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Luthor Harkon

Navy Intelligence

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Does anyone has any information regarding an Imperial Navy intelligence service or any other military intelligence/secret service in 40K? I heard that in one of the Gaunts Ghosts novels such an organisation is mentioned. I would be interested in any information thereabout as I want to create a certain NPC/antagonist for my Dark Heresy group. I am not even sure whether it would be called Navy intelligence or rather naval intelligence or Fleet intelligence or secret service/agency or whatever...

Thanks in advance.

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This is actually a topic that's near and dear to those wishing to play Dark Heresy with characters outside the Inquisition.

One would think that given the secretive and separate nature of 40K institutions, that virtually any large organization would have its own brand of operatives, from the data recovery teams of the Administratum to the collector crews for financial houses.

In short, the Imperial Navy would almost certainly have operatives.

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One of my players wanted to play an Imperial Navy Intelligensariat Officer, so I made up an alternate career path (can be taken by either Adepts or Arbitrators, rank 4) for him to use.

If you want there to be an IN intelligence service, just have it in your games. It can be unique to the Calixis Sector if you want.

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It s mentioned in the Eisenhorn trilogy something called Disciplinary Detachment of the Battle fleet, acting as naval military police as well as security detail, I presume there will be some kind of naval intelligence whose aim will be monitor naval movements both friendly and enemy as well as asses hardware, enemy tactics and profiles. But the old kind snoop job will be up to the DDBF as theirs is the responsibility of keeping an eye on security matters such as harbor bombing and that stuff…
See you

P.S. my original copy of the eisenhorn trilogy was written in Spanish so the nomenclature of the disciplinary detachment could be altered at the translator whim.
 

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Like most of the others, my suggestion would be simply to rename some of the other classes and use them.  So basically a Scum would be an "inflitration specialist", a guardsman would be a sailor, a Assassin would be wet-work, a Arbitrator would be an Investigator, a Adept would be an intellegence specialist and so on and so on.

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I imagine that military intelligence would be a matter for the occasionally-mentioned-but-never-described Divisio Tactica of the Departmento Munitorum - a third facet to the organisation that otherwise forms the logistical and organisational framework within which the Imperial Navy and Imperial Guard exist.

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Thanks for all the replies.

 

@Cifer: Absolutely, but I want a somewhat less 'Inquisition-centric' approach where the Inquisition is not responsible and behind almost everything. I love the idea of the manifold organisations in the Imperium with their overlapping authorities and spheres of influence. While the Inquisition is certainly the most omnipotent and even omnipresent, I like to have other (slightly less) influential groups around.

 

@schoon: Thats exactly how I also see it. Most organiszation would have some kind of (secret) operatives as well as most have some kind of security or 'paramilitary' forces. The Imperium of Men is not a small structured peaceful democracy after all...

 

@macd21 and Xathess: I based the NPC more or less on the Assassin (Death Adept) career.

 

@Idaho: Interesting. I have to check my copy of Eisenhorn.

 

@N0-1: I was originally also thinking about the NPC being an operative of the Depratmento Munitorum (instead of the Navy) to embody a more 'organisational' (one step above-) part of the military instead of the 'acting' one. Divisio Tactica sounds good; where is it mentioned? I just saw the Collegium Analytica mentioned in the Imperial Navy entry of the german Lexicanum web-site, maybe it would also fit...

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NID's aren't necessaraily spies, they do however maintain above everything else, very high levels of confidence and the simple ability to shut their mouth about what they know. I like the idea of basing it off the Arbitrator, you'd have to rub out a few skills and focus around the ability to research some areas like Cryptology, Xenobiology, various dialects, comms gear, tactics and possibly 1-2 alien languages. Few secondary skills in the various Imperial creeds, shipping skills and maybe access to some piloting would round them out.

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I also heard of the Disciplinary Detachment of the Battle fleet, which was mentioned in the Eisenhorn Novels. All this raises a few interesting points linked to the Navy Intelligence topic...
 

