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Horus's plan for neutralizing each loyal Legion


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#1
Indefragable

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"No plan survives first contact with the enemy."

 

-Moltke the Eldar

 

 

Time for some lore/strategy Jeopardy: we know the answers, but what are the questions?

 

We know the outcomes of what happened to each of the loyal Legions during the opening moves of the Horus Heresy. What I would like to explore in this thread are Horus's plans for dealing with each loyalist legion.

 

The trick is is to rewind things pre-Istvaan and try to see things through Horus's eyes. You don't know what sort of list your opponent will bring. You don't know exactly how the terrain will be set up. You don't know how the dice will roll. You can guess, and you can predict, and you can plan. And that planning part is what I us to have fun delving into.

 

These types of topics are the most fun to explore, IMO, and I would imagine are one of the delights of writing for BL/FW. So let's explore and have fun!

 

 

I Dark Angels

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V White Scars

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VI Space Wolves

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VII Imperial Fists

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IX Blood Angels

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X Iron Hands =

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XIII Ultramarines =

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XVIII Salamanders

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XIX Raven Guard

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Special: The Istvaan Situation

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#2
Triszin

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He played the Tsons and Space wolves against each other, he didn't know if he was succesful at turning magnus to chaos so he altered commands so the wolves would attack.

 

thus bloodying both chapters, and leaving either in a weakened state when he needed to turn his attention to them.


banana


#3
Claws and Effect

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Horus would rather have a dead Magnus than a Magnus opposing him.

He set that up so Magnus would be on his side or dead.

The fact that it was the Space Wolves that were sent just played into his hands.

What if it had been one of the Primarchs that would have stopped to talk first, or one of the Primarchs less inclined to take his orders at face value.

If the Blood Angels, Raven Guard, or Salamanders had been sent instead Prospero could have turned out very differently.
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#4
Sandlemad

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The Dark Angels were knocking over the Shield Worlds of the Gordian League at the very edge of the great crusade, which is implied to have been some brutal fighting. They had been at it for years by Istvaan so I'm not sure it fits with a timeline where Horus orders them away. Rather it fits their solitary character and tendency towards independent campaigns apart from the main body of the crusade. Horus might have been banking on this.

 

On the Istvaan Situation, well, Horus was probably the single person with the best view of all the imperium's military assets. He couldn't predict or manipulate everything but he was the best positioned person to figure out which legions would be likely to come a-knocking. Dorn had been declared Praetorian of Terra at the time of the VII legion recall, so I think it's fair to expect that he'd hunker down to defend the throneworld.

 

Was Istvaan V always part of his plan though, or was it in itself a reaction to the purging of loyalists on Istvaan III taking a lot more time and blood than expected?



#5
Isinfier

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Horus' plans to do anything were neutralised by Angron doing an Angron.

Dammit Angron.
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#6
Claws and Effect

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That's actually a good point.

Horus had to deal with the fact that two of his generals (Angron and Curze) could only be counted on to do one thing: Whatever the hell they felt like at the time. And Fulgrim got less and less reliable as time went on.

I think a lot of his planning was taking into account the fact that he was stuck with 2 or 3 loose cannons while the loyalists were generally more willing to work together.

Note I said generally. Lion and Jaghatai were also known for doing their own thing a lot too.
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#7
karden00

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Super interesting thread and thoughts, Indefragable!
I sense this thread is a victim of the way the Heresy has been written by various sources and authoritative bodies over the years.
I'm False Gods (I think it was FG?) the novel ends with Horus planning the dropsite massacre at Isstvan. Iirc, it is presented there as Horus planning for the response of each loyal legion, and the shattered legions were basically planned to be there at Isstvan.

The trouble is, this story has been fleshed out and outright retconned so much and so many times since the original trilogy that making sense of things like Horus's plans is really tricky. This is not a story like Game of Thrones where everything comes from one author who is building upon his story with a strong sense of consistency and continuity in mind.
Basically, it's the opposite.

I wish I had access to my stuff, but iirc, the earliest sources do seem to indicate Horus was quite confident of how Isstvan would look.

Love your analysis, I'll keep an eye on this cool thread!

'Lorgar has his own battles to fight, Erebus,' replied Horus sharply. 'Should he fail at Calth, all this will be for nothing if Guilliman's Legion is allowed to intervene.
You can always ally the Dark Angels to your current ultramarine force.
Never.
My Ultramarines aren't taking the field with traitors.
That's what Dark Vengeance is. A box of traitors.

 

"Now I have a plasma cannon. LOGISTICS LOGISTICS LOGISTICS."


