The word Dæmon, or "δαίμων ", originated from Greek mythology, and was the term for spirits of nature and, well, anything but the Olympian gods. It wasn't a negative term at all, but rather a term that described creatures other than humans and animals, but as they often had ethics that was just as alien, they could seem malevolent at times. In Roman mythology, the term evolved to describe two guardian spirits who all people had attached to them, one benevolent and one malevolent. When Christianity became the state religion of Rome, they were recast as purely evil beings that served Satan; somewhere along the line, they became known as demons.
In /tg/ culture, daemon occasionally pops up as an alternative to "demon" or "devil" as the terminology for the fiendish races. The most iconic example of Daemons on /tg/ are those from the Warhammer settings.
- 1 Dungeons & Dragons and Pathfinder
- 2 Infernum
- 3 Warhammer
- 3.1 Warhammer Fantasy
- 3.2 Age of Sigmar
- 3.3 Warhammer 40,000
- 3.4 Types
- 3.5 Chart
- 3.6 Daemon Princes
- 3.7 Exalted Daemon
- 3.8 Daemon Engines
- 3.9 Half-Daemons
- 3.10 True Names
- 3.11 "Daemons" of the Emperor
- 3.12 See Also
Dungeons & Dragons and Pathfinder
Dungeons & Dragons has long used the term Daemon to refer to their Neutral Evil fiendish race, in contrast to the Lawful Evil Devils and the Chaotic Evil Demons. With the notorious anti-Satanic panic, daemons were renamed as Yugoloths in the Planescape setting, much as devils and demons became Baatezu and Tanar'ri, respectively. See the Yugoloth page for more details.
In Pathfinder, daemons are again the Neutral Evil fiendish race, because yugoloths aren't in the OGL. Born from the souls of Neutral Evil mortals, each breed of daemon embodies a specific kind of death, in comparison to the sin-born demons. For example, hydrodaemons represent death by drowning, whilst thanatodaemons represent death by old age. Answering to the four archdaemons, styled after the Horsemen of the Apocalypse - that is, Famine, War, Pestilence and Death - they hearken back to older descriptions of Neutral Evil in that they hate life itself.
In the Pathfinder setting's closest equivalent to the Blood War, daemons seek to annihilate all life, trying to sweep the multiverse clean of all life other than daemonkind. Once they have achieved that goal, they will then turn on each other, fighting to the death until only one daemon remains in existence. That daemon will take a moment to savor the emptiness of existence... and then commit suicide. They hate life that much. This naturally does not sit well with demons and devils who like existing, so they'll actually team up with eachother and even celestials to stop them.
In the D20 game Infernum by Mongoose Publishing, Daemon is the highest of the "common" titles, the furthest rank a hellspawn can achieve without becoming a noble of some description. It is awarded only to hellspawn who prove themselves true masters in a particular field of expertise - combat, diplomacy, spying, etcetera - and usually requires formal duels between would-be contestants under the eye of a local Captain. Ascending to the rank of Daemon awards a hellspawn with 2000 bonus experience points and grants them their first Noble Mutation.
"Only a fool trusts a Daemon. They are made of the very stuff of change, the raw madness of the Warp made manifest. However, like men, Daemons are creatures of greed, pride, and arrogance, and these are things I trust completely."
- – Abaddon the Despoiler, either being pretty awesome or talking complete bullshit depending on your point of view
Daemons (pronounced like demon, but always spelled with that a) are powerful beings, neither real nor unreal, which do not obey the laws of physics; indeed, their very existence is a warping of reality. They reside within the Realm of Chaos, and usually are organized into groups obeying the rule of Chaos Gods. Though daemons are commonly associated with Chaos, independent and Order-aligned daemons exist as well.
According to wikifags over at the official 40k Wiki, daemons can be created from one of the four Ruinous Powers through a process that's kind of similar to something like a yeast or sponge budding; a Chaos God splits off a tiny fraction of their own will, essence, and power, and in doing so creates a new daemon that is essentially an extension of whatever Chaos God made it. It's worth noting that the Gods can also use the souls of deceased individuals who died under specific circumstances to forge new daemons, and given the general shitfuckery that goes on in the galaxy that results in hundreds of thousands dying on a daily basis, this particular process of daemon spawning is typically more popular. Anyway, these newborn critters then invade the real world, buttfuck (literally, 25% of the time) anyone they can get their horny claws on (even other rapists), and the resulting torrent of chaotic emotions that come from being violently buttfucked by a walking pile of Warp energy feed the Chaos Gods, causing their power to grow and allowing even more daemons to be born (that's right; no matter how many morning-after pills you take, a baby is guaranteed to pop out of someone, somewhere, sooner or later as a result of your fatal defilement). Hopefully now you're starting to realise how utterly ROFLSCREWED the many unfortunate races of the Milky Way are; simply seeing these assholes and getting scared by them essentially gives their gods the power to make even more of these assholes.
