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The Liber Astartes' Thought Experiments

Liber Liber Astartes Liberites Liberalia Martiale Experiment Exercise Inspiration Liber Day

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#76
Conn Eremon

Conn Eremon

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QUINDECEM EXPERIMENTUM

A Sudden Change


For this experiment, I am going to dip into the Octaguide for some assistance, as there are many elements within it that are of great use to anyone crafting a DIY, whether new or a veteran. One of the most common elements of DIYs and lore articles is the concept that they had operated fairly standard, with little deviation from an acceptable norm, until someone, something or some event comes along, changes everything, and then proceeds to become the historic symbol of what the DIY or canon force has become, once more unchanging after this sudden change. It is very common, and can be very believable. With Forge World’s popular Horus Heresy articles chronicling the Terran Legions, one of the common threads linking all of the Legions together is that the discovery of their Primarchs changed everything for them. The Primarchs are in the process of becoming much more fleshed out, for better or for worse. Before this, their mythological status lent an air of mystery to them that hid the flaws of being incomplete characters.

However, the Primarchs are not alone in the level of singular importance and influence they had. Typically, you can find these character roles being re-used in likely the majority of DIY’s, often initial Chapter Masters or founding heroes. The first to lead the DIY force is often granted the same importance as the Primarchs were to the Legions and their successors. There is nothing preventing this from simply being the case, but we should consider how we convey this. One thing to keep in mind is that the old mythological status of the Primarchs is not easy to recreate in DIYs, and can often work against the character and over-all article. Both would be better served if the character were more fleshed out. Often the changes inflicted upon the DIY equate to the sum total of that character. To understand the changes, why they were made, why they were retained, and why this character, we need to know more about this character. The character’s beliefs, the mindset involved. The circumstances the character finds him or herself in, and how the character reacts to them. How the character came into such a position of authority, if not of ranked command, and why the rest accepted the changes proposed or inspired by this character.

Something else to consider is to remove this character, or at least their all-important role to the article. While again, there is nothing to prevent these characters from achieving such a role within the DIY, it can benefit the article’s believability factor when you take into account that this likely would not be how changes come about within every force or faction. Logically, changes made within our DIYs would typically be slow and accumulative. They would take place over periods of time, and be influenced not by one character or event, but a series of influential events and integral characters. There may never be a point in time where those within the DIY will recognize the changes being made, it will only be noticeable by us, those who have written or read the article, seeing the greater differences between the DIY as it was and the DIY as it is. Perhaps the Chapter’s unique cult is not derived from the written memoirs and stratagems the first Chapter Master, but built up over time by small deviations, influenced by the fiery rhetoric of past Reclusiarchs, the slow creep of faith delivered by a devout recruitment stock, and a series of existential events that force the DIY to reevaluate what they believe.

This, then, is the purpose of this week’s experiment. Consider the changes that our DIYs undergo in-universe, where the changes originate and from whom. The changes might not even have permanence, with later developments overriding past, a concept rarely seen in DIYs where there is almost a stagnation broken only by a single, all-encompassing moment of change. What if there were two individuals of equal, if differing or opposing, influence, one coming into a position of authority well after the other. The changes implemented by one, overturned by the other. The important thing to consider is that the sources of the changes should be more than just the source of changes. They should be the source as a consequence of who or what they are, not who or what they are be a consequence of being the source.

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#77
Grand Master Belial

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I am loving these little challenges. I am actually copying each experiment onto a Word Document as a little helper for my next writing project. 


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#78
Conn Eremon

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I'll be interested to see what kind of article could be created using these experiments from the start, GMB.

No server is going to keep this train off-track! Here is the next experiment:

SEDECEM EXPERIMENTUM

Where Were You


We’re doubling back a little bit to the thirteenth experiment, which was about considering what was going on with your DIY during a time in its history that isn’t already established as an essential element. If you combine that with the fifteenth experiment, you may find that such moments are more important than we may think. Especially those times when the identity of our DIY was unique to it, and was short-lived. For this experiment, I’d like us to look again into the past of our DIYs, but this time let’s cast a wider net for some more specific points in time. The history of Mankind is lengthy, and the Imperium of Man, monumental though it is, is but a fraction of it. Imperial history also doesn’t entirely encompass the whole of humanity during its time either, as so much of our species dwells outside its borders or awareness. Within this setting, we are given ten thousand years, spanning an entire material galaxy, and sometimes just beyond, with which we can expand our DIYs. Not all of them will have such longevity. Few beyond the First Founding can claim to have seen it all, and there are those who will only ever see a fraction of a percentage of it all, such as the Tanith First and Only. But even still, this experiment may prove beneficial.

