"Courage and Honour!" and "We March for Macragge!"
First Founding (30th Millennium)
Angels Revenant, Aurora, Black Consuls, Brotherhood of a Thousand, Crimson Consuls (Destroyed), Doom Eagles, Doom Legion, Eagle Warriors, Fire Angels, Fire Hawks (Suspected-Destroyed), Genesis Chapter, Hawk Lords, Heralds of Ultramar, Howling Griffons, Inceptors, Iron Snakes, Libators, Marines Errant, Metamarines, Mortifactors, Nemesis, Novamarines, Obsidian Glaives, Patriarchs of Ulixis, Praetors of Orpheus, Scythes of the Emperor, Silver Eagles, Silver Skulls, Sons of Guilliman, Sons of Orar, White Consuls
Blue, White and Gold
- "Whilst we stand, we fight. Whilst we fight, we prevail. Nothing shall stay our wrath."
- —Marneus Calgar, Chapter Master of the Ultramarines
The Ultramarines are considered one of the strongest and most honoured of all the Space Marine Chapters in the Imperium of Man, and were responsible for almost single-handedly holding the Imperium together after the Horus Heresy. Highly disciplined and courageous warriors, the Ultramarines have remained true to the teachings of their Primarch Roboute Guilliman for 10,000 standard years. The Ultramarines were originally the XIII Space Marine Legion before the reforms that initiated the Second Founding and reshaped the Imperium after the Heresy on the orders of Guilliman himself.
The name "Ultramarines" is a nod to both the Chapter's standing amongst the other Space Marine Chapters and their role as the source for the gene-seed of more Chapters of Astartes than any of the other former First Founding Legions combined. The culture of the Ultramarines is loosely themed upon the culture of Old Earth's ancient Roman Empire, as exemplified in their Astartes' pseudo-Latin names and their strict adherence to the Codex Astartes, as well as the society of their homeworld of Macragge and the Chapter's method of recruitment. The Ultramarines directly rule the sector of space in the Eastern Fringe known as Ultramar as a fief of the Imperium and their Chapter Master is also considered the Lord of Macragge and the Master of Ultramar.
The Emperor of Mankind created the Primarchs from artificially-engineered genes using his own genome as a template, and imbued each of these infant immortals with unique superhuman powers. The doctrine of the Imperial Creed tells of how the Ruinous Powers of Chaos stole away the infant Primarchs within their gestation capsules and scattered them across the breadth of the galaxy through the Warp. More than one of the capsules was breached whilst it drifted through the Warp and the forces of the Immaterium leaked in, altering the gestating super being inside the capsule in unknown ways. Some damage was undoubtedly done and Chaotic corruption later affected several of the Primarchs, although the nature of that corruption would not become apparent until the time of the Horus Heresy.
After drifting for decades, or in some cases even hundreds of years, the twenty gestation capsules came to rest on human-settled colony worlds throughout the Milky Way Galaxy -- planets distant from Terra that were inhabited by a wide variety of human cultures. The capsule containing the developing form of one Primarch fell upon the world of Macragge in the Eastern Fringes of the galaxy. Macragge was bleak but not inhospitable world that Mankind had inhabited for many centuries since the time of the Dark Age of Technology. Its industries had survived the Age of Strife in relatively good repair and its people had continued to build sub-light spacecraft even during the time of the most intense Warp Storms. The people of Macragge had also successfully maintained contact with several neighbouring human-settled star systems, despite the loss of many ships and crews to maintain this tenuous link to the rest of human space. The Primarch's gestation capsule was discovered by a group of Macragge noblemen who were on a hunt in a local forest. They broke the capsule's seal and discovered a strikingly beautiful and perfectly formed child within it who was surrounded by a glowing nimbus of power. The amazing child was brought before Konor Guilliman, one of a pair of nobles who bore the title of Consuls who governed the most civilised region of Macragge. Konor adopted the infant as his own son and named him Roboute Guilliman.
The young Primarch grew unnaturally quickly, and as he did so his unique physical and mental powers became obvious to all. By the time of his 10th birthday Guilliman had mastered everything the wisest men of Macragge could teach him. His insight into matters of history, philosophy and science astonished his teachers, but his greatest talent lay in the art of war, which was the true purpose for which his gene-father had created him. The Primarch's obvious genius for military organisation prompted Roboute's foster-father Konor to grant him command over an expeditionary force sent into the far northern lands of Macragge. This mountainous area was named Illyrium, and it was a barbarous land that had long harboured bandits and brigands. Although many wars had been fought against them, the region had never been pacified. Roboute fought a brilliant campaign and won both the submission and surprisingly, the respect, of the fierce Illyrian warriors. When he returned to his home from the northern frontier, Roboute found the capital of Macragge City in turmoil. During Roboute's absence Konor Guilliman's co-Consul, a man named Gallan, had unleashed a coup d'etat against Konor. Gallan was one of many amongst the wealthy nobility of Macragge who were jealous of Konor's political power and popularity. These malcontents enjoyed easy living on vast estates where they were supported by the toiling of a multitude of impoverished slaves. Konor had moved to change all that and had forced the aristocracy of Macragge to provide their vassals with reasonable accommodation and sufficient amounts of food. Konor had also passed legislation that obliged the nobility of Macragge to begin an ambitious programme of improving and enlarging the capital city at their own expense. These reforms proved to be great benefits to the people of Macragge, but were highly unpopular among all but a few of the more far-sighted aristocrats.
As Roboute and his army approached Macragge City they saw the smoke from a multitude of fires and hurried to investigate. From citizens fleeing the city, Roboute learned that Gallan's troops had attacked the Senate House while Konor and his loyal bodyguard troops were inside. The rebels surrounded the Senate, whilst drunken soldiers in the employ of Galan roamed the city looting and murdering. Roboute hurried to his foster-father's rescue. Leaving his own troops to deal with the drunken rebel troops, Roboute personally fought his way into the Senate House. There he found his father dying of wounds inflicted by an assassin in Gallan's employ. For three days the Consul had directed the defence of the building, even as surgeons fought for his life. As he gasped out his last breath, Konor detailed Gallan's betrayal to his beloved son.
With the full backing of his Legion, Roboute crushed the aristocratic rebels and quickly restored order to the capital city. Thousands of citizens flocked to the Senate House and amidst a wave of popular acclaim Roboute assumed the mantle of the sole and now all-powerful Consul of Macragge. The new ruler crushed the old, aristocratic order. Gallan and his fellow conspirators were executed and their lands and family titles taken from them. Hard-working settlers of unquestionable poverty but equally unquestionable honour were given their old oppressors' farms and property. With super-human energy and the vision only a Primarch was capable of executing, the Consul reorganised the social order of Macragge, and created a true meritocracy where the hardworking and honourable received positions of high office, and the armed forces were transformed into a powerful and well-equipped force. Under the rule of the Consul Roboute Guilliman, Macragge flourished as never before.
Arrival of the Emperor
While the gestation capsules containing the Primarchs had still drifted through the Warp, the Emperor of Mankind and the Legions of Space Marines he had created from his lost sons' genetic material advanced across the galaxy. This Great Crusade liberated many human worlds from alien domination and re-established contact with human-settled planets that had endured isolation and danger for untold thousands of Terran years.
While the young Roboute Guilliman waged war against the Illyrian bandits in the northern mountains of Macragge, the Emperor and a force of Space Marines reached the planet of Espandor in a neighbouring star system. From the Espandorians the Emperor learned of the existence of Macragge and the extraordinary son of the Consul Konor Guilliman. There was no question that this description meant that he had found one of his long-lost sons, for this was surely the legend of a Primarch. While the Emperor's fleet immediately moved on to Macragge, his vessel ran into a sudden and unexpected Warp-squall, a brief but intensely strong disturbance that threw the spacecraft far off-course. By the time the Emperor reached Macragge, Roboute Guilliman had ruled for almost five standard years. In that time the world had undergone a striking transformation. Its people were well-fed and prosperous, its armies well-equipped and its cities had been rebuilt in glittering marble and shining steel. Vessels from Macragge now plied regular and well-patrolled trade routes with the local star systems, bringing raw materials and more people to the flourishing world. The Emperor was astounded to find a planet so well-ordered and prosperous, and realised at once that Roboute Guilliman possessed unsurpassed ability and vision, even for a Primarch. Once Guilliman learned the truth of his origins he immediately swore his fealty to the Emperor, who he knew was his true father.
The XIII Legion of Space Marines, better known as the Ultramarines, was assigned to the command of Roboute Guilliman, whose own genome had provide the basis for its Astartes' gene-seed, and its forward base was relocated to Macragge. The Primarch quickly acclimated himself to the many technological wonders of the newborn Imperium of Man and began his new role with his customary skill and enthusiasm. However, Guilliman's chief talents, as ever, lay in the military arts, and he led his Ultramarines to fresh conquests in the galactic south. He succeeded in liberating more worlds during the Great Crusade than any other Primarch, and the planets he brought within the Imperium always benefited from his intense passion for efficient and fair government. Whenever Guilliman and the Ultramarines freed a world from the tyranny of xenos or other men, his first priority was to set up a self-supporting defence system. Once a world was safe he knew that he could move on, leaving behind Imperial advisers and Iterators of the Imperial Truth to ensure that advanced industry would be created, interstellar trade routes set up with the rest of the Imperium, and government directed solely towards the betterment of the people.
Roboute Guilliman easily mastered the knowledge required for him to lead a Space Marine Legion into battle and took full command of his Astartes, who soon revered him as second only to the Emperor. Guilliman led his soldiers to victory after victory and liberated countless worlds from oppression by aliens and human tyrants ignorant of the light of the Imperial Truth. Guilliman always chose a course of combat that caused minimal collateral damage and helped to win over the hearts and minds of the conquered people. Back on Macragge, the Ultramarines who had remained behind began construction of the Fortress of Hera, the Legion's fortress-monastery, and oversaw the training and genetic modification of new Aspirants to join the Legion's ranks. The Ultramarines' efficiency and wide recruitment pool soon saw the Ultramarines Legion swell in size, becoming the largest of the 20 Space Marine Legions. For instance, while most of the Astartes Legions had around 10,000 members, the Ultramarines had in excess of 25,000, putting them on a par with the Word Bearers. When the Emperor proclaimed Horus, the Primarch of the Luna Wolves Legion and his personal favourite son as the Warmaster of the Imperium, Guilliman accepted the news without resentment. Horus continued to seek his brother's counsel. However, Horus always believed that Guilliman felt that he had deserved the honour of being named Warmaster just as much as Horus, and this fed the coolness and sense of distance between the two Primarchs.
Meanwhile, the fortress-monastery of the Ultramarines, the Fortress of Hera, grew in size and scope on Macragge. Some Ultramarines remained behind to supervise the work, which progressed rapidly thanks to the trading network and advanced industries enjoyed by Guilliman's homeworld. Within a year of the Ultramarines arrival on Macragge a training base had been established. Recruiting for the Legion began on Macragge and the surrounding worlds immediately thereafter. It was not long before the Ultramarines Legion received its first influx of warriors born and bred on Macragge rather than on Terra. Thanks to the thoroughness of their organisation, the Ultramarines were able to receive a constant flow of Neophytes throughout the centuries of the Great Crusade. Because of their strong recruitment base and Roboute Guilliman's tactical expertise, the Ultramarines were the largest of the Space Marine Legions. They managed to generate more Neophytes and suffer fewer casualties than any other Legion.
Battle of Calth
When the Warmaster Horus turned his back on the Imperium, swore his allegiance to the Ruinous Powers of Chaos, and began the Horus Heresy, his first act before making his break with the Emperor of Mankind open was to lure away as many Loyalist Legions from Terra as possible. Horus ordered Guilliman to lead an expeditionary force to the world of Calth in the Veridian System in the Realm of Ultramar to prepare for a campaign in the Eastern Fringes of the galaxy, where, Horus claimed, an Ork WAAAGH! was massing. Horus expected the Ultramarines to await the arrival of the Word Bearers who would join with the XIII Legion in prosecuting a campaign against the Ork menace. Unknown to Guilliman, XVII Legion had long before turned Traitor in service to the Chaos Gods, and its Primarch, Lorgar, gleefully accepted Horus' orders to close the trap on his Legion's long-hated rivals. The Word Bearers' sudden attack decimated Guilliman's Legion fleet, and the Ultramarines' ground troops quickly found themselves impossibly outnumbered by their former allies as the infamous Battle of Calth erupted. The Word Bearers slew their Loyalist foes in droves in the early stages of their surprise attack and pushed them back over huge stretches of territory. The Traitors rejoiced at the terrible blows they were inflicting upon the Legion that had once aided the Emperor in humiliating them upon the world of Khur decades before the start of the Heresy when they had been taken to task for repeated violations of the atheistic philosophy known as the Imperial Truth. Unknown to them, Guilliman's flagship, which had survived the initial Word Bearers' attack on the Ultramarines fleet, effected emergency repairs and regrouped with the other surviving Ultramarine starships in space. Having taken stock of his remaining forces, Guilliman sent an immediate astropathic distress call to Macragge.
The Loyalist Marines on Calth, Ultramarines all, had been forced into a fighting retreat, but soon occupied fortified positions. Many Ultramarines had been born on Calth, and proved more resolute than the Word Bearers anticipated. In space, Guilliman's vessels began hit-and-run attacks on their over-confident enemy. Guilliman assessed his ground troops' positions and broadcast clear, concise orders to each pocket of defence, coordinating them into a cohesive force. One Ultramarine force led by Captain Ventanus led a breakout and retook Calth's Defence Laser silos, aiding the sorely-pressed Ultramarines fleet from the surface of Calth. Guilliman's depleted forces slowed the Word Bearers down long enough for the remainder of the Ultramarines Legion to arrive and rout the Traitor Marines from the system, though at a heavy cost. The Word Bearers turned Calth's own orbital defence platforms on the Veridian star, stripping away the outer layers of its photosphere and destabilising it, ultimately rendering the surface of Calth uninhabitable. At the same time, the Word Bearers had used the battle taking place on Calth to summon a massive Warp Storm called the Ruinstorm, that was intended to cut off Ultramar from the rest of the galaxy and prevent the Ultramarines from providing any reinforcements to Terra as Horus made his assault upon humanity's homeworld. The eruption of the Ruinstorm cut off Calth from the main body of the Ultramarines Legion and left the Astartes of the XIII Legion trapped on Calth locked in a brutal subterranean war with those Word Bearers units that had also been left behind when their Legion retreated from the Viridian System. Yet Roboute Guilliman and a large portion of his Legion had remained off-world as a result of the Word Bearers' devious assault upon the Ultramarines fleet. Bloodied but unbowed, the Ultramarines received the orders of Malcador the Sigillite, the Emperor's Regent, while he was in disposed pursuing the secret Imperial Webway Project, and prepared to meet the needs of the Imperium's defence against the Traitor Legions as best they could.
In his wrath at the outcome on Calth, the Lord of Ultramar had gathered what vessels he could spare after Kor Phaeron’s ambush, drawn additional numbers from the first Ultramarines relief fleet bound for Calth after the massacre above that world, and tracked Lorgar directly through the use of the XIII Legion’s own astropathic choirs. In the wake of the Battle of Calth, the Word Bearers Legion, led by Lorgar, linked up with Angron and his World Eaters Legion to launch a Shadow Crusade against the Realm of Ultramar's Five Hundred Worlds in an attempt to spread the massive Warp Storm known as the Ruinstorm that had been conjured by the Word Bearers' First Chaplain Erebus at Calth across the Eastern Fringe. This prodigious Warp Storm would effectively split the galaxy in half and deny needed reinforcements to the Loyalists as Horus drove on Terra in an attempt to overthrow the Emperor of Mankind.
The Shadow Crusade lay waste to 26 worlds until Guilliman's retribution fleet finally caught up to the Traitors upon Angron's homeworld of Nuceria, which the World Eaters Legion were preoccupied with wiping clean of all life in vengeance for the treatment the Nucerians had meted out a century before to Angron. The XIII Legion warship Courage Above All, Guilliman's temporary flagship, broke Warp at the system’s edge, at the head of a large void armada consisting of 41 vessels. The Ultramarines armada looked wounded, cobbled together from separate fleets. It was not a dedicated interdiction war-fleet, but clearly a ragtag strike force, a lance thrust to the enemy’s heart. Guilliman himself had done the best he could with limited resources. The XIII Legion's Cruisers and Battleships ran abeam of the enemy fleet for repeated exchange of broadsides, offering targets too big and powerful to ignore, while the rest of the Ultramarines fleet used calculated Lance strikes from safer range. The armada then divided its assault potential, doing its utmost to destroy Lorgar's flagship Fidelitas Lex, and attempted to take the World Eaters' flagship Conqueror in a boarding action.
But the Ultramarines not only fought a void war, they also attempted to take the fight to the surface of Nuceria, for this attack was personal. The Ultramarines had come for revenge against Lorgar and the Word Bearers, just as they had pursued Kor Phaeron all the way to the Maelstrom on the other side of Ultramar. Several Ultramarines warships attempted to make a run on Nuceria, haemorrhaging Drop Pods, landers and gunships, forcing planetfall by any means necessary. The Ultramarines fleet swept over and against the Traitors like an insect horde. But the tenacious commander of the Conqueror, Lotara Sarrin, put up a difficult fight and destroyed a number of Ultramarines vessels that attempted to make a run for the surface. Though the World Eaters' flagship transformed a number of the smaller vessels into flaming wreckage, the Ultramarines eventually punched through her tenacious defence and managed to land troops on the surface of Nuceria.
Meanwhile, the Fidelitas Lex was already a ruin, its armour pitted and cracked, its shields a memory. The cathedrals and spinal fortresses barnacling along its back were gone, laid waste by the Ultramarines’ incendiary rage. The XIII Legion's armada attacked in strafing runs and protracted exchanges of broadsides, trading fire with the superior warship and accepting their own casualties as the cost of bleeding the bigger vessel dry. Each assault left the Lex weaker, firing fewer turrets and cannons, taking punishment on its increasingly fragile armour. But she fought on. Crawling with smaller ships, the Lex lashed back with its remaining Macro-cannons, rolling in the light of its own burning hull. Guilliman guided the battle from the command deck of Courage Above All, and had decided that the Lex would die first, killed in the death of a thousand cuts and swept from the game board, while the Conqueror would be boarded and killed from within. In the course of the battle in Nucerian orbit, the Conqueror could not rise to its sister-ship’s defence. Both Traitor Legion flagships fought alone, starved of support and suffering the endless attacks of the XIII Legion’s ragged armada. Salvation Pods streamed from the Lex’s sides and underbelly, along with heavier Mechanicum craft and bulk landers. With the Legionaries of the Word Bearers already on the surface, the ship’s human population fled in the vessel’s final minutes. And still the great vessel fought -- rolling, turning, raging. The Ultramarines Cruisers that drifted past burned as badly as the warship they were killing. This void battle was a form of dirty fighting between warships, too close for the neat calculations of ranged battery fire. Instead, it was an up close and personal slugfest.
The Ultramarines Battle Barge Armsman intercepted the Conqueror and came abeam, launching Assault Carriers and Boarding Torpedoes. While the World Eaters flagship was busy repelling boarders, a number of smaller XIII Legion vessels slipped past her defences and launched Drop Pods, gunships and troop carriers. The first Drop Pods hammered home on the planet's surface. Sealed doors unlocked and the first Ultramarines poured forth, Bolters raised, moving in perfect and well-trained unity. But the World Eaters were waiting for them. Those not lost to the Butcher's Nails at once had the presence of mind to note that these Ultramarines weren not the pristine cobalt-blue warriors they had previously faced on the War World of Armatura. These Legionaries of the XIII wore cracked Power Armour, still scarred and burnwashed from some horrendous battle weeks or months before. These were hardened veterans of the Calth Atrocity. They burned with a cold intensity to carry out the vengeance in their hearts, and were intent on getting to grips with the Word Bearers.
As was their way, the Ultramarines established footholds at defensible positions, clearing room for their reinforcements to land. For every position they held, another was overrun by the World Eaters in a storm of roaring axes, or lost to the Word Bearers' chanting, implacable advance. The XII Legion crashed against the XIII in rabid packs, showing why Imperial forces had feared to fight alongside them for decades. Uncontrolled, unbound, unrestrained, they butchered their way through Ultramarines strongpoints, enslaved to the joy of battle because of the Butcher's Nails cortical implants sandwiched within the meat of their minds. The XVII Legion also met their Loyalist cousins, replacing ferocity with spite and hate. The Ultramarines returned it in kind, hungry for vengeance against the vile Traitors who had defiled Calth and damaged its star. Word Bearers units marched, droning black hymns and chanting sermons from the Book of Lorgar, bearing corpse-strewn icons of befouled metal and bleached bones above their regiments.
As the fighting raged, the burning shell of the Fidelitas Lex cut through the clouds into the planet's atmosphere, shuddering on its way east, rolling ever downwards, achingly slow for something of such scale. The weight of the Lex's massive plasma engines dragged the stern down first, colliding with the Nucerian ocean's surface far from shore. In the meantime, the demigod in gold and blue had finally found the object of his obsession amidst the clamour of war. Guilliman confronted Lorgar, possessing the advantage of two weapons, but Lorgar's Crozius gave him a reach his brother lacked. When they first met, there was no furious trading of frantic blows, nor were there any melodramatic speeches of vengeance avowed. The two Primarchs came together once, Power Fist against War Maul, and backed away from the resulting flare of repelling energy fields. Their warriors killed each other around them both, and neither Primarch spared their sons a glance. Lorgar flicked the clinging lightning from the head of his Crozius, shaking his head in slow denial.
