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View Full Version : Anzion's Theory: Gold or Garbage?



Decius
10-09-2008, 01:28
Many of us have hear it before: "Ork guns work because they believe!". I think this was first mentioned in the 3rd Edition Ork Codex and since then it has generated polarized opinions among 40k gamers.

This poll is not regarding the validity of Anzion's Theory but rather your opinion of it. Basically, does it enhance or depreciate Ork background?

I'll refrain from posting my own opinion so as not to unfairly sway people with my awesome arguments. :p

PS: Sorry for the simplistic poll. I figured I'd just keep it simple.

Canadianllama
10-09-2008, 01:45
I think it is great and adds to the Ork fluff nicely, saying that I believe in heavy limitations to it. An Ork should not be able to grab a discarded boot and start shooting away with it. In my mind it works best imaging the orks gun has jammed but the orks pure wish to hear more of the, ever so enchanting, DAKKADAKKA!!! will see the bullets out the barrel none the less. The Ork belief of red vehicles always being the fastest is as far as I would push it, I might even call that too far if not for that fact I love that rule.

Lord Inquisitor
10-09-2008, 01:58
I hate, hate, hate, hate it. It really does depreciate ork background.

The concept that the Orkoids were created as a self-sufficient army/ecosystem is a terrific idea. Never mind Space Marine "genetic engineering", the Brain Boyz really perfected the art, and the idea that advanced mechanical engineering and other knowledge could be programmed into the organism is a superb science-fiction concept and, unlike many SF elements, entirely plausible.

All of which is somewhat done an injustice with the idea that Ork tech works because of wishy-washy concept of psychic energy. Not that psionics doesn't have its place in the 40K universe, there are other SF concepts (like astrocommunication) that require such a crutch in order to be believable. But ork tech didn't need it.

The idea of "psychic lubrication" (i.e. more efficient technology due to low-level psionics) is a more palatable form of this (although some people persist in saying that all Ork tech - including spacecraft - function on psychic power), but it was still a daft idea in the first place, ruining one of the really great SF concepts 40K has.

PondaNagura
10-09-2008, 02:02
i would think by themselves, that no its wouldn't work. but as a heaving mass of green Waaagh!, the collective psychic resonance might have some effect, though not on their weapons per se, but maybe their teleport/warp transport technology.

also the theory comes from an imperial (correct?) who for the most part have an animistic approach to a lot of their beliefs of how things work, ie machine spirits in a lasgun.

Kandarin
10-09-2008, 02:51
I like the idea that psychic races/groups/individuals are constantly and unconsciously exerting psionic effort to try to make the world fit their beliefs. It explains Imperial miracles and it could explain Orkish technological 'miracles' too.

Still, it's silly (and not in a way that matches normal Ork silliness) to chalk up the entirety of Ork mechanichal aptitude to unsurpassed psionic power latent in each Ork. The Orks mess with reality through the sheer number of orky minds tampering with it, not the individual power of each one.

Anzion's theory should hold true, but only when the power of the Waaaaagh! is at its peak. It should not explain how Orks normally supply themselves and keep their weaponry maintained.

slaanghoul
10-09-2008, 03:01
I love the idea that Ork think it works so it does. It's the only justification that can fit in their background. I mean those Orks are as dumb and stupid as you can get and how a species more stupid than a hillbilly can built spaceship and make weapons and transport is beyond truth. . . unless they have "if I think it works, then it works".

Lockjaw
10-09-2008, 03:21
I hate it, I'm all for the ork's phsycic feild creating waaugh energy, affecting wierdboyz, and warp travel, but the whole "ork weapons work because they beleive" is a load of bull crap. plus the fact there are humans that used ork weapons just fine (diggas, armeggedon ork hunters, one of the ragnar books he hijacked an ork buggy even), so it throws out the whole 'ork guns shouldn't work unless in ork hands' right out the window.

and in general, it's just stupid with a capital S

Askari
10-09-2008, 04:52
To an extent yes it's brilliant. Such as the Red 'uns go fasta! Which, as an inherent thought present in most [or all] Orks, means that Red trukks do go faster. Perhaps the same would happen with ammo for their weapons, the simple act of pulling a mag out and placing it back in would convince the Ork he's reloaded, and as all Orks think alike, they actually do.

