+ inload: Weapon Platforms +

+ Rapier platforms +

+ Rapiers are semi-autonomous tracked weapon platforms used by many arms of the Imperium's military, from the Imperial Militia to the Legiones Astartes. Rugged and reliable, their distinctive grumbling forms are rarely the stuff of legends, instead occupying a humble supporting role in the Imperium's military history. + 

+ Most commonly armed with a bank of linked laser weaponry called laser-destroyer arrays, which operate on similar principles to lascannons, the Rapier is versatile enough to mount other weaponry too heavy, specialised or bulky for infantry – even Astartes – to handle. Common Rapier mounts include quad-guns, heavy bolter banks, mass-drivers and the feared graviton cannon. +

+ Graviton cannons emit a distinctive sub-sonic thrum as they wash the target area with massless spin-2 boson particles, displacing resident scalar and vector particles through a process called quantum spin-weaving. This is manifested in a localised and temporary apparent increase in mass and weight with no concomitant increase in size or displacement of the target, resulting in catastrophic stresses to the target. In layman's terms, it increases the gravity of an area, flattening buildings, crushing armoured vehicles and reducing infantry to a thin, gritty paste. +

+ The Iron Warriors Legion made great use of the Rapier platform, adapting it to bear everything from direct-fire weapons to comms-arrays and orbital links. In addition to these standard uses, the Iron Warriors also commonly utilised Rapiers as transports during deployments in dense terrain like jungles. In these cases, the Rapier platform would typically – though not always – be stripped of their primary weapon and used instead to bear palettes and crates of arms and ammunition for a Muster. These allowed infantry-heavy deployments to operate for longer and range further than otherwise advisable. +

+ Displaying their typical ingenuity and practicality, the IVth Legion also employed the platform for many unique improvised uses, ranging from creating temporary mobile bridges across the racing waters of Vortigern, to carrying the honoured dead back from assaults. There is even one recorded (though uncorroborated) instance of an entire Iron Warriors platoon piloting hastily-stripped-down Rapiers during the Retreat from New Mars, allowing them to outpace their furious pursuers and draw them into a fatal ambush. +


+ The army... complete? +

+ With these Rapiers complete, I've now got a balanced 2000pt army all ready to go for my game tomorrow. Here are a couple of pictures of the infantry en-masse. +

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