It's a boomerang of a setting, I was really trying to throw it away . . .
I love the demand never to repeat yourself required to create a good horror session. And enjoy the imaginative overdrive of a thrilling pulp session. The art of maintaining narrative consequence, without strangling the game, a must in both genres. While trying to find a way to merge above qualities. The gritty pulp of WH40K with its unlimited imagination and unlimited horror struck me.
It seem that both fantasy, horror and science fiction can thrive in the WH40K setting, and that's without any of the three genres seeming awkward or out of place! This I find to be a rather impressive quality of any setting, but with 40K notably, since it rarely lacks in integrity or suffers from narrative incoherence. To my taste 40K is a little to visually grotesque and narratively fatal. And even though I acknowledge this as being part of its strength. I proberbly won't fully embrace such 40K-purism. Instead I'll be using the one-sidedness of the setting as a backdrop to storylines with a more diverse sensitivity. And from there enjoy the exchange between 40K-purism and the stories I want to tell.
Warfare: First World War Battles
Combat: Western Shotouts
Politics: Coldwar Espionage
In this take on Warhammer 40K the setting is seen as a cautionary tale about the dark side of civilization & its conflicts. It's a setting that venerates the character, the story & the leason and not the hero, the righteousness & the victory. It is therefore "the reflexivity of the stories you tell" and "not the grandeur of the hero" that is the narrative focus of the game.
. . . but it just kept coming back to me !!
[ Release of "Dark Heresy 1ed": 25. Jan. 2008 ]