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Hellebore
21-08-2006, 13:45
What is it about the Squats that killed them?

I'm speaking from a game perspective of course, not the fluff reason (tyranids ate them).

The archetype was cited as a major reason by Jervis Johnson ie that it just didn't fit into the 40k universe.

The major contributors I see are these:


Dwarf culture with almost no change from Fantasy - at least the Eldar have an original and unique design.

Denigrating name. JJ's apt "What WERE we thinking?" certainly shows that they were never really taken seriously.

Bad theme. Biker dwarfs in quilted jackets et al made for a funny, rather than feasable race.


So why is it that the Squats in EPIC survived so well? Well, here we see less culture, and more technology. EPIC was a showcase where they could display the technological differences between the Imperium and the Squats, which resulted in a distinctive style of play and an interesting army.

Why do I ask? I am thinking of attempting a 'reboot' of the abhumans, an attempt to retain the core cultural identifiers whilst losing the trashy unnessary and lets be honest, rather inane background they acrued.

I know the Demiurg have been given as a replacement for the Squats, but I see them more as a new race with dwarfish archetypes rather than a true replacement.

So what do YOU think the background of the squats needed, in order to make it viable in the present 4th generation of the 41st millenium?

Hellebore

archonbrujah
21-08-2006, 13:57
I think what really killed the Squats from a rules perspective was the MV 3. With the switch to a uniform movement rate, the main in game defining charateristic of squats was gone.

Also, they did not seem to fit in well with the dark atmosphere of 40K. Even in epic, why would a race capable of building anti grav make giant dirigibles?

I actually like the Squats, still have my army and may someday try to use them as a "counts as" army. But I never expect to see GW support them, or even the Demiurg as a viable full race.

But it wouldn't have killed them to make a WD article on using Squats as auxiliaries for the Tau or IG.

What could have been added to give them some staying power? Rules wise, not much would have been needed. Fluff wise, having them refer to themselves with pride as something other then squats, more gritty darkeness to the race after many of the homeworlds get eaten by the bugs, and remove that racial hatred of Orks, to replace it with hatred for bugs. That would have brought them away from the Dwarf archetype some. Perhaps as allies to the Admech?

Archonbrujah

librerian_samae
21-08-2006, 13:59
I would have concentrated upon the mining/technological aspects of the squats,
as well as add in a extreme 'clanish-ness'.
Change it so they are a few surviving mining famillys from the DAOT that have only just managed to cling onto their survival by scraping a misreble living from the varios asteriods and planetoids they live around.

Drop the silly bikers in space motif.

add in a helthy dose of dark cyberpunk and make them in to a culture of itternarent minners trading along the outskirts of the imperium.

Add in large lumbering vehicles and sturdy pondering walkers.

This helps keep some of the traditional Dwarf feel-
strong familly bonds
love of tech
and travelling artisans


Basicly GW seem to be doing this with the demiurg, I do hawever think they should have just reimagined the squats like this.

As for the name I have no idea, as I was always rather fond of the name 'sqauts'

Goq Gar
21-08-2006, 14:08
The squats? o_O space dwarves!?

Could someone link me to some of this stuff? Ive never heard of this!

Fal
21-08-2006, 14:28
http://www.student.tue.nl/t/j.c.a.v.d.werf/Warhammer/Bible/Alien%20Races.htm#The%20Squats

See your PM`s :angel:

Colonial Rifle
21-08-2006, 14:37
In many ways, I never saw what was so terribly wrong with the original RT era squats; they had some strong fluff (clans, merc-style military organization & a different view of technology) and the army list was well thought out with adaptable Combat squads. It was certainly much better than the RT era Tyranid list. Ok, so some of the minis were bad, but you could say that of other RT era armies (looking at nids again!).

They would need a creative 'hook', probably something to do with mining. I'd like to see them somewhere between IG and Marines in terms of toughness and have access to heavy Imperial robots, just like the good old days! My wish list:

Warlord/heathguard: think Nobz mob in terms of upgrades

Living Ancestor: come on, we have got to have this guy! Maybe hooked up to some sort of life support system?

Combat squads: traditional dwarf stats armed with flak + lasgun. However, they can be upgraded to bolters + carapace. Count Heavy bolters as special and heavy weapon choice, so you can have 2. This should cost you a fortune though.

Exo-armour: yes please :)

Mole Mortar: like a current mortar, but good. Bigger template.

Imperial Robots: yeah! Maybe mining bots, so stick drills on them.

Some sort of crawler vehicle with big wheels. Lots of small arms on it.

Xisor
21-08-2006, 15:03
I'm far more of a revisionist with my Demiurg thoughts. But since I almost always favour the Squats and Demiurg as being distinct/discrete/coexistant entities, I'll detail as best I can here:

Squats's Defining Features
- Abhuman, but still largely human
- Dwarf 'looking', lots of beards, axes and hammers
- Grudges
- Ancestors
- Mining
- STC Tech, and a good grasp to innovate where the rest of the STC fails
- A bit less gothic, but still very mercantile.
- Like humanity, they have girls and boys, and clans, and families and love and hate.
- Squats still do the fighting themselves. There's a distinctively active war/hatred aspect of them.
- Very dwarfen.

[Xisor-Style]Demiurg Defining Features
- Alien
- They have alien thoughts and alien feelings.
- High-tech(vastly superior to STC-grade works, not as good as 'High-Eldar' technology, but far superior to Humanity's)
- Alien 'personality', there's no "Yaargh I'm a drunken Demiurg!" nor is there "you stood on my great grandpappy's toe and now I'm here to destroy your planet"
- Intuitive of own accord, 'super-human' intellect
- Old. Impossibly old. [ :rolleyes: , see final note for explanation]
- Gothically mercantile. You *could* hire some of them to exterminate a planet, if you had the money. Then again, you may just ask the Brotherhood that has *other* plans for that planet, so they exterminate you...as you're competition.
- Not neccessarilly a 'good' race, but generally one of 'order'.
- They have Brotherhoods, but they're not brothers. They're a single-sex race, or at least their reference is. You wouldn't reference a Demiurg as 'he' or 'she', it's an 'it'. It'd refer to itself as 'One', or 'We'.
- Solitary. They're not really big fans of going and getting drunk.
- They rely/utilise extensively on automisation. Drones, robots, AIs, etc. Lots of it. Their armies, for example, would be massive stompy/rolling/floaty things larger than baneblades, yet anything smaller or doing 'the dirty work' would more often than not be a smaller drone or robot, not a Demiurg.
- Like squats, they can be extremely aggressive, but it's not a 'human' aggressiveness. It's an alien desire to obliterate, to exterminate something. It's typically reserved for Orks and Tyranids...



Human After All

An interesting thought I had the other day was this:
- Squats die out
- Demiurg exist
- Demiurg weren't really seen when Squats were about, but Demiurg pre-date Squats in the history books. Squats are abhuman, but for all intents and purposes Demiurg are very much alien(physiologically, psychologically, biologically etc).

Proposal:
When the Squats were being exterminated in the Deep Core when the Tyranids came, a few of them developed a sort of super-temporal-stasis device designed to hold them until after the Tyranids pass. The test of it was largely unsuccessful, disappearing and taking half a dozen Squats with it. The Tyranids procede to wie out the Homeworlds, the majority of the Squats across the galaxy having returned to the Deep Core were eliminated as they tried to defend the homeworlds.
Unbenownst to the final dying Squats, those half dozen Squats who died in the super-temporal-thing, were actually transported millions of years. Into the past*. The Demiurg are their descendents, but it's been a long time.

* After the War in Heaven? During? Before?

I think it's almost the perfect opportunity to introduce time travel in a very interesting and meaninful way. It realistically allows an almost clean slate for the Demiurg, but also deals squarely with the end of the squats. It also doesn't detract at all from my above proposed defining features.

Hellebore
21-08-2006, 15:23
That's a very interesting concept for the existence of the Demiurg there Xisor.

I am also of the opinion that they are distinct from one another, that the Demiurg, despite their superficial 'squat' similarities, are very different.

However, I think in some ways it sort of denigrates the demiurg by explaining their existence via timetravelling squats.

I would prefer two distinct, seperate factions rather than one that is sort of the other.

But your list certainly provides a good account of both groups.

The one thing I think the Squats suffered, was a sort of blending that didn't work. They were supposed to be humans, yet weren't.

The squats were merely abhumans that developed away from the madness of the Age of Strife.

At the moment, I have ideas to incorporate the whole insular 'dwarfish' aspect, with the high tech et al via isolationism.

My concept is basically that the 'Squats' (or what ever I decide to call them) are the oldest human colonists in the galaxy, and think of themselves as the only 'true' humans left. The clannish insular nature is due to this racial belief.

In addition, they maintain at least parts of the STC, as they were the first to leave terra with it, and they understand technology better due to this.

Trying to make humans dwarfs, but humans, but dwarfs I think distorted their image.

If however, you apply the psychological ideosyncracies of dwarfs to genetically modified high gravity human colonists, you simply get a dwarfish human culture.

As an interesting aside, the Ancestor Lords I see as a genetic anomally that occurred due to the tampering their ancestors did to make the race more suited to the Core. The result was that psychic ability only shows itself after a certain age, and the extended lifespan and peculiarities of the physiology of squats results in stable, if less potent human psykers.

Basically, this would be a non Imperial human culture without the superstition, an understanding of and access to, humanities golden age technology (or at least sections), who happen to be around the height of a tau (maybe a bit shorter), who are extremely dense muscularly, to aid in locamotion of high G worlds, and whose only body hair grows on their face for the male, and the back of the head for the female (so bald men, and barefaced women).

Hellebore

Psiweapon
21-08-2006, 15:39
Wow guys those are some really neat ideas for squats and Demiurg, congrats on you :D

The idea of demiurg being time traveller Squats is good too, but... it should be HINTED, not given right away. To make space for conspiracy theorists claiming they're time traveller squats, and more down-to-earth players saying that's nonsense.

Khaine's Messenger
21-08-2006, 15:41
So what do YOU think the background of the squats needed, in order to make it viable in the present 4th generation of the 41st millenium?

The Squats were perhaps the epitome of the Imperium's double standards and the notion of an empire of empires (now all you have is Ultramar and its Space Marines--booooring!). Beyond their reduced stature, Squats were in the unique position of being a "race" of beings who were strongly tied to the Imperium of man while simultaneously looking down upon it in bemusement and a vague feeling of superiority (especially those rambling AdMech priests), and with good reason. It is perhaps the loss of the Squats that has led to a certain upswing in general Imperial tech level, primarily because there's not much human tech to compare any more.

Which is why, imho, if the Tyranids hadn't annihilated them, the Adeptus Mechanicus and the Inquisition would have found a way to screw them over, allies or no, especially since the Squats had no real place on any of the Imperium's ruling councils. The Squats' mercantile interests may have been the only thing preventing such a plan from rolling into place...and then came the Tyranids. How fortuitous. The grudges coming from that could fill a library, and one could radically alter the Squat list to almost anything after that background-shattering event.

But now that the Homeworlds are well and truly reduced to lifeless shells, I'm sure there are Inquisitors and AdMech personnel scrambling to comb over them for anything salvageable, Squats off in the distance being pumped for information, etc. etc. That's the biggest tragedy of the Squats--the absolute abruptness with which the thread was cut with no real explanation or elaboration. Just as Macharius dictated--erasing his opponents from the pages of history.

Xisor
21-08-2006, 16:10
Wow guys those are some really neat ideas for squats and Demiurg, congrats on you :D

The idea of demiurg being time traveller Squats is good too, but... it should be HINTED, not given right away. To make space for conspiracy theorists claiming they're time traveller squats, and more down-to-earth players saying that's nonsense.

Exactly. So, all we need to do is set up two accounts and *nothing* else:

- Inquisitor, Archaeoxenan, Explorator or 'someone else' coming across the records of a dead-world Squat facility in the Deep Core, with a recording/transcript/whatever, of the final squat experiment.
- Otherwise have the Demiurg show up as 'fully closed helm', generally with an 'odd' physiology[squat semi-humanoid] and assorted 'unpindownable' things. By having the Demiurg rely *very* heavily on automation, it makes it *exceptionally* plausible that you're unlikely to be able to just 'study' a Demiurg after killing it. Maintain as little as possible except references to the ancientness of the Demiurg, but few details of their origins.

Sounds about right. It reconciles my (or many other varied) views of the Demiurg with the possibility of a nice looping back plotloop that was intentional!

I'm also keen on seeing the Demiurg as having access to a 'bit' of Temporal Technology, but not very refined...alot like the Eldar, and like a very 'crude' version of the C'tan and Necrons. Once you all see Version 4 of my Demiurg Compendium, you'll understand how I mean to illustrate this.

Not only that, but it also ensures the Demiurg and Squats are distinct and viable *at the same time*, other versions, including a popular one circulating Epic that simply jumbles[if skillfully, but not to my tase] the Demiurg and Squats all together under the title of Demiurg, but the rough History of the Squats simply do not. By making the Demiurg a distinct 'after', or complete replacement for the title Squat. I don't like that. It's *too* revisionist.

Best of all, they don't need to be as I described under 'Human After All', but I think it's, as said, an interesting conspiracy idea. Interestingly enough, the idea came to me when listening to Daft Punk's "Human After All", and suddenly having the vision of a 'potential' out there, stuck lost in time and space...

Xisor

PS It also harks back to the old Portent Conversations about the Demiurg utilising Chronoweapons and things, which I think'd be an exceptionally interesting approach. Even more than that, it allows the Demiurg a way of tying themselves to the history, but still being a minor enough player(ie non-Eldar, non-Necron, non-Old One, non-C'tan) to get through history relatively unscathed...like the Orks and Hrud.

PPS: I feel KM touched upon a great point. It feels that, to me, the time is coming where GW can say "Yeah, we mishandled the Squats. But they're not coming back. We will, however, give them a memorial, and elaborate on their demise". An Inquisitor campaign based around that would be, IMO, awesome.

Sai-Lauren
21-08-2006, 16:21
IMO, if you kept the squats, you've got the issue of there being this high-tech part of a tech-worshipping imperium, and no matter how insular, proud, or even useful they may be, the imperium would send them a present of several marine chapters and half the titan legions to procure anything they were withholding.

So, I would say to bring them back, have them as the lone surviving clan worlds of the original squat worlds, who're angered by the imperium leaving their brethren to their fate (for whatever reason), and have split themselves off. Let them take that name for their racial name, kind of saying "who we were is dead, this is who we are now".

Add the hatred of Eldar and Orks from the original rules, Chaos for forsaking their own oaths of alliegance, and more than likely causing the Tyrannids to attack them, and you're probably about there.

Xisor, time travel? Different for a 40k race, I suppose.

Malphax
21-08-2006, 16:31
I remember seeing a post from one of the GW design team about the death of the Squats on another forum somewhere, but his was months ago and I can't cite the source.

It began when they started to make the codices for each of the races to give them more of a space for special rules and such, rather than having hundreds upon hundreds of pages of army lists and background in the main rulebook. When the time came to make the Squats codex, none of the designers could really get into the idea of the Squats, so it stagnated. At that point they'd just imported several of the Fantasy races directly into RT, but they didn't feel the fluff fit into the universe very well, but most importantly they couldn't put the attention into the Squats that they felt they deserved. But they let the Squats limp on, and instead of getting rid of them entirely when 2nd Edition came out, they just left them alone. However, they eventually decided to abandon them completely because not a single member of the design team felt the "new army excitement" that always goes with the design of a new codex. They couldn't very well support a race that they couldn't bring themselves to write a codex for, so they wrote them out of the universe, which according to this guy should have been done before 2nd Edition so there wouldn't be so many angry Squats players, and they viewed the continued existence of the Squats to be a very big mistake.

It didn't have anything to do with poor sales, as the Squats miniatures sold just fine. It was a design decision to correct the many mistakes with the Squat army, the first of which was pulling an army straight out of Fantasy without considering whether it would fit into the new setting they'd created.

Hellebore
22-08-2006, 04:06
IMO, if you kept the squats, you've got the issue of there being this high-tech part of a tech-worshipping imperium, and no matter how insular, proud, or even useful they may be, the imperium would send them a present of several marine chapters and half the titan legions to procure anything they were withholding.

So, I would say to bring them back, have them as the lone surviving clan worlds of the original squat worlds, who're angered by the imperium leaving their brethren to their fate (for whatever reason), and have split themselves off. Let them take that name for their racial name, kind of saying "who we were is dead, this is who we are now".

Add the hatred of Eldar and Orks from the original rules, Chaos for forsaking their own oaths of alliegance, and more than likely causing the Tyrannids to attack them, and you're probably about there.

Xisor, time travel? Different for a 40k race, I suppose.

This was what I was thinking too.

One of the problems with having the nids wipe them out is EVERY SINGLE homeworld is lifeless ball of rock, with little to no atmosphere.

What could the nids have found so enticing they didn't stop consuming the entire core?

Thus we enter with the fact that, yes they DID stop, and yes SOME of the squats DID survive, and YES they are REALLY, REALLY, PISSED at the Imperium, for a multitude of reasons, (many of which were presented by Khaine's Messenger).

As for time travel, I'd like to think that only the warp can cause people to shift in time. I 'm not sure I like the idea of time travel in 40k, because if it is conciously possible, you get a wargame where everyone has the potential to go back in time and erase their enemies.

Hell, the Eldar could go back in time and prevent the Fall. All of which would form a time paradox, and I think GW has enough problems keeping their fluff straight without introducing THAT too :p


So basically, my concept runs like this:

Golden Age/Dark Age of Technology - humans colonise the Core.

Age of Strife - the warp storms of Slannesh's birth cut them off, and splinter factions of humans raid along their borders.

Age of Strife - After a while, no human ships appear, and suddenly, a huge Waaagh! smashs through the Core. Many are killed, and by the end few are standing.

The Great Crusade - Emissaries are sent to rediscover human worlds, and find the 'squats' - only to be told to bugger off because they no longer trust the degenerate humans roaming the galaxy.

The Great Crusade - Emissary returns with Marines, and the 'Squats' 'accept' imperial rule.

The Horus Heresy - The 'Squats' take this opportunity to seccede from the Imperium, again proven the degenerate nature of what they see as Abhumans when the Emperor's own fight against him.

The Age of the Imperium - After the Heresy, the Imperium has not the strength to reconquor the Core (whilst the 'Squats' have built up their military substantially) so an informal non agression pact is signed, where both groups would fight 'in common cause' against interlopers.

The Reign of Blood - The 'Squats' unobtrusively expand their borders into the Segmentum Ultima.

The Reign of Blood - Several Ork Waaaghs! are redirected into the Core as armies on both sides of the Schism fight across sectors. The 'Squats' far well, despite suffering a huge shortage in manpower.

The Devourer cometh - The Inquisition, long intolerant of the 'Empire' of abhumans rotting at the heart of the Imperium, utilise a modified form of Kryptman's Tactica Ultima, producing a corridor of scorched planets through which a Tyranid splinter fleet passed. The destruction they wrought brought the 'Squat' League to its knees. With grim fatalism the 'squats' fought to the last. Unfortunately for the Inquisition, the homeworlds were low in life and organic matter in general, so as the fleet moved further in, it continued to weaken. Sensing its demise, what was left of the Hive Mind attempted to cut across the Core and into the Ork held worlds to the galactic north.

The 'Squats' bowed, humbled, but not broken emerge from the shattered hulks of their Sanctuaries. Their race almost extinct, their infrastructure smashed, and their belief in the duplicity of the humanoids of the Imperium yet again proven, they gird themselves for war, and attempt to rebuild what was lost.

Meanwhile, the Inquisition and the Adeptus Mechanicus set in motion plans to move into the Core and reclaim all technologies not destroyed by the Tyranid invasion. The 'squats' were destroyed, and now the Emperor can reclaim what was rightfully His.



I like the idea that the Squats have literally been on a war footing for close to 15,000 years, from raiders to orks, to more raiders and finally the nids, they have not had a moments peace. This then explains their fatalistic resolve, the hatred of many races, their distrust of the mutant impure forms of humanoid that control the Imperium, and how it was they were finally laid low.

All this, and not a single mention of beer, bikes, leather, or even Grugni!

Hellebore

Colonial Rifle
22-08-2006, 08:54
Lots of good work here. Malphax - good summary of Jervis' piece. I agree it was a design decision to kill Squats, NOT poor sales. I had squats when I was playing RT and so did my gaming friends - the only squats that filled up the bargain bins were the ill-conceived chaos squats. The design team ran out of ideas in 2nd edition and basically turned them into full-on 'Dwarves in space' with 'Cyber-slayers' and Thunderers, which was a great shame as their RT list/fluff was more distinctly 40k. It would be like picking up the new eldar codex today and seeing entries for 'hover chariots' and 'space dragon'.

Time traveling squats: interesting idea, my only thought is haven't we already got a race that kind of does this - the Hrud. It's been hinted that they are 'out of phase/time' with the current 40K universe. Otherwise, I think it would work.

Sai-Lauren
22-08-2006, 09:13
I remember seeing a post from one of the GW design team about the death of the Squats on another forum somewhere, but his was months ago and I can't cite the source.


Jervis Johnson himself, on the specialist games forums IIRC. ;)

Xisor
22-08-2006, 15:13
@Hellebore mainly,

Don't worry, the proposal isn't that the Squats/Demiurg become the effective 'proto-Time Lords' of 40k, butjust that in very much a Deus Ex Machina, a handful escaped, through time. We already *have* time technology: Stasis Technology plus the C'tan are lords/above of Natural Law, and it is alluded to them making use of phasing in and out of time(much like Hrud), but *not* in the sense that you can just 'drop back in time and stop the fall'. In this context it's not that the Squats went back in time, but fell back to a point where all they're future knowledge and knowledge of history was simply of no use whatsoever. They had to build it up for themselves. They already *were* a part of their own history, in this suggestion, as the Demiurg are noted as having traded with dozens of worlds on the eastern fringe for millenia(I'm sure it says that somewhere, I'm confident it wasn't me that made that bit up), but it's interesting to think the Demiurg/Squats simply didn't make the connection at that point. Now, when it comes to the point of the 41st Millenia, the Imperium is just discovering "Hey, the squats aren't where we left them. They're all gone..."

So, as you see, there needn't be worry about paradoxes...much...(proper time travel *should not* be introduced to 40k...it's too complex, for a protaganist or antagonist to be using, but to say *it has been used* is different)

The vast majority of them went to fight in the Core (interestingly enough, though the Homeworlds may not have been 'brilliant' consumables, there could have been rife in-fighting with Genestealer Cults, in both the Squats and the Orks who'd been fighting them for some millenia, which could explain why the Tyranids went after them, and why they were weak enough to more or less be wiped from history...), only a handful survived across the galaxy. Most likely *not* the warriors(who'd have went to fight), but those who were left behind or just unable to go to the core.

Xisor

Helicon_One
22-08-2006, 20:19
The Devourer cometh - The Inquisition, long intolerant of the 'Empire' of abhumans rotting at the heart of the Imperium, utilise a modified form of Kryptman's Tactica Ultima, producing a corridor of scorched planets through which a Tyranid splinter fleet passed. The destruction they wrought brought the 'Squat' League to its knees. With grim fatalism the 'squats' fought to the last. Unfortunately for the Inquisition, the homeworlds were low in life and organic matter in general, so as the fleet moved further in, it continued to weaken. Sensing its demise, what was left of the Hive Mind attempted to cut across the Core and into the Ork held worlds to the galactic north.

The 'Squats' bowed, humbled, but not broken emerge from the shattered hulks of their Sanctuaries. Their race almost extinct, their infrastructure smashed, and their belief in the duplicity of the humanoids of the Imperium yet again proven, they gird themselves for war, and attempt to rebuild what was lost.

Meanwhile, the Inquisition and the Adeptus Mechanicus set in motion plans to move into the Core and reclaim all technologies not destroyed by the Tyranid invasion. The 'squats' were destroyed, and now the Emperor can reclaim what was rightfully His.
Nice thought there, I'd had similar ideas but you've taken them up in more detail than I did, and its logical that the AdMech would sweep in and claim the Squats advanced technology for themselves. I like the idea that most of the surviving Squats are being used as slave labour in forgeworlds (important slaves, as they're the ones who know how the stuff works, but slaves nontheless) or have been inducted into Imperial Guard penal batallions (I keep meaning to write a fluff piece from the perspective of a Squat penal batallion).

In game terms, Jervis said that one problem was doing the Squats justice in 40K, whereas in Epic they were supported until quite late on because the scale allowed them to represent their huge and finely crafted warmachines, giving them a distinct feel that couldn't really be duplicated in 28mm. Its a shame Forgeworld didn't come about a few year earlier, because things like the Land Train and the Iron Eagle would have been doable, and could have been the spark to fire up some enthusiasm for the race that was lacking at the time.

Tim

Easy E
22-08-2006, 23:52
They are still perfectly viable in game terms. From a background perspective they can also easuily be resurrected.

Xisor (and others) is quite right to view the "squats" and Demiurg as completely distinct entities. He has all ready covered this topic well.

For some additional ideas about background and game play take a look in my sig under Reimagining an OOP race.

Limited use of Chrono-weapons could be a cool nitch for Demiurg. For example, stasis grenades, stasis field mines, temporal distortion beams, all things that do not kill the target but simply trap them.

I think I will stop rambling and stumbling around now.

Hellebore
23-08-2006, 06:55
One of the biggest problems comes from the name. Squats is so..... dumb. Obviously it's a derogatory term used by the Imperium, much like ratling.

But the 'squats' themselves know,and are, human. How does one differentiate them without coming up with some weird alien-esque sounding name for what is essentially a human culture?

Well, one way HUMANS differentiate each other is through nationalality/religion (eg Christian, or German etc).

So, I thought, what do they all have in common? They live in Strongholds (strongholdian sounds a bit daft) in the Core.

So at the moment, I'm thinking they would refer to themselves as Corians (opposing the Imperial Terran).

Thus they belong to the 'Corian League'.

Hellebore

Sgt Biffo
23-08-2006, 06:58
Bringing back the dead is called necromancy!

I for one wasn't upset to see the demise of the squats, for the same reasons of breaking away from Fantasy that JJ sited.

Maybe they could have a place in something like Inquisitor or the like but I'd not like to see them re-established as a 40k army.

I'd like to see new armies.

Hellebore
23-08-2006, 07:03
Bringing back the dead is called necromancy!

I for one wasn't upset to see the demise of the squats, for the same reasons of breaking away from Fantasy that JJ sited.

Maybe they could have a place in something like Inquisitor or the like but I'd not like to see them re-established as a 40k army.

I'd like to see new armies.

The idea is not simply to stick squats back into the game, but to reboot or reimagine them so that they don't disappear completely.

Many people have argued for an army that is humans from Non-imperial worlds.

I think the Squats (or Corians) would be ideal candidates for this, being as they understand technology, have access to advanced forms of it, and aren' overtly religious. Three things the Imperium really is not at the moment.

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
23-08-2006, 08:13
One of the biggest problems comes from the name. Squats is so..... dumb. Obviously it's a derogatory term used by the Imperium, much like ratling.

But the 'squats' themselves know,and are, human. How does one differentiate them without coming up with some weird alien-esque sounding name for what is essentially a human culture?

Well, one way HUMANS differentiate each other is through nationalality/religion (eg Christian, or German etc).

So, I thought, what do they all have in common? They live in Strongholds (strongholdian sounds a bit daft) in the Core.

So at the moment, I'm thinking they would refer to themselves as Corians (opposing the Imperial Terran).

Thus they belong to the 'Corian League'.

Hellebore

Last time this came up, someone gave them the name Asyr (or something similar), but I like Corian.

Hmm, Codex: Strongholds of The Corian. Has a nice ring to it.;)


Many people have argued for an army that is humans from Non-imperial worlds.

In fact, if you look at a lot of people's first army backgrounds, they tend to go for high tech, non-imperial cult worshipping humans.

Sound familiar? :)

Hellebore
23-08-2006, 08:40
Last time this came up, someone gave them the name Asyr (or something similar), but I like Corian.

Hmm, Codex: Strongholds of The Corian. Has a nice ring to it.;)


In fact, if you look at a lot of people's first army backgrounds, they tend to go for high tech, non-imperial cult worshipping humans.

Sound familiar? :)

Personally, I was thinking something like Codex: Corian League (like Tau Empire), but that's just down to personal preference.

I saw the aspects of the Squats as a way to do two things at once; reintroduce a faction obliterated by retcon, AND satiate the desires of those people who want a human army that does not belong to the Imperium.

Hellebore

Xisor
23-08-2006, 10:46
The problem with any such Corian League(has a nice ring to it!), is that the Core was, roughly speaking, wiped clean by the Tyranids, the Orks who presumably came about after them 'moving in', or the combined might of the Adeptus Mechanicus and Ordo Xenos as the discovered the Corians had popped their clogs.

If the Corian League was, rather than the New-age-Squat-Empire, in fact a sort of guerrilla/remnant organisation...The Corian Remnant also has a nice ring to it...Retcon may not be needed so much as saying "Some survived here's what happened"(with a play on the Demiurg also being possible survivors)

A good play could be made of the distinct similarities of the Demiurg/Corians, yet illustrate their differences at the same time.

Xisor

Hellebore
23-08-2006, 11:07
The problem with any such Corian League(has a nice ring to it!), is that the Core was, roughly speaking, wiped clean by the Tyranids, the Orks who presumably came about after them 'moving in', or the combined might of the Adeptus Mechanicus and Ordo Xenos as the discovered the Corians had popped their clogs.

If the Corian League was, rather than the New-age-Squat-Empire, in fact a sort of guerrilla/remnant organisation...The Corian Remnant also has a nice ring to it...Retcon may not be needed so much as saying "Some survived here's what happened"(with a play on the Demiurg also being possible survivors)

A good play could be made of the distinct similarities of the Demiurg/Corians, yet illustrate their differences at the same time.

Xisor

Yes, of course the Corian League is PRE Tyranid.

The Corian Shambles is probably more accurate:D for a modern setting.

As for the name, it sort of just popped in there (no marshmallows though:eek: ) and it seemed to fit without being too alien-esque/cheesy.

It's a nationality type name, rather than a racial one. The way I'm moving (as in, my opinion) is that the Corians believe themselves to be the only true humans, so it would seem a bit weird if they referred to each other as anything BUT human...

I like the idea that the Demiurg are a 'Chaos Dwarf' style army - they have few actual Demiurg, and high numbers of automated attack vehicles/robots et al.

With the Corians (I REALLY like saying that:cool: ) they would still be Infantry heavy, as the original squats were a sort of hybrid guard/marine force.

They would have a preponderance of technology, but not to the extreme the tau possess (I see 50%guard, 30%marine, 20%tau sort of composition technologically), whilst the Demiurg would be nothing but technology.

I like the idea that Demiurg sit at the back of the army and control their robots like a super-realistic computer game:p .

Not as corny as the stupid droid army from StarWars, but with a fairly high degree of automation. The Demiurg army would be fairly small, as all the robots would carry whole squads worth of weapons.

Hellebore

Sgt Biffo
23-08-2006, 13:16
The Corians might make good mercinaries for many existing armies. After all they wouldn't be pumped full of dogma and would be quite capable of maintainance of their equipment.

There would also be a way of fitting in some Imperial or even Xeno tech weapons (A return of the shurieken-cat as a special weapon option. Maybe even a pulse carbine or a big shoota.)

Perahps the Corian League is a loose sort of mercinary guild?



I think they'd have to be modeled a bit differently however. Short, fat guys with beards are what you meet at wargaming conventions, not in the grim darkness of the future where there is only war.:angel:

Hellebore
23-08-2006, 13:48
The Corians might make good mercinaries for many existing armies. After all they wouldn't be pumped full of dogma and would be quite capable of maintainance of their equipment.

There would also be a way of fitting in some Imperial or even Xeno tech weapons (A return of the shurieken-cat as a special weapon option. Maybe even a pulse carbine or a big shoota.)

Perahps the Corian League is a loose sort of mercinary guild?



I think they'd have to be modeled a bit differently however. Short, fat guys with beards are what you meet at wargaming conventions, not in the grim darkness of the future where there is only war.:angel:


Nice ideas.

Ironically, one of the original themes behind the squats involved supplying mercenaries when the Imperium didn't require a tithe (similar to the way in which the Kroot do business with the tau;) ) so the mercenary theme is certainly a fitting one.

As for image, I wanted a more subtle difference. Rather than simply adapt to living in mines (which evolutionarily won't work) I thought that some form of genetic altering would have taken place.

Similar to many a scifi universe, the concept of the heavy gravity worlder comes in. Someone who was engineered to survive on high G worlds would have a tougher more resilient frame. Couple this with adaption to low nutrient environments and you get a compact, well muscled humanoid capable of withstanding a great amount of punishment.

This would probably be a combination of slow metabolism, dense musculature and heavy skeleton, which would in turn cause a slower aging process.

The Corians would thus be slightly shorter, heavier set humans, that (something I decided) were hairless except for the face in males, and the cranium in females with a tougher physique and longer life.

As a side effect of this, any people that are genetically psykers only seem to manifest the power during advanced age, the side effect of which is they have better control of it, but not the fortitude to channel the amount of power younger, more spry individuals would

So, imagine a slightly wider than average human, about the height of a tau (or slightly shorter) with a bald head but the capacity to grow a beard (or plaits if female).

Not too much different from an 'ordinary' human, is it?

Hellebore

Easy E
23-08-2006, 22:51
Traditionally, Squats lived in Strongholds which could form together into leagues.

I agree that they would never refer to themselves as Squats. However, I don't think they would give themselves a racial identity either. I feel that they would simply refer to themselves with their Stronghold name.

In addition, I see their society also broken down into various clans that can trace their heritage to the original human miners. These various bloodlines would then be interspersed throughout the various Strongholds.

The third piece of "squat" identity would be their own family within a single stronghold. They would share a bloodline within that colony that they would use to identify themselves and Kin.

So, if a "Squat" was refering to themselves it would go something like this: Jorge from Argar (Stronghold) of Hendrix (Clan) of the line of Vlados (Family). Then other "squats" would know that the Argar Stronghold was a member of the Kapellian League.

Outsiders would probably refer to them by a variety of names, but the diplomatically accepted name could be something like "Clansmen" or Corians.

Brother Smith
24-08-2006, 00:49
One of the biggest problems comes from the name. Squats is so..... dumb. Obviously it's a derogatory term used by the Imperium, much like ratling.

But the 'squats' themselves know,and are, human. How does one differentiate them without coming up with some weird alien-esque sounding name for what is essentially a human culture?

Well, one way HUMANS differentiate each other is through nationalality/religion (eg Christian, or German etc).

So, I thought, what do they all have in common? They live in Strongholds (strongholdian sounds a bit daft) in the Core.

So at the moment, I'm thinking they would refer to themselves as Corians (opposing the Imperial Terran).

Thus they belong to the 'Corian League'.

Hellebore


'Corian' sounds dumb.

I'd prefer people to refer to them as the core strongholds.

And why do the men have to be bald?

So an Inquisitor might say 'the power of the strongholds is waning'

Khaine's Messenger
24-08-2006, 01:19
I'd suggest calling them the Gnostic Leagues, simply for the irony of Xisor's ideas based on the Demiurge and other possible connections. But then really, that's beside the main line of reasoning here.

As for engineering their stature...I'd rather leave it at minor evidence of direct tampering a la the AdMech report on the Tau. That way you can leave some of that sort of thing up in the air for origin stories and cultural development issues.

Hellebore
24-08-2006, 03:39
'Corian' sounds dumb.

I'd prefer people to refer to them as the core strongholds.

And why do the men have to be bald?

So an Inquisitor might say 'the power of the strongholds is waning'

And squat sounds better?:confused:

And you can't refer to an individual from an area as a "core Stronghold".

Easy E makes sense when he says that a 'squat' would refer to themselves by their Stronghold/clan/family et al.

The term 'Corian' was simply a catchall term like the term 'Imperial'. What does one call a group of people anyway?

And the problem with using Stronghold/clan etc is that if they have a RACIAL/National identity, they can't use the stronghold as the name, because there are too many of them (although maybe not anyone...).

Referring to the group as a whole, I suppose you could call them 'Leaguers' akin to 'Imperial'.

A human from the Imperium would probably introduce themselves in the following order (excepting the fact that talking to an alien would get them killed):

Familial Name, Human, Imperial, Planet of Origin
(Corbec, Human, Imperial, Tanith etc).

A Corian being different from an Imperial Human would have to explain:

Familial Name, Human, Corian, Stronghold

See Easy E's construction:


So, if a "Squat" was refering to themselves it would go something like this: Jorge from Argar (Stronghold) of Hendrix (Clan) of the line of Vlados (Family). Then other "squats" would know that the Argar Stronghold was a member of the Kapellian League.

This is fine when introducing oneself to someone who already knows WHAT you are, but does not help when trying to explain it someone who doesn't.

Why is it that all throughout GW's squat years, they were always referred to as SQUATS and not Core Leaguers?

Because it is a general label that applies to only a specific group of individuals. When yuo say 'Eldar' or 'ork' all the associated stereotypes are implied.

One is a racial name, and the other is a politicogeographic one.


I suppose a better question would be: DO 'squats' think of themselves as humans, or a completely different species?

In my reimagining they believe they ARE humans, and so a racial name is unecessary because they would refer to themselves as human.

If they do not, then they would have a name for themselves as a collective (even if, as Easy E shows, it wouldn't come up very much).

The term 'corian' is a National identity, and is in the same vein as 'Imperial'.

Of course, 'Leaguer' would work too (and Guilder).

It all comes down to a matter of taste, and the term SQUAT I refuse to use in anything other than a derogatory capacity.

hellebore

Sgt Biffo
24-08-2006, 05:28
'Corian' sounds dumb.

I'd prefer people to refer to them as the core strongholds.

And why do the men have to be bald?

So an Inquisitor might say 'the power of the strongholds is waning'



@hellebore- Your always going to get some one thats going to try to shoot you down for being creative.

"Sounds dumb" Yeah! Thats constructive criticism.

Avoiding the Strongholds as a name will help seperate these guys from the old squats. Most everything of the old Strongholds has been destroyed or abandoned.

Zzarchov
24-08-2006, 05:40
For good looking squat minis: The "Grymn" make good stand ins, and I like that style.

Rather than fix a bad concept, I think squats should have a complete revamp from the orks from 2nd to 3rd.

Zzarchovs Steps to respectable "Squats" (if you want abhumans still)

Step 1.) Rename, and blend with existing fluff/ Add to it

This is just a rough draft that came into my mind:

Codex: Stone Men

The "Squats" and all abhumans are the Stone Men of Ancient legend. Before the Golden Men (Ie normal humans) created the Iron men (AI robots) as their servents they created the Stone Men (Genetically modified humans ) to work as their servants. "Squats" were made as technicians, miners and other manually skilled trades, Ogryns for security and labour, Ratlings for initial farming before proper "Golden men" colonists would make planetfall. The Beastmen were some form of mistake.

While the Classic Human Empire fell during the Age of strife, many Stone men continued to live in abandoned facilities in industry and Mining worlds, naturally adept at maintaining them, And so they formed their own culture, their own civilization utilizing the STC's they were bred to maintain.

Some Stone Men formed empires..some planet wide, some System wide..a few comprised of several systems. But the Stone Men cannot utilize the warp safely, and so travel by Sub-light "Arks", progress is slow. Most Stonemen however are locked away in Facilities long since buried in the sands of time, sometimes with Imperial cities built over top of them unaware, causing problems when earthquakes or mining cause the two cultures to meet, sometimes a prosperous agri-world can be consumed when a subteranean race of mole people spills forth to conquer it.


Thats just my mental Diarhea there.

A list could feature allied Ogryns and Ratlings as fellow abhumans labourers, Alot of Imperial weaponry without all the religious Iconography. The General look of the Grymn.

Hellebore
24-08-2006, 06:19
For good looking squat minis: The "Grymn" make good stand ins, and I like that style.

Rather than fix a bad concept, I think squats should have a complete revamp from the orks from 2nd to 3rd.

Zzarchovs Steps to respectable "Squats" (if you want abhumans still)

Step 1.) Rename, and blend with existing fluff/ Add to it

This is just a rough draft that came into my mind:

Codex: Stone Men

The "Squats" and all abhumans are the Stone Men of Ancient legend. Before the Golden Men (Ie normal humans) created the Iron men (AI robots) as their servents they created the Stone Men (Genetically modified humans ) to work as their servants. "Squats" were made as technicians, miners and other manually skilled trades, Ogryns for security and labour, Ratlings for initial farming before proper "Golden men" colonists would make planetfall. The Beastmen were some form of mistake.

While the Classic Human Empire fell during the Age of strife, many Stone men continued to live in abandoned facilities in industry and Mining worlds, naturally adept at maintaining them, And so they formed their own culture, their own civilization utilizing the STC's they were bred to maintain.

Some Stone Men formed empires..some planet wide, some System wide..a few comprised of several systems. But the Stone Men cannot utilize the warp safely, and so travel by Sub-light "Arks", progress is slow. Most Stonemen however are locked away in Facilities long since buried in the sands of time, sometimes with Imperial cities built over top of them unaware, causing problems when earthquakes or mining cause the two cultures to meet, sometimes a prosperous agri-world can be consumed when a subteranean race of mole people spills forth to conquer it.


Thats just my mental Diarhea there.

A list could feature allied Ogryns and Ratlings as fellow abhumans labourers, Alot of Imperial weaponry without all the religious Iconography. The General look of the Grymn.



Those are some very cool ideas.:)

Certainly explains their genetic tampering. I like the way it's tied into the history of humanity, without contradicting existing fluff.

As an aside, can anyone think of a term fitting to call the 'squats', that ISN'T squat?

Khaine's Messenger has 'Gnostic League'
Easy E advocates the use of Stronghold names
I came up with Corian (for Core -ian)
Or Leaguer

Any other ideas that don't suck?

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
24-08-2006, 09:20
For good looking squat minis: The "Grymn" make good stand ins, and I like that style.
...

...
A list could feature allied Ogryns and Ratlings as fellow abhumans labourers, Alot of Imperial weaponry without all the religious Iconography. The General look of the Grymn.
Not only are they good models (see below), they have female soldiers as well, which a race that could well be on it's last legs would have to have, no matter what.

(I personally think Hasslefree have some of the best sculpts out there at the moment - even if they're not all PG-13, and their customer service is fantastic - not only do you get what you ordered, sometimes you get free pick'n'mix sweets as well :D.

Ok, I'll stop advertising for them now. ;))

As for names, I still like Corian (it's their name for themselves, remember, not the Imperial designation, which could still be Squats or whatever), but I can also see the attraction of having things like Clan or Stronghold names to sub-divide them - if nothing else, that way you can justify "blue-on-blue" games as inter-house/clan/hold/whatever rivalries.

And let's keep the C, it's bad enough having Krak grenades and missiles. :rolleyes:


A list could feature allied Ogryns and Ratlings as fellow abhumans labourers, Alot of Imperial weaponry without all the religious Iconography
And that kind of thing would potentially save a lot of new moulds (initially at least - I think they should have their own) if they can use some imperial equipment - maybe only needing an accessory sprue for things like iconography.

Although I think Ogryn/Ratling mercenaries or imperial renegades would be better than straight allies - which would of course potentially allow it to expand to have merc. humans as a part of the army (Rogue Traders may still be tolerated for trade purposes, for example, and some planetary governors and merchant houses may have old contracts or sympathies towards them, and trade with them for armaments etc, whilst some imperial rebellion movements and cults may do the same).

Question, is their equipment self-built (uniform, but requiring production facilities somewhere), or captured, repaired and put into service (easier, but more rag-tag in appearance)?

And I like the "Stone Men" idea as well.

Ravenwing
24-08-2006, 09:29
You could always call them some version of their original name based on the idea posted above.

So if they were originaly known as stone men then it would make sense to have some refferance to this in their modern name. So how about for stone man - calx vir. I know this is only pigeon latin but it adds the all important imperial feal to their name without making it too obvious where it came from.

Just a 2 second idea. It would be very cool to bring them back though and some of the ideas here are very impressive.

Raven

Hellebore
24-08-2006, 09:43
One of my reasons for their higher level of technology comes from more complete forms of the STC.

Being as they were the oldest colonists Terra sent out, they've had their technology sequestered away for ~20,000 years (to present day 41st). Being in the Core they were fairly isolated from the breakdown of the nacent human empire, mainly due to the interdependency developed amongst the Strongholds/clans because of the lack of necessities like food. That kind of 'Brotherhood' kept them close together for their own survival and prevented the Core from collapsing like the rest of humanity.

Technologically speaking, I would imagine that their weapons would be mostly energy based (lasguns were the standard for the original squats, but they could upgrade to bolters) and slightly superior to the standard imperial equivalents (so a lasgun thats a little better than an imperial one, and a hellgun thats a little better than the imperial one etc).

Alot of the more esoteric weapons dropped from 2nd ed could make a return as some of the older weapons the STC encodes.