The Horus Heresy effect on Imperial military organisation

40k fluff suggests that after the Horus Heresy, there was a conscious effort to separate the military branches of the Imperium into distinct factions with their own traditions of service, partly in order to make them less likely to rebel, but mostly to ensure that if a military branch DID rebel, it wouldn't be able to sustain a massive campaign.
 

If a battlefleet turns to chaos, it'll be able to shoot up other navies and cause widespread destruction, but it won't be able to hold ground or actually conquer whole worlds. If an Imperial guard army turns to chaos it'll be left stranded on a planet., unable to conquer other worlds.
The marines were separated from the "normal" human military and became an elite force rather than an officer class.
 

Imperial military built-in limitations
 

Limitations were then built into each military force to ensure interdependance. The Guard doesn't operate ANY flying aircraft. In numerous Forge World books it's clear that the Valkyries/Vultures flown by the Guard are in fact Navy aircraft.
 

I would argue that in the same way, there is a similar limitation on the Imperial Navy: the Navy doesn't operate any standing troops at all.
 

There are numerous references to "Naval armsmen" in various novels - I would tentatively suggest that there aren't any Naval "marines" in the modern military USMC/Royal Marines/Dutch Royal Marines sense. There are no standing militarily trained soldiers on board Naval Vessels who conduct military landing operations or other typical military operations.
 

This doesn't mean that there aren't plenty of fighters on board naval vessels - but I would suggest that when a Naval vessel needs fighters, it draws on its own crew. There are tens of thousands of them, after all.
 

Hence the classic battlefleet gothic images of Naval ratings in boiler suits and brass space helmets armed to the teeth with boarding hooks, pump action shotguns and rivet pistols. These aren’t soldiers…they’re sailors.
 

In the classic Patrick O’Brien novels, he talks of how weapons were handed out to crew when needed in order to carry out a boarding action. One can imagine a 40k version of this – sealed steel weapons crates springing open automatically at locations across the ship on the basis of a command from the Captain, each loaded with shotguns, boarding hooks etc. Ratings would then be expected to return these when the battle was over.
 

So who are the Disciplinary Detachment of the Battle fleet?
 

So all this begs the question…who are these DD guys talked about in the Inquisition novels?
 

I reckon they’re basically Imperial Stormtroopers equipped for putting down onboard mutinies.
 

It’s clear that there are senior Commissars watching every move the Captain makes. I would suggest that the senior Commissar on a Naval vessel is the commander of a separate, internal police force which is specifically designed to put down mutinies on board and to intimidate Naval officers into staying toeing the party line.
 

Imperial vessels are vast, like cities in space, with crews in the tens of thousands. One can imagine that there are all sorts of scum on board, many of them murderous, some of them cultists… a force is needed to put this rabble in line.
 

One can imagine that the Disciplinary Detachment consists of heavily armed, well equipped fanatics from the Schola Progenium, probably with the same or similar training as the stormtroopers in the Imperial Guard. The commissars on board probably make up an “officer class” among them, and recruit from among their ranks.
 

Their weapons would be far better than those available to the ratings, or even officers. In Eisenhorn (I seem to recall) it talks about autoguns with underslung grenade launchers, black uniform…they probably also have access to vac-suits, and specialist weapons like las cutters etc.
If a Naval vessel is put at the disposal of an Inquisitor, one would imagine that the Disciplinary Detachment would be his first choice as a military force capable of backing up his acolytes. Capable of boarding actions or planetary assaults, the only problem with them is that they’re probably very few in number compared to the ratings on board. Even on a very large vessel, there’s probably no more than a couple of hundred of them. They’re not a “marine” force in any way, just really an adjunct to the Commissars.
But even so, Eisenhorn shows how even a relatively small number of them can effectively carry out major raids on behalf of the Inquisition.
 

So what’s this got to do with Naval Intelligence?
 