That said it shouldn't hold to Orks inspects a boot and thinking it's a gun makes it a gun, [like in the other similar thread.]

Gorbad Ironclaw
10-09-2008, 05:02
It's one of the worst 'inventions' in recent 40k background. It's only really surpassed by shoehorning the C'tans into every single thing they could possibly get near.

Orks do have a latent psychic talent and to some degree share a greater psychic connection than humans do (but not nearly as focused as Eldars, or as strong as Nids), but the notion that there technology is dependent on that is rubbish.

Mek boyz inventions work because they work, simple as that. Imperial researches might not understand what's going on and why, but that doesn't take anything away from the mechanical aspect of it.

Allen
10-09-2008, 07:14
Many of us have hear it before: "Ork guns work because they believe!". I think this was first mentioned in the 3rd Edition Ork Codex and since then it has generated polarized opinions among 40k gamers.

This poll is not regarding the validity of Anzion's Theory but rather your opinion of it. Basically, does it enhance or depreciate Ork background?

I'll refrain from posting my own opinion so as not to unfairly sway people with my awesome arguments. :p

PS: Sorry for the simplistic poll. I figured I'd just keep it simple.


As many other pieces of GW fluff, this theory is contradicted by some later sources. AFAIK the Ork Hunters regiments on Armageddon use looted Ork weaponry in their ambushes to spread confusion in the enemy ranks. In some Gaunt novel there are a couple of imperial soldiers that use an ork vehicle to flee from pursuing xenos. Some Raven Guard hero and his retinue of Space Marines were stranded for years in ork territory...they managed to survive with hit&run tactics and looting ork supplies and weapons. Later sources point out that the Krorks (the current Orks) were created by the Old Ones with an innate understanding of technology...if your tools work just because you're part of a psychic race that needs only to believe that a thing can work according to your plans to actually make it work according to your plans who needs an innate understanding of technology? Just slam a couple of things togheter and believe that the result will teleport you...and it will actually teleport you. No need to understand anything.

Ork technology is crude and primitive (even when it's quite advanced like the tellyportas, if you understand what I mean), but I don't think it works only thanks to the Orks psychic talents.

Brother Siccarius
10-09-2008, 07:34
I like it, unfortunately too many people take it the wrong way. Some people seem to think that it's some all powerful field that makes all ork technology work. Well, the technology works when they aren't there too, there's too much given proof that it does (heck there's an entire guard regiment that proves it; Armageddon ork hunters).

I mainly see this as coming from over eager fans or slightly confused enthusiasts who mis-interpret Anzion as saying that if orks believe anything is true that it will happen. This isn't true, or orks would simply win all the time (as they would believe that they would always be victorious), they would be able to turn entire worlds to ash if they got enough to believe it, and they'd be able to create anything. Rather than the overwhelming results that have been attributed to Anzion's theory, it's more appropriate to say that it effects things on a very small scale.

Hellebore
10-09-2008, 07:38
Where is the "I'm ambivalent" option?

I like it as a theory and even as a LIMITED effect, but I DON'T like the idea that ALL ork tech ONLY works through psychic belief.

Hellebore

Khaine's Messenger
10-09-2008, 07:46
As far as I'm concerned, it really doesn't add anything to the Orks to give them psychic lube or pixie dust to make their technology work. I like to have a solid industrial theme for Orks and the Imperium in my personal vision of 40k. Sure, both societies may as well have what amount to cargo cults, but as far as I am concerned, the technology fundamentally works without outside influence unless it is a technology noted to require the influence of the setting's "magic"--teleporters, force weapons, FTL communication and travel, and so forth. It breaks my suspension of disbelief for Ork technology to require magic to function. Heck, it breaks my suspension of disbelief for (all) human technology to require "magic" to function, but the background for Machine Spirits is pliable enough.

However...it only truly turns to garbage when people make tabletop chatter about Orks turning stikkbombz into thermonuclear warheads through the power of sheer Belief for cheap hyucks. Which, even when you regard this bit of background, is silly. But when you're talking table chatter, it's a little hard to take anything seriously. It's along the lines of the Imperial player declaring exterminatus. ;)

I believe Nurglitch had an absolutely massive thread on this at one point. Oddly, it's one of the only threads he hasn't purged of his posts.

