Thorn Moons Regiments: First Assault & Hunters in Dark

Waken, lords and ladies gay,
To the greenwood haste away;
We can show you where he lies,
Fleet of foot and tall of size;
We can show the marks he made
When ‘gainst the oak his antlers fray’d;
You shall see him brought to bay
Waken, lords and ladies gay. – Old Hunting Verse, Walter Scott, Terran Poet, M2

SLMNN – The Vestas of Cardinalis III

They were falling from the sky. Falling like a fiery hammer on an anvil. An anvil that was one of the many of the different hues of green, ghostly spheres that dotted the space in this long lost and forgotten corner of His galaxy. “Praise Him”, murmured the priest and lifted his gaze from the age old decking and looked at the aquila on top his staff.

He lowered his head back and looked along the hull. Sitting around him, on the lenght of their Munitorum standard dropship were sharp faces of the Vestas of Cardinalis III. Tough as worn synth-leather, hard as rockrete, strapped in their harnesses. Everyone was hefting a promethium spitting weapon, head taller than him, sporting a flak-armor fashioned into tight fitting, deadly glove. He had served with them since his days in Missionaria Galactica. Pious, true servants to the Throne.

Sudden blare from the ship’s vox-augmitters startled him from his thoughts. He looked to the pilot’s cabin and saw flashing runes on the consol. Proximity alarm. They had breached the atmosphere, but why on Terra wou…

He woke up. Adrenaline pumping, stimms rushing through his veins.  Full combat-readiness, sounds of battle around him. Laying on his back, everything aching, he smelled smoke, fire and… What was it? Something organic.  He blinked away emergency-glanding signs and looked up, eyes still blurry. Up and up swirling, winding as high as hive-spires, green columns, and the sky was on fire as thousands of ships were landing or falling. Next to him was his aquila staff, blessed wings bent and broken. Gripping it, he rose up in anger, yelling, finding the first words of His chant and the aquila rose as did he. Vestas were around him firing their weapons, some lay on the ground dead along the dropship rubble. Unseathing his chainsword, it’s teeth revving he pointed it to the enemy that was now closing in, now yelling with full fervour. Crusade had begun: For the Emperor.

SLMNN @accipiternidum


CMZ Pictures – Arditi Sector Trench Raiders

Fourth Army Group West specialize in heavy bombardment followed by mass infantry charges. Deployed to Thorn Moons they found themselves bogged down fighting against an enemy that moved underground or in shallow trench systems.  Massed infantry charges into this empty battlefield resulted in high casualty rates for little territorial gain.

A new doctrine was developed from the oldest of manuals.  Small infantry squads advance behind a rolling artillery barrage and occupy the enemy trenches, holding them until the regular infantry can bring up equipment and secure gains. These small squads are typically equipped for hand to hand fighting with pistols, grenades, daggers and improvised hand weapons. They rely on arriving in the enemy trench seconds after the artillery barrage ends.  Casualty rates among these shock troopers are so high that squads are often drafted from the penal regiments.

You can learn more about my entry here:


Ki Niko – Savlar Chem Dogs

A small contingent of Savlar Chem Dogs has been dispatched to the Thorn Moons, Sent as an alternative to the standard death penalty in the Savlar Prison complexes, the men of the 010 more commonly known as the X Squad were thought to be completely Ill equippedfor the campaign ahead.

Initial reports from the battle field seem to suggest that not only have the Chem Dogs survived the preliminary strikes and hostile LZ’s but have excelled, Their predisposition for stealing and scavenging gear and constructing breathing apparatus to inhale their various home made narcotics has given them the upper hand in the hostile environments.

The rate of reports from various other regiments complaining of lost or stolen gear has increased dramatically since the chem dogs made planet fall, little to no evidence can be linked to the two…


Synth 5 – Alpha Team Nephilim

2nd Sqd,1st Plt, A Co., 2/325th Regimental Brigade:Gladiis Ad Imperatorem

Asger Sheld :”The Rampart”,Firstborn,Sergeant

Vold Ignis: Weapons specialist, Corporal
Abrams: Battle Servitor MXIV
Mord: CQC specialist, Abhuman
Blut: Marksman, Abhuman

Servo Skull


Its been nearly one month since they arrived and the team is still trying to acclimate to their environment. The terrain is rugged and the air is thick and wet.

