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Dazed and confused.
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Could you please point me to the battle between the WE and the SW that took place pre-Prospero, or is this something that happens between Prospero and the defense of Terra? I really enjoy the SW and have never heard of this one, although that's not saying much.
It's in Betrayer. A flashback shows a battle between Russ and Angron while their sons go at it around them.
 

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Could you please point me to the battle between the WE and the SW that took place pre-Prospero, or is this something that happens between Prospero and the defense of Terra? I really enjoy the SW and have never heard of this one, although that's not saying much.

In Betrayer, Angron have many flashbacks to a battle between the World Eaters and the Space Wolves. Ending with him and Rush brawling in the mud.
 

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So far most arguments why the Wolf Brothers failed have been that it was directly linked to the SWs.
Since we don't actually have any fluff to guide us allow me to present an alternative theory.

They did it themselves.

We know from Battle of the fang that the SW was experimenting with trying to solve their geneseed problems AKA Wulfen curse. We also know not everyone agreed with it since it was seen as dangerous and threatening.

Isn't it possible that the Wolf Brothers tried to do the same and succeed. Or at least thought they did until 800 years later they just spontaneously mutated into blobs.
It would not be the first time that happened after all. (Thousand Sons anyone.)


Maybe the SW opposition saw it as dangerous because they had seen it fail once?
 

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I know I should probably let dead dogs lie but some of the comments about biology and what’s feasible got me thinking.
So here’s what we know about biology and genetics that could affect something like the wulfen curse.

Fact: About every seventh year the human body will have replaced practically every cell in its body.

Fact: This is in a perfect mechanism. Damages to a cell’s DNA often cause errors to appear in the process or otherwise known as mutation. Most often these mutations lead to rapid and abnormal growth of the cells. We know it as cancer.

Fact: RNA viruses exploit this mechanism of cell-division by replacing parts of the cell’s DNA with its own RNA forcing the cell to produce new viruses. This is the cause behind some of the most horrific and lethal diseases on the planet such as Ebola or AIDS.

Fact: Geneticists can use modified RNA viruses to program a cell’s DNA with new DNA strands of their choice. This is how we have corn that can survive in cold climates or how mice can grow a human ear on their backs. For example, corn gets parts of its DNA replaced with DNA from cold resistant fishes making them able to survive cold temperatures.

Fact: By combining the ability to reprogram DNA with RNA viruses with the fact that the human body is always replacing old cells with new, scientists have come up with something called gene replacement therapy. This a medical procedure that tries to cure genetic diseases by reprograming the flawed cells that causes the disease so that when the flawed cell is reproduce the new cell will be a healthy cell whose DNA no longer carries the errors that cause the flawed cells and the disease in the first place.
But the cure only works at the pace of the human body’s own cell reproduction rate.

Now so far all I’ve talked about is real life science. This is what geneticist does in labs right now. Want to know more. Then just check out Wikipedia or take a subscription to Science or Nature.

However, let’s look at space marines and 40k universe.

Now we know from codexes and IA articles that when a human is made into a space marine huge physical changes takes place in his body. For example his bones grow longer and denser (which btw from a biological point of view isn’t as smart as it sounds) and his ribcage fuses into a single thick bone plate.
We also know that these processes take time, often over ten years. It isn’t an instant process but a natural process taking advantage of the body’s own regenerative mechanism such as cell reproduction.
We also know that a space marine candidate have to be young to be turned into a space marine as the process takes advantage of the human body’s growth from a child into an adult.
And that all this is triggered by the introduction of geneseed into the candidate.

If we combine what the fluff tells us about the making of a space marine and what genetics tells us, I think that we can safely conclude that what geneseed really is glands producing RNA viruses that are used to reprogram the human cells into becoming space marine cells.


Now let’s examine the curse of the wulfen. We know that the Space Wolves’ geneseed was created using canine strands of DNA. We also know that their geneseed is unstable so that if the candidate isn’t strong enough he will transform into a half man, half beast creature known as a wulfen.
From what we know it would seem likely what’s really happening is that the geneseed instead of creating superhuman space marine cells reinforced by positive canine abilities the geneseed is instead simply replacing the human cells with something resembling canine cells (or more likely dog/human hybrids) creating the half human half beast that is a wulfen.

However, would that process be able to change a human into a wolf thus fulfilling the there are no wolves on Fenris comment?
Theoretically, yes. If you can replace all the human cells in a body with super human space marine cells there is nothing that prevents you from replacing the human cells that transforms a being into a body of a wolf.
Note however and this important, we’re talking about transforming a human body into a body identically of that of wolves. Not changing a human into a wolf. You can’t change species but you could however change physical features.
Such a transformed wolf would not be a Canis Lupus but a **** Sapiens Lupus.

Of course, while you could theoretically change a human body into that of a wolf through some process resembling gene replacement therapy the transition period would always kill the subject as no organism could survive consisting of cells from two different types of organisms at the same time.
(Fine, lichens but then lichens is a cellular level symbiotic relationship between an algae and a fungus let’s just simplify things by saying it’s two different organisms living in one body.)

So neither wulfen or fenrisian wolves should survive the curse.
Unless there is some additional mechanism involved that we don’t know about that keeps the subject alive and seeing how much more advanced science in the 40k universe are compared to our own that a safe assumption to make.

