40K: How Much Can GW Shake Up the Grimdark


Every company wants to inject new blood into old franchises – but just how far is GW willing to go?


It’s time to give 40K a shot in the arm!

Time to Liven Things Up

OK, with all the rumors of the End Times approaching for the Imperium, it’s safe to say that GW may be looking to shake things up a bit for 30 year old 40K.

Age of Sigmar HAS been a shot of creativity – injected straight into the beating heart of the GW Design Studio – and I bet the regular staff is excited to flex their creative muscles in such a black slate of a universe.  Now think about switching gears at your desk job from designing for a 2 year old franchise to working on a very very mature one older than many of the staff.

I think GW knows better than to do a giant reset.  I would bet good money there will be no Old World style “End Times” coming for the Grimdark.  But the trick would be – how do you add a lot of spice and new life into the Grimdark, not invalidate every bit of lore and codex out there – yet give every faction something cool to excite the players and non-coincidentally spike sales?

I think you can go faction by faction, and see not the details, but the general direction GW seems to be going to liven things up.  Let’s get started:


Advancing the Story


Chaos: Based on every rumor we have been hearing – it looks like for Abaddon, the 13th time’s the charm.  A successful Black Crusade headed to Terra with a handful of Daemon Primarchs and the ruinous powers in tow will liven things up quite a bit. There were hints in Traitor’s Hate that Abaddon is trying to work some sorcery and create a warprift from the Eye of Terror all the way to Terra.  That would be exciting (for chaos).


The Imperium: I would assume a 2nd Siege of Terra would count as a major shakeup.  Exotic sub-factions like the Sisters of Silence,  Custodes, Deathwatch, and the Inquisition could all get in on the “backs against the wall” action. If the Adeptus Mechanicus have any crazy secrets hidden in the closets of Mars (and you know those nutters do) – this would be the time to pull them out (and get them on the store shelves for us to buy).  The Space Marines and Astra Militarum would of course pitch in. Who knows maybe some no-name chapters would get wiped out in heroic defense of Holy Terra (the Bell of Lost Souls tolls for the Imperial Meercats, who fell to a man defending the outer marches of the Sol system).


Tau: GW has been dropping not so subtle hints of the Tau messing with warp engines. Give the blue dudes the ability to travel great distances and hook them up with some new allies and you have a recipe for a serious “good xenos” counterweight to the Imperium.


Eldar: Remember a few months back when Eldrad and the Harlequins were trying to create a new Eldar God to destroy Slaanesh?  Funny how the Death Masque boxed set came and went in a weekend.  I’m sure those loose plot threads are going to get pulled on and the the Dark Kin will be sucked into the mix.  A reborn Eldar race without the fear of Slaanesh is something the Imperium , Necrons, and Chaos most of all would fear.


Misc Xenos.  Sometimes it sucks to be the bit players on the stage. I have zero idea where GW will take the Orks, Tyranids and Necrons, but as we have seen in past eras, when the Imperium is distracted dealing with a mortal threat (Abaddon), all the hooligans start causing trouble all over the place.  I would expect big areas of the Imperium to crack up and be lost to Xenos domination.


Oh yeah – I almost forgot – Cypher.  He’s gonna show up at the foot of the Golden Throne with that sword before this is all over…

~What much of a shakeup would you get behind for your favorite faction to liven up a new edition of 40K?




  • elShoggotho

    Now will it be an injection of fresh blood, or a syringe full of diarrhea, like they used for the fantasy counterpart?

    • Seienchin

      Warhammer 40k fans are almost immune to diarrhea it seems. Most have no problems with BS like genious Orks having their attack moons suddenly appearing over Terra garnished with a unhealthy dose of plot convenience to render the empire defenseless…

      • Maitre Lord Ironfist

        It was so friggin awesome x) Here the “Rule of cool” os aplied, It might be stupid as hell, but at the same time it is so mindstunnig awesomely stupid that it ist so much Ork. Yes, it was just awesome

      • That’s overly simplifying it, isn’t it? Left alone for 1500 years, it is far from unreasonable to have the orks, which are always prone to ebb and flow but resurface with a vengeance, make big leaps and be led by towering Prime-Orks.
        The Imperium’s defenselessness was pretty much down to the High Lords being incompetent brickheads, too. Never tackling the problems properly, instead falling apart.

        • Seienchin

          Yeah indeed its over simplifying it. Sorry. I left out details like super genious orks who are willing to lead together defying all laws of the ork society, the imperial fists getting nearly wiped out again (Seriously GW writers… Stop it), the moon being able to talk, Star Trek Borg like subspace transportation techno babble (for the orks…) and some heroes sacrificing themselves after seeing how they cant win on their own. And left alone for 1500 years? Orks were left alone for FAR longer in the age of strife when warp travel was almost impossible and they didnt evolve at all. Even buying that orks getting smarter (which was absolutely not the plan when they were created), the whole series plotline is just beyond crazy.