Sgt Sheld was tasked with leading a small exploration team into the darkest parts of the planet. The abandoned colonies and underground networks, hoping to find any information on the history of the planet and what brought the settlers here.

The team is outfitted for close quarters fighting,hazardous environments,and data collection.

Accompanying Sheld is Corporal Vold Ignis,second in command, and dogged weapons expert.Mord and Blut are brothers,abhumans conscripted from a distant hive world.While not much for conversation, are brutally efficient at the task assigned.Abrams is a battle servitor,from an allied forgeworld, attached to the team for protection and breaching secure locations. Lastly a Servo Skull tasked with scouting and decoding ancient texts, also securing any STC,if such a relic was found.



Raphael Pyczek – The Litithe Guard

Once a proud noble regiment on the world of litithe, the litithe guard were changed after a devastating experiment on there planet which caused there skin to become irradiated and a crimson hue. Their vocal cords are a almost completely gone making them unable to talk, as they can only produce macabre moans. The regiment is now tattered across the galaxy being used by the inquisition who can easily command them with a promise of execution if they do not listen.

The litihe guard have equipment that is personally acquired by themselves , meaning that they do not have a standard uniform or weapon, truly the only similarity between two infantrymen are the fainted red paint on their armour and there skin.  In terms of tactics, the litithe guard prefer to use terror and close quarters combat, being very cruel and brutal killers as to scare and intimidate whoever the inquisitor’s targets are.

Raphael Pyczek


Path of Nadir – The Royal Hunters

The Royal Hunters are a cadre of soldiers who are devoted to The Hunt, in its universal meaning. Joining the order means living for hunting. Their origin dates back to the first colonization of Ephesia, where their task was to simply clear out the more feral regions of the planet from aboriginal aliens and beasts. In time, the Hunters became a more complex organization, with his own philosophy and ideologies: martial perfection, cold blood and loyalty are still today at the base of their code. When the Ephesian government evolved into his own twisted form of feudal republic, the hunters gained an elite status – similar to a form of knighthood. The austere presence of the now Royal Hunters became soon a common sight in the courts of Ephesia, as the assumed both the role of retinue and field liutenants for the local Lords. But still, The Hunt is their true purpose, rooted in their cold souls. Silently walking on the battlefield with their reptile capes, the Hunters hit their prey with whichever tool they see fit – from the blessed armament of mars to mysterious xeno weapons, usually trophies of their hunts…

Stevo Leblanc


Ynneadwraith – The Raven Flock

“They trouble me Hafnir,” the kearl muttered as he glared through the viewport, “their ships ever-loitering like a stormcloud on our horizon. Ill omen I call them.”

“You will learn. The Valravn follow us always. Where Wolves tread, Crows follow.”

“Scavengers.” the kearl spat, “Is it true they eat our dead if they find them?”


The crow-chief peered intently at the great ships of the Wolves. He tilted his head in curiosity as clockwork thoughts rattled through his brain. The pack’s fleet was mustering. His curiosity piqued, he flitted a signal to Muninn, his sister-ship. Something was afoot. He could feel it.


As they broke warp by the first moon, the Long Fang Udinn watched the cloud of little black ships with interest. They had a scavenger’s curiosity, scattering to the four corners and racing each other to points of interest. They bickered and squabbled as they reached their destinations, posturing and arming weapons in bluffs and displays of dominance. Where ancient proximital defences opened fire they scattered in shock, squawking warning signals to nearby craft. He listened intently to the cawing chatter between their ships, steadily building a picture of the strange system within which they had emerged.


