Corsairs Gallant

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Corsairs Gallant
CorsairsGallant.png
Battle Cry “Fortune favors the bold!”
Number XXI
Founding First Founding
Successors of None
Successor Chapters Aquilon Knights (Fillibuster), Crimson Hawks (Fillibuster); Umbral Maw
Primarch Rahman Keita'mansa
Homeworld Manden
Strength 72,000 at height (officially 65,000)
Specialty Light/Mechanized Infantry, Covert Actions, Lightning Raids, Zone Mortalis/Void Operations
Allegiance Separatist

This page details people, events, and organisations from Warmasters Triumvirate, a fan re-working of the Warhammer 40,000 Universe. See the Warmasters Triumvirate page for more information on the Alternate Universe.

The Corsairs Gallant were the XXIth Legiones Astartes. Led by Rahman Keita'mansa, they were known for their covert nature and specialty in Zone Mortalis and AirLand operations, and a fondness for highly specialized bolt weaponry. Long skirting the line of acceptable behavior, having pushed to the limit the use of various legal loopholes to avoid censure, they sided with the Separatist forces during the Brother's War, and eventually became an economic and naval powerhouse of the Union that followed. Their primarch, Rahman Keita'mansa, was often considered to be a Rogue Traider first and a primarch second, and he eventually disappeared into the unknown in M35, leaving behind the Gallant Quest, a series of clue and map fragments that some said led to a reponsitory of wealth, archeotech, or other prizes, but that the Corsairs themselves felt was the location of their genefather.

Often distrusted even by their allies, the Corsairs had engaged in false flag operations even during the Great Crusade, and infiltrated several secret chapters in the Imperium, known as Fillibuster chapters, yet largely remained unified following the end of the Brother's War.

History[edit]

Pre-Primarch History & Reunion[edit]

The Great Crusade[edit]

Brotherwar[edit]

Post-Brotherwar[edit]

Homeworld[edit]

Manden is a prosperous and well-connected world, known for being at the nexus of a network of stable pathways through the warp, a fact that accelerated the spread of Manden influence throughout a number of worlds prior to its reunion with the Imperium of Man. The planet itself is roughly nine-tenths the size of Terra, with a mixture of climates but largely savannas and vast rivers in its disposition, a fact that led to the development of a rich mercantile culture of independent city-states led by noble-houses.

Legion Doctrine[edit]

The Corsairs Gallant are, in many ways, entirely unlike most legions, operating almost entirely outside the norms that even diverse legions often share. Their doctrine is crafted by a number of factors, not the least of which is the old maritime culture of Manden and its expansive trade league that was incorporated into the Imperium. The legacy of the House Troops is reflected in several ways, including the Fillibusters but also in the general deployment and tactics; Manden forces were true marines, naval and often light infantry designed to be mobile, self-sufficient, and adaptable. Another major factor was size; due to the restrictive nature of Corsairs Gallant geneseed, the legion was significantly smaller and thus forced into certain tactical options by near necessity. Further, the wealth and culture also led to specific kinds of weaponry and tactics, including low-impact as a defining characteristic of their operations, something that makes them exceptionally good at pacifying human worlds where a lighter touch often goes far.

Buying Victory[edit]

Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast[edit]

Legion Apart[edit]

Mastercrafted Simplicity[edit]

Legion Culture & Personality[edit]

Curiosity and Commerce[edit]

The Gallant Dominion and Corsair Successions[edit]

The manner in which the Corsairs Gallant cement their power in worlds is innately tied to the unique circumstances affecting both their primarch's 'homeworld' as well as the flaw, of sorts, present in their geneseed. It is also how they maintain a network of de jure independent worlds that that de facto under either their direct or nearly so control, the so called Gallant Dominions, contrasted to the worlds they hold via economic means, often themselves technically outside the Union, a few even officially belonging to the Imperium; the so called Corsair Successions. These worlds range from settled planets and even great hive worlds to frontier lands and settlements claimed largely for control over rare resources. These are also the worlds where conflict between Imperial forces, often seeking to reaffirm their control, run afoul of the Corsairs, though far more often control is held covertly, via mercantile means.

