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Unpopular Opinion: The Horus Heresy novels should have never existed  [RSS] Share on facebook Share on Twitter Submit to Reddit
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Made in us
Confessor Of Sins




Tacoma, WA, USA

I find it funny that people regard the Horus Heresy novels as having reliable narrators. You only need to read Prospero Burns and A Thousand Sons to see two very different accounts of that battle. I'm not even sure how the battle between Magnus and Leman Russ went given the two different depictions in the books. The same can be said for the Council of Nikea.
   
Made in us
Exalted Beastlord




Its because the unreliable writers problem kicks in first.

Plus a lot of its written from third-person omniscient, so the reliability of the narrator isn't something that even comes up. They're just blatantly relaying different 'facts.'

Efficiency is the highest virtue. 
   
Made in us
Confessor Of Sins




Tacoma, WA, USA

Third person omniscient doesn't preclude the narrator from being unreliable. It doesn't even require the narrator actually know everything. Thus different views of the same event by different narrators isn't an issues of different facts. It is just a matter of both narrators having imperfect information that happens to differ.

It like when you interview multiple people about an event. Their testimonies of contradict both each other and a recording of the events. Assuming that any Horus Heresy novels is a perfect recording of the event is a mistake. GW welcomes the ambiguity and contradictions.
   
Made in gb
Ancient Ultramarine Venerable Dreadnought




Nottingham

the_scotsman wrote:Horus Heresy isn't what killed 40k, but it is the point where nobody could avoid acknowledging the transformation of the game world from fundamentally a setting that encouraged players "buy these models, build them however you like, paint them how you like, and craft your little corner of this wild, weird mythology, here are some suggestions to get you started" into "here is an imaginary, canonical history designed to enhance our brand appeal, you as the consumer are to purchase our models, build them precisely as we have intended you to, paint them precisely as we have intended you to, and participate in a complex ordained play ritual designed to reconstruct the canonical events as we have laid them out."

Eh, not really. I don't think for a second that the game world has fundamentally changed from an open setting to a closed canon. Are there more hooks and details about those hooks? Yes. But there's still an ocean out there with plenty of space between the hooks.

So, nah - maybe it's changed in your perception, but that's not universal.

Gert wrote:The HH stuff is still a lot of unknowns and "insert your legion here". The books follow bug names at big places and give a broad view of the conflict. 18 Legions with thousands of Astartes plus the forces of the Mechanicum, Knight Houses, mortal soldiers, and Blackshield warbands is hardly restricting the setting. It gave some much-needed love to some 40k Chapters like the White Scars and Iron Hands as well.
There seems to be this feeling you need to read every single book in a series with 50 installments plus numerous other short stories. You really don't. If you're reading Siege of Terra and a character or event is referenced then you can choose to go and read that. Don't care about the White Scars? Don't read the books, I certainly didn't.
Very much agreed. Yes, you get some extra insight and tales from some snapshots of big battles and events, but you don't hear from every battle, from every point on the battlefield, from every warzone commander. Sure, maybe it wasn't your OC-Do-Not-Steal who did what Garro did, but maybe your character did something else awesome, leading their own loyalist resistance in a hidden sector against the traitors. Perhaps your Ultramarine traitor warband aren't mentioned as having existed because Guilliman suppressed information about them.

There's plenty of scope if you have the imagination, I think.

Rippy wrote:Never forgetti, template spaghetti.
DR:90S++G++MB+IPw40k07-D++A++/sWD366R++T(F)DM+ 
   
Made in gb
Jealous that Horus is Warmaster





I really don't get the hate for 30k for this reason. Were people just as mad about the War of the Beast books or the FW Badab War series? They added new background and removed the mystery of a time period. The Badab War was restrictive to the point where it's actually irritating IMO. If you want to do a timelined campaign X chapter can't be involved in the finale because they were removed from the conflict. The later books of HH and the start of Siege have all the traitor Legions at Terra, the main 3 loyalists as well as smaller forces of some other Legions.
   
Made in us
Humming Great Unclean One of Nurgle






I resent HH because of it displacing content which would have been for WHFB. I don't feel like War of the Beast or Badab did that.
   
Made in gb
Jealous that Horus is Warmaster





Where are you getting this info from regarding 30k ending FW support for WHFB? 30k got its first book in 2012 and its second book just two months before the first End Times book was released in January 2014. By the time Massacre was released GW clearly knew they were killing WHFB and TBH I would hazard a guess they knew by book 1 WHFB was out. The novel series started in 2006 and it took six years for that to translate into a game so blaming 30k for unreleased FW stuff is just plain wrong.
   
Made in us
Stealthy Grot Snipa





Atlanta, GA

 Gert wrote:
Where are you getting this info from regarding 30k ending FW support for WHFB? 30k got its first book in 2012 and its second book just two months before the first End Times book was released in January 2014. By the time Massacre was released GW clearly knew they were killing WHFB and TBH I would hazard a guess they knew by book 1 WHFB was out. The novel series started in 2006 and it took six years for that to translate into a game so blaming 30k for unreleased FW stuff is just plain wrong.


