Skaven

From 1d4chan
Jump to: navigation, search
PROMOTIONS-small.png This article contains PROMOTIONS! Don't say we didn't warn you.
DIE DIE SOLDIER MANTHINGS DIE!!!!

"It would be ugly to watch people poking sticks at a caged rat. It is uglier still to watch rats poking sticks at a caged person."
-Jean Harris

Technologically advanced ratfolk in the Warhammer Fantasy setting, you will be hard pressed to find a more unlikeable race out there.

Ugly, evil creatures that spread plague wherever they go and topple kingdoms for fun and profit. More cowardly and cunning than goblins, crueller than Dark Elves, (probably) more hostile than Chaos. There is not a single redeeming feature about them and not a single decent individual. Psychopathy is a natural psychological trait of the race; whereas the Undead and Chaos, if intelligent enough, are still capable of warped if genuine love, Dark Elves are driven to cruelty as a way of life and many individuals can be decent people, and greenskins can have odd attachments and camaraderie with their comrades, Skaven hate everyone and everything. Due to their chronic backstabbing disorder, nobody trusts them (except Dark Elves, who have a treaty with them that both sides betray at times), likes them, or wants to be 'allies' with them. The only times they have done something that benefited the world, such as helping beat the first incarnation of Nagash, are due to purely selfish reasons - Nagash did his best to enslave them and deny them warpstone. As one can expect, they are rather bitey.

So who are they?[edit]

In a lot of science fiction going back to Starship Troopers there are races of Hive Creature. Vast beings that may have separate bodies, but have one will. One Consciousness. Each "individual" is akin to someone's finger, or a cell on someone's fingertip and is ultimately an expendable resource in service to the greater whole. All march in lockstep to expand the influence of the gestalt consciousness across as far as possible, either assimilating or crushing any other they come across. The Skaven are the antithesis of this, though this fact in no way makes them nice.

The Skaven are a race of walking humanoid rats with dubious (but not to be underestimated) intelligence and a hideous feral cunning out to conquer the world in the name of their God, the Horned Rat (not to be confused with the Emprah), and also for their own personal gains. Each Skaven is pure evil, and this is not racism speaking here; by instinct each Skaven is self-obsessed, paranoid, greedy, doesn't give a rats ass (hehe) for their family or their race's well-being unless their own is at stake, and find the concepts of love, honor and friendship to be so alien they can't comprehend them (to give context for this, a greenskin in the End Times event was traumatized by the loss of his beloved Squig while no Skaven individual has ever, at any point, been shown to have an attachment to any living thing other than themselves). The only thing a Skaven hates more than other Skaven is creatures who are non-Skaven, and this gives the ratmen the vaguest ability to work together when they have a common enemy, otherwise they would fall on each other like, well, a pack of rats.

No-one knows where they came from but it is suspected Tzeentch had a hand in their creation through Warpstone and a hideous amount of mutation and generations of breeding with normal rats. There's a poem in the Skaven codex called "The Doom Of Kavzar", written in universe in the Warhammer world's equivalent of Italy that may explain their origins. To summarize;

  • Humans and Dwarfs lived together in city, and decided to build a Noblebright Tower of Babel rip-off to thank the gods for their prosperity. But even Dorf engineering couldn't complete it, so they got some mysterious stranger to complete it who added his own dedication to the gods in a giant bell. Then the temple sealed itself shut, the stranger disappeared, and terrible things happened. The weather turned bad with constant Warpstone-laced rain, crops failed and rats multiplied while growing bigger and smarter. Older fluff said the stranger cursed the city because the people cheated him of payment for finishing the temple, newer fluff just makes him out to be evil and mysterious. Realizing things were becoming Dwarf Fortress, the humans asked the Dwarfs for help. The first time the Dwarfs turned them down after calling them wimps for complaining about rain. The second time they were rebuffed was due to the rats eating all the Dwarfs food. The third time the surviving humans got desperate and smashed open the Dwarf gates to demand their help. But all they found were bearded Dorf skeletons and well-fed, but still hungry, hordes of rats and the poem ends with them eating the humans to the soundtrack "...of dying screams and hideous chittering..."

tl:dr a wizard met humans and dwarfs, someone was swindled so magic happens that makes Skaven.

