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Alrighty, so I've been having a pointless argument with my friends trying to figure out what race is most advanced just out of my own curiosity. I've been thinking it was Necrons but I don't really have any source other than somewhere near the begining(can't recall what page in the codex) It says something like the Necrons were more advanced than any race in the 41st M before they even exsisted... not sure if that's exactly what it says, infact it's probably not even close.
Anyways one of my friends is always saying Tau are most advanced but I haven't been able to find anything in their dex that says that so I've rambled on long enough I think. So basically I'd like to know what races are most advanced in what order because im sure there will be another argument of what race takes 2nd lol. And if you could post proof like a quote and from what page of the races codex It would help.
1 - Necrons
2 - Eldar
3 - Tyranids
4 - Imperium & Tau
5 - Chaos
6 - Orks?
7 - Kroot
Necrons are, undoubtedly, the most technologically advanced race. Their standard gauss weapons, in the fluff, are capable of firing through-and-through a Land Raider. They are walking machines. They encased a god into physical form. They have control over time itself. They have transcended death. The Pariah creature is a craft of both Necron technology and human mutation that combines the two into arguably the perfect being. The Necrons can teleport their strike forces and appear anywhere, or, if defeated, they can teleport the remains of their entire army away if needed.
Secondly, the Eldar are technologically advanced. Their technology is envied in the Imperium. However, the Eldar techology is largely based on their psionic nature. From wraithbone to warp generators to the webway itself, Eldar have high technology. The Black Library and Commorragh are said to bend reality. However, reality is bent in their artificial world.
Thirdly, Tyranids have mastered biology. They may not build things, but they grow things. They constantly make new strains and test them. Anything about a creature's biology can be altered. They have biological mastery greater than any other race.
Fourthly, it is a tie between the Imperium and Tau. Where the tau prefer pulse weapons, the imperium prefers the brutality of solid weapons. The Imperial technology and Tau technology are pretty much equal in function. The only difference is that Imperial weaponry is outright more brutal. Tau use railguns, Imperials use Earthshaker rounds. The Tau are small enough that they can produce high quality technology for their military. However, the Imperium accepts lower quality technology for their military because it is widely available. Tau battlesuits are comparable to Space Marines. The same way that the Tau style of fighting has rendered them low in close combat technology, the Imperium eschews anti-gravity technology. Tau equip the best for their soldiers because they cannot afford losses. The Imperium doesn't mind losses. When the Imperium cares enough, Imperial Titans and the Adeptus Mechanicus show the best the Imperium has which surpasses much of the Tau technology.
Chaos uses Imperial technology. However, Chaos technology is antiquated Imperial Technology that has been stolen. Where they lack in technology they make up for in daemonic gifts and sorcery.
Orks are not really high technology but innovators. If they think it works, it works. Arguably, this makes them either the highest or the lowest tier of technology.
The Kroot are the least advanced because of their conservative beliefs.
EDIT: This was a long miniessay. I wrote it so quickly that I didn't even realie it was so long. Sorry for the tl;dr.
Necrons - control of time and space through advanced physics
Eldar - manipulation of wraithbone through advanced Psychic powers
Imperium/Chaos - Void shields, vortex grenades, warp drives, etc.
Orks - crude but effective teleportation, energy shields, warp drives, back engineer any tech they come across
Tau - Grav engines, stable plasma weapons, railguns
The Tau have the least advanced tech of all. The orks may be crude but Tau still have no real working knowledge of the warp, and its only because they are so small and closely packed that they can keep their fighting forces well equipped compared to the Imperium.
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1) I agree that the Tyranids are an advanced race, but somehow I find it hard to classify what they have as "technology." To be brutally technical about it, they shouldn't even be on the list, but that may be taking it too far. Still, to place them this high up on the list is being a tad too generous. They don't actively research. It's built into their biology. Arguably, you could put the Kroot a lot closer to the nids, since don't forget they are supposed to be assimilating info from vanquished enemies, too, "becoming" what they eat, not unlike the nids, albeit a bit more crudely. I personally would move the nids down a few notches because of this.
