The Death Ravens are an infamous Loyalist Chapter of unknown origin and Founding, said to be created in the early years of the 34th Millennium, though there is some conflicting evidence on this in the Imperial records, with some reference to the Chapter existing as early as the 32nd Millennium. This discrepancy has not yet been reconciled and apart from several fragmentary accounts nothing indicated that they even existed. This rather optimistic view was shattered once the Death Ravens returned to the greater Imperium during the Centurion War. They are suspected, due to their name, raven insignia and pale skin, to be descended from the Raven Guard but they are known to be extremely stubborn and have shown signs of paranoia and they are noted to fall into a berserk fury during battle similar to Blood Angels further clouding their origins. They are Loyalists of the Emperor of Mankind though the significant evidence of major genetic flaws has led to their investigation on charges of heresy by the Inquisition. They have been cleared of suspicion at present but the calls for them to be declared Excommunicate Traitoris have increased in recent years. Interestingly, since their return they have been witnessed on several occasions to operate alongside the Charnel Brethren, Corvus Legion and the Skull Reapers - chapters of Blood Angels, Raven Guard and Iron Hands descent. What reasons for this, are unknown.
The Death Ravens are a relatively unknown Chapter having spent much of their history seemingly outside of the the greater Imperium. The reasons why are very much unknown to many, but during the Centurion War it soon became apparent that the Death Ravens were a Chapter unlike many others. While other Chapters may maintain a facade of humanity despite their transhuman state the Ravens are utterly divorced from the humans they once were. Whatever gene-seed was used in their creation has turned them into inhuman monsters who live only for the thrill of battle and the slaying of their enemies. Imperial commanders have found out, to their cost, that for the Ravens even their supposed allies can become victims of their unrestrained violence.
- The Pentarchy of Blood (860-940.M33) - During the dark and bloody episode of Imperial history known as the War of the False Primarch which plunged the Segmentum Pacificus into anarchy and is now largely lost to myth and purged from the Imperial record, the Pentarchy of Blood was convened by the High Lords of Terra to enact their judgement. Five Chapters, the Carcharodons, the Charnel Guard, the Death Eagles, the Flesh Eaters and the Red Talons are used to systematically destroy eleven Chapters of the Adeptus Astartes judged Traitoris Perdita and lay waste to their homeworlds, finally drawing the eight decade conflict to a close. Although the Death Ravens are not Listed in the Order of Battle there is an Imperial Report of an Astartes Chapter in black and red battle plate with raven insignia and carrying chainaxes that were attached with chains, brutally destroying one of the Traitor Chapters. An Imperial Navy witness reported that the unknown Chapter disregarded any form of bombardment and launched the entire Chapter in a massive drop assault against the fortress-monastery. In the battle's aftermath, the Imperial Navy and Imperial Guard reinforcements claimed that the inside of the fortress was filled with the dismembered and mangled corpses of the defenders with wrecked and destroyed bits of power armour scattered about the halls, and that almost all of the Traitor Marines were missing their heads. It was an absolute slaughter, the fortress having been transformed into an abattoir of human blood. Although not confirmed to be the Death Ravens, the similarities and the Chapter's known violent history seems to indicate that this is the first known reference to them.