#8
Indefragable

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He played the Tsons and Space wolves against each other, he didn't know if he was succesful at turning magnus to chaos so he altered commands so the wolves would attack.

 

thus bloodying both chapters, and leaving either in a weakened state when he needed to turn his attention to them.

 

Great point. Weakening both of those legions is ultimately what he wants. Anything else is gravy.

 

Horus would rather have a dead Magnus than a Magnus opposing him.

He set that up so Magnus would be on his side or dead.

The fact that it was the Space Wolves that were sent just played into his hands.

What if it had been one of the Primarchs that would have stopped to talk first, or one of the Primarchs less inclined to take his orders at face value.

If the Blood Angels, Raven Guard, or Salamanders had been sent instead Prospero could have turned out very differently.

 

Really good points about Magnus and other legions. One has to wonder if

Spoiler

 

The Dark Angels were knocking over the Shield Worlds of the Gordian League at the very edge of the great crusade, which is implied to have been some brutal fighting. They had been at it for years by Istvaan so I'm not sure it fits with a timeline where Horus orders them away. Rather it fits their solitary character and tendency towards independent campaigns apart from the main body of the crusade. Horus might have been banking on this.

 

On the Istvaan Situation, well, Horus was probably the single person with the best view of all the imperium's military assets. He couldn't predict or manipulate everything but he was the best positioned person to figure out which legions would be likely to come a-knocking. Dorn had been declared Praetorian of Terra at the time of the VII legion recall, so I think it's fair to expect that he'd hunker down to defend the throneworld.

 

Was Istvaan V always part of his plan though, or was it in itself a reaction to the purging of loyalists on Istvaan III taking a lot more time and blood than expected?

 

Ah yes. I could not recall the details of the Dark Angels. Given the Lion's reputation, I find it curious how there does not appear to have been a more concrete plan to dealing with them one way or another.

 

I do agree that Horus would know better than anyone the status of all Imperial forces and who would be most likely to muster against him, and when, and how which could definitely influence his plans.

 

 

Horus' plans to do anything were neutralised by Angron doing an Angron.

Dammit Angron.

 

See, I think of any Imperial Commander, perhaps even more than the Emperor himself,* Horus would understand just how to get the most out of Angron and Curze. He was the one person they might actually listen to. And he undoubtedly factored them into his plans. "Known unknowns" are always better than "unknown unknowns" so he certainly planned to have them go crazy and reckless and be unreliable, so he made the most of them in that fashion. He definitely wasn't going to put them in charge of shoring up supply lines or negotiating new alliances, but give them a sandbox to play in and do their thing? That definitely has its use, especially in a galaxy-wide rebellion where Fear is an extremely useful weapon.

 

*because Horus was their peer. Think of the things you would say to your co-worker vs your boss. He also would have fresher experience fighting alongside them and knowing their ticks and what carrots and what sticks motivated them.



#9
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@Claws and Effect;

It's actually interesting, because later on in the Heresy, Horus has a rambling rant at Ferrus Manus' skull lamenting the fact that he's surrounded by traitors, despots and madmen, and he wishes that he had someone like Ferrus at his side fighting the war against the Imperium. It's a rather touching moment, but at the same time it's a fantastic representation of Horus' increasingly thin grasp on reality.

Ferrus as a whole was pretty much the most well-rounded Primarch alongside Vulkan. He doesn't get nearly enough love.
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#10
Indefragable

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Super interesting thread and thoughts, Indefragable!
I sense this thread is a victim of the way the Heresy has been written by various sources and authoritative bodies over the years.
I'm False Gods (I think it was FG?) the novel ends with Horus planning the dropsite massacre at Isstvan. Iirc, it is presented there as Horus planning for the response of each loyal legion, and the shattered legions were basically planned to be there at Isstvan.

The trouble is, this story has been fleshed out and outright retconned so much and so many times since the original trilogy that making sense of things like Horus's plans is really tricky. This is not a story like Game of Thrones where everything comes from one author who is building upon his story with a strong sense of consistency and continuity in mind.
Basically, it's the opposite.

I wish I had access to my stuff, but iirc, the earliest sources do seem to indicate Horus was quite confident of how Isstvan would look.

Love your analysis, I'll keep an eye on this cool thread!

 

Glad you find it interesting. These are the things I think about when I'm supposed to be watching the latest powerpoint :)

 

Part of why I wanted to ask this question is to try to put some structure to the events we know (and love?). The HH is such a massive undertaking that its no surprise (and little fault of the authors) that things get missed, or overlooked, or retconned and re-conned. Part of the authors (and FW writers, too) job is to take the end result, and walk it backwards to find out how and why it happened the way it did.