So man the fuck up, otherwise you're indirectly responsible for giving birth to these dudes nope, sorry, not even growing a manly-ass pair is gonna save you from the guilt of making more daemons, since the bravery and fearlessness you feel will feed Khorne in particular and allow him to spawn a bunch of new horny penis-heads with sharp swords. For fuck's sake.
As I said; ROFLSCREWED. It's thought that the only way to rid the galaxy of this Heresy-given-physical-form would probably be to kill off every single sentient living thing in the galaxy that has a presence in the Warp (Halo array, anyone?), thus 'starving' the Chaos Gods of their juicy succulent thirst-quenching emotions. For obvious reasons this hasn't been tested, and seeing as how at least one of them revolves around a cycle of death and rebirth, to the point where some of his followers are trying to do exactly this, it's debatable on whether or not it'd work in the first place (and that's before we bring up how time in the warp's all fucked up too, which could make them immortal anyway).
Perhaps the only form of protection from this endless loop of chaos spawns is belief in the Emperor's vision of galaxy spanning order and prosperity. Not only can E-Money himself banish even the biggest of big dick daemons back to the warp with the wave of a hand, there's been at least one instance of a certain Euphrati Keeler grasping her imperial aquila and chanting "the Emperor protects" over and over, resulting in the banishment of a lesser daemon.
But wait, it doesn't stop there. Daemons are functionally immortal in that even if their physical forms are destroyed in real space, their essence will return back into the Warp/RoC where they will be ready to wreak havoc once they have another opportunity to go back, unless there are special circumstances preventing them from doing so such as being trapped in an object (such as a Tesseract Labyrinth or enchanted item), or special incantations that imprison it. It is however also possible to give a daemon a "true death" in that it is permanently erased from existence, but this normally requires some incredibly rare artifact, absurdly complicated rituals, or a psyker/wizard of immense power (after all, by truly killing a daemon, you are in essence killing a tiny fraction of one of the Chaos Gods, so of course it'd be hard as fuck). Retcon time！If you slay them with the Emperor's Sword or have the Sisters of Silence present after slaying the daemon's essence will disperse instead of returning to the Warp, permanently destroyed. Even works for Daemon Primarchs! But will not work on daemons required to be present for the final "The End".
Lesser daemons like Bloodletters can normally be banished back by a proper bashing with a mace or a few dozen shots from a lasgun, or with a simple chant of a certain scripture that daemons fear. Greater Daemons, like a Bloodthirster or Great Unclean One, will normally either require extremely powerful dakka the size of Baneblades or in Fantasy, mass-stabbing from spears, cannon balls, the intervention of the Daemonhunters and similar specialists. They are also vulnerable to anyone an author wants to make look cool, resulting in approximately nine thousand two hundred and seventy-three Bloodthirsters being cruelly slain per novel written. Banishing Greater Daemons and Daemon Princes from real space for a long time often requires rituals which involve uttering the daemon's true name, which is a secret to begin with, almost always unpronounceable for a human, long enough to take minutes to utter, and can have nasty spells (like ones that fill your lungs with molten brimstone) included into them - and all this must happen while said angry daemon does his best to slaughter the ritual's participants.
It should be noted that even though the word "Daemon" is their widely accepted name by the mortal races, it is not necessarily the name they call themselves. One daemon in 40k even remarks that it is merely a name given to them by mortals (generally humans) due to its satanic origin (even if it technically has a more neutral, Greek origin, but scratch that, current fluff writers aren't the authors of the RoC and just because it's a daemon doesn't mean it knows jack shit about history). In conversations with mortals they actually like or at least tolerate, daemons often call themselves "Neverborn", and many Chaos worshippers prefer to use this term.
