Get your fill of sci-fi, science, and mockery of stupid people
* FAQ    * Search   * Register   * Login 
Want to support this site? Click

Quote of the Week: "A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within." - Will Durant, American historian (1885-1981)


All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 28 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-14 02:40pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
I debated between starting Salamanders series or covering Blood Reaver. I decided on the former, simply because a.) Blood Reaver can cover a single update, its still a few weeks til Void STalker comes out, and I still have alot of series I want to plow through. Ideally I'm hoping within a month or so to ACTUALLY start covering some of the more long term stuff - Dark Heresy, the Horus Heresy novels, Space Marine battles (ugh) and possibly even 5th edition. I think I can finish up Gray Knights and the supplemental thread (with 13th Black Crusade) If I can plow through the Bastion Wars series (which should take not much more than 3 updates) and Salamanders (3 updates plus this one) I'm alot closer to my goal.

Salamanders is an.. interesting series. Interesting because its a Space MArine novel about the most... humane and generally heroic Space Marines. So you think it should be good right? Well.. I dunno. I can't really make up my mind about it. I actually like Nick Kyme's depictions of Space Marines - Assault on Black Reach and Fall of Damnos made me like the Smurfs (as has Nightbringer, but that's another thread.) but there is just something.. odd about him. Maybe its because he doesn't write Space Marines the way I've come to expect Space Marines to be written, which is alot like Abnett (and I have a mixed view in that regard.) It's really hard for me to pin down.

So its really hard for me to say whether this is a good or bad series. As a whole I liked the books individually, but I feel the arc as a whole fell flat with Nocturne. Flat in that 'Storm of Iron/Chapter's Due' buildup we saw with Honsou (as opposed to Marduk in the Word Bearers, which is another update..) So I live it up to individual readers to decide. Certainly the idea was interesting, if nothing else.

Again one book, two updates.

Page 11
Quote:
Two more fell to his weapon’s retort, their chests exploded as the volatile rounds did their gruesome work;


Bolter rounds vs human torsos.

Page 13
Quote:
What was left of Ko’tan Kadai’s corroded power armour was chained to a pyre-slab along with his half-destroyed body.
...
Two thick chains were piston-drilled to one of the short edges, and the rectangular pyre-slab hung down lengthwise.

Ceramite coated its surface, so the pyre-slab would be impervious to the magma heat.


Lava-resistant ceramite.

Page 14
Quote:
A vast reservoir of lava dominated the cavern’s depths. The hot, syrupy magma came from beneath the earth and was the lifeblood of Mount Deathfire. It was held in a deep basin of volcanic rock, girded by layers of reinforced heat-retardant ceramite so that it pooled briefly before flowing onwards from one of the many natural outlets in the rock.


Yet more heat-resistant ceramite.

Page 20
Quote:
Though the chain links would not dissolve when they touched the
lava, they were still red-hot from the rising heat.
...
The captain’s armour and the remains of his body were quickly
ravaged. The intense heat would render the last vestiges of him to ash.


An indicator of the conditions of the lava, as well as the fact the chain links, like the slab, are also pretty durable. Whether RL material could do this or not, I dont know.

pAGE 30
Quote:
Tradition held that whenever an old captain died and another took his mantle, the ascendant would wear the previous incumbent’s armour.
...
Ko’tan Kadai had met his end before a traitor’s multi-melta. There had been little left of him to salvage, so his armour was given unto the mountain instead. It seemed a fitting offering. N’keln’s armour then was forged anew, an artificer suit fashioned by Brother Argos, Master of the Forge.


It is not normal for power armor to be sacrificed that way, only the sheer damage to Kadai's had resulted in it being so. Thus is the "old stuff is better, pass it along" tradition maintained.

Page 35
Quote:
Fugis saw it as a dim black line
where the tall spire of Epimethus, Nocturne’s only ocean-bound Sanctuary City, jutted like a dull blade. It was surrounded by other, much smaller satellites, the numerous drilling rigs and mineral harvesting platforms that raked the ocean floor or mined its deepest trenches for ore.


Nocturne has an ocean bound city, as well as ocean based mining.

Page 41
Quote:
Close up, the artificer armour he wore was rarefied indeed. Encrusted with the sigils of drakes and wrought with super-dense bands of adamantium that bound its reinforced ceramite plates, it was a masterpiece.


Artificer armor.. it seems to suggest that the cermaite forms a sort of core or bulk of the armor, with a layer of adamantium over/around it, at least partially. Adamanitum backing perhaps?

Page 43
Quote:
“Librarian Pyriel has been probing the star clusters out in the Belt and detected a resonance, a psychic echo of Nihilan’s presence. We will use that as our marker.”


Some sort of distant, FTL based scrying, at least for warp signatures of some kind.

Page 43-44
Quote:
The Hadron Belt was the last known location of the Dragon Warriors.
...
“With respect, sir, our last encounter with Nihilan was months ago. They will be far from there by now, likely returned to the Eye of Terror.”
...
"This remnant Brother Pyriel has found could be
weeks old. What makes you think they will still be lurking in-system?”

Hadron belt is in the REductus sector as per the Short story in HEreos of the Space marines, which as per 5th edition core rules and SM codex is around 10K LY from Nocturne. weeks or months since the last encounter, which means that it took less than a year to reach 10K LY. It could not have taken LESS than 10,000c. Covering that distance in a few weeks would be between 170,000-260,000c.
It is also a good 40-50K LY away from The Eye, which suggests that the Dragon warriors could easily have been back in the Eye of Terror within months (tens or hundreds of thousands of c) which is another indicator that the prior calc is grossly conservative.

Page 49
Quote:
Blinking, he caught fragments of his surroundings through his optical lenses.
Biological data, relayed from his power armour’s internal systems and linked to his Space Marine physiology, materialised on his helmet display. Grainy crimson resolution revealed heightened breathing, accelerated blood pressure and a spiking heart rate. Myriad screens of diagnostic information flickered by between Dak’ir’s slowing heartbeat, his ocular implant absorbing it all and storing it subconsciously.

Engaging a series of calming routines, hypno-conditioned for automatic and instinctive activation, Dak’ir fought his body back to equilibrium again. It was only then that he realised where he was.
..
Re-scanning the battle-helm’s data array, he accessed mission schemata and encoded briefings through a series of sub-vocal commands.


Power armor able to present medical/bio data as well as mission/briefing data for review. Also examples of the techniques conditioned into Astartes for control over various aspects of their body.

Page 50
Quote:
Nocturne was months away. Brother-Captain N’keln had assembled his sergeants, just as he told Dak’ir he would, and outlined his plan to return to the Hadron Belt. Librarian Pyriel had been present, explaining to the officers of 3rd Company that he had detected a faint but distinct psychic echo out amongst the debris and star clusters of the system.


"Months" between Nocturne and REductus. This tends to suggest at least 2, but fewer than 11. No less than 11,000c, but less than 60,000c straight-line. Of course it doesn't really tell how long they spent in system from arriving, but I doubt they could have spent weeks. On the other hand, with what we learn later on in FireDrake and Nocturne, I doubt they spent more than a year round-trip in either case. The bit with the dream visions would reinforce "months" as well.

We again also see Pyriel has some FTL detection ability (psychic scrying of some kind, and psychic in nature) out to 10,000 Light years.

Page 51
Quote:
The dream-visions had at first only surfaced during battle-meditation. They were rare, occurring once or twice every few months.


Da'kir dreams, and this is considered unusual for Astartes (or at least Salamanders it is). The frequency of his dreaming could have implications later on as well, but the dream thing is intereting enough on its own. That said, I'm pretty sure this isnt the first case of Astartes having dreams.

Page 53
Quote:
Four Space Marine crew worked at the vessel’s controls: a pilot sat in a grav-couch situated in the Fire-wyvern’s stub nose; a navigator carefully monitored sensor arrays and complex avionics; a co-pilot and a gunner filled the other two positions. Each wore power armour but with their back-mounted generators removed — all of their suits’ internal systems were maintained by the Thunderhawk’s reactor.


Power armour can link up or draw power from other sources than te backpack.

Page 53-54
Quote:
It was a ship, not a small fighter like the Fire-wyvern but a vast cruiser, akin to a floating city of dark metal.

The ship was evidently of Imperial design: long, but bulky like a long-hafted mace and with a slab-ended prow like a clenched fist. There was obvious damage to the hull, charred and laserblackened as it was by munitions fire. Several of its numerous decks were breached. Ragged
wounds in the metal...
...
...vast banks of laser batteries bowed down as if crestfallen along its ruined flanks. Auto-turrets, forward-arc lances and much larger ordnance made up the rest of the ship’s guns.
...
Clusters of factorum and munitoria comprised the vessel’s hard-edged core, and gargantuan foundry-engines filled its belly. Deep crimson and black, and displaying the symbol of the cog, the cruiser had clearly originated on Mars. It was an Ark-class forge-ship, a vessel of the Adeptus Mechanicus.

“No energy signature from the shields or engines. No radiation reading from the reactor.”


Ark class forgeship... designated as cruiser class earlier. Shipboard factory, presumably for use between systems, in explorator and possibly in crusading fleets.

Page 54
Quote:
“But no enemy in sight, no plasma wake or warp signature. Adrift in
realspace for us to find.”


Warp engines as well as reaction engines can leave lingering signatures that can be detected.

Page 60
Quote:
Most of the damage the Salamanders had seen outside during their approach appeared to have only affected the ship’s ablative armour. Internal puncturing of the hull was restricted to only a few locations, and those areas had been sealed off.


The forge ship had "ablative armor." which resembled physical damage from the exterior. In a way it makes some sense that this would be a feature of ship/armour design - we know they have ablative armor for tanks and body armor, and we know that 40K ships can suffer what appears to be extreme damage and remain functional.. ablative armor may be the sort of trivial damage it can take and appear to suffer yet still remain intact or be so easily refurbished.. Indeed it might explain hull thicknesses in some cases.

Page 62
Quote:
Massive forge-engines loomed in the next chamber, banks and banks of pistons, foundries, kilns and smelting vats filling an expansive machine floor. Conveyors chugged with monotonous motion, steam spat in sporadic intervals from pipes and vents, unseen gears churned noisily.

It was a hive of industry, a slow-beating heart of metal and machines, oil and heat. Yet, for all its labours, the forge-engines had achieved nothing. The vast machineries were merely turning over and over, going through their production cycles bereft of raw materials. Spent bolts piled up on the floor beneath an array of heavy-duty riveting guns, their ammunition long spent; hammers pounded the vulcanised rubber tract of a running belt, their concussive force impotent without plating to beat; oil spilled across the deck and seeped down through cross-hatched grilles, no joints for the empty needle-dispensers to lubricate.

With no independent servitors in sight, no adepts to instruct them, the many and multifarious apparatus continued in their various indoctrinated routines uninterrupted. The only creatures in the forge were those servitors attached physically to the machines, but they too merely worked by rote, implementing their protocols like automatons. There was no evidence of crew or even skitarii armsmen or Martian praetorians,


The forge ship's manufacturing areas. Note the extensive servitor usage, as well as the mention of Praetorians.

Page 72-73
Quote:
For a fleeting moment as the radiation of the fusion beam stroked his battle-helm
and power armour,...
...
The end of his multi-melta still exuded vaporous accelerant created during the chemical reaction engaged to fire the heavy weapon.


Flamethrower-like melta weapon, probably the "pyrum-petrol" variety.

Page 76
Quote:
The Librarian opened his palm. With gauntleted fingers splayed he engulfed the servitor in a blast of psychic fire from his hand, burning out its eyes, rendering its flesh to charred hunks and scorching machinery black.


Assuming something on the order of cloth igniting/severe burning (100 j cm^2 roughly) and human sized propotons we're probably talking high kj/low MJ output for this attack.

Page 77
Quote:
..the Librarian moved out of formation, a hot core of crackling fire building inside his now clenched fist.
...
..Pyriel went down on one knee, head bowed, focusing his power.
...
They had enough for Pyriel to raise his head, his entire body now swathed in an
aura of conflagration. It sped from his hunkered form in a violently flickering trail, its head that of a snarling firedrake that arced around the Salamanders, encircling them as the elemental swallowed its own fiery tail.
...
..the wall of flame exploded outwards with atomic force, the nuclear fire burning all within its path to ash. The servitors became darkened silhouettes in the haze,
only to disintegrate like shadows before the sun.
...
Pyriel’s unleashed holocaust had drained him..
...
Scorched metal, the forlornly dripping remnants of votive chains and the ashen corpses of servitors littered the ground...
...
The conflagration had been devastating. Hundreds of automatons were dead.


Pyriel's super psyker flame attack.. probably represents his maximum power effort, although it is not permanantly draining (he recovers after a relatively short time it would seem.. before they leave the ship long.)

Burning hundreds of servitors like that, somewhere between really nasty surface burning (worse than 3rd degree) and outright cremation. How much of the servitor's body is flesh and what metal we don't know...but its safe to say its high MJ/low GJ at least (for wide area surface burning) to several tens or hundreds of GJ at least (for significant/total cremation of hundreds of human types.)

Page 82
Quote:
Psychic fire spilled from his eyes like an optical laser, tearing
through a line of servitors and severing their mechanised torsos. A clenched fist, and the summoned firedrake roared into being, the elemental burning down automatons as it swept over them in a fiery wave.


Pyriel again. First example of death ray eye lasers as a genuine psychic attack (outside that implied by the Emperor, that is) I have seen in fluff.

Page 86
Quote:
...plus a Techmarine who manned a battle-scarred mobile gun platform. The war machine rumbled on steel-slatted tracks, cushioned on a bed of vulcanised rubber. Its design was narrow, ideally suited to the close confines of the Mechanicus ship that had prevented Brother Argos’ much-needed, as it transpired, inclusion in the mission. The STC used to construct the gun, a pair of twin-linked autocannons with a modified belt-feed, looked post-Heresy but pre-Age of Apostasy. Similar in essence to the Space Marine Thunderfire cannon, the platform also bore the hallmarks of a Tarantula-cum-Rapier-variant mobile weapons system — something the Adeptus Astartes hadn’t used in either form for many millennia. The example before the Salamanders was evidently based on archaic designs.


Basically a variant of the Rapier Laser Destroyer/Tarantulas from older fluff when they were more mobile (antigrav even), wheras "modern" Tarantula are all stationary/fixed (and the Rapier has not yet been deployed in modern terms.) It still probably would exist in some form, as everything else form the old days gets resurrected sooner or later (Mole mortars, Thudd guns, etc.) If they are still mobile this probably reflects the mobility more than modern, and its probably just a lower-grade varaition of what sabre or hydra platforms do.

Page 86
Quote:
Bolters were no different. Lengthened stocks with the extended shoulder rest were an antiquated version of the Godwyn pattern Mk VII carried by the Salamanders — albeit with Nocturnean refinements. Drum-fed and carrying sarissas — a saw-toothed bayonet-style blade affixed to the gun’s nose


"Archaic" bolters. That they have stocks at all is rather fantastic (most pictures don't have them with any kind of stock). Drum fed seems to be older as well, nevermind bayonets (although we know Sisters of battle use sarissas. wonder what that implies...)

Page 94-95
Quote:
Despite the Salamanders’ obvious paucity of ammunition, the Marines Malevolent had neglected to supplement them. The fact that their guns were so antiquated that neither the drum-mags nor the individual shells would have been suitable for their bolters made the point moot.
...
“The old drum-feeds are prone to jamming,” Ba’ken continued. “I’m surprised one hasn’t misfired in their faces before now.”

“They are certainly not wasteful,” agreed Dak’ir, “But aren’t all our weapons relics to one degree or another?”
...
“Aye, but there are relics and there are relics,” he said, obliquely. “These guns should have been stripped down for parts and re-appropriated years ago. A warrior is only as good as his weapon, and these dogs with their patchwork armour and archaic ideas are ragged at best.”


Again the "old" style bolters, as well as a commentary on the general "older is better" philosohpy. There does seem to be actual limits to age (as well as criteria in how "older" can be better) before they retire stuff or recycle it. In cases where "older" IS better, it probably is due to either some interesting bits of lost-tech integrated into it (like teleporters), or because it is from an era where things were better made or better engineered than nowadays, or something similar. Basically its just an indication that like most things in 40K, its not all one way or another - it just "depends". And old bolter can mean its either a priceless relic or a piece of shit antique that should have been scrapped, depending on its origins and such.

This also tends to suggest that they do develop/alter or modify designs t least in some degree, compared to older (outdated) designs . This does not neccesarily mean "more advanced" or more sophisticated or "inherently better" though, alot of it depends on the parameters/motivations behind the changes and what is dictating it. (reliability or simplified logistics over firepower for example)

Page 108
Quote:
flash. Then came pain, so raw and invasive it was as if his organs were twisting inside out, as if the very molecular structure of his being was breaking down in a nanosecond, atom by atom, reforming and disintegrating again a moment later. Sulphur and cordite wreathed his nostrils, so overwhelming he couldn’t breathe. The acrid taste of copper filled his mouth as all notions of time and existence bled away into a soup of primal instinct, like being born. The tangible gave way to the ethereal as all meaning fled from his senses.
...
A sensation of nausea followed, supplemented by a bout of sudden vertigo making Dak’ir stagger as the corporeal world reestablished itself.


Teleportation. Note the curious implied awareness and the "time fraction" suggested there - I'm not sure whether to take that seriously or as being imagined (more towards the latter, although even if taken seriously it doesn't mean that Space Marines have nanosecond reflexes, its more the extent of their ability to slow down or perceive/notice things and process the information - "bullet time" for lack of a better term.)

Page 109-110
Quote:
Teleportation was a dangerous and inexact science. Even with the
benefit of a homing beacon, the chances of becoming lost in the warp or translating back as a gibbering morass of fleshy blubber as your insides became your outsides were still uncomfortably high. To engage in teleportation when those translating had not been primed or were not wearing Terminator armour to protect them from the physical rigours of the process was even more hazardous.


Dangers of teleportation. To be honest I'm not sure how Terminator armor is supposed to protect against this - insulation against the mutational powers of the warp? Or is this just a human version of "Red ones go faster?"

Page 117
Quote:
Not wishing to risk the capriciousness of the Purgatory’s teleportarium or its captain’s spite, Pyriel transported the errant Salamanders back aboard the Archimedes Rex by psychically opening a gate of infinity into the immaterium. Invoking such power was not without risk, but Pyriel as an Epistolary-level Librarian was accomplished in his craft. The three Astartes arrived back in the cryo-vault aboard the forge-ship without mishap.


A rather interesting, if short-ranged (eg in system, and within range of a starship) alternative to teleporters, some sort of pseudo-warp gate thingy. It's not the first time Librarians or similar high powered psykers have done such a feat, either. Either wya it seems more reliable than teleporters despite performing a similar function.

Page 158
Quote:
Teleportation was instantaneous, and the confines of the receiver pad resolved around them. It was one of ten such translation points within the teleportarium in the fortress-monastery on Prometheus.

Ethereal warp vapours rolled off the hexagonal plate, which was large enough to accommodate an entire squad of Terminators, let alone three battle-brothers in power armour.

Crackling energy sparked then dissipated across three conductor prongs that arched over the pad like crooked fingers. Warp dampeners, psychic buffers and other safeguards were in place on the remote chance that anything should go wrong.
...
Dak’ir adjusted to translation quickly this time. Forewarned, he had steeled himself, and with Nocturne’s stable teleporter array the process was smooth. Automated servo-gun systems powered down, having not detected a threat...


Internal teleportation facilities inside the Salamanders fortress monastary. A rather rare (and limited) but interesting way of getting about. Also, it seems to be considreed more stable than the ship based teleportation of the Marines Malevolant. Whether this is because of superior technology, because they are a first founding chapter (better gear in general), because it is on a (relatively) stable planet rather than a mobile starship, or some combination of that we don't know.

Even so they rely on alot of security meausres to protect against warp dangers.

Page 166
Quote:
“There, at the cusp of the Veiled Region in Segmentum Tempestus, is a system benighted by warp storms.."


Their destination via strike cruiser.. a good 15K LY or so from Nocturne, straight line.

Page 168
Quote:
"Deep space augurs have revealed the small system it inhabits is a volatile area, wracked by solar storms."


Somehow they were able to scan/observe the planet. Possibly some sort of scout ship or probe (Though none was mentioned), or possibly astropathic/Librarian scrying of some kind (possible, given implications later.)

Page 178
Quote:
N’keln’s mood was idle and restive as he watched his Brother-Librarian guide them by the Emperor’s Light through the vagaries of the warp. Pyriel was forward of the command throne, on a lower part of the platform. He was encased within a pseudo-pulpit, standing bolt upright. It was not for the purpose of preaching that he was so ensconced, rather his psychic hood was connected integrally to the pulpit’s internal circuitry, augmenting his abilities.


Another case of a non-navigator being used to guide a craft through the warp (alognside such examples as a Farseer in Dawn of War Tempest, a Librarian in the Gav Thorpe Avenging Sons short stories, although daemon assisted later, the Thousand Sons using sorcery, or sorcerers in ADB's Night Lords novels.. or the Orks inconsistently using weirdboyz to do it.) This probably stands out as one of the more reliable and probably long-range examples, however. It could be because of custom-designed gear and psychic augmentation, or it could be because they have such reliable intel (galactic coordinates, the deep space augur stuff) on the locale. One has to wonder why they aren't using a navigator however - do they not have any? Are they currently re-negotiating contracts? Is there some reason they wanted to keep outsiders free of involvement? Or did they have no Navigators to spare for this? Hard to say.

Page 178
Quote:
A series of tactical plans and schematics, deep-augur maps, blind-sketched by the ship’s astropaths, were arranged on a strategio-table to N’keln’s right hand.


I guess "augur" is shorthand for "augury", meaning that this is all psychic stuff. Which in turn suggests the "Deep space augurs" was a form of FTL, long range psychic scrying. What's interesting here is they haven't arrived yet and they could locate the planet and get details on it. This must have limits, however, as they couldn't tell what happens to them shortly (dropping out in the middle of a solar storm.) - it may be limited to relatively slow or fixed locations, or it may have a "lag" or some sort of scrying limits that can't detect certian things (or detect them very rapidly)

Page 179
Quote:
“Preparations for our landing are already underway?”

“Since before we left Prometheus, brother.” N’keln’s gaze had shifted to the plans that Lok was annotating with arrows and battle-symbols.


This tends to suggest they've been traveling for no longer than it takes for a company-sized force with vehicles and such to prepare for landing. Days perhaps, no longer than weeks certainly, although it depends on what "preparation time" means. no more than "months" is implied later, but that also included time spent on Nocturne, not just time spent travelling.

Assuming 2 weeks travel time across 15,000 LY or so we're talking 390,000c. If we were talking say, 4 days. 1.37million c. Four months? 45,000c. So we're talking anywhere from tens of thousands to a few million c, which is pretty much the usual range of Warp travel speeds. At least, inside warp space. Whether this is true outside it is also up for debate (its possible more time passes outside than inside.)

Page 181
Quote:
A massive shudder wracked the Vulkan’s Wrath, a sudden shock wave ripping down its spine. The bridge shook. Dak’ir and several others lost their footing.
...
Klaxons whined urgently, their warning drowned out by the raging tumult battering the Vulkan’s Wrath from outside.

“Alert status crimson!” N’keln bellowed into the command throne’s vox, gripping the arms tight to stay seated. “All hands to emergency stations.”
...
“We must have translated into a solar storm,” he growled loudly, seizing the ragged edge of the shattered pulpit for balance as the ship was smashed again.


They drop out in a solar storm. They must have come out pretty damn close to the star for this to happen (Eg an odd system) or its a very messed up star. Not to meniton that the magic storms are basically buffeting the ship rather violently like a ship at sea...

Page 181-182
Quote:
Dak’ir felt the danger before he saw a thin line of ultra-bright light creeping into being at the bottom edge of the shielding.
...
...multiple shafts of super-heated light reached into the bridge. An ensign nearest the viewpoint spontaneously combusted as the deadly solar energy washed over him. Others at the consoles suffered a similar fate. A shipmaster spun, crying for the Emperor’s mercy, the left side of his face a blackened ruin.
...
Dak’ir felt the heat against his armour tangibly.
...
Not wearing his battle-helm, the view for Dak’ir shimmered through a heat haze. His naked skin was untroubled by it, though he saw a blistering servitor less resilient to the solar flare. It ravaged the inner walls, setting cables aflame and burning out circuitry.
...
Pyriel threw up a force dome around the crew, who crawled into it on their hands and knees. The blinded and the burned were dragged, mewling, into the psychic sanctuary whilst the dead were left to crisp and blacken, their bodies becoming human torches in the blaze.

The crack in the shielding was only centimetres thick when Dak’ir reached the override panel and threw back the lever.
...
The smoking ruins of men lay all about the bridge, their charred corpses like dark shadowy husks on the scorched deck.


Our mysterious storm on unprotected crew. Ignigting someone suggests the entire body is suffering at least 125 j per square cm flash burns (enough to ignite clothing) which would be supported by the severe sort sof burns being inflicted (100+ j per square cm at least) - this is also merely from visible light seeping through a few cm wide crack in the bridge. Assuming a 4 m tall, 2 cm wide aperture.. dozens of people must also be getting torched.

also worth noting is that the same intensity isn't doing much to astartes flesh, which gives you a rough idea of its resilience to visible light at least (125+ j per square cm at least). The Librarian's force dome is providing the crew similar protection. We're probably talking tens if not hundreds of thousands of kj per square cm hitting the ship, and more probably megajoules MINIMUm (not all the light is focused entirely on the crew, its spreading out over much of the deck). Hell considering all the other cases of being in a corona or close to a star, it almost demands a greater intensity.