Both Primarchs fought without heeding their warriors, their godlike movements an inconceivable blur to the Space Marines fighting around them. None had ever imagined the heroes of this new age would take the field against each other, nor could they have predicted the wellsprings of spite between them. Guilliman confronted Lorgar for what his Legion had done across the Five Hundred Worlds of Ultramar. In his righteous anger the Ultramarines Primarch struck Lorgar with one of his fists, battering the Word Bearers Primarch's sternum. Lorgar repulsed him with a projected burst of telekinesis, weak and wavering, but enough to send his brother staggering. The Crozius followed, its power field trailing lightning as Lorgar hammered it into the side of Guilliman’s head with the force of a cannonball. Both Primarchs faced each other beneath the grey sky, one bleeding internally, the other with half of his face lost to blood sheeting from a fractured skull.
As the two Primarchs were locked in their furious life-and-death struggle, they were oblivious to the destruction being wrought around them. Suddenly, Angron burst forth from the Ultramarines ranks, his armour a shattered wreck, and both of his Chainswords spat gobbets of ceramite armour plating and scarlet gore. Angron was plastered with the blood of the slain after hours in the crush of the front lines of intense combat. On his chest hung a bandolier of skulls taken from the mass grave at Desh’elika Ridge. Blood painted them as surely as it marked Angron. Even through the constant pain generated by the Butcher's Nails, that pleased him. He wanted his deceased brothers and sisters to taste blood once more. He had carried them with him across Nuceria, letting their empty eyes witness the razing of his former, hated homeworld. The World Eater launched himself at Guilliman with murderous hatred. The two Primarchs fell into a seamless, roaring duel where Lorgar and Guilliman had abandoned theirs. Guilliman was forced back by the storm of Angron's blows.
As the two Primarchs fought, Guilliman landed a glancing blow, his fist pounding across Angron's breastplate. One of the skulls of Angron's fallen kinsman that hung from the chain worn across his breastplate was partially shattered and scattered across the ground. Guilliman stepped back, his boot crushing a skull's remnants to powder. Angron saw it, and threw himself at his brother, his howl of wrath defying mortal origins, impossibly ripe in its anguish. Lorgar saw it, too. The moment Guilliman's boot broke the skull, he felt the Warp boil behind the veil.
The Bearer of the Word started chanting in a language never before spoken by any living being, his words in faultless harmony with Angron's cry of torment. Lorgar enacted his dark plan to save his brother's life, summoning the Ruinstorm to the world of Nuceria, tearing the sky open and unleashing a crimson torrent, formed from the ghosts of a hundred murdered worlds, raining blood. Guilliman had been holding his own against both Traitor Primarchs, until Lorgar ceased his attack and started his achingly resonant chant. Angron and Roboute still fought, with the Lord of the Ultramarines giving ground each time Angron landed a blow. Angron plunged his Chainsword up under Guilliman’s breastplate -- a shallow stab, but a telling one. The Ultramarines Primarch crushed the impaling sword in one fist and staggered back, truly bleeding now.
Despite the maelstrom of combat and sorcery raging around them, Angron still fought Guilliman, standing above the kneeling Ultramarine Primarch. He had not even noticed the storm of blood streaming from the sky in a red torrent. Sparks sprayed from Roboute’s raised gauntlets as he struggled to ward off blow after blow. He was beaten and down. His wounds bled profusely, a palette of proud defeat. His warriors fought desperately to retrieve him. Fortunately they were granted a brief reprieve, as Lorgar's incantation locked up Angron's muscles, and began to transform the Red Angel into a new form as a Daemon Prince of Khorne. Guilliman took the opportunity to escape into his sons' defiant phalanxes, retreating in enviable unity. Lorgar saw the expression of disgusted awe on his brother's face as the wounded Ultramarine stared at Angron's metamorphosis atop the mound of dead sons from all three bloodlines of Space Marines. The XIII Legion continued to fire even in retreat, leaving the world of Nuceria battered and bloody. Their campaign against the two Traitor Legions was over...for now.
Roboute Guilliman escaped from Nuceria, unable to face or even fully comprehend what both of his brothers had become through their corruption by the Ruinous Powers. The World Eaters completed their purge of Nuceria until not one human life remained on the benighted world. Angron, now the very embodiment of the Blood God's Eight-Fold Path, shook the dust of the world from his feet and did not think of it again.
Battle of Terra
As the long and bloody years of the Horus Heresy passed, the Traitor Legions under the command of the Warmaster Horus finally closed on the homeworld of Mankind and launched their great assault against the Imperial Palace while they believed a good portion of the Loyalist Space Marine Legions remained occupied in other regions of the galaxy. While the Forces of Chaos came close to battering down the gates of the Palace, the Loyalists' stout defence managed to hold the line long enough for Loyalist reinforcements to drop from the Warp on the edges of the Sol System. Salvation was coming.
In orbit of Terra, Horus' allies delivered the fateful news. The Ultramarines, Dark Angels and Space Wolves Legions were only hours away from reinforcing the Emperor and his Loyalist defenders in the Imperial Palace. Horus then knew that his great gamble to seize Terra had failed. What happened next is disputed, some believe Horus disabled his flagship's Void Shields as he experienced one last moment of regret, and some believe it was simply a personal challenge to the Emperor. Nevertheless, Horus lowered the shields of his flagship Battle Barge Vengeful Spirit, allowing the Emperor, the Blood Angels' Primarch Sanguinius and a company of Imperial Fists to teleport aboard and ultimately slay him, ending the Horus Heresy. The Emperor was mortally wounded in the exchange and interred in the Golden Throne immediately afterwards by the Primarch Rogal Dorn, leaving a dangerous void of power and authority within the shattered Imperium.
Unfortunately, the Ultramarines fleet did not arrive at Terra until after Horus' defeat, and they found Terra and the Imperium itself in ruins. Guilliman steadfastly refused to allow the Imperium to fall, and began despatching elements of his Legion to all corners of the galaxy to stem the tide of invasion and unrest as the other Loyalist forces recovered and rearmed to force the Traitor Legions to surrender the territory they had seized during Horus' seven-year-long advance towards Terra. After a decade of intense fighting, some measure of stability was finally restored to the Imperium. To prevent a single commander from ever again threatening the Imperium with as many superhuman Astartes at his command as Horus had, Guilliman reformulated the sizes of all of the Loyalist Space Marine Legions into thousand-man Chapters, breaking apart the 9 original Loyalist First Founding Legions into the much smaller Second Founding Chapters. Never again would one man, no matter how noble his motives, wield the power of an entire Space Marine Legion. The proper organisation and tactics to be used by a Space Marine Chapter is the primary topic of Guilliman's masterwork of war strategy, the sacred Codex Astartes.
Post-Heresy and the Imperial Reformation
Throughout most of the time that the Heresy was under way, the Ultramarines had been engaged in bringing new worlds into Imperial Compliance on the southern edge of the galaxy. Their very success had carried them far from Terra and isolated them from the conquering Traitor Legions which had been concentrated in the galactic northeast. News of Horus' treachery had not even reached the Ultramarines until the attack on Terra was underway seven years after Horus first betrayed the Emperor at Istvaan III. Consequently, the Ultramarines were poorly placed to contribute during the early stages of the Horus Heresy. Luckily, the Ultramarines were therefore largely untouched by the fighting of the Horus Heresy. Other Loyalist Space Marine Legions had lost thousands of troops during the fighting, and half of the original 18 Legions had sided with Horus and been corrupted by Chaos. As a result, the number of Astartes left to the Imperium was very few, yet never had they been more needed by its people.
The disorder following the Horus Heresy had left the Imperium weak and extremely vulnerable. Everywhere the enemies of Mankind prepared to attack. Many worlds remained in the grip of the Forces of Chaos. Into this breach stepped Roboute Guilliman and the Ultramarines. Always the largest of the Astartes Legions, the Ultramarines found themselves divided into smaller units that were despatched all over the Imperium in a desperate effort to stem the tide of invasion and unrest. The Ultramarines successfully held the Imperium together during this time of intense danger when many centrifugal forces were seeking to rip the edifice of the Imperium asunder. Macragge was able to supply new Neophytes for the Legion at such a rate that before long the Ultramarines alone accounted for more than half the total number of Space Marines operating in the post-Heresy Imperium, and there were few human-settled star systems where their heroism went unnoticed at this time. Within a standard decade, order had been restored to the Imperium and the Forces of Chaos had been largely driven into the Eye of Terror. Even as the Ultramarines reconquered the worlds lost to the Warmaster, a new theory of warfare was emerging. Under the guidance of Guilliman's military genius, the Codex Astartes took shape. Its doctrines would reshape the future of all Space Marines and forevermore dictate the foundation of the Imperium's military strength and therefore the path to survival for Mankind.
The Second Founding of the Space Marines was decreed seven years after the death of Horus and the end of his Heresy. The majority of the remaining Loyalist Legions were divided into fewer than 5 Successor Chapters so depleted had their numbers been by the civil war, but the Ultramarines were divided many times. The exact number of Successor Chapters created from the Ultramarines at this time is uncertain: the number listed in the oldest copy of the Codex Astartes gives the total as 23, but does not name them. With the Second Founding, the size of the Ultramarines force was much reduced. Most of the Space Marines of the Legion left Macragge to establish new Chapters elsewhere. The Ultramarines' fortress-monastery had been built to accommodate more than ten times as many Space Marines as now remained on their homeworld. As a result its arsenals and weapon shops were partially dismantled and taken by the new Chapters to found their own fortresses. The genetic storehouses of the Ultramarines, and the Legion's powerful recruitment mechanism, were similarly divided amongst its Successors. As a result of the Second Founding, the Ultramarines' gene-seed became pre-eminent across the Imperium. These new Chapters created from the Ultramarines Legion during the Second Founding are often referred to as the Primogenitors, or "first-born."
Yet the heritage of Guilliman to his Astartes was not only genetic, but spiritual. Even to this day, 10,000 standard years later, all the Primogenitor Chapters venerate Roboute Guilliman as their own founding father and patron, and hold the ruler of the Realm of Ultramar and Master of the Ultramarines, whoever he may be from era to era, as the exemplar of all that it means to be a Space Marine. This is how the Ultramarines rose to be preeminent even amongst all the Chapters that were derived from their genetic material.
Roboute Guilliman continued to serve with the Ultramarines Chapter after the Heresy, leading them for another century after the Second Founding. It was said that during those years, Guilliman led several incursions alongside his brother Primarchs against the remaining Traitor Legions of the Chaos Space Marines. During one such incursion, Guilliman faced Alpharius of the Alpha Legion and defeated him in single combat, though this may simply be legend, as even the Ultramarines themselves cannot confirm this story. The Ultramarines could not liberate the planet, as the Alpha Legion remained unusually capable of resisting despite the apparent death of Alpharius and so eventually the Ultramarines moved on. Guilliman was only finally defeated by one of the Traitor Primarchs, Fulgrim of the Emperor's Children, who had become a Daemon Prince of Slaanesh (and whose own body had been secretly possessed by a Greater Daemon of Slaanesh).
Fatally poisoned in combat by his one-time brother, Roboute was transported back to Macragge in a stasis field, and has remained entombed in that same field for over 10,000 Terran years. Although physically impossible in a stasis field, it is believed by many pilgrims to his shrine that his wounds are actually healing, and that one day he will awaken again when the Imperium needs him most.
The Shrine of Guilliman built to contain his body frozen in time is one of the most holy places in the entire Imperium, and one which welcomes millions of pilgrims to the shores of Macragge every year. It lies within the Temple of Correction, a vaulted sepulchre forming a small part of the Ultramarines' vast northern polar fortress on Macragge. The temple is a miracle of construction and typical of the attention to detail which defines the Ultramarines every endeavour. Its proportions defy the human mind by the scope and grandeur of its design. The multi-coloured glass dome that forms its roof is the largest of its kind. Even the Techno-magi of the Adeptus Mechanicus come to marvel at the structure said to have been designed by Roboute Guilliman himself. According to the Ultramarines there is enough marble within the temple to build a mountain, and sufficient amounts of adamantium and plasteel were used in its construction to build an Imperial warfleet capable of defending an entire sector.
Within this edifice is the great marble throne of Roboute Guilliman, and upon that throne sits his still-regal corpse. Though 10,000 years have passed since his death, the Primarch's body is perfectly preserved by the stasis field. Even his death wounds from Fulgrim's blade are visible upon his throat. His mortal remains are preserved from the ravages of time by means of a stasis field that isolates the Primarch from the time-stream of normal four-dimensional space-time. Everything encompassed by the field is trapped in time and can neither change nor decay. There are some among the more extreme devotees of the Imperial Cult, however, who claim the Primarch's wounds do change. They say that Guilliman's body is slowly recovering and that his wounds show mysterious signs of healing. Others completely deny this, and point out the sheer scientific impossibility of any from of change within a stasis field. Yet enough choose to believe the stories to come and witness for themselves the miracle of the Primarch, generation after generation. Hope, as Roboute Guilliman knew, is truly the most powerful force in the universe.
Tyrannic Wars and the Battle of Macragge
- "We commend our souls to the Emperor. Let the story of our sacrifice burn across history like a shooting star. For death and for glory – for the Ultramarines!"
Over the 10 millennia after the death of Roboute Guilliman Ultramar held against all manner of invaders - some so strange as to defy the comprehension of the common man. The Ultramarines have tested their might against Ork WAAAGH!s and Renegade uprisings, Tau incursions and Necron raids, but the measure of their heroism is shown truest in battles where they have defended all life in the galaxy itself in the face of threats from beyond known space. So did the Sons of Ultramar prove in the 35th Millennium in battle against the Star-Striders of Crioth, and in retaliation for the Heavenfall Massacres. But of all these terrible wars and heroic struggles, there is one conflict that stands above all others - the onslaught of the Tyranid Hive Fleet Behemoth, and the Battle of Macragge in 745.M41.
Upon learning the threat posed to Ultramar by Hive Fleet Behemoth, Marneus Calgar at once drew up his plans. Deeming Macragge to be the star system most immediately threatened, Calgar ordered its already formidable defences to be further improved. A dozen warships already hung in orbit, and each day more arrived from the Warp. Massive Strike Cruisers cast shadows over civilian vessels and Imperial Navy Destroyers, and were themselves dwarfed by the brooding presence of the Ultramarines' Battle Barges. Between this mighty fleet of warships and the planet's no less formidable orbital defence stations, Macragge was anything but defenceless. Scant weeks later, the outrider vessels of the Tyranid fleet attacked Macragge. The alien bio-vessels swept aside attacks by Ultramarines Strike Cruisers and swarmed over the planet below. Soon many thousands of Mycetic Spore-birthed beasts scurried and rampaged across Macragge. Deeming that the Tyranid threat was too massive to be opposed piecemeal, Calgar combined his ground forces into three mighty armies. The primary and secondary taskforces, composed largely of 1st Company Veterans and Ultramaran Planetary Defence Forces, bolstered Macragge's polar fortresses against the Tyranid onslaught. Meanwhile, Calgar's taskforce, the largest of the three, performed a series of rearguard actions, attempting to slow the Tyranid advance and eliminate Hive Mind synapse-control organisms. Calgar achieved great success in the early days of the campaign, buying time with blood for his Battle-Brothers to the north and south. However, the Tyranids kept coming.
In a final climactic battle on Cold Steel Ridge, the Ultramarines rearguard were brutalised by the Tyranid horde and Calgar himself was gravely wounded. Knowing that to remain planetside was to doom his followers to wasteful death, Calgar withdrew to the orbiting Battle Barge Octavius. Refusing all but the most vital medical attention, the Master of Macragge took command of the fleet, and sought a way to save his world from certain destruction. Hours later, the main Tyranid fleet arrived at Macragge. With no sign of reinforcements, Calgar led his fleet in a series of daring attacks, striking at isolated vessels as they spread out to invade Macragge in force. Caught between the blistering firepower of Macragge's polar fortresses and the vengeful hammer blows of Calgar's fleet, Tyranid vessels were destroyed by the score, but many more yet remained. As battle raged, the Tyranids unleashed thousands of Mycetic Spores above the vital polar fortresses—if the fortresses were taken, Macragge's guns would be silenced, and the world left defenceless. So it was that the Tyranids landed in even greater numbers than before, and the fortresses soon found themselves sorely beset. Their gruesome cargo delivered, the battered Hive Ships retreated from orbit. Trusting to his Ultramarines to keep the fortresses secure, Calgar relentlessly pursued the Tyranid fleet, determined that it would not bring ruin to other worlds. Never before or since has the valour of the Ultramarines been tested as it was in the defence of the polar fortresses. The Veteran Space Marines of the 1st Company led the lightly-armed Auxilia in a tenacious defence of the fortresses, holding every wall and trench until the last possible moment before it was overrun by the Tyranid swarm. Slowly the troops withdrew ever deeper into the fortress, while making the Tyranids pay for every single yard of ground they advanced. The Titans of Legio Praetor stalked the ice fields and drove smoking furrows through the onrushing Tyranid hordes with shells and plasma. The ferocity of the swarms was unbelievable. At the northern fortress they overran the walls by using the steaming piles of their own dead for cover. Imperial Battle Titans were dragged down and ripped apart by sheer weight of numbers. The defenders' gun barrels glowed red hot and jammed in spite of the arctic cold, ammunition began to run low even though the fortress had contained stockpiles intended to last for months of siege.
Yet still the defenders fought on. Lumbering scythe-armed Carnifexes tore into the defenders' bastions like living battering rams, smashing their way through metal and rockcrete walls with equal fury. The Ultramarines had to rely on heavy short-range firepower to bring down the foe, but for each Tyranid that fell, another three sprang forward to continue the fight. Lesser men were paralysed with terror as the Tyranids broke through the perimeter again and again, but the Ultramarines never despaired and never gave thought to defeat.
Calgar pursued the Tyranid fleet toward the ringed world of Circe at the edge of the Macragge System. The timely arrival of the Imperial Navy's entire Battlefleet Tempestus from Bakka finally sealed the Tyranids' fate by catching them in a vice between the two fleets. Even now, the Imperial fleet was overmatched, for the Tyranids were too many. The battle would have been lost save for the heroic sacrifice of the great Battleship Dominus Astra. Charging into the heart of the Hive Fleet, the huge Emperor-class Battleship detonated its Warp-Drives, creating a Warp vortex that dragged both it and the entire Tyranid fleet to oblivion.
With the bulk of the Hive Fleet destroyed, Calgar's surviving starships came about and returned to Macragge to try to save the polar garrisons. The survivors of the Ultramarines 1st Company were still believed to be fighting amongst the defence laser silos of the northern citadel, but all contact with them had been lost after the Tyranids overran the surface outposts. Of the southern garrison, nothing was known. Calgar, feeling that the situation was becoming critical, sent the 3rd and 7th Ultramarines Companies ahead in their fast Strike Cruisers while his remaining damaged ships limped back to Macragge. The Space Marines of the 3rd and 7th Companies deployed onto the poles by Drop Pod, their supporting units following up in Thunderhawk gunships. Scenes of unbelievable carnage awaited them below. Piles of mangled Tyranid corpses and shattered wargear lay strewn across the ice. Vast, steaming craters pocked the snows where Titan plasma reactors had gone critical. The stench of death lay everywhere. The 7th Company landed unopposed at the southern fortress and quickly linked up with the survivors of the garrison above ground. Together they pushed on to clear the subterranean passages that the Tyranids had overrun. Devastator Squads kept the alien swarm at bay until Thunderhawk gunships arrived to blast the Tyranids back into the darkness. Captain Fabian of the 3rd Company prudently awaited the arrival of the company's 3 Dreadnoughts before proceeding into the fortress itself to search for survivors.
The dark, dank corridors beneath the northern fortress were already altered by the alien presence. Mucous dripped from the walls and ceilings and a pervasive musky stench filled the air. Alien screams and roars echoed and reverberated along the tunnels. The Space Marines pushed onward into corridors littered with Tyranid and Ultramarines dead, the darkness reluctantly receding before their suit lights. Chameleoid Lictor slay in ambush amongst the corpses, slashing into the advance squads in an orgy of destruction. Eventually the forward squads used flamers to burn their way along the passages and flush out their enemy. Even as fire consumed them, the creatures still leapt forward with claws outstretched to rend and slay.
Through darkness and terrors unimaginable, the 3rd Company finally reached the lower Penitorium where the defenders had made their last stand. Tyranid bodies were piled six deep around the doors, and within the room a circle of Terminators lay where they had fought back to back. Each had given his life for his brothers. The Ultramarines' 1st Company had been wiped out to the last man. The Battle of Macragge remains a great source of both sorrow and pride for the Ultramarines. The names of its fallen are commemorated each year at the Feast of Days, their sacrifice remembered throughout Ultramar with honour and gratitude. But the cost had been great. The Ultramarines 1st Company was gone and the 3rd and 7th sorely diminished. It would be many long years before the Chapter could properly replace its losses, but replace them it would. The Ultramarines would endure.
Since the Battle of Macragge, the Ultramarines have become instrumental in the Imperium's wars against other Tyranid Hive Fleets. In response to the threat, and counter to the dictates of the Codex Astartes for the first time, the survivors of the Battle of Macragge were formed into elite, specially-trained anti-Tyranid squads. These Tyrannic War Veterans make up the first and most powerful of the Chapter's reformed 1st Company, and are second to no other warriors of the Imperium because of their experience, training and upgraded Power Armour.
