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destroyerlord
30-08-2007, 10:04
I just read through an old post about about navigators, and rather than keep a 2 year old post on the front page while taking it even more off topic, I decided to make a new post.
So my question is what does the warp look like? When a ship makes the jump to warp space and the captain looks out the window what does he see? Does it all look funky and purple like the eye of terror/warp storms?
Also, what is the warp like? I have read descriptions of 'flows' and 'stable paths' through the warp and I'm wondering what it means. Obviously the warp isn't simply an alternate physical universe that can be traversed as simply as real space.

Urza
30-08-2007, 10:26
The easiest way to imagine the warp is as a very unpredictable ocean. You have storms, currents, eddies, calms and some very nasty predators lurking beneath the surface :)

However, according to several Black Library novels, each Navigator has his own unique way of interpreting what the warp looks like. FOr example some see it as a unimaginably vast jungle with branches and predators that must be avoided.

grickherder
30-08-2007, 10:47
The navigators might be looking at it with their "psychic" eye, right? Isn't there something special about them that lets them hear the chorus and navigate the warp?

But what would an average joe, space marine, whatever, see when they look out the window? Utter blackness? Some terror or secret desire reflected from within themselves? Blue and purple swirls?

Being trapped there too long obviously isn't good-- but I wonder if visual exposure is bad as well?

pookie
30-08-2007, 10:55
navigators see it diffrently, everyone else, is unlikly to see it as ships are shielded aginst this,blast shileds would drop over every port hole/window. technically the only way they would is if the Gellar field failed.

i would imaging though that it would be a mass of colours, righting and twisting, almost as though if you saw it you wouldnt really be able to pin point which colours you actualy would see, they would change rapidly and wildly.

Feor
30-08-2007, 11:02
No, some windows stay open. In Horus Rising or False Gods Lokken has an encounter with Erebus on an observation deck while watching the warp.

It is supposed to just be a swirling mass of riotous colors and indistinct shapes. The best thing I've seen is next time you've been washing metallic paint off your brush for a couple hours, stir your water cup. now imagine that with random bursts of random colors.

destroyerlord
30-08-2007, 11:19
Nice. So the whole swirly colours thing like the eye of terror pic is what it would look like. I like that.
What about its' geography? (not the right word i know) Are there planets, stars, etc. in the warp? Do these places correspond to stellar mass in the material world? That is, do planets have an equal 'warp self?' Or is everything just random? I like the idea of stellar objects existing in the warp. The demons have to hang out somewhere when they aren't eating peoples minds, right? :P

MadDogMike
30-08-2007, 11:38
Nice. So the whole swirly colours thing like the eye of terror pic is what it would look like. I like that.
What about its' geography? (not the right word i know) Are there planets, stars, etc. in the warp? Do these places correspond to stellar mass in the material world? That is, do planets have an equal 'warp self?' Or is everything just random? I like the idea of stellar objects existing in the warp. The demons have to hang out somewhere when they aren't eating peoples minds, right? :P

Pretty sure with the exception of demon worlds (which I interpret as being in both the warp and real space simultaneously) there aren't any solid objects in the Warp; raw Chaos-stuff isn't really suited to forming organized bodies like that. As for the demons, I'm not even sure they have physical existence outside the material world, so needing a place to stand isn't much of a concern to them. Then again, there could be something in there we aren't told about, since I suspect not every missing ship suffers from mechanical failure or treachery...

TrooperTino
30-08-2007, 11:50
this is an interesting read:

http://wiki.anargo-sector.net/index.php?title=Warp_Travel

very cool page

precinctomega
30-08-2007, 12:26
Imagine being blind. Not that your eyes don't work, but that the part of your brain that processes information from the eyes - the visual cortex - doesn't operate. What would you see?

The answer is nothing. Not blackness. Not darkness. Nothing. There would be no sensation of vision whatsoever.

Now try to image standing at a window and looking out onto the same "nothing". That's what the Warp would look like. Visible nothing.

R.