 

Real world analogy:

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@Claws and Effect;

It's actually interesting, because later on in the Heresy, Horus has a rambling rant at Ferrus Manus' skull lamenting the fact that he's surrounded by traitors, despots and madmen, and he wishes that he had someone like Ferrus at his side fighting the war against the Imperium. It's a rather touching moment, but at the same time it's a fantastic representation of Horus' increasingly thin grasp on reality.

Ferrus as a whole was pretty much the most well-rounded Primarch alongside Vulkan. He doesn't get nearly enough love.

 

Well said. What's the name of that story? I've been meaning to read it for a while.

 

Why I am dying to read more about Ferrus. I don't have any particular love for the Iron Hands or Ferrus himself, but I demand to know more about his background and some of his exploits. One of the greatest missing links of 40k/30k lore.


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#11
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Horus's plans went sideways from the moment Angron headed down to Isstvan III, or even when Prospero went the way it did. But I think overall his plan counted on a quiet purge of his initial supporting legions then having a relatively unopposed attack on Terra. His plans had the Blood Angels and Dark Angels both commited to war zones far from anything important, the space wolves and Thousand Sons basically destroy each other while he gathered intelligence on the custodes, Ultramarines taken out by a sneak attack, and the Iron hands and White Scars on his side. Even with the world eaters and word bearers busy with the Ultramarines that would leave him only facing the Imperial fists, Raven Guard and Salamanders initially with 8 legions.

Horus favoured direct attacks so why not strike Terra quickly with an overwhelming number of legions then blame one of the Primarchs who stayed loyal for murdering the Emperor. Ideally one you just killed on Terra.

Interstellar communication isn't great in the Imperium so blame anything people hear about Horus rebelling as false rumors and know anyone opposing the new Emperor is a traitor. The vast majority of the Imperium will barely notice a change at the top, even most imperial governors probably won't care as long as tithes don't increase much.
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#12
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Alpharius (or Omegon) defied Horus' plans where the Scars were concerned.

Based on Betrayal, Ferrus' doctrine abd methods were terrifyingly brutal. Had he taken Horus' side... (shudders)

Edited by bluntblade, 28 June 2017 - 08:45 PM.

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#13
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A really big unknown has always been just how much help and foresight the Chaos gods gifted Horus with. Did he know who was likely to join him? It was certainly hinted that maybe Lorgar knew some of this, possibly more than Horus did. I believe it was The First Heretic that showed 10 infant Primarchs were touched by Chaos, with it being heavily hinted that The Lion was touched but did not turn like the other 9 ultimately did. Horus not planning much for the First would make sense if he had an idea that they would join him, which was only messed up by The Lion's free will in the matter. There is also the fact that what he wanted is not what he got. He wanted Ferrus, and the Khan, and especially Sanguinius, but got the likes of Curze and Angron (who was fated to be the Blood God's Champion, which at least Lorgar eventually knew). Of those loyal to Horus: Mortarion's Legion was split between his and Typhon's/Erebus' goals, Magnus' Legion was shattered and probably not very helpful (at least on purpose) until the end game. The VIIIth were infighting and outright abandoned by their Primarch. The IIIrd were barely controllable under the sway of NotFulgrim. Lorgar and Angron had much of their forces tying up the XIIIth post-Istvaan. The XXth, well, it's questionable how much they followed any orders beside their own, and even those were fragmented and going toward different goals. This basically leaves Horus with realitive function from his own and the IVth, making Perturabo once again an overlooked asset, but being a heck of a lot more stable than many of his coconspirators.

Meanwhile, taking out those completely tied up (XIII, IX), shattered (X, XVIII, XIX), the failed to turn Vth plus the fight till they die VI, VII, and I are still a pretty formidable force with all that chaos in your ranks, hence all the attempts to marginalize the Wolves. If Horus still thought there was a chance he'd get The Lion onboard, it could explain his lack of focus on the First, and suddenly it would seem like a better idea to lead his discombobulated forces against whom he did.
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#14
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I think what makes Ferrus intriguing for a lot of people is that firstly he's never been covered to a great deal or particularly definitive extent - his involvement in the Heresy kinda precludes that from ever happening - and also that the accounts we have tend to be pretty contradictory. In Fulgrim, we've got a hot-headed, honest and good-humoured brother to the titular Primarch, wheres Forge World paints him as a brutal, cold and prideful warlord of significant seniority among his brothers, having lead an entire third of the early Great Crusade, and having commanded other Primarchs and their Legions. Reconciling those two conflicting representations of Ferrus is going to be one of the primary challenges placed at the feet of David Guymer's upcoming novel.