Er… not THAT much. But Naval intelligence makes for a powerful spy archetype. After all, the world’s top fictional spy is Commander James Bond, formerly of Her Majesty’s Naval Intelligence. Ian Fleming, Bond’s creator, achieved the same rank in the same organization. It’s obvious that the concept has some cachet.

 

I reckon that the Naval Intelligence concept as a playable character for DH could cover the Adept, Arbitrator, Assassin and even Guardsman concept, with the latter being a former member of the Disciplinary Detachment reassigned for more subtle duties. Arguably, Bond himself fits this concept best. (either that or assassin.)

One would imagine that Naval Intelligence would actually be a very similar organisation to the modern UK Naval Intelligence: highly technical, interested in the specifications of rival vessels above just about everything else, highly concerned with ensuring the physical security of its vessels, supply lines and bases, and…er…not much else!

Unlike the Inquisition, Naval Intelligence wouldn’t care much about counter insurgency or spying on cults, or planetary xenos at all. It would be a limited and rather partisan organization.

There may actually be scope for TWO different branches of Naval Intelligence: the larger, more mainstream Naval Intelligence, concerned with the technical and strategic implications set out above, and a smaller, more vicious and interesting Naval Intelligence staffed largely by Commissars and Stormtroopers concerned with rooting out sedition on board Naval vessels.

Anyway, just a few thoughts!
 

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Lightbringer said:

Imperial military built-in limitations
 

Limitations were then built into each military force to ensure interdependance. The Guard doesn't operate ANY flying aircraft. In numerous Forge World books it's clear that the Valkyries/Vultures flown by the Guard are in fact Navy aircraft.
 

I would argue that in the same way, there is a similar limitation on the Imperial Navy: the Navy doesn't operate any standing troops at all.
 

There are numerous references to "Naval armsmen" in various novels - I would tentatively suggest that there aren't any Naval "marines" in the modern military USMC/Royal Marines/Dutch Royal Marines sense. There are no standing militarily trained soldiers on board Naval Vessels who conduct military landing operations or other typical military operations.
 

This doesn't mean that there aren't plenty of fighters on board naval vessels - but I would suggest that when a Naval vessel needs fighters, it draws on its own crew. There are tens of thousands of them, after all.
 

Hence the classic battlefleet gothic images of Naval ratings in boiler suits and brass space helmets armed to the teeth with boarding hooks, pump action shotguns and rivet pistols. These aren’t soldiers…they’re sailors.
 

In the classic Patrick O’Brien novels, he talks of how weapons were handed out to crew when needed in order to carry out a boarding action. One can imagine a 40k version of this – sealed steel weapons crates springing open automatically at locations across the ship on the basis of a command from the Captain, each loaded with shotguns, boarding hooks etc. Ratings would then be expected to return these when the battle was over.
 

So who are the Disciplinary Detachment of the Battle fleet?
 

So all this begs the question…who are these DD guys talked about in the Inquisition novels?
 

I reckon they’re basically Imperial Stormtroopers equipped for putting down onboard mutinies.
 

It’s clear that there are senior Commissars watching every move the Captain makes. I would suggest that the senior Commissar on a Naval vessel is the commander of a separate, internal police force which is specifically designed to put down mutinies on board and to intimidate Naval officers into staying toeing the party line.
 

Imperial vessels are vast, like cities in space, with crews in the tens of thousands. One can imagine that there are all sorts of scum on board, many of them murderous, some of them cultists… a force is needed to put this rabble in line.
 

One can imagine that the Disciplinary Detachment consists of heavily armed, well equipped fanatics from the Schola Progenium, probably with the same or similar training as the stormtroopers in the Imperial Guard. The commissars on board probably make up an “officer class” among them, and recruit from among their ranks.
 