In Fantasy they are made of magic, the source of (most of) which is the Realm of Chaos, and feed upon/inspire certain emotions in mortal beings. Daemon serves as more of a general term for creatures of the Realm of Chaos, or the Aethyr for the powers of Order, though it's still a word primarily associated with Chaos (they're their bread and butter after all). Thanks to the magical nature of the world, Daemons have little trouble manifesting within the world if they can find entrance to it. Indeed, any place that the Winds of Magic linger for too long can create Daemons of various kinds which will usually haul themselves towards the nearest place living (usually sapient) beings are found and act for either good, evil, or something in between, and after being "slain" find themselves within the Realm of Chaos for the first time. They can possess hosts, although the weak mortal frames limit their power and usually this is only done to commit acts of mischief or deliver messages to other mortals.
Nature is said to abhor daemons, at least those of Chaos, and while they can appear easily enough in areas of heavy magic, their grip on the physical world is tenuous; sufficient injury, magic, or simply waiting too long can cause them to dissipate, and they can normally retreat in this manner if things go south for them in battle. Chaos daemons have a particularly tough time manifesting around holy places, such as the Shrine of Asuryan. When a daemon force attempted to overtake it, even small injuries caused them to burst into ashes, and none save N'kari would go near the Flame itself. Even he was sent away howling in fear and pain when his arm brushed the holy altar, which caused his body to flamelessly burn a deep, blistering black.
There are very few means of permanently killing daemons, restricted to the highest magic powers and divine weapons, or just whenever the plot needs it to happen. Skulltaker was once beaten and slain by Sigmar as a mortal, and though he wasn't killed forever, he still bears the scars Sigmar left him, which may indicate daemons become gradually weaker as they "respawn" over time.
Age of Sigmar Daemons are pretty similar to those in Warhammer Fantasy, albeit with one major difference: they're portrayed as being a lot more permanent. Daemons need magic to exist, and since the Mortal Realms are literally made out of the Winds of Magic, a daemonic army once summoned can pretty much roam around the land indefinitely.
In Warhammer 40,000 they are manifestations of the psychic emotions of psychically powerful species and individuals, like humanity and Eldar. They reside in the chaotic and hellish psychic dimension known as the Warp. Daemons can only enter realspace under certain conditions, like being summoned in a ceremony or crossing through a warp rift. Even then, because they are made of warp energy and solidified emotion, they don't last long outside of the Warp, so in order to stick around, they have to either drag the Warp into realspace (resulting in a Daemon World in extreme circumstances) or be bound in a host. Psykers are the preferred choice of host, especially the powerful and uncontrolled ones, and they also happen to be a favourite method of opening Warp rifts -- their powers make them shine in the Warp, which attracts daemons like moths to a flame; all the daemons have to do is wait for the psyker's control to falter, and move in to take possession. Sometimes, stupid people try to become a daemon, often a cult committing mass suicide, in order for their souls to fuse, much like what the Emperor did, but instead of reincarnating (since they can't), their souls will then join and become a daemon, because of their chaotic natures. Since souls are not sentient, someone's soul is not him, and it doesn't count as immortality. Daemon-Prince-hood however does, but you will suffer an eternity of Derp from Games Workshop.
Ever since the ancient Realms of Chaos sourcebooks, daemons have been divided into three groups: Greater Daemons, Lesser Daemons, and Daemonic Creatures.
Greater Daemons are the most powerful of the Chaos God's immortal servants, and it's Very Bad News when they arrive in the real world. They are also the most difficult to banish, as they invariably have tremendously long names, not to mention enough power to give any would-be banishers a hard time. Fortunately for those living in realspace, Greater Daemons are also the most difficult to summon: they require great sacrifices and elaborate ceremonies to even enter the real world, and will not last long without continued exposure to Warp energy. Unfortunately, where Greater Daemons go, hordes of lesser daemons inevitably follow. Greater Daemons are capable of independent thought and are highly intelligent, though this intelligence is heavily influenced by the emotions that form them. However, old fluff (the Hordes of Chaos 6th edition army book from WFB) claimed they do not actually have a true personality or even a consciousness - they were simply hollow husks who did their master's bidding and are merely extensions of their god's presence. Any Daemon with a sort of will of their own was instead a Daemon Prince. This is no longer canon, as former Daemon Princes are now Greater Daemons. Some Greater Daemons are in fact mortals who were particularly revered by their chosen god (barring Dechala, who was just Slaanesh being a troll). Greater Daemons are also stated to have their own goals independent of their Chaos God, usually by just not advancing any greater goal but at times can even be a hindrance to the greater plans of Chaos; this is always met with forgiveness, as any punishment from a Chaos God is ridiculously rare for any Daemonic being (to date the only intentional punishments have been two Daemonettes who disobeyed Slaanesh, and one Greater Daemon who quite literally declared war on Khorne himself). Some players from either game have used this to justify more..."interesting" Daemon armies, such as the Carnival of Chaos or towns which have been taken over by Daemons.
