Warhammer 40k lends itself a bit too well to bringing in out-of-universe ideas, characters, and hell, entire armies. Much as with D&D (or really any RPG worth its salt), you can easily throw together a stat block for just about anything. However, Warhammer 40k is such an 'everything including the kitchen sink (which also wants to kill you)' universe that, for most science fiction and fantasy military forces can be translated without even having to draw up new stat blocks. Generally, the less changes I have to make, the greater a success I consider conversion attempt. It's easy to draw up stat blocks in 40k (they're rather simple), but it's hard to FIND statblocks for every single thing you want to represent.
Every time one of these ideas for a new 'count-as' army takes root in my mind, I end up doing something very dangerous - namely, I consider starting YET ANOTHER army.
A few bouncing around in my head:
Gears of War (Imperial Guard)
The relatively obvious but still inescapable 'Gears of War' IG army, based around the 'Straken Mob in a Vendetta' close combat strategy. Colonel Straken as Marcus, Commissar Yarrick as Dom, a Techpriest as Baird and a Ministorum Priest with Eviscerator as the inimitable 'Cole Train.' Straken's command squad as an attached team of Redshirts (perhaps the various Carmine brothers). Slap it all in a King Raven (Vendetta or Valkyrie) and do exactly what you do in Gears of War - rush in and beat your enemy's face into a pulp. A few squads of Veterans in Chimeras would round out the army (and, you know, let you hold objectives), as regular COG soldiers in Centaurs (or other APCs).
"Scratch one grub!"
Code Geass (Tau)
When I first watched Code Geass, my immediate response was 'Knightmare Frames ARE Crisis Suits!' The right size, appropriately armed and armored, highly mobile (but not 'fighter jet' mobile) - admittedly, there are plenty of mecha that would fit these qualifications, but Code Geass is one of the few mecha series I've seen where the focus is as much strategic as tactical. Most mecha series consist almost purely of dogfighting - which is quite enjoyable, so long as it's well executed. But, as I've mentioned before, I'd love to see another series with a greater focus on the commanders, and the strategies that win battles in addition to the Ace Pilots who dominate the battlefield. So Code Geass lends itself rather well to Warhammer 40k more generally. In this particular case, I freely admit that I did cave in and tweak the codex a bit - nothing terribly substantial, but the ability to mount an Ethereal in a Crisis Suit is long overdue for the Tau anyway, and I couldn't very well have Code Geass without some rules for the Geass itself. If I ever manage to recover said 'Codex Geass' (hurr hurr) from the depths of my old, very possibly fubar hard drive, I'll probably do a post on it. I've also modeled about half of this army, and done some paint work (though some of it needs to be redone, and I suspect I'd want to touch a lot of it up, given that it was like two summers ago).
Mobile Suit Gundam (Imperial or Eldar Titans)
Ah, the holy grail. How to get a Mobile Suit into Warhammer 40k. Imperial ground forces fit the Earth Federation and Zeon ground forces quite well (since Mobile Suit Gundam is heavily based on World War 2, and so are many Imperial Guard armaments, this is no particular surprise). For Mobile Suits themselves, however, it's a toss-up between Warhound Titans and Eldar Phantom Titans. Both are roughly the same size, they're roughly equally resilient. The Warhound Titan has more choices for armaments, which I like, but the Phantom Titans have superior close-combat skills, an 4+ Invulnerable 'Holofield Dodge' save, and the ability to 'Jump' 36" and then make an assault, as compared to the much more sedate 12" move range of a Warhound Titan. Perhaps the answer is simply to decide on a case-by-case basis. As to fielding a Phantom Titan alongside Imperial Forces, well, it's Apocalypse. You can field 80 Orbital Strikes and nothing else if you feel like it. I'm not overly concerned about balance.
1 Warhound Titan + 18 Land Speeders with Multi-Meltas = Kshatriya with Funnels
|Thanks for letting me borrow the Funnels, Ghostlightning.|
Also 1950~ points. But it's totally worth it for the Funnels.
(Incidentally, Mr. Flask, I've realized that even though you hate
I feel like Codex: Chaos Daemons also opens up a host of new possibilities in this direction. Alucard Khornate Daemon army, anyone? (Yes, Alucard would comprise the entire army). One big, nasty Daemon surrounded by lots of Flesh Hounds, Bloodletters, etc. Another series I recently picked up on, Nurarihyon no Mago, provides a large and mildly militarized organization of highly diverse demons. Could be interesting for many of the same reasons as the Armycard, but provide a less uniform modelling experience.
Anybody else thought of any good conversions in this vein (that is to say, repurposing armies. Though I'm always interested to hear new stat-blocks, too)?