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So Warhammer 40,000 has been bumbling around in my head a bit more than usual these past couple of weeks, and my mind latched onto a bit that we discussed in the "Greatest Threat to Mankind?" thread. To make a long story short, the topic of gods and godlike figures came up, mainly, how they get their power. When a Space Marine gives his life in the name of the Emperor, supposedly his soul goes to the immortal Emperor and makes him stronger (gods are apparantly powered by devotion etc). But when, say, a Khorne Berserker kills said Space Marine, the killing of said Space Marine makes the chaos god Khorne stronger. Is this because killing the Space Marine in the name of Khorne claims the Space Marine's soul in the name of Khorne? How does dying for a deity and killing for a deity work to power said deities? In addition, when a person not loyal to the God-Emperor is killed and sent to be judged by the Emperor, does the soul join his ranks when he is judged fairly, and concurrently, if the soul is judged poorly by the Emperor, is the soul merely turned away from joining Him or is the soul devoured by the Emperor?
My gaming group's new motto: That army you're using is overpowered because it hurts my guys, codex is broken and needs a rewrite.
One of the biggest misconceptions, I think, in 40k is that soul equates to something immortal. It doesn't. When a human dies, their warp presence loses integrity within a very short time and quickly breaks up, dissolving back into the constantly shifting sea of the warp. Only Eldar have the unique and horrible misfortune to live on after death. That might not quite be universally true, but it's given as a standard human thing.
The exception, according to the new codex, are chaos worshippers.. When a chaos worshipper dies, their warp presence is absorbed into that of the god they worshipped. They achieve a very hazy 'sort of' immortality through becomming part of the god they saccrificed themselves for, strengthening the god in the process.. I guess other people saccrificed to chaos can achieve the same face, but for them it won't be a terribly nice experience.
I don't think what the chaos gods derive from this can be called power.. They live in a dimension of pure energy, they're surrounded by power all the time. Rather, I guess saccrifice strengthens the god's connection to the material world (which after all is all that makes them what they are.. without living things to define them they would just melt back into the warp themselves.) Human worshipers don't give them power, but they give them strength of identity, and allow them to act in the physical world.
The Emperor is a human being.. It has never, ever been said that he's a god in any sense of the word. People will quote the star child fluff a lot, but frankly, that's been out of the picture for years, and even that doesn't change the fact that the Emperor is a living being, rather than a vast daemon formed from living thoughts and emotions. In short, it's never been said that those who die for the Emperor actually empower him.. He empowers himself by sucking power from the warp because he's a jumbo psyker. He doesn't need a connection to the real world, or self definition, because he already has a physical body and mind of his own. You see what I mean here.. There's absolutely no reason why the Emperor would ever require or even derive any benefit from human belief or saccrifice, any more than you or I would.
The C'tan.. I've come to the conclusion that the C'tan exist on a quantum level, as it explains their total power over the physical universe, and much of their technology and abilities. They draw their power from the material world through feeding on mundane energy.
Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; June 25th, 2008 at 11:42.
I shall try my hand at this
Each Power in the warp is created when like minded souls join together. The soul is a stripped down version of the living creature it used to be. So a man who fought in wars and was killed would have a soul that remembers mostly war, and has warlike emotions. It will have other emotions like love, friendship, etc but the base instinct is warlike and this comes to the fore.
In the warp, these like minded souls are drawn to each other and eventually meld into one. The base emotions become even stronger and the lesser emotions are lost as they are significantly smaller.
So once enough of these souls join together, they begin to form a sleeping being who starts to gain its own self awareness and is based on the emotions it was created from. Eventually, with enough souls and emotion it screams into live which causes a massive storm in the warp and distrupts the warp and the beings in it.
The first to wake was Khorne, fueled mostly by the viscous wars fought in mankinds early history, the war between the Eldar and the Necron probably helped too.
The next was Nurgle when the great plagues infested the middle ages.
Then as intrigue and planning and politics became the norm tzeentch was born.
The fall of the Eldar brought Slaanesh.
There are also other minor powers that are not strong enough to wake, or can only wake for brief periods.
The Emperor, when slain, became the starchild, and the starchild had enough power to animate the corpse until it was placed in the Golden Throne. That way the star child is still linked to the material universe.
To increase the power of a warp god you can either join more souls to the mix (sacrifices, or when a follower dies, or when a like minded soul dies)
Or you can worship the god. This increases their power as they feed off that base emotion.
So when anyone in the universe kills someone else, a little power is given to Khorne, when anyone succumbs to a disease or becomes morbid, a little power is fed to Nurgle.
When a Champion of the Diety does so, it sends more energy. The champions job is to create more of that energy, thus increasing the power of the god. Hence why a Khorne Champion will spill his followers blood or kill himself violently rather than succumb to his wounds.
The Gods can expend their energies to manipulate the warp around them, warp their followers with gifts, and in the creation of Daemons.
Daemons are, for the most part, a sentient being created using a portion of their gods power. should the god will it, they will instantly cease to exist. Hence they are totally loyal and strive to further their gods goals.
Some daemons, being in the major minority, are not created by any f the gods but are generated by a bunch of like minded souls who all died together or similar events. They can be powered by similar means as the god, worship and sacrifice.
People who die in the loyal service of the Emperor, unless their soul is captured beforehand joins with the Emperor and strengthens him in the same way. After all the Emperor is exactly the same as a warp god, created by hundreds, and now billions, of like minded souls.
the Emperors judgment, is not really the Emperor deciding if the soul is good enough. it is the fact that if the soul was not loyal to the emperor it will not join with him.
Does that answer your question or did I miss anything?
Arch Overfiend & Grand Despot
I currently play:
Doom Eagle Space Marines
Hive Fleet Omega Tyranids
Goff Ork Boyz(dead)
Tau of O'me
Inquisitorial Xeno Hunters
and my attempted foray into fantasy
'Dark Angel Green' Dark Elves in need of fluff