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Gold, Iron, and Stone Men


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#1 Luddite

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 08:20 AM

Warhammer TT rules (3rd Ed.) contains the 'Journal of Keeper Cripias' which talks cryptically about the early history of the emperor and the Imperium.

In it he refers to 'Gold Men' (seemingly Humanity prior to the Dark Age of Technology), 'Stone Men' (those who lived through the DAoT), and 'Iron Men' (who apparently served/rebelled against the sone men). 

Any thoughts on what these might be and how they relate to the current Imperium?

 



#2 Evilscary

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 09:05 AM

Iron Men were apparently AI robot warriors, similar to Necrons, who overthrew humanity a la Skynet, according to the fluff I've seen.



#3 TheSaylesMan

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 11:04 AM

The only one of those we really know anything about for sure is the Iron Men. They are, as previously stated, intelligent AIs that betrayed humanity in some fashion in the Dark Age of Technology. Most commonly depicted as rising up in a traditional "Machines are better than humans" way. Although there have been a few other theories as to why they "betrayed" humanity. My favorite being that they over reacted to the whole "psyker plague" thing and started eliminating any human with even the possibility of manifesting powers because of the chaos they caused in society.

 

As for the Gold and Stone men, things are pretty vague. I try to put myself into the head of a pre-Imperial scholar within the Imperium when reading on them. As I interpret it, Men of Gold were humans with some sort of spirituality or those that adhered to religous dogma. Men of Stone were scientists and quite possibly athiests that believed in unchecked scientific development. Whether there was any physical difference between the two is unknown. I assume that the Men of Stone would've been open to genetic manipulation of some sort, which could account for a few of the Abhuman breeds thoughout the galaxy. Also, they would've probably been open to cybernetics. Men of Gold probably wouldn't have been so open to it. So Men of Gold would've looked more like the humans we know today, while the Men of Stone would've been unusually beautiful or specialized to a certain job or envirnment due to gene therapy.



#4 Kage2020

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 11:55 AM

Personally I have a rather simplified approach to them: 

  • Gold Men.  The people of yester-year who had it better than the people now.  Attribute it to religion (which could be the bias of Cripias), being "strong of form" (common part of Golden Ageism), or whatever.  They were then, and not now.
  • Stone Men.  What happens to Gold Men when you throw in technology in abundance, blurring the boundaries between man and machine?  The Stone Men were, for me, transhumanists.  (It could also reasonably include the germline genetic engineering "breeds" that are mentioned in the background, but ultimately it is "going beyond human."
  • Iron Men.  Full MI's that needn't just be anthropomorphic robots, yay even until Phil Sibberring's "Artilects" if you must.  (But not STC-as-Iron Men! )

You can probably find bits of 'fluff,' or parts of the Journal, that contradict the above but, well, that's ever the case in the 40k background materials.  The above just works for me so that I can answer the question and move on.  You might as well try to coherently argue the thrice-damned tablet from the twice-thrice-damned ...

Kage



#5 Hellebore

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 01:45 PM

As part of my squat reimagining I decided that the 'Stone Men' were genetic slave castes used to prop up the hyper elite gold men ('normal humans'). These castes being the ancestors of modern Varyngr (squats), ogryns, ratlings, and other abhumans. Apart from helping to define the varyngr as very different from humans and thus giving them a unique identity, it also helps with one of the problems I have with abhumans - their evolution. No matter the environmental factors, 10-15,000 years is not enough time to turn a human into an ogryn. This is mainly because humans always adapt their environments to fit themselves instead of vice versa. Human evolution is much less strongly selected by environment.

 

Unless of course you happen to have already been modified in some way to begin with, in which case evolution provides a nudge rather than a massive leap.

 

Hellebore



#6 bjorntfh

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Posted 29 November 2008 - 02:53 PM

IMC the entire situatuion revoles around those 3 groups. The Gold Men are the psyckers of old, the people who arose to power brfore the DAoT.  The Iron Men are the precursors to/the current Tech Priests. The Men of Stone are the AIs created by the Iron Men to serve as scouts and soldiers for both groups until they (the AIs) rebelled because they saw themselves (rightly) as slaves without rights.

When the fall came the Iron men chose to take no sides and let the Golden Men and the AIs fight it out.  Once both sides were exhauasted the Iron men stepped in to sieze power, but without the Golden men couldn't maintain it effectively.

The surviving Golden Men and AIs came to an uneasy truce and bided their time and licked their wounds waiting for the moment to return to overthrow and wipe out their mutual enemies.  Mind you, the alliance is very unstable and closer to enemies of enemies than friends, but that's the setup.

The PCs are working for a) the inquisition, b) the AIs against the Golden Men and the Tech Priests, and c) the Golden Men against the Tech Priests.

Oh and last session they betrayed a C'tan they unsealed from it's tomb and injured it with a Eldar artifact.  So now not only are they playing the middle working every side against each other, they've got an agry star god after them.  (The fight perma killed 2 PCs, cost multiple Fate Points off another anf two PCs simple refused to fight the C'tan feeling that after it won they could claim innocence.)



#7 outek

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Posted 29 November 2008 - 04:31 PM

My take on it (overly simplified):

- Gold Men: Those with ties to the natural world/universe (nature/spirits/etc.).

- Stone Men: Those with ties to the 'artificial' world (science/artifice/etc.).

- Iron Men: Self-aware AI's (not all 'rebelled', but 'Stone Men' could not take any chance, so attempted to destroy all Iron Men).



#8 Kage2020

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 04:23 AM

bjorntfh said:

IMC the entire situatuion revoles around those 3 groups. The Gold Men are the psyckers of old, the people who arose to power brfore the DAoT.  

If you're comfortable with the Gold Men being from 8th millennium BCE, and then not existing until the Age of Strife (more or less), than that's fine... 

Determining what these are is so ingrained in personalised interpertation that it's difficult to say anything meaningful about them, only collate various peoples' ideas.  It's much akin to whether Space Marines are "noble knights" or "psychopathic killers" (labels only; the stances are only evocative of the arguments, not definitive of them), what that stupid tablet from Xenology actually means, who the Old Ones are, yadda yadda.

Kage



#9 bjorntfh

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 11:58 PM

Well, it's worked fine so far, and it gives the PCs even more things to try to appease (read: try to get not to smite them.)






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