Due to their tau-esque attitude toward technology, they could mix and match their vehicular weaponry. Additionally, the jetbike was also part of the Imperial arsenal circa Great Crusade, so it would actually be fairly realistic to have Corians utilise these, instead of the more famous Trike/bike monstrosity.

The RH1-N0 APC would probably be the standard transport, whilst the RA1-D3R assault tank their mainline tank (L33T speak is good for SOMETHING ;)).

The drill technology utilised by the old squats would also be available, such as the mole mortar and the T3R-M1T3 Tactical delivery transport.

And the conversion beamer would be a poorman's D-cannon in function.

Energy weapons (laser, plasma, fusion/melta) would probably be the foundation for their offensive technolgy as it is the cornerstone of their power resources (the squats developed highly efficient plasmacores and fusion drives).

All in all, I think the only things that really didn't work with the squat imagery was the name, the biker motif and the blatant dwarf psychology.

Everything else was fairly good, and would only need to be tweaked slightly to fit inline with modern 40k.

Personally I don't see the Corians using bolters, as these were a specialist development during the Great Crusade for equipping the Emperor's troops.

That doesn't mean there wasn't the ability to construct a powerful laser(maser) based weapon though.

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
24-08-2006, 10:19
Technologically speaking, I would imagine that their weapons would be mostly energy based (lasguns were the standard for the original squats, but they could upgrade to bolters) and slightly superior to the standard imperial equivalents (so a lasgun thats a little better than an imperial one, and a hellgun thats a little better than the imperial one etc).

What are you thinking - it's a little tricky to make something "slightly" better.



Due to their tau-esque attitude toward technology, they could mix and match their vehicular weaponry. Additionally, the jetbike was also part of the Imperial arsenal circa Great Crusade, so it would actually be fairly realistic to have Corians utilise these, instead of the more famous Trike/bike monstrosity.

The RH1-N0 APC would probably be the standard transport, whilst the RA1-D3R assault tank their mainline tank (L33T speak is good for SOMETHING ;)).

The drill technology utilised by the old squats would also be available, such as the mole mortar and the T3R-M1T3 Tactical delivery transport.

L33T speak is never good for anything. :)

What about guard vehicles (Chimera and Russ hulls)?
And how about the epic vehicles - such as the Land Train, Iron Eagle Gyrocopters etc, would they get a place in the background/ Forge World plans?

And yes to Termites, and hopefully Moles as well (FW can do the Hellebore :)). In theory all you need is a model for it bursting out of the ground - give it the same kit as a Crusader (assault ramps and frag plates) and maybe some flamers to help clear the area.

Not so sure on AG vehicles, it's taking them too close to Tau IMO.

Hellebore
24-08-2006, 10:50
What are you thinking - it's a little tricky to make something "slightly" better.

ap6 instead of -.



L33T speak is never good for anything. :)


No, you're right:eyebrows: , it really isn't. But, I suppose I can argue that the Rhino got its name from the RH1N0 line anyway, and that was before l33t...



What about guard vehicles (Chimera and Russ hulls)?
And how about the epic vehicles - such as the Land Train, Iron Eagle Gyrocopters etc, would they get a place in the background/ Forge World plans?

And yes to Termites, and hopefully Moles as well (FW can do the Hellebore :)). In theory all you need is a model for it bursting out of the ground - give it the same kit as a Crusader (assault ramps and frag plates) and maybe some flamers to help clear the area.

Not so sure on AG vehicles, it's taking them too close to Tau IMO.

The Russ is the RU-55 Support tank (actually based on a demolisher).

Gyrocopters would be some form of enclosed speeder design, slow, but heavily armoured.

The Land trains, colossi, goliath et al would still be there, but in a slightly modified form.

The AG vehicles would consist only of jetbikes and speeders. There wouldn't be any tank AG vehicles - too big to fly.

Considering the Imperium still uses speeders, and they DID have jetcycles (of the M14 Bullock variety) I thought that the use of jetbikes instead of TRIKES would further differentiate them without remomving a very characterful part from the Squat background (because biker dwarfs from mars is such a bad idea).

In some ways the original squat army was set up like the modern Eldar one.
There was a core of professional warriors - hearthguard(aspects), and all squats had to perform a certain amount of military service (like guardian militia).

So if you look at the Strongholds (or Havens/Sanctuaries or whatever other term you want to use) as possessing a standing army of Hearthguard, that also provide the command structure for the common soldiers in the Brotherhood (Or Homeguard as I have called them. Sounds defensive enough to reflect the way they operate) then you get an army command structure like a combination of the Guard platoon and the Eldar (units of professional hearthguard and units or brotherhoods led by a hearthguard assembled into Sections).

Any bikeriders would be strategic reconaissance/outrider types, and the army would be supported by field artillery (Mole Mortars, conversion beamers and Quad launchers) and Support tanks.

I also believe the Corians would still possess alot of cybernetic knowledge, and could field limited numbers of Robots in maniples under the command of the engineering corps.

At the moment, the Imperium still has (in the background) the Legio Cybernetica (it is mentioned in the EoT and Armageddon3 campaigns) so although there isn't anything in the army books about it, the imperium DOES still possess robot infantry.

I would assume, as the Corians are older and have more complete data, that they would also be able to field robots...

Hellebore

Xisor
24-08-2006, 10:51
Good works going on here!

Some thoughts on the vehicles:
- Corian Humanity: STC Rollers (Baneblades, but perhaps rather than treads, lot sof those massive wheels?)
- Tau & Eldar: Slow & Fast anti-grav respectfully
- Orks: Fast Cars!
- Imperial Humanity: STC Tracked
- Demiurg: Walkers(generally[A term I sued was "Stompy Ambulators", think War of the Worlds and Tripods]) & AG-jet-tech to get from A to B when A to B is very big
- Tyranids: Leg and Wing!
- Necrons: They don't go from A to B, they skip the intervening distance and arrive at B as they leave A.

Gives each a distinct 'imagery', but leaves Corian and Imperial Humanity very close.

I also appreciate the wording of Corian as an 'alternative' to Imperial. The Imperial Humans and derivatives come from The Imperium of Mankind, whilst the Corian Humans and derivatives(have them have a fair few variants) come from the Corian League of Humanity(The League settled in the Deep Core)

A question on Corian relations

Will you all press to use the 'Brotherhood' as a 'unit' of force for the Corians? It just seems to be supremely emphasised with the Demiurg, yet it's not been mentioned once here...

Zzarchov's Stone Men Proposal

Whilst it's a neat idea, would you put any additional 'reasoning' for the Corians actually settling in the Core rather than randomly across the Galaxy? Or just a 'That's where the resources were, gotta live near that scrumtious tiberium...' style thinking?

Khaine's Messenger

I *highly* doubt GW could ever allow themselves to have a Gnostic League who go on to create their own Demiurge, neat as it may be. :rolleyes: :p

Hellebore
24-08-2006, 11:12
Good works going on here!

Gives each a distinct 'imagery', but leaves Corian and Imperial Humanity very close.


Something I don't mind, considering the Corians are STC enslaved humans anyway. Hmmm, big tires.....MONSTER TRUCKS!!:evilgrin:



I also appreciate the wording of Corian as an 'alternative' to Imperial. The Imperial Humans and derivatives come from The Imperium of Mankind, whilst the Corian Humans and derivatives(have them have a fair few variants) come from the Corian League of Humanity(The League settled in the Deep Core)


Exactly. When you think about it though, it does raise questions about the other 'abhumans'. Do ratlings see themselves as a different race/species, and thus take the perjorative term Ratling as a title? Or do they think they are humans that are simply being prejudiced against? Ogryns probably don't care.... but any other 'mutant' thinks of themselves as human (albiet cursed for perceived failings of the parents if they happen to live on an overtly Imperial planet).



A question on Corian relations

Will you all press to use the 'Brotherhood' as a 'unit' of force for the Corians? It just seems to be supremely emphasised with the Demiurg, yet it's not been mentioned once here...


At the moment I have almost finished writing an army list (bare bones) and have stuck to using modernistic terms for things. Whilst I can appreciate the way Dwarfs name things (grudgethrower, gyrocopter) a technologically advanced irreligious section of humanity (excepting of course the all important veneration of ancestors) I doubt very much would name their vehicles so ah, colourfully.

In my mind, the names for the vehicles would be acronymal manufacturing designations (hence a return to the rhino's original RH1-N0 and my creation of the RA1-D3R and RU-55 names). Of course there would be slang terms used (like Big Bertha etc).

The Brotherhood would be a sort of soldiers club rather than an official designation. At the moment I'm working with 'Sections': CnC Section, GI Section etc.

It would be similar to the platoon of the Imperium, but different enough to (hopefully) emphasise the clannish 'brotherhood' aspect as well. The Brotherhood is as far as I am concerned, a purely Demiurg 'thing' now (unless you want to make Demiurg Corians too ;)) and so it would only play a roll as the name for the 'club' one gets initiated into when becoming a Hearthguard.



Zzarchov's Stone Men Proposal

Whilst it's a neat idea, would you put any additional 'reasoning' for the Corians actually settling in the Core rather than randomly across the Galaxy? Or just a 'That's where the resources were, gotta live near that scrumtious tiberium...' style thinking?


The way I see this concept is basically the 'Stone Men' where the specialised engineered 'labourer' castes sent out to specific areas. The astronomers of today can make a good guess about what type of planets are at the centre of the galaxy, so I am sure the instigators of the colony ships would have too. Whether they knew precisely or not, they sent colony ships with that 'kind' of 'stone man' on board, hoping they would be the correct type for setting up the initial colony phases (or just living their and mining). Maybe they sent equal contingents of each type of Stone man, and contented themselves with at least ONE type having the necessary abilities.
This would be a God perspective, "At the dawn of time" sort of thing though, not something that would appear in the background of the Corians, but there nontheless as an explanation of their existence.



Khaine's Messenger

I *highly* doubt GW could ever allow themselves to have a Gnostic League who go on to create their own Demiurge, neat as it may be. :rolleyes: :p

I vaguely remember the joke about this, but the specifics escape me.

Hellebore

Xisor
24-08-2006, 11:29
On all points: Excellent, parallel yet complementary ideas!

With Demiurge-Gnostic thing: Gnostics (a branch of Christians, rather different from Agnostics) believe (IIRC) that 'God' hired a secondary deity, called the Demiurge, to create the material universe for him. In doing so, the Demiurge also added in the malevolence/darkness of his own nature as well as the specifics of the Universe requested to be created. It explains why the Universe isn't quite as perfect as God...I think.

Thus it'd be quite amusing to have the gnostics create their own God(or Demi-God)...

Xisor

Karasu
24-08-2006, 11:53
As an aside, can anyone think of a term fitting to call the 'squats', that ISN'T squat?

Khaine's Messenger has 'Gnostic League'
Easy E advocates the use of Stronghold names
I came up with Corian (for Core -ian)
Or Leaguer

Any other ideas that don't suck?

Hellebore

They're human variants, right? If they know that they are gentically engineered, how about Homo Sapiens Durientsis (Hardy Humans). This could then be Durients as the common form.

Another option would be Patientis (Enduring) but that would make the Patients.. :eyebrows:

Zzarchov
24-08-2006, 12:38
I wasn't thinking about any kind of "core worlds" mentality, though you could spin one if you wanted. I was thinking more of a way to "re-write them back in" in the same way they were written out in the first place, I literal Muligan for the race.

By not building one empire but have them be drifting inside space hulks (often unaware they are even in space) or in deep underground archeo-tech facilities spread all over the galaxy you have a plausible reason for them to be absolutely anywhere from the eastern fringe, to core, to the western fringe. And you can always write in a small "Squat" empire to be near whatever GW campaign is up this summer.

As for why make them a labourer caste, its to get away from the technologically innovate bit. Not degrading is good, but if they were innovative as humans were..and had no reason to hate technology then it would stand to reason after 20,000 years they would have lept past the imperium in technology to scientific sorcery.. which is quite different from a tanks and bullets army. So I figured while not religious about science, they would be pragmatic about it but not innovative. Like someone who just ate a bland but nutritious meal every day. They didn't start worshipping food spirits and knew exactly why the meal was nutritous..they just had no urge to learn to cook something better...If that makes any sense?

Thats just my take anyways.

scwolf
24-08-2006, 16:37
The Russ is the RU-55 Support tank (actually based on a demolisher).

The Leman Russ tank got its name because there were commanders in the Imperial Guard ranks who admired the ferocity and tactical prowess of the Space Wolves' Primarch Leman Russ.

This is a nice bit of fluff on several levels. One, it speaks of the working relationship between the Space Marine Legions and the Guard in the pre-Heresy era that they would name their main battle tank after a Primarch; and two, it says something about Russ in particular that he was the only Primarch to be given such a widespread honor. I'm not saying that there aren't other pieces of IG equipment that weren't named after other Primarchs, but none has the visibility of the Leman Russ tanks.

To turn around and say that the tank that they picked to honor this Hero of the Imperium with already had a model number of RU-55, really seems to cheapen the gesture.

I'm all for your other model numbers, but given the historical importance of this particular piece of fluff, I'd urge you to drop this one.

Easy E
24-08-2006, 23:54
Did I mention that I love this topic? Here are some of my thoughts, that hopefully piggy back onto some of your ideas.

Technology- Since they use STC I assume that the majority of weapons would be based on the STC designs. The Corians/Clansmen would have inovated with them over time so they may have a slightly different appearance, but I imagine that a Lasgun still uses the same stats as a lasgun. The difference can't really be portrayed in 40K, but can be more so in Inquisitor (see the different Lasgun patterns). So a Clan made lasgun would be lighter, hold a slightly larger charge, and have improved integral iron sights, but would still be essentially the same as an Imperial lasgun.

I really like the idea of the model numbers as the designation of the STC template used to create them.

Name- I would simply call them Clansmen.

Genetic Engineering- This part could be a mystery even to the Clansmen themselves. All they know is that they landed as humans similar to Imperials, and are now a very different. Some could attribute this to natural adaption, while other learned souls could hint at darker , more nefarious origins.

Military Organization- Each Stronghold has one Warlord who is appointed by the Stronghold's Lord. Usually they are relatives, but not always. The Warlord then chooses a certain number of subordinates based on the number of military eligible Clansmen in the Stronghold. So, 1 BattleMaster for every 10,000 militarily eligible clansmen. The Battlemaster controls a single Brotherhood, and the Warlord controls all the Brotherhoods.

The only professional military force is the Hearthguard, who are always considered on active duty. They represent 10% of the military capacity of the Stronghold. A Battlemaster is assigned a portion of Hearthguard to form the officer corp of his Brotherhood. The Hearthguard are divided equally among the number of Battlemasters and a portion is provided to the Warlord as well.

All Clansmen are eligible for military service for a period of their life cycle. They maybe called upon as needed. Normally, they only gather for short periods of training until called upon to deploy by the Warlord. They are essentially conscript soldiers, who are led by the Hearthguard/Battlemasters.

Tyranid Invasion- How did they survive the Tyranid Invasion? There are two potential solutions to this problem:

1. They holed up inside their Strongholds deep underground. The Nids stripped the surface of their world's and left them barren rocks. However, the Stronghold's deep underground were impervious to this and simply re-emerged after the threat passed.

2. The Tyranids expended so much energy and Bio-mass trying to dig out the Strongholds and strip the relatively lifeless planets that they could not re-coop the energy used in the process. This led to a slow degradation of the Hive Fleets capabilities allowing them to finally be defeated in battle and scattered.

Depending on which version you like better will help dictate how many Clansmen currently exist, how they view the Galaxy, how they view themselves, and what their galactic goals will be post-Tyranid wars.

I could talk about the little blighters for a long time, but I will stop now.

Easy E
24-08-2006, 23:58
On all points: Excellent, parallel yet complementary ideas!

With Demiurge-Gnostic thing: Gnostics (a branch of Christians, rather different from Agnostics) believe (IIRC) that 'God' hired a secondary deity, called the Demiurge, to create the material universe for him. In doing so, the Demiurge also added in the malevolence/darkness of his own nature as well as the specifics of the Universe requested to be created. It explains why the Universe isn't quite as perfect as God...I think.

Thus it'd be quite amusing to have the gnostics create their own God(or Demi-God)...

Xisor

To add on to this IIRC the reason the Gnostics believed that God had used a secondary Diety was to help them solve the problem of Evil. The reasoning was, if God was all powerful and Knowing why would he create an imperfect world? The answer was that if the world was imperfect, then the creator must also be imperfect. Therefore, God could not have created the world since he is perfect.

In order for the world to be created imperfectly, then God must have sub-contracted creating of said world to a secondary being who was itself imperfect. Since this secondary being was imperfect, it could not create a perfect world. Hence, we have the world as it is; and why Evil can exist in our world despite God being all knowing and powerful.

Convoluted I know.

Hellebore
24-08-2006, 23:59
The Leman Russ tank got its name because there were commanders in the Imperial Guard ranks who admired the ferocity and tactical prowess of the Space Wolves' Primarch Leman Russ.

This is a nice bit of fluff on several levels. One, it speaks of the working relationship between the Space Marine Legions and the Guard in the pre-Heresy era that they would name their main battle tank after a Primarch; and two, it says something about Russ in particular that he was the only Primarch to be given such a widespread honor. I'm not saying that there aren't other pieces of IG equipment that weren't named after other Primarchs, but none has the visibility of the Leman Russ tanks.

To turn around and say that the tank that they picked to honor this Hero of the Imperium with already had a model number of RU-55, really seems to cheapen the gesture.

I'm all for your other model numbers, but given the historical importance of this particular piece of fluff, I'd urge you to drop this one.

It was more of a "land" speeder/raider type name (that is, the raider/speeder has always been called a Land raider/speeder, but about 5 years ago GW printed an article that explained their names from the discoveries of one Arhkan Land - thus making the name less about function and more about honourary titles).

Funnily enough, I find RU-55 less contrived than the other model numbers - it actually sounds like a modern tank name.

But yes, I do agree regarding Leman Russ (although similarly to the Land issue, there is some contention over whether it was named for him because of gratitude, or because he discovered the forge world that had the STC for the tank - one being meaningful, and the other being an ego trip) he is after all the Primarch of my favourite marine chapter.

However, that leaves me with the problem of coming up with a namethe tank was given BEFORE it was named for Leman Russ (maybe it was called the Lion El'Jonson - man would that **** off Russ!!:p)

Hellebore

Brother Smith
25-08-2006, 00:28
@hellebore- Your always going to get some one thats going to try to shoot you down for being creative.

"Sounds dumb" Yeah! Thats constructive criticism.

Avoiding the Strongholds as a name will help seperate these guys from the old squats. Most everything of the old Strongholds has been destroyed or abandoned.

I hate that attitude that if someone disagrees, then they must only be doing it because the other person is being creative, it's impossible for someone not to like a suggestion!

Well thanks for appreciating my opinion. :rolleyes:

I disliked Corian because it doesn't sound right to me. So shoot me.

As for strongholds, we are talking pre-ingestion.

The Galactic core is HUGE. The Squat terrirtories were not significant enough to merit the moniker of 'Corian'.

Brother Smith
25-08-2006, 00:29
And squat sounds better? *snip*

I agree, I just dislike the sound of Corian. My humble opinion.

Hellebore
25-08-2006, 00:33
I agree, I just dislike the sound of Corian. My humble opinion.

Hey, no, thats fine:)

I wasn't trying to sound all huffy. Do you have any ideas (or support ones that already exist) for a replacement name?

All ideas that don't suck are welcome:p

Hellebore

Brother Smith
25-08-2006, 00:39
Hey, no, thats fine:)

I wasn't trying to sound all huffy. Do you have any ideas (or support ones that already exist) for a replacement name?

All ideas that don't suck are welcome:p

Hellebore

Clansmen would seem too anarchic and traditional to me, when we are trying to promote a technological and civlised culture in our redesign.

Corian seems out of place because the Leagues only took up at most 0.0001 of core space.

I would suggest an entirely new name, seperate from any older fluff or squat reference, as we are mving away from the extremely short nature of squats/dwarves. Something more human.

MadDoc
25-08-2006, 02:05
I've been watching this with interest and thought I might throw my opinion into the mix. :evilgrin:

Let me preface this by stating, quite clearly, any criticism contained within the following opinions is directed at ideas, NOT their creators and any imagined offence taken by anyone is unintentional, in their head, and therefore their own problem.

First off, I don't like the name Corians either. It feels overly contrived, thats just how it feels to me.

Next I think if we're going to re-imagine the Squats, another name which I don't particularly like, then we need to at least try and embrace what GW has done to the Strongholds.

To address just what has supposedly happened:
The Tyranids have eaten them... Ok, so the Squat homeworlds were ravaged by Tyranid Hivefleets, that doesn't mean that they were all wiped out.

So what of the remnants... The Sqauts were always hard headed, stubborn little buggers. Some of the archetypes used for the good ol' Squats were ill concidered to say the least, I still shudder at the memories of Squat bikers and trikes. But the 'nids broke all the trikes and the bikers were left as a decoy so that the other (non flawed concept) Squats could scarper, at least thats the idea that helps stop my nightmares. ;)

Being a little more serious for a second though, the Squats if they exist still would exist as little more than small mobile warbands. Imagine coterie of grizzled hard-bitten veterans following their tough as nails Leader. They hate aliens and all gribblies just like their Father, his Father, his Father's Father and his Father's Father's Father before him, stinking savage Orks, effete untrustworthy Eldar, but most of all those damn ravenous 'nids that broke the Strongholds wide open and scattered the Clans. Their lives a constant struggle to hold the remnants of their former lives together and get some payback on those damn gribblies.

I see the remnants of the Squats as being groups of disparate, bitter individuals clinging to the last remnants of their Society, too Stubborn to give up and angry at the Universe for the position they're now in. These newly formed Kindreds setting out to avenge themselves against the 'nids and anybody else stupid enough to get in their way.

For me this darker image is more in tune with the more Gothic re-imagining of 40k, "The Grim Darkness Of The Far Future" and all that.

We all want to move away from the cartoon/comic feel of the former Squats and the overt Dwarves in Space image.

Anyway thats my take on things... which turned into some what of a rant. :angel: My apologies.

Easy E
25-08-2006, 02:19
To address just what has supposedly happened:
The Tyranids have eaten them... Ok, so the Squat homeworlds were ravaged by Tyranid Hivefleets, that doesn't mean that they were all wiped out.

So what of the remnants... The Sqauts were always hard headed, stubborn little buggers.

I totally agree. The question was how did they survive? Did they survive by bundling up in their Strongholds and waiting for the Nids to leave? Did they drive them off in battle? This will determine how the survivors perceive themselves.


Some of the archetypes used for the good ol' Squats were ill concidered to say the least, I still shudder at the memories of Squat bikers and trikes. But the 'nids broke all the trikes and the bikers were left as a decoy so that the other (non flawed concept) Squats could scarper, at least thats the idea that helps stop my nightmares. ;) .

I don't think the Bikes were so bad, as long as you put them in the proper context. Not every Squat rode a Bike or Trike. Only the Nobles and the Guild. To break that down further, I really only seeing Guildsman using Bikes, and mostly to travel the great wastes between Strongholds/Mines on the same world. The common squat had to ride in a Land Train. However, the Guild was suppose to be seperate, from the Stronghold culture. That leads me to wonder how the Guilds fare post Tyrannic Invasion?



Being a little more serious for a second though, the Squats if they exist still would exist as little more than small mobile warbands. Imagine coterie of grizzled hard-bitten veterans following their tough as nails Leader. They hate aliens and all gribblies just like their Father, his Father, his Father's Father and his Father's Father's Father before him, stinking savage Orks, effete untrustworthy Eldar, but most of all those damn ravenous 'nids that broke the Strongholds wide open and scattered the Clans. Their lives a constant struggle to hold the remnants of their former lives together and get some payback on those damn gribblies.

I see the remnants of the Squats as being groups of disparate, bitter individuals clinging to the last remnants of their Society, to Stubborn to give up and angry at the Universe for the position they're now in. These newly formed Kindreds setting out to avenge themselves against the 'nids and anybody else stupid enough to get in their way.

For me this darker image is more in tune with the more Gothic re-imagining of 40k, "The Grim Darkness Of The Far Future" and all that.

We all want to move away from the cartoon/comic feel of the former Squats and the overt Dwarves in Space image.

Anyway thats my take on things... which turned into some what of a rant. :angel: My apologies

I agree totally with this aspect. They would be rather bitter that no one tried to help them, and essentially left them for dead. Especially their erstwhile allies, the Imperium. That would mean that they had been betrayed by almost every major race at some point in their history. I would imagine they would be rather Xenophobic.

Khaine's Messenger
25-08-2006, 02:39
Will you all press to use the 'Brotherhood' as a 'unit' of force for the Corians? It just seems to be supremely emphasised with the Demiurg, yet it's not been mentioned once here...

The main problem, as I see it here, is that one reaches the problem one has with, say, the Dark Eldar and the Tau (and others)--the armylist becomes a portal to their society rather than serving as a representation of a mere facet of it, and a facet that isn't even a complete representation of their warmaking capabilities. In that sense, one must be careful of concentrating on "units of force."

True, since getting the tar beat out of them during the Great Betrayal (har-har), they'll probably be operating in small, autonomous groups more to 40k scale than any other society...but it's still something to keep in mind.

MadDoc
25-08-2006, 02:42
:cries:
I totally agree. The question was how did they survive? Did they survive by bundling up in their Strongholds and waiting for the Nids to leave? Did they drive them off in battle? This will determine how the survivors perceive themselves.
The way I had envisioned things, I saw the defenders of the Strongholds fighting a desperate, and losing, rearguard action, the survivors being ultimately forced to flee. Thus further enhancing their bitterness and more deeply entrenching their natural unwillingness to give ground, or retreat.


I don't think the Bikes were so bad, as long as you put them in the proper context. Not every Squat rode a Bike or Trike. Only the Nobles and the Guild. To break that down further, I really only seeing Guildsman using Bikes, and mostly to travel the great wastes between Strongholds/Mines on the same world. The common squat had to ride in a Land Train. However, the Guild was suppose to be seperate, from the Stronghold culture. That leads me to wonder how the Guilds fare post Tyrannic Invasion?
Oh, don't get me wrong, its not the bikes and trikes I had a problem with its how they were imagined/implemented that bothered me. The whole Hells Angels Dwarves thing just didn't sit right with me. Rogue Trader had so many good things, and yet so many bad... :cries:

The Guilds would more than likely have faired well, having had the most direct access to the best tech and the ships to use to scarper. I would imagine that each new kindred would therefore have a reasonably strong Guild presence, it can't hurt to have in house Engineers and Traders to barter what you can't beat out of someone. :chrome:


I agree totally with this aspect. They would be rather bitter that no one tried to help them, and essentially left them for dead. Especially their erstwhile allies, the Imperium. That would mean that they had been betrayed by almost every major race at some point in their history. I would imagine they would be rather Xenophobic.
Spot on. Thats exactly what I was picturing, as a result of what they've been through they've developed a rather magnanimous attitude towards the other races, they hate them all equally. :evilgrin:

Hellebore
25-08-2006, 04:06
One thing though, is that you can't really ignore their culture 'pre-nids'.

That is, whilst they exist a certain way NOW, they didn't always. Basically what I'm saying is that what I envisage is a total reboot of the 'squats' - not just a "Well, all the dodgy stuff was around before the nids, but it sort of disappeared and this is what they are like now" type of reaction.

Thus whilst they would exist in a certain way NOW (depending on the parameters Easy E has set), you still have to create a society that produced the new paradigm.

So at the moment I've been mainly concentrating on PRE-nid 'squats'. But more than that, I want to actually reboot them in new 'vision' rather than just stick them back together like they used to be.

Easy E has in his signature a link to a thread he made about squats, but the one thing that stuck out the most was that they weren't really that different - the units, formations, and names were really just a 4th edition version of squats (this isn't necessarily BAD, but isn't what I want to do).

So I suppose I'm approaching this from GW's perspective - we've removed the squats because we failed to do the dwarfen archetype justice through perceived notions like biker dwarfs etal. So how do we reintroduce the SQUATS, without them BEING everything we decided sucked about squats?

This is how I'm looking at it; previous ideas and concepts didn't work, so how do you take those concepts, and mould them until they DO work, or throw them away and make new ones?

I've downloaded alot of squat fanlists on the internet, but they all seem to simply stick squats back into 40k as if they never left (a sort of "GW never got around to updating them to 40k, so here's a list" type mentality).

GW killed them off, and thus bringing them back unchanged or with slight changes isn't enough to 'GW' (me) that they deserve to be stuck back in.

So basically, I'm taking the major archetypes from the original squats and that's it.

Here's a list of the things I think are important, but don't convey biker dwarf syndrome (BDS):


Human colonists
Developed/engineered to be compact/tougher, more resilient
Live in the Core on hunks of rock rich in minerals
Economy dependent on mining
Live in enclosed enclaves/stronholds/havens
Are fairly clannish and insular
Still possess alot of STC technology the Imperium lost
Understand the workings of technology
Have a professional soldiery (hearthguard)
Possess more esoteric weaponry (quad launcher, mole mortar etc)
All troops are conscripted/militia
Use vehicles based on both marine and guard designs
Have been constantly defending themselves against ork raids
Unusual genetic anomally where psykers only present in old age
Are fairly irreligious, but respect their ancestors, and honour them
Was allied with the Imperium


These are fairly core to the design of the original squats, but they can easily be manipulated in such a way that the squats themselves don't turn out the same as their previous incarnation.

Of these, I am pushing the human and technology aspect the most. Corian was a national term used by themselves to differentiate between themselves and Imperials ie "I'm a human from the Core, he's a human from the Imperium."

Another term I came up with at Brother Smith's instigation was "Leaguer", someone from "The League".

So, I wish to redescribe the entire history of the leaguers, how they developed, their appearance, and their society right up until "The Age of Devestation" when the nids scoured their homeworlds.


As an aside, the whole nids thing, whilst GW canon, doesn't make much sense. NONE of the League worlds possessed any flora, fauna or any biological entities except the squats themselves.

So one must ask the question "How much of the League was actually destroyed?" This comes back to Easy E's two questions regarding the squat survival, but I'm looking at it from the nid perspective.

Why would you waste valuable resources attacking planets with a negligable biota when the costs far outweighed the gains?

The way I'm heading, the nids probably made a half hearted attack into the Core once they got there, but realising the slim pickings, they just left. This would have still caused a huge amount of damage and all the aforementioned bitterness, but it wouldn't have left them wandering vagabonds.

It would be another defeat in a long line of defeats ranging back to the Age of Strife. No wonder the leaguers dislike everyone:D

Hellebore

Sgt Biffo
25-08-2006, 04:18
I hate that attitude that if someone disagrees, then they must onlyI disliked Corian because it doesn't sound right to me. So shoot me.

As for strongholds, we are talking pre-ingestion.

The Galactic core is HUGE. The Squat terrirtories were not significant enough to merit the moniker of 'Corian'.

At the risk of starting a flame war;

I did appericiate you opinion, and this post shows that you had more to say in better words than just "sounds dumb". So why didn't you? Using such limited vocabulary and not giving reasons for your opinion (other than they "sound dumb") reflect poorly on yourself.

It is little suprise that you do not feel your gaining the respect you deserve when you do not express your opinion well.

IncubiLord
25-08-2006, 05:58
Random appearance by IncubiLord...

I will now offer another take on the whole thing:

Q: The Tyranids showed up and wiped out the Squats. Why?
A: Because Genestealer cults drew the Hive Fleet there, and once they've travelled such a great distance they must feed - even if the located biomass is only a snack.

By the time a Hive Fleet is in-system, it has to have a certain amount of attack-creatures up and ready in case there's resistance. Simply reabsorbing them is a considerable loss of energy, so they need to add some biomass.

Q: How did the Squats survive being swarmed by the 'Nids?
A: First of all, the Squats have not been as restricted to the core as some think. They have sent out expeditions of their own to find colony worlds, and many of these vessels were out of the area when the Tyranids ate the center of their society.

Secondly, when the Squats knew their fate was sealed they bundled up their children and Ancients onto whatever ships they could, sending them out to ensure the survival of the species. A group of these vessels disappeared in the Warp, but most made it out to new locales unscathed.

The Ancients and the children developed a different society with the removal of many formative elements this caused, but the core virtues remain.

Q: Why is the name Corians bad?
A: Because it just feels off, and when you say it out loud you may as well be saying Koreans.

You want to avoid anything that could be even mistakenly connected to a RL nationality when creating a fake one.

I'd be more interested in seeing something along the lines of Calirans, going off a shortened version of the suggested calx vir.

Q: Since the race is near extinction, what are they doing about this?
A: Being a group of abhumans, the Squats are likely to take in other humans and try to "breed true" so to speak, with a mixture of adding hi-grav-world humans (these are not squats, but they're closer than you and I) and ratlings to their genepool to maintain a their basic physiology.

Ogryn are probably welcome with the other heavy-worlders, and there may even be some experiments into combining Squat and Ogryn genetics (obviously a female Ogryn would have to be the surrogate if the two subspecies are compatible).

Now that I have stirred the pot, I shall sit back and see what boils to the surface...

MadDoc
25-08-2006, 06:05
One thing though, is that you can't really ignore their culture 'pre-nids'.

That is, whilst they exist a certain way NOW, they didn't always. Basically what I'm saying is that what I envisage is a total reboot of the 'squats' - not just a "Well, all the dodgy stuff was around before the nids, but it sort of disappeared and this is what they are like now" type of reaction.

Thus whilst they would exist in a certain way NOW (depending on the parameters Easy E has set), you still have to create a society that produced the new paradigm.

No one was proposing ignoring the Squats culture, quite the opposite. By re-imagining the Squats and their preexisting archetypes, its possible to maintain their history without the camp-ness that BDS in particular led to. I like the idea of the Guilders using bikes, fast transport between a Stronghold and its trading partners made sense, Hells Angels Dwarves was just a really bad way of doing it.

A much better idea would've been rough and ready slightly eccentric engineer types, moving between Strongholds on their bikes, most probably a bike built as a part of their training in the Guild.


So at the moment I've been mainly concentrating on PRE-nid 'squats'. But more than that, I want to actually reboot them in new 'vision' rather than just stick them back together like they used to be.

*SNIP*

This is how I'm looking at it; previous ideas and concepts didn't work, so how do you take those concepts, and mould them until they DO work, or throw them away and make new ones?

*SNIP*

So basically, I'm taking the major archetypes from the original squats and that's it.

Here's a list of the things I think are important, but don't convey biker dwarf syndrome (BDS):

*SNIP*

These are fairly core to the design of the original squats, but they can easily be manipulated in such a way that the squats themselves don't turn out the same as their previous incarnation.

I think re-imagining the Squats is the right way to go, just transplanting them from one edition to another neither addresses nor solves any problems.

One thing I will point out about the Homebrew lists you refer to, is they are for the most part from people who either didn't have a problem with the Camp/Cartoonish image the Squats used to possess, or didn't quite get the concept, so they're not really trying for change.

What needs to be kept in mind when re-imagining the Squats is where they're culture has formed, They're miners, technicians and labourers living in isolated complexes, in close quarters with one another. In order for a Society like that to work and not tear itself apart, the need for a sense of unity within the group, a sense of commmunity, family, loyalty would become paramount. Even smaller groups within the Community, those of like minds and positions would form their own tight-knit groups.

Over time some of those groups may have taken more permanent, structured forms. *cough* Guilds *cough* Clans *cough* :D


Of these, I am pushing the human and technology aspect the most. Corian was a national term used by themselves to differentiate between themselves and Imperials ie "I'm a human from the Core, he's a human from the Imperium."

I really don't like the feel of Corian as a name. Its just feels contrived, almost as contrived as the idea that the Squats and the Demiurg are one and the same, GW was quite clear on that, the Demiurg are Xenos, the Squats have never been aliens. The main thing I don't like about Corian is it doesn't ring true as a name a Squat would use to refer to himself/herself, as has been stated by others a Squat would be more likely to refer to themself in terms of Hearth and Home as opposed to by racial identity. That is an Imperial concept.

I also feel that focusing on something other than that which would have been the under-pinning force behind the formation of the Squat Homeworlds, i.e. mining, is wrong. What I feel really needs to be emphasized is the sense of community and family that would be forged due to the close confines and isolation of the Strongholds. The Band of Brothers feeling, if you will.


Another term I came up with at Brother Smith's instigation was "Leaguer", someone from "The League".

So, I wish to redescribe the entire history of the leaguers, how they developed, their appearance, and their society right up until "The Age of Devestation" when the nids scoured their homeworlds.

I have very few problems with the history of the Squats. My main problem, and I believe GWs as well, was with how that history and character was imagined and executed. As somebody wrote earlier if we could re-imagine the Squats in the same way as GW re-imagined the Orks, grittier and less cartoonish, we'd be a long way toward fixing the problem.


As an aside, the whole nids thing, whilst GW canon, doesn't make much sense. NONE of the League worlds possessed any flora, fauna or any biological entities except the squats themselves.

Which would be more than enough for the 'nids to be interested, they were moving through the Systems in question anyway, and the Hive Mind seems to work with a view to the big picture, it doesn't matter how much or how little bio-matter might be present the 'nids want it all. They absorb everything and the minerals would be stripped and absorbed as well. The 'nids utilises organisms in the place of tech, bone is laced with minerals in reality, other minerals act as metabolic agents and can act as catalysts in biological reactions, so minerals are desirable to the 'nids as well. Where has it ever been stated that the 'nids only strip the bio-mass of a planet? Its not, the opposite in fact. Its just that when you happened to be a Bio-mass yourself that tends to become your focus.


So one must ask the question "How much of the League was actually destroyed?" This comes back to Easy E's two questions regarding the squat survival, but I'm looking at it from the nid perspective.

The official fluff states they were wiped out. Pretty unambiguous really, there was a small rider stating that a few may have survived elsewhere, possibly even some in Imperial space but the numbers clearly weren't substantial.


Why would you waste valuable resources attacking planets with a negligable biota when the costs far outweighed the gains?

Who's to say they would be wasting resources? They not only reabsorb their own casualties they gain the bio-mass of the Squats and the minerals they strip from the rocks. You're framing your perspective in human terms, short term view, once something is dead its lost to you. The only way the 'nids truly lose bio-mass is if they wiped out/chased off and can't reabsorb their casualties.


The way I'm heading, the nids probably made a half hearted attack into the Core once they got there, but realising the slim pickings, they just left. This would have still caused a huge amount of damage and all the aforementioned bitterness, but it wouldn't have left them wandering vagabonds.

I get the feeling that this opinion springs less from any real Tyrano-logic and more from a desire to make the Squats a much larger presence than the official fluff would allow. :eyebrows:


It would be another defeat in a long line of defeats ranging back to the Age of Strife. No wonder the leaguers dislike everyone:D

Hellebore

They were never that found of the Imperium to begin with, to much fussing about and alot of Religious mumbo-jumbo. :evilgrin:

Sai-Lauren
25-08-2006, 11:50
Q: The Tyranids showed up and wiped out the Squats. Why?
A: Because Genestealer cults drew the Hive Fleet there, and once they've travelled such a great distance they must feed - even if the located biomass is only a snack.

If the cult is small (due to small population and/or low population growth rates), then the signal will be less, and less talons of the hive fleet will be attracted. It's kind of self-regulating that way.


The way I'm heading, the nids probably made a half hearted attack into the Core once they got there, but realising the slim pickings, they just left. This would have still caused a huge amount of damage and all the aforementioned bitterness, but it wouldn't have left them wandering vagabonds.
Just a thought, but how about they eventually (after the loss of billions - maybe even trillions of lives), and with great reluctance due to it's very nature, created something that interfered with the Tyrannid's hive mind and drove them off - leaving the Tyrannids with the instinctive knowledge that the core is a "place of pain", something they don't really want to talk about, something where they have been trying to put the genie back in the bottle ever since, something the Imperium would be extremely interested in, something possibly (thinking off the top of my head here) related to what happened all those years ago on Ganymede...

Just how far would you go for racial survival? ;)

And on the plus side, there's a lot of lumps of rock to start mining for minerals - which could be the province of the Demiurge, and the main reason to split the two races - the Corians/Leaguers/whatever we're calling them see it as grave robbing.

MadDoc
25-08-2006, 12:42
Just a thought, but how about they eventually (after the loss of billions - maybe even trillions of lives), and with great reluctance due to it's very nature, created something that interfered with the Tyrannid's hive mind and drove them off - leaving the Tyrannids with the instinctive knowledge that the core is a "place of pain", something they don't really want to talk about, something where they have been trying to put the genie back in the bottle ever since, something the Imperium would be extremely interested in, something possibly (thinking off the top of my head here) related to what happened all those years ago on Ganymede...

Just how far would you go for racial survival? ;)

This is a concept I quite like the sound of, although how well it would mesh with the official GW story of the Squats demise is somewhat dubious. All the same a nice idea, very evocative. :cool:

I believe the Ganymede fiasco was a Massive Warp Drive they tried consturcting in a planetside lab and their containment field bit the big one, and BAM massive localised Warp breach. :o


And on the plus side, there's a lot of lumps of rock to start mining for minerals - which could be the province of the Demiurge, and the main reason to split the two races - the Corians/Leaguers/whatever we're calling them see it as grave robbing.

Squats = Abhuman strain (stable mutation from human ancestors)
Demiurg = Xenos race (completely NON-human, also supposedly and 'old' race)

That is to say, completely unrelated races, one human(abhuman) the other alien, NO relation, NO common ancestry, NO in fluff connection. :mad:

Sorry, its just thats one thing that really annoys me. Its clearly stated by GW that the two are seperate entities, the insistance of some in ignoring that fact just really toasts my Grox burger.

Sai-Lauren
25-08-2006, 14:13
Squats = Abhuman strain (stable mutation from human ancestors)
Demiurge = Xenos race (completely NON-human, also supposedly and 'old' race)

That is to say, completely unrelated races, one human(abhuman) the other alien, NO relation, NO common ancestry, NO in fluff connection. :mad:

Sorry, its just thats one thing that really annoys me. Its clearly stated by GW that the two are seperate entities, the insistance of some in ignoring that fact just really toasts my Grox burger.

Sorry, must have missed that one. Where was it stated (aside from someone like Jervis saying "we may do Demiurge as an alien race at some point") that Squats (as was) and Demiurge are different?

Anyway, it's likely the Demiurge would start mining those nice large lumps of rock that coincidentally used to be someone's homeworld when they came across them - which would really p*** the survivors off.

Although as conflicts go, it'd be rather short. :evilgrin:

Xisor
25-08-2006, 17:41
Oh FFS.

The Demiurge isn't a Squat,or remotely human, as it's the secondary deity that Gnostic's believe created the material/energy/non-heaven-and-hell-style universe.

The Demiurg, no e, are the alien race created by GW to fill the void in archetypes left when the Squats were wiped from history.

One proposal for them, one of my own, was to have the Demiurg *maybe* some of the Squats who tried to survive the oncoming Tyranids by using an imense Stasis field thing. Unfortunately(or from an 'advancement of science PoV:fortunately) for them, they in fact built a machine that was able to somehow displace them in(or out of) space and time. To this universe? To another? Who knows.

Anyway, the ideawas they ended up with *very* little except what they had with them gazillions of years *ago* in our 40k timeline. Perhaps aside the Old Ones, perhaps during the rise/golden age/fall/waning/stationary-point of the Eldar Empire. Somewhere, and quite a while ago.

So, they started off as Squats,but their relation to us is much the same as the relation of Eldar and Ork...both created by the same 'genepool'(ie Old Ones),but nowadays *extremely* different,perhaps such that there are no traces of biological similarity: theywould indeed be past a point where it's not relevant if they *were* the same, they are now aliens.

However, in the interests of not introducing such a hefty bout of time-travel to 40k all at once, I'm happy to side-step the idea and focus on the Demiurg, no e, and the Squats being entirely different.

Now,back to the Squats(whose thread this is).

Interestingly, I think I'd largely have to agree with KM, IncubiLord and Hellebore and go against Easy E's projected layout for Alternate-Squat culture. It is simply that I think it's too(and by too I mean far, far, far too) 40k centric for any use to come of it.

They're centered around fighting.
They're the remnants of a (could be) staunch technocratic society based largely around wealth and spreading the wealth through close bonds of kinship for mutual gain (notice how Scotland, with it's heavy mining-related population is rampantly more socialist than anywhere else in the UK/Most-of-Europe?).
Yet:
- Their society is governed by Warlords
- Their society is organised in strict fighting groups of Brotherhoods

Harking back to the side-conv on Brotherhoods, I feel that whatever these born-again-Squats are,they *shouldn't* be running about in Brotherhoods. That's Demiurg territory now, it seems.

