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Post
31-07-2010, 11:07
The Emperor conquered the galaxy in just 200 years, any idea what sort of forces he did that with? How much of the galaxy did he actually conquer? Even if each Primarch conquered 10,000 worlds on average, that's still just 180,000 worlds, less than 20% of the Million plus worlds of the current Imperium.

And the Imperial Army was surely smaller than the current Guard, most of it was Terran, the Guard recruits from hundreds of Hive worlds, none of the current core Guard planets, Krieg, Cadia, Catachan, Ellysia were developed/conquered during the Crusade.

As for the Marines, currently we have over a million of them, to equal that, each of the legions must have had 56,000 marines on average.

The Imperial Fleet is a tricky one, the current Imperial probably has more docks and naval fortresses than the Crusade, the four Segementum capitals were just frontier worlds back then. Don't know about sheer number of ships, though.

Additionally, the Imperium has various Fortress worlds, far flung garrisons ect built up through 10,000 years of war, as well as the Deathwatch, Grey Knights, Sisters of Battles, and maybe the Arbites.

Shadowlance
31-07-2010, 13:09
Ok just a quick question; you’re not questioning the plausibility of the Imperium conquering the Galaxy in 200 years are you? Because if you are I have a rant still saved from the last thread which question that.

Now onto Numbers: D

It is stated that during the times of the Great Crusade the Imperium conquered nearly all of the galaxy (Save a fair portion of the rim which was left alone due to the whole issue of a certain traitor *cough* Horus *cough*) so we can assume that it is about 85-95% conquered. Through millenniums of turmoil, revolts, uprisings and subsequent Imperial reclamation crusades we can assume that the Imperium borders may have changed quite considerable, as to whether or not they have actually grown or shrunk I won’t go into.

Forces the Emperor used.

Ill start with the obvious, Space Marines.

The numbers of each legion varied greatly. From memory the Thousand sons were the smallest due to their geneseed instability (what with the mutating and all) they were 10,000 marines rough. While I remember reading somewhere that the average legion numbered roughly 100,000, and then we have the ultramarines that were triple the size of any legion due to their greater recruitment rate (So many smurfs). The legions themselves perhaps played the greatest part during the crusades acting as the greatest incentive to join (Protection behind human bunkers and what not) as well as the greatest deterrent against revolting against the Imperial expansion (Human bunkers once again). So not only their actual effective use on the battlefield but their use of the battlefield aided the expansion greatly (as most of the central worlds of the Galaxy folded with only the greatest standing longer than a day) Now days there are 1,000,000 marines, with only 9 remaining loyal and 3 (Possibly 4) taking something like 70% casualties during the heresy and the ultramarines going into overproduction post heresy before the legions dissolution into chapters it roughly comes out at 1,000,000 marines.

Guard

While it was true the starting power of the guard was nothing during the early days of the great crusade compared to the modern day Imperium that was only during the start. In fact during the start of the crusade it wasn’t even the guard, the official Imperial Guard was not actually founded until later in the crusade, until then it was more of a 'Legion Militia' more than anything. But as the expansion rolled on many of the worlds conquered or reclaimed were recruited from (Whether by conscription or musting of volunteers once again a topic I won’t go into). So by the end there was a truly vast number of Guard at the Emperors disposal, not to mention all of the forgeworlds reclaimed and created and all of the Titans and so forth they poured out.

World like Cadia and a few of the others however were most likely founded during this time, as Cadia is noted as having stood guard over the Eye of Terra for 10,000 years (not the best example as I do actually think it was founded post heresy but there are undoubtedly many other formed pre heresy). It may not be as strong as what the guard is today but then again 10,000 years of constant siege may shift the figures slightly.

Navy

The Imperial navy did start out small, but it got big quickly. Due to the Emperors ties with Mars and the many treaties as well, Mars was a major producers of Titans, weapons and ships for the crusades and still is today. As the Imperium expanded and took in many new territories, more resources and conscripted vessels that would have joined their ranks, and what with Mars having one of the best records of STC their ships were most likely better than any other human vessels they would have encountered. Not to mention that with the Emperor pushing scientific ideals once again this would have removed some of the religions dogma of the Mechanicus and sped up their improvement of designs during this period.

However compared to modern day Imperial fleets they still were comparatively small with it being recorded many times about the stresses on commanders due to a lack of naval support, most notably during the heresy when loyalist Marines were often cut down due to their lack of Naval support.

Garrisons, foreworld, spacebases ect, ect

Undoubtedly 10,000 years of war and imperial rule has granted 40,000 many, many more garrison worlds, forgeworlds and the like but never the less during the heresy with legions like the Imperial fists specialising in building fortresses many of the Crusade garrison world and Forgeworlds (Most notably around the Segmentum Solar were many still remain) were superior to 'modern' ones.