Defenders of Ultramar
The Ultramarines have always held the Eastern Fringes of the galaxy in the vast Ultima Segmentum against the forces of darkness that threaten the Imperium from beyond the Halo Stars, and the Chapter's 4th Company has a special hatred for the savage xenos invaders known as the Tyranids. Rapacious, extra-galactic predators, these relentless alien killers consume all before them in their quest for bio-matter to feed the ever-hungry biological factories of their Norn-Queens. The first Tyranid Hive Fleet, code-named Behemoth, smashed into Imperial space in 745.M41 and descended upon Macragge in a fury of talon and claw. Forewarned of the coming xenos danger by the Inquisitor Kryptman, the Chapter Master of the Ultramarines, Marneus Calgar, stood ready to face the deadly aliens, but nothing could prepare his warriors for the sheer horror of what was to come. Commanded at this time by Captain Idaeus, the 4th Company fought at the forefront of the invasion and were instrumental in the destruction of several of the larger Tyranid vessels. At last the invasion of Hive Fleet Behemoth was repulsed, but at terrible cost; the entirety of the Ultramarines' Veteran 1st Company was wiped out defending the northern polar defences of Macragge and many great heroes of the Astartes met their end. The Ultramarines had won the First Tyrannic War, but Kryptman assured Calgar that the Tyranids would be back.
With the destruction of Hive Fleet Behemoth, the Ultramarines set about consolidating their hold on the interstellar Realm of Ultramar. Many of their best and bravest warriors had fallen to the Tyranids, and with their strength thus depleted, many other alien and piratical raiders took advantage of this lapse in security and launched their own raids throughout Ultramar to sack worlds previously unassailable. Thus it was that the 4th Company – which had been at full strength when the Tyranid fleet attacked – had come through the war with the fewest casualties, and were thus the first called upon to help liberate Vorhn’s World, a Shrine World of the Ecclesiarchy in a neighbouring sub-sector.
The Ork Warlord known as the Arch-Maniac of Cabela had seized the world, enslaving its population and defiling the holy temples of the Emperor. Such barbarity could not be countenanced on such a holy world and thus the 4th Company was tasked with its liberation. Idaeus once more led his warriors into battle, using a combination of rigid adherence to the words of the Codex Astartes and an uncanny ability to adapt to rapidly changing battlefield conditions to circumvent many of the Ork strongpoints and destroy the most vital elements of their defences. With much of their energies spent hunting down the Space Marine raiders in their midst, the Orks were unable to repulse the massed tank companies and regiments of the Imperial Guard's Jovian Hussars who overran the Greenskins with an unusually low casualty rate. It was during the cleansing of Vorhn’s World that a young Space Marine named Uriel Ventris first came to Idaeus’s attention. Descended from the legendary Lucian Ventris, who had died fighting the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Behemoth beneath the polar defence fortress 180 years before, Uriel displayed an exemplary courage, even amongst warriors for whom heroic feats of bravery were the norm. Taking command of his squad when his sergeant was killed by an Ork warlord, Uriel displayed the qualities that would one day lead him to command the 4th Company itself.
With the liberation of Vorhn’s World, the task was now to secure the borders of Ultramar, and upon their return from the victorious campaign against the Orks, Idaeus’s company joined their Battle-Brothers in securing the borders of Ultramar against further attack. For the next 5 standard years, the company patrolled the northern borders of their realm, running interdiction attacks and boarding actions against any and all raiders they encountered. Aboard the Vae Victus, an honourable Strike Cruiser commanded by Captain Lazlo Tiberius, himself a scarred veteran of the Tyrannic Wars, the 4th Company destroyed over 300 enemy vessels and achieved the highest number of kills to add to the banner in their company chapel.
Over the next few years, between occasional returns to Macragge for obeisances at the Temple of Correction, where the stasis-sealed, mortally wounded form of the Primarch Roboute Guilliman watches over his Chapter, the 4th Company regained its strength and inducted many new members. Returned to full combat readiness, the company was once again fit for duties beyond the borders of Ultramar and in the Mereneas Core, the company was to earn the gratitude of the Adeptus Mechanicus when they boarded and destroyed the Space Hulk Flame of Iniquity, an agglomerated structure of scores of derelict starships that threatened a number of their Forge Worlds, the giant factory planets where much of the armed might of the Imperium is produced.
Following this success, the determination and courage of the 4th Company came to the attention of Inquisitor Markhov, who was in need of warriors of such great skill. He petitioned Marneus Calgar for the Ultramarines' assistance in a matter of grave urgency. Calgar consented to allow the 4th Company to be seconded to the Inquisition's service and Idaeus’ company was despatched to the world of Epsilon Regalis – a world later to be made infamous by the Witch Hunter Tyrus. Precisely what occurred on this world has never been made known, the events subsequent to the Ultramarines deployment on Epsilon Regalis having been sealed by the order of the Ordo Hereticus. Immediately following this mysterious mission, the 4th Company were involved in the eradication of several indigenous life-forms on the world of Horranveth to allow colonisation by an Adeptus Mechanicus Explorator team to proceed. Many among the Ultramarines felt that this type of combat was beneath them, but none dared defy their Chapter Master’s decree.
Following the purgation of Horranveth, the company was recalled to take part in the Balur Crusade, a mixed- Chapter-force led by Marneus Calgar himself. A strong coalition of xeno creatures (identified as the Tau, Kroot and Tarellians) had launched an attack into Imperial-held space and demanded that the inhabitants of the captured worlds swear allegiance to their blasphemous empire. Naturally, such naked aggression could not go unanswered and together with warriors of his own Ultramarines and from the Blood Angels, Marines Malevolent and the taciturn remnants of the Scythes of the Emperor Chapter, Calgar led the combined Space Marines army to swift victory, destroying the nascent xenos colonies and re-establishing Imperial rule.
The 4th Company were to fight the Tyranids again on the world of Ichar IV when the Tyranids returned with yet another Hive Fleet, this time known as the Kraken. Far from the battering ram of Hive Fleet Behemoth, it appeared that the Tyranids had somehow learned from their defeat centuries before and attacked in a series of smaller, yet no less lethal splinter fleets – advancing across a much wider front. Many of these fleets were destroyed, driving the aliens to consolidate their attack on the industrial world of Ichar IV. Again, the Tyranid threat was met with courage and steel, the men of the Ultramarines fighting alongside hundreds of Imperial Guard Regiments and elements from 7 other Space Marine Chapters. The 4th Company were again in the forefront of the fighting, with Idaeus and Uriel both awarded the Imperial Laurel for their heroism. Once more the aliens were repulsed, though the threat of Hive Fleet Kraken remained strong. The Tyranid fleet broke into a number of smaller fleets as it retreated from Ichar IV and it is known that many of these splinter fleets penetrated deep into the galactic core. Some even reached as far as the Segmentum Solar though the massed guns of the Imperial fleet destroyed these without mercy. However, whether every one of these Kraken splinter fleets has been destroyed remains unclear.
Following the defeat of the Tyranids at Ichar IV, the 4th Company was despatched to the world of Thracia, where the rumoured deployment of the Night Lords Chaos Space Marines necessitated a force capable of meeting them blade-to-blade. Regiments of Imperial Guard pushed towards the planetary capital city, meeting stiff resistance, but crushing all before it. As the campaign progressed, the Imperial lines became lengthy and strung out – all too easy to attack and destroy from the flank. Realizing this, the 4th Company attacked the bridges that would allow such an attack, but in the process Captain Idaeus was lost, heroically sacrificing his own life to destroy the last bridge. Mourning his loss, the 4th Company returned to Macragge, whereupon Veteran Sergeant Uriel Ventris was elevated to the rank of Captain and commander of the company.
Together with the newly appointed Captain Ventris, the 4th Company set off on their latest mission; to escort Adept Barzano of the Administratum to the troubled world of Pavonis. On the Eastern Fringes, Pavonis had been plagued by piratical raiders and civil insurrection and upon the Ultramarines’ arrival, the planet was very nearly plunged into a bloody civil war between its competing industrial cartels. Captain Ventris and Adept Barzano (now revealed to actually be an Inquisitor of the Ordo Xenos) went on to discover that the planet’s troubles were at the instigation of a madman named Kasimir de Valtos who desired the release of an ancient and powerful C'tan Star God who had been imprisoned beneath the surface of Pavonis for tens of millions of years. De Valtos was ultimately thwarted, though the ancient being known as the Nightbringer was freed from its aeons-long slumber and set loose amongst the stars. Only time will tell whether its escape will cost the Ultramarines and the galaxy dearly.
With peace and Imperial rule restored to Pavonis, the 4th Company journeyed to the northern reaches of Segmentum Tempestus to the world of Tarsis Ultra – a world brought into the Imperium by Roboute Guilliman himself during the early days of the Great Crusade -- and a world with a proud history of upholding the traditions of the Ultramarines. Ancient oaths of brotherhood bound the fate of Tarsis Ultra to the Ultramarines and when a gargantuan Space Hulk drifted in-system, Captain Ventris led his men deep into its haunted depths to destroy it from within. Buried deep within its structure, the Ultramarines discovered nests of frenzied Orks and something much worse: Genestealers. The fighting within the Hulk was amongst the fiercest encountered by the 4th Company, but its warriors were able to fight their way clear of the hulk and watch its destruction from the bridge of the Vae Victus. But the victory was tinged with dread, for the Astartes vessel's Astropaths detected the forward edge of a bow wave of Warp interference – a phenomenon known as the "Shadow in the Warp" – which could mean only one thing. The Tyranids were approaching the borders of the Imperium once more.
With warning of the approaching Tyranid Hive Fleet Leviathan given, the Imperial response was unusually swift. The Ultramarines contacted a brother Chapter of Space Marines, the Mortifactors, though they had diverged considerably from the ideals of Roboute Guilliman – embracing a culture of death worship. A fleet led by the Imperial Navy Admiral Bregant de Corte aboard the battleship Argus was assembled, including many ancient and noble ships of war; the Sword of Retribution, and the Kharloss Vincennes to name but two. Imperial Guard soldiers from the Death Korps of Krieg and the Logres Regiments were shipped in and the local Planetary Defence Forces trained by Sergeant Learchus using the methods of the Ultramarine training barracks. Inquisitor Lord Kryptman once again lent his expertise to the commanders of the defence of Tarsis Ultra as well as bringing an elite Deathwatch Space Marines Kill-team led by the justly famed Watch Captain Bannon. As far as any world could be defended, Tarsis Ultra was as secure as it could be made given the time available to its defenders.
Battle was joined in the system’s outer reaches and though the world of Barbarus Prime was lost to the Tyranids, the first elements of their fleet were defeated. The advance of the Hive Fleet could not be stopped and Kryptman was forced to sacrifice the world of Chordelis – ordering the Mortifactors to virus-bomb it from orbit before the Tyranids could assimilate its biomass. Despite fractures appearing among the Imperial commanders, the Tyranid threat was met with courage and honour on the surface of Tarsis Ultra, though the defenders were hard-pressed to stave off the relentless attacks of the aliens.
Though many thousands of lives were lost, and a huge proportion of the 4th Company was slain, the Tyranids were once more defeated when Captain Ventris cast off the teachings of the Codex Astartes and took command of the Deathwatch Kill-team. He led them on a last, desperate mission to deliver a lethal gene-poison to the heart of the last remaining Hive Ship. Having once served with the Deathwatch, Captain Ventris knew that this was where he could do the most good, and despite the grim warning from Veteran Sergeant Learchus that Marneus Calgar would hear of his flouting of the Codex, he set off on his mission. Through alien terrors and biological horror, the Deathwatch Space Marines and Captain Ventris were successful and the gene-poison was administered to the Tyranid Norn-Queen. Driven into spasms of uncontrolled mutation, the Norn-Queen died and her death throes drove the slave Tyranid organisms connected to her via the gestalt psychic consciousness of the Tyranid Hive Mind into paroxysms of feral self-destruction. The Tyranids were defeated, but like Ichar IV before it, the taint of the alien invasion would forever be impossible to remove from the surface of Tarsis Ultra—and the souls of its surviving population.
With Tarsis Ultra secured, the 4th Company gathered its dead and returned to Macragge, the hearts of its warriors heavy as they contemplated the cost of honouring their ancient debt. But something worse was awaiting the 4th Company upon their return to their homeworld. Allegations of heresy awaited Uriel Ventris for his actions on Tarsis Ultra and with them, the potential to strip the company of its honour.
Captain Ventris was spared the expected execution for his breach of Ultramarine doctrine and instead given a Death Oath by Marneus Calgar: he and his faithful companion, Sergeant Pasanius Lysane, were to seek out "a place of dark iron" where twisted reflections of the Space Marines were being wrought. Shortly after departing Macragge, Ventris' starship was attacked by Warp entities directed by a daemon imprisoned inside a daemon engine called the Omphalos Daemonium. This daemon engine resembled a huge, grotesque steam locomotive, which could travel between the Warp and realspace. The two Space Marines were seized and taken deep within the Eye of Terror to Medrengard, the Daemon World that was the home of the Iron Warriors Traitor Marines. The pair soon linked up with a band of Renegade Space Marines and two surviving former Imperial Guardsmen, who were escaped slaves of the Iron Warriors. The group became a self-styled guerrilla band, engaging in hit-and-run attacks against the Iron Warriors. Ventris, Pasanius and the band of guerrillas were eventually captured by Warsmith Honsou of the Iron Warriors, and after defying him, Ventris was "implanted" in the womb of a Daemonculaba, a genetically-modified woman whose womb had been amplified with Imperial Fists gene-seed the Iron Warriors had stolen during the 13th Black Crusade from the world of Hydra Cordatus and which was intended to turn normal adolescents into new Chaos Space Marines. This twisted technology was a mechanism intended to accelerate the development of new Traitor Marines in the laboratories under Honsou's fortress. These new Chaos Space Marines were intended to refill the ranks of the Iron Warriors Legion, which had been unable to replace its losses over the 10 millennia since the Horus Heresy. The Daemonculaba were also the mutated creatures that Uriel and Pasanius had been tasked with destroying in the first place. At the same time, Honsou was under siege by rival Iron Hands Warsmiths for refusing to hand over their share of the untainted Imperial Fists gene-stock taken after the invasion of an Imperial facility on Hydra Cordatus. As the fighting raged, Ventris and Pasanius managed to get free and succeeded in destroying Honsou's labs and his fortress, although in order for this to happen they had to release a captive Khornate Daemon Prince. The Daemon Prince then annihilated the rival daemon it had previously imprisoned in the Omphalos Daemonium, destroyed Honsou's fortress and minions, and attacked Honsou's rivals, driving them away. Later, Uriel, Pasanius, and a group of the so-called Unfleshed, who were the mutant rejects of the Iron Warriors' experiments to make new Space Marines using the Daemonculaba, escaped from the Eye of Terror on the Omphalos Daemonium, which had reverted to a normal starship.
However, the former daemon engine brought them through the Warp to a troubled world called Salinas, and more specifically to a forbidden zone on that world's surface that reeked of death. Ventris and Pasanius were then confronted by the veteran Imperial Guard Regiment that ruled the planet as a gift of conquest, and the suspicious and ruthless Planetary Governor, the regiment's ex-commander. They requested help in reaching Macragge, but their astropathic transmission was intercepted by the Grey Knights, who were monitoring Salinas for other reasons. A squad of them arrived on the planet, arrested Ventris and Pasanius, and after grueling physical, mental and spiritual trials declared them untainted by their exposure to Chaos during the events on Medrengard. In the meantime, it was revealed that a powerful psyker had likely brought the Omphalos Daemonium to Salinas in order to use the freed Unfleshed as an instrument of revenge against the governor and his former regiment. This was vengeance for the regiment's murder of tens of thousands of civilians, including the entire population of a town that was the birthplace of many of the leaders of a small-scale guerrilla campaign that now operated on Salinas. The campaign itself had been caused by the brutality and heavy-handedness of the Imperial Governor. This ravished town was the forbidden zone the Ultramarines had first found themselves in when they arrived on Salinas. After being possessed by the psyker, the Unfleshed went on a killing rampage, but they were eventually killed by Uriel, Pasanius, and the Grey Knights, who subsequently returned the Ultramarines to Macragge.
Having successfully completed their Death Oath, Uriel and Pasanius were welcomed back to the homeworld of their Chapter but were subjected to interrogation and tests by the Chief Librarian to insure they had not been tainted by their time on the Daemon World of Medrengard. After both Uriel and Pasanius were deemed free of Chaotic taint, Uriel was reinstated as Captain of the Ultramarines' 4th Company and given the opportunity to prove himself in the eyes of those who still doubted him by returning to the world of Pavonis and defending it from Tau invaders. Pasanius was not so fortunate, as he was demoted in rank and forced into one hundred days of isolation from the Chapter. This harsh treatment was a punishment for hiding the unusual regenerative abilities of his bionic arm, which he had gotten after the C'tan called the Nightbringer had scythed off his biological arm during the earlier Ultramarines mission to Pavonis. Apparently because of this contact with the C'tan, the bionic arm had become infused with the Necron's living metal, the substance called necrodermis. After one hundred days he was reinstated as a Battle-Brother of the 4th Company and rejoined his captain.
In the meantime, the Warsmith Honsou was consumed by hate for Ventris and the Ultramarines following the events on Medrengard and the destruction of his Chaos Space Marine incubation experiments. He hatched a plan to annihilate the Ultramarines, and especially Uriel Ventris. As bait, he used a stolen Mechanicus virus to turn Tarsis Ultra, the world the Ultramarines had vowed to protect, into a Dead World. He had assembled a large invasion force, which apart from his Iron Warrior warband, included Chaos Cultists, Traitor Marines and Traitor Guardsmen, Dark Eldar pirates, Kroot and other alien and human mercenaries, a Dark Mechanicus force led by the Traitor Magos Cycerin, and a multitude of criminals, psychopaths and killers. Honsou managed to find and board a star fort hidden for the previous 60 years in the depths of uncharted space in the Ultramar Sub-sector, guarded by an Ultramarines contingent. He slaughtered the star fort's Ultramarines garrison and then freed the powerful Daemon Prince M'kar, secretly held captive within the fort. The daemon, who had once been the Word Bearers Dark Apostle named Maloq Kartho who had originally attacked Ultramar during the Horus Heresy, was imprisoned by Marneus Calgar, the Chapter Master of the Ultramarines, with the help of the Inquisition. M'kar hated the Ultramarines Chapter and the Imperium of Man with a passion. Aligning with the Warsmith Honsou, the Daemon Prince possessed a desecrated Ultramarine Dreadnought shell so that he could interact with the material universe, turned the star fort into a Chaos abomination linked directly to the Warp, and called forth a huge daemon army to join in attacking the worlds of the Realm of Ultramar.
Honsou had managed to acquire a clone of Uriel Ventris, known as the "Newborn," who had been created from the genetic material left behind while Uriel was in the womb of the Daemonculaba on Medrengard. The Newborn was a psychic as well as physical clone of Uriel. As such, he had fragments of Uriel's knowledge and memories, including the defence protocols of Ultramar, which Honsou first used to attack the star fort, and then the entire Realm of Ultramar. The whole Chapter rose in defense of the realm, aided by an Adeptus Mechanicus contingent under Magos Locard, the warband of the system-based Ordo Malleus Inquisitor Suzaku, a squad of Raven Guard Space Marines, the mobilized Ultramar Planetary Defense Force regiments, and many civilians. The war expanded to encompass several Ultramar worlds, at least one of which was destroyed. Finally, Uriel confronted the Newborn (and Honsou), on Calth, his planet of birth. Honsou had gone there at the request of M'kar, to the Tomb of Ventanus (an ancient Ultramarine hero of the 4th Company known as "the Savior of Calth") to destroy Ventanus' sarcophagus and his wargear. Uriel killed the Newborn using a blade that was part of Ventanus' wargear, and in the battle that followed Honsou's more numerous force was defeated thanks to the sudden appearance of spectral guardian-warriors. Honsou, faced with capture or death, detonated the explosives the Iron Warriors had previously placed around the Tomb, collapsing the grand edifice of the Tomb on top of himself and his opponents. Uriel and some of his fellow warriors survived and headed to Talassar, an Ultramaran world where M'kar and his daemon army were close to overrunning Chapter Master Calgar and his dwindling forces. Uriel and other friendly reinforcements arrived in the midst of the final, climactic battle for the world. Ventris tossed the powerful anti-daemonic Blade of Ventanus to Calgar as the Chapter Master was duelling with M'kar, and Calgar used it to completely annihilate the Daemon Prince.
With the daemon army and Honsou's forces defeated in all the theatres of the war, the Imperial forces proceeded to engage in mopping-up operations, and within six months, the Realm of Ultramar was declared free of the touch of Chaos. Ominously, while the ruins of the Tomb of Ventanus were searched thoroughly, the body of Warsmith Honsou was never recovered.
