I mean, them getting shut down on their "master plan" to dupe everyone, playing both sides plus their own, was the proper resolution. In their insane arrogance, they played themselves. They thought they knew better than everyone - be it Horus, the Cabal, Dorn, the Eldar, you name it - and.... turns out they didn't. They didn't get the payoff they were deluded enough to strive for even at the cost of putting their own Legion into a schism, with nobody trusting another even in their own ranks. And they never should have gotten that payoff in the first place.
Their inferiority complex turned into them believing themselves superior to their peers and cleverer than alien cabals, and even the Chaos Gods. It took Dorn to show them that they really weren't smarter than everyone, and now they're left with a broken Legion that doesn't even know what's what anymore, because they're still acting at cross-purposes towards a nebulous third path, with a half-Primarch having to abandon his own preparations while a large part of his sons acts independently towards designs he had no input on.
It's the perfect mess rooted in overestimating themselves.
Praetorian is an excellent novel but it really, really doesn't qualify as a resolution. (I'll note that Dorn was too pig-headed for any plan that involved talking to him to work, rather than them being outplotted as such.)
Except that we literally have a plot hook that Alpharius went in believing things were set up so that no matter how things went, the Alpha Legion was going to come out on top. You can say a lot about Alpharius's hubris, but it's narratively unsatisfying to go "Alpharius was literally making up in his private motive rant and there wasn't actually anything going on there beyond the guy known for intricate plots deciding to just wing it and do improv speech night with Dorn without anything else in mind". That isn't to say that the Alpha Legion's other plans worked, just that narratively speaking there obviously were other plans going on. Alpharius the character had a very specific and very certain belief that things were a win-win scenario, so what was the root of that belief?
The problem with the Alpha Legion as a whole is that writers haven't properly addressed their overall status in 40k as a Legion or how they arrived there from the events of the Heresy- and the idea of lack of internal trust isn't really one based in their narrative when every single time their themes are mentioned it talks about discipline, coordination, and unity of purpose, very often in out of character summaries. Paranoia/backstabbing is a defining theme for Iron Warriors and Night Lords, the AL less so.
The problem with the AL is they're missing at least two well-written novels: One in 40k showing what their status is that actually focuses on them as viewpoint characters so we can get the inside look the way we did with Night Lords and Death Guard- and a Scouring/post-Heresy novel to bridge the gap from "30k Legion with fingers in every pie" to whatever they are in 40k. We don't even know their legion status in 40k beyond snapshots of some warbands in the Eastern fringe post-Badab, some in the galactic core around that time, and a bunch of random oneoff warbands/villains of the week that pay lip service to being "Alpha Legion" because I guess the writer wanted CSM in blue armor rather than red that week- so the idea they're "broken" is more or less complete guesswork or extrapolation from decidedly unreliable footnotes. The Codex certainly doesn't say as much.
(Meanwhile in the Indomitus era, we apparently have the ones partying with Abaddon, playing merry hell in Pacificus as well as the Ultima Segmentum ghost ship?)
We have a better idea of who's who in the Iron Warriors and how their set-up works than we do the Alpha Legion- and while it being open-ended is nice, I'd rather like a proper 40k supplement or novel to shut down ridiculousness like "lol they're broken". I'm not saying to reveal everything and shut down homebrew, but they're in dire need of an ABD Night Lords or Lords of Silence-type novel about proper Alpha Legion that gives us a peek behind the curtain, rather than "warband that literally has no idea what's going on with the galaxy" or "literally random renegades dressing up". The Index Astartes was nice but we need something slightly more concrete.
On the subject of the Primarch novels, I do hope they hand Alpharius's novel to someone who at least does the research or is vague enough for missteps to be brushed over. This is a case where a badly written novel could seriously hurt the faction's already sparse lore.
Also, on the subject of bad writing, I don't know why Swallow keeps getting Blood Angels stories. It's doing no one any favors, really.
Edited by Lucerne, 10 September 2020 - 08:30 PM.