Extra Punctuation: Hating Warhammer 40k and Space Marine

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 NEXT
 

I'd have to say I agree overall.

I've looked over the WHM40K universe. I found it strong on drama and action, but short on everything else, and my big tabletop wargaming experience previously was Battletech (3026-Clan Era).

Whereas both franchises have a voluminous backstory, Warhammer's is wide but shallow. There aren't many main characters that stand out, and those that do are stereotypical to an extreme. In fact, extreme characterization and imagery is pretty much the bread-and-butter of WHM40K to start and end with.

By contrast, Battletech provides a strong range of both primary and support characters, driven by a wide variety of ideals and passions. While each major faction presents an overall specialization, this is generalized instead of being made the be-all-end-all found in Warhammer.

Of course, it's easy to dismiss Battletech in computer game terms, since to date almost all such have been in-the-cockpit slugfests between giant robots... which is a slim slice of the entire game universe. It's like going to a smorgasbord where all you end up eating is mountains of creme brulee.

Putting aside the fact that it's a much stronger combined-arms wargame system, the social dynamics and economic considerations in the larger backstory of Battletech are generally what drive the various factions' military decisions --- something with much more depth and nuance than yelling WAAAAAAAAAAGGGGGGH a lot.

All of that said, I can see why some people would find WHM40K fun --- on the same level as finding a fart-joke comedy flick fun. It's all a matter of how seriously you want to take your entertainment.

Lol k no one will care in a weeks time anymore.

This one guy:
Lol k no one will care in a weeks time anymore.

This may be the most well written argument I've read in months

Really, I love the Warhammer 40k setting, except for one small caveat.
There is only war.
I mean, after Ten. THOUSAND. YEARS... something would have to give. I mean, yeah, a prolonged state of technoligical regression, I can get that. The world being more or less static, largely based on the near-immortality of the ruling class? I feel that. But after spending so long embroiled in an endless war, something would happen.
I guess the entire premise is an extended dramatization of the stupid old question: What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object?

Can someone tell me if I'm just imagining things as worse then they actually are because of a personal soft spot for all things 40k, but was this EP particularly venomous (and even more biased) then normal?

Look, I know the Lore of 40k is semi-trashy sci-fi fantasy and the games are convoluted and easily stereotyped (to a degree in that they started the stereotyping in some cases). But it's fun if your into semi-thrashy things, or offbeat sci-fi fantasy.

And did he actually try to compare the DnD crowed with the 40k crowed and claim one to be superior? Or was that a joke that went over my head?

darthricardo:
Really, I love the Warhammer 40k setting, except for one small caveat.
There is only war.
I mean, after Ten. THOUSAND. YEARS... something would have to give. I mean, yeah, a prolonged state of technoligical regression, I can get that. The world being more or less static, largely based on the near-immortality of the ruling class? I feel that. But after spending so long embroiled in an endless war, something would happen.
I guess the entire premise is an extended dramatization of the stupid old question: What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object?

Well... "in the far distant future, we found a compromise" doesn't exactly carry itself for an epic, now does it?

rda_Highlander:
It's been bugging me for quite some time, and I just can't calm down about it.
THEY ARE NOT SPACE MARINES. THERE IS NO WATER IN SPACE. THEY ARE SPACE INFANTRY, damnit!

It so pisses me off, I can almost see the people who came up with this name, think "They should be the MOST badass awesome hardcore ubermencsh in entire world! Dhuur, what is the most awesome army type we heard about? Oh, they're called marines! Awesome!"
I'm sorry, it just makes me so irritated for some reason.

A marine, as a military term, is a type of soldier who specializes ship to ship combat and amphibious or trans-terrain warfare. The US Marines are naval infantry, and in many countries marine (in the military sense) translates almost exactly to that. The term space is applied to the front to note that they are a space going marine, also seen in spaceship, space shuttle, space capsule. They are Marines in that they work both on ships and land and can battle equally effectively on either of them.

"You know what Warhammer 40K is? It's the product of a generation that has never known any kind of real conflict or struggle."

Yeah... this statement is pretty much bull.