          • Damistar

            Ork evolution is driven by the strength of their opposition. During the Age of Strife they were pretty well isolated as much as humanity. They also formed multiple empires, such as the one defeated at Ullanor. The Beast arose from that defeat against the might of the Great Crusade. Orkses are always ready for another go…

          • Muninwing

            so ork evolution (orkalution?) operates how people who don’t understand evolution think it works? that’s oddly fitting. and maybe better to attract the religious/illiterate/kansas outlier markets?

          • Damistar

            No, I think they’re strictly Darwinian (survival of the fittest). What I’m saying is that it takes an outside influence to cause the Orks to adapt, which they are engineered to do. For example: An isolated Ork world has a feral level of technology (the Orks hit each other with rocks). Enter an AdMech explorator force which shoots up the place. One of the surviving Orks will develop into a Mek, who will create shootas. Another might start making Deffdreads. But it takes that initial challenge to make them change.

          • Muninwing

            and those changes are reasonably immediate, and can happen to individuals instead of over long streches of time to populations.

            one thing changes into another immediately instead of being selected with survival and passing along traits to future generations.

            it’s more of a reaction to stimulus than an evolution. less darwin, more pokemon.

          • Damistar

            I guess it would depend on the Orkoid spores and whether the adaptations in the Ork are encoded in them. I know the Orks have DNA (animal and fungoid) as there has been pictures of the helix in older codexes. I guess I’ll need to dig out my Xenology book and look into it.

          • The Imperial Fists *did* get wiped out. All of them. They were reformed, which also “fixes” a problem with the lore concerning the recorded Chapter Masters and the shift in being a fully defensive force on Terra and an active galactic force.

            The Orks had a mighty, technologically-advanced society going on before Ullanor. Gorro saw the Emperor almost defeated by a big ork before Horus saved him. Anybody remember that? They had crazy levels of technology and society then, before being shut down.
            Heck, all of this even ties back into Ghazghkull in the end, being the successor to these empires of old.

      • ZeeLobby

        That whole series sounded pretty dumb. Fluff recently has suffered on both sides.

        • I was let down by it, I though it would actually be about the Orks. But no. The Orks are just this thing in the back that the characters stand in front of. the imperial politicking is the actual story, so if you like that sort of thing it’s interesting enough.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            I found it deeply fascinating and fun.

          • I’ve enjoyed most of it. I’m not hating it. There are some very fun characters and some that are..Side quests. I had high expectation of Stuff from the Orks pov and that’s not really these from what I’ve read. I’m only on book 5 or 6.

          • SYSTem050

            To be fair that actually sounds more interesting to me. Don’t really like the black library that is just page after page of fighting. Imperial political intrigue sounds good. Presumably though it is still let down by ham fisted black library writing style

          • I think that should have advertised much stronger. There’s a lot to take in, the goings on and plots. One thing I like is the characters don’t seem to change when another writer takes over. Nothing drastic and out of character.

        • Muninwing

          it can’t be as bad as the Warzone Damocles fluff writing, or the first few releases for AoS….

      • Not defenseless enough there are 12 book, it should have been over in 3.

      • LordKrungharr

        It’s not that’s we 40kers are immune to diarrhea, but rather we don’t mind it because it is so easy to wipe up afterwards rather than the sticky usual.

        • Muninwing

          “things we don’t need to know about your diet or health” for 400 alex…

  • Old zogwort

    Half of the universe can die and it will still be grim dark. Them suddenly making peace and cultivating flowers would break the setting.

    • Seienchin

      DONT temp GW like that… People thought the same about warhammer fantasy but nobody could have dreamed how twisted the end times were and how utterly riddiculous and stereotypical 2016 the successor in its style and story would be ( I like AoS’s gameplay though. Pretty nice ideas and sometimes faster than warhammer fantasy)

      • vlad78

        But anything would be faster than WFB!!

        • Seienchin

          Yeah but that was the joke 😉 Its sadly only sometimes faster… Some battles in AoS take forever thanks to all the special rules per units, endless checking of your stats (its not like before where every normal dwarf has T4 or something like that) and monsters getting weaker after losing life (great mechanic but having 3 monsters on the field is just painful… Never have more then 2 stages please…)

          • Frank Krifka

            thank god you’re not a game designer…

          • Muninwing

            the rules are only for pages!

            except all the special rules that are now on the individual warscrolls instead of in one convenient book…

            it’s like a split-level house. looks like a colonial with a lot of room. actually is just a really tall ranch with a garage in the basement. looks like a deal because it’s rearranged, but isn’t because it’s not an actual improvement.

    • Muninwing

      one race on one planet won’t suddenly start doing that; how would it just magically start over a billion planets and xenos with fundamentally different thought-patterns or even brain-wirings?

  • Nyyppä

    I fail to see how invalidating every codex is a bad thing if A) that leads to better balance and B) it’s free for the gamers. If the balance would be awesome I would gladly pay for the new material too. Then again if the balance problems do not get fixed I’ll still buy nothing from them.

    • Old zogwort

      This is something else. Them invalidating the army I play would perhaps not break the setting but would sure upset me ; ) . You don’t need to AoS / squat all codexes, that would not necessary balance things,theyjust need to make the new 8th codexes more balanced.