What I would like to know is, in the context of our DIYs, where were you? Where were you, within this great expanse of time and space, when events occurred that reverberated throughout the entirety of this expanse? The Imperium of Man suffered a civil war a second time, the Nova-Terra Interregnum. Where were you? What were you doing? Whose side did you choose? Did you choose a side? Did you use a side? Did you choose, or was it chosen for you? The Imperium of Man suffered a third civil war, the Age of Apostasy. Where were you? What were you doing? Does your Sisterhood recall its time as Daughters? There are many points in time along Humanity’s history that we can choose. The Slave Wars, before Abaddon’s rise to power or the Beast whose Ork army dwarfed that of Ullanor. The Ullanor army was from an already mythological time that had nearly succeeded in killing the Emperor Himself, and the Beast was worse.

It’s entirely possible that the answer to these questions is that your DIY was just not involved. Using the Tanith First and Only example, the entirety of their existence (and of any other Tanith regiment, hence first and only) is consumed by the Sabbat Crusade. Perhaps some remnant of that regiment will survive the Crusade, perhaps not. This doesn’t necessarily mean that this experiment is unnecessary or irrelevant for any DIYs that fit the Tanith model. Other worlds have raised multiple regiments, and many regiments have ancient histories. Even with that, the denizens of Tanith were around long before Gaunt came along to save its Ghosts. Before Tanith was colonized, those who would colonize Tanith existed out in the greater beyond. How far back you want to go, or how many different degrees of separation you want to go through, is up to you, but all of it could end up relevant to your finished article. You don’t need to use galaxy-changing events as a framework for this experiment, they merely provide easy targets.

This experiment is just about exploring the past, but about putting our DIYs into perspective. They do not exist in a vacuum; they are part of a whole. They interact with those around them, and they can readily be participants in events of great scope. Maybe we, the readers, don’t need to know the details of what happened during these events, or your DIY’s actions within that event, in the finished article itself. But knowing yourself where your DIY was and what it was doing can have an impact on how you write what is relevant to the article. It can reveal something about your DIY you were not aware, or take them on a different path than you initially intended.

Edited by Conn Eremon, 22 July 2015 - 10:36 PM.

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#79
TDF

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Where were you when the Kraken broke?

In the second half of 991.M41 the Order of the Gilded Blade began hearing reports of eldar raiders attacking remote settlements on Kerrett II. The Order usually assigned no more than a couple of squads to a single deployment, this strategy allowing them to defend more of the Emperor’s lands from his enemies. However, knowing that they would struggle to match the eldar in the field of hit-and-run tactics and stealth such small numbers necessitate, the Order despatched seventy-six sisters – the largest deployment in nearly a century.

On arrival at Kerrett II it became apparent that the large number of battle sisters was entirely warranted. The eldar had unwittingly awakened a necron tomb beneath the planet’s largest mountain range and the undead machines had already scoured an entire continent clean of life.

Canoness Juona Costillion positioned her sisters at key strategic locations, reinforcing the badly demoralised PDF regiments. The resulting spike in religious fervour amongst the men of the PDF and the holy meltaguns of the Order succeeded in turning back the previously unstoppable necron advance for almost a week. Before long, however, the metal xenos awakened more powerful engines of destruction and resumed their systematic purge of all life on Kerrett II.

It was at this stage that word arrived of imminent reinforcement. Thirty regiments of Imperial Guard led by the renowned General Volontis Yu were winging their way through the warp to exterminate the necron menace. The sisters of the Order of the Gilded Blade praised the Emperor for his goodness towards his faithful subjects.

Days later there was another astrotelepathic communiqué. The reinforcements were being diverted to the Eastern Front to battle the ravenous hordes of Hive Fleet Kraken. Kerrett II was being abandoned to its fate. Although the PDF commanders attempted to suppress this knowledge word soon leaked out and the effect on PDF morale was catastrophic.

As their allies abandoned their duty and fled for whatever safety their faithless minds could imagine the sisters did not despair. Canoness Costillion requisitioned every fighter, bomber and air transport that still had crew and launched a desperate suicide mission against the main necron tomb. The details of this assault are unknown, for none survived to speak of it. The last transmission reported that the sisters had breached the entrance to the tomb and exactly two hours and seventeen minutes later every necron on the planet engaged their phase-out protocols. The respite was greeted by a combination of wild adulation and grim pessimism, the latter of which turned out to be the more accurate. Twelve hours later the necrons returned with a vengeance and within two weeks the planet had been scoured clean. The necrons retreated back into their tomb and have not been seen since.

Addendum: General Yu’s army arrived on the Eastern Fringe and were despatched with all haste to the beleaguered world of Bahaku Prime. Tragically the fleet of ships suffered heavy time-distortion in the warp and arrived as the tyranids were in the final stages of consuming the planet’s atmosphere. To compound the disaster the ships broke warp right in the middle of the xenos swarm. Within minutes the Imperial vessels were being boarded by an unending tide of bio-horrors. Although the Emperor’s warriors fought with great valour the damage they inflicted on the tyranids was, ultimately, inconsequential.


