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Emperor's opinion on Chapters, Guard and Sisters?  [RSS] Share on facebook Share on Twitter Submit to Reddit
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Made in eu
Hallowed Canoness




Ireland

But if we take that literally, then ... what - does the Emperor pop up next to the Champion to hold his hand? Or just Big E's skeletal arm, floating next to the Marine?
The exact wording, rather than lending credence to the belief that the Emperor actually intervenes, makes it even harder to believe. The sentence can only work in two ways - either by having the Emperor's actual hand take a vacation from the Golden Throne ... or by assuming that it should be taken as a metaphor.

The Sisters' Codex has similar wording for some of the AoF, yet there's that one line about how it just looks like miracles to those who can be fooled.

[edit] Crimsoooooon!

Seriously, this is, like, the third post this week where you do this.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2013/03/05 19:18:51


current 40k RPG character: Aura Vashaan, Astromancer Witch-Priestess
previous characters: Captain Elias (Celestial Lions Chapter), Comrade-Trooper Dasha Malenko (1207th Valhallan Ice Warriors), Sister Militant Elana Melanthis (Order of the Sacred Rose), Leftenant Darion Baylesworth (Rogue Trader frigate Artemisia) 
   
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Personally, I still prefer the consistency of an approach more like the Star Wars franchise, or better yet Battletech, because it ends up feeling more like "a greather whole" where everything is meant to fit together. As you said, for a segment of the fanbase just having the material alone is not enough. They want to understand the setting, and they want to see book X they just purchased actually matter in the grand scheme of things. I actually believe this is the default approach that many fans take, in part because continuity has become a sort of industry standard.


I wouldn't mind a bit more continuity, but aside from the points you raised regarding the writers, there are....issues....with trying to achieve that level of integration.

1.) Some tough choices would have to be made

Look around us on this forum for a second. 1,001+ threads about why "such and such" is Better/Worse/etc. or why "so and so" Believed/Supported/Reviled XYZ.

Depending on how one shaped continuity, one risks alienating a portion of the fandom. And this isn't just some sort of "mere fanboyism" dilemma.

For...whatever reason...on Dakka Dakka and other 40K forums, people seem to like to CrissCross their Real World commitments with their Hobby.

So a debate about the Emperor for instance isn't merely about the Emperor - it spirals into discussions about the status/role of religion (or lack thereof) in society, the cost benefit analysis of dictatorial authority vs. civil freedom, etc.etc.

The storm brewing over the Tau takes on characteristics of dicussions about nationalism and race (West vs. East), systems of control, etc.

If we were to definitively answer any of these questions........ say goodbye to some of these --> $$$$$$$$$$$.

2.) Which way is the Industry really going?

Its true, in terms of Franchise fiction, the industry standard is to hold to some sort of varying degree of continuity. But other outlets seem to be swerving in different directions.

The Comic Book Industry tends to reboot itself every decade or so.with some sort of "magic Crisis" that RetCons large swaths of continuity and bring it line with the expectations of their readers.

Most of the major titans of the Gaming Industry threw out the concept of Metaplot. If i understand this correctly, there was a surge of tying fictional works to games due to the advent of some sort of line called Dragonlance back in the 80s which produced a whole slew of "Game-Novels" similar to BL novels relationships to 40K. The result shaped all gaming products to essentially be a "next episode" in a series of "episodes" that were part of an over-arching metaplot.

All well and good, except that the Gaming industry ran into the same problem the Comic Book industry and heck, Soap Operas, Prime-Time TV Shows, and Spanish Telenovelas run into: Trying to sustain an interesting Story Arc/Plot spanning decades (in the real world) is very very very difficult. More often than not, the demand for "NEW NEW NEW" leads people into directions of "quck fixes" like
a.) It was all a Dream.
b.) Time Travel
c.) Multiple Universes

To the point that the Metaplot becomes unwieldly and fans (old and new) become disatisfied.

So I guess someoen made the decision that instead of trying to crank out the next "episode," the next story arc to add onto the existing on - why not just focus on Themes. That way you don't have to worry about continuity or consistency.

As for Films - well. look what happened in terms of Star Trek in the hands of JJ Abrams. "I don't want to deal with all of this accumulated Lore.....ok... let's just start an alternate TimeLine."

On a sidenote, SW is already in a state of flux because Lucas keeps rewriting things of the EU with his own ideas, be them in the prequels or the Clone Wars series. The franchise still offers the advantage that you know which source overrides which, however - so whilst fans may bitch and moan about this and that not being valid anymore because Lucas just retconned it, at least they do know what is valid. There is no doubt between the sources, there is always a clear hierarchy on which comes first whenever a conflict arises.