Khorne's Greater Daemons are Bloodthirsters, giant axe-wielding warriors with massive leathery wings. They are always angry, all the time. There are eight hosts of Bloodthirster, each of the eight possess their own lethal skills, armaments and title. Those of the eighth host, for example, are known as Bloodthirsters of Unfettered Fury. These monstrous beings are skilled if unsubtle generals and, armed with their infamous combination of axe and whip, are most often seen commanding Khorne’s daemonic legions in their attacks on realspace. By comparison, those of the sixth rank, known as Bloodthirsters of Insensate Rage, are berserk destroyers who wield immense axes as tall as a fortress gate. Nothing can stand before such terrors on the battlefield, and the Daemons of Khorne are drawn instinctively on in the wake of their furnace-hot fury. The infamous Bloodthirsters of the third host, meanwhile, are known as the Wrath of Khorne. These beings are fire-breathing braggarts, hunters after glory who delight in humbling the mightiest heroes of the foe and butchering them in the name of their bloody lord.
Slaanesh's Greater Daemons are Keepers of Secrets, each carefully formed to tempt their foes and each looking to experience as many sensations as possible. Their appearance depends on
Slaanesh's mood GW's policy at the time of creating them.
Nurgle's Greater Daemons are Great Unclean Ones, whose joviality is infectious...literally. They are so plague-ridden that they excrete daemons from every available opening. Mmm, is that Grimdark enough for you?
Malal's Greater Daemons are "Guardian of Contradictions", looking like giant daemon goats with a woman's head for a tail (wtf). So far they are the closest interpretation we can get on what they actually look like. The name is only fanwankery based on concept art by Tony Ackland for Malal's Daemons which was never made into models.
Great Horned Rat's Greater Daemons are Verminlords, miniature versions of himself which represent his values (all of which are simply acting like a massive asshole) as well as the values of the Skaven clans (e.g. killing, defiling, killing, proliferating and killing).
Like the Heralds, which are Exalted Lesser Daemons, there are also Exalted Greater Daemons (Exalted Bloodthirster, Exalted Lord of Change, Exalted Great Unclean One, Exalted Keeper of Secrets, and Exalted Verminlord), each of which is usually represented by the Forge World models of each daemon. They are usable in Storm of Magic as Bound Monsters - creatures summoned through the Warp and bound to their summoners through Bound Scrolls. That doesn't stop them from NOMMING their masters given the chance, though. Of course, these made the transition from Warhammer Fantasy to Age of Sigmar, where these behemoths are more expensive though sometimes at the cost of utility (and often using the old Index statlines when later Armybooks adjusted the stats of the basic Greater Daemons) by expending a great amount of god-specific points exclusive to the God-aligned armies.
In 40K, only the Exalted Bloodthirsters are mentioned. Eight of them belonged to the First Host and answer only to Khorne. Each of them commands eight Bloodthirsters of the second host, each of the second host commands eight of the third host, and so on. (8^8 ie. 16,777,216 Bloodthirsters from the lowest order alone, yeah we're fucked.) That said however, the named daemons (An'ggrath, Zaraknyel, Scabiethrax, and Aetos'Rau'Keres) have persisted throughout the editions and effectively take their place as the nameless Exalted Greater Daemons did on the other side.
The lesser daemons are the most common sort, and serve as the foot soldiers for the legions of Chaos. Each one is roughly on par with a couple of Empire soldiers in Warhammer Fantasy Battle (generally stronger in close combat, but mostly lacking ranged attacks), or a Space Marine/Imperial Guard stormtrooper in Warhammer 40,000; they form the Core of a Warhammer Fantasy Battle Daemons of Chaos army, and the Troops of a Warhammer 40,000 Chaos Daemons army.
It's worth noting that the canon for many of the Daemons was changed by this fucker. The entire nature of the Daemons in general was mutated in his WH40K Daemon codex, and arguably not for the better. Whilst Bloodletters and Screamers are largely unchanged, Daemonettes were changed in both fluff and function (originally they were engineered by Slaanesh from Eldar souls to be both seductive AND deadly in combat, although they remain so in Fantasy) and Nurgle Daemons were changed dramatically (as was Nurgle's Rot, which changed from a survivable-if-formidable daemon-pox to a daemon-spawned AIDS with no cure that eventually makes you a Plaguebearer
no matter what unless you commit suicide or die before you start worshipping Nurgle, which makes about as much sense as this, but whatever).
