Scent of a Gamer

From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.

What it’s like

There have been numerous attempts to describe the lives lived by the Chaos Space Marines of Warhammer 40,000, who dwell in the Eye of Terror, a realm where time and space are variables to be negotiated.

art by Mark Gibbons

Aaron Dembski-Bowden’s short piece called ‘What it’s like’ does this better than anything else I have read. Originally a blog post, it has been preserved on 1d4chan for everyone to enjoy. Here’s an excerpt:

“Time passes in the Eye of Terror, after the Sons of Horus lost you the war by running when their primarch fell. You spend a lot of that time fighting the Sons of Horus because they’re weak, and getting weaker. You kill them and take their ships, their worlds, their fortresses, their equipment. You make deals with worlds settled by the Dark Mechanicum. Other times, you invade those worlds, for supplies. Other times, the Mechanicum breaks its oaths to you, screwing you over, because that particular forge, that particular leader, or that particular world had a better offer from a stronger warband. Or because they secretly hated you. Or because of reasons you never find out.

You raid the Imperium a lot, for vengeance, for supplies, for slaves, for territory, and to teach them the truth behind reality. Maybe you do it for the glory of the Dark Gods, to please them, or maybe you do it for yourself, to make life better, easier, or to humiliate a rival who lost a fight against that world or fleet in times past. Maybe you do it because there’s pressure from several Aspiring Champions and squad leaders that are inciting the troops into believing you’re weak, and should be removed from your position as co-leader. You need a show of strength. Soldiers need victories.

You make alliances with other warbands from other Legions, either to group together against a serious enemy, or because you share territory and genuinely consider yourself allies. You break some of those promises, because it suits you better to kill those former allies and take their land/resources/ships. You stick to some of the others for all time, because they’re your Gods-damned brothers in arms, and you’d die for each other. Only, in 6,000 years of living in Hell; fighting daemons; and fighting the Imperium, you betray them because you learn they’re about to launch a surprise attack on your stronghold, or your fleet. Only, maybe they weren’t, and you were deceived by a third party. Or maybe they were, and they win, and you have to cut and run with half your resources and manpower squandered in a war you never saw coming. Much of the time, no matter what happens, you fight a lot of other warbands from other Legions. That’s life in the Eye of Terror. For every alliance you make, there are half a dozen battles.”

Great stuff if you’re planning a new warband of Chaos Space Marines, or if you’re planning a loyalist force who have been fighting the entrenched war against these enemies.

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This entry was posted on February 19, 2022 by in cool stuff, Writing and tagged , , , .
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