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The Primarchs: Angron


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#76
Kenzaburo

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Very spot on, Tymell. This was the first time the WE worked for me. I didn't even like them in Betrayer. In here, they come off as very much more realistic, having this super-abusive relationship with their father, that is so much based in real world dysfunctional relationships. The kids craving for attention, going to whatever self-destructive lengths to impress, while he just doesn't care. Only some of their siblings go the other route: If he doesn't love me, despises me even, maybe he isn't worthy of my adolation at all - and so they rebell and sitance themselves.

 

This works even better, considering that the lore sometimes likes to point out how stunted Astartes can be, because they are taken in as children and put through hell. That's why they have the close sibling bonds but tend to look to parental figures. And that doesn't always work, because some parents actually suck. The WE being masters of aggressive warfare and at the same time being somewhat neglected children in their mental state made them a whole lot more endearing to me.

 

If we now also consider that the WE might have inherited that basic empathy trait of Angron, they would even more care about satisfying their father, about making him proud. And he abuses it without a second thought, actually tries to hurt them as much as possible, as he was hurt before on Nuceria. From a psychological viewpoint, this story made them fascinating.

 

Also, I really felt for Mago - if a WE stays loyal, they tend to show that strange, but impressive sense of martial pride and honour that gets me every time. I would go so far as to say that the story would have been even better, had it been a full-length heresy novel. Nevertheless it worked quite beautifully for me. :)


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#77
Kelborn

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Now I know that there's a lot already covered in after stories like Betrayer or After Dash'ea, but I wanted to ask if there's some new War Hounds stuff happening.

I'm mostly interested in the pre-Angron Legion and besides some few bits here and there and Forge Worlds take on them, I'm eager to read more about the XIIth Legion.

 

So is Angron a decent bought then?


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#78
Jareddm

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Now I know that there's a lot already covered in after stories like Betrayer or After Dash'ea, but I wanted to ask if there's some new War Hounds stuff happening.
I'm mostly interested in the pre-Angron Legion and besides some few bits here and there and Forge Worlds take on them, I'm eager to read more about the XIIth Legion.

So is Angron a decent bought then?

I would say yes. A solid third of the book is a compliance action undertaken by the pre-Nails World Eaters, still applying and citing the virtues of traditional War Hound tactics, the trinity of spear, shield, and axe.
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#79
Kelborn

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Shame on me that I haven't written that down earlier.

 

Angron....World Eaters...

For me, they were always entertaining for their simpleness Blood for the Blood God! shtick.

Then came Betrayer and I started to see the Legion behind the stereotype. I acknowledge them as characters, as a Legion, which really got a culture at hand, etc.

Further was I really interested into the War Hounds, mostly because of Lhorke. But besides this and what we got from Forge World, there was not much about the War Hounds to work with.

 

My interest in the XIIth Legion faded again as others received a way better treatment *cough* White Scars *cough*, which became my favorite Legion/s.

 

But then Ian St. Martin, an author I almost never read before, dropped Angron and the Ghost of Nuceria. I enjoyed the latter and when I finally started reading Slave of Nuceria, I was gobsmacked and I tell you why.

 

If you're interested into the War Hounds, this one is for you.

It fleshs out their culture, combat doctrine, ideology and everything you might want to know. Angrons flashbacks were great, as well, don't get me wrong. It almost broke my heart to see his transformation from a caretaking gladiator into *Angron* as we know him.

AND

Spoiler

 

But where this one shines, imho, is the characterization of the War Hounds. Yes, in the overall arc, there's nothing new as some fraters have pointed out already. We know that they all gonna have the Nails. We know what comes after Slave of Nuceria. But still, this Primarch novel adds some great stuff.

 

Mago is a great character. I would love to see more of him and the pre-Angron Legion done by Ian. Never have I made so much notes and bookmarks before and that should mean something. ;)

 

Long speech short: Well done, Ian! :tu:


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#80
DarKnight

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I have yet to read Slave of Nuceria, but I probably will soon even though my hope aren't high. I have a question though, I've listened to a podcast review and read this thread so I'm aware Angron leaves the War Hounds for two years after being found to find something in the galaxy able to kill him. Shortly after the M31 portion of this book ends is he Night of the Wolf where we are told the Wolves could've killed him if Russ gave the word. (Also funny since the Nails are supposed to be the overriding factor in breaking that 36 hour time limit given by Angron, but they're still able to be outmaneuvered to the point of having their primarch killed) Anyway, have I gotten the proper context here or am I missing something?
Trial Of Blood Part I & IIPrelude To ArmageddonBlack blood vomited through corrupted lips as he struggled to speak his last. "I-iron within, iron wi.." His legion's motto was cut short as Soghur ended his life with a final swing of his axe. "You know nothing of iron, traitor," spat the Iron Hand as he strode over his already forgotten enemy.<p>"I understand you might think the IX Legion a bit... overzealous with our devotion to blood. But you must understand, blood is the most valuable resource on Baal. The tribeless are left to die. Lord Sanguinius was the only surviving orphan anyone could remember who actually thrived before he was found. So you see, his blood is singular in the history of our world, and we are honored to share it with him." - Ninth Captain Demion

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#81
Kelborn

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The 2 years scene ist s a flashbacks
31 hours
A raging mob of near mindless berserkers can "easily" be outmanouvered, imo.