Charax
10-09-2008, 08:02
I subscribe to the theory that Ork technology works better because of the psychic influence, not that it works entirely because of it. This makes it entirely possible for Non-Orks to use Ork technology, but it's far more likely to malfunction.

That seems entirely reasonable to me. One thing I'm not so keen on is Xenology's assertion that orks generate this energy field on a cellular level.

Lord-Caerolion
10-09-2008, 08:04
I'd always interpreted it as being what was mentioned above, more of a "psychic lubrication" than the psychic field allowing it to work at all. So their guns will still fire, their Trukks will still drive, etc, when used by a non-Ork, but the Orky field just boosts the effects. Guns will have a bigger bang, red Trukks will drive slightly faster, etc. After all, they do use actual technology, its just that for them it works better than it really should.

Ad-Hoc
10-09-2008, 12:48
I like it as presented. What peopel seem to mis is that the Theory describes 'Many' ork weapons not working on recognisable principles. People seem to have read this as The majourity, most or all.

Personally my understanding is it was intended to refer to Items such as KFF, Zaaap Gunz, Shokk Attack and so on. The big wierd stuff you only see during a Waaagh, the stuff we knew already was beyond even the Eldars understanding. I put this down to using the Orks Waaagh Psychic field as a Power source. Take the shokk attack gun for example. It opens a worm hole through the warp, only psychic abilities/based technology have been shown to be able to penatrate into warp space at such a small level, let alone navigate to a target. Why doesn't it work for the Imperium of man? No waaagh, no power.

Just seems logical that the creators of the Orks decided to use some of the power they generate in their technology.

totgeboren
10-09-2008, 14:44
I like the basic idea of it, but going as far as giving it in-game effect is to much (red paint), therefore I voted no.

This quote sums up my feelings about this subject.


I subscribe to the theory that Ork technology works better because of the psychic influence, not that it works entirely because of it. This makes it entirely possible for Non-Orks to use Ork technology, but it's far more likely to malfunction.

LexxBomb
10-09-2008, 15:06
would you rathewr they go back to buying bolters and plasma guns and autoguns from the Imperium (cos thats what they did in 2nds Ed) I think you will find The Orks as a race changed during 2nd Edition in the Side game GorkaMorka (I think The Perry Twins did the models and that fluff was changed to suit the new models)

edit
they didn't explain why ork hunters on Armageddon can weald Ork weapons

Rabid Bunny 666
10-09-2008, 15:14
I like it. IIRC, that snippet of background is from a Techpriest, and the reason it doesn't have a mechanism because it lacks a machine spirit. Viewpoints are great.

Grimbad
10-09-2008, 22:40
I like it, it's just that some people take it out of proportion. It's no more ridiculous than techpriests managing to fix something. They say 'hocus pocus machinicus goddammicus' and the Leman Russ starts working again, so why can't orks do something similar? And seeing as they are orks, it turns out they do something similar by accident.

Adra
10-09-2008, 22:51
Where is the "I'm ambivalent" option?

That would be the not voting option.


I like the idea. Its just another example of how amazing the ork race really is. Not only are they super fighting, super breeding, super healing, hard as nails nutters with amazing tech abilities....but hell they can also just will a broken device to work and it kinda will. Their tech works fine its just they are so violent that damage is bound to happen and they can just belive it works hard enough to make it happen. Its almost like the Old Ones where like "yeah looking good but hell they dont seem to be able to maintain their kit..no worries just stick in some imba will power." Scary buggers....

Hellebore
10-09-2008, 23:18
That would be the not voting option.


Does that mean the ambivalents' won the poll? On account of there being ~40,000 warseer members and of those the majority didn't vote?

It needs an ambivalent option so the above absurdity doesn't happen.

Hellebore

Decius
11-09-2008, 18:28
Perhaps I'll post a more refined poll based on the information gathered in this one. What should the options be, if this poll was more refined? These seems to be the main responses in this thread:

Q: Ork tech works because of their psychic field.
1: I support this idea completely.
2: I support this idea on a limited scale only.
3: I do not support this idea at all.

Would that cover the opinions on this topic better, or am I missing something?

