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Abaddon given a bad rap


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#1
TorvaldTheMild

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Anyone think the term 'failbaddon' is so undeserved?  Chaos have been sent to the Eye of Terror after being demolished by the Imperium, they have no real natural resources and the resources they have are scavenged from loyalists etc. the spend most of their time fighting with themselves through their God allegiances or even among the undivided and yet Abaddon has destroyed the Cadian gate and split the galaxy in two isolating one half from the other and is the biggest threat the Imperium has faced since the HH but people still keep saying he's a failure.


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#2
Brother Tyler

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You may find this topic of interest, particularly the link to a post that AD-B made in his blog.


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#3
Khornestar

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I would say yes, undeserved.

With unoriginal humorous intent, like most internet memes, maybe it starts out funny enough, and then a decade passes and somehow it survives.

Read what GW has written about their characters. “Headcanon” and memes are cheap, shallow substitutes.
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#4
Marshal Loss

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I do understand why some people view Abaddon negatively, particularly in the great echo chamber that is the internet. But him being successful isn't a matter of opinion, it's a fact; no other could have done what he's done. He's the Antichrist of 40k. We're fortunate to have ADB as the character's champion in this respect.


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#5
Brother Ramael

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I believe he doesn't deserve the bad rep but he'd definitely do better with a pair of arms.


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#6
Karhedron

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The meme went back to circa 3rd edition when the 13th Black Crusade was first introduced as a worldwide campaign. In the campaign Chaos did well in 40K battles but was fairly trounced in Battlefleet Gothic. The Dev team interpreted this as Chaos doing a lot of damage to Cadia but failing to break through the Cadian Gate in overall terms. This led to the supposition that Adabbon had tried to take the Cadian Gate 13 times and failed.

This was later retconned or expanded to explain that the previous Black Crusades had had different objectives. The first resulted in the death of Rogal Dorn, the last know loyalist Primarch. The 12th was retconned as the Gothic War which saw Abaddon seize 2 of the Blackstone Fortresses which had been used to guard the Gothic Sector. Previous "defeats" were now described as steps in a masterplan that the Imperium had failed to spot.

Suffice to say I think that Fail-baddon memes are long obsolete at this point but held some validity back in the day.
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#7
tangoalphatwo

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All I know is that the two ADB books about Abaddon are some of my favorite books, not just in the Black Library, but ever. Since I was a kid, with his original release, Abaddon has been a total bad ass in my opinion.
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#8
Snazzy

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Suffice to say I think that Fail-baddon memes are long obsolete at this point but held some validity back in the day.

 

We are living in a post Saturnine world in which Abaddon has been spelled out to have been the biggest living loser in 40k.  His rush to finish the Siege of Terra decapitated the Sons of Horus, set the Emperor's Children against the rest of the Legions, laying the foundation for the Slave Wars.  Abaddon's failure instead accelerated the timeline, forcing Horus to drop the shields and face the Emperor.  History teaches us that even souped up with Chaos power, Horus could not win against the Emperor.  The only chance the traitors had was to win the Siege of Terra and face the Emperor en mass.  In effect, the failure of the Horus Heresy was not that of Horus, but Abaddon and to a lesser extent Little Horus.

 

After the Heresy Abaddon abanddons his Legion, leading to it being hollowed out, and the body of Horus stolen.

 

In his defense, Abaddon is a born loser.  The scope of his ambitions demands that he falls just short.  If he succeeded, that's the end of the Imperium.  Instead, he wins some victories and ultimately retreats.  He has to.  He cannot be another Horus.


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#9
BluejayJunior

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I think you're putting too much of the blame on Abaddon for that. The plan was ultimately signed off on by Perturabo. And it was a good plan itself. Dorn was just able to counter it very effectively (after only discovering the flaw through sheer luck). 

To me, the battle's outcome rests far more on Dorn's plan and it's near flawless execution than any fault of Abaddon. It still took 3-4 of the Loyalists' best swordsmen to almost kill Abaddon. 

Even Dorn's victory at Saturnine came at the cost of losing on the of the spaceports. 