- First Pacification of Luna (ca. 800.M30) - This early Imperial campaign was the first operation mounted by elements of the early Space Marine Legions beyond the skies of Terra. The Unification Wars were still raging across the surface of Mankind's birth world. Luna was the bastion of a conglomeration of resurrectionist gene-cults whose members believed that human nature was both fractal, fractured and transcendent. Each of these Selenar gene-cults clung to a different set of archetypes. Every cult member was a product of creation by the Selenar gene-wrights according to formulae crafted in the Dark Age of Technology. Resurrected in body time and time again they sought to distill the true personification of a single human archetype. In their subterranean complexes the cults were powerful, insular and resistant to the Imperial Truth. The Imperials would have normally dealt with these insular cults in the usual matter they handled all of the other Terran factions and techno-barbarian states that refused to accept the rule of the Emperor of Mankind -- by obliteration. The fact that the Selenar gene-cults had something that the growing Imperium needed complicated that position. The Selenar returned the Imperial entreaties for alliance with silence. As the threats of the Imperium soon began to outnumber its offers, the Selenar cults began to gird themselves for war. So it was that the Emperor finally ordered Luna to be pacified by the sword, their superstitious beliefs cast down before the Imperial Truth and their gene-craft yoked to the needs of the Imperium. To this task the Emperor set the three of his newborn Space Marine Legions most suited to this purpose on what some Imperial chroniclers name as the first true battle of the Great Crusade. The combined force of the VII, XIII and XVI Legions (later named the Imperial Fists, Ultramarines and Luna Wolves) lifted from the surface of Terra in a scattering of rocket flame. The as yet unnamed XVI Legion had been chosen to serve as the Space Marine force's vanguard, and had brought its full strength to bear. Cutting power to their assault craft, the Astartes of the XVI Legion drifted silently towards Luna through the void like arrows fired into the night. As the smaller wave of assault craft belonging to the VII and XIII Legions approached the airless world, the Selenar defensive weapon systems embedded in Luna's surface lashed the oncoming Imperial force. The XVI Legion's assault craft, unlooked for and unseen, struck their targets like a dagger in the night. Within six hours of the first shot being fired, Luna had been pacified and brought into Imperial Compliance, the first off-world conquest of the Imperium of Man. Faced with annihilation, the surviving Selenar cultists bent the knee instead, their surrender communique transmitted to Terra calling for the Emperor to "call off his wolves." Broken and humbled, the enslaved gene-wrights of Luna would help forge the next generation of Space Marine who would carry out Mankind's conquest of the stars. As for the XVI Legion, they had earned their name -- the Luna Wolves.
- Compliance of Tarsis (Unknown Date.M30) - This was an Imperial Compliance carried out by the Ultramarines Legion upon the world of Tarsis against unknown assailants. During the assault, the Primarch Roboute Guilliman was attacked by a mysterious assailant, but was saved by a native soldier of this world. In a supreme display of humility, Guilliman bent his knee before the soldier and vowed a warrior's oath that should this world ever need aid then the Ultramarines would answer the call. A temple within the capital city of Erebus displayed the Tarsis Frescoe, a mosaic of enormous proportions painted by an unknown artist that covered the walls, ceiling and even the floor, covering the entire chamber like a canvas. This frescoe displayed the events that had occurred during the Great Crusade. In gratitude to Guilliman and the Ultramarines, the planet renamed itself Tarsis Ultra in honour of its saviours.
- Castigation of Khur (964.M30) - Nearly six decades after being brought into Imperial Compliance and some forty-three standard years before the start of the Horus Heresy, the XIII Legion, the Ultramarines, utterly destroyed the city of Monarchia on the world of Khur on the order of the Emperor as an example to both Primarch Lorgar and his Word Bearers Legion that violations of the Imperial Truth through the encouragement of the continued error of religious faith and the spread of idolatrous doctrine would not be tolerated. This action, against a monument to the worship of the God-Emperor they had called "the Perfect City", crushed the morale of Lorgar and his Space Marines and led them to seek out new gods more worthy of their worship -- the Ruinous Powers of Chaos.
- The Tesstra Compliance(Unknown Date.M31) - Tesstra was at that time part of a close alliance of totalitarian colonies resistant to the Imperium's authority. This alliance, known as the "Conservation", had survived the Age of Strife through a mixture of relative good fortune and rigidly imposed eugenic control. This divided its population into highly stratified castes enslaved to their civilisation's greater needs. For the Imperium, the Conservation's worlds represented an addition to the Great Crusade's conquests; a prize that would liberate a human population of nearly eleven billion, but in order for this to be the case, the abhorrent civilisation created by the Conservation would have to be systematically dismantled. Once the Imperium's emissaries made their desires known they were fired upon and driven away, while the Conservation geared its worlds to violent defence against the Great Crusade. The Warmaster Horus, whose own forces were at the time engaged in battle elsewhere, diverted the forces of two Expeditionary Fleets, commanded by Roboute Guilliman and Alpharius respectively, to bring the Conservation to heel. The Ultramarines began to immediately conduct a campaign to engage and conquer the outer worlds of the Conservation, whilst pinning down its mobile military assets in an ever constricting noose. Alpharius and his Alpha Legion did not immediately attack, but instead circled, launching probes and raids without seeming rhyme or reason. Increasingly infuriated by the Alpha Legion's lack of progress and co-operation, Roboute Guilliman is known to have openly berated Alpharius in council, demanding that the Alpha Legion learn from his own Ultramarines' method of warfare and emulate it to achieve the victory that the Great Crusade demanded of them both. Further, that if Alpharius were to place his Legion under Guilliman's full command, the Conservation could be made to fall in a matter of months. This demand Alpharius ignored. Through the tactical brilliance and strategic genius of Alpharius Omegon, the Legion employed their well-known deceptive tactics of infiltration and the gathering of intelligence by their human non-Astartes agents on the ground. To the Tesstrans they appeared to be delaying their invasion, appearing only as threatening spectres as more and more Tesstran forces were deployed to Tesstra Prime's defences in preparation for the inevitable attack. When the assault finally came, it sent the Tesstrans reeling, striking from a hundred vectors at once yet leaving whole swathes of the defensive lines untouched. Soon sabotage ran amok, causing sever supply shortages and Alpha Legion strike forces began to appear inside the capital city, making red slaughter of government facilities and security stations with impunity. Sheer anarchy reigned as the Tesstran commanders were unable to redeploy their forces from the defences not under attack back to the city. Supply lines collapsed or were cut, orders were redirected or simply failed to arrive, and entire divisions were stranded trying to cross bridge networks that had been blown apart before they could reach them. It was then that the Harrowing of Tesstra Prime truly began. Beset on all sides by Alpha Legion forces, the Tesstran forces were subsequently torn apart by the Legion's super-heavy armour columns, and their own forces were advanced directly into the teeth of a vicious trap already laid for them. The battle was short lived and effectively over, but the killing continued. As the Alpha Legion withdrew from Prime, their task done, they left an anarchy of riot, fire and ruin in their wake. The regime and infrastructure had collapsed, and the dead and dying were everywhere in the streets, with pestilence and famine soon to follow. It is estimated that 90% of Tesstra Prime's population, both military and civilian, would not survive the battle and its aftermath. The rest of the plane capitulated in a matter of days. Alpharius Omegon's conduct invited censure from many quarters, especially from Primarch Guilliman, who declared the Alpha Legion's tactics dishonourable and unworthy of Astartes in a formal protest to the Warmaster. Horus was the only Primarch who openly praised his brother-Primarch and the way in which his Legion had conducted a truly masterful campaign, but the Ultramarines would not serve directly alongside the Alpha Legion for the rest of the Great Crusade.
- Pacification of Arkenath (ca. 004-005.M31) - Captain Hektor, commanding 500 of his Battle-Brothers, helped prosecute the Emperor’s Great Crusade to bring enlightenment to the galaxy and repatriate the lost colonies of man by fighting the Vektates of Arkenath. The Vektate were a deviant culture, an alien overmind that had enslaved the human populous of Arkenath. Hektor and his warrior brothers had shattered the yoke that bound their unfortunate human kin and in so doing had destroyed the Vektates. The human populace owed fealty to the Imperium, and demonstrated it gladly when they were free of tyranny. It had been a grim war. Captain Hektor's ship the Fist of Macragge had been involved in a brutal ship-to-ship action against the enemy, but had prevailed. Repairs had been conducted on Arkenath, as well as the requisitioning of a small tithe of men, eager to venture beyond the stars, to help replenish elements of the ship’s crew. Once the war was over, Hektor and his Battle-Brothers had been summoned to the Veridian System and the region of space known as Ultramar in preparation of the massive joint campaign of extermination with the Word Bearers XVII Legion against the Ghaslakh xenohold, a common mission for the Astartes during the final days of the Great Crusade. It would be on the Veridian System's primary world, Calth, that Lorgar would launch a surprise attack on the Ultramarines, later known as the Calth Atrocity whilst they were gathered for the campaign against the Orks of Ghaslakh. The XIII Legion would be caught completely unaware while the Word Bearers attempted to use the advantage of surprise to completely annihilate their hated rivals. The Fist of Macragge would never arrive, as they would be completely obliterated by the Word Bearers secretly-constructed warship, the Furious Abyss, while enroute to Calth.
- Cleansing of Ariggata (ca. 004.M31) - This was an Imperial Compliance that was carried out jointly by the Ultramarines, Luna Wolves and the World Eaters Legions against the world of Ariggata. A technologically advanced world, the world of Ariggata had been isolated from the rest of humanity for many centuries, and when Imperial envoys arrived bearing word of the Emperor and the Imperial Truth, they were executed in a bloody gesture of independence. The military might of Ariggata was formidable, and thus the honour of its pacification fell to the Warmaster Horus and two other Space Marine Legions under his command. Most of the planet was quickly conquered, except for the massive fortress within which most of the leaders of the planet cowered. Eager to be on his way, Horus commanded Angron, Primarch of the World Eaters, to take back the citadel and kill only the leaders. Eagerly, Angron led the assault. However, the fortress was heavily defended and the casualties were horrendous, a dozen World Eaters falling for every metre of land. Eventually, a ramp of corpses led up to a single breach in the wall, and the Astartes of the World Eaters Legion plunged in. Filled with rage over their fallen brothers, they were merciless. By the time the Ultramarines 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 vengeful fury of the World Eaters. It was an absolute slaughter, the fortress having been transformed into an abattoir of human blood. The Ultramarines were disgusted by this savage behaviour and by the time the appalled Sons of Guilliman left the citadel, the Luna Wolves and the World Eaters had already departed, leaving the Ultramarines to garrison Ariggata until the Imperial Army arrived. Before Guilliman was able to confront his brother Primarchs regarding the massacre on Ariggata, the Horus Heresy erupted, both Horus and Angron spitting on their oaths of loyalty to the Emperor, and Guilliman's worst fears were confirmed.
- Battle of Calth (ca. 005.M31) - The Battle of Calth, also referred to as the Calth Atrocity, was the name given by later Imperial scholars to the treacherous campaign conducted during the early stages of the Horus Heresy in the 31st Millennium by the traitorous XVII Space Marine Legion, the Word Bearers, on behalf of the Warmaster Horus against their hated rivals, the XIII Space Marine Legion, better known as the Ultramarines. The campaign was launched by the Word Bearers' Primarch Lorgar Aurelian with the goal of exterminating the XIII Space Marine Legion outright. The purpose of the Word Bearers' invasion of the Ultramarines' Realm of Ultramar in the Eastern Fringe of the galaxy was to tie down the XIII Legion and prevent them from reinforcing their fellow Loyalists as the Traitor Legions marched relentlessly on Terra itself. The crux of the campaign came on the Agri-world of Calth in the Ultramar Sector, where the Ultamarines successfully broke the Word Bearers' surprise assault after a viciously-fought siege action, though at the cost of terrible casualties and the complete destruction of Calth's atmosphere and once-verdant biosphere. As a result of the devastation wrought by the Word Bearers during the Calth Atrocity, future generations of Calth's people were required to live deep underground in massive subterranean hive cities to escape their world's radiation-scorched, airless surface. While both the Ultramarines and their Primarch Roboute Guilliman survived the Word Bearers' assault, the campaign successfully prevented the Ultramarines from participating in the Battle of Terra as Horus had planned.
- Shadow Crusade (ca. 006.M31) - Enraged beyond the capacity for speech by the Word Bearers' betrayal of the Imperium and assault upon Ultramar, Roboute Guilliman gathered what vessels he could spare after Kor Phaeron’s ambush of the Legion fleet at Calth, drew additional numbers from the first Ultramarines relief fleet bound for Calth after the massacre above that world, and tracked Lorgar directly through the use of the XIII Legion’s own astropathic choirs. In the wake of the Battle of Calth, the Word Bearers Legion, led by the Primarch Lorgar, linked up with Angron and his World Eaters Legion to launch a Shadow Crusade against the Realm of Ultramar's Five Hundred Worlds in an attempt to spread the massive Warp Storm known as the Ruinstorm that had been conjured by the Word Bearers' First Chaplain Erebus at Calth across the Eastern Fringe. This prodigious Warp Storm would effectively split the galaxy in half and deny needed reinforcements to the Loyalists as Horus drove on Terra in an attempt to overthrow the Emperor of Mankind. The Shadow Crusade lay waste to 26 worlds until Guilliman's retribution fleet finally caught up to the Traitors above Angron's homeworld of Nuceria, which the World Eaters Legion were preoccupied with wiping clean of all life in vengeance for the treatment the Nucerians had merited out a century before to Angron. The XIII Legion warship Courage Above All, Guilliman's temporary flagship, broke Warp at the system’s edge, at the head of a large void armada consisting of 41 vessels. In their wrath, the Ultramarines destroyed the Word Bearers' flagship Fidelitas Lex during the furious void combat. Eventually, the Ultramarines managed to take the fight to the surface. The first Ultramarines poured forth from their Drop Pods but the World Eaters were waiting for them. The XII Legion crashed against the XIII in rabid packs, showing why Imperial forces had feared to fight alongside them for decades. Uncontrolled, unbound, unrestrained, they butchered their way through Ultramarines strongpoints, enslaved to the joy of battle because of the Butcher's Nails cortical implants sandwiched within the meat of their minds. The XVII Legion also met their enemy cousins, replacing ferocity with spite and hate. The Ultramarines returned it in kind, hungry for vengeance against the vile Traitors who had defiled Calth and damaged its star. Eventually Guilliman confronted Lorgar, and the two Primarchs came together in furious combat as their warriors killed each other around them, and neither Primarch spared their sons a glance. But in the midst of their life-and-death struggle, the Word Bearers' Primarch, Angron, intervened and confronted Guilliman. Guilliman held his own against the pair of Traitor Primarchs, but took multiple wounds for his efforts. Eventually Angron managed to plunge his Chainsword up under Guilliman’s breastplate, leaving him with a serious wound. Despite the strife raging around them, Angron still fought Guilliman, standing above the kneeling Ultramarine. Guilliman was beaten and down. His wounds bled profusely, a palette of proud defeat. Guilliman's warriors fought desperately to retrieve him. Fortunately they were granted a brief reprieve, as Lorgar's incantation locked up Angron's muscles, and began to transform the Red Angel into a new form as a Daemon Prince of Khorne. Guilliman took the opportunity to escape into his sons' defiant phalanxes, retreating in enviable unity. Lorgar saw the expression of disgusted awe on his brother's face as the wounded Ultramarine stared at the transformed Angron atop the mound of dead sons from all three bloodlines of Space Marines. The XIII Legion continued to fire even in retreat, leaving the world of Nuceria battered and bloody. Their campaign against the two Traitor Legions had ended at Nuceria...for a time.
- Great Scouring (Unknown.M31) - As one of the largest remaining Loyalist Legions that emerged relatively unscathed from the Horus Heresy, the Ultramarines Legion played an instrumental part in the Great Scouring. This was the Imperium of Man's great counter-offensive against the Traitor Legions of the slain Warmaster Horus, following the end of this lamentable civil war after the Battle of Terra. Before actually being confined within the life support mechanisms of the Golden Throne, the Emperor had pronounced judgment on the Traitors: declared Excommunicate Traitoris, they were to be driven into the hellish region of the Warp rift called the Eye of Terror, which would hold them for all eternity. All records and memory of the Traitor Legions were to be expunged from the Imperial archives. Worlds such as Istvaan V and Davin were scoured clean of all life because of their corruption by Chaos. The Traitor Legions' associated troops from the Dark Mechanicus or the regiments and starships of the Imperial Army that had turned to Chaos were to be destroyed or driven into the Eye. It would be as if the Traitor Legions had never existed to sully the Imperium with their betrayal. The fighting would continue for another seven years. The Loyalist Space Marine Legions destroyed at the Drop Site Massacre on Istvaan V were slowly reestablished using what little gene-seed the survivors had managed to escape with, though the Legions were refashioned as 1,000-Space Marine Chapters rather than full Legions as Primarch Roboute Guilliman's Codex Astartes now required after the Second Founding at the dawning of the 32 Millennium.
- Reunited (646.M32) - A one-hundred-standard-year period of anarchy is ended by the intervention of the Space Marines. Agnathio, Chapter Master of the Ultramarines, unites over fifty Chapters of Space Marines and arrives upon Terra. Agnathio holds a locked council with the squabbling noble "rulers" of Terra. What is said has never come to light, but when the Space Marine fleets return to their homeworlds, there once again sit twelve High Lords of Terra, and unity is restored to the Imperium.
- 9th Black Crusade (537.M38) - The 9th Black Crusade was a Black Crusade led by the infamous Chaos Champion Abaddon the Despoiler and his Black Legion, launched out of the Eye of Terror in 537.M38. During this time, the Lamenters Space Marine Chapter was recalled along with a number of other Crusading Chapters by the High Lords of Terra to help deal with the rising threat of incursions from the Eye of Terror. But the Lamenters' fell reputation for suffering bitter reversals and dark turns of fate worked against them during the Chaos attack on the Hive World of Corillia during this campaign. The superstition-bound Mortifactors Chapter refused to fight alongside the Lamenters, abandoning the planet rather than serve beside them. Unwilling to desert the Hive World's population, the Lamenters held out alone against the Black Legion's onslaught for six standard weeks, suffering horrendous losses until the Ultramarines and White Scars led a battle group that broke though the Chaos warfleet to relieve Corillia. Reduced to barely 200 surviving Battle-Brothers by their sacrifice, the Lamenters were deemed lost when their fleet disappeared in a Warp Storm soon afterwards, only to reappear more than a standard century later on the edge of the Segmentum Solar, having slowly battled their way back from the outer void.
- The Jorun Retaliation (143.M41) - En route to service in the Gothic War, an Imperial Guard battlegroup, the 15th Heraklion Ironclads, turned on their Commissariat detachment and went Renegade. Investigations into this turn of events uncovered the foul xenos taint of the Dark Eldar, who had managed to ensnare and corrupt General Jorun and his command structure. The Traitor General Jorun and his attached former Imperial Navy battlefleet raided planet after planet, enslaving whole populations for their foul xenos masters. The full Howling Griffons Chapter was given command of a strike force to deal with the Traitors, with support from the Ultramarines and Sons of Orar Chapters of Astartes for a campaign that became known as the Jorun Retaliation. The Traitor Guard force was intercepted as they made planetfall on the Feral World of Asturia. Caught unprepared for such a fierce counter-assault, over 5,000 Renegade Guardsmen died in the first hour of the ferocious Space Marine attack, torn apart on their landing zones with much of their heavy armour yet to be unlimbered. General Jorun eventually met the Emperor's judgement at the hands of the Howling Griffons Chaplain Armand Titus. The Traitors' morale collapsed with the death of their leader and the swift desertion of their foul xenos allies. The disordered and panicked Heraklons were ruthlessly hunted down and slain in the aftermath; the Renegade forces had been completely wiped out within only six hours of the battle's opening salvos.
- Charadon Campaign (698.M41) - In 698.M41 the Ultramarines took part in a combined Space Marine force led by their Chapter Master Marneus Calgar, which consisted of elements of the Angels of Absolution, the Lamenters, the Marines Errant, and the Silver Skulls. During a seven-year-long Imperial Crusade the force inflicted a series of major defeats on the Ork empire of Charadon which delayed the invasion of the Imperium by the WAAAGH! Argluk for thirty standard years.
- The Battle of Macragge (745.M41) - Hive Fleet Behemoth was spearheading a large Tyranids invasion force into Imperial space and were making unprecedented progress towards the Realm of Ultramar. Upon learning of the threat posed to Ultramar by the vicious Tyranids, Chapter Master Marneus Calgar at once drew up his plans. Calgar declared that the Hive Fleet would be halted at Macragge before it consumed more of Ultramar or drove deeper into the heart of the Imperium. Deeming Macragge to be the star system most immediately threatened, Calgar ordered its formidable defences to be further improved. Scant weeks later, the outrider vessels of the Tyranid fleet attacked Macragge. With the Hive Fleet destroyed after the sacrifice of an Imperial Battleship created a Warp vortex that destroyed the majority of the Hive Fleet, Calgar's surviving starships came about and roared back to Macragge to try to save the beleaguered polar garrisons. Calgar, feeling that the situation was becoming critical, sent the 3rd and 7th Ultramarines Companies ahead in their fast Strike Cruisers while his remaining damaged ships limped back to Macragge. Despite horrendous losses inflicted upon the Tyranid fleet from the orbital and polar defence grids, many Tyranid organisms were able to reach the surface of the planet. The Tyranid swarm swept across the planet with the most intense fighting in the region of the northern polar defence installations. Despite the Ultramarines fleet's ability to destroy the Tyranid bio-ships, horrific casualties were suffered by the planet's population as well as the Chapter. Calgar went down to the planet's surface, leading the 3rd Company against the ravenous hordes of the Great Devourer. The entirety of the elite 1st Company was wiped out to a man whilst defending the northern pole's defence grid. The Ultramarines 1st Company was gone and the 3rd and 7th sorely diminished. It would be many long years before the Chapter could properly replace its losses from the Battle of Macragge, but replace them it would.
