and its allies were betrayed by House Chimaeros and House Wyvorn, which were secretly in league with the dark powers of Chaos.
Severely diminished, House Minotos was barely able to disengage from the battle they had so eagerly sought, losing many scions and their mechanical steeds to the enemy's guns, a retreat that was further saddened by the death of High King Tolwyn Tan Draconis and the disappearance of Marchioness Lauret Tan Pegasson.
As sole survivor of the ruling elite of Adrastapol, Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos honoured Asrastapol's ancestral traditions and recognised the claim of Tolwyn's son, Danial Tan Draconis, to the title of High King. Knowing full well that unity was required more than ever, Grandmarshal Gustev took it upon himself to reassure the other military leaders of the Imperial war effort by renewing House Minotos' oath of fealty to the Imperium.
The gallant Grandmarshal was slain during another cowardly ambush unleashed by House Chimaeros, even if the ultimate survivors of House Minotos followed High King Danial to ultimate victory. In the wake of the Donatos Uprising and the terrible casualties suffered on that world, the rule of House Minotos fell to Gustev's son, Kurt Tan Minotos, who had yet to pass his Ritual of Becoming.
House Minotos Stands Alone
In the wake of the Donatos War, distrust impeded High King Danial's efforts to bring Adrastapol up to technological parity with the rest of the Imperium of Man. With so many Knights slain on Donatos Primus, the High King realised that Adrastapol needed to improve its own defences.
Ever the traditionalists, many of the High King's decrees were met with discomfort by House Minotos, which feared that improving the living conditions of their serfs and relying on large armies of infantry as part of a Planetary Defence Force might diminish the social prestige and tactical efficiency of their Nobles. Seeing the High King's decrees as a disguised means to deprive House Minotos of its heritage and sap its strength, Grandmarshal Kurt only paid lip-service to the High King's vision, allocating only a scant minimum of resources to the effort to keep the High King happy.
While House Draconis and House Pegasson invested much of their resources and fortune to expand their household's serf-based infantry armies, in particular their air forces and orbital defence capabilities, House Minotos focused its efforts on regaining its strength and replacing the Knight losses of the Donatos War. Even when the Knights of Adrastapol marched to war on other worlds, House Minotos only contributed the barest minimum of forces, claiming that such was all they could spare.
Despite several diplomatic visits by the High King himself, Kurt Tan Minotos would not be swayed, which left House Minotos woefully unprepared when the Orks of WAAAGH! Killfist invaded Adrastapol. Lacking the orbital batteries and aerial defences of Pegasson and Draconis, the Minothane territories suffered harshly, the Orks of Warlord Gorgrok Killfist landing in the southern regions of Adrastapol's main continent controlled by the Minotos.
Against the great mass of Orks and the terrible war machines they deployed, even the might of the Minotos Knights failed. The House was defeated repeatedly, including at the Battle of the Chasm, the Defence of Hallanspoint and during the Ironfields Charge.
Trapped in its ancestral home, the Iron Maze, beleaguered by Greenskins, House Minotos bravely fought on but knew it was doomed. As the Orks sacked and burned the city of Minosaal, located at the very gates of the Iron Maze, Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos refused to call for aid. The Minotos Knights fought bravely, bleeding the Orks for every road, every yard, every section of the wall they took, but all with no hope of victory.
It was then that a relief force of House Pegasson arrived to turn the tide of battle. Thanks to this aid, House Minotos' valiant last stand turned into a resounding Imperial victory. Humbled by the assistance of House Pegasson and the return of the Knight of Ashes, a Freeblade who had interrupted his hunt for his mother, a Chaos witch, to return and save his homeworld, Grandmarshal Kurt finally saw the errors of his ways and made amends for his past misconduct.
He pledged himself and every able-bodied Minotos Knight to the fight against the Orks, joining House Pegasson in its race to break the siege of the Draconspire where High King Danial Tan Draconis bravely held out against Killfist's personal horde. Having found an ally in the Knight of Ashes, Grandmarshal Kurt was content to play the role of military commander of House Minotos, a role that suited him far more than that of ruler.