Their weapons would be far better than those available to the ratings, or even officers. In Eisenhorn (I seem to recall) it talks about autoguns with underslung grenade launchers, black uniform…they probably also have access to vac-suits, and specialist weapons like las cutters etc.
If a Naval vessel is put at the disposal of an Inquisitor, one would imagine that the Disciplinary Detachment would be his first choice as a military force capable of backing up his acolytes. Capable of boarding actions or planetary assaults, the only problem with them is that they’re probably very few in number compared to the ratings on board. Even on a very large vessel, there’s probably no more than a couple of hundred of them. They’re not a “marine” force in any way, just really an adjunct to the Commissars.
But even so, Eisenhorn shows how even a relatively small number of them can effectively carry out major raids on behalf of the Inquisition.
 

So what’s this got to do with Naval Intelligence?
 

Er… not THAT much. But Naval intelligence makes for a powerful spy archetype. After all, the world’s top fictional spy is Commander James Bond, formerly of Her Majesty’s Naval Intelligence. Ian Fleming, Bond’s creator, achieved the same rank in the same organization. It’s obvious that the concept has some cachet.

 

I reckon that the Naval Intelligence concept as a playable character for DH could cover the Adept, Arbitrator, Assassin and even Guardsman concept, with the latter being a former member of the Disciplinary Detachment reassigned for more subtle duties. Arguably, Bond himself fits this concept best. (either that or assassin.)

One would imagine that Naval Intelligence would actually be a very similar organisation to the modern UK Naval Intelligence: highly technical, interested in the specifications of rival vessels above just about everything else, highly concerned with ensuring the physical security of its vessels, supply lines and bases, and…er…not much else!

Unlike the Inquisition, Naval Intelligence wouldn’t care much about counter insurgency or spying on cults, or planetary xenos at all. It would be a limited and rather partisan organization.

There may actually be scope for TWO different branches of Naval Intelligence: the larger, more mainstream Naval Intelligence, concerned with the technical and strategic implications set out above, and a smaller, more vicious and interesting Naval Intelligence staffed largely by Commissars and Stormtroopers concerned with rooting out sedition on board Naval vessels.

Anyway, just a few thoughts!
 

Quite a few thoughts indeed!  Relating to my own experiences (as a member of the Navy).  Reading back on how Marine units tithe a few of their own marines to be specially trained Xeno-fighters, the same could be said for the various ratings and the DDBF.  Every rate has to offer up a certain number of bodies who are then trained by the Commisar who heads the DDBF and, after the initial training is complete, he (or she) goes back to their rate and rogers up during emerginces or as the Commisar needs them. 

Of course, there could be those who willingly voluteer themselves to the DDBF and escape their current rate to be permanent members or maybe use it as a means of advancing (if such a system exists within the Empieral Navy of course seeing as only Noble born crew tend to take the officer role by birth-right)

 

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Lightbringer said:

I would argue that in the same way, there is a similar limitation on the Imperial Navy: the Navy doesn't operate any standing troops at all.
 

There are numerous references to "Naval armsmen" in various novels - I would tentatively suggest that there aren't any Naval "marines" in the modern military USMC/Royal Marines/Dutch Royal Marines sense. There are no standing militarily trained soldiers on board Naval Vessels who conduct military landing operations or other typical military operations.
 
 

 

I think you`re mistaken here, i think the navy has her Naval Infantry, troops to defend the ship against boarding  and boarding themselves, like the old Age of Sail Navy Infatry, they are not capable of Invasions of planets, they lack the organisations and the hevier equipment

 

THe DDBF are more Fleet Arbitrators, Discipline and internal security their thing, i see also th need of information gathering in all imperial forces

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warpdancer said:

THe DDBF are more Fleet Arbitrators, Discipline and internal security their thing, i see also th need of information gathering in all imperial forces

In, or alongside? Remember that the majority of the time, campaigns are joint efforts between the Imperial Guard and Imperial Navy, and as such a unified, centralised service for military intelligence would seem to be more fitting, especially given the dominance of the Departmento Munitorum in other matters military, such as logistics, morale, loyalty and discipline (amongst other things, "Fleet Arbitrators" and all matters of ship discipline would be subservient to, and subject to the whims of, the ship's Commissar... who is specifically not Imperial Navy, but rather Departmento Munitorum; in theory, and subject to the usual regional variation clause, military police could easily operate outside of the Guard or Navy and be beholden solely to the Commissariat).