__________________________

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Thanks for putting up these challenges Conn. Whilst there's a huge backlog to get through I am tempted to try them all out.

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#80
Conn Eremon

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Glad you like them, TDF. :tu:



SEPTIDECEM EXPERIMENTUM

Re-evaluating Interests


Most people seem to have gotten into this hobby with a bias towards a particular facet of the setting. That is particularly evident on the B&C, where each particular facet of the setting that is B&C-relevant has their own forum or subforum. Members have a tendency to frequent only those forums specific to their particular interests. It’s not universal, there are plenty of us who peek into all corners of the B&C. It’s not unexpected, or altogether ‘wrong.’ The hobby side of things can be expensive, and so people choose those armies they like best. Why wouldn’t members spend the majority, if not all, of their time on the B&C where their chosen factions are the focus? Even though I have an interest in any faction of this setting, and don’t partake of the hobby, I did choose a side, that of the DIY, that of fluff over crunch. My own involvement in the B&C reflects my interests, which means I rarely look into the modeling forum and have only ever gone to the army list sections by accident. Everywhere else, I look into for lore, ideas and DIY concepts.

This is all well and good, something that nearly every member of B&C can probably relate to, having a preference. But there can also be a flipside to this bias, that of a bias against something within this setting. This is not uncommon either, and kind of comes with the territory. Once you have chosen a side, the other side is the other side. Interests will always vary, so this isn’t necessarily a bad thing either, and this experiment isn’t about getting over something you really just don’t like. Nevertheless, there may be value to be found in exploring them nonetheless. This will be the intent of this week’s experiment. Not to explore your own DIYs, but those corners of the setting you least frequent or are interested in. It doesn’t need to change your mind, because you may find value in the experiment even if you end up in the same place you started.

So choose the other side for once. Explore what it is that makes it so undesirable. Pinpoint the things that turn you off from them. Separate it out from the rest, and see what is left. Is there anything there that speaks to you in some way? What if you changed the things you removed, and made them into something else? Maybe you’re exploring this because your DIY is the protagonist of your vision of the setting, and you want their antagonists to be more believable, more interesting. Maybe they’re not directly opposed, but still at odds, perhaps even allies, if in name only. Maybe there is no connection to your existing DIYs.

Once again, this isn’t necessarily about getting people to change their minds. I don’t expect someone to choose a greatly disliked faction, and suddenly decide that they need to buy and build a whole new army because of how this experiment got them to think. If, by the end of this experiment, you’re still not interested in them, so be it. But, maybe you will find something. Maybe you will force yourself to look at something differently, from a new angle, and find that you like what you see. Or, maybe as you’re exploring this experiment, you’ll come across something special, that you want to take note of and utilize for something else entirely.



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I had the idea for this experiment when I started thinking about those members who have chosen, clearly and loudly, the sides they oppose. I was thinking about why this position seemed so alien to me, why I never became like that. I never thought it was wrong, as long as it didn’t bleed out and hurt the fun of others, it was just not a sentiment I could relate to. I started thinking about how I first got involved in Warhammer 40k, why I decided to go the DIY route, and why I ended up choosing all of the sides as a favored side. What I realized I had done to get to that point I felt could make a good experiment, so I hope it made sense. Since I have, technically, already gone through this experiment, I figure I’ll type out what that experience was that got me to this point as my submission. Consider it an example of what this experiment did for one person. Whether it’ll do the same for anyone else, who knows.

For me, enjoying the setting as an encompassing whole, started by looking at everything for something I could distill into a DIY concept. In the end, I found it everywhere. Maybe it helped that I started this process early in my involvement, and that I was already well and truly into the process before I came across the B&C as my first, true 40k community. But, maybe I would have reached the same endpoint either way.

I came into this hobby through the Dawn of War videogames. There, I found myself much preferring the aesthetic of the Loyalists over Chaos and Xenos, as well as with the characters and voice-acting. I was immediately just another Imperial Space Marine fan, and I just did not like Chaos (or Xenos, because homo sapiens forever). At this point, my one DIY wasn’t much more than a name (Emerald Tigers), a color scheme, and was a complete mishmash of the only two Chapters I had much interest in: Space Wolves and Raven Guard. Raven Guard, because I was always a fan of the sneak, the thief, the assassin, the silent death. Space Wolves, because of the Ragnar trilogies, which is ironically now my least favorite depiction of the Wolves. This DIY needed an antagonist, so I created two Traitor Warband colors, gave them terrible names (Winter Court/Summer Court), and lo, here were the bad guys. I had no real interest in their original Legions, and one of them remained one of the hardest aesthetical looks for me to get into. It took a sudden desire to give my antagonists more depth, as a means to explain the DIY Chapter by giving them an opponent that was more than just a paper cutout Chaos Marine.