- The Centurion War (931-954.M41) - The Chapter's first confirmed appearance is in the works of the field notary Ciaphis Quilp, in his account of the Centurion War. Sometime during 940.M41 as the war finally began to turn in favour of Imperial forces Lord Commander Corvo (Chapter Master of the Ash Scorpions) was informed by his Chief Librarian that a significant force was making their way through the Warp and break into realspace behind Corvo's main force. Fearing that it was secessionists he removed his entire chapter from the fighting against the Knights of Guilliman and prepared for arrival of this unknown force, what emerged from the warp was not what Corvo had expected. A full Astartes Chapter had arrived, this new Chapter immediately began broadcasting that they were friendly and even lowered their shields to show peaceful intent, they offered a parley on the nearby world. Leading a single squad Corvo met with these unknowns and through he was wary of them his Chief Librarian stated that he believed that they were not followers of the Dark Gods but nor could he certain they were followers of the Imperium. The unknown Astartes introduced themselves as the Death Ravens, a name Corvo dimly recalled hearing before, and their leader named himself Captain Moloch of the 10th Company. He told Corvo that the Lord Reaper would only talk through him. Over the course of several hours the two parties conversed until finally Corvo was convinced that the Death Ravens were true to the Emperor at least, and so, with some reservations he allowed them into his order of battle. Following this meeting, Lord Reaper Uric Draf leads the entire Chapter against the Knights of Guilliman on their Homeworld of Jorvick. The Secessionist Chapter defended their Fortress-Monastery in the North of the World. The Death Ravens were supported by Imperial Guard Units as well as two Titans deployed in support. Astartes support came in the form of the Salamanders, but Lord Reaper Draf would not wait for the Salamanders to arrive, and so, the Death Ravens launched their attack using Drop Pods and Thunderhawks. This resulted in the destruction of Secessionist forces for the loss of 374 Death Ravens. The Death Ravens lost all self-control during the final assault on the fortress-monastery. The citadel was heavily defended and the Death Ravens took 9 hours to break into the fortress-monastery. Eventually, a ramp of corpses led up to a single breach in the wall, and the Astartes of the Death Ravens Chapter plunged in. Filled with rage they were merciless. By the time the Salamanders, who were supposed to support the Death Ravens, arrived, the battle was all but over. The inside of the fortress was filled with the dismembered and mangled corpses of the defenders, for not one soul had been spared the fury of the Death Ravens. It was an absolute slaughter with shattered weapons and armour scattered about the halls, the fortress having been transformed into an abattoir of human blood. The Salamanders were disgusted by this savage behaviour and reported the Death Ravens barbarism to the Inquisition. Following the battle, the Death Ravens rejoined the main Imperial Force, and for the next two years, they were used as a spearhead by Lord Corvo, who although was disgusted by the Death Ravens' actions, he could not deny that they were effective. As the Forces of Chaos revealed themselves to be the true architects of the war, the Death Ravens' aggressiveness was put to good use, as world after world fell to their savage berserker fury. But problems began to surface, and reports began filtering back of excessive casualties in tactic-less displays of horde warfare. Even the Death Ravens' Imperial allies were sometimes subject to the Ravens' fury. In 942.M41, the Death Ravens broke away from the main force to travel to an Imperial World far away from the Centurion Cluster, and for reasons known only to themselves, launched an all-out assault against the world, and soon fighting raged across the world as the Death Ravens lost what little control they had. They proceeded to systematically slaughter almost all the world's entire population over the course of a single day. Why they attacked this world is unknown, and the Death Ravens have refused to even discuss the attack, leaving only the vid-captures, pict-Logs and the horrified and traumatized survivors as evidence. Further investigation showed that thousands of young men were missing, and Imperial scholars believe that they were taken as future recruits by the Death Ravens. Following this devastating attack, the Death Ravens retired from the war for reasons unknown, and aside from a single Strike Cruiser that attended the hearings at Lycan and various reports from other Chapters including the now infamous attack on Teutoburg, they have not been seen since...
