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View Full Version : Living on the Brink of Armageddon



Icarus
14-10-2006, 01:00
I was thinking about the different approaches to the moving along of background taken by Games Workshop and White Wolf respectively, and wondering which kind of approach was best.

For those not familiar with White Wolf, they are a company who created an extremely popular Pen and Paper RPG called Vampire the Masquerade. The important fact is that White Wolf took their universe, advanced its storyline continually with various publications, and then finally took the big plunge and actually instituted Armageddon. They gave players the chance to not only see but involved in how the world ended.

This was obviously a pretty bold move, but did make something that was pretty unique and exciting to play. As kind of a downside though, everything had to be reset to zero afterwards, rolling back the clock and doing it all again.

Now by contrast we have GW, who keep hinting at apocalyptic events which will destroy all life in the universe, or at least ensure final decisive victory for one side. But it never actually happens. The game of 40k exists in this timeframe in the last few days of the 41st Millenium, on the very cusp of everything exploding into one great galaxy-spanning brawl. Some would say that this makes the game feel a little pointless in terms of its story, as nothing ever really matters, nothing a player can do will affect future events. Others would argue that it is this approach that makes the rich background of 40k what it is.

So where do you stand? Do you think 40k would be more interesting if the timeline was properly advanced, where the results of the games and campaigns you played in were actually deciding one bloody final outcome? Or do you think this would be pointless and ultimately damaging to the hobby?

Heretic12
14-10-2006, 01:11
Personally I dont think they should come out with a final desicive victory for one side or the other, though I do think they should actually incorperate some of these "Events" into actually evolving the story line. At the moment the Imperium is doomed in sense of the fluff, but the 60% SM + Inquisition forces out there should speak otherwise like, "Nows not our time, we shall continue for another millinia."
I would like to see things a little more Interactive fluff wise though Im fine with it just being endless.

hysteriax
14-10-2006, 04:11
GW will simply not make a decisive victory to one race/army becuase of the overwhelming popularity of the army on the tabletop game, with everyone wanting to be part of the "victorious race" and by making all the other armies significantly inferior to other races available essentially destroying the other races' purposes. However, i believe that GW will continuosly release small amounts of info as time progresses, with the release of new codicies/supplyments to the game as seen in the tau, eldar and space marine codices but to an extend where the 40k universe seems to JUST fall apart in total annihlation.

Personally i'd like to see the return of several Primarchs and what theyve been up to in the last 10,000 years :D

Lancaster
14-10-2006, 05:40
I like the way it is progressing now, at a reasonable rate.

I mean, the Two C'tan awakening in 3rd, The Tau being born into existance, I think that one or two major changes should happen every edition, not drastic apocalyptic changes, but maybe a Tau breakthrough, or a new Tryanid Mutation, or a new whatever the Imperium calls those blueprint thingers.

Basically, nothing earthshaking, just enough to keep the game from going stale, and I think GW is doing a great job of that.

Now, if only they could keep up with the models... Unmodelled units/vehicles are just sloppy.

leonmallett
14-10-2006, 06:45
I voted against 'progression', but did so because of the wording. As it stands there is always an in-built progression to 40K, every time we get a new or revised Codex or rulebook. That is fine as it fine-tunes the fluff, which is in itself often pieced together from 'historical' (in 40K perspective) information, and allows new or existing stuff to be added (often retrospectively like the C'Tan/Necrons being fleshed out - okay fleshed may not be the right choice here...). To progress the story as the poll suggests is to fundamentally change the status quo, and therefore we may as well have a different game. To use the original posts example, in the end they (WW; WoD) had to reboot anyway. Status quo with bits added, but not dramatic forward progression is the way to go.

RampagingRavener
14-10-2006, 10:09
Eh...I want progression, but I don't want apocolypse. Does that sound odd? It might be nice if the Imperium wasn't so Doomed, so the plot could be advanced into the next Millenium without the background imploding.

