Something struck me whilst at Conpulsion 2013. Do that many people really play Space Marines?

It would seem the vast majority of players actually favour these generic space fascists and I just can’t wrap my head around it. I’m not actually being facetious about fascism here – the Space Marines are not the “good guys” in Warhammer 40,000. In the grim darkness of the future there are no “good guys” – it’s just a case of choosing what kind of bad you’d like.

Personally I love greenskins. They’re carefree, enthusiastic, and go to war because it’s fun. It’s not fun for those fighting them, obviously, unless they’re other Orks, but let’s not bring the horrors of reality into this.

The other thing being that ever since Gorkamorka their aesthetic has been this wonderful post-apocalyptic style. Armour that has that “Kicked-by-trolls” look, ridiculous custom gear, and stuff like this:

Space Marines have some personality but by comparison they’re a grey office cubicle. I just don’t see the appeal, really. A few models perhaps but a whole army seems duller than queuing to get through a train station ticket barrier.

It really does seem that lots of people play as them, perhaps because winning is what matters to them, if I was guessing. I would imagine that things are likely to be unbalanced in the spehss mahreens favour to keep them popular.

Personally I want an army that I enjoy building and that just thinking about inspires creativity. Last night I found myself thinking of a bit of Orky terrain to build for Gorkamorka – fortunately I keep a notepad next to my bed!

With so many interesting races available in Warhammer 40,000 and so few “bro gamers” who are enamoured by Space Marines, what’s with the popularity?

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