      • Nyyppä

        Sure. I just don’t think that they can manage that.

        • ZeeLobby

          Bingo! I have zero faith they can manage the game system.

          • Marc Buckingham

            They have had 8 goes at it already….

          • ZeeLobby

            Some were better/worse than others. Lately it’s just all seemed downhill though. And nothing I’ve seen from them so far looks like they’re willing to spend the money/effort to REALLY fix it. Just a lot of bandaids.

      • Muninwing

        70% of that would just be to take units as they are and apply a proper points-algorithm to them.

        if fan-made balancers for AoS were able to make that half-done game playable and reasonably balanced in the early days, then i’m betting someone can write an algorithm incorporating all the variances of 40k that would assign more proper points values.

  • Leo

    If I want a story, I read a book. I prefer from a setting a different kind of expansion, like new races and places to explore.

    • Mark of Death

      Exactly this. They were giving an amazing setting to play with by some great people in the 80s. Just make more amazing things in that setting. The galaxy is a big place

      • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

        I think a lot of people don’t realise its a setting and just think it is a very slow moving story!

        • Leo

          There is a lot to explore in the timeline as well… just in the past, see what they did with Horus Heresy. Exploring new systems or going back to, say, age of apostasy, could be a way to have a change some people apparently need without ruining it for everyone else.

          • Muninwing

            i’ve mentioned that before… that the Age of Apostasy and each of the Black Crusades, as well as a ton of other events, are each in themselves a whole new expansion.

            if they ever release plastic sisters, i’d love to see a whole series of campaigns for the AoA that would be that kind of “shake the game up” without giving it nowhere to go later.

  • Vayle

    I think if abbaddon is going to siege Terra, the emperor will awaken again and we will see the 40K universe with a living emperor… let me quote this from the codex cult mechanicus:
    “The Tech-Priest custodians at work in the Emperor’s Palace uncover irrevocable failures in the mechanisms of the Golden Throne. A dozen contingency expeditions are immediately launched, including a Xanthite war procession sent through the Exhubris Portal. The Xanthites fight through Harlequin Troupes and Daemon hordes alike before reaching their intended destination. In the grave-cold oubliettes beneath Commorragh, a
    dark bargain is struck.”

    and this from the dark eldar codex:
    “… but the Haemonculi have the power to bestow – or withhold – life after death.”

    • euansmith
      • neverness

        “Souuuls. Feed me souuuuls!”

    • Maitre Lord Ironfist

      I prefer they jsut let him die, since he was created by shamans in the first place when they combined they Souls. So why not have the sacrifice of Bazillions of Psykers have the same effect now. The throne does not fail, it just reached the point where its job is done.

      • euansmith

        They could go all 40,000th Dalai Lama and have a “Quest for the Emperor Child” story line, in which all the “goodies” and “baddies” in the 40k Universe are scouring the Galaxy for the Emperor’s reincarnated soul. The throne could still be functioning as the Astronomican, but failing.

      • Red_Five_Standing_By

        You do realize the Throne is what is keeping the doors closed to a gate way that leads directly to the warp? If it fails, the whole of Terra will be consumed by daemons, potentially becoming the heart of a second Eye of Terror.

        • Jack Jomar

          This and the void dragon… it slumbers under the sands of Mars

    • Emprah

      What happens if we combine two of the greatest trolls in 40k history, the Emprah and Vect?

      Dark Trollperor.

  • Earl Tower

    For over two decades I always wanted a split Imperium. A living Emperor steps down from the Golden Throne, but all 10,000 years of worship has produced a Warp Entity with the Emperor’s personality. We get the Imperium of Man torn asunder as some follow the healed Emperor and others deny him.

    • The Rout

      That would be very cool but we kind of already had a split imperium. The Horus Heresy (and now CSM) are exactly that.

      I want to see terra fall and the imperiums centre ripped out. Make the imperium the underdog for a change rather than the big bad.

      Seriously with the exception of the nid the IoM is more than a match for any one of the xenos or chaos factions. The only reason the IoM hasnt won is because its enemies with almost every other faction and constantly fighting all of them in some form or another.

      Interestingly the imperium isnt actually fully at war with the Tau and Eldar. Sure they fight but its not a shoot on sight kind of deal like it is with the other races for the most part. Some developments in that regard would be nice.