I think the advantage held by SW (which i'm only using here as an example for Franchises like it) over 40K re: Continuity stems from the fact that - 40K grew out of a Game, SW grew out a single creative vision.

We can't specifically point to some sort of authority or authorial vision of 40K in the same manner that SW or ST could.

Let us not forget that 40K grew up out of a desire to essentially have Warhammer in Space. I tend to toss around my old battered copy of Rogue Trader to my kids friends who get into 40K and they always ask questions like "Where's the Emperor? Where's hte story?"

To which I can only say, "Back then, they made it up on their own.





   
Made in eu
Hallowed Canoness




Ireland

ContemplativeSphinx wrote:Some tough choices would have to be made. [...] Depending on how one shaped continuity, one risks alienating a portion of the fandom.
Undoubtedly. I'm not sure if it would be better for 40k at this point (the deviations between depictions of specific details in official/licensed material have been growing ever larger, and as such the number of opinions within the fandom) - just that it might have been better if continuity would've been held sacrosanct from the start.

Retroactively invalidating things would be a tricky thing indeed ... even though one could very well argue that nothing is valid right now anyways. But most fans have embraced a very specific vision of the 41st millennium and would become angered at a different, perhaps even opposing interpretation being officially elevated above theirs. I know *I* would have a hard time accepting the contents of certain BL novels over Codex fluff, and it might actually end up driving me away from the hobby if the latter would ever be discarded for good, as it would force a very different perception onto my army. Many hobbyists will feel likewise, whatever source they prefer.

So in away, at least now we're all on the same footing and nobody is left behind. I only hope that stability will not erode further over the coming years, as the various origins of fluff will churn out ever more contradictions and conflicts between themselves, further increasing the mental gap between the fans. Is this just my perception, or have fluff debates increased in both frequency as well as intensity over the past few years?

ContemplativeSphinx wrote:So a debate about the Emperor for instance isn't merely about the Emperor - it spirals into discussions about the status/role of religion (or lack thereof) in society, the cost benefit analysis of dictatorial authority vs. civil freedom, etc.etc. The storm brewing over the Tau takes on characteristics of dicussions about nationalism and race (West vs. East), systems of control, etc.
Oh, yes. Although on some level, they are interesting debates to be had. It's almost a credit to 40k that it inspires people to talk about such things - proof that there is a deeper, almost philosophical meaning behind many of the themes, even if it's just a side-effect of the setting.

ContemplativeSphinx wrote:Trying to sustain an interesting Story Arc/Plot spanning decades (in the real world) is very very very difficult.
And we can witness this in 40k too, with people moaning about how the timeline is stuck at 999.M41 etc...

Although this franchise/setting already offers an easy way out of the issue - in essence, the "time travel" or "multiple universes" cop-outs you listed, but without actually breaking continuity:
Time travel: 40k is a setting with a very long timeline, so it would be easy to retroactively insert events into it. In fact, this is already being done. There are almost 10.000 years of history to be filled, and I can't imagine that previous eras of the Imperium do not offer any potential for interesting novels or campaign plots? What about, say, the Age of Apostasy? A 2E story blurb in a half-forgotten Codex, yet such a monumental event in Imperial history that it's mind-boggling that nobody picked it up for a story yet.
Multiple universes: The galaxy is large, and so is the Imperium. Thousands of planets colonised by all sorts of people and all with potentially unique cultural and technological traits. You want to place your story on a feral world with amazons riding dinosaurs? We've got a planet for that. Mad-Max'esque gangers in a violent cyberpunk turf war? Here you go, take this star system over there.

The real issue with 40k's continuity is not actually any big divergence in terms of "world events" or alternate histories or so, it's that a large number of authors are seemingly incapable of sticking to certain standards. Example: Jes Goodwin once joked on the GW Designer Podcast that Space Marines are getting bigger and bigger in BL novels. Why? Why are the writers unable to stick to as simple a guideline as "7 feet"? Did I somehow miss the memo about some sort of one-upsmanship contest between the writers?
This is what really gets me - and what causes most of the disagreements in dakka's fluff section. There is so much potential for rich detail, yet it's thrown away again and again because apparently almost every freelance writer thinks he's got a better idea. Most often, it's not even about any sort of story, it's about not caring enough to embed a plot into the corset that already written fluff would provide, or maybe just not doing enough research.

ContemplativeSphinx wrote:I think the advantage held by SW (which i'm only using here as an example for Franchises like it) over 40K re: Continuity stems from the fact that - 40K grew out of a Game, SW grew out a single creative vision. We can't specifically point to some sort of authority or authorial vision of 40K in the same manner that SW or ST could.
I dunno - 40k may have started as a game, but at some point in time there still was only one vision, and that was the studio's, as printed in the books they published. If they really wanted, they could have made sure that licensed fiction respects it - alas, they caved in and established the Black Library, to officially separate tie-in fiction from the game and its background.

