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Ghazghkull's favourite playground.

Armageddon is a perpetual clusterfuck an Imperial (barely) Hive World in Segmentum Solar. It is one of the most well-known Hive Worlds in the galaxy, with an industrial output surpassing that of many Forge Worlds. As it supplies dozens of worlds with materials and protection, Armageddon is a strategically vital world and is heavily garrisoned. Climate-wise, Armageddon is an ash-filled polluted hellhole. On the main continent there is little more than ash-filled deserts, though its southern regions and the secondary continent have jungles home to carnivorous plants like the Helsreach Monsters. It is home to the Steel Legion, one of the most recognized Imperial Guard Regiments in the galaxy.

Armageddon was also the location of some of the largest wars in the history of the galaxy, including the Third War for Armageddon (the largest land and space battle in the history of the Imperium of Man bar none), and the subject of numerous failed Imperial Assaults during a *small* occurrence called The War of The Beast. Notably it was also the largest gathering of Space Marine ships in history, including the Siege of Terra or the Ullanor Crusade (the latter of which was what led The Emperor to declare Horus his Warmaster).

Speaking of which, it turns out there's a reason for why the place is an Ork magnet. A "special" CS Goto-level retcon made Armageddon into the teleported Ullanor itself, ancestral home of two of the greatest Ork Empires to have ever existed. So, perhaps unknowingly, the Orks aren't invading - they're coming home. Or maybe it's just bad, disjointed, schizophrenic writing in a book line known for them, but hey-ho. The War of the Beast was weird.

First War for Armageddon[edit]

A typical Tuesday on Armageddon

The Beginning[edit]

The first war for Armageddon began with a series of Chaos rebellions in the hive populace as the Daemon Space Hulk Devourer of Souls came out of the warp above the planet. Much of the World Eaters legion was aboard the hulk, and they made planetfall amid the bloody rebellions, slaughtering all resistance on the main continent. Realizing that the main hives were lost, what was left of the loyalist populations retreated to the smaller continent across the sea to regroup and resupply at the small military bases and outposts located there. For a few short weeks the Khornate hordes busied themselves with sacrificing civilians to summon daemons to bolster their ranks, and the Loyalists used this time to fortify as well as they could, but they had little more to offer their foes than flashlights and insults.

The Blood God's hordes turned their eyes to the last defenders, now bolstered by daemons and the Daemon Primarch Angron himself. The ragged refugees and soldiers could do little more than pray for deliverance when...

The Cavalry Arrives[edit]

Out of the fucking blue with no real lore explanation the Vlka Fenryka showed up, led by the Old Wolf himself! The wolves blast the fuck out of the Devourer of Souls and make planetfall to help the remaining Planetary Defense Force and Steel Legion forces defend the remaining civilians while they awaited the help that Logan had called for. They actually started gaining ground against the World Eaters until Angron and his Cruor Praetoria, his bodyguard of twelve Bloodthirsters, charged the Imperial line and started chopping up everything that stood between them and Armageddon's south pole.

The Grey Knights fucking finally show up to the party and this 'ragged brotherhood' fight Angron and his Bloodthirster posse and win when their brotherhood's Grandmaster was able to banish Angron after Hyperion shattered the daemon Primarch's blade. Of the 109 Grey Knights who took to the field, 13 survived. Following Angron's banishment the Wolves and Steel Legion were able to destroy the few Khornate forces that remained.

The Months of Shame[edit]

As the whole planet had been contaminated by Chaos, by the sanction of Inquisitor Lord Ghesmei Kysnaros, the decided course of action was that the remaining population of Armageddon, civilians and soldiers alike, were to be sterilized and sent to Inquisitorial compounds to be worked to death or otherwise exterminated, and optimistically intended to have any Space Wolves who had seen the Grey Knights be mindwiped save for Grimnar.

The Space Wolves were not fucking amused, to put it mildly. Logan politely and calmly explained to the Inquisitor that by punishing the citizens of Armageddon for their heroism and survival, the Inquisition were sullying the honour of the men that yet lived and disrespecting the memories of the dead. The Inquisitor Lord more or less told Logan to go fuck himself. The Old Wolf was not amused.

Shortly after this exchange, surviving refugees and soldiers began to be transported off-world, only to mysteriously 'disappear' (certainly nothing to do with the Grey Knights knocking out their warp-drives then blowing them apart, not at all!). The Wolves pretty quickly figured out what was up and called the Inquisition to explain their deeds, but they weren't feeling talkative. The Inquisition began firing on any civilian craft leaving the planet, including the ones escorted by the Space Wolves, who blocked the Inquisitorial fire, first with their void shields and then with the hulls of their ships, but never fired back.