- The Teutoburg Campaign (999.M41) - When a massive Ork invasion struck the Teutoburg System, the Adepta Sororitas Order of the Emperor Resplendent responded in kind. They sent seven whole companies of Battle-Sisters to assist the beleaguered sector. In one notable incident during the brutal campaign, the Order found themselves fighting alongside the Militia of Gaius City on Teutoburg VI as well as the notorious Death Ravens Space Marine Chapter, who had appeared and joined the war. They deployed their 6th and 7th companies. Also serving were the Charnel Brethren, Skull Reapers and Corvus Legion Chapters. Chapter Master Uric Draf denied Canoness Anastasia any tactical counsel whatsoever and even refused to meet with her. Talks between the two Imnperial forces was conducted by the Captain of the 6th Company, Shadow Captain Allokan. Many Sisters doubted whether Uric Draf was even present, but several reports indicated a giant Space Marine leading the Astartes forces. After nearly a century in leading her Sisters to war, occasionally alongside Space Marine Chapters, this treatment came as no surprise. But the Order's main grievance was with the way the notorious Chapter conducted themselves during the ensuing battle. The Battle-Sisters struck Warlord Nazgrubba's army as it changed positions from shelling the main Defences of Gaius City, to occupying the settlement. Battered by three days' bombardment, the population of Gaius City had dug underground and, under the careful ministrations of the Order's Sisters Superior, were determined to form an ad hoc militia to defend their homes. The Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren launched their attack on the Ork column when it was approximately one Imperial mile from Gaius City and, hitting the Orks in the rear and flanks, they drove the disorganised enemy into the Battle-Sister's waiting guns. Caught between Battle-Sisters and Space Marines, many Orks were slaughtered, with the survivors mounting their vehicles to escape with all haste. The Sisters first noticed something was very wrong when three mobs of Orks, deserted by their cowardly leaders, formed up and assaulted their front line, choosing to engage the Gaius City militia, rather than the Sisters' deadly accurate bolt guns. The Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren, apparently driven mad by some kind of battle frenzy, crashed into the Ork's rear ranks just as the first Orks reached the militia. The crazed Marines fell upon the Orks in an orgy of blood letting. Many Marines removed their helmets and, eschewing the use of pistols and other ranged weapons, set about the Orks with chainsword, chainaxe and knife and tooth. Canoness Anastasia witnessed in mute horror, Marines ripping out the throats of Orks with their bared teeth. The raw fury and love of carnage she saw in their faces as they literally tore the enemy apart made her shudder in fear. The Orks were annihilated within seconds of the Marines' attack, but the small number of the enemy were simply not enough for the Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren who by now seemed to have been driven into a fever pitch of absolute blood lust. With no more Orks for them to butcher, they scrambled over the barricades on the perimeter of Gaius City and smashed into the thin line of militia. Properly driven into a true battle frenzy now, the Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren performed acts of the most debauched nature in the name of violence. Men, women and youths, all fell beneath their blades. The old, the infirm, none were spared the Marines crazed attack. The Canoness later reported that she had personally witnessed cannibalistic acts committed by the frenzied Marines. She ordered a hasty withdrawal of her Sisters from the Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren with all haste, before they reached their positions. The Canoness later reported the incident to the Inquisition. Her report stated that both the Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren were unstable beyond redemption and that they were not fit for duty anywhere within their mighty Imperium. The Canononess firmly believed that it was evident that the Death Ravens and Charnel Brethren had devolved far beyond any point reached by a loyalist Chapter and requested their immediate destruction. The Corvus Legion and Skull Reapers were spared a request for their destruction. The last known sighting of these four Space Marine Chapters was made by an Explorator augury-beacon, which marked them tacking course through the Warp towards the Eastern Fringe. The current whereabouts and operational activities of the Death Ravens remain unknown.
The Death Ravens have no known homeworld to speak of, and where they recruit from is also unknown, but is is believed that they once had a homeworld (which is listed in ancient Imperial historical records as Deimos) but whether this planet is still their homeworld is unknown, as is where it is currently located.