Khorne's lesser daemons are Bloodletters. They are disciplined as they march to battle, but they tear into enemies like nobody's business on the charge. They take skulls for the skull throne. Like Daemonettes, they underwent a significant model change for one edition, then went back to their old appearance but revamped to higher quality.
Slaanesh's lesser daemons are the Daemonettes (though they are not all female all the time, despite what the name might suggest). They can take whatever form is required to beguile their foes as they close in for the kill, though some browsers of /tg/ like them just the way they usually are. Their models have varied over the years from somewhat attractive bald sharp-toothed humanoids to six-titted graylings (you'll learn very quickly that Slaanesh has a rather noticeable tit fetish, as well as every other fetish out there, most likely).
Nurgle's lesser daemons are Plaguebearers. They are generally stoic creatures who are born from the souls of people who died of Nurgle's Rot. Their models have pretty much never changed, always being swollen-gutted decaying horned cyclops things. Yum.
Nurgle also has Nurglings, pudgy foot-tall chibis made in nurgle's own image and which form form the puss bubbles of Great Unclean Ones or particularly devout Nurgle worshippers.
Tzeentch's lesser daemons are Horrors. They start out pink-colored, hyperactive and batshit insane, and when they are destroyed, they split into two Blue Horrors which are morose and cynical little bastards. Their models started out as oversized heads with long spindly arms and legs, but they underwent a design change into big-mouthed tangles of tentacles and arms and have stayed like that pretty much ever since. Recently a third stage has been added, such that a slain Blue splits into two apathetic Brimstone (Yellow) Horrors.
Malal's lesser daemons are Hook Horrors, which are once again just concept art made by Ackland for Games Workshop. They have two hook claws (hence the name) but overall they look like a
cheap cool Halloween costume that resembles an anorexic crow whose head has been reduced to a bird-like skull.
The Chaos Gods of Order (who only existed in Warhammer Fantasy) lacked proper Daemons as far as the actual game was concerned. One among them, Solkan the Avenger, blessed mortal Witch Hunters to wage war against his Chaotic Chaos kin in the physical world instead. They had them in WFRP though. One of the few fleshed out Law daemons is the Viydagg, a creature said to hunt death daemons of Khorne and permanently slay them.
Chaos Gods of Order were gradually phased out in favor of other pantheons of Order, like those of the Elves and the Empire. These were mentioned as having daemons and spirits of their own, but these were never named explicitly; the books suggest modifying existing daemons as templates, so it could be inferred that they're somewhat similar to what Chaos has, just less... chaotic. It could also be argued that "daemons" for Order come by way of their mortal champions, such as Aenarion or Magnus the Pious, who proved mightier than even the greatest mortal servants of Chaos (and their daemonic legions in the former's case).
Furies can be thought of as lesser daemons of Chaos Undivided, although "Chaos Undecided" might be a more accurate description -- they served the Gods of Chaos, but did not devote themselves strongly to any one before dying.
Daemonic servants and creatures can be more powerful than lesser daemons, but are generally less intelligent. Some, classified as daemonic steeds, may be ridden or otherwise directed by a suitably impressive lesser daemon, or even a lucky mortal servant, while others, classified as daemonic beasts, are simply turned loose on the enemy and left to their own devices.
Khorne's daemonic steeds are Juggernauts, metal-skinned dog/rhino/lizard-creatures with molten blood, and his beasts are the Flesh Hounds (calling them "Khorne Dogs" earns your skull a place under Khorne's ass) which are sent to hunt Khorne's enemies (including his own servants, if they displease him). Bloodletters who managed to tame and ride Juggernauts are called "Bloodcrushers." Flesh Hounds are also used as mounts, although mostly by mortals like Arbaal.
Slaanesh's daemonic steeds are "Steeds of Slaanesh" (which has got to be a sex pun), and his/her beasts are called Fiends of Slaanesh. Daemonettes who ride Mounts of Slaanesh are called "Seekers." Both Fiends and Mounts feature body parts from lots of creatures, and have long tongues (all the better to 'taste' their prey, if you know what we mean...) and rows of human breasts (there's that tit fetish again).