2) As I said, the Kroot deserve a bit more credit. I'd put the Orks at the bottom. They don't really develop "technology" per se. They unconsciously use the Waaagh! energy to simply make whatever they pick up work. If it weren't for the Waaagh!, half their stuff wouldn't work at all.
3) I agree that Necrons and Eldar (in that order) should go before the Tau, but only because the Tau haven't mastered warp travel. It's a big achilles heel for them, otherwise I'd be tempted to put them at the top. Yes, the Necrons have achieved a lot, but their technology is static, as is the Eldar's. The Tau have built up a LOT (anti-grav vehicles, plasma weapons that don't blow up, etc.) in a comparatively short period of time (the blink of an eye, really, compared to the Eldar and Necrons). For this reason, they deserve to be above the Imperium. Right now, the domain of mankind is locked in a "Dark Age" where there is often no explanation for how the technology they've stumbled upon works (such as plasma guns), and more importantly, they don't WANT to know how anything works, and don't care to go beyond what is basically a big machine gun as their toughest primary weapon. The Tau, by comparison, have actually developed, you know, FUTURISTIC weapons. That puts them above the Imperium in my book.
If the Imperium didn't have STCs or was capable of independent thought with regards technology, then they would be far above the Tau, but the Tau in the time it takes one explorator fleet to communicate back their existence and another to arrive in their region of space, have created capable super-heavy weaponry, spacecraft larger than Titans capable of atmospheric operations. Tau don't have the Navigator gene and barely register in teh Warp, so I would see these as their SOLE fundamental flaws to exploitation of Warp technology. of course, they neither have "sponsor" gods that eat stars annor do they have inertialess drives of the Crons...
I would suggest that if we consider Golden Age of technology Imperium, then they would be ahead of the Tau. However, much Golden Age technology does not function, is not reproducible and can't be maintained. Its liek saying that a child given a calculator is more "technologically advanced" than one that doesn't need a calculator...Especially when the calculator only functions within acceptable tolerances around 25% of the time. I'd LOVE to see Imperial Guard or Adeptus Mechanicus "availability" stats on tehir war engines, it would probably make the British Army or US Air Force look like the epitomes of efficiency!
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I would say that humans are close to being the least advanced, they exist with technology, they don’t control it. They appear to have no viable science (as in method and theory), and no understanding of how much of their technology actually functions, they imitate, they don’t create. The Adeptus Mechanicus are more efficient but are really post-human rather than human in any real world sense. Remember the Imperium is, essentially, a stagnant, degraded entity living in the wreckage of a former advanced society.
There is also the point that technological advances aren’t necessarily as efficient as existing technology. The Imperial Guard tanks run on fossil fuels (how primitive) yet it is far easier (and more efficient) to build an internal combustion engine and run it, than it is to build a fusion reactor small enough, safe enough, and cheap enough, to run a vehicle like a tank, plus the Imperium has no shortage of oil, unlike the real earth.
Well, I would argue that the psychic capabilities of a race aren't what make it technologically advanced at all, that's magic, not technology, so you would have to consider what race would be most advanced without taking into account: the warp, psychic powers, gods, or anything a god or god-like entity had to contribute.
So for example, you are looking at the emperium without their astropaths, basically what happens when they are in the shadow of the warp, and at that point, they can barely communicate via vox-casters to the ships in orbit...
I would base as:
1 - Necrons
2 - Eldar
3 - Tau
4 - Chaos
3 - Tyranids
4 - Imperium
6 - Orks
The necrons and eldar have been covered. Tau same as other people there advancing so fast. Chaos i would put next and before imperium, they got black stone fortress working imperium didn't and other examples show how they have the edge. The nids im not sure, so there kind of "floating" for genetics no 1 anything else not sure. Imperium once great tech but declining. And orks well. Kroot etc i have left off been minor races, would be here all day.
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Orks no1 they must be the highest although they dont have as powerful weapons such as the gauss flayer however, they must be pretty damn techinally advanced to be able to make guns, vehicles and space ships out of literal junk i suppose that that could show that they are the worst as they dont have guns that are made properly etc but still it would probably be a lot harder for you to pick up like 100s of pieces of metal and make it into a gun that would work than mass produce thousands of 1s that you know already work. also the fact that they manage to build forcefields is pretty darn impressive id love to hav an ork meks orky knowwots.