Honsou is a Warsmith of the Iron Warriors Chaos Space Marines. Like most of his ilk, he gets shit done. Evil shit. Notable for being the eternal rival of Uriel Ventris and creating one of the grimmest, darkest things in 40K, which is a huge accomplishment considering the amount of Grimdark in the setting already. He's also a mix of Iron Warriors geneseed with a bit of Imperial Fist thrown in, courtesy of Fabulous Bill.
Honsou's Blotter In Brief
- Created by Fabius Bile from the mixed geneseed of an exemplary Imperial Fists captain and one of the few remaining honourable Iron Warriors, Honorable Soulaka. Due to an accident in the lab, the container holding this mixed geneseed was partially defaced, leaving only the letters "HON" and "SOU" on the side (as in Honorable Soulaka). Saved by Lucius while he was still a glint in the apothecary's eye. What a bastard.
- Siege of Hydra Cordatus – Honsou took part in a siege that ended with the ransacking of an Imperial Fists gene-seed cache and him becoming a Warsmith of the Iron Warriors traitor legion.
- The Horrors of Medrengard – Medrengard was Honsou's planetary base in the Eye of Terror from where he headed the unfathomably evil Daemonculaba project using the stolen gene-seed. At the same time he fought off the Grand Companies of two rival Warsmiths, killing one and absorbing his army. The
goodhorrific times came to an end when an Ultramarine by the name of Uriel Ventris showed up and freed a bloodthirster bound to the Warsmith's fortress. Proving that he had massive, iron balls, Honsou kicked the bloodthirster awake and convinced him that the remaining rival warsmith was using magic, and was thus a bitch, leading to the bloodthirster defending his former prison just to kick that guy's shit in. This war resulted in the near-total destruction of both Honsou's fortress and his forces, but not before the Daemonculaba spits out a clone of Ventris dubbed "the Newborn". Thus began an obsession in Honsou...
- Genocide at Tarsis Ultra – The Ultramarines spent years and countless resources and lives to repel a Tyranid incursion at Tarsis Ultra. Honsou, filled with salt after his little science project got smashed, proceeds to sneak into Ultramar, basically virus bomb that bitch with one of the Ultrasmurf's own defense satellites, and left a message making it clear that you don't walk away from a fight with Honsou.
- The Skull Harvest – From the heart of the Maelstrom, it's the EVILEST CHAMPION OF THE GALAXY contest!! Last man standing is declared the evilest and has the right to lead the Chaos warbands of the slain losers! Thus, by murdering a few dozen opponents in the arena, he garnered a force of 17,000 warriors composed of Chaos Space Marines, pirates, and xenos.
- The Daemon Prince M'kar – after slaughtering the occupants of a secret Ultramarines star fort, Honsou released the Daemon Prince M'kar the Reborn from his confinement. M'kar then daemonically possessed and desecrated an armoured Ultramarines Dreadnought to aid Honsou in his dark designs.
- Assault on Ultramar – With his army (dubbed the "Bloodborn" by M'kar, a name the Warsmith hated) Honsou embarked on a quest to destroy all of Ultramar. Honsou himself leads the assault on Calth, Ventris's homeworld, with orders from M'kar to destroy the lost Tomb of Remus Ventanus, who led the defense of Calth during the Horus Heresy and was rediscovered by Ventris as a child. Taking a look at Ventanus's sarcophagus, Honsou finds the Shard of Erebus, a ritual knife, and Honsou realizes that M'kar fears the weapon. Confronting Ventris at the tomb with his bodyguard, the Iron Warriors nearly overwhelm the Ultramarines and Raven Guard when all of a sudden the Legion of the Damned show up and start using the Iron Warriors as target practice, and the ghost of Remus Ventanus seriously injures Honsou in the battle. Rather than let Ventris kill him, Honsou activates the bombs that destroy the tomb. The Ultramarines ultimately beat back the Bloodborn, and Marneus Calgar kills M'kar with the Shard of Erebus, but not before the invasion killed a third of the Chapter. Honsou escaped and presently remains at large. Thus he exists as an ever-looming danger to the Ultramarines and the Imperium of Man... Or he would if current lore didn't effectively ignore his existence and all the events that surrounded him.