The Corsairs maintain a strong aristocratic system of patronage and nobility, tied into the legal protections granted by the Warrant of Trade held by the Keita'mansa dynasty, under the authority of the Emperor himself and thus held in a strange state even in the post-Separatist era; no Imperial authority can countermand that of the Emperor himself, and thus while technically (and, in truth, actually) outside the light of the Imperium, the Keita'mansa dynasty technically hold authority through the Warrant, one granted under such specific terms by the Emperor that mark it as utterly unique. This factor is why agents of the Corsairs can occasionally be found even inside the Imperium, abet only when enough power can be exerted to cause the Warrant to be enforced. The Corsairs are not so foolish as to attempt to invoke it to stave off battles where forces are already in place, but it can be used in other, more tactful, manners. Its protections are directly tied to the house of Keita'mansa, and this has shaped much of the legion culture.

As a result, each member of the Legion is adopted, legally, into the Keita'mansa family, or a cadet branch there-of. This, at least technically, would extend the protection of the Warrant of Trade to them. Further, as they achieve higher ranks, they are eventually set up in an arranged marriage with a noblewoman from one of the many other houses that dot and hold power in the worlds of the Gallant Dominion. These arrangements are more than merely formal; Astartes are encouraged to actually meet and interact with their wives, though the production of children is done entirely via in-vitro methodologies, using samples taken prior to ascension into full Astartes and/or methods of seed generation via techno-alchemical methods. However, marines are more often than not away engaging in the business of war and trade, and as such consorts are often not merely tolerated, but actively provided, often failed aspirants to the legion, a fact that is not seen as dishonorable due to the nature of the gene-seed and difficulty, and instead these individuals are often integrated as chosen servants inside the noble families. Gene-therapies and other methods are utilized to avoid negative effects, and outside blood from noble houses is regularly brought in, thus causing noble marriages to serve a double purpose.

The relationship between an Astartes and his children is complicated. Female children rarely interact with their fathers and are, like many of their kind, used for political and noble marriages, as well as to spread the key genetic markers of the Keita'mansa dynasty that are necessary for gene-seed implantation to succeed. Sons are often, by contrast, more directly tutored, taught the key skills of a Corsair Gallant long before the trials of ascension are held and they are tested as being fit for the implantation process. Failures to these trials are married into other families, serve aboard vessels as lower officers or deck crew, or, occasionally, chosen as consorts. Those that do pass and enter the implantation process undergo deep checks for gene-seed compatibility long before it is ever attempted, and even then often fail to accept the implant process. These usually die, but those that survive almost universally become ship crew, and are generally not allowed to pass on genes, at least not into the noble houses.

Through these methods, the Keita'mansa family becomes entrenched on worlds, linked by marriage and blood to other noble houses, and supported by the military and economic might of the Legion, is able to maintain power and control. Often, other houses nominally are higher in authority, directly administering worlds, yet few are foolish enough to think they do not do so at the sufferance of the house of Keita'mansa.

Gene-seed flaws and other Mutations[edit]

Either by flaw or by design, the gene-seed of Rahman Keita'mansa is incredibly restrictive in its implantation rates, with rejection rates significantly higher than normal. It is for this reason that the Corsairs Gallant have always been the smallest of the legions, at least sparing the lowest points of the Brotherwar where casualties rose to astronomical heights for some others. This limitation has informed their combat doctrine, leading to the rapid tactical strikes and covert operations, and the shock-and-awe lightning strikes that maximize efficiency and minimize causalities on their side. It is also why, ironically, they hid away a portion of the legion, the Fillibusters and Blackshields, operating under false-flags to further their goals long before they ever entered the picture officially, if ever.

The Geneforged[edit]

The Ghasts[edit]

Legion Organization[edit]

Rank Structure[edit]

The Auguries[edit]

Filibusters and Blackshields[edit]

A Corsairs Gallant-aligned Blackshield operating during the Brother's War
Even prior to the Brother's War and the Corsair's joining of the Separatist cause the Corsairs Gallant made heavy use of unmarked and false-flag operatives, keeping a full seven-thousand marines in covert status. The origins to this phenomenon lie in the traditions of old Manden and surrounding worlds. Trade families dominated the politics, and it was simply the way of things to both declare ones official forces as well as maintain unmarked forces, often masquerading as other armies or mercenaries, yet composed of fully loyal members.