But, it was Fantasy Flight Game’s Deathwatch RPG that really did it for me. I used it to recreate the DIY I had already envisioned, which helped me chuck the existing Second Legion nonsense I had going (it really was nonsense, but I have been working on a non-nonsense retry at the Lost Duo). I enjoyed it so much that I decided to create multiple DIYs with those rules. I ended up tossing a lot of them out as bad ideas (in fact, I think my Guardians of Midas are the only relics from this point in time), but it led me into my current, ongoing interest in creating a DIY Successor of each of the nine First Founding. It was at this point that I was really putting this experiment to work, exploring each of these Chapters in more depth, finding what I liked, what I didn’t like, and applying these conclusions to a Successor of theirs. In most cases, these conclusions were buried under the actual process of building the DIY, but they were the base upon which the rest was constructed nonetheless. By creating a DIY concept out of these Chapters, I developed an appreciation of the original. I even had a new favorite, the professional Ultramarines. It took me a while for some, the Iron Hands longest, but even with them it was the creation of the Iron Hunters DIY that really made me realize that damn it, the flesh is weak.

These sourcebooks only really had the ability to make Chapters, though there are some fanmade duplications done for others out there, but once I had made DIY Successors, I needed to make DIY Warbands. And so I applied the spirit of the experiment to the Traitor Legions, and it worked for me there too. Had a really rough time with the Emperor’s Children and Death Guard, because the whole Slaanesh/Nurgle aesthetics, as popularly depicted everywhere, really just don’t do it for me, even to this day. But that didn’t mean that their character, their drive, and their mania, didn’t appeal to me. All it took was reimagining them to retain all those qualities I liked, and giving it a new fitted shell. With the Emperor’s Children, who were the Winter Court, it was about taking that winter theme and applying it more symbolically than literally (though it is still a literal theme). I kept the drive, the need, for perfection, for extreme experiences, and added on a self-defeating, manic desire to preserve it once attained. To freeze time and space around these moments, and capture them forever. Once caught, once bound, now dull, now lifeless, and so the cycle continues. I had an image in my head, of a Guardsman, scared out of his wits, whisper-yelling to get the attention of his partner-scout. Getting no response, the Guardsman crunches through the snow, as quietly as his Imperial issue boots will allow. His comrade is there, eyes open, lascarbine against the shoulder, peering over the lip of a snowbank like the crack shot he is, waiting for that perfect moment to fire. But when the calling Guardsman nears, he notices that, rather than the billow of thick jackets and furs, it is that the snow beneath has the dull, dark look of dried blood. He will notice the steel pins, that hold his unit-brother’s eyes open, that keep his hands tight against his gun, that keep his knee bent. The scout was a crack shot, waiting for that perfect moment to fire. He had found it, they had seen it, and in death they had bound him to it. The moment is still lost, and so they abandon him to its passing. It’s not enough for them. But this new mortal, as his mind comes to grips with the other’s fate, calling that name out, to be stolen by the biting wind that one, last time. Such a perfect moment of anguish.

I didn’t need to envision this warband as loud and colorful as your typically depicted Noise Marine, because that kind of Emperor’s Children was not my kind of Emperor’s Children. But, they are both still clearly Emperor’s Children. To this day, my Death Guard DIY remains rather ephemeral, still in its conceptual stage simply due to the constraints of time and place of priority. Even so, it was Brother Olis and my process of recreating the VII ‘Imperial Fists’ Legion as the blight-damned within our Guilliman Heresy Project that has been, so far, the most appealing depiction of Plague Marines I have yet to come across. Even though it’s not one of my DIYs, and even though I’m pretty sure it was Olis who thought up most of it, if not all of it, it was still the act of exploring this aspect of the setting through a DIY that brought me to a point where I could really enjoy that aspect.

Though outside of the scope of the B&C, and therefore may never see the light of day, I have done the same with each of the Xenos breeds. My Homebrew folder on my computer has about seventy different DIY concepts being worked on at some point or another, and that’s not including the intrinsically DIY projects I involve myself in, such as the Liber Cluster, the Corax Coup and the Guilliman Heresy. The latter two both contain variations of some form or another of the canon-DIY seventy. Which is why I stopped calling my project to put my B&C-aligned DIYs the Twenty Articles Project. At this point, that project is far more than just ten Chapters and ten Warbands, though they remain my primary focus. I still retain some bias, as I have more Imperial DIYs than Chaos DIYs, and more Human than Xenos. But I am happy with where I ended up. For one, it led me to finally let my creative juices flow. I don’t care so much if my DIYs are good, well-constructed articles as I do that I enjoy creating them. And while I might have likes and dislikes, sometimes even extreme dislike, for certain authors or studios over others, within the setting itself all I see are things I like, and things I kind of like more.