 

With regards to what would happen had Ferrus turned to Horus' cause, I think its pretty telling that Massacre suggests it would likely change the entire outcome of the Heresy. I think that Ferrus surviving on either side of the conflict could have pretty significant consequences to be honest: he's a hugely capable general who has experience leading entire prongs of the Great Crusade and commanding his brothers, he holds huge sway with different Mechanicum factions, and last but certainly not least, he's the only individual in the Galaxy fully aware of the locations of and capabilities of the Keys of Hel.

 

If he's alive on the Loyalist side, Dorn has a commander away from the Throneworld capable of organising the Loyalist war effort outside of Terra, and with full control of the Keys of Hel, every Traitor victory provides an army of resurrected Loyalist dead, which could combine to significantly slow Horus' advance even further.

 

If he's alive on the Traitor side, Horus finally has a reliable general, reducing his need to babysit the other Primarchs, one who is utterly remorseless and has a tendency towards utterly destructive campaigns - he's one hell of a stick to Horus' political carrot.

 

I do wonder however, whether his position among the Primarchs could be seen by Horus as a threat over time - I'm sure I've read somewhere that the Warmaster agonised over turning Sangunius to his cause because he feared the Angel could be a challenge to his authority, and I could see the same in Ferrus. He's an earnest and straightforward leader, with none of Horus' politicking, and I doubt the Gorgon would be super keen on the corruption that spread through the Warmaster & his forces as the war ground on. Mortarion & Perturabo seem to have not too dissimilar a mindset to him, and the Mechanicum would hugely respect his authority - at the start of the Heresy, he'd be a huge boon to the Traitors, but the longer the war lasted, I'd imagine he could be a significant threat to them.

 

I have to admit, the potential for a surviving Ferrus's brutality and utter remorselessness to be a dark mirror to the Traitors' worst excesses has a really interesting dynamic - he's the only Loyalist Primarch really willing to stoop to their methods and that would have created some fantastic interplay between the two factions. 


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#15
Claws and Effect

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Another crucial thing that happened was the shattering of the XIXth (yeah, my fanboy is showing a little ;)).

The Raven Guard being all but eradicated and effectively out of the fight was fairly important to the overall rebellion, because they're the perfect foil to the Night Lords. Hell, their Primarchs are mirrors of each other just like Dorn and Perturabo.

With the Raven Guard out of the picture the Night Lords were free to wreak havoc at will. The XIXth being available to hunt them down would have curbed a lot if that.

#16
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but give them a sandbox to play in and do their thing? That definitely has its use, especially in a galaxy-wide rebellion where Fear is an extremely useful weapon.

I believe that was (one of) the point(s) of the Thramas and Shadow crusades.

 

Well said. What's the name of that story? I've been meaning to read it for a while.

The Warmaster audiobook, which apparently isn't available on Black Library's website at the moment.

 

I believe it was The First Heretic that showed 10 infant Primarchs were touched by Chaos, with it being heavily hinted that The Lion was touched but did not turn like the other 9 ultimately did.

If this is true, and if the Chaos Gods planned to corrupt only half of the Emperor's sons, we can deduce that the two lost primarchs were planned to be loyal. It makes their ends especially fortuitous.

 

I do wonder however, whether his position among the Primarchs could be seen by Horus as a threat over time - I'm sure I've read somewhere that the Warmaster agonised over turning Sangunius to his cause because he feared the Angel could be a challenge to his authority, and I could see the same in Ferrus. He's an earnest and straightforward leader, with none of Horus' politicking, and I doubt the Gorgon would be super keen on the corruption that spread through the Warmaster & his forces as the war ground on. Mortarion & Perturabo seem to have not too dissimilar a mindset to him, and the Mechanicum would hugely respect his authority - at the start of the Heresy, he'd be a huge boon to the Traitors, but the longer the war lasted, I'd imagine he could be a significant threat to them.

Ferrus Manus considered himself a tool first and foremost, and I mean this in the original, utilitary sense, and by extension considered his entire Legion tools as well. He never was interested in rising above his station. If he decided to give Horus his loyalty, it would be absolute and unbreakable... up until he realizes Horus is only a puppet and endeavors to reduce his face to two dimensions with his hammer.



#17
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Horus gave Curze a message for the Lion. When they met face to face the went off and talked but we never knew what was said. This was just before their first duel.

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#18
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A few things worth mentioning:

Horus did know who would respond to the Call for Isstvan. He had already set the pieces to put the legions he knew would not turn on the butcher's bloc. Vulkan is the annoying good guy and Corax already dislikes Horus for his abuse of power. In his eyes, they are the easiest threats to remove in the loyalist legions, and early victories are invaluable to boost morale.