Interesting Aspects of Religious Right Evangelical Squats to examine
(NB- Just trying out different names to see if anything fits)

- How do the deal with AI? What's their 'stance'? Imperium is very *anti*, Eldar are very 'not really caring', as they're all about Eldar, but not *anti* as such, Tau and Demiurg are clearly very Pro(not sure about Demiurg limits, but I'm fond of the Tau having placed certain 'limits' on manufactured AIs, and idea of mine was that N'Dras, the abandoned sept, was actually abandoned due to an AI Rebellion...)
- What is their sociological organisational structure? Currently I favour a highly meritocratic near-socialism. That is: High Taxes and tithes to local guilds, families, institutions and things, butalso with an extensive welfare-style system. This'd reinforce the 'bonds of kinship' feel to the Squats whilst allowing it a very firm framework in terms of plausibility. Of course, it isn't a proper socialism, or even close to a variant of communism, there's no state, no 'centralised government', but the setup, the underlying protocol to their society is such that a stable and working 'state' arises from it...if that makes sense. It explains the 'Strongholds' in one rather nice swoop. They're not built with 'structure' in mind, but based on some underpinning principles, the Strongholds 'arise' where dense groups of Commi-Abhumans(still trying) group together.
- Surviving the Tyranids. I also favour the 'most Strongholds pretty much ended with Genestealers running rampant', so only 'rag tag fugitive fleets' could escape. One family here, three brothers there, five cousins from this Stronghold and perhaps half a dozen unrelated folks from another have all grouped together. Not to 'refound' anything as such, but to preserve theirselves, and their mentality. They aren't attempting to 'rebuild a golden age', so much as survive. And if kicking Orky/Tyranid/Imperial(Traitor!)/Eldar(Didn't help, but knew about it) butts happens to be on the cards, then why not?

Perhaps they are trying to rebuild their 'race', but not their 'society'...their society has survived. I get the impression that even with only two or three left galaxy-wide, their society-mentality would still see it as surviving so-long as there is more than one coffin-dodging-squat surviving, and thus still room for 'bonds of kinship'.

If that makes any sense...

MadDoc
25-08-2006, 20:52
Sorry, must have missed that one. Where was it stated (aside from someone like Jervis saying "we may do Demiurge as an alien race at some point") that Squats (as was) and Demiurge are different?

Anyway, it's likely the Demiurge would start mining those nice large lumps of rock that coincidentally used to be someone's homeworld when they came across them - which would really p*** the survivors off.

Although as conflicts go, it'd be rather short. :evilgrin:

It was stated by Jes Goodwyn amongst others as well as the strong inference in the fluff for the Demiurg, mostly BFG related admittedly but that makes it no less relevant.

Also if it were only he who shall remain nameless *spit* that had said it, I wouldn't have bothered mentioning it.

I'd imagine the Squats would loathe the Demiurg for desecrating the remains of their homeworlds and nicking the resources that were rightfully theirs. :mad: Not to mention, somebody they can see eye to eye with and head butt without a stepping stool would be a nice change for them. :D

Easy E
25-08-2006, 23:40
@Hellebore- I am pleased that you read the list, did you also follow the link to the fluff as well? It tries to build on what was all ready there and talks alot more about how individuals and communities interact. Granted, I'm not the best writer, so it maybe tough to wade through.

Edit: I see that you did as you commented in the thread. I thank you.

As for the Army List itself; yes, a great many units are there, but their reason for existing was different. I wanted them to be familiar enough, but slightly off. The key to re-working the Squats into 40K really is Imagery and Model design, as the basic history was accceptable. At least in my view.

@Mad Doc- The fluff that states the Squats were wiped out was from an Imperial perspective in the beginning of the Inquisition War trilogy. Therefore, it only refects what the Imperium perceived happened. What really happened maybe very different.

@Xisor- I guess my interpretation was 40K-centric as that is my primary use for it. Oh well.

The idea of the stateless state is very interesting. I see the underpinnings of such a system being Oath related. Everyone knows they have ccertain requirements and Oaths that have been made to the community as a whole. Then individulas can choose to create Oaths amongst themselves for various reasons (Be they material, emotional, or something else). The highest crime amongst the Neo-squats would be Oathbreaking. This would be the cultural glue that could informally hold the groups together in a stateless state.

Of course this leads me to wonder how the Guild fits into place, and if it still exists?

MadDoc
26-08-2006, 00:31
@Mad Doc- The fluff that states the Squats were wiped out was from an Imperial perspective in the beginning of the Inquisition War trilogy. Therefore, it only refects what the Imperium perceived happened. What really happened maybe very different.

Thats one of the first written sources of it, but a number of the Designers have stated that is what happened, also the Tyranid Hive Fleets which ripped through the Core according to the Tyranid source material would tend to agree. :evilgrin:

Besides I can't help but feel the best way to reinvent the Squats, to re-imagine their character, is to have some hugely traumatic event, like the shattering of their Empire and the effect of its aftermath, and use that as a catalyst for their rebirth. That is of course IMHO.

Easy E
26-08-2006, 01:08
Besides I can't help but feel the best way to reinvent the Squats, to re-imagine their character, is to have some hugely traumatic event, like the shattering of their Empire and the effect of its aftermath, and use that as a catalyst for their rebirth. That is of course IMHO.

I agree with that sentiment totally.

However, the complete destruction of every single Stronghold takes the "squats" (we really need a new name) from an actual galactic player that deserves a Codex and re-introduction into the background down to one of the many barely mentionable races in 40K. Since my goal is to re-introduce them as a playable race, I am more inclined to the idea that a significant portion of their population must survive.

In addition, having them get totally pwned by another race in the 40K galaxy is a bit humiliating. How can you credibly allow them to face off against them in the current 40K timeline? You can't realistically.

MadDoc
26-08-2006, 02:39
However, the complete destruction of every single Stronghold takes the "squats" (we really need a new name) from an actual galactic player that deserves a Codex and re-introduction into the background down to one of the many barely mentionable races in 40K. Since my goal is to re-introduce them as a playable race, I am more inclined to the idea that a significant portion of their population must survive.

Even if only 10% (just a random percentage don't read anything into it) of their total Pre-Sundering Population were left that'd still put them on par with likes of the Tau numbers wise. The Squat Homeworlds were numerous, even devastated they'd still have a sizable presence, just in a very different form.


In addition, having them get totally pwned by another race in the 40K galaxy is a bit humiliating. How can you credibly allow them to face off against them in the current 40K timeline? You can't realistically.

Hmmm... their society is devastated by a horror from the beyond, they've got a habit of being bitter of even over little things. I see them as the quiet kid who worked hard, stayed out of trouble and made all sorts of cool stuff then this 6' bullied came along and kicked their ass and broke their toys. The kid then goes off somewhere, makes all new better anti-bully stuff, bulks up and then comes back spending the rest of his time kicking the crap out of everybody and anybody who made things hard for them or failed to help them when somebody did.

The whole Revenge of the Galactic Whipping boy thing. :D

That would lend a whole new degree to the bitter and spiteful angle. Not to mention the whole little guys out to prove themselves after such a big loss of face. Sorry about the pun I couldn't help myself. :angel:

Born Again
26-08-2006, 05:22
I'm going to interrupt the conversation a moment here... one thing that's always bugged me is how exactly did they get eaten by the nid's? The squat homeworlds were at the galactic core, and the Tyranids were coming in from the Eastern Fringe... If they'd got that far into the galaxy, 40k would be all but over wouldn't it?

We now return to your regular programming. I enjoy the idea of Demiurg eventually making it onto the table.

Hellebore
26-08-2006, 05:53
Aggghhhh...... too many posts to reply to:cries:

I'm sort of going to answer/explain whatever, bits here and there.

When I referred to pre-nid society, it wss because there seemed to be a focus on how the squats functioned AFTERWARD; that they were broken down into families/clans all their stuff was destroyed and they are roving bands.

I wanted to codify the society that produced this before scourging them into near oblivion.

As to the nids, I'm going to have to disagree with you MadDoc, almost completely.

Invading worlds and consuming them is an expensive process, expensive in terms of energy consumed. One of the ways Kryptman has decided to stall tyranid advance is via the Exterminatus of planets in Leviathan's path, giving them nothing to consume, making them gradually weaker the further they move through the wasteland.

Even if one where to put millions of guardsmen on each of those planets to fight the nids as a holding action, they would still not provide enough organic material to restock the energy expended to attack the planet in the first place.

This is the reason the tyranids only attack lush green worlds. Macragge has a low population (I don't even think it goes over a billion but I could be wrong) so it isn't the population itself that is the important resource. In addition the tyranids leech off the entire atmosphere and all water bodies, neither of which the homeworlds have.

So you can see my problem with the idea that the line: "As for the abhuman, the tyranids put paid to that thread too long ago" at the beginning of Ian Watson's Inquistion War trilogy (as a way to explain the existence of a squat) actually means the Core was obliterated, because the longer the nids were in the core, the weaker they would become, due to lack of nutrients.

It has nothing to do with wanting the squats to be a larger part of the background (you say later that they did fill the entire core and that there was alot of them), in fact I want the number of homeworlds LESSENED, not increased. I want to downplay the 'power' the Leagues wielded (and as a byproduct of this, make the leagues smaller) because it gave the squats too much of a prominence, and thus posed too much of a threat to the Imperium (being as they were, non-religious, and insulting the machine spirits yadda yadda).

There are many worlds in the imperium that have their own ideosyncratic views, but so long as they are human (or abhuman) and tow the imperial line, they are left to believe wheels are evil, or that baths in sugar cure one of possession.

Thus if the squats when encountering the imperium offered to tow the line and provide minerals to them, they would have been left alone. Coupled with the difficulties of traversing the core, and the small number of the squats that existed, they would probably have just let them get on with it (with exclusive trading rights for all their mineral wealth, plus the imperial tithe of course). Having fewer squats also means the nids could almost be dead of starvation and still perform near genocide.

For societal structure, Xisor has outlined one that is similar to how I perceived it functioning. Easy E's oathbinding is also part of it.

Anyhow, this is how I see their society functioning:


Each Stronghold is a self contained state
Within in each stronghold there are many clans - extended family groups that are related if you go back far enough.
Each clan functions in a similar way to the Houses of Necromunda (goliath, Van Saar et al) in that they compete for contracts and mining rights
Within the Clan (read House) their is the Head, and his immediate family. Everyone else lives within the Clan, and all their earnings go to the clan
Imagine it if your entire family lived together, and pooled their income to provide for everyone.
The Noble House(Clan) is the family that probably set up the stronghold, or stole it from those who did.
They take a tax from the other clans, which they use to fund themselves, and ostensibly to build infrastructure and military materiel. It is they who fund the Stronghold's army.
In this instance the Noble Clan is effectively a hereditary government, whilst the clans provide all the manpower and actual resource recruitment. This doesn't stop another clan from seizing power off them, either if they are crappy governors, or through nefarious means.
And because the world is very harsh, there just isn't as much room for backstabbing or thievery simply because it would be detrimental to their own clan through weakening the hold.
The Engineer's Guild would be a seperate body that is employed by the Noble Clan to oversee quality control on Clan projects, act as liasons between clans and generally move around from clan to clan, and stronghold to stronghold, keeping the technology running, building new things, and ensuring that the clans aren't skimping on material quality.
This effectively makes the Guild an independent entity, which COULD give it alot of power, were it not for the fact that it needs to maintain its integrity and perceived neutrality in order to make money themselves.
A League is a coalition of Strongholds, where the noblehouses send a representative to build strategies for protecting the strongholds, and negotiate treaties/contracts between the seperate strongholds. The Guild ultimately answers to a League council, and as it is made up of a member from each stronghold, they can't show favouritism.
Making each planet possess a single stronghold is also a must. Having multiple city states across a planet all independent of one another didn't work in the original squats, because it made them very bitsy.
If however, there is one stronghold per planet, and the clans have stakes on seperate sections of the planet and do their mining in those places, it creates an even more clannish insular mentality for the squats.
This would also mean that there really isn't that many leagues, as I found the concept of a League fine, but not dozens of them. In fact, I would say there would be no more than 4 or 5, each with a dozen member worlds, and this would form the "OverLeague", where ostensibly they are united for mutual strength and protection (obviously doesn't work very well, and could be used as a reason for their eventual downfall).
Having single strongholds per planet also opens up the raiding aspect - with such a big expanse to cover, another stronghold could quickly move into an unmined area, rip a bit of quick cash, and then bugger off. This would probably cause inter-stronghold wars if ever caught.



So you've got your mutually supportive clan, who tithes the noble clan who supports the Hold itself, who in turn answers to a League of Holds, who employ the Engineers Guild to oversee clan production (I am sure there are plenty of other Guilds as well - like the hydroponics guild, the sewage guild etc. Each one would be employed by the Leagues/noble clans to over see a certain facet of stronghold life).

As for the destruction of the nids removing them as a galactic player - I've aleady said I don't like the fact that they WERE galactic players in the first place.

If when the nids invaded the squats panicked and went holy crap all out warfare, the nids would have had no choice by to retaliate.

So MadDoc, although I don't like the idea that the nids consumed the whole squat league, I do agree that should the squats go on the offensive and attack them, the nids couldn't really retreat with an enemy at its back. So they had to fight, but this time not for resources (of which there was virtually nil) but rather to get the bloody short angry men from off their backs. Actually puts an interesting spin on the nids to, its not often they get fight rearguard actions.

The thing is, once the squats were beaten into the ground through a battle of attrition, the nids would have left for greener fields (and in this case, I mean the heavily biota-ed ork worlds surrounding the core).

So yes, the squats were 'destroyed' in that they ceased to be a functioning 'nation' but that didn't make them completely uselss.

An analogy to the eldar fleeing the Fall in craftworlds comes to mind - the squats had some strongholds that survived (I prefer Easy E's "hide underground and pray they leave" explenation) but their military was obliterated, and their economy broken.

With this sort of pressure, all social norms would turn on their head, and the squats would become almost socialist - no money, no rich, no poor, everyone had to pull together to save the race. All mining was put toward rebuilding the infrastructure that was lost, and everyone simply turned to rebuilding.

Through clandestine contacts amongst rogue traders, they traded ores for foodstuffs, or whatever else they needed.

I get a gnostic feeling imagining a dwarf in a black hooded robe, meeting in a dark room ;)with a rogue trader to organise sale of trillions of dollars of ore for food.

I'm not keen on having them deal with the Eldar at all (that bit of fluff is from a time when the eldar were not the arrogant bastards they are now), but rather with other human worlds.

They sold ore to other human worlds, until the age of strife, when humanity shat on them with its crazyness: Strike 1 humans.

After this, they were hit by massive ork waaaghs stirred up by the age of strife: Strike 1 orks.

The Imperium was formed, and they ostensibly folded the squats into them. They stripmine by proxy the squat stronghold worlds, taking the majority of their wealth from them.

The Reign of Blood causes several attacks on the ‘abhuman filth’ at the core, which instigates a mass withdrawal of squats into the core, angry at yet more attacks from the degenerates. Strike 2 humans.

The orks attack Golgotha, destroying huge amounts of mining equipment and weakening the squat military. Strike 2 orks.

After the Reign of Blood, the squats have dealt with the Imperium less, whilst still sending their tithe, they have withdrawn contracts, ostensibly due to the drying up of mineral veins, ore bodies etc. The Imperium is too busy dealing with emergent threats on the Eastern Fringe, to notice.

The tyranids smash through imperial space. Desperate to move them out of the way, the imperium attempts to shunt them into ork held space.

Some of these move into the Core, and the squats call on their imperial allies for help. Through a combination of hatred of abhumans, anger at their virtual secession from the imperium, and the distraction of huge battlefronts, no help is sent. The squat military is obliterated. Strike 3 humans.

After being stooged by the degenerate remnants of humanity one too many times, they are now embittered against everyone. They hate orks, tyranids and imperials to such a degree that they will attack any and all presence of them within the Core.

I see the Squats at the centre of the galaxy in a similar fashion to Israel in the middle east (no anti-Semitism intended), a people embittered by past experiences and surrounded on all sides by those they see (and who in some cases prove) to be their enemies. Obviously that is a generalization but I’m trying to produce a specific archetype.


Phew, well there we go.

Hellebore

Zzarchov
26-08-2006, 06:27
hellebore.. your forgetting something..Kryptman hit the worlds with exterminatus once they were in planetfall, to destroy much of the force and make them take time to rebuild it. The nids were not hampered at all other than time (which is what he needed to build a fleet).

Energy is not lost, expended yes, but they aren't consuming worlds to gain energy. Energy is limitless with the power of the stars to draw from (as most life does). They devour worlds to gain mass.

When they consume a world they aren't eating as we eat, a better description would be they are breeding.

Hellebore
26-08-2006, 09:57
That's the second part of the section on Kryptman's plan yes, but prior to that it says he wished to form a cordon by raizing planets in front of Leviathan's advance to 'deny the hive fleet any further raw materials for its ships."

Also, breeding it may be, but there has never been anything about the energy consumption/production of them.

There are certainly no autotrophs mentioned, and the closest we get to herterotrophs are the attack organisms of the swarm - they bath in the digestion pools and 'eat' the digested nutrients. I infer that the burrowing core organisms are probably chemotrophs, but they may just be created with a set amount of energy and when it is expended they die.

And with regards to eating, we don't consume just for energy, we consume for building materials (a human body replaces its entire stock of atoms over a two year period).

Energy isn't a literal 'thing' it is merely the byproduct of a specific set of chemical reactions. All organisms on earth use atp to provide 'energy', but 'energy' is nothing more than the ability to decouple atoms, or re-attach them.

Every action produced by a tyranid uses up energy, and unless those hive ships can convert sunlight into energy, then they WILL lose energy.

I'm sorry, but the fluff shows tyranids are only interested in consuming actual organic resources, they can't convert inorganic carbon compounds into organic ones, otherwise they wouldn't descriminate on what planets they invade.

Hellebore

susu.exp
26-08-2006, 10:26
I´ll just repost my alternative timeline adapted since I find myself in agreement with Xisor on the Demiurg.

M 21: Squat history begins with the Age of Founding. The mining colonies of the Home Worlds are in constant contact with Terra and the Squats show no distinction from normal Humans.

M 24: Beginning of the Squat Age of Isolation. The Homeworld mining colonies become self-sufficient, independent strongholds. During this period the Engineers Guild develops into a sociopolitical power and strongholds form complex political and trading agreements that become Leagues.

M27: A slight abating in warp storms leads to encounters between the Squat Home Worlds and alien races in a period known as the Age of Trade. Squats use their tremendous mineral wealth to trade for weapons, foodstuffs, and high-tech systems with the Eldar.

243.M28: Betrayal of Grace: Grunhag the Flayer, and Ork Warlord, attacks the Squat Homeworlds with a huge fleet. Many strongholds are wipied out by the orks. The Epic ballad, "The Fall of Imbach", commemorates one such destruction. This marks the beginning of the Squat Age of Wars with hostility towards the Orks and distrust towards the Eldar who stayed neutral in the conflict.

722.M34: Rogue Trader Dausen makes contact with the Squat Home World, Terlaken B3 Svyz, and notifies the Imperium. Orders for termination are suspended awaiting a reply and the dispatch of an Inquisition research team. The following period of history is known to the Squats as the Age of Rediscovery.

Early M36: Incidence of warp storms increases. Imperium reels as Orks and other races rampage throughout a divided galaxy. Period known as the Age of Apostasy begins. Sometime during this period the last of the Squat strongholds seceded from the Imperium.

985.M39: Squat Civil War. League Thor fights League Grindel over exploration of the Lost Stronghold of Dargon. Cyclops invented.

432.M41: Betrayal of man. When League Thrym is besieged by an Ork Wargh, the Imperium promises to help, but then these reinforcements are re-directed towards the Eye of terror. The 73 Stongholds of league Thrym fall.

813.M41: First contact with the Tyrandids. Ivar III is stripped bare of all life, including 19 Strongholds.

859.M41: Betrayal of kin. The war against the Hive fleet has left 756 Strongholds, belonging to 8 Leagues. Loki, Kapella, Freya, Trollen, Thor, Grindel, Grogald and Alvis. The living Ancestors of almost all Strongholds meet on Genta II to hold council over the course of action to take. The council ends in disagreement and the Leagues form the 4 alliances.
Kapella and Trollen form the alliance of Oegir, deciding to hold their ground and calling out for support by the Imperium and the Eldar.
Grogald and Alvis form the alliance of Skimnir, leaving the Homeworlds and turning towards the one known power that has not yet betrayed the Squats: Chaos. They break contact with humanity immediately and head towards the Eye of terror.
Thor leaves the Homewolds alone. The war has left them the strongest League and they believe they can escape from the Hive fleet.
Grindel, Freya and Loki form the alliance of Isnar, leaving the Homeworlds to seek a new place to start.

903.M41: Communication is lost with the Squat worlds of the Kapellan League. It is the last league the Imperium of man still had contact with

946.M41: The Isnar Alliance first encounters the Tau.

This brings the Tyrannic war in line with past conflicts, the series of betrayals would be the list of dates the Squat children learn in elementary school history classes. The league of Thor seems to be the thing most people have described here, the Oegir alliance having been destroyed, the Isnar alliance getting somewhat integrated with the Tau empire and the Skimnir alliance joining the Chaos Squats.

I think hellbores summary of the social structure is very good, but I think that there were once many leagues (traditional fluff had 800), but they were reduced in number by internal wars and the tyrannic onslaught. After the betrayal of kin only one traditional league survived, but in time there might be more. This brings me to the subject I want to talk about, namely the way worlds are settled and the infrastructure is build up and what the social consequnces are.

The Squats are able to withstand higher gravitational forces than humans, but even they have limits. 20g can be handled for short periods, but 3g is the maximum for outstretched periods of time. Even with these restrictions the Squats have settled on planets with far higher surface gs, using their technology, since such massive and dense planets are usually rich in heavy elements, which are a key resource in many of the material technologies developed by Squats. Such a planet will usually get "punctured" by orbital lasers leaving a hole of a certain depth, as gravitational forces decrease inside a planet (funnily enough the gravitational force is 0 at the center of gravity, just where the equations used to describe planetary motions show it to be the biggest). The puncture is stopped at a habitable depth and a work module is brought to that level. From that starting point the planet is mined to the inside and the sides, until enough mass has been removed to make mining towards the surface viable. Each league sends out Explorer ships to find and settle such planets regularly, founding new strongholds which remain part of that league. Sometimes a stronghold is established on a planet so righ in resources, that it is able to function on its own and does not require imports from other league strongholds. In that case a stronghold may choose to secede from the league and form a new one, setteling new planets itself.

Squats being abhuman require food and water, which are usually absent from the stronghold worlds. Two sources are available for these recourses. In the past trading for raw materials and fully operational machinery with the Imperium and Rough Traders was the main source of these resources, but only few RTs are aware of the existence of the league of Thor. The other is synthetic replication, which is very energy consuming and requires a stronghold to reduce all other activities to a minimum. Currently this is the main source of food and water in the league and it has restricted their ability to settle. Some have called for raids on imperial worlds to increase the availability of these crucial goods and their voices are getting louder.

The technology of the Squats is ahead of its imperial counterpart in areas that directly affect their life, mostly mining, but also material technology, which is a combination of metallurgy and mineralogy and fusion technology, which powers Squat life creating the breathable athmoshpere in the strongholds and as seen above food and water in times of need. For a long time Squats have produced war machines for the imperium and only used them themselves in small numbers. The great number of subterrain strongholds made traditional ground forces less neccessary, although the Rhino, the Land Raider, the Leman Russ, the Chimaera and their variants have been seen. The mainstay of Squat warengines have always been Tunnelers, which originated as STDs, but have been heavily modified for Stronghold use. Tracked vehicles, notably their superheavy designs were build for assaults and defenses on "Level Zero", the layer of rock that was first settled and often contains large open spaces where cube miles of rock have been removed and where the heart of the stronhold is to be found.

While the hearguard, the standing army of stronghold is usually quipped with first rate weaponary, primarily designed for warfare, the inducted militia troops that make up the biiger part of the armed forces bring their own weapons. Sometimes the clans will settle mining rights in a certain area with force and thus they all carry weapons for the purpose of defense. These weapons fit the circumstances of their usual use, being very effective in confined spaces, but mostly lacking long range. Flame weapons are very uncommon, because they reduce the oxigen levels in the shaft they are being used in and therefore may be lethal to the wielder as well, but the shotgun is used in a variety of designs. In melee situations the clan troopers will resort to their hammers, which depending on the Squats profession and standing will have special qualities, far from the mundane tool they are to humans.

Some guy (UK)
26-08-2006, 10:28
What is it about the Squats that killed them?

I'm speaking from a game perspective of course, not the fluff reason (tyranids ate them).

The archetype was cited as a major reason by Jervis Johnson ie that it just didn't fit into the 40k universe.

The major contributors I see are these:


Dwarf culture with almost no change from Fantasy - at least the Eldar have an original and unique design.

Denigrating name. JJ's apt "What WHERE we thinking?" certainly shows that they were never really taken seriously.

Bad theme. Biker dwarfs in quilted jackets et al made for a funny, rather than feasable race.


So why is it that the Squats in EPIC survived so well? Well, here we see less culture, and more technology. EPIC was a showcase where they could display the technological differences between the Imperium and the Squats, which resulted in a distinctive style of play and an interesting army.


Just to go off that, I found this on the Idgamming forums, sorry if this already been discussed:


Jervis Johnson has had this to say on the subject.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jervis johnson
I know I shouldn't get drawn on this... but... can't... resist

Seriously, a couple of points just so you can have an informed debate based on the real reasons that Squats are no longer available. Be warned, it is going to be hard reading for people that like the Squat background.

First of all, Squats were *not* dropped because they were not selling well. There were then, and are now, plenty of other figure ranges that sell in the sort of % quantaties that the Squats pulled down, especially when you look across all of the ranges produced by GW rather than just those for 40K.

No, the reason that the Squats were dropped was because the creatives in the Studio (people like me, Rick, Andy C, Gav etc) felt that we had failed to do the Dwarf 'archetype' justice in its 40K incarnation. From the name of the race (Squats - what *were* we thinking?!?!) through to the short bikers motif, we had managed to turn what was a proud and noble race in Warhammer and the other literary forms where the archetype exists, into a joke race in 40K. We only fully realised what we had done when we were working on the 2nd edition of 40K. Try as we might, we just couldn't work up much enthusiasm for the Squats. The mistake we made then (deeply regreted since) was to leave them in the background and the 'get you by' army list book that appeared. With hindsight, we should have dropped the Squats back then, and saved ourselves a lot of grief later on.

Anyway, the Squats made it into 2nd edition, and since we were doing army books for each of the races, we started to try and figure out what to do with them. Unfortunately we just couldn't figure out a way to update them and get them to work that we felt was good enough. The 'art' of working on an army as a designer is to find the thing that you think is cool and exciting about an army, and work it up into a strong theme. This 'muse' didn't strike any of us, and so, rather than bring out a second-rate product simply re-hashing the old background, we kept doing other army books instead, with stuff we did feel inspired by.

Now, while this was all going on for 40K, we were actually doing some rather good stuff for the Squats in Epic. On this scale there was a natural tendancy to focus on the big 'hand-made' war machines the Squat artisans produced, and this created an army with a feel that was very different to the biker hordes in 40K. However, this tended to reinforce the problems we saw in the Squat background rather than alleviate them, underlining what we *should* have done with the Squats in 40K.

In the end (and it took years to really get to the roots of the problem) this led to a realisation that we were going to have to drop the Squats in their 'Squat' form from the 40K background. There was little point having a major race that we weren't willing to make an army book for, and their inclusion in the background meant that people kept asking us when we'd do a Squat Codex. Instead we decided that we'd write the Squats out of the background by saying that their Homworlds had been devoured by a Tyranid Hivefleet. This would give us the option in the future to return to making a race based on the Squat archetype for 40K. This race was given the name of Demiurg, and a certain amount of preliminary work was done to get a 'feel' for what the race would be like. At present the only hint of the Demiurg in 40K is the Demiurg spaceship for BFG. However, we do have this race 'in our back pocket' as a possible new race for 40K, or an interesting character model in Inquisitor, or whatever. So far the Demiurg have lost out to other projects, and it may be that their time never actually comes, as they will have to win through on their merits, not simply because we once made some Squat models in the past. At present, I have to say that it is more lilely that they *don't* make the cut than do, as there is a certain predudice these days to simply taking races from Warhammer and cross them over to 40K like we did in the early days, so it may be that the Squats/Demiurg end up remaining a footnote in the history of the 40K galaxy. Only time will tell...

I'll finish off by saying that whatever we decide to do 'officially', there is nothing stopping players with Squat armies from using them, either in Epic or 40k for that matter. There is no GW 'rule' against using old Citadel Miniatures, as long as you use them with exisiting army lists and in a way that won't cause confusion for other players. I recommend taking a positive stand by saying "Have you seen these cool old models? They're called the Squats and GW used to make them back in the late eighties/early nineties. I love 'em, so I count them as Imperial Guard and use them with the current rules..." Put like this I can't imagine that anyone would stop you from using your army.

Best regards,

Jervis Johnson
Head Fanatic


Just thought it would be worth showing, if not already done so- this leaves the Demiurg open for future use if needed, which sounds pretty interesting.

Later, Some Guy

crandall87
26-08-2006, 14:05
The squats are very much alive. Just check out my 40k online site for my models. lol

Xisor
26-08-2006, 16:00
I had an Epic post here, but the spirit of Portent seems to have eaten it. :cries:

Gist that I remember:

Don't go for 'All Stronghold are thus'. Suggest instead that most develo like that, but there is alot of variation.

Don't go for a single Engineer's Guild, but a host of guilds, conglomerates and such that allow for alot of capitalism and individuality to be expressed, even to the point of mercantile selfishness, but that it goes hand in hand alongside the communal society that is the clans/families/houses/dynasties etc.

Generally overseeing clans develop, but not just as nobles, and generally not treated as noble. Saying "I'm lord of the Eastern Fringe" is likely to get a response of "So?", wheras saying "I'm of the house Khr'yl of the Vasernai Stronghold, I'm the current director of our operation there and seek to improve the status" would provoke a reaction of interest rather than admiration, but still better than being disregarded.

Emphasise that it's having connections and affilliations to other neo-squats that's important, not the individual/specific ties themselves that are important. What you house is may indeed be significant, but being able to say you're toally unconnected but still enterprising and here to look at how you can build your own house aside/within/to help the stronghold would get a warmer reception. It's not the material possession of wealth and house, but how it was gained, your own integrity with it, and the strength of your ties/bonds that make you 'important'.

With the nids, I still prefer Genestealer Cults, but it could be an 'exeriment' on the part of the hivemind, or even just routine protocol. The Squats were annoying drawing the attention of the local minor Vanguards and Kraken fleets, so they exterminated them. It needn't be the Hivefleet itself that got the Squat homeworlds, even just a few vanguards would be suitable to deal with it. Perhas even more approriate. The Hivefleet passed through, but the vanguard committed a brief exterminatus/neutering.

That's all for now.

Xisor

Hena
26-08-2006, 18:44
I would have a small addition to this. As I didn't see anyone posting about the demiurg list that has been made for epic, I might as well post it here. The fluff is very well written and quite specific to this topic (written by epilgrim). Heres the page, see the demiurg v2 pdf.

http://iki.fi/hena/gw/epic

cav da man
26-08-2006, 19:14
I would have a small addition to this. As I didn't see anyone posting about the demiurg list that has been made for epic, I might as well post it here. The fluff is very well written and quite specific to this topic (written by epilgrim). Heres the page, see the demiurg v2 pdf.

http://iki.fi/hena/gw/epic
im pretty sure the demiurg are "now" a completely non human looking race in how they are trying to be portrayed away from the squats....or am i thinkin of another race?.

epilgrim
27-08-2006, 02:54
Rearguard at Cysces III – story by Steve Rogers, gameplay by Epilgrim and Moscovian

Negotiations were not going well.

Trade Factor Hyklann was perturbed. The Thing sitting in the chair was perturbed. The Other Thing on the floor seemed particularly perturbed - or was it surprised? It was difficult to tell because a large portion of its face was scattered on the table, the opposite wall and the Thing in the chair was still definitely perturbed.

“As I was saying,” Hyklann reiterated, “I have a very low tolerance for…” his voice trailed off as he waggled his fingers in a manner he hoped conveyed something mystical.

“I think your companion misunderstood me, tolerance and susceptibility are not the same, yes?” The Thing sat there, perturbed, irritatingly so.

Hyklann’s Lineholder security teams had reported perimeter breaches for weeks, but it was only 3 hours ago since these two had been apprehended. Did these things ever blink? The remaining spy was bald with sharp features, decidedly pointed ears and clothed in a robe that made it obvious that the guards who had captured these two were very lucky, maybe too lucky.

Matters had not improved when, during his preamble regarding the legitimacy to their mineral rights on this rock, the temperature in the room dropped 3 degrees for no logical reason. Procedures being what they were the Sergeant-at-Arms had been correct in ventilating the woman with his side-arm. Pity, in her way she had seemed rather intelligent, and a potentially challenging opponent, however, given her current standing in the meeting perhaps she had been a tad too self-possessed.

“She mentioned a prior claim; would you care to pick up where she…left off?” He queried. The Sergeant-at-Arms was intent on their ‘guest’. Their guest seemed intent on ignoring the fact that some type of fluid was running across his eye…nope, definitely not the blinking type. This was going to be a long one. He made a deliberate show of not blinking too.

“Hello. My name is Trade Factor Hyklann of the 71st Commerce Fleet, under the guidance of His Beneficence, Merchant Prince Alsed Telman. You were apprehended while attempting to disrupt our ore processing operation here on Cysces III. Our contract with the System’s Imperial Governor guarantees our exclusive rights to this planet for a period of 10 stellar orbits. Are you appearing as a disputant to this claim?”

He waited…the Sergeant-at Arms waited…the Thing on the floor waited, its one remaining eye seemed focused on a wisp of cordite that stubbornly refused to dissipate. Hyklann smiled, remembering when he had presented the antique slug-thrower to the sergeant. Finally the other thing in the chair spoke.

“Mon-keigh Filth…you speak of claims and rights and profit, you are not fit to walk on our paths. Remove yourselves.” The spy seemed to feel this opening was also a closer.

“Do tell, please, I’m curious about your reference ‘Mon-kea’… and you mentioned a path, where does it lead to?” Hyklann sensed that he was about to get a history lesson. The haughtiness of this one would not allow it to shut up once started…

“…and that is about the sum of it Milady, the Eldar seem to have a prior claim that the Imperial Governor was well aware of, this being an ancestral hunting ground that the Imperium had agreed to quarantine in a cease-fire agreement. The subject we interviewed seems to be an advance guard sent to prepare for a routine layover. It’s a little sketchy on the details.” Hyklann related the statement to his Legate. “We were forced to remove the senior member of their ‘delegation’ as proscribed under Article 78-09, Subsection (c).”

“Understood Factor, good work. The Prince is performing a rearguard inspection tour and I have confirmed reports that our Orbital Security has been compromised. The Fleet is moving to deny them a choice of landing zones. Recent scans indicate that point sources of warp flux have been detected on planet, which would tend to support the Eldar’s prior claim.”

Marshal Legate Bronwyn, The prince’s consort and second-in-command was in rare form today, she knew her way around the Directorate and the legal position they were in. Eldar were always a problem, especially when they were on the receiving end of an underhanded land grab.

“Hyklann, begin demobilization of the works, and prepare for asset recovery,” she continued, “I’ll need best time estimates for dust off. On my authority, you are to redirect MCFs
‘Hellion”, “The Conqueror” and “The Crimson Bane” to support the Lineholder Batteries deployed south of the Face. Message trans with thumb-sig, Acknowledge.”

“Received, Madam Director, what of His Lordship the Prince?” Hyklann inquired.

“Prince Alsed will do as he always has, he shall command the field while your teams begin the demob…” she paused for a moment “When will I have my estimate?”

He replied, “The Iron-Breakers and the Merchant Services are already generating their man-hours, preliminary estimate within 5 hours, Milady.”

“Good,” she purred, “the Eldar seem very intent on seeing us off, and while we prepare our breach of contract contingency settlement with the Governor, I don’t think they will be willing let us leave without forcing us to blunt their pride a little. It will keep our troops well trained. Besides, I think Alsed was getting a little bored, Legate Bronwyn out.”

“Yes, Milady, Factor Hyklann out.” Yes, he mused, bored and reckless. Hopefully the Prince’s retinue would be up to earning their salaries. The next few days were going to be interesting indeed.

The Eldar scout sat in his chair privately despairing…these creatures were not corrupt Mon-Keigh, their weapons and their behavior was not as anticipated. Hopefully the elders could preserve the People’s World without making a fatal error. They must.
The metallic click slightly behind his left ear allowed him a moment, to focus on the faces of those he had waited centuries to see again. The Demiurg behind him spoke quite gently, “Nothing personal friend, it’s just business.”

Hellebore
27-08-2006, 03:36
What is this from?

Is it supposed to be Demiurg, or Squat? Are you saying the Demiurg ARE the squats?

It's a good story, but a little explanation never hurt ;)

Hellebore

Hena
27-08-2006, 03:54
What is this from?

Is it supposed to be Demiurg, or Squat? Are you saying the Demiurg ARE the squats?

It's a good story, but a little explanation never hurt ;)

Hellebore
I suggest you read the demiurg list behind that link that I posted :).

Hellebore
27-08-2006, 04:18
That is rather good :)

Unfortunately I don't think it fits with GW's own background ie that the squats are abhumans and the Demiurg are aliens from the Eastern fringe.

I however really do like the way this is written, and so much of it is similar to the concepts already discussed, it almost feels like, plagiarism to use them :p

But like I said, as far as can be ascertained from the background, the squats were destroyed by the tyranids, and the Demiurg are a mysterious group of aliens from the Eastern Fringe, often found allying themselves with the Tau.

Let me just reiterate that this army list is VERY well written, is internally consistent, but also does seem to suffer from the same thing every other "Squat" list I've ever seen on the net also suffers from: and that is little reimagination.

All the units seem to have their original squat names, and the army is set up very similarly to the original squat list. It seems to mainly focus on changing the background of the squats to fit the newer Demiurg race, rather than changing the army as well.

There ARE new units like trade union armsmen, Legates etc, but these appear to be Demiurg-esque units attached to what is essentially a Squat army with ironeagle gyrocopters, thudd guns, rapiers, overlords, land trains etal.


Hellebore

Zzarchov
27-08-2006, 05:52
Every action produced by a tyranid uses up energy, and unless those hive ships can convert sunlight into energy, then they WILL lose energy.

I'm sorry, but the fluff shows tyranids are only interested in consuming actual organic resources, they can't convert inorganic carbon compounds into organic ones, otherwise they wouldn't descriminate on what planets they invade.

Hellebore


1.) As they have eaten plants before, they can convert sunlight to energy..especially as there are Tyranid plants.

2.) Define "Organic" those are completely arbitrary terms (organic and inorganic). The nids in the codex strip a planet of all its minerals (iron, silicon, titanium) and its atmosphere.

The Nids are self-replicating machines, the easiest way for a machine to replicate is what we deem "biological". A nid would strip a squat stronghold bare, as long as it can be breached the costs are irrelevant, since they needent be paid.

Hell, even for the Imperium this is normally true, regardless of how many many, MANY men die, you can always just breed more with a harsh forced impregnation program. It just takes longer for the Imperium (14-16 years before rifle ready) where as the Nid footsoldiers can be bred in days or weeks (so could humans with a good genetic program..if it weren't banned)

Hellebore
27-08-2006, 06:55
These are links to what I refer to as inorganic, and organic carbon.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_Inorganic_Carbon
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inorganic_chemistry_of_carbon
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organic_matter

I agree there are nid 'plants' in as much as there are immobile organisms that appear plant shaped, but the definition of a plant has more to do with biological characteristics rather than phenotype.

And the Hive mind does not use every gene it absorbs, there are no tyranids with a pancreas, nor any with body hair etc.

There is a chance they have, but they've never said that tyranids can convert sunlight into energy (the only mention of 'energy' that I can find is in regards to consumption of nutrient fluids by swarm beasts).

Converting sunlight into energy would be such a cost effective measure, that the tyranid fleets would have had no need to go into hybernation between galaxies because the energy need not be conserved if there are trillions of photons bombarding them from all the stars in the galaxy.

The fact that hive ships DO hybernate is an indication they have non renewable energy reserves.

I see your point of view, and it would be interesting to see nids as photosynthetic, but there just isn't any information on it.

The problem is photosynthesis is such a big advantage, that the nids would be much more powerful than they are portrayed.

Hmmmm, i'll have to see if I can find anything written on it one way or the other.

I don't think the hive ships photosynthesise, because they have hardened external carapaces of inorganic molecules used to protect them from vacuum and cosmic radiation- very little space for chloroplasts. Also they sheath their carapaces with syphoned gases etc, which would add another layer of difficulty.

Also, they DO absorb minerals, but they don't specify which ones. The planet ends up a "lifeless ball of rock" but rock is ambiguous as to its chemical composition. The fact the planet still exists afterward certainly suggests there are SOME things they don't use.

Silica is a major component of common earth crust and mantle, but it is combined with oxygen, and many, many metals.

If those were removed from the silica dioxide matrix, then the rocks would be turned to dust, acidy sludge etc. The planet wouldn't survive being digested, yet they appear relatively unscathed (excepting the loss of atmosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere ;)).

Hellebore

Hena
27-08-2006, 06:58
Let me just reiterate that this army list is VERY well written, is internally consistent, but also does seem to suffer from the same thing every other "Squat" list I've ever seen on the net also suffers from: and that is little reimagination.

All the units seem to have their original squat names, and the army is set up very similarly to the original squat list. It seems to mainly focus on changing the background of the squats to fit the newer Demiurg race, rather than changing the army as well.

There ARE new units like trade union armsmen, Legates etc, but these appear to be Demiurg-esque units attached to what is essentially a Squat army with ironeagle gyrocopters, thudd guns, rapiers, overlords, land trains etal.
Thing is that in epic squats worked. In 40k didn't do that well at it. Drop the 'miniature hells engels' from the equation and use 'cyberpunk meets judge dredd style bikes' and bikers aren't a bad thing anymore.

Although the overlord air ship (the idea in general) isn't that good in epic :p.

epilgrim
27-08-2006, 12:39
Originally Posted by hellebore
Let me just reiterate that this army list is VERY well written, is internally consistent, but also does seem to suffer from the same thing every other "Squat" list I've ever seen on the net also suffers from: and that is little reimagination.


glad you liked the work regardless. I am an old time epic player and while playtesting Epic:Armageddon I had discussions with Jervis to no avail about doing a redux on the squats.

So I let them die in my own mind for the time and was content to let them sit in my closet. Recently one of my fellow epic players, Moscovian, was looking through my crates and noticed them. He thought they were very cool and just what the hell was wrong with me...he was right, it was always an excellent army the minis deserve better than what GW tried and finally killed off. He challenged me to do this, I thank him.

I saw the excellent Forgeworld space craft, I love 'Galactica' and I know all of the fluff from 15+ years of GW fandom. So I set about re-imaging the Demiurg from their own point of view as opposed to what the Imperium would have seen after the Age of Isolation.

The gist of it is that the squats never were...the homeworlds were drestroyed, and the Demiurg exist in small but determined numbers with a pragmatic attitude towards their relationship with the Tau and the rest of the universe.

I have not gone to the length of creating a new army since I already own all of the pieces for an army that are unique excepting the rhinos, rapiers and thudd guns, which are well explained as a genetic technology common to a race with STC capabilities.

I am well aware that GW will do what they want with the Demiurg, but as that seems to be something we are waiting for, I took a page from thier own writing style and practice by re-working an exsiting race to make it more contemporary or exciting. By and large most everyone who reads this stuff has thought the idea is a good one, and anyone who wants to has an excuse to play with the old epic minis. No harm done.

Xisor
27-08-2006, 16:01
By and large most everyone who reads this stuff has thought the idea is a good one

That's what they said about my compendium too! Oh, woe is me! :( / :p

I still have to reiterate the point, Epilgrims work on the Demiurg is fantastically good...but it's still the squats(really need a new non-Demiurg name...) to me, and to a lot of other folks too!

I still feels there's room for two deliciously different Dwarf archetypes tobe filled here. One Demiurg, and one neo-Squat.

Cap'n Umgrotz
27-08-2006, 16:13
It really annoys me that the "tyranids ate them" and yet did not incorparate any squat characteristics.
Saying a big assed waaagh wiped them out would have been better, and more in bloody character.

Xisor
27-08-2006, 16:52
I personally put it as *both*.

Waaghs had been harranguing the Squats for centuries, wearing them down. Then they finally beat off the Orks, wayhey! Then the couple of genestealer cults draw the attention of a passing Hivefleet, it sends out it's vanguard forces(Kraken and Droneships) who generally overwhelm the weakened strongholds.

It's a bit of a tradgedy really.

Xisor

cav da man
27-08-2006, 17:34
the stories and links i have seen in this thread have all at least implied that the demiurg are more or less squat like and im sure they are not even supposed to be humanoid. I remember one refence as a type of "polar bear" thing but my memory tends to be dodgy with these things, can anybody verify that the demiurg arnt just squats with a different name?

epilgrim
27-08-2006, 17:48
Here is how I envision it happening, they more or less fall victim to chance and their own isolationist policies...