This argument makes no sense when combined with the later statement about Warhammer 40k being juvenile. If the game is juvenile fantasy, then unless you plan on marketing this to child soldiers, your target audience CAN NOT POSSIBLY have known the kind of real conflict or struggle alluded to by mentioning the Somme. Calling the game childish or a juvenile fantasy isn't too far-fetched but you can't then say that the people who enjoy such flights of fantasy only do so because they don't known what the reality of situations like this are.

Here is an example of a product appealing to the "glory of battle" in a worst possible scenario of war - THE ILIAD. When normal wars for the time lasted months, this war lasted years with endless killing on both sides. You have two sides, neither of which are the "good" guys. (Achilles spends a couple of chapters continually trying to desecrate the body of his enemy or murdering prisoners) The story doesn't even show an end to the war, it simply shows that the Greeks and Trojans are going to kill each other in a more civilized fashion rather than the brutal slug-fest they have been in.

Ignorance is bliss eh?

plugav:

SilverUchiha:
I couldn't agree more with the point of wanting to play D&D for the storytelling aspect. I love the way it allows you to pursue the story and roleplay aspect. But I've only played with groups that like the combat only and don't give a shit about the story.

My impression has always been that D&D promotes combat-oriented play. It's one of the reasons why I've always prefered Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (the 1st and 2nd editions, I haven't read the 3rd). The combat is there, but your party is far less likely to be a professional dungeoun-crawling commando unit.

Cool. FYI, wasn't knocking that Warhammer didn't have story or anything. I was just saying I agreed with his point about D&D and that's it.

As for your thoughts on promoting combat-oriented play, it really depends on what version and what books you look at. If you do 3.5 and have a library of digital copies of all a lot of the books, it feels more like a story-telling roleplay experience. If you have 4.0 at all, then it is going to feel more combat oriented. Which is why I have not bothered trying to learn 4.0 yet aside from just not caring enough.

Hmm, this is probably the first time I must disagree with pretty much everything this illustrious reviewer has to say. Tone, motif, background, etc, etc were dealt sloppily by someone who obviously don't know much about this setting, it's history, and who didn't care to do some research to back his arguments up.

Gut feeling and guffaws do not a good analysis make.

and I though I was pretentious....

I can see I didn't hate it as much as Yahtzee however my oppinion of the game was that the story lacked depth. Especially because the lore felt as though there was much depth to it but it was just never shown in the game which is kinda sad :(

ACman:
Tau are space communists.

You sir, cracked me up. This is the funniest WH40K joke I heard lately.
Anyway, totally agree with you. Basically everyone are crazy alien haters who seem to look for excuses to kill others.

You know, I figured that they should have some damn evolve nukes so far to into the future.

similar.squirrel:
Oh, butthurt has been generated. I'm bookmarking this thread for future chuckles.

Yeah, I was surprised by how much people are infuriated about this. Still, I guess this is a gaming website. There is always going to be a fair bit of backlash. Wasn't expecting this much though.

Yeah, this is pretty much the dumbest thing Yahtzee has written since that one column where he said there aren't any good stories about the Batman character because he never changes. Demonstrates the same total blindness to the property he is criticizing and also misses the central theme entirely at the same time.

But it's sure a good thing we have Yahtzee around to be "brutally honest". Everyone knows that online fandom communities don't have enough arrogant bitching. Certainly we don't have nearly enough negativity already. Nope, we don't have any of those things.

rayen020:

A marine, as a military term, is a type of soldier who specializes ship to ship combat and amphibious or trans-terrain warfare. The US Marines are naval infantry, and in many countries marine (in the military sense) translates almost exactly to that. The term space is applied to the front to note that they are a space going marine, also seen in spaceship, space shuttle, space capsule. They are Marines in that they work both on ships and land and can battle equally effectively on either of them.

Although I agree with what you say, it still isn't nearly their definition. All I've seen of them is standing in the field/trees/mud and shooting from heavy weaponry/ripping with swords/bashing with charisma. The Guards are more suited to be called "space marines" as far as I can tell. The marines themselves are more of a paratrooper kind. Oh, right! Space Troopers! That's what I'd call them. Although there are already certain Starship Troopers, but that's beyond the case.

