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(WH/40k/AoS+) Stanning Slaanesh with a Clean Conscience

Cessna

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Help me spin Slaanesh? Thanks.
Slaanesh isn't about gender.

Slaanesh is about DESIRE, and not necessarily sexual desire. The desire to excel, to be the best, to triumph. That's a powerful force, and that's why the other Chaos gods are all so afraid of Slaanesh. They all know deep down that without desire, they'd be nothing. Tzeentch wouldn't even bother try to change anything, Khorne wouldn't keep hitting the gym and working out to bet stronger, and Nurgle would just sit on the couch all day instead of cooking up new diseases.

Ever watch Mad Men? That show had a perfect example of a Slaaneshi champion - Don Draper. He built his entire career on creating desire in others - the desire to buy, influenced by his ads. Don's personal life was ruled by desire - the desire to be the best ad man, to land the big contract and, yes, to sleep with anyone he thought was pretty. Don embodies desire - he'd be perfect for Slaanesh.

That's what we love about Slaanesh. Want to win that game of 40K? That's Slaanesh whispering in your ear. Want a beautifully painted model? Guess who wants you to want it. Slaanesh is what moves you to act.

And besides, Slaanesh has the best parties.
 

Endless Rain

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Slaanesh isn't about gender.

Slaanesh is about DESIRE, and not necessarily sexual desire. The desire to excel, to be the best, to triumph. That's a powerful force, and that's why the other Chaos gods are all so afraid of Slaanesh. They all know deep down that without desire, they'd be nothing. Tzeentch wouldn't even bother try to change anything, Khorne wouldn't keep hitting the gym and working out to bet stronger, and Nurgle would just sit on the couch all day instead of cooking up new diseases.

Ever watch Mad Men? That show had a perfect example of a Slaaneshi champion - Don Draper. He built his entire career on creating desire in others - the desire to buy, influenced by his ads. Don's personal life was ruled by desire - the desire to be the best ad man, to land the big contract and, yes, to sleep with anyone he thought was pretty. Don embodies desire - he'd be perfect for Slaanesh.

That's what we love about Slaanesh. Want to win that game of 40K? That's Slaanesh whispering in your ear. Want a beautifully painted model? Guess who wants you to want it. Slaanesh is what moves you to act.

And besides, Slaanesh has the best parties.
It's well established that Warhammer's Chaos God of Desire is Tzeentch, not Slaanesh. To quote the Lexicanum 40k wiki,"Tzeentch was created and sustained by the desire for change that is an essential part of nearly all mortal life; almost all species are aware of the concept of a better tomorrow, and any form of dreaming, imagining or resolution for change empowers the Chaos God." Slaanesh does have the best parties though, since all the plots and schemes in the galaxy won't make Tzeentch's parties better than those of the literal god of partying.
 

Cessna

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It's well established that Warhammer's Chaos God of Desire is Tzeentch, not Slaanesh. To quote the Lexicanum 40k wiki,"Tzeentch was created and sustained by the desire for change that is an essential part of nearly all mortal life; almost all species are aware of the concept of a better tomorrow, and any form of dreaming, imagining or resolution for change empowers the Chaos God." Slaanesh does have the best parties though, since all the plots and schemes in the galaxy won't make Tzeentch's parties better than those of the literal god of partying.
Tzeentch being motivated by desire does not make him the god of desire.
 

George Angell

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Well there's arguably some overlap between the different Chaos Gods particularly between Slaanesh and Tzeentch. None of them are really the sort to stay tucked away in one little bailiwick.

There's a pretty good AoS novella "The Red Hours" that features a Slaanesh demon that feeds on individuals desire to be recognized for their achievements and and ultimately become epic heroes. The demon possesses and works to aid them in accomplishing their goals with the ultimate goal of making them the main character of some epic tale.

Slaanesh is about wanting more, more food, more sex, more adulteration, but their also about having the greater sensations the most delicious, amazing, or even the most repugnant meal one can imagine. At the same time their also about striving for perfection. To be the greatest artist, the greatest athlete, the greatest warrior the world has ever know. This is where the overlap with Tzeentch. But I would say Tzeentch is more about fulfilling ones ambitions while tearing down what came before, Slaanesh is about perfecting what is.

An artist inspired by Tzeentch would break away from the Academy (and burn it down for good measure) and then create a series of impressionist masterpieces, then burn all of those canvasses, and move on to cubism, or abstract expressionism. The Slaanesh artist creates the most beautiful Academic painting imaginable to the point were the viewer stares at it unable to beak away until they starve to death because they've forgotten to eat.
 

Crumbs

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Slaanesh despite constantly being refered to as the god of pleasure is actually the god of excess. It just works out that people have vices and they refer to slaanesh using those vices.

Perfection and pleasure do not need to have anything to do with one another yet slaanesh is whorshipped by people who want either. Those who want perfection in something spend all day doing it. Someone else might find pleasure in loud high pitched noises so they listen to that all day. The key is excess.
 

CrazyIvan

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From one of the more recent Chaos Daemons codexes, about a Grey Knight (we think...)'s passage through the realm of Slaanesh. Note how only one of them is sex-related. She Who Thirsts is about excess, about the notion of one more hit, about being at the pinnacle.