Special Units[edit]

Maurauder Squads[edit]

Braves[edit]

Reaver Squads[edit]

A Corsairs Gallant serving in a Reaver squad, note the combi-heavy bolter/flamer weapon and the lack of Bills of Honor
Though often considered lacking in honor, the Reaver Squad was a formation inside the Corsairs Gallant deployed when maximum impact and destruction of property and personnel was necessary. In some ways taking the place of Destroyer Squads and inspired by legions such as the Death’s Heads, the Reavers utilized a mix of flamer weaponry, entire sqauds using combi-flamers, infernus heavy bolters, and other incendiary weapons to wreck havoc across wide areas, burning out resistance too hard to expel through other means. Though considered lacking honor, and thus not authorized to wear Bills of Honor on their armor, the Reaver Squads were not disdained, and were considered necessary parts of the Corsairs Gallant doctrine. Rarely did an Astartes remain in their numbers for long, instead rotating back into normal squads, their time in the formation rarely spoken of and not held either for or against their later honors or promotions.

Brethren of the Court[edit]

The elite of the elite, the Brethen of the Court are a force of terminator-armor equipped Astartes that honor guards are drawn from for praetors and the Primarch himself. They are also the last stop before an astartes of the XXIth legion is promoted to an officer rank, and indeed all officers remain as members of the Brethren, entitling them to a place at the court of the Primarch and Legion master. It is there that these picked men both learn and give council. Often, Brethren are then embedded into squads to give direct action to the council choices, but when formed into an all Terminator force they are to be reckoned with, equipped with heavy blades of arcane make and both grenade harnesses as well as under-slung Astartes-grade grenade launchers for hurling several varieties of powerful grenade at foes. The blades used by the Brethren, though, are perhaps the true iconic element. Drawn from caches of ancient weapons and those discovered on the fringes of the galaxy, some are not unlike the phase blade used by the primarch, while others are cleaving weapons that strike with unheard of power. Rahman himself would gift a member of the Brethren their first blade, a rite later taken up by the Legion Master after the primarch disappeared into the unknown.

Kroot[edit]

Origins and Development[edit]

Usage[edit]

Legion Equipment[edit]

Power Armor[edit]

A Corsairs Gallant Tactical Marine in Mark III Ultra/Manden pattern armor and wielding a Mark IV Ultra Pattern bolter.
A Corsairs Gallant Assault Marine wearing Crusade-era assault-grade armor

Designed based on their standard Mark III armor, the Mark III Ultra/Manden resembles exterior pattern of Mark III plate closely, though its shoulders tended to be more akin to that of the older Mark II plate. Notable for its use of exposed riveting as much for decorating as construction purposes. It also utilized a wide, flaring belt, as well as usually a loincloth woven of armormesh which actually could deflect or reduce the power of las weapons, though it was largely stylistic in usage. The true modifications were largely internal; the pattern was constantly updated to incorporate later advances in internal technology, while retaining the front-focused defensive capabilities of the original Mark III armor favored by the Corsairs for its usefulness aboard vessels and in other narrow confines, such as urban terrain. Additionally, they integrated improved targetter systems and autosenses above that of standard power armor, with even the basic tactical marine incorporating improved optics and other technology as a force and power multiplier. Each suit also incorporated a grav-chute into the backpack design, allowing all marines to operate as paratroopers. The design is also intended to be able to easily host extra pouches, ammo or grenade racks, or other equipment as necessary, and also an optional wrist mounted vid-screen with integrated vox uplink to the overall network, often coordinated via command Rhinos that are deployed in theater.

Further, the Corsairs Gallant produced what was known as assault-grade armor, designed for use by their rare but elite assault and other jump troops. Though its torso design was taken more from later patterns, its internals and other parts were mostly linked to that of the original Mark III plate, abet with a much higher gorget and a full cowling around the head. Later models would included reinforced leg-mountings that had greater armor and impact absorbing properties for jump-use.