Ikkaan
30-08-2007, 12:31
The navigators third eye is not an eye in the meaning of an biological optical sensor. The navigators third eye was probably developed from an organic human eye because the pathways for the nerves were more easily understood than for example an additional organ IN the brain cavity (where it would be better shielded from physical accidents than something on the forehead, especially on a ship with low and cramped corridors).

Navigators are able to detect warp flow, different official sources and novels pass side notes that different navigators experience the warp in different ways. Some see swirling colors, other see endless tubes, others smell something, others have tactile feelings as if they are touching something.

Normal procedure on human spacecraft is to shut every window close to protect passengers and crew from looking into the warp - not only because it is harmful but potentially it could enable warp beings from communicating with persons inside, and talking them into fatal acts (i.e. sabotaging the geller field, opening the shutters, opening a hatch, etc.). Navigators need to have direct view into the warp and have open viewports. To my knowledge it isnīt known if they close their normal eyes during warp travel.

The description in the horus heresy novel tells us that normal beings are able to look into warpspace on an observation deck. In relation to everything we heard before it would drive any observing creations into madness or worse. So the observation deck is probably a room with video/3d screens showing a filtered false color version of the an n-dimensional space which would otherwise not be viewable by fourdimensional beings (at least not without damaging them). Such screens are a nice thing to have but utterly useless to navigators und incomprehensible but nice to look at for everyone else.

Kage2020
30-08-2007, 14:05
this is an interesting read:

http://wiki.anargo-sector.net/index.php?title=Warp_Travel

very cool page
Which is, unfortunately, a fans interpretation of the warp mixed with a single chart that comes from an official source (i.e. warp travel times).

I'm afraid that in many regards - and this despite the cool image produced by Magelord on the page you cite - that precinctomega's interpretation is the one that most closely gels with my own. Indeed, a quote from that page is, I feel, quite poignant:


How does one describe the Astronomican and our relationship to it? I have heard many explanations for it, but it is from an archaic, pre-Imperium poem that provided me the most accurate statement: 'Music heard so deeply that it is not heard at all, but you are the music while the musics lasts'. We can see with our pineal eye, true, but it is the feel of the Astronomican that truly guides us. We are mutants, they say, but we are more truly touched by the spirit of the Emperor than by those that slander against us.
It is the vision of the psyker, or the abstract renderings of the "warp sensor" (cf. WD139/140 & Inquisitor/Draco), that the potential of the warp is given a "visual" manifestation. Thus, for me, it's not just staring out into the abyss - after all, you can do that in normal space - but staring out and feeling that it is staring back at you.

And that's not contradictory to the quoted page and its approach of the "layered warp," or the idea that Chaos represents the consensual subconsciousness of sentient beings, etc. Or at least it's not meant to be. Interpretations change over time. ;)

Kage

TrooperTino
30-08-2007, 14:45
It is the vision of the psyker, or the abstract renderings of the "warp sensor" (cf. WD139/140 & Inquisitor/Draco), that the potential of the warp is given a "visual" manifestation. Thus, for me, it's not just staring out into the abyss - after all, you can do that in normal space - but staring out and feeling that it is staring back at you.

the funny thing is... it IS staring back at you^^

I see it that way: What you 'see' if looking at/in the warp is what your brain makes of it. Trying to interpret the look of a multidimensional (bla bla bla) thing that is so completely different to our three dimensions, a mans brain tries to give him a picture, which is only an interpretation of the warp. So everyone would see another thing... just empty space, the absence of anything or swirling red and orange colours. Its all just a try to explain the unexplainable.