- The Purge of Thrax (762.M41) - Chapter Master Marneus Calgar lead the remnants of his Chapter against the Daemon-corrupted Adeptus Mechanicus Forge World of Thrax in 762.M41. Under the leadership of their Chapter Master, the Ultramarines banish countless thousands of daemons and recover crucial Imperial data-records from the twisted manufactorum complexes. With the mission complete, Calgar issues the order for Exterminatus.
- Siege of Zalathras (797.M41) - Marneus Calgar, Chapter Master of the Ultramarines, holds the gate alone against an Ork horde for a night and a day.
- A New Power Rises (799.M41) - The Ultramarines begin to fortify the eastern bounds of their realm of Ultramar against the emergent forces of the upstart Tau Empire.
- The Forgoil Campaign (805.M41) - WAAAGH! Gutshredda rampages through the Forgoil System. Marneus Calgar leads 3 companies to the assistance of the Forgoil Planetary Defence Forces. In a little more than three weeks, the Ultramarines destroy the tellyporta ships and Stompa factories that provided WAAAGH! Gutshredda with much of its momentum. In the final battle of the war, Calgar and his Terminator-armoured retinue board and destroy Gutshredda's flagship, Da Supadestructa.
- The Ironblood Campaign (822.M41) - Warpsmith Grathax descends upon the world of Ironblood with an army of Daemon Engines laying waste to everything in their path. They are soon met in open battle by several Imperial Guard tank regiments and over a hundred Ultramarines main battle tanks under the command of Brother-Sergeant Chronus. The ensuing battle lasts for three solar days, and enough ordnance is expended to flatten several cities, before the last Warp-forged machine is finally destroyed. Over a thousand smoking wrecks litter the scarred landscape, creating a tank-graveyard so vast that it is visible from orbit.
- The Chapter Endures (841.M41) - The Ultramarines' 1st Company's operational strength exceeds fifty percent for the first time since the Battle of Macragge.
- The Hallowed Stars' Scouring (848.M41) - Chief Librarian Tigurius' mysterious insights lead to the Hallowed Stars Scouring.
- A Hero Honoured (849.M41) - Captain Cato Sicarius is appointed as High Suzerain of Ultramar.
- Assault on Black Reach (855.M41) - WAAAGH! Zanzag invades the Hive World of Black Reach. By the time Captain Cato Sicarius and the 2nd Company of the Ultramarines arrive in orbit, the Orks, using devastating new weapons, have already overrun much of the planet. Sicarius and his Battle-Brothers immediately deploy to reinforce Ghospara, the besieged capital hive city of Black Reach. The Ultramarines' Drop Pods land hard on the heels of an orbital bombardment and in a brief but bloody battle, cast the Orks from Ghospora's walls before setting off in search of Zanzag himself. Captain Sicarius prosecutes a deadly search-and-destroy mission, razing several Ork forts along the Blackwallow River, but Zanzag continues to evade him. When Sulphora Hive comes under attack from a massive Ork horde, Sicarius hands the hunt over to Veteran Sergeant Toria Telion and his Scouts. Telion soon discovers that the Orks are transporting warriors and weapons across the Blackwallow River by means of crude submersibles and tracks them to a vast natural cave –- Zanzag's base of operations. Sicarius immediately gathers what forces can be spared and boards a Thunderhawk gunship to assault Zanzag's Lair. The Orks are taken completely by surprise by the speed and ferocity of the attack; Heavy Bolter shells and Hellstrike Missiles tear into their formation before they realise they are under attack. Within moments, the Thunderhawk's front ramp slams open and Captain Sicarius leads his Space Marines into the heart of battle, striding forwards with Bolters blazing. Scores of Orks fall, their bodies heaped around the shattered stalagmites of the cavern floor, before they can mount a counter-attack. Zanzag directs the firepower of his Boyz' supa-weapons, but their shots prove nearly worthless against the inviolable armour of the Terminators marching at the fore of the Ultramarines' assault. It takes an hour's bloody fighting to secure the cavern, but the Orks are finally defeated when Sicarius cuts their Warlord's head from his shoulders and ends the threat of WAAAGH! Zanzag with a strike from his Power Sword.
- Battle of Orar's Sepulchre (888.M41) - An Eldar emissary from the Biel-tan Craftworld was sent to the Imperial world of Commrath to enter negotiations with its Planetary Governor for the return of an ancient eldritch artefact from the tomb of one of the Ultramarines' most-lauded heroes, Captain Orar, known as the Sceptre of Galaxian. When the Imperial noble refused his request, the Eldar emissary grew angry and soon his pleas turned to threats of violence. The Planetary Governor refused to be cowed by the arrogant xenos and had the Eldar executed on the spot. However, the Governor had the foresight to heed the Eldar's threats and requested aid from the Ultramarines. Eldar from the Alaitoc and Iyanden Craftworlds then proceeded to assault the planet Commrath to recover the Eldar artefact within Orar's Sepulchre. Orar was a great Ultramarines hero in the aftermath of the Horus Heresy, and Chapter Master Marneus Calgar vowed not a single alien would breach the sanctity of his tomb. For the first time since the Battle of Macragge, Calgar lead his entire Chapter to war. The Eldar descended upon Orar's Sepulchre to find it held against them by the Ultramarines. Eldar Aspect Warriors and Guardians darted towards the main gates of the great edifice that was Orar's tomb as grav-tanks and artillery engines battered the Imperial defenders. On Calgar's command, the Ultramarines emerged from cover and scoured the invaders from the Sepulchre's steps with disciplined Bolter volleys. The Eldar fell back, only to find their lines of retreat cut off by Assault Marines and Land Speeders. Eldar leaders emerged from cover and rallied the trapped first wave, only to fall to sniper fire as the Ultramarines' Scouts made their presence known. The initial Eldar assault faltered but, for an entire day and night, they continued to attack. Though they mustered every arcane science at their command, they could not overcome the tactical brilliance of Marneus Calgar and his Ultramarines. The following day, a fresh assault swept onto the great stairs of the sepulchre, led by a colossal figure wreathed in flame -- an Avatar of Khaela Mensha Khaine, the Eldar god of war. Heavy weapons fire seemed only to anger the creature, and the Ultramarines' battle line buckled beneath its onslaught, so Calgar issued a challenge himself. The fiery god bellowed with fury, its first blow missing the Ultramarines' Chapter Master by a hair's breadth. The second tore plates from Calgar's armour. A third bit deep into his shoulder, driving the Chapter Master to one knee. But the fourth slammed into the armoured palm of Calgar's left hand. Rising up, Calgar struck with all his strength, bringing his other gauntlet around in a mighty arc that punched clean through the molten ichor of the Avatar's torso. With the fall of their war god, the Eldar lost all heart and retreated. Some fled without heed while others fell back in good order, but all of the xenos retreated into the darkness. Despite overwhelming odds, once again the Ultramarines had emerged victorious, but in his wisdom Calgar knew that the Eldar would return for the Sceptre of Galaxian. So it was that Calgar informed Commrath's Governor that the Galaxian Sceptre would be removed from Orar's Sepulchre to Macragge, where it could be properly defended.
- The Assault of M'kar (878.M41) - Chaos pirates, led by the Daemon Prince M'kar the Reborn, claim several uninhabited worlds on the borders of Ultramar. In a decisive battle in the Halamar Rift, Captain Sicarius destroys much of the pirate fleet, but M'kar the Reborn escapes into the Warp.
- The Morix Assault (900.M41) - The heavily-defended Tau outpost on Morix Prime is eliminated in a rapid strike by the Ultramarines 4th Company.
- The Darkhold Ambush (921.M41) - Marneus Calgar is ambushed by the Night Lords whilst en route to the Darkhold battle zone. The Chapter Master's crippled vessel makes planetfall on the sparsely settled Imperial Feudal World of Barathred. Several hundred Night Lords Chaos Space Marines make landing shortly thereafter, but Calgar rallies the planet's feudal population to defeat them.
- The Trenor Uprising (929.M41) - Three dozen Ultramarines Scout Marines, under the expert direction of the famed Sergeant Telion, put down a rebellion against the Imperium on Trenor in less than a day.
- M'kar's Revenge (935.M41) - A daemonic horde under the direction of the Word Bearers Daemon Prince M'kar the Reborn seizes control of the star fort Indomitable in Calth's outer orbit. Under the command of Marneus Calgar, Terminators from the Ultramarines 1st Company board the star fort. M'kar is slain by the hand of Lord Macragge, who tears the upstart Daemon Prince limb from limb.
- The Second War for Armageddon (941.M41) - WAAAGH! Ghazghkull descends upon the Imperial Hive World of Armageddon in the Segmentum Solar, initiating the Second War for Armageddon. The Orks are defeated only by the extreme stubbornness of the defenders and the combined might of the Blood Angels, Ultramarines and Salamanders Chapters. Thought dead by his foes, the wily Ork Warlord Ghazghkull himself escapes into space.
- The Cleansing of Malbede (963.M41) - The Ultramarines clash with a Tau expeditionary fleet for control of the cursed planet of Malbede. When the conflict awakens the Necrons hidden on Malbede, the Ultramarines and the Tau join forces to defeat the emerging Necrons. In the wake of the battle, Marneus Calgar initiates Exterminatus on Malbede, but allows the Tau to evacuate before the planet is destroyed.
- Dark Rain at Vallenin (967.M41) - Despatched to free the enslaved population of the Agri-world of Vallenin from the Dark Eldar Kabal of Lethal Guile, the Ultramarines' 3rd Company is sorely pressed by the xenos' grav-craft, until their Hunters deploy to reap a great tally amongst the swift craft.
- The Damnos Incident (974.M41) - The Ultramarines 2nd Company under the command of Captain Cato Sicarius rescues survivors from the doomed world of Damnos, an Imperial Civilised World and Mining World that was also a Necron Tomb World. The Necrons awakened and launched a massive assault upon all life on the planet's surface, while Damnos Planetary Defence Force and Imperial Guard regiments proved unable to defeat the hideous cybernetic xenos. The Ultramarines made a defiant stand at the planetary capital city of Kellenport, holding the Necrons back as the evacuation of the planet's Imperial population proceeded during what became known as the Damnos Incident. Chief Librarian Tigurius is found wherever the Ultramarines are hardest pressed, shattering the advancing Necrons with the fury of his mind and summoning psychic shields to cheat the machine lifeforms of their prey. The actions of Venerable Dreadnought Agrippan are just as heroic, and for three hours he holds Kellenport's western gate alone and unaided, obliterating all who oppose him. By the time Kellenport's defenders are driven back to their last bastion of defence, only forty Space Marines and twenty Imperial Guardsmen remain planetside. Agrippan is lost in these last few minutes, his frame pinned between a dozen streams of Gauss Weapons fire. As Thunderhawks speed Tigurius and the last survivors to safety, Agrippan's fusion reactor explodes, obliterating the spaceport and every Necron within it.
- Skirmish with Hive Fleet Perseus (976.M41) - Hive Fleet Perseus is detected by the Ultramarines in 976.M41. Spearheading an assault, Chapter Master Marneus Calgar was severely mauled, losing all four limbs as well as large areas of body tissue and his left eye. He underwent extreme augmetic surgery and has had most of his missing body parts replaced with bionics.
- The Liberation of Lagan (989.M41) - The Ultramarines 3rd Company liberates the Lagan System from the Tau Empire.
- The Second Tyrannic War and the Battle of Ichar IV (993.M41) - The Ultramarines quash a rebellion on the industrial world of Ichar IV, only to find themselves at the forefront of a desperate defence against Hive Fleet Kraken. Accompanied by Chaplain Ortan Cassius and Veterans from the First Tyrannic War, Calgar launches a daring assault that severs the Tyranids' synaptic control through the Hive Mind, a battle won in no small part due to the fury with which Cassius leads his brothers into the fray. In a replay of history, Marneus Calgar, having narrowly escaped death at the hands of the Swarmlord during their confrontation on Macragge, faces the genetic reincarnation of the same beast on the blood-soaked fields. This time, however, Calgar triumphs, slaying the beast with his bare hands. However, the Space Marines' victory comes too late to save the planet itself, for the Tyranids had already reduced it to a smoking charnel house of death and destruction. Perhaps worse for the Imperium, the Hive Mind re-absorbed the Swarmlord's consciousness yet again, and having learned from its defeat, the beast's next reincarnation would prove to be more cunning and dangerous than ever before. Elsewhere, the Eldar Craftworld Iyanden is ravaged by other tendrils of the Kraken. Two Space Marine Chapters -- the Scythes of the Emperor and the Lamenters -- are all but wiped out and hundreds of Imperial worlds are lost to the Tyranids before the incursion is blunted.
- The Taking of Bridge Two-Four (997.M41) - At the Battle of Bridge Two-Four on the planet Thracia, Sergeant Uriel Ventris succeeds Captain Idaeus as the acting commander of the Ultramarines 4th Company. Idaeus passes on his Power Sword, a symbol of his office, then valiantly sacrifices himself against an overwhelming force of Chaos Space Marines in order to capture a vital objective.
- The Third Tyrannic War and the Defence of Tarsis Ultra (997.M41) - Elements of the Ultramarines and Mortifactors Space Marine Chapters, led by Chaplain Cassius, make a stand against one spur of the Tyranids' Hive Fleet Leviathan on the world of Tarsis Ultra. The defenders defeat this tendril of the Leviathan with an engineered anti-Tyranid biological plague, but the remainder of Hive Fleet Leviathan rampages on unabated.
- The Liberation of Graia (Unknown Date.M41) - The Forge World of Graia in the Segmentum Tempestus, home to the Titan Legion known as the Legio Astraman ("The Morning Stars"), was assaulted by the Ork WAAAGH! Grimskull, over a million Greenskins strong. The Imperial Guard's 203rd Cadian Shock Troops Regiment was diverted to Graia and made a combat drop, but was unable to stem the green tide and the Adeptus Mechanicus feared that the world and its extremely valuable Battle Titan-manufacturing facilities would fall into the Orks' hands, representing a major threat to the Imperium. To deal with this threat, the Ultramarines despatched the 2nd Company, at this time under the command of Captain Titus, to assist the Imperial Guardsmen. After launching an assault on the Ork flagship in orbit of the world in the hope of slaying the Ork Warboss Grimskull outright, Titus and two members of his company's command squad were forced to land on the planet itself. They proceeded to engage the Ork forces and ultimately to unmask a plot of the Chaos Sorcerer Nemeroth and his warband of Chaos Space Marines, the Chosen of Nemeroth, to seize experimental technology on Graia that would allow Nemeroth to ascend to become a Daemon Prince with Graia as his Daemon World. In the course of the Graian campaign, Titus successfully slew Grimskull in single combat, thus ending the Ork threat as the Greenskins withdrew from the world as their various clans began fighting for control of the WAAAGH! Titus also faced Nemeroth as he began his ascension to daemonhood and slew the foul sorcerer, banishing his soul to the Warp and ending his plans for Graia. Detachments of the Blood Ravens and Black Templars Chapters then arrived to aid the Ultramarines and the remnants of the Imperial Guard in securing the Forge World. However, during the crisis on Graia, Titus had displayed both a disregard for the strictures of the Codex Astartes and had been curiously unaffected by Nemeroth's Chaotic sorcery. Fearful that his commander had become tainted by Chaos, his subordinate Leandros made his concerns known to the Inquisition. Inquisitor Thrax, who had arrived on Graia with the Black Templars, took Captain Titus into custody for interrogation and the determination of his purity. The Liberation of Graia took place in an alternate universe where Titus rather than Cato Sicarius was the Captain of the 2nd Company.
- Return to Damnos (999.M41) - Despite the Inquisition's efforts to suppress all knowledge of the Necrons' reemergence into the galaxy, the Imperium's faith in its military supremacy was shaken by the news that spread across the galaxy after 974.M41 that these xenos had overcome both the Imperial Guard and the Ultramarines at Damnos. Eventually, reports of the loss of Damnos made their way to Terra, where both the Fabricator-General of the Adeptus Mechanicus and the High Lords of Terra decreed that the Ultramarines must return to Damnos and eradicate the Necron threat once and for all. Twenty-five standard years after the Damnos Incident, in 999.M41, this Imperial order was brought to Macragge by the experienced Deathwatch strike team led by Squad Lazarius. Chapter Master Marneus Calgar was not pleased with the Imperium's decree, for he knew that his 2nd Company had faced only a fraction of the awakened Necrons on Damnos a quarter of a century before. Once they returned to Damnos, the Ultramarines would face the entire strength of a Necron Tomb World and risk the deaths of hundreds of the Chapter's Astartes. Yet, Calgar knew that the High Lords of Terra were right and that the Necrons on Damnos must be defeated if the Imperium was ever to know peace in the face of the growing Necron threat. With the record of the Ultramarines stained by the action on Damnos, it was their duty to banish the ghosts of the past. Upon haring Calrgar's announcement that the Ultramarines' 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, and 6th Companies, accompanied by elements of the 10th, would return to reclaim Damnos for the Emperor, Cato Sicarius smiled for the first time in decades. It is said that during the preparation for the assault, Sicarius trained so hard that he fought with the fury of a man possessed and even slept in the cage-vault. Before the solar month was out, Calgar's armies and fleets had been assembled and over 500 Space Marines stood ready for war. In addition, Sicarius was granted a Vortex Grenade by the Deathwatch Sergeant Davian Imocles, who was rumoured to be an old friend and former squad mate. The journey to Damnos was a perilous one, with Calgar relying on various ruses and distractions to get his warriors safely to the planet's surface. By the time the Necrons had spotted the true location of the Ultramarine warships, the Astartes fleet was in a position to launch their Drop Pods. The first wave consisted of unmanned variants designed to draw the fire of the Gauss Pylons. The second wave, however, represented the true assault, which brought hundreds of Space Marines as well as a number of vengeful Imperial Guard regiments to the heart of the Necrons' subterranean tomb complex. Their objective was to destroy the pyramidal complexes that controlled the Necron power grid and to do it before the Imperial forces were overwhelmed. However, one factor that they did not account for was the physical incarnation of a C'tan held within a Tesseract Vault. It was determined that this vault was the true source of the Necrons' power and must be neutralized if the Imperial forces were to have any hope of victory. Despite the power brought to bear by the Imperial assault on Damnos, Marneus Calgar felt like a duelist being taken apart by a superior foe in the battle-cage. The xenos' battle logic proved impeccable, with its master intelligence anticipating the Ultramarines' every move and neutralizing each tactic they employed. Thanks to an energy shield emitting from the vault, every plasma volley and melta blast employed against the Necron Monoliths dissipated harmlessly or detonated prematurely before it could harm the constructs. Since the xenos had managed to analyze the Ultramarines' battle doctrine, Calgar realized he must attempt a completely unexpected stratagem. Assaulting the ranks of the Necron Immortals, the Chapter Master jumped onto the metallic base of a malfunctioning Gauss Pylon and slowly pushed the war engine's crescent back until its viridian beam hit the energy shield of the floating necropolis. With a blinding flash of light, the energy shield protecting the tomb complex collapsed and the Tesseract Vault was broken wide open to reveal the enraged demigod imprisoned within. A giant cruciform of pure light rose above the Necron army, the remnants of the C'tan's energy cage still crackling around it. Roaring in exultation at its newfound freedom, the booming sound threw Ultramarines and Necrons alike to the icy ground and cracked the planet's crust. Its first victim would be the Necron Overlord, the Undying, which the star god crushed with ease by transforming the earth around his metallic form into an oversized fist. The Overlord phased out of reality, seeking to escape back to his subterranean lair. But deep underground, the surviving members of the Deathwatch's Squad Lazarius had reached their own objective. The Undying teleported back to his cabled sarcophagus right in front of the Deathwatch's eyes. Unfortunately for the Necron, the crack team of Astartes had replaced his revivification engines with melta charges and entropic destabilisers and proceeded to blast the Necron Overlord into atoms. Back on the surface, the xenos reeled from the loss of their leader and the artificially intelligent command programs that had governed their warriors' every action. Meanwhile, the unleashed C'tan lashed out in fury at both its Necron enslavers and the Ultramarines as Captain Sicarius duelled a Flayed Ones Lord. After ramming his Power Sword into the powerful Flayed One's torso, Sicarius summoned twenty-five years of anger and frustration into a final burst of strength. He unclipped the Vortex Grenade that had been given to him earlier and activated the weapon before throwing it at the enraged demigod hovering overhead. The grenade detonated and formed a spiralling orb of nothingness as its unstoppable force sucked the C'tan into the Warp before collapsing and winking out of existence. Sicarius felt a great weight lift in that moment, as he realised both he and the Ultramarines had been redeemed for their original failure on Damnos in the sight of the Emperor. Over the next few solar days, the Imperials eliminated the surviving Necrons with grim efficiency. Empty tomb complexes were collapsed or detonated under the guidance of the Deathwatch and the citizens of Damnos whom Sicarius had rescued decades before were restored to the world to reclaim it for their own.
- The Zeist Campaign (999.M41) - Captain Cato Sicarius leads an army to halt the Tau's Fourth Sphere Expansion. An Imperial Crusade later known as the Zeist Campaign drawn from 30 Space Marine Chapters drives the Tau back from dozens of Imperial worlds, but is recalled before its work can be completed to deal with the much greater threat of Abaddon the Despoiler's 13th Black Crusade.