The Corsairs Gallant would continue to use Mark III Ultra/Manden pattern armor well past the Brother's War, abet integrating later developments in certain areas into it. The use of the consistent style was an intentional choice; associating a specific pattern with the legion helped to set apart the Blackshields and Fillibuster forces who, in contrast, nearly never were seen in Mark III armor, let alone the Manden pattern of it. Though seemingly simple, this small choice proved effective.

Terminator Armor[edit]

Though it may seem surprising for such a fast raiding force, the Corsairs Gallant not only make heavy use of Terminators, the possess a significant amount of the armor, notable of the Tartaros pattern, and employ it widely in void and zone mortalis combat. The Corsairs Gallant were some of the first to receive the relatively late Tartaros pattern, having heavily subsidized the production for several key Forge Worlds that allowed them to claim a lion share of the initial production. While the Corsairs Gallant possess enough suits of Terminator armor to equip several formations, most astartes granted rights to a suit also have a suit of finely wrought artificer armor they make use of in many cases, deploying in Terminator armor only in specific circumstances. When deploying, they are done so via Storm Eagle transport more often than not, teleportation being disfavored by the Corsairs for its somewhat dangerous nature and unpredictability.

Small Arms and Infantry Equipment[edit]

The standard bolter pattern utilized by the Corsairs Gallant was the Mark IV Ultra Pattern, notable for its capability for both single-shot and three-bolt burst fire as well as automatic, loaded from a standard 25-round sickle magazine and firing the same .75 caliber explosive tipped mass-reactive bolt of most other patterns. However, the Mark IV Ultra Pattern also integrates a built-in ammunition counter, an Auto-senses targeting uplink, and a biometric handgrip sensor for genetic identification of its user as standard features, and was usually constructed to a significantly higher grade by both the Forges that the Corsairs patronized and by their own legion smiths. Capable of accepting a number of other attachments, the legion tended to equip many of its forces with additional optical sights, drum magazines, barrel extensions or suppressors, and with foregrips, among other attachments, all of which improved its versatility and capabilities. It could also mount a grenade launcher under-barrel.

The focus on the bolter is not entirely odd; it is, after all, the standard small-arm of the legions. However, the focus on quality and versatility the Corsairs Gallant put into it exceeded that of other legions by several levels. The Corsairs Gallant culture shunned the use of the common plasma and melta weaponry, and the rare and hard to maintain volkite gear was also disliked. Flamers, while useful, were niche and lacked versatility. For plasma and melta weaponry, it was a mix of issues; plasma tended to have stability issues, a major concern for smaller forces like the Corsairs, and also was dangerous for use in shipboard environments. Melta weaponry was even more so, and its range limitations was seen as almost precluding use. As a result, the Corsairs preferred to utilize mix of dedicated and underbarrel grenade launchers and combi-bolters equipped with drums and specialized ammunition as support weapons, and notable integrated these weapons at a tactical level, in contrast to the dedicated support squads used by other forces.

One exception was graviton weapons, due to both the legion’s contacts with certain forge worlds and their use in shipboard operatons. This also led them to throw weight behind the development of other forms of the weapon, even when the Mechanicum objected.

The legion also made heavy use of shotguns, even equipping whole squads with them during shipboard actions, themselves utilizing a variety of specialized rounds as well. Favored by their assault troops, the Corsairs were at ease with the shotgun as they were with the bolter.

Heavy Weapons[edit]

Much like their attitudes to small arms, the heavy weapons utilized by Corsairs infantry were limited largely to heavy bolters and missile launchers, once against linked to their focus on versatility. The heavy bolter could utilize various ammunition types, and often was equipped with suspensor harnesses to assist in mobility and use aboard ships and other close quarters areas. Missile launchers were used both in dedicated heavy launchers as well as single-shot disposable tubes, thus giving individual squads capabilities that they otherwise would lack. There was one heavy weapon the legion did use that was unique to them: the frag cannon. A heavy, shotgun-like weapon that fired either in slug or fragmentation modes, it could decimate entire corridors or punch through the armored bulkheads when needed.