Driven by his shame and hate of the Greenskins, the Knights of House Minotos fought bravely, but even their might proved insufficient to break through the fortifications of Northrise Battery, an Imperial position now held by the Orks' super-heavy elements. Although House Minotos destroyed several Ork Stompaz and countless lesser foes, it was only with reinforcements from House Draconis that the battle was won.
A Bright New Future
While House Minotos is still recovering from the losses suffered in the Second Ork War, the House has been fully accepted back into the fold of the Adrastapolian Knight Houses. After embracing High King Danial's new vision for Adrastapol, Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos has pledged the mineral wealth of the Minothane lands to the reconstruction of Adrastapol and the improvement of its defences. Although the ultimate survivors of WAAAGH! Killfist still need to be hunted down, House Minotos' gaze is already fixed on its future.
While rumour has it that High King Danial and much of House Draconis are already preparing to join the Knight of Ashes on his hunt for the Traitor Alicia Kar Manticos -- a venture that is on the cusp of becoming a full-fledged Imperial Crusade -- House Minotos' position on this matter remains unclear.
- Horus Heresy (Unknown Date.M31) - While the Imperium of Man tore itself asunder in the great interstellar civil war known as the Horus Heresy, Adrastapol had prospered under the aegis of High King Rhoderic Tan Chimaeros. But the taint of Chaos had also taken root on Adrastapol as both House Hydrax and House Medusos openly declared for the Traitor Warmaster, Horus Lupercal, and waged a war of conquest that took a heavy toll on the remaining Knight Houses. House Minotos joined the alliance formed by High King Rhoderic that ultimately vanquished these Renegade Knights.
- Ork Wars (Unknown Date.M41) - When the Ork Warlord Skarjaw led his WAAAGH! to the Knight World of Adrastapol, all the Knight Houses gathered their forces under the aegis of House Chimaeros to defend their homeworld from the depredations of the Orks. Belonging to one of the most savage and feral tribes of his race, Skarjaw and his Greenskins rode to battle on towering warbeasts known as Squiggoths. These great beasts can easily pose a threat to Imperial Knights, a fact the defenders of Adrastapol became painfully aware of when House Manticos' ancestral home and fortress were destroyed by the invaders. House Minotos bravely fought these invaders but was not present during the invasion's pivotal encounter at the mighty fortress of House Draconis, the Draconspire, where Skarjaw was slain by Tolwyn Tan Draconis, then the mere Gatekeeper of the Draconspire. Although the WAAAGH! had been defeated, the Orkoid survivors of this invasion soon turned feral and scattered. In the years that followed, the Knights of Adrastapol mercilessly hunted down the remaining Orks and Squiggoths until their homeworld was declared purged from the xenos filth which had tainted it.
- Chondax Crusade (Unknown Date) - All data redacted.
- Galhorm Crusade (Unknown Date) - Very little is known about this obscure Imperial Crusade save that it was a costly battle for the Imperial troops involved and especially so for the Knights of Adrastapol. Following the death of the Kingsward, Gedric Tan Chimaeros, the crown of the High Kings of Adrastapol passed on to House Draconis.
- Donatos War (Unknown Date.M41) - Variously referred to as either the Donatos Insurrection, the Donatos Uprising and the Donatos War, this conflict marks the struggle for the possession of the Industrial World of Donatos Primus. Following an insurrection of Donatos' civilian population and some of its Planetary Defence Forces, it soon became apparent that elements of the Word Bearers Traitor Legion were to blame. Their leader, the Dark Apostle Varakh'Lorr, hoped to attain daemonhood by sacrificing Donatos' menial classes and his own followers. The Imperium reacted with uncustomary swiftness, counterinvading Donatos Primus at the head of several regiments of Astra Militarum and the combined forces of the Knights of Adrastapol. Under the guidance of High King Tolwyn Tan Draconis, the Imperial troops soon pushed the insurrectionists back. In what was believed to be the final battle of this conflict, House Chimaeros and House Wyvorn betrayed their allies, catching them in a murderous crossfire which nearly brought about the end of House Pegasson and House Minotos. Suffering crippling losses, Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos nevertheless was able to maintain unit cohesion and lead its battered survivors to a safe haven. While House Draconis escaped with less casualties but mourned