The Grimdark Universe of Warhammer 40k

“In the grim darkness of the far future, there is only war.”

Megalithic ships looming in the bleak emptiness of space.  Ethereal, high-tech crafts streaking through the void between space and time. Enormous warriors in power armor, tech priests covered in cybernetic oddities, elven warriors with supernatural abilities, and chitinous abominations bent on devouring the galaxy.  You will find all these things and so much more awaiting you in the grimdark universe of Warhammer 40k.  

A realm of sci-fi that stands out in all its Gothic-horror, high-tech, magic glory. In the 41st millennium, the universe is a grim place.  Man has spread to a million worlds, but there are countless horrors waiting for them amongst the stars.  There are brutish Orks, haughty and territorial Eldar, and the ideological Tao, all of whom have their own ideas of how the galaxy should operate, and none of whom agree with mankind on the matter.  As for humanity, they follow the God Emperor, the beacon which guides them through the void, their salvation, and their doom.  Warhammer 40k is a complicated universe, to say the least, but from it come endless stories of valor, war, and tragedy, all nestled within a unique setting.  Navigating this bleak galaxy is dangerous and difficult, but the God Emperor has mercifully guided us to these beginnings.

Gaunt’s Ghosts

This series follows the deeds of Colonel-Commissar Ibram Gaunt and the Tanith First-and-Only, better known as Gaunt’s Ghosts.  These brave souls are not marines clad in power armor; these are men of the Imperial Guard.  Their stories are told with brutal, fast-paced action, tragedy, and the bond between soldiers who have nothing else but each other.  Reminiscent of the descriptions of WWII, Gaunt’s Ghosts will give you an intimate view of the ugliness of war in the 41st millennium.  

Space Wolves

One of the fan-favorite factions, the Space Wolves are an epic combination of space marines, vikings, and supernatural beasts.  They ride into battle on giant dire wolves and attach huge claws to their power-armored fists. They can also gain the memories of any creature they eat!  It’s wicked cool!  The Space Wolf Omnibus is a great place to read about all the epic, if slightly over the top, action.

Horus Heresy

If you want to understand one of the most important events in the history of 40k, read the Horus Heresy.  The characters and actions taken in this series shaped the galaxy in a thousand different, irreversible ways.  The primary focus of this series is Horus, the Emperor’s favorite son, and how descent in the ranks leads to a rift within the Empire.  There are so many things that happen in the Horus Heresy series that it really must be experienced first hand.  

These are just a few examples to get you started, and once you’ve seen the Imperium, it only gets more grim and dark from there.  From there, you can travel “cannot-be” void of the warp to visit the tomb worlds of the Necrons, the hives of the Tyranids, or the endless horror show that comprise the realms of the dark Eldar.  If you like a little horror, a Gothic flavor, and a bit of arcano-punk with your sci-fi, the 41st millennium is the place to be!