Bolter Ammunition[edit]

One of the primary ways the legion achieved versatility in the use of its bolters was in its focus on specialized bolt rounds for them. Stalker-pattern bolts designed for stealth use and other rounds like Metal Storm frag shells were not invented by the Corsairs, but were extensively utilized by them. However, the legion did go out of its way to gain the ability to produce certain rounds for itself, such as Tempest Bolts, which were largely the province of Mars before the Corsairs gained the ability to produce them through a mix of covert acquisition and reverse engineering. The discovery of this fact nearly led to a small crisis between the Mars priesthood and the legion, with the Corsairs Gallant promising to limit their production and the spread.

Other strange rounds included toxin-infused Metal Storm rounds, known as Viper Storm rounds, as well as Webber Binding rounds, Hellfire bolts, and the odd Bombard round, which was designed to be fired at an arc as a sort of impromptu light mortar, containing greater explosive filler due to the lower propellant, and less focus on penetrative power over blast force. Combined with the targeting systems used, this meant squads could form small urban fire support platforms. These were just some of many other types that the forces were often deployed with, giving even a normal tactical squad greater flexibility than nearly any other legion.

The truest danger, though, was the Torsion bolt, which used gravitic technology to create a rending gravitic burst on target. Though often no more dangerous than a normal bolt, the rounds could often cause internal damage, allowing them to bypass armor completely.

Astartes Grenade Launchers[edit]

.

Armored Vehicles[edit]

A Pythagori III-made Rhino hull, using anti-grav technology

Though wealthy and well-equipped, the Corsairs Gallant made a point of avoiding many of the larger, rarer and more complicated vehicle systems used by the legions. This even included the relatively common, comparatively speaking, Land Raider platform, let alone vehicles like the Spartan or Sicaran-series of tanks. Instead, they made extensive use Rhino-patterned vehicles, including the base Rhino Armored Personnel Carrier, the Predator Battle Tank, the Vindicator Siege Tank, and the Whirlwind Mobile Artillery Tank, as well as variants of those. However, they also made use of several other vehicles, most not entirely unique to them but either discovered by them or merely used more extensively.

However, there is one aspect of the Corsair Gallant that set them apart. Though the Grav-Rhino, as it was often called, was not unknown, it was a rare vehicle indeed. The Corsairs Gallant, however, secured the services of a Forge World in the Eastern Fringes, Pythagori III, whose talent with gravity technology was comparable in scope to the plasma expertise of the renowned Forge World Ryza. The pattern of Grav-Rhino hull produced there, using both their expertise and fragments of data recovered by the Corsairs Gallant and their Rogue Trader allies, came to be used by the Corsairs Gallant as the primary hull for nearly all their other vehicles. They produced and used versions of the multitude of other vehicles that were based on the Rhino chassis, all using the same anti-grav skimmer technology that gave them extremely effective mobility. Though they would pass on data to other Legions on most other discoveries, the Corsairs Gallant stubbornly controlled the export of the Grav-Rhinos of Pythagori III, using the fact that it was a Forge World as a shield against charges of tech-hoarding, though their actions and clear manipulation of the Forge World hierarchy was one of a number of things that caused rifts between the core of the Priesthood of Mars and the XXI Legion.

Stegodon Armored Personnel Carrier[edit]

Actually discovered by Ashur of Banipal's Loxodontii, the Stegodon never-the-less became a favorite of the Corsairs for its extended hull and weaponry potential. Functioning essentially as a Rhino hull with an extended crew compartment, with firing ports for passengers and a cupola turret in the front, the Stegodon would become the basis for many other Corsairs Gallant vehicles, replacing the Rhino in some regards as the base hull, the extended section allowing for the mounting of more substantial equipment internally. It recieved the same grav-propulsion upgrades as the other Corsairs vehicles as well, and eventually would all but replace the Rhino in their use.