- Defence of Ultramar (854.999.M41) - In the midst of the oncoming 13th Black Crusade, the Realm of Ultramar comes under renewed assault from the Forces of Chaos. The Daemon Prince M'kar the Reborn, clad in mortal flesh once again within the body of a former Ultramarines Dreadnought, leads the onslaught against the world of Talassar. Other Chaotic warlords under the control of the Iron Warriors Warsmith Honsou attack Calth, Espandor and Tarentus. Marneus Calgar recalls all Ultramarines forces to defend Ultramar, dispatching a reinforced Battle Company to each threatened planet. Calgar himself accompanies the 2nd Company to defend Talassar, determined to slay M'kar a hundred times over if need be.
- The Eye of Vengeance (870.999.M41) - In an exemplary display of his abilities, Scout Sergeant Telion single-handedly changes the balance of the war on Quintarn.
Realm of Ultramar
One aspect of the Ultramarines Legion that survived the Second Founding was the close relationship between the Space Marines and the populations of the surrounding planets. During the Great Crusade the worlds around Macragge provided young recruits for the Ultramarines. They also supplied raw materials, armaments and spacecraft. Although the need to recruit from these worlds diminished almost to the vanishing point with the reorganisation of the Legion during the Second Founding, the tradition continued. To this day, the Ultramarines recruit not from a single world, but from the whole of local space. This area around Macragge is called Ultramar, the stellar empire of the Ultramarines. Ultramar is unique amongst the demesnes of the Space Marines. Where other Chapters rule over a single planet, asteroid or, in some cases, a mobile space fleet or orbital fortress, the Ultramarines have a larger demesne. They control no fewer than 11 local star systems, each with its own worlds and governments loyal to the Chapter.
Before the Horus Heresy the realm of Ultramar consisted of more than five hundred worlds, and was commonly referred to as "The 500 Worlds of Ultramar" or the somewhat heretical "New Empire." These 500 worlds were all themselves divided into fiefdoms. The largest was the Ultramarines' homeworld of Macragge, with the fiefdoms of the worlds of Saramanth, Konor, Occluda, and Iax all varying is size. Before the Word Bearers' surprise assault on the world of Calth during the Heresy there was talk of Calth gaining its own fiefdom due to its industrial output nearly rivalling that of Macragge before the Traitors destroyed its biosphere. The fiefdoms of Ultramar were ruled by a Tetrarch, who was an Ultramarines Captain or Chapter Master chosen for this position by Roboute Guilliman, the Primarch of the Ultramarines Legion. The Tetrarch would then choose both a military governor, an Emperor's Champion and his Honour Guard. After the Horus Heresy, when the Space Marine Legions were broken down into smaller 1000-man Chapters, the 500 Worlds of Ultramar were divided up and given over to the many Successor Chapters of the Ultramarines. The Ultramarines Chapter kept control of the original center of Ultramar, consisting of no fewer than 11 local star systems, each with its own worlds and governments loyal to the Chapter. All the worlds that once comprised the larger Realm of Ultramar share a common cultural heritage with Macragge, so it is not surprising that their styles of architecture, government, and societal traditions are similar.
After the Horus Heresy all 11 worlds benefited from the improving reforms of Roboute Guilliman and its citizens are disciplined, productive and loyal. As a result, Ultramar is a wealthy stellar empire within the larger Imperium that knows little unrest and no rebellion - a somewhat unique distinction in the increasingly desperate days of the late 41st Millennium. The population live in sprawling cities, but these cities are surrounded by extensive farmlands and seas that teem with fish.
Each of Ultramar's worlds are self-sufficient in raw materials and food. Trade between the planets is active, and each planet has its specialties and delicacies. Each world is balanced as a society and also as an ecosystem - although composed of primarily industrial worlds, Ultramar has none of the nightmarish toxic wastelands that are common phenomena throughout the galaxy. It is therefore little wonder that many system governors and planetary lords across the Imperium regard Ultramar with an envious eye.
Ultramar is the feudal realm of the Ultramarines within the greater realm of humanity that is the Imperium of Man. Its worlds do not pay the Imperium's tithes. Instead they contribute directly towards the upkeep of the Ultramarines Chapter. The rulers of the individual worlds of Ultramar are feudal lords of the Chapter Master of the Ultramarines. This is why the Ultramarines leader is also the Lord of Ultramar, with all the rights and responsibilities that such a title entails. Just like other worlds in the Imperium, each world of Ultramar raises regiments for its own defence. Most worlds in the Imperium are obliged to provide regiments for the Imperial Guard when required, but Space Marine homeworlds are an exception. In the case of Ultramar, however, the Ultramarines rule so efficiently and are so prosperous that they maintain several hundred regiments ready and willing to join the Imperial Guard when the need arises. As a result, regiments from Ultramar have fought all over the galaxy, often in campaigns alongside the Ultramarines themselves. Each world of Ultramar also provides Space Marine recruits for the Ultramarines Chapter itself. Throughout Ultramar, proud citizens point to public statues of famous Ultramarines who were born to local families. Amongst the older aristocratic dynasties it is a matter of considerable esteem to send recruits to the Ultramarines. For a family to have provided a renowned hero, perhaps even an actual Master of the Chapter, is a great honour that brings considerable fame and status for many generations.
The Ultramarines are unique in that, unlike their fellow Astartes Chapters, they control nine habitable worlds, rather than a single Chapter planet, star system or fleet. Collectively, these star systems are known as the Realm of Ultramar, a sub-infeudated autonomous region of the Imperium of Man, with Macragge as the capital world. Macragge is a cold and rocky world with large, inhospitable polar regions, though certainly capable of sustaining human life. It is home to the Fortress of Hera, the Ultramarines' fortress-monastery. Ultramar is located in the galactic Southeast of the Eastern Fringes near the galactic Rim. The Eldar Craftworld Iyanden has been sighted in this sector and the expanding Tau Empire is also nearby. Twice Ultramar has stood in the path of a Tyranid Hive Fleet and the Tyranid threat in the Eastern Fringes remains strong. Macragge, the Ultramarines' homeworld and location of their fortress-monastery, is just one of the 11 worlds in the Realm of Ultramar. Macragge itself is mostly bleak and rocky, with more than three-quarters of its land mass formed from mountainous upland almost entirely devoid of life. The people of Macragge do not live in this inhospitable region, but the fortress-monastery of the Ultramarines is built here upon a craggy peak surrounded by impenetrable mountains. Within this mighty fortress, inside the vast Temple of Corrections, is the shrine of the Primarch Roboute Guilliman himself. This is where his body sits upon a huge throne of ornately-carved marble. He is preserved in death by a stasis field impervious to the decaying effects of time. This is one of the holiest places in the Imperium, and thousands come from all over the galaxy to look upon the face of the ancient Primarch. The other ten worlds are:
- Calth - Cavern World - Calth is an airless world whose inhabitants live in underground cities where the deadly light of Calth's blue sun cannot reach them. The caverns of Calth are constructed on such a huge scale, and with such grandeur, that they are as light and airy as any city of Macragge. Calth was once a verdant world whose people lived on it surface until the Word Bearers Traitor Legion launched a massive assault against the Ultramarines early in the Horus Heresy while the XIII Legion was gathering on the world for a joint campaign with the Word Bearers against the Orks. The aftermath of the resulting Battle of Calth led to the destabilistion of Calth's sun and forced the surviving civilians to flee underground. Of all the local worlds, Calth is the most specialised, for although its people grow vast quantities of food in nutrient vats, they prefer to import most of what they eat from the neighbouring system of Iax. Calth is famous for its orbital shipyards, which provide the spacecraft used by the Ultramarines as well as civil and military craft for wider use in the Imperium.
- Espandor - Frontier World - Most distant from Macragge is the world of Espandor, a planet of extensive forests whose major cities are confined to the westernmost of its two continents. Espandor is a secondary settlement whose people are the descendants of explorers from Macragge and hold considerable pride in their rugged existence. Tradition has it that Espandor was settled during the Age of Strife by merchants blown off-course and subsequently stranded by Warp Storms. It is the least densely populated of all the worlds of Ultramar.
- Iax - Garden World - Iax is sometimes described as the Garden of Ultramar. Its climate and fertility have made it one of the most naturally productive worlds in the Imperium. The inhabitants have harnessed the planet's inherent verdancy, covering its surface with well-ordered farms and cultivated woodlands. There are no large cities on Iax, but many small towns dotted over the landscape, connected together by an efficient system of fast hydroways. The oldest and most urbanised area of Iax is the ancient city of First Landing, whose citadel has withstood the barrages of invaders over the centuries. Legend has it that Guilliman came to Iax many times, and that he treasured the world almost as much as his beloved Macragge.
- Konor - Forge World - Konor is an Adeptus Mechanicus Forge World. Konor shares a common culture with the rest of Ultramar but technically is independent of the Lord of Ultramar's rule as it owes allegiance instead to the Fabricator General of Mars. However, Konor often relies upon the Ultramarines for its defence and the products of its manufactoriums are mostly intended for use by the Chapter.
- Parmenio - Parmenio is an Ultramarines Training World used largely for increasing the tactical and strategic skills of the Chapter's Neophytes.
- Prandium - Dead World - Prandium once teemed with life. Settlers from Macragge established a colony on the planet after the Horus Heresy. Thanks to a mild climate and fertile virgin environment, the people of Prandium prospered. The planet soon become the most beautiful jewel of Ultramar, a planet of remarkable prosperity and an incredibly rich native fauna. Prandium was destroyed by Hive Fleet Behemoth in the First Tyrannic War. The lifeless planet is now reduced to bedrock, its atmosphere blown into space by the ferocity of the Tyranid attack.
- Talasa Prime - Talasa Prime is an Inquisition Fortress World.
- Talassar - Ocean World - Talassar is a planet of storm-tossed seas and rocky islands whose single continent is known as Glaudor, which was the site of a major battle between the Ultramarines and invading Orks immediately after the Horus Heresy.
- The Triple Worlds (Quintarn, Tarentus and Masali) - Agri-worlds - These small planets form a triple world combination orbiting around a common centre of gravity much like the Earth and its moon. Gigantic horticultural cities cover hundreds of square miles, capturing precious water in wind traps and storing it in massive underground tanks. The cities of the Three Planets are enclosed by gigantic domes under which flourish forests and gardens as lush as any in Ultramar.
After the Horus Heresy, the Space Marine Legions were broken up into small fighting forces. Roboute Guilliman laid down the organisational dictates that would become a part of every Space Marine Chapter from then on. Though some Chapters would later stray from the precise structure laid out in Guilliman's Codex Astartes, most Astartes Chapters remain faithful to its teaching. The Ultramarines follows the teachings of their Primarch and the Codex with a religious dedication. They follow the organisational format laid out during the Second Foundingwith strict devotion, only deviating from their Primarch's teachings when the situation leaves them no other choice (such as with the creation of the Tyrannic War Veterans). During the incursion of Hive Fleet Behemoth, the elite 1st Company was utterly wiped out in a heroic last stand beneath the northern polar fortress of Macragge. The 1st Company contained the Chapter's finest warriors who were equipped with Terminator Armour, a precious and ever-dwindling resource. Such losses of men and material are not easily replaced. As the Ultramarines were located in the galactic East, which saw successive assaults from Tyranid Hive Fleets, the experiences that made Veterans of their warriors inevitably came from fighting those foul xenos. Under the personal direction of Chaplain Cassius, a new elite, the Tyrannic War Veterans, emerged.
These new elite squads were a departure for the Ultramarines, a Chapter for whom such specialisation was almost unheard of. But two factors led to their formation: first, the necessity of having a full-strength Veteran company available and second, the Chapter's rabid hatred for the Tyranids.
Tyrannic War Veterans
- "Remember the names of the honoured fallen, recall their deeds and know that their sacrifice honours the Chapter. No son of Guilliman could wish for a more glorious death."
During the first incursion of the Tyranid Hive Fleets, the Ultramarines were constantly engaged with the extragalactic menace. The invasion of Hive Fleet Behemoth was halted at Macragge, in a series of battles that completely wiped out much of the Chapter. Veterans of Tyranid conflicts are often grouped into elite units of Tyrannic War Veterans, also known as Tyranid Hunters. These units are specially trained to effectively fight this particular xenos menace. Currently, 12 members of the Ultramarines 1st Company are composed of Tyrannic War Veterans. Tyrannic War Veterans usually carry a Bolter and an Astartes combat knife. Some carry close assault weapons like a Multi-melta, Flamer or a Plasma Gun. Tyrannic War Veteran Sergeants carry Chainswords and a Bolter or a Bolter and grenades.
Ultramarines Honour Guard
The Honour Guard of the Chapter is comprised of Ultramarines who guard the revered Chapter Banner. To become an Honour Guard, one must display courage that goes above and beyond the normal call in a given combat situation. The Ultramarines Honour Guard wear highly ornate suits of Artificer Power Armour and are each armed with an Axe of Ultramar, a powerful weapon forged by the Techmarines in the Chapter's Forge and constructed with rare ores excavated beneath the world of Prandium. Among those in the Honour Guard are two special individuals, the Chapter's Ancient, who is the bearer of the sacred Banner of Macragge and the Chapter Champion, the mightiest member of the Honour Guard who is armed with the Honour Blades, a matching set of master-crafted Power Swords, a broadsword and a poniard, which he wields with deadly skill.
Like their fellow Astartes Chapters, the Ultramarines also maintain a Librarium of potent psykers who are highly talented and trained to master the power of the Warp at the highest levels. Each Chapter selects its Librarians in its own way, either from seed worlds, as it does with the bulk of its Initiates, or from the ranks of gifted psykers brought to the Scholastica Psykana. Most Chapters train and test chosen psykers following the ancient ways laid out in the Codex Astartes. Librarians of the Ultramarines are trained in this way, and, with few minor variances, have been taught to live by the word of the Codex. Ultramarines Librarians have a number of unique psychic abilities only used by the psykers of their Chapter:
- Fury of the Ancient - Calling upon the legends of his Chapter, the Librarian summons forth a ravening beast of ghostly flame and psychic energy. The flaming apparition then charges forward from the Librarian in a straight line, moving up to the extent of the power’s range before vanishing in a burst of energy.
- Glory of the Emperor - For the briefest of instants the Librarian channels the light of the Emperor, bathing all those nearby in His glory, which can cause massive damage to creatures of the Warp.
- Inspiring Word - The Librarian calms the minds of nearby allies and completely dispels their fear and doubt.
- Paragon - The Librarian lets his authority shine forth in a blaze of psychic energy, filling nearby allies with strength and resolve to emulate his glory.
- War Cry - With a terrifying cry, the Librarian demoralises and stuns nearby foes, forcing them to cower before his might.
- Word of the Emperor - The Librarian recites a sanctified prayer to the Emperor, speaking holy words that burn the minds of the unfaithful and cast out the spirits of the Warp.
Order of Battle
Like most Codex Astartes-compliant Chapters, the Ultramarines are divided into 10 companies of 100 Space Marines each. Each company is led by a Captain of the Ultramarines, who -- in addition to his company command -- is in charge of a particular aspect of the Chapter's logistics. Since the end of the First Tyrannic War, the elite, xenos-hunting Ultramarines Veterans known as Tyrannic War Veterans, have been scattered throughout every company in the Chapter to pass on their experience and expertise in killing the Ultramarines' most hated alien foes to their greener Battle-Brothers. An Ultramarines Astartes' company designation is indicated by the colour of the trim of his Power Armour shoulder plates. The current company commanders and company order of battle of the Ultramarines Chapter in 999.M41 are as follows:
- Chapter Command: Marneus Calgar, Lord of Macragge, Chapter Master of the Ultramarines
- Chapter Armoury: Fennias Maxim, Master of the Forge
- Librarius: Varro Tigurius, Chief Librarian
- Master of the Fleet: Lord Admiral Lazlo Tiberius, an Astartes of the Ultramarines Chapter and Hero of Macragge, has been made the Master of the Ultramarines Chapter Fleet by Marneus Calgar
- 1st (Veteran) Company, "Warriors of Ultramar" (white trim): Captain Severus Agemman, the Regent of Ultramar
- 2nd (Battle) Company, "Guardians of the Temple" (gold trim): Captain Cato Sicarius, the Master of the Watch
- 3rd (Battle) Company, "Scourge of the Xenos" (red trim): Captain Ardias, Captain Mikael Fabian (temporarily in command), the Master of the Arsenal
- 4th (Battle) Company, "Defenders of Ultramar" (green trim): Captain Uriel Ventris, chosen by the 4th Company's former commander, Captain Lucius Idaeus, the former Master of the Fleet, as his successor before his death at at the Battle of Bridge 2-4 on the world of Thracia
- 5th (Battle) Company, "Wardens of the Eastern Fringe" (black trim): Captain Caito Galenus, the Master of the Marches
- 6th (Reserve) Company (orange trim): Captain Epathus, the Master of the Rites
- 7th (Reserve) Company (purple trim): Captain Ixion, the Chief Victualler (Quartermaster)
- 9th (Reserve) Company (blue trim): Captain Sinon, the Master of Relics
Captain Invictus had been the commander of the 1st Company until he died at the Battle of Macragge alongside most of his company. Severus Agemman had originally commanded the 2nd Company until his promotion to command the 1st after the Battle of Macragge. Until 745.M41, Captain Ardias originally led the 3rd Company, but was seriously injured in battle by overwhelming Tau forces. Mikael Fabian was confirmed as the temporary successor captain before the Battle of Macragge against the Tyranids, and, with his 3rd Company, had success in the reconquest of the North Pole Fortress. Until 999.M41, Captain Lucius Idaeus led the 4th Company, but died in battle on Thracia. Uriel Ventris was confirmed as the successor captain shortly after, but was exiled from the Ultramarines for failing to adhere to the Codex Astartes. He successfully completed his Death Oath and returned home to take up his command once more.
The Ultramarines recruit new Astartes from amongst the the populations of all the worlds which comprise the Realm of Ultramar in the galaxy's Eastern Fringe. As the Ultramarines have long been the rulers of Ultramar, its nobility considers having a son chosen to join the Chapter to be an honour without parallel. Adolescent Aspirants who wish to join the Ultramarines are generally expected to overcome one of two different types of Trials if they hope to be chosen to become Neophytes.
First, the Ultramarines may expect their Aspirants to pass what is known as an Exposure Trial within one of the more difficult environments to be found within the boundaries of Ultramar. Few worlds of the Imperium of Man are entirely free from adversity and these rare exceptions are either the holdings of wealthy mercantile combines or pleasure retreats for retired, high-level Imperial servants or the local sector nobility, entirely inaccessible to the vast bulk of Mankind. Most of the Emperor's subjects live on worlds that are dangerous in some manner. Long-settled planets are riven by pollution, the toxic waste of thousands of standard years of industry seeping into the very bedrock and raining from the skies in a constant downpour. Other worlds are heavily irradiated, by the processes of industry or by the effects of local celestial phenomena. Younger worlds where Mankind's dominion is not yet fully established are often host to all manner of hostile lifeforms, including predatory beasts, carnivorous plants and virulent microbes.
Plenty of worlds feature environments that are inimical to life, yet due to some natural resource or the world's strategic value, humans eke out an existence there nonetheless. Such environments range from sub-zero ice wastes, impenetrable swamps and arid deserts to exotic death world jungles, methane sumps and hydrocarbon oceans. In an Exposure Trial, the Aspirant must go out into such an environment and simply survive for a set period of time. If he is a native of such a hellish place, the Aspirant will have some knowledge of how to survive, yet is shorn of all aid and divested of all but the most basic of survival equipment. Communities living in the midst of a death world jungle, for example, rely on total and constant cooperation just to go on existing another day and none are ever out of the sight of another. An Exposure Trial in such a place would force the Aspirant to go out into the jungle alone and face the terrors of the wild with only himself to rely upon for the first time in his life. Some Exposure Trials test the Aspirant's fortitude in a specific environment. Such Trials carried out in an icy waste could involve the Aspirant travelling from one point to another, with countless hundreds of kilometres of trackless snow-blasted plains separating the two.
Other Aspirants might have to cross an entire continent of irradiated ash dunes, traverse an impassable mountain range, swim a predator-infested ocean or a hundred other such challenges. One particularly inventive variation of the Exposure Trial is one in which the Aspirant is taken from his own environment and transplanted into an entirely unfamiliar one. A Feral World savage might be deposited in a hive city, for example, or a Hive Worlder in a predator-infested Death World jungle. Many Exposure Trials are impossible to complete, entailing the Aspirant simply staying alive as long as possible. Those who face the impossible without faltering and who survive long past the point they should have perished are recovered by the Chapter's Apothecaries, often having succumbed but not yet died, and revived, having been judged worthy of becoming an Astartes Neophyte. Amongst other types of Trial, the Ultramarines make extensive use of the Exposure Trial. In fact, some of the warrior elite of the Realm of Ultramar are known to cast newborn infants into the wilderness in order to test their resilience.
The second and less commonly employed Trial for Ultramarines Aspirants is the Challenge Trial. The Challenge requires the Aspirant to fight a duel or compete in some other manner against a full Astartes. In truth, none expect the Aspirant to better a full Battle-Brother and his success is more often measured in the degree of his failure. Very occasionally, an Aspirant does manage to beat an Astartes and when this happens it is not uncommon for the individual to go on to become a legendary hero of the Chapter. Many Challenge Trials involve a test of martial skill, with the Aspirant fighting an armed duel against a Battle-Brother. It is usual for the Aspirant to be armed and the Astartes to fight with his bare hands and probably without his Power Armour, yet still the Aspirant has virtually no hope of victory. Most Challenge Duels end in the death of the Aspirant, for even an unarmed, unarmoured Astartes is a giant compared to the young, adolescent challenger and well able to slay him with a single blow, intentionally or not. Other Challenge Trials involve contests of strength, stamina, speed, skill or mental strength. The Trial might range from the lifting of impossibly heavy loads to the imbibing of toxic substances. As with a duel, this type of Challenge Trial can often prove deadly. In both cases, however, an Aspirant that has failed the Trial—yet performed to the Chapter's satisfaction—is rescued from the jaws of death by the Chapter's Apothecaries and judged worthy of progressing to the rank of Neophyte.
