House Cawdor is coming out this weekend, alongside Gang War IV. Full of Redemptionist fire, more fire, and even more fire than you’d reasonably expect, they are the scavengers among scavengers. But here’s why they continue to endure in spite of the odds.
Or perhaps that should be, they endure to spite the odds. House Cawdor is the runtiest, of the Houses. From the outside, it’s a miracle they’re in power at all. Comprising junkers, scavengers, and whatever the 40K equivalent of a mudlark is, House Cawdor is the poorest of the great Houses, forced to survive on what they can find from the refuse and rubbish of Hive Primus. But in spite of it all, they hang on, clinging to hope with a fiery zeal that helps them endure the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune (I know that’s the wrong play for a House that features the Thane of Cawdor, but bear with me). And it’s their zeal (and bloody-minded, spiteful survival instincts) that carry them through, giving them a place in the underhives of Necromunda.
via Warhammer Community
Most of the lore we talk learn in today’s article comes from Specialist Games writer Owen Barnes, who takes us through the hardscrabble, cobbled-together life of the gangers of House Cawdor.
The House of Cawdor sifts through the rubbish cast down from the hive city, finding treasure amongst the trash and trading it back to its former owners. It is a distasteful but vital role within the ecology of the hive cities, and one the House has jealously claimed as its own.
Doomed to a lifetime sifting through midden heaps, the citizens of House Cawdor nonetheless take great pride in their labours, taught as they are that by their suffering they are blessed. This is the foundation of the Cult of the Redemption, and while more cynical minds might see it as merely another means of control, those brought up on its teachings see it as the only chance they have to earn a place at the God-Emperor’s side.
They might not carry the biggest guns or most advanced tech, and individual Cawdor Gangers might be on the scrawny and undernourished side (even by the dismal standards of Necromunda), but they fight with the fury of believers and, like rats, for every one you can see, there are three more lurking in the shadows. Cawdor Leaders hold a special place among their crews, even more so than most gangs. Usually carrying some cobbled together icon of the Redemptionist Cult, they are the rallying point for their kin, driving them at the enemy and keeping them in the fight when the bodies are piled three deep. In time, a Cawdor gang might even rise to the notice of the clan’s word-keepers, earning a benediction from the Thane of Cawdor himself and taking their eternal place among the scrap-saints of the Redemption.
And from this religious zeal that gives them only a chance at their death meaning more than their meager existence, they fight ferociously and with whatever means they have available. You can see it in the artwork that GW has teased:
They do their best to try and have real weapons, but when all you have is trash and scraps, well–there’s only so much you can do. So they have to get clever, and that means being spiteful about what can kill someone. Their pole weapons might be a crude mockery of the arms of the Adeptus Custodes, but for a rusty hook taped to a stubber whose trigger is locked in auto-fire mode, they get the job done. Look on their minis and you’ll find scavenged blades, flamers, and jury-rigged explosives strapped to the backs of rats.
Plus whatever this guy is.
The point is House Cawdor are a bunch of dumpster-diving slags who’ll probably never amount to more than a quick death in the back alley of some dark Underhive corner, but, it’s because they’re doomed that they fight harder than anyone else. Sadly, they spend too much time trying to kill their rival gangers, rather than attacking the real enemy keeping them down: capitalism.
Now who’s ready to get redeeemed?