Edited by Conn Eremon, 28 July 2015 - 02:26 PM.

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#81
Dizzyeye

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For myself, I was accidentally introduced to 40k when I bought a biker squad from my local Toymaster just thinking the models looked cool compared to some crappy models I had bought before. Soon enough, an old friend of mine showed me where I could get more of these models and soon I wanted more. The idea of having a sort of blank canvas to create my own ideas (Even if they were crap to start off with.) Really appealed to my younger self. However at that time I was more interested in having battles with other people at Games Workshop and progressing from the beginners rank that had been around at the time.

 

For a while though, and now to some extent, I've been drifting on and off ideas around 40k and coming up with ideas for DIY chapters. I've tried a few times to create my own unique chapter that made sense in the wider universe but eventually the idea worn on and I would put the idea away. Along with this, most of my ideas have involved space marines/ chaos space marines fighting each other or the Imperium as a whole and never really considered using alien forces to help develop a force.

 

Recently though after talking with a mate of mine, we're now planning on setting up a sort of campaign where we build our forces up and give a unique twist. I remember in the old version of the Inquisition Codex, there was a page or two which held the images of orks corrupted by Nurgle and serving his will. Now I'm currently thinking up an idea of using the forces of Chaos, more specifically demons, that isn't just solely basic on cultists and space marines. Imagine a force that has been twisted in one way or another to serve the forces of Chaos which not only contains space marines, but other alien forces who have been corrupted to serve Chaos. All lead by a demon who instead of launching countless demons at a problem uses a worlds own forces to kill themselves, causing chaos and treason to weaken a world. After all, the Horus Heresy proved to be one of the most hard hitting events for the Imperium because not only did they lose forces but also had them turned against themselves, something we only see in the Imperium of Man from Black Library and so on. The main force would be chaos space marines and so on, however to add flavour there could be an odd squad of orks twisted by Chaos; something that would make sense in the universe.


 gallery_4664_11830_9542.jpeg                                                                                                     y06PB2Q.png

 

Click here to have a look at my DIY chapter, the Knights' Penitent.


#82
Grand Master Belial

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When I wrote Fallen so many years ago now. I knew I would need some of them to go over to Chaos and why would they do it. While it is still hidden in the writing, when I wrote the reasoning, it was recommended to be left out as too extreme. What was it? That as Fallen Dark Angels were scattered through space and time the Chaos Gods also marked each and every one of them with a subtle marker based within thier soul and their desires. While I figured many went to Khorne, I also thought Papa Nurgle would get some. But what would be the marker, that desire? A poisoned mind? No, it was a desire to be stronger and the ability to conquer anything. The cure to Smallpox is to be given Cowpox, another disease. Penecillin is derived from a fungi. To a marine, what is the worst way for them to fall in combat - an illness they cannot see or fight. I can several marines taking poisons in ever higher doses until their bodies build up the immunity. In such a way that they could go to a world like Catachan and not worry about plants like brainleaf, or other mutating plant, as their body could fight off the attack. The lure would then be that since Nurgle can and has created plagues that can affect even marines, the marine would try to build up an immunity to Nurgle's Rot only to be slowly turned into another Plague Marine. If any Chaos god has patience, Nurgle is one of them.


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#83
Conn Eremon

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Sorry folks, I was busy much of the weekend to Tuesday, and I chose procrastination over getting in the next Experiment yesterday. I have the next topic in mind, a Galaxy of Possibilities, and will begin working on it tonight, but I think at this point it would be best to simply wait until next Tuesday to post it up even if I do finish it tonight.

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#84
Conn Eremon

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OCTAVODECEM EXPERIMENTUM

A Galaxy of Possibilities


The Warhammer 40k setting is big. It encompasses an entire galaxy, and covers ten thousand years. Even our most-fleshed out areas and times are shallow glimpses of wider stories. We have enough to have an idea, to create an image in our head. To have a narrative, and see a story unfold. For us DIYers, to create a story of our own. We have enough to form one of the best online boards all around discussing it. We have a lot, but we are missing a lot more. This is something I have always tried to keep in mind. This can be particularly noticeable when you consider the range of models, and that the lore markets those models. There are in-universe explanations, such as most advanced tech being recreated within forge worlds operating off the same, original designs. Other times, we are either told or can assume that there is more to tell.

It’s a safe assumption to make. The galaxy is vast, and much can change in ten thousand years, even during an age of stagnancy. What it means by there being a potential for more than what we already know is that everything we have could potentially be incomplete. There could be another prominent Imperial world classification than those we most often see. There could be a tank chassis that looks nothing like any model released in the past thirty years, yet is prominently used in the Guard. Could be that Tactical, Devastator and Assault squads are only three of five basic squad types found in Codex adherent Battle-Companies. Perhaps these are regional idiosyncrasies that we have never been shown because the region has never been expanded upon. Chaos is said to be an infinite realm of infinite horrors, yet the models reflect Chaos as being homogenized, a short series of standard daemon sets with minimal variation.