the loss of High King Tolwyn, House Pegasson was virtually crippled. Following his betrayal, Viscount Gerraint Tan Chimaeros proclaimed himself High King of Adrastapol, but true to their oath, the Nobles of House Minotos chose to stand with House Draconis and openly supported the claim of Tolwyn's son, Danial Tan Draconis. Upon the new High King's orders, Grandmarshal Gustev was appointed as liaison officer between the surviving Knights and their Cadian allies. As one of the more experienced military leaders, the Grandmarshal's voice was well-represented in the Loyalists' war councils. Hard-pressed against the resurgent forces of the Traitors, House Minotos committed much of its remaining strength to High King Danial's first counterattack. Although this assault succeeded in confronting and annihilating a small portion of House Chimaeros' numbers, the gathered Knights were led into a carefully planned ambush within an abandoned Adeptus Arbites Precinct Fortress. It was there that House Minotos suffered the loss of its leader when Grandmarshal Gustev and his Knight were transformed into a hideous and rabid Chaos Spawn by the terrifying Warp-infused powers of Alicia Kar Manticos, who was both a powerful Witch and an adoratrice of the Chaos God Tzeentch. Suffering further casualties in the collapse of the Precinct Fortress, House Minotos' soon possessed no more than a dozen operational Knights. Despite their losses, House Minotos resolutely stood by its allies and joined them in their desperate but ultimately victorious attack on the enemy stronghold within the Vale Electrum, a desperate battle which ended in the deaths of all the enemy commanders, including the Dark Apostle Varakh'Lorr, Archduke Dunkan Tan Wyvorn and Viscount Gerraint Tan Chimaeros. Leaderless and scattered, the remaining Word Bearers quickly retreated from Donatos Primus whilst the vengeful Imperial Knights mercilessly hunted down the last of their traitorious brethren.
- Second Ork War (Unknown Date.M41) - Barely five standard years after the successful conclusion of the Donatos War, Adrastapol was invaded by the numberless hordes of WAAAGH! Killfist. The Ork Warlord Gorgrok Killfist of the Deathskulls was a far cry from the savage Skarjaw the Adrastapolian Knights had defeated in the past. Great Ork combat walkers, from Gorkanauts and Morkanauts to Stompaz and even Gargantz, marched behind hordes of Orks in blue warpaint; whole squadrons of captured Imperial tanks kicking up dust alongside the Orks' own ramshackle creations. Lacking the aerial and orbital defences of the other Houses, the lands of House Minotos were hit particularly hard, unable as they were to destroy the Ork Roks before they reached Adrastapol's surface. While bravely assaulting the Orks' landing zones, the Knights of Adrastapol bought themselves time but within solar weeks Gorgrok's various warbands linked up to form unstoppable hordes. Due to the sheer dint of the Greenskins' numbers, the Knights were forced to retreat to their fortresses. Beleaguered in the bastions known as the Eyrie, the Iron Maze and the Draconspire, the Nobles bled the enemy as best they could but ultimately each House was forced to make its own stand separately. In this dark hour, a lone voidship, fittingly named the Unbroken, broke through the Ork fleet and landed a single lance of Imperial Knights in the wilderness of the Adrapotine Mountains. Their leader was no stranger to Adrastapol, for he was the Freeblade known as the Knight of Ashes, the last scion of the corrupted House Chimaeros who had come seeking redemption. Guided by the hands of prophecy, the Knight of Ashes had returned in Adrastapol's hour of need. Before all communication was lost, the High King of Adrastapol tasked the Knight of Ashes with seeking out the other Houses to come to the rescue of House Draconis, now trapped in their Draconspire fortress by the vast armies of Gorgrok himself. Rallying House Pegasson first, the Knight of Ashes led a sizable force of Knights to lift the Siege of the Iron Maze where the bloodied but ultimately victorious Knights of House Minotos joined his nascent army. Together the two Knight Houses and the Freeblade force known as the Exiles then made haste to the Draconspire where High King Danial Tan Draconis fought what he believed to be a desperate last stand. While the Ork Warlord was slain in personal combat by the High King, it took the slaughter unleashed by the reinforcing Imperial army and the destruction of the horde's remaining super-heavy walkers to fully rout the WAAAGH!. Follow-up operations lasted for well over a Terran year before the Knight of Ashes was able to resume his hunt for his mother, the fearful Chaos witch Alicia Kar Manticos.