Ironically, though many members of the Ultramarines have been drawn from the ranks of Ultramar's powerful nobility, and such a position adds to his family status and regard, one of the first things that becoming a Neophyte will teach the new recruit is that in the Ultramarines, family birth and status are meaningless. Every Battle-Brother stands equal in the eyes of the Emperor and Roboute Guilliman and the only aristocracy is that forged by sacrifice and blood in service to Mankind and one's fellow Astartes.
The Ultramarines Chapter is well represented in the ranks of the Deathwatch, the Chamber Militant of the Inquisition's Ordo Xenos. Ultramarines have been undertaking the Long Watch since the very earliest days of the Vigil in the Jericho Reach, and it is claimed in several archives that the very first Battle-Brother to take the Apocryphon Oath at Orphite IV was of the Chapter. Given their outlook and their knowledge of tactics and every nuance of the operational art, it is perhaps unsurprising that a large proportion of the Deathwatch’s leaders in the Jericho Reach are seconded from the Ultramarines. Every single Battle-Brother of the Chapter is steeped in the dictates of the Codex Astartes, and is well-read in almost all methods of warfare ever conceived. But it is not just knowledge that makes Ultramarines such worthy leaders, but the inheritance of Roboute Guilliman himself. Just as that Primarch united the Imperium and the Adeptus Astartes after the end of the Horus Heresy, welding the military might of the greatest stellar empire the galaxy has ever seen into a single, mighty war machine, so the Ultramarines serving in the Deathwatch unite the many and varied warriors serving beneath them. Such officers must ensure that taciturn Dark Angels work alongside hot-headed Space Wolves, that noble Blood Angels stand side-by-side with morbid Raven Guard. He must address the legitimate concerns of each and ensure the team works together as a seamless whole. He must know every nuance of his warriors’ abilities, and their weaknesses too, and utilise them as the living weapons they were created to be. It is only by the wisdom of the Codex Astartes and the example of its author that such a feat is possible.
Chapter Combat Doctrine
- "We are the Ultramarines, the sons of Guilliman. Whilst we draw breath, we stand. Whilst we stand, we fight. Whilst we fight, we prevail. Nothing shall stay our wrath."
For any given tactical situation, the Chapter has come to rely on the holy dictates of the Codex Astartes to meet any situation. This tome contains the wisdom of thousands of Imperial warriors who have contributed to the Codex, and details everything from proper unit markings to how to launch full-scale planetary assaults within its pages. The Ultramarines do not specialise in any particular form of combat, instead proving to be the ultimate generalists—surprisingly proficient at every task required in warfare, but not the master or greatest practitioner of any of them. For instance, the Aurora Chapter is far more skilled in armoured warfare than the Ultramarines, while the Raven Guard are second to none in the use of guerrilla, infiltration and hit-and-run tactics, and the Imperial Fists are the recognised masters of siege warfare. Yet the Ultramarines' generalist skill in the arts of combat would provide a potent defence against any of these Chapters, and so they are often held up as the standard to which all other Chapters of Astartes are compared, for better or worse.
The saga of the Ultramarines Legion and its Successor Chapter takes many elements from the ancient Greek (particularly Spartan) and Roman societies, namely in terms of its military organisation. They are the pre-eminent Space Marines army that serves as the example for all other Codex-compliant Chapters in the Imperium, and they do not require any tactical supplements beyond the Codex Astartes.
The Ultramarines' dominion over the star systems of Ultramar gives these Astartes unparalleled contact with Imperial citizenry. This has led to an unusual level of affinity for the common citizenry among an Astartes Chapter, comparable only to that displayed by the Salamanders. The Ultramarines regard themselves as protectors of the innocent, and not simply the Imperium's best warriors. This indicates the Ultramarines may be considered one of the noblest of Space Marine Chapters, fighting for not merely honour and martial pride or glory, but to protect the lives of their own people. In addition, unlike most Imperial organisations, they are willing to work with aliens like the Eldar from time to time, and even hold some respect for the Tau Empire. Unlike other Imperial military forces, the Ultramarines do not renege on their deals with alien allies, even after victory has been achieved.
The Ultramarines are a byword for courage and honour, and their warriors are justly held in the highest regard throughout the Imperium. Unlike many other Chapters, who control a single planet or fortress-monastery, the Ultramarines control no fewer than 8 star systems directly from their homeworld of Macragge, the stellar realm known as Ultramar. It is from these worlds that the Ultramarines recruit their newest members, administer Imperial Justice and rule Ultramar with a just and disciplined hand. The Ultramarines' fortress-monastery – known as the Fortress of Hera – is situated in the highest peaks of Macragge, and it is here that the best and bravest of the children selected from the many training academies throughout Ultramar are brought to begin their training as Space Marine Aspirants. Here, they will become the most feared fighting warriors of the Imperium – the Angels of Death, the Adeptus Astartes.
Roboute Guilliman, the Primarch of the Ultramarines, set down the foundations of the Imperium’s fighting forces 10,000 years ago in a mighty tome known and revered as the Codex Astartes. This holy work embodied all the Primarch’s military genius and set out precise guidelines for virtually every single aspect of war imaginable, everything from the correct conduct while marching to the precise execution of a planetary assault. But perhaps its most significant edict was the breaking-up of the First Founding Space Marine Legions into the smaller Chapters that exist today. No longer would one man control a force as powerful as an entire Space Marine Legion. Each Chapter would be broken up into a force of 10 companies, roughly a thousand warriors strong in total. The Ultramarines have followed Guilliman's teachings since those days and are strict adherents to the words of their Primarch’s tome, and the organisation and combat doctrines of the Ultramarines of today are the same as those followed by the Ultramarines of ten thousand years ago. These tenets of belief have passed to the Imperial citizens of Ultramar and this stellar realm is as close to the ideal of an Imperial human Utopia as is imaginable in a galaxy defined by war.
As befits the inheritors of Roboute Guilliman's superb military genius and ferocity in battle, the Ultramarines have fought in the manner prescribed in the holy pages of the Codex Astartes for ten millennia. They do not interpret the sacred words of their Primarch loosely, for to do so is considered blasphemy in their eyes. Such deviation is unthinkable to the Ultramarines. To the Chapter, the Codex is a divine work of wisdom, sanctified by the beneficent Emperor himself. The Ultramarines see no reason to deviate from its wisdom. The life-long lessons of discipline and self-reliance are taught to the people of Ultramar from birth, giving them the strength of character to hold true to teachings over ten thousand years old.
- Roboute Guilliman - Roboute Guilliman was the Primarch of the XIII Space Marine Legion and its myriad subsequent Second Founding Successor Chapters. Guilliman was the Primarch who single-handedly reshaped the Imperium of Man after the Horus Heresy during the Imperial Reformation, taking the lead role in reforming the administrative and military apparatus of the Imperium following the internment of the Emperor of Mankind within the Golden Throne on Terra. Guilliman is perhaps best remembered for being the author of the Codex Astartes, a key volume that laid out the proper tactics and military organisation for the majority of Loyalist Space Marine Chapters now in existence.
- Marius Gage - Chapter Master during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy eras of the Ultramarines Legion's 1st Chapter. Gage became the first Chapter Master of the reorganised Ultramarines Chapter following the poisoning and subsequent internment in stasis of Roboute Guilliman at the hands of the Daemon Primarch Fulgrim of the Emperor's Children Traitor Legion.
- Remus Ventanus - Captain of the 4th Company during the Horus Heresy. Played a vital role during the Battle of Calth against the traitorous Word Bearers Legion.
- Lysimachus Cestus - Captain and Fleet Commander of the XIII Legion's 7th Chapter during the latter stages of the Great Crusade and the early stages of the Horus Heresy. He is notable for leading the valiant interception mission against the Furious Abyss, the massive Battleship of the traitorous Word Bearers Legion, and ensuring its destruction before it could play a role in the Battle of Calth.
- Ptolemy - Ptolemy was the first and greatest Librarian of the Ultramarines and the founder of the Library of Ptolemy. Ironically, by the 41st Millennium little details remain about his life, though it is known that he might have been present for the trial of the Thousand Sons' Primarch Magnus the Red during the Council of Nikaea, but it is unknown whether he was one of the Red Sorcerer's accusers or defenders.
- Tylos Rubio - Tylos Rubio was an extremely powerful Space Marine psyker during the Great Crusade era of the early 31st Millennium, who had once been a Codicier of the Ultramarines Legion before the Emperor of Mankind’s formal decree at the Council of Nikaea had banned the Astartes Legions' use of psykers, including their own corps of Librarians. Honouring his oath to the Emperor, Tylos surrendered his Librarian panoply and wargear, and returned to the lines as an ordinary Battle-Brother of the 21st Company. He would later be recruited by Nathaniel Garro, the former Death Guard Battle-Captain, during the infamous Battle of Calth at the outset of the Horus Heresy, and become one of the seven Astartes who would form the core of what would become the Inquisition's Grey Knights Space Marine Chapter.
- Marneus Calgar - Marneus Calgar has been the Ultramarines' Chapter Master throughout most of the 41st Millennium as well as the Planetary Governor and Lord of Macragge. He wields the Gauntlets of Ultramar, the weapons that the Ultramarines' Primarch Roboute Guilliman had taken from a Chaos Champion he slew during the Horus Heresy.
- Chief Librarian Tigurius - Tigurius is believed to have survived contact with the Tyranid Hive Mind and to be the strongest psyker in the Imperium, with the possible exception of Mephiston, the Lord of Death of the Blood Angels, Njal Stormcaller of the Space Wolves, and of course the Emperor of Mankind.
- Reclusiarch Ortan Cassius - Ortan Cassius is the Ultramarines' Master of Sanctity. He is one of the oldest Ultramarines not contained within the armoured chassis of a Dreadnought. Though Cassius is close to 400 standard years old, his sturdy presence within the Ultramarines line of battle still fills the hearts of his younger brethren with pride and valour. He is the founder and mentor of the Tyrannic War Veterans.
- Chaplain Varnus - In the PC game Dawn of War - Winter Assault, Varnus was the Chaplain who lead the Ultramarines force to escort the Collegia Titanica Titan Recovery Team intended to reawaken the Imperator-class Battle Titan that had been lost on the Ice World of Lorn V during the Horus Heresy. After the Imperial Guard came to his aid when his Thunderhawk transport crashed, he witnessed the summoning of a Bloodthirster Greater Daemon of Khorne, which mutilated one of his Space Marines. Enraged, Varnus charges out of his defences and confronted the Greater Daemon in close combat, single-handedly defeating it. He later helped hold the line against an awakening force of Necrons as the Emperor Titan lying dormant on Lorn V was brought online.
- Lord Admiral Lazlo Tiberius - Tiberius served as the commander of the Ultramarines Strike Cruiser Vae Victus and is the Ultramarines current Master of the Fleet. Nearly 400 standard years old as of the late 41st Millennium, he has spent nearly all of his career fighting in the void of space, and is one of the Chapter's finest void-tacticians. The Vae Victus is usually assigned to the Ultramarines' vaunted 4th Company, under the command of Captain Uriel Ventris. As the 4th Company's commander, Captain Ventris is traditionally entitled to the position of Master of the Fleet, but he transferred this esteemed title to Tiberius in recognition of his superlative skill and experience.
- Ancient Galatan - Ancient Galatan was the Bearer of the Banner of Macragge in times past, taking part in the Corinth Crusade from 698-705.M41. During a fierce battle against the Orks of WAAAGH! Skargor, he briefly dropped the sacred standard when his arm was chopped off by the Ork Warboss Skargor. While distracted with trying to break the banner with his Power Claw, Ancient Galatan impaled his Power Sword through the back of Skargor's head, killing him instantly and breaking the spirit of the Greenskins. Though he later died from the wounds incurred in the encounter, the Banner of Macragge remained upright for the remainder of the battle, rallying the Ultramarines to finally defeat the Orks.
- Ancient Helveticus - Ancient Helveticus was the Bearer of the Banner of Macragge. He bore the Chapter's Banner during the Battle of Macragge, and was present aboard Marneus Calgar's Battle Barge when it was boarded by Tyranids. He led the fierce counter-attack against the encroaching xenos, and was subsequently killed in battle, both fatally poisoned and burned by the assault of the horrific xenos. His grip upon the shaft of the banner was said to be so tight, that initially it could not be pried from his hands even after his death.
- Ancient Tortalus - After the Battle of Macragge, the young Chapter Master Marneus Calgar declared that the Banner of Macragge would not be carried forth again until the Ultramarines had rebuilt their strength, until they were once again a whole Chapter. It has taken them two centuries to bring the 1st Company back to full strength after their sacrifice at Macragge. Only then did the Chapter Master believe that the Ultramarines were fit to carry the Banner of Macragge into battle once more. Ancient Helveticus was succeeded in this duty by Ancient Tortalus.
- Captain Severus Agemman - Severus Agemman has served his Chapter with honour for many years, earning his place as the current Captain of the elite 1st Company through the weight of his deeds and respect of his Chapter Master. As part of his rank, he also bears the title Regent of Ultramar, and is considered the lord of that realm should Marneus Calgar be called away to war. Previously Severus served as the Captain of the Second Company, but was promoted to First Captain after his predecessor, Captain Saul Invictus, was killed during the Battle of Macragge. As can be expected, Agemman is a proud warrior who lives for his duty; he is utterly devoted to the Chapter, its master and the Emperor. However, Agemman lives under the shadow that many great men must endure; the knowledge that, as masterful a leader and warrior as he is, perhaps this is all he will ever be. It is no secret that Cato Sicarius, Captain of the 2nd Company, is favoured to become Chapter Master after Calgar, and that many within the Chapter consider Agemman too valuable in his current role to advance to higher command. If this bothers Agemman, he has never shown it; the First Captain immerses himself in his duty so that none might ever say he has placed his own glory before that of the Ultramarines.
- Captain Saul Invictus - Former Captain of the 1st Company. He valiantly led the combined Ultramarines, Imperial Guard and Titan Legion forces at the Battle of Macragge. Following the grievous losses sustained by the Ultramarines Chapter during the Corinth Crusade (698-501.M41), Captain Invictus rebuilt and carefully honed the elite 1st Company with stolid and formidable veterans drawn from the rest of the Chapter, in accordance to the dictates of the Codex Astartes. By reforming the 1st Company this way, Invictus avoided the failures of many reformed Companys by maintaining squad cooperation and cohesion, which was flawless, and superb fire discipline. Invictus was fanatically committed to ensuring that his battle-brothers deserved the respect they gained from the rest of the Chapter and drove them with relentless energy. During the Battle of Macragge, Invictus requested that the 1st Company be assigned to protecting Macragge's two vital polar defence fortresses. These were the lynchpins in Macragge's orbital defence network. Invictus judged (correctly as it transpired) that the Tyranids would attempt to make landings at these two location in order to neutralise the defences, which would open the door for untold numbers of these vile xenos creatures to swarm down from the orbiting Hive Fleet and infest the planet. The presence of the elite veterans of the 1st Company ensured that the Tyranids suffered unsustainable casualties overrunning the fortresses, delaying the inevitable long enough for Marneus Calgar and the rest of the Chapter to achieve victory in space. Captain Invictus's body was discovered amongst the many bodies of the battle-brothers of the 1st Company, who had made their last stand in Silo 8 of the northern fortress. Tyranid corpses were piled for twenty yards in every direction, circling the fallen defenders.
- Captain Cato Sicarius - Captain of the 2nd Company, Grand Duke of Talassar, Suzerain of Ultramar and Master of the Watch who was the hero of the Assault on Black Reach and the Zeist Campaign. Sicarius also led the Imperial forces on Medusa V and moved to combat the invasion of Ultramar by the Forces of Chaos under the command of the Daemon Prince M'kar the Reborn. Sicarius is believed by many Astartes within his Chapter to be a fitting successor to Marneus Calgar as the next Chapter Master of the Ultramarines and Lord of Macragge.
- Captain Titus - Titus was the Captain of the 2nd Company and the hero of the Liberation of Graia. Titus faced his greatest test when he and his company of Ultramarines were sent to the Adeptus Mechanicus Forge World of Graia in the Segmentum Tempestus to stop an invasion by an Ork WAAAGH! 1 million Greenskins strong led by the Warboss Grimskull intent on stealing advanced Imperial weapons, including a Warlord-class Battle Titan. The assault was part of an intricate plan unleashed by the Chaos Sorcerer Nemeroth, the Chaos Lord of a warband of Chaos Space Marines known as the Chosen of Nemeroth, to get his hands on an experimental power source on the world that would allow him to ascend to become a Daemon Prince. Accompanied by 2 members of his command squad, Sergeant Sidonus and Battle-Brother Leandros, Titus joined with the Imperial Guard's 203rd Cadian Shock Troops Regiment and its only surviving officer, 2nd Lieutenant Mira, to eventually kill Grimskull and halt the WAAAGH! Unfortunately, the Ordo Xenos Inquisitor Drogan, who Titus and his Astartes relied upon for assistance in retaking the world, was actually an undead pawn of Nemeroth who used a specially designed weapon powered by the experimental power source Nemeroth wanted, to open a portal into the Warp that allowed the Chaos Sorcerer, a horde of Chaos daemons and his Chaos Space Marines to come to Graia. Curiously, however, Titus displayed an unknown immunity to the sorcerer's psychic powers which immediately raised the suspicions of the highly orthodox Leandros to his commander's possible corruption. Following the death of his old friend Sidonus at Nemeroth's hand, Titus hunted down the foul Chaos Sorcerer and slew him just as he was in the throes of the ascent to daemonhood, banishing his dark soul back to the Warp for punishment by his Dark Gods. Unfortunately, after saving Graia, Captain Titus was taken into custody by the Inquisition's Inquisitor Thrax and his retinue of Black Templars Space Marines on suspicion of heresy after Leandros reported his captain for both his resistance to Nemeroth's sorcery and his multiple deviations from the Codex Astartes held sacrosanct by all Ultramarines. His current fate is unknown. Titus was the main character of the video game Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine, which took place in an alternate universe where Titus rather than Cato Sicarius was the Captain of the 2nd Company.
- Captain Fabian - Fabian was the Captain of the 3rd Company, and the Ultramarines' Master of the Arsenal.
- Captain Uriel Ventris - Captain of the Ultramarines 4th Company. He is armed with the Sword of Ideaus, Lucius Ideaus being his predecessor as commander of the 4th Company and his mentor. He was exiled from the Chapter for not adhering to the Codex Astartes after leading an Deathwatch Kill-team into a Tyranid splinter Hive Fleet to kill its Norn-Queen. After destroying the Daemonculaba on the Daemon World of Medrengard, home of the Iron Warriors, he and his Veteran Sergeant Pasanius Lysane have now returned to Ultramar. After returning to Ultramar, Pasanius and Ventris had to undergo tests for their purity, and since then Ventris has regained command of the 4th Company. His first mission upon his return was to head back to the Tomb World of Pavonis and ensure that it was recovering from a Necron awakening, when the 4th Company engaged the Tau unexpectedly. The Ultramarines ultimately won, with Ventris adhering to the Codex Astartes for every engagement.
- Captain Cato Galenus - Galenus was the Captain of the 5th Company and the Ultramarines' Master of the Marches.
- Captain Epathus - Epathus was the Captain of the 6th Company, and the Ultramarines' Master of the Rites.
- Captain Ixion - Ixion was the Captain of the 7th Company and the Ultramarines' Chief Victualler.
- Captain Antilochus - Antilochus was the Captain of the 10th Company and the Ultramarines' Master of Recruits.
- Captain Kruger - Kruger served as a Force Commander for the Ultramarines forces present during the events of Warhammer 40,000: Chaos Gate.
- Captain Erikon Gaius - Gaius was the Captain of the 21st Company during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy eras, and he was known as the Hero of the Hadir Uprising, as well as Gaius the Strong and Gaius the Unflinching. During the infamous Battle of Calth, Gaius rallied his devastated company and counter-attacked the traitorous Word Bearers Legion, inflicting several casualties, but unable to halt their advance. He eventually gave his life heroically during the latter course of the campaign.
- Watch Captain Marius Avincus - Marius Avincus Caeso was recruited into the Ultramarines with his twin brother Gnaeus, and both served together for centuries. After more than 300 hundred standard years in service to the Ultramarines, the brothers faced a horror the likes of which none could imagine—the Tyranids attacked Prandium. Gnaeus was slain, crushed by a Carnifex while trying to defend refugees being evacuated from their homeworld. During the Battle of Macragge Avincus had the opportunity to strike back against the vile xenos. In the years that followed he was chosen to join the 1st Company as one of Chaplain Cassius' Tyrannic War Veterans. After 12 years of service, he was nominated for service with the Chamber Militant of the Ordo Xenos -- the Deathwatch. He currently serves as a Watch Captain with the Deathwatch within the Orpheus Salient of the Jericho Reach.