Which means that with a little faith in Big E (or some long forgotten noble laureate) biology do indeed allow for a space marine to transform into a wolf.


And we haven’t even mention psyker magic or warp mutations. This is all science and conjectures drawn from predictions on how the scientific field will progress. (Gene replacement therapy will probably been perfected within the next hundred years tops. So real life space marines are probably only a couple of hundred years away, not forty thousand.) Throw psyker magic and the warp into the mix and who knows what’s possible.
 

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^ Wow

Wolves are I think warp spirits from their fallen brothers reborn to serve (Fenris and the whole life and death circle)...My theory...Seriosly, GW needs to clear that out ASAP....
 

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Further to my previous post, I really do believe that the founding Legions that have few or no successor chapters also seem to coincide with the Legions that still have a living Primarch.

Ultra Marines
Blood Angels
Iron Fists

Space Wolves
Raven Guard
Salamanders
White Scars

Iron Hands
Dark Angels

the First three have dead Primarchs and lots successor chapters, the second group have few or no successor chapters and whose Primarchs left under mysterious circumstances. The last group are complete contradictions, the Iron Hands lost their Primarch early on and never really recovered morally, The Dark Angels have many successor chapters but a mysteriously dissappeared Primarch. the central group are all Legions that would not willingly accept the Codex, I wonder that the did a deal with the High Lords for their chapters to have immunity if they left the Imperium. The central four chapters all had living Primarchs at the end of the Heresy and the Scouring, and could have easily become Emperor Proxy or ruled jointly. Maybe there was a secret deal done, by which the Emperor could become a god and they left. Anyway part of the deal would be immunity from the Inquisition by reason of their purity of loyalty and service, and have their gene seed keep undiluted and a certain freedom from the codex to do what they like. Possibly having a much larger chapter and not needing successors or possibly not wanting them.
Kick the idea around, its biggish and newish.
 

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the central group are all Legions that would not willingly accept the Codex,
The Blood Angels and Dark Angels are both non-codex chapters (but aren't included in your central four) whereas all but one of the Chapters listed as central are considered codex. Additionally, Dorn is one of the Primarchs noted to have most intensely opposed the break up of the Legions.

The central four chapters all had living Primarchs at the end of the Heresy and the Scouring,
Depending on when the Scouring is considered to end this may not be true. Russ and Corax both disappeared sometime during it and Vulkan may have already been dead at that point. Additionally, Dorn is still alive at the end of the Scouring and is indeed one of the final Primarchs left standing.

Maybe there was a secret deal done, by which the Emperor could become a god and they left. Anyway part of the deal would be immunity from the Inquisition by reason of their purity of loyalty and service, and have their gene seed keep undiluted and a certain freedom from the codex to do what they like.
I don't see how this deal works out for the Primarchs. On the one hand, they don't want the Emperor to be worshiped as a god. And on the other, why should they have to sacrifice their lives to prove their loyalty to a bunch of puny mortals who weren't even alive during the Heresy.

Possibly having a much larger chapter and not needing successors or possibly not wanting them.
The only problem with this is that most of the Chapters you think would've made this deal are not larger than Codex-standard Legions. Only the Black Templars (who are not an original Legion) and the Space Wolves (who, as noted throughout this thread, are a special case) are larger than normal.
 

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I'll just chime in.
IRRC in prospero burns and thousand sons there are passages that describe the sw as having problems with their marines and they are beginning to run low on numbers till leman is found.

Hence gene seed can b implanted in terrans, however oftentimes there are troubles. There is even a Terran librarian who lasted for 200 years roughly.

2ndly. Battle of the fang states the wolf brothers were created and last 1500 years I think before half turned to chaos. Before they turned its stated that they began to suffer losses to the wulfen, similar to the flesh tearers but instead of black rage it's wulfen. So they were unsustainable in the long term as a chapter, however they still lasted 1500 years and could've lasted longer if not for turning to chaos.

The point is not that the genes we'd does not function outside of fenris, it is that it does not function efficiently. Why waste time making chapters that cannot sustain themselves because they are inefficient?
 

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There has been fine discussion over why they have a hard time with a successful recruiting process as well as predecessor.

One question I think is interesting to dwell upon is why the Emperor implanted the certain genetics into Leman Russ in order for him to have a better chance of a survival in a planet like Fenris. Certain ideas like whether the Emperor had some future insight over what the Primarchs were going to go through or whether the Emperor gave Leman Russ an "interesting" set of genetics for a controversal set of purposes...
 

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One question I think is interesting to dwell upon is why the Emperor implanted the certain genetics into Leman Russ in order for him to have a better chance of a survival in a planet like Fenris.
I'm not sure he did. I'm fairly certain any other primarch would have prospered just as well on Fenris. We've seen that they are pretty much invulnerable to anything other than another primarch, or chaos infused weapons. I don't think a little inclement weather (that's all that the hostile Fenrisian climate would be to any primarch) would undo any of them.
 

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Unless it has been retconned, it is my understanding that the Wolves and Templars are the only two chapters that do not adhere to the codex. The Templars true numbers are suspected to be around 5-6k if remember correctly. Russ on the other hand, only adhered to the spirit of the codex not the letter. Rather than split his Legion into successor chapters, he broke the legion up into twelve great companies with each commanded by a Wolf Lord and having around 1000 marines. I believe that during the Heresy the Wolves were the smallest legion
 
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