House Minotos Territories
The lands of House Minotos are a harsh swathe of the southern region of Adrastapol's primary inhabited continent. At their heart lie the mineral-rich Kulrikh Peaks. At their base, House Minotos established its first and principal fortress, the Iron Maze. A fair distance away stands the city of Minosaal, the largest urban settlement in Minotos lands. Reasonably fertile plains called the Ironfields surround both city and fortress.
The recurrence of the term "Iron" in names and titles also indicates the main source of House Minotos' wealth -- the mining of ferric ores. Much of House Minotos' lands are rocky plains with the more fertile areas given over to agriplexes. Even here, rich veins of various minerals are harvested in large crater-mines, an activity that explains the muscular stock of House Minotos' serf class as well as the spirit of self-reliance so common within House Minotos.
Whereas the lands of the other Knight Houses have changed greatly since the ascension of High King Danial Tan Draconis, the Grandmarshals of House Minotos have always abhorred change and take great pride in their ancestral ways and millennia-old traditions.
For instance, House Minotos Knights are the only Adrastapolian Nobles still to wear antique suits of armour in lieu of the un-armoured bodygloves favoured by other Houses. The Knights' strength and resilience are perhaps best illustrated by House Minotos' traditional and ceremonial drink, Kulrikh sourwine, a highly acid and sour vintage one must drink without flinching.
The Iron Maze
The Iron Maze is the ancestral home of House Minotos, a vast fortress that shared many similarities with the now-razed Chimaerkeep. Its redoubts and firing lanes are spread out over a large area to form a defence in depth, hence the fortress' common nickname -- "the Labyrinth."
The Iron Maze's complex design aims to confuse and disorientate enemies, luring them deeper inside the maze where concealed killing zones will allow the Maze's defenders to catch their opponents in multiple crossfires. The Iron Maze is the largest military structure on Adrastapol and covers more than thirty Terran square miles.
Located at the foot of the Kulrikh Peaks, the rear of the Iron Maze is protected by sheer cliffs which make it impossible to outflank, forcing the enemy into the narrow passages leading directly into the defenders' guns. Before the Second Ork War, no enemy had succeeded in breaching the labyrinthine complex of bastions, sub-fortresses and keeps that form the Iron Maze. Even the Orks only conquered the central portion of the fortress while the more heavily defended flanks continued to hold out against the enemy until the House Pegasson relief force arrived.
Notable House Minotos Knights
- Gustev’s Revenge - Gustev’s Revenge is the heavily customised Knight Gallant piloted by Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos, the current ruler of House Minotos. The Knight's name is a clear reference to Kurt's father and his ignominious death on Donatos Primus. Gustev’s Revenge’s brutal design epitomizes House Minotos' mastery of close quarters combat. Its main weapon arm features a Knight-sized replica of the Minothane Warhammer commonly worn by House Minotos' Nobles, while its other arm is equipped with a massive shield of pure Adamantium. Kurt's steed also benefits from limited capacities at range through the deployment of carapace-mounted Twin-linked Melta Cannons like the ones found on the Imperial Devil Dog.
- Merciless - Badly damaged in the ambush struck at the Adeptus Arbites precinct fortress, the Merciless had to be abandoned, the meagre resources of the remaining Loyalists not enough to ensure that Merciless would walk again. It is unclear if Merciless’s wreck was salvaged after the end of the hostilities on Donatos.
- Song of Strength - Little is known of Song of Strength except that it used to be piloted by Sire Federich Dar Minotos. Like so many of its kin, Song of Strength was lost in the final Loyalist offensive during the Donatos Uprising.
- Thunderclap - One of the many Knight Gallants in service to House Minotos, Thunderclap used to be the Knight armour piloted by Sire Jeremial Dar Minotos, one of the House's most fearsome warriors. Surviving the initial Traitor onslaught on Donatos Primus, Thunderclap was lost in an artfully laid-trap by the Renegades of House Chimaeros. Standing too close to Thunderhymn, Thunderclap was immediately attacked by the giant Chaos Spawn the once noble Knight had been transformed into, the beast's many tentacles and other strange appendages preventing Thunderclap from fleeing the wave of debris that destroyed the Adeptus Arbites precinct fortress where a portion of House Chimaeros' strength had been cornered by the Loyalist Knights of Adrastapol. Unfortunately for House Minotos, Thunderclap 's Throne Mechanicum could not be retrieved.
