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Though the Lion has proven that he is more than capable of fighting Curze in the past. I still see it as more, Guilliman and the Lion getting in each others way.
I see it as both Guilliman and the Lion getting in each other's way but also something else. I think that when Curze fought the Lion in Savage Weapons he wasn't at the top of his game, he wasn't in full control of himself. I think that Curze in The Unremembered Empire is him fully lucid and in complete control of himself, and thus fighting at his full potential. So... quite scary stuff.


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I see it as both Guilliman and the Lion getting in each other's way but also something else. I think that when Curze fought the Lion in Savage Weapons he wasn't at the top of his game, he wasn't in full control of himself. I think that Curze in The Unremembered Empire is him fully lucid and in complete control of himself, and thus fighting at his full potential. So... quite scary stuff.


LotN
That's one good way of looking at it...

I rather thought the whole arc went differently, though.

At first, Curze was displaying typical sadist behavior. He was trying to look his victim in the eyes, even as he was eviscerating them.

As the Lion starts showing signs that he's not the easy victim he expected him to be, Curze starts to look for ways to hurt the Lion (and, subsequently Guilliman, as well) from an increasingly safer distance, to minimize the risk to himself (hence the booby traps, for instance).

Since the threat of pain or physical damage has produced no significant results in the past, he also starts focusing more and more on psychological warfare (mass murdering legionnaires), in order to both sap other primarchs' morale, as well as goading them into reckless action by forcing them to do the honorable thing and place themselves at risk.

Curze isn't actually becoming a better fighter by stepping up his game. He's starting to lose himself even more than usual; he's resorting to base instincts and low cunning even more so than usual...

Just think about it... he's so focused on making Ultramar bleed that he doesn't even free Sevatar and the other captives, despite the fact that he could probably have done so, and since bleeding Ultramar is his goal, he would have most certainly benefited from an unspecified number of legionnaires dispersing across an entire world to wreak havoc at will...;
 

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That's one good way of looking at it...

I rather thought the whole arc went differently, though.

At first, Curze was displaying typical sadist behavior. He was trying to look his victim in the eyes, even as he was eviscerating them.

As the Lion starts showing signs that he's not the easy victim he expected him to be, Curze starts to look for ways to hurt the Lion (and, subsequently Guilliman, as well) from an increasingly safer distance, to minimize the risk to himself (hence the booby traps, for instance).

Since the threat of pain or physical damage has produced no significant results in the past, he also starts focusing more and more on psychological warfare (mass murdering legionnaires), in order to both sap other primarchs' morale, as well as goading them into reckless action by forcing them to do the honorable thing and place themselves at risk.

Curze isn't actually becoming a better fighter by stepping up his game. He's starting to lose himself even more than usual; he's resorting to base instincts and low cunning even more so than usual...

Just think about it... he's so focused on making Ultramar bleed that he doesn't even free Sevatar and the other captives, despite the fact that he could probably have done so, and since bleeding Ultramar is his goal, he would have most certainly benefited from an unspecified number of legionnaires dispersing across an entire world to wreak havoc at will...;
Curze never cared about his legion, they are completely insignificant to him and just getting in the way. As I see it, he was positively exulting in that he could return to form as a lone vigilante against a whole world, just like in his youth.
 

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Another nexus novel - will they EVER END THIS ULTRAMAR BACKWATER stuff. I don't want a fights between Primarchs - when we all know, that nobody dies where.
And please kill this Vulkan at last - it's tiresome - dead-live-dead-live....... Is anyone stays DEAD in the HH ANYMORE? :smoke:
 

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I advocated Prospero Burns relentlessly for so many years, but in a single instance my arguments have been shattered and my hypocrisy revealed to the light. I admit it -- I am a fairly disappointed by the lack of Sanguinius in this novel. Abnett-Guilliman has been the star of the series after Horus, for me, but after the lukewarm Fear to Tread, I hoped for more.