Enemies at the Gates
For ages large populations of Orks had been located in many of the sectors surrounding the Homeworlds and the Imperial alliance with the Demiurg formed a convenient barrier while the Imperium reclaimed its former holdings. For their part the Demiurg had long been accustomed to the regular incursion of the occasional Ork Waaagh, the rare but deadly encounters with the Eldar and the increasingly familiar raids of the Traitor Legions from the Eye of Terror.

Despite these threats, with expansion once again possible following the receding of the warp storms, the Demiurg Merchant Marine formed large expeditionary flotillas called Commerce Fleets to explore and exploit unclaimed star systems.

The Commerce Fleets formed the pinnacle of Demiurg science and adaptation. With the Stronghold class starships, the orbital Forge class refineries and their large surface-going ore processing plants the Demiurg had mastered the harshest planetary environments and now turned their skills to profiting from the resources of the rest of the Galaxy. A Commerce Fleet could normally remain in space away from the Homeworlds for generations and in some cases be utilized to permanently relocate the entire fleet as part of a trading outpost or a new colonial effort.

What they could not have anticipated was the level of indifference the Imperium would demonstrate in their most dire hour.

The Death of the Homeworlds
Following the outreach of the Commerce Fleets the next major change in the history of the Demiurg came late in the 40th Millennia and would forever colour their relations with the rest of the universe.

The Tyranid Hive Fleets had been plotted, tracked and fought by every race throughout the Galaxy. The Demiurg were no exception, but between the Eye of Terror and the Ork Hordes core-wards of the Homeworlds, they never anticipated a Hive Fleet advance straight through Ork Space uncontested. Worse still the Orks performed what amounted to a mass migration completely saturating the bulk of the Demiurg defensive capability, leaving the Homeworlds vulnerable to the onslaught of the fast approaching Hive Fleet.

No records survive, but it has been postulated that the Demiurg, long noted for their stubborn intractability were more than likely to be unwilling to consider abandoning their holdings and extinction was preferable to giving ground to this star born vermin.

The Imperium as always was overcommitted to battles with the forces of Chaos and further weakened by the overspill of the dislocated Ork populace. They were unable to bolster the valiant stand of the Demiurg and thus the Homeworlds were lost.

All That Remains
The Commerce Fleets that were abroad during this tragedy gradually became aware of the fall of the Homeworlds and opinion was sharply divided on how, and indeed if, the Demiurg might survive as a people. Many enclaves felt betrayed by the Imperium and were determined to make them pay for allowing the Homeworlds to perish.

Other more vocal elements sought to assemble crusader fleets to reclaim their fiefdoms from the infestation of the Tyranids, but to a certainty, all of these attempts resulted in failure and annihilation.

In the end, or more practically, as a new beginning, the remaining Demiurg have sought to fortify what remains and work towards consolidating their role as independent traders, mining operations and occasionally mercenaries. And they have found clients; profit and revenge are easy to come by.

Xisor
27-08-2006, 17:52
Not beyond feasible doubt.

However, looking at it *very* explicitly,

Squats: Abhumans
Demiurg: Squat semi-humanoids, Xenos, from the Valhallan famous regiment article.

So, whilst there is a chance the Demiurg and Squats are the same(ie the Imperium didn't notice that they weren't Xenos, just small rounder humans),it looks extremely unlikely in my view.

For one: Squats aren't semi-humanoid, they're humanoid. Very much so. So much so, you *could* just call them slightly mutated/engineered humans. Many people do.

Demiurg, on the other hand, are semi-humanoid, not 'small humanoids', but squat semi-humanoids. Only part humanoid. Nobody know's what the real difference is manifested as. I had a few ideas:

- Multiple limbs, but otherwise fairly human looking
- Totally different sensory apparatus(compound eyes, antenae, mandibles, tentacles)
- Quadrapeds
- Insectoid (like 'ant-men' or something, similar to the insectoid tech folks from starwars, forget the name)
- Tentacles, or my name: techneurites, non-motor-related limbs that can directly interface with technology. Ie you could actually plug a Demiurg into a USB socket...

Generally speaking they *could* be squats with a different name, but most indications GW have given us is that this is not the case(and hence why I disagree on principle with Epilgrim's Demiurg work, they're not Demiurg, they're Squats! But it's his work, and good work at that so I can't, and shouldn't even if I could, complain), so I think the case still lies open: Squats *and* Demiurg, not *are*.

Xisor

Mechanicus
27-08-2006, 17:52
Yes, from the Tau BFG Armada:


Although known in legend among many indigenous races throught the region, Demiurg vessels avoid Imperium-claimed space scrupulously unless specifically invited in. Unfortunately, less than scrupulous planetary governors have been known to employ Demiurg forces to bolster their own positions, inviting Inquisitorial censure for their truck with aliens.

Unfortunately, the Squats are just abhumans, not aliens.

cav da man
27-08-2006, 20:02
im "almost" certain the demuirg are not even slightly humanoid. The problem here is from all the contradicting fluff the line between them just gets fuzzier and fuzzier

Hellebore
28-08-2006, 04:29
I thought these were in some way related?

http://warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=40899

Jes denied them to be Demiurg, but I don't know what else they could be...

As for a name for the squats:

Coreen
Coran
Corian
Leagan
Leaguer
Centrists
Centrese
Primogens (they believe themselves to be the only uncorrupted humans left in the universe so primogen=primogenitor)
Purists
Purista
Trueborn
Firstblood
Numen
Trumen
Unimen
Minerists
Minerese
Holders
Claners
Holdarian
Clanarest
Clannar


You can see the suffix similarities (but then, they seem to be the most common form of suffix for denoting race/group).

Add more, pick one, vote whatever, just find me a blasted NAME :p (that doesn't suck)

Hellebore

susu.exp
28-08-2006, 08:35
I´d add Varingr, meaning "those under oath" and used by the Scandinavian traders in the Viking age. Mostly the Skandinavians are remembered for the "Normans" and the "Vikings" who were very agressivly expansionist and raided the towns of western europe, but in the east, they were mostly traders, and their routes went as far as Baghdad. Since Norse influnces are important in the WFB Dwarfs, they make sense in the conceptualization of the "Squats", Varingr has the advantage of not being an imperial designation by any interpretation. While I can see various groups in the Imperium using the names you have given (RTs would probably use Leaguer or Clanner and Corian might be a term used by the Ordo Xenos, while Imperial propaganda might actually use "Squats"), the Varingr themselves have their own language, split apart from the common dialects of the imperium during the age of isolation.

Oh and of course the name already implies they are "the real humans", just like Innuit, now used as the designation for a group of humans literally just means "human".
The outer galactic core is called midvars, the middle universe, where the Varingr live, the fringes are utvars, the outer or lower universe, where giants (aka imperial humans) roam and the inner core is asvars, where none can live apart from the gods and those who fell in battle or died mining go.

epilgrim
28-08-2006, 11:18
...and here is why Demiurg fits in with my fiction and what has been suspected or hinted at as the successor race to the squats.

From Wikipedia:
The term Demiurge refers in some belief systems to a deity responsible for the creation of the physical universe and the physical aspect of humanity.

The word derives from the ancient Greek δημιουργός (dēmiourgós, Latinized demiurgus). In Classical Greek, the word means “artisan” or “craftsman” (literally in the service of the people: δήμιος (dēmios) “official” + ἔργον (ergon) “(piece of) work”). It is used metaphorically of a creator (of the laws or the heaven) or even the Creator (of the World) in Plato.


As I fashioned them they are creations born of Humanity that themselves are imbued with the drive to create, and whom themselves view the Imperium as alien. I give GW high marks for plucking this term from ancient philosophy in the same manner as they did the Tau.

While I understand some people's conclusions about the Demiurg being an alien species, I keep thinking in terms of GW writing style...alien from who's point of view? Are they examined from the viewpoint of the Demiurg themselves or the Imperium? So little has been said and done with them (officially) due to GW's 4th edition revision commitments as well as WFB and the last gasp of LotR that this race is limited to two resin models and precious few pages of text dedicated to BFG.

As I said earlier I'm an old time fan used to GW re-working and recycling their universe which has worked well for them in the past, and I'm an Epic player with a fully viable army to play. Much like GW I wonder what the hell they were thinking when they called them 'squats' much less an 'epic squat' (an old Citadel Journal joke).

Until GW rolls out an army called Demiurg with something more substantial than two spacecraft models, I don't see anything wrong with everyone developing their own concept for possible adoption or absorption. I'm made my material available to GW, if any of it suits them and if it proves useful for Epic or the WH40K universe so much the better. For now I've got a list, a background, a game system and tons of minis to keep me going. At the same time I applaud everyone’s efforts to fashion their own visions for what might someday be the Demiurg.

Hellebore
28-08-2006, 12:56
I totally agree with your point of view on the Demiurg, as GW have not yet explored them, which is why I like your list.

I personally wish to keep them seperate, and that is what I have been attempting to modernise the Squats into something slightly different, whilst still keeping the flavour of the originals.

So for me, this is all about turning the squats into a seperate group of humans, rather than following the Demiurg route.

But that stops no one from coming up with their own lists with their own view on how the Demiurg, Squats, or BOTH are imagined, until GW pulls their collective finger out and decides to tell us either way.

And that's part of the fun. :D

Hellebore

Brother Smith
28-08-2006, 14:12
I´d add Varingr, meaning "those under oath" and used by the Scandinavian traders in the Viking age. Mostly the Skandinavians are remembered for the "Normans" and the "Vikings" who were very agressivly expansionist and raided the towns of western europe, but in the east, they were mostly traders, and their routes went as far as Baghdad. Since Norse influnces are important in the WFB Dwarfs, they make sense in the conceptualization of the "Squats", Varingr has the advantage of not being an imperial designation by any interpretation. While I can see various groups in the Imperium using the names you have given (RTs would probably use Leaguer or Clanner and Corian might be a term used by the Ordo Xenos, while Imperial propaganda might actually use "Squats"), the Varingr themselves have their own language, split apart from the common dialects of the imperium during the age of isolation.

Oh and of course the name already implies they are "the real humans", just like Innuit, now used as the designation for a group of humans literally just means "human".
The outer galactic core is called midvars, the middle universe, where the Varingr live, the fringes are utvars, the outer or lower universe, where giants (aka imperial humans) roam and the inner core is asvars, where none can live apart from the gods and those who fell in battle or died mining go.

Best name so far, and some of the best ideas too.

Hellebore
28-08-2006, 15:31
Varingr is interesting.

I'm worried that too much Scandinavianism will make them appear MORE dwarfish, and thus MORE squatish.

Of course, if done right, it shouldn't matter, so long as the flavour of terms is viking-esque and it doesn't become a primitive superstitious society by becoming overtly viking.

The terms for the galaxy are also quite good, again so long as the spiritual implications and association with viking mythology doesn't crowd the concept.

Hmmm, Varingr DOES sound pretty cool, and if it is merely a human dialect rather than an indication of culture it could just work.

Nice work Susu.exp :)

Hellebore

susu.exp
28-08-2006, 22:01
Varingr is interesting.

I'm worried that too much Scandinavianism will make them appear MORE dwarfish, and thus MORE squatish.

Of course, if done right, it shouldn't matter, so long as the flavour of terms is viking-esque and it doesn't become a primitive superstitious society by becoming overtly viking.

I agree and that´s why I went with the less known name, which in the historical sources is linked with the areas in which the culture was technologically advanced and trade-oriented. I would like to downplay the Scandinavian influence in other areas, especially warfare and in some respects mythology, because they would feel out of place and are already established in the Space Wolf background. The name, the trading and the shipbuilding capabilities are aspects where I see the reimagined "Squats" quite close to Viking age scandinavians, but there is the mining/engeneering aspect, the isolationism and quite a few other things which set them apart.


The terms for the galaxy are also quite good, again so long as the spiritual implications and association with viking mythology doesn't crowd the concept.

I´d see them as formerly mythological concepts, now mostly deprived of those connotations. The three "varses" are quite removed from norse mythology, which had 9 areas and one of which had the Dwarfs or Dark Elves (interestingly the same thing and conceptually close to the Trolls in Pratchett). What these areas show is a certain contempt for Imperial humans, Utvars is not a place you particularly want to deal with.


Nice work Susu.exp :)

Thanks.

Easy E
28-08-2006, 22:03
Varingr rocks as a name. I am happy to see that the short ones have generated so much discussion.

I am going to go back into the past of this thread and pick up a line of thought that Xisor orignally posted. He was curious as to the status of the "Varingr" (Pending) and AI technology.

It was established in the RT era background that the "Varingr" were adept at using Robots. In this same timeframe, robots were still based off living brains in mechanical bodies that could be programmed. This allowed the Imperials to avoid the entire Stone/Ironmen problems. Hence why the Adepts involved with robots were the Legio Cybernetica.

I feel that the "Varingr" would use the continue the same tradition as their long ago ancestors suffered the same problems with the stone/ironmen before the populated the Homeworlds. This would probably still be a popular children's story and racial myth.

As a result, the "Varingr" are no more advanced in the area of AI then the Imperium. Instead, they would use items mechanization, robotics as we have today (only more advanced), and techological tools that must be wielded by living beings. No true AI.

Just to clarify, the neo-squats (Varingr) are abhumans, while the Demiurge are Xenos. I feel that is the official line for this thread. Is it definitive? Of course not. Could the Demiurge in fact be Squats? Yes. Do alot of ideas about one interact with ideas of the other? You bet. However, for the purposes of this thread, let's assume they are seperate entities.

Brother Smith
28-08-2006, 23:44
Varingr rocks as a name. I am happy to see that the short ones have generated so much discussion.

I am going to go back into the past of this thread and pick up a line of thought that Xisor orignally posted. He was curious as to the status of the "Varingr" (Pending) and AI technology.

It was established in the RT era background that the "Varingr" were adept at using Robots. In this same timeframe, robots were still based off living brains in mechanical bodies that could be programmed. This allowed the Imperials to avoid the entire Stone/Ironmen problems. Hence why the Adepts involved with robots were the Legio Cybernetica.

I feel that the "Varingr" would use the continue the same tradition as their long ago ancestors suffered the same problems with the stone/ironmen before the populated the Homeworlds. This would probably still be a popular children's story and racial myth.

As a result, the "Varingr" are no more advanced in the area of AI then the Imperium. Instead, they would use items mechanization, robotics as we have today (only more advanced), and techological tools that must be wielded by living beings. No true AI.

Just to clarify, the neo-squats (Varingr) are abhumans, while the Demiurge are Xenos. I feel that is the official line for this thread. Is it definitive? Of course not. Could the Demiurge in fact be Squats? Yes. Do alot of ideas about one interact with ideas of the other? You bet. However, for the purposes of this thread, let's assume they are seperate entities.

Legio Cybernetica, RT robots and Squat robots are NOT servitors. They have no organic parts, or machine spirits.

They aren't AIs either. Who said robot meant intelligent? AI means equal intelligence and self awareness (not to mention emotion) to Human beings.

epilgrim
29-08-2006, 00:06
for my part I will keep developing my worldview of the Demiurg and if anything comes of it so much the better. Playtesting on the Epic:Armageddon list continues as does the writing of new stories.

This is the battle report and epilogue for "Rearguard at Cysces III"

Turn One: Disorganization and Disaster!
Prince Alsed was of two minds today; one was extremely grateful that the Consortium had any kind of warning and that the MCF had been redeployed to his rear. The other was of a disposition to levy fines against the Lineholders and their backers for clearly not maintaining their training regiments. Unfortunately, while they were clearly disorganized a report was being squawked over the vox that a reinforced Grand Battery, entrenched along the right flank had been assaulted by Eldar elites. Not only had they held their ground, and not lost a man, they had in fact virtually wiped out their attackers and a large airborne assault war engine! The Eldar’s resolve had faltered and most of them had been unable to withdraw in good order. The few that did retreat reportedly disappeared…Eldar.

Elsewhere the battle was mixed; the Iron Eagles were holding station unable to resolve their tactical displays, the Autonoms were dislodging the advance screen of Chicken-Walkers the Eldar had mysteriously gotten into position…damn L.G.B. security. “Hellion” and “The Conqueror” were reaching deep into the Eldar order of battle with coordinated missile strikes, but “The Crimson Bane” was unable to maintain a pattern lock on the Eldar’s massive artillery battery that was opposing it.

To add to the confusion Bronwyn, aboard the BCC “Remembrance” had been able to lay in a course to warn off the approaching spacecraft, but her approach vector and overtake was so dramatic it would be fortunate if she was able to follow through on her kinetic strikes in a timely manner. Good woman, solid commander, tough break.

His own fortune was no better at present…while sallying forth to launch a strike on the artillery his retinue had been waylaid by a formation similar to the one that was wiped out by the Lineholders. His result had been a protracted melee that left his opponents mortally crippled, but he himself advancing the rear…honesty might require that he admit he was running for his life, but sometimes redefining disagreeable terms was required, especially for one’s posterity.

Turn Two: The Wave crashes against the Rock, Tidal Flow, Ebb and Eddy.
While the Prince attempted to regroup, the Lineholders, in response to their previous failures made valiant efforts to repulse the Eldar. The Mole Mortars launch salvos of ground penetrators into the Eldar Advance troops causing havoc. The Autonoms target seekers were firmly focused on the Eldar Formations that seemed determined to guard the stone obelisk before them. “The Crimson Bane” finally lit off their Pilum missile, but it hardly seemed to equal to the rate of fire pouring down on it from the Eldar Artillery. None of the Iron Eagles were able to do more than hold as they watched their wing-mates get swatted out of the sky.

“Remembrance” still had not arrived, but clearly the Eldar ship had. Super-heated air and mounds of earth erupted around “The ‘Bane” but the particle shielding was up to the task and no damage was sustained.

The crew of “The Conqueror” had located a horrific monstrosity that only the Eldar could take comfort in. It was approaching the L.G.B. Thudd Gun position from the direction of the nearby Warp disturbance. They relayed the targeting information to “Hellion” and went on to fire into the Eldar rear hitting a formation that had been prioritized as a potential C & C group. “Hellion” successfully showed the Eldar that Demiurg technology was more than a match for spirituality. The smoking remains of the giant construct boiled away into insubstantiality. The Mole Mortars sighted the witch that had summoned the construct and dealt with them.

The Prince, having continued his retreat was no longer concerned with posterity, survival itself was in question and he was fast running out of answers. Two formations, one of Walkers and another with Eldar regulars and their skimmers were consolidating the position were his task force was cut down. His successor, Aaron was also in retreat, but luckily he was riding on a trike and not a priority target while in retreat.

Turn Three: Bloodied and Broken.
“Hellion” and “The Conqueror” were running out of targets they could see and troops they could protect. The crew of “The Conqueror” settled for a reformed squadron of jetbikes that CIC had designated ‘Vypers’ eliminating them, “Hellion” pivoted to the right flank in time to discharge the Hellfury Cannon as a ‘Vampire’ Class flyer landed virtually on top of the CIC station, behind the L.G.B. mortar position.

The Mole Mortar Grand Battery finally located the last member of the ill-fated Eldar assault. The squad was undeniably brave, but unfortunately in range. The Thudd Gunners faltered on seeing the ‘Vampire’ land nearby, but resolved to make an advance towards the now undefended warp structure.

The Autonoms seemed to stall their advance but continued to fire at any targets in range. The Rapier Battery attempted to close on the Eldar Artillery formation, but their shooting was rushed. The Eldar reply was anything but and the L.G.B. sustained heavy casualties that forced them to withdraw.

The left flank was failing entirely, the Iron Eagles beyond failing were in fact now being struck down systematically, completely unable to defend themselves. “The Crimson Bane” seeing the dire straights facing the Merchant Prince reversed course and launched an assault on the closing Walkers handing them a sound defeat.

“Remembrance” was reporting their approach over the horizon, but for Alsed it was over, still attempting to regroup he was cut down by the pursuing Eldar troops.

Turn Four: Pyrrhic Victories
With little else to support the left front “The Crimson Bane” upheld the honor of the Prince by destroying the last of the Eldar forces. “Remembrance” finally arrived firing one of its strikes at a lone Vampire and the last at the Eldar ‘Void Spinners’. The Vampire was destroyed, but the Eldar artillery were little more than inconvenienced. The Autonoms were still unmovable unable to resolve their programming priorities or overwhelmed by incoming fire. The Demiurg war engines having little else to combat, being out of position, launched missile strikes against the few viable units including it seemed the Eldar Commander. With so much loss on both sides it would have been easier to exit the field, but both sides were unable to concede.

Turn Five: Vindictive Conflict
The Eldar command, realizing that the Demiurg were in fact preparing a general withdrawal began to lessen their attack eventually conceding the field to allow the Demiurg to leave. For their part, The Demiurg of the 71st Commerce Fleet, formerly lead by Merchant Prince Alsed Telman were saddened by his death, but now focused on new goals…


Epilogue:
“…And so Madam, The Directorate has accepted Aaron Telman’s status as Prince Elect provided you serve as Regent until he graduates from the M.S.J.”

“Thank you Director Fyn, and what actions is the Directorate taking regarding the review of our Default Petition?” asked Legate Bronwyn, “Have they reached a consensus?”

“Their review has supported the standard clauses regarding discharge of binders, an immediate assessment of Liquidated Damages and a comprehensive claims settlement of all material impact costs. Restitution is to be acted upon your communication with the Local Governor.

“Well then, please convene a Conclave, bidding will start at 8% on value for each Brotherhood the Factors commit with an additional .5% for each Merchant Militia and a Full 2% for all SHVY assets wagered.” Bronwyn eased back in Alsed’s Council Seat.

“And the Governor?” inquired Fyn.

“It would seem that he is not returning my comm. I’d take that as a refusal of the terms.”

“And the fact that you have not commed yet…” he pressed.

“…Saves us the effort.”

“Indeed it does Madam Regent, Indeed.” Fyn bowed, “I will inform the Fleet of your decision and convene the Conclave immediately. Thank you Madam Regent.”

As he left, Director Marshal Legate Bronwyn Symk, Crown Regent of the Consortium, 71st Commerce Fleet, thumbed the scanner on the Telman Estate and considered her own bid for the Contract Breach Settlement…



Hope you enjoyed the story. I look forward to seeing everyone elses work as the bid to save the stunties continues!:)

Easy E
29-08-2006, 02:27
Legio Cybernetica, RT robots and Squat robots are NOT servitors. They have no organic parts, or machine spirits.

They aren't AIs either. Who said robot meant intelligent? AI means equal intelligence and self awareness (not to mention emotion) to Human beings.


I agree. They aren't servitors. However, they aren't "true" (as in fully mechanical) robots either. Now this is what I recall from the Compendium. I also recall a very elaborate programming chart to determine a robots actions. The robot revolt before the Age of Strife was first developed in this article (again IIRC). I will have to check my sources at home and get back to you.

So Brother Smith, I assume this to mean you feel that the Varingr could have AI (sentient machine)
technology?

Edit: Also, when I referenced robots in my previous post I was refering to the Maniples of Catellans, Conquerors, etc.

Hellebore
29-08-2006, 02:47
I agree. They aren't servitors. However, they aren't "true" (as in fully mechanical) robots either. Now this is what I recall from the Compendium. I also recall a very elaborate programming chart to determine a robots actions. The robot revolt before the Age of Strife was first developed in this article (again IIRC). I will have to check my sources at home and get back to you.

So Brother Smith, I assume this to mean you feel that the Varingr could have AI (sentient machine)
technology?

Edit: Also, when I referenced robots in my previous post I was refering to the Maniples of Catellans, Conquerors, etc.

In my preliminary writings I had a 0-1 Cybernetica control section, allowing the purchase of 1-4 maniples of robots (with a simplified control system).

The Cybercon Section was made up of an Engineer and his Engineering Corps - basically a control squad for the maniples.

A limited form of Robot technology should be available (the Background for the EoT and Armageddon campaigns both have Legio Cybernetica units as listed in the force disposition tables, so if the Imperium still possesses the technology, then undoubtedly the Varingr Leagues would still possess them).

The Varingr also utilised alot of STC based vehicular designs in common with the imperium (Like the Land Raider et al) - the Power of the Machine Spirit ability a land raider has is obviously based on the cortex design of the robot maniple.

So even now the Varingr (pronounced var-IN-gur, va-ren-gur?) possess technology capable of producing the equivalent of land raiders, rhinos and even leman russ.

As an aside to this, if the terms Varingr and midvar et al are to be used, would this 'language' style be translated into other aspects?

Would, for instance, the Leman Russ Demolisher be called a "Mjolnir", and strongholds called Midgards or something similar?

Or would the 'exotic' terminology only be a remnant, and thus only apply to the most basic parts of the culture (like terminology for the race, the universe, rocks, ore etc) whilst everything else would have a more 'techno' sound?

Hellebore

unknownps
29-08-2006, 02:54
i'd be happy to see the Demiurg as a mer/ally part of the tau but supply heavy slots only since the bugs take the fast and the kroot take the assault

just my 2c

cailus
29-08-2006, 03:37
i'd be happy to see the Demiurg as a mer/ally part of the tau but supply heavy slots only since the bugs take the fast and the kroot take the assault

just my 2c

I like this idea. And I would make the Deimurg rather steampunkish in nature - basically big giant unwieldy machinery that is actually superadvanced and quite dangerous.

And keep the Squats dead. I like them but they are long gone.

Easy E
29-08-2006, 04:18
@ Hellebore- I think it would be nice if they had an STC Pattern designation and a more common name.

For example: The STC template pattern for the Land Raider would be the RA1D3R and the Vanigr would call it the Mjolnir. So it would be the RA1D3R Mjolnir for a Codex entry.

The use of some Varingr-esque terms would help create a theme, but I feel the Stronghold and Leagues should remain the names. We want to be careful of not going overboard with the Varingr as Norse thing. We don't want to fall to much into the realm of cartoon characterizations.

susu.exp
29-08-2006, 08:38
So even now the Varingr (pronounced var-IN-gur, va-ren-gur?) possess technology capable of producing the equivalent of land raiders, rhinos and even leman russ.

var-IN-gur, as far as I can tell from my sources.


As an aside to this, if the terms Varingr and midvar et al are to be used, would this 'language' style be translated into other aspects?

Would, for instance, the Leman Russ Demolisher be called a "Mjolnir", and strongholds called Midgards or something similar?

Or would the 'exotic' terminology only be a remnant, and thus only apply to the most basic parts of the culture (like terminology for the race, the universe, rocks, ore etc) whilst everything else would have a more 'techno' sound?

I´d go with the second option, although modern "tech"-sound has roots in traditional languages as well. But unless we have a linguist around, who knows Old Norse well enough to make a technical sounding language in the spirit of the old we wouldn´t be able to pull it off. The named leagues in the original fluff had names from the Norse Pantheon, but that might be science talk, like the ZEUS supercollider, or naming the planets after Roman gods.

I would emphasize the guild with the vehicle designs. My image of the guild is one that mixes several current institutions:
a) Patent office
b) Academy of science
c) Office of standardisation
So the guild would be a singular institution doing the official work and overseeing engeneering, by setting standards etc. The STCs are fundamental designs and are designated with different terminology than other bits of knowledge. A demolisher would be based on the Russ STC (Guild code C), the variant with a number (Guild number 4), so a demolisher would carry the Guild Identifier C4, and be delivered with a certificate stating that it was produced under guild supervision, which means that it complies with the norms and therefore guild aproved replacement part will work and that it was produced with a certain minimum quality. As one of the workhorses of Varingr mining the Mole would be produced in very modified forms, with lots of improvements, a guild identifier for a modern mole might be FH 629/471, FH the Guild code for mole and 629 and 471 the design changes implemented (629 is drill portion microstructure and 471 is hull strenght reduction, the FH 629/471 would therefore be used in particular solid rocks, the microstructure giving additional strenght for drilling and the hull made thinner, because it is less likely for solid rocks to give in behind the drill. If a new found stronghold orders a bunch of those the guild and the strongholds it orders from will know their planet will probably supply a lot of raw material, because dense rock at level 0 points to a general high desity at the lower levels and therefore a greater ammount of heavy elements).
Only the most common items manufactured would gain a vernacular name, and sometimes all variants of one design are called the same. A non STC design would only bear a number, without the Guild code prefix. Usually a dash is used for instance "- 4097376".

Sai-Lauren
29-08-2006, 09:11
It was stated by Jes Goodwyn amongst others as well as the strong inference in the fluff for the Demiurg, mostly BFG related admittedly but that makes it no less relevant.

I thought most of the Demiurge background was still speculation, hearsay and outright lies.;)



I'd imagine the Squats would loathe the Demiurg for desecrating the remains of their homeworlds and nicking the resources that were rightfully theirs. :mad: Not to mention, somebody they can see eye to eye with and head butt without a stepping stool would be a nice change for them. :D
That's kind of why I mentioned it, I think there is space for both the Demiurge and the Corians/Varingr/whatever we're calling them, and whether they had a common set of ancestors at one point or not is immaterial - although it could add something to the animosity between them if there is.


Just to clarify, the neo-squats (Varingr) are abhumans, while the Demiurge are Xenos. I feel that is the official line for this thread. Is it definitive? Of course not. Could the Demiurge in fact be Squats? Yes. Do alot of ideas about one interact with ideas of the other? You bet. However, for the purposes of this thread, let's assume they are seperate entities.
Ok, fair enough, we can come back to family relations at a later time if need be.

Vehicle class names - I'd like to see them get their own vehicle classes simply to differentiate them from the Imperium (back to the Squat-Imperial split issue I mentioned earlier), although I think they should use Imperial designs as well, but in more limited numbers (maybe they don't produce the designs themselves anymore, but are practically minded enough to press captured vehicles into service after repairs, repaints and upgrades).

Else they're still just another part of the glorious Imperium of Man (or even worse short guardsmen), with all that implies.

Hellebore
29-08-2006, 12:56
Vehicle class names - I'd like to see them get their own vehicle classes simply to differentiate them from the Imperium (back to the Squat-Imperial split issue I mentioned earlier), although I think they should use Imperial designs as well, but in more limited numbers (maybe they don't produce the designs themselves anymore, but are practically minded enough to press captured vehicles into service after repairs, repaints and upgrades).

Else they're still just another part of the glorious Imperium of Man (or even worse short guardsmen), with all that implies.

They do use the STC though, and all the Imperium's vehicles/weapons are from the same source.
I suppose they may have STC designs for things the Imperium doesn't but all their vehicles would still come from the same source.

Unless you want to explain their high technology some other way and distance them from the STC, there stuff has to have SOME relation and similarity to Imperial technology.

Hellebore

schoon
29-08-2006, 14:59
Keep in mind that it's been a long time since the STC, and that designs would have changed significantly over the last 10,000 years, particularly in a society not as technologically stagnant as the Imperium.

Thus, what they use now (in M41) might only very vaguely resemble the original design (which is what the Imperium would still be using).

If you have these Varingr use straight Imperial technology, they fall into the same pitfall as the Squats: their technology and culture won't be unique or interesting enough to make them worth the effort.

Khaine's Messenger
29-08-2006, 15:09
Yes...now may be a good time to argue the nature of STC being used here. First, it's arguable they're more of a magic box that provides a prepackaged tech base. However, there is no evidence that this is anywhere near the limits of human technological know-how, but merely a portable tech-base for colonists in a universe of infrequent communication. If this is so, then really, there should be an air of "the STC was an incomplete technology from which our designs evolved and on which we feel we should not be dependant." On the other hand, there is the STC from False Gods, which is argued to be able to creatively adapt and evolve its technology almost like Tyranids adapting its bio-organisms, almost like a Montgomery-Scott-In-A-Box. Or the STC from Dark Adeptus, which managed to become self-aware.

Brother Smith
29-08-2006, 15:28
Well I remember some quote about how STCs themselves have been changed over the millenia (Age of Strife and onwards).

STCs are almost never exactly how they were when they were created, especially as it is usually the blueprints and such that are found and it is these that have been altered.

Xisor
29-08-2006, 16:21
Just for a bit of C'toeism(that is what we call reverse shoehorning conspiracy theories about here, yes?):

STC was sold to early humanity by an old wise race of space-faring semi-humanoid nomads...

:p :rolleyes: :angel: :eek:


I'm more than happy to keep to the Demiurg *and* Squats(vagrungni...something) for this thread, though a pleasant side effect is that makes me more than happy to keep to the 'Demiurg *are* Squats' for the purposes of Epilgrim's list development! Every Xisor's a winner!

Khaine's Messenger and the Standard Template Construct (Like Indiana Jones and the ...such and such)

An excellent point. My opinion of the STC was this:
- It was a compilation of highly advanced technological templates. It *knew* how to make things. Perhaps not the absolute height of Mankind's techy know-how, but a fully functioning one would bring the Cult Mechanicus' Quest For Knowledge so far in advance of what it is know that it's an unreal comparison...
- Not only does it know how to make things, it knows how to improvise. You're stuck in a wood with a hammer, a chisel, a couple of solar-recharge-laser-cutters and an STC box. You want to build an orbital shuttle. You ask it. Several years and half a forrest later, you have an orbital shuttle. It's built from wood and some rocks, but it'll work...(well, perhaps not, but it would be at least able to say "not a chance, try building a city first, then developing through a tech-tree...")

It is, to me, essentially, a great big expert system on building things. Very advanced things.

But not too advanced.

I like the idea that the Vagringos would hold a form of disdain for the STC. Whilst a powerful tool, it is not necesserilly the best one (a famous Vagooba saying would be "If the only tool you have is an incomplete STC, every problem looks like a lasgun...")

Vagriba Weapons

Given that these neo-Squats aren't a technophobic society, perhaps we should examine their basic weapon being something *other* than a Lasgun. A Hellgun, for instance...

Back to the STC again

Perhaps the Neo-squats even view the STC as a bad thing, in that once you issue it as a complete system, then your only hope is to stagnate, or have it turn into Skynet...

Enough for now.

Xisor

EDIT: A quick 'rebuke on the Demiurg being Squats whilst I remember. The BFG Armada stuff is, IIRC, rather 'Eye of God' view than Imperial Documentation, isn't it?

susu.exp
29-08-2006, 21:27
Vagriba Weapons

Given that these neo-Squats aren't a technophobic society, perhaps we should examine their basic weapon being something *other* than a Lasgun. A Hellgun, for instance...


I suggested Shotguns for conscripts earlier on, because the short range is no distractor in tunnel fights. Same S as the hellgun, lower range and worse AP. And assault 2 rather than rapid fire. Though I can see them producing better slugs than imperials get, due to their metallurgical abilities, so AP 6 or even AP 5 for a Varingr shotgun would probably be justifiable. While we´re at the "other than lasgun" and "other than guard vehicles" topic, the Varingr should probably be more stationary than guard, but the gun line should be less viable as well, therefore tunneling vehicles should be a central concept in the tabletop representation, deepstrike the best way to get units where they are supposed to go and the Varingr best at close range, with some long range Support.

Easy E
29-08-2006, 22:28
let's watch the specific rules talk here. This is not the time or place, and we don't want the wrath of the Mods to come down on this great discussion.

Okay, I'm coming around to the adapted STC designs for two reasons:

1. The varingr are a technological race, and many of us can agree that the Imperial Version of things are not very techy. Therefore, we can use them as a basis, and look at how a technological race would improve them. A quick example would be the Land Raider. Instead of what we have now, perhaps it would implement a turret design, more of a slope to the armor, and reactive armor boxes. What would this look like? Even though gamewise it would be about the same.

2. I agree that we need to differentiate themselves from the Imperium, and modified STC designs are the way to go. Sometimes modified to the extent that they are almost unrecognizable, but the same game uses would exist.

Edit: And the nature of STC systems. I always saw them as a set of templates. You then input the materials you had on hand, and what you wanted to do. it would then cross-reference and determine what would fit the requirements best if it could. I really only saw them as a huge database, and not even close to the pinnacle of Human technology. It's sort of like sending a bunch or technical read-outs/blueprints with every colony ship, attached to a search engine.

The Ad mech only thinks it's the pinnacle of knowledge because they simply don't know any better.

Brother Smith
30-08-2006, 00:41
Well thats the thing, all STCs have been modified, unless you find AN STC.

I'll try and find the reference explaining it.

Sai-Lauren
30-08-2006, 08:20
Edit: And the nature of STC systems. I always saw them as a set of templates. You then input the materials you had on hand, and what you wanted to do. it would then cross-reference and determine what would fit the requirements best if it could. I really only saw them as a huge database, and not even close to the pinnacle of Human technology. It's sort of like sending a bunch or technical read-outs/blueprints with every colony ship, attached to a search engine.

The Ad mech only thinks it's the pinnacle of knowledge because they simply don't know any better.

Agree on that point, but I'd go even further and say that it's more a collection of parts and components, with enough intelligence to be able to put the appropriate parts together based on the task you want it to do and the environment you've told it about - for example, why have a separate cargo transporter pattern for each possible environment when you can have a cargo transporter chassis, with cabs, engine compartments and drive train set up for different environments that will fit onto the chassis.

Hellebore
30-08-2006, 13:25
Agree on that point, but I'd go even further and say that it's more a collection of parts and components, with enough intelligence to be able to put the appropriate parts together based on the task you want it to do and the environment you've told it about - for example, why have a separate cargo transporter pattern for each possible environment when you can have a cargo transporter chassis, with cabs, engine compartments and drive train set up for different environments that will fit onto the chassis.

That's how I've always pictured the STC - the IKEA of the 41st Millenium. :D

The way I was thinking this could be reflected (specifically in their military hardware) was by giving them free reign with vehicle weapon points. They would have no problem mounting any type of weapon on a vehicle, so rather than having the Mjolnir assault tank come equipped with the standard imperial load, there would be a list to choose from.

With each vehicle having this much freedom, they won't 'feel' a if they are simply blatant imperial rip offs.

I suppose also, that the vehicle shapes don't have to look that imperial either.

I was discussing theme and design with a friend from my games club, and he suggested their technology look very heavy and solid. High gravity worlds require extremes of construction.

In addition he postulated that alot of the League weaponry would be high Strength, and low penetration. Basically they were built like brick **** house and hit like a tonne of bricks (they seem very 'bricky' to me :p).

Lower AP values would make them less likely to kill things outright, but high strength would certainly take it's toll.

Stylistically I liked the idea, but I found it a little hard to reconcile with the high level of melta/plasma/laser style weaponry the guilds were renowned for.

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
30-08-2006, 14:01
That's how I've always pictured the STC - the IKEA of the 41st Millenium. :D

The way I was thinking this could be reflected (specifically in their military hardware) was by giving them free reign with vehicle weapon points. They would have no problem mounting any type of weapon on a vehicle, so rather than having the Mjolnir assault tank come equipped with the standard imperial load, there would be a list to choose from.

With each vehicle having this much freedom, they won't 'feel' a if they are simply blatant imperial rip offs.

Not quite sure on that one, it does sound like a good idea (right tools for the job), but it could get horribley close to power gaming unless it was done right - essentially you're looking at a limited VDR, and we all know the problems that thing can throw up if you want to abuse it.



I suppose also, that the vehicle shapes don't have to look that imperial either.

I was discussing theme and design with a friend from my games club, and he suggested their technology look very heavy and solid. High gravity worlds require extremes of construction.

Kind of where I was as well - taking something like the Chimera and making it look closer to the Gorgon (or if you remember RT, that Zoids conversion they did for a tunneller). Basically, heavier and bulkier, almost like insect/crustacean carapace.



In addition he postulated that alot of the League weaponry would be high Strength, and low penetration. Basically they were built like brick **** house and hit like a tonne of bricks (they seem very 'bricky' to me :p).

What're you planning - a Squat replacement, or introducing Lego to the 40k universe? :evilgrin:



Lower AP values would make them less likely to kill things outright, but high strength would certainly take it's toll.

Stylistically I liked the idea, but I found it a little hard to reconcile with the high level of melta/plasma/laser style weaponry the guilds were renowned for.

Hellebore
They would also murder Armoured Companies, but Marines would be quite safe.

Not quite sure what to do here, about the only justification is that the targetting sensors are more used for mining, and so have a hard time locking on to and focussing the beams correctly against small targets, wheras vehicles are much bigger and don't move around as much.

Easy E
30-08-2006, 21:52
I like the emphasis to be on technology that could have been developed as an off-shoot of mining. With that in mind I would focus more on Melta, Plasma, and Laser technology.

In addition, units designed for close-Quarters fighting are a must.

In the past, artillery has been a specialty of the squats, should this emphasis continue? I'm not sure how it fits in with the types of worlds the Varingr live in. The same applies to a certain extent to Tanks.

Hellebore
31-08-2006, 03:13
I like the emphasis to be on technology that could have been developed as an off-shoot of mining. With that in mind I would focus more on Melta, Plasma, and Laser technology.

In addition, units designed for close-Quarters fighting are a must.

In the past, artillery has been a specialty of the squats, should this emphasis continue? I'm not sure how it fits in with the types of worlds the Varingr live in. The same applies to a certain extent to Tanks.

That is also what my friend said regarding mining weapons, but I have to disagree to a limited extent. Thematically it is fine, but realistically no group of people alone in a dangerous universe are only going to make weapons based the tools they use for their industry - it would imply they never had weapons until then.

Everyone possesses weapons they make specifically for killing things, and I don't think the Varingr would be any different (especially considering how many weapons the AdMech have pulled from their STC designs :D).

HOWEVER, having said that I can see SOME of their weapons having evolved naturally from mining tools. The T3R-M1T3 apc is an obvious one, the mole mortar another. Fusion cutters and plasma torches etc would also be understandable.

The basic side arm though I definitely can't see as being a glorified blow torch, it would be a gun designed to kill.

Their more exotic support elements and specialist weapons sure, but not the basic weapons.

Mining is a great theme, but it can be taken too far (I'm mean, you don't want them all to be wearing flak helmets that look like mining helmets with little lights on them, do you?:p), or all their ccw are picks.

As for assault units, I liked the idea of exo armour assault units and Embittered survivors. The exo armour units would have the built in weapons of previous eras, and be used to strike right into the heart of the enemy.

I do like the original berserker design, but they were just TOO troll slayer-esque for me.

Discussing it the other day, I thought a rag tag unit of those varingr who have lost their entire clan/familly whatever to either nid attacks or previously ork attacks become wandering depressives, who seek out Strongholds for employment as mercenaries. They go into battle hopped up on near lethal doses of combat drug cocktails using very large mining drills/cutters/chainsaws et al to destroy the enemy.

It is similar in style to a trollslayer, they just don't run around with mowhawks dressed in their undies. If the theme is TOO dwarfish though, I'll drop it because I don't want to have just dwarfs in space.

My boss suggested calling them the Embittered - they hate everyone more than other Varingr hate them (which is quite an acheivement).

Mercenary companies of alcoholic drug addicts that travel around the core looking for release (and now the tyranids have done so much damage, there would be ALOT of these Dispossessed - also a name option).

And don't forget the Conversion Beamer technology - that would be an awesome mining tool. Simply point and convert your really hard granite mountain side into energy (which could be siphoned off to power generators et al).

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
31-08-2006, 08:15
And don't forget the Conversion Beamer technology - that would be an awesome mining tool. Simply point and convert your really hard granite mountain side into energy (which could be siphoned off to power generators et al).

And kind of related to the idea I had driving into work about their weapons - explaining the high strength, low AP you postulated earlier.

Beam, rather than Pulse, weaponary.

In an earlier part of your post:-


HOWEVER, having said that I can see SOME of their weapons having evolved naturally from mining tools. The T3R-M1T3 apc is an obvious one, the mole mortar another. Fusion cutters and plasma torches etc would also be understandable.

Mining implements would almost certainly use beams to cut, rather than pulses which would explosively vapourise the surface, dangerous if it ignites some gas, and also potentially damaging the minerals you're after.

Now, if we say that the majority of focussing crystals and energy packs that are produced are designed for this kind of energy output, and that at some point, some engineer would have tried them in a firearm (either a specific job in mind, or they were running out of normal ones), found it successful, and passed that knowledge around, then they could have shut the manufacturing plants making the normal ones down, and converted them over to the new type (more efficient production processes).

The downside is that such a weapon does need to dwell on it's target to significantly damage, and moving invariably focusses the beam on a different, undamaged part of their armour - which a man/ork/eldar can do, but a tank finds a lot more difficult.

susu.exp
31-08-2006, 16:18
The downside is that such a weapon does need to dwell on it's target to significantly damage, and moving invariably focusses the beam on a different, undamaged part of their armour - which a man/ork/eldar can do, but a tank finds a lot more difficult.

