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General Squeek Squeek
21-03-2009, 09:00
Over the last couple of weeks I've read alot of different threads each citing different sources of fluff. The one thing in common is that for the most part it seems like many sources of fluff are routinely discarded (Codex's, BL novels, and OOP Codex's). So... which fluff do most people consider standard to use??? Is their some major fluff source that I'm missing, because for me personally I consume BL fluff, and what I read out of army codex's.

malkkis
21-03-2009, 09:17
Well, for me, the official fluff is the newest one. The newer fluff may overlap, or totally change events, so you have to cope with that. But yet there are still some stuff in older rulebooks(codex imperialis etc,iirc) that is considered as canon. The GW have also said that BL stuff is canon, hard to say anything about C.S. Goto though(never read his books). For fluff, there's also internetsource called lexicanum.

Filthy O'Bedlam
21-03-2009, 09:22
The Fluff is best Viewed as a Gestalt, or think of a massive group painting that is always growing. The Best and Most Relevant Fluff is usually most prominent, but it's in the the viewing as a whole and the discovering of little lost and wonderful treasures throughout the work that make it What it Is.

From a Purely "What is the official Fluff of the Army" point of view, The Newest Codex is the definitive history.

Cheers, Filthy

General Squeek Squeek
21-03-2009, 09:48
I guess I phrased my question a little off of what I meant. Whats bugged me recently is that someone will cite source X (codex, WD, BL novel, ect.) and person Y will counter with that source is rubbish and doesn't count. The new Space marine novel a great example of this (I do agree that it could have been done better, but boy does it get a beating on warseer). I guess since I'm only in to my 2nd year of this hobby I haven't read alot of the older codex's, but jeez it feels like unless you have a 2nd edition stuff on hand you can't count whats currently written as correct cannon.

Chairman_woo
21-03-2009, 10:23
I generally treat fluff as semi-biased accounts generally from the prespective of one particular race or faction. This seems to fit fairly well with GW's often whymsical/mysterious wording and somewhat frequent contradictions. And tends to serve me well when the integrity of the fluff begins to get vague e.g. genestealer cults, they have all but dissapeared from the modern fluff (codex, novels etc.) but (as far as I can tell) have never been officially "removed" thus giveing one room for manouver/ones imagination to run riot.

However some things are just flat contradictions, so as a general rule I would reccomend takeing the most modern incarnation of the fluff (especially if it appears in a codex) and then treating everything else on its relative merits. e.g. the old realm of chaos "starchild" story of the emperor or the whole illuminati thing sit for the most part (in my oppinion) in a grey area of being neither entireley incompatible, nor being completeley superseeded. As such I like to think it allows one to cherry pick some of the finer elements of the fluff which are no longer explicitly supported, or if your that way inclined allows one to treat the history of 40k like much of its real world equivalent i.e. very much from the perspective of the source.

History is written by the winners, and unbiased accounts of anything seem somewhat rare. I read a very interesting take on the whole ultramarines being 4th founding nobodies in 1st ed/RT and subsequent buff to "Teh awsomestist" by 2nd, as a conspiracy by Gulliman and the high lords of terra to re write the imperial history books and soliify their controll after the emperor was wounded by replaceing the crimson fists. It actually made alot of sense to me (Tho I do seem naturally drawn to conspiracy theories) given the obviousley dodgey nature of the high lords, and the emperors enprisonment (My personal theory is the mechanicum/Dragon used the oportunity to steal the imperium froim uner the emperors nose, but then what do I know...).

Anyway thats my 2 cents..

Chairman_woo
21-03-2009, 10:27
I just had a look for that Ultrasmurf conspiracy thread (It was here on warseer) but cant find it, tho I'm shure of you root about in the background section it'll turn up.

Chairman_woo
21-03-2009, 10:28
The Fluff is best Viewed as a Gestalt, or think of a massive group painting that is always growing. The Best and Most Relevant Fluff is usually most prominent, but it's in the the viewing as a whole and the discovering of little lost and wonderful treasures throughout the work that make it What it Is.


Quoted for truth...

09Project
21-03-2009, 10:42
Unless it is the old Realm of Chaos books... Someone will discount it for some reason or another.

Realm of Chaos books seem to be a wee holy grail of 40k fluff.

Lothlanathorian
21-03-2009, 10:45
The Fluff is best Viewed as a Gestalt, or think of a massive group painting that is always growing. The Best and Most Relevant Fluff is usually most prominent, but it's in the the viewing as a whole and the discovering of little lost and wonderful treasures throughout the work that make it What it Is.

From a Purely "What is the official Fluff of the Army" point of view, The Newest Codex is the definitive history.

Cheers, Filthy


Cue Eff Tee, my friends.

Idaan
21-03-2009, 12:55
Marc Gascoigne, head of BL said:

I'll happily be your tree. But I'm not sure you'll hear much of a crash. I weary of this question, and I weary of typing it all in yet again, yet again.