Also note that the sunlight is probably not even a fraction of the energy involved hitting the ship (particle radiation, whatever is buffeting the ship, etc.) since if the sun side is getting hit only part of the bridge could be exposed, and nothing on the bridge itself (the blast doors, or even the windows) is even close to being melted, vaped or breached - its only the organic crew at risk.)

Page 183
Quote:
“Hull engines are non-functional, aft thruster banks three through eighteen are showing sporadic power emissions. Shields are down and decks thirteen through twenty-six are showing critical damage, possibly an integrity breach.”

It was a grim report.

“What hit us?”

“The port-side of the ship was struck by a light beam from the solar storm. It burned through our outer armour, took out our shields and strafed most of the sun-side decks. Entire sections were ripped out. The worst hit areas were totally burned. Everything there is ash. I’ve shut them down already.”

“Imagine a melta gun at point-blank range against a suit of ceramite.”


Damage report and an analogy. Apparently its pure EM radiation, but the parts hitting the rest of the ship must be more severe than what hit the bridge (it burned through the outer hull and armor AND shields, but it didn't burn/destroy the glass on the bridge?) I'm also wondering whta kinds of shields it was - void shields? Cremation (of crew, at least) would suggest again tens to hundreds of kj per square cm hitting the ship.) If the hull is explosively vaporizing in parts, it might explain the shaking, but then you have to wonder why, if they are under constant bombardment over minutes, the ship isn't being slowly melted/vaporized/blasted apart, since it already punched straight through the armour in the opening salvos. That means very little vaporization would occur, especailyl over a 15 minute period, which means that lots of velocity need be imparted to the ship.

It's possible that the extreme damage at the beginning was due to variations in the power of the storm (they jut were hit initially by a bad part) or by lack of preparation. It also depends on where it was hit - not all sections suffered it woudl seem, depsite the entire "sun side" section taking hits - it could be reflecting only weaker portions of the hull. either way the entire ship is still mostly intact and structurally sound, particularily since it survives reentry with damage (including to the engines) and a crash landing and can still lift off planet.

Again there's alot of oddities and complications that prevent this from being accurately calced, nevermind we don't have any exact idea on the energies involved.

Figurative example. Assume a 10 million ton strike cruiser. Assume 10% of its mass was ablated off in that 15 minute time period, with ablation occuring every few seconds. about 34 tonnes of mass ablates every few seconds, then. Assuming that the ship is shaken by oh, 1.5 meters per second (less than a gee at least), the 34 tonnes of matter must be travelling at ~442- km/s or so. The ship would be hit with at least 534 kt/s of energy, and survive this for 15 minutes at least, without being totally destroyed or even crippled... about 480 MT worth of damage, minus shields and armour.

On the other hand, it could just be a purely magical storm, disturbance created because of adverse warp storm activity, which was mentioned as afflicting the area recently. That would make calcing things difficult, so my above assessment is at best a rough approximation.

Page 184
Quote:
“We are still aloft.”
...
“How long will that be the case whilst we are breached?”
...
“Not long,”
...
The breached decks would have to be purged and sealed. Hundreds, if not thousands, of human serfs worked in those areas of the ship — N’keln would be condemning them all to death.
...
"..assist in the evacuation. Save as many as you can, brothers. I will order the decks locked down in fifteen minutes.”


fifteen minutes of bombardment, with hits every few seconds.. again they're not worried about totally being destroyed in that time nor is the ship blasted in two by the time that happens.

Page 184-185
Quote:
Iagon was pitched off his feet as a violent tremor rippled across the solitorium. Zo’kar yelped in pain as he was torn from the Salamander’s grasp. A low rumble echoed through the chamber, followed by the sound of tearing metal and a crash of steel. Something fell from the ceiling...
...
The ceiling of the solitorium had collapsed.
...
Something had struck the ship and continued to assail it, that much Iagon knew as he leapt over the wreckage and fought his way into the outer corridor.


Internal damage from the storm.

PAge 187
Quote:
The Vulkan’s Wrath was shuddering badly, jolting with severe force every few seconds or so.


The freqeucny of whatever the hell is shaking the ship.

Page 190
Quote:
Torn deck plates bled away into the darkness of the lower levels, pitch-black pitfalls that he discerned through his battle-helm’s infrared
spectra.


Infrared viewing, as well as more internal damage. Its implied they may go through the various optical spectrum in the novel, but this is the only one mentioned.

Page 198-199
Quote:
“We must have entered Scoria’s upper atmosphere by now. The ship will be at terminal velocity. Any escape would be suicide. We get them to the upper deck.”
...
“The chances of these men surviving a crash are slim at best.”
...
“We are going to crash in a vessel that is not meant to land, deliberately or otherwise, on solid ground. We shield them,” he said. Wrenching metal resonated loudly in Tsu’gan’s ears, as forbidding as a death knell. “And hang on to something.”


This certainly implies that they are going to crash onto the planet in a somewhat uncontrolled fashion - or at leats, uncontrolled enough to put the crews at risk (but cn still survive, which is another thing against completely uncontrolled descents unless the inertial damping can handle it). At the same time, the crash cannot be totally uncontrolle dbecause it most obviously wasn't a hypervelocity impact (although it was significantly thermal still, as we learn.) Also, when the ship breaks free later on, it has enough "lift" to hover, which it couldn't do on thrusters alone. Its quite possible (likely) that they have some sort of antigrav or thrust ability that allows them to orbit without being tugged closer to the planet, however, which might help with liftoffs.

Either way it suggests at least a partly-uncontrolled descent, which the ship is surviving quite handily, in a damaged state, and can still lift off and travle in space after enduring all this. Not exactly proof of super-weak starships, methinks.



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-14 02:45pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Part 2

Page 201
Quote:
The Vulkan’s Wrath had struck the surface of Scoria like a meteorite, its hull still burning from its rapid re-entry into the planet’s atmosphere. Impelled by its momentum, the strike cruiser had dug a massive furrow into the earth, hull antennas, towers and engines ripped apart as they met against unyielding bedrock. Hundreds died in the crash, smashed to paste and broken as they were bounced against barrack rooms and hangars in the massive ship. Fires broke out instantly, burning those unlucky enough to be in their path to ash. Some were crushed as the fragile sinews holding up vast sections of damaged upper decks and ceilings capitulated, sending tons of metal debris crashing down onto their heads. Long swathes of armoured shielding had punched inwards, pulping hapless crewmen when the corridor they were clinging to became a single sheet of beaten metal.


Reennrty and crash again. Again it doesn't sound exactly controlled but.. its not uncontrolled either (no crater, people survived, etc.) Perhaps it had somethign to do with descent angle, and perhaps they were firing thrusters to slow things down, and maybe the AG compensated for the collision enough to hlep the crews.. but it wasn't totally, completey uncontrolled.. but still violent despite that. And the ship is still spaceworthy.

Also note the "armoured shielding" mentioned.. that may explainw aht sort of shielding was burned through.

Page 204
Quote:
Behind him, the crash-landed strike cruiser loomed like a canted cityscape, bizarrely off-kilter. Even partially sunk into the ashen ground as it was, the Vulkan’s Wrath was huge. Its span was the width of several hive blocks and it took several Astartes to guard it at kilometre intervals.


Implies that cruiser is at least 2-3 km long.. also a "hive block" is at least 1, maybe 2 kilometres.

Page 204-205
Quote:
The solar flares had scorched fresh battle-scars down the old strike cruiser’s flanks, and punctured its armoured skin with fire-fringed, meteor-sized apertures. Aboard grav-sleds, the worker crews made detailed reports of structural damage. Sparks cascaded from the ranks of heavyduty welding rigs, fusing plates from ancillary sections of the ship over the most heinous of its wounds. A few areas were so bad that the wreckage had to be sheared away with cutting tools and patched over like an amputated limb.


More battle damage. Note the ship was stated to have been hit by multiple solar flares.. which apparently had enough violence in them to make the ship lurch physically... yeah.

PAge 205
Quote:
The command post itself was a prefabricated structure, little more than four walls, a canted roof and a hololith-projector slab displaying in grainy blue resolution what the sensorium and deep-augur probes had ascertained about the lay of the land.


Prefab salamanders facility. also mention of the "deep augur" probing again.

Page 206
Quote:
“Can we achieve loft, Master Argos?” asked N’keln, his brow furrowed as the hololith switched to a rolling schematic of the Vulkan’s Wrath. Red areas made up around sixty per cent of the total image and indicated damaged sections.
“To be brief: no,”
...
A side view cutaway showed a large area of the Vulkan’s Wrath below the
earth-line, sunk deep into the planet’s outer crust. “As you can see, the ship is partially submerged within the ash plain. Basic geological analysis reveals that Scoria’s surface is a mixture of ash and sand. The intense heat of our re-entry reacted with it, resulting in an endothermic metamorphosis. Essentially the ash-sand crystallised and hardened,”


Extent of damage and the effects of reentry. They apparently displaced a vitrifed/melted mass of sand and ash. Assuming around a 500 metr diameter, 300 meter "deep" hole is displaced we might be looking at tens, even hundreds of megatons of KE in the impact. And they still haven't been destroyed yet.. damaged yes, especially on top fo the solar flares, but not devastated. And the sixty percent damage is probably for total - collision + storm.

Page 206-207
Quote:
“Surely our engines are strong enough to pull us free,”
...
“Ordinarily, yes,”
...
“But we are down to three banks of ventral engines. An operational minimum
of four are needed to achieve loft.”
...
“What of our thrusters? Can we shake ourselves loose?”
...
“Not unless we want to burrow to the planet’s core,”
...
“Our prow
is angled downwards. Any thruster burst will simply push us further in that direction. The Adeptus Mechanicus did not build vessels such as this to take off from a grounded position.”


The status of engines and such. It gives an indicator as to why ships (normally) aren't designed for atmospheric use. I assume the "ventral engines" are the manuvering thrusters, not the main thrusters. This suggests the manuvering thrusters can easily provide enough thrust to counter 1 gee. That would require quite a bit of eneergy even if we assume 90% of the gravitational pull was countered by AG - petawatts of sustained power output, quite easily.

Page 207
Quote:
“I’ll warrant our near-destruction to a solar storm wasn’t part of Vulkan’s vision,”


Implies the solar storm may have been able to destroy them.

PAge 210
Quote:
...a pair of Thunderfire cannons the Techmarine had liberated from the hold of the Vulkan’s Wrath. The tracked war machines, not unlike the mobile weapon platform that the Marines Malevolent had employed on the Archimedes Rex, were ideally suited to dissuading further assaults from the indigenous chitincreatures.


Mobile thunderfire cannons.

Page 211
Quote:
Through the rebreather mounted in his helmet, he detected trace amounts of carbon, hydrogen and the acrid stench of sulphur dioxide dioxide, carried towards them on the breeze — in other words, oil.
...
..the technological ability to both mine and refine oil; not only that, but use it in a manufacturing process.


This is interesting given what we learn later about fyron.

Page 236
Quote:
Chugging thunder erupted from above Tsu’gan as heavy bolter and autocannon emplacements started to eat through
their ammunition belts.
...
Power armour was tough; tough enough to withstand such weapons as these, but the sheer rate of shells increased their potency threefold.[
...
“Use the transports as armoured cover,”


Salamander armor can resist single autocannon (which I preusme to mean low calibre stuff 20-30 mm maybe) impacts and heavy bolter rounds, but sustained barrages can breach it (presumably hitting close to the same impact point to fracture. Rhinos, however, are much more resistant.

Page 260
Quote:
“Vulkan’s fire burns in my breast,” a powerful voice intoned, eclipsing the beat of hammered metal. “With it I shall smite the foes of the Emperor!”

Sensation, vague and indistinct at first, returned to Tsu’gan. He was faintly aware of a reassuring presence nearby, a lodestone to which he could anchor himself.
...
Tsu’gan caught hold of the voice, stentorian and commanding, grasping it like a rope of salvation. A refulgent figure stood beside him, a crackling stave held in his outstretched hand.

“From the fires of battle are we born.”

No, not a stave — the warrior, sable-armoured with a face of death, held a hammer.

“Upon the anvil of war are we tempered.”
A blazing aura roiled from it like a fiery wave, chasing down the darkness and burning back the apparitions that tried to clench to them like parasites.


A rather tangible example of the faith of Space Marines (or other Imperials) resisting the corrupting/manipulative effects of Chaos.

Page 262-263
Quote:
Swollen with grotesque musculature, the monstrous ghoul-drones were the size of ogryn.
...
Another ghoul-drone was destroyed, engulfed by Honorious’ flamer. Its biologically unstable frame collapsed hideously in the intense heat. It muscles cooked and burst in blood-red torrents.
...
Maintaining momentum, Iagon had punctured the ghoul-drone’s cranium with a bolt round that exploded it from within and obliterated the eight-pointed star branded onto its face.


bolter and flamer fire vs ogryn-sized servitors.

Page 264
Quote:
...Elysius severed the clutch of cables linking the weapon to the Iron Warrior’s fusion generator. Undeterred, the Warsmith spun about, revealing a reaper cannon morphing from the constituent parts of his right arm.
...
Elysius swung again, but the Warsmith swatted the blow away with his left arm, a bionic limb like one of its legs — this thing was more machine than man.

...
All the while, the reaper cannon was slowly resolving. Coagulated flesh and
iron blended into solid, dull metal. Inner mechanisms were forming, the hellish strain of the obliterator virus rapid and pervasive. If fully forged and allowed to fire, that weapon could shred the Salamanders into flesh and chips of battle-plate.


Warsmith obliterator. Seems ot be a half-and-half sort of thing. If it formed a reaper autocannon it could easily decimate Salamanders in power armor (considering repear autocannon are Teminator weapons.. not surprising.)

PAge 272
Quote:
...it was a ship nonetheless.

“One that crashed long ago,” said Illiad. “Its reactor still functions and we use its power to generate heat, purify the air and water. The sodium light rigs are kept burning through the conversion of fusion energy.”


Ship of the 154th Expeditionary fleet, Crusade era. "fusion reactor" that involves a fusion process. Can also generate heat and purify air/water. Either they have a ready supply of fuel, or the ship can last for 10,000 years simply on "life support" roles for a thousand or so people.

Page 277
Quote:
“There are no shells, no ammunition of any kind for this cannon,” he said, almost to himself. “It is powered by a small fusion reactor.”
“Nuclear?” asked Tiberon, who was closest.

Draedius shook his head. “No. More like energy conversion. I’ve found several receptaclescontaining trace elements of a fine powder I have no records of.”


Non-nuclear fusion reactors. This probably explains the 154th Expeditionary ship's power source. We learn the stuff powering the gun is Fyron from the planet.

Page 285
Quote:
“Scoria has deep veins of ore. Fyron, it is called.” He wiped the sweat of his labours from his brow. “We are miners, generations old. Our ancestors, in their wisdom, realised the ore was combustible. It could be used to keep the reactor running, to charge our weapons and maintain our way of life, such as it is.”


Fyron: A combustible material that is also used to power fusion "conversion" processes. Also, remember the bit where Tsu'Gan thinks he detected oil? I have a sneaking suspicion this is the stuff he mistook for oil (we see no mention of oil,a nd the only thing they mine is Fyron.) Yet another possible case of diesel "fusion", although in this case its coal-analogue fusion.

Page 301
Quote:
“If his ship is indeed from Isstvan, he must be thousands of
years old.”
...
“Obviously, he has been here for some time. Whether that period extends to millennia we cannot know. The armour is old, but still worn by some in the Chapter today. The ship itself could simply be a reclaimed Expeditionary vessel, re-fitted and re-appropriated by the Adeptus Mechanicus.”
...
“The warp storms could have affected the passage of time. But it’s also entirely possible that this Salamander is simply many years old, longevity being a benefit of our slow metabolic rate. Such a thing has never been tested, given that
most of our number invariably meet their end in war or, if death is not forthcoming and age arrives first, by wandering out into the Scorian Plain or setting sail on the Acerbian Sea to find peace. It is the way of the Promethean Creed.”
...
The light reflected off the warrior’s eyes, turning them a cerulean blue.
The old Salamander blinked.


An intereting tidbit, in light of what we learn from the HH series. in the Series, we learn the Astartes are functionally immortal (in theory) - they dont know how long they might live or if they might truly die, but many novels in that series reinforce the idea they are basically ageless. We know in modern times that living a thousand years or more is considered exceptional for an Astartes, but it isn't really certain whether they die of old age (indeed Pyriel comments on that with regards to the Salamanders here.)

It is without a doubt that the Salamander, brother Gravius, is alive and capable of speaking and talking, so they can - somehow - live that long. Whether he is fully funcitonal (and we address that soon) is up for debate.

One possibility is time dilation through the warp, of course. The man leading them here, Illiad, believed it was thousands of years, although how he can measure time or know that is up for debate (and if he were in the warp stormthe time dilation would affect him as well.) It is possible a Space Marine can go into suspended animation to survive the years (a Dark Angel in Eye of Terror did the same as well.

It is also possible that the gene seed has mutated in some way over the years, or the rituals/techniques to maintain it have suffered over the millenia (enither is impossible, given the differences in process between the Great Crusade era and modern era.) It could be back in the Great Crusade Era a Space Marine properly maintained and monitored was functionally immortal, but in modern times they've lost the ability or knowledge to do this, and so they can die (but will age considerablty more slowly.)

Page 303
Quote:
Dak’ir knew that many ships kept visual logs as the basis for battle simulations or to chart the progress of a campaign for future reference.


Naval logs.

Page 305
Quote:
“Can you arise, brother? Are you able to walk?” he asked.

“I cannot,” Gravius answered with regret.

Pyriel touched a hand to the venerable brother’s greave and shut his eyes. He opened them a moment later, the cerulean glow still fading.

“His armour is completely seized,” said the Librarian. “Fused to the throne. His muscles have likely atrophied by now, too.”

“Can we move him?”

“Not unless you want his limbs to break off as we attempt it,” Pyriel replied grimly.

“This is my post,” Gravius rasped. His breath reeked of slow decay and stale air. “My duty. I should have died long ago, brothers."


This may suggest that there are drawbacks to Astartes living that long, although him having been stationary for so long may also explain why his joints are fused and he couldn't move (depends on how they locked up I suppose. again there is Magron from Eye of Terror...) the atrophy may not be becuaes of age but because he hasn't moved or used his muscles.

Page 307
Quote:
The aliens’ predisposition towards battle was obvious in their musculature and build, however. Trunk-necked, their skin as tough as a flak jacket, they were hard beasts to kill. Broad shouldered with thick bones and still thicker craniums, they stood as tall as an Astartes in power armour and were also his match in strength and raw aggression.


Ork strength and durability. These must be extrmeely tough compared to some other Orks (to be as strong as Astartes.) Their skins are equal to (soft/flexible) flak jackets (armor - which I take to mean that it is very resistant to las- and bullet impacts and probably cutting/stabbing attacks by normal people.) Coupled with their pain tolerance, thick/large bones, and general size/bulk this makes killing orks by any weapon a damn sight mor impressive than with normal human weapons.

Page 313
Quote:
Tsu’gan gunned down a chieftain’s armoured bodyguard, turning its skull into bone fragments and red vapour as the bolter round entered its eye and exploded outwards.


Bolt round vs a powerful Ork maybe.

Page 315
Quote:
..before jamming his bolt pistol into
the maw of a second and reducing its head to shredded meat.


Chaplain bolt pistol vs Ork skull.

Page 328-329
Quote:
“A thousand metres,” Apion reported, keeping sentry on the orks’ approach with a pair of magnoculars.

“Weapons ready,” snapped Dak’ir. His tone was clipped and precise as he brought up his bolter.

Each Salamander occupied a section of the outcrop, snug in makeshift firing lips rendered by the natural permutations in the rocks. A staccato of arming sounds disturbed the heavy silence before the air was still again.

“Eight hundred…”

Dak’ir sighted down the bolter’s targeter.

“Seven hundred…”

Dull percussions from the Thunderfire cannon salvo were rippling across the dunes. Clustered explosions plumed in fiery grey, slowly pushing the greenskin vanguard together. “Six hundred…”

“In Vulkan’s name!” Dak’ir roared and the bolters roared with him.


Salamander bolters have a range of at least 600 metres against Orks. 500 Orks vs 5 Marines.

Page 329
Quote:
Errant bullets from the greenskins’ chainguns and solid-shot cannons chipped at the rock wall. A shard spanged against Dak’ir’s pauldron but he barely felt it. The spatial display on his right helmet lens told him the orks were just three hundred and sixty-five point three metres away.

In less than a minute they’d be hitting the grenade line. Then there would be two hundred metres between them and the horde.


Ork gunfire reflects off Pauldron. Ork average running speed is at least ~2.76 m/s. Ork gunfire at ~365 metres as well.

Page 330
Quote:
..expel the partially spent magazine and ram home another one. The process took less than three seconds.


Time for Astartes to reload boltgun.

Page 331
Quote:
Two hundred metres became a hundred and fifty in Dak’ir’s helmet lens. With so many orks in the vanguard, it was inevitable that some would make it through.
...
Raking a slide of his bolter, he switched the gun to rapid fire. They’d burn through ammunition much faster this way, but the punishing effects of such a salvo would be irresistible.


Rapid fire bolter range.

Page 331
Quote:
The orks, more tenacious than a plague, rolled on into the firing line, scarcely fifty left in the vanguard from the five hundred who had broken off from the slower element of the splinter horde.

Solid shot struck his elbow, finding a spot between the plates, and bit. Dak’ir grimaced, another deflecting off his left pauldron as the orks got close enough to be partially accurate with their return fire.

Ignoring the bullets skimming off his power armour, some punching small holes but stopping at the layered ceramite...
...
Caught between the twin storms of bolters and flamers, barely a score of orks remained.


A score of Orks from 500 get within melee range of 5-6 Marines. The rest are cut down by the Thunderfire guns, mines/grenade line explosions, and bolter fire.

Page 337-338
Quote:
The massive capacitors in the Vulkan’s Wrath’s guns were charging. Huge upper-deck turrets swivelled into position with the churning retort of metal. The air crackled with slow actinic discharge, magnetising the metallic elements in the ash and grit particles, statically adhering them to the Salamanders’ boots and leg greaves. The throb built to a high-pitched whine and Dak’ir saw a nimbus of electrical energy spark and fork around the mouth of the guns.

An instant later and they were unleashed.

A blast wave, so heavy and powerful it put the Salamanders on their knees, rippled across the ash plain. Concave slashes of grey scudded in the wake of the turret guns’ lethal discharge, swirling mini-vortices of displaced ash and dirt.

The barrage lasted a few seconds but the greenskin horde was left devastated by it. Strike cruiser guns were intended to be fired at extreme ranges in the depths of space against massive, heavilyarmoured and void-shielded targets. The firepower they could bring to bear was insanely destructive. Argos, in his genius, had only activated a small portion of the guns. The laser battery was enough to atomise vast chunks of the greenskin army, slaying hundreds in a deadly las-cluster.

Several thousand super-powerful blasts had emitted from the guns, but at such frequency and velocity that they appeared as one continuous beam. Those not caught directly in the beam were burned by it. Several hundred greenskins were already ablaze; some wandered about aimlessly amongst the scorched earth, others were just charred husks. The rest were crippled by shock and disorientation, blinded and deafened by the terrible assault.


Warship lasfire unleahsed on the target. Clearly, it's not a full output barrage (2 las turrets, but whether they are fully powered or not is up for debate. If its turrets and las weapons they may even be point defense guns rather than broadside weapons, despite the implication otherwise. alternatley it may mean that the ship has a large number of smaller calibre guns.) The interesting thing is that its implying that the barrage is a series of invidiual shots/pulses (a large number over a few seconds) that imitates a sustained beam.

Page 339
Quote:
“If they return, we’ll have Master Argos engage the Vulkan’s Wrath’s guns again.”

Agatone shook his head.

“No we won’t. Argos has told me he can only fire them once. The recoil might collapse the bedrock holding up the ship and bury it for good. He won’t risk it.”


The barrage fired had some noticable/dangerous recoil, apparently.

Page 358
Quote:
..allowing M’lek to loose his multi-melta. A brutish greenskin, two heads taller than Tsu’gan, its body an armoured shell of plates and whining servos, had its torso liquidised to visceral slag by the multi-melta’s beam. It fell back into a steaming heap, crushing two of its smaller brethren.


Ork nob/mega armoured ork has its armoured torso (more/) melted by a multimelta. At least double, perhaps triple digit MJ?

Page 360
Quote:
Tsu’gan rammed his bolter’s muzzle into the beast’s mouth and pulled the trigger. Blood and brain matter burst out the back of the ork’s head, mixing with skull fragments.


Another (partial) bolter head popping of an Ork.

Page 363
Quote:
The Ignean came out fighting, gutting an ork on his chainsword whilst vaporising the snarling head of another with a shot from his plasma pistol.


Vaporizing or exploding an ork skull - high kj or low MJ at least? full vaporization could easily be double digit MJ too, and still be explosive :P

Page 364
Quote:
Sonnar Illiad merely nodded. His rugged face was pale, his muscles bunched tight as he gripped his lasgun harder than he needed to. The other settlers were the same.
...
When a lasgun salvo shredded a mob of onrushing orks, he changed his mind.


Assuming the usual definition of a "mob" we might be talking 10-30 Orks. We know there are 50 or so humans (with lasguns mostly) tops... That means 5 people per ork to 1 person per ork. Problem is, what does " shred" mean?

Either way you have Lasgun fire taking down Orks rather messily. Still considering how much more massive and tougher Orks are, that lasgun fire (even if several lasguns) can put down an Ork is quite impressive, especially if its a single lasgun vs an Ork.

