Adeptus Astartes

Adeptus Astartes


The Adeptus Astartes, or Space Marines, are the iconic elite fighting force of the Imperium. Created from the genetic material of the Primarchs, a Space Marine is a perfect superhuman soldier and superior in every respect to a normal human. Physically exceptional, rigorously trained, psychologically conditioned, and equipped with the most powerful weapons at the Imperium’s disposal, the Adeptus Astartes are feared and adored in equal measure across the Imperium.

A Chapter of Blood Angels fights off a Tyranid force.


  • They Shall Know No Fear: As a result of the ruthless psychological conditioning and exhaustive training from a young age, the Adeptus Astartes confront battle and death without emotion.
  • Chapter Tactics: The Adeptus Astartes are organised into Chapters. Each Chapter reflects the attributes, attitude and combat style of their original Primarch. A Chapter contains around one thousand marines and is completely self sufficient. They each have an array of vehicular support, heavy weapons, frontline troops and scouts and are comparable in firepower and capability to armies far greater in size.
  • Like Father, Like Son: The genetic material of the Primarch used to create the Adeptes Astartes means that each Marine reflects the personality and attitude of their Progenitor. This means that across all the Chapters of Space Marines there is great variance not only in appearance, but in preferred combat style and attitude. Some chapters prefer hit-and-run assaults, others prefer the art of siegecraft, while others favour the thrill of close combat.

Notable Events

  •  The Great Crusade 798.M30 – 005.M31
    • Under the command of the Emperor of Mankind himself, the Adetpes Astartes and their Primarchs expand the Imperium of Man across the universe. It is an unparalled time of expansion, settlement, unification and technological advancement.
  • Horus Heresy 005.M31 – 014.M31
    • Half of the original Legions of Space Marines turn against the Imperium under the banner of the traitor Warmaster Horus. Horus and the traitor legions fight their way to Terra over seven years, but the Warmaster is slain in single combat by the Emperor of Mankind. The Emperor is mortally wounded by Horus and is kept alive by being placed upon the Golden Throne .
  • The Second Founding – 021.M31.
    • Roboute Gulliman creates the Codex Astartes, an outline of military organisation, strategy and tactics. In order to avoid the calamity of the Horus Heresy occuring again, the Adpetus Astates are reorganised from huge Legions into smaller Chapters. This is to prevent the corruption of a handful of Marines having access to the exceptional firepower of an entire legion.
  • The 13th Black Crusade – 995.999.M41
    •  Abaddon the Despoiler leads the forces of Chaos in the 13th Black Crusade, the greatest Chaos offensive since the Horus Heresy, in an attack of the key Fortress World, Cadia. The Black Templars, Imperial Fists, Dark Angels and Space Wolves are all involved in the defence of the Cadia, but they are ultimately unsuccessful as Cadia is annhilated and the Eye of Terror begins expansion across the galaxy.
  • Guilliman Awakens – 999.M41
    •  An uneasy alliance between the mysterious Ynnari and Archmagos Dominus Belisarius Cawl successfully lead an operation to reawaken Roboute Guilliman, Primarch of the Ultramarines. The Primarch returns just in time to defend the facility from an assault of Black Templars as Abaddon attempts to prevent his restoration.
  • Indomitus Crusade 999.M41 – 111.M42
    •  A newly invigorated Guilliman launches a new Indomitus crusade to attempt to reclaim lost Imperium territory in the wake of the 13th Black Crusade. Guilliman and the loyal Adeptus Astartes chapters are replenished and reinvigorated by the deployment of the new Primaris Space Marines, the product of ten thousand years of work by Archmagos Dominus Belisarius Cawl.

Related Articles

    Further Reading

    More information on the Adeptes Astartes can be found by following these Noospheric links:

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