      • Muninwing

        the problem with the fall of the Imperium is that few to no other factions (maybe save the tau) are interested in maintaining a civilization. the nids want to eat it, the crons want to kill it, the orks want to fight it, and chaos wants to rebel against it. the eldar want to be left alone to brood (or screw, if they are dark). all this requires a certain amount of stability to defend or assault.

        and that’s why the imperium falling would be a fundamental change to the setting in a largely negative way. there would not be a baseline.

        now… i dig the idea of two imperiums. that the SM and a few others dig in wherever they are, that there are conflicting demands made of the IG and navy, and that maybe the Emperor is not as he seems… this would make certain groups interested in protecting only certain parts of the Imperium, or only certain “pure” or “loyal” (definitions subjective) planets.

        and maybe it would be more like four or five parts, with the AdMech doing their own thing as they decide the Emperor is in fact not the Omnissiah (and some side with the Necrons and the Void Dragon), and some planets joining the Tau and some places becoming too infected with genestealer cults but too far away from the hive fleets and being forced to develop their own societies instead. and the chaos worshippers would usher in daemon footholds, but the rebellious non-chaosified marine chapters would want to stake out their own mini-empires.

        that’d be an interesting setting, and maybe less boring. but it would also involve fragmenting the largest unified body, potentially setting up a reunification later if a larger threat emerged. and it would require multiple forces of defense and preservation to persevere, with complicated interactions between those spheres of influence and the independent groups such as SM that serve outside of the fragmentation.

    • Karru

      That wouldn’t be too far fetched, at least when you look at the current table top presence for certain armies. It’s mostly Imperial vs Imperials already, so it would at least bring more sense why I’m seeing my 8th Ultramarines vs White Scars battle this month.

  • Karru

    I still believe that the best course of action for GW when it comes to advancing the story and making things interesting is to do the following:

    Stop the story to the high point. It can be Siege of Terra for example. Basically all these planets and sectors are now under siege from different threats, Tau, Eldar, Orks, etc. Now it is up to the players to shape the story. They could release so many campaign books for it. This way no one gets angry that their favourite character/planet/chapter/mushroom was killed off. Players shape those. They can do their own campaigns for them or they can continue to play the game with their favourite characters that aren’t dead and because of that aren’t removed from the future books because GW said so.

    • The Rout

      Characters being dead wouldnt worry me too much. Look at the ork for example, most if not all of their characters are dead but you can still use them and just say its either a different or alternative timeline from a fluff standpoint.

      Would suck a bit for the story if named characters died but then there are plenty of books that dont contain those characters. For example i play wolves, grimnar is missing atm presumed dead. Now if he was dead id be a bit upset but considering there are probably more SW books out there than any other faction and hes featured in 2 or 3 (out of at least 14 books i can think of off the top of my head) i think the fluff would still be just fine.

      Player input into the outcome would be great but it wouldnt really progress the story. As you and many others have pointed out, CSM suck the big one. If the fluff advancement was based on official results then the 13BC would be cake walk for the IoM and nothing would really change. I understand the argument for maintaining the setting but i also want more novels to advance the plot and if done right i think this could reinvigorate both the setting and the game.

      • Karru

        I didn’t mean to make it a WW campaign. A campaign that your local gaming club can play and see who won. It’s not meant to be like the “terrible” AoS campaign that was done, since it was decided the moment Order was made one big faction against all the others. If they made 13th Black Crusade into a WW campaign, Abaddon wouldn’t get out of the Eye of Terror, it would be quite the opposite. The Imperium would invade the Eye and eliminate the Chaos Gods for good, considering the current balance and player numbers for all the factions.

        • Sleatertr

          Why bother with WW campaign? GW will just ignore the result for good, just as they did with Fantasy!. I still remember the WD saying that the “Storm of Chaos” had ended up being some kind of localized front of low athmospheric pressures. 🙁

  • BartTP

    No, I have a better idea. Let’s destroy whole galaxy, let it be consumed by the Eye of Terror and shattered into shards. And then, yolo, let’s move the story a few thousands years forward, when the spark of the Emperor lights the void up and new dimensions are created, you know, pockets of reality, where different factions and xenos live, oh, oh, and then the Emperor AGAIN – get it? – AGAIN creates superhumans called eternal aeprimarchs, who fight with chaos gods, because they too survived the end times and stuff. Yeah…!

    • Karru

      This sounds amazing! GW should really hire you for their writing team! Now, about the design of those Emperor’s new soldiers, how about Greek style muscle armour and fully golden? Then we can have some with wings. Oh, oh and some ride Giant dragons but not all have wings. That would work!

      • BartTP


    • Seienchin

      Since we now have “subspace” technology which only the orks used 8000 years ago, lets have the emperor create some Imperial attack moons there to battle ork attack moons (with an orkish face on it that can speak), Necron pyramids in spece and Chaos moons (that actually sounds cool…).

    • Strategery.

      wow is AOS really that stupid?

      • Kaptain Badrukk

        Only if you skim read about the first 5 paragraphs, then give up and burn you dark elf army on youtube.

        • ZeeLobby

          Oh, the setting is definitely that stupid. The stories they’ve now written in it might not be that bad though. No one I know asked for Warhammer: MtG.

          • DeadlyYellow

            I like to point back to that hilarious Sylvaneth release event. It’s hard to really feel Order has anything to worry about when relative strength outweighs the three other Alliances combined.

          • Karru

            One of the countless reasons why you don’t see GW doing any WW campaigns for 40k. Even if it’s Imperium victories vs every other army combined, the results would most likely be at least 80% win-rate for Imperials.

          • ZeeLobby

            But there’s noooo many Khorne Berzerkers! I mean Blood Blood SkullBlooders.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Chaos’ book is as big as Order’s.