All of this. GW didn't just plan on a whim to kill WHFB altogether back in 2016(?) and replace it with Age of Sigmar. That decision was probably a lengthy, multi-year process with dozens of meetings and discussions about the state of the game, the financial viability of it, and the added pressure of replacing it with something completely different. You don't kill a game overnight that was one of your biggest core games for 30 years.

   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Battlefield Tourist





On an Express Elevator to Hell!!

I have really enjoyed the Heresy series. Alongside the TCG artwork and artbooks it created a really cool niche of modelling and gaming and something I still am enjoying to this day.

That being said, I wish that the authors and powers that be had got together and agreed on a central premise for why the Heresy took place. The one that they settled on, of Horus being stabbed by a magic sword (also known as 'a wizard did it') was weak-ass and has essentially underwhelmed the whole reason of being of the 40k universe.

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Made in us
Prophetic Blood Angel Librarian




I think the Primarch series has a far better success rate when it comes to relatable characters and the view of the fall of many of them. Granted, Lorgar is an utter wuss when it comes to Kor Pheron and that part of the series wound me up, but to be fair to the author, I cant think of any other way how they could have made out Lorgar's upbringing, to result in his future actions, especially since Kor Pheron simply exists (No other Primarch would have accepted that cr*p, it just makes Lorgar even more pathetic).
I particularly like the M30 rather than M31 focus many of the books have (Great Crusade rather than the Heresy). When I purchase a new Primarch book I'm much more confident that I'll find a hit compared to the Heresy series. Not that I particularly mind the Heresy series, it's about a 50% rate for me.
   
Made in us
Dakka Veteran




I don't think it's that unpopular of an opinion. It's also responsible for a lot of the "murderously genocidal Imperium is totes the good guys" stuff that's screwed things up over the years.
   
Made in gb
Jealous that Horus is Warmaster





Do you have anything to back up that claim? If you're claiming the HH series is responsible for GW painting the Imperium in a better light then I'm heavily disagreeing on that. For starters the pre-Heresy Imperium, while still a genocidal fascist military state, was not the superstitious fear/hatred-driven one seen in 40k. There are plenty of awful or stupid things perpetrated both pre-Heresy and during the Heresy by the Imperium. It's not a perfect state but the point is it's better than the 40k Imperium and the loss of the Emperor makes things worse.
As for the opinion that the HH series shouldn't exist, I'm sure the large player base, extensive novel range, Primarchs series spin-off, Siege of Terra sequel, and a nearly decade-old game with 9 main books to its name would disagree.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/03/27 18:28:37


 
   
Made in eg
[MOD]
Keeper of the Adeptus Arbites Flame






Cairo, Egypt

I'd give 50/50 odds that the Horus Heresy series will end with a 'modern' 40k scribe cracking his knuckles and looking at the massive work of historical fiction he's created.

Just before the Inquisition kicks down his door and drags him off for heresy.

 
   
Made in us
Prophetic Blood Angel Librarian




Haha so basically the 40k version of 'it was all a dream', or worse still 40ks version of Trek's 'we have gone back in time and drastically changed the very beginning so all those shows you watched for decades across multiple series, all the movies and the odd book you read... never really happened *insert Simpson's Nelson point and laugh here*'.
That would really really suck.
   
Made in gb
Been Around the Block




For the most part I’m completely fine with the HH series. On a project of that size you are bound to get some bad books and weak ideas creep in. The main issue I have with the series is still the missing legions. Even after turning traitor you’d think someone would blab about them, but in a book series designed to explore a mythical period in the 40K lore it seems to go out of its way to leave some things as myths.
   
Made in gb
Jealous that Horus is Warmaster





There are some hints as to their fate but nothing more than they were lost and very specifically so. All the traitor legions are excommunicae traitoris but the lost legions and their Primarchs are deleted records. Any time they are brought up in conversation the topic is shut down. Both Magnus and Lorgar are chastised for trying to discuss them, by Mortarion and Magnus again respectively. Corax upon meeting the Emperor wonders why if he is the 19th son why has he only 17 brothers, then the Emperor gets sad. We also know by the time of the events surrounding Monarchia there are only 18 legions. First Heretic has quite a bit to say on the matter with Magnus saying the Emperor purged their records, made the remaining Primarchs swear an oath to never discuss their lost brothers, and that they are referred to as "the forgotten and the purged". There are numerous other examples in HH texts all from different authors detailing potential fates of the lost Primarchs but the general notion is they did something unforgivable in the eyes of the Emperor, even more so than the betrayal of Horus and the traitors.
   
Made in eg
[MOD]
Keeper of the Adeptus Arbites Flame






Cairo, Egypt

Poly Ranger wrote:
Haha so basically the 40k version of 'it was all a dream', or worse still 40ks version of Trek's 'we have gone back in time and drastically changed the very beginning so all those shows you watched for decades across multiple series, all the movies and the odd book you read... never really happened *insert Simpson's Nelson point and laugh here*'.

That would really really suck.


"The universe is a big place and, whatever happens, you will not be missed."

 
   
 
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