After months of tense standoffs and passive resistance against the Inquisition, the Space Wolves had eventually dispersed unquantified numbers of survivors and utterly shattered the Inquisition's best attempts at containment (including several outright Exterminatus actions on planets where survivors were believed to have been), to the point where the Inquisition themselves unofficially admitted containment was simply no longer possible. Having failed with his previous attempts, the Inquisitor Lord was feeling a bit butthurt and so decided to lash out, and this is where the Space Wolves finally got sick of the Inquisition's shit.

See, the Inquisitor Lord Kysnaros and the Grey Knights Grand Master serving him had hit upon a brilliant (read: utterly bone-headed) plan: they would call a truce with the Wolves and meet with them in a neutral system to parley, with their respective ships' weapons and shields powered down to prevent any "unfortunate incidents". The catch, of course, was that the Inquisition never intended to live up to their word - when the fleets met as planned, they would open fire almost immediately to cripple the Space Wolves' fleet and force Grimnar to submit to their demands under the threat of annihilation.

Grimnar, unaware of the trap, duly showed up in the relic Strike Cruiser Scramaseax with its weapons off and shields powered down (as both sides had agreed upon), only for its escorts to be destroyed and the Strike Cruiser itself halfway crippled. Kysnaros took a moment to gloat before "inviting" Grimnar across to his ship, to discuss how the Wolves were going to atone for their actions against the Inquisition (hint: it involved stripping away a lot of their independence and sending them on a Penitent Crusade). As it would turn out however, that Inquisitorial Gloating™ would prove to be a bit premature.

Unsurprisingly royally pissed off at this betrayal and Kysnaros's outrageous demands, Grimnar traveled to the Inquisitor's ship, and (upon finding out he gave the order to fire on the Wolves) promptly split the Grey Knights Grand Master open from head to nadgers before he could even draw his blade, before verbally tearing into both the Grey Knights (who were becoming increasingly demoralized, feeling this campaign was a failure and far out of their remit) and the Inquisitor Lord for their incompetence, betrayal of parley, and overall pig-headed approach. When the Knights tried to prevent the remaining Wolves (Logan and three of his Honour Guard, all others having died in the betrayal) from teleporting out, the Wolves answered by shooting their way back to the Scramaseax and departing the system at speed.

(Evidently the Inquisitor Lord thought it was a good idea to be in a void war with Logan Grimnar, a dude who can call on EIGHT battle barges and FUCKING THIRTY Strike Cruisers, and in command of a chapter, a First Founding chapter no less, of Space Marines, and whose forces are typically assumed to be approximately triple the average number, if not larger. He was wrong.)

The End[edit]

The next few months were... messy, to say the least. The Space Wolves, infuriated by this latest betrayal, began actively hunting down and destroying Kysnaros's vessels - including the 10,000-year-old GK flagship Glaive of Janus, with its entire crew and the fifty Veteran Grey Knights aboard. The Inquisitor Lord, despite knowing that any effort at containing Armageddon's survivors had failed by this point, responded by escalating the purges of located survivors and calling in favours from the Inquisition's unofficial Astartes lapdogs. It was also around this time that a number of the Inquisitor's underlings (among them, Hyperion of the Grey Knights and Fenrisian Inquisitor Jarlsdottyr) began plotting to assassinate Inquisitor Lord Kysnaros outright, fearing that his actions were going to spark off an outright civil war between the Wolves and the Inquisition.

After eight months of the Inquisition getting its ass kicked, the Inquisitor Lord finally called on every resource he could muster and set off to Fenris with an entire Imperial Navy fleet, a Grey Knights Strike Cruiser and the entire Red Hunters Chapter fleet. Their mission? To hold Fenris, as well as the (currently lightly-defended) Fang hostage, and ultimately (again, optimistically) intending to strong-arm the Wolves into a final parley in which the Inquisition could dictate the terms under the threat of annihilating the Wolves' home.

Y'know, cuz it worked so well when Bucharis tried it.

To make a long story short: the Wolves caught onto the plan and returned, attacking the Inquisition's task force; both sides gave each other bloody noses and everyone lost various amounts of men and ships (the Inquisition-GK-RH soup more so than the Wolves), and the fighting ended when Logan thoroughly demonstrated that for all that the Grey Knights are peerless psykers capable of going toe-to-toe with daemons and perma-killing them, in a close-quarters fight they couldn't hold a candle to the sons of Russ. He made this point by teleporting to the Inquisition flagship's bridge, killing the Lord Inquisitor (who by now was on the verge of a nervous breakdown as he realized how monumentally boned they all were) in a single blow, and throwing Hyperion a Kharn vs Erebus level of beating as his retinue dismantled the surviving Grey Knights.

