21 December 2020

Homebrew Space Marine Chapter (Rogue Trader)

Work continues on my Rogue Trader era homebrew Imperial Space Marine chapter. I've assembled and painted a number of test figures and finally settled on a color-scheme for the power armour as well as a name: the Atomic Scars.

Shortly after releasing Rogue Trader, Games Workshop began publishing background fluff in White Dwarf magazine. One early article, famously republished in the Warhammer 40000 Compendium, introduced a number of additional Space Marine chapters including some oddball but cool selections like the Sons of Medusa, along with simply baffling ones like the Space Sharks.

I favored the Firehawks of all of these new chapters, primarily because of the more futuristic slant of their chapter insignia: a (presumably nuclear) mushroom cloud.

Designing my own homebrew chapter, I decided to blend obviously "space-age" iconography with other symbols at home on a medieval banner. The first symbol below, came amazingly quick, as did the chapter's name. I eschewed the more obvious "Atomic Swords" or "Atomic Blades"; "Atomic Scars" popped into my head first and still sounds the best to me.


A second insignia design followed the first, after concerns that the original symbol may prove too difficult to draw/paint by hand. I'm hoping a set of custom decal paper eliminates the need for hand-painting dozens of tiny shoulder insignia; regardless, I've kind of warmed to this second symbol.

Why is it so hard to place an image where I want it Blogger?  WHY?
So I'll put the question to the denizens of the internet: which symbol do you prefer as a Space Marine chapter insignia?  
Here's the alternate symbol.  I guess I'm placing it here...

13 comments:

  1. I like the first symbol, but I suspect it won't look great at the size needed to fit on shoulder pads. The second image doesn't evoke enough atomic bomb in my mind, looks like a dainty thinned down sword...

    Could you make a sword with the hilt as a mushroom cloud? Maybe line art it rather than have the blade as a solid colour? The nuclear/nuclei loops might not work on the small scale (as noted in the first part of my comment).

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  2. Thanks for the comments Dave!

    I like the idea about the sword with the mushroom cloud hilt; I'll try to make an insignia like that. I suspect however that making the mushroom cloud prominent would make the insignia look too much like the Firehawks symbol.

    My hope is that printing the insignia on decal paper will provide enough detail even at the teeny tiny level (~6mm to 7mm across).

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    1. I printed out some decals for my lamenters many moons ago. Got them off bell of lost souls when it had more heart to it. It's hard to find the old decals but I think bigred did most of them so searching for his posts yields a bunch. I mention this as it's worth printing some to see the sizing they chose. Then you'd be able to mock some up (without the decal paper) to test. Decal paper is finicky and a bit costly, so get it right on paper first, right?

      https://www.belloflostsouls.net/category/bigred/page/2
      https://www.belloflostsouls.net/2007/07/tutorial-custom-decal-sheets-2.html

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  3. Our Space Age Army: Solo Platoon-Level Skirmish Rules... will try thank you... where there any scenarios ?

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    1. Hey, thanks for checking out my crappy games. No, I never wrote any scenarios for OSAA and honestly I haven't played it in years. It was a good bit of fun but I've got a different homebrew I'm testing now.

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  4. I vote for the alternate symbol. Its more bold and direct.

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    1. Thanks Chris!

      I printed out my test copies and learned two things:

      1) A symbol of 6mm looks best even though slightly larger will fit
      2) I also prefer the alternate symbol a that scale. I'm going with that one for the chapter symbol with maybe the first symbol being on a battle standard.

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  5. Well... crappy is just being very creative... and please put those homebrew things out here so we can test them... anyway You know that... AI or solo gaming is a big thing and is asked for a lot of board games... You remade already a lot as solo play... greetings and thanks...

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  6. And be careful... think you know... "Space Marine(s)" is a licensed word by GW...

    "It is my understanding that "Princess Ryan's Space Marines" designer Mark McLoughlin was pressured by a certain company whose initials are G.W. to cease and desist on the grounds that said company's games about "space marines" should have sole claim to the term, never mind the fact that Mark's game had been around for quite a while and the term goes back to sci-fi writers in the pulp era.
    Deep pockets won."

    But I think you know that...

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    1. I'm not sure I follow. In this blog post I'm simply describing how I am enjoying GW's product, not claiming any of their Intellectual Property as my own.

      If people couldn't even utter the name of the miniatures they are painting, there would be a lot of closed-down You Tube channels.

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    2. GW lost a few court cases over the last few years regarding their aggressive attempts to control intellectual property. It's why they moved to 'primarus marines' and 'astra militarum'.....those things are possible to claim as trade mark. Imperial guard and space marines have been around for so long it's not possible.

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  7. Sorry... I thought... "homebrew Space Marines"... was using their "license" of that word... so was only a warning....but saw now as daved wrote... that they lost that claim in court and using "Primarus Marines" instead... I didn't mean to disturb anything... greetings...

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    1. No worries; I appreciate you stopping by and having a look at my little corner of the internet!

      Your point is well taken and actually something I considered when writing the blog post. When I mentioned the published Space Marine chapters from the 1988 Compendium (White Dwarf) actually, I thought about including a few images. A simple Google search for "Space Sharks" or "Sons of Medusa" will bring up scanned pages from the source material.

      That however, would be crossing the IP line in my mind and I chose to leave the images out. They are not mine to share. It's a subtle difference between showing a painted mini from my own collection and a scanned image from one of GW's books but as a creator of content (even if it's free) I try to be a stickler about IP protection.

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