I don´t think it is a downside. In the thread where I first posted my alternative timeline, I also suggested that the Varingr (not called that back then of course) would be hart hitting, short ranged and slow. This in itself would not work on the tabletop, because their opponents could just keep out of range and kill them off. But with the addition of weapons that take some time, one can imagine a strategy. Let´s say they get such weapons, using blasts or large blast markers and taking time. They would be fired in the Varingr turn, but not do any damage, insted a marker would be placed. The damage would be applied at the end of the opponents movement phase, giving them an opportunity to escape, but also allowing the Varingr to channel them towards their hard hitters and denying them the use of move or fire weapons. If enough of these are available the tactic is viable, though something else might be in order to deal with Eldar and Tau vehicles. I think traditional tanks should be available as a 0-1 choice, like in the Ork list, but without the looted rules. Varingr vehicle gear would make them better than their imperial counterparts (maybe a minimum requirement for additional equipment should be built in).

cav da man
31-08-2006, 22:05
Everyone possesses weapons they make specifically for killing things, and I don't think the Varingr would be any different (especially considering how many weapons the AdMech have pulled from their STC designs :D).
Hellebore

many weapons have been developed around things such as farming or common tools warhammer, scythe etc...., the thing about the "glorified blowtorch" that was mentioned is that yes it may start out as a blowtorch and you may find that seems pathetic when you put it like that, the weapons of today are just nicely shaped pieces of metal which throw little projectiles at people :) but then once you see that a mining tool has the potential to kill then over time it is altered so the less kill crazy roots can't be seen so easily:eek:

Easy E
31-08-2006, 22:56
many weapons have been developed around things such as farming or common tools warhammer, scythe etc...., the thing about the "glorified blowtorch" that was mentioned is that yes it may start out as a blowtorch and you may find that seems pathetic when you put it like that, the weapons of today are just nicely shaped pieces of metal which throw little projectiles at people :) but then once you see that a mining tool has the potential to kill then over time it is altered so the less kill crazy roots can't be seen so easily:eek:

Well said. That's why their weapons should be Plasma, Melta, and Laser based mostly. Sure, they are specifically designed to kill things, but the weapons are also technologies that would be developed by mining interests.

My question about Artillery was never really covered. Does artillery heavy seem like a good theme for an underground dwelling race?

As for the Embittered, it is strongly Trollslayerish. However, alcholic, drug addicted Varingr are a bit different. I think it can be pulled off, as long as visually, they are different from Troll-Slayers. So no mohawks and orange hair.

I am interested how the Ancestor Worship associated with the squats would translate over into the Varingr? Since many clans and people had been annihalated, would this practice be transformed into something different?

Hellebore
01-09-2006, 06:52
Well said. That's why their weapons should be Plasma, Melta, and Laser based mostly. Sure, they are specifically designed to kill things, but the weapons are also technologies that would be developed by mining interests.

My question about Artillery was never really covered. Does artillery heavy seem like a good theme for an underground dwelling race?

As for the Embittered, it is strongly Trollslayerish. However, alcholic, drug addicted Varingr are a bit different. I think it can be pulled off, as long as visually, they are different from Troll-Slayers. So no mohawks and orange hair.

I am interested how the Ancestor Worship associated with the squats would translate over into the Varingr? Since many clans and people had been annihalated, would this practice be transformed into something different?

Well this is how I would break it down:

Standard infantry armament: offensively design weaponry
Specialist plasma/fusion weapons: altered mining implements
Support Weapons: Altered mining implements (with a bit of offensive ingenuity thrown in).

There were alot of medieval weapons coopted from non military uses, but the sword, arguably the most common weapon was purely offensive in creation.

As to artillery, I belive they would use SOME, and that it would be a modified form of something. The mole mortar is an obvious one, with its ability to deliver a shaped charge to a specific location. The quad launcher could have several uses, maybe it was used to expose mountain side ore bodies without having to climb the thing. Maybe it was actually a mole mortar platform, and they just removed the drill bit from the explosive and pointed it UP instead of down.

At the moment I have three 'true' artillary pieces, the mole mortar, the quad launcher, and the heavy quad launcher. The HQL is mounted on a modified Leman Russ Demolisher hull, as the size of the gun means it requires a huge counterweight.

To my mind, the armament and equipment of the Varingr is fairly defined.

The troopers are armed with laser/maser/xaser weaponry as standard, and there are a couple of heavier weapons like a heavy laser/maser/xaser rifle, and a laser/maser/xaser cannon which fulfill anti infantry and tank roles.

Then there are the specialist weapons that are based on fusion and plasma technology.

Plasma lances and projectors, with shorter ranges but higher penetrative power, for those confined spaces against heavily armoured opponents (I'm thinking originally mega armoured nobs/warbosses, and later tyrant guard and warriors etc).
Fusion projectors and cannons for taking out armour close up (ork battlefortresses, looted vehicles, stompas, bonecrushers, and carnifexes) when the infantry units are within spitting distance.
Plasma thrower. A nasty piece of kit designed around a portable plasma core, with a nozel on the end. A flamer on 'roids for utterly destroying all fleshy creatures in tunnel areas.

Conversion beamers used as effective anti tank and anti infantry weapons, coopted from the tunnel cutting devices used to dig out new mine systems.
Mole/quad/heavy quad artillery all high powered explosives designed for maximum saturation (again used as open air mining equipment, or perhaps just built to stop ork mechanised armies from getting too close to the Stronghold - I can see heavy quad batteries studding a stronghold's outer shell).

The Embittered are pretty Trollslayerish, I'll admit, which is why I wasn't sure whether they should exist (being the biggest proponent of reimagining and all).
I think the drug/alcohol addicted almost penal legion-esque aspect does differentiate them, I'm just not sure whether it is enough...

The ancestor worship (or veneration - it removes religious conotations which I think an advanced human civilisation would not have) I see as a validation of their 'purity' - they can trace their ancestors back to the diaspora from Terra, proving them to be the last pureblood humans left - the mutant degenerates of the Imperium are obviously hoplessly corrupted by rampant psykers, daemonic possession, and the inability to provide proper rad shielding for their people. They have also degenerated culturally - worshipping machines, and corpses!?:wtf:

Thus their ancestors are that tangible link to the Golden Age of Humanity and the evidence that the Varingr are the last true humans.

This is an aspect I created because I liked the idea that one of the reasons they were so insular was because they truely believed themselves alone in the galaxy - there were no other humans they could associate with; and the constant betrayals by the abhumans of the Imperium only went to prove how far they had degenerated.

This would also stem from the clan dependency, each varingr in each clan having to work for the 'greater good' of the clan itself, is in its own way a form of ancestor veneration - they see their family and ancestors as so important they will work hard to keep it functioning. Clan pride and all that.

With a large number of clans destroyed, I think the veneration of ones ancestors would INCREASE, and may even take on an air of desperate religious belief - mainly to stop themselves going made with grief.

The concept of the Embittered would stem from this strong need to maintain the memory of ones clan and ancestors through the heroic deeds of its last sons.

I mean, you can twist the story any way you want really to justify why something works the way it does. So long as the mentality and social makeup match the actions of the people, everything has an internal logic, no matter what the original reason for putting it there...

Hellebore

Lockjaw
05-09-2006, 22:10
would they still see themselves as humans? maybe they'd see themselves as the next advancement in humanity instead and the psykers and all the imperium has as evolutionary dead ends

Easy E
06-09-2006, 03:52
That ancestor veneration change seems about right to me. Thinking that they are the last true humans adds and interesting twist. Then why refer to themselves as anything other than Humans?

On a different subject, (I like to do that huh?) I was thinking a bit more about the Engineering Guild. After the Tyrannic Purge, perhaps it wouldn't exist as a seperate organization anymore. Instead, it would be lone Engineers accompanied by groups of other survivors and warriors. Engineers would have a few apprentices (1-10) and be relatively feared/respected in the community of survivors.

How blasted were the Varingr going to be after the Tyrannic Purge? I'm trying to remeber if planetwide Strongholds were still going to exist, or if they were going to be smaller entities.

Drogmir
06-09-2006, 04:29
Well when you think about the gameplay started shifting from

Funny and Adult Humor- Slannesi and etc.

Dark but Teen Oriented- Well mostly the blood gore and stuff

But still if Squats were still around I would have played them. Nothing better than having you ass whooped by short little stubby humans things

Hellebore
06-09-2006, 06:44
That ancestor veneration change seems about right to me. Thinking that they are the last true humans adds and interesting twist. Then why refer to themselves as anything other than Humans?

On a different subject, (I like to do that huh?) I was thinking a bit more about the Engineering Guild. After the Tyrannic Purge, perhaps it wouldn't exist as a seperate organization anymore. Instead, it would be lone Engineers accompanied by groups of other survivors and warriors. Engineers would have a few apprentices (1-10) and be relatively feared/respected in the community of survivors.

How blasted were the Varingr going to be after the Tyrannic Purge? I'm trying to remeber if planetwide Strongholds were still going to exist, or if they were going to be smaller entities.

If the Varingr see themselves as human, then yes they should probably call themselves human. The reason I used the word Coran (or Corian) was as a regional designation - they were humans from the Core. The other reason I posted that long list of names had to do with the concept of humanity - the Imperium is running around calling themselves "Human", so why don't we call ourselves the "FirstBlood" humans? Just to show the superiority. The Varingr would concede that Imperial humans are homo sapiens, but Homo sapiens vulgaris, rather than the Varingr Homo sapiens nobilis.

Thus the title for these people is such a hard one to come up with, because 'squat' is SUCH an ingrained term amongst the fandom, it would be very hard to break the habit.

As I began codifying my thoughts, I started separating different groups of the Varingr into Guilds - so there is the Guild of Ancestors, Guild of Engineers, Guild of Chicken Soup Nozzle cleaners etc. The guild was effectively a highly specialised corporation that provided a very specific service to the Strongholds and Clans. As such each 'coporation' would have holdings even after the Tyranid Purge. There probably WOULD be lone Engineers, but I wonder whether they are more Embittered, than Engineer?

The Strongholds would require alot of engineering expertise to rebuild after the attack, so I think they would be 'pressganged' into service, purely for the race's survival.

This quote is a section taken from the very end of my initial draft of the history of the Varingr (or Saga). It illustrates my thinking on the state of the Core League after the Tyranid attack.


The Core League was in ruins. Best estimates placed the casualties at four fifths the total population, with the total destruction of two thirds of the League’s Strongholds. Its population in tatters, its infrastructure smashed, the Core League turned a heavy heart to rebuilding what was left of their civilisation.
All the refugees had been concentrated across three systems near the centre of the Core, and the Hearthguard and Fleet set about consolidating their defences. After barely surviving the Tyranid attack, it would be the bitterest of ironies should a renegade invasion force or ork waaagh deliver the death knell for their people. For the next two hundred years the Core League turned its entire workforce to the effort of rebuilding, whilst the hearthguard are sent on retrieval missions, braving the icy darkness of the destroyed strongholds to recover what they can. Just as they had when the Flayer had been defeated or when they weathered the Heresy, or even the defiance of Vandire’s Reign of Blood, the Varingr rebuild, and dream of vengeance and the destruction of all those who would deny them their place in the galaxy.

Broken, but defiant, the Varingr refuse to give in and will fight to the bloody end.


I liken it to the Eldar Fall. They have been smashed, but refuse to give up.

Hellebore

La'mour Le Breton
06-09-2006, 08:17
i would think of the quad launchers like automatic grenade launchers, like an assault cannon with less shots and blast templates, heavy 3 blast s 4 ap -, and give them a krak frag type option, so like heavy 3 s 8 ap 5 no blast some thing like that, put them on bikes and transports that would be sweet,
the heavy quad launcher would be devestating against infantry, as i would see the squats fighting loads of weaker opponents, same frag krak type option

La'mour Le Breton
06-09-2006, 08:23
what type of Clost combat weapons would you think squats would use? some supershort range plasma burners, alot of powerfists/drills/hammers, some cool new special rules would be cool, not just the same double strength no save strike last, maybe remove the strike last as squats would have low Initiative and are really stocky

Hellebore
06-09-2006, 11:51
Should they use an extended 'viking-ese' lexicon to name units/clans/strongholds etc?

Or should it be used sparingly, or perhaps corrupted pseudo-norse, or not at all?

I found this translation site that produces some interesting words:
http://www.tranexp.com:2000/Translate/result.shtml

clan=ćttflokkur, ćttbálkur
warrior=stríđsmađur, bardagamađur
guard=vörđur, bakvörđur, vernda, gćta, vaka yfir
warden=vörđur, umsjónarmađur, forstöđumađur
protector=verndari
ancestor=forfađir

So does Varingr et al sound suitable for the neosquats, or should it be kept to a minimum (or ignored)?

Hellebore

susu.exp
06-09-2006, 17:38
That ancestor veneration change seems about right to me. Thinking that they are the last true humans adds and interesting twist. Then why refer to themselves as anything other than Humans?

I touched on this before. For one thing, a few ethnic groups now have names that in their language means "human", for example the "inuit". The other reason is that the Imperium uses "human" but also "imperial" to distinguish itself from others who might claim the word (for instance the followers of Chaos, who want to overthrow the regime of the "false emperor of mankind" and replace him with a true government of mankind). The varingr would think of their imperial counterparts as untrustworthy, because the imperium is held together by superstition and force, while the Varingr would be held to gether by mutual trust and contracts - hence the name "those under oath", they honour their commitments out of personal ethics (at least that´s how they think about themselves). A rough trader might not pay what he is due, but a varingr will always pay his dues. Using Hellbores link I found "illur" as "unrightous", and "Illungr" would certainly be a name they would have for all those who betrayed them in trade and war (Orks, Eldar, the Imperium, Chaos?, Tyranids? - adapted "Mřrongr" for murderers?).

As they say: "A Varingrs handshake is worth more than an Orks bellow, an Eldar promise and an Imperial contract."


I liken it to the Eldar Fall. They have been smashed, but refuse to give up.

I agree 100%. The are the dying race with hope and may not be a dying race in the future anymore. Times are grim, but still there´s something left. And that something refuses to go.


i would think of the quad launchers like automatic grenade launchers, like an assault cannon with less shots and blast templates, heavy 3 blast s 4 ap -, and give them a krak frag type option, so like heavy 3 s 8 ap 5 no blast some thing like that, put them on bikes and transports that would be sweet,

You forgot rending... Put them on bikes?! Re-read post #1: We are reimagining the Squats, because the biker image failed. And c´mon, assault cannon with blast templates? Why not twin-linked earthshaker cannon on a jetbike? Special rule: May move and shoot with Ordnance weapons. Should come in at 20 points with T6 and W10... (I´m not overly serious here)


the heavy quad launcher would be devestating against infantry, as i would see the squats fighting loads of weaker opponents, same frag krak type option

Wait? You want a heavy version of that, too?


what type of Clost combat weapons would you think squats would use? some supershort range plasma burners, alot of powerfists/drills/hammers, some cool new special rules would be cool, not just the same double strength no save strike last, maybe remove the strike last as squats would have low Initiative and are really stocky

That´d really be a cool and innovative rule. Especially because It´d probably make them strike before Marines with P-fists. That certainly fits the image of the Varingr perfectly... This might be the right place to talk about where I see this going: Brilliant background, right now being developed by mainly hellbore, Easy E and a bit of Xisor (I´m unwilling to give myself a lot of credit, but I had my fingers in there too...). At some point we will talk about a rules representation, I think hellbore is drafting something up and I´ve made one or two suggestions in this thread as well. It may get to the stage an official codex is, i.e. playtested, balanced and not too broken to play with, not having a dealine and developing this onle could even take it further than that without FAQs. At some point we´ll also talk about the appearance of the Varingr (hellbore talked about wanting a "boxy look" for their weapons, and interestingly I had built a "concept gun" which was pretty boxy. So we might mot have to argue about that a lot). Artwork will appear, as well as some conversions. And then... Then we´re done. The homebrew codex of old in shiny new armour. And if we do it right, people will allow it in their gaming groups. If we put Rending blast assault cannons on bikes, people won´t.


Should they use an extended 'viking-ese' lexicon to name units/clans/strongholds etc?

Or should it be used sparingly, or perhaps corrupted pseudo-norse, or not at all?

This I guess, is where we have to bring in the "rule of cool", if it sounds good, keep it, if it sounds bad, shove it. I can see myself ordering a unit of Varingr to prepare their weapons, but "stríđsmađur" doesn´t roll of the tongue. "bardagi" is "battle", so can I say "He beheld the line of Bardagr, each of them eager to defend the stronghold"? Yes. But that is a personal opinion. Generally speaking, too much would make a text unreadable, if the Badragr fire demba at Illungr, no one will understand it. But if you introduce the terms, a certain amount of specific speech will work (demba is what "barrage" is translated to and a retranslation get´s "spill, pour out, dump, shower, downpour, scud").

Easy E
06-09-2006, 21:39
Should they use an extended 'viking-ese' lexicon to name units/clans/strongholds etc?

Or should it be used sparingly, or perhaps corrupted pseudo-norse, or not at all?

I found this translation site that produces some interesting words:
http://www.tranexp.com:2000/Translate/result.shtml

clan=ættflokkur, ættbálkur
warrior=stríðsmaður, bardagamaður
guard=vörður, bakvörður, vernda, gæta, vaka yfir
warden=vörður, umsjónarmaður, forstöðumaður
protector=verndari
ancestor=forfaðir

So does Varingr et al sound suitable for the neosquats, or should it be kept to a minimum (or ignored)?

Hellebore

The imperium uses psuedo-Latin on many things, so psuedo-Norse would help differentiate themselves. However, you don't see Guardsman being called legionairres or Sergeants referred to as Centurians. As susu.exp states, the "rule of cool" is our guide.

@susu.exp- Thanks for reminding me about what you said earlier in the thread, the point is excellent now as it was then.

Fantastic- "A Varingrs' handshake is worth more than an Ork bellow, an Eldar promise and an Imperial contract." This helps put us into the right frame of mind.

@ Hellebore- do you think all of these different guilds will make a factured society potentially too structured? Shouldn't some key skills just no longer be available? Or is this structure pre-Tyrannic Purge?

Hellebore
07-09-2006, 04:42
The imperium uses psuedo-Latin on many things, so psuedo-Norse would help differentiate themselves. However, you don't see Guardsman being called legionairres or Sergeants referred to as Centurians. As susu.exp states, the "rule of cool" is our guide.

@susu.exp- Thanks for reminding me about what you said earlier in the thread, the point is excellent now as it was then.

Fantastic- "A Varingrs' handshake is worth more than an Ork bellow, an Eldar promise and an Imperial contract." This helps put us into the right frame of mind.

@ Hellebore- do you think all of these different guilds will make a factured society potentially too structured? Shouldn't some key skills just no longer be available? Or is this structure pre-Tyrannic Purge?

Yeah, I like that Varingr expression.

As to the guilds, yes I was mainly thinking pre-tyranids. I'm still looking at them pre-tyranids so as to have a complete picture which can then be chopped up to make the post-tyranid society.

I don't think that the engineer's guild would be the only group wandering around - too many strongholds were destroyed for everyone to get back together. I'm sure itenerrant engineers + entourage exist, but being a big guild they would still have entire lodges/halls intact in the strongholds that weren't destroyed.

As a bit of design emphasis, I was thinking that the '-gr' sound at the end of the name could be a common theme for Varingr words - obviously no over doing it, but it also means that the words won't just be direct translations from icelandic.

For military structure this is how I (so far) have outlined it:
titles are 'defensive' sounding to emphasise their protection of the stronghold.

Protector/Warden - highest level of command, from the Skarl/Jarl/Thane's noble clan.
Highguard(replacement for hearthguard)- professional soldiery supplied and paid by the noble clan. Leaders called Custodians?

Clanguard (equivalent of national guard - a highly trained militia - more so than the guardians of the eldar). Leaders called Veterans, or oath holders.

The highguard form CnC sections that are responsible for a certain division of clanguard sections(squads) - similar to a platoon.

Highguard units are used as field specialists and shock troops - veteran high guard are given Exo Armour for surgical missions.

There are highguard jetbike sections, outriders for scouting and counter assault. Heavy attack units of highguard wearing specialist Exo Armour, integrally mounted in a jetcycle frame. The two become one, a single lump of metal with big cannons.


The Stronghold is controlled by the noble clan - a clan that trace its ancestry right back to the colonists who founded the stronghold (important as it makes the noble clan 'closer' to the ancestors). toying with the idea of the "Governor" of the clan being called a Skarl, just to add a little bit of extra flavour to the names.

Within that stronghold exist several greater clans, each with a claim on a section of the planet. They are self sufficient extended families that all work to mine the plot of land (usually the size of a small continent). The head of the clan would be called a Jarl (if the skarl is going to be the head of the stronghold).

Clans dine communally - well, the 'lesser' clans within the greater clans do. this creates huge mess halls where they can interact, watch some entertainment (the Guild of Skalds?) and discuss the days work. Emphasises the clannish insular nature that each subsection of a clan dines as a single group.

The clanguard are made up of any varingr from the clan currently on the roster. Basically ALL varingr in a clan must be on the roster, and they go through cyclic "on Call" rotations. Thus if war is declared, or military intervention needed, who ever is currently on the roster picks up their equipment, and goes. An equal number of varingr from each clan is on rotation at any one time, to prevent competition between clans.


Hellebore

Splagbot
08-09-2006, 03:01
Having read the thread, there seems to be a lot of talk of the Demiurg and wanted to know if anyone could fill me in as to what if anything is happening with them.

The reason I ask is because the last time I went to Games Day in 2001, I had a chat with Jervis Johnson, who I might add is always very accessible at Games Day, anyway I was ranting about the Squats, as I am want to do and he mentioned then about these Demiurg and how GW where working on them, I assumed that GW abondoned the project as I heard nothing more, until now that is.

So I ask again, whats going on?

Hellebore
08-09-2006, 03:08
Having read the thread, there seems to be a lot of talk of the Demiurg and wanted to know if anyone could fill me in as to what if anything is happening with them.

The reason I ask is because the last time I went to Games Day in 2001, I had a chat with Jervis Johnson, who I might add is always very accessible at Games Day, anyway I was ranting about the Squats, as I am want to do and he mentioned then about these Demiurg and how GW where working on them, I assumed that GW abondoned the project as I heard nothing more, until now that is.

So I ask again, whats going on?

http://specialist-games.com/battlefleetgothic/assets/lrb/E_BFGTau.pdf

This is the only stuff they've done with the Demiurg. There are a few fan lists out on the internet, but appart from that, BFG is your best bet.

Hellebore

Easy E
08-09-2006, 22:18
Hellebore, how do individual families interact in the communal clan structure?

Easy E
11-09-2006, 22:38
Some additional thoughts about what Hellbore said earlier:

Warden sounds like a good name for military commanders below the level of Warlord. It also makes sense to change the Brotherhood to Clanguard. So pre-purge the structure would be:

Thane- Leads the Stronghold- Technically the Hearthguard are only subject to his orders. In reality, they are often seconded to a warlord's command.

Warlords- Leads the military- It is sometimes a member of a military council, so a stronghold could have more than one warlord, each commanding a portion of the stronghold's military capabilities.

Warden- The Wardens make up commanders answerable to the warlord(s). The size of their command fluctuates depending on the mission and what the Warlord deem necessary.

Hearthguard- Most units would be led by a member of the Hearthguard as they are the only professional military forces.

Post Tyrannic Purge the structure would be different as strongholds would have adapted to their new reality.

Thane- the thane now commands the military forces directly. This way he can harness military forces more directly to focus resources needed for the stronghold's survival. Perhaps the Hearthguard would change their name to the Highguard as there may no longer be a hearth to guard.

Wardens- They would maintain the same rank, except they would be answerable directly to the Thane.

Highguard- They would be dedicated military units of their own, and would essentially act as the Thane's praetorian guard. They would perform specialist missions and battlefield roles.

Oathholders- This would replace the Clanguard as every member of the stronghold would need to be militarized. They would be bound to service to the stronghold via oath, which would serve the Stronghold by submitting to the orders of the Thane.

Embittered- These guys are not part of the military structure proper. I see them as being made up of Oath-breakers and techincally no longer exist according to the stronghold. They are seen as expendable.

As for Stronghold structure, pre-purge I see Stronghold's being composed exclusively as one clan. Those that can draw their lineage to the original founding settlements, and those that can draw to a particular colony are considered a member of that clan. Therefore, communal dining would only be for those members currently in rotation in the Brotherhood/Clanguard. Those not in rotation would either dine with their guild. The non-male members would dine in their own family holdings. Pre-purge, I see the Varingr as a very patriarchal society.

Post-purge the patriarchal nature of the society would collapse as would many of the exclusive membership guilds. The only fully functioning guild left would be the Engineer's Guild, who would incorporate many of the survivors of the pre-purge more technical guilds (Such as Hydroponic Maintenance Guild, Sewer Technicians Guild, etc). This would also lead to a jumbling of Clans together in one Stronghold. However, I don't see the concept of a Noble clan becoming common place, as the Varingr should be more meritocratic. All members of the stronghold would be part of the Oathholders and could be called up instantly. Post-purge, the stronghold would more likely dine communally as Hellebore suggested.

Going forward, we should try to specify if we are discussing post or pre-purge to avoid confusion and mixing two very different archetypes for the Varingr.

Hellebore
12-09-2006, 05:21
NB Everything I have mentioned previously has been PRE-purge, just to work out what the modern Varingr society is like, by creating the past one.



Hellebore, how do individual families interact in the communal clan structure?


You mean 'nuclear' families? Mum, dad etc? I see the 'clan' as literally just an extended family - so you have a patriarch, and then all his decendents, so you get great, great, great, great, great grandkids all hanging out, but knowing they were descended from the same guy. They treat each other like brothers/cousins, despite the huge generational gap, because they are family.

Thus a child would be brought up by his parents, whilst interacting with 'cousins' who move in and out of his life, like uncles and close second cousins coming to stay for a week. Basically, the family unit is merely that, a unit and smallest denominator of a clan. I suppose genealogically, the closer you get in relation to someone, the closer they are to you. So perhaps there is an unmentioned 'line of relatedness' were your distance effectively puts you in someone elses 'family'. It's a classic feudal style genealogy effect, and is purely socialogical - they just 'know' when someone should be welcomed as family, and when they should be welcomed as a guest.




Thane- Leads the Stronghold- Technically the Hearthguard are only subject to his orders. In reality, they are often seconded to a warlord's command.


I suppose it depends on how you see the Thane. Basically, I'm looking at a Thane as a planetary governor, but more like a King than democratically ellected leader. This means he 'commands' the armies in as much as a king would, but that he has his general staff that run the military.

The way I was working it, the 'hearthguard' were called the 'highguard', and they were now the professional military of the Stronghold, performing all the same functions the old squat hearthguard did. Having said this, it does make sense to have the Thane protected by his own elite, not affiliated with the normal military command structure.

This prevents them being used against the Thane, and can also be used as military 'observers' going to battle with the warlords to determine they prosecute the war in the best interests of their Thane. Sort of a commissar-cum-adeptus custodes-cum-storm trooper.

Thus they may be present on the battle field, but are following orders given by their Thane, not the warlord. Puts a little tension in the military, and displays the power a Thane wields.



Warlords- Leads the military- It is sometimes a member of a military council, so a stronghold could have more than one warlord, each commanding a portion of the stronghold's military capabilities.


As an aside, from a purely game perspective, would you imagine the Warlord to be a playable character, or are they the 5 star generals in the pentagon dicating the action? I'm not sure these guys would be offensive officers, rather issuing their orders tot the Wardens, and having them prosecute the battle.



Warden- The Wardens make up commanders answerable to the warlord(s). The size of their command fluctuates depending on the mission and what the Warlord deem necessary.


I see these as similar to the tau Shas'O/Shas'El - Varingr soldiers from the Highguard that have moved up through the ranks to command ranks. They are professional soldiers that LEAD professional soldiers.



Hearthguard- Most units would be led by a member of the Hearthguard as they are the only professional military forces.


Further to my statements above, I feel that the hold military would be a professional soldiery, whilst the hearthguard would be the elite bodyguard to the Thane, the private force dedicated to safeguarding the Thane and his clan/family (a big job, which of course means the Thane just HAS to have hundreds of obscenely well armed and armoured hearthguard running around - it's got nothing to do with maintaining his power at ALL...)



Post Tyrannic Purge the structure would be different as strongholds would have adapted to their new reality.

Thane- the thane now commands the military forces directly. This way he can harness military forces more directly to focus resources needed for the stronghold's survival. Perhaps the Hearthguard would change their name to the Highguard as there may no longer be a hearth to guard.


Where are the warlords in this? Was the rank abolished due to perceived inadequacies? Perhaps the Thanes laid the blame for the tyranid victory on their warlords, and took direct control of the armies from the entrenched military bureaucracy. The Thane would then have absolute military control of the highguard AND the Hearthguard.



Wardens- They would maintain the same rank, except they would be answerable directly to the Thane.


Maybe the Thanes, believing the current military inadequate, replaced all the Wardens with their most trusted hearthguard officers. Thus they effectively directly control the ground level command structure as well.



Highguard- They would be dedicated military units of their own, and would essentially act as the Thane's praetorian guard. They would perform specialist missions and battlefield roles.


This is how I've envisaged the 'professional' military. They are the 'storm troopers' of the army, with the clanguard forming the fighting ranks.



Oathholders- This would replace the Clanguard as every member of the stronghold would need to be militarized. They would be bound to service to the stronghold via oath, which would serve the Stronghold by submitting to the orders of the Thane.


In this instance, as I've got them on permanent roster, the Thane would probably declare a state of emergency and activate the entire roster, effectively calling everyone to battle.

Having said that, POST-purge the Varingr would be looking toward rebuilding their infrastructure, and, considering that the tyranids have left the core/were destroyed, the only threats would be imperial exapnsion and ork raids.

Thus whilst everyone would be ostensibly on a war footing, they would still need to go about their daily jobs in order to set things aright.



Embittered- These guys are not part of the military structure proper. I see them as being made up of Oath-breakers and techincally no longer exist according to the stronghold. They are seen as expendable.


Absolutely, and in addition, they would probably see themselves as expendable too. They move about the core in large groups, searching for battle to avenge the deaths of their clan and stronghold, doing whatever it takes to get their vengeance. This would include, painful bionic surgery to make themselves into cyborg combat monsters, willingly taking addictive combat enhancers, that eventually melt their brains, and all sorts of other self inflicted nastiness that aid them in their ability to kill their enemies, and continually punish them for their perceived failure at protecting their clan.



As for Stronghold structure, pre-purge I see Stronghold's being composed exclusively as one clan. Those that can draw their lineage to the original founding settlements, and those that can draw to a particular colony are considered a member of that clan. Therefore, communal dining would only be for those members currently in rotation in the Brotherhood/Clanguard. Those not in rotation would either dine with their guild. The non-male members would dine in their own family holdings. Pre-purge, I see the Varingr as a very patriarchal society.
[QUOTE=Easy E;936733]

This is very similar to the original squat design, yes? The patriarchy, one clan/stronghold etc? One of the reasons I wanted to have a stronghold composed of multiple clans was because it reduced the homogeny. Effectively a stronghold just became the clan house, rather than a huge city/hive with millions of people in it.

Also, if there is one stronghold per planet, you would either have to create LOTS of strongholds, something I didn't want to do, because I don't think there were *that* many Varingr - they were a small collection of colonies in the core. Unless you think that having only 20 or 30 clans is ok.

The stronghold is built on the original colony settlement, which would have been several thousand people, all from different families. Over time I can see these families (who may not have all been from the same backgound/nation) developing their own unique ideosyncracies, and slowly forming 'clans' based on this.

Actually maybe I'm looking at it the wrong way. In all likelyhood, those colonies WOULD homogenise, after 10,000 years all the original families would have interbred until they were all related in some way. Ok, what I'm attempting to do still works, but with a little bit of a different emphasis.

Each stronghold is made up of a single clan, which is the desendents of the original colony. WITHIN the Greater clan, there are lesser clans - families that have segregated themselves somewhat, and formed their own identity. These lesser clans are what I originally referred to when I mentioned the stronghold having multiple clans. Strongholds are still segmented, as each lesser clan effectively becomes a mercantile entity in order to control sectors of the planet for mining.

So yes, the Stronghold is a single clan, and the people would identify themselves as such, but they would also say that fred is a Gerd clanner, whilst they are a Hilga clanner, despite them both being from a single clan called Jerig.

I think we are using the terms clan and family to mean slightly different things, so hopefully what I've said will clear that up a bit.

[QUOTE=Easy E;936733]
Post-purge the patriarchal nature of the society would collapse as would many of the exclusive membership guilds. The only fully functioning guild left would be the Engineer's Guild, who would incorporate many of the survivors of the pre-purge more technical guilds (Such as Hydroponic Maintenance Guild, Sewer Technicians Guild, etc). This would also lead to a jumbling of Clans together in one Stronghold. However, I don't see the concept of a Noble clan becoming common place, as the Varingr should be more meritocratic. All members of the stronghold would be part of the Oathholders and could be called up instantly. Post-purge, the stronghold would more likely dine communally as Hellebore suggested.


I like to think that the guilds are clans that cut across clan borders. So, whilst two varingr may be in different clans, they are both part of the clan/guild of engineers. This acts very similarly to a clan, except they are SPECIFICALLY meritocratic in their membership - you don't have to be born in to the guild.

Everything else is based on birth. You are born into clan Gerd, and thus are allowed all the freedoms of that clan, but also the restrictions. Being born into a lesser clan simply means it curtails what you can and can't do, because your lesser clan has finite resources, and it is their holdings you must work. The only way out of this is to join a guild, but even then, you are restricted in what you can do because the guild is very specialised.

I can't really see the guilds all collapsing, maybe because I've built them up in my mind as corporations that span strongholds - ie there are engineering guild 'offices' on all the strongholds, and each stronghold's engineers must pay tribute and fealty to the leaders of the engineers guild.

Thus, even had the tyranids killed off the leaders of every guild, lower level administrators would still exist in those strongholds not destroyed, and they would take over control of the guild. In this way, the guilds would certainly loose power, and some of the very SMALL guilds may have been obliterated (as they only had offices on those strongholds destroyed).

I see the guilds as a cross between a corporation and an Eldar Aspect Temple - they aren't always everywhere, but the big ones tend to have 'shrines' on every 'craftworld'.

Patriarchy would be less important with low numbers, but I can't see them being super patriarchal even before the purge. The problem is HOW patriarchal? Are women only allowed to cook, clean, and make babies?

Or are they just under a more strict leash than males? They can still work the mines, operate machinery etc, but when the lesser clan decides it's time for her to marry, that's it?

For a race whos whole clan endeavour is fairly mercantile in nature, the clan that puts its women to work would have a MASSIVE man(woman)power advantage over those that don't.

Perhaps the military is strictly off limits to women, but POST purge it is now forced to recruit women due to low numbers of men.

The idea of the "noble" clan comes from the concept of a Thane - why use a word that is essentially an autocratic feudal title, if you simply get 'voted' thane?

Basically, a Thane is someone from the 'core' lesser clan, ie the one that has the best records to prove linneage. As geneaology and ancestors are really important, the leaders of the Strongholds would all have to be 'noble' by linneage - they would need to have a direct documented ancestral linneage to the 'ancestors' (which means the original colonists).

Similar in the way nobles needed proof of nobility on either side of the family for X generations etc.

That doesn't stop people marrying into the clan, but once someone has married into a clan, they become PART of that clan, and are no longer considered part of the previous one.

As an aside, following (loosely) nordic tradition, males would join a females clan, and females would own the land as the males are too busy working (read pillaging and raping for vikings).

Thus patriarchy with an interesting twist.


I am enjoying these refreshingly mature conversations, it's nice to see a lack of "oh noez!Your idee is teh sux, mine =p0wnz lolz.

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
12-09-2006, 08:47
Wow, that was a long post :)

My views
Firstly, I'm not too sure about not differentiating between the Thane, and the Warlord post-purge. Whilst it's likely the senior military figure surviving would be by default quite high up, there's still the civilian population to consider (I'm thinking the power structure represented in the new series of Battlestar Galactica - Adama follows the structure he's always followed because that's who he is (old career military, with no real ambitions) and he respects it, but when Cain shows up (ambitious young high flyer), you know that sooner or later she will throw out the President and the Quorum, and become a military dictator).

So, how about making the Thane a Thane-ess? Not so much making their society Matriarchal rather than Patriarchal, but honouring the female clan members as the future of the clan. The warlord would then be her closest military advisor.

Succession would probably be decided by the clan leaders (as a Stronghold council), although the current Thaness could have some say in the matter. A male Thane could be elected, but may have to run at least some of their decisions past the council.

You can still have female warriors (and a society that close to extinction would almost certainly have to have both genders fighting), but the professional soliders (of both genders) would have to have brought at least two (maybe even three?) children into the universe before they could join up, and possibly even have stored some genetic material for use in surrogate parents. (Again from BSG, "if we want to survive, we're going to have to have babies").

I also think there would be a form of national service - where the civilians serve in the armies of the stronghold/clan/whatever for a year no matter what (maybe a short deferral if they're pregnant), and repeat that service every say five years. Their equipment is their own (guns and armour are cheap and readily available, it's the people to use them that are scarce), so if the stronghold get's attacked, then all civilians know their roles in it's defence, but only the active troops actually engage in offensive actions.

They could also possibly do an interim stint, not in the military as such, but in backup roles, weapons, equipment and munitions production, training up those who've just come of age and are entering service for the first time, and so on.

Easy E
12-09-2006, 22:30
[quote=Hellebore]
I think we are using the terms clan and family to mean slightly different things, so hopefully what I've said will clear that up a bit.
[quote=Hellebore]

This is the crux of the matter. I agree that all of the colonists from one of the original colonies would become a single clan. Then when this group of original settlers expanded to different parts of the Core, the new Stronghold was considered part of the Clan.

Within this Clan, their would be a series of Families that would be extended families as you mentioned above. The basic and most fundemental obligations would be to the extended family. This families would also be able to work family mines, plantes, hydroponic farms ect. The only way to move away from the family business would be to be taken into a Guild as an apprentice, or to become a professional soldier (hearthguard)

For example, from Terra in the Dark Age of Technology human colonists settled the planet Golgotha. After the warpstorms lifted the Varingr of Golgotha decide to set-up a colony on a nearby planet. The send out a colony ship and found a new Stronghold called Golgore. The inhabitants are still part of Clan Golgotha, but they are members of the Golgora Stronghold.

Now within the Golgora Stronghold are several families that originally founded Golgora. These families would grow naturally and be considered important elements of Golgora, we may have the Jengers, the Skeldings, and the Hadir, and many others. The Jengers would still be members of the Clan Golgotha of the Golgora Stronghold, but their first obligations would be to other Jengers of Golgora as they would be kin. Jengers from Golgotha would be given the same respect and courtesy as any other member of Clan Golgotha.

The Thane PRE-PURGE would be a member of the original families of the Stronghold, and choosen by the familiy elders to represent the Stronghold as leader. Warlord's would be from any of the other families (and I don't see Warlord's as being a playable character. That is a task for Wardens), and the Hearthguard would be a position independent of any families. Varingr who joined the Hearthguard would serve the Stronghold in principle, and the Thane in practice. A Hearthguard's normal familial obligations would be dissolved. Wardens would be chosen by Warlord's and may or may not be from their own family.

Female Varingr would be able to be part of the family business or a Guild. They would also maintain the Family House. These structures would be rather large complexes that would house large extended families, and would require a great deal of teamwork and co-ordination to function.

Post-Purge the Thane's dissolved the Warlord rank and took direct command of the armed forces. This was so the Thane could more easily direct the resources of the stronghold for survival. The Warlord's were seen as an obstacle to the Thane's ability to fully direct the resources of the Stronghold.

I like the idea of the family ties and property flow through the females of the family after the Purge, since the menfolk would be busy reaving, fighting off incursions, prospecting, etc.

National Service would be a must, and females would be part of this process. I also agree that all member sof the race must provide genetic material for reproduction on induction into the Oathholders. This material would be zealously guarded and the be considered the most important defensive priority.

The idea of see females as the future of their society is intriguing. I'm not sure if the patriarchal mindset of the Varingr that I imagine would be so easily turned on it's head, but necessity may dictate it. The question is would this lead to a protection of Females or a greater integration of them into the patriachal parts of the society?

Easy E
14-09-2006, 22:03
Double Post- AHHHHHHHH!

The previous discussion of the Stronghold military made me think of the Engineers Guild. In the past they seemed to be potrayed as having their own military forces that they could call on for their own purposes. That's where a lot of the Bikers and Trikes came into play.

I'm starting to come to the conclusion that this would not be the case. Why would the Engineer Guild have a large military force. I can see that they would have a military force to protect their vital interests, but it would be a body of troops similar to the Thane's Hearthguard. I would also argue that other large guilds may have had their own forces as well.

Socialy, joining the Guild's military forces would liberate you from your normal bonds of family as you now serve the Engineer Guild exclusively. This could be an advantage to joing the Guild military as you would no longer be bound to the traditional rules of the Varingr society. In addition, prospective apprentices could be recruited from the ranks, plus you would have the standard military upward mobility. I tend to refer to them as Armsmen, but I am open to other ideas.

I imagine that Guild forces would always be led by a full-fledged member of the Guild. Perhaps ceremonially, military leaders would be given the rank of Engineer to give them a say in the Guild House, but they would not be a true engineers. I see the military leaders to be subservient to the true engineers wishes, except when on the battlefield (or a situation deemed military in nature).

Now in addition to the grunts, I imagine that the Engineers Guild may also have exotic wargear of their own. Maniples of robots, Vehicles, Gyrocopters, etc come to mind. These would be organized in a more adhock manner. Perhaps they would be the property of particular engineers and could only be used with the consent of the engineer in question. They would not follow any true structure and be mercurial in nature. Thus the backbone of the Guild's security forces would be small contingents of troopers.

Post-Purge- The Engineers would be in small groups represnted more closely akin to Inquisitor bands. They would have some close followers and a handful of security assets. Like in the Pre-purge days they may have access to some interesting personal gear (like robots, Iron Eagles, Vehicles) but they would be used at their whim. They would be individual of the normal Stronghold force and be able to ally with them when the need suited them. However, they would also have no direct control over Stronghold forces.

As a dwell on this topic more, I wonder if the Engineers Guild would not jusst be incorporated into the Stronghold proper as their skills would be to valueable to keep as independent. I would think that many of the lesser guilds would face this fate. how would the Engineers' Guild resist this?

Sai-Lauren
15-09-2006, 08:10
Double Post- AHHHHHHHH!

Don't worry, just good to know there's at least one other person looking at this thread ;)

Engineers Guild - sounds good too me.



As a dwell on this topic more, I wonder if the Engineers Guild would not jusst be incorporated into the Stronghold proper as their skills would be to valueable to keep as independent. I would think that many of the lesser guilds would face this fate. how would the Engineers' Guild resist this?

I would think that it's their very nature that would allow them to remain independant - they have skills and knowledge that the strongholds don't have.

In the pre-purge days, they (and presumably the other guilds) would have been politically neutral from the strongholds - presumably by some kind of directive/mandate from the High Lord - the Thane of the oldest colony. This would allow all the strongholds to use their talents as necessary, and prevent one stronghold from stopping another getting access to those skills, leaving them at a disadvantage (that's not to say that always happened though).

Post-purge, they would still be independant for the same root reason - to supply their skills and knowledge - and no one would try and bring them into their strongholds - partly for reverence for the "old ways" (and if the Engineer's Guild were at the front of the battles during the purge, then also out of respect for their fallen), and partly because there's bigger things to worry about than political maneuvering - like the survival of the species. ;)

On some worlds, the guild would effectively be a part of the stronghold (where it's the only one on planet, for example), on others, they would operate nomadically from the strongholds, rotating around them as their skills are required.

And to be a little cruder, they would also supply a new set of chromosomes into the gene pool of the Strongholds preventing genetic stagnation and inbreeding - I can easily see another part of their post-purge role being as a kind of gigolo (yep, Casanunder :p ).

susu.exp
15-09-2006, 09:30
Double Post- AHHHHHHHH!
The previous discussion of the Stronghold military made me think of the Engineers Guild. In the past they seemed to be potrayed as having their own military forces that they could call on for their own purposes. That's where a lot of the Bikers and Trikes came into play.

I'm starting to come to the conclusion that this would not be the case. Why would the Engineer Guild have a large military force. I can see that they would have a military force to protect their vital interests, but it would be a body of troops similar to the Thane's Hearthguard. I would also argue that other large guilds may have had their own forces as well.

Agreed. I´ve talked about my view of the EG before and I still see them more as a regulatory organization, setting production standards, etc. than as the part of the Varingr culture that actually does the production. The guilds would be agencies of the government, but independent of the local government, that means they fall outside the Stronghold or even League structure, running parallel to them. While the Stronghold government is responsible for the safety of the stronghold, through the draft armies, the Highguard and local police forces, sanitations, rations, etc, but the EG ensures common standards of production in all strongholds, common respect for patents. Just like a Trade Guild would see to common regulations on trade. So the guilds would be roughly equivalent to international organizations like the UN or the WTO. The power of the guilds would have waned post-fall because the number of Strongholds decreased, so that a common decision by all the Thanes can override Guild decisions. A good example would be reduced quality control on military vehicles, which the Thanes introduced to bring the armoury back to full strenght faster, where the EGs protest was noted, but no repercussions followed as even the council of prospectors would not issue sanctions on all Strongholds at once in such dire times. (just a short notice on possible rule representation here: "Guild aproved" could be a very low cost vehicle upgrade, with slight benefits. Mandatory in pre-fall lists and still common in post-fall lists).


