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The Timeline, according to Lexicanum

Timeline Lexicanum

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#1
Urriak Urruk

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I noticed in a few threads that people are confused about the timeline, because it is established that the Imperium and Guilliman itself is confused as what year it is.

 

But hurrah, the Lexicanum is here to save the day!

 

http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/M41

http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/M42

 

All "Gathering Storm" events are placed in the 41st Millenium, while the Indomitus Crusade and the Plague Wars are placed in the 42nd Millenium.

 

 

PlagueWars.jpg


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#2
Wargamer

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I'm surprisingly okay with this... even if it means the game's name is wrong. :P

 

It kind of reminds me of Runescape, where after a certain point they declared that they were starting a new Age - all the existing Quests took place in the old era, and from that point on the new quests followed an evolving timeline.

 

From our perspective, it means we can handily ignore the :cuss out of new Lore if we want to - just declare your stuff is "M41" and the return of Robust and his Primaris brigade don't apply.


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#3
Bryan Blaire

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Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

So while the Lexicanum might be cool for having done this, if the actual setting says "We can't really trust to know exactly when something is", then legitimately you could be playing in 38K, thinking it's 41K.

The real question in my mind is "What does it matter?"

Edited by Bryan Blaire, 19 June 2017 - 11:40 PM.

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#4
Sandlemad

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Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

 

Yeah, this. I've seen the chronological confusion stuff discussed elsewhere as being a cheap coverup on GW's part, which to my mind shows a very fundamental misconception of what 40k's about. Time as measured by the Adeptus Terra is just as confusing, byzantine, distorted, and Kafka-esque as everything else in the imperium. Even in the real world, look at how scholars argue over establishing a consistent chronology for ancient Egypt; now multiply the timespans, throw in even more devastating civil wars, add the vagaries of the warp, and tell the scholars they are allowed to kill each other.

 

Nearly everything folks have said about the difficulties of warp-based communication and travel apply (possibly even more so) to RG's attempts at reform. I respect the Lexicanum crew for trying and really enjoy reading through the timelines but it's a little bit of a doomed effort. Saying you're playing your games in M41 or 'pre-Cicatrix' or 'pre-Guillman's reforms' are all the same thing really.


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#5
Hrvat

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Lexicanum timeline is OK for those that accept the calendar count under which fall of Cadia happened in 999.M41 so there is nothing wrong with continuing that count.

 

Now that is quite different from what the actual count is.

 

Which reminds me of something. Why don't they just carbon (or pottassium argon) date something RG knows is from his time even at our 21st century count it should provide a much closer actual date than the +-1000 years RG is currently noticing :)



#6
jeffersonian000

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People misunderstand time keeping in the 40k. 999.0M41 is not January 1, 40,999 AD. It's the 999th 6.5-hour cycle in M41 with confidence the transmission originated from Terra. It's a reference stamp, not a calendar. 538.9M40 is the 538th cycle in M40 with no confidence in where the transmission originated.

So, when the events of the current setting cannot with confidence be determined to occur in M41 or M42, but was recorded as received on Terra at time stamp of 992 in M42 with coding from Ultramar, Imperial dating would be 992.3M42.

This was all explained once upon a time in publication lost to the ages, ie, there's an old article somewhere.

SJ

Edited by jeffersonian000, 19 June 2017 - 04:00 PM.

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#7
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Close but not quite smile.png

 

Last I saw it was in the 6th ed Rulebook which was a reprint of the 3rd ed Rulebook text and that was from an even earlier WD article.

 

 

The Lexicanum article correctly represents the information > http://wh40k.lexican...l_Dating_System

 

 


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#8
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No, you are confused.

Imperial dates are written as follows: 0 123 456.M41

The first number is the authenticator, indicating how precise the measurement is. 0 means that the event occurred in the Sol system, or there was direct contact with Sol. The higher the number, the more potential inaccuracy there is, all the way up to 9, which indicates that the date is little more than guesswork.

