The Red Hunters are one of the rare chapters that worship the Emperor of Mankind as a god.[3a] Their uniform is red, with a white skull with a black Inquisition symbol on its head as a Chapter badge. What little is known about the Red Hunters suggests that they may have been founded immediately following the Horus Heresy, and were intended to hunt down and eliminate the Traitor Legions. To accomplish this task they are assisted by the forces of the Inquisition and offer their services to the Inquisitors in return. The entire Chapter has been known to serve under an Inquisitor Lord on occasion.
So strong is the link between this Chapter and the three great Inquisitorial orders that rumours abound that they had been founded at the request of the Inquisitorial Representative on Terra, and that there was a secret pact between the Inquisition and the Chapter for mutual support. The Chapter is tied to the Inquisition by ancient bonds of honour and duty and are often called upon to face the servants of the Ruinous Powers and other fell enemies of Mankind. Fighting in Inquisitorial strike forces and providing protection for the most senior Inquisitor-Lords, the Red Hunters have confronted numerous horrors no mortals can face and be allowed to live should they survive, lest they taint others.[7a]
When forces serve alongside certain units of the Inquisition, many witness the full horror of a daemonic incursion or similar phenomenon. When those of the Imperial Guard or similar types of Imperial warriors witness such things, a common protocol that is utilised is that they are often put to death soon after, a mercy considering the corruption and insanity that will inevitably have taken root in their mortal hearts. As such, Chapter's line brethren are routinely subjected to a mnemonic purgation ("mind-wipe") rite, a protocol that preserves their souls and their physical abilities, albeit at the cost of their memories, skills, experience and personality. This makes them an even more valuable weapon in the hands of the secretive and often necessarily brutal Inquisition.[4d]
- 688.M40 — The Second Abonian Genocide
- 444.M41 — First War for Armageddon: in the aftermath of the war, the Red Hunters were called to aid the Inquisition in purging the Imperial survivors. At the climax of the series of clashes between the Inquisition and Space Wolves known as the Months of Shame, the Red Hunters' entire chapter fleet under the command of Chapter Master Daemar[3c] was mobilized at the behest of Lord Inquisitor Ghesmei Kysnaros to besiege the Wolves homeworld of Fenris.[3a]
- 742.M41: The Damocles Crusade
- 812-830.M41: Siege of Vraks — The Siege of Vraks saw the deployment of a significant force of Red Hunters, centered around the 3rd Company. The entire force was never deployed as a single unit and were often divided amongst Ordo Malleus Inquisitors to act as an elite cadre of shock troops for their operations. Hence, squads and vehicles could be found just about anywhere along the front, with Red Hunters being present in small numbers at most major battles until the end of the campaign. The Red Hunters saw extensive action during the final stages of the Siege of Vraks, mainly in offensive actions against the final renegade stronghold, the Citadel. A particularly dark day for the chapter saw roughly 150 brothers of the chapter perform an ill-fated drop pod assault on the Armoury Gate, which led to the citadel's undercroft. Unfortunately they were beset by a Chaos Reaver Battle Titan of the Legio Vulcanum and hordes of archenemy soldiers. Despite attempts by the 269th Death Korps Siege Regiment's efforts to breach the gate and provide an escape route for the Red Hunters trapped in the "Death Pit", the entire force was destroyed to a man.[2a] The Red Hunters saw action once again alongside Lord Inquisitor Hector Rex, brother Astartes of the Grey Knights Chapter, and Krieg Grenadiers of the 158th and 150th regiments. This engagement would be more successful than the assault on the Armoury Gate and see the Cardinal Gate breached and the Bloodthirster An'ggrath banished back to the warp. The final engagements also saw the deployment of Red Hunters Terminator Squads. They were critical in aiding the Death Korps Engineers' efforts to clear the Undercroft. The 3rd Squad of 1st Company, Squad Zokura, achieved a kill-to-death ratio of 97:1 during this operation.[2b]
- 915.M41 — Starting of The Red Hunt — The Chapter was ordered to shadow the penitent crusades of the three rebel Chapters sided with Astral Claws during the Badab War. The order was given by the Inquisitional Representative and it was also ratified by Senatorum Imperialis.[4b]
- 956.M41 — Following The Red Hunt, a full task force of the Red Hunters, several high-ranking Inquisitors and their retinues vanished during the tracking the Mantis Warriors near the moons of Lomea. Their fate is still unknown and the Mantis Warriors have not shared any information about that despite subsequent investigations.[4b]
- 993.M41 — Following The Red Hunt, Red Hunters suffered losses fighting the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Kraken alongside the Lamenters Chapter, whose penitent crusade the Red Hunters were assigned to track.[4c]
- 999.M41 — Campaign against the Night Reapers.
- Late M41, date unknown — The Red Hunters fought alongside the White Scars and Celestial Lions Chapters to purge the third moon of Woebetide from an Enslaver plague.
Although still a Chapter of Space Marines that look to the Codex Astartes for its organisation and spiritual guidance, the Chapter makes their squads available for rapid responses to Inquisitorial calls for assistance. Often times, an honour guard of Red Hunters squads are called forward to the frontlines to provide personal protection to high ranking Inquisitor Lords.[7b]
Notable Named Vehicles
- Daemar — Chapter Master at the time of the First War for Armageddon.[3b]
- Targus — Techmarine. Took part in the Damocles Crusade.
Red Hunters Land Raider that belongs to the 1st Company. This transport was used during the assault upon the Cardinal Gate
Red Hunters veteran wearing Tactical Dreadnought Armor
- 1: Insignium Astartes [Needs Citation]
- 2: Imperial Armour Volume Seven - The Siege of Vraks - Part Three
- 3: The Emperor's Gift (Novel)
- 4: Imperial Armour Volume Two - Second Edition
- 5: Warhammer: Visions 17, pg. 112
- 6: Savage Scars (Novel), Chapter 10
- 7: Imperial Armour - The Siege of Vraks: Second Edition
- 8: Hunt for Voldorius (Novel), Chapter 12
- 9: Adeptus Astartes: Successor Chapters, pg. 76
- Space Marine Chapter Gallery (accessed 2007.02.18) (shoulder pad image)