Socialy, joining the Guild's military forces would liberate you from your normal bonds of family as you now serve the Engineer Guild exclusively. This could be an advantage to joing the Guild military as you would no longer be bound to the traditional rules of the Varingr society. In addition, prospective apprentices could be recruited from the ranks, plus you would have the standard military upward mobility. I tend to refer to them as Armsmen, but I am open to other ideas.

I can see the guilds getting armed support from Strongholds when they need it (like UN peace forces, or police forces at WTO meetings). They would draw young Varingr of promise from the Strongholds and train them on other strongholds, because they might be partial if they have to judge the work of their own family (in fact they would be bound by two mutually exclusive bonds, their family and their guild membership. Both would demand loyalty and asking a Varingr to choose between those loyalties is seen as unethical). The benefits a clan gains from letting a valuable member join a Guild are therefore slight - until they move up in the Guild hierarchy. A family member in the concil of prospectors has brought fame and wealth to many a clan.


I imagine that Guild forces would always be led by a full-fledged member of the Guild. Perhaps ceremonially, military leaders would be given the rank of Engineer to give them a say in the Guild House, but they would not be a true engineers. I see the military leaders to be subservient to the true engineers wishes, except when on the battlefield (or a situation deemed military in nature).

I agree. The EG or any other guild would set the goals and guidlines for military action, but the forces would be led by high ranking military leaders sent by a Thane at the request of the Guild. Only in few instances such a force would stay together for long periods of time, but famously the Stronghold of Dargon was defended by a force taken from over 50 Strongholds during the conflict between league Thor and League Grindel. While the conflict raged, Dargon never fell into the hands of either side, both of which had sent troops honoring the guild request. The Guild forces were led by a Warden from the Stronghold of Norn, which was not part of any of the leagues. Things got messy when Norn joined the League Grindel...


Now in addition to the grunts, I imagine that the Engineers Guild may also have exotic wargear of their own. Maniples of robots, Vehicles, Gyrocopters, etc come to mind. These would be organized in a more adhock manner. Perhaps they would be the property of particular engineers and could only be used with the consent of the engineer in question. They would not follow any true structure and be mercurial in nature. Thus the backbone of the Guild's security forces would be small contingents of troopers.

Pretty much agreed. Following the civil war between Grindel and Thor the Guilds combined their political power to get some of the most devastating weapon systems out of the hands of the Stronghold leaders. The concil of propectors was apalled that the Cyclops saw its first use against other Varingr. With the loss of power by the guilds during the fall and the power increase of the "new Thanes" the restrictions on these Systems have been questioned and the EG is very concerned about rumors that several strongholds, where Guild inspections are not fully functional yet are breaching the Super heavy test ban treaty of 013.M40.

Post-Purge- The Engineers would be in small groups represnted more closely akin to Inquisitor bands. They would have some close followers and a handful of security assets. Like in the Pre-purge days they may have access to some interesting personal gear (like robots, Iron Eagles, Vehicles) but they would be used at their whim. They would be individual of the normal Stronghold force and be able to ally with them when the need suited them. However, they would also have no direct control over Stronghold forces.


As a dwell on this topic more, I wonder if the Engineers Guild would not jusst be incorporated into the Stronghold proper as their skills would be to valueable to keep as independent. I would think that many of the lesser guilds would face this fate. how would the Engineers' Guild resist this?

I think its an ongoing political battle between the Thanes and what is left of the Guilds. Some strongholds don´t allow young varingr to join the guilds and some won´t even let Guild members inside. However this means that their products will not get Guild certified, which will reduce trade. Right now they are primarily rebuilding their own infrastructure, but in the future this might be enough leverage to reinstall the guilds original power.

TimmyMWD
15-09-2006, 16:52
Hey all, big fan of the thread. I was wondering what your thoughts are on the potential that squats (what are you calling them now? That name sucks) had colonized other worlds outside of the Tyranid war path. I liken it to the High Elves in Warhammer - although Ulthuan got the crap kicked out of it several times, there were isolated colonies that flourished and developed their own structure/culture/etc. that shared commonalities but were different at the same time.

For example, I can imagine one hold-world rich in minerals would have its forces comprised of a lot of miner-technology turned military. A hold that features the Engineer Guild would be very mech'd up, etc.

Thoughts?

Easy E
16-09-2006, 02:31
Well, the old days did have the Age of Colonization in which the Squats/Varingr colonized other planets. However, it mostly seemed to be limited to the Galactic Core. They seemed to bump up against the Orks, Eldar and Warp Storms that halted their expanion. The informationon the actual Tyranid attack is rather sparse, so it leavs us open to interpretation as to what the Tyranids actually did.

There are a few possabilities:
1. The Varingr hid in their Strongholds deep underground and waited until the Tyranids left.
2. Some Strongholds were not in the path of the Hivefleet
3. The Hivefleet splintered in the Core and smaller splinter fleets encountered Varingr Strongholds. Smaller fleets may have been able to be fought off.
4. The Hivefleet exhausted it's resources as it could harvest little from the Core and died off, thereby leaving some strongholds left as survivors.

How the Tyranid attack occurred and deciding on this aspect, would help you decide how to portray a 'modern' varingr force.

These are the main explainations

Xisor
18-09-2006, 23:36
Okay, it's relatively unrelated, but it'll be helpful (or not) for any more 'Squats are Demiurg' comments that may arise further down the discussion.

It's version 4 of my Demiurg compendium. It compiles their rules for BFG, Inq and EA. Unfortunately they're almost entirely made up by me except from the fraction taken originally from GW. It's largely my own work, but with continual help and input from a vast amount of folks. So, see how you find it:

http://savefile.com/download/86793?PHPSESSID=b2e2df80cf899bc831f7b9dbc1335f6d

<stops being rampantly off topic...>

Good work folks!

Xisor

Easy E
19-09-2006, 01:11
Dang, my computer wouldn't let me (Stupid work!) I wanted to see the BFG Rules.

That brings me to a question abour Varingr. Space travel? How is it done.

The Imperium uses Navigators, Chaos has Sorcerors, Orks have Weirdboys/Hulks, Eldar have Warlocks and Farseers, Necrons have some special engine (Name escapes me now), and the Tau skim the Warp. What would the Varingr use to travel in space? The traditional warp drives and psyker combination just seems wrong. Every ship can't have a living ancestor.

I'm hoping someone smarter than me can help out.

Lockjaw
19-09-2006, 02:43
maybe they have something similar to hyperspace, it'd be different from just being warped based for once

Hellebore
19-09-2006, 04:26
I like all the discussion regarding the engineer's guild, so I want to move onto the living ancestors.

The way I am working things, living ancestors are in their OWN guild, the Ancestor's Guild for want of a better term.

This should solve their spaceflight problems too. Although it means every ship really DOES have a living ancestor. I suppose it depends on how prevalent you think they are.

To be completely realistic, if you can't put one ancestor on every space ship, then there is no way you would have enough to send to war, so they would never show up in an armylist. Thus I've taken the stance that there are many of them, but still quite rare.

To get back to the living ancestors, I see this as a genetic anomally whereby the psyker gene is only activated during advanced age, thus there are no young psykers amongst the varingr.

With a whole lifetimes worth of experience and discipline, a living ancestor has greater control over his psychic powers than a human, but can channel much less powerful effects.

Basically they are rarely affected by the warp, but can't summon almighty killydeath powers. A tradeoff between greater control, and less effect

Now, the ancestor's guild takes all those who show their power, and inducts them into the company of the firstborn, the primogenitors, the ancestors. Through this they are capable of manipulating the power granted to them by their ancestors (the warp) for the good of all.

I see the living ancestors guild as a conglomerate, similar to the adeptus astropathica and navis nobilitae all in one. They provide navigators for Varingr ships, a single to follow, and all the other usual psychic abilities, like protection from mind invasion, and the reading of envoys minds for the Thane.
The guild would in effect be the Ancestor family, any child born to the family would have a chance of developing psychic powers at an advanced age (like the navigator houses). Other varingr MAY exhibit such abilities, but if they do, they are married straight into the ancestor guild.

Alternatively, ALL the potential psychic genes are within the ancestor guild, and thus they are extremely valuable, because there is no way the league would survive should the family be killed. Hmm, I think I like this one better, adds more mystery and hints at genetic tampering - WHY do NO other varingr possess any capacity to manipulate the warp? Why are they to all intents and purposes warp blunt, yet this one group of them develops powers almost all the time?

Thus they are employed by strongholds in many capacities, which only some of them can fulfill. Thus within the guild, there will lodges of the traveller, the warrior, the guide etc, each of these contains ancestors who can perform a specific type of psychic task, whether it be offensive on the battle field, as a guiding beacon for those from the traveller lodge attempting to pilot their craft into port etc.

The families have a low birth rate, and they are unnaturally long lived - a single living ancestor can reach ages of 900 years. It appears as though when their latent power activates it fortifies their bodies, so whilst they appear extremely old, they are in fact quite healthy.

The power they use will be produced by the belief in the ancestors - they literally think that their power comes directly from the ancestors themselves.

This sets up the disgust at the degenerate imperium - the varingr get their power from the blessing of their ancestors - the TRUE primogenitors of humanity. The imperial witches use daemon magics and channel their power through the corpse god, an irrevocably corrupting and daming action.

Thus the varingr can quite rightly see themselves as superior, when they don't suffer from daemonic attack, grow tentacles etc.

The chaos squats I think would be more like the Night Lords in their stance with chaos. They have become barbaric mercenaries, willing to do anything to get what they want. Whilst SOME of the living ancestors with them are corrupted, most are just as blood thirsty as the rest.

In fact, that just gave me another idea - another reason to hate the imperium; before Horus and the crusades, no Varingr strayed from the league, nor trucked with evil powers. When Horus turned traitor, many varingr went with him. Thus the Imperium corrupted their brothers, the degenerate taint that filled their diseased blood infecting the varingr.

The varingr thus are quite justified in their distrust and hatred of the imperium, because it seems they are pretty much the reason for all the Varingr's woes...

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
19-09-2006, 08:59
You could also have exiled navigators, and rogue traders would certainly be interested in Varingr goods.

Or maybe they managed to fix whatever it was that blew up Ganymede, or they use some other form of FTL transit system (maybe something like Quantum Tunnelling?).
Would certainly be truer to background - using physics rather than warp magics.

Or, they have a series of beacons in the warp (like the hyperspace beacons in B5) - maybe crewed (which could also explain how some of them survived - the nids couldn't get into the warp to consume them) and the crew can maintain their station's position, or maybe the beacons are unmanned with some kind of warp anchor to stop them moving around.

Another (slightly gross) possibility is that they actually hardwire neural tissue with the navigator gene into their ships, and link that into the navigation systems (with appropriate wards and safeguards), so the tissue passively picks up the warp currents, and the computer systems interpret the neural signals and plot the course.

Easy E
19-09-2006, 22:09
The way I am working things, living ancestors are in their OWN guild, the Ancestor's Guild for want of a better term.

I was thinking that they would form an advisory concil of some sorts for the Thane, and be part of selecting a new Thane or removing incompetent ones. A form of supervisory board. An entire Guild organized across Strongholds would mean that their were a lot of these abnormalities running around.


This should solve their spaceflight problems too. Although it means every ship really DOES have a living ancestor. I suppose it depends on how prevalent you think they are.

To be completely realistic, if you can't put one ancestor on every space ship, then there is no way you would have enough to send to war, so they would never show up in an armylist. Thus I've taken the stance that there are many of them, but still quite rare.

I'm not sold on this idea yet. Every ship with a living Ancestor seems like every other space faring race. I can see the Living Ancestors perhaps being the Navigator for the flagship, and then all the other ships link up. Individual ships could maybe use a system like a navigation computer for short Warp hops. Not efficient, but faster than sub-FTL. Alternatively, their were some excellent suggestions from Sai-Lauren.

The reason Living Ancestors were sent to war would be in their supervisory/advisory position and to keep tabs on the Thane/Warlord's activities. Their role as inspector and investigator would often lead them to the front to "see how the troops see."


To get back to the living ancestors, I see this as a genetic anomally whereby the psyker gene is only activated during advanced age, thus there are no young psykers amongst the varingr.

With a whole lifetimes worth of experience and discipline, a living ancestor has greater control over his psychic powers than a human, but can channel much less powerful effects.

Basically they are rarely affected by the warp, but can't summon almighty killydeath powers. A tradeoff between greater control, and less effect.

Yeah, I can see this. I like this aspect of Living Ancestors as it differentiates them from other psykers.


Now, the ancestor's guild takes all those who show their power, and inducts them into the company of the firstborn, the primogenitors, the ancestors. Through this they are capable of manipulating the power granted to them by their ancestors (the warp) for the good of all.

I see the living ancestors guild as a conglomerate, similar to the adeptus astropathica and navis nobilitae all in one. They provide navigators for Varingr ships, a single to follow, and all the other usual psychic abilities, like protection from mind invasion, and the reading of envoys minds for the Thane.
The guild would in effect be the Ancestor family, any child born to the family would have a chance of developing psychic powers at an advanced age (like the navigator houses). Other varingr MAY exhibit such abilities, but if they do, they are married straight into the ancestor guild.

These seems a lot like copying from the Imperials.


Alternatively, ALL the potential psychic genes are within the ancestor guild, and thus they are extremely valuable, because there is no way the league would survive should the family be killed. Hmm, I think I like this one better, adds more mystery and hints at genetic tampering - WHY do NO other varingr possess any capacity to manipulate the warp? Why are they to all intents and purposes warp blunt, yet this one group of them develops powers almost all the time?

I like this alternative much better. More original and it leaves an area open to speculatation for the Fluff hounds.


Thus they are employed by strongholds in many capacities, which only some of them can fulfill. Thus within the guild, there will lodges of the traveller, the warrior, the guide etc, each of these contains ancestors who can perform a specific type of psychic task, whether it be offensive on the battle field, as a guiding beacon for those from the traveller lodge attempting to pilot their craft into port etc.

Sounds pretty specialized. How many of these Living Ancestors do you propose?


The families have a low birth rate, and they are unnaturally long lived - a single living ancestor can reach ages of 900 years. It appears as though when their latent power activates it fortifies their bodies, so whilst they appear extremely old, they are in fact quite healthy.

The power they use will be produced by the belief in the ancestors - they literally think that their power comes directly from the ancestors themselves.

This sets up the disgust at the degenerate imperium - the varingr get their power from the blessing of their ancestors - the TRUE primogenitors of humanity. The imperial witches use daemon magics and channel their power through the corpse god, an irrevocably corrupting and daming action.

Thus the varingr can quite rightly see themselves as superior, when they don't suffer from daemonic attack, grow tentacles etc.

Sounds like a good interpretation to me. makes the veneration of ancestors actually do something other than just provide a bit of flavor. What happens to a Varingr soul upon death, does he merge into a gestalt warp entity that the Living Ancestors tap to channel their powers?


The chaos squats I think would be more like the Night Lords in their stance with chaos. They have become barbaric mercenaries, willing to do anything to get what they want. Whilst SOME of the living ancestors with them are corrupted, most are just as blood thirsty as the rest.

In fact, that just gave me another idea - another reason to hate the imperium; before Horus and the crusades, no Varingr strayed from the league, nor trucked with evil powers. When Horus turned traitor, many varingr went with him. Thus the Imperium corrupted their brothers, the degenerate taint that filled their diseased blood infecting the varingr.

The varingr thus are quite justified in their distrust and hatred of the imperium, because it seems they are pretty much the reason for all the Varingr's woes...

Hellebore

Chaos Squats (What was the name of the evil norse dwarves?) could be a bit more nuanced than blood thirsty pirates. Perhaps they rebelled (in there eyes) to liberate their Varingr-kin from their Oaths with the Imperium. They saw the contacts as destructive to the Varingr race and the Imperials as unworthy of their loyalty. Conversely, they may have chafed at the traditional restrictions of family, clan, stronghold, and guild bonds. Horus offered a way to break the status quo, so they took it.

Ultimately, the remaining Varingr would see the Chaos Squats (That's how a Varingr may refer to them if they had to; it shows their disdain) as Oathbreakers. Just like the Imperials, Eldar, and the Orks before. They broke their Oaths with their Strongholds and in fact turned on those they had sworn Oaths with. Essentially a double crime. The first would be punishable by the Living Death (The Varingr would be considered dead all ready and estranged/Shamed) but the two together can only be punishable by Oblivian. Oblivian being true death and removal from the Varingr records, essentailly no longer every having existed to the Varingr.

Perhaps we better hammer down Varingr proper before I go all crazy thinking about Chaos Squats.

Hellebore
23-09-2006, 07:14
I was thinking that they would form an advisory concil of some sorts for the Thane, and be part of selecting a new Thane or removing incompetent ones. A form of supervisory board. An entire Guild organized across Strongholds would mean that their were a lot of these abnormalities running around.


Well, the Ancestor 'Guild' would certainly demand respect, similarly to how a priest at the court of a king would be turned to for advice on spiritual matters etc.

You don't need alot of them, because their services per capita are more expensive, thus the guild could live quite comfortably.



I'm not sold on this idea yet. Every ship with a living Ancestor seems like every other space faring race. I can see the Living Ancestors perhaps being the Navigator for the flagship, and then all the other ships link up. Individual ships could maybe use a system like a navigation computer for short Warp hops. Not efficient, but faster than sub-FTL. Alternatively, their were some excellent suggestions from Sai-Lauren.

The reason Living Ancestors were sent to war would be in their supervisory/advisory position and to keep tabs on the Thane/Warlord's activities. Their role as inspector and investigator would often lead them to the front to "see how the troops see."


Well this comes back to my ideas about the actual SIZE of the Leagues. Realistically the Imperium would not grant autonomy to an empire within their boarders, especially being run by abhumans with a dangerous disregard for proper technological practice. So I believe the reason they got away with it had more to do with the fact that they were just too small to worry about. About the size of the Tau Empire, or even only 2/3 the size. The core is quite a big area, and having the Varingr inhabit the entire area as the squats were described just doesn't fit right.

What this means is that being smaller, they needed to travel shorter distances, and just had less ships to move around. Also, if there was ever any faction so inclined, the Varingr would be the ones to create 'super tankers' - ships 3-4 times bigger than a normal battleship to move ore around.

Actually, they would probably be more like the Nostromo from Alien. A smallish 'tug/engine' attached to a huge ore processor.

Thus the Ancestor need only pilot one ship, because the huge cargo bay it is dragging behind is carring the equivalent of 5 ships worth of material.

So, apart from the war fleets, the commercial fleets would require very few actual Ancestors to pilot, because each mining Guild would only need 2 or 3 super tankers. In fact, the ore could transported to the mega storage bays in orbit, awaiting ferrying. Thus the little warp tug, just comes along, hooks up, and then exits the system and goes into warp space to drop it off somewhere else, hooks up to something in THAT system requiring delivery to the previous one, and does the same.

The Varingr practicality would mean that a complicated plan would be layed out so that each warp tug never backtracked, always moving from one system to another in a never ending loop, thus increasing the efficiency of the system and eliminating wastage (seems like the Varingr thing to do).

Anyway, the upshot is they don't actually need many commercial Ancestors of the Lodge of the Traveller to move trillions of tonnes worth of materials around.

During their brief incorporation into the Imperium between the Heresy and Vandire's Reign of Blood (I have used this point as an excuse for the Varingr to throw off the shackles of degenerate Imperial rule, because of it's tumultuous results) they may have hired Navigator houses to move stuff further afield, but would have preferred their ancestors doing it.



Yeah, I can see this. I like this aspect of Living Ancestors as it differentiates them from other psykers.



These seems a lot like copying from the Imperials.


I felt that the Living Ancestors would function more like the eldar warlock (games mechanicswise - no psychic test) because of their personalised relationship with the ancestors, each one manifested a power slightly different to every other one, used in different ways.

When you require similar outcomes as everyone else, you tend to need similar mechanics to do them. Thus the Varingr would need an anology to the Navigators and the Astropathic beacon, because they are humans and thus are under the same limitations as the Imperium.


The fact that an adept of the astropaths can find another astropath's mind in the warp to send a message allows for a Living Ancestor to do the same, to help Guide them safely. So you have a Traveller on a ship, able to direct a ship, and a Guide on a Stronghold contacting them and providing them with directions.

It's not quite the same as the beacon, which acts more like a sun for bearings, but rather a lighthouse, indicating where the stronghold is relative to the warp.



I like this alternative much better. More original and it leaves an area open to speculatation for the Fluff hounds.


I thought so. Following the generalised dwarfen archetype of magical resistance, it would be intriguing that a single clan/familycumguild would have the capacity to produce a Living Ancestor, whilst noone else can. They are similar to the navigator houses crossed with priests and the dwarfen runesmith - a group of individuals that provide invaluable service to their people, whilst also being mysterious and powerful.


Sounds like a good interpretation to me. makes the veneration of ancestors actually do something other than just provide a bit of flavor. What happens to a Varingr soul upon death, does he merge into a gestalt warp entity that the Living Ancestors tap to channel their powers?




Chaos Squats (What was the name of the evil norse dwarves?) could be a bit more nuanced than blood thirsty pirates. Perhaps they rebelled (in there eyes) to liberate their Varingr-kin from their Oaths with the Imperium. They saw the contacts as destructive to the Varingr race and the Imperials as unworthy of their loyalty. Conversely, they may have chafed at the traditional restrictions of family, clan, stronghold, and guild bonds. Horus offered a way to break the status quo, so they took it.

Ultimately, the remaining Varingr would see the Chaos Squats (That's how a Varingr may refer to them if they had to; it shows their disdain) as Oathbreakers. Just like the Imperials, Eldar, and the Orks before. They broke their Oaths with their Strongholds and in fact turned on those they had sworn Oaths with. Essentially a double crime. The first would be punishable by the Living Death (The Varingr would be considered dead all ready and estranged/Shamed) but the two together can only be punishable by Oblivian. Oblivian being true death and removal from the Varingr records, essentailly no longer every having existed to the Varingr.

Perhaps we better hammer down Varingr proper before I go all crazy thinking about Chaos Squats.


Like this. When I equated them to the Night Lords I did so more out of comparative value rather than literal. Because of the Varingr mentality, and their apparent warp bluntness, they would not worship chaos per se, but it would corrupt them in more mundane ways.

The night lords don't really worship chaos, but their very knowledge of what chaos actually IS, gives them an ethical 'get out of damnation free' card - they don't need to follow societal norms because they KNOW what the universe is really made of and based on.


Thus, Renegade Varingr (as opposed to Chaos) would be corrupted in a more mundane manner, removing social constraints on certain behaviour, freeing individuals from the need to take responsibility.

Similar to the Tau's Mon'tau.


Hellebore

susu.exp
23-09-2006, 20:17
I like the "super-tanker" idea, but I think even System to System would be too much. I think the Varingr would use a non-warp based method for shorter distances and then the big ships would take over from strategically placed commerce bases. I&#180;m using the old Norse influence again, where a highly advanced see-faring nation did not use maps or compass-navigation, but oriented itself by the shorelines - pure visuals and still made it from Norway to America. My idea is "black-hole hopping", using stellar objects for a catapult effect is standard NASA practice today. The varingr would use this to maximum effect. The acceleration archieved is determined by the objects mass and how close you can get. The core has a high number of black holes (and in the absence of a BH there are still white and brown dwarfs or neutron stars en masse) which have a very high mass. If you went by within the Schwarzschild radius you could get speeds greater than c. This technique would enable the Varingr to go from A to B only a little slower than warp drives, with the added benfit of not being in the warp. Only goods which need to get somewhere ASAP or goods that are transported really far would benefit enough from warp-travel to warrant the additional cost of getting a place in a super-tanker (and you ned to get there as well).

On the size of the Varingr "Empire": There is one more reason why the Varingr could have been allowed to remain independent: Their productivity. If you look at the Segmentum Ultima you will see that there are realy overstretched supply lines and relatively few AdMech worlds. If the varingr had that as leverage it could ensure their independence, especially if they also threatened to take there knowledge of STCs with them. I think the Inquisition would handle this "diplomatically", i.e. just keep quiet about it at the high lord meetings and maybe even cover it up. Just to maintain a "We&#180;re investigating" stance there would be representatives from the Ordo Xenos and the Ordo Hereticus dispatched every 10 years, to hold council over whether the Varingr are distinct enough to warrant labeling them Xenos (and therefore eradicating them under monodominant doctrine) or merely heretical Abhumans (and therefore to be persued as tech heretics), to come to the traditional conclusion that this conflict of jurisdiction could not be solved again this time and a new meeting should be set up ten years further on. The Inquisition is smart enough not to start a crusade for worlds imperials can&#180;t settle anyway, especially when the guard regiments that could be raised for such a crusade would find themselves without a bunch of factory fresh Russes and a supply of lasguns. I think the annals of the Black templars include a "cursed crusade" which roughly pointed in the direction of the Varingr homeworlds and saw the mysterious death of quite a few officers and several ship malfunctions...

Xisor
24-09-2006, 12:46
If you went by within the Schwarzschild radius you could get speeds greater than c.

Not to side track the discussion, but I assume this is hand-waved-fluffing of real physics. Mainly as, as far as my studies in relativity and astrophysics have taken me, this is still not possible. In the interests of *actually* handwaving a fluff for it, you could simply *create* a name and radius (like the Eigstrenvar Radius) that allows specialised electromagnetic interactions with a gravitic field such that the acceleration fudges relativity.

Nice and hand-wavey.

Xisor

susu.exp
24-09-2006, 19:02
It is hand-waved-fluffing. The fact is that nothing can escape the Schwarzschild-radius, as long as it is slower than light (The Schwarzschild-radius for the non-physically inclined is the distance from a black hole where the escape velocity is c). There is nothing in relativity that says you can&#180;t be faster than c, but getting from below c to above c and vice versa is impossible - as long as you don&#180;t come across a singularity, where all bets are off. So within a Schwarzschild Radius there is the faint possibility of getting beyond c. Not very practical from a space traveling standpoint for us (long distance to the next black hole and we&#180;d get killed by gravity long before we&#180;re anywhere near the crucial distance), but physically possible. I&#180;m ignoring all the associated problems here, but I note that the limit of gravity assists to sub-c velocities only applies as long as no singularities are passed, which again is based on the idea that you can&#180;t pass singularities. Since a lot of SciFi ignores the later (anything with wormholes in it makes quite a bunch of additional improbable assumptions), I think I&#180;m still in the realm of the fudgeble...

Easy E
25-09-2006, 23:08
I also like the idea of the Super-Tanker. It limits the number of Living Ancestors that are needed, and still makes them some what rare. The Pilot and the Lighthouse concept also works conceptually for me. Do all members of the Ancestors' Guild families become Living Ancestors or just a higher percentage of them?

The Blackhole slingshot thing is a nice way to move them around the Galaxy, but it also eliminates one of the main points of 40K, The Warp. I would prefer a way in which the Varingr would be limited by warpstorms just like everyone else. Although that was very impressive hand-wavium, at least level 5.

Size of the Varingr Empire pre-purge seems to be a big question. The "old" background seems to have them inhabiting large swathes of the Core. This can be interpreted several ways:

1. A huge Empire with a vast population
2. A huge Empire with a small population
3. A small Empire with a dense population
4. A small empire with a small population

Each of these choices has its adavantages:

1. A huge empire with a vast population helps explain why the Tyrannids would be drawn into the rather desolate Core to begin with. It also helps explain why the Imperium decided to ally with them. They were to big to destroy in the traditional way, and the best course of action was to allie and try to subvert them.

2. The Empire would span many systems, but their would be few habitable planets. This would make the population of the Varingr small relative to the territorial size of the Empire. This fits into the idea of each Stronghold being full of hearty survivors as each one is a distinct and seperate entity from their neighbors. This could lead to interesting scenarios of isolated strongholds fighting for survival from hordes of whatever. The scattered and isolated nature of the Strongholds helped some strongholds avoid the attention of the Tyrannid fleets. However, this leads to speculation on why the alliance with the Imperium. Perhaps, the Imperium simply did not want to go to the expense of Terrafroming these worlds, and saw no reason to re-settle all ready productive planets.

3. Small Empire and dense populations. This would help explain the devastation of the Hivefleets attack, and why the Imperium thought the Varingr were totally destroyed. Perhaps the alliance with the Imperium occurred as they were seen as a useful buffer against the Orks that also seem to inhabit this area of space?

4. Small Empire and small population. I have the most difficult time examining the benefits of this configuration. How would any have survived the HiveFleets and why would the Imperium have allied with them if they were just another small, potentially xeno empire. Perhaps you guys can help me out.

Xisor
25-09-2006, 23:08
Fudgeable it is then. My next misgiving is that it's a distinct advance on other races. No other major race, save the Necrons, (unless I'm mistaken), have been allowed to access FTL in a conventional-non-warp-related sense.

In this manner, I'd also have to suggest severely limiting the extent of 'independent' Varignr travel to the viscinity* of Black Holes.

*You lot work out what the viscinity is in this regard!

And now for something completely different

Sidetracking once again from the discussion, it was said(paraphrasingly in another thread) "The whole Squats/Demiurg Abhuman/Alien case only arises from the difference in name and the scant references of Ad Mech Explorators...hardly the most reliable source"

I beg to differ in the extreme. If Imperial technology, and the Adeptus Mechanicus in particular, are good at any one thing it is this: Biology & Medicine. They expand lifespans, they maintain Space Marines. They identify things and tinker with others. Juvenat Drugs! Bionics! MIU Devices! Psychic Hoods! Exosanguination. Binary Cortices.

The list goes on. I think if an Adeptus Mechanicus Explorator (Magos Biologis of some form, no other Magos would presume to make such a faux-paux on the Quest for Knowledge to assume knowledge outside their field...that would indeed be heresy!) carries out an examination of the Demiurg, they will most definately identify them as Xenos, if indeed they are Xenos.

Jealous with Knowledge yes, but lying with knowledge? So openly? It is the dark future, there is only war, and everything we've been told *is* a lie...

But I still feel that if they've classified and identified the Demiurg as a Xenos species, with ample time to study them, then they are Xenos. (Note: Xenology is odd in that the Inquisitor was conducting the whole thing for obscure reasons very far from the Cult Mechanicus...prying too far into their Quest for Knowledge, that is a more than valid defence against the spurious 'Ad Mech Explorators are unreliable'. If they're unreliable, then nothing is reliable in the Imperium)

[/rant]

Sarge
26-09-2006, 01:03
3. A small Empire with a dense population

3. Small Empire and dense populations. This would help explain the devastation of the Hivefleets attack, and why the Imperium thought the Varingr were totally destroyed. Perhaps the alliance with the Imperium occurred as they were seen as a useful buffer against the Orks that also seem to inhabit this area of space?

Problem with this scenario is that the Tyranid tried this and it failed *points at the Tau who amazingly devistated an entire splinter fleet without losing a planet*

Now if this was how the Squat Empire was arranged, than it would be mentioned on the maps of the Imperium by positioning alot of little stars near eachother, but it's not, the only dense sector on the eastern front (so to speak) is that of Tau. Who much like the Squat out classed the Imperium technology wise, and strategy wise, yet were able to beat off the Tyranid with little to no loses, while the Squat got wipped out to the last bearded stump of a man.

Most likely it's the first scenario, it explains both questions, why the Imperium didn't just erradicate them, and why the Hive fleet was attracted to that sector of space.

Easy E
26-09-2006, 01:14
Fudgeable it is then. My next misgiving is that it's a distinct advance on other races. No other major race, save the Necrons, (unless I'm mistaken), have been allowed to access FTL in a conventional-non-warp-related sense.

I totally agree. However, it is tempting to give them new and expansive technology, they are still (ab)humans. It is more plausible to base most of their technology off Imperial equivalents and logical extrapolations/derivatives of it.

Skrittiblak
26-09-2006, 19:08
Since the Squats were wiped out by Tyranids - how about a new hybrid GENESTEALER SQUAT! The six-limbed stumpy terrors of Karkafoon IX!

Hellebore
26-09-2006, 22:24
I totally agree. However, it is tempting to give them new and expansive technology, they are still (ab)humans. It is more plausible to base most of their technology off Imperial equivalents and logical extrapolations/derivatives of it.

This is the reason I didn't make it any more complicated - they are humans, and are effectively limited to what humans can do.

However, perhaps they DO have the capacity for a single Ancestor to guide more than one ship, through some technology that follows the psychic beacon of the lead Ancestor, or perhaps something else.

Maybe they use a psyocculum style thingie, or a telepathica matrix onboard secondary ships that can detect the thoughts of the Ancestor on the Primary ship, and can follow them through the warp.

Or MAYBE all Living Ancestors have the capacity to reach the minds of their family, even if they aren't Ancestors themselves? Maybe the Guild of Ancestors puts a non-psyker on secondary ships, who can guide the ship via a direct link to the Ancestors mind?

The big problem with this though is the inherent vulnerability - if anything happens to the Ancestor the whole convoy is stuffed.

Hmmm... maybe that same psi-matrix is connected to the warp drives, so that should the signal stop receiving for a given length of time it turns of the engines and shoots the ship back into realspace (ie it won't just squeeze out the ship if a hiccup or glitch occurs, it needs to have a set time limit).


I still think the Living Ancestor would play a significant role in shipping, because they are the only psykers available to the Varingr.

However, after the Tyranid Purge, they may be very short on Ancestors, if only a fraction of the population survived, there wouldn't be very many Ancestors left (although, maybe not, because many would be on ships in warp transit, and I have no doubt they would have their own private escape ships).

This comes back to the population.

Of the 4 options Easy E gave I would rather 2 of them:

1. A huge Empire with a vast population
2. A huge Empire with a small population
3. A small Empire with a dense population
4. A small empire with a small population

Both those have their advantages, and disadvantages.

A big empire means the Imperium could see them as a threat but also allows them to more realistically survive the Tyranid Purge.

A small empire makes them more likely to be simply assimilated into the Imperium, but makes it harder for them to survive the Purge.

A large population again makes them a threat to the Imperium, whilst a small population makes it hard for them to perform any military tasks, let alone survive the Purge.

I think I'm leaning toward a spread out Empire, with a medium to low density population.

So, maybe a single clan runs an entire system, with only one stronghold on one of the planets, and all their industry spread throughout the system.

Thus, the Varingr could be spread across hundreds of systems, but only have one stronghold per system making the total population overall pretty small.

POST purge, though, they would be the opposite. I see them falling back to the core of the Core, the oldest and most heavily fortified strongholds.

Imagine if the Imperium was crushed, they would all retreat toward Terra, and consolidate their forces. The same would happen here, but in this case it would be to the oldest and most revered strongholds, retreating to the bosom of the ancestors...

So POST purge, the Varingr are a dense population, in a small empire. They've gone from 200-400 systems, down to say, 50, or even 20, with all the refugees from the destroyed ones flocking to the these.

Hmmm, this is good, I think. It allows the old Squat fluff to stay more or less valid, with the 'thousands' of strongholds and the '700' leagues by giving them a largish empire, whilst still producing a small empire when the tyranids were finally beaten-off/retreated.

Hellebore

Easy E
27-09-2006, 00:09
To jump back to space travel, the majority of Varingr ships probably spent their time in the Galactic Core or on a well traversed route. Would it be possible to create a type of navigation computer (or cerebral cortex) with pre-programmed star map information? I would think that the Varingr would be very familiar with the Homeworlds. The ship could then make short warp hops, recalibrate it's position, and then hop again. This method of warp travel would be inefficient compared to Imperial warp travel, but still utilize some of the same ideas. Plus, if the ship had to go outside of it's normal routes, it would be extremely dangerous.

This could also tie into the Living Ancestor method as longer, quicker, or more efficient travel would require the use of a Living Ancestor. This could be reserved for special ocassions or military fleets. Then, if the Flagship with the Living Ancestor gets hosed, then they can go back and use their navigation computers.

Sai-Lauren
27-09-2006, 09:19
Fudgeable it is then. My next misgiving is that it's a distinct advance on other races. No other major race, save the Necrons, (unless I'm mistaken), have been allowed to access FTL in a conventional-non-warp-related sense.


Maybe there's the answer then, somewhere along the lines they found a small tomb world, disabled all the guardians (pre-awakening, and possibly damaged due to some occurance - say a meteor strike hit something vital, and of course, there could still be something they've missed) and managed to reverse engineer some Necron tech - giving them FTL, but nowhere near the level the Necrons have.

Easy E
27-09-2006, 17:30
I prefer your idea about vat grown "brains" essentially used as navigation devices on board ships.

This leads into a nice discussion about the tech level of the Varingr. We all know that they see technology in a more practical light than the Imperium. We also know that they like to tinker with technology. What we don't know is how far this tinkering would take them compared to the Imperium of Man.

I would hypothesis that the majority of Varingr tech would be focused on mechanical engineering, power generation, hydroponics, and maintenance. I see them as being very practical in nature and only developing tech that is more efficient, cost-effective, or durable in nature than tech that all ready exists. They work with all ready made STC templates and try to improve on them, instead of going out of their way to create "new" technology. This will lead to more innovations, but still keep the basis of technology with the Imperial feel.

For example, the humble Las gun. The difference between an Imperial Las-gun and a Varingr Las-gun could not really be represented in the 40K scale (If I knew more about the Inquisitor game I could argue the improvements there). However, it would be issues such as improved battery life and recharge rate, lighter material construction, even less delicate parts, improved sights, and stronger more resillient alloy construction.

However, I see the Varingr being less advanced in the areas of biology, titan construction, and space travel. I feel the Imperium is very biologically advanced as they have developed servitors, cerebral cortex, and space marines. The Varingr in contrast have focused more on maintaining their strongholds and to do that they need to look more about mechanical issues as a matter of survival and less on their own bodies. As for Space Travel, I don't see this as a large priority for the majority of Strongholds. It is something that must be done for trade reasons, but they would prefer to be more insular.

Voronwe[MQ]
27-09-2006, 18:16
-What if the squats was a DAOT experiment made to settle the galactic core?
-What if the squats, during these experiments, got 'psyk-genes' isolated and rooted out, for various reasons, so that they, alike the Tau, are only able to skim the edges of the warp and make shorter jumps as they have no psykers to navigate their vessels at all, thus reinforcing the 'local empire' feel.

EDIT:
The squats deserves a remake, and the concepts here is... interesting.

Sai-Lauren
28-09-2006, 13:58
I prefer your idea about vat grown "brains" essentially used as navigation devices on board ships.

Ok, fair enough (and thanks). Just trying to offer a different alternative based off other people's ideas. :)



This leads into a nice discussion about the tech level of the Varingr. We all know that they see technology in a more practical light than the Imperium. We also know that they like to tinker with technology. What we don't know is how far this tinkering would take them compared to the Imperium of Man.

I would hypothesis that the majority of Varingr tech would be focused on mechanical engineering, power generation, hydroponics, and maintenance. I see them as being very practical in nature and only developing tech that is more efficient, cost-effective, or durable in nature than tech that all ready exists. They work with all ready made STC templates and try to improve on them, instead of going out of their way to create "new" technology. This will lead to more innovations, but still keep the basis of technology with the Imperial feel.

Ok, don't disagree here. Mechanical, materials and civil engineering would be their strong points. There certainly needs to be some tinkering room though, otherwise everything stagnates (maybe Engineers Guild initiates have to examine some existing technology as a part of their apprenticeship and come up with at least one possible improvement as their final qualification to full membership of the guild).

Meaning everything slowly advances, but with the majority of advances in areas where they're already strong (as that's where most of the Engineers would have their focus), but tiny, wheras less popular areas would have less frequent advances, but much bigger in their scale.



However, I see the Varingr being less advanced in the areas of biology, titan construction, and space travel. I feel the Imperium is very biologically advanced as they have developed servitors, cerebral cortex, and space marines. The Varingr in contrast have focused more on maintaining their strongholds and to do that they need to look more about mechanical issues as a matter of survival and less on their own bodies. As for Space Travel, I don't see this as a large priority for the majority of Strongholds. It is something that must be done for trade reasons, but they would prefer to be more insular.
The lack of biological knowledge would kind of nix the neural tissue navigation though - unless they had some reason for specialised neurological technology.

Although, maybe if the robot organic cortex from RT era was resurrected, that would be enough, with the NTN systems as an offshoot of that technology.

And of course, that does leave the question of where they get the neural tissue from, especially if it's difficult or near-impossible for them to vat grow it from existing germ lines. ;)

Hellebore
28-09-2006, 14:46
Ok, fair enough (and thanks). Just trying to offer a different alternative based off other people's ideas. :)


Ok, don't disagree here. Mechanical, materials and civil engineering would be their strong points. There certainly needs to be some tinkering room though, otherwise everything stagnates (maybe Engineers Guild initiates have to examine some existing technology as a part of their apprenticeship and come up with at least one possible improvement as their final qualification to full membership of the guild).

Meaning everything slowly advances, but with the majority of advances in areas where they're already strong (as that's where most of the Engineers would have their focus), but tiny, wheras less popular areas would have less frequent advances, but much bigger in their scale.


That my friend, is one of the simplest, yet coolest ideas so far produced in this discussion - such an elegant way for their stoic attitude and their understanding of technology to merge together seamlessly. bravo!

It encourages their apprentices to think about the technology, but doesn't do it in a crazy over the top manner - very staid and steady. Awesome.



The lack of biological knowledge would kind of nix the neural tissue navigation though - unless they had some reason for specialised neurological technology.

Although, maybe if the robot organic cortex from RT era was resurrected, that would be enough, with the NTN systems as an offshoot of that technology.

And of course, that does leave the question of where they get the neural tissue from, especially if it's difficult or near-impossible for them to vat grow it from existing germ lines. ;)

Doesn't the Imperium possess telepathica matrices though? There was that one near the Tyran system that Kryptman attempted to use, only to find it burnt out.

Are these matrices merely rooms full of astral telepaths, or are they machines capable of picking up psi signatures? The witchhunters possess a wargear item called a psi-occulum, which can detect psykers, so i assume there are SOME mechanical precedents.

They would need warp sensors, and the warp drive is afaik completely inorganic, so having warp navigating computers isn't impossible.

Of course, they may not be particularly GOOD, which is why at least one ship in the convoy (the Varingr wouldn't travel singly, you see;) would need an Ancestor on board to provide a proximity beacon to latch on to.

Hellebore

Atherakhia
28-09-2006, 14:56
(i'm not reading 11 pages of stuff about Squats vs Demiurg cos this is all I wanted to say)

The imperial guard Leviathan was originally a Squat vehicle.

Hellebore
28-09-2006, 15:08
(i'm not reading 11 pages of stuff about Squats vs Demiurg cos this is all I wanted to say)

The imperial guard Leviathan was originally a Squat vehicle.

Lol. It hasn't actually been squats vs demiurg, as we quite early set them apart for the purposes of this discussion.

This particular thread is a thought experiment on how to reimagine the squats in order that they would be suitable for reintroduction to 40k.

I believe the imperial guard 'leviathan' is called a Capitol Imperialis now, so it does have some distinction from the squat version - which would retain the Leviathan name.

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
28-09-2006, 15:08
That my friend, is one of the simplest, yet coolest ideas so far produced in this discussion - such an elegant way for their stoic attitude and their understanding of technology to merge together seamlessly. bravo!

It encourages their apprentices to think about the technology, but doesn't do it in a crazy over the top manner - very staid and steady. Awesome.

Cheers :D

Kind of a cross between university final year projects and advanced degrees (MSCs, doctorates etc), and the apprenticeship system - you don't automatically get to become a full member after a period of time, you have to earn your place.



The witchhunters possess a wargear item called a psi-occulum, which can detect psykers, so i assume there are SOME mechanical precedents.

They would need warp sensors, and the warp drive is afaik completely inorganic, so having warp navigating computers isn't impossible.

Well, again going back to RT, energy scanners could detect psychic energies (amongst other things), so I've always assumed the psi-occulum and related tech was just the 3rd edition version of that. However, there is a difference between detecting energy emissions, and actually deciphering them, working out what they're doing, and then being able to plan to do something about them.
There's also the question of whether it's the psychic energies that are being picked up, or material energies that are being released as a result of the psychic energies.

Warp drive is simply something that produces enough energy at the right frequencies to either throw the ship into the next door universe, or rip a big enough hole between the universes to allow the ship to slide through (eg Farscape Starburst, B5 Hyperspace, whether by the ship itself, or through jump gate tech).

Edit:


I believe the imperial guard 'leviathan' is called a Capitol Imperialis now, so it does have some distinction from the squat version - which would retain the Leviathan name.

I believe the CI and the Leviathan are still separate - His Last Command certainly features Leviathans.

Squats used Leviathans, but also had the Colossus and Cyclops based of the Leviathan hull.

Hellebore
28-09-2006, 15:12
Well, again going back to RT, energy scanners could detect psychic energies (amongst other things), so I've always assumed the psi-occulum and related tech was just the 3rd edition version of that. However, there is a difference between detecting energy emissions, and actually deciphering them, working out what they're doing, and then being able to plan to do something about them.
There's also the question of whether it's the psychic energies that are being picked up, or material energies that are being released as a result of the psychic energies.