Page 366
Quote:
Of the fifty that had joined Dak’ir’s squad, only twenty-three remained.


Again 50 settlers.

Page 367
Quote:
...L’sen fired his bolter one-handed and shot the legs
out from under a charging greenskin, whilst Fugis, bolt pistol bucking violently in his grasp, destroyed the face of another.


More bolter fire vs Orks.

Page 374
Quote:
..N’keln then reversed the cut and brought it up into the beast’s exposed flank. The mono-molecular edge of the power-charged blades melted metal and overloaded the narrow-field force generator rippling energy across the greenskins armour. It howled as the sword bit into hide then flesh and finally bone.

The stink of cooking meat assailed Tsu’gan’s nostrils...


Power sword vs Ork. Not only is the blade extremely sharp, but the field has significant thermal damage. Not sure if the force field generator is on the power sword or the Ork's defensive field

Page 382
Quote:
...Dak’ir had described to N’keln the nature of the black rock as told to him by the human settler, Illiad. It was akin to a planetoid, rotating on a horseshoe orbit around Scoria; a planetoid inhabited solely by orks. Every few years it would come close enough to Scoria for the orks to launch their crude atmospheric craft to make war on those that inhabited the planet...


The "planetoid" is inhabitable enough to sustain an Ork ecosystem and allow for atmospheric travel between the two when they get close (the shaking may be because of the close proximity, perhaps.) Having enough gravity to be "habitable" means its pretty heavy (earthlike perhaps.. think Endor's moon.)

The yalso mention its possible it has "millions" of Orks.

Page 384
Quote:
“Though it offends me to my core to dirty my hands with the weapons of traitors, I see no other choice. We cannot use the Vulkan’s Wrath to destroy the black rock, nor is any weapon we possess here capable of such a feat — the Iron Warriors’ seismic cannon is our choice."


Possibly implies the Vulkan's Wrath (strike cruiseR) has some sort of weapon onboard that could destroy the planetoid. Does not mean convenntional firepower, it could be a particularily powerful cyclonic warheads payload, for example.

Page 397
Quote:
He had felt it most strongly in the ruined bridge of the old Expeditionary
ship, where Gravius had sat like a recumbent corpse. By the laws of nature, the ancient Salamander should not still be alive. As Fugis had approached him, a sense of awe and reverence slowing his steps, Gravius was nearing the end of his endurance. It seemed he had held on for millennia, waiting for the return of his brothers.


More mystery cast on Gravius's lifespan.

Page 407
Quote:
A glance back showed him the battle-brother was on the ground a few metres from his previous position, part of his torso melted away.

“Get him out!” Dak’ir cried, recognising the brutal effects of the multi-melta.


Melta effect again. Similar yield perhaps against the melta against the Ork.

Page 413
Quote:
In his mind, the Librarian heard the slow pull, the long metal report of the depressed trigger as the traitor unleashed his bolter at him.

A bolter’s velocity is ferociously quick, its rate of fire faster than an eye-blink. Pyriel’s mind was faster.

Bolter shells exploded ineffectually against an invisible shield, dense blooms of light rippling in midair with each percussive impact.


Pyriel's implied reaction time.

Page 413
Quote:
Plates of ceramite parted easily before the force sword, undone by its shimmering power field, before the Librarian lowered the invisible shield and channelled his psychic might through the edge of the weapon.

At once the Iron Warrior sagged as his soul was sundered, cast into the oblivion of the warp to be fed upon by daemons. Smoke exuded from the traitor’s eye-slits and a deep light glowed from within.


Force weapon in action.

Page 415
Quote:
Tentatively, he went to touch the fiery barrier but withdrew his hand as the heat sensors in his armour spiked. His gauntlet came back badly scorched and partially melted.


Temperature sensors in gauntlet (I think) - might be tied to the auto-senses (EG artificially replicated senses.)

Page 420
Quote:
Fyron-fuelled capacitors charged the air, their throb and pulse emitted as a wave of force as the cannon was empowered and a second later, unleashed.


Seismic cannon. Enough Fyron for two marines to carry whilst fighting (no more than a few hundred k perhaps) to blow up planetoid.

Page 421
Quote:
Ghor’gan didn’t see the combat blade in Dak’ir’s hand until it was too late. The blade was only
half a metre long but the Salamander sank it to the hilt in the renegade’s chest.


Combat knife/blade.

Page 425
Quote:
The black rock exploded with all the finality and grandeur of a shattered star. At once the blood-red sky flooded with brilliance, a pure white flare that bathed all in its eldritch glow. The flare died but the sun returned with it, weak and yellow but brighter than the forbidding gloom of the eclipse.

Abruptly and violently sundered, the black rock was spread across the firmament. The fragments of its passing became new stars burning in the light of day. Drawn by the gravitational pull of the planet, the stars became larger and larger until they resolved into vast meteorites, swathed in fire and billowing smoke.


Destruction of the planetoid by the Seismic cannon. Problems, hwoever. For one thing, a few hundred kg (if that) of Fyron even at 100% energy conversion wouldn't provide the brute force to shatter a planet. Then there's recoil issue (a habitable planet is not going to be much smaller than Earth) and there was no discernable recoil.

One possibility of course, is that the seismic cannon is purely technobabble. The second possibility is that the planetoid was much smaller, artifiically constructed to allow for habitability. Either way it's not normal.

Page 426
Quote:
Tiny meteorites arced past it on fiery contrails as it hovered a thousand metres above the surface. The backwash of massive ventral engines pressed down upon Tsu’gan despite its altitude. It was an Astartes strike cruiser.


A strike cruiser hovering a km above ground, on ventral thrusters that are not inceinerating anyone beneath them.. that again suggests antigrav.

Page 431
Quote:
Upon N’keln’s reluctant concession, a squadron of Stormbirds had roared from the Purgatory’s fighter bays headed straight for the crash site and the Vulkan’s Wrath.


The Marines Malevolant have stormbirds. This tends to suggest that stormbirds were technically still able to be designerd or built, but are perhaps considered outdated by the modern Imperium (or at least, they can't be maintained.. it could be another Grand Cruiser situation. Of course, the Malevolent using them, considering how poorly supplied and "make do" they are, would tend to suggest it's simply outdated tech compared to say, thunderhawks.)



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-14 04:09pm
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2006-08-26 10:57am
Posts: 639
Quote:
Salamanders is an.. interesting series. Interesting because its a Space MArine novel about the most... humane and generally heroic Space Marines. So you think it should be good right? Well.. I dunno. I can't really make up my mind about it. I actually like Nick Kyme's depictions of Space Marines - Assault on Black Reach and Fall of Damnos made me like the Smurfs (as has Nightbringer, but that's another thread.) but there is just something.. odd about him. Maybe its because he doesn't write Space Marines the way I've come to expect Space Marines to be written, which is alot like Abnett (and I have a mixed view in that regard.) It's really hard for me to pin down.

So its really hard for me to say whether this is a good or bad series. As a whole I liked the books individually, but I feel the arc as a whole fell flat with Nocturne. Flat in that 'Storm of Iron/Chapter's Due' buildup we saw with Honsou (as opposed to Marduk in the Word Bearers, which is another update..) So I live it up to individual readers to decide. Certainly the idea was interesting, if nothing else.


Warning: series spoilers below. You were warned.

I've had much the same issues with the Salamanders series myself; personally, I like Kyme's characterization of Space Marines. For me, he's one the few authors that I think does well with them. Abnett and AD-B being the others. I just wish he would end his love affair with the phrase "pragmatic/pragmatism". He uses it a a lot, especially in the Salamanders books and not always in ways that it should be used. Still, his characterization of the Salamanders is very nice, with a few pieces highlighting just how much they are invested in protecting mortals - the scene with Dak'ir and Tsu'gan aboard the dying strike cruiser was one; they absolutely hate one another, but neither hesitates to use their own bodies to shield mortal crewmen from a surge of flames. Another was a look at Hesiod (I think that's the name of the city) with Salamanders directing traffic to ease the flow of refugees. It was just something so mundane, so far removed from what we'd normally expect to see Space Marines doing - I liked that touch.

Another issue I had was that things happen between books - before Salamander, there was his short story Fires of War in Heroes of the Space Marines and between Salamander and Firedrake, there was Prometheus Requiem in Fear the Alien and while he touches on the events these stories, unless you've read them, you have no real idea what happened. You know for example, that Kadai died (Fires of War) and Emek was mutilated (Prometheus Requiem) but he refers to these events so often that it really does feel like part of the story is missing without having read them.

There was the same issue between Firedrake and Nocturne. The problems with the renegade Marines Malevolent and the Voices, the internecine bickering and power-brokering of the Dark Eldar. It really feels like there was supposed to be something else in there, but we only get brief allusions to it and I think it hurts the story, because Kyme drops these characters and situations in there and you only have the barest inkling of their motivations or histories. It's all the more glaring because of the role the raiders and renegades have in the story.

I do agree with you on the arc falling flat; in Firedrake, we learn that Nihilan has this terrible, planet-cracking weapon that he plans to use to destroy Prometheus... only he fires it once, just using to breach an ancient vault. There's never any indication that he was planning to follow up by using the seismic cannon again, and it kinds of robs the climax of any impetus. Like in Goldeneye where Sean Bean has a super-duper-kill-all-technology EMP satellite... and he's going to rob a bank with it. It kind of stole the tension from the Firedrakes' and Dak'ir's assault on Nihilan's... strike cruiser? battle barge? (Kyme uses both terms); the Salamanders don't know that Nihilan won't use it again, but we do.

All that said, each book itself is a good read, especially if you like non-asshole Space Marines - if you can get past all the fire metaphors and over-use of "pragmatism". Heh.



Image
Sugar, snips, spice and screams: What are little girls made of, made of? What are little boys made of, made of?

"...even posthuman tattooed pigmentless sexy killing machines can be vulnerable and need cuddling." - Shroom Man 777

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-14 08:19pm
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4568
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
YAY! My favorite Loyalist chapter! The books aren't that bad either, but I agree they feel very... unusual in a literary sense. I never read read any of the supplementary short stories, but I didn't have a problem. The first book plunged you right into the action, a mighty Captain slain by cowardly and treacherous hands at his moment of triumph. Later things, like Emeks maiming seemed to me like all the off-hand references in the first Star Wars to places we never saw, barring the EU. They felt like a reminder that the Salamanders lead very busy, sometimes complicated lives in a very dangerous universe.

Connor wrote:
Internal teleportation facilities inside the Salamanders fortress monastary. A rather rare (and limited) but interesting way of getting about. Also, it seems to be considreed more stable than the ship based teleportation of the Marines Malevolant. Whether this is because of superior technology, because they are a first founding chapter (better gear in general), because it is on a (relatively) stable planet rather than a mobile starship, or some combination of that we don't know.

Even so they rely on alot of security meausres to protect against warp dangers.


I could be wrong, and its older fluff so who knows what the status of it is, but I seem to recall the Fang has 4 teleporters to let the Space Wolves move throughout the fortress quickly in the event of an attack, or load into strike cruisers and battlebarges in a hurry. Only teleportium 1 can recieve visitors from outside, but all can teleport between themselves, or send Space Wolves up to their ships. And that single recieving platform is guarded by a full squad at all times.


Connor wrote:
Another case of a non-navigator being used to guide a craft through the warp (alognside such examples as a Farseer in Dawn of War Tempest, a Librarian in the Gav Thorpe Avenging Sons short stories, although daemon assisted later, the Thousand Sons using sorcery, or sorcerers in ADB's Night Lords novels.. or the Orks inconsistently using weirdboyz to do it.) This probably stands out as one of the more reliable and probably long-range examples, however. It could be because of custom-designed gear and psychic augmentation, or it could be because they have such reliable intel (galactic coordinates, the deep space augur stuff) on the locale. One has to wonder why they aren't using a navigator however - do they not have any? Are they currently re-negotiating contracts? Is there some reason they wanted to keep outsiders free of involvement? Or did they have no Navigators to spare for this? Hard to say.


By this point they're on the trail of their Primarch before he was sent to the planet he disappeared on. I can see them wanting to keep that between the trusted few. I think we can call the ability of many psykers to navigate the Warp proven, though I doubt many can do it as well as dedicated Navigators empowered by the Paternova.

Besides, you didn't include the most famous example. During the Heresy Typhus, who was a psyker but most certainly not a Navigator, took up that post for the whole Death Guard armada, since none of the Navigators agreed to betray the Emperor. Then he deliberatly stranded the whole fleet in the Warp so Papa Nurgle would have time to work them over, but that was malice on his part, not any inability, seeing as the whole fleet did make it to Terra when Nurgle was done with them.



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-15 01:53am
Offline
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 22421
Connor MacLeod wrote:
Page 109-110
Quote:
Teleportation was a dangerous and inexact science. Even with the benefit of a homing beacon, the chances of becoming lost in the warp or translating back as a gibbering morass of fleshy blubber as your insides became your outsides were still uncomfortably high. To engage in teleportation when those translating had not been primed or were not wearing Terminator armour to protect them from the physical rigours of the process was even more hazardous.
Dangers of teleportation. To be honest I'm not sure how Terminator armor is supposed to protect against this - insulation against the mutational powers of the warp? Or is this just a human version of "Red ones go faster?"
I'd go with counter-warp protections or integral shielding somehow helping. The Terminator suit may also be explicitly designed with some device made to permit safer teleportation and preserve bodily integrity, something that could be built into ordinary power armor but isn't for logistics reasons.

Quote:
Page 117
A rather interesting, if short-ranged (eg in system, and within range of a starship) alternative to teleporters, some sort of pseudo-warp gate thingy. It's not the first time Librarians or similar high powered psykers have done such a feat, either. Either wya it seems more reliable than teleporters despite performing a similar function.
Recurring literary theme here- men can do certain things better than machines, especially when the warp is involved at least tangientally, as with teleportation.

Quote:
Page 158
Internal teleportation facilities inside the Salamanders fortress monastary. A rather rare (and limited) but interesting way of getting about. Also, it seems to be considreed more stable than the ship based teleportation of the Marines Malevolant. Whether this is because of superior technology, because they are a first founding chapter (better gear in general), because it is on a (relatively) stable planet rather than a mobile starship, or some combination of that we don't know.

Even so they rely on alot of security meausres to protect against warp dangers.
Probably all of the above- the Salamanders' own fortress will have the finest teleporter they can procure, and they are among the most technologically adept chapters in the galaxy. Said teleporter may include large fixed machinery that isn't considered worthwhile to mount on a mobile platform. And of course, the Marines Malevolent seem to have an idea of maintenance that boils down to chewing gum and bailing wire, so their teleporter may be in bad shape because they kept trying to jury-rig it along rather than admit to the Adeptus Mechanicus that they needed a new one.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-15 02:35am
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2007-12-19 08:31am
Posts: 879
Location: Newcastle, Aus
Connor MacLeod wrote:
Page 13
Quote:
What was left of Ko’tan Kadai’s corroded power armour was chained to a pyre-slab along with his half-destroyed body.
...
Two thick chains were piston-drilled to one of the short edges, and the rectangular pyre-slab hung down lengthwise.

Ceramite coated its surface, so the pyre-slab would be impervious to the magma heat.


Lava-resistant ceramite.

Page 14
Quote:
A vast reservoir of lava dominated the cavern’s depths. The hot, syrupy magma came from beneath the earth and was the lifeblood of Mount Deathfire. It was held in a deep basin of volcanic rock, girded by layers of reinforced heat-retardant ceramite so that it pooled briefly before flowing onwards from one of the many natural outlets in the rock.


Yet more heat-resistant ceramite.

Page 20
Quote:
Though the chain links would not dissolve when they touched the
lava, they were still red-hot from the rising heat.
...
The captain’s armour and the remains of his body were quickly
ravaged. The intense heat would render the last vestiges of him to ash.


An indicator of the conditions of the lava, as well as the fact the chain links, like the slab, are also pretty durable. Whether RL material could do this or not, I dont know.


I don't see much problem. According to Wiki, when lava first emerges it's 700 to 1200C; we can narrow it down more as it's flowing easily enough, but is viscous as syrup. This probably makes it Mafic lava, normally erupting at 950C. Ultra-mafic would be 1600C apparently, but that would be runny as water.
So we're probably looking at 950 to 1200C. Mild steel will handle that as long as it's not left in there long, and isn't expected to perform major feats of strength, and there's got to be more suitable steels than plain mild steel for the task. For instance, these guys have a steel where
Quote:
The anti-oxidation is better than 0Cr23Nil3 and it can be heated to 1235℃.Used for furnace material, automobile purification devices material.
.

I'm assuming the steel was only glowing red because it hadn't been in there long enough to fully heat up, or had cooled. If instead that accurately reflects the lava temperature, that's well under 900 (more in the 700s), and mild steel will do you fine. That would also suggest Intermediate lava.

I would expect chemical corrosion, but the steel could be made resistant, or at least replaced regularly.
I notice it didn't say the armour was completely destroyed in the short time. I believe vulnerable areas were melted/corroded/burnt or broken by the lava, and then the armour fell in pieces to the bottom where it slowly dissolved. (Some bits could be down there still; it's not like anyone's going to go down to look).

It's funny, I didn't realise lava was that cold. I always thought it was really hot. Odd, considering I always pictured it glowing red, and that means a pretty low temperature; I just never made the connection.



“I am the King of Rome, and above grammar”
Sigismund, Holy Roman Emperor

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-15 03:19am
Offline
Jedi Council Member
User avatar

Joined: 2003-03-30 06:41pm
Posts: 1861
Location: Northwest England
Simon_Jester wrote:
And of course, the Marines Malevolent seem to have an idea of maintenance that boils down to chewing gum and bailing wire, so their teleporter may be in bad shape because they kept trying to jury-rig it along rather than admit to the Adeptus Mechanicus that they needed a new one.


Or, more likely, they demanded the Ad Mech fix/replace it gratis and stomped off in a huff when they got told "no". The Marines Malevolent are relentless arseholes who seem to enjoy pissing off everybody they meet; it wouldn't surprise me, considering the grave-robbing (that's why the Malevolent were on the forge-ship for the Salamanders to meet them - steal Astartes arms and armour from it), to learn they've pissed off the Ad Mech enough that they actually can't get resupplied from most forge worlds.



"I do not say the French cannot come. I only say they cannot come by sea." - Admiral Lord St. Vincent, Royal Navy, during the Napoleonic Wars

"Show me a general who has made no mistakes and you speak of a general who has seldom waged war." - Marshal Turenne, 1641

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-15 09:12pm
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4568
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
Black Admiral wrote:
Simon_Jester wrote:
And of course, the Marines Malevolent seem to have an idea of maintenance that boils down to chewing gum and bailing wire, so their teleporter may be in bad shape because they kept trying to jury-rig it along rather than admit to the Adeptus Mechanicus that they needed a new one.


Or, more likely, they demanded the Ad Mech fix/replace it gratis and stomped off in a huff when they got told "no". The Marines Malevolent are relentless arseholes who seem to enjoy pissing off everybody they meet; it wouldn't surprise me, considering the grave-robbing (that's why the Malevolent were on the forge-ship for the Salamanders to meet them - steal Astartes arms and armour from it), to learn they've pissed off the Ad Mech enough that they actually can't get resupplied from most forge worlds.


Yeah, the MM are kind of assholes. One of the chapters that firmly believes they are not a shield to the Emperor's realm and people, but a swrod to strike down His enemies and is supremely unmoved by collateral damage. IIRC they've sometimes had to raid Imperial worlds for supplies to keep up their campaigns.

It suprised in the book that the Salamanders did not immediatly recognize the Malevolents, ssince I had believed their respective chapters enmity well established in the fluff. Didn't their chapter masters exchange harsh words on Armageddon after the Malevolents ended a hostage situation with a massive artillery strike?



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-15 09:16pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member

Joined: 2010-06-21 09:04am
Posts: 2287
Yeah, the Salamanders and the Marines Malevolent (a Chapter name begging to go renegade) had a spat at Armaggedon, but given the limited number of Salamanders deployed at Armaggedon not everyone in the Chapter may have known about the incident. Big galaxy after all.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-16 03:09am
Offline
Jedi Council Member
User avatar

Joined: 2003-03-30 06:41pm
Posts: 1861
Location: Northwest England
Ahriman238 wrote:
It suprised in the book that the Salamanders did not immediatly recognize the Malevolents, ssince I had believed their respective chapters enmity well established in the fluff. Didn't their chapter masters exchange harsh words on Armageddon after the Malevolents ended a hostage situation with a massive artillery strike?


Tu'Shan's reaction was a bit more severe than mere harsh words; the short story Emperor's Deliverance expands on just what his little "dispute" with Captain Vinyar of the Marines Malevolent over that incident was.

Basically, Captain Vinyar's chilling in his barracks/command room when Tu'Shan kicks the door open and tells him he's spoken to the Guard commander, witnessed the brutality, and been told of the civilian casualties. While Vinyar's responding with (essentially) "lols collateral damage dude", Tu'Shan's dropping his weapons, and tells Vinyar this isn't a discussion - oh, and to put his gauntlets back on, because Tu'Shan wants this to be even (while limbering up). This finishes with;
"What are you talking about, Tu'Shan?"
"Penance and retribution. cracks knuckles I'll give you one piece of advice - don't go for a weapon. shuts the door"

I'm thinking that Vinyar needed to see an Apothecary after that little "command consultation". :mrgreen:



"I do not say the French cannot come. I only say they cannot come by sea." - Admiral Lord St. Vincent, Royal Navy, during the Napoleonic Wars

"Show me a general who has made no mistakes and you speak of a general who has seldom waged war." - Marshal Turenne, 1641

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-16 08:57am
Offline
Jedi Council Member

Joined: 2010-06-21 09:04am
Posts: 2287
Salamanders are just awesome like that :)

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-18 12:40am
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4568
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
Black Admiral wrote:
Ahriman238 wrote:
It suprised in the book that the Salamanders did not immediatly recognize the Malevolents, ssince I had believed their respective chapters enmity well established in the fluff. Didn't their chapter masters exchange harsh words on Armageddon after the Malevolents ended a hostage situation with a massive artillery strike?


Tu'Shan's reaction was a bit more severe than mere harsh words; the short story Emperor's Deliverance expands on just what his little "dispute" with Captain Vinyar of the Marines Malevolent over that incident was.

Basically, Captain Vinyar's chilling in his barracks/command room when Tu'Shan kicks the door open and tells him he's spoken to the Guard commander, witnessed the brutality, and been told of the civilian casualties. While Vinyar's responding with (essentially) "lols collateral damage dude", Tu'Shan's dropping his weapons, and tells Vinyar this isn't a discussion - oh, and to put his gauntlets back on, because Tu'Shan wants this to be even (while limbering up). This finishes with;
"What are you talking about, Tu'Shan?"
"Penance and retribution. cracks knuckles I'll give you one piece of advice - don't go for a weapon. shuts the door"

I'm thinking that Vinyar needed to see an Apothecary after that little "command consultation". :mrgreen:


Ok, that I'll have to read sometime. Vinyar... is this the same Vinyar as throughout this trilogy? The one who
[Reveal] Spoiler: Nocturne
starts melding with his armor and hearing voices, so he's allowed to "go renegade" and join Nihilan's warband in a "completly unauthorized" assault on the Salamanders?


Yeah, I'm sure that bit of chicanery is never coming back to haunt the Malevolents.



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-18 03:43pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member
User avatar

Joined: 2003-03-30 06:41pm
Posts: 1861
Location: Northwest England
Checking, I got the phrasing slightly off, and since it's good anyways;
Quote:
Emperor's Deliverance, by Nick Kyme
Vinyar was poring over the maps on his strategium table, planning the next assault, when he heard the barrack house door opening again.
'Changed your mind, Nemiok?' he asked, looking up but finding someone else in his chambers. Vinyar sneered. 'You.'
An onyx-skinned warrior was standing before him, armoured in forest green. A scaled cloak hung from his broad shoulders, attached beneath gilded pauldrons. Iconography of drakes and fire, hammers and anvils emblazoned his battle-plate. His voice was abyssal deep.
'I have spoken with Colonel Destrier,' he said. 'I have also witnessed the excessive force used at Emperor's Deliverance and been told of the civilian casualties.'
'There is collateral damage in any war,' protested Vinyar. 'If I had not acted as punitively as I did, there would still be orks roaming that camp. Besides, cowards are unworthy of being spared.'
The green-armoured warrior had unhitched a thunder hammer from his back and slammed it on the strategium table, cracking data-slates and tearing maps. He was unbuckling a holstered pistol when he said, 'You misunderstand the purpose of my visit, Vinyar.' He looked up and his eyes flashed fire-red. 'This isn't a discussion.' He glanced at the gauntlets the Marines Malevolent captain had discarded. 'Put those back on. I want this to be even.'
Vinyar was belligerent, but reached for his gauntlets anyway. 'What are you talking about, Tu'Shan?'
'Penance and restitution,' said the Chapter Master of the Salamanders. Bones cracked in his neck as he loosened them.
'I'll give you one piece of advice,' he added, clenching and unclenching his fists to work the knuckles. 'Don't go for a weapon.'
Then he closed the barrack room door.


As this comes after an entire story of relentless cockbaggery on the part of the Marines Malevolent (from being arseholes to the Hospitaller Sister-Superior running the camp to refusing to assist a stranded medical transport to their wrecking up of the camp fighting the Orks - which is worse than 'just' shelling it with their Whirlwinds), I find this intensely satisfying.