The next number is the year fraction. An Imperial year is split into 1000 segments of 8.766 Terran Hours. This is not widely used and is purely for administrative purposes.

Final three digits are the year. Once again, a millenia is split into 1000 years.

M41 is the millennium.

So as of this post the date is 0465017M41.
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#9
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All I know, is that the fact its up in the air what the date really is, is my favorite fluff addition in...a really long time.


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#10
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All I know, is that the fact its up in the air what the date really is, is my favorite fluff addition in...a really long time.

 

If nothing else, its a very elegant way of letting them move the timeline past 999.M41 without having to rename the game system.


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#11
A D-B

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Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

So while the Lexicanum might be cool for having done this, if the actually setting says "We can't really trust to know exactly when something is", then legitimately you could be playing in 38K, thinking it's 41K.

The real question in my mind is "What does it matter?"

 

Yep. 

 

And...

 

 

Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

 

Yeah, this. I've seen the chronological confusion stuff discussed elsewhere as being a cheap coverup on GW's part, which to my mind shows a very fundamental misconception of what 40k's about. Time as measured by the Adeptus Terra is just as confusing, byzantine, distorted, and Kafka-esque as everything else in the imperium. Even in the real world, look at how scholars argue over establishing a consistent chronology for ancient Egypt; now multiply the timespans, throw in even more devastating civil wars, add the vagaries of the warp, and tell the scholars they are allowed to kill each other.

 

Nearly everything folks have said about the difficulties of warp-based communication and travel apply (possibly even more so) to RG's attempts at reform. I respect the Lexicanum crew for trying and really enjoy reading through the timelines but it's a little bit of a doomed effort. Saying you're playing your games in M41 or 'pre-Cicatrix' or 'pre-Guillman's reforms' are all the same thing really.

 

 

Also yep.

 

I remember a while ago when I first heard the changes were coming. My very first question was: "Are we moving into M42?"

 

"Nope. Doing away with dates altogether. It's all still in the Dark Millennium."

 

The idea was never to 'move the timeline forward' as some folks like to say, it was to reshuffle the 'current' setting and 'current' point in time to mean different things. We saw a classic example two editions ago, when the Thirteenth Black Crusade stopped meaning "that ancient store campaign that much of the fandom still misquotes the results of", and started meaning "the thing that hasn't happened yet but that Abaddon and co. are building up to".


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#12
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I always just accepted that the date was "the far future"

In other words, perpetual Thursday.
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#13
Scribe

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Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

So while the Lexicanum might be cool for having done this, if the actually setting says "We can't really trust to know exactly when something is", then legitimately you could be playing in 38K, thinking it's 41K.

The real question in my mind is "What does it matter?"


Yep.

And...

The idea was never to 'move the timeline forward' as some folks like to say, it was to reshuffle the 'current' setting and 'current' point in time to mean different things. We saw a classic example two editions ago, when the Thirteenth Black Crusade stopped meaning "that ancient store campaign that much of the fandom still misquotes the results of", and started meaning "the thing that hasn't happened yet but that Abaddon and co. are building up to".

Respectfully, disagree.

1. It did happen, and we got a write up and all, then it WAS backed out.

2. Chaos won.
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#14
Felix Antipodes

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The muddying of the timeline is just a continuation of a policy GW has been pursuing for awhile similar to when they removed dating refs from the fluff in recent codexes. Does it matter? Not really, unless you are of the type that likes to know exactly when something like the Badab War happened.

Never understood why limiting "now" to within M41 was so important to some. I've always looked at it as a trademark rather than a timestamp. Maybe the should move over to Dark Imperium and avoid the problem. lol

#15
A D-B

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Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

So while the Lexicanum might be cool for having done this, if the actually setting says "We can't really trust to know exactly when something is", then legitimately you could be playing in 38K, thinking it's 41K.

The real question in my mind is "What does it matter?"