            Destruction and Death need help though.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            You do realize “bubble worlds” massively pre-date Magic’s use of the concept, right?

          • ZeeLobby

            Oh, I definitely know. Doesn’t mean it’s good, lol.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            It’s a fine concept, very traditional in the non-Tolkien-inspired fantasy genre.

          • ZeeLobby

            This is all opinion at this point, but imo it’s very lazy. There’s no effort needed to flesh out a world if its not consistent, or temporary/fleeting.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Its just the fantasy equivalent of planets.

            But your comment is more about how GW took the idea and used it than to the idea itself.

        • Karru

          Why don’t you try to give us a summary of AoS lore then? That is pretty accurate summary of it, even if it is written in insulting tone.

          Also, that Dark Elf army burning was so fun to watch. It is the exact opposite of actually sending GW a message, it just means that you paid the money and now someone else won’t benefit from it. The real message would’ve been to give the entire army away for free or for something like 1$.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Still not a message since GW would not have received a penny for that sale any way.

          • Karru

            It’s not about the money, it’s about sending a message. *Let’s get gringey*

            Those burned models are now gone completely. If he had given them to someone else who would have enjoyed AoS or wanted them for 9th age, they now didn’t have to give GW the sales from buying them from them. Instead he would now have a full Dark Elf army that only made GW one sale, instead of the possible second sale when someone else bought the same stuff.

      • Leo

        Don’t be ridiculous is way dumber.

      • BartTP


      • Red_Five_Standing_By

        It isn’t, really.

        The story is basically the Sigmar creating an elite cadre of powerful soldiers and then sending them out into the nine realms to fight Chaos, Orcs and Vampires.

  • Darth Bumbles

    I think what’s needed is an out and out victory for one of the core factions that changes the status quo.
    Abaddon nukes Earth.
    The Eldar fracture Slaanesh.
    Ahriman gets into the Black Library.
    A third Ork God, Spork, is born.
    The big E dies and Regenerates.

    Something that is big enough to mark a “before event”/”after event” boundary in the fluff.

    • polyquaternium7

      Time to Ork out with your Spork out! 😀

    • Seienchin

      I agree but PLEASE make the setting advance in time as well then. It would be silly if everything important happens in the span of a few hundred years after 1000s of years of the status quo…

  • trygon

    It is not the background or stories that need the change. It is the rules and codices.

    Slim the game down instead. Make it easy for new people and those not playing several games a week.

    First thing to do is to remove the one-side-do-everything-turn sequence. Make each turn an activation of units, one at the time, alternating between the two players. Toss in a roll for initiative each turn if you like, but just the tactical challenge of manouvering units this way is a lot more fun.

    Get back the old rule of fire at closes target. Make manouvering an art.

    Trim down on the dicerolls and all special rules making almost infinite re-rolls (Sometimes it feels like it). There are much simpler ways to solve it.

    As for all this talk about major events. Just make different ages and scenarios that peopla can play in. Fact is it is already done.
    There is 40K and there is 30K.
    For those that like a Siege of Terra… go play W30K in the days of the Heresy. Sisters of Silence, Abaddon and Custodians fit in fine here.
    If you like fighting a plethora of different enemies instead, go for W40K.

    • Coltcabunny

      Well, seeing as model wise we have Epic in 28mm they might as well steal its turn sequence too…

      • trygon

        Can’t comment on Epic (only tried it once over 20 years ago) since I have almost no experience of it.

        Still there are other miniature games that uses this type of turn sequence. It adds a layer of strategy to in which order to activate units etc. Also command units (HQ) usually can give orders activating other nearby units, not just being ‘bling-carriers’ with all the fancy wargear for characters.

        … and on that subject, I really think there should be several ‘vanilla’ HQ choices in each army. All named characters should preferably be removed as HQ and instead be labled ‘Heroes’. ‘Heroes’ are then selected if both players agree or during special scenarios. (One might have believed GW learned of it’s errors back in 4th Ed. WFB… also known as Herohammer)…

        • Coltcabunny

          I’m going from memory here, not played Epic in a while but what you described was exactly how Epic Armageddon played. You’d pick a formation, activate it, then your opponent would do one of theirs then back and forth until you ran out of formations.

    • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

      IGOUGO isn’t leaving anytime soon, but a lot of what you’re saying has merit. Target priority was never a big draw for me, as it makes tactical shooting harder. I’d rather be able to deal with real threats early than further hamstring down-ticket factions like Orks and ‘Nids. What they really need to do is make older assault-oriented factions more viable.

    • Zack_Deschain

      YES! Its stupid the way it is right now. “oh yes, lets wait until the entire enemy army has finished moving, hurled warp bolts and charged us…NOW we can react…Well, whatever is left of us…”

      Infinity’s ARO system is awesome…but I dont think it would work well in large scale battles…so at least alternating units would be a nice change. I think thats how Dystopian wars works too?

  • Mark of Death

    Why don’t they just add awesome things into an already awesome setting. Rather than just think ‘I can write better’ and wipe it out. The Eldar being an old doomed race is their thing! The galaxy is massive and so easy to come up with cool stuff. Rather than doing a AoS reset and making every race different.