I think that's the real difference between Slaanesh and Tzeentch. Slaanesh is about excess and desire, but its about an ever more narrow version of it. Louder music, more exotic drugs, finer foods and more elegant blade work. That's not change - it's just a different type of stasis, whereas Tzeentch is...disruptive.

“The first circle the knight pushed through was richly appointed beyond the dreams of kings. Mountains of stacked gold reached towards rainbow mosaics of gemstones in the marble vaults high above, glittering ingots and diamonds beyond count littered the ground. The knight marched past many a starving wretch attempting to count the innumerable gold coins.”
“Crunching his way across a beach of golden teeth, the knight came to the shores of a vast lake of dark wine. The lake was dotted with pallid islands formed from the backs of giants, each linked by criss-crossing bridges. The backward hands of each giant held up a table that groaned under the weight of a lavish feast. There, he saw mortal men gorging themselves on the banquet, wide-eyed and desperate in their hunger as others frantically tried to gulp down the lake itself.”
"The wanderer made his way through fields of golden light and soft hay, where lissom maidens and beautiful youths frolicked near-naked in the hallucinogenic musk of the lithe beasts that cavorted with them. The faces and fertile forms of the dancers were impossibly sensual, moulded to the perfect desire of the heart.”
“...the knight emerged onto a balcony where he was greeted by roars of adulation and approval. An army of Space Marines so vast its number was beyond counting awaited before him on an endless plain, listening in fevered anticipation of his commands for conquest.”
“Wearied by his ordeals, the wanderer strode on through a mesmerising woodland paradise, its maze of pathways thick with flowers and heavy with thorns. The gentle, fragrant breeze whispered to the knight of past glories, reminding him of the executions he had performed in the Emperor’s name. Mirrored pools reflected the knight as a shining saint, his face serene but his sword bloodied as he artfully carved apart rank after rank of red-skinned Daemons.”
“An endless beach stretched away from the knight, and heavenly choirs sung soothing lullabies as the perfumed sea lapped at the fortress walls of his mind. The wanderer’s bones cried out for rest, even if only for a moment.”
 

howard david ingham

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i think the main thing for me is that the queer representation in Warhammer is with Slaanesh. It's not that Slaanesh is *about* gender, it's about the fact that all the trans representation in Warhammer was, in the era i am most familiar with, there. So like, the problem i have is that yes, they're the god of excess and pleasure and everything but the classic Slaaneshi daemons and tbf the original Slaaneshi champions were all explicitly not cis.

(so from my collection: )

So either we remove the queer (and it's interesting that the few not-daemon chaos models now on sale aren't even all that camp anymore) or we alter the way in which the liberationist aspects of the faction are presented.

i mean, look, i don't even mean make them goodies, because this is Warhammer right, but perhaps find more reasons why one might be cheerfully on the Slaaneshi side.
 

Scutarii

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i mean, look, i don't even mean make them goodies, because this is Warhammer right, but perhaps find more reasons why one might be cheerfully on the Slaaneshi side.
Through the lens of a wargame we're only really exposed to the Slaaneshi who find their pleasure/desire/excess/etc. expressed through warfare and conflict. There are exponentially more worshippers who don't engage in that behaviour and instead seek their desires through other means.

Slaanesh is only really 'evil' in the sense that going too far down that path leads to dangerous outcomes to other people. Dedicating yourself to your art is only really a bad thing because neglecting other parts of your life is harmful to you and potentially those who rely on you. In a Slaanesh dominated world though you would not suffer ills and wants to yourself (as the magic of Slaanesh would sustain you) and nor would those around you (unless, that was their desire too).

Remember, in 40k land Khorne has entire Daemon Worlds deep in the Warp where in the morning all the Orks on the world come to life, spend the entire day in constant war with hordes of Daemons, loving every second of that rush of battle until everyone of them lies dead. Then, come the morning they revive once again to repeat the cycle. If Khorne can do that then Slaanesh can make sure everyone living in a Slaanesh world suffers only the ills that make them happy. Are you in the circle of gluttony, gorging on the finest foods? You can do so forevermore without worry of heart disease, Slaanesh's magic makes sure of that!

CrazyIvan CrazyIvan 's descripton of the gardens of Slaanesh (i.e.: their Godrealm). Do you think anyone living inside those realms is unhappy? Or in danger of really suffering negative consequences they don't want? If any part of living in those realms was undesireable? That would be anathema to Slaanesh! As the numerous reals each with wildly different desires being catered for shows there isn't just one way that Slaanesh fulfills you.
 

Inqy

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CrazyIvan CrazyIvan 's descripton of the gardens of Slaanesh (i.e.: their Godrealm). Do you think anyone living inside those realms is unhappy? Or in danger of really suffering negative consequences they don't want? If any part of living in those realms was undesireable? That would be anathema to Slaanesh! As the numerous reals each with wildly different desires being catered for shows there isn't just one way that Slaanesh fulfills you.
I think the idea is that anyone whose gone that far into Slaanesh's realm is going to find any stimuli desirable regardless of context. It's just an aside in a random bit of fiction, but I remember The Scent briefly referred to that with the Chaos Lord basically noting his whip was mostly just a prop as his followers basically just relished any physical sensation.
 
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