Horus/ Commander Farsight comparison - Warhammer 40K Fantasy
 

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  1. #1
    Senior Member C'Tan Pooky's Avatar
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    Horus/ Commander Farsight comparison

    I was reading the story about Commander Farsight and the Tau Empire in the Tau codex.

    His story sounds a little familiar:

    - Farsight was most loved and he was everything a Tau warrior should have been
    (Horus was the most beloved/ favourite Primarch)

    - Farsight got bitter and hated the Tau Empire and cursed at their inability to help him
    (Horus got bitter at the Emperor for claiming all his glory and conquests)

    - Farsight found something (Dawn Blade) which made him even more hardcore and
    seems to change him (Horus turns to Chaos and accepts the ruinous powers/ gifts/
    blessings)

    - Farsight runs off with a good amount of Tau warriors and does his own thing (Chaos
    legions run into the Eye of Terror)

    - The Tau empire now think he's a threat (The Imperium wants Chaos destroyed)

    - The remaining Firewarriors aren't sure who to follow, Farsight or Shadowsun since both
    have appealing ideals (1/2 of the legions deciding to turn)

    In a very loose sense I think it sounds a lot like Horus with respect to the Imperium.

    Would the Tau consider Farsight to be the equivilant of Horus to the Imperium?

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  3. #2
    Son of LO ze_poodle's Avatar
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    Horus was a lot more dastardly than Farsight. He tricked and slaughtered many of his brothers, as well as declaring open war, which I don't think Farsight would stoop to. His eventual corrupted was far more total, involving a complete reversal of spirit and body, whereas Farsight seems to be just a whacko general who got fed up with bureaucracy.

    Also, the betrayal of Horus has several faux-biblical inspirations, whereas Farsight's betrayal seems to be purely political in motivation - just an example of how the Greater Good isn't universally accepted amongst the Tau race, as well as giving players a more close-combat option for their Crisis Suits. I mean, hey - seven-man Crisis Suit squad.

    That said, you're right - there are several cosmetic similarities. I don't think it means anything, though, except that GW is possibly not that inventive with their IC backgrounds these days.
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  4. #3
    Son of LO The_Giant_Mantis's Avatar
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    I have to say it, but farsight is actually my 40k hero.. I think he's got it perfectly right:

    "Each must find their own way, if those in our heartland had witnessed the savageries of the void as have we they would know this. The hand of each of the great starfarers is turned against the other, none will join their strength together just to see their ancient enemies prosper. Neither should we."


    I think farsight has a far more ambiguous status in the Empire than Horus has in the Imperium. Even after his disappearance had reached the point where it couldn't be anything other than insubordination, commander shadowsun's symbolic destruction of his statue was shocking and caused a mass outcry among the fire caste. Farsight doesn't seem to be the symbol of evil and corruption which Horus is in the Imperium, except perhaps to a few paranoid ethereals and doomsayers, he's an enigma.

    Also, farsight has expressed no desire to destroy the Tau empire, in fact, as the quote above shows, he doesn't seem to want to destroy anything. He's merely decided that the Ethereal vision of the greater good as their manifest destiny to conquer the galaxy is flawed.

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    Senior Member Misanthrope's Avatar
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    Anyone else see a psuedo-connection between the Tau Empire and Farsight, and the current political "atmosphere" here in the 1st world?

    Anyway, sounds like Farsight is a Leftist.
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  6. #5
    Son of LO The_Giant_Mantis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Misanthrope View Post
    Anyway, sounds like Farsight is a Leftist.
    Well.. considering he's the military leader of a series of colonies with sanctioned mercenaries, I don't think so at all.. I'd say, if anything, the Empire is far more 'left' than farsight (although I myself don't like these definitions of left and right, they're not really sophisticated enough for modern politics.)

    The thing I quoted actually makes far more sense as a right wing doctrine than a left wing one. If a politician says 'each must find their own path' they can't really be accused of being leftist. Leftism general advocates social cooperation, what Farsight seems to be saying is exactly the opposite, cooperation isn't going to work.

    If anything, from that quote at least farsight comes across as a very pragmatic liberal survivalist.. The behaviour of his mercenary bands backs that one up pretty nicely too.
    Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; February 7th, 2007 at 00:03.