The Raven Flock


DarkMasterWoo – The Expsyles

++Psykic Anomaly Detected++

++Expsyles Regiment Deployed++

Lieutenant Pavlichenko (The Huntress) strides steadily through the winding corridors of the space hulk, blade in hand whispering with crackling, puissant energies. Her chemunition-loaded side arm hums softly in its holster, hardwired to her auto-senses for quick firing. The Huntress knows neither fear nor indecisiveness – and so it is she who leads, by both rank and example. Drixx (The Navigator) trails shakily behind her, las pistol already drawn, visibly quivering as he peers unsteadily into the warp to search for the anomaly they are meant to destroy. They are flanked by the Culexus Twins – Kaytah (The Dancer) and Jaeth (The Archer) – wearing matching Animus Speculums primed to twist any malicious psychic energy back upon its caster. Somewhere far ahead, in the dark, Emril (The Shade) scouts the way. As he explores, shadows trail in his wake – a spreading curtain of counter-warp energies that hides the rest of his squad’s advance. His mask crackles, warp flames dancing, and he fingers the release on one of his many hallucinogenic grenades, used to sow and amplify fear while the rest of his team moves in for the kill. They march, steadily onward, searching for their quarry…


Menagerie40K – The Graalite Awlpykers

Impaler of Beast, Slayer of Behemoth.

Nobility hailing from the impenetrable fortress-towers of Graal. The elite Graalite Awlpykers carry themselves as unmatchable beasthunters. No matter the size, no matter the strength. Having perfected their art over the centuries fending off the utterly hostile fauna of their homeworld, they carry their  Electropykes with pride. Each pikeman accompanied by a retinue of priests, brawlers and other warriors deemed worthy. For the Graalite, The Moons of Thorn are but another hunting ground.


So thrilled to share this post! The First Assault & Hunters in the Dark represents those Thorn Moons Regiments that functions as shock attack troops, scouts and lethal hunters who stalk their green prey in the cover of the dark. But some categories still to share – and who knows; the hunter could become the hunted!


On a pilgrimage into the weathered worlds of Warhammer 40K. Exploring texture, narrative and atmosphere in miniature form.

15 thoughts on “Thorn Moons Regiments: First Assault & Hunters in Dark

  1. Well feth. Too much good work. WOW. In the prescience of such incredible quantity and quality (and I guess generally) I’ve never liked calling out “my favorite” It’s just such a lazy way to comment art. Having said this, I just absolutely and utterly adore the “Crows”. Every now and then originality, understanding of the 40k universe, building, painting and storytelling just come together perfectly and that’s how I feel about this group. Thanks so much for participating and enriching the project so everyone !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I’m really glad you like them 🙂

      For what it’s worth I agree with you on picking favourites. There’s an implicit (and false!) suggestion that others aren’t which couldn’t be further from the truth.

      I do have to thank you (and everyone at Iron Sleet!), not just for running this fantastic invitational but for providing the sheer quantity of inspiration you guys have provided. Not just in modelling, but also in showing just how mythic and strange the universe of 40k can be 🙂

      My little Crows for instance borrow very heavily from your Vlka Fenryka, which is fitting given how in-universe their culture orbits that of the Wolves. ‘Where Wolves tread, Crows follow’ is true both in-universe and out 😉

      So yeah, thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A great set indeed. Some great limited palettes here, and a nice mix of medieval and futuristic as always.

    The Crows are of course great, it’s a great backstory that fits perfectly into established canon, and a fantastic aesthetic – they are all unique, but also unified. The beasts are a lovely expansion of the theme.

    I also really like the imagery and OSL of the Expsyles, lovely vivid violet in the dark.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Apparently there is something or some thing about the Thorn Moons that deeply frightens the Imperiumme…

      At least, they have sent massive amounts of Thorn Moons Regiments and Imperial Crusaders to the region resulting in the Crataegus Legionaires, Green Mechanicvm and their allies being outnumbered ten to one!

      But only the Thorne Lord knows what awaits the Crusaders in the boreal dark…From Throne to Thorne!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. It was a joy to be a part of this, tons of inspiration from every angle. CMZ Pictures’ Regiment has some of my favorite photos from the invitational. I especially love the emblem for this batch.

    Thank you Iron Sleet, it was an honor to participate!


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