I’ve always found the background of “The Fallen” of the Dark Angels quite an interesting one. While some seemed to treat them as just another flavour of Chaos Space Marines, I always preferred the angle of them being fugitives from the Dark Angels, but still basically loyal to the Emperor and Humanity, of not the Imperium proper. One of the positives that came from The Gathering Storm series (aka 40k End Times) was the release of Cypher and a bit more of an exploration of The Fallen as a tabletop force beyond bland CSM, with rules and a bit of fluff explaining how they pretty much fall on all points of the spectrum – from loyalists to die hard chaos worshippers.
This suited me well. I’ve got a lot of the old metal Rogue Trader-era Space Marines, though most are earmarked for other projects, but there’s a few of them that I’ve always wanted to turn into Fallen. Something about Brother Holt (so named in that first catalogue from 1988) always struck me as being a perfect Fallen Angel. The damaged, incomplete armour, scarred visage, and just something about the overall sculpt just placed him there for me.
So like so, so, many other models in my collection, he sat barely started for a solid decade or more until recently. Spurred by reading through The Gathering Storm books and once again – the imminent (at the time) coming of 8th edition, I went looking for this guy in my old figure cases, got him out, rebased him and finally got him finished. Well, completely repainted him from the little that was barely started. I went for original Dark Angels livery, but scratched up, weathered and damaged in the extreme of the Forge World style that I usually eschew in favour of the cleaner look, which I did retain on his bare skin.
I will build at least a squad of Fallen Angels, and possibly/probably a small “warband” style “army” that can run in smaller 40k games, and serve as an ally to non-DA imperial forces in larger games. I like the idea that they would openly declare themselves to be a mobile, Crusading force of Dark Angels (sometimes joined by Cypher) when assisting human forces/IG/PDF or even other Marines – and given their clear stature as Astartes, livery and gear – generally speaking, who would know to question them more deeply?