"One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man."
- – Elbert Hubbard
"Hast thou attempted to initiate the rites of deactivation and reactivation a second time?"
- – Senior Archmagos Roy on the Mechanicus' most effective repair rite.
They are united by a belief in technology, Machine Spirits, and the Omnissiah, zealously guarding what secrets of technology the Imperium has managed to scrape together (and jealously kept by the Adeptus Mechanicus -- the technology cult of Mars). Their core dogma is that all technology is sacred, and everything that can be learned has already been done so, and probably just forgotten. This inevitably leads to the Tech-Priests being unwilling to either reverse-engineer other technology or develop new ones, citing disrespect towards existing designs. Despite their role as a priesthood of technology, they've stagnated for close to 10,000 years and are now the foremen of little more than glorified Mass-production factories. Only very few senior members of the Mechanicus are allowed to experiment or innovate. Fewer still are actually capable of doing so, and only within strict guidelines. Considering what horrors are produced (often by accident) by those Tech-Priests who try to innovate outside those guidelines, this isn't at all unjustified.
Tech-Priests are often secluded within their own priesthood, studying or (if they're of a high enough rank) performing minor research. Sometimes they're also found outside the Adeptus Mechanicus working as tech-support, fixing the many machines of the Imperium when they break by performing hour-long maintenance rituals involving sacred incense, blessed oils, and prayers to the Omnissiah for the machine spirit to start working again. Both surprisingly and unsurprisingly, this system tends to be effective, given that most rituals involve cleaning and purifying components, anointing the machine with sacred lubricants, and
restarting revitalizing the machine spirit. On the other hand, regularly saying a prayer to a fuel-tank can keep it working longer than reasonably expected, or get a malfunctioning Cogitator to work properly again, so long as you keep doing it and the machine doesn't get moody.
Other varieties of techpriest exist, such as the Magos Biologos -- a sect of the Mechanicus who focus on repairing and updating the natural machinery of the human form, rather than artificial replacements, as well as xenologist branches. They may implant purpose-grown organs (such as the Lostok Augmentation, a set of glands that pump powerful combat drugs into the bearer's body), create fully organic Servitors, and so on.
Rogue Trader ships sometimes carry Tech-Priests, not just for their invaluable technological aid but to also ferry them to a pilgrimage or holy place. They may also be found working for Inquisitors as emissaries from the Adeptus Mechanicus, giving aid or simply claiming artefacts in the name of the priesthood.
Sometimes Techpriests are allowed on certain Squat regiments to inspect on their technology and maybe re-engineer it for Imperial use. The Squats aren't so keen on letting their technology be molested by a cybernetic Dr. Octopus but they let them in anyway to keep the trade going between the Squats and the Mechanicus. Techpriests in battle often accompany Squat War Machines and the Squat Engineers accompanying their weapons of mass destruction. The Techpriests and Squat Engineers often work hand in hand despite distrusting each other due to the former's anal-retentive hoarding and stubbornness to technologically progress and the latter's mad-scientist style of inventions and stubbornness to trade their technology to others.
Techpriests may also accompany They-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named, although they are just there to oversee their tech progress. They have no actual power over them so the Techpriest can't accuse them of tech-heresy and whatnot.
- Heretek, what you get when techpriests violate orthodoxy, and sometimes mix in with Chaos.
- Techmarine, a Space Marine with training from the Adeptus Mechanicus.
- Warpsmith, the Chaos Space Marines' equivalent to the Techmarine.
|Forces of the Squats|
|Command:||Guildmaster - Living Ancestor - Squat Warlord|
|Troops:|| Brotherhood Heavy Weapons Team |
Commissar - Hearthguard - Mole Mortar Team
Squat Berserkers - Squat Thunderers
Squat Trooper - Tech Priest
|Vehicles:|| Cyclops War Machine - Colossus War Machine |
Land Train - Leviathan - Rhino - Squat Bike
Squat Trike - Tunneling Transport Vehicles
| Iron Eagle Gyrocopter |
Overlord Armoured Airship
|Artillery:|| Heavy Quad-Launcher |