The Plague Hulk is a Daemon Engine dedicated to the service of the Chaos God of pestilence and disease, Nurgle. A Daemon Engine is a nightmarish artificial construct used by the Forces of Chaos that is a fusion of a realspace vehicle or combat walker with a possessing daemonic spirit of the Warp. The Plague Hulk is a multi-limbed combat walker that resembles the hybrid fusion of a Defiler or Soul Grinder Daemon Engine with a corpulent daemon of Nurgle. The Plague Hulk is ungainly and sickening to look upon; staggering into battle on corroded metal limbs, its engine belching great shrouds of reeking vapour and pestilent fog that poisons the very earth itself.
Historator-savants in the service of the Ordo Malleus are unclear as to when and where Plague Hulks were first encountered, for the archives contain numerous accounts of daemonic engine-things that broadly match their description. The earliest likely sighting of a Plague Hulk was during the 4th Anancus Gamma Counter-Strike, when a demi-company of the Red Hunters Space Marine Chapter, under the mandate of Inquisitor-Lord Skane, was assailed by a wave of daemonic servants of Nurgle, including a number of Daemon Engines that Skane later reported as being hybrids of machine and Daemon carrying weapons capable of unleashing torrents of warp-spawned filth and decay. The Inquisitor made it a lifetime's work to ascertain the true of these horrors, seeking them out with increasingly maniacal fervour wherever the Warp encroached upon the material realm. Skane and an indentured Red Hunters task force vanished into the Caradryad Warp Fault in late 693.M39 whilst pursuing a mission, and it is assumed the Inquisitor-Lord was slain in the course of this Emperor-given duty.
Following the disappearance of Inquisitor Skane, several allied peers and Throne agents have continued this work, and it is from their studies and reports that most of what is known of the Plague Hulks is derived. It has been determined that Plague Hulks are summoned forth from the depths of the Warp rather than being constructed, and as such they may represent some incarnation of the Soul Grinder specific to Daemons aligned to the Ruinous Power known as Nurgle. This is largely conjecture however, for few witnesses have survived a full scale manifestation, and even the Hulks that have been destroyed have not left behind any wreckage that could be recovered or studied. It is believed that Plague Hulks are summoned or called upon by a specific ritual incantation known only to the most blessed of Nurgle's sorcerers and magi, and which is instant death to any who have not mastered the inner mysteries of the lore of decay. As the 41st Millennium draws to a close however, Plague Hulks are being encountered in ever greater numbers. From the cratered wastes of Vraks to the planet-spanning defence lines of Cadia, wherever the decayed hosts of Nurgle take to the field of battle, there too are to be found the lumbering Plague Hulks, the ground itself putrefying as they unleash the foul gifts of their master upon the material realm.
The mechanical chassis of the Plague Hulk supports a seething, maggot-ridden mass of putrescent daemon-flesh, at the centre of which sits a massive gaping maw capable of vomiting a tide of unspeakable foulness that can rot flesh and corrode metal. This weaponised ability is classified by the Ordo Malleus as a Mawcannon, and is a weapon common to larger Daemon Engines. The Plague Hulk armament also includes an arm-fused cannon of arcane origin known as a Rot Cannon. The Rot Cannon belches out shells that are so impregnated with dark ichor and infection that a mere scratch from one of the weapon's bone fragments will immediately and agonisingly fester into a crippling injury. The Plague Hulk, much like the Defiler and Soul Grinder Daemon Engines that it so closely resembles, is also armed with two massive mechanical Dreadnought Close Combat Weapons known as Iron Claws, which are also sometimes called Servo Claws. These weapons usually take the form of large, piston-driven claws featuring three bladed talons and are fully capable of tearing main battle tanks into pieces and wiping out entire squads of infantry in a single sweep. The daemon-machine also carries a weapon in its single, massively powerful limb. This weapon usually takes the form of a gigantic cleaver or huge rusted flail, and when coupled with the creature's amazing strength are more than capable of cutting or smashing through even the toughest of armour plate.
Ordo Malleus Departmento Analyticus Technical SpecificationsEdit
The technical specifications of the Plague Hulk have not yet been determined by the Ordos of the Inquisition.
- Imperial Armour Apocalypse II, pg. 72
- Imperial Armour Modelling Masterclass II, pp. 78-79
- Imperial Armour Volume Thirteen - War Machines of the Lost & The Damned by Andy Hoare with Alan Bligh & Neil Wylie, pp. 134-135
- Forge World Webstore: Plague Hulk