Warhammer 40K is finally getting a television series. I've never played the game, but I've been in and out of game stores pretty much all of my life, and I've had friends who have collected some really large armies, painted them to gorgeousness, and fielded them against foes sitting across from them at conventions amidst startlingly cool tabletop terrain. I was always content to be just that: a spectator. I never really wanted to play. It looked too involved, too time-consuming, and honestly too heavy to carry around from place to place. And then there was (of course) the problematic issue of storing it all once I did start collecting. So nope, I never started. But that doesn't mean I wasn't a fan.

I played a couple of the video games through the years, and I found them pretty intoxicating. Warhammer 40K takes place in a distant future where humanity is ruled by an emperor who is pretty much a god (made so through some kind of dark science) and he is served by armies of genetically enhanced humans called space marines. These guys are immensely powerful, and their power armor is extremely impressive. They go to war against all kinds of enemies. The most intriguing of these enemies (to me) were things that resembled alien xenomorphs (I think they were called tyranids) and the followers of dark gods like Slanesh and Khorne. In the Warhammer universe, these entities are very real, and they have destroyed entire worlds by remaking them into versions of nightmares Clive Barker must have on occasion (he's the creator of Hellraiser).

In fiction, Warhammer 40K is kind of inaccessible. There are stories and novels, but it's hard to find a recommended reading order or even a place to start as they are all different. I think Games Workshop has done a tremendous job in managing their intellectual property. However, I think the screws are so tight on a lot of their stuff that it has made it hard for someone like me to really explore their universe without playing the actual game (which may be their intention as the game is what makes them money). And they usually concentrate around a particular character, which you may not understand if you haven't played the game, so there's that too. But maybe with this new TV series, there's a break in the ice that's forming.

A tv series will need to appeal to more than just the fan base (although the fan base is extremely important in any endeavor). So they'll need to explain in detail about Earth, the Emperor, the roles of the Space Marines, and the enemies of the Space Marines. They'll need to give us bits of information over time regarding how the universe works, the threats the good guys are facing off against, and whether or not there are even good guys to work for (kind of like in Game of Thrones). This has got me excited, because from what I've seen, the universe of the Space Marines has always been extremely intriguing, but very daunting, to explore.

Anyway, I guess we'll all see where it goes.

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