And the rest, is history...

Well for we know, skaven are one of those ancient race, but certainly not older than the dragon and the dragon ogre who were already living in the world before old one came, not older than the races created by the old one (lizardmen, elves, Dwarves). It is mentioned that they exist around the time when Nagash was still human. It was the Skaven that supply Nagash with the warp stone to build the black pyramid. It was the Skaven that helped Nagash to poison the River Vitae and unleashed a magical plague to decimate every living thing in Nehekhara, and it was the skaven that.....betray Nagash and assist in his defeat at the hand of a human named Alcadizzar. Skaven also appeared during one of the Norse man invasion during Sigmar's reign, where they tried to use the invasion as an opportunity to destroy mankind, but failed none the less thanks to the Dwarves that was blocking their tunnels. Also, if the "The Doom Of Kavzar" was turned out to be true, then it probably took place a few hundred or so years before Nagash's reign. So yeah, Skaven is a pretty old race for a species with short life span.

They live in a massive underground empire (with the Horned Rat being the God Emperor, ironically far more successfully than the OTHER Emperor) called Skavenblight which spans through the Warhammer world like the Underdark. No one trusts them quite rightly and few other races resist killing them on sight, which is reciprocal. They are more numerous then any other race in the world and only one enemy keeps them truly in check: themselves.

Society[edit]


As you may expect (if you do not know much about rat social behavior, which is fairly well developed and includes among other things evidence of rodent altruism, or work on people's stereotypes of what rats are like rather than how rats interact), Skaven society is rather literally cutthroat when it comes to promotions. In a world where you have chaos warriors who can Honor the chaos gods by killing/raping/getting minions caught up in complex plots, beastmen which are in a similar lot as chaos on top of animalistic agression, orcs that are hardwired to love to scrap and dark elves who've literally made assassination and backstabing an art the Skaven have managed to collect the gold medal in (f)ratricide. After receiving said award they've promptly began killing each other to see which Skaven individual got to keep it in a conflict which continues to this day. The only reason why their society has not murdered itself into extinction is because of a very high reproductive rate. Despite their teamkilling tendencies they obey the Grey Seers, the prophets of their god the Horned Rat, without question. Except for the other Grey Seers.

The Skaven race is ruled over the by council of thirteen, Skaven of such evil they have been chosen by their vile god and manage to survive the constant threat of assassination, most likely because everyone is too afraid of these uber-ratman to go near them. Although they squeak big about their plans for world domination, they are too busy trying to outdo and kill each other (just like in real world politics!). Despite the name there is only twelve Councillors; the 13th seat is symbolic and reserved for their god and woe betide anyone that tries to sit on it!

Although unintentional on the side of writers, there are circumstances where real life rats can become Skaven-like. In social experiments involving overpopulation designed to see what effects human overpopulation in cities like New York or Tokyo could be paralleled, rat populations with far too many beings in far too small an area begin to go, as individuals, insane while the group becomes far more violent despite having adequate access to comforts and food. Fights are more likely to occur and more likely to be fatal, cannibalism for some becomes preferential to their normal diet with these cannibal rats remaining in groups and shunning all other contact, some will refuse to go on living and will simply waste away for no medical reason, many begin to self-harm and in a few cases chewed off limbs for absolutely no observable reason. Some will intentionally destroy toys they come across (this is why we can't have nice things!) while in small populations they only play or ignore them. Rates of homosexuality increase and heterosexual rats become more violent towards each other with some literally hatefucking their partners to death (these two behaviors may explain the bizarre amount of Skaven porn on the internet), and mothers refuse to have anything to do with offspring. When a high-density population that shows these behaviors is given more area to roam in by having another set of open cages attached or being shifted to smaller population cages, the behavior remains the same meaning the rats have been permanently mentally damaged; only with successive generations do they regain sanity. So in a way, Skaven have intentionally made themselves fucking insane by choosing to live in horrible conditions and to overpopulate (Of course Skaven have been written like this before the experiment was conducted, so its merely an interesting coincidence rather than inspiration). Theoretically, saner and more level-headed (if not necessarily less evil) generations of Skaven could emerge if the species got access to more room and better conditions, which they have in Age of Sigmar.

