Marneus Augustus Calgar: Also known as The Notorious M.A.C, The MAC Daddy, Manliest Cattleguard, Pimp Daddy Calgar, and Papa Smurf.
LOOK AT THEM PIMP-SLAPPIN' HANDS!
A character from the fictional Warhammer 40k universe. According to Matt Ward, 5th edition codex writer, Calgar is the spiritual liege of every Space Marine ever and is now playing second fiddle to his newly resurrected primarch. All the Space Marines look up to him (or down to him) and strive ever jovially to be more like him and his Ultramarines, but because of their laughable shortcomings, most Chapters, including the Dark Angels, White Scars, Imperial Fists, Blood Angels, Iron Hands, Salamanders, Raven Guard, Space Wolves and all their successors, will never be as good. It is stressed constantly in the vanilla Space Marine codex and even mentioned a bit in the Blood Angels codex. The entirety of the Imperium awaits the day the Emperor awakes so that the Emperor may proclaim Calgar the rightful heir to the Imperial throne. As a surely irrelevant side note, Matt Ward plays Ultramarines (then later Necrons). Marneus Calgar is the current Chapter Master of the Ultramarines Chapter of Space Marines, and titled Lord Macragge.
Just who is he?
Calgar is one of the big three, the others being Dante and Logan, the three Chapter Masters the whole Imperium knows. While Dante is worshipped as a larger than life legend and Logan is beloved for being a bro to the common man, Calgar is respected for his leadership, both in battle and ruling Ultramar.
His characteristic weapons are the Gauntlets of Ultramar, which were reclaimed by the Primarch Roboute Guilliman from a Chaos Champion (Where'd he lose them in the first place?). These gauntlets allow Calgar to bash gaping holes in enemy lines, allowing his men to achieve victory for the Imperium in a joyous slaughter of the heretic forces across the galaxy. They do, however, make it extremely difficult to use restroom facilities, turn door handles, or hold small objects. They also have attached Storm Bolters on each arm. Like a baws.
Following a skirmish against the Tyranid Hive Fleet Perseus in 976.M41, Calgar lost all four limbs as well as large areas of body tissue and his left eye. Now fitted with bionic replacements, he is more machine than man
twisted and evil. So his giant, power fist, gun hands are pretty much his actual hands. Several guys have argued that he currently bears a prosthetic robotic penis. For unexplained reasons, his augmetics are inferior to Col. Straken's
An unofficial nickname for Marneus is "Papa Smurf", due to other players referring to the Ultramarines as Smurfs and Calgar being their leader. The nickname has its origin in the actual miniatures' diminutive size and the fact that they are blue. One could also point out of course that the average cartoon smurf is either a total dick or pants-on-head-retarded, and requires Papa Smurf's constant leadership and guidance just to function on an everyday basis. This allows us to extend the metaphor in a hilarious way. Further extending the metaphor is that he once got his shit kicked in by the Swarmlord, who has since been nicknamed Gargamel, while Roboute Gulliman (see below), who was the original Ultramarines leader back after a long time and seeking to restore them to greatness now gets the moniker of Grandpa Smurf.
As of 6th edition he is also a xenos-loving bastard, having allowed the Tau to evacuate a planet that was facing Exterminatus due to a Tyranid infestation. To be fair, though, the Tau are one of two races (the other being Eldar) who work with the Imperials at points, so this could be just a bargaining chip to be used later. He also dual-wielded Necron Pylons while the Ultramarines were retaking Damnos (before you ask, Phil Kelly wrote this, surprisingly).
His response to his Primarch getting back up and running things again has not been explored a great deal, although his first act was to transfer command to his Primarch in perpetuity, without any dispute or deliberation. So the guy who GW has been plugging for decades as the guy that everyone else looks up to, has now taken a back seat for someone better.
Guilliman does note how competent Calgar is and decides to keep him around as an advisor. When the Terran Crusade begins he leaves Calgar in command of Ultramar (which due to Guilliman's early declarations of sovereignty is now close to its original 500 worlds, rather than just eight) while he's gone. So assuming Guilliman stays on Terra to assume control of the Imperium, Calgar has command over one of the largest territories and collective armed forces in the galaxy.
Dark Imperium has suggested that he hasn't been taking it that well since the Indomitus Crusade, even though he's been named head of the Ultramar Tetrarchs; he seems to be one of the first in the Chapter to realize Guilliman's not the infallible savior figure the Chapter has romanticized him as, and he took Guilliman's reorganization of Ultramar's government as a veiled criticism of his own governing skills. Further complicating things is Guilliman's currently unexplained choice to begin tutoring Cato Sicarus personally, which Papa Smurf has assumed means he might be replaced in the future. It's only fairly recently that he's accepted that it was arrogant of him to think his actions had anything to do with his Primarch's recent choices, and while he's not taking it out on the people of the Imperium (which he had blamed at first) he's still feeling rather guilty about the whole mess.
On the Tabletop
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Being one of the big three, Marneus Calgar is a cost-of-a-landraider LOW slot special character who'll kick ass and take names on the battlefield even though he did lose a few things compared to his old profile. He has Chapter Tactics and ATSKNF like any ultramarine, plus Eternal Warrior, Independent Character and two special rules unique to him, "God of War," which allows him to pick whatever warlord trait he fancies, and "Master Tactician," which gives him an extra use of a tactical doctrine of his choosing. He comes to battle equipped with a power sword, artificer armor, an Iron Halo, an Orbital Bombardment, and frag and krak grenades. If he so chooses he can exchange his artificer armor (and his grenades) for the Armor of Antilochus which is a relic suit of terminator armor that gives him Relentless (though he can still sweeping advance) and Deep Strike. The armor has two relic master crafted power fists, the famous Gauntlets of Ultramar (which were used by Guilliman himself, which further means Calgar likely has to wear ANOTHER pair of power fists underneath them, just so his hands are big enough). The gauntlets are power fists with a pair of master-crafted bolters strapped to the bottom (with the profile of a AP2 storm bolter), and because of the expert make of the fists and his armor he strikes at full initiative.
Calgar is an absolute goldfish in combat, in the first edition he even made use of the so called "Calgar Handshake", capable of lifting a tank and launching it towards the enemy in combat. With
5 6 (they are wielded as a pair) Strength 8 AP2 attacks at initiative on the charge nothing short of a landraider is going to survive melee with this guy, and as much as it pains me to say it, Calgar is probably the most formidable of the three. Don't get your IC's into melee with this guy unless their name is Jain Zar or Abaddon, though Dante or Asurmen might take him with a few lucky rolls, Dante in particular having the advantage of a higher base initiative and a strength 6 (7 on charge) ap 2 weapon that strikes at initiative. All that said, a lot of his value comes from his tactical genius. Being able to choose your warlord trait at the beginning of a battle is huge, and an extra tactical doctrine, while not vital, has the potential to tip the balance of a game in your favor. Drawbacks? Well, he's slow, but you'll be sticking him in a transport or deepstriking him, so that hardly matters. He costs more than a Land Raider, but that's hardly unusual for a LOW. He lost his rerolls on armor-penetration, and he no longer gives ultramarines the ability to choose their morale results anymore, which sucks. Real talk though, even with the nerf this guy is still worth his points and you know it. YMMV, but in this author's opinion he's a steal for his cost, just remember that even with that 2+/4++ he'll crumble quickly if out in the open against anyone with 2+ shooting, because he's something of a fire magnet.