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Naval Security is clearly part of the Navy (see the Eisenhorn book Xenos).  They do searches, boarding actions, ground assault, and probably defend the various holdings of the Imperial Navy (remember that in some systems the Navy controls multiple moons and space stations).  There are, in fact, Naval Security Stormtroopers.  Clearly the Comissariat has authority over them (but the Comissariat has authority to shoot the captain, so that's not really news) and obviously they are the unit of choice to handle the Comissariat's main issues of discipline, morale, and justice. 

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Cynical Cat said:

Naval Security is clearly part of the Navy (see the Eisenhorn book Xenos).  They do searches, boarding actions, ground assault, and probably defend the various holdings of the Imperial Navy (remember that in some systems the Navy controls multiple moons and space stations).  There are, in fact, Naval Security Stormtroopers.  Clearly the Comissariat has authority over them (but the Comissariat has authority to shoot the captain, so that's not really news) and obviously they are the unit of choice to handle the Comissariat's main issues of discipline, morale, and justice. 

Two things spring to mind here: firstly is Dan Abnett's intermittent grasp of the background (the accidental introduction of Colonel-Commissars springs to mind as his most prominent mistake, but there've been others), and the secondly is the inherent regional variance present in almost every facet of the Imperium - it's far too big to be uniform.

So yeah, sure, Naval Security is a specifically Imperial Navy matter in regards to Battlefleet Scarus (that is, the portion of the Imperial Navy concerned with the Scarus Sector)... but elsewhere? Who knows...

Beyond that, I don't recall there ever being a discussion about the nature of the chain of command of "Naval Security" within Xenos - as is only correct, given that they're a tangential element at best. Are they, beyond all shadow of a doubt, Imperial Navy personnel? Or is Naval Security solely their job, without any considerations of whether it's a Munitorum Provost or a Naval Officer who signs their orders? Is it a distinction akin to that between Ship's Commissar and Regimental Commissar, where the former is, by necessity and through training and experience, more familiar with the laws and structures of the Navy than those of the Guard?

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In Xenos they're under the command of a Commodore in charge of the system's Naval Security department and who is able to muster up the battlefleet in the later part of the book.  The same commodore has his name on the victory arch under which Eisenhorn pauses and thus survives the ensuing massacre in Malleus.  It's pretty clear that the Navy is in charge.

You are, of course, right to bring up regional variations and Abnett's ocassionally questionable knowledge of canon (although he's far from the worst offender).  It makes sense though.  The Navy has vast holding and many duties which require infantry (internal security, boarding actions, policing actions, etcetera).  Some of those are going to fall under the Commissariats normal duties and some won't (beyond their general authority to shoot people for behaving badly).  Of course everything the Navy does falls under the Commissariat's perview in one way or another. 

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Little bit off-topic, but on the behalf "flyers are Navy only":  Altough both GW and FW state that Guard and Navy are strictly separate to the point, that even the aircraft is manned by Naval personel, there are several things which speak against it. Creating Navy and Guard from the Imperial Army after the Heresy has sense, but only if it means that Guard is fighting on the surface and Navy in the void of space. Dan Abnett and also other authors (Anthony Reynolds with Elysians in Dark Apostle, Henry Zou with regiment-which-name-I-can´t-recall at the opening story of Planetkill) often put Imperial Guard crews in to the cockpits of the atmospheric craft, maybe the new IG codex featuring Valkyre and its new gunship version will recreate Games Workshop line of cannon about it.