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#10
Lucerne

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Just going to note that, in universe, Talos trash-talked Abaddon to his face.


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#11
TorvaldTheMild

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Just going to note that, in universe, Talos trash-talked Abaddon to his face.

Unlike Horus; Abaddon has self control.



#12
Putrid Choir

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Suffice to say I think that Fail-baddon memes are long obsolete at this point but held some validity back in the day.


We are living in a post Saturnine world in which Abaddon has been spelled out to have been the biggest living loser in 40k. His rush to finish the Siege of Terra decapitated the Sons of Horus, set the Emperor's Children against the rest of the Legions, laying the foundation for the Slave Wars. Abaddon's failure instead accelerated the timeline, forcing Horus to drop the shields and face the Emperor. History teaches us that even souped up with Chaos power, Horus could not win against the Emperor. The only chance the traitors had was to win the Siege of Terra and face the Emperor en mass. In effect, the failure of the Horus Heresy was not that of Horus, but Abaddon and to a lesser extent Little Horus.

After the Heresy Abaddon abanddons his Legion, leading to it being hollowed out, and the body of Horus stolen.

In his defense, Abaddon is a born loser. The scope of his ambitions demands that he falls just short. If he succeeded, that's the end of the Imperium. Instead, he wins some victories and ultimately retreats. He has to. He cannot be another Horus.

To me, Horus *losing* and Abaddon's *failures* are just anti-hero plot armor. The heresy happened because of the Chaos God's corruption. It was really them vs the Emperor. The 9 traitor Legions are just pawns to them. The Chaos Gods wanted the Emperor out of the way and the Imperium to be hurt, not destroyed. The constant strife and emotion is what feeds them. So Abaddon (and Horus by that extant) can't be too successful.

I still think he is badass. Never was a fan of his hair though. Go bald with dignity bro.

#13
MegaVolt87

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Just going to note that, in universe, Talos trash-talked Abaddon to his face.

Unlike Horus; Abaddon has self control.

You got that the wrong way around. Abaddon would have killed Talos for that if there were no plans for Talos. Horus would have eitner shrugged it off and make a joke to defuse the situation or intimidate the critic etc. Lifting his hand would be the last thing he would do in such a situation. Abaddon runs the CSM like Ghaz runs the orks- by being the best ead crumpa.
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#14
Xenith

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Anyone think the term 'failbaddon' is so undeserved?  Chaos have been sent to the Eye of Terror after being demolished by the Imperium, they have no real natural resources and the resources they have are scavenged from loyalists etc. the spend most of their time fighting with themselves through their God allegiances or even among the undivided and yet Abaddon has destroyed the Cadian gate and split the galaxy in two isolating one half from the other and is the biggest threat the Imperium has faced since the HH but people still keep saying he's a failure.

 

The term 'failbaddon' is a lazy meme used only by people who have never actually read any of the background to the 40k universe. They assumed that because there was a 13th crusade, all the others failed. 

 

It's literally 2+ decades old that the 1st Black Crusade was to claim Drach'nyen, which he obviously did.


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#15
Morovir

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Just going to note that, in universe, Talos trash-talked Abaddon to his face.

Unlike Horus; Abaddon has self control.

You got that the wrong way around. Abaddon would have killed Talos for that if there were no plans for Talos. Horus would have eitner shrugged it off and make a joke to defuse the situation or intimidate the critic etc. Lifting his hand would be the last thing he would do in such a situation. Abaddon runs the CSM like Ghaz runs the orks- by being the best ead crumpa.

 

 

This is actually addressed by ADB in his Character Week 2020 interview a few months ago. He states that basically, Abaddon couldn't care less about what Talos said. He's only meeting him as a favour to The Exalted. For Talos, it is the greatest day of his life, getting to tell the Warmaster to his face just what he thinks of him, deluded as he may be. For Abaddon, it was just a case of "Mm-hm, you done?". 


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#16
Closet Skeleton

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You got that the wrong way around. Abaddon would have killed Talos for that if there were no plans for Talos. Horus would have eitner shrugged it off and make a joke to defuse the situation or intimidate the critic etc. Lifting his hand would be the last thing he would do in such a situation. Abaddon runs the CSM like Ghaz runs the orks- by being the best ead crumpa.