"I do not say the French cannot come. I only say they cannot come by sea." - Admiral Lord St. Vincent, Royal Navy, during the Napoleonic Wars

"Show me a general who has made no mistakes and you speak of a general who has seldom waged war." - Marshal Turenne, 1641

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-18 04:13pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Bladed_Crescent wrote:
I've had much the same issues with the Salamanders series myself; personally, I like Kyme's characterization of Space Marines. For me, he's one the few authors that I think does well with them. Abnett and AD-B being the others. I just wish he would end his love affair with the phrase pragmatic/pragmatism". He uses it a a lot, especially in the Salamanders books and not always in ways that it should be used.


Yeah, he gets the same sort of astartes you like to read about, comparable to many of Abnett's/ADB's characterizations, or McNeill's Ultramrines (or the Imperial fists from Storm of Iron), or Alaric form Grey Knights. Its the 'heroic defender of humanity' symbol - at least thats how I think of it. It's really the strong point in the series, and it would work better if he could just.. I dunno. deliver on the actual plot.

And yeah, the overuse of certian phrases. Like Abnett using 'wet leopard growl' for Space Wolves. If I get another novel with that I think I'll have to create a drinking game to get through it.

Quote:
Another issue I had was that things happen between books - before Salamander, there was his short story Fires of War in Heroes of the Space Marines and between Salamander and Firedrake, there was Prometheus Requiem in Fear the Alien and while he touches on the events these stories, unless you've read them, you have no real idea what happened. You know for example, that Kadai died (Fires of War) and Emek was mutilated (Prometheus Requiem) but he refers to these events so often that it really does feel like part of the story is missing without having read them.

There was the same issue between Firedrake and Nocturne. The problems with the renegade Marines Malevolent and the Voices, the internecine bickering and power-brokering of the Dark Eldar. It really feels like there was supposed to be something else in there, but we only get brief allusions to it and I think it hurts the story, because Kyme drops these characters and situations in there and you only have the barest inkling of their motivations or histories. It's all the more glaring because of the role the raiders and renegades have in the story.


Yeah. Having all these separate story elements scattered about in both short stories and novels in-between the main three was pretty confusing. And in retrospect the plot seems to be scattered all over - it really doesn't add to that sense of 'building' to anything. Its more like a 'day in the life of the Salamanders Chapter' like it were some reality TV show.

Quote:
I do agree with you on the arc falling flat; in Firedrake, we learn that Nihilan has this terrible, planet-cracking weapon that he plans to use to destroy Prometheus... only he fires it once, just using to breach an ancient vault. There's never any indication that he was planning to follow up by using the seismic cannon again, and it kinds of robs the climax of any impetus. Like in Goldeneye where Sean Bean has a super-duper-kill-all-technology EMP satellite... and he's going to rob a bank with it. It kind of stole the tension from the Firedrakes' and Dak'ir's assault on Nihilan's... strike cruiser? battle barge? (Kyme uses both terms); the Salamanders don't know that Nihilan won't use it again, but we do.

All that said, each book itself is a good read, especially if you like non-asshole Space Marines - if you can get past all the fire metaphors and over-use of "pragmatism". Heh.


Well I think he had potential there for a big 'twist' type ending.. I mean the idea that this super doom weapon was a misdirection could have been great - how many 40K stories center around something like that - The Gothic War (and 13th Black Crusade) did, as did the entire premise of the Word Bearers trilogy. But it just feels like the entire buildup is forgotten after that attack.. like the whole assault has no further consequences, and is just forgotten. The idea it might be used for a dual purpose (misdirection as well as revenge, or perhaps some other p urpose like keeping the Salamanders busy) would have worked.. it just needed more to carrry it through.

And I also don't think it helped in the WAY the story was resolved - again the potential for misdirection here is not the issue, so much as the way Kyme pulls it off (old geneseed + super psyker + <blank> = PROFIT) because it just feels really.. I dunno, contrived.

I'm kinda hoping after the next Salamanders book I might feel differently about it, but right now it just feels like the series has gone flat.. hopefully that could change, because if Kyme can actually pick up on the plots he could actually be a good BL writer.



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-20 03:12pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Next update for Salamanders. Well, really the whole book, since its a single update.

Firedrake was the next installment of the Salamanders novels, and its a bit of a departure from the first book. For one thing it breaks along different lines - much of the book (as the Title shows) deals with the Salamanders First company. And the Dark Eldar. but despite that it deals greatly with the Salamanders Chaplain from the first novel and his own personal issues. This may be a subplot but it actually felt like a major plot. And then if that weren't enough there was the whole 'Librarian' subplot with Dak'ir, which plays into the overall 'arc' of the first three books (to say that loosely.)

Again the strong points of the book are the characters and much of the writing - I loved the inclusion of He'stan and he contributed a great deal to the enjoyment of the story but again it feels.. disjointed. Especially compared to the first book. You essentially have (at least) 3 different plots running simultaneously and you aren't quite sure where they are going, or how they quite tie into the major plot. It just doesn't feel... foreboding enough. There's no anticipation of building towards something great and major and significant. That a major war is coming is quite evident, but its something that is stated, not felt, and I think that's where things tend to fall flat.

Still, you're given a novel with some decent Astartes and non Astartes characters, and the interpersonal conflicts are somewhat forgivable (although Iagon is the worst example of this, consistently.) and its still better than a Marines Malevolent novel.

page 16
Quote:
...the rest of the war council could make out a star map of the subsector in the gloom: Gevion Cluster Worlds, Uhulis Sector, Segmentum Solar.


Current locaton/destination for some of this story to take place.

Page 17
Quote:
“Your men have fought bravely during the campaign, general, but are spread thin. The bulk of your regiments are occupying and stabilising the lesser Gevion worlds. Your strength is depleted here.”


The bulk fo the regiment is spread throughout the other worlds.. we dont know how many other worlds, but probably more than 2-3. There are 500 men here.. suggesting they're at least 1500-2000 strong.. and that probably is a drastic underestimate.

Page 17
Quote:
“So you consign us to corralling citizens and protecting aid stations?”
...
Since the dark eldar had appeared on Geviox, a steady stream of refugees, those who had managed to escape the slavers’ nets, had made for the outlands and the temporary Imperial aid stations there.


Hey disaster relief stations. how Grimdark!

Page 23
Quote:
...Elysius drew forth the Sigil of Vulkan from his belt. It was a holy artefact, once a piece of their primarch’s armour and thus named for
him. It resembled a hammer, an icon of the Chapter and symbolic echo of Nocturne’s atavistic heritage. Its purpose, besides being a venerated Chapter relic, was unknown. In solitude, Elysius had studied it often but despite many years of examination, even after consulting the Tome of Fire which contained all of their primarch’s wisdom and prophecy, was no closer to unlocking its secrets.


Elysius used it in the last book as a rallying point to reinforce the resistance of the Salamanders against the influence of Chaos in the Iron Warriors keep. It seems that this sigil is unusual in more ways than just that, but its behaviour last book may be tied to its mystrious nature. Or it could be a manifestation of psychically-fuelled mass belief having tangible effects.

Page 24
Quote:
It was a small world, barely five million souls, but rich in ferrous ore.
...
Cities were two-thirds factorums, inhabited by a predominant labour force population. But Geviox was no forge world; it had no allegiance to the Adeptus Mechanicus. It was a processor-planet, where raw materials would be ground from its earth, its very lifeblood yoked until it was dry. Then the populace would move on, little more than labouring transients, to the next world in need of harvest.


Gevion is a "small" world, probably a mining world, and there seems to be a purpose in this. The planet seemingly is held only in a semi-nomadic manner - the population exists to facilitate the mining, only moving on after the world is tapped out. We saw something like this in "Mortal Fuel" in the short story from Planetkill, although this depiction is considerably more chartiable than the last one was. The plaent cannot be vastly smaller than Earth (given certain parameters of gravity and such) so its mineral content cannot be dramaticlally less than earth, either. In any reasonably short timeframe (and this seems to be a pattern., implying they've done it to worlds multiple times before) suggests a fairly short (on galactic/40K timescales as far as this goes) timeframe of a few centuries or a few millenia.

I wonder if they just abandon the cities, or if those get moved too. At the very least they have a fairly predictable transport capacity for millions of planet-dwellers.

Page 27
Quote:
He too noticed the landing field, where the Night Devils Valkyries and Chimera tanks had once idled...


Night Devils, They seem a well equipped force, having both Valkyries and Chimeras. The percentage of their force so equpped isnt known (EG whether they are fully mobile, or if they are mostly infantry with some air/ground mobility, or what.)

Given what we learn later its possible they just have a significant storm trooper and armoured fist complement, but I'm guessing at the very least based on what we see later, they are mostly/wholly mecahnised with significant stormtrooper/valkyrie elements.

Page 29
Quote:
He stowed the magnoculars so he could replace his battle-helm. At once, the battlefield was drenched in a tactical-yellow film. Distances, dispositions, formations and geographical data swarmed across his retinal display, swallowed up by Ba’ken’s eidetic memory.


Helmet info displays

Page 29
Quote:
vTwo squads including Ba’ken’s were poised to advance down the centre but not before the heavy cannon were neutralised


Important for the following quote.

Page 32
Quote:
The Space Marines ate up the metres between them and their enemy in a few short minutes. It was a brutal sight. The earth shook as several thousand kilograms of ceramite pounded over it.


They mention earlier that there are ~2 squads of Salamanders involved in the advance. This means 2000-3000 kilos, we're talking 100-150 kg per Salamander. It could just mean both trooper and suit, but that would lead to soem fairly lightweight salamanders and power armor (which conflicts with a great deal of other info) but it could mean that the armor itself is fairly heavy, but not super duper heavy (EG several hundred kilos for power armor is not unreasonable given all we know.)

Page 34
Quote:
On this day, with the inhabitants of the city either dead or incarcerated, the yield was low. Still, the industrial complexes ground
on, obeying automated doctrina protocols that kept the great machine going.


Factory automation. This tends to make me think it might be modular or at least mobile in some sense, like the admech facilities mentioned in Execution Hour that the AdMech airlifted off of a planet to be destroyed by Abbadon's Planetkiller. The buildings perhaps are static, but that would be all.

Page 38
Quote:
Time slowed, and the battle din became a dull, half-heard clamouring at the base of his skull. Around him, he knew his brothers had slipped into a similar state. Ba’ken’s secondary heart surged into life, filling him with vigour, providing his limbs and organs with the relentless energy they needed.


Space Marine "battle mode" so to speak, slowed perceptions and boosted biological processes.

Page 38
Quote:
Turn thirty degrees—kill stroke to jugular administered by piston-hammer.

Eliminated.

A split-second later, another lashed out from the opposite side…

Back a half-step, two shots point-blank into midriff. Torso destroyed. Eliminated.

A third, then fourth charged him from the front…

Lead with right shoulder. Disable foremost threat by shattering ribs and collarbone. Headshot with bolt pistol to second target. Cranium destroyed.
Eliminated. Return to disabled primary threat. Downward hammer strike to shatter spine. Fully incapacitated.


Space Marine combat from Space Marine mind... seems rather methodical, at least for this one and the Marines involved (its implied others may have similar 'training') Note the bolt weapon 'destroying torso' and 'destroying cranium'.

Page 39
Quote:
Through his retinal display, Ba’ken judged the Capitol gate to be under a hundred metres away. A rapid structural analysis suggested they’d need breaching charges or a multi-melta to penetrate it


Durability of a gate.. helmet systems do structural analysis to assess required firepower to demolish. Useful function. Also breaching charges compared to multi melta in temrs of cpaability.

Page 40
Quote:
A dark beam struck Ek’bar and put him on one knee. The brother-sergeant grunted but got to his feet again immediately, roaring at his warriors to advance with Elysius. Rippling shield returns blossomed around the Chaplain as his rosarius field protected him from the heavy weapons.


Dark Eldar lance beams against Chaplain Rosarius and against power armor. The former resists pretty well, the latter tends to be easily penetrated throughout the book. Considering its a heavy weapon, not surprising.. although it doesnt have quite the "oomph' of a lascannon either (either because of nature or damage mechanism or power or whatever - it punches holes through Marines rather than blowing them apart.. more like some kinds of plasma rifles/pistols against Marines.)

Page 41
Quote:
Something fast swept in low and without warning. Too fast for his retinal display to track, especially with the energy interference from the heavy guns ahead, Ba’ken could only watch as Brother L’sen gurgled and was lifted off his feet.


Tracking systems in the helmet.

Page 67
Quote:
Fifteen separate assassination attempts had been made against Archon An’scur. All barring three had been thwarted and yet here he was, alive and imperious, if a little gaunter than before.
...
Some within the cabal said his soul was promised to Kravex—that the haemonculus kept An’scur’s missing digit under lock and key, and through the application of his torturer’s science had resurrected the archon each time he was killed. Only a sample of biological matter was needed.

Gaining a haemonculus’ favour was the difficult part.


Dark Eldar "immortality" - easy if you can make the right friends anyhow. The interesting thing about all this is how

Page 76
Quote:
That had been three years ago, ever since the 3rd had returned from Scoria.


The events on Scoria are 3 years in the past. Confirms wihat hpapens later, and this is repeated many times throughout the book.

Page 79
Quote:
In the crackling field there was a progenoid gland, held within an armourcrys vial and suspended in some kind of amniotic solution.
“The fluid within the vial keeps it from necrotising?”
...
Tu’Shan stepped closer to regard it, as if drawing his answer from proximity to the vial. “An ancient warrior of the Legio—Gravius was his name.”
He’stan turned sharply to regard his Chapter Master.
“He lived? After ten thousand years?”
“It would seem so, but his mind was shattered, crammed with the thoughts and memories of all of his brothers.”


again the feat of a Space MArine to live 10,000 years seems remarkable/impossible to those of a 'modern' era.

Page 81
Quote:
Even through the retinal display of his battle-helm an impenetrable fog of smoke and drifting ash smothered the view. Flashes of fire tinged the grey pall a deep orange, and temperature spikes on the systems of his power armour that were still functioning relayed intolerable levels of heat and radiation


Temperature monitoring of the power armor

Page 81
Quote:
Pain-killing drugs flooded his body, damping the agony down his left side into a dull ache that only debilitated and no longer incapacitated.


Power armor-administered painkillers.

Pag e84
Quote:
It was over twice the Salamander’s height and half again as broad. It was a man, or at least a simulacrum of one. Its skin was onyx-black from the volcanic
basalt used like clay to fashion it. Carved psychically by Pyriel’s mind, it was a creation of utter perfection and terrifying beauty. The enhanced musculature was exhaustingly defined. Its noble countenance was hard but eerily humanoid. Its bald pate shone like jet, the reflected fire light swathing it in an orange sheen. And the eyes… they burned like captured pools of flame.


Psychically-created stone construct. Interesting ability. I wonder how it is animated.,

Page 88
Quote:
Except the monster was not divine, it was a construct forged psychically from volcanic clay and fortified by Pyriel’s warpcraft.


More on the construct.

Page 93
Quote:
A tiny drygnirr regarded him from atop a small rock. It had coal-black scales with a blue streak down its back and spines. The lizard’s eyes flashed blood red as it took in the hulking nomad in its midst. He had seen the totem-creature before. Pyriel used it, his familiar and psychic embodiment in saurian form so he could observe all that Dak’ir did.


Like a Psyber raven or a similar... I dont know if its mechanical, cybernetic, or what.

Pag e96
Quote:
I will turn you into ash…

Dak’ir would immolate his would-be murderer. There would be nothing left but a charred mark on the plain.


Implied cremation of another Space Marine via psychic fire.

Page 99
Quote:
“Stormbird…” he murmured, knowing the inside of the Astartes assault craft from the old versions he’d seen in the Promethean Hall of Remembrance. Few Chapters used them anymore, preferring the faster and more manoeuvrable Thunderhawks to act as their gunships.


Implies the AStartes might still have and use stormbirds.

Page 121
Quote:
Between them they carried Tsu’gan’s power armour. It was his old suit, the one he had worn whilst part of the 3rd. Now its surface was rendered with the swirling iconography of drakes, serpents and flames. It had been meticulously artificed, re-forged and remade into a thing of pure beauty. Far superior to its former incarnation, it was armour worthy of 1st Company, of a Firedrake of Vulkan.


Salamanders chapter seems to be able to turn any power armor into artificer grade.. at least for their Veterans.

Page 121
Quote:
First came the black bodyglove, almost invisible against Tsu’gan’s onyx skin. It was overlaid with an exoskeleton that interfaced with the systems of his power amour. Festooned with linking ports and conduit points, it would join him to his suit, enhancing his strength, speed and combat abilities exponentially.


Power armor capabilities.

Page 121
Quote:
Imaan’s power armour had been smelted down but he had bequeathed his Terminator armour to Tsu’gan after death. The marks upon the
Firedrake’s wrists were a reminder of that bond, and that when he wore the suit Imaan’s spirit warred with him.


Terminator armor is retained and re-used, but they will dispose of old power armor. Says something about their ties to the admech or their own manufacturing compared to other Chapters.

Page 122
Quote:
The Master of the Fleet had generously provided a frigate, Firelord, to ferry the 1st Company warriors to their theatre of war.


FireDrakes will take a frigate on their mission.

Page 123
Quote:
“On Gevion, a cluster of worlds in the Uhulis Sector, Segmentum Solar, contact has been lost with elements of 3rd Company,”


Their destination . Based on 5th edition map, Uhulis is over in an area bordering betwene Solar, Tempestus and Pacificus. A good 25-30 thousand LY away from Nocturne.

Page 140
Quote:
There was, inevitably, a divide between brothers of the Technicarium and the Librarius. One dealt with the tangible, the tactile, what could be grasped and seized with one’s own hands; the other dealt with the ethereal, the abstract and the amorphous. It was science versus superstition and the two did not always make easy bedfellows.


SCIENCE!

Page 140
Quote:
The Chief of Librarians was often famously quoted regarding his thoughts on the limitations of science.
I can pulp your flesh and snap your bones in less than a second, and without so much as lifting a finger. What is the power of technology compared to that?


Librarian feat.. supposedly. Of course what can technology do? *points to starship orbital bombardment*

Page 141
Quote:
“We follow the portents and tread the lines of fate where we can, brother. It is a journey that will take us off-world. Warpcraft is unpredictable, though,”
..
“To call it craft is a misnomer, brother. To call it craft suggests creation, permanence. Whereas, anything arising from your art is ephemeral at best.”
Pyriel turned to object but the flare in the Forgemaster’s human eye warned him against it. “I have performed the machine rites on your gunship myself,” said Argos.

“The Caldera will get you to your destination, tempest or no.”
...
The Chamber Sanctuarine of the Caldera had room enough for thirty warriors so armed—with just two it felt positively desolate


They're taking some small craft that can land on planets to another planet.. apparently in the same system. Will discuss this later.

Page 151
Quote:
“Tell him he has field command. Colonel Hadrian is dead.”

“And with him, the bulk of the 83rd battalion,”


A Battalion might imply between 500-1000 men. There are at least 500 more men prior to the massacre to follow.. 1500 on this planet.. implying perhaps at least 3-5000 per regiment.

Page 152
Quote:
General Slayte scowled, showing his teeth before turning to his command staff. A clutch of aides, officers and tactical savants were huddled over a hololithic display plotting the movements of the Night Devils regiment and those of reported enemy sightings in relation to them.

The scene rendered in grainy amber, flickering with every percussive shell detonation felt through the bunker’s ferrocrete walls, was an erratic mess. The xenos had pushed and pulled their forces in myriad directions, first dividing and then massacring. Small groups, isolated platoons or straggling squads, were despatched first. Weak before the strong, that was the way of it. Then the larger battle groups were hit with ambuscade or slowly withered away by lightning attacks when at camp or after dark. Fear like a contagion was running through the regiment with virulence and every man, even Krakvarr, bore symptoms.


Hololithic display and the current situation. Note the holoith is supposed to be lost tech according to the Arcadius, yet we frequently see IG commanders with them. Of course this is close to the core regions, whereas Arcadius was on the ass-end of the galaxy when he noted that.

Also Krakvarr is the comissar for the regiment. He smoke,s he's friendly with the General, and generally more human and less asshole.

Page 153
Quote:
A slow but determined march to the edge of Ironlandings followed a rapid muster, the men eager to fight and die for the Emperor.
And die they did, all too readily.
Slayte believed that with the troops and armour at his disposal, making inroads to the Capitol would have been relatively straightforward.


AGain the Night Devils are either fully mechanised, or they are at least partly mechanised with infantry. But they have vehicles.

Page 153
Quote:
...Slayte was secretly overjoyed at Commander Agatone’s order for him to return to the front. Joy turned to dismay when he learned
of Chaplain Elysius’ disappearance.
...
He remembered the quiet before the screaming. It was a dark lullaby that sent him to nightmarish places when he’d managed snatches of sleep in the intervening weeks.


Weeks have passed since Elysius vanished. Given that very shortly Slayte will have his ass saved by the Firedrakes, this means they took only 2-3 weeks to arrive, tops. Thats around ~400-800,000c assuming straight line from Nocturne to Uhulis.

Page 153
Quote:
What passed for troops of the line, their segmented armour edged and bloody, shot whickering bursts of flechette fire into the Imperial ranks. A side glance at his carapace armour, and Slayte saw the remnants of splinter fire still embedded in the torso section and shoulder guard. His first adjutant, Nokk, had been shredded in the general’s place.


Dark Eldar weapons. Apparently its some sort of flechette/APDS dart type round rather than a glorified dartgun.

Page 154
Quote:
...picking up his battered armour. He thought again about trying to remove the splinters but they were hideously sharp. Colmm had tried with a pair of
pliers but ended up just wrecking his tools.
...
Slayte shrugged on the carapace body armour, fastening the straps while Colmm fixed the shoulder guards.


Sharpness of DE splinter weapons.

Page 155
Quote:
In the assembly yard beyond, Slayte’s storm-trooper platoon awaited him. Three armoured Chimera tanks, pintle gunners sat idly at their posts, would convey the general and his staff.
...
“Contact the other commanders. Converge on our position, full assault.”
..
The ramp slammed shut and the last of the Night Devils platoons headed towards certain death.


The regiment has at least some Storm trooper platoons. The interesting thing is it implies they re not exactly rare, or indeed that Chimera forces are rare, given they're demanding the other commanders/forces converge on their forces for an assault - that certainly implies at least some of the other troops are mobile.


Page 158
Quote:
He seized the heavy stubber, ripping it from its pintle mount as a cadre of jetbikers hove into view...
...
The recoil was so fierce it reminded him of his first Valkyrie air-drop. He’d been a member of the elite storm-troopers back then.


Again at least the storm troopers use Valkyries sa well as chimeras. It may mean the rest of the regiment does as well. Hell it may even be a grenadier regiment.

Page 159
Quote:
A burst of splinter fire from the biker’s front-mounted cannons ripped up half of his face and tore his shoulder to hot, red ribbons of meat.
Donnsk dropped without a whimper.


splinter fire again.

Page 163
Quote:
Seventeen metres from the ground, he turned to the others.

“In Vulkan’s name,” he roared.

Beside him, He’stan leapt from the hold and into the blood-red light.
A few seconds later, Praetor followed.
...
The air thundered past him in a blur, collision warnings flashing amber across Praetor’s tactical display. A few metres below, He’stan had angled his body like an arrow.
..
He hit the ground less than five seconds before Praetor but the veteran sergeant marvelled at the carnage he wrought in that short space of time. A blow from the Spear of Vulkan severed a skiff in half, its bifurcated ends pulling away from each other like a sinking ship with its back broken. Fire and shrapnel from the engine explosion tossed ragged eldar corpses into the air. He’stan was engulfed but merely moved through the storm, plumes of fire rolling off his armour in waves.


A rather impressive 17 meter free fall in seconds, taking out the enemy on impact.. at least thats what He'stan does. :P

Page 168
Quote:
Isolated pockets of Guardsmen still held out, retreating into circle formations, hellguns held out and spitting las.


This may suggest that the Night Devils are substantially, even totally equipped with hellguns of some kind. This doesnt neccesarily mean they all have the OMFG powerful many times the energy of a lasgun" type, they may just be slightly better (like in the munitorum manual) with better armor penetration. They may also be used as the lasgun equivalent of a SAW or LMG. I'll note in a few cases it is at least partly implied they have conventional las weapons (or the officers do, at least.)

Page 173
Quote:
“It was a webway mirror the fiend used against us, ancient science, not sorcery of any kind. It was your soul it was draining, Tsu’gan.”

Tsu’gan knew the dark eldar, like all of the xenos races, had infernal technologies they used to prosecute their wars and bring man beneath their yoke, but this? To strip another’s soul?


Webway mirror. Interesting feature, not sure what it has to do with the webway, but again I havent read DE fluff in awhile.

Page 175
Quote:
“My commissar is dead. I have lost a major and two corporals. I survive by dint of the Emperor’s intervention and I’d posit just over two hundred and fifty of my five-hundred-strong battle group still live. And of those, close to another hundred are wounded. In short, my lord, we are in ragged shape.”


The state of the Night Devils force currently. Implied they may not all have Chimeras, as they comment that the IG troops might have trouble keeping up with the AStartes.

Page 176
Quote:
He braced his hand against the hard metal of the deck where he kneeled.
The other one, his power fist, had been removed and a tangle of ragged wires sagged from the socket like intestines. There were furrows in his battle-plate where the barbs and lashes had stung him.


Elysius lost his arm in the last novel, he now has a augmetic with a built in power fist.

Page 210
Quote:
He’d snapped on a luminator attached to his bolter and used an ultraviolet spectrum to illuminate a ragged line on the sewer floor.


UV spectrum lamp.

Page 210
Quote:
..slipping the tracker bolt into his weapon’s breech. The explosive tip had been removed by the Chapter’s Techmarines and replaced with a tiny beacon that would transmit to the rest of the Salamander battle group. It would hurt, but it wouldn’t kill.