To answer your question, Hellebore, I did not create an ambivalent option because I honestly don't want a "no opinion" option. It just seems like a non-answer to me. So, if you want to vote in my poll you better make a choice. I'm putting my foot down, so to speak.

As to what I voted: I do not like Anzion's Theory one bit. Even if it was created with the intention of being the ramblings of an ignorant Magos, many gamers have assumed it to be true. If it is supposed to be true, then it reduces the Orks to nothing better than hillbillies that drive magic cars. I prefer the idea that Ork technology works because of the laws of physics (well, sci-fi physics at least), and not positive thinking.

As for proof that the theory is false, I think the most damning evidence is in the Commissar Cain novel "Death or Glory", where Cain and a veritable ragtag army cross a continent using Ork vehicles and weapons. All of them humans. In fact, Cain and a tech-priest both comment on the robust nature of the vehicles. While they do discard the Ork technology when possible it is not because it stopped working but because Ork technology is dangerous to anyone without an Ork physique. For example, the recoil from a shoota could break your arm if you're not careful, if you could even lift it in the first place.

Well, I've run out of things to say so I'll stop.

Darkhorse
11-09-2008, 18:51
Lets take this to the point of Argumentum Absurdum:
Ork points at you and shouts, "Bang!"/ Points at tank and shouts, "Boom!!!"
You'd have to be a total madboy to believe this, but of course we (should) have madboyz...
Ork Holds his arms out to the side and goes, "Neeowwm!", throws himself at the ground and misses...

Messiah
11-09-2008, 18:56
I love it, love it, love it!
But in the sense that by thinking it works, the ork actually repairs the weapon, vehicle or whatever technological thing it is. Therefore others can use it, its been repaired, and therefore a boot can never be a gun unless the ork believes it so much that he actually manifests enough psychic energy to remake the boot physically into a gun, after which anyone can use it.

Bauglir
12-09-2008, 11:49
I agree with those who advocate that the psychic aura might act as fuel for a tool, weapon or vehicle. But I don't subscribe to the theory that the psychic aura is what makes the item work in the first place.

As for the old WD article on the matter - I think it mentioned that captured orc technology would work for the first few weeks (possibly sub-optimal) before the item would literally fall apart.

Now read this very interesting article (http://www.damninteresting.com/?p=870) on evolving circuits! I'm not saying it's related to the original topic in any way, but it gives some good reasons for why you can't always hope to reverse-engineer technology. Read the article, and imagine that Orc technology somehow was designed to utilize that psychic energy aura.

Ancient
12-09-2008, 11:59
I recall that it works against the Orks as well, somewhere there is a story of Ork's being cleared from a Hive City, they found it was better to use guns with a big report, as obvioulsy the louder the bang the more effective the gun is, so Ork's seemed to die more often when shot with these guns than technically slightly better, but quieter, weapons.

Clockwork-Knight
12-09-2008, 12:12
Might be because ork weapons have the strenght of bolters (although not its penetration capabilities), whereas lasguns are... well, lasguns. :p

sigur
12-09-2008, 12:33
I don't like the idea at all. It's just one of these many things that were used in 3rd edition to make Orks look like a savage and brainless band of cavemen who by chance found a few guns. Orks do engineer very well-working weapons and equipment. They use pragmatic ways to do so but their stuff works and not just because they believe it does.

In terms of tractor beams and forcefields, one could say that Orks are pretty much ahead of the Imperial technology.

Faustburg
12-09-2008, 12:38
I recall that it works against the Orks as well, somewhere there is a story of Ork's being cleared from a Hive City, they found it was better to use guns with a big report, as obvioulsy the louder the bang the more effective the gun is, so Ork's seemed to die more often when shot with these guns than technically slightly better, but quieter, weapons.


As always.... source? :confused:


Agreeing with several people above; Those saying that ork tech works because they believe in it are missing the point, or simply not reading that background piece text first hand... It simply says that some equipment recovered and examined by Imperial scientist does not work unless used by an Ork. Not all. The vast majority of artefacts will still be on down-to-earth explainable physic principles.

Red paint jobs... The orks believe "red uns go fasta", and the game effect is that they do... but really, look at it as the faster ones get painted red, or that when they go to the shop to have their vehicle looked over, the Mek will tinker with the engine, strip off a few heavy plates here and there, and do other modifications, and then before returning it have his assistants slap on a fresh coat of red paint because that is what is expected...