Let's take a look at Battletech. Similar to 40k, this started only as a game as well, yet the authors have established firm guidelines and policies about how their canon works, providing all fans with a clear idea of which sources they can turn to if they have any questions regarding how X works within the setting: http://www.sarna.net/wiki/Canon

1) Rules take precedence
2) Fluff and novels are next
3) Artwork is lowest on the continuity food chain
4) Newer material overrides conflicting earlier publications
5) The Line Developer has final say. All hail the Herb.

- Mike Miller, BT Writer

Hell, if people want, they can even pay the guys in charge a virtual visit and ask them directly. We can only dream of something like that for 40k.
Granted, in 40k, the GW studio has also supplied a much smaller amount of detail as to how certain things work, almost forcing other writers to come up with their own stuff - but still, there was a time when you could find cross-sections and hard numbers in GW books. Now it seems as if everything just becomes more vague, as if out of fear that it might contradict with some licensed material.

ContemplativeSphinx wrote:I tend to toss around my old battered copy of Rogue Trader to my kids friends who get into 40K and they always ask questions like "Where's the Emperor? Where's hte story?"
To which I can only say, "Back then, they made it up on their own.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2013/03/05 20:37:45


current 40k RPG character: Aura Vashaan, Astromancer Witch-Priestess
previous characters: Captain Elias (Celestial Lions Chapter), Comrade-Trooper Dasha Malenko (1207th Valhallan Ice Warriors), Sister Militant Elana Melanthis (Order of the Sacred Rose), Leftenant Darion Baylesworth (Rogue Trader frigate Artemisia) 
   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






The Palace of Thorns, London Annexe

I suspect that whilst the Emperor would wake up and be appalled by the Sisters of Battle he would realise that A) It is too late now to get rid of them as it might start a civil war where they and the Ecclesiarchy deny who he is and B) He would realise that the Imperial Truth did not provide a viable alternative to Chaos and that belief in a God-Emperor is the lesser of two evils. Finally, C) He may even have found that if people worship him, he gets more powerful. If that is the case, he would probably want worship.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2013/03/05 20:41:03


Only losers have sigs.  
   
Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut




 Lynata wrote:

So in away, at least now we're all on the same footing and nobody is left behind. I only hope that stability will not erode further over the coming years, as the various origins of fluff will churn out ever more contradictions and conflicts between themselves, further increasing the mental gap between the fans. Is this just my perception, or have fluff debates increased in both frequency as well as intensity over the past few years?


Increased by a lot is my own inclination. Even if you "screen out' all the external issues such as "My RL views affect the way I act toward the Hobby," you can still find the kernels for todays current flamewars originating from within the context of the fluff itself.

I think the latest bruhaha over Matt Ward's changes serves a good indicator of this trend.

As you said before, fans who came into the hobby at different points in time embrace different versions of the 41st Millenium. Attempts to RetCon their favorite version will understandably meet with much resistance.



ContemplativeSphinx wrote:Trying to sustain an interesting Story Arc/Plot spanning decades (in the real world) is very very very difficult.
And we can witness this in 40k too, with people moaning about how the timeline is stuck at 999.M41 etc...


I hate to say it, but given that the company has no direction/vision for what the future holds/should be - freezing the current time at 999.M41 is probably the safest thing to do.

Time travel: 40k is a setting with a very long timeline, so it would be easy to retroactively insert events into it. In fact, this is already being done. There are almost 10.000 years of history to be filled, and I can't imagine that previous eras of the Imperium do not offer any potential for interesting novels or campaign plots? What about, say, the Age of Apostasy? A 2E story blurb in a half-forgotten Codex, yet such a monumental event in Imperial history that it's mind-boggling that nobody picked it up for a story yet.


Multiple universes: The galaxy is large, and so is the Imperium. Thousands of planets colonised by all sorts of people and all with potentially unique cultural and technological traits. You want to place your story on a feral world with amazons riding dinosaurs? We've got a planet for that. Mad-Max'esque gangers in a violent cyberpunk turf war? Here you go, take this star system over there.



Quite possible. This seem to be a preferred route to take in terms of fiction writing. Any inconsistencies generated can be chalked up to changes between time periods or to "regionalization/localization."


it's about not caring enough to embed a plot into the corset that already written fluff would provide, or maybe just not doing enough research.


This is where that Continuity unit over at LucasArts comes in handy for the prospective writer.


1) Rules take precedence
2) Fluff and novels are next
3) Artwork is lowest on the continuity food chain
4) Newer material overrides conflicting earlier publications
5) The Line Developer has final say. All hail the Herb.

- Mike Miller, BT Writer



Point taken - Bt is quite organized it seems.

   
 
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