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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 8:34 am 
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Two weeks or so ago, as I was on holiday and had some time for daydreaming, I started thinking about the End Times. A lot of people didn't like them simply because they destroyed a world and setting they loved and had invested a lot of time in. But I think more people were very upset because the writing was terrible, the plotlines hard to believe and they more or less said, everything you have been told up to now is actually wrong.

Being who I am, I went on to think that I (with the rest of the WH community) could have probably done a better job at creating a believable story that wouldn't piss off every WH player out there.

So, as thought experiment I'm asking people here the following. Assume your manager at GW comes up to your desk and tells you that you have to write The End Times (capitals included). How would you do it? How would you end the WH world? (I'll put my own thoughts in a future post as well)

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 3:06 am 
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Just some quick thoughts while my little one sleeps...

I'd liken it to something Tolkein would put out there. Let's look at the two as a comparison:

Middle Earth (Tolkein)
Massive evil force (Orcs)
Ancient Evil (Sauron and others)
Various groups that don't see eye to eye (Elves, Men, Dwarves)

WHFB
Massive evil force (Chaos)
Ancient Evil (Nagash)
Various groups that don't see eye to eye (elves, men, dwarves)

Why destroy the world? Create an epic story arc where the heroes get a chance to be heroic, the villains get to be villains and provide actual danger ... but at the end of it all? Let hope live.

Aside from all that, if I had a say I wouldn't have pushed the storyline as quickly as they did. The entire campaign and arc was under 2 years (iirc) and then BAMM ... everything was gone. I didn't even have a chance to pick some of the stuff up before it was unavailable.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 3:49 am 
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I'd have to agree that there really was no reason to end the world. They could have drastically rearranged the map and combined whatever they needed to combine without ending the world.

The speed was also an issue, and I can't help but wish they'd done the last couple books before or during the process. I honestly think they rushed the whole thing, perhaps even more than they originally intended.

If the world absolutely had to end I don't think there is a way that it could have been done that I would have been happy with. They did seem to find the worst way to do it at every turn.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 12:30 pm 
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How bad was it? Story-telling wise I mean.

I only read the Gav one for High Elves. It seemed perfunctory, but no more so than a lot of the other in-house fiction. I thought it was generally well received? (Maybe I read an online review somewhere? Cant remember.)

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:19 pm 
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I'll stop lurking for a second and answer a more interesting (to me) question:

How would I fix it?

1. I'd build up to a "big" reveal. The 8 realms didn't start in the Realms of Chaos. They came into being when the Calador created the Vortex. The assumption was that the Vortex went back to the Realms of Chaos ... it didn't. It went to it's own pocket dimension. For 6 thousand years the Vortex split the winds of magic into eight colors, and inside the Vortex they formed into the realms. Tie the Mortal Realms tighter to the World that Was and the actions therein.

2. For 6 thousand years, the Elves defended the Isles of the Dead. Not letting any Daemon get even close. Chaos had no idea what was forming in the shadow of the World that Was.

3. For 6 thousand years, as the winds streamed across the World that Was, they picked up psychic impressions. Not just of people, but of places as well. As such, there are places within the Mortal Realms that are similar to places in the World that Was (think a New Nuln in the Realm of Metal ... but with more steampunk). As well as, people/archetypes who seem to get reborn periodically within the Realms.

4. In addition, when the World that Was disintegrated, parts of it were transported wholesale to the Mortal Realms (like attracting like) (Sylvannia was slurped over to the Realm of Death, The Slayer Hold found itself in the Realm of Fire, etc. etc.)

5. Then start throwing in hints that the Realms have become, not only self sufficient, but anathema to Chaos in general. They have become lodestones to the raw stuff of magic, pulling it apart into the various winds. The Chaos Gods need to conquer and tear down the veils between the Realms or they have the very real possibility of having their source of power stripped out from under them and dying a final death. Drop the Chaos Gods down a peg or two and make them be playing for their continued existence as well.

That's how I'd fix the fluff as it currently stands.

p.s. Oh ... I'd also put out some decent maps (same quality that we'd find at the beginning of the army books) for the various parts of the mortal realms. Maybe even something like this http://i.imgur.com/ls5IiaB.jpg for the Realm of Life, but with cities and townships marked out on it (and areas of Chaos corruption). If you're going to go high fantasy ... really go high fantasy!


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2016 8:48 pm 
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I would've tried to finish off some of the cool story lines that were just left hanging. These annoyed me no end. Like Settra for example.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 12:58 pm 
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I haven't actually read the end times stuff, just the synopses posted on Ulthuan...but with that caveat...

Am I the only one who thought it was executed OK, broadly speaking? I liked that they progressed the story arc for the world, I liked what they did with the winds of magic, I liked Teclis being a supremely tricksy bugger, I liked Caledor going independent and Tyrion going to Khaine, I liked the Undead coming to the Empire's aid against chaos...generally some totally epic stuff going on.

