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Blood of the Emperor (Primarchs Anthology)


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#1
Roomsky

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Blood of the Emperor

 

I liked this whole collection. Some are much stronger than others, but with one exception it exemplifies what I like out of the Heresy: exploring the Primarchs at an arms’ length, through someone else’s lens. It is, to me, restraint that produces the best Heresy stories rather than a bald account of events.

 

Lupus Daemonis - Graham McNeill

The one exception. Not a lot to say about this one, its goal is to flesh out Chthonia, just a little, and it does that well enough. While it doesn’t have the distance I prefer, it’s obtuse enough that it never goes too far or too wacky. It’s fine.

 

Skjalds - Nick Kyme

Better in concept than execution – the idea that a group of hunters share their versions of Russ` legend is a great idea. The story focusses overmuch on the hunt rather than these disparate tales, but it’s still surprisingly good, especially for Kyme.

 

The Sixth Cult of the Denied - David Guymer

I’ve been missing good Guymer for a while, and this delivers. The pacing’s good and it keeps mostly to conversation to fill the story. The concept here is great too, Magnus having a sort of Nikea-in-miniature for one of his sons (with unsurprisingly, a similar result.) Full of character and a bit of TS philosophy.

 

The Will of the Legion - Andy Clark

Probably the weakest entry, but still decent. I praised Clark’s work on Gate of Bones but in terms of actual writing quality he’s nothing special. It’s mostly an action sequence with some ruminating about Dorn’s manner of warfare. It does let us see Yonnad in action though, and paints a good arms-length picture of the primarch, especially for so short a story.

 

Council of Truth - Mike Brooks

The Alpharius tale I’ve been waiting for, relegated to a good but unfortunately short story. I usually have no problem with the Heresy’s additions, but for the Alpha Legion they all but threw away his establishing character moment and motivator in favor of everything about Legion. This story doesn’t correct that, but it does at least finally acknowledge the Guilliman incident. On its own, it’s pretty great.

 

Terminus - Chris Wraight

Arms-length considerations about Daemon Mortarion and the Doom of the Death Guard. If you disliked The Buried Dagger, read this instead. It’s 1/20th the length and leaves more room for interpretation, while addressing the necessary beats. Standard high-quality Wraight.

 

 

Overall I think this is the best Primarchs anthology released so far. Every entry is at least solid and again, it’s nice to see some restraint for once. It preserves what little gravitas these characters have left.

 

To Taste (it’s an anthology, what do you expect?)

8/10


Edited by Roomsky, 27 March 2021 - 02:13 AM.

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#2
Marshal Loss

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Terminus - Chris Wraight

Arms-length considerations about Daemon Mortarion and the Doom of the Death Guard. If you disliked The Buried Dagger, read this instead.

Guess I better give this a purchase!


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#3
malika666

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Spoilers?


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#4
Marshal Loss

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Terminus was absolutely bloody fantastic. Best short story I've read from BL in years. Makes me sad that we missed out on a Wraight Fall of the DG novel, but with this & Lords of Silence, any lost ground is more than made up.


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#5
Blood-worm's Master

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Am I the only one finding the events in Lupus Daemonis' ending strange to the point of being anticlimatic?

Spoiler


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#6
Darkwrath121

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Am I the only one finding the events in Lupus Daemonis' ending strange to the point of being anticlimatic?

Spoiler

You're not the only one. It's very... McNeill!
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#7
malika666

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Erm...elaborate?

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#8
Lucerne

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Maybe the real Alpharius

Spoiler

 

tongue.png

 

More seriously though the Alpharius one was fine if nothing ground-shaking. Gave us a nice little set of motive rants.


Edited by Lucerne, 29 March 2021 - 12:35 AM.

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#9
Tymell

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Spoilers?

 

Lupus Daemonis:

Spoiler

 

Skjalds:

Spoiler

 

The Sixth Cult of the Denied:

Spoiler

 

The Will of the Legion:

Spoiler

 

Council of Truth:

Spoiler

 

Terminus:

Spoiler

 

Anywho, as a whole I felt this anthology was a mixed bag. None of the stories were terrible, but several were held back by certain aspects.

 

Spoiler

 

I give it a 7/10 as a whole. A couple of great stories, a couple of fairly forgettable ones, and a couple with some good promise held back by certain points of execution.


Edited by Tymell, 08 April 2021 - 01:12 PM.

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#10
Urauloth

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Hold up, there's Wraight Death Guard content in this? I somehow missed that fact. I'll go order this immediately.


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Its lonely cry comes shivering through the dark,

As beasts roar at the great biting flames,

"Blessed are the chains that bind him to the darkness

and cursed are the blades that leave him lame"


#11
matcap86

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As someone who's usually pretty okay with anything BL puts out and fond of Anthologies, this was a rare disappointment for me. Only The sixth cult of the denied and Terminus where alright for me and even those fell kinda flat? With Lupus Daemonis being just weird (not in a good way) introducing character traits and paradigms that fly against what we've seen so far.

5/10 if you like death guard

Edited by matcap86, 09 April 2021 - 06:58 AM.


#12
Urauloth

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weird (not in a good way) introducing character traits and paradigms that fly against what we've seen so far
 

 

I would probably summarize my whole Heresy experience with McNeill like this, honestly.


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Its lonely cry comes shivering through the dark,

As beasts roar at the great biting flames,

"Blessed are the chains that bind him to the darkness

and cursed are the blades that leave him lame"


#13
StrangerOrders

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weird (not in a good way) introducing character traits and paradigms that fly against what we've seen so far


I would probably summarize my whole Heresy experience with McNeill like this, honestly.
I do not understand why they keep letting him near that Legion and the VIth too for that matter.

Leaving him near any legion with 'wolf' in its name is like leaving a baby alone with a jackal.
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#14
Splog

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6/10

 

Wraight's Death Guard story stands out from the others (in a good way).

 

Overall, I was left feeling that I was only really reading the stories to be current/complete in reading the Horus Heresy. 

 

Spoiler


Edited by Splog, 22 April 2021 - 06:39 PM.

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#15
byrd9999

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Just finished Lupus Daemonis, and I can see what you are saying. It follows McNeill's classic predictability, rather than bothering with any kind of character arcs, developments, twists or turns. Adult Horus is fed-up of bloodthirsty tyrants, so he rebels by wanting to kill the closest thing he has to a father? So of course little boy Horus has to do the same as well. This kind of on-the-nose storytelling is what really frustrates me about McNeill's writing.

 

And thankfully Horus' primarch pod has golden lightning Emperor-brand awareness on it, rather than being a functional piece of equipment, otherwise we wouldn't be able to make the connection facepalm.png  If the Emperor had really made the primarch pods golden with lightning flashes on them, he deserves to lose the galactic civil war.


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#16
Doghouse

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Not having read Luper Daemonis and based on what people are saying here it's genuinely sounding a lot like the plot to Spiderman.


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#17
byrd9999

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I don't know Spiderman, but there's certainly an element of Incredible Hulk about it... maybe McNeill has spent too long in LA lol.

 

And so was little boy Horus bald too, or when the magic code word was spoken and Horus bulked out, is that when he went bald?



#18
Ubiquitous1984

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I was really looking forward to this anthology, but I found it only 'ok'.  Sons and Scions were both superior IMO.  






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