In fact, if the root of the Skaven's evil nature could be traced to both their terrible environment and the terrible culture that both feeds and feeds off of that environment rather than anything genetic, theoretically, there could actually be good Skaven if they were somehow separated from Skavenblight immediately after birth and raised outside of it by someone willing to give them a chance. However, seeing as how the primary…“engines” of Skaven reproduction are heavily guarded in the very heart of Skavenblight, and literally every other race in Warhammer is hard-wired to kill the mangy rat-bastards on sight (and with FUCKING good reason), such a thing will almost certainly remain purely theoretical. Especially since all that trouble would ultimately amount to little more than proving a petty point, with little to no real pay-off.

Clans[edit]

Skaven organize themselves into Clans, through which they organize their backstabbing. The individual backstabs for position within a Clan, the Clan backstabs for position in Skaven society.

There are many Clans, far more than any being other than the Horned Rat (presumably) knows. Clans rise, fall, split, infight, reform, and even ally constantly. Each Clan seeks to have one of their members in a position in the Council of 13, which runs the business of their entire race.

The Council of 13 is conveniently organized like a clock, with 13 at the 12 position which is representative of the Horned Rat. Members are called Lords of Decay. Each position is more powerful within the Council based on their proximity to the Horned Rat, so the Lords of Decay at the 1 and 12 position are the two most powerful, 2 and 11 behind them, while the Lords of Decay at the 6 and 7 positions are the weakest. Each Lord of Decay can outright veto the position of the one opposite them. Each Lord of Decay has their position marked by a symbol, either that of themselves or that of their Clan. The Lords of Decay have thus far remained in power for most of the existence of the Council thanks to the life-prolonging Warpstone they use (so Skeksis), although they rise and fall in power.

Skaven Clans fall into two categories: Clans and Thrall-Clans. Clans are extremely powerful, and epitomize the different aspects of Skaven society. Thrall-Clans are weak Clans that swear allegiance to a Clan to survive or grow in power. Of course thanks to Skaven backstabbing, a Thrall-Clan is an expendable frontline infantry source while the Clans are just sources of really neat toys like Rat Ogres and Ratling Guns, and of course every Clan and Thrall-Clan are waiting to betray each other while making allegiances to other Clans and Thrall-Clans to betray their REAL allies that they're of course waiting to be backstabbed by while totally being unaware of the fact that a fourth set of Clans and Thrall-Clans have set up the backstabbing conga for their own benefit, and so on as far as you want to get into it (note: this describes a single day of plotting or so).

Most Clans are Warlord Clans, producing large numbers of warriors and focusing on conquest to earn the supplies and finances needed to purchase goods from other Clans.The Pestilent Brotherhood is the religious faction of the Skaven, mostly focused on the disease aspect of the Horned Rat (so Skaven Nurgle devotees). They are allied clans (more so than the usual at any rate) by default when not backstabbing for more power within the Pestilent Brotherhood.

When fielding an army, one or two Clan paint jobs and multiple Thrall-Clan paint jobs are quite fluffy.

The four greatest (and best-described in fluff and crunch) Clans are:

  • Clan Eshin, the ninja assassin Clan. {MURDER ALL OF THESE!!!!!!!!!!!!!}
  • Clan Moulder, the Clan which breeds monsters and sews them together Frankenstein style to make even better monsters.
  • Clan Pestilens, the largest and most powerful Pestilent Brotherhood member.
  • Clan Skryre, the Clan which produces Warp-powered Tesla cannons, machine guns, vehicles, and other assorted machines.