I hoped for what the cover promised. A union of Astartes and primarchs; a second Ullanor, a loyalist mirror to Isstvan V; Imperium Secundus; a brittle union between the tactician and the Angel, with the Lion driving between them like a wedge.

Ah well, I shan't judge a book by its spoilers. Pound-for-pound, Abnett has never disappointed me with his work, and I won't cast an accusing finger at Kyme, neither.
 

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Then you have all the novels where The Black Library authors went off the reservation and were making shit up as they went along... Battle for the Abyss, Deliverance Lost, Outcast Dead, Betrayer, Vulkan Lives... all awful.
BotA I can understand, but Betrayer? Really?

I'm not sure I understand your "off the reservation" comment in regards to Betrayer. Prior to Betrayer here was Angron's total known storyline.

Angron was angry. Then he became a demon prince. Then some stuff on Armageddon happened. The End.

The reservation? There wasn't enough fluff there to fill a thimble. What we got in Betrayer was absolutely brilliant and actually made Angron a three dimensional character instead of just Angry Primarch.

I won't argue over the other books you mentioned, but lumping Betrayer in with those is just...wrong.

As for Unremembered Empire, I thought it was excellent as well. I really don't understand the line of critique stemming from "But why wasn't the Lion being more of a dick to Guilliman regarding Imperium Secundus?"

Did we read the same novel? The Lion came in and had his Marines in drop pods ready to attack Macragge during the same time he was meeting Roboute. He deliberately kept Curze's existence from the Ultramarines, made it abundantly clear that the only reason he didn't attack Roboute was because Guilliman had kept his honesty about his intentions clear and that Roboute had turned down the regency

The Lion didn't want Roboute to declare himself Regent, went to Ultramar to make sure that didn't happen, and then Roboute didn't declare himself Regent. So why exactly should the Lion continue making trouble if he got everything he wanted?

I think it is far more interesting to speculate as to what happened between now and the Battle of Terra in regards to the Lion and Roboute. Something happened to keep those two from Terra and that could be potentially quite a compelling story.

The best part about Unremembered Empire is that it was the uber-nexus story. Pretty much all the existing plot threads connected here and so we have a nice clean slate moving forward. I'm excited.
 

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So why exactly should the Lion continue making trouble if he got everything he wanted?
I'm not arguing against you here, because your points are all entirely valid. But the nagging criticism that has established itself in my mind is that the Lion's portrayal seemed to be quite different to that of Fallen Angels (where he was politically manoeuvring to gain support for his bid to become Warmaster), Savage Weapons (where he openly denounces Guilliman) and The Lion (where he further denounces Guilliman). Obviously all of these portrayals have been done by different authors, but it just seemed to me that the Lion accepts the notion of Imperium Secundus too readily (even with Sanguinius chucked into the picture in the last few pages). In his mannerisms, speech and interactions with Guilliman throughout the novel he just seems too... polite... given his previous portrayals (thinking he should have been Warmaster and despite Horus's betrayal was still manoeuvring to claim that title, his claims that Guilliman was just as bad as Horus, his arrogance at being the First Primarch, etc).

But hey, this isn't a major slagging off by me. I enjoyed the novel. :)
 

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Obviously all of these portrayals have been done by different authors, but it just seemed to me that the Lion accepts the notion of Imperium Secundus too readily (even with Sanguinius chucked into the picture in the last few pages).
I think that can be attributed to two years of frustration in the Thramas Crusade. While the Dark Angels "won" that series of battles, it probably showed the Lion exactly how screwed up everything was. After that, Guilliman's proposal probably seemed like a bit of sanity after so much crap, thus reversing his earlier skepticism.

And again, everything the Lion knew at the point was that allegiances were broken. Rumor and innuendo ruled the day and no one could be trusted. He was ready to gut Macragge, up until Roboute showed his loyalty to the Throne.

We also can be fairly sure that the Lion isn't going to turn his back to Roboute completely. He'll be watching just in case. But I understand your point.
 