With the top Inquisitor dead, Hyperion busy being beaten into ground beef, and Logan both utterly frothing mad and more than willing to kill everyone aboard, Bjorn teleported up into the brouhaha and had what is quite possibly the single most "Bjorn" moment ever. Not only did Bjorn tell the Inquisition to get off his damn lawn, not only did he tell Logan to "quit making so much damn noise with this out-of-hand party, young man," Bjorn actually came onto a Fenrisian Inquisitor (who earlier had tearfully fallen to her knees in reverent awe upon first seeing Bjorn and now fought at his side AGAINST the Inquisition's hooligans), calling her a "beautiful frost-born maiden" (revealing himself to be a crotchety old romantic neckbeard after our own hearts).

Everyone was pretty fucking dumbfounded, but hey, the Lord Inquisitor was dead, and he was pretty much the only one who'd been in favour of this strategy in the first place (though his colleagues and implicitly the highest levels of the Inquisition, promptly began (AGAIN, optimistically) looking for ways to bring the Wolves to heel), so the vast majority of those involved simply shrugged and went their own ways. Inquisitors, even Inquisitor Lords getting ahead of themselves, trying to throw their weight around with Astartes, and then getting in way over their heads is hardly unprecedented, and is a scenario that usually only ends one way. Trying that shit with First Founding chapters however... You'd have better odds trying your luck in a game of chicken with a black hole. Just ask the Dark Angels.

Now in song form!

Second War for Armageddon[edit]

To make a short story even shorter, the Second War for Armageddon was a massive fucking meatgrinder full of happy Orks and pissed off Humans. Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka arrived on the planet with a bunch of Roks and a few billion Orks and decided to make things more interesting. Armaggeddon's ruler at the time was a fucker by the name of Herman von Strab, a man so delusionally assured of his own abilities and decisions that ignored every piece of sensible tactical advice given and sent numerically inferior, split focus forces to fight against the uncharacteristically clever Ork hordes. He actually deployed a Titan Legion without any kind of support, resulting in their total defeat.

When things really started going south, he evacuated to his private bunker and bombarded his own cities with past-the-use-by-date Virus Bombs, killing millions of his own people as well as the Orks. The planet was only saved due to the actions of a few loyal but disobedient commanders, including Commissar Yarrick, the Old Man himself, who took over and started getting shit done. Yarrick managed to hold things together with his half-whipped and half-starved forces until the Marines arrived to help out. Commander Dante arrived with a taskforce to finish the fight. Ghazghkull got bored and fucked off to space. Kinda like WWI.

All this war did in the long term was create Mephiston and set the scene for the big war that came after, which brings us to...

Third War for Armageddon[edit]

The third war for Armageddon was the biggest land war in the history of the Imperium and the galaxy's mosh pit. FUCKING EVERYONE was there - well, all the Orks and Humans anyway. Seriously, all nine former Space Marine legions were there along with a lot of successors, a dozen Titan Legions and a metric fuckton of Guard regiments, along with a few billion Orks. There were more Void Ships and ground forces at the third war for Armageddon than any other war in the history of mankind, surpassing even the Siege of Holy Terra and the Ullanor Crusade (though this has been partially retconned by our overlords). Commanding this clusterfuck was High Marshal Helbrecht in charge of the Void Battle, as the Templars are void specialists, and Commissar Yarrick in overall command on the ground (says a lot about how hardcore Yarrick is that even the Astartes were willing to take orders from this guy).

To make a short story even shorter: Ghazghkull was annoyed that he had to fuck off to space last time, so he came back with even MORE Orks to come back and get Yarrick, though this time the Imperium was prepared and eventually forced a stalemate. Ghazghkull got bored and fucked off to space again, with Yarrick joining the Templars on an epic road trip to go smite the green fucker, only to be left in the proverbial dust when Gork and Mork intervened on Ghazghkull's behalf. The conflict has kept going ever since, with no sign of slowing down.