Horus never tries openly to convert thr last few unknowns (the Lion and the Khan) because they were just that. For the Khan, he had already set the warrior lodges in motion has a corrupting mechanism.

For the Lion, it was a win-win situation. He Know he could not count on Kruze at any stage of his planning, pre and post heresy. If Kruze delivers the message and converts the Lion great. One more for the cause. If not, well he rids himself of an enemy and an inept ally.

As an additional bonus, had Corax been allowed to so what he does best behind the enemy lines on his terms unmolestes, it would have been crippling to tbe war effort. Much more than the scars were.
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#19
Athramar

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Also, Ferrus surviving Isstvan is a deal breaker for either side. For the loyalists, without the Iron hands, there is no rallying of the shattered legions.

For the traitors, this means a full additional legion and reduced disruption efforts against the warmaster's mustering.

He does deserve a novel. Hell, Iron Hands deserve a novel that is relevant to the storyline.

As for Sanguinius, Horus needes him dead, not on his side. Not for Logistical reasons, but to remove the one being who would show him the error of his ways. He knew he was his equal and could not suffer him to live for it. This is why he is angry with Erebus after the failure of Signus.

#20
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I think it's highly likely Horus knew almost exactly which legions were going to respond to Istvaan, simply because he gave orders to many of the other loyalist legions and knew exactly where they were. Blood Angels, Dark Angels and White Scars were all sent off to other corners of the galaxy, so he knew they couldn't respond. Ultramarines were busy mustering at Calth, so they are out as well. Imperial Fists were just too far away to respond being all the way over in the Sol system, which leaves the three loyalist legions that ended up at Istvaan. 

 

Basically I think Horus had a plan for all the loyalist legions except the Imperial Fists as they were out of his reach. 

 

edit: Wolf Pack beat me to it..


Edited by Lord Asvaldir, 01 July 2017 - 05:46 AM.

The Night is Dark and Full of Terrors...

 

 


#21
Kais Klip

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Really cool topic. 

 

When all is said and done, let's try to remember though that a Legion is still a Legion and still a Legion.

 

What this means is that a Legion is only worth as much as itself; one Legion will cancel out another in battle, rendering both strategically ineffective as Legions.

 

Everything remaining constant, the entire rebellion is up in the air on a sheer 50/50 chance. Horus has 9 legions turned to his course. Half the mortal military, as well as half of the mechanicum, is on his side as well. The first assymetrical "weight" to consider, is the Emperor himself and by extention his own legion (the Custodian Guard), all fortified in the necessary objective of Terra.

 

 

 

I say necessary because I always wondered by exactly it was, you know, necessary; Horus in my opinion could have named his own capital, and fought his own Long War. But he is Warmaster, and I am not, so lets assume his judgement that a long war is untenable is correct. 

 

 

 

So, the first asymmetrical weight, the Big-E-and-his-C, is countered by Horus' own assymetrical equivalent weight; the Chaos Gods and the Warp. 

 

The table then is set, and as remarked, completely fair on both sides, apart from the fact that the end objective is fortified, and will therefore take 3-5 times its own weight to take. This is the first part where we come to the concept of force multipliers, and they are essential; the more force multipliers Horus can muster, the more the chance of Victory swings his way. And we say Horus must muster, because the initiative is always with the incumbent (big ass fortification). 

 

So, just to achieve victory, Horus required 5 Legions of his own to be present on Terra. And that's just with the naked Custodian guard. The presence of the Imperial Fists alone, moves the necessary numbers up to TEN LEGIONS. You can see already, why Horus was sweating about taking Terra in the least amount of time; with more than one legion present on Terra, it was completely unattainable for anything like a 50/50 rebellion, and 50/50 are brilliant odds when it comes to coups and rebellions. 

 

Treachery, as Lorgar remarked, works very well. It provides the first victories of the rebellion; 4 Legions annihilate their rotten, loyalist halves at a much reduced cost, and then 8 legions annihilate 3 not only with the force multiplier of betrayal but also that of superior numbers; 3 legions are shattered and wiped off the strategic board to the cost of... none. 

 

 

 Corax's lesson to Guilliman, on the other hand, was that conventionally ineffective forces can still turn the tide of a war via unconventional means.

 

 

 

OP makes a great remark on Space Wolves vs Thousand Sons, so that I will skip, as its general knowledge by now. The assignment of the Alpha Legion, however, is a welcome and novel remark in my opinion.