In addition, there is the Grey Seers, white-furred Skaven with horns that represent the servants of the Council and the Horned Rat. They are above all Skaven other than the Lords of Decay and as a result tend to be somewhat free from the backstabbing conga, other than that of other Grey Seers. Any white-furred Skaven who do not have horns are part of the Council Guard, the elite warriors that protect the Council and the Grey Seers.

The Thrall-Clans are:

  • Clan Carrion, nomadic scavenger Skaven, loot anything not nailed down unless they can take the nails too.
  • Clan Crooktail, Skaven who live under the Frozen Wastes who are prone to radical and advanced mutations.
  • Clan Ektrik, Skaven obsessed with lightning and machines. Have created Skaven cyborgs.
  • Clan Feesik, a Pestilent Brotherhood member Clan so poor it was mistaken as being blessed with extreme disease and elevated falsely into the Pestilent ranks.
  • Clan Ferrik, smiths and miners with many Dwarf slaves that actually produce shiny and new well-crafted masterwork sets of arms and armor.
  • Clan Fester, a Pestilent Brotherhood member that are so diseased they are in active states of decay.
  • Clan Flem, a Clan focussed on the art of the plague without having the trappings of the Plauge Monks. Toadies of Clan Pestilens.
  • Clan Gangrous, a Clan of gladiators with weapons replacing missing limbs.
  • Clan Gristleback, Skaven who live under tyrants (for Skaven) whose underlings are chained together and have their tails cut off.
  • Clan Gritus, a Warlord Clan split-off from Clan Mors that mostly fights other Skaven, quite successfully. Fairly wealthy.
  • Clan Grutnik, the Clan most wealthy in Warpstone.
  • Clan Gnaw, Skaven who capture monsters in the Badlands for Clan Moulder. Skaven cavemen.
  • Clan Krizzor, a Warlord Clan allied with Moulder.
  • Clan Kreepus, a clan conquered by Clan Grikk that fought for freedom with the help of Clan Eshin.
  • Clan Mange, the most loyal (meaning they work purely for profit) Skaven have. Almost furless.
  • Clan Morbidus, a Pestilent Brotherhood member that acts as mercenaries.
  • Clan Mordkin, a Warlord Clan obsessed with death due to fighting heavily against Nagash.
  • Clan Mors, the primary Warlord Clan which has had the most success against the Dwarfs. Is currently ascendant and well underway to become one of the most powerful Clans.
  • Clan Rictus, a Warlord Clan that controls the passages leading to the Night Goblins, who they use as their primary source of slaves.
  • Clan Scruten, a secret army disguised as a Clan by the leader of the Grey Seers.
  • Clan Septik, a Pestilent Brotherhood Clan who are the most faithful Skaven to the Horned Rat and often are sent on (and succeed at) suicide missions.
  • Clan Skab, the clan that produces the most Stormvermin. These warriors are often sold to the other Clans as soldiers or bodyguards.
  • Clan Vruzz, POISON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Clan Skrittlespike, Skaven who live the deepest underground with pure black bulging eyes, and large ears. Terrified of loud noise.
  • Clan Skrapp, the poorest Clan of the Skaven. God tier liars allied with Clan Eshin who claim to have the most powerful army, which no Clan wants to test.
  • Clan Skully, Skaven who idolize Eshin but use heavy armor which makes the sneaking pointless.
  • Clan Skurvy, Skaven pirates. More paranoid than most Skaven.
  • Clan Skuttle, Skaven pirates who are arch enemies of Clan Skurvy as the second largest naval Clan.
  • Clan Spittl, Skaven of Lustria who hunt Lizardmen. Almost certainly went extinct by Age of Sigmar, give all Skaven are terrified instinctually of Lizardmen now.
  • Clan Treecherik, the assassin Clan that backstabs more than any other and almost entirely just fights Skaven and itself.
  • Clan Volkn, a Warlord Clan based in a volcano with obsidian weapons and armor.
  • Clan Vrrtkin, a Clan obsessed with poisons and gasses which are pledged to Clan Skryre.
  • Clan Jamcreermin, Skaven freedom fighters.
Clans of the Skaven
Great Clans: Clan Eshin - Clan Moulder - Clan Pestilens - Clan Skryre
Thrall Clans: Clan Ektrik - Clan Feesik - Clan Fester - Clan Flem - Clan Gratzz - Clan Kreepus
Clan Morbidus - Clan Septik - Clan Skrat - Clan Treecherik - Clan Vrrtkin
Warlord Clans: Clan Carrion - Clan Corpulent - Clan Crooktail - Clan Famin - Clan Ferrik - Clan Festerlingus
Clan Festus - Clan Gangrous - Clan Gnaw - Clan Gowjyer - Clan Grikk - Clan Gristlecrack
Clan Gritak - Clan Gritus - Clan Grutnik - Clan Jamcreermin - Clan Klaw - Clan Krik - Clan Krizzor
Clan Liskit - Clan Makris - Clan Mange - Clan Mawrrl - Clan Merkit - Clan Mordkin - Clan Mors
Clan Rictus - Clan Rikek - Clan Rikket - Clan Scruten - Clan Skab - Clan Skaul - Clan Skitr
Clan Skitterbite - Clan Skrapp - Clan Skrittlespike - Clan Skully - Clan Skurvy - Clan Skuttle
Clan Sleekit - Clan Spittle - Clan Verminus - Clan Volkn - Clan Vruzz