Using pict-log and video-captures from the Centurion and Teutobourg campaigns, Imperial scholars were able to determine much about the Death Ravens appearance and weaponry. Armour is of ancient design, in fact, no marks of armour more recent than the MK VI have been observed. It also seems to be highly personalised, as no two Battle-Brothers' armour looks alike. Small tokens such as bird skulls or feathers adorn the plates. Some Battle-Brothers wear a fully black-coloured helm rather than the black and red of other Battle-Brothers. This is often combined with red striations on the helm or a bloody hand print on the face, although the reasons for these honour markings is unknown. Red "tears" (more likely blood drops) painted beneath the eye lenses on a helm are thought to denote an Astartes' ritual scarification and kill tally marks are often carved into a vambrace or a warrior's individual weapon. A "raven-head" decoration on a vambrace accorded an individual warrior status as having killed a fellow Death Raven of higher rank in a sanctioned arena duel. Of the armour observed, the MK V Hersey Pattern is by far the most used. Vehicles often have the same decoration but some, Dreadnoughts especially, have script in an unknown language carved into the ceramite. Weaponry is also of an ancient design with the Umbra Pattern bolter the norm, but Tigrus and Phobos Patterns have also been observed. The Death Ravens have also seen to extensively using Chainaxes.
- Head Taking - One of the most inhuman traditions of the Death Ravens is the practice of removing the head of fallen foes although for what reason imperial scholars are at a loss. Many believe that it is simply a rather macabre way of determing enemy casualties
- Gladiatorial Combat - Since their return, a few imperial forces have had the dubious honour of being allowed to witness another of the Ravens' traditions, that of Gladiatorial Combat which takes place in specially designed pits in the depths of the Death's Herald, known as the Blood Pits. When the Ravens Battle-Brothers have a disagreement many choose to settle their problems in these pits. Two combatants will enter naked, save for a loincloth, and be chained together where they fight until first blood is drawn, or in some cases, results in death.
- Binding Weapons - The Death Ravens have also been known to bind their weapons to themselves by using large dense black chains, removing them only once victory is achieve, much in the same way as the Astartes of the Black Templars.
Nobody knows what Primarch’s gene-seed led to the creation of the Death Ravens and the Ravens themselves have never revealed anything about themselves. A Deathwatch Apothecary reportedly examined a corpse said to have been from the Death Ravens and interestingly, the gene-seed bore several markers reminiscent of both the Raven Guard and Blood Angels bloodline. These markers are uncommon, and a link to either Raven Guard or the Blood Angels would explain several other details about the Death Ravens as well. However, apart from those few similarities to Raven Guard and Blood Angels gene-seed the Death Ravens gene-seed is so different in other aspects that it is unlikely that they are descended from either Chapter. Due to their brutal nature and close-combat prowess there have been some Imperial scholars that have claimed that they are somehow connected to the World Eaters, but that is clearly impossible and most think it is just a rumor, albeit a rumor that has increasing evidence supporting it.
Further light was shed on their origin in the aftermath of the Centurion War when the Knights of Guilliman were brought to trial by a conclave of Chapter Masters whose Chapters had not fought in the conflict, presided over by the master of the Ultramarines, Marneus Calgar. During the trial only a single Astartes from the Ravens attended, Captain Moloch with a single Strike Cruiser in orbit over Lycan. After the trial was over, Lord Calgar attempted to communicate with Lord Draf over a secure vox channel, but was met with only silence until Calgar accused the Ravens of being no better than the Traitor Legions, to which Lord Draf replied with the following, "Who are you to judge us? Those of our blood stood alongside the Emperor on Terra, while yours hid until it was over." This statement seems to rule out the Raven Guard as they did not fight on Terra but gives further credence to the Blood Angels. The Imperial Fists and White Scars are not thought to be the origin of the Chapter as the Ravens have use of the Betcher's Gland and Sus-an Membrane and the Imperial Fists do not. The Deathwatch Apothecary who examined the Ravens' gene-seed was from the White Scars Chapter and he noted no similarities between his own gene-seed and the ones he examined. No other Loyalist Legions fought on Terra, and so, if the statement is true then the Ravens must be descended from Sanguinius unless the rumours of a Traitor Legion origin are found to have merit.