Some of the best expansions of this setting in recent years has been the shedding of light on murkier areas, or talented creations of entirely new aspects of the lore. This includes Forge World, who has been churning out Legion histories that include a wealth of information on the Legions before the coming of their Primarchs, and the first book of a series that will reveal the foundation of the Black Legion, which also included a very interesting description of what actually goes on when the Warp spilling forth from the Eye of Terror violently clashes with the light of the Astronomican

This experiment does not necessarily have a writing assignment attached, it’s more just to have something to consider. There is more than what we are shown. Sometimes our DIYs are little more than a shuffling about of information we already have. But we can also use them to finally see just how much is hidden.

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#85
Grand Master Belial

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Time to update the Table of Contents

 

Experiment

  1. A Narrative Shift
  2. A Hero's Fall
  3. A Progenitor's Judgement
  4. The Final Days
  5. A Breaking Point
  6. A Red Alliance
  7. A Bond Of Blood
  8. A Derivative Original
  9. An Unshaken Faith
  10. A House Divided
  11. A World Burns
  12. Of Different Blood
  13. A Different Time
  14. An Unexpected Battlefield
  15. A Sudden Change
  16. Where Were You
  17. Re-Evaluating Interests
  18. A Galaxy of Possibilities
  19. New Blood

Edited by Grand Master Belial, 19 August 2015 - 04:44 AM.


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#86
Conn Eremon

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Added to the first post. Thank you.

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#87
Conn Eremon

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And now, for the penultimate experiment!

 

NONADECEM EXPERIMENTUM

New Blood

 

One thing that can tie DIYs of nearly every kind on the B&C is recruitment. Everybody recruits. It’s a major aspect of Space Marine Chapters and it’s a matter of corruption and enslavement for those who have turned to the Chaos Gods. Imperial Guard regiments receive their recruits upon Founding, and though they may find themselves inducting further cannon fodder over the years, they just as likely may be folded into another undermanned regiment or simply allowed to fade away upon the battlefield. Some will recruit wherever and however they can, others will only take from a pool of potential recruits that have been bred or trained specifically for such service, even if unknowingly or unwillingly. Everybody recruits; everybody replaces old blood with green. As the saying goes, the children are our future.

 

That future will become the past, and cycle on and on. For Chapters and Warbands of ancient renown, this cycle overlaps itself and is consistently dominated by the past. Recruits find their lives dominated by heroic or terrible demigods who have been around for centuries, and they will remain so for decades before they themselves may create any kind of impact on structure or demeanor. Other, more mortal forces will have a higher turnover rate, and their recruits may have a greater impact. For some, such as regiments of the Tempestus Scions or the Adepta Sororitas, this is offset by the manner of their recruitment being deliberately trained from a very young age to fulfill the established roles. In other, more ad hoc circumstances, you can experience a wide variety of recruitment sources and situations. Imperial Guard regiments may induct vast swathes of planetary populations in the face of impending war, forcibly if necessary.

 

 

However the recruits are brought into our DIYs, and wherever they came from, they will have a varying impact on that DIY’s future. This experiment is for us to dwell upon our sources of recruitment and the nature of our recruits. How they are inducted into our DIYs determines how much of their original character may remain, if it is overwhelmed by the existing character of the DIY, or even if a newer character is formed in response to the process. A more pacifistic society may suddenly find itself overwhelmed with a bitter disgust for the Emperor when forcibly sent to war. Will this new character transform the DIY in time, or will it be swallowed up by the momentum of war and survival? A lot of this experiment is similar to previous ones, but what I am interested in here is not simply in what will change. Often, how our DIYs affect recruits and recruitment drives is all we consider in crafting our articles. Here, I want us to consider how the recruits and recruitment drives affect the DIY.


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#88
Conn Eremon

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VICESEM EXPERIMENTUM

Up to Chance

 

So we come to the final experiment, and this one will tackle one of the most difficult parts of creating a DIY: that of falling into a rut. There are many, many ways in which one can try to navigate their way back into the wellspring of creativity, and these ways can be as varied as the people who utilize them and the ruts they fall into. We are going to do this my favorite way. We are going to let the element of chance help us out of our rut. Now, not everybody is in a rut, nor does everybody want to have their DIY be expanded upon randomly rather than deliberately. So for the purposes of this experiment, we will be creating a brand-new DIY.