- Thunderhymn - Thunderhymn was an ancient and revered Knight Crusader that served as the personal steed of Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos until it was lost during the fateful Donatos Uprising. For such a sacred item of the Cult Mechanicus, Thunderhymn suffered a fate worse than mere death, its entire mass -- including its pilot -- being transformed into a hideous Chaos Spawn of never before seen proportions by the baleful spell of the Tzeentchian witch, Alicia Kar Manticos.
Notable House Minotos Personnel
- Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos - Gustev Tan Minotos was the revered ruler of House Minotos who bore the traditional title of Grandmarshal. A competent and fearsome warrior in his youth, age had not dulled Gustev's eagerness for battle. His long years had also gifted him with great wisdom, hiding a keen intellect behind a boastful facade and boyish cheerfulness. The most distinctive features of the Grandmarshal's appearance were his impressive beard and moustache which he wore in spectacular and eccentric patterns that required a great deal of wax to hold fast. Like all the Nobles of House Minotos, Gustev Tan Minotos was powerfully built, his stature further underlined by the ornate if archaic suit of battle armour he usually wore. Alone of the rulers of the three Loyalist Knight Houses to deploy to Donatos Primus, Grandmarshal Gustev survived the initial betrayal by his former allies among the Renegade Houses of Chimaeros and Wyvorn. As the most experienced of the remaining Loyalist leaders, Grandmarshal Gustev would have been well within his right to claim command of the Imperial war effort, but out of a sense of frendship for the former High King Tolwyn Tan Draconis, Gustev did not challenge Danial Dar Draconis' claim to his father's crown. Instead, the Grandmarshal supported the young High King by not questioning his decisions and taking it upon himself to reassure the Cadian regiments they fought alongside of their unshakable loyalty to the Emperor of Mankind. When Danial Tan Draconis led a counterattack upon a House Chimaeros hunting-party, Grandmarshal Gustev naturally took to the field at his side. The enemy hunting-party, some twenty Knights in total, had established camp in an abandoned precinct fortress of Donatos' Adeptus Arbites, a mighty edifice at the foot of gigantic cliffs. It was within the fortress' courtyard that Gustev Tan Minotos would meet his horrible end. Whilst conducting a parlay with the consort of the enemy leader, Alicia Dar Manticos, the Traitor revealed her true identity as a worshipper of Tzeentch and a Sorcerer. Using the baleful powers of the Warp, the Witch unleashed a powerful spell which changed the adamantium and steel of Gustev's Knight, the Thunderhymn, into living flesh. Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos died with a prayer on his lips, the invocation of the Emperor's name not enough to stop the rampaging and unholy transmutation that had befallen his Knight and him. Thunderhymn and its occupant fused together and became a hideous Chaos Spawn, a wriggling mass of gnashing teeth, gaping maws and hideous tentacles that lashed out at the nearest Knight. The thing that had been Grandmarshal Gustev attacked a member of its own Exalted Court while the Loyalist Knights fled from the trap laid before them, for before she vanished in a blaze of sorcerous fire, Alicia Dar Manticos had detonated hidden bombs which now brought the towering cliffs overlooking the Arbites fortress crushing down. The Chaos Spawn and its unfortunate prey were both crushed under tons of rocks and ferrocrete, never to be unearthed again.
- Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos - Son of Gustev Tan Minotos, Grandmarshal Kurt was the leader of House Minotos at the time of the Second Ork War. Having recently ascended to the Minotos throne following his father's tragic death in the Donatos War, Kurt was aware he had big shoes to fill, a task he believed was not up to. Kurt's youth and lack of experience made him an easy target for political maneuvering and although High King Danial tried to guide him through frequent visits, Kurt failed to see the benefits of the many reforms launched by the High King. The Grandmarshal's reluctance in allocating funds and manpower for the construction of orbital defence silos in accordance with these decrees may well be to blame for the devastation of the entire region by the Orks of WAAAGH! Killfist once they landed on Adrastapol. While leading many of his Knights' sorties himself, the Knights of House Minotos were soon pressed back to their own fortresses. Refusing to call for help, Kurt Tan Minotos bravely fought on but was relieved when suddenly a large force of House Pegasson led by the Knight of Ashes arrived to break the siege of the Iron Maze. Having learnt his lesson, Grandmarshal Kurt begged for the Marchioness Tan Pegasson's forgiveness and pledged every remaining Minotos Knight to the desperate attempt to break the siege of the Draconspire where the Orks' main horde had gathered under the banner of their Warlord, Gorgrok Killfist. Piloting Gustev's Revenge, his heavily modified Knight Gallant, Grandmarshal Kurt personally led the charge on Northrise Battery where the Greenskins' own combat walkers had gathered. Battling against Stompaz, it was at the head of a Gallant lance that Kurt Tan Minotos finally broke through the battery's walls, enabling Inquisitor Massata to call off the Exterminatus he had ordered carried out on Adrastapol. With this great victory cementing the unity of the three remaining Knight Houses, Kurt Tan Minotos finally saw sense and wholeheartedly embraced the High King's politics of technological modernization. Kurt and the remaining Knights of his Exalted Court were each given a seat on the newly formed War Council of Adrastapol which prosecuted the rest of the war of extermination against the Orks.
- Herald Wilhorm Dar Minotos - Sire Wilhorm is one of the few survivors of the reconquest of Donatos Primus. He and his Knight -- Merciless -- survived the initial treason of their allies and even the ambush at the Arbiters' precinct fortress, but only narrowly escaped with their lives. With his Knight crippled beyond immediate means of repair, Sire Wilhorm had to suffer the shame of dismounting and fighting the final battle of the Donatos campaign from the rear, within a Sacristan crawler. Upon the coronation of Kurt Tan Minotos as the regent of House Minotos, this veteran of the Donatos War was promoted to the rank of Herald and granted a place in House Minotos' Royal Court. As a veteran of one of the bloodiest campaigns in recent history, Sire Wilhorm distinguished himself during the fierce battle of the Second Ork War.
- Gatekeeper Ottovio Dar Minotos - Sire Ottovio served as Gatekeeper to Kurt Tan Minotos. His ultimate fate remains unknown as at least three members of Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos' Exalted Court are known to have been slain in the Siege of the Iron Maze.
- Sire Boriss Dar Minotos - Sire Boriss fought during the Donatos Uprising. He was one of the few survivors of that bitter campaign.
- Sire Colchin Dar Minotos - Sire Colchin was a Knight Gallant pilot of great reputation who distinguished himself during the Second Ork War. At the Siege of the Draconspire he was asked by Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos to follow Gustev's Revenge in an assault on the Northrise Battery during which he was slain.
- Sire Federich Dar Minotos - Sire Federich was a simple Knight of House Minotos who fought during the Donatos Uprising. Whilst he survived both the initial treason of the Loyalist Knights' former allies, the crippling ambush at the Arbites' precinct fortress and the heavy fighting for the Imperial mustering point, he died during the second attack on the Valle Electrum.
- Sire Gastaurn Dar Minotos - Sire Gastaurn fought under Grandmarshal Kurt Tan Minotos at the Siege of the Drakespire, following his liege in the failed assault on the Northrise Battery. Sire Gastaurn was killed by an Ork Stompa before even reaching the walls,
- Sire Jeremial Dar Minotos - Sire Jeremial was a member of the Exalted Court of Grandmarshal Gustev Tan Minotos, House Minotos' inner circle and ruling council. Like his sire and liege, Sire Jeremial survived the initial phase of the Donatos Uprising only to perish at the ambush on the Adeptus Arbites precinct fortress. Horrified by the cruel fate that had befallen Grandmarshal Gustev, Sire Jeremial was not quick enough to break formation, the attack of the mindless Chaos Spawn causing his Knight, Thunderclap, to stumble and fall. With the enormous Chaos Spawn trying to eat its way through his Knight's armoured plate, Sire Jeremial could not run or escape his steed before he was buried and crushed under the earth-shattering force of tumbling rocks and debris.
- Sire Mikal Dar Minotos - Sire Mikal was one of the young Nobles who rose to Knighthood in the wake of the Donatosian War. Sire Mikal survived the Siege of the Iron Maze and was part of Grandmarshal Kurt's forces when he attacked the Northrise Battery.