Hope this help, sorry for the text walls :D

Shadowlance:D

Tactical Retreat!
31-07-2010, 13:25
Considering the Imperium is on the brink of collapse it's probably a lot weaker now than during the Great Crusade.

burad
31-07-2010, 13:34
It's likely that there's a lot of unexplored space 'in between' the stops on the Astronomican Interstate Highway. Which the Mechanicus is probably doing the most to fill in, given their incessant quest for losttech.

Hellebore
31-07-2010, 13:40
The Horus heresy said they conquered 2 million planets. That's a very tiny portion of the galaxy.

The Imperium has never physically 'owned' most of the galaxy. Their sectors are full of chunks of empty space. They have a great PRESENCE throughout the galaxy, but they don't actually control much of it at all, either during the 31st or 41st millennia.

Hellebore

Post
31-07-2010, 15:11
My question is whether the Imperium has more forces now, as compared to 31K.

First of all, the Crusade army's strength was comprised mainly of troops from the core Imperial worlds surrounding Terra, whereas in 40k, worlds in the other Segmentae are just as, or more important, Krieg and Cadia most notably.

Also, Psykers. The Imperium has widespread use of psykers, while the Crusade barely used them.

Add to that the various Chamber Militant of the Inquisition. The Imperium now has it's Fortress Worlds, Arsenals and mothballed military stockpiles (which apparently include Grand Cruisers), and is otherwise massively entrenched.

How much of its current plight is due to lack of vision, crippling dogma and internal decay rather than decline of power? I'd like to think that the Imperium is now far more powerful than 10,000 years, if it had genius like that of the Primarchs back again at the helm, it would once more crush all before it.



The Horus heresy said they conquered 2 million planets. That's a very tiny portion of the galaxy.

2 million? Double the size of the Imperium in 200 years? That's 10,000 planets a year! How could you possibly expand at that rate? Imagine Monaco with 2 sq km expanding like that, by the end it'd have 400 million sq km, 4/5 of the land mass of the entire world. How would you secure that area? Integrate it? You'd have your starting pop. of 35,000 do all that?

Hellebore
31-07-2010, 15:16
Yes I know. The argument over whether it would be feasibly possible to actually conquer 10,000 planets a year has occurred many times. Generally the pro conquest people resort to 'Primarchs!' as their answer.

I think the current imperium does indeed have more men an materiel than it did in the past, well at least until towards the end of the crusade when all those planets should have been sending troop tithes to the front lines.

Hellebore

Wyrmwood
31-07-2010, 15:28
The Imperium has actually expanded since the Scouring, AFAIK. It is larger and more powerful now than it has ever been, but during those early years it faced no great singular threat, let alone the many it does now, and the Imperial forces were more focused and had momentum.

Clockwork-Knight
31-07-2010, 18:08
The Imperium has not expanded, it has regained a fraction of the worlds it had under control before the horus heresy, and continued to do so till they had at least half of the worlds that were brought into the guiding hands of the emperor.

Tactical Retreat!
31-07-2010, 18:35
The Imperium has not expanded, it has regained a fraction of the worlds it had under control before the horus heresy, and continued to do so till they had at least half of the worlds that were brought into the guiding hands of the emperor.

That, and the 5th Ed. Rulebook makes it pretty clear that their military is stretched to the breaking point, with commanders all over the Imperium "calling for reinforcements that do not exist".

Kage2020
31-07-2010, 19:16
Which seems a bit strange, all things considered. Perhaps they should upgrade their tactics to something that comes out of the 21st century rather than the 18th/19th? ;)

Kage

Karl MkVI
31-07-2010, 19:44
2 million? Double the size of the Imperium in 200 years? That's 10,000 planets a year!

yes, but look at it like this; Horus Rising tells us that there are over 4,000 expedition fleets (not exactly sure how many; I dont have the book with me) by the point at which that book is set. now, I understand that this number has obviously grown over the 200 years, but lets average it out between 0 and 4,00 fleets; equalling 2,000.

10,000 worlds a year, divided by 2,000 fleets, equals 5 worlds per fleet per year. now think how many worlds would be uninhabited. it's achievable.

this is veeeery rough, of course; I accept that. but if one considers it? it is possible.

and the Imperial forces would have been far stronger in the time of the Great Crusade, imo. otherwise, they wouldnt be under so much pressure now; there were some serious threats back then, but until the Heresy began, humanity was kicking butt left right and centre, on twice as many worlds.

discuss... :)

Post
01-08-2010, 03:14
A sense of lost grandeur and gradual decay is central to the setting. I dunno, there are examples of large areas of space being conquered throughout the setting, only a few are explicitly new, like the Calixis sector, how much of the rest is reconquest?


10,000 worlds a year, divided by 2,000 fleets, equals 5 worlds per fleet per year. now think how many worlds would be uninhabited. it's achievable.