All have greyish, pale skin with an almost deathlike pallor and jet black eyes. Rather unusually, when seen un-helmeted most battle-brothers seem to have some sort of bionic implanted into their skulls. No imperial scholars have found any evidence of its origin or function and it seems to be unique to the Death Ravens. Whichever Primarch the Death Ravens are descended from, the gene-seed of the Chapter has clearly affected these Astartes at a mental level. Simply put, the Space Marines of the Death Ravens have a physical need to shed blood and kill - a driving imperative that sends them into a berserk fury of unrestrained bloodthirsty psychosis. Despite the absence of irrefutable evidence there is clearly several major flaws in the Death Ravens' gene-seed, which will only increase over the next few years, many think the Chapter is living on borrowed time and that their end is nigh. Whether that end is to be declared Excommunicate Traitoris and be destroyed, or to turn Traitor and fall to Chaos is unknown.
The Death Ravens are a dedicated assault force and are almost exclusively comprised of Assault Squads that deploy with Jump Packs or in transports. Tactical Squads operate much in the same way, often deploying by armoured transports or gunships, and even when they don't they will charge across the battlefield in order to engage the enemy in hand-to-hand combat. The Death Ravens also contains no Devastator Squads, as the few heavy weapons the Death Ravens' posses are distributed amongst the various squads, and those few are invariably anti-infantry such as Heavy Bolters and Flamers. But even amongst their tactical units, heavy weapons are often left behind, as many sergeants are reluctant to hold their units at range long enough for the weapons to be used effectively. Librarian's are also absent, as the Death Ravens do not want any connection the Warp outside of the necessity for travel to other star systems and long range communication. This hatred of the Warp also extends to their equipment, as their Terminator squads do not have access to teleport technology. The Chapter has no reserve Company, only the 1st Veteran Company and nine Battle Companies.
Unlike other Chapters the Death Ravens do not have Scout units, and therefore, do not wear the traditional Scout armour. Instead, their newly-inducted warriors are gifted with an ancient set of Power Armour of a fallen Death Raven, and welcomed into the ranks of one of the Battle Companies as a full Battle-Brother. For the Death Ravens, no Astartes is considered a Neophyte, instead each new man has been accepted into their ranks as a full Initiate. In rare instances the Initiates will fall completely to the Blood Rage almost as soon as they enter one of the Companies. These unfortunate creatures are then inducted into the Veteran Company before service in the Battle Companies.
Like other Chapters, the Death Ravens possess an extensive support personnel comprised of thousands of Chapter Serfs as well as mindless servitors who are failed Aspirants given a second chance to serve the Chapter by crewing one of the Chapter's vessels in the Chapter Fleet. As stated before, most of these servitors are failed Aspirants, but some are rescued humans who have sworn themselves to the Chapter. There are also serfs who were born into their status as the child of Chapter Serfs. These serfs are fanatically loyal to their transhuman masters, and indoctrinated into many of the lesser orders of the Chapter's Cult. Although human, they still benefit from remarkable training and access to superior weaponry, and this makes them a formidable foe in defence of their chapter's Barque and in ship-to-ship boarding actions, even without the support of their genetically modified lords.
As with many Astartes Chapters the number of Battle-Brothers fluctuate significantly. The Death Ravens' numbers are believed by Imperial observers to be at less than Full Strength. The available evidence indicates that the Chapter may have as few as 100 full Battle-Brothers. The companies are so reduced, that they may have as few as one or two squads, per Company.
Their flagship, the Death's Herald, has been extensively modified to be able to transport the entirety of the first five battle companies, and has had more extensive weapons retro-fitted and upgraded defence systems which makes it one of the most powerful warships in the Imperium. Their second Battle-Barge was formerly known as the Guilliman's Light, which was taken a prize from the Knights of Guilliman Chapter, it's name now, is unknown. The remaining five reserve companies each have a dedicated Strike Cruisers and the Chapter Fleet is complimented by nine Gladius Frigates and two Nova Frigates. Due to the Chapter's small number and the individual Battle-Brothers reluctance to crew a warship, their vessels have on average only one Space Marine crew who commands a crew of servitors. The ships' Captains are often the most determined of the Chapter's Astartes, as they have managed to suppress the raging bloodlust within themselves, long enough to crew a starship, but even these determined Astartes can only hold out for so long before they too, fall completely to the Blood Rage and have to be replaced. Strike Cruisers and the Deaths Herald also have Techmarines on board, but their Frigates do not, instead relying on trained Chapter Serfs..