 

 

Pre-corruption Horus would have shrugged it off, there's not supposed to be much left of that guy by Terra.

 

Abaddon is the best 'ead crumpa to those of his followers who respond best to that sort of thing. The Black Legion books make it clear he can inspire loyalty in those who have loyalty to give, but that just isn't a majority of Chaos Space Marines.


Edited by Closet Skeleton, 19 October 2020 - 10:37 AM.


#17
Prot

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This is a topic that always draws .... heated conversation since I can ever remember.

 

ADB getting involved sometimes made it a nightmare to moderate. So please, let's keep it civil, and let's remember we all have our take on Abaddon... there is no right or wrong here.

 

I confess as a huge Black Legion fan I've been involved in many of those conversations. But sincerely I say that I've been anti-Abaddon for the longest time, and my mind has changed over time.

 

The number one reason for this is the way Abaddon is now written in the modern novels (even though those Abaddon moments stretch from deep in the past, to the present story lines.)

 

Abaddon used to be written as a grunt with an ego issue and (to me) there was no sense of leadership with his 'space thuggery' as I called it. (Leading by fear only gets you so far.)

 

But who cares? Time has passed, and a LOT of authors have changed my mind. But I confess it still feels strange to read Abaddon as a well thought, plotting master of opportunity and patience.... I can't tell you how weird that is as a long time fan of the genre.

 

Nevertheless that's how he is written now. Abaddon had a personality transplant some time ago. Space thug no more. In fact I would say the way I see him written now is -extremely- similar to how I've always seen Huron written. (Another fave of mine.) Huron, similar to Abaddon, wields a lot of power, and in modern writing they both share the same dry wit, and a sense of weird honour, and duty. They both strike you as someone that you definitely want on your side, however, there is this psychotic anger boiling below the surface of that personality and you know it is capable of phenomenal destruction. Both are tortured souls, yet  like most good villains, they have a side that many of us can relate to.

 

I literally just finished reading small passage from Saturnine: (SPOILER POSSIBLE:)

Spoiler

 

The rest of the mournival thinks Abaddon wastes his time, but he is the patient hunter now. He takes these opportunities now to soak in anything that improves his own tactical expertise and his humbled in front of such a master, putting his own ego aside. 

 

So is this the Abaddon I read about in my first 10 years of 40K? Not one bit. Do I like the 'new' one better? Heck yea. The old one was a cartoon space bully.

 

How does this relate to him being good or bad? I found during the transplant of his personality that GW/Black Library have almost made.... a concentrated effort to make sure these major/minor conquests of Abaddon are all part of a grander scheme. 

 

This is a far cry from what I used to call the ' drunk uncle' you had to roll off your couch every Christmas get together. Abaddon -was- that guy. The Imperium (family) had to put up with him once a year, listen to his boasting and delusional statements, wait for him to crash on the couch, pass some gas, roll him into a cab at midnight, and send him back in to the warp. 

 

Not anymore. He is a calculated psycho who does not fail! Now these are all steps, carefully executed over the millennium to an ultimate goal. 

 

So to me... the current Abaddon has certainly shaken the Fail Abaddon mantra, but it has taken the collective works of quite a few great authors.


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#18
Snazzy

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Abaddon has been a master plotter since at least Battlefleet Gothic.


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#19
MegaVolt87

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Well, something has gone wrong somewhere, Vigilus ablaze puts him right back to his classic moustache twirling Saturday cartoon villain self, then as Prot says Saturine bulks up his character growth a lot. Then he salty and just sends the planet killer on the way to Vigilus basically after the Vengful Spirit is trashed even more than it was and he left a non bootlicker CSM Lt in charge on the bridge ready to do a runner without him on board. Doesn't really put his leadership and command abilities in a good light in Vigilus Ablaze IMO.

