It is well known that the Warhammer world was created out of a concoction of literary, mythological and historical sources, and I have traced many of them in my ‘WFRP Story’ posts. Below I have attempted to summarise this graphically. The infographic charts the various influences on the key elements of the world of WFRP‘s first edition. Inevitably it simplifies relationships and conceals some of the subtleties, but I think it provides an interesting overview. The image can also be downloaded from here.

Making of WFRP

I have also presented the same information in the form of a pie chart. This suggests the WFRP1 setting is 53% mythology, 25% literature and 22% history! Of course, that is based on very crude and almost certainly misleading assumptions about the weighting of individual elements. I simply assign each element from the diagram above equal importance. It probably understates the significance of Michael Moorcock, for example. But it’s a starting point.

Making of WFRP Pie Chart

Title art used without permission. No challenge intended to the rights holders.

6 thoughts on “MYTHOPOEIA

  1. I like this a lot. Is it possible to provide a download?

    I’m thinking that it might be possible to include some distinction in the flow chart using symbols by the terms to indicate whether or not the influence is confirmed by an author, or by a contributor, or by a colleague, or not.


  2. A fun idea.

    A flaw, I think has to be it doesn’t always acknowledge the full range of influences that gave rise to certain ideas. Sigmar is, for example, equated directly with Siegfried and traced to Wagner – which is doubtless fair enough – but there were other mythological antecedents not pointed to. The Siegfried story is drawn from Germanic and Norse legend. Arguably, Norse myth is a greater influence than Wagner – at least in terms of the similarity of names (Sigurd and Sigmar). And as for Sigmar’s role (hammer wielding god protector) this owes much to Thor and the worship of gods equated with Hercules by the ancient Germans, I would suggest. The influence of Moorcock and Anderson in Warhammer Elves is another under acknowledged issue here.

    Of course, the more arrows and lines you add, the more tangled and hard to read the diagram would become, so I can see why you might have chosen more direct one to one relationships!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re exactly right. The relations had to be simplified to represent them graphically, so all sorts of influences have been omitted. For example, Warhammer trolls were influenced by D&D trolls. D&D trolls were influenced by Poul Anderson. Zhu Bajiee thinks they were also influenced by Marching Zombies. Paul Stormberg thinks they were influenced by dime-store figures…. To represent all this in one diagram would result in something like a plate of spaghetti!

      I might attempt some variations on this in future, though, for example, a separate diagram just of creatures with more levels on influence.


    1. Sorry. Can you not zoom in your browser? Or download it, or open it in a new tab?

      WordPress can’t display it any bigger, I’m afraid.


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