Cyclone Armored Mortar Carrier[edit]

Discovered in the eastern fringe, the STC for the Cyclone is based on relatively common parts. Based on the Rhino hull abet with the top doors removed and parts of its hull left open, the Cyclone was intended as a mobile mortar platform. However, its weapons system was not found, and thus the Corsairs Gallant integrated the quad-launcher into it as a result. When put into service it was found to be an extremely effective mobile artillery platform. Less destructive than the Whirlwind, the Cyclone never-the-less was also faster and easier to transport, and thus became a standby for the Corsairs Gallant in their highly mobile attacks. The data was passed on to the other legions, but the fact that the Corsairs Gallant put it into production prior to getting approval from the Mechnaicum was one of several slights that soured relations between central Mars and the legion, exacerbated when they did pass the data on not to Mars, but local Forge Worlds that were closely aligned to the Corsairs.

Sabre Armored Tank Hunter[edit]

Not unlike the Vindicator in hull, the Sabre was a dedicated anti-tank platform that utilize a large laser destroyer, a massive anti-vehicle laser weapon. Favored by the Corsairs Gallant, the hull was only used in mixed ways by other legions, but was modified with the grav-propulsion platform of a Pythagori III-made Rhino, or produced from those hulls, rather frequently. It was favored more so by the Corsairs Gallant compared to other legions due to that anti-grav technology, thus alleviating some of flaws in mobility that limited its use.

Predator Punisher Combat Tank[edit]

A modified form of the standard Predator that utilizes a turret-mounted Avenger mega bolter taken from the same STC data that led to the creation of the Stormcrow Fighter, and the hull of actually the Stegodon armored personnel carrier. The cupola-mounted combi-bolter was retained, while the sponson mounts usually used heavy bolters. The expanded hull was used to hold the large quantities of ammo necessary to feed the weapons systems on board. The platform was utilized in urban terrain where the massive firepower was useful against infantry and other soft targets, but utterly lacking against anything harder. The design would be later spread to other Legions, particularly those with relative closeness or at least operational connections to the Corsairs.

Predator Nullifier Assault Tank[edit]

Aircraft[edit]

Stormcrow Fighter[edit]

A Blackshield-aligned Stormcrow with its nose weapons shown
A twin-engine fighter based on data discovered by a Corsairs Gallant-associated Rogue Trader and explorator fleet, the Stormcrow Fighter would be passed on in full to the other legions, but was heavily used by the Corsairs themselves perhaps to a greater degree. With its nose-mounted avenger mega bolter, as well as heavy bolters, and wing weapons in the form of missile launchers or hurricane bolters, and also bombs, it served as a fast air to air interceptor as well as light ground support craft that fit perfectly with Corsairs Gallant doctrine. Though the nose weapons could be swapped with two lascannons, this was rarely done by the Corsairs themselves, their ever-present Cult of the Bolter mentality seeming to take hold.

Storm Eagle Transport[edit]

A modified version of the Storm Eagle, the Storm Eagle Transport removed the passenger compartment entirely and replaced it with a more open space with a transport system derived from that of the Thunderhawk Transport, designed to grip a Rhino-pattern vehicle and allow it to be rapidly transported and deployed. The Storm Eagle Transport usually mounts the twin-linked Avenger Bolt Cannons from the Fire Raptor in the nose, while retaining the wing-mounted lascannons, allowing to support the advance of forces after it has deployed them. The Storm Eagle Transport could haul most Rhino-hulled vehicles, sparing the Whirlwind due to the size of its launcher. This was part of the reason the Corsairs came to prefer the less destructive but easier to transport Cyclone in many cases.

Naval Assets[edit]

The Crystal Skull[edit]

Chrysaor[edit]

Notable Members[edit]

Named, noteworthy marines

Rules[edit]

If available, tabletop rules

Pages of the Warmasters Triumvirate Project
Loyalist Legions: II-Golden Mountains - Silver Blades - The Sentinels - Titan Marchers
Traitor Legions: Chosen of Hecate - Doomsingers - Forge Lords - I-Leviathan Host - Loxodontii
Seperatist Legions: Corsairs Gallant - Dusk Phantoms - Emperor's Dragoons - Iron Guard
Unknown: Death's Heads - Gunslingers - Knights Stellaris - Pale Hounds
Smoke Stalkers - Soaring Host - Star Wardens - Ussaran Liberators
Primarchs I-Marduk Engur - II-Pacha -
Related Pages: Warmaster's Triumvirate Timeline