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Demiurg Compilation of Modelling Concepts & Artworks

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Bolter & Chainsword: Please allow the parallell comparisons to Chaos Dwarfs in WHFB here in the opening post for a richer understanding of the community creativity involved with 40k Demiurg. The discussion is of course squarely centered on Demiurg in 40k, as is the compilation.


The mysterious Demiurg of the first decade of this millennium was a teasing concept and attempt to reboot the Squats as a more alien species in Warhammer 40'000, not wholly dissimilar from the out-in-the-cold status of Chaos Dwarfs in Warhammer Fantasy at the same time. Both sported occasional mentions in official background materials, a few new miniatures and tidbits to throw people a bone about the mystery. Fringe niche stuff, for the avid enthusiasts to embroil themselves in and get creative about. While the Chaos Dwarfs of WHFB got new releases every decade, the Squats and Demiurg stayed cold until Leagues of Votann rolled in with a fantastic backround vision for space Dwarfs. I cannot recommend the first dozen or so pages of the new Squat codex highly enough: Treat yourself and read it if you haven't!


Still, the resemblance between WHFB Chaos Dwarfs and 40k Demiurg carries over to the realm of community creativity. Lately, I discovered that there had in fact been a fair amount of community creativity around the Demiurg, including converted armies in project logs and various artworks scattered over different websites. This corresponds on a much smaller scale to the gigantic amount of community creativity over on Chaos Dwarfs Online. While CDO requires many thousands of pictures salvaged for a compilation, the Demiurg required only a few dozen.


While small in number, these community works are still visionary and excellent concepts, and well worth looking at.


Especially so if you want to model Leagues of Votann Kin with strange cloneskeins in close contact with the Tau Empire. For you know what? Demiurg as hinted at in previous background is still relevant, only now we know that they are Kin. And most prominently the Seran-Tok Mercantile League, known to have traded the most with Tau.


And so, I want to share the Demiurg salvage work I did for my own references, made far easier by the efforts of Old Lawgrim over on the sadly dead forum Space Dwarfs Online. Naturally, official and community-brewn both feature:








Rock and Stone!


-   -   -


@Kage2020 among many others may find something worthwhile with this community creativity for the Demiurg.



Edited by Karak Norn Clansman
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A great compilation; thanks for sharing here. I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts on how you personally would develop the Demiurg in the context of the new Leagues of Votann – how close or distinct would you have them from the other Leagues?

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1 hour ago, apologist said:

A great compilation; thanks for sharing here. I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts on how you personally would develop the Demiurg in the context of the new Leagues of Votann – how close or distinct would you have them from the other Leagues?

Thank you. After having seen all the community concepts developed for the lithoid Demiurg, I am convinced that one should strike a bold course and make them different enough from other Leagues to warrant plastic upgrade kits (if I were GW) or future sculpting tutorials (since I am me, and those tutorials will come in due time). While not lithoid aliens, I would make them heavily genetically modified Kin. There are already plenty of references to genetic engineering and tailored organs implanted to make Kin better for different tasks, reminiscent of Adeptus Astartes and Dark Age of Technology bio-modifications in general. The theme is already there.


So let's run with it. Make the Seran-Tok Mercantile League the core of Demiurg, and make them very different. While baseline humans would have been filled with distaste, the pragmatic Squats just see the practical value of such bodily mutations. Give the Demiurg all of the faces developed by GW and community artists alike (well, maybe except for the last one in the compilation since it doesn't say Dwarf to me at all, but it's a good concept aside from that). Chuck in some iconography of their own, such as the angular polygonal Celtic knotwork in one of the concept sketches. And let people have fun converting their Leagues of Votann into Demiurg as a sub-faction, both with upgrade kits and sculpting tricks.


Maybe also introduce some unique guns, like the funky one seen in the second reference sheet. Add some crystaline melee weaponry. And perhaps some extra ion weaponry. And chuck in some insectoid robots as seen in the concept models above. Perhaps lean heavily into Ironkin by having more robots of all types around.


So I would have the Demiurg be distinct from other Leagues. Much of the models would still share the basic League design, but upgrade kits and potential whole new Demiurg models would pull away a bit even in the armour department, with visors and decor of their own.