 

I think Vigilus Ablaze was just bottled up for so long no one bothered to check it and do a revision in the relevant lore sections. Also it annoys me that Abaddon seemingly has one of the best set of recourses available to him, but can't get the Vengful Spirit back to 100% functionality for the new age on, but Macragge's Honour, the Phalanx etc can seemingly stay at 100% functionality for 10k+ years in a technologically declining Imperium? facepalm.png


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#20
Snazzy

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I think Vigilus Ablaze was just bottled up for so long no one bothered to check it and do a revision in the relevant lore sections. Also it annoys me that Abaddon seemingly has one of the best set of recourses available to him, but can't get the Vengful Spirit back to 100% functionality for the new age on, but Macragge's Honour, the Phalanx etc can seemingly stay at 100% functionality for 10k+ years in a technologically declining Imperium? facepalm.png

 

Didn't you hear?  They opened a Black Cell.  A Black Cell!

 

Abaddon was done badly post Cadia because ultimately everything was a set up to the return of RB and the Indomitus Crusade.  Then again, it increasingly feels like everything that has happened in 40K was in service to RB and the Primaris.


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#21
Lucerne

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Chaos in general gets shafted in narrative where it doesn't have resources on screen it obviously should have maintained.


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#22
Gederas

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Well, something has gone wrong somewhere, Vigilus ablaze puts him right back to his classic moustache twirling Saturday cartoon villain self, then as Prot says Saturine bulks up his character growth a lot. Then he salty and just sends the planet killer on the way to Vigilus basically after the Vengful Spirit is trashed even more than it was and he left a non bootlicker CSM Lt in charge on the bridge ready to do a runner without him on board. Doesn't really put his leadership and command abilities in a good light in Vigilus Ablaze IMO.

 

I think Vigilus Ablaze was just bottled up for so long no one bothered to check it and do a revision in the relevant lore sections. Also it annoys me that Abaddon seemingly has one of the best set of recourses available to him, but can't get the Vengful Spirit back to 100% functionality for the new age on, but Macragge's Honour, the Phalanx etc can seemingly stay at 100% functionality for 10k+ years in a technologically declining Imperium? facepalm.png

Well, wasn't Macragge's Honour basically mothballed for those 10k years?

And Phalanx actually WAS declining in functionality. The Imperial Fists supplement and Adeptus Custodes codex both state that it was at far less functionality and that the Custodes help was the only way for Phalanx to start working again like she once was



#23
Daemon Prince Marbas

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I think Abaddon has the same problem as Perturabo. His writing is inconsistent. The Horus Heresy series makes him seem like a thuggish brute while The Siege of Terra and Black Legion novels make him seem like a calculating Warrior King capable of inspiring both great admiration and fear in his followers and others, including the audience. Then like someone mentioned earlier, Vigilus Ablaze and The Fall of Cadia just make him seem like a brute again. I think we need to remember that while everything is canon not everything is true as GW has said before. So basically, pick the idea of Abaddon- you prefer. If you prefer the megalomaniacal, ultraviolent gangster version of Abaddon, that's great! If you prefer the version where Abaddon is a noble heretic astartes ruthlessly fighting for Astartes unity and to tear down an empire that he believes had betrayed it's greatest warriors and builders then that's great too! I think what's great about these larger than life figures GW gives us in the narrative is we can disagree about their nature and everyone is right in a way.
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#24
TorvaldTheMild

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Just going to note that, in universe, Talos trash-talked Abaddon to his face.

Unlike Horus; Abaddon has self control.

You got that the wrong way around. Abaddon would have killed Talos for that if there were no plans for Talos. Horus would have eitner shrugged it off and make a joke to defuse the situation or intimidate the critic etc. Lifting his hand would be the last thing he would do in such a situation. Abaddon runs the CSM like Ghaz runs the orks- by being the best ead crumpa.

 

You couldn't be more wrong.  Abaddon has resisted the Chaos gods for 10,000 years he knew the mistake Horus made and is one of the most self controlled individuals in the 40k universe, regardless of Talos.



#25
Lucerne

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"gangster" and "idealist" aren't entirely mutually exclusive either, especially depending on who he has to deal with tongue.png


Edited by Lucerne, 21 October 2020 - 12:45 AM.

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