 

Now, there are many benefits to creating a new DIY. For one, many of us already have plans to expand beyond a single DIY, and even for those that did not, it can be very rewarding to try your hand at it again. For another, the end conclusion does not have to be a fully completed, standalone DIY. How far you delve into this other DIY is up to you, and can be as superficial as a Codex entry the length of a paragraph, especially if you wish for this new DIY to exist solely as a means of expanding upon a pre-existing DIY. It can also be a full article, capable of standing on its own, equal to any other DIY you have created. You can decide to scrap the new DIY, because perhaps in the process of creating it you found that it would be beneficial to cannibalize it to the benefit of an already existing or forming DIY of yours. You can also use this DIY to further experiment with your creativity, perhaps by trying your hand at a different style of writing or article type, or by utilizing the previous experiments in this thread.

 

Now, the purpose of introducing the element of chance into the creation of your DIY is that you utilize chance to keep your momentum going. You create the DIY, and you do not slow down. When you hit a rut, and every DIY-creating process will have at least one rut, however easily overcome, you allow yourself to progress pass it by letting chance decide the matter for you. You can also allow chance to create the framework in the very beginning, with your own creativity connecting the dots and making corrections. For those of you who create a Space Marine Chapter, and have access to the Fantasy Flight Games’ Rites of Battle, introducing chance is very easy, as you have within that reference readily available tables specifically for the creation of a Chapter. For others, it is not so easy. There are fan-made tables, based off the Rites of Battle Chapter creation, for everything from Chaos Warbands to Guard Regiments. However, opinions could vary wildly on the quality of those tables and their source, so it is up to you if you would like to search for and utilize them. Otherwise, what I would suggest is that, when you reach your first point of hesitation, even the inkling of finding yourself in a rut, you stop, and you consider your options on moving ahead. Then roll a dice or flip a coin, and however it lands is the option you take, allowing you to move on without losing speed.

 

Now, allowing chance to have a say in the creation of a DIY does not mean that you should stick to it once some aspect as has been randomly selected. There is an age-old trick where if you are stuck deciding between two different things, flip for it. While the coin is still in the air, you will have decided which one you most want. When that happens, go with what you want, not what the coin flip decided. This is the best-case scenario of using chance to help in DIY creation, by tricking your mind into deciding on what it really wants instead of wasting time debating with yourself. However, it might also surprise you, and provide you with some combination of traits, ideals, and history that you might not have thought of on your own but, looking on it now as a whole, actually really fits and seems interesting.

 

Speaking of wasting time, using chance in this way does speed up the process, keeping you from being bogged down by any one aspect of the DIY creation. However, speed is not the point of it, and getting it done and over with should not replace taking the time to really think about it. Perhaps, if you are like me, you will take this time after you have already allowed chance to fill in on the blanks. By looking at it as a whole, if unfinished, piece, you can contemplate how the different aspects of your DIY, whether deliberately considered or randomly selected, interact with each other. Some will fit really well with each other, flow into each other, and some will seem out of place. Sometimes, half the fun can be in trying to validate that which is out of place until you feel like it fits. That said, chance is far from perfect, and it may have let in some elements that you just do not want. So get rid of them, and either select something to replace them, or allow chance to do it for you again. And so on, and so forth, until you are satisfied.

 

The point of this experiment is also not, necessarily, to craft a randomly created DIY. The end-product does not have to have any of the elements introduced by chance. Every single one of my DIYs has been built upon a framework of chance, and yet I have far more DIYs where everything that was randomly rolled on a table has been completely replaced or struck out than I have DIYs that have any one of those elements remaining. This is partly because, as I was going over the randomly crafted DIY, I would spot patterns I liked and ones I didn’t, and would rearrange the many aspects of a DIY according to what I liked about what I saw. But mostly, it was because I would begin to apply a greater theme, or themes, to the DIY, typically historical or fictitious in origin. So in this way, I had three tools available to me. I had my own creativity, such as it is, I had the element of chance to keep me moving, and I had themes to keep me on track.

 

I would still get into ruts, because those infernal things can be pretty demanding when they want to be. But of all the things I’ve done to get myself out of a rut, leaving it up to chance has been the most successful.

 

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If there is anyone who is interested in the tables found in Rites of Battle, but does not have access to it themselves, feel free to message me with what you would like randomly selected, and I will roll on the tables and give you the results.

 

For the purpose of this experiment, I am going to be more transparent over the creation of a DIY Chaos Warband, the Highborn. I’ve already sworn to this month’s Liber Challenge, and I will use that opportunity to show the Highborn from their earliest, randomly selected framework to their final, polished rendition.

 

+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+

 

Yes, I did say that this was the last experiment. I’ve been holding onto this one since the very beginning, and I felt that the 20th experiment would be the best time to put it up, when I have reached the point of scraping the bottom of the barrel for experiment ideas. It was always an experiment I wanted to allow extra time for, at the very least a month or two.

