However, I have been thought-experimenting about how to use my Space Marine armies with the shiny new Codex, and having a thoroughly enjoyable re-read of Robbie MacNiven's Red Tithe. This book describes the exploits of the Carcharodons Astra as they battle the heretical Night Lords deep inside a prison complex.
Reading some fiction has provided a refreshing counter to just reassessing my army from a rules point of view. It's tempting to flick through the Codex and just go "that's best" and ignore the fluff; however I want to have an army that's both somewhat effective and somewhat true to the lore.
Take the Red Brethren for example; these are essentially 1st Company Terminators assigned to the various Battle Companies but report directly to Tyberos the Chapter Master, sitting along side the regular chain of command.
That's a cool bit of lore which deserves to be reflected in the army collection.
The Red Brethren described in Forge World's Badab War book are all Lightning Claw armed Assault Termies; in Red Tithe the veterans are equipped with more familiar Storm Bolter/Power Fist armed Tactical Dreadnought Armour. I might consider adding such a squad at some point as Terminators are my favourite 40K models.
Red Tithe also mentions the slumbering Ancients of the Company; the mighty Contemptor Dreadnoughts. These look quite tasty in the new Codex.
The Carcharodons are a void based fleet with a long history. I can imagine a number of sacred relics in their possession and so my shiny new Forgeworld toys (a Sicaran Battle Tank and a couple of Dreadnoughts) will eventually be painted to join the Space Shark's Armorium.
Red Tithe's plot centres around the Space Shark's efforts to recruit new blood into the Chapter to replace battle brothers who have been lost in combat. I have a number of Scout Squads in my Carcharodons collection but I want to expand the force to include more Primaris Marines.
Red Tithe's sequel is called Outer Dark; this book covers ancient pacts between the Space Sharks and the Mechanicum, so perhaps the Carcharodons have received Primaris reinforcements through this alliance.
The Carcharodons Astra gene seed's origin is clouded in mystery, however there are strong hints they are Raven Guard Successors. I've played my force on the table top as such, and I think I will continue to do so with the new rules. It's time to get hold of the new Raven Guard supplement and see what benefits that will also provide to the Space Sharks.
So in summary refreshing my knowledge of the lore has been very enjoyable, and reminded me why I chose this Chapter in the first place. I intend to use some of that narrative to help frame the army and the rules it uses in the future!