Meanwhile, the events of the Gathering Storm ended up putting Armageddon directly in the path of the Blood Crusade - a colossal legion of Khorne Daemons who almost certainly are ready for a second round. As of Dark Imperium, the Blood Crusade tried to summon Angron but the Salamanders managed to muck up the ritual. While the Chaos warbands were fighting each other, the Orks and the Steel Legion actually teamed up to banish them on occasion before going back to fighting each other. At this point, half of the planet is now a Daemon World occupied by the forces of Khorne and Tzeentch (which as usual are fighting among themselves as well) and the other half is presumably clinging to whatever territory they can old while waiting for Old Man Yarrick to come back to fuck shit up. Even worse, there are signs that the Salamanders merely delayed the summoning of Angron rather than preventing it completely, and the warp rift left behind from his initial banishment brings forth more and more daemons as if preparing for the return of the Red Angel.

Armageddon indeed.

Codex: Armageddon[edit]

As with the 13th Black Crusade, Third Edition also introduced a Codex supplement for the Third Armageddon War with a basic overview of the war and some variant armies based on the forces arrayed.

  • Black Templars: A variant Space Marines army. If you're wondering how they got their 4th Edition Codex as badass as it was, you'll find the origins here. Vows, a lone-wolf Emperor's Champion, Crusader Squads, all of it was introduced here.
  • Salamanders: Another variant Space Marines army. This is where the -1 Initiative rule came from and how they became the diehards, including reinforcing their tanks with ceramite. All Fast Attack units are 0-1 here, meaning that you'd need to either make your options count or rely more on other FOC slots.
  • Speed Freeks: A variant Orks army list focused entirely on going fast. Every unit in this army has a compulsory transport they had to start the game in, and thankfully the boyz knew well enough to fall back to their rides in the event that they failed a morale check. Even your big guns are strapped to trukks, something we've somehow never gotten since.
  • Steel Legion Mechanized Infantry Company: A "variant" Imperial Guard. Rather than introducing new units or rearranging the FOC, a Mechanized Infantry Company instead required all units either be vehicles or hitch a ride in a chimera - something the army list happily opens up for any units otherwise incapable of taking them. The only units you couldn't bring along were the Deathworld Veterans from the Catachans supplement, which wasn't much of a loss.
Timeline of Warhammer 40,000
The Times of Old Wars of Secession - War in Heaven (60.000.000 BC) - Fall of the Eldar (M30)
Pre-Heresy Age of Terra (M1-M15) - Dark Age of Technology (M15-M25) - Cybernetic Revolt (M23-M25) - Age of Strife (M25-M30)
Great Crusade (Late M30-005.M31) Unification Wars - The Last Church - Rangdan Xenocides - Interex - Gardinaal - Faash - Council of Nikaea
Horus Heresy (005.M31-014.M31) Battle of Isstvan III - The Burning of Prospero - Battle of the Alaxxes Nebula - Drop Site Massacre - Thramas Crusade
The Battle of Phall - Battle of Calth - Signus Campaign - Imperium Secundus - Battle of Trisolian - Siege of Terra
Time of Rebirth (015.M31-M32) The Great Scouring (~015.M31) - Start of The Long War (M31) - The Legion Wars (M31) - The Battle of Skalathrax (M31)
The Battle of Harmony (M31) - Creation of the Codex Astartes (M31) - Second Founding (021.M31) - Battle of Thessala (121.M31)
The Forging (M32-M34) The War of The Beast (544.M32-546.M32) - The Beheading (546.M32) - The War of the False Primarch (780.M33-860.M33)
Nova Terra Interregnum (M34-M36) 21st Founding (M36)
Age of Apostasy (M36) Plague of Unbelief (310.M36)
Age of Redemption (M37-Early M38) Abyssal Crusade (321.M37-121.M38)
The Waning (Early M38- Early M41) Gothic War (143-151.M41) - The Macharian Crusade (392-399.M41) - The Macharian Heresy (400-470.M41)