 

And about the Intelligence- does anybody remember sub-branch of Departmento Munitorium called Officio Assanorium? There were only three mentions about it as far as I remember: operatives of Officio Sabatorum were listed at summaries of Imperial forces in Codex: Armageddon and Codex: Eye of Terror and in the Kill-team novel by Gav Thorpe, there was one character which was its ex-operative. Kill-team inclene me to think, that  Officio Sabatorum is kind of CIA/GRU/SOE kind of organization, working with military espionage, sabotage, terrorism and assasination. Unfortunatelly there is no closer description, only these brief mentions. Still, it looks like very good plot/backround factor, especialy in the undercover nad secret work of Inquisition´s acolytes. Co-ordinating actions of them with Sabatorum operatives at war-zones as Tranch could be really intresting...

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I think it is priceless that some people still question Dan Abbnett. Look, the guy has been given a mandate by the same people that gave mandates for other writers to complete this "canon-thingy" you seem so fond off. The mandate is about writing stories in the setting of a number of games but that does not mean he can do what ever he wants. Do not direct you frustation on a author but on the same company that wrote your precious canon. After all they still have the same label on the cover meaning that GW thinks they are just as valid.

Naval intelligence are probably a rather boring career mostly because it is about being analyst. Being a agent, in the same sense as James Bond, is probably unheard of. Why? Well, who will they spy on? The only thing physicly possibly is Chaos but then you are at a dire risk at being corrupted. You can't infiltrate anything but your own military and why would the navy do that in a organized way?

Even if the Navy does not have armed infantry that does not mean there can't be troopers within the ranks of the bransch. There are a huge difference between having shotguns, grenades and heavy machineguns compared to having tanks, divisions of infantry and attillery. Something you need to take over a planet. Armed personal is a relative term in these circumstances and the naval troopers in Xenos can't be counted as a army. No matter how good they were they are not going to take over a city. The PDF armour would see to that because no matter how diehard you are, you can't take out tanks with handguns.

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Robban-O said:

Even if the Navy does not have armed infantry that does not mean there can't be troopers within the ranks of the bransch. There are a huge difference between having shotguns, grenades and heavy machineguns compared to having tanks, divisions of infantry and attillery. Something you need to take over a planet. Armed personal is a relative term in these circumstances and the naval troopers in Xenos can't be counted as a army. No matter how good they were they are not going to take over a city. The PDF armour would see to that because no matter how diehard you are, you can't take out tanks with handguns.

Auspicious that I am reading Xenos right now and Naval troops just overran the Glaw compound.   Eisenhorn, or Abbnett, comments specifially that the several hundred naval trained and equipped troops armed with autocannons and support aircraft could indeed, and perhaps have, taken over cities or even worlds and they took over the compound in a few minutes and only lost a dozen or so troops. However he also comments that they are also the newly drafted contingent that haven't left the planet.  And to add a little more confusion the whole operation is under the direct command of the naval officer.  Might have to review this a little bit over lunch.  Hot Pockets - yeah!!!

But I do find this discussion a little humorous as it seems to be a recurring theme that gamers are notorious for being more familiar with the game than the actual designers, let alone authors who might be writing books in the same universe.

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Rashid ad Din Sinan said:

 

 

Auspicious that I am reading Xenos right now and Naval troops just overran the Glaw compound.   Eisenhorn, or Abbnett, comments specifially that the several hundred naval trained and equipped troops armed with autocannons and support aircraft could indeed, and perhaps have, taken over cities or even worlds and they took over the compound in a few minutes and only lost a dozen or so troops. However he also comments that they are also the newly drafted contingent that haven't left the planet.  And to add a little more confusion the whole operation is under the direct command of the naval officer.  Might have to review this a little bit over lunch.  Hot Pockets - yeah!!!

If I have things correctly sorted a autocannon is something equialent to a 50 cal. Meaning that it can't knock out tanks unless you shower it with bullets. That they have support aircraft is not so strange, flying is what the navy does. However you can't take over a city with that equipment, unless there is no PDF there.