  • Maitre Lord Ironfist

    Some brighthammer would be great.

  • Sleatertr

    Why is it that, for every faction, the Word “shakeup” means a positive advance in their goals, while for the Imperium is just the oportunity to fight yet another defensive battle to limit its losses? 🙁

  • Mike X (Official)

    Sisters of Silence are NOT in 40K. Stop trying to make it happen.

    • Thank you. They’re wiped out, all of them dead during the War of the Beast. Yes, some Inquisitors (like Eisenhorn) have made use of blanks, but that’s all there is. The Sisters of Silence, as an organization, do not exist anymore.

      • Sonic tooth

        Havnt read tgat (and probably wont) ..are they really all dead? Cool faction but probably at adds with the “emperor is god” imperium of 40k

        • Mike X (Official)

          “Neither force is currently an active military force in the galaxy (the
          Adeptus Custodes don’t leave Terra, and the Sister of Silence have not
          bean widely active for 9,000 years), so they don’t feature in any
          current Imperial formations, which tend to reflect active forces at the
          close of the 41st millennium.” – GW

        • Really all dead. The last one sacrificed herself to wipe out the Beast, and even her group of last survivors was off in hiding before they were called back to service. They’d broken their oaths of silence due to the events post-Heresy, but took them back up after paying their respects to the Emperor on Terra.
          Their location (or rather, the hints that led to finding it) were only found due to a survivor of the Heresy itself.

          • Sonic tooth

            Im glad. I dont feel they should be in 40k and the custodes should be on terra. I love both factions tho

      • Sleatertr

        I’ve read they actually exists in 40k… BUT like a single temple in a forgotten ball of dirt, no more than 40 of them. Wiped, for galactic purposes

    • Admiral Raptor

      They’ll just be added back in. The galaxy is a large place, there will be some forgotten temple somewhere just lousy with SoS.

      They’re not going to create plastic 30k models that won’t find their way over to 40k. GW loves money, the story line will always change to accommodate new models.

      GW doesn’t take the fluff seriously, neither should you.

  • euansmith

    “I found this pinned to the Golden Throne.2

    “What is it?”

    “It is a note.”

    “What does it say?”

    “We attempted to make a delivery, but you were not in, so we are returning your package to our local distribution centre. It is signed, Cypher.”

  • Sonic tooth

    Im sure “more space marines” is the answer

    • Sleatertr

      No. You mean Space Marines Space marines. Now THAT’S genius.

  • Sleatertr

    Why is it that, for every other faction, the word “shakeup” means a positive advance into their goals… while for the Imperium is just yet ANOTHER chance to fight a desperate battle in order to just not die? 🙁

  • I’ve said this in past discussions, but the problem with an “End Times” in 40K is… it’s already happening. 999.M41 is the galaxy teetering on the brink of annihilation, one minute to midnight and counting down. Chaos wins, and not even Dan Abnett can stop it.

    There is precisely one (1) current-era source that technically exceeds that date and sort-of implies that things aren’t quite as bad as they look, but whether or not anyone at GW remembers it is up for debate and even if they do, they have so far elected to ignore it.

    The End Times worked(ish) in Fantasy because Chaos can be beaten. There are other forces in the world that can rival the power of the Chaos Gods and keep them in check, and thereby free up other, lesser powers to make a tangible difference.

    Not so in 40K. The Emperor’s endgame, the purpose of the Golden Throne, wasn’t to beat Chaos–it was to work around it. It was to eliminate humanity’s reliance on Warp travel and create an atheistic humanity that disbelieves all Gods–Chaos or otherwise–and thereby cuts the Chaos Gods off from their source of power and influence. That plan, needless to say, has failed in the most complete, spectacular fasion possible.

    The Imperium is fighting enemies on all fronts, and is holding back the tide… just. They absolute best humanity can do in the face of Chaos, the Orks and the Tyranids–the sum total of all of humanity’s collective, combined effort–is to not lose too much ground too quickly. The best they can achieve is to prolong the stalemate.

    From a game perspective, that’s great. It means everyone has a reason to fight everyone, forever. And that’s what a wargame needs in order to work.

    From a story perspective? It’s a very dark, very cramped literary corner they’ve written themselves into. They have achieved a sort of deadly equilibrium; a circle of swords propping each other up. The moment one of them changes–gets smaller or bigger, is moved or removed–the entire pile comes crashing down. The Imperium can’t win because then you’ve solved the primary conflict of the story (and therefore, ended the story), and they can’t lose because the moment they fracture, they’re annihilated (and therefore, ended the story). The only thing you can do–and exactly what GW has done–is to keep adding more swords to the circle in the hope of keeping people interested.

    The problem with “one minute to midnight” stories is that the situation CANNOT be allowed to reach an equilibrium like 40K has. Either the clock HAS to strike midnight at some point, or the disaster must be averted and the clock set back. You cannot do either of those things to 40K, since the function of the entire setting is predicated on the notion that humanity has been pushed to the brink and spends all of its strength merely staving off the fall.