I agree that Space Marine is a terrible game that managed to ruin a handful of decent enough ideas with a lot of meh. It is also a terrible ambassador of it's over all universe and that's probably my biggest hate of it. As far as the universe I think Yahtzee is wrong, but expecting some one who isn't mind you any kind of journalist to do due research is probably just expecting too much.

I think his overall ignorance made this article very boring to read.

I don't care much for Space Marine or whatever it is either. The most interesting thing I got from that is that he played Gears 3. Hopefully the review of that is coming soon.

Evil Alpaca:
"You know what Warhammer 40K is? It's the product of a generation that has never known any kind of real conflict or struggle."

Yeah... this statement is pretty much bull.

This argument makes no sense when combined with the later statement about Warhammer 40k being juvenile. If the game is juvenile fantasy, then unless you plan on marketing this to child soldiers, your target audience CAN NOT POSSIBLY have known the kind of real conflict or struggle alluded to by mentioning the Somme. Calling the game childish or a juvenile fantasy isn't too far-fetched but you can't then say that the people who enjoy such flights of fantasy only do so because they don't known what the reality of situations like this are.

Here is an example of a product appealing to the "glory of battle" in a worst possible scenario of war - THE ILIAD. When normal wars for the time lasted months, this war lasted years with endless killing on both sides. You have two sides, neither of which are the "good" guys. (Achilles spends a couple of chapters continually trying to desecrate the body of his enemy or murdering prisoners) The story doesn't even show an end to the war, it simply shows that the Greeks and Trojans are going to kill each other in a more civilized fashion rather than the brutal slug-fest they have been in.

Yeah yahtzee is , once again, being ignorant and hatefully dismissive again as he is want to do with all of his pretentious arrogance.

At any rate, I guess this is why I rely on Yahtzee for two things: humor, and the occasional game recommendation. If I need a review of a game, I can either use another website, or just the Escapist's reviews, simply because they're not burdened by the load of having to make their assessment funny.

I was a bit baffled by his depiction of the 40k universe, though. I can't remember the last time anyone was depicted as taking an admirable point of view when they talked about "the glory of battle." In the Gaunt's Ghosts books especially, war isn't glorified in the slightest. And his literal interpretation of the "there is only war" stuff just comes across as petty, like 40k stole his girlfriend and he's scrambling for reasons to insult it.

And, bizarrely, he literally summed the game up as being exactly like Gears of War. I'm questioning whether or not he actually played the game around that point, and given his previous rantings, it's clear that he wants it to be one thing and is dead set on depicting it to be that.

It's a damn shame. I've seen him rant and be funny at the same time before, but this is just...weird, like comparing a racist rant to a sketch from the Chappelle show. With previous stuff, it at least felt like he was enjoying it, but now it's just blind hate.

I always thought that WH40K was very much different from any other type of military Sci-Fi because its tongue has been pretty much surgically attached to the inside of its cheek.

Most military Sci-Fi seems to be all about glorifying the heroic exploits of their warrior protagonists, and how their will to fight makes them so much better than the pitiful civilians. Heck, someone once showed me a novel where an alien-besieged Federal Republic of Germany used alien biotechnology to rejuvenate their WW2 veterans and re-establish the Waffen-SS (complete with railgun-equipped "Tiger III" tanks), and anyone who disagreed with this brilliant plan was implied to be a pinko liberal traitor to humanity by the (American) author.

In WH40K, on the other hand, it is made abundantly clear that the space marines, for all their badassery, are completely brainwashed crusaders fighting for a corrupt theocracy that would probably be considered pure evil were it not for the fact that their opponents are either even more evil or simply outside of any definition of "morality".

Harkonnen64:

Let's think about this for a moment. In a game and setting dominated by big, burly men in equally big, burly armor, the inclusion of a female character would had to have been something the creators went out of their way to do. And if they would go out of their way to put a female character in a situation where her authority is questioned, they would have had to recognize the possible (or maybe intentional) sexist implications. She didn't "happen" to be a woman, she was deliberately made a woman. Don't underplay the issue.

The creators might have been deliberately made a woman, but her authority due to gender isn't what is questioned, that was yahtzee misreading the scene.
Rather the space marine asking is surprised because she is the ONLY officer left alive, and a low ranking one at that.

