Dreams Dashed or A Clearer Picture?

This post over at Bootae’s says it all … so take your Third Realm ideas and cram them down the toilet. If not for Bootae, this would’ve missed my radar having been unplugged from much of what Games Workshop is doing these days.

This is an interesting move. For as long as I can remember, the armies of GW’s amazing fantasy world were always at odds with one another. Sure, you’d have the random alliance where Elves would forget what pompous snoots they are and help out the lowly men of the Empire. Or some obtuse Black Orc Warlord would accept a bribe from a Chaos Lord to help rape and pillage some northern province. For the most part … the races of this world were all on their own.

When WAR launched having two factions it was a point of contention for many Warhammer purists. Mythic “bent the lore” to do this … especially with the side of Destruction. I can easily write up a rationale for any race to align with another so I’m more forgiving. It appears the WAR we play with the alignments as such was merely a precursor to GW making this change, and a big one at that.

For those playing the tabletop game … I don’t see this as a problem. At my local comic shop on any given weekend, I’d see Elves fighting Chaos … Dwarfs fighting Bretonnians … Orcs fighting Dark Elves … Empire fighting Empire. It didn’t matter to them. They just wanted to showcase the cool new paint jobs on their army, and to play the game hoping for some luck of the dice. The lore itself made for excellent reading in the various army books and novels. Did it really matter to the gamers themselves when they showed up to play each week? I’m saying no.

For those of us playing WAR … other than the realization that we are now destined to have two competing realms, does it really matter? Honestly? I want to login and play … fight … kill and be killed. To me, fighting Destro is fighting evil … and all their races look evil. Fighting alongside an Elf and a Dwarf is second nature to me … Tolkein’s lore helped shape this and whereas the races have had their falling outs from time to time … they need each other to survive.

Bottom line, leading up to the release of WAR, GW released a book about this monumental event — the Age of Reckoning — and how it would forever change that world. The book and subsequently the game we play have done that. This isn’t new territory for GW, they’ve done it before … letting worldwide events shape the lore of 40k. A huge 40k event was launched on the notorious planet of Armageddon. Games were played by players all around the world and the wins/losses would decide the planet’s fate. For the life of me, I can’t recall if the Imperium triumphed or if they were overcome by the various Xeno forces. In the end … GW left their lore in the hands of the most important people of all … those who played their game.

I’ve enjoyed all the Third Realm theories and have enjoyed writing my own on the subject. But I’m willing to look forward and it seems our course is set with two, competing realms.

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