A Bad Enough Dude to Serve Chaos
Being a grade-S sick fuck, Honsou oversaw the Daemonculaba after acquiring some geneseed. The Daemonculaba process produced new Chaos Space Marines, entailing a shocking myriad of cruelties whose peak was flaying people alive and forcibly impregnating women via reverse c-sections. It's probably Tuesday tea break on your average Slaaneshi daemon world, but it is one of the few examples that actually pops up in 40k lore and is given some fleshing out.
He also killed a few billion people at Tarsis Ultra and rendered the entire planet a lifeless rock with some well applied virus bombs for the sole purpose of maliciously spiting Uriel Ventris. In other words, an action on par with the pedigree of 99% of chaos lords, whose only difference is occasionally making planetfall and actually fighting like men or building temples on everything.
While he did give the Ultramarines a rather good pounding, the fact that he had to ally with M'kar to do so significantly drops his cool factor. Still, at least he loses to one of the only two cool Ultramarines, rather than the faggots under Cato Sicarius.
Some might argue that destroying one planet, engaging in pretty tame Slaaneshi-style experiments, stealing a box of geneseed, while being an otherwise relatively ordinary Astartes who doesn't personally draw on the Chaos Gods for help, makes him the most evil villain in 40k. This overlooks those who did the first thing a thousand times more, those who did the second and probably first a lot more, those who probably did the third at least once, and let's not forget certain non-humans who've done all of the above. On the other hand, he did manage to maintain a good fortress with a Bloodthirster stuck inside, on Medrengard, which ended up getting broken only thanks to the chisel-pulling skills of the Ultramarines, so his tactical competence still exceeds that of some other (armless) failures. Also, what makes the destruction of Tarsis Ultra noteworthy from all the other Chaos Lords that destroyed worlds is precisely because Honsou did not do it for glory, conquest, pillaging, or even just for the lulz. It was all just to send a spiteful message, and then there's how he did it. Again, let's reiterate, he sneaked into the heart of Ultramar with just a handful of warriors, sent the planet to hell in just a handful of hours using the Ultra's own defenses, and left to get back onto his schedule before the Ultramarines even knew what was going on. The Alpha Legion would give that a standing ovation. Tl;dr For other Chaos lords a planet's destruction would be the whole point of a campaign, for Honsou it's just a quick side-stop.
Honsou The Nice Chaos Lord
Despite the fact he's a ruthless and merciless warlord, responsible for the deaths of billions of innocent people, Honsou is a decent and just leader to his men. You would never see him sending his men to certain death without a very good reason, and most times he actually jumps in and joins them, getting his gauntlets dirty digging trenches alongside everybody else. You would never see him killing his subordinates for anything lesser than outright treachery. He made the Daemonculaba for the entirely reasonable purpose of pumping out more Space Marines, rather than for the sake of torturing innocent people like some Haemonculus would. Honsou shows respect to both his allies and his foes which is something rarely seen amongst corpse-worshipers or even Tau. Of course, being a Chaos Lord he still needs to meet his work quotas but he never descends into cartoonish villainy for the sake of villainy. It is stated in-universe, that if not for the fact that he was born (made?) in an already Chaos-corrupted legion, Honsou would have been great material for a noble imperial hero.
His general decency contrasts very heavily with his villainous moments, which is probably the reason why those moments look much more monstrous and terrible than pretty much the same things performed by Fabius Bile or Abaddon. In fact, his humanity and civility is what makes his evil so much more disturbing.
|Famous members of the Traitor Legions|
| Originating from
| Abaddon - Ahzek Ahriman - Argel Tal - Cypher - Doomrider |
Eidolon - Erebus - Fabius Bile - Haarken Worldclaimer - Honsou
Iskandar Khayon - Kharn - Kor Phaeron - Lheorvine Ukris - Lucius
Lugft Huron - Luther - Madox - Necrosius the Undying - Sevatar
Shon'tu - Svane Vulfbad - Talos - Typhus - Ygethmor - Zhufor
| Originating from
| Araghast the Pillager - Azariah Kyras - Bale - Crull - Eliphas The Inheritor |
Firaeveus Carron - Kain - Nemeroth - Neroth - Sindri Myr - Varius