Tracker shell. Will injure but not kill without explosive payload (At least against a 'stealer.

Page 225
Quote:
A thunderous report echoed around the warehouse as the bolt shell destroyed the creature’s skull. Congealed blood splattered the Salamanders around him, before the body crumpled and dried away to ash in moments.


bolt round vs HAemonculus skull.

Page 227
Quote:
“The finger,” Tsu’gan realised, “and the box it was put in, they were not with the body.”

“Science is merely sorcery to those without the wit or knowledge to see it. What we don’t understand we regard as mythical, impossible. The box was a portal. The finger resides in some gene-lab now, awaiting the resurrection of its owner.”


Haemonculus resurrection. Also a bit of that oddity in this book they sound far more... 'Imperial Truthy' than 'Imperial culty' Its another one of those disjointed aspects of the book, but one I actually like.

Page 238
Quote:
Dak’ir opened his eyes. As he unleashed the flame, he viewed the world through a fiery veil. It was a roiling wave, snapping serpents at its crest, and it rolled over the walking corpses with such intensity that skin and flesh flaked to ash in seconds.

Echoes, soot-silhouettes, were all that remained of the foremost undead. The ones that followed crumpled against the heat, their desiccated bodies quickly collapsing.
Others, those who had only just surfaced, carried on, their bodies ablaze.


Dak'ir cremates a large but unspecified number of zombies.

Page 238
Quote:
He thrust his sword into the chest of one creature and ignited its entire body with psychic fire. The ashen remains were still flaking off the blade when Dak’ir took the head from another.


Implied cremation.. at least partly.

Page 239
Quote:
The Librarian drew his plasma pistol and put a bolt through its torso, ending it. The next shot vaporised the skull of a second.


Da'Kir's plasma pistol. MJ range maybe for literal vaporization. If not.. less.

Page 239-240
Quote:
“Burn them, Dak’ir,” said Pyriel, a surge of fire channelled through his force staff interrupting him. “Unleash the deathfire.”
..
The undead were kept at bay whilst Dak’ir’s focus travelled inwards, seeking the fiery core within and the catalyst with which he could release it. The name passed his lips without him realising it had been spoken.
“Kessarghoth…”
Dak’ir’s eyes went from cold, cerulean blue to ardent flame red. He roared with the ancient voice of a long-dead drake, and the terrifying din drowned out all others in the chamber. Molten death spewed from his mouth, through the grille in his battlehelm, and bathed the deathless horde.

“Pyriel, down!” The voice did not sound like Dak’ir’s, but the other Librarian crouched as the lava flow scorched overhead, engulfing the other side of the
chamber. The walking corpses, hundreds strong, were swept up in a terrible maelstrom and melted away in moments. The coffins and sarcophagi proved more resilient but lasted only seconds more before they too had sloughed to insignificant wisps of smoke on a hot and undulating magma sea.

It was over in moments. The lava cooled rapidly into rock, the two Librarians standing on a circular plateau surrounded by a ringed crater. Of the dead, of their vessels, there was no sign. Dak’ir had obliterated them utterly. Hundreds of them.


Dak'ir's super psychic lava attack. To be fair at this point, he has trouble controlling it and he's supposed to be some osrt of super-psyker.

Page 243
Quote:
The psychic hood was, in part, a nullifying device. It aided with the concentration of psychic force, whilst at the same time reducing the risk of its
wielder succumbing to the predations of the warp. Here, Pyriel intended for it to staunch the roiling fire within his apprentice from a roar to a whisper. Gauged to maximum, the hood would prevent almost all psychic conductivity and leave Dak’ir effectively nulled.


Psychic hoods are variable setting.

Page 246
Quote:
...Tonnhauser thought of his father. He was back on Stratos and fought as part of the Air Corps. He’d wanted the same for his son, but Varhane had left as part of a planetary tithe of men and materiel to the Imperial Guard. He’d wanted to see the galaxy. If he was to die then he’d do it under a foreign sky and in the Emperor’s name.


At least some of hte Night Devils seem to come from Stratos.. if not all. That may explain the VAlkyries at least, although its interesting how he was recruited into the regiment on STratos and is fighting on the far end of the segmentum away from his homeworld, givne the Reductus sector's location. Not impossible just.. unusual.

Page 286
Quote:
Argos racked the slide of his bolt pistol. The auto-readout snapped to “MAX”.


Salamanders scoouts have some sort of visual readout listing ammo capacity.

Page 310-312
Quote:
A wall of fire, so high it reached the heavens, surged from the earth. Nocturne’s surface had become a web of fissures, the planet’s lifeblood seeping out of them in rivulets of lava. The sky was ablaze. In the blood red firmament a star was falling. Prometheus burned, the metallic orb wreathed in reentry flare as it cascaded like a doomed comet towards the planet below. Its gravity had failed. Death was certain.

From the hellish night above an incandescent beam speared down to strike Nocturne’s heart, impaling it. From the lowest depths of the world, a death cry
sounded. It came from the ancient drakes who had lived in the bowels of the earth for millennia. Their spirits were dying. Nocturne was dying. Their mournful sound was a lamentation for a doomed world.
...
The Acerbian Sea boiled into a great pall of steam, burning away the skiffs, eradicating the gnorl-whales and scalding Epimethus from existence.

On the Arridian Plain, Themis—City of Warrior-Kings—was dragged under the sands, lost to the wailing dunes.

Mount Deathfire belched fire and fury, the haemorrhaging of a vital artery bared open by a mortal wound. She spluttered, like a body with its lungs ruptured, her breaths the last from a life almost ended. The Dragonspire ridge collapsed, the craggy rises falling one by one into smoke and ruin. It was followed by the chain of the Serpent’s Fang. Forests of granite shattered, broken by the atomic blast wave coursing through them. Then came the Cindara Plateau, that most holy of monuments, swallowed beneath the fracturing earth.

Chapter Bastions, tribal settlements that had stood upon inviolable bedrock since the dawn of ages cracked and crumbled against the cataclysmic forces unleashed in the planet’s death throes.
...
Ignea, an entire region of subterranean caves, was sundered in a single, devastating instant. The only legacy of its existence, a deathly cloud of displaced ash. Hot winds came from the east, transforming the Gey’sarr Ocean into a blanket of fire and scorching the white walls of Heliosa, the Beacon City, black.
Aethonian, the Fire Spike, ruptured and split, lava oozing down its once proud flanks like blood.

Hesiod, Clymene, as far as the Themian Ash Ridges, as deep as the T’harken Delta where the leo’nid preyed and the sauroch herds gathered—all of Nocturne
became as dust. Its cities were shadows; its peoples not even a memory. Burned from the galactic sky, it was a warning, a cautionary tale. An entire civilisation was gone, rendered into atmospheric dust.


Purported destruction of Noctrune by seismic cannon. Bear in mind this is a vision.

Page 316
Quote:
“It’s called dysjunction,” said He’stan, who’d halted the Firedrakes at the threshold to the temple, where the bridge began. There they waited together, in two lines of five. They’d heard and felt the capricious motions of the twisting city as they closed in their borrowed raider.
...
“It is the dusk-wraiths’ way,” counselled He’stan. “Their borders are ephemeral, their pacts and allegiances likewise. It bodes well.”

“How so, my lord?” Halknarr asked. “Bad enough we must navigate this labyrinth without it changing on us constantly.”
“The city’s denizens will require time to adjust, redraw their tiny empires and claw fresh lines of dominion in the sand. We can exploit this distraction, use it to get closer to the Sigil undetected.”


Dark Eldar have transforming cities.. apart of their politics apparently.

Page 330-331
Quote:
“The seismic cannon,” he breathed.
...
“A relic of the Dark Age of Technology,” said Dak’ir. “Kelock discovered its existence, found a way to construct it.”
“A weapon capable of annihilating a small moon…” The implication in Pyriel’s words trailed off.

“The one on Scoria was just a test. They wanted to see if it would work.”
...
...The beam I saw in the vision was much greater, mounted on a starship. Nihilan means to destroy us, master.”


Discussion of the Seismic cannon that supposedly will destroy Nocturne.

Page 343
Quote:
“I know little of your biology, my lord,” ventured Tonnhauser, “but I understand it is capable of regeneration. Why isn’t he… healing?”

“The trauma is too great.” He looked at Ionnes. “Even we have our limits.”

Elysius was not just talking about the physical as he regarded Ba’ken. The sergeant’s jaw was clenched. “In fact, his sus-an membrane should’ve activated by now and put him into a regenerative coma. The stubborn sauroch is blocking it.”


Limits on astartes healing, the mention of the sus-an and the healing sleep, and the fact it can be consciously blocked if need be.

Page 369
Quote:
How Elysius had known to thumb the activation rune then, he would never learn.

How it had burned into life at all when it was supposed to be broken and spent was another mystery. Did a lingering kernel of energy in the weapon’s power cell impel it to life at the crucial moment? Or was another power at work, one governed by faith? The Chaplain was wise enough to know that some miracles should simply be, and not be subject to questioning.


My bet is a miracle-based WAAGGH effect thing. It's an exampel of what Iv'e said - those litanies and shit that they teach the Guard and Marines can sometimes have a tangible, useful benefit - with the right people at least. This is proof.

Page 375
Quote:
Praetor’s strident tones followed. ++Engage homing beacons++

A series of dull icons from the small wrist-mounted devices locked to each and every Firedrake lit up the gloom in pearlescent white.

++Even through the veil…++ Praetor’s voice was already fading as transition took hold, ++…they will find us…++


Teleporting out of Dark Eldar territory.. apparently even in the webway (or wherever they are) they can be located. This says something about the location/tracking/transport process (the signal arguably must pierce dimensions, somehow)

This would be indirect proof of some sort of ftl/warp piercing signal.

Page 376-377
Quote:
From the rearline, Techmarines manning a battery of Thunderfire cannons ordered cluster fire into the panicked dark eldar ranks. They were little more than
chaff now—most of the alien elite was either dead or had already fled into the webway. In the distance, hugging the horizon line, portals of dark liquid shimmered. One by one they vaporised out of existence, leaving a grimy fog that lingered on the breeze for a time like smoke before disappearing completely.

The vanguard of the Salamanders brought more battle tanks. The armoured spear was to be led by Agatone in his Land Raider, Fire Anvil.
...

On the left flank, their vantage point a set of iron hills, Lok commanded the Devastators. Their salvos of missiles and plasma bursts took apart a rearguard of grotesques ferried out of the webway to stymie the Salamanders assault. Lascannons lanced the air, scything down raiders and other, more heavily armoured skimmermachines, before their cult troops could ascend and flee.
...
Rhino transports followed in the wake of Fire Anvil. They carried what remained of the 3rd’s Tactical squads, armed and armoured for close engagement.
..
Predators rolled between the armoured transports, the battle tanks sending punishing salvos from their autocannon and lascannon turret mounts.
Overhead, Assault squads burned the air with contrails of fire from their jump packs. They kept pace with the tanks, protecting their flanks and seeking out isolated enemy targets.
...
Supporting the Astartes were the Night Devils. General Slayte had survived the war and meant to end his part in it on the frontline with the rest of his men.
...
A final few raiders surged through the inky darkness of the portals, the last to be conveyed to Volgorrah before the sons of Vulkan brought the fire and the horizon burned.


Assault by Astartes and IG on fleeing Dark Eldar. VArious points of interest include:

- Bombarding the Dark Eldar on the "horizon" and very shortly approaching them (minutes maybe?) Exact distance to horizon isn't specific, but at least the Predators, the Devastaotrs, and the Thunderfire cannon seem to be capable of at least multi-km ranges. given tank heights we might figure up to 8 km range.. although this is dependent a great deal on other factors (elevations for example.)

- Assault marines seem to be keeping up with the Astartes and Guard force. Depending on whose speed they are limited to this may suggest anywhere from 20 kph (guard) to 50 kph or so (Land Raider) If it's limited by the LAnd Raider this might suggest the IG forces are pretty fast (of course since we know they have chimeeras, this isn't really a shock. We've never seen them with Leman Russes. Either way its fairly impressive movement speed for Assault Marines.

Page 378-379
Quote:
Teleportation was a highly dangerous mode of travel. It meant slipping into the empyrean and riding the tides of warp space. Fell creatures lurked in those depths, attracted by the tiny soul fires of the living. Their hunger was insatiable. Even with a homing beacon slaved to the Firelord’s teleportarium, despite the prayers and acts of supplication made to the machine-spirits by the Techmarines, it was not an exact science.


The dangers of teleportation.

PAge 379-380
Quote:
“The sus-an membrane has put him in a regenerative coma,” he muttered, interpreting the data relayed on the scanner screen.
...
“Fortunate given the condition of his body. It will take months to repair this damage. I cannot vouch for the psychological injury, of course.”


Baken takes months to recover. The Firedrakes arrive home long before then, setting an absolute minimum on FTL speed (30K LY or so in far less than a year.)

Page 380-381
Quote:
“I am sorry we lost Tsu’gan,” Emek said, bowing slightly before his Chaplain. In the intervening months since the Protean incident the two had discussed much.


Months since the Protean incident, again it took less than that to arrive at this planet.

Page 388
Quote:
They waited in silence for the arrival of the Caldera. The Thunderhawk gunship had docked at Prometheus less than an hour ago.
...
They’d made their return from Moribar with all speed, and though the planet was not far from Nocturne, a twist of warp fate had ensured they’d arrived after He’stan and the Firedrakes.


This might imply that the time taken was far less than months.. weeks or days maybe.. but its not certain since the warp weirdness is partly the reason.

Rather more curious and problematic though is that this implies that a Thunderhawk can travel FTL or something... That can't be a common design even if it is possible. And probably quite a bit larger than your typical Thunderhawk.

Page 398
Quote:
Upon inspection later, the Tech-marines had told him it should not have worked. The Master of the Forge had confirmed it.

The crozius’ power cell had been breached. It was beyond function.

It was no mere thing, Elysius had decided. To ignite when he had needed it the most, it spoke of something deeper than faith.


Again, faith-fuelled operation (or enhancement) of technology. Human version of the WAAAGH effect - they just think of it as miracles rather than "red ones go faster".

Page 398
Quote:
Elysius was glad Tsu’gan hadn’t seen it and feared it would now hit Ba’ken hardest of all when he was revived from his sus-an membrane coma.


Ba'ken is still in a coma.



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-24 10:46pm
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4568
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
Connor wrote:
Dark Eldar "immortality" - easy if you can make the right friends anyhow. The interesting thing about all this is how


How what?

Connor wrote:
Haemonculus resurrection. Also a bit of that oddity in this book they sound far more... 'Imperial Truthy' than 'Imperial culty' Its another one of those disjointed aspects of the book, but one I actually like.


The Forgefather must, of necessity, travel the length and width of the Imperium and beyond. He clearly knows the Eldar tongue well. It's not really that suprising that he'd have a different perspective on most things.

Connor wrote:
Assault marines seem to be keeping up with the Astartes and Guard force. Depending on whose speed they are limited to this may suggest anywhere from 20 kph (guard) to 50 kph or so (Land Raider) If it's limited by the LAnd Raider this might suggest the IG forces are pretty fast (of course since we know they have chimeeras, this isn't really a shock. We've never seen them with Leman Russes. Either way its fairly impressive movement speed for Assault Marines.


This happened in the first book to, when the 3rd Company assaulted the Iron Warriors outpost they loaded all but the assault marines into Rhinos and their single Land Raider. The assault marines were able to sort of keep up in a forced march, hitting their jump packs periodically as they fell too far behind. At least, the rest of the company did not have to wait at their destination for the assault squads.



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-25 03:02pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Ahriman238 wrote:
Connor wrote:
Dark Eldar "immortality" - easy if you can make the right friends anyhow. The interesting thing about all this is how


How what?


Don't remember. Possibly 'how little mateiral' they need to recreat an entire DE body, but of course we see this happen in 'Path of the REnegade'

Ugh. I'm gonna have to cover the Eldar Path novels at some point too :P



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-25 03:05pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Annnd.. here comes Nocturne . IMHO its the weakest of the three books thus far in the series, mainly because it fails to live to the buildup. The previous two novels are forgivable because of their 'stand-alone' nature, but this was supposed to be the culimination of the series and tie up many (if not all) of the plot points. I actually think Nick Kyme had a good idea here (sort of a HA HAH FOOLED YOU twist) but it couldn't quite carry through the execution. That said the characters still remain a strong point of the series, except perhaps for Da'Kir and Tsu'gan. I can't quite decide what to think of them or what their purpose is. He'Stan and Tu'Shan are still the best parts.

Anyhow, two part update all at once. I got more books to cover!


Page 10
Quote:
Centuries earlier, the Black Rock’s erratic course had been set. The Architect’s own clawed hand had put
it into motion. Those with the sight, who could perceive the grand conjurations of the galaxy, would behold
the strands of fate pulling it towards the red world, presaging apocalypse. They had but to look upon it.

If we believe this, this suggests Tzeentch can somehow (although not neccesarily without effport) manipulate events to put an asteroid/comet or similar on course with a planet.

Page 19
Quote:
His burns hadn’t healed well. Some supposed it was on account of them being caused by psychic lightning. Overlapping scar tissues knotted and scalloped in places,...

Indicates that Salamanders, if not other Space Marines, can have their healing abilities hampered by psychic attacks of an electrical nature, although having it as burns suggests other forms of attack (flame, acid?) might work also.

Page 25
Quote:
"Greetings from Mars, Adept Argos."

Admech delegation on Nocturne. Judging by the above, and the fact they are repeatedly referenced as Martians, it suggests they came from mars.

Page 27
Quote:
"That I also know. I saw to its return to the Martian priesthood, not so long ago in fact."
..
"It was one year and three point six months according to standard Imperial units of
time, to be precise. I was the one responsible for its restoration."

We're talking about 15-16 months for at least a round trip between Nocturne and Mars by this point, possibly 3 (if it includes the time for the Salamanders to return it to Mars.) and not including whatever time it spent being refurbished. at a minimum we're talking 40,000 LY, possibly 60,000 or so if its 3-way trip. We're talking about 30-40 thousand c at least.

Page 31
Quote:
Hard bands enclosed his wrists. The metal from which they were forged was black and dense. It was a ‘null’ collar, the bracelets a part of the ward, an unassuming but arcane device that inhibited the use of psychics. The one fastened tightly around Dak’ir’s neck and wrists was dialled up to its most potent setting.

Anti-psyker devices. sound a bit like the Aegis hood?

Page 32-33
Quote:
As revealed in the armour of his ancient forebears, the survivors of Isstvan, these fated words had haunted him for the last four years.
...
...he was briefly transported back to the Aura Hieron temple on Stratos where Ko’tan Kadai had lost his life and he himself had been grievously injured.

It all began with Kadai.


Four years or so since the start of this series. A year has passed since book 2.

Page 43
Quote:
Though old, even for a Space Marine,
he needed no magnoculars to find what he sought in the haze.
...
For over four centuries, Prebian had served the Chapter as Master of Arms. As de facto captain of the Seventh Company, a rank he had held for just over four decades, he had a small but august legacy.


at least 400 or so years old is considered "old" for a Salamander.

Page 45-46
Quote:
By the time they had descended the rock and met with their masters on the desolate plain, there were
nine left from the original twenty-three that had been chosen. The rate of attrition was not unusual.


Salamanders aspirant attirtion.

Page 46-47
Quote:
Having undergone several stages of biological implantation associated with ascending to the lowly rank of Scout...
...
A mutation in the Salamanders genome meant their pigmentation reacted more aggressively and irreversibly to the implantation of the melanochromic organ than other Space Marines. Meant as a safeguard against ultraviolet and radioactive exposure, it actually reacted with the unique radiation of Nocturne’s atmosphere to create onyx-skinned warriors. It also affected retinal cells, and the glow about Val’in’s eyes was almost fire-red. His bulked-out musculature showed a strong response to the introduction
of the ossmodula that enhanced bone mass and durability, as well as ossifying an aspirant’s ribcage into a solid plate.


Scout stage, and the Salamanders.. "mutation." Later they comment that only one (Val'in) will survive the end of the training.

Page 49
Quote:
"Geviox… Scoria and Stratos." he said, naming the worlds where
N’keln and Kadai had met their respective ends, "have been hard on all of you. To lose two captains in just a few years is tough on any battle company."


3 locations in ~3 years. Gevoix is ~30K LY away. Scoria is in the veiled regions, which is another 20-30 LY away. Stratos was in the Reductus sector some 10K LY away. Kadai was lost on Stratos in the Fires of War short story. They returned to Nocturne after that, and Salamander begins with Kadai's cremation. They shortly after return to Stratos. Then Back to Nocturne. Then they go to Scoria, and return. In Firedrake it is to Gevoix and back for the Firedrakes to recover Elysius (and there is the 3rd's own deployment in that time) That's a round trip of 30K LY for Stratos (3 trips) Scoria is 40-60 K LY. Gevoix is at least 60K LY.. 90K if we allow for the separate deployment of the third prior to the dispatch of the Firedrakes. Total travel distance in a 3 year period is 130,000 to 180,000 LY. Which is 40-60,000c, on average. IT goes without saying this is tremendously conservative, since it doesn't account for any downtime (to rebuild losses), time not spent in conflicts, time spent around the various locales, etc.. which can in the various cases easily add up to months or even a few years.. particularily the time spent in the Hadron belt in the first novel, and all the time spent on Nocturne.

As for all other previous calcs.. this tends to reinforce the idea that no more than a few months, and probably a few weeks, elapsed for all the different FTL transits. We know from Fire Drake that the scoria event to the start of that book was 3 years, and we know that the events of Nocturne themselves (from the start of Firedrake, really) elapse in under a year - again a few months. This tends to reinforce how tens of thousands of c is the minimum, but a very low minimum, and hundreds of thousands is possible, even likely.

Page 55
Quote:
"Even Horus Lupercal could not resist the lure of Chaos. Is Zek Tsu’gan mightier than the
primarch of the Luna Wolves, the Warmaster of the Great Crusade."

Tsu’gan responded with flippancy. "Just like a servant of Ruin to refer to ten thousand year-old myth. Get over it, the Long War is done."


interesting that Tsu'gan believes Nihilan's statements about Horus are myths.

Page 69
Quote:
Seen through the lattice floor was a pair of immense capacitors.
Menials, servitors and other debased creatures busied themselves in the darkness far below with the radiation and the heat. A low hum was coming off a bank of power coils that bled into the capacitors and flanked a large fusion reactor with refined fyron powder at its core. The machinery fed into an immense segmented barrel etched with graven runes that was only partially visible. The rest protruded into the void from the Hell-stalker’s prow like the ram on an ancient sea-faring vessel.
Ironically, the weapon actually was archaic. At least, its standard template construct was. It had originated from an age before Old Night when all the many secrets of the universe had been lost.

Through his patron and the obsession of the dead technocrat Caleb Kelock, Nihilan had wrested one of those secrets back
from obscurity.


The seismic cannon hooked up to the magic fusion reactor and the magic fusion powder from Scoria. I think we can actually call this a case of a reactor being powered by magic pixie dust.

Page 70
Quote:
Old hate flared in its eyes as it regarded the four renegades, but like a flame
about to snuff out. Much of its form was mechanised and it whirred and ground robotically
as it moved.

Necrotic breath to match the condition of its pallid flesh washed from the Iron Warrior’s ugly, slack-jawed mouth. It struggled to speak.
...
Several devices, esoteric and alien in origin, were implanted into the Iron Warrior’s skull. An ankh-like rune glowed dully upon the surface of one. It helped to conceal the fact that much of the back of the creature’s head was missing, so too the bulk of its brain-matter.
...
"Reconstitution was not ease."’ Ekrine hissed, "but Ramlek managed to fashion something to animate it at least."

"Is it fully revivified?"
...
"This is a husk with some remembered behaviours for our purposes. It is not unlike a servitor, except its protocols were slaved solely to the construction of the weapon."
...
"That’s because it’s dead, you moron."


The Dragon Warriors have some interesting resurrection tech, of a sort. Technically I suppose this means he's undead, or just more servitor like (as noted) but he acts more or less alive (undead) - he's aware and can work on technology. The servitor parallel also poitns to the possibility servitors can have at least some high level function, although the possibility (likelyhood) of sorcery involved in this (especially for the awareness) cannot be ruled out either. If Ramlek (a rather brainless and stupidly loyal follower of Nihilan) can fabricate it too, it can't be all that complicated.

Given what happens later to Tsu'Gan, this also suggests that Nihilan has acquired and is accessing Necron technology, the Ankh being one giveaway. the Warsmith is therefore aware and alert (and hates his captors) but is unable to disobey.

Page 70
Quote:
The thunderous report of a bolt pistol ended Ekrine’s reply.
Nihilan holstered his sidearm, looking down on the headless Iron Warrior.
"I have need of the mind shackles your dead-man is wearing. Sieve them from whatever brain chunks are left and throw the bodily remains into the furnaces."


bolt pistol round explodes what is left of unhelmeted Iron Warrior skull. Also anothre hint at necron tech "mind shackles" - which is a probable reference to mindshackle scarabs. Interesting that Nihilan has somehow subverted to his use necron technology (This is supposed to be difficult by design.)

Page 82
Quote:
As he primed the syringe, Tsu’gan was put in mind of the chrono-gladiators that fought in the underhives of numerous frontier worlds. For a while they would be unstoppable, their physiologies enhanced exponentially, but when the chrono finally ran out…


Chrono gladiators.. nice refrence to some early fluff.

Pag e84
Quote:
He’d been led from the penitarium by Pyriel and flanked by a squad of six Firedrakes wearing unmarked, saurian power armour. Each one carried a ceremonial chainblade and melta-pistol.