 

Horus then throws the Night Lords against the Dark Angels. One legion against the other, with no apparent force multiplier in sight. At first sight, this is Horus' first mistake, and perhaps a sign of him getting lazy. But consider the following; a force multiplier effect is hard to come by, and while throwing these two against each other guarantees the mutual destruction Strategic Kill of each legion, for the Night Lords, the destruction of their Legion coherency does not constitute a Strategic Kill; on the contrary, it shatters one predictable blade into many hundreds of splinters that are now free to reave and disrupt the loyalist side of the Imperium; something the Night Lords are exceptional at, while the Dark Angels are not as competent in (or rather, as competent as any other defeated force press-ganged into unconventional strategy). 

 

The problem was the Dark Angels possessing an unaccounted-for force multiplier in the form of their warp jump thingy, that effectively shattered the Night Lords with little loss to Dark Angel strength, who then double time it to Terra. It is at this point that the scales tipped away from Horus and damned the War. Guilliman's Five Hundred Heresies was a welcome stroke of luck for the Traitor war effort.

 

Even with Guilliman's help though, the Ruinstorm could not hope to keep all 5 Legions away from Terra. Its a way too unreliable Stratagem to build your entire war effort around, if only 1 legion slipping through to Daddy finishes the entire coup. This is why Guilliman's idea was so heretical, given that Terra still stood; the Emperor needed only two legions on the Walls of Terra to pretty much damn the rebellion in its crib. 

 

What I don't understand, is why Horus bothered with Istvaan V in the first place. If he is right, and a Long War is untenable, his only chance is to seize Terra while it is only guarded by the VIIth and the Custodian Guard. We see already, that killing three Legions in exchange for even one loyalist legion using the time to flee to Terra loses him the war. 

 

 

 

Therefore, what Horus should have done; 

 

Gather up your Traitors: 

 

5 for Terra 

3 for the Ruinstorm

 

 

(Death Guard for the Siege, Iron Warriors for the Walls, World Eaters for the Wall Ramp, Sons of Horus for the Emperor, Emperors Children for sprinkles on top) 

 

 

5 legions, commanded by Perturabo and marshalled by Horus, wrestle Terra from the Emperor and His Guard in a matter of months. Weeks in reality, because only the Fists are present on the walls, as the Custodian guard is busy fighting the Webway War. 

 

The other 3 legions raise a Ruinstorm around Terra, blocking out the Vengeful Nine. The Word Bearers direct Curze and Alpharius to Raise the Ruinstorm like only they could, blocking out the Vengeful Nine for the time needed for the assault. 3 legions would hastily fortify, and then square off against 8. 

 

Notice how the math works out? 

 

 

 The Ruinstorm becomes Horus' own Walls of Terra. If you have been paying attention, this whole thing is pretty much the Battle of Alesia with Caesar against the dirty barbarians. In Space. Thus suddenly, the setting has historical precedent to fall back on. But GW is not as smart as me. 

 

 

And now the ball is in Horus' court; he has the initiative, because not only do the Loyalists have to break through, and they will break through, because this is only the Night Lords and Alpha Legion backing up Lorgar in holding the walls, but they have to break through in sufficient numbers and coordinated cohesiveness to actually face off with 5 legions occupying what is essentially Occupied Berlin; whatever is left of the Traitors has a massive force multiplier, not to mention daemonhood.

 

 

 

Thus giving us two Sieges of Terra, giving us double the drama, and raking in GW twice the money. 

 

The end. 

 

Post Credits: 

 

Except it doesn't end there. The series instead moves on into eternal war, with Terra the new Jerusalem that's switching hands between Daemon Primarchs on one side and Ultramar and the Avenging Crusade on the other. Throw in some Tyranids and Necrons to shake things up from time to time when the community gets bored from spending its summers campaigning across the wastes of Terra. 

 

 

TL;DR: Abbadon is right, Horus fumbled it. 


Edited by Kais Klip, 02 July 2017 - 01:26 AM.

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"Sire! We are yours and you are ours,                       "The Wolves are coming! How they bleat and moan our names, pissing themselves like animals, thinking our blood chills with the mere wave of their axes.

'Til the stars burn out,                                                   What do they know of war? They hold no technology, no stratagem nor ruse we have not yet met and bettered. In every way, we are superior.

And our eyes do not recognise the skies,                    Save for one. The Emperor does not make mistakes; for all their failings, all their misgivings, all their inadequacies... the Savage holds strength in his
Not unlike each other's hearts,                                        weakness. Savagery, depravity, barbarism. To their breasts, they hold stratagems of the basest kind. Will we let these blows land unparried?
'Til we are lone against the tide,                                  We will not set aside our pride. Of all the Legions, we deserve. Who else has been laid so treacherously low, yet still rose to the paradigm of glory?