Rashid ad Din Sinan said:

But I do find this discussion a little humorous as it seems to be a recurring theme that gamers are notorious for being more familiar with the game than the actual designers, let alone authors who might be writing books in the same universe.

Unless you acknowledge that the authors are creating more aspects to the game. That it is inconsistent is irrelevant since it is a fictional product.

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Robban-O said:

If I have things correctly sorted a autocannon is something equialent to a 50 cal. Meaning that it can't knock out tanks unless you shower it with bullets. That they have support aircraft is not so strange, flying is what the navy does. However you can't take over a city with that equipment, unless there is no PDF there.

I am just quoting from the book - I did check it out and that is what he said.  Abbnett also seems to use 'navy intelligence' and 'Imperial Guard' interchangably during the scene.  Or both forces were involved directly.  He does seem to paint NI as some elite force.

Robban-O said:



Unless you acknowledge that the authors are creating more aspects to the game. That it is inconsistent is irrelevant since it is a fictional product.

Fictional but people often want to take bits from the books and put them into the game.  I wonder how much the reverse is true - items in the books migrate back into the game.   But people still want consistency which often loses to artistic liscence.

I am intrigued by the Galvian bio-circuitry in Midas' hands for example as it seems quite sophisticated and elegant compared to much of the other tech.

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Some bio augmentation is elegant.  There are a number of characters in various books with extensive concealed augmentations.  The Mechanicum, for religious reasons, prefers obvious replacements and artists, for obvious reasons, like to go that route as well.  That doesn't mean every implant or rebuilt is a huge clunky thing made out of black metal.

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TorogTarkdacil said:

often put Imperial Guard crews in to the cockpits of the atmospheric craft, maybe the new IG codex featuring Valkyre and its new gunship version will recreate Games Workshop line of cannon about it.

The Elysians have been an established regiment since their background first appeared alongside the 3rd Armageddon War global campaign; they, as is only proper given their role, work closely with the Imperial Navy. Similarly, ever since the Valkyrie (and later the Vulture) was added to the setting (by Forgeworld, several years ago - as far as I'm aware, the background is unchanged in this regard), it has been a Navy-crewed aircraft that works closely with Imperial Guard ground forces. The only major exception - an Abnett one, in Double Eagle, but one that makes a degree of sense - is a "guard regiment" who operate as Fighter and Bomber squadrons rather than ground forces due to the nature of their homeworld, and who are deliberately and regularly mentioned as being a bizarre exception to the norm.

Which is, IMO, the main difference between contradicting established background and expanding it - presentation. Being different because of ignorance or disdain for what already exists tends to show, while being different while making it clear that you acknowledge that which is already established demonstrates an effort to expand and explore the background rather than simply pay lip service to it, and tends to, in my experience, be far better recieved.

The fact that the Valkyrie is in the new Imperial Guard codex does not make it an Imperial Guard unit - afterall, Imperial Guard armies can now take Naval Officers as advisors for Command HQs, and similarly the codex contains (and has long contained) units from other parts of the Imperium, such as Enginseers from the Mechanicus, Preachers from the Ministorum, and Departmento Munitorum Commissars.

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N0-1_H3r3 said:

 

In, or alongside? 

In , they´re part of the navy OTOH  think the COs of the navy are part of the adeptum ministrorum and giving anybody short of a Lord Inquisitor or  a commodore is a most stupid idea.

 

The intelligence service my be part of the AdMin, with branches for guard and fleet or sectors, frontlines with special units  working for the guard-navy or better specialised for guard or navy  interests.

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Rashid ad Din Sinan said:

 

  I wonder how much the reverse is true - items in the books migrate back into the game. 

I would say: A lot. Not using popular aspectes from the novels would make the games less appealing for a whole lot of people. Besides entertaining the fans the novels also serves as a inspiration for the game. Instead of paying designers to sit and discuss different ideas you could pick up the good bits from the novels, which you can consider being free.

 

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