The Captain overseeing the scout training with Ba'ken and also a leader of I think Seventh company was carrying a melta-pistol too. I guess the Salamanders can afford not only to artifice the hell out of normal armor, but they can make compact meltaguns too.

Page 85
Quote:
The collar around his neck had never felt so heavy. Surrounded by a refractor field with the energy wall turned inwards, every precaution had been taken with Dak’ir’s imprisonment.


This suggests refractor fields are one-way devices (otherwise if they were two way, what point turning it inwards?)

Page 98
Quote:
Flesh-pink, dewy-eyed and sweating, the behemoth was a wretched and muscular thing. Its eyes were tiny, as if it lived much of its life underground or in abject darkness and had devolved accordingly. A flared snout with broad undulating nostrils dominated a brutish face. Bulbous growths mutated its already overdeveloped limbs and back. Its neck was thick and brawny. Though it carried no weapons, its fists were like piston-hammers and its malformed skull like a battering ram capable of denting tank armour.


Some sort of mutant I guess. Tsu'Gan is running from it, so I guess in his state he can't fight it hand to hand.

Page 99
Quote:
Auto-carbines were no use; their human-sized grips were too small for his fingers. He needed something bigger, maybe a belt-feed or sentry cannon. He could tear it off its mountings, use it low-slung, hard into the shoulder to absorb the inevitable kick.


Shipboard weaponry on the chaos ship. Note the "auto-carbine".

Page 99
Quote:
There were dozens of boarding weapons, large tracked cannons and belt-feeds. Booted feet rattled on the deckplate outside.
...
Tsu’gan seized an auto-fed cannon. Someone had left a drum in the breech. He estimated over four hundred rounds.
..
Four serfs carrying studded body shields made cover for four more toting heavy carbines.
...
Triggering the cannon, Tsu’gan filled the doorway with noise and fire. The serfs were rendered into ruddy chunks in a matter of moments. Others on the periphery, not in the direct line of fire, took shrapnel hits or were felled by the sheer explosive force of the attack.


Tsu'gan's improvised weapon. Some sort of heavy stubber/autocannon probably, given that it seems to have explosive ammo (shrapnel/explosive effects)

Page 100
Quote:
Heedless of the auto-feeder, the behemoth charged.
...
"Far as you go." he growled, and unleashed what was left in the cannon.
It got another few metres before it slumped and died. The behemoth’s grotesque body was riddled with bullet holes and drooling blood from countless wounds. Tsu’gan was gasping at the end of it, the autofeeder whining empty long before he’d released the trigger.


Feeder vs Beast

Page 101
Quote:
On Scoria. It was the exact imitation of the seismic cannon, only several times bigger. A phrase sprung to mind,unbidden, as he beheld it.

Planet-killer.


Seismic cannon again.

Page 105
Quote:
The two-handed chainsword was immense. Its mono-molecular teeth could even cut adamantium apart.


Astartes-sized Eviscerator chainsword.

Page 110
Quote:
Attached to the hangar’s exterior docking spine was the impressive forge-ship the Archimedes Rex. It loomed through a vast portal of clear armaglas that was durable enough to withstand meteor strikes and starship barrage.


Armaglas resilience. This is just for a window port, mind, not acutal armour or such. It depends of course on what kind of starship barrage.

If we're going to take a literal definition it's referring to something smaller than an asteroid, but larger than a micrometeorite (and is not a meteorite - eg it doesn't survive reentry) So the "meteor" in question ought to weigh at least a gram and shoudl travel between 11-72 km/s (orbital velocities) - 60 kj if we go with the lower limit (not much more than a meteorite. If its a 1 kg meteor.. 60 MJ. Note that for a 70 km/s meteor we're talking several MJ to several GJ of impact energy. A 1 gram meteor will hit with a momentum between 11 kg*m/s and 72 kg*m/s.. 1000x that for a 1 kg meteor. Assuming a 1 ton meteor we're talking between 60 GJ and 2.5 TJ, with 1000x momentum of a 1 kg meteor.

It could also mean higher (kiloton or megaton range for example) but its probably not as large as say, hundreds of thousands/millions of tons

This is really just an estimate we're probably talking something not much more than a cm in diameter for a gram-range asteroid, somethingsize of a human fist for a 1 kg asteroid, and somethign close to human sized for a 1 ton asteroid. Given we're talking starship barrages I'd expect something at least either high velocity kilograms or tons, at least.

Page 111
Quote:
Much of the Martian red in its paintwork was scored to the bare, grey metal beneath. The machine-cathedra, the mech-temples, data-shrines and factorum of the immense forge-ship appeared rusted, almost fossilised against its craggy hull. Jutting laser batteries and macro-cannon turrets slumped lazily at their stations


Admech forge ship again. Yet another indication of mobile orbital fabrication and production capability, but of course we knew that existed.

PAge 111
Quote:
A warning rune flashed up on his bionic eye. A message scrolled across the retinal display in binaric. It took a fraction of a millisecond to translate.


Millisecond translation time for a message.. gives you an idea of what AdMech cranial implants can do at least in processing data.

PAge 112-113
Quote:
Whatever had afflicted the Archimedes Rex wasn’t gone. It
was merely dormant, waiting for a synaptic trigger to release it.
Xhanthix had primed it, inloaded some crucial data-packet out on the dunes.
The corrupt data was within him, running rampant within his cybernetic implants, virulent as a contagion. A binary compound, he was the reactant to its catalyser. Alone, each component was harmless; together, they were lethal.

Terrible knowledge unfolded in Argos’s brain slowly, too slowly.

I am the trigger.

Like a sluggish data-file that had finally inloaded, Argos realised he had been compromised. Something had happened to him when he’d first interfaced with the forge-ship; something so powerful and invasive that it could overrun an entire Martian complement. It had done so before, turning its denizens homicidal. The signal was strong; he’d felt its resonance even on the surface of Nocturne when the Archimedes Rex was at dock on Prometheus. It had been dormant for several years. Logically, it was the only way it could have escaped detection. Otherwise, it would have been isolated, quarantined and neutralised during one of his sanctification rituals.


Scrapcode attack.

Page 113-114
Quote:
The deck fell away beneath him – or rather, he was lofted above it by the intensity of the blast wave. His retinal senses were immediately overloaded by the angry flare of light. Temperature gauges red-zoned as the tolerance levels of his armour reached their limit. He was spun in slow motion, rotating through a hundred and eighty degrees, limbs flailing. Hot frag launched from ground-zero with the velocity of bolter rounds, shredding hapless crewmen and tearing servitors apart in a welter of oily blood.
...
Argos’s roar merged with the cacophonous explosion until it became one agonised sound. Seconds seemed to stretch into minutes as furious incendiary waves rolled out across the hangar.

He hit the ground with a jolt, ripping off a shoulder pad and scraping across the deck for another ten metres before finally coming to a stop.
...
There were fires, bodies strewn between them. Some were badly burnt; others writhed in agony, speared by shrapnel.
...
Argos was bleeding. The servos in his right leg were damaged and it didn’t move as easily. Every third step he had to drag his foot. The static in his head was fading, becoming more like a dull ache. He risked reactivating his bionic eye. A heat spectrum overlaid his vision. Bio-scanning matrices identified Orgento’s signature to Argos’s left. Only a few metres separated them. The Techmarine had flat-lined.

Orgento was dead.

His power generator was torn up along with most of the cuirass protecting his back. One of his arms was missing, the blood clotting but not enough to save him. Massive internal haemorrhaging registered on the scan. Several organs had been liquefied as poor Orgento bore the brunt of the explosion.


Magos detonates and produces shrapnel damage. The "velocity" thing is interesting, but up for debate. The evidence suggests it was a powerful high explosive, but it might not be - a "overloading capacitor" might not be very HE... and there was alot of thermal damage.

This and this The first link suggests a velocity of 3000 fps, whilst the second suggests 5000 fps.

Assuming we take this as accurate, we might figure a bolt round can have a velocity between 900 m/s and 1500 m/s. This doesn't necesairly mean all bolt rounds can do that or that it would even be a common velocity. We know some are s supersonic and some subsonic - they can vary, and it stands to reason that some may be designed for highre velocity over other features. 900 m/s is not totally unreasonable either - most modern rifles have velocities in that range (esp heavy ones), and given bolters have a good 500-600 m range, this would fall in with that "shrapnel" velocity as well. My personal belief is that the 'velocity' will depend on the round in question and how it is fired - I no longer believe they are all 'rocket propelled/asissted' because the 'bolters ejecting casings' visual has cropped up plenty of times in 40K and that actually (in my mind) makes sense for certain interpretations (esp with the recoil issue) - maybe they can fire as rockets or as bullets in the chamber depending on circumstance.

A :"cased" bolt round might be able to achieve the more rifle/shrapnel like velocities, while the rocket bolts would be about half that.. call it 400-500 m/s (which fits with alot of rocket assisted weapons or grenade launchers or similar.)

Also the Techmarine is able to use his sensors as biosensors.

It is also hard to calc the damage given the burns and such but it suggests at least megajoules per square metre, suggesting perhaps many kilograms of HE equivalent. Assuming 30% of the AdMech body were implants (say 20-30 kg) and velocity was somewhere between 700-1500 m/s, you'd expect at least 5 and 34 MJ of KE, and 14,000-45,000 kg*m/s worth of momentum total. OVer hundreds or thousands of pieces of shrapnel that is.. quite deadly, but it would be only part of it (the blast, and thermal effects as well.

Overall it seems safe to say the Magos power source, HE component or whatever was comparable to at least many kg, if not tens of kg of TNT. Probably not much more than that generally (mass volume constrants on even a mechanically augmented body)

Page 115
Quote:
Argos slipped a vibro-knife from a sheath fastened to his chestplate and severed the
thing’s thorax cabling.


Vibro-knife.

Page 115
Quote:
The automated defence systems alone could repel a sizeable
invasion party without the need for additional reinforcement


Automated defense systems protecting hangar. The Salamander's station also has its own armsmen. I assume these are serfs trained for military roles.

Page 118
Quote:
He looked old but had recently received juvenat treatments. Some of the aging in his body had been regressed, restored to beyond its prime. As the impromptu bio-scan concluded, Argos realised that he knew him.
"Sonnar Illiad." the serf said at last.

Juvenat (or at least some techniques) can be applied after the fact to reverse aging to some point, although I suspect they are less effective than if applied beforehand. In this case Illiad who was an old man in the first novel is probably in his thirties or forties now (so 3-50 years removed)

Page 119
Quote:
Even the rear thrusters that provided propulsion were baffled,
so they could run silent.


Baffled thrusters on Land Speeder

Page 119
Quote:
The view was grainy and green-tinged, tracking data spooling across his view, but the aspirant stood out
clearly enough.


Magnoculars.

Page 120
Quote:
It was a Storm-variant, with capacity for carriage at the expense of deadlier weapon systems. Any aspirant that survived induction would at least have a ride back to the nearest Sanctuary City. The Storm only had room for two crewman and five riders, which said a lot about Salamander pragmatism and the harshness of the trials.


Storm variant Land Speeder. Has a heavy bolter and missile launcher, and carrying capacity. That there is space for 5 suggests they rarely expect mor than that to survive.

Page 121
Quote:
Ba’ken hauled on the heavy bolter, unlocking it and sliding the gun around on its mounting rail. He checked the load – a full mag of heavy mass-reactive. Any sa’hrk hit by one would be crimson mist.

Flicking up the iron sights, Ba’ken adjusted his aim by tracking along a distant ridge.
...
"Approximately five hundred metres."


HEavy bolter has at least a 500 m range via iron sights in Astartes hand. Also can blow apart sa'hrk. We dont know how big they are, but they are big/strong enough to take down a Nocturne bull/cow analogue, and be a threat to a Space MArine scout aspirant.


Page 142-143
Quote:
Whirring plaintively, his bionic eye zeroed in on the armoured figure slaved to the seat of the cannon. Not all of the weapon was visible; much of the defence laser protruded outside of a plated dome, its massive barrel
pointed heavenwards.
...
It carried sigils upon its flanks and bore the mark of master artisan-smiths of an elder age. Vulkan’s hand was evident in it, for it was he who had forged it in millennia past.

The figure joined to it via mental interface uplink did not stir as Argos approached. He was intent on his duty, his eternal duty. Servitors and lesser adepts roamed the area too, consulting cogitators and examining streams of data, or observing monitors and augur arrays.
...
One screen remained. It was the largest and hung above the cannon like a vast piece of obsidian. An image had appeared in the glass-like plane of a huge asteroid, several thousand kilometres away but closing. The zoom adjusted, as if fast-forwarding the rock’s trajectory.
...
Targeting data streamed across the visual in a series of runes and rapidly changing geometric diagrams.

Some of the symbols flashed crimson as the weapon’s crosshairs aligned over the sprawling rock’s core. Adjustments were fed into the machine, subtly altering the prescribed position of impact.


Vulkan's Eye defence laser. Implied range of at least 2000 km or so.

Page 145
Quote:
Three more servitors, in an attempt to intervene, died quickly before Argos mounted the command chair to Vulkan’s Eye and jacked in.

It rebelled at first, whatever machine-spirit possessed the artefact realising the caustic element in its new symbiotic partner. Whatever was driving Argos, the impulse he continued to fight so hard to locate and neutralise, overwhelmed it.

Data streamed into his compromised cortex. Targeting matrices and alternative firing solutions presented themselves in an unfettered blur of rapid information exchange. He and the cannon were now one. The mental interface was complete.

Subconsciously he adjusted the aim of the cannon, a vast and complex procedure that took seconds as it aligned over an immense distance.

A warning flashed up on the screen. The core of the asteroid was highly combustible. A direct hit would result in a chain reaction that would release an explosion of such force and magnitude as would be felt across several planetary regions. Prognosis for its effect on Prometheus verged on catastrophic.


Again preparing to fire on the asteroid..

Page 146
Quote:
Power coils embedded in the weapon’s superstructure reached optimum levels as the artificial scream of capacitors at full tolerance drowned the chamber in ear-shredding noise. No human could bear it; even unaugmented Space Marines would experience massive auditory discomfort. This was a god-weapon, a slayer of monsters.

...
In a shriek of venting energy the defence laser fired. The whickering beam coursed from the barrel at incredible velocity, impelled by semi-nucleonic fusion. Its retort was felt in the resulting shockwave that rattled instrument panels and caused tracts of cabling to quiver.
...
Reaction was instantaneous as a second sun was born briefly in the void-night, its life expectancy cut cruelly short as it went from red dwarf to supernova in a matter of micro-seconds.

Argos perceived none of this – no one did. Only his mind’s eye bore witness.


Vulkan's EYe fires. The interesting thing (aside fromt he "Semi-nucleonic" fusion.. more magic fusion) is the implication that slaved into the weapon Argos has a reaction/perception time measured in micro seconds.

Page 147
Quote:
As the speeder bounced across the Pyre, Val’in struggled to sight down his carbine.
...
Val’in saw them in grainy green luminescence, through the crosshairs of his lasrifle: three arrow-shaped skimmers that mirrored the one they’d broken earlier.


Lasrifle sight.

Page 148
Quote:
The skimmers were protected by some kind of flickering field that masked their true movements and provided unnatural camouflage. Doubtless it was how they’d managed to infiltrate so far into the desert without detection.


DE stealth system.

Page 148
Quote:
The augur slate displayed a wire-mapped version of the upcoming terrain,
the contours described in hexagonal delineation so he could predict when to turn or how close they were to a ravine or ridge. The construct was a basic one but highly accurate.


Land speeder terrain mapping function.

Page 149-150
Quote:
Instantly, the already acrid air became sulphurous. The speeder’s green paintwork started to crack and peel away as it was eroded.
..
The aspirant looked on in grim satisfaction at the sudden screaming, the dark eldar without helmets feeling the acid burn more acutely than the rest. It was unfortunate for them that the skimmer driver was vain enough to eschew any face protection.
...
...Prebian rose from a crouching position, one hand against the roll bar to steady himself. His face was untouched.
...
Even the aspirants, not yet having reached their full apotheosis, only carried minor burn scars.


Space Marine resistance to acid, as well as the scouts.

Page 153
Quote:
Prebian urged them to retreat but was careful not to let them give in to their instincts and flee. They were not yet Scouts, let alone Space Marines; their human predilections might still hold some sway.


Val'in and his other companions (Aspirants) aren't officially scouts.. onyl some measure of their ability.. but they ar still vastly more powerful than a human.

PAge 165
Quote:
"The Unbound Flame in a vessel of flesh and blood? Are you certain of this?" he asked He’stan.
"Nothing is certain, but it is my belief."
...
"How can this be? Vulkan hid his gifts almost ten thousand years ago,
yet Dak’ir has not even earned a single platinum stud."

"Could the primarch have begun a confluence of events that would reach their terminus at this point?"
...
"Could he have foreseen this, somehow known a vessel for the Unbound Flame would
emerge in this time, at this hour of crisis?"
...
"How can we possibly know? At best it is myth, at worst it is maliciously false."


The Salamander leaders are discussing the possibility of one of the Nine treasures Vulkan hid... the speculation is interesting for its implications - if true. One would wonder why he might create such a possibly.. impermanent... artifact. Of course we still dont know if Space MArines are truly immortal or not either so.. it might not be.

As to how he would create it.. it depends alot on the method. I mean if it was something like micromachines or some sort of artificial virus like thing, it might be designed to trigger when conditions/circumstances were right.

If this were true, it would also mean Vulkan had some pretty good precog.

The other interesting tidbit is how Vel'Cona the chief librarian reacts.. he and a good many other Salamanders (like Emek) express skepticism and general lack of superstition compared to most Space MArines (or Imperial citizens for that matter.) - they're rather sophisitcated and pragmatic by 40K standards, despite their emphasis on humanity.

Page 166
Quote:
"I knew you were an optimist, Pyriel, but I did not think you credulous. There are countless prophecies that speak of our father’s return but we cannot trust in any of them to come to pass. We must look to ourselves, not fate ten thousand years old, for our survival."


Again we see a rather distinct lack of supersittion or faith... which is curious. You'd think the Chaplain would disapprove of these ideas, as sensible as they are. Afte rall many Chapters would view their primarch as utterly perfect (think of REd Fury and the response of Dante and others to the idea of experimenting with cloning to produce troops. IF a Primarch couldnt do it, why would an Astartes?)

Page 192
Quote:
His Terminator armour was of an ancient design, a previous incarnation that was just as inviolable but bulkier that operated an extended chainfist and a triple mag storm bolter that was anything but standard.


Interesting yet archaic Terminator armour variant.

Page 206
Quote:
Engaging his shadow field, the archon flew through the carnage, flickering out of existence briefly before resolving again on the other side. To his mild chagrin, the sybarite made it too, albeit trailing smoke, his Ghostplate armour hazed with heat.


DE defenses against exploding vehicle.

Page 213
Quote:
Prebian pulled down the magnoculars and pointed at the ribbed joints between sections of his battleplate.
"Here is where it’s weakest, or if they fight without helm then aim for the head. Remember your rituals of accuracy. Use them." He addressed both aspirants. "Once they’re beyond the void shields, no manportable weapon can breach these walls. They’ll need to climb. You’ll have an advantage then. Keep your sights angled low, closer to vertical the better. A shell that penetrates something not fatal like a shoulder or kneecap will travel further. Hopefully it’ll detonate around something important."

He gestured to his hearts, throat and finally head.

"Killing shots." he explained. "No mercy, no quarter. This is the Great Enemy we fight. A Space Marine, even one corrupted by Ruin, can sustain a lot of punishment."


Weak points in Astartes armor and best places to land kill-shots. The main advantag eof AStartes is that, for the most part, the likely spots are the hardest to hit or penetrate. Chestplates are backed by the fused rib-bone shield and the black carapace as well as solid plates. The head is vulnerable, although the pauldrons can provide obvious protection (probably why they are auto-reactive) and are only vulnerable from certain directions - in addition to the fact the kill spots are small targets, and space Marines despite their size and bulk.. are quite fast.

Page 215
[quote
He gestured to the horizon where the first of the enemy’s guns had begun to fire.
...
]Across the length of the void shields the artillery barrage was like an iridescent lightning storm. The smaller shells created stabbing flashes in the shield’s transparent membrane when they struck, whilst the heavier salvos erupted in vast eye-burning blooms that lingered for seconds afterwards like oil on water.
...
Void shields provided excellent protection against high-velocity shelling and turret-mounted energy weapons but were no barrier to slow-marching infantry. The first waves who’d survived the hell-storm beyond the shield threshold emerged like pale versions of themselves coming slowly into focus.[/quote]

The Sanctuary city voids work alot like SW theatre shields.. stop fast stuff, let slow stuff through. But they won't damage living beings, oddly (interesting considering the warp-baesd nature implied for some shields.)

Also artillery bombarding from the horizon, implied range at least 8 km, probably more.
Page 220
Quote:
So far, the nova cannon still functioned but it was taking longer to
re-power after firing and a section of starboard broadsides was destroyed. Shields in that section were also displaying weakened energy returns. Overall, the voids and displacers were currently at around forty-seven per cent effective.


I wonder what displacers are.. displcacement shields maybe? The displacers may be a subset of the shield systmes which are, in other sources, tied to the warp - or rather, displacing/dumping attacks into the warp. In the context of this novel, the displacers may be a primary line of defense to deflect or divert attacks, backed up by more conventional means of turning them (like a refractor or conversion field - basically absorbing and/or deflecting energy, possibly with heat sink/reradiation effects.)

Page 221
Quote:
Like all void battles, the conflict above Nocturne was slow and ponderous. A captain was not only required to think in terms of multi-dimensional space but he also had to predict and prepare. There was a sense of almost orchestral choreography in its complexity, where each instrument supports every other. In isolation each ship in a battle line was less effective than when combined and deployed in the right order at precisely the correct moment. Foresight was essential. If a hulking cruiser or battle-barge was in the wrong place, it would take a long time to move. Rapid manoeuvres in response to enemy tactics were simply impossible.


The tactics of space combat. The main interesting detail is how that there's a mathematical component - one ship fighting one ship won't do much, but ganging up ships together is how they are effectively defeated/destroyed. This is more along the lines of BFG style reasoning... and it echoes combat of the like you see in, for example, Legend of the Galactic Heroes.

Page 222
Quote:
The lances powered and a salvo of deadly beams raked across kilometres of void-space to the aggressor ship.

"Torpedo spread, wide dispersal," he followed, and the forward tubes were vented. Dac’tyr watched the tacticarium screen and the red icon representing the ship that had ambushed them.

Forward lances registered several strong hits which downed the cruiser’s shields momentarily. It was a calculated shot as the torpedo markers bypassed the overloaded defences and bloomed against the vessel’s armour.


This seems to imply shields might have stopped torpedoes.

Page 222
Quote:
The overhead screen displayed a view of the cruiser, its prow wreathed in flames. Secondary explosions rolled up the hull as incendiaries and ammunition stores cooked off spectacularly.
...
Without shields, the renegade cruiser was a floating powder keg primed for violent ignition.


Volatiles go off inside the ship.

PAge 224-225
Quote:
Still a few degrees to go before the nova cannon could be unleashed. Momentum from the aft engines was picking up. Dac’tyr estimated as long as a minute until they achieved the optimum firing solution.

"Nine per cent, six per cent…"
...
"A few more degrees…"
"‘Starboard shields down." we’re taking damage.
...
Sixty seconds that had felt eternal in their passing finally reached a terminus.


I'm not sure what "a few" degrees is.. but it takes a minute at least to make a turn to bring about the nova cannon.. its at least 4-6 degrees. 6-9% of shielding seems to represent about a minute's worth of sustained bombardment in combat against a vastly greater enemy force (more than double outnumbered, IIRC)

Given two mentions of "a fe wmore degrees" we might figure 30-60 seconds before shields go down (6-9%), which suggests 5-12 minutes or so worth of endurance.

Page 225
Quote:
A coruscating beam thrust from the prow of the Flamewrought and coursed across the void. Hit with the destructive fury of a dying sun, the middle cruiser broke apart and shattered.


Nova cannon hit. Not sure how to take "dying sun" - might pair up with the reference to nova cannon shells in CAdian blood, though.. some sort of implosion device. It's scoring direct hits though, and this isn't the first time in the novel

Page 231-232
Quote:
According to the worshippers of the Omnissiah, the great Martian Machine God, every weapon has a spirit. It is this anima that must be soothed and placated in order for it to function. The seismic cannon possessed an ages-old sentience. It had the perspective of a terrible era when such apocalypse weapons existed that could erase entire races from being. Its spirit was malicious and terrible. It could not be placated, and was only capable of wrath.

The fully charged capacitors released a mournful whine as the fyron powder reacted in devastating molecular fusion. Energy coursed up the vast barrel, only barely contained. Upon reaching the mouth there was a flaring corona of power like a dawning sun that bleached the sky magnesium white.

Then it roared with a voice like crackling thunder and drove a wound deep into the heart of a world.


Several things. One, the 'sentience' of the seismic cannon (and others) is implied to be legit, although that may be hyperbole.

Second, molecular fusion from the magic pixie fyron dust. The Seismic cannon fires. Admittedly, the effects are under-whelming, but we learn later that may have been deliberate.

Page 233
Quote:
Through the forward occuliport he watched the Hell-stalker approach with disgusted awe.
It was immense, dwarfing even the Flamewrought. No weapon he possessed could stop it. Perhaps the nova cannon, if fired at close range and able to hit some vital system, might slow the behemoth down but this was a fleet-killer.
...
Dac’tyr had seen its like before but not for many years. It was a vessel built for crusading, so vast and powerful that it could take on opposing flotillas single-handed and run for centuries before needing to make dock.
..
The vessel was bloated by additional cannons, torpedo tubes and fighter bays. Armour, thickened and re-bolted several times over, fattened its grossly cluttered flanks and underbelly. The Hell-stalker was an ugly thing, wrought for carnage at the sacrifice of speed and manoeuvrability.