It's the same thing as a lot of game affecting war gear and how it is rules wise presented, e.g. Terminator armour/honours. You don't actually get better at fighting for having them (+1 attack), you are allowed to have them because you were better at fighting....

Brucopeloso
12-09-2008, 13:05
I hate, hate, hate, hate it. It really does depreciate ork background.

The concept that the Orkoids were created as a self-sufficient army/ecosystem is a terrific idea. Never mind Space Marine "genetic engineering", the Brain Boyz really perfected the art, and the idea that advanced mechanical engineering and other knowledge could be programmed into the organism is a superb science-fiction concept and, unlike many SF elements, entirely plausible.

All of which is somewhat done an injustice with the idea that Ork tech works because of wishy-washy concept of psychic energy. Not that psionics doesn't have its place in the 40K universe, there are other SF concepts (like astrocommunication) that require such a crutch in order to be believable. But ork tech didn't need it.

The idea of "psychic lubrication" (i.e. more efficient technology due to low-level psionics) is a more palatable form of this (although some people persist in saying that all Ork tech - including spacecraft - function on psychic power), but it was still a daft idea in the first place, ruining one of the really great SF concepts 40K has.


I agree
I love the idea that tech ability is "programmed" into meks by the old ones (as medical ability is programmed into painboyz). It explains the ork tech limitations and apparent standardization of the equipment much better than the psycic field thinghy.

Xandros
13-09-2008, 20:08
Belief is a powerful force. Orks believe strongly. This works well for humans too, for example in the placebo effect. It makes a great deal of sense to me that orks would benefit more, given their singleminded personalities. I don't think a boot would automatically become a firearm, but a deadly weapon no less, and would probably end up with the local mek: "It looks ded shooty, boss".

Clockwork-Knight
14-09-2008, 00:36
Placebos still don't make weapons shot, and even the orks aren't capable of such a feat.

Col. Tartleton
14-09-2008, 01:44
I've always seen orks as being fully able to make technology using inherent talent and a bit of elbow grease.

Ie.
Making a bom chukka out of a mailbox, a spring, and some tin cans full of C4.

Almost within believability, and some orkish instincts worthy of any basic engineering abilities mixed with some luck and a bit of simple cunning make it comparable to "ani tin' a 'umie boom stik can dish owt"

Hrw-Amen
14-09-2008, 11:31
It is not some huge powerful force that makes everythign work just because an ork wants it to. It is more like a prayer that an enginseer would perform. That is not to say orks sit around praying over their stuff, but in their heads they think along similar lines.

They may not know why something works, but doing the right thing makes it work or at least they believe it does. Maybe things like stubbers work better for orks simply because they are crude and not made that accurately. You need an orks mass / strength to pull back that trigger that for a puney human would simply snag on some rough cut metal filing sticking out!

Another example that alot of people can sympathise with would be a guy (Or girl.) on a fast motorbike. They weave in and out of traffic going at ridiculous speeds that any normal person would fine frightening and unbelieveable. Yet they do it because they believe that they are the best, they are invincible. For the most part they are, they do not hit anything, until that one day when a car pulls out in front of them on a blind corner or whatever and they die. That is what it means, an ork may know his stubber is going to carry on working regardless of how poorly maintained it is and for the most part it will which just goes to prove hisn point. Until one day it jams, then he is killed and the weapon gets into the hands of some Imperial tech adept who wonders why it does not work and comes up with some theory about it having to be used by an ork in order to function. Which again just goes to prove the ork right, although he does not know this because he is dead.

KingNova3000
14-09-2008, 12:32
I really like the theory. Gives orks some more character (not that they needed anymore :P) I just love the fact that if they think it should work then it should be so. Lets face it it would have to be the case, there is just no way their tech would function without some kind of "power" driving it. Look at their aircraft for example, they should fall out of the sky let along keep up and fight high tech aircraft such as Imperial fighters or Eldar aircraft.

Kaihlik
14-09-2008, 13:25
I think it says more obout the Imperiums lack of understanding even in regards to their most common foe. I think that the most that the "ork thinks it works" could do would be to prevent guns from jamming and keep engines running by simply holding them together longer than would be normal.