But overall, yes, that's the context.

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#82
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The WE fight as bersekers...so it's more like of course the WE can be outmaneuvred. It's their strength and their weakness. Like how Angron has Russ beaten into the dirt and crawling on the ground but then finds himself surrounded by enemy marines.

#83
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They were worse than outmaneuvered. They never even noticed Angron was in danger in the first place, save for "the few World Eaters in possession of their senses" mentioned in Betrayer (chapter 17, page 305). Lhorke was the only one the narration named among those, and it's easy to imagine all the others were the librarians.


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#84
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Semantics...the WE with the Nails fight with no tactics. They're not a legion, they're a berserk mob.

#85
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Yeah after reading it, the Warhounds could not hit the 31 hrs because there was an obvious disparity when they got their armoured support down and the infantry attacked with no heavy armour or artillery. 10-12 hrs to land 10k legionaries, not sure if that is a normal time either. I don't see WE being competent enough with logistics etc, similar to WS not being much better at things like that compared to UM or IW for instance to do it. Berserker horde is great when someone has your back, not so much on your own. Could imagine the SoH counter strikes against enemies attempting to outmaneuver WE etc. Also considering conventional tactics essentially made the berserker charge work, the nails did not really seem like much needed improvement. Angorn is a bit special, not everyone can end a planetary invasion in one attack all the time. 


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#86
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Always bothered me that the World Eaters never retained any tactical acumen in the conventional sense. Their combat seems arbitrary as does their whole organisation post nails. But how would a legion like that even function AT ALL? Should of had the nails remote control in the fluff, with sgts or captains or even big A flipping a switch to literally set them on KILL MODE


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#87
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That is the one thing I'm bothered by when talking World Eaters, too: If they are all frenzied loons, how do they fly Thunderhawks, steer tanks and all that? It seems like the rage would need to come in waves or somesuch, so they can actually organize at least a bit. But the way the rage is depicted, with the WEs or with Uzas in the Night Lords trilogy, they just go crazy and several hours later they might drop out of that for just a bit before succumbing to it again...


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#88
Knight of the Raven

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I'd need to reread all of Betrayer to dig out the quotes, but the Butcher's Nails only bite this hard when the World Eaters are in a genuine battle. Outside of actual warfare, they just have very, very short attention spans as soon as murdering something to death isn't the subject. They do manage to restrict themselves to first, second or third blood in the fighting pits, after all.

The World Eaters can make plans. It's just that the heat of battle makes these plans amount to 'these guys start the battle here, those guys there, those other guys...' There are also lulls in their blood frenzy, even if it tends to be only because they've butchered all enemies nearby, so there can be reactions and updates from their side. Or at least walking to the next frontline.

There are stages in the battle of Armatura, after all, if I recall correctly. And Khârn himself is pretty chill when he's not on the battlefield. A little too much, perhaps, because I've come to find him to be about as much a Nail-bitten World Eater as I find Serana to be an actual vampire in Skyrim: Dawnguard.

 

Fair question about the vehicles. I guess the context differs between having several inches of armor between you and the closest foe and having a chainaxe in your hand and a dead man walking in front of you.


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#89
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Khârn is highlighted as a very controlled warrior by WE standards, but to judge by Lhorke's thoughts, there was a minority capable of imposing some initial order until around the time of Ghenna.

#90
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Just finished it and I thought it was middling on the scale of primarch novels. Mago was a great character and I liked the war hounds stuff but the book wrapped up too suddenly as I had no idea what the significance of the SW turning up was. If mago had managed to get a transmission out it would have made more sense.

The disappearing for two years might have made sense if for the rest of the book Angron wasn't portrayed as a restless psychopath. Whilst he's on his hols he treats with men like a God and accepts their offerings but back home he kills anyone who looks at him wrong and doesn't engage with them. A scene with Russ might have fixed if a bit, a conversation with a peer giving some framework. Rather than Angron ngh Smash!

#91
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I actually like Wraight's version of the WE in his short story Rebirth more than the more frothing version later adopted by ADB and FW.

#92
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I actually like Wraight's version of the WE in his short story Rebirth more than the more frothing version later adopted by ADB and FW.

 

I'm having some trouble wrapping my head around this statement. Khârn literally froths at the mouth in that story:

 


Khârn towers over me. Froth spills from his lips, and his eyes bulge from their swollen sockets.

 

 


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#93
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Have you read how the WE are portrayed in combat in Rebirth...cuz if you have, you would be able to

#94
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Finished the audiobook. Took awhile due to life on my end (a story for another time).