Now details I'd quibble over, and maybe more if and when I read the books...maybe Imrik joined with Malekith to easily. Maybe Tyrion took the sword too soon. Maybe, mabye, maybe. But broadly speaking I quite liked it.

I never played an End Times game so I'm not sure what impact it had on that side of things. What I'm salty about is that they then killed WH:8th Ed and replaced it with AoS...but I don't wanna derail ;).

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 1:40 pm 
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John Rainbow wrote:
I would've tried to finish off some of the cool story lines that were just left hanging. These annoyed me no end. Like Settra for example.


Yes, there were far to many things just left unresolved. And it makes no sense to introduce them if they were never going to do anything with them. There are also several things done by characters that just don't seem to make sense, and I was hoping that they'd explain later. Why was Draycha going around collecting people for Nagash? Why did Morgana La Fey let herself get taken by a tree? And then there are the inconsistencies. Like the elf that gets turned into a vampire, becaomes a goddess, and then gets beheaded by Tryion because she doesn't want to be a vampire.

So, I guess they key to making it better would be to keep better control of the story. In 5 books I think they used 7 authors, and 0 editors. If you add the BL stuff it's worse. It should have been one author, and one editor.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 2:39 pm 
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Agreed. They needed an editor. Some of it was very cool i.e. the Vlad stuff in particular. Yet other stuff was super lame and poorly written - most of the final books. I also didn't really like the elf book. I didn't mind the story or what happened but they just did it all so fast.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 3:25 pm 
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Ferny wrote:
I never played an End Times game so I'm not sure what impact it had on that side of things.

An acquired taste.

:(

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2016 12:50 am 
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SpellArcher wrote:
Ferny wrote:
I never played an End Times game so I'm not sure what impact it had on that side of things.

An acquired taste.

:(


Honestly most of it wasn't even around long enough to have any real impact on the game, especially when you consider they under-ordered the first few books and a lot of people who wanted them couldn't even get their hands on them. And shortly they got all that ironed out none of them were available.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2016 12:55 am 
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Yeah I never saw much of the ET stuff on the table top. Even those Rat Ogres that were meant to be awesome never really had time to make it to the table in my area before WFB was killed off.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2016 9:30 am 
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I would estimate about 1/3 of UK tournaments went full lists (Chaos Legion etc), though not most of the new magic rules. About 1/3 allowed the new units but not mixed lists. About 1/3 went 50% Lords and Heroes and Lore of Undeath only.

It was that way for about a year? Managed to avoid most of it by picking and choosing events.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2016 5:23 pm 
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No heroes turning into gods BS, that's for sure.

If i had to kill the world, I'd make it dark and grim, Warhammer style (or at least WFRP style). Possibly some kind of global magic catastrophe (with a proper story and explanation of course), maybe coupled with a massive chaos invasion, killing most of the population, moving into an postapocaliptic dark fantasy world.

Game wise it could be an opportunity to ditch, redesign or merge some armies (not necessary a good idea from business pov due to the fact that people spent lots of money on their hobby, but it would make sense fluff wise), with fluff gravitating towards warbands (that's wad I'd call the current ~100 man armies TBH) fighting for survival or dominance in the new era.

This way they could create a new world from the ashes of the old one, with proper atmosphere and some logical continuity.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:49 am 
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(at the risk of some semi-serious threadomancy)

Headshot wrote:
How bad was it? Story-telling wise I mean.

I only read the Gav one for High Elves. It seemed perfunctory, but no more so than a lot of the other in-house fiction. I thought it was generally well received? (Maybe I read an online review somewhere? Cant remember.)

headshot

This article will tell you everything you need to know about the End Times and why it was terrible.

As for how I would have done it: I wouldn't have. There's no good way to END a world people are this invested in. I've been thinking about it a lot, and I just can't come up with a way that I would be happy with that wouldn't come across as a huge Deus Ex Machina. What the Warhammer world needed was for the Chaos victory to not be a foregone conclusion and for there to be consistency in the world. What I would have liked to see instead of End Times was a resurgence of the Forces of Order for a change, the Elves on Ulthuan repopulating for the first time in ages, Dwarves reclaiming some old Karaks, that kind of stuff. Have the High Elves invade Naggaroth for a change, have Bretonnia lead an Errantry War into the Chaos Wastes. Do something to break the monotone "Chaos is coming to get you!" story we've had for so long. This could then end with the Lizardmen doing some of their continent shifting, which could give a new Dark Power the opportunity to be the main villain for one edition, say the Skaven burst out and make their bid for the world. They could eventually be stopped, but Tilea for example in its entirety could become Skaven territory for the rest of the Warhammer timeline. Then when the Skaven have been forced to stay, maybe the Vampire Counts take advantage of all the dead bodies lying around and launch their invasion on the lands of the living, forcing the Empire and Bretonnia to call upon assistance from High Elves and Dwarves, which then allows the Dark Elves to push out the occupying Asur from Naggaroth.