Yep.

And...

The idea was never to 'move the timeline forward' as some folks like to say, it was to reshuffle the 'current' setting and 'current' point in time to mean different things. We saw a classic example two editions ago, when the Thirteenth Black Crusade stopped meaning "that ancient store campaign that much of the fandom still misquotes the results of", and started meaning "the thing that hasn't happened yet but that Abaddon and co. are building up to".

Respectfully, disagree.

1. It did happen, and we got a write up and all, then it WAS backed out.

2. Chaos won.

 

 

Ha! You're not disagreeing with me, dude. I never said it didn't happen, just that the results were constantly misquoted, and that it became something else in 6th Edition when GW wanted it to. (And then something else again at the end of 7th.)

 

It's the perfect example of this timeline jazz.


Edited by A D-B, 20 June 2017 - 07:58 AM.

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#16
ThatOneMarshal

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Personally I absolutely love the idea of not knowing truly what year it is considering that some of the lore that we get comes from Imperial records.

After reading 1984 (which the imperium takes quite a bit of its quest from) the whole idea of the changing of the dates by the authories is pretty cool.
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#17
Scribe

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Isn't the key though that there actually IS a timeline war going on (effectively) and the Imperial calendar is likely to have been tampered with, possibly more than once?

So while the Lexicanum might be cool for having done this, if the actually setting says "We can't really trust to know exactly when something is", then legitimately you could be playing in 38K, thinking it's 41K.

The real question in my mind is "What does it matter?"


Yep.

And...

The idea was never to 'move the timeline forward' as some folks like to say, it was to reshuffle the 'current' setting and 'current' point in time to mean different things. We saw a classic example two editions ago, when the Thirteenth Black Crusade stopped meaning "that ancient store campaign that much of the fandom still misquotes the results of", and started meaning "the thing that hasn't happened yet but that Abaddon and co. are building up to".

Respectfully, disagree.

1. It did happen, and we got a write up and all, then it WAS backed out.

2. Chaos won.

 

 

Ha! You're not disagreeing with me, dude. I never said it didn't happen, just that the results were constantly misquoted, and that it became something else in 6th Edition when GW wanted it to. (And then something else again at the end of 7th.)

 

It's the perfect example of this timeline jazz.

 

 

I can see how it could be shifted that way, but I find it hard to believe its a 'just as planned' moment, and wasnt an intentional retcon at the time. :]



#18
Bryan Blaire

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The muddying of the timeline is just a continuation of a policy GW has been pursuing for awhile similar to when they removed dating refs from the fluff in recent codexes. Does it matter? Not really, unless you are of the type that likes to know exactly when something like the Badab War happened.

One of the keys to 40K is that being "the type to know exactly" doesn't really work out well, because you can't know exactly. Even with the "date stamps", all you truly knew was the approximate refencial time frame in which the event was recorded as happening. You could say "Badad War started about 55 years before blank, and went on for 10 years", but to say that those dates were perfectly accurate has always been somewhat of a misstatement for a setting where not knowing something perfectly is more likely than knowing it perfectly.

People act like all the mechanisms of society in the Imperium are as exact as our current world's are (and if you are truly honest, even ours aren't that exact). We have a "single history" and "acknowledged historical timeline" because it's important to some folks on earth to establish those things, and since there's factual data, a lot of people not involved in any way become accepting of it. That doesn't inherently mean it's perfect though, there are people that disagree about the facts, have alternate views they present as facts, or disagree with the data and say it actually shows something else. That's just one planet, with a population capable technologically of having those kinds of discussions.

Now imagine that you have multiple planets that may or may not be capable of that, but don't have instant communication with each other. You can imagine that things might begin to get misaligned between them. Toss in the capabilities of an organization that not only can alter the history books (one of Earth's big benefits), but has the capability to convince people that they have misremembered or outright alter memories (or completely take them away, leaving you to rely 100% on the revised version).