BTW in the Gaunts ghosts series there was a glassdome in a Admech ship from where you could look out into the warp. The 'glass' translated the warp into something you could look at. I didn't like this. somehow this looks wrong to me. Why do I mention this? I have no idea :)

Kage2020
30-08-2007, 14:56
the funny thing is... it IS staring back at you^^
Well, if you want to get funky with the interpretation of the page that you quoted, you're actually staring back at yourself. After all, the unknowable horrors of the warp are actually a product of your own nightmares and psychoses... ;)

Kage

Feor
31-08-2007, 02:04
To cover a quick thing above:

There are physical planets, asteroids, ships, etc. Within the warp. They come fro the material universe and exist in the warp due to various accidents/efforts. The most common examples are Space Hulks, however, whole planets have vanished into the warp only to re-emerge years later. (ref: Dark Adeptus, yeah yeah, I know)

Arcanus
31-08-2007, 08:56
The navigators might be looking at it with their "psychic" eye, right? Isn't there something special about them that lets them hear the chorus and navigate the warp?

But what would an average joe, space marine, whatever, see when they look out the window? Utter blackness? Some terror or secret desire reflected from within themselves? Blue and purple swirls?

Being trapped there too long obviously isn't good-- but I wonder if visual exposure is bad as well?

Navigators guide the ships by sensing the Astronomican, a psychic beacon, and using that point as a point of reference. They don't have to see anything in the warp.

MutantMaggot
31-08-2007, 09:58
It probably depends on your imagination. The warp will shape itself according to your idea of what it looks like. There will still be currents and storms, but if I looked out I would probably see blank emptiness, like precinctomega described, but Feor would see a whirling mass of colours. Perhaps the strong willed could even shape the warp to their wishes?

MvS
31-08-2007, 10:30
What does it 'look' like?

I would go with:

"The answer is nothing. Not blackness. Not darkness. Nothing. There would be no sensation of vision whatsoever. Now try to image standing at a window and looking out onto the same "nothing". That's what the Warp would look like. Visible nothing."

And

"it's not just staring out into the abyss - after all, you can do that in normal space - but staring out and feeling that it is staring back at you."

And

"Trying to interpret the look of a multidimensional thing that is so completely different to our three dimensions, a mans brain tries to give him a picture, which is only an interpretation of the warp."

And

"you're actually staring back at yourself. After all, the unknowable horrors of the warp are actually a product of your own nightmares and psychoses"

Which is why I dislike the interpretation that there are windows for people to look out of during Warp jumps. I think most humans would get spooked, or perhaps get paranoid cabin fever, if they gazed at the Warp for too long. I prefer the idea that the Imperium is paranoid about the Warp and try to control any form of uncontrolled contact with 'ordinary' people, even just visual contact, primarily because they don't understand or trust the Warp and certainly don't trust people.

During a Warp jump I imagine a ship being locked down, with ports closed to all but very high-ranking or relevant personnel. This isn't because everyone would see daemons gibbering just beyond the Gellar Field (although I'm sure there's a fun case for a few Twilight Zone "there's something on the wing!" moments), but because a hundred people looking into the Warp may see a hundred different things, and you never know if any of them already have slight emotional problems, psychological problems or are latent psykers, and, well, I wouldn't want anyone going even a little bit nutso on a long Warp journey.

There is debris and 'stuff' at different 'levels' of the Warp, although I imagine the 'deeper' stuff sinks the more unbound its physical laws become until theoretically, if it gets 'deep' enough, it could be anything, perhaps just raw half-realised and broiling potential.

Kage2020
31-08-2007, 12:29
Which is why I dislike the interpretation that there are windows for people to look out of during Warp jumps.
I have less of a problem with that, to be fair. The wonderful thing about windows is that you can see out of them. With that said, the "warp shutters" is an entirely reasonable response to the well-documented approach to trying to shut off contact with the warp while making warp jumps...

...At the same time I can most definitely see "salty sea dogs," or their warp travel equivalents, popping open a warp shutter so that they can gaze into the depths.


This isn't because everyone would see daemons gibbering just beyond the Gellar Field...
Agreed there. Indeed about the only thing that I believe you would see on that front is random 'jump fire' (ball lightening equivalent with the ship at the center, extending to the Geller Field -- much like a plasma ball), and the equivalent of Cherenkov radiation at the border of the Geller Field and the Warp.


