Pre-orders for tomorrow. That Arco-Flagellent boxset looks promising with lots of bits? Would love to see the sprue on this one.

via the Warhammer Community this morning

Penitent Engines and Arco-flagellants are available to pre-order this weekend, so we thought it would be fun to talk about penitent hosts – vast gatherings of holy pilgrims and those seeking redemption in the eyes of the God-Emperor. With that in mind, read on to learn more about them!
The Holy Orders of the Adepta Sororitas may be the only official military wing of the Ecclesiarchy, but there are many other resources at the disposal of the Adeptus Ministorum. Should a sufficiently inspiring preacher of the Imperial Cult rise to prominence, they may end up forming a penitent host – a rag-tag collection of holy zealots and those seeking (or otherwise condemned to seek) penance. When amassed in sufficient numbers and focussed towards a common purpose, such a force can be unleashed as a crusade that can lay low a planetary system as readily as an Adeptus Astartes strike force.*

The God-Emperor’s Work

For its part, the Adeptus Ministorum will rarely intervene to prevent the snowballing of such gatherings, for provided they are aimed in the right direction, the resulting holy war will ultimately serve their purposes by spreading the Imperial Cult and thereby expanding their power base. Indeed, the Ecclesiarchy will often choose to supplement the nascent crusade with expendable forces of their own in the form of Penitent Engines and Arco-flagellants.
In this manner, those convicted of serious crimes or heresy will not only serve out their capital punishment in redemptive battles against the God-Emperor’s foes, but will form a devastating spearhead to the often poorly equipped rabble that follow in their wake. After all, even the most fervent Ecclesiarch is not naive enough to think that a horde of riled-up zealots can overcome a well-defended fortress through faith alone. A pack of Penitent Engines, on the other hand, can tear through even the most heavily armoured gates to create a breach for the masses to pour through.

Of One Purpose

Given the noble and holy ambitions of most penitent hosts – such as the liberation of loyal, God-Emperor-fearing citizens from the oppression of unbelievers – their purposes often align with the Orders Militant. It is therefore common to see the Sisters of Battle fighting alongside hordes of the faithful as well as those found wanting in the eyes of the Ecclesiarchy (namely, those poor souls bound into Penitent Engines or Arco-flagellation). When aligned with the military strength and skill of the Adepta Sororitas to form a mighty crusade, there are few forces in the galaxy that can withstand their holy fury.

The Darker Side of Faith

Throughout the Imperium’s long history, there are some Ecclesiarchs whose greed or delusions of grandeur have led them to follow a path less pure. By bastardising the Imperial Creed and manipulating the faith of their followers to suit their own ends, these demagogues can carve out whole empires for themselves should they be left unchecked. More often than not, these would-be tyrants will meet their end by way of an Assassin’s bullet** or a blade in the back before they can cause lasting harm. Yet the annals of history are replete with grim tales of those who have managed to somehow turn the faithful against the Imperium, such as Cardinal Bucharis’ Plague of Unbelief and the disastrous reign of High Lord Goge Vandire.
If you’re looking to create your own penitent host (even a corrupted one!), or to add the fearsome combat prowess of Penitent Engines and Arco-flagellants to your Adepta Sororitas force, you won’t have long to wait – both of their amazing new multipart plastic kits are up for pre-order tomorrow! If you want to pick up two incredible miniatures in the form of Taddeus the Purifier and Pious Vorne to add to your Adeptus Ministorum collection (not to mention open the door to an awesome new game to play with your gaming group!), grab a copy of Warhammer Quest: Blackstone Fortress today.

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