Alternatively, I would have liked it if Slaanesh really had screwed the other Chaos Gods over in their plan to destroy the world, since she/he/it likes it, joining the other gods to put an end to this nonsense of ending the world, setting herself/himself/itself apart from the rest of the pantheon and allowing the Horned Rat to take its/hers/his place, slightly similar to what happened in AoS. Slaanesh wouldn't still be good, but he/she/it would be against the other Chaos gods at least, creating more nuance.

IDK, anything except what we got.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 1:26 pm 
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I was thinking about this the other day, and why the end times still bugs me so much. Yes, it was terribly written and badly needed a project director to keep track of what was going on. And yes, it killed of not only a game but a world that I had enjoyed for years, and then replaced it with a world and models that I find ridiculous. But even all that isn't enough to explain just how much it bugs me.

It's simple, I'd already fought the Storm of Chaos. Quite actively too. I was one of this sites (well the previous version) two representatives to the Conclave of Light. And then the powers at be took that victory away from us. Reminds me a little to much of the time I spent in Iraq. Not at all rational, but fighting the same battle after you've already won it sucks.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2017 11:16 am 
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I had a funny little revelation rereading the End Times books the other day, concerning Malekith, Morathi and the line of succession to the Phoenix Throne.

So it is stated outright that Malekith is Asuryan's choice as the heir to Aenarion. There was no grey area left in the matter, it was the patron god of the elves will.

But why? Malekith was not the first born son, that was Morelion and any issues from a marriage between related monarchs is as much a barrier to Malekith as his half brother. So Malekith doesn't have majority on his side.

Both Morelion and Malekith are the progeny of a union between powerful magic users and the greatest warrior of the age, but Malekith was born after the drawing of Widowmaker and his mother was either a conspirator with Chaos or a worshipper of the Cythari. Surely the union of the representative of Asuryan and Isha is preferable to that.

Unless?

Unless Morathi is of the line of Caledor Dragontamer. She has the raw power, the hubris, the arrogance of the Caledorians, demonstrates them all. In fact, by the time of the Sundering, she may be the most powerful elven mage alive aside from Caledor.

That makes Malekith the product of both Caledor and Aenarion, the two greatest defenders of elvenkind, their two greatest and most powerful heroes. In him the two families are welded together and Malekith, for all his countless tragedies and faults, demonstrates that.

Malekith is the Prince who has the highest possible potential and bloodline nobility the elves could ever sire and it is the only feasible reason that Asuryan would pick him over his brother.

When Caledor holds Morathi close before they are caught by Slaanesh, he even tells her to 'die with the dignity of her heritage'.

Morathi was of the line of Caledor. That was why Malekith was chosen to become the Phoenix King and heir to Aenarion.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2017 2:08 pm 
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Nah. Old Mali was chosen to be "edgy" and "unexpected".


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 06, 2017 12:53 am 
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Also I seem to recall Morathi being actually named as a Nagarythean noblewoman in the fluff.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 07, 2017 6:53 am 
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It's possible of course. Though I always have the feeling that many people here are more knowledgeable of the GW canon then the actual writers GW employs. So they didn't think it through that far. And they mainly picked him because he was available and they needed someone with a mildly plausible backstory.

Rod

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:37 am 
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Prince of Spires wrote:
It's possible of course. Though I always have the feeling that many people here are more knowledgeable of the GW canon then the actual writers GW employs. So they didn't think it through that far. And they mainly picked him because he was available and they needed someone with a mildly plausible backstory.

Rod

Morelion sailed away and that's the last we heard of him, a better "true Phoenix King" would have been his heir, even if that would have been just a rehash of Valten and the most clichéd resolution ever.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:13 am 
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A better resolution in my mind would have been to retrieve Caledor from the vortex. An elf from before the time the DE and HE split. Probably the mightiest of them all, save for Aenarion. And more easily accepted by all sides. Also, logical / plausible if you accept that the vortex needed to go. And a character on par with Nagash / Sigmar / whatever deamon you come up with.

Rod

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:38 am 
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Prince of Spires wrote:
A better resolution in my mind would have been to retrieve Caledor from the vortex. An elf from before the time the DE and HE split. Probably the mightiest of them all, save for Aenarion. And more easily accepted by all sides. Also, logical / plausible if you accept that the vortex needed to go. And a character on par with Nagash / Sigmar / whatever deamon you come up with.