I think the real problem for me, and I speak for no other, is that the topic as a "big question" doesn't matter. It's all as true as everything else, and all just as false/half-remembered/sort-of-true. The answer you are seeking is "Yes and no" or perhaps "Sometimes". And for me, that's the end of it.

Now, ask us some specifics, eg can Black Templars spit acid and we can answer that one, and many others. But again note thet answer may well be "sometimes" or "it varies" or "depends".

But is it all true? Yes and no. Even though some of it is plainly contradictory? Yes and no. Do we deliberately contradict, retell with differences? Yes we do. Is the newer the stuff the truer it is? Yes and no. In some cases is it true that the older stuff is the truest? Yes and no. Maybe and sometimes. Depends and it varies.

It's a decaying universe without GPS and galaxy-wide communication, where precious facts are clung to long after they have been changed out of all recognition. Read A Canticle for Liebowitz by Walter M Miller, about monks toiling to hold onto facts in the aftermath of a nucelar war; that nails it for me.

Sorry, too much splurge here. Not meant to sound stroppy.

To attempt answer the initial question: What is GW's definition of canon? Perhaps we don't have one. Sometimes and maybe. Or perhaps we do and I'm not telling you.

So it's pretty much up to you to decide which version of fluff is canon when there's a conflict. This pretty much renders all background forums obsolete, so when discussing fluff usually the newest version is the most actual. But when creating your army feel free to use any GW(or subsidiary) published material.

EVIL INC
21-03-2009, 13:07
Thats the bad thing about the inconsistancy in it. It has led to COUNTLESS arguments and confusion over which is "right". If they had ahad the common sense to just stay consistant to begin with, we wouldnt have this problem.
On a personal note, I say go with what you like best. If you like an older version, rather then newer later ones for example, use counts as and conversions to represent what you like as best you can. Hell, if you can see hello kitty marines, american civil war gaurd and football team based orks, there is nothing wrong with seeing a havok unit with an icon of khorne and bunny eared helmets.

sycopat
21-03-2009, 13:40
I like me my fluff, and will happily debate specifics till the cows come home but for me, well the galaxy is a big place, and a lot of stuff is not standardised due to it's size. As long as it makes sense in context any fluff source that hasn't been wholly retconned since can be considered "canon", my own personal take on canon in 40k being "This is what is believed by relevant experts in the setting" not necessarily what is "true" (Happily, this makes it easier for me to accept retconning as I can ascribe it to a simple shift in popular opinion)

As an example, the current "titan size" thread in the background section: Personally I see no reason why titans from different parts of the galaxy cannot be vastly different sizes, be it due to slightly different plans, changes in measurement systems over time(hell if we can't get this right from one continent to another how are we supposed to believe they hold true from one planet to another?), gut feeling of the designers, quality and availability of materials etc. not to mention titan size is probably something of a penile extension to ad mech, and bigger/faster/flashier is something they strive for (Human nature, gotta love it: Our god machine is better than your god machine...)
On the other hand ultramarines are always blue because that is their heraldry and they are only found in one place and only have one history, but love using propoganda to make sure everyone loves them...


Of course this point of view is of no use to people trying to find a definitve answer to titan sizes so they can build a titan, so I stay out of the debate myself, it's just a good example of how conflicting fluff can be simultaneously correct depending on personal taste and how well you can reconcile the conflict in your own head and in context with the setting.

narrativium
21-03-2009, 13:46
It is inconsistent. Some details clash. I think that's a wonderful aspect of the universe, in that it means there's great freedom to be creative, but I can understand that it can frustrate a great many people who want to state something definitive about the universe. Sure, it leads to the familiar arguments about "can there be female Marines" and so on... but then, just because the freedoms exist doesn't mean GW supports or endorses them or has to reflect them in its stories.

It's the "Darth Vader killed Anakin Skywalker" situation. Many of the statements are true, from a certain point of view. Those of you who believe the Ultramarines aren't the greatest Chapter, go right ahead. There are reasons to think so. There are reasons to think otherwise. I prefer to be one of those who tries to understand why some might think it is, or isn't, than be right about it.

Kuanor
21-03-2009, 22:50
"The greatest chapter" is subjective per definition because "great" is so.

If you read enough fluff sources you probably discover consistent peaces. You will also find, especially in newer codices, fluff, that willingly replaces old one and modify concepts. And than you will find (more often in WDs or in BL) things the author obviously not properly thought about, didn't know enough of the fluff "categories" described above or of what else reason wrote some crap or at least things, which, if they would be true, would terribly ruin the consistence of the fluff image.

Regarding this categorization it should be obvious which fluff I see as most suitable for being regarded as cannon.

Now, it is true that during the 2nd edition more attention was paid to this consistence. But there also is fluff of the second kind, which is willingly and advised been changed later.