Friends, while it is the truth that in grade school I was familiar with and a fan of role-playing games – namely Dungeons & Dragons – it wasn’t until High School that I was first introduced to the war-torn science fiction setting of Warhammer 40,000. Although I should add that my initial introduction was not with the epic miniature game that is still extremely popular around the World today – but with the more self-contained Space Hulk board game. I still look back fondly on those long weeks of playing the board game before school started – one of the benefits of being a library aide was I was let in around an hour before school began – that included my small group of friends. Space Hulk made a big enough impression on me that I began to dive into the extremely dark lore of the main game. Learning of the mighty Space Marines or the Adeptus Astartes – who stand as the ‘righteous’ army of the Emperor of Mankind and protect the Imperium of Man from alien forces, the mutants, the heretics, and the temptations of the Chaos Gods.
After all as it said in the Warhammer 40,000 universe:
“In the grim darkness of the far future there is only war.”
As I’ve already stated, Warhammer 40,000 shows no signs of its popularity dwindling any time soon – as matter of fact there is a live action television series currently in development. As I understand it – it will be based on a character known as Inquisitor Gregor Eisenhorn – whose exploits were chronicled by Dan Abnett (Guardians of the Galaxy, The Punisher) in a series of novels and short stories. In addition I have read that Frank Spotnitz (The X-Files, The Man in the High Castle) will act as showrunner – so perhaps it will end up at Amazon?
With as popular as Warhammer 40,000 is it should come as no suprise that over the years there have been many fan made short films and fiction. However, few have been quite as impressive as this short film mini-series entitled Astartes. Worked on over a period of two years by a 3D artist named Syama Pedersen – the mini-series focuses on the hunt for the retreating leaders of ‘The Argosa Uprising’ and their traitorous militia by the Retributor Space Marines. It is split up into five chapters that have a running time between 2 to 3 minutes – although the fifth chapter is a little over 7 minutes.
Seriously, one of the streaming services just needs to team up with Games Workshop and just fund Syama – let them make an ongoing series of animated shorts!