Warp drive is simply something that produces enough energy at the right frequencies to either throw the ship into the next door universe, or rip a big enough hole between the universes to allow the ship to slide through (eg Farscape Starburst, B5 Hyperspace, whether by the ship itself, or through jump gate tech).

That is true, but if all you need is to DETECT a certain warp signature (ie the mind of an Ancestor) and then just move the vessel in that direction, or maintain a specific distance to it, you don't really need to decipher it.

I imagine the signature of an Ancestor is alot easier to pick up than the ambient warp energy, or even the fairly blunt Varingr soul itself.

So really, the whole thing works along the same lines as a laser guided bomb, just in this case, it is a psi-guided starship;)

Hellebore

Easy E
28-09-2006, 21:51
So we have scanners and Living Ancestors working in conjunction to create a warp navigational method. If we also use the Super-Tanker analog, do these move in convoys or singularly. If they are singular does each one still require a Living Ancestor or is a nav computer enough?

As for starship design, I would imagine that they would be very modular. Since they would have few ships they would have different modules they could attach for different roles. So the basic hull might be a cruiser size hull. Then they could add a 4 lance battery modules, a shuttle bay, and a couple of science labs for exploration. For Space Superiority, they would strip the shuttle bay and science labs, and instead replace them with a few Torpedoe batteries. The warships they did have would be simple, well-maintained, and durable.

In addition, I feel that the Varingr would not have a great tradition with strike fighters or assualt shuttles. They would prefer capital ships.

Sai-Lauren
29-09-2006, 12:25
That is true, but if all you need is to DETECT a certain warp signature (ie the mind of an Ancestor) and then just move the vessel in that direction, or maintain a specific distance to it, you don't really need to decipher it.

I imagine the signature of an Ancestor is alot easier to pick up than the ambient warp energy, or even the fairly blunt Varingr soul itself.

You could, but why not use the IFF transponder or active sensors?;)

Another possibility is tug ships - IIRC, the energy required to open a warp point is nearly independant of mass and size, so a tug ship (pretty much a drive system, crew compartments and life support, and a skeletal docking frame) could wait near the recognised warp points, have a number of ships dock onto it, then project the appropriately sized fields as required, jump the whole lot across into the warp, pilot to it's destination, jump back out and all the other ships un-dock and either head in system, or pick up another tug ship going to a different system. The jump points could even have their own deep space stations to provide an assembly point, repair yards and defences.

The tug ship could even have it's own dedicated cargo ship that simply does shuttle runs between the systems the tug ship covers - thereby covering most, if not all, of the cost (and bringing new supplies/taking crew to and from shore leave) and leaving the additional ships to make up the tugs' operating profit.

Hellebore
29-09-2006, 13:29
You could, but why not use the IFF transponder or active sensors?;)

Another possibility is tug ships - IIRC, the energy required to open a warp point is nearly independant of mass and size, so a tug ship (pretty much a drive system, crew compartments and life support, and a skeletal docking frame) could wait near the recognised warp points, have a number of ships dock onto it, then project the appropriately sized fields as required, jump the whole lot across into the warp, pilot to it's destination, jump back out and all the other ships un-dock and either head in system, or pick up another tug ship going to a different system. The jump points could even have their own deep space stations to provide an assembly point, repair yards and defences.

The tug ship could even have it's own dedicated cargo ship that simply does shuttle runs between the systems the tug ship covers - thereby covering most, if not all, of the cost (and bringing new supplies/taking crew to and from shore leave) and leaving the additional ships to make up the tugs' operating profit.



That was the basis for the 'super tanker' idea. A single ship that connects to several huge transport containers (each as big as a cruiser).

The only real problem with that is it puts all your eggs in one basket. If that specific 'tug' disappears, ALL the stuff carried by it will too.

Even with such a transport multiplier, you still end up with alot of ships, which would infer alot of psykers/ancestors, which was something Easy E didn't like.

Thus the attempt to reduce the number of ancestors necessary to guide larger numbers of ships.

Hellebore

susu.exp
29-09-2006, 20:07
http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?p=977127
Would you agree on my preference of placing the original homeworlds around the area I named (1350:900)?

I&#180;ll get back to space travel tomorrow.

Easy E
29-09-2006, 20:43
Looking at that I would say 1200-1600:750-915. A bit of a larger area thatn you suggest, but the general idea is the same. That does put them in the proximity of several "known" Ork worlds, provides a corridor to the Imperium, is relatively close to the Maelstrom (for the Chaos Squats to flle into), and is in the Core. The strongholds in the "east" side are also close to the Dominion of Storms, which would lead to isolated colonies/strongholds.

Back to Space Travel, I see the Tug idea as working well for commerce/civilian use, but not as well for military purposes.

Hellebore
30-09-2006, 02:27
http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?p=977127
Would you agree on my preference of placing the original homeworlds around the area I named (1350:900)?

I&#180;ll get back to space travel tomorrow.

I was thinking more like sandwhiched between the Maelstrom and the Gates of Varl.

1350 is above Telsa Prime, and almost outside the Core itself.

The squat homeworlds on that map aren't even IN the core:confused:
1285:1190?

If they end up further in the core, they become surrounded by bad things. Badab and the maelstrom would be good to use as a way to cut them off from the Imperium, when Huron turns traitor. Also, part of my rewrite has been to use the Reign of Blood as a way for the Varingr to escape imperial 'interest' - the Storm of the Emperor's wrath certainly cuts off any imperial movement from that direction. You end up with a 'cup' holding the varingr league with the open end facing the dominion of storms.

All the ork empires in the Maelstrom would also supply alot of orky aggression.

Some things on that map don't make sense - Tallarn is right in the path of Leviathan, but that was never part of the background. I assume that being 2d the red arrow is either ABOVE or below Tallarn, missing it completely.

Also, If you look at the size of the Tau Empire, you can see it isn't very big.

I would put them at ~1200:850, arranged like a tear drop shape, with the most above the maelstrom, and these spreading out to the right toward the dominion of storms.

As Easy E says, having them spread out through the Core allows for isolated colonies/strongholds, and thus the capability to survive.

I think that their 'over' expansion could be expounded upon - they were too greedy, to self assured, and thus spread their holdings too thin. Thus when the tyranid tendril moved toward them, they could not mount an effective defence. They have since learned from their mistakes;)



You could, but why not use the IFF transponder or active sensors?


Well, I assume that when navigating the warp, only psychic beacons/equipment will work. I've never really seen any information where ships in the warp use mundane means to navigate.


Hellebore

Easy E
03-10-2006, 22:31
Since we are talking about Living Ancestors and the warp, let's try and hash out how a Varingr soul interacts with the warp. There are some precedents with other races.

Human souls are cast into the warp and are targets of other predatory warp entities. Most likely they will be consumed by a Chaos power of vrious stature.

Tau have a very small warp presence, but I do not know what happens to a Tau soul when they die. Most likely they will face the same fate as a human soul.

The CWE Eldar capture their souls in soulstones and then "upload" them to the infinity circuit on board their craftworlds. They then live on to help advise the remaining Eldar and are protected from predatory warp entities. A similar process happens to Exodites, only their wraithbone constructs are planet based.

DE Eldar are consumed by Slaanesh or another Dark Eldar.

Orks merge back with Gork or Mork depending on the Ork.

Tyranids, perhaps they don't have souls in the traditional sense. It can be assumed that they are re-absorbed back into the psychic enitity of the Hive Mind/Shadow in the Warp.

With this broad overview in mind, what would happen to Varingr? We know that they believe in a form of Ancestor worship. Is this a stron enough development to protect their souls from other larger warp entities, or do they follow the same general pattern as human souls?

Hellebore
04-10-2006, 15:33
First off, I am maintaining the assumption that the majority of Varingr are warp blunt, and that only those from the Ancestor families have souls strong enough to use psychic powers.

Also, apparently the tau have very 'strong' souls, but with little warp presence. Apparently there are two parts to a soul, wavelength and amplitude :p

Anyway, they are supposed to have very little presence but strong souls, so perhaps the Varingr have a similar phenomenon?

I would put them between humanity and the tau in regards to souls surviving after death ie it doesn't happen. Whether their souls are strong enough to warrant being eaten is another matter.

I'm not sure how it would work - there really aren't enough varingr to put more than a tiny puddle of soul energy into the warp, so I can't really see them tapping a Ancestor 'god' so much.

Being genetically and one assumes 'soully' similar to humans means they would probably follow similar psychic principles.

Although, interestingly, the whole ancestor power concept is similar to how the original human psykers used their power. The shamans that created the Emperor used shamanistic power, that worked off their ability to reincarnate and all those who had gone before (thus ancestors).

Actually, perhaps the Living Ancestors, due to their unique development, utilise the soul power of LIVING varingr? They effectively tap the souls of the living, and absorb it (similar to how orks generate Waaagh! power in greater numbers) to generate psychic effects?

Or you could go down the rather more mundane route and say that due to the unique varingr psyche, which is highly resistant to otherwordly influence (and thus is why they do not worship 'gods') and because living ancestors do not manifest their power until a certain age, they develop almost a high resistance to influence from the warp.

The stubborn, insular, and clannish psyche of the Varingr is actually a survival trait that protects them to some degree from warp attacks. It manifests itself in a small but extremely 'tough' soul, that is so 'hard' and small that it provides too much of an effort for a daemon to devour, thus the cost outweighs the reward.

This explains why living ancestors manifest minor powers, and not the earth shattering ones other more volatile and WEAK races do.

So, the Varingr psyche AND physiognomy are both very tough, spiritually they provide little for a snack, but what they do have is very strong.

There are several ways you could go about it, but because they ARE humans, in all but name (who wants to be called 'human' when they can be called VARINGR! :p) their connection to the warp can't really be too much different to other humans.

What are people's thoughts on military structure?

At the moment POST purge, I'm going on a modified Imperial regiment structure.

Here is my thinking:

PRE purge, the professional soldiery, or 'highguard', are very common, appearing in regiments like imperial storm troopers. Units of clan warriors were lead into battle by a Highguard veteran, supported by units of Highguard and Elite units of Hearthguard.

The Standing Army, the Highguard, are lead by Wardens and Protectors, soldiers who rose in the ranks.

The Thane would send his elite Hearthguard as 'observers' and warriors to bolster the fighting courage of the clan warriors (Like during the Horus Heresy when the Emperor would send units of his Adeptus Custodes with loyalists as a visible extension of the Emperor's Will).


Units were more adhoc, each a milita band of warriors. The highguard units were more disciplined and were the core of the army.


POST purge

The Highguard are devestated. Their numbers have been decimated fighting the tyranid advance. Thus now, multiple units of clan warriors must be controled by single Highguard, their numbers too few to lead each.

Thus you get a regimental structure where a highguard leads a control squad, with several clanguard sections attached.

The highguard uses a similar method to the Vox caster to deliver his orders, effectively controlling a single squad, albiet 3x the size of one he would have controlled before the Purge.

The Highguard take the place of the Hearthguard as elite shock troops, the few remaing grouped together to perform specialist missions.

The hearthguard are provided as bodyguards for the Wardens and Protectors, the commander of the hearthguard effectively being the voice of the Thane whilst at war. They are under orders to ensure that the Commander does not shirk in his duty, but also protect him from harm (sort of a double edged sword).

So in mechanical terms, PRE purge I see the Varingr as militarily very similar to the old squat army lists, whilst POST purge, they have had to tighten their belts, and have been forced to redevelop their military due to their absolute massacre.


Hellebore

Easy E
04-10-2006, 17:18
In the situation above, can you define the role of the Hearthguard and their relationship to the Highguard for me again. I had a hard time conceptualizing what you were trying to get across.

Calif
04-10-2006, 20:42
This is what's happened! : http://www.tsoalr.com/ read and laugh!

Califen

susu.exp
04-10-2006, 21:47
I&#180;m getting a bit behind...

a) Space travel (again). I think the objections to my idea are valid, though it would be severely limited in scope and nowhere near Necron tech. Maybe they use it, without entering the Schwarzschild radius, which would allow them to get close to c, but not break the lightbarrier. The tech for thi does exist today and is in use, so it would exist as a possibility in the imperium, but the abundance of human psychers and general absence of large quatnities of black holes would make it unfeasable. Still, I&#180;d like to see some kind of non-warp system to system travel in the background, or the number of super Tankers would be too large for my liking - or the Varingr infrastructure too bad.

b) Living ancestors and Varingr souls. What if we actually go by the name? What if a living ancestor would actually accumulate Varingr souls when they die and protect them from other warp entities. Instead of the Spirit Stones the eldar use, the souls of dead varingr would merge with that of the LA. The psychic strenght of a living ancestor would be needed to protect those souls, while in return they would in unison generate some forms of psychic protection when the LA is in danger - if he dies they will fall prey to deamons. A living ancestor would pass the ancestors he protects on to his students when he dies. Are they all family? Maybe. But I don&#180;t think they would feel like they did belong to the same family with the different ancestors they have taken.
BTW: The power of the LAs used to remain relatively stable, because their number increased with the number of Varingr and the living ancestry of each LA stayed about the same level. With the purge some LAs have fallen, their ancestry lost. Others have survived battles where hundreds of souls came to them for protection. So I see anotherway to answer: "How did they survive the purge?" On some worlds the LAs became powerful enough to keep the hive fleet from entering the system.

c) Varingr Space. I think the areas you have pointed to are too large. The EoT is 3500ly across on that map, and the whole core is really big. The inner regions are also very hostile to life (the fact that you have large araes of space with dense ionized gas with the occasional black hole in between makes it both hostile and useless to a cluture seeking out heavy elements). I can see them spread through the outer core, though even a region as big as the maelstrom would be quite a large area.

d) I like the military composition, although I think that units would still be adhoc. After the purge no Varingr can be purely civilian or purely military, and I would like to see military and civilian structure represented in some way. Then again, I don&#180;t know that much about how to organize an army, the finer points of structure reforms and such going over my head. So you&#180;d probably get an "I like that" from me if it was the polar opposite. I keep thinking about the Varingr military more in tactical terms. What are they good at, what are they bad at and how should they "feel" (I spend a couple of bucks each months for Jervis column with a magazine I skim at best around it).

Hellebore
05-10-2006, 02:30
In the situation above, can you define the role of the Hearthguard and their relationship to the Highguard for me again. I had a hard time conceptualizing what you were trying to get across.

Hearthguard are the Thane's Elite guard, a cross between Arbites and the Adeptus Cutodes, with maybe a smattering of Commissar thrown in.

The Highguard are the actual professional soldiery, but professional in a stormtrooper way, rather than an Imperial Guard sort of way.

If you look at the structure of a Sisters of battle army, the battlesisters would be similar in position to the highguard, whilst the Celestians would be equivalent to the Hearthguard. Your average clan warrior would be an inducted imperial guardsman in the above scheme.

The Hearthguard would be either a hereditary position, or perhaps recruited from the most promising Highguard (or maybe even both). Their job is to protect the Thane and the Noble family, and enforce his wishes, even on the battlefield.

So the Hearthguard would go to war, as the command retinue of a warden/protector. They only show up as command retinues, whilst the highguard form specialist units that work around the clan militia.


At the moment I've got two military structures I'm working on, but I'm not sure which one to use for Pre, or Post.

It comes back to game mechanics I'm developing in tandem with the background, so I'll only briefly touch on that (seeing as how this is a background forum).

The only way to get effective points in Troops units is one of three options:

1: Your troops units are small, but expensive (space marines)
2: Your troops units are large, but cheap (orks)
3: Your troops units are small, but you get multiple units for one choice (Imperial guard)

The problem is, the Varingr are just not expensive enough (Being militia around the cost of an ork) to make 1: a viable option.

Thus leaving 2 and 3.

The squats never had really big units (8 in RT, and 5 in 2nd ed I think) which means that 3 is the most likely direction.

HOWEVER, as I said previously, I came up with several reasons for why the structure would be one way PRE purge, and another POST.


Unfortunately, I can come up with reasons why they are the other way round.

Anyway I'll give a mechanical break down on how I'm working at the moment, which is hopefully backgroundy enough to warrant posting here:

Option 2 (large cheap units)

One unit of 8-16 clan warriors. May be lead by a Highguard.

Reasons for being used as Army Comp POST:

With break down in League communications, and the destruction of Infrastructure, not to mention the huge loss of life, the Varingr form ad-hoc units of clan warriors carrying all the equipment they can get, and are lead into battle by a Highguard.

Reasons for being used as Army Comp PRE:

The Varingr, relaxed in their attitude, and dismissive of the Imperial guard, form more natural ad-hoc units that work more organically on the battlefield together. WHen a Varingr reaches active rotation on the roster, they join a unit. Thus the units are never a fixed size.

Option 3 (small cheap single choice multiunits)

ONe Control Section of 4-8 clan warriors lead by a Highguard.
+
Two to Three units of 5-10 clan warriors that can be lead by an Oath Keeper (Non commissioned officer type).

Reasons for being used as Army Comp POST:

After the destruction of their League, the Varingr radically restructure their military. With a greater need for the fewer Highguard available, they are forced to put several units under the command of a single highguard, leaving more to be assembled as elite units.

Reasons for being used as Army Comp PRE:

Being inducted into the Imperial guard as tithe regiments, the Varingr had to comply with Imperial military structure, requiring platoon style command units and attached squads.

2 is alot more adhoc in feel, whilst 3 is very structured, and works like the imperial guard.


If people can think of a way to produce a military structure different to either of these feel free. At the moment though, I can't think of any way to do it.

I think that both type of unit structure WORKS, but whether they should exist PRE or POST I'm still not sure about.




b) Living ancestors and Varingr souls. What if we actually go by the name? What if a living ancestor would actually accumulate Varingr souls when they die and protect them from other warp entities. Instead of the Spirit Stones the eldar use, the souls of dead varingr would merge with that of the LA. The psychic strenght of a living ancestor would be needed to protect those souls, while in return they would in unison generate some forms of psychic protection when the LA is in danger - if he dies they will fall prey to deamons. A living ancestor would pass the ancestors he protects on to his students when he dies. Are they all family? Maybe. But I don´t think they would feel like they did belong to the same family with the different ancestors they have taken.
BTW: The power of the LAs used to remain relatively stable, because their number increased with the number of Varingr and the living ancestry of each LA stayed about the same level. With the purge some LAs have fallen, their ancestry lost. Others have survived battles where hundreds of souls came to them for protection. So I see anotherway to answer: "How did they survive the purge?" On some worlds the LAs became powerful enough to keep the hive fleet from entering the system.


See this is a really cool idea. I'm just not sure whether spirit gestalts in the warp would work, or whether the Varingr could actually do it.

It's a damn fine idea, but as the Varingr are human effectively, I just don't know how possible it is.

It actually sounds very similar to the way Dark Eldar prolong their lives.

How exactly does a Living Ancestor GAIN the souls? Are they just naturally attracted to the Living Ancestor's soul, or does the living ancestor have to 'suck' their soul out of them ala Dark Eldar style?

I'd be a bit leary of attributing the ability to halt hive fleets though - that seems a bit too powerful. I doubt even an eldar farseer could hide his people from the great devourer, let alone a short human.

Also, would a living ancestor have to accumulate ALOT of them, if they are warp blunt, and have very little presence, it would take a huge amount of souls for them to manifest any power.


Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
05-10-2006, 10:10
The Varingr, relaxed in their attitude, and dismissive of the Imperial guard, form more natural ad-hoc units that work more organically on the battlefield together. WHen a Varingr reaches active rotation on the roster, they join a unit. Thus the units are never a fixed size.

Option 3 (small cheap single choice multiunits)

ONe Control Section of 4-8 clan warriors lead by a Highguard.
+
Two to Three units of 5-10 clan warriors that can be lead by an Oath Keeper (Non commissioned officer type).
...

...
2 is alot more adhoc in feel, whilst 3 is very structured, and works like the imperial guard.

Which does go back to them being short guard again - although I do think it is the best option.



How exactly does a Living Ancestor GAIN the souls? Are they just naturally attracted to the Living Ancestor's soul, or does the living ancestor have to 'suck' their soul out of them ala Dark Eldar style?

Only things I can think of is something related to eldar spirit stones (either on the individual, or as a part of the living ancestors regalia) - although what if the Living Ancestor only has to protect their souls for a short time?

Maybe after a little while the souls begin to lose their cohesion and break up (I thought about protecting them to be collected and go to Valhalla or similar, but that almost inevitably leads into religious worship, and again we're not differentiating from the Imperium), becoming little more than echoes on the wind that warp creatures can't gain sustenance from.

Really strong souls can occasionally reconstitute themselves for limited amounts of time (yes, Star Wars universe Force Ghosts ;) - actually, I'd say they could enter and affect the dreams of certain individuals - Living Ancestors certainly, but also very close family members), but not for long and only under certain conditions.



I'd be a bit leary of attributing the ability to halt hive fleets though - that seems a bit too powerful. I doubt even an eldar farseer could hide his people from the great devourer, let alone a short human.

One word - Iyanden ;)

I still think mechanical/technological for driving off the hive fleet rather than psychic.

Easy E
05-10-2006, 21:49
Sai-Lauren, you have some sweet ideas. Some are even revolutionary. That being said, they maybe too revolutionary for what we are trying to do.

I agree with you that some other non-warp travel would be great to see in the Background. However, I'm not sure the Varingr are the ones to do it. As Hellebore noted, they are merely slightly more advanced humans, shouldn't there technology base mirror Imperial technology to a certain extent?

On the other hand, you did mention that the deep core does house many Black Holes, so your idea seems plausible for core dwelling people. in fact, it nmight even be more efficient for them since they are warp blunt and would help explain why the Varingr empire was primarily in the Core. Perhaps the Super Tankers and merchant ships could use your method, but the military ships could use the standard warp technique, giving them a greater freedom of movement. This could also fit into the background of the Tyrannid purge as War fleets would be held up by the Tyrannid Shadow in the Warp, but other non-military Varingr could flee using their merchant ships Black Hole drives(?). They could not build and equip enough military ships with the Black Hole drives once the error had been detected. Just some brainstorming, I'm not sure if I have a point yet.

As for the LA concept, I love the idea, and it makes the ancestor worship/living ancestors much more dynamic. it also explains why LA's are resistant to Daemonic Attack. The only major flaw is that eventually, a LA would have to acquire so many souls that they could challenge the Emperor. A modern LA could carry the souls of almost 15 MILLENIA of Varingr. Even if the average Varingr life span is 150 years, you still have a shedload of souls with you.

Acting as protectors while the Varingr soul transitions into some other state is interesting as well. The question is what are the Varingr souls transitioning into? Reincarnating, a different form of existance, simply dissipating into nothing? In this scenario, I see a Living Ancestor spending much of their time in a trance like state, astrally searching the Warp for Varingr souls that were sent adrift.

Now, onto the military structure. I feel that each Stronghold's military capacity would be different so a rigid military structure is not in order. Option 2 with 8-15 Clan Militia potentially led by a HighGuard sounds like the most flexible way to represent the varying military abilities of the Stronghold. When you add in the rotationally nature of service and varying troop levels because of it, this option makes even more sense. (Plus, it's the one I used ;) ). The same rational applies pre and post purge.

So the Hearthguard is the eyes and ears of the Thane to make sure that any particular Wardens don't get to out of hand, and follow the directives of the Thane? They have sworn loyalty directly to the Thane, and therefore are not bound by the traditional family and Brotherhood (military) oaths? This would give them a greater freedom of action to enforce the Thane's will.

By the way, I think the Clan Militia should all be called Oathholders as they have taken Oaths to protect the Stronghold (not the Thane) and become a member of the Brotherhood.

I will post more later about the larger military structures of Strongholds when I have a bit more time.

Lockjaw
05-10-2006, 22:44
maybe just for keeping things more tech than mystical, the living ancestors find lost adrift souls in the warp, and collect thim into a type of machine devoloped for soul keeping, like a computer but instead of programs, their are souls or something similar. and not something small like eldar spirit stones, it would be just a big machine, maybe the size of a tank

Easy E
06-10-2006, 02:13
Perhaps the machines they store them in would also be the navigation computers.

Hellebore
06-10-2006, 03:02
Just had an interesting discussion regarding this topic with my boss.

I was saying how I liked Susu-Exp.'s and Sai-Lauren's concepts, but wasn't sure how they would work with an essentially HUMAN race.

We then started to discuss exactly why a Varingr soul is so blunt, and how this would effect it.

One of the problems humans have is their soul isn't strong enough to retain its cohesion after death. What if a Varingr could? Not as well as an eldar, but getting back to the soul ghosts. Perviously I said that maybe the reason Varingr don't tend to suffer daemonic attack is the cost to reward ratio. Their soul, like their bodies, is dense and compact, making it extremely hard to 'crack'.

Thus a daemon would not bother with the pathetic morsal of Varingr soul, as it takes too long to attempt to get at it, and doesn't provide enough sustainence.

The soul would break up given enough time, and thus eventually can get consumed when it is no longer intact. This would provide some basis for the concept of the Ancestors "Watching Over" them, because the spirits of the Ancestors would have a very, VERY limited presence, like a ghost.

The Living Ancestors however, have the capacity 'protect' these souls, via a last rites sort of ritual, so on the battlefield after the dead are collected, the Ancestor performs the ritual and the souls of the dead are 'pulled' toward him.

As part of my rewrite, I equipped each Living Ancestor with an "Ancestor Staff", a device of importance given to a Living Ancestor as both a focus for his power, and the ability to 'pull' said souls toward him. Not quite a storage unit, but rather a warp artifact that acts as a beacon in the warp by amplifying the Ancestor's presence so that the dead swarm to them, protected by the mental walls of the Ancestor's Will.

Thus a Living Ancestor really COULD be seen as such, because they can commune with the Ancestors in a limited way, through dreams and portents etc, and manifest the power of the Ancestors to protect other Varingr.

Sort of a Shamanistic practice.

The question is of course, why can they do this, and not other humans? This was a stumbling block for me, because I detest making races "special", giving them something no one else has 'just because'.

However we then looked at where they are. The core, as has been mentioned, has black holes in it. What would the effect be on humans living within spitting distance of a half dozen black holes? Probably not much.

BUT, the Maelstrom is also near the core - what would happen if a black hole and the warp collided? Well, seeing as how the warp is fantasy, anything we really want!:p

In addition, the Varingr existed in the core at the time of the eldar Fall - imagine what could have happened to the Maelstrom and/or the black holes in this area when the psychic shockwave of a god's birth blasted through.

Anyway, perhaps through such evolutionary processes the Varingr evolved a less and less powerful soul, one that could protect itself from the damaging conditions it found itself in.

The thought of opening a warp rift inside a black hole was just too cool:D

As to the Living Ancestors, their families may have either been engineered, or evolved for some other reason, to channel the power around them, rather than resist it.

During the Purge however, millions of Varingr were dying every day, that sort of soul overload can be deadly. I can imagine that the Living Ancestors may have helped stave off the tyranids, but in a altogether more crude fashion - they simply exploded.

I can see the Ancestor feeling the souls of the dead Varingr rushing toward him, like a tsunami, inexorable, unavoidable. The few that knew what was happening, attempted to divert the rush into themselves alone, in an attempt to spare the others the same fate.

Imagine a Stronghold, burned, broken, and dying, with a small resistance force at its centre. The Ancestor looks to his Thane, and says "Get our people out, I will stay and buy you time."
And then strides toward the encroaching swarm, power literally oozing out of every pore, as the slaughter of his people causes an irresistable surge of power through his body, slowly destroying him, but in the process giving him immense power.

A shield of soul energy, all those that died but moments before forms around him, and all tyranids that come near are incinerated. Striding through the hold, he smites all those before him, unleashing destructive energies that collapse whole sections of the Stronghold, crushing the undending tide.

He reaches the centre of the swarm, and can feel that the last of his people have left. Calm descends as he relaxes the walls of his will, allowing the souls of the Ancestors to consume him.

"The Ancestors clamour for vengeance, and Vengeance they shall have!"

From orbit it appears as though a fusion reactor has gone critical, and nothing is left.

Whether or not it is the right direction, it certainly is evocative. I like the idea that the living ancestors became ticking time bombs the more the tyranids slaughtered, but it didn't make them allpowerful gods, it just made them explode.

Sort of like the Alpha psyker - an untrained super powerful psyker whose own power eventually destroys them, consuming them.

A Living Ancestor's power is very subtle, and relies on tapping into the miniscule amount of energy the souls of the ancestors possess. In this way they are not a traditional psyker, and have some similarites to Farseers using spirit stones to channel power, except what a Living Ancestor does is much less powerful.


Until you kill most of their population and attempt to shove 20 billion souls into a single Living Ancestor simultaneously;)


@Easy E - you say that a unit 5-15 is better reflective of the individuality of a stronghold, but after the Purge, there wouldn't really BE any strongholds, most having been destroyed.

In that time of woes, a better, more structured military may be required if the survivors are to survive.

I'm not sure that ad-hoc would work if they are attempting to rebuild their League, it is too disorganised. The reason I thought that afterward they became regimented was to increase fighting efficiency - they had to be perfect at what they did, because they couldn't afford mistakes.

A mistake could cost them their entire race.


Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
06-10-2006, 09:01
Sai-Lauren, you have some sweet ideas. Some are even revolutionary. That being said, they maybe too revolutionary for what we are trying to do.

Vive la Revolution! :D

Basically, I'd like to see them stand away from the imagery of the Imperium, to give them their own identity - I think one of the reasons the muse never hit was that the designers were too much involved in the Imperium, and couldn't see any hook to hang the Squats on.



Acting as protectors while the Varingr soul transitions into some other state is interesting as well. The question is what are the Varingr souls transitioning into? Reincarnating, a different form of existance, simply dissipating into nothing? In this scenario, I see a Living Ancestor spending much of their time in a trance like state, astrally searching the Warp for Varingr souls that were sent adrift.

I do think dissipation (they are still human souls, although I like Hellebore's idea that the souls are too tough for daemonic creatures to crack open - even in death, still hard as stone :p ), although whatever we decide, it does give the Living Ancestors a nice dark edge to them - imagine being in a stronghold, and seeing a Living Ancestor leaving their sanctuary and walking towards someone's living quarters - almost certainly someone's about to die.

Kind of "Here walks the Reaper..."

The souls powering an ancestor is a neat idea, although I still can't see that driving off the whole hive fleet - maybe not even driving the Tyrannids off the one planet.

Here's a thought - what if they somehow managed to capture one of the Norn Queens, and threw it into a Black Hole*? The psychic scream of it's death throes would almost certainly drive off the remaining creatures in the hive fleet (and possibly kill off a lot outright, and disorientate others so that they're easy to kill), and thanks to gravitational time effects, it could potentially still be screaming (assuming psychic energy isn't affected by gravity) - creating a buffer zone.

Basically, it's the "place of pain" idea I had a while back.

*other ideas, some kind of extremely experimental micro-singularity weapon, or they found some way to collapse a star into a black hole when the Norn Queen was in system - say the star was already beginning to die and they somehow speeded it's death up from centuries to days, an act of absolute desperation, many millions of Varingr lives lost as well and it'll probably never work again.

Hellebore
06-10-2006, 09:05
Vive la Revolution! :D

Basically, I'd like to see them stand away from the imagery of the Imperium, to give them their own identity - I think one of the reasons the muse never hit was that the designers were too much involved in the Imperium, and couldn't see any hook to hang the Squats on.


I do think dissipation (they are still human souls, although I like Hellebore's idea that the souls are too tough for daemonic creatures to crack open - even in death, still hard as stone :p ), although whatever we decide, it does give the Living Ancestors a nice dark edge to them - imagine being in a stronghold, and seeing a Living Ancestor leaving their sanctuary and walking towards someone's living quarters - almost certainly someone's about to die.

Kind of "Here walks the Reaper..."

The souls powering an ancestor is a neat idea, although I still can't see that driving off the whole hive fleet - maybe not even driving the Tyrannids off the one planet.

Here's a thought - what if they somehow managed to capture one of the Norn Queens, and threw it into a Black Hole*? The psychic scream of it's death throes would almost certainly drive off the remaining creatures in the hive fleet (and possibly kill off a lot outright, and disorientate others so that they're easy to kill), and thanks to gravitational time effects, it could potentially still be screaming (assuming psychic energy isn't affected by gravity) - creating a buffer zone.

Basically, it's the "place of pain" idea I had a while back.

*other ideas, some kind of extremely experimental micro-singularity weapon, or they found some way to collapse a star into a black hole when the Norn Queen was in system - say the star was already beginning to die and they somehow speeded it's death up from centuries to days, an act of absolute desperation, many millions of Varingr lives lost as well and it'll probably never work again.


Well considering the graviton gun is just one step away from a blackhole gun, I can't see it as too much of a stretch that they created the BFG 5000 of Graviton guns and shot the star of the system the majority of the splinter fleet was in.

If the souls = power thing were to be used, it would definitely be a subtle and rather gradual thing, none of this powering up malarky.

I never wanted the Living Ancestors to possess very powerful psychic abilities per se, focusing more on their innate protection from daemonic intrusion. It's more a tit for tat thing - you get protection at the expense of less power.

However, IF they somehow 'protect/absorb/capture' Varingr souls after death, they could certainly be overloaded if their entire race is being systematically obliterated around them. Thus coming back to the human alpha psyker - too much power = kaboom! :P

So whilst the Ancestors may not have single handedly driven off the fleets (I would not want them that powerful) through the spectacular expedient of exploding in a titan sized D-cannon sort of way, they would have taken large chunks out of the invading Tyranids.


I'm thinking that these blackholes would be good somehow in the background, even if they simply make warp travel through the Core extremely difficult. This alone would dissuade Imperial forces from continually travelling through the Varingr territories, because of the risk. Having lived there for tens of thousands of years, the Varingr would have either learnt to manouvre around them, or used them somehow to slingshot themselves around the Core.

The Living Ancestor's ability to contact souls would also enable them to pilot warp ships through the dangerous conditions of the Core, by homing in on their port of call.

The whole talking to souls/channelling soul energy seems like a cross between a spiritseer, farseer, and a shaman.

I actually think the shamanistic side of things works well with a people that venerate their ancestors, it fits with the mentality.

Hellebore

Lockjaw
06-10-2006, 22:44
Here's a thought - what if they somehow managed to capture one of the Norn Queens, and threw it into a Black Hole*? The psychic scream of it's death throes would almost certainly drive off the remaining creatures in the hive fleet (and possibly kill off a lot outright, and disorientate others so that they're easy to kill), and thanks to gravitational time effects, it could potentially still be screaming (assuming psychic energy isn't affected by gravity) - creating a buffer zone.


i had an idea, shoot it down if you want but i like it, what if the tyranids didn't eat all the squats and it's just an imperial line, maybe the inquisition in a deal with the ad-mech, killed as many as they could as mutants, leaving the worlds free for the admech to go through and take some tech from, and to cover it up, they claim it was the tyranids, it would also cover some of the holes, like the ones in the IG, the ones nin the ad-mech, they just mysteriously dissapear one day, and noone questions it. the remaining ones know what really happened and hate the imperium for it
conspiracies like that fit in pretty well with 40k too

scwolf
08-10-2006, 21:00
This is what's happened! : http://www.tsoalr.com/ read and laugh!

Today's Helpful Intarweb Tip

When linking to a web comic to make a point, it helps to link to the specific strip (http://www.tsoalr.com/view.php?date=2006-10-01) and not the front page (http://www.tsoalr.com/), because when the web comic updates, the new strip may be entirely unrelated to the point you were trying to make.

(We now return you to your Varingr/Squat thread, already in progress.)

Sai-Lauren
11-10-2006, 08:30
Another thing I thought that the Living Ancestors could do (or certainly their guild), is Varingr geneology.

For one thing, there's the whole ancestor reverence/worship, so it would be important to them to have someone keeping track of their relationships (and also to try and prevent any Romeo and Juliet situations, as I'm sure there's more than a few clans who're not speaking to each other because someone's great^n grandfather borrowed the lawnmower and has never returned it), plus post-scouring (the Eldar fell, the Varingr got scoured ;)) it would be even more important to keep track of who's parents to whom, to prevent inbreeding and genetic stagnation.

Voronwe[MQ]
11-10-2006, 14:07
That sounds more like Huckleberry Finn situation, that borrowed lawnmover.:D

Easy E
12-10-2006, 06:56
I agree that geneology would be a critical part of Varingr society. If the LA's are a Guild, that would give the none psychic ones something valueable to do.

Gotreksbrother
12-10-2006, 08:13
Ruleswise they could easily have incorporated the Squats: Just make the whole infantry based section move with Slow and Purposeful instead of the regular 6 inches. And when moving in difficult terrain they could roll 3 dice and choose the two lowest. That would solve the movement issue.
As for the background, make them a variant IG list or say that some surviving the tyranid onslaught moved towards Tau dominated space and making them an option for Tau. They could have preferred enemy vs. tyranids and their weapons should be very anti tyranid as well as anti monstrous creature in general.

Cheers, GB

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
12-10-2006, 10:21
Gotta admit, im not a fan of them but they are an interesting curiousity (like the Zoats). Perhaps they could be given a Mad Max style post-apocalyptic look instead ? This would go well with them being survivors of the tyranids too. Just a thought...anyway, id give them weapons based on different kinds of drills, Nail-guns ect..primitive but powerful stuff.

I definitly agree with those who think the Demiurg are a seperate and "alien" race.

Lockjaw
12-10-2006, 19:20
yeah, that would work towards making them a little less mini spacewolves/spacevikings. but probably make them more towards the biker dwarves from mars look that noone liked

Easy E
14-10-2006, 08:39
I'm glad to see the interest this thread has generated with a variety of posters.

I'm going to step back to the question of military structures and then branch out from there.

First off, alot of the structure of the Varingr after the Tyrannid invasion depends on how you see what remains. Essentially, there are two possabilities that I see:

1. The entire Varingr structure was eliminated and all that is left is isolated bands of randomly thrown together Varingr struggling to survive. There are no more Stronghold's, Leagues, or Guilds. Their are only warband type groupings.

2. Some of the Strongholds managed to survive. These form the core of the remaining Varingr race. These strongholds are attempting to remain relatively "normal" but must adapt to the new situation. Other surviving Varingr are attempting to re-unite with these strongholds, and the remaining strongholds are trying to locate survivors/tech/resources to continue their existance as a race.

Depending on how you view their 'current' sitaution will color your opinion of their new organization and military structures. I will come out and say that I see option 2 as being more likely.

With that said, I feel that Varingr military options are still relatively fluid, and the appropriate number of troops and units will be given to Wardens to complete their missions. It is then up to the Warden to create the smaller units, and his subordinates (High Guard?) to work out the details from there.

Therefore, I stand by my answer of 8-15 per squad.

Organizational ranks that I propose:

Oathholder (Trooper)
Sargeant (Self-Explanitory, although a different name is welcome)
High Guard/Hearthguard (JO for IG Equivalent)
Warden (HSO for IG Equivalent)
Warlord (Non-playable, perhaps this rank would have been eliminated after the Tyrannid Purge to streamline the Thane's control of vital military forces)
Thane (NOn-playable and ruler of a Stronghold/Warband)

Of Course, the Engineer's Guild and Living Ancestors would be outside of this organizational structure as they are their own seperate entities that create their own policies to follow.

Hellebore
15-10-2006, 01:43
I'm glad to see the interest this thread has generated with a variety of posters.

I'm going to step back to the question of military structures and then branch out from there.

First off, alot of the structure of the Varingr after the Tyrannid invasion depends on how you see what remains. Essentially, there are two possabilities that I see:

1. The entire Varingr structure was eliminated and all that is left is isolated bands of randomly thrown together Varingr struggling to survive. There are no more Stronghold's, Leagues, or Guilds. Their are only warband type groupings.

2. Some of the Strongholds managed to survive. These form the core of the remaining Varingr race. These strongholds are attempting to remain relatively "normal" but must adapt to the new situation. Other surviving Varingr are attempting to re-unite with these strongholds, and the remaining strongholds are trying to locate survivors/tech/resources to continue their existance as a race.

Depending on how you view their 'current' sitaution will color your opinion of their new organization and military structures. I will come out and say that I see option 2 as being more likely.

With that said, I feel that Varingr military options are still relatively fluid, and the appropriate number of troops and units will be given to Wardens to complete their missions. It is then up to the Warden to create the smaller units, and his subordinates (High Guard?) to work out the details from there.

Therefore, I stand by my answer of 8-15 per squad.

Organizational ranks that I propose:

Oathholder (Trooper)
Sargeant (Self-Explanitory, although a different name is welcome)
High Guard/Hearthguard (JO for IG Equivalent)
Warden (HSO for IG Equivalent)
Warlord (Non-playable, perhaps this rank would have been eliminated after the Tyrannid Purge to streamline the Thane's control of vital military forces)
Thane (NOn-playable and ruler of a Stronghold/Warband)

Of Course, the Engineer's Guild and Living Ancestors would be outside of this organizational structure as they are their own seperate entities that create their own policies to follow.

I personally see 2 as the most likely as well.

I've also been looking at how they got themselves in the situation they are in, and how they survived.

Before the purge, they had never really seen any combat (excepting the invasion of the Flayer's Waaagh!) within the Core, due to difficulty of navigation (Those black holes make great Mcguffins) and isolation.

They would have tithed units to the Imperial Guard, but those would have been an almost economic transaction- troops for food sort of thing.

The clans and families would have sold troops to the imperium (in the same way that Catachan's only real resource are its soldiers - they have very little industry) and never had to worry about invasion.

This would certainly breed a bit of laxity, especially when they easily defeat small ork raiding fleets/chaos raider forces (as opposed to full blown warfleets).

The whole feeling of superiority and the fact that their SDF (Stronghold Defence Force) had easily dealt with small raiders would have bred a sort of complacent arrogance.

With the tyranids, it would have been different. Xisor's suggestion of genestealer cults certainly works well with this - it creates a completely different form of invasion.

The Varingr would have thought little of the new "Cult of the First Father" Ancestor sect that appeared, as it was simply a bit more strident in its views on the Ancestors. However, this would lead to the outer-Core Strongholds, the ones closest to the Splinter Fleet's advance. Due to the sparse nature of the Strongholds and their holdings, such occurances would probably not be noticed - isolated mining outposts being out of communication would be a common thing.


Thus the Varingr League would be slowly eaten away, completely oblivious to its fate.

It would be the actions of an individual warden, who had been reading to many military histories (mainly concerned with the victory over the Flayer 10,000 years ago) that would have prevented absolute destruction.

After a while the Varingr would cotton on to what's going on, and several sects of the First Father would thus have rebelled, attempting to prevent an organisation of resistance.

The Warden rallies the SDF across several Strongholds, and arms the populace. Thus the Varingr are formed into fighting ranks as the tyranid fleets reach the inner core, the centre of the oldest League worlds.

Through a combination of sheer bloody mindedness, self sacrifice, and a few uber doom weapons that explode stars/make black holes (as posited previously) they either destroy the nids, or drive them away, toward the richer ork worlds, where there is more than dirt and tough varingr meat for tea:D


Anyway, from this sort of event, the need for a more structured military would be obvious, and the mobilisation of the populace necessary.

This leads into the rotating roster where everyone fights in the army at certain times. This would be to clear out tyranid infestations in lost holds, recapture lost outposts, and fend off raiders who sensed easy pickings (this would also include Adeptus Mechanicus Explorator fleets as well;) ).

Thus they are beset on all sides, a remnant of what they were, and through the horrific lesson of having most of their population massacred, have developed a sophisiticated military and a grudge-borne hatred of all others, and a fatalistic need to avenge their ancestors' deaths, and kill all those that would stand in their way of prosperity.

Of course, with the bitterness they feel, that criteria applies to EVERYONE now:cool:

Hellebore

Xisor
15-10-2006, 02:24
First off, alot of the structure of the Varingr after the Tyrannid invasion depends on how you see what remains. Essentially, there are two possabilities that I see:

1. The entire Varingr structure was eliminated and all that is left is isolated bands of randomly thrown together Varingr struggling to survive. There are no more Stronghold's, Leagues, or Guilds. Their are only warband type groupings.

2. Some of the Strongholds managed to survive. These form the core of the remaining Varingr race. These strongholds are attempting to remain relatively "normal" but must adapt to the new situation. Other surviving Varingr are attempting to re-unite with these strongholds, and the remaining strongholds are trying to locate survivors/tech/resources to continue their existance as a race.

I'd go more for a Battlestar Galactica Approach. None of the Strongholds actually survive, but there are sufficient refugee remnants to form a semblance of them 'in flight'. That is, the actual strongholds are gone, but there are still loose groupings, those who descended from particular strongholds and were offworld at the time. Those who managed to fight their way out past the edge of the hivefleet etc.

The idea and ideals of the Strongholds survive, but the Strongholds themselves are gone, thus devastating the way things worked and in turn leading to a slightly more 1) force than 2). But they're trying to preserve what remains with them, carry the traditions etc where possible.