REference to direct-fire nova cannon shots it seems. Also it is possible, although rare, for starships to have centuries long operational endurances.

Note the enhancements as wlel. this might become interesting later.

Page 233
Quote:
A pulse of light ignited from the energy flux. It held there, burning for a few seconds, before being unleashed in a single focused beam.

An escort in its path, attempting to come at the Hell-stalker from beneath, was clipped.

The ship disintegrated on contact with the energy lance uncoiling from the seismic cannon. A flash of light filled the Flamewrought’s occuliport and when it faded the ship was gone. A squadron of smaller gunships, coming in the escort’s wake but peeling away at the sight of the larger vessel’s destruction, were swept aside by the blast wave. Their hulls were stripped back in seconds, the metal flayed off layer by layer until only atoms remained.

It hit the Flamewrought too and sent warning icons scrolling across the tacticarium display.


Seismic cannon fires. Destroys and escort, damages battle barge. Damage mechanism.. who the fuck knows.

Page 234
Quote:
They were approaching the edge of the void shielded area in a dispersed formation when the instrumentation across the entire spread overloaded. The torpedo shook violently and Praetor grimaced as a chain of sparks erupted from the console before it cut to black.

A secondary void-tremor slammed into the diminutive boarding vessel, spinning it. The shriek of protesting metal threatened an integrity breach. If that happened they’d survive but be cast adrift like all the other flotsam of space. The seals held but were under huge strain. Tiny fissures, venting minute pressure leaks, webbed the interior hull. Monstrous turbulence seized them and the torpedo trembled like a bunker exposed to a constant ordnance barrage.
...
The void-tremors were subsiding, signalling the return of comms.


This seems to suggest void shield penetration is not a definite thing, even with low velocity. Again it may be there is something of an inverse relationsip between shield penetration and velocity (slower the more liekly).. it may also be there are various tricks or countermeasures that aid in penetrating shields too. This certainly seems to suggest voids can fuck with systems and destroy ships by phyiscal power too even if penetrating.

Kind of interesting since people could walk through teh city voids unharmed earlier, though. But this would explain why they concentrate on weakening or dropping voids before firing torpedoes.. that too may enhance odds of penetration.

Page 244
Quote:
"Don’t you believe in miracles any more, or the possibility of
divine providence?"

He did. Elysius had borne witness to it on the Volgorrah Reef in the Coliseum of Blades when the broken crozius had ignited and killed the wych queen, despite the fact it shouldn’t have been able to. Because of that, he’d lived; because of that, his belief and purpose had been restored.


Example from last book, once again showing how warp/thought interactions can influence technology, much in the way it does for Orks.

Page 254
Quote:
The Techmarine was already preparing the tracked Rapier-mount he’d brought with them. It was archaic, the gun platform hailing from several previous generations of Space Marine warfare. The track bed it rolled across the dunes on was built for heavy terrain and coped well with the rigours of the desert. It had even surmounted the mound of the dead. As Harkane manipulated the hand-held control console a pair of cannon-bearing weapon arms unfolded from the Rapier’s central stock and cycled into position. Drum mags dropped either side of the twin autocannons, belt feeds unfurling like brass-shelled tongues from their breaches.

...
Hard staccato gunfire chug-chanked from the twin autocannons, raking the battlements and turning the air in front of the Scouts into a gritty storm. After a few seconds and several hundred rounds, the Rapier’s muzzle flare died off and the dust cleared.


Remote control rapier platform.. again old fluff from 2nd edition and epic resurrected. This one has autocannon instead of a las-weapon.. a "few seconds" and "several hundreds" rounds, suggesting a ROF on the order of 100 rounds per second.



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-04-25 03:07pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Part 2.. and we're done with Salamanders for now!

PAge 256-257
Quote:
He could see it, feel it, his senses were as alive as they always were but it moved in a way that was alien to him. It did things, performed acts he had not told it to. It was as if his neural synapses had been re-routed and Tsu’gan was no longer in full command of them. His limbs moved now as if of their own volition. He had become like a puppet, dangling helplessly on Nihilan’s strings.
...
Tsu’gan had heard of some psykers that could inhabit the bodies of others,
using their will to impel their actions, effectively wearing them like a suit of battle-plate. Nihilan’s mind shackle was not like that. Tsu’gan could only liken it to the command protocols given to a servitor via their doctrina wafers. It was as if he’d been given a series of pre-set routines and was now bound to follow them.


The "mind shackle" influence. Rather interesting, if it is necron tech.

Page 258
Quote:
Turning his full attention on the other one, Tsu’gan pushed the muzzle of his bolter into the Scout’s chest and pulled the trigger. The close-range burst scorched his armour, turning it black from the discharge flare, but ripped open the neophyte’s torso.

Tsu’gan let him crumple in a bloody heap...


Bolter barrage vs Scout, and scout carapace.

Page 259-260
Quote:
A third took a bracing stance and swung around a heavy bolter to rake the gap between them.

Tsu’gan reached back and seized Rennard. The Marine Malevolent wasn’t expecting the move and by the time he fought it he was being used as a meat shield and struck by mass-reactive shells.

The dense impacts rocked the warrior’s body and Tsu’gan pushed forwards behind it all the way to his opponent, causing horrendous damage to Rennard in the process. At almost point blank the sheer force of the heavy salvo knocked them both off their feet.

Tsu’gan landed hard on his back but was quick to roll the groaning Marine Malevolent off him as he led with his chainsword.
...
Leaving Rennard to bleed out...


Heavy bolter seems to mortally wound Marine Malevolent. Imapct has enough force to knock down Tsu'gan and Marine both. Whehter by impact or explosion or both...

Page 263-264
Quote:
Quote:
He, the low-born of the prophecy, fated as saviour or destroyer, was still the source of Tsu’gan’s distemper. He used it, fashioned his wrath into a spear and thrust its tip through the barrier between his mind and body.
....
He struck at the mind shackle, hacking into it with his gladius and cleaving it
down the middle. But as soon as the blade was withdrawn, the damage was undone. The device had repaired itself.

Tsu’gan sagged in defeat, feeling the numbness in his head again as the tendrils of bondage were remade. His brief rebellion was over. The mind shackle had reasserted its influence.
...
..he thrust again recklessly with his gladius this time and impaled the device. Already the blade was being pushed out, the split it had carved reknitting as living metal flowed over it like sentient mercury.


Tsu'gan manages to get angry (focuseD?) enough to break the mindshackle's control, but when the damage is destroyed it self repairs and reasserts control so long as it is attached. It even repair sagainst the thrust, whjch just goes to show how durable the buggers are and how hard they are to remove... but they can be beaten.


PAge 267-268
Quote:
Nocturne screamed. The earth cracked and like a beast with its flank skewered by the hunter’s spear its blood poured forth.
...
...the sound of tectonic plates breaking and grinding.
Presaged by the runnels of lava spilling out into the plains like fiery arteries, a cavalcade of massive earthquakes wracked the surface of Nocturne. Mount Deathfire bellowed, spewing up a vast pyroclastic cloud that fashioned night from day in a matter of seconds. The air thickened with ash as the red world fought to tear itself apart, thrashing and shouting with the pain of her wounding.
...
Crimson lightning split the smoke-drenched sky; the deep lava glow of the erupting mountain chains was like a firmament of hot amber stars in the blackness.
...
Chasms opened in the lands beyond the Sanctuary Cities. Entire settlements, the tented outposts of nomads, the subterranean domains of cave-dwellers were extinguished in moments. Those not smothered by ash were boiled with intense heat; the few that survived those trials were swallowed by the gaping earth or drowned in hellish lava.

A jagging line in the ground fed all the way to the gate-wall of Hesiod, thick enough to devour a gunship whole without it touching the sides. It struck the void shield first, which shimmered in a few seconds of valiant resistence before capitulating and collapsing. Then it roared on, smashing into the wall itself and sharpening its craggy teeth on the foundation stone of Nocturne. This was the planet’s bedrock, one of the seven places discovered by the earth shamans of old and where the tribal-kings had founded the Sanctuaries that would later become city-bastions.

A fissure rode up the dark obsidian of Hesiod’s boundary. It became a crack, widening farther as each second passed, tearing open the city’s defences like they were naught but clay.


Seismic cannon on Nocturne. It's honestly hard to calc this, and we dont know if its brute force or technobabble or what and to what degre.. the quakes and the planet shaking suggest significant energies, but its hard to estimate really. It's most definitely not instantaneously fatal (no global firestorms, no massive amounts of ejecta, etc.) but given the name of the weapon that may not be the intended effect despite the highly visible beam. It could go either way, and its not really easy to measure the effects of the weapon on any target or what it should be desgned tos top.

The only thing we can really note is how the void shields briefly resist a quake/fissure opening... indicating that voids perhaps provide some measure of structural reinforcement as well as a physical barrier.

the interetsing thing is that its implied this isn't just a temporary thing.. the quaking is the primary and consistent effect.. whether it is just the geological nature or setup of the planet or what... we dont know.

The 'crack" is more than 30 m wide, given a Thunderhawk's wingspan (or length, not much difference iether way).

Page 278
Quote:
Tsu’gan, not the mind shackle, was governing his actions again. He reached
up to touch the alien thing clinging tenuously to his cheek. The skin where it was pinioned was raw, down to the bone; the lava had dissolved it, but it had also severely damaged the mind shackle.
...
He ripped it off his face and took what followed with gritted teeth.

Agony already wracked his entire body, what did a little more matter.

...
Tsu’gan crushed the broken silver beetle and scattered its remains.


Yeah, it seems like is Necron tech.

Page 286-287
Quote:
Several took up crouching positions and shouldered cannons that blazed with a pellucid light. As the bright beams touched Engel’saak’s skin they burned, they actually hurt it.
...
It spewed a stream of corrupting fire from its beak-like maw, engulfing the summit of the dune and the mortals who were first to crest it. Despite their armour they burned, groping and writhing in the ash of their own immolated bodies.


Daemon seems to be harmed by shoulder-fired lascannons (Bazookas) at least to some small degree.. but in turn paritally incinerates another group in their armor (MJ to GJ range at least, depending on how deep/severe and the number.)


PAge 293
Quote:
A squadron of Predator battle tanks, Destructor and Annihilator variants, rumbled along in its wake. Autocannon turrets and side-mounted lascannons riddled the static enemy artillery with armour-busting fire.

A missile battery went up in a blaze of fire and shrapnel. The explosion spread to a heavier ground-to-air Bombard, killing its crew and scuppering the war engine.
...
Ponderous ordnance tanks, the Whirlwinds and Vindicators of Master Kor’hadron’s
Armoury, laid down suppressing fire from a distance. Rocket bursts chewed up the earth in front of the enemy tanks and split their tracks, slowing their response to Tu’Shan’s flanking column. Fat shells spat from the mouths of Demolisher cannons tipped entire vehicles onto their sides where the escaping crew were lit up like burning torches from Tu’Shan’s flamestorm side-mounts.
...
Tu’Shan rolled over the mechanised outriders, smashing the wrecks from his path and grinding foot troops to paste beneath his iron-shod tracks.
In a few short minutes, the artillery was almost totally destroyed and the Dragon Warriors were in retreat.


Armor battle. Of note are:

- autocannon spenetrating along with lascannon fire. Also seem to have simialr range (at least 2 km or so, perhaps.)

Vindicators and Devastators used as artillery fro extended range.. greater than 2 km? Demolisher rounds (rocket assisted I believe) can tip vehicles over (tanks and artillery).. considering we're tlaking tanks that must mass tens of tons.. this is rather impressive, especially since the tanks are still more or less intact enough for crews to get out. To get an idea of the impact involved consider this link which says the following:

Quote:
For a point of reference, 36 kN-s of momentum imparted to an 18-tonne FCS vehicle through its center of mass by a FOOB gun would endow it with 2 m/s of velocity. The kinetic energy of the vehicle would be 36 kJ, sufficient to raise the vehicle about 20 cm off the ground. It should be understood the moment arm between the center of mass of the vehicle and gun trunnions would result in substantial rotational energy imparted to the vehicle as well.


At least 2 m/s x vehicel mass would lift the tank up 20 cm,which might risk flipping it. There is also the Ogorkiwicz limit of 900 n*s/to mentioend elsewhere to consider. No matter how you consider it, it suggests the tanks are pretty damn durable.

The fact they pass over the force within "a fe wminutes" suggests an engagement range between 1.7 and 2.5 km (assuming ~50 kph travel speed for the tanks, and they were moving at top speed, which isn't unreasonable) which meshes with what we know from such vehicles.

Page 294
Quote:
Forged by the fury of the seismic cannon, the bore hole was also wide. It walls were ridged, and descended in molten rings. In the manner of a colossal drill, the energy lance had pierced the many layers of rock and earth between the surface and the magma halls beneath it. Laid open like a wound, Nihilan had but to turn the enemy’s eye away and he could walk into this realm unmolested.


Effect of Seismic cannon. It seems that Nihilan wanted to punch a hole into the surface of the planet to infiltrate the Salamanders homeworld for his own purposes, rather than purely to demolish the world (at least not right off and used his proposed conflict as a diversion.

We don't know how big a hole is put through, but Nihilan is able to use a jump pack to make his passage.. assuming between 20-200 meter diameter for the hole, melted through the crust of the planet (it says it went to the "heart" but I'm assuming it means down to magma - later evidence confirms this and a dpeth of around 40-100 km. For a 20 diameter hole melted.. 13 megatons to 3.2 gigatons for a 200 m diameter hole given the above assumtpions. This does not neccesarily mean much, given that a.) I'm assuming arbitrary hole widths and b.) we dont know if it was all melted or some was vaporized or simply ejected molten, and c.) at least some if not most of the energy was lost in subsidary effects (creating the quakes, disrupting the entire planet, etc.) For all we know this is how the weapon is mean tot work.. it punches a hole straight in while unleashing its effects as seismic tremors throughout the thickness of the crust., or something. Or maybe it is meant to disrupt or agitate the mantle/core to cause the shaking/shock effects. Or it could be purely technobabble.

Page 303-304
Quote:
Auto-slaved weapon systems cycled into violent action as secondary holding tubes split apart as if spring-loaded. Droves of missiles sped into the gun decks, ripping into the makeshift barricades erected by the defenders and tearing apart the grisly torture chains draped across its vaults.
...
Dense explosions chewed up weapon teams and hastily scrambled shield-carriers.
...
Static Rapier turrets added to the carnage of the Deathwind missile arrays, shredding the packed ranks of canoneers who’d hauled tracked multilasers and wheeled heavy stubbers into firing positions.


Salmaanders automated boarding weapons.. boarding torpedo version of deathwind drop pods. Also more static Rapier weapons. Also note the boarding crews are using man portable (tracked/wheeled) multilasers and heavy stubbers, as well as having some sort of boarding shields (full body perhaps) by shield carriers.

Page 304-305
Quote:
Solid shot pattered off the Terminators like metal-cased rain. It turned the deck into a quagmire of spent ammunition and impotent brass shells. A round smacked against Praetor’s left retinal lens and he scowled..


Terminator armor durability.

Page 305
Quote:
Scanning the perimeter, cycling through several light spectra until he found one that provided the cleanest visual feed, he isolated cell leaders that were shouting frantic orders for more men.

Lighting these individuals up on the group tac-display was swift; their deaths to the combined fire of several key Firedrake squads were quicker still


Multi-spectral optical systems, as well as some sort of datalink allowing them to share data and targeting information for coordinating fire.

Page 306
Quote:
The way ahead was clogged with the grubby remains of bonded-slaves. It chafed to raise arms against once-loyal servants to the Throne but madness and hell had rendered them beyond redemption. Execution was a mercy. "Fire to cleanse the fore." he added.

Vo’kar and the other heavy flamers unleashed a furious blaze that turned the sundered corpses into ash.

Slowly, but with purpose, the Firedrakes drove over it and expanded their cordon. Superheated bone cruched to powder underfoot.


Heavy flamers (unknown number) cremate unknown number of corpses.. enough that it can block the path for terminator armor, at least, and cremation is VERY energetic.

PAge 308
Quote:
Entire battalions of armsmen had fallen to his spear and gauntlet.


Many battalions of armsmen on board the flagship (Battleship/cruiser grade.)

Page 313
Quote:
A narthecium medical kit came with the armour. It carried various
items, coagulant gels, counterseptic, rapid-ossifying sprays, a bio-scanner, chem-ampoules with liquid nitrogen and phials of anaesthetic. Of much higher grade and concentration than human compounds, his medi-kit was designed to prolong and preserve life; none of it was particularly useful in the art of killing.


Apothecary gear.

Page 314
Quote:
During his tenure as part of the
apothecarion, Emek had done extensive research into the myriad alien races that plagued mankind and knew the thing that was stalking him.
..
Xeno-taxonomers would classify the creature: mandrake.


Xenos research and Xeno-taxonomy. That seems to suggest ignorance is not quite as widespread as it is thought. Information is controlled and restricted, without a doubt, but that doesn't mean people are completely stupid and ignorant. I mean fuck, Even guardsmen can be taught to read and write.

Page 314
Quote:
There, he had augur arrays and visual-spectra devices
that could detect the mandrake. He also had a cohort of battle-servitors that could be tasked with its execution or at the very least deter or delay it.


Apothecary defense systems. Emek is confident they could cope with a Mandrake's stealth.

Page 316
Quote:
The reductor was a drilling implement attached to his gauntlet. It was noisy but sharp enough to cut
through ossmodula-hardened bone.
...
... he slid out the surgical knife instead. The shuck it made slipping from its sheath sounded loud in the gloom. It was a broad-bladed, saw-edged thing forged of mono-molecular steel that could cut toughened Space Marine flesh with ease.


More surgical gear. It really shows you what is needed to get through a Space Marines' body to his organs.

Page 318-319
Quote:
Attached to the neck was a small atomiser that Emek
triggered like a sidearm. The liquid contents coned out in a fine spray, vaporising instantly on contact with the air into a pellucid white gas which then crystallised.
The mandrake shrieked and recoiled as the liquid nitrogen compound reacted with its skin. Parts of its body started to freeze solid as it sought the succour of its shadow realm, anchoring it in reality.


Interesting means of neutralising a Mandrake's abilities.. if you can catch him off guard close in.

Page 319
Quote:
A thunderous retort, made louder in the narrow corridor, deafened him and the mandrake disappeared in a welter of flesh, bone and shadowed strips.


A bolter.

Page 323
Quote:
Shard rounds, alien and venomous, impacted against the rosarius
field the Chaplain arrayed around him. Like blind insects striking armaglas, the barbs from the dark eldar’s chattering rifles fell dead at his armoured feet.


The Rosarius seems to provide a slowing effect to stop the rounds completely, rather than simply deflecting, destroying or displacing them.

Page 324
Quote:
Elysius spied the hulking form of Master Argos at the foremost barricade. They were automated shields, a little over waist height. There were several Tarantula and Rapier emplacements slaved to the defence too.


Salamander defences.

Page 324
Quote:
"There are another five hundred metres of shielding I can activate down this ventral corridor"


500 meters thick, wide.. what?

Page 324
Quote:
The mighty forge-ship he referred to
was one of Vulkan’s artefacts, restored to the Chapter in an elder age. Without it, the Salamanders’ capacity to fashion artificered armour and weapons would be greatly reduced.


The Chalice of Fire artifact seems to be the explanation why there is so much high end gear for the Salamanders and why they can afford to destroy (rather than recycle) power armor with their dead, as well as outfit their officers/heroes and their Veterans with such high end gear (artificer armor, melta pistols, etc.)

One would think that this would provide a useful industrial resource. The Salamanders could make quite a profit they can use to support their world if they supplied other Chapters.

PAge 324
Quote:
"Amongst other relics, like the Nocturne’s Hammer"


Reference to the oldest rhino in the Imperium. Crusade/HEresy era.


Page 327
Quote:
"You’re bleeding to death. Even your Larraman cells cannot regenerate fast enough whilst your body is being exerted like this."


Unsurprisingly, limits to Marine endurance.

Page 331-332
Quote:
"It’s a massive dose of adrenaline. Enough to kill a lesser being, but just the right amount to keep you
conscious long enough so you can help me kill these bastards."
...
"in a few minutes it will overload your nervous system and send you into anaphylactic shock. Your body will then compensate for this trauma by putting you into suspended animation coma."


To be fair, Ba'ken is still recovering from the massive amount of injury he suffered in the last book, so he's not quite up to full strength, and exerting himself now is leaving him vulnerable.

Page 332-333
Quote:
A raking bolter shot from Ba’ken cut down another of the abominations. Its bloated torso ruptured with multiple detonations, spearing its closest brethren with bone shrapnel as its chest cavity exploded.
...
Emek decapitated a third with a headshot, painting the walls either side of it with gore and brain matter.


Bolter and bolt pistol vs DE grotesques.

Page 333
Quote:
Without the compensators built into his power amour, he had to brace himself as he racked an alternator slide and switched to full auto.

This burst would likely expend all of his ammunition in a single stroke. With one hand under the barrel to steady it, he triggered his bolter and engulfed the corridor in a storm of exploding shellfire. Midway through the salvo, he roared in concert with his weapon and for a few glorious seconds they were of one voice, one purpse. A split second before the hard chank of metal announced the chamber was empty, he lifted the barrel.


Given a 20-30 shot magazine for a boltgun and assuming it is full (it isn't but we don't know how full/empty it is) it takes 2-3 seconds to empty it. Meaning 10-15 rounds per second ROF is the upper limit for this bolter, and it could be lower.

Also Marine bolters are designed to be wielded in power armor, due to the built in compensators and such (which would seem to be in full armour, as earlier it is noted Ba'ken is only wearing his arm and leg stuff.

Page 340
Quote:
Another fired a heavy bolter attachment but a bright flare of actinic energy arrested
the salvo before it could hit him.

Elysius was shielded by his rosarius and had interceded between servitor and Salamander.


Rosarius stops a heavy bolter salvo.

Page 342
Quote:
A burst of bolter fire deflected off the archon’s blade, dismissed like an insect.


DE Archon can deflect bolt fire with his sword like a JEdi.

Page 354
Quote:
A plasma bolt struck the skull boss of his shield and rocked him. Servos protesting in his leg armour, he pounded into the shell storm being unleashed by the renegades.


Terminator storm shield takes plasma gun blast, Terminator armour shrugs off sustained bolter fire.

I'll note that through much of the series, the Salamanders use their storm shields as a weapon -apparently either the edges are sharpened or the powerfield/force field enhancements give them a cutting edge.

Page 354
Quote:
Brother Or’vo took a lascannon beam in the chest, which felled him.


Lascannon hit manages to fell Terminator.

Page 356
Quote:
The room was immense, a vast octagonal chamber set with massive
spinning fans that pushed ice-laced air into a web of generatoria far above. Halfway up the long tunnel, industrial jets squirted gouts of liquid nitrogen into the manufactured atmosphere. Upon contact with the air, the jet streams vaporised and veneered the lower sections of the generatoria in a chemical frost.

Praetor could think of only one thing that would require such excessive methods to cool it. Above them was the apocalypse weapon.


The reactor cooling systems for the seismic cannon.


Page 356
Quote:
The edges of the octagonal chamber were largely flat and made of metal. There was maybe just over a hundred metres to the mesh underfloor of the chamber above.
...
By mag-locking their boots to the walls, they could march all the way to the top.


Interesting that Terminators can walk up the side of a battleship for 100 metres, against the pull of gravity. Later they mention suspensors which no doubt can help, but this is still a damn impressive feat.


Page 358-359
Quote:
It was immense, easily the size of a Land Raider, possibly bigger. The lower half
of its body consisted of six insectoid limbs, engineered by some insane techpriest. Mechanised parts met daemon flesh in an unholy fusion where its abdomen and torso joined. Here it was red as blood-fire, sinous and over-muscled. It was not unlike a grim, daemonic centaur, only more horrific, an engine merged with the physical essence of a warp-fiend.
...
Pipes
jutting from its back vented hell-smoke in sympathetic empathy of its tangible anger.
...
The shells seemed to ripple against its skin as if striking a molten barrier that was robbing them of all potency.
...
"Use your blades and hammers."
...
He’stan unleashed a burst from his storm bolter. Like all of the Forgefather’s trappings, this was no ordinary weapon. It was blessed by the hand of Vulkan and fashioned to smite the denizens of eternal hellrealms.

"It is a creature from the Soul Forge." he said. The hallowed shells from his first salvo detonated brightly against the monster’s daemonic torso. The wounds were white against its hell-red flesh and flared with a righteous flame, but did little to slow let alone kill the thing. "It is a Soul Grinder."
...
It lashed out, snapping a warrior in two before it seized upon another with a hideous
mechanised claw and butchered him. Heavy rounds thundered from a cannon fused into one of its arms, chewing up another of the indomitable First.


Soul Grinder. SEems to be alot like a Defiler. Claw and arm mounted gun, skin enhanced/resistant to bolter fire (akin to some sort of shielding), but more vulnerable to blades.

Also He'Stan Vulkan has a special Vulkan-descended storm bolter - perhaps one of the Primarch's old weapons, but not one of the Nine itself. It has a tangilbe (sanctified) effect on the enemy. I'd guess either the rounds are specially blessed by a Chaplain or something, or the collective Nocturne/Salamander faith in the wepaon being from Vulkan is so great that it conveys automatic sanctity (Another human version of the "Red ones go faster" effect)

Page 360
Quote:
He’stan helped return him to his feet. The Forgefather was immensely strong but it was only for the fact of the Tactical Dreadnought Armour’s suspensors that he was able to lift the prone sergeant at all.