- Watch Captain Prascus - Captain Prascus was an Ultramarine seconded to the Deathwatch who is best remembered for building the first hunting grounds at Watch Fortress Erioch 400 standard years ago. He became renowned for his skills in the selection and deployment of Kill-teams, as he was always able to balance their members to create a dynamism that proved nigh unstoppable in combat. Prascus served 11 Vigils with the Deathwatch, acting as Watch Captain for 6 of them and as Master of the Vigil twice. He was killed in the Battle of Macragge during the intense fighting at the Northern Polar Fortress complex during the First Tyrannic War.
- Sergeant Pasanius Lysane - Lysane was a Veteran Sergeant of the Ultramarines 4th Company and the best friend of Captain Uriel Ventris. Lysane accompanied Ventris during his Death Oath and bears an augmetic arm. This arm was once covered in necrodermis, the Necrons' living metal substance, after Lysane's encounter with the C'tan known as the Nightbringer on the Tomb World of Pavonis, but the arm was removed by Dark Mechanicus Tech-priests during his time on the Daemon World of Medrengard and eventually replaced by a normal bionic limb after his return to Macragge. For not telling the Chapter about his prior bionic arm's xenos abilities, Lysane was reduced in rank to a line Battle-Brother and forced to spend 100 days away from the Chapter in penance.
- Sergeant Antaro Chronus - Antaro Chronus is the most gifted of all the Ultramarines' tank commanders. His abilities extend to almost any armoured vehicle kept within the Chapter's Armoury. Few other commanders within the Adeptus Astartes can match his strategic genius and tactical acumen on the battlefield when it comes to armoured warfare. In recognition of his superlative skills as the Chapter's preeminent tank commander, he was awarded the ancient title of the "Spear of Macragge."
- Sergeant Sidonus - Sidonus was an aged Veteran Sergeant of the Ultramarines 2nd Company and served as second-in-command to Captain Titus. He accompanied the Captain on the mission to secure Titans during the Liberation of Graia along with Brother Leandros, who both made up Titus' retinue in the Command Squad of the 2nd Company. Despite his experience in countless campaigns, he proved no match for the Chaos Sorceror Nemeroth, who killed him during the conflict on Graia as he attempted to get an experimental power source technology that drew on the energies of the Warp and had been created by the Adeptus Mechanicus to safety.
- Sergeant Aeonid Thiel - Sergeant Aeonid Thiel served as a squad leader in the 135th Company of the XIII Legion during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy eras. He was marked for censure prior to the Battle of Calth for running theoretical scenarios on fighting other Space Marines. Throughout this campaign, he used unorthodox tactics and strategy to wage war with all ferocity against the Ultramarines' former brethren, the Chaos Space Marines of the Word Bearers, who had woefully betrayed both the Ultramarines and the Imperium. When Roboute Guilliman led a boarding party of 50 Ultramarines aboard an orbital platform commandeered by the Word Bearers, he ordered that the squad leaders accompanying him paint their helmets red because the Word Bearers' traitorous attack had demolished the Ultramarines' normal command hierarchy and because of unreliable Vox communications. Roboute Guilliman wanted firm and simple visual cues for the chain of command in that situation. Following the events of Calth, Guilliman declared that from that time forward, in recognition of the heroism and original thinking displayed by this lone Ultramarines Sergeant, the red-colouration of the helm would be considered a badge of honour instead of censure amongst the Ultramarines. In the ten millennia since the Battle of Calth, the Sergeants of the Ultramarines and several other Codex-compliant Chapters continue to paint their helmets red to signify the honour accorded to the Astartes who achieve this rank.
- Scout Sergeant Torias Telion - Torias Telion is a Sergeant assigned to the Chapter's 10th Scout Company. Telion is an incomparable instructor of new Ultramarines recruits. Telion has served under the command of three successive Chapter Masters and has trod more battlefields across the width and breadth of the galaxy than most senior Captains within the Chapter. No less than four currently serving Ultramarines Captains attribute their skills and success within the Chapter's hierarchy to the peerless tutelage of this esteemed warrior when they were Neophytes. Despite having earned the honour of serving within the Chapter's Honour Guard several times over, as well as having earned the Iron Skull, the Imperial Laurel and a dozen Marksman's Honour badges, Telion has elected to remain with the Novice Scout Marines of the 10th Company. Telion is most famous for his unparalleled skill as a marksman and sniper amongst the ranks of the Astartes. Indeed, the Ultramarines have seconded Telion to other Space Marines Chapters allied with his own, where his expert guidance and teachings enable other Astartes to achieve a unique level of knowledge and skills that will help them spread the light of the Emperor to the darkest corners of the galaxy.
- Banner of Macragge - The Banner of Macragge is the ancient Battle Standard of the Ultramarines Chapter and it is considered to be one of their most revered Chapter relics. It was touched by the Emperor's own hand when He presented it to the XIII Space Marine Legion's Primarch Roboute Guilliman at the beginning of the Great Crusade in ca. 800.M30. The Ultramarines have preserved it for ten millennia through fire and war and decimation, each generation passing it on to the next as a burning torch of their love for the immortal Emperor who made them. It has languished in dull stasis chambers and flown beneath the suns of a thousand alien worlds. It has flown on Macragge itself, whenever the whole Chapter is gathered together, and it has been carried forth whenever the Ultramarines have fought as one against the direst of foes. It is said to be made of a strange material known only to the ancients; light as silk but strong as steel; flame cannot burn it and where it is rent asunder it re-spins itself as perfect as the day it was first made. It is marked with the names of all seventy Chapter Masters, beginning with Roboute Guilliman and ending with young Marneus Calgar. The Banner carries an honorific for each Victorix Maxima (High Gothic for "great victory") of the Chapter which has been declared at the Imperial Palace on sacred Terra.
- Cingulum - The Cingulum is a belt formed from several studded straps of leather or a similar strong and flexible material, which serves as a place for the hanging of victorex and other accolades of valour. Such belts are common decorations amongst the Ultramarines and their Successor Chapters. The appearance of a cingulum also varies with the type of small, detailed plates that have been used to stud it and the choices of what terminal decorations hang upon it.
- 1st Company Relic - When the Ultramarines lost their 1st Company during the defence of Macragge against Hive Fleet Behemoth, it was a terrible blow to the Chapter and it took them many years to fully recover. Deathwatch Watch Captain Prascus of the Jericho Reach is known for carrying around a small, rent piece of armour from their last stand. He claims that the memory of those Battle-Brothers' sacrifice emboldens him in combat. Inspired by Prascus’ devotion, many Ultramarines serving in the Jericho Reach have begun carrying such tokens. Such relics steel the Battle-Brother's will against the influence of the Tyranids, as they remember the price paid by their brothers and struggle harder to resist.
- Gauntlets of Ultramar - Amongst the oldest and most revered of all Ultramarines' artefacts, the Gauntlets of Ultramar are a pair of unique Power Fists with integrated Bolters. Legends say that the Gauntlets were taken by Primarch Roboute Guilliman himself, after defeating a mighty Chaos Champion in hand-to-hand combat during the Gamalia Reclusium Massacre of the Great Crusade. These weapons come from a source unknown and no Techno-magos has ever succeeded in penetrating their armoured shell to examine the mechanism within. The Gauntlets are only worn by the Master of the Ultramarines himself, the Lord Macragge, and at other times reside within a crystal case in the Fortress of Hera, inside the Temple of Correction's Shrine of the Great Primarch.
- Gilded Boltgun - Among the oldest and most stable of all the Chapters, the vaults of the Ultramarines are well stocked with some of the finest examples of Imperial weaponry known to exist. One example is the Gilded Boltgun, a master-crafted Artificer weapon of unsurpassed beauty and artistry; a weapon fit for a Sector Lord, or a Space Marine Captain. No record remains of how this weapon made its way to the Jericho Reach, but it has been used by some of the most heralded Ultramarines to serve in the Reach with the Deathwatch.
- Helm of Varthion - Sergeant Varthion is a legend at the Deathwatch's Watch Fortress Erioch in the Jericho Reach. Long before Warmaster Achilus ever dreamed of conquest through the Jericho Reach's Warp Gate, the Deathwatch kept vigil over this ancient artifact. In the fourth century of the 41st Millennium, Varthion and his squad destroyed a xenos warhost hundreds of times their number in defence of the Gate. Records conflict as to which side of the Warp Gate originated the enemy assault, but accounts of the aftermath in the control structure are identical. They describe alien corpses of an aspect uncatalogued before or since, “in such volumes that Varthion’s squad stood atop them like Titans astride a demolished hive.” The Ultramarine Sergeant’s ancient helm contains the pinnacle of augury sensors and prophesier readouts. A dedicated Cogitator bank also provides tactical recommendations based on thousands of standard years of compiled Ultramarines combat theory.
- Heraldry Scrolls - Scrolls worked into a Battle-Brother’s armour, either as metalwork or a placard are popular in many Chapters, and the Ultramarines are no exception. This crest may display a motto or title, but most commonly it bears the Ultramarine’s name so that his enemies know who brings their deaths, and tales of his deeds may travel.
- Honour Blades - Presented to champions of the Chapter, Honour Blades are a matching Broadsword and Poniard Power Sword set. Wielded together, the blades are perfectly matched and provide the champion with an expert defence and attack.
- Hood of Hellfire - The Hood of Hellfire is a specially modified Psychic Hood that not only provides protection against the psychic assault of other psykers, but allows Chief Librarian Tigurius to conserve his body's energy, enabling him to make use of his powerful offensive psychic abilities more often than is normal for even the most powerful of human psykers.
- Infernus - Chaplain Ortan Cassius bears the master-crafted Combi-Flamer/Bolter called Infernus. This weapon was crafted and modified by Cassius himself. The Bolter portion of Infernus is loaded with Hellfire rounds instead of standard Bolter ammunition.
- Jaw of Bloodcharn - The Jaw of Bloodcharn was the Chainsword wielded by Tactical Squad Sergeant Kuriel during the war for a vital Agri-world in the Ango Sub-sector. Sudden attacks by dark-armoured Chaos Space Marines brought death to Kuriel’s captain and the sergeant stepped into his place to take command of the Ultramarines strike force. As the conflict escalated, Kuriel coordinated his efforts with allies from the Red Wolves and Sons of Orar Chapters, showing outstanding leadership ability. He was subsequently elevated to the 1st Company and his promotion to the rank of Captain was only prevented when he volunteered to join the Deathwatch. His weapon is the mark of a great commander and is often given to an up-and-coming Ultramarine slated for eventual officer status.
- Mantle of Suzerain - This special suit of Artificer Armour worn by Captain Cato Sicarius provides a level of protection that rivals that of a suit of Terminator Armour. The left pauldron of this armour belongs to the original suit of Mark II Crusader Pattern Power Armour worn by Captain Orar of the 2nd Company, a great hero of the Ultramarines Legion during the Great Scouring of the Traitor Legions from Imperial space after the end of the Horus Heresy. It bears the 2nd Company's heraldic colours which Sicarius has also adopted as his own personal heraldry and also incorporates an Iron Halo and a golden Aquila that designates his position as the Grand Duke of Talassar, his homeworld in the Realm of Ultramar.
- Rod of Tigurius - Chief Librarian Tigurius wields the Rod of Tigurius, an extremely potent master-crafted Force Weapon that draws on Tigurius' own psychic energy and focuses it into a tight beam of unstoppable power.
- Talassarian Tempest Blade - Wielded by Captain Cato Sicarius in close combat, this Power Sword's energy field is so strong that in certain instances it can slay a foe with a single strike.
- Urion's Doom - Urion was an honoured member of the Ultramarines 1st Company at the time of the invasion of Ultramar by Hive Fleet Behemoth. He was stationed at the Northern Polar Fortress during the Battle of Macragge. He fought on the outer wall until it was overrun, his Storm Bolter reaping a heavy toll amongst the Tyranid horde. He defended the silo doors of the fortress until they were breached, mowing down countless more bioforms. He battled in the catacombs as the surviving defenders fell back deeper and deeper. He fired burst after burst, each one finding its mark, until at last his ammunition was spent, when he charged into hand-to-hand combat and was finally overcome. His recovered Storm Bolter, Urion's Doom, is now a relic of the Chapter given to a member of the 1st Company who has particularly disntuinguished himself in combat with the Tyranids. As such, it is usually granted to one of the Chapter's Tyrannic War Veterans.
- Vengeance Launcher - Wielded by Captain Titus, this unique weapon fires explosive mines that generate a gravitic field, able to stick to foes before exploding.
- Hammer of Macragge - A potent and revered relic of the Ultramarines Chapter, the Hammer of Macragge is a millennia-old Thunder Hammer that has long remained aboard the Reclusium of the Battle Barge of the Ultramarines 2nd Company in a shrine of honour. The Hammer of Macragge has been wielded against foes of the Imperium of Man for many millennia, and it contains powerful ancient technology that is little understood in the late 41st Millennium. The 2nd Company's Ultima Squad swore their battle pledges on the Hammer shortly before their deployment to the Shrine World of Mithron which had come under assault from the Forces of Chaos, including the Chaos Space Marines of the Black Legion. Later, Battle-Brother Proteus confronted a daemon inside the Reclusium of the 2nd Company's Battle Barge and tore the Hammer from its reliquary, using it to banish the daemon back to the Warp, before it could use the Imperial Fists artefact recovered from Mithron, the Liber Mithrus, to open a Warp portal on Macragge itself.
Space Marine Chapters usually possess 4 or 5 Battle Barges in their Chapter fleets, but the Ultramarines can field up to 10 currently if it draws on moth-balled naval stores as the Realm of Ultramar depends on the Chapter for sector naval protection rather than on a sector battlefleet of the Imperial Navy. The Master of the Fleet for the Ultramarines is Captain Lazlo Tiberius, an Astartes and one of the heroes of Macragge.
- 10 Battle Barges (including those lost or destroyed):
- Emperor Incarnatus
- Faith's Pyre
- Honour's Fist
- Icon of Faith
- Imperator Rexelius
- Infernus Iconus
- Lord Laomedon
- Pro Merito (Lost to the Warp)
- Seditio Opprimere
- 15 Strike Cruisers, including:
- Garra de Macragge (Macragge's Claw)
- Iter Splendere
- Vae Victus
- Valin's Revenge
- 20 Escorts
- 75 Thunderhawk gunships
- The following vessels were a part of the XIII Legion's fleet during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy eras (many were destroyed, others became part of the Ultramarines Successor Chapters' fleets):
- Macragge's Honour (Gloriana-class Battleship) – Flagship of Primarch Roboute Guilliman and the XIII Legion
- Aegis of Occluda (Unknown Class) - Severely damaged during the Battle of Calth.
- Antipathy (Cruiser) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Antrodamicus (Grand Cruiser) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Antropheles (Troop Transport) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Burnabus (Escort) - Suffered catastrophic damage during the Battle of Calth.
- Campanile (Fleet Tender) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Cavascor (Unknown Class)
- Constellation of Tarmus (Unknown Class) – Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Cornucopia (Unknown Class)
- Courage of Konor (Carrier) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Deliverance of Terra (Unknown Class) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Gauntlet of Glory (Battle-Barge)
- Gauntlet of Power (Battle Barge)
- Gauntlet of Victory (Battle-Barge)
- Gladius (Escort) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- High Assent (Unknown Class)
- Hope of Narmenia (Battle-Barge) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Janiverse (Frigate) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Jeriko Rex (Fast Escort) - Suffered catastrophic damage during the Battle of Calth.
- Johanipus Artemisia (Carrier) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Lutine (Unknown Class)
- Menace of Fortis (Unknown Class) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Mlatus (Unknown Class)
- Mlekrus (Strike Craft)
- Remonstrance of Narthan Dume (Battleship) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Samothrace (Unknown Class)
- Sanctity of Saramanth (Heavy Destroyer) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Solonim Woe (Unknown Class)
- Sons of Ultramar (Battle-Barge) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Spirit of Konor (Battleship) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Stations of Ultramar (Picket Cruiser) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Steinhart (Carrier) - Suffered catastrophic damage during the Battle of Calth.
- Suspiria Majestrix (Grand Cruiser)
- Tarmus Usurper (Unknown Class) - Suffered catastrophic damage during the Battle of Calth.
- Testament of Andromeda (Carrier) - Suffered moderate damage during the Battle of Calth.
- Triumph of Iax (Unknown Class) - Crippled during the Battle of Calth.
- Ultimus Mundi (Battleship)
- Valediction (Carrier) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Vernax Absolom (Unknown Class)
- Vospherus (Carrier) - Destroyed during the Battle of Calth.
- Chronicle (Unknown Class)
- Glory of Fire (Unknown Class)
- Legendary Son (Unknown Class)
- Nova Warrior (Unknown Class)
- Praetorian Trust (Unknown Class)
- Triumph of Espandor (Unknown Class)
- Unbroken Vigil (Unknown Class)
The Ultramarines typically paint their Power Armour and vehicles a medium (Ultramarine) blue, and their symbol is an inverted white Greek letter Omega. The Ultramarines also utilise black-and-yellow chevrons, usually on weapons such as Power Fists. They also incorporate the double-headed Aquila (the Imperial Eagle - especially seen in command and elite squads) in their armoury. They also have a gold (shining gold) trim on their Aquila. Their shoulder armour trim colour varies depending on the company the Space Marine belongs to, with the 1st Company being trimmed in white, the 2nd Company trimmed in gold, etc. (see above). Apothecaries of the Ultramarines keep the blue armour but have their hands, shoulder guards and backpacks painted white. They have a white vertical stripe painted down the centre of the helmet. Some Apothecaries have their armour white throughout with a blue shoulder plate (white trim).
The Chapter badge of the Ultramarines is a large, white Omega letter drawn from the Greek alphabet, representing the concept of ultimate perfection.
- Wargame Tactics for Space Marines - A site for Ultramarine Tactics.
- Apocalypse: War Zone Damnos (6th Edition), pp. 7-24
- Chapter Approved 2001
- Codex: Black Templars (4th Edition), pg. 6
- Codex: Space Marines (6th Edition), pp. 8, 16, 20-33, 47, 59, 77, 89, 105-110, 128-141
- Codex: Space Marines (5th Edition)
- Codex: Space Marines (4th Edition)
- Codex: Tau (3rd Edition), pp. 58-60
- Codex: Tyranids (5th Edition), pg.14
- Codex: Ultramarines (2nd Edition)
- Deathwatch: Core Rulebook (RPG), pp. 53-54, 200
- Deathwatch: First Founding (RPG), pp. 67-73
- Deathwatch: The Jericho Reach (RPG), pg. 138
- Deathwatch: Rites of Battle (RPG), pg. 237
- Final Liberation: Warhammer Epic 40,000 (RPG)
- Horus Heresy – Volume II: Visions of Darkness
- Horus Heresy: Collected Visions
- How To Paint Space Marines
- Index Astartes III, "Warriors of Ultramar - The Ultramarines Space Marine Chapter"
- Imperial Armour Volume Nine - The Badab War, Part One, pg. 127
- Imperial Armour - The Horus Heresy - Book One: Betrayal, pp. 80-81
- Insignium Astartes: The Uniforms and Regalia of the Space Marines
- Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine (Video Game)
- Warhammer 40,000 Rulebook (6th Edition)
- Warhammer 40,000 Rulebook (5th Edition)
- White Dwarf 309 (US), "Painting Showcase: Ultramarines", pg. 82
- White Dwarf 264 (AU), "Index Astartes – Ultramarines"
- White Dwarf 263 (US), "Index Astartes - First Founding: Warriors of Ultramar - The Ultramarines Space Marine Chapter", pp. 18-25
- White Dwarf 208 (US), "Faith and Vengeance: Space Marine Chaplain Background and Tactics", pp. 78-86
- White Dwarf 185 (US), "Lord Macragge, Master of the Ultramarines", pp. 7-12
- White Dwarf 119 (US), "Space Marine Painting Guide", pp. 32-39
- White Dwarf 103 (US), "Rampaging Rhinos", pg. 65
- White Dwarf 97 (US), "Index Astartes - Ultramarines" by David Wise & Rick Priestley, pp. 39-49
- Battle for the Abyss (Novel) by Ben Counter
- Garro: Oath of Moment (Audio Book) by James Swallow
- The First Heretic (Novel) by Aaron Dembski-Bowden
- Betrayer (Novel) by Aaron Dembski-Bowden
- Dark Heart (Novella) by Anthony Reynolds
- Mark of Calth (Novel) by Nick Kyme
- Rogue Trader series of novels:
- Rogue Star (Novel) by Andy Hoare
- Star of Damocles (Novel) by Andy Hoare
- Savage Scars (Novel) by Andy Hoare
- The Ultramarines series of novels:
- Nightbringer (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- Warriors of Ultramar by Graham McNeill
- Dead Sky, Black Sun by Graham McNeill
- The Killing Ground by Graham McNeill
- Courage and Honour by Graham McNeill
- The Chapter's Due by Graham McNeill
- Iron Warrior (Novella) by Graham McNeill
- Catechism of Hate (Novel) by Gav Thorpe
- Leviathan (Novella) by Graham McNeill
- The Enemy of My Enemy (Novella) by Graham McNeill
- Chains of Command (Novella) by Graham McNeill
- The Fall of Damnos (Novel) by Nick Kyme
- Fate's Masters, Destiny's Servants (Ebook) by Matt Keefe
- The Heraclitus Effect (Ebook) by Graham McNeill
- Legends of the Space Marines (Anthology), "Consequences," by Graham McNeill
- Rules of Engagement (Audio Short) by Graham McNeill
- Eye of Vengeance (Audio) by Graham McNeill