There may be design elements in their Battlefleet: Gothic ships to borrow for ground vehicles, come to think of it.


And as always, I would be all ears to the ideas and different visions of others around here. :smile:


I will eventually delve into this with art and writings in Descendant Degeneration (DD), but that will probably come after I've finished some 10 or so pieces and cobbled together a print-friendly first PDF volume of all the works so far. You see, my plan is to finish DD volume I with the Crowning Glory piece set last in the book, since I am still laughing all the way to the bank after Games Workshop played right into my hands with the way they designed the Leagues of Votann as Dark Age of Technology leftovers. Incredible coincidence from my angle, but also a logical development to 40k given all GW's growing Dark Age of Technology references in the background. Crowning Glory is essentially me doing a victory lap while cartwheeling, as an ardent Dwarf fan.


Thus, Demiurg seems like a proper place to start off in volume II to delve further into the Kin, in detail. I will post at least a link and the artwork in this thread when that happens. Maybe next year.


Besides, Squats are more fun as a wild variety of styles. There is room both for Rogue Trader style Squats, Necromunda Ironhead Prospectors, new Leagues of Votann NASA-punk Squats, Demiurg and something else entirely. The sky is the limit. CDO spirit all the way, baby!


@Lord_Ikka: Count on it, Lord!


Rock holds.

Edited by Karak Norn Clansman
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On 2/16/2024 at 8:13 AM, Karak Norn Clansman said:

Squats are more fun as a wild variety of styles.

A million times this. I'm strongly in favor of "kin can look like anything", and especially Ironkin. I love the idea of cyborg dwarf clones that are indistinguishable from their AI and other digital brethren. A League could be made up of very disparate communities with many distinct cloneskeins. I haven't leaned into it explicitly too much as yet for modeling, but my own League headcanon has strong Blade Runner / Ghost in the Shell vibes...


I think the existing votann efforts by GW lend themselves equally to a kind of Kirby-esque neon space fantasy. The 'tech so advanced it's indistinguishable from magic' kind of Thor/Asgardian thing really opens things up as well. 


Good luck with the manuscript. Your enthusiasm has always been an inspiration, and I'm glad to see it flourishing again after the great re-emergence : )




The Good Doctor.



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I'm more akin to ignoring the Squats/Votann and having Demiurg as their own entity.


I like the idea of them being quite few in number and relying on robots/drones/AI machines to bolster their numbers.


A while ago, I started putting together a Demiurg army (some are pictured in the opening post) using a mix of converted Kharadron Overlords and a mix of drones/vehicles/robots from other sources... Gates of Antares.


I have units of three Demiurg leading a group of drones. I have three guilds: Air, Earth and subterranean, each having control of separate aspects of the warmachine... for example, the Air guild control flying vehicles/drones and also the space-going vessels. The earth guild control ground assault drones and vehicles while the subterranean guild have access to tunneling and diving equipment.


These are some Earth Guilders:




And these are some of their drones:




I haven't got access to any codexes at the moment but I'm not sure if any would be a good fit, to be honest... and once the LOV arrived, I sort of lost interest in the Demiurg...

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Love the 'rock people' vibe there Inso... I also started Squats using Kharadron, but didn't convert most of them nearly as much as you have.


I think it's perfectly acceptable to quietly leave out Leagues / Votann in your headcanon and replace them with whatever weirdness you prefer for Demiurg... If pressed you can always just say that they are indeed a small contingent of alien survivors somewhere on the fringe.


As to use in-game - Karadron thunderers are about the size of regular hearthkyn, I've found. Regular arkanauts are noticeably smaller than hearthkyn - and a base size down.


Assuming those drones are on 40mm bases (?) then they look good for thunderers (might consider swapping to all/mostly ranged weapons if you can for that). In addition you could easily use some of the combat ones as Einhyr Champions, though those are characters so you'd only have 3.


I like the Gates of Antares callout. I thought the boromite rockskin look among the best I'd seen... sadly let down by the lava spiders which were amiss for me.




The Good Doctor. 

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