But if they are to survive, it must be a brave new world...

Xisor

Grubnar
15-10-2006, 03:47
I'd go more for a Battlestar Galactica Approach. None of the Strongholds actually survive, but there are sufficient refugee remnants to form a semblance of them 'in flight'. That is, the actual strongholds are gone, but there are still loose groupings, those who descended from particular strongholds and were offworld at the time. Those who managed to fight their way out past the edge of the hivefleet etc.

The idea and ideals of the Strongholds survive, but the Strongholds themselves are gone, thus devastating the way things worked and in turn leading to a slightly more 1) force than 2). But they're trying to preserve what remains with them, carry the traditions etc where possible.

But if they are to survive, it must be a brave new world...

Xisor

I like that, but then again that may be just because I like Battlestar Galactica and not because it is a good idea. I cant be the judge on that. But I think it firts with the whole mineing in space background. Moving from planet to planet, asteroid belt to asteroind belt. gas giant to gas giant etc.

As for the name thing, I do not thing "Varingr" rolls off the tounge very well, if you get my drift. If we are still talking about dwarfs in space why not call them "Dvergar", simply the icelandic word for dwarfs.
Also, I like the name "League". It has a nice ring to it. Codex: Free League.
Adding the word "Free" to show that they will not be oppressed or beaten and will never, ever surrender. As Shakespear said: Live free or die.

P.S. How would they react to the Tau Empire?

Hellebore
15-10-2006, 04:37
I'd go more for a Battlestar Galactica Approach. None of the Strongholds actually survive, but there are sufficient refugee remnants to form a semblance of them 'in flight'. That is, the actual strongholds are gone, but there are still loose groupings, those who descended from particular strongholds and were offworld at the time. Those who managed to fight their way out past the edge of the hivefleet etc.

The idea and ideals of the Strongholds survive, but the Strongholds themselves are gone, thus devastating the way things worked and in turn leading to a slightly more 1) force than 2). But they're trying to preserve what remains with them, carry the traditions etc where possible.

But if they are to survive, it must be a brave new world...

Xisor


Well, yes, but I feel that this makes them more like the Demiurg, wandering around, mining and protecting themselves from interlopers.

I see them as more sedentary, too stubborn to leave the strongholds of their ancestors. Everyone else must be removed to prevent any threat to their way of life.


Effectively, the universe must change, not the Varingr:p

Hellebore

Easy E
15-10-2006, 09:10
The idea that the Varingr had very little military experience prior to the Tyrannid Invasion makes sense to me. They mostly would have had their Brotherhoods fighting in the service of the Imperium. However, per the "old" background, the Squat Homeworlds broke from the Imperium during the Reign of Blood. That would leave a lot of time for them to be a seperate entity from the Imperium. Plus inter-league rivalry was high, after their succession. This often led to warfare between different Leagues.

The concept that most of the Varingr experience with warfare was witht he Imperial Guard leads to an assumption that they would organize like the Imperial Guard.

On the other hand, I personally like the idea that the Varingr would be less rigid and more fluid in organization to meet the needs of any given situation. I seem them as very practical, and this would help illistrate that part of their psyche. However, this may not be the most popular or logical conclusion.

Finally, the discussion of Genestealer cults reminded me of something. Since I imagine that Varingr society is very much bound by Oaths and family ties, this type of infection would really strike at the heart of their culture. How would a Varingr be able to take up arms against kinsmen or those they have taken Oaths to protect without being an Oathbreaker themselves? I think this is an area that the Engineers Guild would be uniquely suited to fill. Since when you join the Engineer's Guild, your former Oaths and family ties no longer apply, and you become bound to the Guild, they would be able to strike at these infestations with no social/ethical/spiritual qualms that other Varingr would possess.

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
16-10-2006, 06:54
I had more ideas on doing a Squat scavangers remnants this weekend, when I get time I may do it all from scratch. I'll post my ideas later this week. I'm enjoying this thread alot, love reading everyones ideas :)

Hellebore
19-10-2006, 08:06
Some thoughts on the engineer's guild.

I cannot for a moment believe that, however well connected Varingr leaders may be, that the Adeptus Mechanicus wouldn't try to dominate the technology of the League.

They wouldn't like the way the engineers did their business, and would at the very least attempt to control how they did it (including trying to get them to use the proper unguents and obeisances).

The way I can see to explaining why the engineers didn't get themselves purged, was a sort of dirty compromise. Basically, the admech forgeworlds are not the sole provider of materiel for the imperium, many planets have industry given over to stuff normally produced on a forgeworld. Necromunda houses have contracts with the Admech to allow them to make weapons.

So what I'm thinking is that the engineers 'bought' the patents, or were sold the 'rights' to make the stuff they were already making, just as the admech does with planets like necromunda.

Thus it was a way for the engineers to maintain their control over Varingr technology, but also made them beholden to the AdMech. If they wanted to make something new, it would have to be approved by the mechanicus, and they couldn't make things that the mechanicus hadn't sanctioned.

I can't see the mechanicus standing by whilst the engineers 'perverted' the machines - it just isn't like them. So, if the engineers instead had a working relationship with the mechanicus like the Houses of necromunda, they could get away with staying in cotrol, and effectively avoid confrontations with the admech (as they had been 'sanctioned' to make the things they were already making).

Of course, I doubt this would have stopped the engineers funding their own private designs, and building things without the knowledge of the mechanicus, but it allows for the pretence of cooperation, and on the surface makes it APPEAR as though the admech control the production of the engineers.

But even within imperial worlds like necromunda, that control isn't absolute, so imagine what it would be like in the isolated Core systems. ;)

Hellebore

Xisor
19-10-2006, 09:29
Since this is a revisionist history of the Squats, we could propose that the Ad Mech had started to get really peeved with the Varingr. That is: There were strongholds being attacked left right and center by Adeptus Mechanicus-deployed forces in an effort to subdue certain worlds/factions.

Indeed, we could suggest that there was a very significant fracturing in the Engineers Guild: those who still sided with/defended/wanted good relations with the Cult Mechanicus and those breakaway or rebel factions. We could set up a very 'Inquisitor' style approach of intrigue and mystery to my aforementioned 'conflict' rather than the Adeptus Mechanicus showing up with two Titan Legions...

Combining a heavily intrigue based 'war' with Hellebore's proposals for 'selling the rights' and things would give a grittier feel, overall, to the Varingr.

It was probably fortunate for the Imperium that they got eaten by the Tyranids...as they'd have become a major thorn in the side of the Mechanicus otherwise...

Xisor

Hellebore
19-10-2006, 10:01
Since this is a revisionist history of the Squats, we could propose that the Ad Mech had started to get really peeved with the Varingr. That is: There were strongholds being attacked left right and center by Adeptus Mechanicus-deployed forces in an effort to subdue certain worlds/factions.

Indeed, we could suggest that there was a very significant fracturing in the Engineers Guild: those who still sided with/defended/wanted good relations with the Cult Mechanicus and those breakaway or rebel factions. We could set up a very 'Inquisitor' style approach of intrigue and mystery to my aforementioned 'conflict' rather than the Adeptus Mechanicus showing up with two Titan Legions...

Combining a heavily intrigue based 'war' with Hellebore's proposals for 'selling the rights' and things would give a grittier feel, overall, to the Varingr.

It was probably fortunate for the Imperium that they got eaten by the Tyranids...as they'd have become a major thorn in the side of the Mechanicus otherwise...

Xisor

Actually, that was something I had forgotten, I originally envisaged a more Admech/Inquisitor heavy conspiracy to bring the Varingr low, to the extent of doing a 'Kryptman' and directing a splinter fleet right into the Core. Makes it cheaper to kill your enemies if someone else pays the bill.

I was thinking that, were it not for the absolute wealth owned by the League, the admech would have moved in earlier, but their wealth enabled them to buy some breathing room, and use their assets as leverage.

It would be too expensive to move into the whole core and repopulate AFTER having to kick out everyone there first, thus I expect they were given some freedom so long as they continued to send their enormous resources to the Imperium.

So in the interests of expediency, the Highlords sold the rights to manufacture machines, as a pretence to placate the Admech but also as a way to avoid losing such a huge resource.

It wasn't until the Reign of Blood that this protection disappeared, mainly because Vandire was insane and hated abhumans. But without the mercantile werewithall they once had, the Varingr engineers and strongholds were naked in front of a put out Admech.

I doubt they Admech would have resorted to all out war, but they would probably have raided isolated strongholds, disrupted mining etc. They may even have attempted to buy strongholds, in an attempt to build up support within the Core.

Hellebore

Hellebore
21-10-2006, 23:44
Just thought I'd put susu's nice little piece of work in this thread so I don't lose it. :D


Stu&#240;ningsma&#240;ur!

Young brothers. Let me tell you about the olden days. From utvars the home of giants our ancestors came, to the places we know as the homeworlds. With their sweat they built the Strongholds, with their tears they conquered the core and with their lives they created the mines that supported us for millenia. Then... Darkness fell. For hundreds of years, we were seperated. But our ancestors held on, keeping their ways alive in that grave time. In each stronghold some kept the memory alive of what it meant to be one of us. And when a new dawn came and we were reunited, the strongholds formed alliances called the leagues. And those who knew of the machines formed the great guild of engineers, as those who knew of the past, formed the great guild of living ancestors, for not only did they remember from what they were told, no. They were the ancestors, they had been there. And as an ancestor I speak to you. I was there, when the first worlds were settled. I was there when darkness fell. I remember the reunion ages ago. Our days of glory began. We traded the goods we produced with the green skin, with the Eldar and with mankind. We were prosperous until we were betrayed. Betrayed by the Greenskin, when he waged war against our strongholds. Betrayed by the Eldar, when they refused to send us help in those days. Mankind still stood by our side, I was there on Golgotha, when we held back the green tide, with man by our side. But I was also there, when the great beasts came and man betrayed us. Our calls for help were left unanswered and stronghold after stronghold fell. I saw Jervis, son of Jon, Thane of the Grindel league dispair. I saw the fall of Grumbil, one of our most venered strongholds built before even my remembrance begins. We fled, we scattered and some escaped the beasts. But after the scouring we started to rebuild. We found others and slowly we are recovering our worlds. Some of you, young ones may think we live in desperate days, but ours is an age of reunification, the second dawn. It is upon you to keep our traditions alive and do your share. Let me take your oath:

I will - with all my strenght, with all my knowledge and all my spirit - toil, so that those who rely on me, will not be disappointed. In turn, I will rest assured that I can rely on them. I will not lie, I will not steal, I will not break this oath. I will honour my family, my stronghold, my league, my ancestors and the whole of our being they embody. I will defend our traditions against those who whish them gone and our ways against those who have betrayed us. I will share my knowledge, my memory and creative effords, as knowledge, memory and innovation have been shared with me. I will strive for excellence in my duties, I will surpass the standards, I will not rest until my work is done. Here I stand before those who have taken this oath in the past, ready to repay my debts to them and to build a future for those not under oath yet. I will them to recognize this oath, which will bind me forever.
Thus I am Varingr

Sai-Lauren
24-10-2006, 08:41
Since this is a revisionist history of the Squats, we could propose that the Ad Mech had started to get really peeved with the Varingr. That is: There were strongholds being attacked left right and center by Adeptus Mechanicus-deployed forces in an effort to subdue certain worlds/factions.

Add in a few of the more fanatical members of the Ecclesiarchy yelling "Purge The Mutant", and you could certainly get a significant crusade going - which does of course get around the Imperial Military suddenly being able to pull significant amounts of troops away from warzones without them being missed.

Politically, it wouldn't touch anyone with any real power, as they can just dismiss it as a few rogue preachers stirring up trouble - even as they feed ammo and weapons down into the crusade with their other hand.

Although I would say that they wouldn't want to feed the Tyrannids into the Squat worlds, they'd want to wipe them out themselves.

Easy E
26-10-2006, 07:06
I think this Ad Mech assault could easily have occured during the Reign of Blood. Combine this with the anti-abhuman sentiment during this timeframe and we see why the Homeworlds began to suceed from the Imperium. It is very likely that many were not allowed to go peacefully by the various Imperial factions.

viperidae99
27-10-2006, 03:10
There is an indication (a picture and caption) in the 2nd ed. Space Wolves codex indicating the Space Wolves have Squat Bondsmen that assist in guarding the Fang when the chapter is called away. There's a picture of a squat (trying to remember while at work) of a squat with a large wolf pelt, bionic leg (I think) and a pistol/sword combination.

Just thought I'd throw that in the mix, see if it gets picked up. Are squat bondsmen common in the Adeptus Astartes?...Is this a 'Space Wolves do different things to most' thing?...Could this be used to build on the squats survival, in a form...a rogue element of bondsmen abandoning their posts...?

Hellebore
27-10-2006, 14:18
There is an indication (a picture and caption) in the 2nd ed. Space Wolves codex indicating the Space Wolves have Squat Bondsmen that assist in guarding the Fang when the chapter is called away. There's a picture of a squat (trying to remember while at work) of a squat with a large wolf pelt, bionic leg (I think) and a pistol/sword combination.

Just thought I'd throw that in the mix, see if it gets picked up. Are squat bondsmen common in the Adeptus Astartes?...Is this a 'Space Wolves do different things to most' thing?...Could this be used to build on the squats survival, in a form...a rogue element of bondsmen abandoning their posts...?

I'm not sure.

As far as I know, every marine chapter only recruits from their homeworld, and there aren't any squats on Fenris.

However, the space wolves and squats share very similar psychological traits - both being viking archetypes.

"Mad" Alfred Nunez wrote a 3rd edition codex where the space wolves encountered the squats first, and they get on swimmingly (being drunk most of the time, that is pretty literal:p ).

Your point about rogue bondsmen brings up the point that even had the entire squat league been eaten by the tyranids there would be millions of squats in guard regiments, as mercenaries and freebooters, and even as merchants and ships crew.

Hellebore

Sai-Lauren
27-10-2006, 14:33
Your point about rogue bondsmen brings up the point that even had the entire squat league been eaten by the tyranids there would be millions of squats in guard regiments, as mercenaries and freebooters, and even as merchants and ships crew.

Hellebore
Plus all the ones that were on AM worlds, passing on their techical knowledge, living on Necromunda (they had rules in Gang War 5 IIRC) and so on.

To paraphrase Douglas Adams writing about the Babel Fish and the theological repercussions of it's existance...

"Oh dear," says the design team, "we hadn't thought of that!" :D

Easy E
30-10-2006, 06:39
Bondsman? Is this a generic term for Space Wolve serfs or is it attributable only to the Squats that serve the Space Wolves?

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
30-10-2006, 12:49
I like the idea of Squats serving the space wolves chapter. Also if the nids ate the Squat leagues, what about the Chaos Squats ? (I only just found out about them)

Hellebore
30-10-2006, 13:17
I believe bondsman is a synonym of chapter serf, to use a more nordic flavour.

I doubt the space wolves would use abhumans as serfs, any more than the squats would willingly BE serfs - and serfs are supposed to be utterly loyal to their chapter.



In my interpretation of the Varingr, they were not completely wiped out, and so the arguement is irrelevant.

Utterly devestated ala the eldar Fall, bloodied and broken, but not annihilated.

I also have no real populations of Varingr within imperial space, all having long since moved back to the Core after the Sundering during the Age of Apostasy (Vandire's Reign of Blood).

Their merchants would still send trade items to the Imperium, as per their original contracts, which would appear on Administratum paper as though they still belonged to the Imperium, but it was really just protection money to keep the imperium happy.

Hellebore

Xisor
30-10-2006, 14:18
So, this may be jumping the gun a bit, but perhaps we should examine a rough 'historical campaign guide' (not an actual play-through campaign, just as a thought exercise) to detail what exactly is known about the "Death of the Ancestors" (I think that's a suitably neat name, both fitting for the Varingr mentality, and reflecting this thread which essentially drew up most of their background)?

That is: track the larger Strongholds, how they fell, did they survive for long against the Hivefleets? Was it only one or two that lasted any time at all? Whilst I imagine every varingr fought to the bitter end, in a very much Bablyon 5 'In the beginning' style, as Londo Mollari puts it: "If I could fight with half as much dignity when the time time comes as they did, then I would die well"

That is: it may have been an utter and pretty much hopeless extermination after extermination...but still they fought fought on, until only a rag-tag fugitive fleet escapes and settles the few shadow-colonies we may know today.

Alternatively, we could turn it into an Epic battle of mighty tales and wondrous deeds. I'm not so sure about that run though...I prefer the extermination after extermination to truly give us an archetype shift sufficient to respresent the Varingr as a 'beaten but still fighting' race.

Xisor

Easy E
30-10-2006, 14:45
I recognize it as extermination after extermination, but each "victory" for the Tyrannids is pyric (sp) in nature. The core as little of value for the Nids so each stronghold destroyed would consume more bio-mass than would be gained by the fleet. This would eventually lead to the fleet simply splintering to other parts of the galaxy. Essentially, the 'end" of the Tyrannid threat could have very little to do with the actions of the Varingr themselves, although they probably would not tell themselves this.

I like your idea of the Historical Campaign Guide for the Tyrannic Purge. That's what I refer to it as, but it doesn't have the Varingr flare to it. However, the Death of the Ancestors sounds ace. Some other ideas would be:

The (Re)Forging
Time of Sorrow
Ragnarok
Sundering
Shattering
Exodus (depending on how we imagine the last Varingr surviving. If they flee in their merchant ships, this seems appropriate. If they merely waited the Tyrannids out, then not so much)
The Dark Times (Could refer to the years spent in hibernation/isolation inside their fortress strongholds waiting for the Tyrannids to pass)

For my own Homemade Codex, I was thinking of creating a sample stronghold and trace its settlement to eventual fall; throughout all phases of the background. The Age of Founding up through the Age of the Purging.

Also, if any of us created some concept art should/could we post it here?

Edit: Did you decide on your military structure Hellebore?

Xisor
30-10-2006, 15:02
I'd be tempted to go a few of the roads for survival and extermination.

As we are allowed to do so, we should emphasise the 'roughly fractured, roughly similar' nature of the Varignr society at the time. All the Strongholds were facing a similar threat, but simply put: there's no way of uniting to fight it off. If it takes Ultramar (and Battlefleet Bakka) or Iyanden to hold back a fleet...

That is:
- One Stronghold could have moved the fight to the bunkers...only to be caught by burrowers
- One Stronghold stood and fought in space, air, ground and only at the last moment conducting a dangerous warp-jump with a 'colony ship' which sucked the world into a Warp-breach incident and resulted in the complete loss of the Stronghold
- Another could have managed to 'just' escape with a good portion of it's merchant shipping losing all but a handful to the Tyranid pursuit
- Yet another could simply have been caught unawares, with only those outside the Stronghold remaining

So lots fight and die, or are otherwise lost such that there are no intact Strongholds (an unfortunate result of placement...).

In a manner of speaking, this'd be a great opportunity to show that descendents of various Strongholds refer to it differently. Those from the first example would use 'the Shattering', those of the second the 'Reforging', those of the third 'the Exodus' and the fourth easily 'the Time of Sorrows'

Xisor

Hellebore
02-11-2006, 03:12
I decided on a pre and post purge military structure, dependent on certain characters within the story I am writing to describe the history of the Varingr.

Basically, as Xisor says, they were quite disparate, and I have the 'Varingr Irregulars' as how they supplied troops to the Imperium, supplied by families individually so that they were kitted out uniquely with different sizes etc.

Every story has a hero, and I created a Warden that had come back from exile as a mercenary and seen the pathetic state of the Stronghold military.
When the invasion began, he used his core of veteran mercenaries to form a line against the tyranids, and forcefully enlisted the populace.

Thus, right at the cusp of defeat, he drew a line that the tyranids could not cross. Weak from lack of biomass, and sensing a far more formidable opponent, the hive fleet left the Core, heading toward the ork empires.

After this he was hailed as the Uniter, and set about ruthlessly restructuring the military and a citizen's place in it. With so few left, everyone had to contribute as a full time soldier, on rotation, only the young and old were spared (except the Ancestors) the infirm had their weakness purged and replaced with bionic implants, so they too could fight on.

Basically, in many ways, how I wanted to structure the military revolves around the mcguffin of the 'hero', but I feel it works pretty well. It also points out that the Varingr PRE purge were fractured, lax, and arrogant, whilst those after are bitter, united, and resolute in the face of extinction.

So, the effect of the tyranid invasion encapsulates all the points mentioned - all the strongholds acted independently from one another, each being snuffed out in turn. It was only The Uniter in the centre of the oldest Core worlds that turned a rabble into an army, and staved off the darkness.

I suppose in some ways it is also similar to Yriel of Iyanden, however the similarities are fairly minor, because Iyanden had an effective army, Yriel was just a better strategist.

Hellebore

Hellebore
02-11-2006, 03:12
I decided on a pre and post purge military structure, dependent on certain characters within the story I am writing to describe the history of the Varingr.

Basically, as Xisor says, they were quite disparate, and I have the 'Varingr Irregulars' as how they supplied troops to the Imperium, supplied by families individually so that they were kitted out uniquely with different sizes etc.

Every story has a hero, and I created a Warden that had come back from exile as a mercenary and seen the pathetic state of the Stronghold military.
When the invasion began, he used his core of veteran mercenaries to form a line against the tyranids, and forcefully enlisted the populace.

Thus, right at the cusp of defeat, he drew a line that the tyranids could not cross. Weak from lack of biomass, and sensing a far more formidable opponent, the hive fleet left the Core, heading toward the ork empires.

After this he was hailed as the Uniter, and set about ruthlessly restructuring the military and a citizen's place in it. With so few left, everyone had to contribute as a full time soldier, on rotation, only the young and old were spared (except the Ancestors) the infirm had their weakness purged and replaced with bionic implants, so they too could fight on.

Basically, in many ways, how I wanted to structure the military revolves around the mcguffin of the 'hero', but I feel it works pretty well. It also points out that the Varingr PRE purge were fractured, lax, and arrogant, whilst those after are bitter, united, and resolute in the face of extinction.

So, the effect of the tyranid invasion encapsulates all the points mentioned - all the strongholds acted independently from one another, each being snuffed out in turn. It was only The Uniter in the centre of the oldest Core worlds that turned a rabble into an army, and staved off the darkness.

I suppose in some ways it is also similar to Yriel of Iyanden, however the similarities are fairly minor, because Iyanden had an effective army, Yriel was just a better strategist.

Hellebore

Lockjaw
03-11-2006, 00:16
just another thought. kind of like another faction of squats, you couldn have the varingir, you could have the chaos squats, and a 3rd faction of rebel squats/varingr/shorties that beleive their the last squats and blame the Imperium, doing alot of gurilla warfare and hit and run attacks on imperial bases and outposts, could also work in necromunda as gangs of rebel vangir operating in the underhive or something to screw around with the imperial running of the hive orsomething. almost like how there's different kinds of eldar, craftworld/harlies/dark/exodus/croneworld, you could have likewise with varingr

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
03-11-2006, 00:21
funny you mention that, I always thought there should of been an official Squat gang in Necromunda.

Carlos
03-11-2006, 10:05
The Demiurg will never make it into 40K. Ever. There were rumours of a squat henchman for the ordo xenos however, so maybe there is hope after all.

Codex: Hrud will be the next one.

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
03-11-2006, 16:57
'Codex: Hrud will be the next one.'

Just asking, but how do you know that ? Or is that speculation ?

Voronwe[MQ]
03-11-2006, 19:05
He believes that Hrud will be the next one (interesting, really, since their army would be fast ground forces according to a Creature Feature Chapter Approved article, and their background would also be fun, since they migrate when their population grows to big to wage war. another viewpoint from which to look upon 40k, and another representative of the myriad minor xenos empire in the galaxy) because they've been mentioned a number of times over the years - such as in Codex: Imperial colour scheme sections depicting a Cadian trooper with a camouflage suit used during the [something] Hrud Migration - and now with Xenology showing a Hrud (or supposedly Hrud...), there is a chance of it happening. I would buy an army directly, anyway. ;)

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
03-11-2006, 19:15
Id definitly welcome more Xeno races, especially if they are non-bipeds. I think theres still plenty of things that can be done personally.

Voronwe[MQ]
03-11-2006, 19:44
Plenty? Just plenty? I'd say an endless stream.

I hope that a Demiurg hencman will accompany Codex: Alienhunters.

Acolyte of Bli'l'ab
03-11-2006, 19:52
True true, it only takes imagination :)

I thought the alienhunters was going to be put into a codex inquisition along with daemonhunters and witchunters though.

susu.exp
03-11-2006, 21:04
Their merchants would still send trade items to the Imperium, as per their original contracts, which would appear on Administratum paper as though they still belonged to the Imperium, but it was really just protection money to keep the imperium happy.

Hellebore

I´m pretty much with you there, although I would emphasize that the imperium needs the merchandize. The varingr are very productive and they needed a lot of goods from the imperium at their peak, so they would´ve produced a huge ammount of stuff. The homeworlds exports would easily overshadow 10 forge worlds and with the kind of defenses the imperium pulled on Armageddon, the homeworlds had an enormous strategic importance. The problem: They were not imperial. So my view remains that this trade was protected by a group of Inquisitors (radical, if you take the monodominants viewpoint). There might have been an actual "Kryptman" run by another group of Inquisitors. With the obvious reaction from the Varingr-conspirators. I´m writing a short story based on this idea, where an interogator under the Aegis of an older Ordo Xenos Inquisitor is introduced to the way Imperial-Varingr relations work and I think about writing another one, when the now fully fledged Inquisitor learns of the demise of the Homeworlds.


For my own Homemade Codex, I was thinking of creating a sample stronghold and trace its settlement to eventual fall; throughout all phases of the background. The Age of Founding up through the Age of the Purging.

Also, if any of us created some concept art should/could we post it here?

Good question. I think we need to work out the "infrastructure" so to speak of our work. I think there are rules concepts being worked on by some of us (I know you have written several versions of your codex, I´ve been scribing away at some interesting concepts for support weapons and I´ve got some ideas for basic troops as well and IIRC hellbore has something done as well), so we need another thread like this for pure rules discussion. Then there are visuals and again, I´ve been doodling a bit. Then there is the simple fact that we are on page 24 now and a lot of ideas get lost a bit. So we need to compile what we have produced so far. I think the "Death of the Squats" thread limits what we can do in some ways, because it is in background and some things that are coming up would fit rules dev, stories and art, maybe even P&T better than this. So the question is: How do we organize "The birth of the Varingr"?

Finally: Hellbore took a piece I wrote and put it up here (Thanks, I was thinking of making a copy that day, but had to go to work and when I got home it was already up). Something that struck me, when writing it was, that we are actually very similar to the post-purge Varingr. I have always tried to find out what the 40k armies represent, what basic archetypes they go back to and how they reflect on human nature. The closest representative of homo ludens, the game playing man are Orks for instance, their clan structure resembling teenage clichees (Goff Jocks, Evil Sunz Skaters) and who apart from Orks thinks war in the 41st millenium is fun and vehicles move an extra distance when painted red: 40k gamers. The Varingr are very much designers. They want to re-create their culture. And so do we. When I look at this thread I am amazed at the background that has been created. But I also see a danger: This background may resonate with me, because I took part in creating it. The basic emotion it caters to is the joy of innovation and the process of sharing ideas. And this is something that unites us, but the wider appeal might not exist. To go back to post #1: What does the background need to work. And it may need something beyond the two pillars of respect for the past and a drive to go beyond it. Maybe my fear has no base, but the few who are actively engaged in the process of creating the Varingr seem to be driven by the same ideals they are (a bit of nostalgia for the days of the landtrain and a lot of enthusiasm for going beyond that and creating something better from this fundament). So maybe we should also look at options that widen the philosophical base, or we just try to emphasize the Varingr way of doing things so that it resonates with a wider audience of gamers (i.e. innovation not in the way we do it, but also the innovation tapped into when painting and modeling, etc.)

Easy E
04-11-2006, 07:04
I´m pretty much with you there, although I would emphasize that the imperium needs the merchandize. The varingr are very productive and they needed a lot of goods from the imperium at their peak, so they would´ve produced a huge ammount of stuff. ...So my view remains that this trade was protected by a group of Inquisitors (radical, if you take the monodominants viewpoint). There might have been an actual "Kryptman" run by another group of Inquisitors. With the obvious reaction from the Varingr-conspirators.

This fits 40K perfectly. It also adds depth to relationship between the Varingr and the Imperium. Combnine this with Xisor's ideas about the Adeptus Mechanicus and we have a very rich interaction between the Homeworlds and Imperials. Can we do something similar with the other Xenos races? I know that betrayals earlier in the Squat's past caused bad blood, but do we want to carry that same idea over into the Varingr?


So the question is: How do we organize "The birth of the Varingr"?

I propose a simple cross forum series of thread webs. For example, we will create a thread in Background, Rules Dev, P&T, and Stories and Art that focus on the subject of the appropriate forum. So for example, the Background thread would contain the Varingr Background, the Stories and Art forum would have a thread for fiction and one for concept art, etc. The first post in every thread will also provide links to the other threads for those interested in other aspects of the project. We can also keep the first post updated with attachments of the latest drafts of rules, background, model, etc.


...The basic emotion it caters to is the joy of innovation and the process of sharing ideas. And this is something that unites us, but the wider appeal might not exist. To go back to post #1: What does the background need to work. And it may need something beyond the two pillars of respect for the past and a drive to go beyond it. Maybe my fear has no base, but the few who are actively engaged in the process of creating the Varingr seem to be driven by the same ideals they are (a bit of nostalgia for the days of the landtrain and a lot of enthusiasm for going beyond that and creating something better from this fundament). So maybe we should also look at options that widen the philosophical base, or we just try to emphasize the Varingr way of doing things so that it resonates with a wider audience of gamers (i.e. innovation not in the way we do it, but also the innovation tapped into when painting and modeling, etc.)

Perhaps we will also need a thread for Designer's Notes. I also see the danger. If you look at the responses on this thread, you see some of the wide variety of emotional responses to what we are doing. However, it seems to be the same group of "hardcore" that keep coming back and adding to the thread. I have been pleasantly surprised by the interest this thread has generated, but there has been much more apathy. Does this speak to what we have developed, the thread subject, the length of the thread, Misconcpetion of what the thread is about? I don't know.

cthorpe
04-11-2006, 14:20
Hi there guys..

@ Easy E.. Dont worry there are many like me who have followed this thread from the beginning, and liking what we have seen so far.. Its just that you guys have been coming up with some great concepts and ideas, and at the moment I dont think I can contribute to the discussion as most of what I think has already been said.. and I dont want to muddy the waters by repeating things..

As a commander of a Squat/Varingr platoon with chimerodon, mole mortar battery and others waiting to be employed in defense of the homelands..I look forward to the continuence and flourishing of this thread..

Keep on with the great ideas guys..

Carl

Sai-Lauren
08-11-2006, 14:13
I have been pleasantly surprised by the interest this thread has generated, but there has been much more apathy. Does this speak to what we have developed, the thread subject, the length of the thread, Misconcpetion of what the thread is about? I don't know.

The fact that it's been 25 pages, and there's been hardly any mention of Marines for their adoring fans to froth over, and everyone else to whine at the attention they receive? ;)

Actually, it's more likely that everyone who has looked in is curious, but only a few are actually interested enough to think about the subject.

Speaking of:
For background, I think there's a series of subjects that can be covered - some examples of which are (some of which have been covered in some aspects already):

Their technology - specifically what it's primary purpose is, then how it is adapted for other purposes (for example, military funding for missile development leads to advances in computing power, which then leads to advances in medical diagnostic systems).
Their society - how the individual members relate to those around them, their friends, family, collegues and the rest of the populace. Are they encouraged to push their own limits and see how far they can get - sinking or swimming on their own abilities, or are they tightly bound to a caste-type role - knowing their place and never looking outside of it? Are they matriarchal or patriarchal? Do they stay within their family groups for life or move out at a certain age? Do they see gender as irrelevant - just another physical trait like hair colour or height (like the Eldar do), does it have a bearing only in certain areas (only males can do certain jobs, only females certain other jobs), or do they keep one gender totally subservient to the other?
Their art and literature - how they see themselves, and express that physically. Is their art bright or dark, realistic or abstract, are their nights around the fire full of short stories and jokes or long sagas and parables?
Their trade - what they cannot supply for themselves, and what they're willing to give up to get it. Who will they trade with? Will that trade always be above board and honourable, or will they make deals that are more murky - for instance, would they sell arms to a cult on an imperial world (either to support that cult, or simply for the money), even if those supplies could lead them into serious trouble at a later date (if the cult turns out to be chaotic, and decides to turn on their suppliers, or if the Imperium finds out and retaliates with extreme prejudice).
Their economy - do the individuals work for the community, and the community feeds, houses and looks after them in return, or are they employed, and then spend their wages on what they want?


For the Varingr, I certainly agree that they need to be examined pre-Tyrannids, and the changes they have been forced to adopt post-Tyrannids.

So, Trade:
IMO, the homeworlds were quite lifeless, even when originally settled. Hydroponic farming would produce some food, but those who manned the asteroid belt mining facilities didn't even have the direct sunlight of their parent worlds to facilitate their growth, and so required rations to be brought in on regular supply ships.

So, wheras other human colony worlds were simply dropped off and left to their own devices, the homeworlds had to have an effective trade network setup virtually from day one - some were funded by mining consortia, with convoys regularly doing the rounds of "their" colony worlds, picking up extracted ores, minerals and precious/semi-precious stones, and bringing in supplies - water and food (in some cases, live animals), and new colonists.

As time went on, and the colony worlds became separated from Earth (via warp storms, distance and time), the consortia started to merge - some peacefully through mergers and acquisitions, others through hostile takeovers, and some through outright corporate warfare - sabotage in the mines was not uncommon, and in at least one case, mercenaries attacked the HQ offices of a company, leaving many dead.

This became a turning point, the miners began to draw the conclusion that they were simply there to fund the companies, who had no real interest in them, and so started to plot between themselves. The freighters and corvettes of the convoys were slowly infiltrated with those who sympathised with the miners cause, and some of the companies were bought into by shadow companies set up by the miners.

Eventually, the mining colonies considered that they had enough strength to stand on their own and went on strike, declaring their independance. When the companies tried to use their fleets to break the strikes and put new colonists in the miners place, they found that their ships either refused to break orbit, or ejected those crew still loyal to the companies in shuttles and escape pods and jumped to the mining worlds to defend them. The companies tried to appeal for military aid, but with the contracts to the local forge worlds and imperial governors being supported by the companies now owned by the miners, and the few freighters still moving between the mining colonies and the rest of human space fulfilling those deals - ores, metals, gems and manufactured articles in return for food stuffs, water and textiles, they were turned down flat.

Some attempts were made to disrupt these contracts, but they were soon on the receiving end of military action themselves. Eventually, the mining consortia collapsed, leading to a severe economic downturn in the areas around the former mining colonies - now calling themselves the homeworlds - but not affecting the homeworlds themselves. These areas slowly returned to their former glories, but a deep resentment was held towards the homeworld settlers for many generations afterwards - a lot of the original "racial purity/abhor the mutant" preachers sprang from this resentment.

Post-scouring, the situation is worse still. The hydroponic farms on nearly all the worlds have been destroyed, and the reserves that were sensibly set aside for leaner times are either lost forever, or have been used. The freighters that used to carry the food are now either refugee vessels or were pressed into service as armed merchantmen and most destroyed.

The Varingr economy is slowly starting to pick up, but they are in a desparate plight - the old contracts are now being ignored by the Imperium in most cases (although a few Forge Worlds still look the other way), food is scarce, rationing a way of life, and hunger a constant companion for all - the hording of food is one of the most heinous crimes for the Varingr, and will result in banishment or death.

Some dislocated persons have become mercenaries, fighting for local governors and others, where they can buy food or equipment such as new hydroponic equipment to send back home. Others have resorted to piracy, jumping to hive worlds and attacking cargo vessels carrying food, attempting to capture them and take the cargo to their homes. Other efforts, such as colonisation or the armed conquest of worlds that can be used for farming are also underway, although what responses from other races these will stir up is anyone's guess.

Wow, that went a bit longer than I thought it would :)

Easy E
10-11-2006, 13:54
I think you previous post does a great job detailing the founding and then goes onto the Post-Scouring. However, the time between the foundings and the Scouring needs some fleshing out.

Also, something we might want to add to your list is their psychology (?)- How do they perceive themselves as a race? How do they perceive other races? What are considered admirable qualities? Bad qualities? What is considered successful? etc.

On the other hand, if we want to create a document similar to a Codex to start off with we only need a thumbnail. For a codex we have a limit of 76 pages with art and army lists. Perhaps we need to start distilling our ideas down into something codex friendly to give a feel for the Varingr as opposed to all of their detailed background. I guess it depends on the goals of this thread and where we want to go int the future?

I actually propose that we close this one and start a Background thread about the Varingr themselves and not the Death of the Squats.

Hellebore
17-11-2006, 00:24
I actually propose that we close this one and start a Background thread about the Varingr themselves and not the Death of the Squats.

Sounds like a good idea. When I started the thread, it was more as a thought problem:


What is it about the Squats that killed them?

I'm speaking from a game perspective of course, not the fluff reason (tyranids ate them).

The archetype was cited as a major reason by Jervis Johnson ie that it just didn't fit into the 40k universe.

The major contributors I see are these:


Dwarf culture with almost no change from Fantasy - at least the Eldar have an original and unique design.

Denigrating name. JJ's apt "What WHERE we thinking?" certainly shows that they were never really taken seriously.

Bad theme. Biker dwarfs in quilted jackets et al made for a funny, rather than feasable race.


So why is it that the Squats in EPIC survived so well? Well, here we see less culture, and more technology. EPIC was a showcase where they could display the technological differences between the Imperium and the Squats, which resulted in a distinctive style of play and an interesting army.

Why do I ask? I am thinking of attempting a 'reboot' of the abhumans, an attempt to retain the core cultural identifiers whilst losing the trashy unnessary and lets be honest, rather inane background they acrued.

I know the Demiurg have been given as a replacement for the Squats, but I see them more as a new race with dwarfish archetypes rather than a true replacement.

So what do YOU think the background of the squats needed, in order to make it viable in the present 4th generation of the 41st millenium?

Hellebore

This thread did a good job of discussing that, and produced some really great ideas as well.

I was frankly surprised that it produced as much of a response as it did - the squats have always been pulled out as an example of GW retcon whilst also being used to point out how ridiculous some of the older stuff was.

I've seen many fanlists on the internet, some of them simply placing squats in 4th edition complete with quilted jackets and sideburns, others taking some new steps.

This whole exercise for me, was to take a race that the designers felt was beyond repair (re. Jervis Johnson's infamous quote) and see if it would be possible to breath new life into it.

I had already drawn up preliminary ideas, background and an army list when I thought it would be a great idea to ask everyone on Warseer, just what it was about the squats that didn't work, and what did.

Suffice to say over 200 posts later and some great ideas and interesting images have come from this thread.

A new thread on a new topic would probably help, but it depends on what people wish to get out of this.

I'm at a point now where I am confident I have all the tools needed to write the background/armylist for a new army to replace the squats.

Exploring culture and technology and all the other things that make a race a living believable entity would be a great idea, and I think would probably have a staying power most background threads do not.

Hellebore

Lockjaw
17-11-2006, 20:16
There was a site years ago, that had a fan made retcon of squats as organized more as a corporation, the art was definatly different , had almost an anime look, been trying to find the site again, but i think it's gone.
some of the background ideas could of been useful (probably not the art design though, as Tau are already the anime inspired race)

susu.exp
18-11-2006, 01:14
Are they matriarchal or patriarchal? Do they stay within their family groups for life or move out at a certain age? Do they see gender as irrelevant - just another physical trait like hair colour or height (like the Eldar do), does it have a bearing only in certain areas (only males can do certain jobs, only females certain other jobs), or do they keep one gender totally subservient to the other?

My view would be, that they are very meritocratic, especially in the more visible areas of Varingr culture. The guilds work by securing the best talents they can get, the Living Ancestors just are (and probably do not percieve themselves to be gendered, if you carry the memories of hundreds of Varingr past, there´s bound to be quite a variety there). And in the military structure the Varingr can´t differentiate right now and they probably didn´t in earlier days, when a stronghold faced a Waargh or a Dark Eldar raid every able body would have been called to arms. This might be a good place to talk about beards. Just to again cite the source for my ideas, I am cribbing from ancient egypt here and in particular used Allan Peterkins "1000 beards - A cultural history of facial hair" as reference.
In ancient egypt shaving was a must, facial hair was seen as bestial and not to remove ones beard was barbarism and quite frankly showed that one wasn´t quite ready to be a part of civilized humanity. The only exception to this rule were the Pharaohs. In fact, facial hair was a requirement for being on the Throne or Egypt. Special care was taken with the grooming of the royal beard later it was covered in gold dust. As time went on the royal beard became fake, solid gold replaced the former real facial hair opening the Throne to the likes of Cleopatra and Hatshepsut. The second inspirations comes from Trevor Bolders sideburns. TB was the Spiders from mars' bass player and had quite big sideburns, which he dyed in metallic colors.
So the idea here would be to take these and integrate it with the Varingr. Fake beards would be used to desginate rank in the military structure, using rare metals to differentiate between basic grunts and the officers. The metals would be particular to specific strongholds, depending on which materials were readily available and which were rare and therefore precious. Using thin strands of the metals would make these beards flexible and they would even serve as additional armour against energy weapons, like lasguns.
Modelwise, this leads to an interesting look, allowing easier conversions of WHFB Dwarfs to Varingr, while making them appear very different at the same time.

Easy E
18-11-2006, 06:56
The beards idea is fantastic.

I also find it strange that someone wrote a history on facial hair. Then again, it's getting harder and harder to find unique thesis topics.

Hellebore
18-11-2006, 23:20
My view would be, that they are very meritocratic, especially in the more visible areas of Varingr culture. The guilds work by securing the best talents they can get, the Living Ancestors just are (and probably do not percieve themselves to be gendered, if you carry the memories of hundreds of Varingr past, there´s bound to be quite a variety there). And in the military structure the Varingr can´t differentiate right now and they probably didn´t in earlier days, when a stronghold faced a Waargh or a Dark Eldar raid every able body would have been called to arms. This might be a good place to talk about beards. Just to again cite the source for my ideas, I am cribbing from ancient egypt here and in particular used Allan Peterkins "1000 beards - A cultural history of facial hair" as reference.
In ancient egypt shaving was a must, facial hair was seen as bestial and not to remove ones beard was barbarism and quite frankly showed that one wasn´t quite ready to be a part of civilized humanity. The only exception to this rule were the Pharaohs. In fact, facial hair was a requirement for being on the Throne or Egypt. Special care was taken with the grooming of the royal beard later it was covered in gold dust. As time went on the royal beard became fake, solid gold replaced the former real facial hair opening the Throne to the likes of Cleopatra and Hatshepsut. The second inspirations comes from Trevor Bolders sideburns. TB was the Spiders from mars' bass player and had quite big sideburns, which he dyed in metallic colors.
So the idea here would be to take these and integrate it with the Varingr. Fake beards would be used to desginate rank in the military structure, using rare metals to differentiate between basic grunts and the officers. The metals would be particular to specific strongholds, depending on which materials were readily available and which were rare and therefore precious. Using thin strands of the metals would make these beards flexible and they would even serve as additional armour against energy weapons, like lasguns.
Modelwise, this leads to an interesting look, allowing easier conversions of WHFB Dwarfs to Varingr, while making them appear very different at the same time.



Sounds similar to something I was thinking about. Those in command positions wear elaborate ancestor masks, repleat with metal beard attached.

I didn't want to go too overboard with beard helmets etc, but I thought commanders would probably wear something like that.

I was also thinking that growing a beard amongst Varingr could be a sign of maturity/manhood, or as a signal that you are married/a father.

A social reason (I believe the amish grow a beard when they marry) I think would be a good reason to have them with beards.

Hellebore

Zedric
19-11-2006, 22:55
For good looking squat minis: The "Grymn" make good stand ins, and I like that style. [...] A list could feature allied Ogryns and Ratlings as fellow abhumans labourers, Alot of Imperial weaponry without all the religious Iconography. The General look of the Grymn.
I actually came to these forums for the express purpose of discussion my potential ideas for using the Grymn as Squats. I'll be reading through this thread (needed to pull this reply out first) and providing feedback as I have it.

Cleric
22-11-2006, 07:57
I'd like to start with saying this is one of my favorite threads of all time on any forum. I simply love it.

I just wanted to add my $0.02 to the suggestion of "Corian" to replace "Squat". It's quite simply put an awful name and let me tell you why:

You have here a race who's most defining characteristics are being short and excelling in the field of machinery. Having the words "Made in Coria" engraved under a giant mech should give you some idea of where I'm going with this.

Before long you'd see legions of armored Kor... Err... Corians painted in subtle yellow tones with perhaps slightly slanted eyes driving a fleet of Hyundais across the battlefield...

I may be completely mad (in fact I'm quite sure of it) but I still feel that I raise a valid point.