Nurgle's daemonic steeds are "Palanquins of Nurgle" (it's a sedan chair towed by Nurglings) and his beasts are the uncreatively named Beasts of Nurgle. You MUST play with them, otherwise they get bitter and become something else called Rot Flies, which are, who would have guessed, giant rotting flies with spear-sized stings. Two splatbooks claim Nurgle has another (technically third, if one counts the aforementioned Rot Flies and Beast of Nurgle as being the same) daemonic creature in the form of the Plague Toads, huge diseased frog-things that can swallow humans whole and which all other Nurgle daemons look down on. The second even claims that there's a counterpart to Plague Drones in the form of "Pox Riders", which are Plaguebearers clinging to Plague Toads as they hop into battle.
Tzeentch's daemonic steeds are Screamers, giant manta rays that are called "Discs of Tzeentch" as when someone is riding them, Screamers somehow transform into discs. Needless to say, it's not pleasant for the Screamer. His beasts are called Flamers (not to be confused with the flamer weapon), since they look like they are made of fire.
Malal's daemon steeds are "Limbo-Ticks of the Anti-God" and his beasts are "Malal's Paradoxes of Pandemonium", both of which resembles every single arachnophobe's worst nightmare. The latter is usually colored black, grey and white like all things Malal-ish and have a fuckhuge maw meant for potential OMNOMNOMNOM with two sickle like claws to boot, while the former has the body of a giant louse with monkey like limbs and a giant human-like skull with a equally giant horn on it. Like the others, this is just /tg/'s name for Ackland's artwork.
Daemons of Order
The Chaos Gods of Law existed in earlier editions of Warhammer Fantasy were mentioned as having Daemons of their own, such as the Viydagg (which looked something like a hippiefied Grail Damsel). While the Gods of Law slowly stopped being mentioned in the setting, the Gods of Order, Sigmar and the bunch, were said to have their own Daemons still, though none were ever specifically named; even magical creatures like Ulric's wolves weren't outright named "daemons."
With Age of Sigmar the entire Lizardmen army was refluffed as "Seraphon" which have light magic running through their veins which is as corrupting to Chaos as Chaos is to mortals; Saurus blood can cleanse any of Nurgle's plagues, rots, and diseases, and the Slann are stated to be ahead of their enemies (which includes Tzeentch) in planning thanks to their scrying caste.
Sigmar also created the
Sigmarines Stormcast Eternals which are mortals forged in magical metal who have the same properties as Daemons.
Not every god fills every slot, but a couple mortal equivalents are listed in parenthesis. Also note Furies are so pathetic they don't even get to be on the chart (then again, neither do Heralds).
|Chaos Gods||Greater Daemons||Lesser Daemons||Daemonic Servants||Daemonic Beasts||Daemonic Steeds||Mounted||Chariots|
|Khorne||Bloodthirster||Bloodletter||None||Flesh Hound||Juggernaut||Bloodcrusher||Blood Throne/Skull Cannon|
|Nurgle||Great Unclean One||Plaguebearer||Nurgling||Beast of Nurgle/Plague Toads||Battle Fly/Rot Fly||Plague Drones/Pox Riders||Palanquin of Nurgle|
|Slaanesh||Keeper of Secrets||Daemonette||None||Fiend||Steeds of Slaanesh||Seekers of Slaanesh||Seeker Chariot/Hellflayer|
|Tzeentch||Lord of Change||Horror/Flamer||None||Screamer/Mutalith Vortex Beast||Disc of Tzeentch||None||Burning Chariot|
|Malal||Guardian of Contradictions/Maiden of Malal||Hook Horror||None||Paradoxes||Limbo-Ticks/Nightmares||Parasite Riders||None|
|Great Horned Rat||Verminlord||None (Skaven)||None (Skaven)||None (Giant rats)||None||None||None (DOOMWHEELS)|
For those mortals unfortunate enough to not be daemons to begin with, there is another route to immortality: serve a Chaos God and impress him or her so much that they grant the gift of daemonhood, resulting in an ascension into a Daemon Prince. In terms of power, they are typically only second to greater daemons, but a few especially strong mortal followers of chaos (traitor primarchs being the most famous) become more powerful than most greater daemons upon ascending. This is the ultimate goal of PCs in the Black Crusade roleplaying game, and indeed most worshipers of Chaos with even an ounce of ambition. Unfortunately, the Gods' attentions are fickle; would-be Daemon Princes who fall short of expectations may find themselves transformed into Chaos Spawn for their failures... Did I just...well...fuck... GLARBLRAWRGLARBL
Also, among followers of chaos, there are those who know that in the warp, the souls of dead men and women are actually devoured by the Chaos Gods; many of them actively try to escape this fate (Rape) by becoming Demon Princes.