  7. #6
    Son of LO ze_poodle's Avatar
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    He's more of a Kurtz character without the uninhibited savagery; a general who got fed up with how the bureaucracy of the home worlds treated its soldiers, and decided to take matters into his own hands. I wouldn't call him left at all. If anything, he's an anarchistic rightist.
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  8. #7
    Senior Member Misanthrope's Avatar
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    I'm saying this based on the psuedo-fascist nature of the Tau Empire itself and Farsight's apparent disapproval of it. You're right, it does sound more anarchist than merely "leftist".

    Leftism general advocates social cooperation
    "Leftism" as the new catch-phrase may as well be liberalism. "Leftism" to me is the Left -- Communism and shallow socialism. It is hardly social co-operation, more the emancipation of all living beings from exploitation by others. I may be wrong about Farsight, I don't know much about him other than that quote pretty much. Like I said, my opinion comes from the fact that the Tau Empire is essentially fascist and Farsight's rebellion against it coming from Leftist/Centrist principles.

    If anything, he's an anarchistic rightist.
    Libertarian!
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    ..I think we've gone a little off topic. I'm envisioning Nightline interviewing Shadowsun and Farsight now. ...it doesn't end well. And for some reason Henry Kissinger is there in a dreadnought.

    As for the original topic. I don't see much connection between Farsight and Horus. Seems like a lot of reading into superficial similarities.

    Horus was a traitor motivated by his own arrogance, the Emperor's gradiose but inherently inhuman transhumanist plans, and the machinations of Chaos.

    Farsight is a traitor to the Ethereals, not his race. He's not racing around yelling out stuff like 'Tau for the Tau god' or something similar. His motivation seems to be something more along the lines of 'whose greater good?'

    It ties in with my somewhat odd belief though, that the 'heroes' of WH40k are the ones who hold to their societies ideals, while not their methodology. The good Mr. Ventress leaps to mind.

  10. #9
    Son of LO The_Giant_Mantis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Misanthrope View Post
    Libertarian!
    Actually.. I think the term 'anarchic' is better.. Enclave practices, such as the hiring out of mercenaries in exchange for resources, border on the survivalistic. It sounds to me like, rather than believing honestly in individual rights to freedom, farsight just got a shot of how big and scary the universe is and has decided, quite rightly in my opinion, that the best a person can hope for is to stay alive in it.

    Also.. it's implied that the enclaves are run under a military government. They're not called the 'coalition of different caste leaders including Farsight enclaves', they're named after and theoretically if not literally ruled by a military commander. That's very, very unlibetarian.

    Quote Originally Posted by Misanthrope
    It is hardly social co-operation, more the emancipation of all living beings from exploitation by others.
    Without meaning to move this into Enhanced level politics.. I think that is Marxism. Not all left wing politics follows the Marxist conflict based model. Indeed, I'd say the key difference between the modern left and the modern right is the views on the ideal role/size of government. Right wing government is small and doesn't play much role in the lives of its citizens, left wing governments are larger and both give and demand more of their citizens.

    Under this.. I'm not sure where farsight would be.. I've changed my mind, in fact, I'd say he's probably a survivalist, which is not really a political position at all so much as a bad case of pragmatism.

    This makes sense with the probable cause of his treachery.. He's been separated from the ethereals, this means, without the calming pheremones telling him to love and obey the masters and be ready to saccrifice anything for the greater good, he's reverted psychologically to the aggressive, selfish and proud beings the fire caste once were. I'm willing to bet, whatever his philosophy turns out to be, it's unlikely to be terribly altruistic. In my opinion it's unlikely to go far beyond "the empire sent us out here to die, but we're going to survive.. even if it kills you.. ummm.. I mean us."

  11. #10
    Senior Member C'Tan Pooky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Giant_Mantis View Post
    Also, farsight has expressed no desire to destroy the Tau empire, in fact, as the quote above shows, he doesn't seem to want to destroy anything. He's merely decided that the Ethereal vision of the greater good as their manifest destiny to conquer the galaxy is flawed.
    I should have also said, more precisely, that the comparison won't be always literal. In that I mean he doesn't want to destroy the Tau Empire physically, as opposed to Horus who wants to burn it to the ground. BUT! In Farsight saying "all must find their own way" is quite different to "for the greater good" in the Tau sense. The Tau sense of the greater good is all working together, in a (already mentioned) left or communistic kind of way. So, in Farsight saying each needs to find their own way I'm sure the Ethereals would be crying out heresy and that Farsight wants to smash the perfect unity of the Tau Empire ideals (not smash the Tau Empire itself) to pieces.
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