 

This does not mean that I am done with the Liber Experiments forever, just that it is a good point to take a break and let me refill the bucket of inspiration. When I feel like I have another good series of ideas, I’ll revive this thread.

 

However, I am also interested in hearing from everyone else, either as feedback for how they felt these experiments went, such as what worked and how it could be improved, or in ideas for future experiments that I would be more than happy to incorporate.

 

I hope these experiments have been useful, and I hope that fun was had. I had a good time putting them up and reading everybody’s contributions.


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#89
paulJam

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Good series Conn Eremon, a mighty effort ["MIGHTY!!"]

 

Your insights have been an enjoyable, thought provoking and helpful both directly (i should do that) or comparatively (am i doing that? or do i want to do that?).

I can see myself returning to this post between drafts/revisions for inspiration.

 

thank you.


 


#90
Conn Eremon

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Thanks for the kind words, paulJam. ^_^

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#91
Grand Master Belial

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This is some Ace material. I have already made references to it in the Dark Angels subforum on a couple of occasions and have it linked as part of the this winter's competition - Legend of the Angels - for inspiration as it will be a writing competition.

If I were to give it constructive crticism, it would be in organization of each experiment. Just in my opinion, I would like to see an introduction, the experiment and then an example or reference. It just makes finding the point of the experiment easier to find when referencing it in the future. Right now on some of the experiements it is hard to find in the narrative. But this is just my opinion since I tend to be more overly organized than probably a majority of people.
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#92
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Definitely making this the base for all future works


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#93
Conn Eremon

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PRIMAVICESEM EXPERIMENTUM

Sharing the Limelight


Every article has as its focus a single actor, that creation that is our very own, played out on the stage of the forty-first millennium. They are not always the only actors on the stage however, and we often define or illustrate our creations in their interactions with an ensemble cast, who could themselves be creations of our own or others if not of canon. More often than not, these other actors are there and gone. Minor characters that only exist for brief moments, play their side roles, and then leave the stage, never to be seen again. Others may have longer lasting impact, but their roles are still only relevant through their relationship with the article's focus. Beyond these articles, this multitude of extras will have their own stories, of which our own creations are just passing through themselves. Within the articles we write, our creations are of utmost importance and relevance, while adding them to a setting that completely swallows them up in its magnitude and its scale.

This, the twenty-first experiment, is going to be a little similar to the first. What I would like everyone to do is to select one of the many cast members hidden about in your articles, and explore them independently of those articles or the creations they were written to explore. I would prefer it if we explored these extras before or after they encounter or interact with our creations. Which extra you choose is up to you, and it does not matter if you choose a canon actor, or something else you have created or borrowed from another member if you created a shared universe.

There are likely a veritable plethora of choices available to you to choose from, depending on how fully cast your articles are. Many of our Chapters list child or brother Chapters, those created from them or alongside them, that you could explore. Our home worlds did not spontaneously come into being upon being assigned to or claimed by our creations, so you can explore these worlds before then. Our allies and foes will exist before and after they fought alongside or against our creations. Well, perhaps not, depending on the destructiveness of the battle, but there remains scope nonetheless to explore. So choose one of these examples offered, or find something not mentioned, that you have mentioned somewhere in your articles and used to define or distinguish your creation, and give them a story of their own.

The revival of these experiments is tied to the Liberalia Martiale 2016 celebration, and so it would of course be remiss of me to not connect this to the primary event of this celebration, Grand Master Belial's Brotherhood of the Angels challenge. I invite anyone who participates in this experiment to turn their efforts into full articles in their own right, as vows to the linked event. As such, this experiment will remain through the duration of the Brotherhood of the Angels event.


In the spirit of this experiment and the Brotherhood of the Angels, I will be creating the Nam Erech, the Chapter of the Broken Void, and as an additional vow take the time to give their mortal Warcults their own article.
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#94
Grand Master Belial

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I'm adding a link to this thread in the BotA Guides. Some of the experiments may help members flesh out a piece of their chapter's history.

 

As an example of the 21st Experiment, I came up with a planet that was meant to be home to a space marine chapter - the Questing Brothers. The catch was the planet itself was not a death world but the populace was artisans. While they were able to get other recruits from other planets, the chapter world would take in childhood criminals thought to be beyond redemption and did a crime so heinous that death was getting off lightly. Instead they were marched to the chapter and dumped to become an initiate to serve a sentence of life as an Astartes. 

 

As a part of the chapter's culture, they seek penance by earning the two pieces of the chapter badge - a laurel and a purity seal. Only when they achieve both can they become full members of the chapter and earn the right to wear power armor. 



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#95
SickSix

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A very good resource here. You have really put a lot of time, effort and passion into it. I will definitely be referencing this as I flesh out my DIY.

#96
Conn Eremon

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That's nice to hear, SickSix, I hope they help.

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