"At one point the boy's club happens upon an outpost commander who has been talked up by other characters for a while and discovers that she's an attractive young lady. "Oh god, you chunky fucks are going to be taken aback by this, aren't you," I predicted. And sure enough, they were, in the least emotional possible way"

You see where yahtzee got it wrong? He read the line as sm going "wat ?a gurl in command" and in doing so he misreads the scene and his understanding of 40k worsens.

As for downplaying the issue and whether the guy writing the dialogue realized the possible intentional/misintentional sexist implications of that particular line and was trying to bring an up an issue or seek to play a little joke on the players prejudices....
Eugh...Do you really want to chat about that? That topic doesn't enthrall me, would rather go back to bitching/white knighting 40k.

Hm. I thoroughly enjoyed the game from start to finish. But I suppose it should be mentioned I play tabletop Warhammer 40K (Orks) and love the Dawn of War strategy series:-P

Ahum. All of you people bashing on 40k's story, or lack thereof, I refer you to this link:

http://www.blacklibrary.com/Warhammer-40000

I felt like this game with just a few adjustments could have been really really good, but as it stands it's just alright.

sharpe95th:
Why are any of your surprised the skinny nerdy man who loves fantasy, wears a stupid hat, and has a pretentious beard doesn't like military fiction?

40K isn't really "military fiction" though. It is absurd. We're talking about a world where 9 ft tall super-soldiers paint their power armour in bright, primary colors because in the dark future of the 41st millennium, camo is apparently for pussies.

Most of the vehicles are ridiculous. The designs of the rhinos and land raiders just couldn't work. Now for your average 13 year old kid, realism isn't necessary. But to call this game military fiction demands a basic level of believability.

40K is juvenile, and it's juvenile in that particular style of trying to pretend it's adult. It tries so hard to be GRIMDARK that it trips all over itself and looks like a clown. How many terrain pieces for 40K do you see that have evidence that people once lived on the battlefield that is being fought over- you know, broken appliances, every day rubbish (note, not rubble) in the streets, maybe a child's toy left behind because the family had to evacuate without even the time to look back? Now how many terrain pieces for 40K do you see that are strewn with skulls for no particular reason other than perhaps that the Spikey Marines like stacking skulls in their free time?

I don't agree with everything Yahtzee said here (I'm in the hobby for the painting converting, and I got into miniature gaming because of the terrible people I used to have available to table-top RP with.) But those things are opinions, and it doesn't threaten me if not everyone shares mine. But as for the general character of the game- I think he's spot-on.

Katatori-kun:

sharpe95th:
Why are any of your surprised the skinny nerdy man who loves fantasy, wears a stupid hat, and has a pretentious beard doesn't like military fiction?

40K isn't really "military fiction" though. It is absurd. We're talking about a world where 9 ft tall super-soldiers paint their power armour in bright, primary colors because in the dark future of the 41st millennium, camo is apparently for pussies.

Most of the vehicles are ridiculous. The designs of the rhinos and land raiders just couldn't work. Now for your average 13 year old kid, realism isn't necessary. But to call this game military fiction demands a basic level of believability.

40K is juvenile, and it's juvenile in that particular style of trying to pretend it's adult. It tries so hard to be GRIMDARK that it trips all over itself and looks like a clown. How many terrain pieces for 40K do you see that have evidence that people once lived on the battlefield that is being fought over- you know, broken appliances, every day rubbish (note, not rubble) in the streets, maybe a child's toy left behind because the family had to evacuate without even the time to look back? Now how many terrain pieces for 40K do you see that are strewn with skulls for no particular reason other than perhaps that the Spikey Marines like stacking skulls in their free time?

I don't agree with everything Yahtzee said here (I'm in the hobby for the painting converting, and I got into miniature gaming because of the terrible people I used to have available to table-top RP with.) But those things are opinions, and it doesn't threaten me if not everyone shares mine. But as for the general character of the game- I think he's spot-on.

If you want that narrow definition than every non-historical based military piece or writing is "ridiculous" including star ship troopers which is supposed to be the A standard for military-fiction.

Stu35:
Well I've read the Horus Heresy novels. And yes, the 40k universe is incredibly retarded, but it's fun, and it's fantasy, and it doesn't really matter that it makes no sense on an economic level.