My brothers, rage!                                                          Our pride is like a weighted blade; a sword with no heft nor burden, cuts poorly and shatters mid-blow. 
Against that dying of the light,                                     But we must set aside our honour. We must cast off our reservations. We must muddy our cloaks in this coming fight. We must use the hilt as 

So into the jaws of death,                                              much as the blade. We must delve into the matter of the savage, and raise it too into perfection. There is little point to them, brothers. Only one purpose
And out the other side!                                                   for which they exist. Take that away, show them that even in that we are better, and the Wolf King and his pups will be broken." 

++ Under Censure ++ Clicky: Star Wars vs 30k                                                                                                                                - IIIrd Legion Treatise, On Hunting Wolves, Lord Commander Konstantin


#22
Athramar

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Some good points, butI think you put a little too much stock in the 5-1 defender's advantage. While I do agree that each legion present on Terra significantly cripples Horus's chances, the final battle saw the elements of effectively 4 legions defending and the outcome was still a stalemate. It's a historical generalization that does not necessarily hold true, especially in a universe where one can summon endless hordes of daemons and the most effective way to kill your enemy is to drive close to them and hit them with your sword.

 

You have to take into account that Terra was under siege during the whole heresy timeline: Magnus struck the first blow unwittingly, preventing the Emperor from taking an active role in the war. 

 

In regards to rushing to Terra, that was more or less the original fluff. But Fulgrim's conversion failure / Garro escaping the massacre coupled with Angron deciding to land, turning a afternoon picnic into several days/week of resistance by the surviving loyalists sprevents him from rushing to Terra. He needed the ruinstorm to disrupt all communications, not just warp travel.

 

In regards to the ruinstorm; It required rather a rather strong set of circumstances to trigger, in the utmost betrayal. Horus did not trust the powers of chaos and did not particularly like that his plans would hinge on the ruinstorm, orchestrated by Lorgar. I also doubt any other legion than the Word Bearers would have been able to oversee the unleashing of the storm, as none had the esoteric knowledge. Sending the 2 most unreliable legions to aid the WB in this on a tight time table would have been disastrous.



#23
Kais Klip

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Well the thing about the defender advantage is that the more unrealistic it is - the lower it is - the faster the Emperor dies and the more Horus conserves his strength. 

 

I still don't understand the current period of hesitation; fine, stop off at Molech to power up, but after that, where's the speartip plunge to Terra that Lupercal is known for? 

 

We've been shown many times that there are no front lines; not only that but there are no supply lines to secure, less so with the Ruinstorm offering one side uncontested passage. 

 

I know why we havent finished the series yet, but I don't understand Black Library's excuse, for the main bulk of Horus' forces it should have been: 

 

Istvaan III -> Istvaan V ------> Molech ------> Terra. 

 

It's not like the Emperor is Voldemort, and Horus needs to knock off 9 side-quests at each opposite end of the galaxy before he can hit a strike. 

 

Terra should have been the fifth book. They can still continue the series as well; tell the Ruinstorm story, the Unremembered Empire story. 

 

Not all legions have to be at Terra. Look at WW2 serials; there's more to the fight than Berlin, so why are they treating it like the be-all-end-all of the series? 

 

As I said, I understand why the series has dragged on, I just don't understand the excuse and the ten year timetable we got.


Edited by Kais Klip, 02 July 2017 - 01:54 AM.

"Sire! We are yours and you are ours,                       "The Wolves are coming! How they bleat and moan our names, pissing themselves like animals, thinking our blood chills with the mere wave of their axes.

'Til the stars burn out,                                                   What do they know of war? They hold no technology, no stratagem nor ruse we have not yet met and bettered. In every way, we are superior.

And our eyes do not recognise the skies,                    Save for one. The Emperor does not make mistakes; for all their failings, all their misgivings, all their inadequacies... the Savage holds strength in his
Not unlike each other's hearts,                                        weakness. Savagery, depravity, barbarism. To their breasts, they hold stratagems of the basest kind. Will we let these blows land unparried?
'Til we are lone against the tide,                                  We will not set aside our pride. Of all the Legions, we deserve. Who else has been laid so treacherously low, yet still rose to the paradigm of glory?

My brothers, rage!                                                          Our pride is like a weighted blade; a sword with no heft nor burden, cuts poorly and shatters mid-blow. 
Against that dying of the light,                                     But we must set aside our honour. We must cast off our reservations. We must muddy our cloaks in this coming fight. We must use the hilt as 

So into the jaws of death,                                              much as the blade. We must delve into the matter of the savage, and raise it too into perfection. There is little point to them, brothers. Only one purpose
And out the other side!                                                   for which they exist. Take that away, show them that even in that we are better, and the Wolf King and his pups will be broken." 