It isn't just conquest. You'd need to leave a garrison on each world, lessening the forces available to attack the next, you'd need to setup/augment their government, you'd need to divert resources to protect your conquests from attack, ect ect. With each step forward, you are spreading your forces ever thinner.

SlightlyEstranged
01-08-2010, 03:31
One thing that should be remembered though is that at that time the Emperor was there. As only one man he could only be in one place at a time but with psychic 'glamour' could he not have won over the hearts and minds of those that he conquered previously?

DarthMcBob
01-08-2010, 03:53
That, and the 5th Ed. Rulebook makes it pretty clear that their military is stretched to the breaking point, with commanders all over the Imperium "calling for reinforcements that do not exist".

You know, that part always bugged me. I know the game is GRIMDARK! and the Imperium, Eldar, and anyone else who you could vaguely sympathize with must be DOOMED!, but that strikes me as a very poor way to go about it. Think about it. Assuming that the Imperium's average population per planet is roughly the same as modern day earth's, with a corresponding birthrate, there should be ridiculous numbers of people available for fighting for the Emperor. The only things I could ever even buy as a threat are the Tyranids, Necrons, and Orks, due to their similar jaw-dropping numbers. Their enemies besides that are: The Chaos Space Marines (deadly, but their numbers are minuscule on a galactic scale), Eldar (the same, plus the Tyranids just wiped out one of their big Craftworlds for the Imperium), Dark Eldar (one city, and don't even attack Imperial armies, only helpless civilians), and Tau (don't even make me laugh, their own codex admits they could be squahed like a flee when the Imperium bothered to get around to it). According to the Necron codex, many Necron lords have gone insane from millions of years of confinement and won't obey the C'tan. So they're not unified. The Orks most certainly aren't. So I'd have to say the biggest threat is the Tyranids under the Hive Mind, but that's fine because I play them anyway. :D

While I'm thinking of logistics, I'm wondering how the Traitor Legions still even exist. How do they recruit? The only place that could even be considered mildly safe for them is the Warp, and there's no guarantee that a daemon won't show up to collect on its end of the bargain. Their worlds are way too harsh to ever have any population of regular humans. So how do they go about getting humans, putting them through the trials, converting them to Chaos, and convincing the new Space Marine why he shouldn't put a bolt in the back of their heads? In particular, how do the World Eaters still exist when they're not anything close to a united force and are absolutely blood crazy? How do they restrain themselves from murdering the aspirants when such a thing is anathema to their god?

Iracundus
01-08-2010, 04:07
You know, that part always bugged me. I know the game is GRIMDARK! and the Imperium, Eldar, and anyone else who you could vaguely sympathize with must be DOOMED!, but that strikes me as a very poor way to go about it. Think about it. Assuming that the Imperium's average population per planet is roughly the same as modern day earth's, with a corresponding birthrate, there should be ridiculous numbers of people available for fighting for the Emperor. The only things I could ever even buy as a threat are the Tyranids, Necrons, and Orks, due to their similar jaw-dropping numbers. Their enemies besides that are: The Chaos Space Marines (deadly, but their numbers are minuscule on a galactic scale), Eldar (the same, plus the Tyranids just wiped out one of their big Craftworlds for the Imperium), Dark Eldar (one city, and don't even attack Imperial armies, only helpless civilians), and Tau (don't even make me laugh, their own codex admits they could be squahed like a flee when the Imperium bothered to get around to it). According to the Necron codex, many Necron lords have gone insane from millions of years of confinement and won't obey the C'tan. So they're not unified. The Orks most certainly aren't. So I'd have to say the biggest threat is the Tyranids under the Hive Mind, but that's fine because I play them anyway. :D

There are several inaccuracies in your assessment of some of the races.

The Craftworld Eldar while not numerous on the galactic scale know a lot of ancient sites and have artifacts. In the Tyranid Codex, it describes how the Eldar are taking to incinerating entire worlds to deny them to the Tyranids. So the Eldar still have a few tricks up their sleeves. Also their entire policy is based on steering the future through targeted actions in the present. A small seemingly inconsequential raid or assassination may prevent a war in the future. However, humans, both in the Imperium, and in real life are not very good at noticing prevented events (ie things that do not happen), so the true success of Eldar actions can be less obviously gauged.

The Dark Eldar while preferring to target civilians, also are listed in the BRB as raiding and crippling a major Segmentum shipyard and naval base. These attacks on the logistical side do pose a threat because they erode the ability of the Imperium to resupply and face other threats.