As always however, a very funny article.

Don't expect this to be the popular response.

But it is pretty spot on (as someone else who read HH).

similar.squirrel:
Oh, butthurt has been generated. I'm bookmarking this thread for future chuckles.

Reminds me of MovieBob's Expendables review. Classic, claissic reactions.

Not impressed by this article. Played Space Marine myself, and... yeah, it's really not that great, but Gears of War? Pretty damn off the mark. Gears of War is meant to make you feel slow, lumbering, and stupid (developers' own words), Space Marine's meant to make you feel huge and unstoppable. If I had to draw a comparison, I'd say it's more like a scaled back Ratchet and Clank game without the benefit of jumping mechanics, platforming, and puzzles. Don't get me wrong, it's really a mediocre-to-average game that doesn't deserve a defense from me, but if you're gonna call it out on being a knockoff at least get the details right.

cefm:
What bugs me about WH40K is that it PRETENDS to have a back-story but doesn't really. There's just no real explanation of motivations, economy, politics, etc. And from the extremely limited story that is there, these other levels of detail are rendered impossible. It's just WE KILL THEM, and THEY KILL US. That's it.

Uhh? No. It's got very, very extensive backstory. The rulebooks are 90% fluff, 5% actual game rules, and 5% images of miniatures to give you painting ideas. There's whole huge series of novels devoted to it, some of which are actually best-sellers, and four different tabletop role-playing games devoted to the 40k universe. I only recently got into 40k after years of dismissing it just like you did, and I found it was on par with anything Tolkein or Frank Herbert ever did. Just sillier. Much, much, much sillier. But, eh, hater's gonna hate. I suppose it's a bit much for me to expect you to approach this rationally.

Wow Mr Croshaw. I'm sure you realized the amount of fanboy rage this article would unleash. In saying that, I myself have never really had any interest in the Warhammer universe. I had a friend that used to do war gaming, WW2, and he only mentioned Warhammer has being similar, yet infinitely more complex and daunting. As such the only other mentions of the game I hear are from fans who seem to have a quest to educate the world of the entire back story. Can't really verify any of your points, for as I mention, I have little exposure to the series, but from what little exposure I have had this article seems to be pretty accurate.

Normandyfoxtrot:

If you want that narrow definition than every non-historical based military piece or writing is "ridiculous" including star ship troopers which is supposed to be the A standard for military-fiction.

Ah, but the original Starship Troopers (which has little in common with the movies that share the same name) is somewhat believable, if for no other reason than that there aren't any pictures of the silly drop pods and MI armor.

But the book Starship Troopers has military tactics all over it. There are almost no tactics in 40K, unless they are exploiting a rules loophole. In 40K your bald, screaming SPESS MEHRENS shoot. Then they run up to hit the bad guys with their swords.

This article sounds more like a expanded part of one of Yahtzee's Zero Punctuation rants then his usual writing.

NickCaligo42:
The rulebooks are 90% fluff, 5% actual game rules, and 5% images of miniatures to give you painting ideas.

This perfectly encompasses everything that is wrong with 40K. It has an extensive backstory, which is so ridiculous and un-compelling that even the fans refer to it as "fluff". Reams and reams of text have been written that even the people who like it for whatever reason admit by the term they use to describe it that it completely unimportant to the actual game.

What is important in 40K? Finding an excuse for your [insert color here] marines to point and shout at your opponent's [insert color here] spikey marines. Then you roll some dice, and whoever wrote the better army list wins.

If Warhammer 40k: Space Marines were a Japanese game and was, more or less, the exact same game but with a different franchise plastered onto it and some other sci-fi or fantasy stetting in the place of what we currently have but it was, over all, exactly the same plot and game play we would go on and on about how much the melee sucks, how clunky the gun play is and how over the top and stupid the action is.

The combos are no better than Dynasty Warriors, the gun play isn't "tight" and the world is as dark and gritty as you'd expect an American game to be. But still we praise it for being fun and defend it because it's from an IP that we westerners love and all of that jive. But mark my words if this game were based on an anime or some other Japanese game IP we wouldn't be so forgiving about it's short comings and blandness.

It really boggles my mind, it really does.

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here