A sadly short-lived concept, Exalted Daemons were introduced in the Hordes of Chaos army book for Warhammer Fantasy Battles, and can be seen as the "Chaos-Loyal" analogue to the Daemonhost, or alternatively a Fantasy based, character tier version of the Possessed. Exalted Daemons are Chaos Champions who haven't earned the moxie to be turned into Daemon Princes, but have earned special attention, which results in a Daemon possessing and merging with their body. Attendant fluff implies that, unlike conventional possession victims, Exalted Daemons are fusions of mortal and daemonic soul, with the original inhabitant still being conscious and having some influence, rather than dead or pushed aside.
Mechanically, Exalted Daemons were essentially lower-grade Daemon Princes, using up two Hero choices instead of that editions 1 Lord choice + 1 Hero choice. They had one less point in Weapon Skill, Wounds, Initiative and Leadership than the big Daemon Princes, but the same ability to Fly, cause Terror, bear a Mark Of Chaos, and a Unit Strength of 3. They could be Sorcerers, maxing out at level 2, and wield up to 50 points of Daemonic Gifts.
In 8th edition, 40k introduced Greater Possessed, which are larger, individual versions of normal Possessed Marines, and are thus somewhat similar to the original Exalted Daemon concept.
Some daemons can be combined with machinery to create mighty Daemon Engines; this gives them some actual structural integrity and lasting power, as they are now firmly anchored in reality. The really big ones are made by the Forge of Souls, while others are made by Warpsmiths. Some Daemon Engines are aligned with one of the Chaos Gods, while others (like Defilers and Soul Grinders) serve Chaos Undivided. Even WFB has these in the forms of the Skull Cannon, Blood Throne, and Burning Chariot (and arguably the Hellflayer Seeker Chariot, even if it is not possessed), which are like possessed war machines mounted on top of possessed chariots as well as the Soul Grinder (which exists in 40k as well, though it only has a stone thrower arm rather than cannons everywhere). Now that Chaos Dwarves are back as a regular WFB army, albeit made entirely by Forgeworld, they seems to be rather fond of Daemon Engines and pack a whole lot of them, including a daemon-possessed, steam-powered train which carries other war machines all around the battlefield while firing its giant cannon/crashing into the enemy lines mauling people with giant-sized pickaxes.
A handful of characters called or calling themselves half-Daemon have existed in both settings throughout the years (as well as Blood Bowl of course where the non-footbal rules are made up on the spot and never adhered to). Generally speaking these are from old or iffy lore sources, but one recent character does exist. For the End Times
clusterfuck abortion monkey's paw result event a large kit of the Maggot Riders who ride giant maggots called Pox Maggots and serve Nurgle were released. One of the three riders was named Orghotts Daemonspew the "Bastard King of Icehorn Peak". His mother was a mortal witch (in the more classic sense of the word) and his father was a Great Unclean One (have fun imagining it). Icehorn exists on the rim between reality and the Warp, where Daemons are as much the people of the land as humans. Orghotts has an extremely long lifespan thanks to his half-Daemon nature, and longs to actually physically reach Nurgle's Garden which appears to him sometimes in his kingdom. He leads Daemon and Chaos human armies across the world, seeking not to become a Daemon Prince but be blessed by Nurgle into becoming a full-fledged Daemon alongside his father. The diseases produced within his own body have killed more than the armies he's lead, and beings connected to Nurgle know by smell that he's one of the "royal family" so to speak.
Daemons tend to hide their true names by giving themselves false ones. This is due to the fact that they can be banished if their true name should ever be uttered. The downside about true names is that all true names are quite a mouthful. Daemons' true names are very hard to pronounce or outright comprehend if you aren't an extensively trained daemonologist who can understand the various fel languages of the warp. There was even one instance that uttering their true names can actually make your mouth literally burn. That also isn't counting the other difficulty of trying to find the actual name of the daemon you're trying to banish in your codex of daemon names (and the consequences of invoking the wrong name can range anywhere from your banishment ritual failing, to summoning THAT daemon instead. So you now have two threats to contend with. Also you have a blasphemous book containing the countless names of malevolent daemonic entities and strong-of-will enough that you aren't going mad from the various whispers telling you to summon each one of them, right?).