I had an idea for my own version of an Angron Primarchs novel. I jotted it down before I read this specifically b/c I didn’t want my own ideas to be influenced by it and vice versa. Without going into details, suffice to say that I was pleased at how much my own ideas jived with some of the elements of this narrative.

For me, I can’t help, but wonder if it’s a style guide thing. There are many flashes of brilliance throughout the story, yet taken as a whole it’s a bit dull and “yea, of course the WE chopped up a planet.” On paper it’s a story about going from point A to point B, yet when everything we know about the subject of the story is already point B, then you need plenty of point A to contrast that. And IMO, there simply was not that.

Speaking of journey...any journey (including life itself) is so often less about the destinations and more about what you encounter song the road. And for me, these were the highlights of the story. As mentioned above, there are some truly brilliant moments scattered throughout and I would have loved to have spent more time with them if given the chance. Specifically,

-Nuceria
-“the cave”
-the pre-nails War Hounds

Spoiler


Suffice to say, Angron’s story was always a tragedy. An author’s job was to either strap us in to the train as it heads 200mph for that wreck of a tragedy...or...try to show us just what was lost and why it is a classic tragedy worth crying over. This one does not quite achieve the latter in the same the Fulgrim book does, nor does it quite go “hold onto your butts” mode of the former. It’s somewhere in between which is both it’s strength and weakness. It gives yo ya sense of what could have been, while also giving just enough further depth to what you already know to warrant an exploration.

IMO, absolutely worth reading.


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Edited by Indefragable, 23 August 2019 - 09:03 PM.

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#95
Tymell

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Have you read how the WE are portrayed in combat in Rebirth...cuz if you have, you would be able to

 

I have, and I'm still puzzled. They spring an ambush, I don't recall anything particularly special about their combat portrayal, and both in the general combat scenes and the scenes with Khârn, they're still shown as brutal and savage.

 

I'm mostly taken aback because I remember that being the big thing I disliked about Rebirth: that Khârn is shown as much more of a foaming-at-the-mouth monster than he usually is at this time. So it seems odd to hear someone specifically contrasting that, but in the reverse direction.


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#96
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~~~

 

 

Great review. Good enough that I'll even forgive you for defaming my beloved Ferrus Manus. ISM is a wonderful author and I look forward to whatever he puts out next, guy has a knack for space marines.

 

@b1soul- I too seem to recall Khârn being more of a raging psychotic in Rebirth than in Betrayer or otherwise. I'll grant it's a pretty decent evolution of the Khârn we got in Galaxy in Flames, but I'll take ADB's any day.


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#97
b1soul

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The WE in Rebirth are still tactically capable. I didn't say I prefer Khârn in Rebirth, I said I prefer the WE in Rebirth (and the implications regarding how they're able to operate as a fighting force).

They didn't just come at the TSons as a berserk chainaxe wielding mob of frothing madmen (a la Night of the Wolf or Armatura). They used cover, stealth, ambush, and ranged firepower to get the job done in a tactically efficient manner. They actually trapped their foes, rather than blindly chasing. In melee, it's clear that the WE are faster and stronger (and they don't just hack wildly), but the TSon sergeant (our friend Arvida) has combat precog and it evens out a bit.

#98
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I actually like Wraight's version of the WE in his short story Rebirth more than the more frothing version later adopted by ADB and FW.

I'm having some trouble wrapping my head around this statement. Khârn literally froths at the mouth in that story:

Khârn towers over me. Froth spills from his lips, and his eyes bulge from their swollen sockets.

To be fair - and I've given this short extensive thought - he's on Prospero in the aftermath of the Burning. All that ætheric unpleasantness is going to really screw with the Nails, and Khârn does maintain control for a time.

I might've actually raised the question with AD-B at some stage, though I don't know if he ever replied.

AD-B's take on the WE overall is fine by me because he couches it in terms of degradation and builds sequences and scenes out of the consequences.

Edited by bluntblade, 24 August 2019 - 08:10 AM.


#99
Indefragable

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Angron touches on the fact that someone who is first exposed to the nails is far more dangerous to contain than someone who has had them for a while.

Like someone who gets high on x substance for the first time compared to habitual user of several years.

Hence how Khârn is able to “ride the waves” in and out of combat once he’s had them for a bit.

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#100
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<snip>
I was hoping that this book would give me a bit of a view on the Warhounds or something that makes me think that the WEs are anything other than a bunch of desperate-for-daddy's-attention fools. Sadly, I'm not seeing it yet except a bit from Mago (dig him.) I loved seeing a marine stand up to Angron. Made them feel human for a moment and was the highlight of the book so far for me.


I do think there is some great new information on Warhound tactics. To me this was the big reveal.
Spoiler

Edited by Lord Lorne Walkier, 24 August 2019 - 08:20 PM.

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