Deity[edit]

The Skaven worship their creator the Horned Rat, a god as sickening and vile as they are. God of disease and vermin, thankfully he gets the crap kicked out of him by Sigmar and Sotek on a regular basis and frankly anyone that feels like having a go. He got fed up with such bullshit at the End Times, telling the Skaven to stop backstabbing eachother and get shit done, which they proceed to do by destroying many cities. He also made a deal with the Chaos Gods as he cannot defeat them.

As of Age of Sigmar, Slaanesh was kidnapped by three Elf gods that were formerly mortals (Tyrion, Teclis, Morelion) at the manipulations of Tzeentch and the newly-appointed HNIC of all Chaos Archaon. This resulted in Nurgle and Khorne immediately voting with them to boot him out of the pantheon and the Great Game and promoting Horned Rat to proper Chaos God in his place. Horned Rat immediately renamed himself Great Horned Rat, but found out that the big kids table was full of backstabbing assholes with absolutely no respect for each other, and somehow even less for him. When the Chaos Gods gave Archaon their blessings, Archaon rejected his and spat directly in his face for daring to presume GHR can bless the self-righteous ass that is Archaon.

Army[edit]

Skaven are your standard easily abused horde army. Lots of cheap vermin, whose numbers allow them to easily ignore their one theoretical weakness: shitty leadership, backed up by more expensive and/or specialized units, that are in theory unreliable but will still wreck your shit moar consistently than most anything else by sheer volume. Also, DOOMWHEELS.

Under current rules they are have always been considered overpowered, except for a brief period where DoC reigned thanks to your Spiritual Liege. They have now reclaimed their mantel, since 8th edition heavily favors mass infantry blocks, and the Skaven can easily throw out a block of 100 models for less than what some other armies will spend on a lord, no, I'm not exaggerating, which under the current rules is virtually unbeatable.