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Finished this last night so I feel I can join in here now, and frankly, I'm wondering what all the fuss was about. The whole novel kept building and building to... nothing.

It's always nice to see more of the primarchs up close, but I wasn't totally impressed with them. Guilliman was a bit of a pussy. He nearly gets totalled by just 10 marines? Seriously? We've seen Vulkan bully a super heavy tank, Ferrus wade through TS like a knife through better, Corax kick ass and take names, Kharn go off like a tactical nuke and even that pussy Lorgar take on a titan, but Guilliman can barely handle 10 marines?

Grammaticus went from being a bad ass in Legion to a pussy in VL! to back to being a bit of a bad ass in this. The whole perpetual thing is being bled dry at this stage though. I hope they just let Oll Persson get where we all know he has to, and leave it at that.

I'm left with the distinct impression that this was a gap filler. Which is a pity, because I was so looking forward to it. Hopefully Scars will lift my spirits after this bit of a let down.
 

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BotA I can understand, but Betrayer? Really?

I'm not sure I understand your "off the reservation" comment in regards to Betrayer. Prior to Betrayer here was Angron's total known storyline.

Angron was angry. Then he became a demon prince. Then some stuff on Armageddon happened. The End.

The reservation? There wasn't enough fluff there to fill a thimble. What we got in Betrayer was absolutely brilliant and actually made Angron a three dimensional character instead of just Angry Primarch.

I won't argue over the other books you mentioned, but lumping Betrayer in with those is just...wrong.
I'm glad you enjoyed it, but really, it served no purpose other than to create a new, and inconsistent picture of the World Eaters, and take up 400 pages of paper.

Not in that it was bolter porn, but that literally the entire first part of the novel serves no purpose other than to describe a battle with no grander significance. I don't have it at hand, but we're talking over a dozen chapters to cover relatively minor details. It has more than 200 pages just of filler. I mean, seriously, place Angron's homeworld anywhere other than Ultramar, and suddenly you don't even need the Ultramarines or the battle on the training planet at all. Angron goes to his homeworld to take his revenge, Lorgar channels his hatred and rage to turn him into a daemon prince, Kharn picks up the abandoned Gorechild, and we've literally told the same story, but succinctly and efficiently.

The only reason the story even gets shoehorned into Ultramar is to facilitate the corny, and worse, unfulfilling, threeway Primarch battle. And it's a shame, because the more silly battles between Primarchs with contrived exits so they can all fight another day, the less meaning any of those conflicts have.

Think about how powerful the story of Sangunius confronting Horus is. How powerful the story of Fulgrim and Ferrus's duel is. That's because there are consequences. How many times now in the Horus Heresy series have the Primarchs fought epic battles to the death... only for nobody to die because of some silly plot device to break them up? At this point, it's little more than fan service. Primarch battles are the Japanese schoolgirl panty shot of the Horus Heresy, lol.

Unremembered Empire will eventually be known as Unremembered Novel. There's nothing going on here, in terms of things we need to know about. This is another a short story bloated out to a full novel. Abnett punishes us with more jibberish about perpetuals, facilitates another boring and corny three way battle between primarchs who probably shouldn't even be in the same place at the same time, and introduces more goofy stereotype Marines.

And on top of that it's just opening up more plot holes, and facilitating new ones. I honestly don't think the Black Library has any idea what they're doing at this point, other than trying to figure out how to sell us more books. This novel does nothing more than offer up the segue to the next novel about nothing. Unless you just absolutely had to read another set of indecisive, conclusionless, and ultimately meaningless battle between primarchs, you wasted any time you spent reading this.


2/5 stars. I give it 2 just because it's fairly well written from a technical standpoint. It's just that it never deserved to be a novel in the first place. I think the better name for it is Unremembered Novel, because in the end, after this series is finally dragged out to its conclusion, it will be a forgettable middle chapter of the Heresy, notable only for the events of its own final chapter, and perhaps not even that. It's not awful, it's just... pointless.
 