Rod

Getting one of the two dragon boys to actually live up to the hype? Not the worst idea

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:43 am 
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Prince of Spires wrote:
A better resolution in my mind would have been to retrieve Caledor from the vortex. An elf from before the time the DE and HE split. Probably the mightiest of them all, save for Aenarion. And more easily accepted by all sides. Also, logical / plausible if you accept that the vortex needed to go. And a character on par with Nagash / Sigmar / whatever deamon you come up with.

Rod

I think this would have been a very good idea, probably they didn't do it to avoid the overlap with Teclis in the Powerful Mage slot, but I think your reasoning is spot on.
Malekith suddenly being the chosen one was...not the most logical choice, to say the least.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:45 pm 
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Maybe have Teclis sacrifice himself to release Caledor? Then you get rid of the two mages problem.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:29 pm 
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Prince of Spires wrote:
It's possible of course. Though I always have the feeling that many people here are more knowledgeable of the GW canon then the actual writers GW employs. So they didn't think it through that far. And they mainly picked him because he was available and they needed someone with a mildly plausible backstory.

Rod


This is undoubtedly true. However, I was theorising from an in-universe standpoint, not from what GW originally intended or if the writer knew the full measure of the background.

When you add everything together, in-universe, the only logical explanation I can see is that Morathi is a Caledor.

There are no other bloodlines of significance at that point; Malekith's birth predates Ariel, Orion, all the other Phoenix Kings, Alith Anar...

and no other strong arguments that I can make for why a progeny of Morathi would be more acceptable to Asuryan, in-universe, comparative to Morelion or his descendants.

As for the matter of her being a Nagarythe noble, that's a matter of proximity not breeding. She could have been an exile, a guest of the court of Anlec, there are many reasons a rogue Caledorian could have been in Nagarythe.

She's a Caledor.

Always knew those lizard lovers would be the bane of Ulthuan.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:32 am 
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Makiwara wrote:
Always knew those lizard lovers would be the bane of Ulthuan.

:lol:

Not that I disagree on any level, but I don't think there is enough there to support this. First off, it's mentioned that Aenarion moved his court to Nagarythe AFTER meeting Morathi, so it is more likely that that is her native land. Of course she could have been a Caledorian who had moved there, but since they are generally arrogant, considering themselves and their kingdom to be better than anyone else, I find this unlikely.

As for the bloodlines question, this is not necessarily true at all. Bel-Shanaar lived at the same time, there was the bloodline of the Everqueens, and many other nobles as well. It is mentioned that Aenarion goes for Morathi purely due to "dem bewbs". She was also a servant of Slaanesh at the time and even if she wasn't right then, surely Asuryan would have gone "Nope, this bitch is a thot, no spawn of her's will get my blessing!" and went for Morelion's line instead.

The only reason why Malekith could have been argue to be Asuryan's choice is If Morelion's line was lost (either as in "we can't find them" or "oh my Asuryan they're dead!"), so he'd have been the back-up choice. Like Pepsi when they don't have Coke.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:19 am 
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You still neglect the real reasons. "Won't this be so cool" and "They'll never see this coming". With a strong possibility of "We're already going to piss them all off when they figure out we really mean this End Times stuff, what can we do to troll them a little harder?" Followed by, "Good idea. And to really get them let's not even bother with the last couple of army books, and Never to an FAQ to explain what we meant for half of the others".


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 7:31 am 
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Shannar, Sealord wrote:
You still neglect the real reasons. "Won't this be so cool" and "They'll never see this coming". With a strong possibility of "We're already going to piss them all off when they figure out we really mean this End Times stuff, what can we do to troll them a little harder?" Followed by, "Good idea. And to really get them let's not even bother with the last couple of army books, and Never to an FAQ to explain what we meant for half of the others".

We're mostly just arguing the in-universe reason, GeeDubs' actual reasons are well known: "Durr, what would be the dumbest thing we could do, hurr?"

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Luna, try not to beat them too hard. They are proud about their pseudo-glorious past and their present nothingness, you know.
-Elmoth, about Caledorians


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 2:17 pm 
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Luna Guardian wrote:
Shannar, Sealord wrote:
You still neglect the real reasons. "Won't this be so cool" and "They'll never see this coming". With a strong possibility of "We're already going to piss them all off when they figure out we really mean this End Times stuff, what can we do to troll them a little harder?" Followed by, "Good idea. And to really get them let's not even bother with the last couple of army books, and Never to an FAQ to explain what we meant for half of the others".

We're mostly just arguing the in-universe reason, GeeDubs' actual reasons are well known: "Durr, what would be the dumbest thing we could do, hurr?"


Oh. But that operates under the assumption that they HAVE in universe reasons. That's a leap I'm not sure i can make. At best they are half thought out attempts to justify decisions already made.


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