...although I'm sure there's a fun case for a few Twilight Zone "there's something on the wing!" moments)...
I both love and hate that particular episode!


There is debris and 'stuff' at different 'levels' of the Warp, although I imagine the 'deeper' stuff sinks the more unbound its physical laws become until theoretically, if it gets 'deep' enough, it could be anything, perhaps just raw half-realised and broiling potential.
That's basically how I see it, too. If ships - debris, whatever - would only stick to the Shallows then, for the most part, they're going to be fine even if their Geller Field shuts off. (Heretical approach, I know.) None of this "ships being torn to pieces" twoddle, nor is the ship going to pop out of the warp like a cork will break the surface if held under and then released.

Unfortunately, debris is never going to stay just in the Shallows. After all, nightmares frequently bubble to the surface of our minds, clawing at the barriers between the conscious and the subconscious. Those two things are basically what the matterium and the immaterium represent -- the conscious, reasoning mind, and the subconscious, intuitive and reactionary mind.

But there we go.

Kage

DantesInferno
31-08-2007, 12:47
I have less of a problem with that, to be fair. The wonderful thing about windows is that you can see out of them. With that said, the "warp shutters" is an entirely reasonable response to the well-documented approach to trying to shut off contact with the warp while making warp jumps...

...At the same time I can most definitely see "salty sea dogs," or their warp travel equivalents, popping open a warp shutter so that they can gaze into the depths.


Agreed there. Indeed about the only thing that I believe you would see on that front is random 'jump fire' (ball lightening equivalent with the ship at the center, extending to the Geller Field -- much like a plasma ball), and the equivalent of Cherenkov radiation at the border of the Geller Field and the Warp.

This thread has reminded me of the fairly recent movie Sunshine. Looking out from a ship, the warp might appear frightening, immensely powerful, but with some strange beauty to the horror.

MvS
31-08-2007, 13:26
for the most part, they're going to be fine even if their Geller Field shuts off. (Heretical approach, I know.) None of this "ships being torn to pieces" twoddle, nor is the ship going to pop out of the warp like a cork will break the surface if held under and then released
Exactly.

We know that all sorts of creatures and races navigate the Warp, perhaps in the 'shallows' and some don't have an equivalent Gellar Field - at the very least we know Space Hulks don't. As long as there are all the usual live support systems than a ship would need in Realspace, I suppose they would be passably safe.

That said, they would certainly be more vulnerable to random circumstances, and the 'deeper' they go the more likely they are to meet and experience strange and probable nasty things.

In Flight of the Eisenstein we have a scene where some Marine or other is touched by Nurgle and changed into a minor daemon of some sort while they are in a damaged ship in the Warp. To me this says that the Gellar field was inoperative and they had sunk quite 'deep' into the Warp.

So yes, I agree that ships wouldn't get torn apart at the normal sailing 'depth' of Imperial craft in the Warp, but I think without a Gellar field there is a very good chance that Things might start to happen, and if they sink deeper into the Warp... well... I can picture an Event Horizon* moment with a possessed but otherwise whole ship transported back into Realspace after the crew have gone insane with waking nightmares and/or turned psychotic.



* Although the "Pure Chaos. Pure Evil" comment was a bit rubbishy for me. Chaos might be pure nightmare, but that isn't necessarily the same as 'pure' evil...

precinctomega
31-08-2007, 13:51
I'm afraid that in many regards ... that precinctomega's interpretation is the one that most closely gels with my own.

*stunned silence* ;)

R.

Kage2020
31-08-2007, 14:02
We know that all sorts of creatures and races navigate the Warp, perhaps in the 'shallows' and some don't have an equivalent Gellar Field - at the very least we know Space Hulks don't.
Some space hulks. Ever since the Geller Field was introduced, I get the impression that they always seem to handily have one. ;)


As long as there are all the usual live support systems than a ship would need in Realspace, I suppose they would be passably safe.
Indeed, that's how I see it. Of course, all it takes is one upwelling of the Deeper warp, or the warp equivalent of a rip tide, and suddenly the pooch becomes very much scr... Okay, you get the idea.


