Upon the Daemon Worlds of the Eye of Terror and other equally hellish realms there lurk many terrors, from ancient and terrible weapons long since forgotten by the Imperium to malignant daemonic entities invested with an unfathomable hatred of the Emperor and all His works.
The Relic Predator is one such horror; a battle tank of ancient provenance that once served the Space Marine Legions during the Great Crusade. Fast, well-armoured and carrying the most potent of weaponry, these tanks were the nightmare of ancient battlefields.
After uncountable years within the twisted depths of the Eye of Terror, Infernal Relic Predators bear little resemblance to the proud machines of war they once were.
Warped by the influence of the dark powers that rule in that realm, their armour defaced by all manner of cruel decoration and many now serving as vessels for monstrous creatures born from suffering and pain in the Empyrean, there are few in the Imperium who would still recognise an Infernal Relic Predator for its original class.
Yet despite this, their weapons have lost none of their bite, and many a fratricidal war has been fought amongst Heretic Astartes warbands for possession of one of these devastating war engines.
Infernal Relic Predators mount a range of potent weaponry once common among the armies of the ancient Imperium, but which is in many cases long lost to the Tech-priests of the present Adeptus Mechanicus. Many of the most arcane inner mysteries of plasma bolt, conversion beam and magna-blast are now unknown to the Cult Mechanicus, but retained still within the blasphemous tomes of the Heretek dark magi.
In many cases, lost patterns are merged with the blasphemies of the Dark Age of Technology and with the fell blessings of the Warp to create analogues of weapons coveted beyond reason by the scions of Mars. Leering faces are to be seen writhing with the Plasma Destroyer bolts fired by the Relic Predator Executioner and below the roar of the Heavy Conversion Beamer is to be heard the tortured shrieking of a billion damned souls.
More so than many others of their class, Infernal Relic Predators are jealously guarded by those champions of the Ruinous Powers fortunate enough to count one amongst their forces. They are coveted by rival warlords and are often the target of inter-warband raids, and word of an unclaimed Relic Predator being located or dug up on some ancient battlefield is sufficient to draw numerous would-be claimants, and it is not uncommon for large battles to be fought over their possession.
Despite myriad blasphemies of techno-sorcery, the Infernal Relic Predators of the Chaos Space Marines conform to a number of broadly recognisable types. One of the most common is the Relic Predator Executioner, the turret of which mounts a fearsome Plasma Destroyer or occasionally a Heavy Conversion Beamer.
Another pattern much prized amongst certain Heretic Astartes warbands is the Relic Predator Infernus, which is equipped with a Magna-Melta or a Flamestorm Cannon. Each of these weapon configurations is employed in its own battlefield context.
The Plasma Destroyer able to gun down even heavily-armoured infantry, as well as light and medium vehicles, with a withering hail of superheated energy blasts. The Heavy Conversion Beamer is fearsomely destructive, especially at range, against fortifications and large, slow-moving armoured targets.
The Magna-Melta cannon mounted by many Infernus Pattern Relic Predators is capable of reducing the heaviest tank or sturdiest bunker to bubbling slag, while the Flamestorm Cannon can burn entire formations of enemy troops to ashes.
- Flamestorm Cannon
- Smoke Launcher
- 2 Heavy Flamers, 2 Heavy Bolters or 2 Lascannons (Optional set for sponson weapons)
- Magna-melta Cannon (Replacement for Flamestorm Cannon)
- Autocannon with Inferno Bolts (Replacement for Flamestorm Cannon)
- Heavy Conversion Beamer (Replacement for Flamestorm Cannon)
- Twin-linked Lascannon (Replacement for Flamestorm Cannon)
- Plasma Destroyer (Replacement for Flamestorm Cannon)
- Extra Armour Plating
- Pintle-mounted Combi-bolter
- Dirge Caster
- Dozer Blade
- Warpflame Gargoyles
- Combi-flamer, Combi-melta or Combi-plasma
- Havoc Missile Launcher
- Destroyer Blades
- Daemonic Possession (No crew necessary)
The war machines of the forces of Chaos are nigh limitless in their variety and blasphemy, yet there exists amongst them a class that transcends sanity itself and sets them entirely beyond the physical laws of the mortal realm.
These are the so-called "possessed" war engines, vehicles crew and controlled not by living operators but by things drawn forth from the Warp itself. In theory any vehicle can be possessed, and the process appears to be steeped in murderous and arcane ritual that is the subject of lifetimes of heretical study. Regardless of the specifics, these vehicles are invested with a daemon which is sealed within their armoured shell.
Hatches and access points are closed and warded so that the daemon cannot escape, and its flanks are covered in binding sigils. Thus bound within what amounts to a mobile tomb and an armed and armoured shell, the daemon is able to exist within realspace in a manner ordinarily denied to it.
Possessed vehicles radiate palpable waves of malevolent intent and their vision ports and sensor blocks pulse and flicker with the unclean light of the Immaterium. In battle, they crave the blood of the enemy with scant regard to their master's strategy and invested with the power of the Warp, they are able to shrug off attacks that would cripple a mundane vehicle of the same type.
As potent as these daemonic vehicles are, they are only ever fielded with great caution. In between battles they must be forcibly restrained with heavy chains and runes of binding. They are wont to turn upon allies if no foes are nearby and in the case of transport vehicles, they have been known to consume those who travel within their armoured troop bays.
Most dangerous of all is the moment the possessed vehicle's outer hull is finally breached by enemy fire, for at that instant the wards are likely to fail catastrophically and the daemon within will be banished back to the depths of the Sea of Souls, claiming the lives of any caught within the Warp-fuelled blast of effect as they reclaim their freedom.
Ordo Malleus Departmento Analyticus technical Specifications
The Ordo Malleus has not released any technical specifications for this vehicle at this time.
- Imperial Armour Volume Thirteen - War Machines of the Lost and the Damned, pp. 31–33