Reviews: Herald Of The Void

A straight-lined but enjoyable journey

Louise summoning someone else is about the de facto crossover, so why not have her summon... a Necron Lord? A C'tan worshipping Oldcron to boot. Herald of the Storm, or Herald for short, is itself a canon mashup of the Tabletop and Dawn Of War series and it shows. Not only is he capable of (menacing) speech, he's also very competent, combining most aspects of canon Lords such as the C'tan essences and lots of wargear from Dark Crusade and Soul Storm. Louise got quite the servant there. Herald comes fresh from a crushing defeat and awaits punishment. So being summoned by little pinkette Louise turns his programming around, making him believe she is a C'tan and he has been teleported there for babysitting duty. An ususual and young C'tan since she doesn't consume souls among other things but still. She isn't, really. So now the unlikely pair try to follow the usual plot with some differences as expected, leading to many a great Curb Stomp Battle, funny situations due to misunderstandings and building an army and superior spy network to prepare a wicked finale.

Overall, the story is fairly straight-forward. Many of the canon events happen and play out similar though not quite the same, but Herald naturally has a more combat-oriented philosophy about dealing with enemies. Unless someone is related to Louise or she orders him not to, he will fight to kill. Being a 60million year old undead roboskeleton with unimaginable power and intelligence certainly helps. Louise herself is terrified of him at first, but slowly gets accustomed to him. Of course the revelation she may be a C'tan shocks her highly. However this gets her to think about herself, which has the unintended side-effect of reducing her Tsundere behaviour to near zero. The story changes several aspects, such as dealing with the water spirit, battles against Albion and the fate of Prince Wales (it's sort of awesome).

The balance between just bulldozing everything and telling a proper story is done well here. The story portrays Herald symphathetically but also ruthless while Louise's personality is much better too. Everyone important gets their moment(s) of awesome while staying believable within the context. A negative note is some of the scenes are too short, but this work is not Beige Prose overall either. If you like both Louise and Necrons, this will be enjoyable.

Subpar Fanfic

Aside from the popularity of Warhammer 40k and Familiar of Zero this fanfic doesn't have much going for it. I imagine the author had all kinds of cool stuffing going on in the story, unfortunately he didn't bother to show the readers. Events that would have been awesome if give a few pages, are simply told to the reader in just a paragraph. "Gee, I have this really spectacular fight scene in my head, to bad none of you readers are psychic. Oh well, I'll just tell you it happened in one short paragraph."

Then there's the rather flat characterization. Like puppets on a string, they dance to the authors whims with no effort given to fleshing out reasons or motives.

As is the case often, interesting idea, poor execution.

From comments

  • Comments: I'm surprised no one listed this already. The story is well written, Herald thinking Louise is a C'tan is very amusing, and overall its an interesting take on the 'Louise summons someone other then Saito' plot. All Glory to the Star Gods!