The 41st Millennium is a dangerous place, rife with war and conflict, and if an Acolyte hopes to survive he must make sure that he is well armed and equipped. This chapter deals with some of the many types of weapons, armour and gear that exist within the Imperium.
Laser or “las” weapons are the most numerous weapons found in the Imperium. Based on reliable technology, they are cheap to manufacture and easy to maintain. Las weapons work by emitting short, sharp pulses of laser energy emitted from high-storage fast-discharge capacitors, with a flash of light and a distinctive snap like the cracking of a whip as the trigger is pulled.
Solid Projectile weapons, or slug-throwers, are almost as plentiful in the Imperium as las weapons. Popular with Imperial servants and renegades alike, they are prized for their ease of manufacture and versatility, not to mention the satisfying sound they make when fired. No other class of weapon boasts so many varieties. Slug-throwers can offer a weapon for all occasions.
If there is one weapon type that defines the Imperium, it is the bolter. No other weapon combines high technology levels with deliberate brutality, and no other race would consider making it but mankind. Bolter weapons fire rounds of self-propelled mass-reactive shells called bolts, set to explode just after penetration. Overall they are superb, if temperamental, devices requiring skilled maintenance using the correct rituals and blessings. Furthermore, these are all very rare weapons, available only to the lucky or well-connected few. Many are centuries old, handed down from veteran to successor, and some have long legends attatched to them of their great lineage.
Bolter ammunition is expensive and difficult to manufacture, and only the elite of the Imperium has ready access to it. The standard bolter round is .75 caliber and has a super-dense metallic core with a diamantine tip.
Flame weapons all operate in much the same manner by firing gouts of flame at the target. They use a fuel generically referred to as promethium, though it can also consist of home-made concoctions or other chemical brews depending on the local technology level. Once produced, the intense jet that spurts from the barrel creates a torrent of liquid fire, which spreads out in an inferno that burns even on water. Once set ablaze, enemies are hard-pressed to put out the fire.
Melta weapons (also known as cookers or melters) are a specialist type of weapon that have short ranges but are devastatingly powerful. Most work by combining highly pressurized gases into an unstable sub-molecular thermal state, which is fired out in an intense blast of heat that can turn even tank armor into molten slag. Targets are vaporized within seconds, usually accompanied by a distinctive hissing sound as the beam boils away the water vapor in the air.
Plasma weapons represent an almost lost art for the Imperium. The secrets of their manufacture are now known to but a handful of the inner circle of the Adeptus Mechanicus and their tech-adept artisans. They function by using sturdy flasks of hydrogen suspended in a photonic state to provide the fuel needed for the plasma reaction. The photohydrogen fuel core gives off tremendous heat when fired and the firer often must wait for the core to cool and recharge between shots.
In a galaxy raked by war and disorder there is a high demand for extremely destructive ordnance. To that end the forge worlds of the Imperium send out a steady stream of explosives, grenades, and similar weaponry, some of which may find its way into the hands of Acolytes and their foes.
- Frag G/M
- Krak G/M
- Inferno Thermal G/M
- Blind G
- Stun G
Close combat weapons are a common sight throughout the galaxy, and in many places it would be unthinkable to venture without at least one such weapon on your person. Depending on the planet’s level of technology (and the wealth of the user), these can range from simple metal blades to high-tech weapons of plastic or exotic metals and can include swords, axes, pole arms, clubs, mauls, bludgeons and other simple devices.
- Brass Knuckles
- Great Weapon
- Throwing Star/Knife
Chain weapons are popular amongst most warriors in the 41st Millennium, as most races and planets have the basic technology to produce these brutal weapons. They all have fast-moving chains of serrated metallic teeth running across what would normally be the weapon’s bladed edge. Even the slightest hit can rip open flesh, and solid strikes can eat through armor. Most are loud and all are visibly dangerous, and the sight of one can demoralize even the most fanatical opponent.
Power weapons work by projecting a disruptive energy field along the length of a blade or head of a weapon, allowing it to slice through most armor as well as limbs with ease. Many of these weapons conceal their true nature via subtle power packs and energy projection veins, appearing as a normal weapon until activated when crackles of lightning run across the blade. Most can function as a asimple weapon when powered down, a useful ability should their energy source run dry or become dangerous to use.