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Veteran Sergeant,

I kind of agree what your saying. However, I did enjoy reading "Unremembered Empire" , I understand that in the over all of the heresy story line it doesn't contribute as much as the earlier novels did.

I think to some extent Black library is stretching out the heresy . We all know from the fluff what happened. It's possible that the heresy novels could of been shorten but this is game work shop we are dealing with which is a publicly traded company. So the bottom line is more important.

Hence, why we have the the serialize white scars novels being release piece by piece.
 

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Primarch battles are the Japanese schoolgirl panty shot of the Horus Heresy, lol.
I know you didn't intend it this way but...

At least in my experience, Western literature is slanted more towards how events scuplt the story while Eastern literature focuses on the characters that drive the events. Not saying that either of them focus exclusively on either (and of course each individual story has its own mix of the two), but as a general rule of thumb that's how it goes. In my experience.

And speaking of panty-shots, I think this one clearly has Guilliman wearing a pair of shimpan (too oblique? Don't worry about it). In other words, I think we got more of a feel for how Guilliman really feels about the Heresy.

I think it advanced Guilliman in a more likeable way, overall. People complained about him planning a Second Imperium. Well, now we get to see this planning from his perspective. And boy is it an eye-opener.

He doesn't want to lead the Imperium, first or second. He'd be happy to hand it off to anyone, even Russ.

Furthermore, we learn that Guilliman didn't think he was the end-all-be-all. We get to read how he acknowledges that he felt Horus and the Lion actually stood above him. He admired those two. That's something new and, I think, interesting to see.

We also get to see the ramifications of Istvaan V amongst the Loyalist Primarchs. There's not an ounce of trust to be had. I thought the moments when Guilliman and the Lion first met were very interesting. Particularly when Guilliman orders the void shield lowered during their meal, despite how recent events would have said to do otherwise.