Wars for Armageddon (444.M41, 941.M41 and 991.M41) - Damocles Crusade (742.M41)
Time of Ending (Early M41-999.M41) The Vaxi Atrocity (731.M41) - First Tyrannic War (745-746.M41) - Sabbat Worlds Crusade (755.M41-780.M41) - Siege of Vraks (813.M41-830.M41)
Massacre at Sanctuary 101 (897.M41) - Badab War (901-912.M41) - The Vaxhallian Genocide (926.M41) - Second Tyrannic War (990.M41-993.M41)
Orphean War (991.M41-Ongoing) - Third Tyrannic War (997.M41-999.M41) - Taros Campaign (998.M41) - Fall of Shadowbrink (998.M41)
Octarius War (999.M41-Ongoing) - Conquest of Uttu Prime (Late M41) - Devastation of Baal (999.M41) - 13th Black Crusade (999.M41-M42) - 2nd Siege of Terra (000.M42)
Age of the Dark Imperium (000.M42-Ongoing) Ultima Founding (999.M41-012.M42) - Indomitus Crusade (999.M41-Ongoing, first phase ended on 012.M42)
War of Beasts (001.M42-025.M42) - Plague Wars (~012.M42) - Psychic Awakening (M42)
The Planets, Systems, Regions and Sectors of the Galaxy
Imperial Homeworlds: Holy Terra (Luna) - Sacred Mars
Primarch Homeworlds: Baal - Barbarus - Caliban - Chemos - Chogoris - Colchis
Cthonia - Deliverance - Fenris - Inwit - Medusa - Nostramo
Nocturne - Nuceria - Olympia - Prospero - Macragge
Notable Imperial Worlds: Accatran - Acreage - Agripinaa - Alaric Prime - Arkhona - Armageddon - Astaramis
Atoma Prime - Aurelia - Aurum - Badab Primaris - Bakka - Baraspine - Barbarossa IV
Belacane - Bellerophon's Fall - Belis Corona - Beseritor - Betalis III - Black Reach - Bodt
Branx Magna - Cadia - Calderis - Calth - Catachan - Chinchare - Coronis Agathon - Cretacia
Crucis - Cyrene - Death of Bianzeer - Dreah - Drenthal - Drusus' Shrine World - Dusk - Eleusis
Endymion Prime - Espandor - Equinox - Fedrid - Fenksworld - Fervious - Frostheim
Galen VI - Gantz - Ganymede - Ghosar Quintus - Grail - Gramarye - Gryphonne IV
Gulgorahd - Hale - Harakon - Hethgard - Hilarion - Hydra Cordatus - Hydraulic
Incron - Iocanthos - Isstvan III - Istrouma - Jupiter - K'otal - Klaisus - Kanak - Karrik
Kenov III - Klybo - Konor - Krieg - Kronus - Kurkaris - Laius Rift - Landunder - Loebos
Malfi - Medusa V - Mercury - Meridian - Messelina Gloriana - Mezoa - Midgardia - Minea
Mithron - Mordia - Mornax - Morwen VI - Naxos - ND0/K4 - Necromunda - Nemesis Tessera
Nemeton - Neptune - Nethamus - Novaris - Numinal - Ophelia VII - Orask - Orbel Quill
Pandrosar - Paramar V - Pavane - Percipre - Phyrr - Pluto - Port Maw - Prol IX - Pry - Pythos
Reth - Rophanon - Rocyria - Rynn's World - Ryza - Sacris - Sanctuary 101 - Saturn - Savlar
Scelus - Scintilla - Sepheris Secundus - Shaprias - Siscia - Soryth - Spectoris
St. Josmane's Hope - Tallarn - Tandaris - Tanith - Tantalus - Tartarus - Terrax
The Lathes - The Pearl Moon - Thracian Primaris - Thramas - Tranch - Tintaroth
Titan - Tsagualsa - Turtolsky - Typha-IV - Typhon Primaris - Uranus - Valhalla
Vanitor - Vaporius - Vaxanide - Venus - Vigilus - Vitria - Volonx - Vostroya
Vraks - Vyaniah - Wrack - Zayth - Zel Secundus - Zhao-Arkkad - 108/Beta-Kalapus-9.2
or Daemon Worlds:
Bathamor - Black Marble - Bubonicus - Bulwark - Cyclothrathe - Eidolon - Exyrion
Fleshworld - Glass Moon - Iniquity - Kathalon - Medrengard - Oliensis - Plague Planet
Sicarus - Slaughtersphere - Sortiarius - The Writhing World - Triplex Worlds - Ulan Huda
World of Immortal Sorrows - Xana II
Xenos Worlds: Amontep II - Arkunasha - Arthas Moloch - Dal'yth - Lub'grahl - Mandragora - Mekslag-Ikks
Quintus - Salash'hei - Sagacity - Silva Tenebris - T'au - Taros - Tinek'la - Ursulia - Vior'los
Contested and
Other Worlds:
Falon's Lament - Kulth - Mahir - Obstiria - Ravacene - Scansion Beta - Skapula
Systems and Regions: Ghoul Stars - Halo Zone - Jericho Reach
Kaurava System - Solar System - Stygius Sector
T'au Septs - Taelus System - Ultramar
Types of Worlds: Agri-World - Craftworld - Daemon World - Death World - Eldar World
Forge World - Fortress World - Hive World - Civilised World - Tomb World