That said, they would certainly be more vulnerable to random circumstances, and the 'deeper' they go the more likely they are to meet and experience strange and probable nasty things.
Yep, that's one of the reasons that I find the quote from Inquisitor/Draco to be so inspiring -- the cthonic undertones without actually be as "in your face" as we commonly see in the BL novels (which I like to view as exceptional circumstances anyway).


To me this says that the Gellar field was inoperative and they had sunk quite 'deep' into the Warp.
Analogies of the warp always get a bit stretched, but for me is a weird combination of surface Age of Sail travel, mixed with WWII submarine travel. The Geller Field in this quirky model is much like the skin of the sub -- go too far down and leaks might develop. Go further still and it ruptures with all the nastiness that involves. Of course, if you don't have a Geller Field and you try for the Depths? Oops. Big mistake.


Things might start to happen, and if they sink deeper into the Warp... well... I can picture an Event Horizon* moment...
LOL. Yes, that would work. ;)


Chaos might be pure nightmare, but that isn't necessarily the same as 'pure' evil...
Exactamundo, or however you spell that.


*stunned silence*
LOL.

To be fair, though, although I've never expressed a direct opinion on the "look" of the warp - beyond the request on the ASP for someone to draw the "occularis navis" - the interpretation of warp travel and the nature of the warp has been out there for some time. :D

Kage

Temprus
03-09-2007, 06:25
I can show you what the warp looks like:

Temprus tosses a Vortex Grenade and teleports out. :D

Better yet, look here:
http://us.games-workshop.com/games/40k/apocalypse/catalog/Apoc_Vortex.htm

Kage2020
03-09-2007, 14:49
Cool daemon face there, though to be honest even I had known that there was a "vortex template marker" the chances are that I would have been able to describe what GW would have done with it. ;)

Kage

RexTalon
04-09-2007, 05:17
First, I plan on making my own vortex template because that pic doesn't do the warp justice.

Second, and most importantly, you have to understand that the warp in the 40k universe represents the multitude of dimensions on a much grander scale.

Most people think of different dimensions as looking the same as our own but with a different feel or aspect to them. This may be true but the actual physical difference is only noticeable on the smallest scale.

If we zoom down to the lowest level, the quantum level, we would see that all material things aren't actually made of anything at all. Everything in the universe is made of vibrating energy. Different "particles" are represented by different vibrations of energy. If we were able to shift this view 90 degrees to the right we would see the universe as entirely different than it is now. We would be essentially "out of phase" with our own universe and we would see things differently than we do now. This is a complete over simplification, but I'm not sure anyone here has a deep understanding of string theory.

Now imagine you have this ability to see the energy of the universe as it vibrates. Not only that, but you can see it from several different angles. Now, as you see things along these alternate angles, you start to see the universe in all it's designs and you start to be able to predict it's movements. This is the level of a Ships Navigator.

Now that you can predict it's movements you start to understand it's make up and you can influence it's movements by your own design. This is the level of a deamon. (the ability to influence them WITHOUT seeing and predicting their movement is the level of a psyker. This close link between psykers and deamons is what makes psykers so dangerous.)

Now that you can influence it's movement, you start to understand how it's made, so you begin making your own "material" of the universe. This is the level of a god.

When the Navigator looks into the warp, not only does he see the direction of the universe, he also sees all the directions the universe might move, and all the emotions of the people in the universe around him. (people's emotions actually DO influence energy, but we won't get into that) They see all the horrors that happen in peoples minds. They see all the lust, greed, hate and despair. They see the very fiber of the universal energy. That's why it's so difficult for a Navigator. He has to collapse all those permutations for everything that might happen into what will most likely happen, then guide the course of the ship along that path.

If someone were to come up to me and say that they could give me the power to see alternate dimensions, I would flatly refuse. That would be the most horrible thing to behold... EVER.