About The Dark Fortress
12 March 2013
1. What is it?
The Dark Fortress is a website that exists to publish practical, entertaining and useful articles for Warhammer 40K gamers and modellers, particularly those using Space Marines of the 'Unforgiven' – the Dark Angels and their Successor Chapters.
It showcases exemplar painted and converted armies, reviews and comments, offers tactical tips and hobby tutorials, and other resources that Dark Angel afficionados will find both fun and of benefit to their enjoyment of the hobby.
The Dark Fortress was launched in March 2003 by hobbyist/gamer/graphic designer codenamed Isiah (who now acts as overall editor). Content is produced and submitted by talented hobbyists from around the world.
The two key criteria for anything that appears here is 'usefulness' and 'high quality'.
2. Who is behind the scenes?
Chronicler Isiah is the codename of a trooper in the first squad, 4th company.
He has been given the task of recording the exploits of a garrison of Dark Angels during a posting, and has been given authority to transmit reports directly to the Inner Circle, and Imperial Headquarters without the oversight of the Interrogator-Chaplain accompanying the force.
But his real identity and purpose remain a mystery...
The 'real' person behind the scenes is a married man with two young boys who is interested in anything 40K, art, architecture, design, food, clever science fiction, technology, literature and military history.
He currently works as a designer within a large international structural engineering company. He lives near Bath in the UK.
The author has been inducted into the Inner Circle. This is a group of like-minded individuals dedicated to the furtherance of the Dark Angels and Unforgiven Chapters within the Warhammer 40K gaming community. This was a great honour, uncalled for and unexpected.
The author posts on many Forums on Dark Angel and other related matters, under the following usernames:
- Isiah – on Bolter and Chainsword
[a Moderator on the Dark Angels panel and temporary Moderator on the Official Rules panel]
- Isiah – on Eternity Gate
- Isiah – on Warseer
- chronicler Isiah – on Gathering of Angels
- Zuriel – on Librarium Online
- Auspex – on Dakkadakka
3. How did it all start?
A brief history
The Dark Fortress started life very modestly in the Spring 2003 (the exact date of first upload lost in the hazy mists of time). The original intention was that it would be a simple journal site for my then new 4th Battle Company army, featuring batreps, fan fiction of my own creation and pictures – the usual fansite format.
Funnily enough, it was the birth of our first son that prompted the idea of the site, as I spent a lot of time sitting around waiting to do the 2am bottle feed I thought: "why not make use of the time?" Since then it has been a labour of love, and yes I'm still sometimes doing stuff at 2am.
From the outset I wanted the site to be easy to maintain and update as I have a limited amount of time to tinker as I'd much rather be creating proper content. This meant much of the internal navigation is by hypertext links as opposed to (the then fashionable) complex and tedious to create rollovers – a method now fully endorsed by the plethora of blog sites and blog look-alike sites on the web.
Inevitably the site quickly outgrew the original remit with the addition of downloadable banners, special rules and other tactical articles being published. Not only that but the site has also been used to host three wargame campaigns (so far). These forming separate standalone mini-sites.
After a total design overhaul undertaken during 2010 and by a constant process of improvment, The Dark Fortress forms a general resource for the Dark Angels and anyone else with an interest in Space Marines. It features a growing gallery section that also includes non-DA models; items of background information both fact fiction and conjectural; reviews; interviews and comments; and the core of tactics, fiction and rules.
4. What of the future?
This site is here to stay and grow for the forseeable future. With web technology and user-functionality becoming increasingly sophisticated, The Dark Fortress needs to encompass more of it or fall behind. The recent design overhaul has added scope for future site enhancements to both improve user-experience and the incorporation of social media functions to further and more easily spread the 'word' as it were.
Whatever is around the corner, The Dark Fortress will always primarily be content-driven. And in that respect I'd like to say thank you to all those who have made contributions in any way, whether it be taking part in a campaign, or saying yes when I pester them to allowing me to use their models in the gallery, or allowing me to use their tactics/other items elsewhere etc, so THANK YOU, you know who you are.
5. How often does new content appear?
New content is put up on the site every month. The number of new items might fluctuate but the aim is at least four articles per month. This isn't as prolific as many blog sites – but this isn't a blog site and articles can take a huge amount of time to research, write or edit and activity here has to fall in with 'real life' necessities.
How can I get in touch?
You can get in touch via the Contact us page, or via a message to @twitter although I don't put much constructive effort into Twitter as I should. You are also welcome to leave your comments on any of the pages where that facility is active.
Can I contribute?
Yes. Check the Submissions page to better understand what we'd like to feature. If you are in any doubt about prospective content please do get in touch with your submission querry. You will always get an answer.
Can I advertise?
Yes if the right (sympathetic) product or service cames along. Contact me for further details.
Can we exchange links?
Yes but I only link to things I find useful or interesting and adding to the world in a positive way. I'm not a fan of linking to something just for SEO purposes. I have no problems with sites wanting to link to The Dark Fortress. Contact me for link exchange requests.
What are the site's web standards?
7. Other useful site information
8. Just ask
Thanks for reading. If you have any other questions, just drop me an email and ask.
I hope you enjoy your visits to The Dark Fortress.
If you liked what you saw here, feel free to share it!