Chapter Combat Doctrine
Since their Reemergence the Death Ravens have become famous across the Imperium as little more than frothing, psychotic berserkers who at the first sign of the enemy will rampage across the battlefield in the hopes of engaging the enemy in hand to hand combat..
Their Elite Veteran Assault Squads of the 1st company are known as Reaper Squads. Reaper Squads are Berserker assault units composed of the most savage and bloodthirsty killers in a Chapter comprised of savage and bloodthirsty killers that are deemed just too unstable and insane to serve in a regular Company. Within these units their are even Marines that are too far gone to be anything but restrained between battles and are informally known as the Crimson Brethren, these Elite units are akin to the Death Company of the Blood Angels, It should be noted that all members of the first Company are just one step away from joining these psychopathic Marines which provides an Endless Supply of new members for the Brethren.Their Veteran Sternguard squads are also Assault Squads but equipped with Boltguns rather than Bolt Pistols and close-combat weapons. The Battle-Brothers of the Battle Company's are no less Bloodthirsty but are simply those that manage to focus their desire for berserk slaughter through martial discipline, mastering a variety of macabre and savage weapons.
Notable Death Ravens
- Lord Reaper Amit - Listed in ancient records as the Chapter's Lord Reaper, it is unknown when he obtained the position and when and where he was slain.
- Lord Reaper Uric Draf - The currant Lord Reaper(Chapter Master) of the Death Ravens is a truly gigantic Space Marine, It is said that he even approaches some of the great Primarchs in size. He wears a pelt taken from a giant predator that he hunted in his youth, hanging with the skulls of slain World Eaters. He has been Chapter Master for an estimated 400 years, obtaining his current position by challenging the former Lord Reaper to single-combat, for the Right to Command. This unprecedented event occurred barely a year since his transformation into a Space Marine. This was unheard of, as no new recruit had ever challenged a veteran Battle-Brother to combat, let alone the Lord Reaper himself. But the Death Ravens' Chapter Master could not refuse the challenge once the gauntlet had been thrown down, and so, he entered the Blood Pits. The bout lasted all of 5 seconds, before Uric Draf butchered his opponent with assault after brutal assault. The Lord Reaper just couldn't cope with Uric Draf's unrelenting fury, With their former Chapter Master laying in a bloody heap in the sand, the Astartes of the Death Ravens proclaimed Uric Draf the new Lord Reaper, and so he left the pit to the howls of his Battle-Brothers. Uric was then gifted with the Armour of Redemption, which was found to fit him perfectly, as if it had been made for him, and wielding the twin relic Chainaxes, Death's Herald and Death's Hand, he led his brothers to war. Uric is believed to have been born on Terra itself. Like most of his Battle-Brothers, he is a frothing psychopathic berzerker who feels nothing outside of slaughter -- no smiles, no tears, nothing. One of the few living people to have met him described him as a mutilated, bloody, reeking, wrathful figure that stalked amongst his brothers - a giant in massive armour with a pale and tattooed face, long dreadlocked-like connectors attached to implants in the back of his skull which connects him to his armour. Outside of battle Uric possesses a dead-eyed glare, murmuring to himself in a low monotone between battles, until he is once again turned loose upon an enemy and his eyes light up with the thrill of battle as he rampages across the battlefield in his overwhelming urge to destroy his foes.
- High Chaplain Ulric - The High Chaplain of the Death Ravens, Ulric is believed to have been High Chaplain for over 200 Years. He acts as the spiritual head of the Chapter. He wears a suit of master-crafted artificer power armour that looks like exposed muscles, and wears a jump pack with wings.