Fun Facts[edit]

  • They consider the number thirteen to be lucky/holy. This a reference to how thirteen is seen as unlucky in Western society. However, several real-life nations/cultures consider thirteen a lucky number.
  • Grey Seers regularly ride giant bells on scaffolds into battle
  • DOOMWHEELS
  • Their leaders lead from the back, to get a better view of the battle of course and not due to the meatshield tactic.
  • They can improve anything, with the additional of magical radiation rocks!
    • This may or may not involve improving themselves by snorting said rock.
  • GIANT LIGHTNING CANNONS
  • Backstabbing little bastards, they'll fuck you up five different ways without you even knowing about it, if you're lucky.
  • Skaven do not abide by any codes of honor or battle etiquette, and as such, they WILL bring a gun to a swordfight (and even then they'll try to steal your sword beforehand (and poison you (and improve themselves with warpstone before (aaaaand the gun might be a DOOMWHEEL)).
  • Skaven have a combination of ego and incompetence that would make Starscream look down his nose at them.
  • Skaven do NOT think about the potential consequences of anything that they do. Taken to its logical conclusion in The End Times when they blow up one of the moons and nearly destroy the planet when it falls on it.
  • At one point they had the cheapest troops in any game setting. How cheap? It was measured in fractions of a point!
  • THEY HAVE THE GREATEST TECHNOLOGY BUT DON'T KNOW HOW THE FLIP IT WORKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

DIE DIE MANTHINGS![edit]

The above sentence clearly illustrates the quirks of skaven language: they often say certain monosyllabic words twice (words like "die die" and "fool fool" are popular) Also, they often end the name of a species with the suffix -things, so manthings, dwarfthings etc. etc. to indicate that non-Skaven are not people (although considering their backstabby natures it isn't as if they're trying to avert sense of shame or horror from killing others, which is why humans dehumanize during war).

Female Skaven[edit]

In their only mention in the modern fluff, female Skaven are described as mostly essentially mindless giant sky-scraper sized living wombs that are blind and have severely atrophied limbs, do not have the intelligence to speak, are covered in lactating breasts, are bought and sold as particularly valuable slaves, and only exist to constantly dribble baby Skaven like a faucet and to eat thanks to the Skaven tendency to "improve" on nature artificially. In one of the Gotrek & Felix novels, a Skaven is rewarded by his superior by being given permission to mate with one (the implications are mind-boggling).

However, there is a mention of a female Skaven in the same position as her male peers in the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay supplement Warpspawn, where a white-furred female with skill in magic appears early on. Given how Skaven who are born with white fur or with horns are immediately placed into positions of power within the central "Clan" representing their god himself and are immune to backstabbing and murder by their peers (in the open, as its a taboo so assassination must be kept secret) then its likely that being born blessed by the Horned Rat is enough to prevent a female from being turned into a baby machine. So any player wanting to have their own female OC is best off making them a Grey Seer or one of their servants.

Original Skaven Blood Bowl models had females, which had cheerleaders, which had four breasts each.

In real life, eusocial rodents have only one queen (three times the size of a sterile male) who is sexually active. The other females are rendered temporarily sterile by her presence (hormone suppression).

Beastmen connection[edit]

So, since this is a race made of humanoid rats empowered by Warpstone (which is officially described as being Chaos energy manifest), you may be wondering whether or not they're Beastmen. Well, the answer is that it kind of flips back and forth. Way back in the early editions, yes, Skaven were explicitly a break-away faction of relatively stabilised Beastmen, even pitching in with the Hordes of Chaos or spawning Chaos Champions of their own. Since then, the connection has been downplayed extremely; the Empire generally describes Skaven as just "Beastmen who happen to look like rats", but there's no official connection between the two other than the fact Grey Seers have horns that signal them as important (a classically Beastman trait) and the fact both are animals mutated by Chaos-stuff.

Warhammer 40k[edit]

While no direct space Skaven exist, there are ratlike mutants described in the fluff, rat-worshiping cultists in Necromunda, a mutant race called Ratlings which despite being more halfling than rat could be argued as a successor, the Imperial Guard itself which serves as uneducated and amoral xenophobes who are mass-bred and treated as currency by the Imperium with access to some nice and fancy toys which are more likely to cause teamkilling than damage to foes *BLAM* HERESY!, and lastly there are the Tyranids who are 40k's version of ungodly numbers faction crossed with the Ogre Kingdoms motivation to eat everything in sight (though for different reasons). The Hrud used to be the Space Skaven, as in giant dieselpunk rat people, but that was pretty much retconned. They look different now (on the rare occasion they are mentioned in the fluff), so the only actual space Skaven are the Veer-Myn from Warpath by Mantic games. As usual, most of their models are, well not terrible, but not the greatest things ever, there is however great potential for a fantasy warlock engineer conversions. However, it does appear that the recent Skitarii model releases may have taken inspiration from the Skaven aesthetic (though not gameplay) with their many steampunk-styled weapons, most notably the Transuranic Arquebus and Radium Jezzail.