Terminator armour has suspensors, helping to offset the mass/weight of armor.

Page 360
Quote:
They’d reached just over fifty metres, when three more ancillary hatches opened.


Height of the Termiantor forces over He'stan and the soul grinder. Important shortly.
Earlier it was mentioned they were 100 metres below their target, but we know for sure they are 50 metres.

PAge 362
Quote:
He’stan saw one of the climbing Firedrakes fall. His brother hit the ground thunderously like a comet, hurt but not dead.


50 (maybe 100) meter fall seems to injure Terminator, but he survives. Possibly due to suspensors (mentioned later)

Page 363
Quote:
A stream of warp flame burst from the Soul Grinder’s mouth, forcing He’stan to dive aside or be immolated by it. He barely had time to spring to his feet when a second burst engulfed the deck behind him.
The metal squealed and spat as it was malformed under the warp fire’s terrible influence.


Soul Grinder warpflame attack.

Page 365
Quote:
She grasped the pyramidal object An’scur had given her and hurriedly activated the runes.
...
As the dark light burned Lyythe’s wretched hands into skeletal claws she enjoyed a final, tragic moment of absolute agony before the concealed void mine exploded and her soul was cast to the feet of ravening daemons.


DE versoin of vortex weaponry. Assumign they can still make them, they're unsurprisingly more sophisticated than Imperial equivalents.

Page 366
Quote:
A reaper canon spat out from the shadowy throng, catching the veteran sergeant in the chest and hurling him down.

Before he hit the ground, Praetor knew it was over.
...
It was numbing and he barely felt the jolt as he smashed into the deckplate,
buckling it.
With a tenacious death grip, Praetor held on to his shield and hammer.


Praetor survives a fall from a similar height. Again suspensors may play a role.

Page 369
Quote:
Unwilling to pause in his manic fusillade, he didn’t see the vaulted ceiling
glowing red and the burning line etched in the kilometres-thick metal.


Da'kir as the Ferro Ignis arrives. I'm not really sure how to take the "kilometres thick" metal thing. On one hand that seriously seems to imply the ship is so massive it has several km of armor plating and yet... no ship in 40K except maybe fortress monasteries could have that. I'm guessing it references to how far to the external hull there is, with all the systems, walls, armor plating/structural reinforcement, bulkheads, etc. between that point and this. I'd guess maybe 10% of that is armor, which is still alot (hundreds of metres) but also recall it was noted that the armor plating on this ship was "several times" greater so its not dramatically different from other ships (and we know extenral hull plating from the Rogue trader RPG and Black cRusde that hull armor is tens of metres thick easily.) Hell ven assuming 1% armor that's still 20 metres thick, which suggests something like 8-10 meter thick armor is normal. However you look at it, 40K hull armor is more than just a couple metres thick despite what some people say (unsurprising when Titans, which are nothing compared to starships, also have metres thick armor)

The other interesting detial is that this puts some lower limits on ship size. We know the ship is at least 2-3 km across or tall, and given usual Navy ship length/width ratios (assume length is 4-5x width) you might get anywhere from 4 to 15 km in length. It seems to suggest from "top to bottom." Given the seismic cannon is implied to be placed in a way similar to other prow weapons (EG nova cannon) the ship is probably about 2-3 km "tall", plus or minus the few hundred metres below they may have had to cross (anothe reason I'm loathe to assume we're talking solid kilometres thick hull..)
This means the ship could be 2-3 km "tall" at the prow, but easily several times that in width given strike cruiser/battle barge design typically (It is mentioned interchangably that the ship could be a strike cruiser or battle barge, I am guessing more towards the latter since it is noted to be bigger/more powerful than even the Salamanders battle barges.) Given the "height/length" ratios of a Barge here, my earlier estimate is off by quite a bit.. I'd guess Length is ~8x the height, so we're talking more like 16-25 km length. Width of the ship is maybe 2-3 times the height.

Page 372
Quote:
"All crew, as we are flung headlong into the yawning darkness, heed my words. That sound you hear, the chiming of metal upon metal, the shriek of adamantium steel and the lofty thunder beyond our walls is the anvil."


Starship made of 'Adamantium steel' - so I guess you can alloy with adamintium or other materials.

Page 373
Quote:
He consulted the tacticarium display but the readings were indecipherable. The sheer speed of the flame spear was incredible. It was like no spacefaring vessel he’d ever seen, but then this wasn’t a ship; it wasn’t a ship at all.
...
The flaming spear widened at its tip, spreading into a fiery blade that burned in the void despite the lack of oxygen. Brighter than the sun, it struck the Hell-stalker with the force of a god and sheared it in half.
...
First Praetor felt an overwhelming sensation of heat and then he saw a crackling wall of flame. It passed through the hull of the enemy warship, cleaved through it like a welding torch cutting through metal
...
Depressurisation came in the fire’s wake, the chill of the void rushing into the shaft as the Hell-stalker’s prow simply fell away and
parted from the rest of the ship.


Super-psyker Da'Kir just sliced through the ship's prow (from the ceiling to bottom I'd guess)

Page 377
Quote:
It was a jagged spike of broken ship’s spine, naked struts jutting
from the wound like broken ribs. It had been severed, and molten edges of the metal superstructure suggested it was something phenomenally hot that had done it.


Seems like Da'kir melted his way through the hull. Shows what a high end super-psyker can do (although one that is, IMHO probably even more than alpha-class.. meaning it is even more uncommon. This is far and above beyond what a mere Librarian can do.)

We also learn (and confirmed later) Da'kir's action prett ymuch decimated a good chunk of the enemy escort fleet, either directly or indirectly (from the Hell-stalker blowing up for example).

Page 379
Quote:
Then he saw the wrecks. Ship after enemy ship littered the void, burned and blackened by incendiary fire, broken and bleeding. They’d emerged into utter carnage. It had swung the favour of the battle to Dac’tyr’s fleet and the Salamanders.

Fugis didn’t need to see it to know the spear of flame he’d caught a glimpse of earlier had done this, had reduced an enemy flotilla to rags.


As I said, Da'Kir pretty much decimated the entire fleet singlehanded.

Page 379
Quote:
Nihilan cycled through his optical spectra until he found a filter that provided the cleanest visual acuity.


More multi-spectral autosenses.

Page 379-380
Quote:
One scrape could puncture a vent, disable his jump pack and send him falling to oblivion in the fuliginous depths below.

The seismic cannon had cut a wound into the molten core of Nocturne, close to its heart.
...
He increased the burn in his engines, thumbing just a little more power into the vents. Then he waited silently in the shadows, jump pack eating fuel with a dulcet burr, keeping its wearer aloft and relatively still.


Nihilan is using a jump pack to traverse the way to his destination. The Seismic cannon (true intention) cut a hole to the "molten heart" of Nocturne - again which suggests to the mantle rather than the core, to my thinking.

Page 380
Quote:
Soon, it would swell and burst. Mount
Deathfire would crack and open. She would bleed to death and drown the world in hellfire.


Nihilan ponders on the fate of the world.

Page 382
Quote:
‘Slay him!’ Nihilan snapped, backing off to protect the book.
Ramlek broke into a loping run, power axe swinging. Pyriel threw the hulking warrior aside with a burning column that spiralled with the heads of chasing serpents and crashed the Dragon Warrior into the chamber wall. He tried to get up but Pyriel hit him again with a blazing hammer that left Ramlek’s armour cracked and trailing smoke. Out cold, the Dragon Warrior didn’t rise again.


Pyriel disables Ramlek. Assuming a 500-1000 kg Astartes in armour (Ramlek seemed kind of large and hulking really) we're talking thousands of kg*m/s worth of momentum exerted, at least. Probably several times that if not more given Ramlek must have been sent flying and struck hard enough to get knocked out (a'la spear throwing scene for ST armor.)

Page 383
Quote:
One of the black darts had bitten through his armour. Pyriel imagined it moving
parasitically through his body, intent on his heart. It wasn’t real, though, just a psychic manifestation. His mind made it real. His will alone could excise it like a splinter from the wound. Gasping another knife-edged breath, he pushed the dart out.


Interesting telepathic/illusion based attack.

Page 383
Quote:
Though he tried to deny it, the ‘sending’ from Prometheus had weakened him.


Possible limits on the Gate of Infinity. Seems to suggest hundreds if not thousands of km range limit.

Page 385
Quote:
"I liked the psy-hammer, by the way. It’s not easy to put Ramlek down."


The psychic/TK attack mentioned above.

PAge 390
Quote:
Gunning their engines, a pair of Predators went to engage it, turrets booming. Autocannon shells exploded harmlessly off the daemon’s scaled hide. In retaliation, it spewed a torrent of warp fire that reduced the tanks to molten slag and their crew to ash.


2 Predators melted down to slag, crews ash (a couple GJ per crew, maybe 4-6 crew total for both?) and to 30-40 ton predators melted (assuming iron is ) 60-80 GJ.. so call it maybe 60-100 GJ at least from an incrnated Daemon's (in dragon form) warp attack.

Page 390
Quote:
..an armoured Rhino strayed too close to the daemon and was immolated. Another, slewing on its tracks to drive clear, was smacked aside with a sweep of the creature’s tail. It rolled, spitting fire and frag before crashing to a halt on its roof.


Sending an armoured 30 ton rhino flying with a tail sweep form the daemon.

Page 391
Quote:
Tu’Shan grimaced as the daemon-dragon smacked into the Land Raider’s hull. He got off a desultory burst from the pintle-mounted storm bolter before the battle tank pitched onto its nose and the Chapter Master was thrown clear of its negligible protection.
...
The dragon-daemon had crushed the front of the Promethean, squeezed its armour in its talons like it was parchment and left it buring


Daemon lifts up on its nose and crushes LAnd Raider. A comment on its size and strength.

Page 393
Quote:
Vel’cona’s lightning shield saved the Chapter Master’s life. It flickered and spat as the creature’s warp essence touched it, reacting like a refractor field does when exposed to rain. There was a hiss of static then the stink of ozone and the shield collapsed.

Not waiting for a riposte, the Master Librarian threw a psychic storm against the daemon, feeding arcs of jagged, azure lightning into its neck and torso. It was badly burned. Fat slabs of scale hung off the daemon by immaterial threads and an ugly, black scar marred the bloody shimmer of its hell-skin..

...
Vel’cona thrust his open hand towards the ground. As
he brought his hand back up, stiffened into a grasping claw, the surface of Nocturne was wrenched up with it.

Tendrils of dust and debris trailed off a vast, metres-thick wall of earth. For a few seconds even the daemon-dragon was obscured from sight. The clatter of crumbling stone presaged its return as the creature crashed through the elemental barricade.
...
Vel’cona dug deeper, dredged up the bedrock Hesiod had been founded on. With a psychic sculptor’s hand he fashioned a prison of sanctuary stone around the creature, encasing it within the fortified heart-rock
of Nocturne.

It barely held.


Chief Librarian Vel'Cona's powers. The shield is interesting, and the storm suggests severe burns but.. its hard to calc because we don't know the daemon's exact height. It's much taller than a Space Marine (2-3 metres), and probably taller than either a Predator or a Land Raider, but its not massive (EG not titan scale) maybe 5-10 meters.

Assuming 5 meters and 4th or so degree flash burns (lets say 100-400 j sq cm given the effect on its skin. Given a 5x2 m daemon we migth e talking 10-40 MJ at least.. not impossible given some of the cremations in other sources.

Also its abilitiy to raise "metres" thick" barriers to encase daemon. Assuming 5 m tall, 2 m thick walls 2 m wide.. Vel-cona amassed some 180 tonnes of earth around the daemon in a matter of seconds. to imprison it. Not neccesarily a direct sort of TK, but it is still impressive in the ability to exert force.

Page 394
Quote:
"Give it a volley of the broadside laser batteries."

A few minutes later and the already damaged enemy frigate was no more.


A already damaged frigate survives several minutes of broadside fire from a Battle barge.

Page 394-395
Quote:
Despite Dac’tyr’s best efforts, the Salamander fleet had been facing certain defeat, outnumbered and outgunned by a superior foe.
...
A trailing torch of fire had intervened. Everything changed in the space of a few heartbeats. It had torn the enemy flagship into pieces and crippled several others.


Confirmation of what happened earlier. we also learn that some of the enemy ships actually fled.

Page 397-398
Quote:
"Have the gunners power the prow-lances." he said, wiping a line of blood from his mouth, "and prepare a firing solution to the surface."
"That’s an orbital strike, my lord."
...
A miniature sun was born in the bloody sky above them, magnesium white and growing by the second.

Static electricity crackled the air, presaging a flurry of dry lightning strikes. Vel’cona fended off one with his outstretched palm; another he earthed to his force staff.

...
Together they reached the wreckage of the Land Raider as a tiny targeting beam pierced the oily clouds above.
..
In less than a minute the lance strike would hit the surface.


Preparations for the orbital lance strike. Apparently its quite visible, and involves a visible targeting beam (for precision) but takes a minute or more to prepare. Tu'Shan intends to use a Land Raider for protection.

Page 398-399
Quote:
Lorkar shouted for his warriors to take cover as the orbital lance strike came down. It hit the earth with an ear-splitting boom, the shock wave billowing out as far as the ravine where the Marines Malevolent sheltered. It was bright, incredibly bright and the after-flare was slow to recede from the sergeant’s retinal lenses.
...
"Ordnance, fired from deep space." he asserted.
...
"Cursory wreckage analysis suggests he was thrown by the blast. Currently, he is trapped beneath a section of a battle tank that has flipped onto its side."
...
"The lance strike has isolated him from the rest of the fighting. I can detect no heat signatures or electronic returns within five hundred metres."


Effects of the lance strike. It probably didn't lsat (fireball wise) for more than a few seconds or less, and its implied the blast radius (nonlethal) was not much greater than 500 m or so. That would point to low megaton at best, and probably not much more than single kiloton range. Especially since Tu'Shan wasn't that far from the point of impact yet didn't get engulfed in a fireball. This did not do much to the daemon, sadly.

Page 403
Quote:
From a prone position, the warrior was upside down and had drawn
a short combat blade.
...
Lorkar thumbed the activation stud on his grip and the
combat blade buzzed into motion.


Vibro-weapon again.


PAge 404
Quote:
An unpleasant musk escaped into the air as this second layer of plate was revealed. It was pitted, rusted at the edges and fused into Lorkar’s flesh.

Tu’Shan had seen the tainted armour of traitors before. He knew how it could mould to the wearer, become a symbiotic part of them.


Mutation and corruption being an obvious, tangible thing any blunt Space Marine can recognize. Unless you're a Soul Drinker, then its a holy blessing.

Page 405
Quote:
Lorkar rammed his vibro-blade into the Chapter Master’s armour,
between the pectoral and shoulder guard. Tu’Shan cried out as the churning teeth met flesh.


Vibro-blade seems to have chainsword-like qualities here, depending on what oyu take "churning" to mean.

Page 405
Quote:
feeding a jolt of power into the hammer and severely
electrocuting the Techmarine who was flung back several metres and landed in a quivering, smouldering
heap.


Tu'Shan's hammer seems to be a powerweapon. In adition to the blast effect it seems to inflict severe electrical burns... high kj to low MJ maybe? That'd be roughly consistent with similar weapons like the Gauntlet sof Macragge (1-8 MW there)

Page 410
Quote:
Emerging from the fading darkness, Vel’cona fed a lightning arc through his palm that struck Nihilan in the shoulder. The Master Librarian called down a second strike that cracked his chestplate then a third, hammering the Dragon Warrior as he tried to rise.

Nihilan earthed a fourth bolt with his staff, using it like a lightning rod. He was halfway to his feet when Vel’cona clenched a fist to split the ground beneath him. Foundering in the cracks, Nihilan threw a wayward spit of hell-flame that the Master Librarian repelled easily with a dismissive gesture.


Lightning and earthquake attacks from Vel'Cona.

Page 411
Quote:
Nihilan summoned a lance of darkness that would strip his old master’s soul from his flesh and leave the rotting husk in its wake.

Vel’cona threw up a spear of his own, an arcing line of flame that met the blackness of Nihilan’s warp sorcery and held it.
...

The vying psychic conjurations expanded as more power was fed into them
by their wielders, becoming a miniature event horizon that slowly filled the vault and everything in it.

Within the boiling morass of warp energy, Vel’cona percieved his avatar as a roaring drake, thick-scaled and tusked; whereas Nihilan had fashioned one of the dragon-kind, a blood-red, winged beast scarred by old wounds. The monsters clashed, gouging and clawing, tearing hunks of scale and flesh with their fangs, giving physical form to the mental struggle.

Slowly, the drake began to assert its dominance. It grew larger even as the dragon diminished.


Psychic duel. It takes on interesting connotations with the "Avatars" forming, reminsiicent of the psychic duel ravenor engaged in in his series.

Page 413
Quote:
There was a gaping chasm in Pyriel’s torso from where the soul lance had gutted him. Though the hell-fire had cauterised the wound, it had left it black with taint and destroyed the majority of his organs.


Nihilan's soul lance attack that defeated Pyriel. Cauterisation, but it totally defeated a (weakened) PYriel's attacks. Destroying most fo the organs and cauterisation suggests severe large scale burning, thorugh the torso.. easily tens if not hundreds of kj for those effects alone. I'm really not sure it has to be super powerful either beyond a few tens or a few hundreds of kj... it's not just raw power that always helps a psychic duel, it can also be skill (The speed. precision or focus with which attacks are delivered.. the difference between a thrown dagger or a fired arrow and a hammer or a wrecking ball.)

Page 419
Quote:
More than a hundred sentiences crowded inside him. Their animae and subsumed memories were fuelling him. He knew he was no Unbound Flame, whatever that even was. He was not a relic given the form of flesh. He was a conduit.

Upon the throne of Scoria, Gravius had held onto the psyches of his former brothers and it had driven him to insanity, burned him from the inside out. But Gravius was no psyker, his mind was untrained and unready for the burden of legacy he placed upon it. He was merely a vessel, a means of harbouring that power until the right host came along. Dak’ir was the Ferro Ignis, the Fire Sword, and he had emerged from the ashes of war to smite Nocturne’s enemies.


Honestly, I'm not surprised if he really wasn't one of the Nine, but I find it hard to figure out exactly what he is, and if this was intentional, or what part the eating of Gravius' gene-seed had to do with it. Is it some pecularity of Salamander physiology? Some sort of secret link to Vulkan? Tapping some sort of psychic gestalt to enhance his own abilities? Hard to say. It's also hard to say whether this was intentional, or if it ties into the prophecies. Perhaps Vulkan, for example, was aware of the dangers of this sort of thing and the prophecies were meant as some sort of (lousy) warning.

The "conduit" comment, I suspect, is important, but what he is a conduit for I don't know. Since he's a psyker, this makes me think that perhaps he is subject to some sort of possession, but not one where he is actually "taken control" of... more a kind of soul-binding or "sorcerous" tap. Given the fears of Vel'cona (and Tsu'gans reactions) this seems quite possible.

One idea is that Vulkan is dead and Da'kir is a conduit/avatar for his soul, although Vulkan was never a psyker. Alternately (and more liekly) this is a variation of the tapping of the 'human god" powers.. a miracle of sorts, akin to what the Sororitas do perhaps brought on by the manifest belief in prohpecies among the inhabitants of Noctrune.

Another interesting thing lies in Gravius consuming the geneseed of his fellow astartes.. it all seemed to congregate in his own gene-seed, which included "soul" and memories - eg the mental/psychic aspects - of Gravius' battle brothers. IOt tends to lend an interesting psychic angle to Space Marine's capabilities, and an interesting spin on the "genetic legacy" beliefs towards gene-seed (eg a Space Marine lives on in his gene-seed.) It may even suggest some sort of evolutionary aspect - the abilities/traits of prior Astartes passes itself on (in some measure) to a successor. That would be a sort of mutation, and we know gene seed invariably mutates, but this may not be wholly bad.

PAge 421-422
Quote:
The fire that had coursed through him was dying out. Just a few stray
embers remained. His time as the conduit for whatever power had infused him was ending.
...
Dak’ir was about to rise when he felt a surge of heat within him. A fiery core of something he had thought extinguished was suddenly reignited. Despite his injuries, he struggled to his feet.
...
Life, despite everything, would continue on this hell-world.

Unless…

Dak’ir tried to harness the flame, to bring it under his control, but it was beyond him now.
...
He needed to sever the conduit at its source. He was that source.
...
He wanted to call out even as the fire around him began to grow. First it
would infuse his fingertips, then it would wrap around his body, then burn the desert, burn so hot the sand would turn to glass. The fire would expand, more destructive than a payload of atomics. It would burn and consume, overwhelming the cities until all that remained was ash.


Da'kir's powers are growing manifest again, and this time (it seems) he cannot control it. This puts some interesting connoations on his destruction of the Hell-stalker and some of the fleet, since it is reasonable to assume what he pulled off before was a maximum power feat - EG the same power that has the potential to devastate nocturne is of the same magnitude as the power that destroyed the flagship and escorts. evne if it was only a fraction of that (1/10 or 1/100th) it is still damn impressive (it didnt totally vaporize the ship after all, it only punched a hole through the hull.)

On the other hand, it is a psychic attack, and despite the brute force references to it earlier it's hard to totally dismiss the technobabble nature. Or to pin down exact yield (Nocturne is a Death world, after all) - I suspect if I tried some would object anyhow, but I still think its potentially teraton level events at least to demolish the prow of a battle barge and take out some portion of the fleet. That's not unreasonable given what we know form other sources, either (EG millions of tons worth of ordnance exchanged in opening salvos in Daemon hunter.)

That aside, we get more comment on the "conduit" nature.. it seems that the gestalt-thing of Gravius' gene-seed (genetic legacy?) - which may suggest Da'Kir has consumed something of the souls of other Salamanders - a vaguely daemonic angle to things, but it would explain his greatly expanded abilities and his acting as a "conduit" in a way, especially if he's drawing on the knowlege/souls of all those past Salamanders - perhaps through them the psychic gestalt/essence of all the salamanders before him, or something like that.

Either way it's quite clear that Da'Kir is merely the portal (albeit a powreful one) for something much greater. Not unlike the Thorian belief in finding a suitable host for the Emperor, or the super-psyker from Ian Watson's short story "warped Stars".

PAge 438
Quote:
He aimed the bolter’s muzzle at the pilot’s head and removed it with a single explosive shot.


Astartes decapitation, bolter-style.



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-05-02 10:27pm
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4568
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
I'm still trying to decide whether Da'kir and Tsu'gan killing each other after saving Nocturne was brilliance or a cop-out.



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-05-03 07:44am
Offline
Redshirt
User avatar

Joined: 2010-06-09 08:23pm
Posts: 28
Location: Ireland
Ahriman238 wrote:
I'm still trying to decide whether Da'kir and Tsu'gan killing each other after saving Nocturne was brilliance or a cop-out.

Tsu'gan didn't die, though. He survived at least up until crashing the Marines Malevolent thunderhawk into that station's landing pad.

Edit: didn't die by Da'kir's hand, I mean.



Victory and Death are the twin sons of War ~ Saint Sabbat

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-05-03 01:31pm
Offline
Emperor's Hand
User avatar

Joined: 2002-07-07 03:03am
Posts: 7143
Location: Singapura
Quote:
"It’s a massive dose of adrenaline. Enough to kill a lesser being, but just the right amount to keep you
conscious long enough so you can help me kill these bastards."
...
"in a few minutes it will overload your nervous system and send you into anaphylactic shock. Your body will then compensate for this trauma by putting you into suspended animation coma."


This part is contradictory, since adrenaline is used to treat anaphylactic shock.

Its hard to see what else it could mean though, since anaphylactic shock refers to shock induced by an allergic reaction, so, the Space Marine body had to be responding to something outside of trauma and etc.

My biology is much more spotty, but I'm quite sure adrenaline in and as of itself doesn't interact directly with the nervous system.



Let him land on any Lyran world to taste firsthand the wrath of peace loving people thwarted by the myopic greed of a few miserly old farts- Katrina Steiner

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-05-03 01:49pm
Offline
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 22421
Space Marine biology is so messed up I wouldn't be surprised if they can literally eat horseshoes and shit nails. We know they don't need sleep, do need all kinds of bizarre mineral nutrients, have bones made of god-knows-what, have kidney-equivalents that can scour virtually any known poison out of their system quickly in reasonable doses...

It would hardly be surprising to me if they're allergic to adrenaline. They probably use some other chemical in its place on their own, adrenaline being insufficiently MANLY KNOW NO FEAR enough for them or whatever.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-05-05 12:37pm
Offline
Sith Apprentice
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-01 05:03pm
Posts: 14059
Space Marines apparently require all sorts of chemical modification to keep at their peak (and that doesn't include some of the various chemicals, stimms, battle drugs, or whatever their power armour may or may not inject to enhance performance in combat - varies by author.)

Then again nothing says this has to be taken seriously if there is a contradiction. People (even Space Marines) can get things wrong, and it might also be an error in translation (From gothic to english - or whatever.)



ImageNew Archive of my 40K analysis stuff, over on SB, including the stuff I've posted there as well as my stuff here.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Salamanders series analysis thread PostPosted: 2012-05-13 12:57am
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4568
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
WRT Space Marine longevity, I seem to recall reading the Blood Angels live unusually long for Space Marines, some for 1,200 years. Dante has been Chapter Master at least that long, and unless he got his implants in some seriously interesting times, it probably took him at least a couple more centuries to climb the ladder to Master.



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 28 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group