Some ridiculously powerful daemons, especially those of Tzeentch, have incredibly long names. One, recorded in the books of the Grey Knights, had a ten-minute long true name and quite a few Knights died attempting to perform the banishment rituals... though once they got to reciting it, there apparently wasn't much it could do to stop them. Then there was Justicar Alaric and his attempt to banish the Tzeentchian Daemon Prince Ghargatuloth where he had to recite the warp spawn's true name, a incomprehensible tongue twister, FOR TWO HOURS STRAIGHT.
Daemon Primarchs are also not immune to this rule, as Kaldor Draigo managed to severely weaken Mortarion by uttering his true name (as in the original name the Emperor gave him, before he was given the name "Mortarion" on Barbarus).
The effects of their names being uttered tend to have mixed results and seems to depend on the strength of the daemon in question, although all of the results are debilitating. These can range anywhere from the daemon's strength being sapped, to them being immobilized or even explode, as well as being outright banished back into the warp. In any case, it's an event all of them would fight tooth and nail to avoid, as it's a guarantee that they'll be defeated if its utterance is ever successful.
"Daemons" of the Emperor
It has been speculated by some both within the Imperium and by those outside of it that the nature of beings such as Living Saints, the Legion of the Damned and the Sanguinor (and maybe the Anchorite of Word Bearers) might lie closer to the servants of the Chaos Gods than most would feel comfortable with. They are likely made of the same warp-stuff as traditional Daemons and both appear and disappear in the same manner, though seemingly of either their own power or that of the Emperor's, usually to assist struggling Imperial forces. Further evidence for this is presented during the fall of Cadia, for when the Cadian Pylons briefly were brought fully online, the Legion forces present dissipated with the rest of the Daemons and Saint Celestine had much of her power suppressed. (Does that make the Chaos resistant Wulfens roaming the Warp his daemonic beasts?)
It serves as another piece of fairly solid proof that the Emperor is on the verge of godhood, if he isn't one already. To add more credence to this theory, the Emperor is now the equivalent of Imperial heaven. Every faithful Imperial servant, from a venerated Chapter Master to a lowly Administratum scribe, will have their soul absorbed by the Emperor upon their deaths, and the Emperor has been shown to be able to resurrect these souls as needed (as shown as when he was able to resurrect a giant man with gleaming silver arms and a giant hammer along with an army of Space Marines wreathed in fire, when Magnus accidentally destroyed his webway project and a tide of daemons started flooding inside the Imperial palace, and this was before unwittingly ascending into godhood.). Hence, the Emperor can be considered a Chaos Gods of Law, and he's using his now god-like powers to aid his children and further his agendas, in the same vein the Dark Gods use their powers to the same, albeit more sadistic ends.
Of course, to even consider any of the above is tantamount to HERESY of the worst sort, so it's best to just go along with it.
- Chaos Gods
- Tactics on how to play the Fantasy variant
- Tactics on how to play the 40k variant.
- Daemons Mod: The Dawn of War Mod that brings this army to DoW players.
|Playable Factions in Warhammer 40,000|
|Imperium:||AdMech:||Adeptus Mechanicus - Mechanicus Knights|
|Army:||Imperial Guard - Imperial Knights - Imperial Navy - Militarum Tempestus - Space Marines|
|Inquisition:||Inquisition - Sisters of Battle - Deathwatch - Grey Knights|
|Other:||Adeptus Custodes - Adeptus Ministorum - Death Cults - Officio Assassinorum - Sisters of Silence|
|Chaos:||Chaos Daemons - Chaos Space Marines - Lost and the Damned - Chaos Knights|
|Xenos:||Aeldari:||Dark Eldar - Eldar - Eldar Corsairs - Harlequins - Ynnari|
|Tyranids:||Genestealer Cults - Tyranids|
|Others:||Necrons - Orks - Tau|
|Playable Factions in Warhammer Fantasy Battle|
|Human Kingdoms:||The Empire of Man - Bretonnia|
|Elves:||High Elves - Dark Elves - Wood Elves|
|Dwarven:||Dwarfs - Chaos Dwarfs|
|Undead:||Tomb Kings - Vampire Counts|
|Heirs of the Old Ones:||Lizardmen|
|Greenskins||Orcs - Goblins|
|Servants of Chaos||Warriors of Chaos - Daemons of Chaos - Beastmen|