- Chapter Champion Morgrim - Chapter Champion of the Death Ravens, Morgrim wields a massive two-handed chainsword in battle. He too, also wears a suit of Artificer Armour.
- Bjorn the Butcher - The Current Leader of the Crimson Brethren is a frothing psychopathic berzerker, who, like his charges, can only be restrained outside of battle. He wears the Badge of the Lord Reaper Uric Draf, in order to show that he is the Chosen Warrior of the Chapter's current Chapter Master. It is said that aside from the Uric Draf and Morgrim, he is most formidable warrior in the Chapter.
- High Priest Ramiel - The currant High Priest (Chief Apothecary) of the Death Ravens. Ramiel wears a suit of Indomitus armour, modified to enable him to perform his Apothecary duties.
- Chaplain Molochia - Molochia is a senior Chaplain, second only to the High Chaplain himself. He acts as the head of the Reclusium and is a senior advisor to the Chapter Master, often being the voice of reason to the Lord Reaper's insane fury. He wears a suit of Indomitus Terminator Armour and Carries an Ornate Crozius Arcanum that was a gift from the High Chaplain himself.
- Captain Magron - Captain of the 1st company. He wears a suit of Tartaros Terminator Armour.
- Captain Merir - Captain of the 4th assault company, Merir wields a Thunder Hammer and is noted for his savagery in combat. He wears an ancient suit of MK IV Maximus pattern Power Armour with an upgraded jump pack.
- Captain Belor - Captain of the 5th Assault Company, Belor wears a suit of MK VI Corvus pattern Power Armour with an upgraded jump pack. He wields a pair of Lightning Claws in battle.
- Captain Moloch the Wise - Captain of the 10th Company. Uniquely amoungst his Battle-Brothers, Moloch has not become a bloodthirsty killer and is considered the most calm and level-headed member of the Chapter and is a military genius. He serves as an advisor to the Chapter Master. In battle, Moloch wears a modified suit of MK V Heresy pattern Power Armour and carries a Storm Bolter and Power Fist.
- Ancient Borek - Borek the Slayer is a Battle-Brother formerly of the 2nd Company, who is now encased in a pre-heresy relic Comtemptor Pattern Dreadnought. He is the oldest Death Raven, having been entombed over four thousand years before the present.
The Chapter Fleet is small but extremely powerful. They possess two Battle-Barges ,the truly ancient Death's Herald and an unknown vessel that was formerly known as Guilliman's Light. The following are the known vessels of the Death Ravens as of 999.M41:
- Death's Herald (Battle-Barge) - Flagship of the Death Ravens Chapter
- Unknown (Battle-Barge) - An unnamed Battle-Barge that was formerly known as Guilliman's Light.
- Blood Reaper (Strike Cruiser) - Belongs to Death Ravens' 6th Company.
- Salvation (Strike Cruiser) - Belongs to the Death Ravens' 7th Company.
- Revenge (Strike Cruiser) - Belongs to the Death Ravens' 8th Company.
- Reaper of the Lost (Strike Cruiser) - Belongs to the Death Ravens' 9th Company.
- Emperor's Light (Strike Cruiser) - Belongs to the Death Ravens' 10th Company.
The Death Ravens wear red and black coloured power armour. The main part of the backpack, the upper portion of the helmet, shoulder pauldrons, arms, knees, greaves and sabatons are red in colour. The top of the backpack, main exhaust ports, faceplate, breastplate, groin and upper leg are black in colour. The white coloured squad specialty symbol on the right shoulder guard designate operational specialty -- Tactical, Devastator, Assault or Veteran. A squad number is not displayed. A black coloured gothic numeral is stenciled on the left knee guard, which designates company number.
The Death Ravens Chapter Badge is reminiscent of the Raven Guards Chapter iconography. The Death Ravens utilise a large white coloured raven, centred on a field of crimson.