    • Adrien Fowl

      I Dan Abnett can’t stop it, I do not know who could save us. 🙁

      • ZeeLobby

        Dan Abnett probably could. Don’t get me wrong, cause I actually enjoy his writing more than many others at BL, but he definitely adds crazy stupid stuff sometimes to further the plot.

        • Adrien Fowl

          I have to admit that Abnett is one of my favourite writers.

          What do you mean by adding crazy stupid stuff? Any examples?

          • ZeeLobby

            The Cabal, perpetual, etc. I realize they might not have been his soul creation, but they’re just silly Deus Ex plot fixers, and hole fillers (cause we would have gouged our eyes out at the SM on SM action spread across 40 books). And don’t get me wrong, I really liked Legion. There was just a ton of crap introduced in that book that we never needed…

          • amaximus167

            Eh, I enjoyed those things quite a bit.

          • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

            Ah well, YMMV. Still holding out hope that Pariahs will return, aside from Culexus Assassins and SoS. And I’m still waiting for Penitent to come out, despite all of the CSMs and 2 Primarchs being name-dropped in Pariah.

          • ZeeLobby

            Like I said, I enjoy his books, but he does just throw in crazy stuff occasionally to add more depth. He could spend those pages developing existing characters or average character instead. GW fluff as a whole is struggling to get back in touch with the average human’s plight as it all goes towards super herores. Sadly, the average human’s plight is what makes good fiction.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By


            I really want a story from the perspective of the Sigmar Worshipers.

    • bginer

      “And with a bound, he was free”.

      The base situation can always be changed. Should it? That’s where ymmv.

      • I can’t think of a way to do it that doesn’t involve either invalidating huge chunks of the game’s lore, or a massive retcon, and frankly I don’t think GW can either.

  • The_Illusionist

    Let’s say that the Eldar do finally get their act together; Eldrad and the Harlequins pull off some big shenanigans that sees Ynnead born (because Eldar creating more Gods NEVER goes wrong, am I right?), which unites all of the pointy-eared gits under one Messiah-figure. The repercussions of this would explain what happens to the remaining factions, and it could be great.

    Obviously the Eldar get a shot in the arm; all of the factions unite under Ynnead-Eldrad (or whoever) and return to being one race. The Craftworlds get refit into continent-sized attack vessels and wraith-technology gets mixed with the weird and wonderful stuff that the Kabals use. Pick any Eldar and Dark Eldar unit and mash ’em together – there’s your new models. I still have hopes that we’ll even see the Exodites, because Dinosaur-Riding Eldar would be awesome, and completely doable if they suddenly gained access to warpgate technology for the first time in 10,000 years….

    Next; the lore has, for many years, implied that Gork and Mork are the same ‘people’ as Kaeala Mensha Khaine and Cegorach – both the Orks and Eldar were created by the Old Ones, so it’s suggested that those different Gods are just racial memories, mixed with myth and legend, of the same Old Ones. But with Ynnead on the scene, the Eldar lose interest in their old gods, which have been silent and abstract for so very long; Kaeala Mensha Khaine and Cegorach thus lose their “balance” and, since only the Orks are still worshipping them, become definitively Ork-y. Gork and Mork get a huge power-up, which becomes a part of the Waaagh. Orks start evolving at a phenomenal rate (Ork ‘Ogre’ models?) allowing the Klans to unite under much bigger areas and to overcome their rivals; huge, scarred and massively veteran Orks start breaking out of the Octavius system where they have spent 30 years in constant battle with Tyranids, ready to wreak havoc.

    The Necrons are only just waking up, but now they feel the disturbance in the force; another new warp entity (Ynnead) has been born and two more (Gork and Mork) have undergone a state of metamorphosis into something much bigger and more powerful; they don’t like that at all, so it’s time to start waking up the Doom Engines and Nebula-eating Super-Shards with which they originally used to battle the Old Ones, since they’re still sitting around in Tombs waiting for a significant threat to come along.
    Necrons are easy in that regard – “this new unit? It was there all the time, asleep under a pyramid, and has only just woken up”. Have at it, designers!

    Tyranids are easiest of all. Just create a scenario in which the three big Hive Fleets – Behemoth, Kraken and Leviathan – finally meet up with eat other and exchange notes. Now all Tyranids have the benefits of all three Fleets, as well as adapting further having eaten the new stuff that comes along like the Psychic Eldar Dinosaurs (because they should be), the enormously ‘roided Orks and *maybe* even a Daemon-Primarch or two….

    I did that in 10 minutes. Hopefully GW can come up with something better in the *decades* that they’ve had to think about it…. =P

  • dmedesha

    I would like to see 40K “advance backward.” How about, instead of 8th Edition, a rewrite to “Age of Imperium” that covers the unification wars (Thunder Warriors) on Terra through the Great Crusade (all those interesting Zenos) the HH and whatever the end will be.

    • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

      I’d be willing to bet that the Unification Wars are GWs plan for what to do next once FWs treatment of the HH is complete.