Lord Humongous
14-10-2006, 14:19
I think that local events (of which most of the fluff focuses on) tend to get blown out of proportion. A full on galactic conflict in 40K could take thousands of years to play out. Its not uncommon for worlds to fall and the Imperium to not even notice or respond for several centuries. So to say that everythings gonna come to a head as soon as the reach m41 seems silly; conflicts could break out and not be resolved for thousands of years.
That's not to say that its unreasonable to expect some progression. I for one would love to see the Imperium loose a BIG chunk of territory, but pull back cleanly and be much stronger in its key areas.

schoon
14-10-2006, 14:48
While personally I would like to see some story progression, though not the type that gives any one race the edge over any other, I just don't ever see it happening.

I'd love to see short-term fluctuations, such as a Waaagh! that overruns an entire sector before the Imperium beats it back, or an Imperial assault that makes some headway into a Chaos bastion before faltering.

The 40K universe exists in a state of dynamic stasis, and overall I think it works pretty well.

Helicon_One
14-10-2006, 16:27
The White Wolf approach would be a spectacularly poor approach to take: if the whole galaxy just explodes in a big fireball, then what was the point of all those battles we've fought in the past? That would just be a big slap in the face from the designers if, after repeatedly telling us that the 40K background is as much our creation as it is theirs, they get bored of it and suddenly say "and then everybody died, The End".

The "Warhammer 41,000" approach of advancing the timeline in a significant way whilst still keeping it recognisable as the setting we know (preferably not burning up all the existing plot threads by anything too obvious, like the Emperor and the primarchs waking up) is something I'd like to see though, if (and that's a big "if") its done well and believable, not scribbled out on the back of an envelope during Gav Thorpe's lunch break.

Tim

Curufew
14-10-2006, 16:34
I just don't really want the game to be centre around the Imperium

leonmallett
14-10-2006, 16:37
You mentioned the one name I would not want asociated with 'progression', which makes me more certain that no purposeful forward progression is the way to go, if only to avoid that particular threat!

Romanus
14-10-2006, 17:41
I too voted for progression over stagnation, but not apocalyptical doom for the galaxy. I've advocated few times that the storyline should be moved forward to the next millenia as this would give more purpose to actually being involved in campaigns and such hosted by GW. For the most par the current approach of having history end at 999 M41 is a bit awkward as any campaigns and such held before this point seem stale as the outcome is already, technically, assured. e.g. the Imperium Survives. Eye of Terror campaign was good i thought, but used up the small amount of froward movement they had with the current storyline. Bight the bullet GW, bring on the 42nd Millenia.

As for the non-Imperium Centric ideal, i'd like to see Biel-tans efforts for a new Eldar empire start to bear fruit in the new codex and the eldar finnaly making some headway into becoming a credable power again on theh galactic scale. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes of the fall. Hope to see it in the upcoming dex :).

Cheers, Rom

Biellan
14-10-2006, 17:52
I too have voted for progression without the end of the universe as lack of progress will lead to stagnation. I'm thinking along the lines of what Romanus has said, but also maybe a new Tau Sept being devastated by an Imperial attack and a couple of Eastern Fringe Imperial worlds falling to the Tau so that you don't just have the same worlds being under the sway of the same race for the entire time and maybe an advance in the Tyranid attack on the Orks.

answer_is_42
14-10-2006, 18:31
I've advocated few times that the storyline should be moved forward to the next millenia as this would give more purpose to actually being involved in campaigns and such hosted by GW. For the most par the current approach of having history end at 999 M41 is a bit awkward as any campaigns and such held before this point seem stale as the outcome is already, technically, assured. e.g. the Imperium Survives. Eye of Terror campaign was good i thought, but used up the small amount of froward movement they had with the current storyline. Bight the bullet GW, bring on the 42nd Millenia.



maybe a millenia every edition of the game?

Phunting
14-10-2006, 21:15
maybe a millenia every edition of the game?The game used to progress by a year with every game year. GW stopped this in 1999 at the year 40,999. It should be game year 41,006 right now, hence the next millennia, but GW for some reason didn't do it. I think a millennia per addition would be rather disjointed and pointless.

Kegluneq
14-10-2006, 22:00
Although making it the GY 41,006 would be just as bad, that's barely enough time for a few warp jumps per real world year...

Chem-Dog
15-10-2006, 07:10
And you would have to, some say, change the game to WH41K.

I'm all for progressing the story, we do get new bits wedged in here and there but it does seem that the game background has lurched to a stop with stories increasingly being set back in time or out of the loop altogether (See Medusa V).