- Armour of Redemption - The Armour of Redemption is the oldest relic in the Death Ravens' Armoury and the Ravens actually have no idea how old it is, only that it is at least six thousand years old, and might be older. This mighty relic is a master-crafted suit of Artificer Armour that has been modified extensively into an exquisite suit that contains ancient technologies that were rare even before the Heresy. The Chapters' Chaplains proclaimed that the the this Chapter relic had been made for the Chapter's True Leader, and that the one who could wear it would lead the Chapter to Redemption. The fact that it seems to fit Uric Draf perfectly, only enhanced his standing with his Battle-Brothers, and he is now considered the Chapter's prophesied saviour.
- Death's Hand and Death's Herald - A formidable pair of Chainaxes that use the Teeth of a predator that is capable of cutting through Power Armour with ease, they were Created at the Same time as the Armour of Redemption and were intended for use with the Suit
- Word of the Emperor - A Crozius Arcanum used by the Chapters High Chaplain in M.37 and held in stasis aboard the Death's Herald.
- Blood Reaper - A Massive two-handed Chainsword that is used by the Ravens Chapter Champion, it uses the same teeth as the Death Reapers Chainaxes.
Allies and Enemies
- World Eaters - Although as a Loyal Chapter, the Death Ravens have a hatred of all things Chaos, they seem to have an almost unheard of hatred of the World Eaters and have even been known to abandon an operation at the merest rumour of their presence. The current Chapter Master even wears chains hanging with the skulls of slain traitor Khorne Berzerkers .
- Knights of Guilliman - The Death Ravens were responsible for the near-destruction of their Chapter, and the Knights have now vowed to have a reckoning between them.
- Ultramarines, Salamanders, Space Wolves- These Chapter are known enemies due to their known humane nature, and the fact that the Death Ravens have slaughtered Imperial civilians on a number of occasions.
- Inquisition - The Inquisition believe that the Death Ravens are no better than the Traitor Marines of Chaos and have attempted to have them Declared Heretics several times, but have yet to provide irrefutable evidence.
Feel free to add your own
By the Death Ravens
- "Who are you to judge us? Those of our Blood stood alongside the Emperor on Terra while yours' hid until it was over!"
- — Lord Reaper Uric Draf to Chapter Master Marneus Calgar of the Ultramarines
- "We Know what we are and what you think of us..you think us monsters. Creatures not fit for the Emperor's galaxy, and you may be right. Yes we are monsters, but we are the Emperor's monsters. Never forget that."
- — Unknown Death Raven Astartes
About the Death Ravens
Feel free to add your own
- "Reports of Death Raven squads sighted on one of the nearby worlds sir."
"Avoid contact, I don't want any unneeded collateral damage."
"Sir, the locals have lost several settlements."
"New order. Shoot on sight.""
- — Chapter Master of the Blood Wights, Agathus Colchian
- "I wonder Uric, whom would you say is the finer swordsman, Mogrim or Kerventes? I propose a duel! And to the winner goes the honour of first sip from the chalice! And the eternal enmity of his foe!"
- — Eulitus Ephrain and the Wings of Salvaxes in post-battle celebration with the Death Ravens
- "The Death Ravens are no enemy we want to face, but are a truly relatable chapter no matter how much you wish it untrue. A templar is bound by oath, not by morals."
- —A Brigadier of the Crimson Templars
- "Raving psychopaths more akin to wild animals than Astartes. Keep your eyes open and your senses sharp, Emperor only knows when they will turn on those they once called allies."
- — Lophess Ovair, Obsidian Blades First Captain
- "Of brethren lost and brethren found, vipers dead beneath the ground. Our brothers clad in blooded feathers, tied and bound by bladed tethers. Forsaken from the honoured sons, descended from the savage ones. Pure of mind and pure of soul, to absolve their sins their eternal goal."
- — Unknown Astartes of the Mortarchs Serpentia
All Artwork except for a couple of pics from space marine painter were created by Algrim Whitefang