The Tau while militarily a minor power on the galactic scale, are more dangerous for their ideology. Imperial regiments and worlds defecting to the Tau along their border is one thing, but in addition it is the perception that secession is possible to get away with that is more dangerous and may breed more rebellions among those far flung Eastern Fringe worlds, particularly if they feel they've been abandoned by the Imperium. This theme was highlighted before in the 4th edition rulebook and SM Codex which described the Imperium stripping the Eastern Fringe of troops to reinforce the Eye of Terror against the ongoing 13th Black Crusade.

The Necrons, though now recently described as more broken up into individual factions and with some possibly deranged Lords, still have all the various technological gadgets yet to be brought out from their tombs. There also remain an unknown number of Necron warriors still in stasis so the true numerical strength of the Necrons is unknown.

The Chaos Space Marine Legions are backed up by the mutant and cultist forces collectively called the Lost and the Damned, plus have the option of daemonic assistance. Their numbers are far larger than just a few Marines. Combined with the renegade fleet assets at their disposal, they still pose a significant threat, particularly with the success of the 13th Black Crusade, which has resulted in Abaddon being outside the Eye of Terror with a now repaired and once more functional Planet Killer. In its attempts to deal with this, the Imperium has ended up having to make sacrifices on other fronts.



While I'm thinking of logistics, I'm wondering how the Traitor Legions still even exist. How do they recruit? The only place that could even be considered mildly safe for them is the Warp, and there's no guarantee that a daemon won't show up to collect on its end of the bargain. Their worlds are way too harsh to ever have any population of regular humans. So how do they go about getting humans, putting them through the trials, converting them to Chaos, and convincing the new Space Marine why he shouldn't put a bolt in the back of their heads? In particular, how do the World Eaters still exist when they're not anything close to a united force and are absolutely blood crazy? How do they restrain themselves from murdering the aspirants when such a thing is anathema to their god?

The CSM recruit from the various worlds in the Eye of Terror as detailed in the 2nd edition Chaos Space Marine Codex. They recruit from the masses of slave warriors that fight for the Chaos gods. In this sense they are little different from loyalist SM that recruit from savage, feral or wartorn planets.

Karl MkVI
01-08-2010, 14:55
It isn't just conquest. You'd need to leave a garrison on each world, lessening the forces available to attack the next, you'd need to setup/augment their government, you'd need to divert resources to protect your conquests from attack, ect ect. With each step forward, you are spreading your forces ever thinner.

yes, but every inhabited world conquered brings millions more potential recruits per generation (remember, we're talking five or six generations over 200 years), a number that increases exponentially as the Crusade goes along.

Lupe
01-08-2010, 17:24
A little bit of a personal opinion here

The Imperium as we know it today - the behemoth that covers most of the galaxy - is pretty much the same as it was at the end of the Great Crusade.

Now, obviously, I doubt that it's possible to go from a single planet empire - and not a very advanced one, compared to the other human worlds we see in the Horus Heresy - to dominating the galaxy within 200 years. So I, in all honesty, chose to think of the first year of the Great Crusade as the year when the Imperium finally managed to secure the Segmentum Solar, and launch its first expedition outside of it.

This would pretty much explain where they got the initial manpower required for such an undertaking, how they managed to have any supply lines at all, and how they tackled the lot of other problems that invading armies face.

Idaan
01-08-2010, 17:32
I think what people are missing is that:
1. The Fall of the Eldar was right before the Great Crusade, leaving galaxy in the state of power vacuum into which various species were just starting to expand. None of the alien races or human dominions we see in HH books, while advanced and dangerous in their own right, seem to have more territory, population or industrial power than, say, Tau.

2. It requires less manpower to attack then defend, unless we're talking fortified positions. Certainly, the worlds of the modern Imperium are anything but fortified, and the vagaries of Warp travel make it possible for the enemies to attack anywhere, not only on the borders. Moreover, there are numerous xeno empires and wild space regions within the Imperium, so they can't just defend frontier worlds.

3. As a result, the Imperium never faced any kind of unified opposition that would equal its full might. They could almost always choose the time and place of their attack and if any campaign proved too hard for the expedition, they could just draw reinforcements from more peaceful fronts. Conversely, right now I'd say the might of the Imperium equals the might of all its opponents and it can't afford to move its forces around freely.

4. There were no Tyranids, no Necrons, no Tau and the Eldar were still reeling from the Fall (at least they should be, but HH writers have no idea when the Fall was). One could argue that all minor Xeno races that nibble at the Imperium in M41 (Hrud, Xenarch, Q'orl, Tarellians, Scythians etc) were the ones that proved too strong to eradicate during the Crusade, and if anything, they've grown in power since then.


That's why I argue that the largest Space Marine legion, the Ultramarines, was 25,000 strong, not 250,000 (that figure was probably originally a typo in HH artbook). But there are people who prefer the largest figures, even though it makes little sense that two nominally equal formations would be 250x different in size and that UMs suffered 90% losses before the Second Founding and yet continued to exist as a coherent fighting force.