++ Under Censure ++ Clicky: Star Wars vs 30k                                                                                                                                - IIIrd Legion Treatise, On Hunting Wolves, Lord Commander Konstantin


#24
Marshal Loss

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I still don't understand the current period of hesitation; fine, stop off at Molech to power up, but after that, where's the speartip plunge to Terra that Lupercal is known for? 

 

We've been shown many times that there are no front lines; not only that but there are no supply lines to secure, less so with the Ruinstorm offering one side uncontested passage. 

 

I know why we havent finished the series yet, but I don't understand Black Library's excuse, for the main bulk of Horus' forces it should have been: 

 

Istvaan III -> Istvaan V ------> Molech ------> Terra.

 

The Heresy has not been the old 'rapid strike on Terra' that it used to be for many years now. The FW books make it very clear that the speartip strike on Terra was no longer possible after the betrayal at Isstvan III became apparent. The Heresy developed into a vast, grinding war, and supply-lines definitely did matter. There are numerous pieces of information on this across the black books.


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Can somebody push some damn perspective in me, because right now I'm back to calling the DG the new level of cheese not seen since 7th edition Eldar came out.

And just a FYI, not that I am calling anyone out in particular, but over on some of the other boards they are poking fun at us here on this board for griping about the DG. It only makes me more determined to find a way to field pure SW lists against them.

 


#25
Kais Klip

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I still don't understand the current period of hesitation; fine, stop off at Molech to power up, but after that, where's the speartip plunge to Terra that Lupercal is known for? 

 

We've been shown many times that there are no front lines; not only that but there are no supply lines to secure, less so with the Ruinstorm offering one side uncontested passage. 

 

I know why we havent finished the series yet, but I don't understand Black Library's excuse, for the main bulk of Horus' forces it should have been: 

 

Istvaan III -> Istvaan V ------> Molech ------> Terra.

 

The Heresy has not been the old 'rapid strike on Terra' that it used to be for many years now. The FW books make it very clear that the speartip strike on Terra was no longer possible after the betrayal at Isstvan III became apparent. The Heresy developed into a vast, grinding war, and supply-lines definitely did matter. There are numerous pieces of information on this across the black books.

 

 

Pardon me if I'm being difficult; but we are told repeatedly that there are no front lines, that the whole war is just a mishmash of random blobs of forces moving through, past and sometimes against each other only when they encounter the other in real space to either resupply or actively looking for a fight (battle of Phall), short of Autek Mor's firebreak across the northern zone. 

 

Securing your supply lines implies the Warp allows any non-consensual fight; when no, both forces have opportunity to flee. 

 

How can your supply lines be threatened when you can just dive right past any blockade? 

 

What was Horus scared off, when he had enough legions not only to besiege Terra but also to hold the loyalists at bay a la Alesia? 


Edited by Kais Klip, 02 July 2017 - 02:22 AM.

"Sire! We are yours and you are ours,                       "The Wolves are coming! How they bleat and moan our names, pissing themselves like animals, thinking our blood chills with the mere wave of their axes.

'Til the stars burn out,                                                   What do they know of war? They hold no technology, no stratagem nor ruse we have not yet met and bettered. In every way, we are superior.

And our eyes do not recognise the skies,                    Save for one. The Emperor does not make mistakes; for all their failings, all their misgivings, all their inadequacies... the Savage holds strength in his
Not unlike each other's hearts,                                        weakness. Savagery, depravity, barbarism. To their breasts, they hold stratagems of the basest kind. Will we let these blows land unparried?
'Til we are lone against the tide,                                  We will not set aside our pride. Of all the Legions, we deserve. Who else has been laid so treacherously low, yet still rose to the paradigm of glory?

My brothers, rage!                                                          Our pride is like a weighted blade; a sword with no heft nor burden, cuts poorly and shatters mid-blow. 
Against that dying of the light,                                     But we must set aside our honour. We must cast off our reservations. We must muddy our cloaks in this coming fight. We must use the hilt as 

So into the jaws of death,                                              much as the blade. We must delve into the matter of the savage, and raise it too into perfection. There is little point to them, brothers. Only one purpose
And out the other side!                                                   for which they exist. Take that away, show them that even in that we are better, and the Wolf King and his pups will be broken." 

++ Under Censure ++ Clicky: Star Wars vs 30k                                                                                                                                - IIIrd Legion Treatise, On Hunting Wolves, Lord Commander Konstantin





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