I'm sure the Vulkan sub-plot will also yield something. I just started Vulkan Lives. I didn'y enjoy this subplot, but maybe I should have read Vulkan Lives first? We'll see how that turns out.
~~~~~~~~~

I will say, the last quarter of the novel was poop. I didn't like the Curze fight. He shouldn't have been there.

I didn't really like the whole Vulkan-perpetual subplot. I also didn't like how he died like 8 times in the end. Yeah, sure, not in the best shape, still healing, whatever. Still, he was weaker than a Space Marine, I feel.

Yeah, the whole "teleport-with-feeling" thing was retarded as hell. And then Guilliman magically teleporting back WITH the Lion, nonetheless. That seemed too convenient.

The first three quarters of the book was good enough that I was still riding its high as I ran into the disaster that the last part of the book was. In the end, I thought it was pretty good...as a means of fleshing out Guilliman's character.
 

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I have to agree with Child-of-the-Emperor's take.

It's painfully obvious by now that there simply isn't a recognized "standard" for what a Primarch can and cannot do. It varies both by author by author and novel by novel - even when we're talking about different novels by the same author. We have to accept that a Primarch can do (or cannot do) whatever the author needs him to for the sake of the story. Quite bluntly, get used to Fulgrim taking the proverbial power fist to the face in one story, only for Roboute to be warned of dying from a bolter round to the face in another.

This ties in directly to what I felt was one of the two weak points of the novel - Konrad Curze as the primary antagonist of the story. Because he's basically the only antagonist of the story worth mentioning, Dan had to write him and the other Primarchs in a way that makes them stand in, yes, sharp contrast to what we've come to expect. Specifically, the Night Haunter has to be far more dynamic and capable than we've seen him before; on the other hand, Roboute Guilliman and Lion El'Jonson have to be far less capable than we would expect.

The above ties to the other weak point of 'The Unremembered Empire' - it's a direct continuation of 'Vulkan Lives'. Fitting in Vulkan's storyline with that of Imperium Secundus is like trying to wedge the proverbial square peg in the round hole. Hindsight is always 20-20, and I hate to inject it into a novel, but I'd much rather have seen those two storylines resolved on their own.

I think ADB debunked that one I heard.
I'd be interested to see where. To the best of my knowledge, ADB has been very non-commital about this topic. I wouldn't blame him, either way. I only half-jokingly pursue the topic of Sevatar-as-Khyron, but assuming it's a real thing, the last thing ADB would want to do is make any sort of firm statement about the topic.

Cheers,
P.
 

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I'd be interested to see where. To the best of my knowledge, ADB has been very non-commital about this topic. I wouldn't blame him, either way. I only half-jokingly pursue the topic of Sevatar-as-Khyron, but assuming it's a real thing, the last thing ADB would want to do is make any sort of firm statement about the topic.
ADB posted on his facebook
ADB said:
No, that isn't what happens to Sevatar. Nice try, forums. Nice try.
He is not specific as to what rumor about Sevatar we got wrong, but as it is really the only one talked about it is generally assumed the Sevatar/Khyron rumor is what is being referred to.

Also, I share CotE thoughts, about the novel and was really hoping for a more political/moral story regarding all the Primarch present and discussing the merits to Imperium Secundus, and a little less watching Vulkan die pointlessly over and over.

EDIT: that's not to say I did not thoroughly enjoy the novel, was very nice to read a fluid and coherent novel for a change lol.
 

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You'll forgive me if I require something with a bit more substance than that, I'm sure. :)
Ya I hear you, I'm still hoping it turns out to be true as I believe ADB would make that into one hell of a story. I was just posting the evidence of where ADB supposedly "debunked" it.
 

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Consistency rears its ugly head again.

As much i like the Heresy series i find it pathetic that they've been unable to establish any ground rules and create a truly consistent setting. Honestly, how many books did it take to even get the legion sizes sorted?

Things like the legion sizes, a basic timeline, the abilities of the primarchs should have been established early on. What exactly is discussed in the Heresy Meetings we've heard about? Whatever is, it's not helping consistency.
@Veteran Sergeant

It was set in Ultramar as that was the key part of Lorgar and Horus' plan. To cut off the Ultramarines and Ultramar from the rest of the Imperium Lorgar used the bloodshed of his invasion into Ultramar to create the warpstorms to isolate Ultramar.

The battle on the training planet (or rather the war world) was to show us the mentality of the World Eaters and their relationship with their primrach. That was essentially what the whole novel was about.
 

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Honestly, how many books did it take to even get the legion sizes sorted?
(I know it was a rhetorical question, but I feel the need to answer it regardless.)

It took the Heresy team 12 full novels to finally establish that there was a need to clarify the Legion sizes. From that perspective it really does seem that there was pitifully little organisation going on in the first half of the series.

I do think it is better now and that they have learnt a few lessons, but it is still below-par.
 

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@Veteran Sergeant

It was set in Ultramar as that was the key part of Lorgar and Horus' plan. To cut off the Ultramarines and Ultramar from the rest of the Imperium Lorgar used the bloodshed of his invasion into Ultramar to create the warpstorms to isolate Ultramar.
It's stupid and makes no sense. If Lorgar had all of the Word Bearers in Ultramar, why weren't they at Calth?

The idea of Calth was sacrificing the Word Bearers in a gambit to hold up the Ultramarines. It was Horus's way of using his least valuable but most prolific troops to take the Emperor's best and most prolific troops out of the equation. The rest of the Word Bearers then went to Terra with Lorgar. It's a distraction. A misdirection.

But if all of the Word Bearers were in Ultramar already, why would Lorgar hold up part of them rather than apply overwhelming force at Calth and destroy the Ultramarines utterly? It makes absolutely no strategic sense. Instead he decides to attack bits of Ultramar piecemeal?

Nope. Bad writing, and poor editorial vision at TBL. Nothing more, nothing less.
 
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