The same familiar species, Homo sapiens, has in the millennia passing after the present day spawned a number of minor subspecies referred to (somewhat pejoratively) as "abhumans". The two most seen abhumans are the ratlings (equivalent to halflings) and ogryns (equivalent to ogres). The vast majority of humans in the galaxy are nominally citizens of the Imperium of Man. It was created by the Emperor, an extremely powerful psyker, whose life is sustained artificially since the mortal wounds he suffered at the culmination of the Horus Heresy. The Emperor is now worshiped as a deity by the citizens of the Imperium. Currently the Imperium is controlled by a ruling body of 12 of the most influential and powerful men in the galaxy, collectively known as the High Lords of Terra. The Capital of the Imperium is the planet Terra. The Imperium features a wide variety of organizations and affiliations, which are represented in the game by a selection of five playable armies:
- Imperial Guard: The main fighting force of the Imperium.
- Space Marines: Elite superhuman soldiers.
- Inquisition:They are well known for their ruthlessness in battle. Inquisitors of the Ordo Malleus (Daemon Hunters), Ordo Hereticus (Heretic Hunters), Ordo Xenos (Alien Hunters), as well as other Orders. Each of these have their own Chamber Militant, their military arm, which are: the Grey Knights, the Sisters of Battle and the Deathwatch respectively.
The other major factions of the Imperium, usually as supporting additions to the above armies, often playable in spinoffs of Warhammer 40,000:
- Adeptus Custodes: The Emperor's Bodyguard, ten thousand of the most powerful human warriors ever created.
- Adeptus Mechanicus: The tech-priests of Mars, and their associated vehicles, armies and Titan Legions
- Imperial Navy: Operate most military spacecraft and are responsible for interstellar transport of other Imperial forces.
- Officio Assassinorum: human assassins of the Imperium.
- Adeptus Arbites: Unflinching enforcers of Imperial secular law.
- Adeptus Titanicus: Pilots of the mighty Titan Legions
Many of these non-playable forces can be represented using existing forces; White Dwarf has featured armies such as a Custodian Guard force created using Space Marine rules and a Mechanicus force based upon Imperial Guard. Others, like the Arbites and the Officio Assassinorum, function as allies for existing armies, such as an Ordo Hereticus army including a Culexus Assassin. Forge World also produces a range of resin Titan models for use in Warhammer 40,000.
There are also human settlements outside of the Imperium: worlds cut off from the Imperium for generations, those that have rebelled against the Imperium, or that have merely been overlooked. The only non-Imperial humans playable in the game are:
- Gue'vesa: Humans who have rejected the Imperium and joined the Tau Empire and now fight alongside them for "the Greater Good".
- Lost and the Damned: Humans and mutants who worship and fight for the Chaos Gods.
Read more about this topic: Warhammer 40,000 Species
Famous quotes containing the word humanity:
“Each man too is a tyrant in tendency, because he would impose his idea on others; and their trick is their natural defence. Jesus would absorb the race; but Tom Paine or the coarsest blasphemer helps humanity by resisting this exuberance of power.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson (18031882)