- Sire Rikhardt Dar Minotos - Sire Rikhardt also fought during the Donatos Uprising and emerged victorious and alive from the engagements of that terrible conflict only to be slain in the final battle when the deranged Archduke Dunkan unleashed the power of his Acastus Knight Porphyrion's Magna Lascannons against his severely damaged Knight Crusader.
- Sire Willer Dar Minotos - Sire Willer fought in the Second Ork War and was part of the lance of Knight Gallants that was led by their Grandmarshal to break through the defences of Northrise Battery. As the Orks kept filling the gaps in their defences with Stompaz, the assault failed to carry the breach. While Sire Willer's Knight lost a leg to an enemy Stompa, Sire Willer's own fate is unknown.
Before the disastrous turn of events during the Donatos Uprising, House Minotos was commonly considered the strongest of all the Knight Houses of Adrastapol, the individual might of its scions and Nobles even compensating for the greater numbers of Houses Draconis and Chimaeros. Conservative estimates indicate that House Minotos' ranks originally included approximately 100 suits of Knight armour, though many of these were lost during the conflict on Donatos Primus, leaving less than a dozen Knights to return to their homeworld.
Like the other Houses, the vast majority of House Minotos' Knights are of the Paladin pattern, with only a few of the other patterns of Knight suits still in use. Of the Paladin's many variants, the Knight Crusader and the Knight Gallant were the most common, the latter being particularly valued as its capabilities allowed the scions of House Minotos to make the best use of their expertise in melee combat.
In stark contrast to the other Nobles of Adrastapol, House Minotos has consciously preserved its ancestral traditions. Unlike more progressive Houses such as House Pegasson, House Minotos vehemently refuses to allow its female Nobles to ride into battle piloting a Knight suit. In a crowd of Adrastapolian Nobles, the scions of House Minotos will always stand out, as their baroque traditions demand that their Knights incorporate elements of plate armour, making them appear very much like giant knights from Terra's ancient medieval period. The male Nobles of the House's higher ranks also favour wearing great, waxed moustaches.
More than any other Knight House of their world, House Minotos values individual physical strength, even when not sitting on their Knight's Throne Mechanicum. As a result, a Knight from House Minotos will be notably more muscular and physically fit than the scion of another House. The physical prowess and fitness of Minotos Nobles surpasses that seen among the infantry Guardsmen of most Astra Militarum regiments as they frequently engage in different forms of ritualistic combat. As fierce as their reputation is on the battlefield, the scions of this House have an equally fierce reputation for debauchery in the dining halls and banquets that usually follow an Imperial victory. Once sufficiently inebriated, a Minotos Knight will boast for solar hours about the many victories he has won. This boorish behaviour has sometimes led other Knight Houses to frown upon House Minotos and their lack of decorum and self-control.
The colours of House Minotos are orange and brass, with black usually worn as a complement.
The arms of House Minotos display the great bull-head of the minotos, or minotaur in the ancient languages of Old Earth.
Where all of the other Nobles of Adrastapol favour the sword, House Minotos prefers the brutal efficiency of the warhammer. The great Minothane warhammer is a ponderous, heavy weapon which requires great strength to wield, hence the focus on physical strength within House Minotos' ranks. While its detractors often argue that it takes little skill to master, the Nobles of House Minotos have elevated the use of a warhammer to an effective and utterly deadly art that focuses as much on the defence of the hammer's wielder as it does upon smashing through an enemy's guard with sheer, brute force. The skill required to effectively wield the Minotosian warhammer is the opposite, for example, of the great dexterity and concentration used by the swordsmen skilled with the elegant Pegassia rapier. Sturdier than the signature weapons of the other Houses of Adrastapol, a Knight of House Minotos can wait for his enemy to become tired and make a mistake, trusting that his warhammer can end the fight or break his enemy's weapon with but a single, well-timed strike.
House Minotos' tradition of charging the enemy while blasting Imperial arias from their Vox-speakers is a thinly veiled reference to an iconic scene of Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 film Apocalypse Now. It depicted a helicopter assault during the Vietnam War by the 1st US Cavalry Division to the sound of Richard Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries.
- Kingsblade (Novel) by Andy Clark
- Knightsblade (Novel) by Andy Clark