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Drop Pod

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Ultramarines Deathstorm pattern Drop Pods with Assault Cannons.
Space Wolf Drop Pods entering the atmosphere.

Drop Pods are transports used primarily by Space Marines and Chaos Marines for orbital insertion and one-way rides.

Space Marines

Adeptus Astartes have used Drop Pods since the time of the Great Crusade.[1] The Drop Pods of the Adeptus Astartes look and work similarly to a ship's Life Pod and can carry either twelve normal Marines, a single Dreadnought or a single Thunderfire Cannon.[4] They are launched from a Strike Cruiser or Battle Barge[1] in low orbit towards the drop zone, usually amidst or near a battlefield.[3] Once launched, they plummet through the atmosphere until retro jets fire to slow their descent.[4] A machine spirit guides the pod to its destination and can receive further commands from the mother ship. Although the Pods become immobile after having landed they can be recovered by the Chapter's Techmarines and reused.[1][2a][6a] Drop Pods are usually extracted by using far larger vessels that not intended to operate in a war zone. After that they are transported to the ships that deployed them, repaired if needed and used in the next battle, so many Drop Pods have been in service for centuries. Some Space Marine Chapters inscribe records of each drop onto the interior bulkheads of their Drop Pods, so other brothers can read them and take heart in the insuing battles.[12]

Standard Drop-Pods are most frequently armed with an array of either Storm Bolters or Deathwind Missile Launchers.[4]

There are also cargo-carrying pods that deliver a much needed ammunition to fighting troops even in the heat of battle.[12]

Variant Patterns

Corvus Assault Pod[16]
  • Corvus Assault Pod: A variant pattern of drop pod used in a similar manner to a Boarding Torpedo; corvus assault pods are used to assault other ships or Space Stations in the void.[14] A variant is also used by Warlord Titans to deliver troops on enemy walls.[16]
  • Deathstorm Drop Pods[7],(also known as Deathwind Drop Pods)[1] are a variant pattern that don't carry troops; instead they have weapon systems installed to rake the enemy with high levels of fire once they have landed and opened. They can be armed with either Whirlwind Launchers or Assault Cannons.[7]
  • Support Drop Pod are similar in role to Deathwind Drop Pods, carrying automated weaponry instead of troops. Upon landing, the pod opens to a turret-mounted plasma cannon. Unlike the Deathwind it is however capable of sustained operation.[15]

Chaos Space Marines


Main article: Dreadclaw

The Dreadclaw is an ancient Drop Pod variant that can also be used as an assault boat for ship-to-ship combat. Unlike other Drop Pods it is able to take off after landing. Dreadclaws are exclusively used by Chaos Space Marines.[2b] [6b]

Other Forces

  • The assassins of the Eversor Temple are deployed in special Drop Pods that prepare them for their missions. These Pods are equipped with neuro-links that feed the details of the mission to the assassin while remote links activate and begin to prepare his body for the task at hand.[5]
A Mission of Sisters of Battle and their Rhinos landing via a drop pod
  • The Battle Sisters of the Adepta Sororitas occasionally deploy via Dominica-pattern Drop Pods, a pattern of Drop Pod that can carry five unaugmented humans, when undertaking special high risk missions such as infiltrations behind enemy lines, chirurgical strikes against high value targets, or disabling the command structure of a renegade Space Marine chapter. Such operations are usually requested by the Ordo Hereticus, with support of the Imperial Navy. Each Order Militant maintains a small number of Drop Pods exclusively for those operations, and their use is reserved to elite troops such as the Celestians and Dominions. This includes a variant of the Deathwind Drop Pod, which will then be armed with weapons favored by the Sororitas, either five twin Heavy Bolters or Multi-Meltas.[11]
  • Some Ecclesiarchy vessels such as the Hammer of Thor are also equipped with gigantic Drop Pods able to hold several vehicles and the accompanying infantry, shot directly from Macro cannons. These pods sport numerous searchlights on their exterior hull to illuminate the surroundings after landing.[13]

Technical Information

Technical Specifications
Type Orbital Drop Pod, personnel[1] Operational Ceiling N/A
Vehicle Name Drop Pod Max Speed 12,000kph descent
Forge World of Origin Lucius Range Unlimited
Known Patterns IV-XXXVI Main Armament None, Automated Whirlwind Launchers/Assault Cannon (Deathstorm)
Crew None Secondary Armament None
Powerplant 31 x FV-50-75 retro-rocket Main Ammunition N/A
Weight 14 tonnes Secondary Ammunition N/A
Length 5.2 m Armour
Wingspan N/A Superstructure 60 mm
Height 7.7 m Hull 70 mm



With the release of [7], the Deathwind Drop Pod (discontinued) from previous Forge World publications has officially been replaced with the Deathstorm pattern.

Related Articles


Modern Space Marine Fleet
Battleships Battle Barge
Cruisers Strike CruiserVanguard Class
Escorts Gladius ClassNova ClassHunter ClassRapid Strike Vessel
Attack Craft ThunderhawkStormravenStorm Eagle (Fire Raptor) • Storm TalonStormhawkXiphonOverlordNephilimDark TalonStormfangStormwolfCorvus BlackstarCaestus Assault Ram
Transports Thunderhawk TransporterLanding CraftDrop Pod