      • Andrew

        I would love to see the Unification Wars done in a 10 or 15mm range.

        • Mr_Pickles

          I’d rather see the Dark age of technology as a 10-15 mm game. Where Baneblades are medium tanks and Leman Russ are scout tanks.

        • euansmith

          Of course, Thunder Warriors and Technobarbarians were all so huge, that they would still probably be 28mm tall in 15mm scale 😉

      • ZeeLobby

        FW will have to do something. Though it could be 20 more years til the HH is actually completed.

        • Mr_Pickles

          Yea, I gave up on waiting for IA:8 Kastrel Novem to get a re-print. It would be at least another decade before HH stuff gets fleshed out enough to be put “on the side”.

  • DeadlyYellow

    1d4Chan has turned me against Abaddon in favor of Blackheart, but I doubt GW will give turn on their favorite punching bag.

  • Jake

    I think GW might be holding off a bit. just imagine all the hardcore star wars fans that are going to be shed when the SJW-wet dream “rogue one” inevitably leaves a bad taste in people’s mouths like ghostbusters did. just imagine when technology and perhaps the fanbase of 40k expands where seeing an entire slew of of ‘Lord Inquisitor’ quality content featuring even the Primarchs! the future is very bright indeed for 40k!

    • ZeeLobby

      That’s it’s problem, not enough grim. They seem to be transitioning, in fluff, rules and models, more towards an action figure company than an actual RPG tabletop gaming company. Just not sure there’s a big enough market for that anymore.

      • Jake

        i too sweat at the idea of 40k fundamentally changing.

        • ZeeLobby

          Yeah. I mean a lot of it just worked better when Apocalypse was it’s own thing, and larger things/formations were optional. This “bring everything you own” approach is cool for the collector, but doesn’t necessarily make a fun game or background.

  • Emprah

    They can do whatever they want with the rules, if people wanted good rules they would be playing another game by now.

    But they better not touch the lore.

  • piglette

    Just retcon out necrons, tau, dark eldar, grey knights, and genestealer cult.

  • CatachanCommissar

    If Matt Ward is back writing we know the direction.

    • TheWanderingJewels

      Crap. I forgot about the Ward. but is he on 40k writing duty?

  • nurglitch

    It’s a sandbox of an entire galaxy and 10,000 years. Nothing needs to be shaken up. There’s so much space and time to play in, and so many things that can be written up. WWII doesn’t need shaking up for gamers to enjoy it, why change the 40k fictional universe?

  • flyingtam

    You want a template for 40K end times? OK. Abaddon (Nagash) goes on his 13th Crusade (just like Nagash). He brings some Deamon Princes with him (Mortachs). First thing he does is end the warfare in the Eye of Terror (Nagash and the Tomb Kings/Vampires- aka Necrons). Meanwhile, Asdrubael Vect fights the Eldar and wins (Malekith), but they have to come together to save the Eldar before it’s consumed by Slaanesh. The Orks do the Ork thing. Tau try to ride it out in their Empire (Dwarfs), and the Tyranids continue trying to eat everything (Skaven), culminating in a huge battle between the Tau, Bugs, and Abaddon. Adaddon wins BTW. Finally, in the Imperium, the Emperor finally comes back, and brings the Primarchs with him (Sigmar and his Stormcast Eternals). There is another huge, final battle on Terra, and so much energy and Chaos is loosed, that the Eye of Terror basically explodes consuming the entire Galaxy. Chaos Gods laugh, and that’s the end of 7th Edition. Now, each planet has to fight off the Deamons and Chaos. Meanwhile, the Emperor collects the best of the best of the best and makes a new Space Marine/Primarch/Custiodian army, and attempts to drive back the Chaos and re-establish the Imperium in another Crusade. All Hail the Age of the Emperor (Age of Sigmar!).

  • Heinz Fiction

    In opinion they don’t have to advance the story. They may do so if they like but the background is really not one of the issues the game has at the moment…

  • rtheom

    I don’t know about 8th edition, but if they really want to do the fluff right, by 10th or so we’ll basically have just Tyranids filling the entire galaxy as they’ve managed to eat everything else. How balanced the game will be then when there are no armies other than Tyranids! ;D

  • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

    If they properly adhere to a “5 Minutes until Midnight” theme, they need to play up the fact that the galaxy is inconceivably vast, to the point that you could easily fit in an entire Edition-run’s worth of games within the timeframe of the 13th Black Crusade. From a writing perspective, everything needs to either be clearly planted in the immediate past, or presented in a tense, moment-by-moment narrative pace, like in Know No Fear. To that end, BL needs to have Black Crusade tie-in novels on deck and soon.

    As for Necrons, 2 words: Red Dragon.

    Orks just need someone to fight, but if Ghaz pulls a Sabertooth on Yarrick, I would not at all be surprised.

    Nids just need a shot in the arm/overhaul before we can even consider their role in this big edition change, but getting pegged as prime unexpected kingmakers is not unprecedented, just need to fix their Alliance levels.

  • Jack Jomar

    all this aside, cypher and all – what about the void dragon?