It doesn't make for a situation where anyone can actually accurately know with atomic clock precision all time-date stamps on every event that occur, especially when information is given at best from the view of a semi-omniscient narrator. The need to do that seems more like an exercise in frustration for discussion and counter to the knowledge presented for the setting.
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#19
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Speaking for only myself, I love that. I love that it's a mess, impossible to pin down, even though I want it pinned down!

I can actually feel some of that frustration and can imagine being some lowly Administratum clerk being completely unable to reconcile some events, but needing to do so.

As someone in a corporate IT environment, accuracy and precision is important but it's a simple jump to FEEL how frustrating it would be to not even know the actual date.

I love it.
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#20
Felix Antipodes

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To clarify, I don't have a problem with the timeline being muddied and, like @Scribe, think it perfectly suits the setting. I was just attempting (badly it seems) to explain why some may not be happy with it.
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#21
jeffersonian000

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No, you are confused.

Imperial dates are written as follows: 0 123 456.M41

The first number is the authenticator, indicating how precise the measurement is. 0 means that the event occurred in the Sol system, or there was direct contact with Sol. The higher the number, the more potential inaccuracy there is, all the way up to 9, which indicates that the date is little more than guesswork.

The next number is the year fraction. An Imperial year is split into 1000 segments of 8.766 Terran Hours. This is not widely used and is purely for administrative purposes.

Final three digits are the year. Once again, a millenia is split into 1000 years.

M41 is the millennium.

So as of this post the date is 0465017M41.

Thanks for the clarification! That was what I was referring to.

SJ
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#22
A D-B

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I can see how it could be shifted that way, but I find it hard to believe its a 'just as planned' moment, and wasnt an intentional retcon at the time. :]

 

 

We may be talking past each other, because I'm not sure what you mean. Everything with the 13th Black Crusade was an intentional retcon, that's my point. And the timeline was never, at any point, been planned to "move forward" in the way a lot of fans suggest. The plan was always to scrap dates and stay in M41 - just like they scrapped the previous 13th Black Crusade and rewrote what happened, they scrapped the end of the Dark Millennium and rewrote what happened / what's happening.

 

Now, I can't say if that'll always be the way, but that's what's happened now, and what's been planned for a long time. "We're doing away with dates" was literally the first thing I heard about the new edition of 40K, a long-ass time ago.

 

You can either take that at face value or call me a liar, but it is what it is - there's no "respectful disagreeing" with facts, if you get me. It'd certainly be a weird thing for me to lie about, with absolutely no benefit to me. 


Edited by A D-B, 23 June 2017 - 02:43 PM.

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#23
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To be frank, from what you're describing it sounds as if someone opted for the lazy approach.

If you're using grimdark unironically you're part of the problem.


#24
A D-B

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To be frank, from what you're describing it sounds as if someone opted for the lazy approach.

 

People seem to be responding really well to it, though, and it also makes a great deal of sense in-universe, illustrating the way the setting functions. You can dislike it, sure, or resent the look behind the curtain on how decisions are made, but none of that changes how well it's going down even in this thread. The why it happened is meaningless when it's what has happened that matters. 

 

Surely laziness would be the easiest and simplest thing? "Yep, M42, whatever." The easiest and simplest thing would be the OP's link to "the new timeline", which immediately garnered a negative reaction from pretty much every poster in favour of what's actually happening instead, so... call it however you prefer, I guess. 

 

I like it. It fits the setting. I think it's a cool idea. Even Scribe, who is arguing with me for some reason (a breakdown in our communication or I'm missing a point somewhere, I expect), likes the idea. Doesn't make any real difference, either, beyond illustrating the setting's temporal madness. All good.


Edited by A D-B, 23 June 2017 - 02:55 PM.

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#25
Loesh

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I certainly like it, mainly because THE CHRONOSTRIFE is the most metal name for people immolating each other over calender's and also basically sums up 40k in it's entirety. 


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