Age of Sigmar[edit]

As of Age of Sigmar, Skaven had survived the end of the old setting by teleporting Skavenblight to another dimension. When Horned Rat became Great Horned Rat he immediately drew Skavenblight into the Warp and created more of his Daemons. Skaven had a golden age where there was Warpstone everywhere to be found, they had the direct blessing of the Great Horned Rat, and unlimited space and potential around them. They promptly did the impossible and somehow dug so deep that part of the Warp collapsed into Skavenblight which collapsed into the material realm which is now made up of eight "nearly infinite" planes made of the former Winds of Magic. Skaven now have access to all of reality at once, and can appear everywhere from beneath Sigmar's throne to beneath Khorne's throne. As can be expected the tunnels are not stable and thus only the Skaven are willing to use them usually, as even immortal and deathless Daemons can somehow vanish into the space between spaces never to be seen again when Skaven are involved. Skaven have also had an exponential population boom, which is impressive considering they damn near outnumbered insects in the old setting. Each former Clan is now only a type of Clan; what was once the billions of ratmen that made up clan Moulder for example is now billions of Clans of billions of ratmen each which all identify as a Moulder type of Clan. Skaven thus far in the fluff have predictably allied most with Nurgle.

Despite this massive buff to their lore the arch enemies of the Skaven, the Lizardmen, have gotten a boost too. Slann have lost the ability to see the present and instead are nearly omniscient concerning the past and future which allows them to outplan their enemies (the statement was vague, and it may or may not include Tzeentch himself considering even Sigmar was able to create a wall Tzeentch couldn't see past). The Lizardmen themselves are now beings of pure light, whose blood cleanses all Chaos taint and turned Nurgle's most beloved champion into a clean and healthy human again while purifying an otherwise permanently desecrated pool of water. Their numbers are unending, and to make matters worse for our beloved ratmen there now exists an ancestral memory in all Skaven. At the sight of Lizardmen all Skaven suffer PTSD flashbacks to jungles and stalking lizards tearing out the hearts of their kin, despite having been born only a few years ago and having never encountered them before.

As a result, while Skaven were backstabbing fucks who were against literally everything in the setting including themselves, in Age of Sigmar they now have a clear arch enemy faction akin to the High Elves/Dark Elves of Fantasy.

Models[edit]

Skaven are one of the primary things in the Warhammer IPs that are actually unique to Games Workshop. As a result, its hard to obtain miniatures for them from third party companies, which is of particular irritation to Skaven players who want Skaven Slaves to actually look like downtrodden Skaven or those who refuse to give any more money to Games Workshop.

However, Reaper Miniatures thankfully has begun to produce a "Wererat" range which includes decent alternatives to Rat Ogres, Assassins, a Verminlord, and even a female Skaven with six breasts for those wanting to have the most unique Warlord in the FLGS. This is in addition to the ordinary rat models, useful for spicing up scenery or large kits (or obtaining cheap Rat Swarms). These models are produced in the "Bonesium" material in the Bones line, which while being prone to bending badly is LUDICROUSLY cheap and completely safe from being dropped from any height onto any surface. Noteably some have taken to replacing the parts notorious for bending (weapons, especially spears) and replacing them with kitbashed weapons or even greenstuff. As far as the metal range goes, Reaper also produces Barrow Rats which can be useful as Pox Rats, Giant Rats, or Rat Hounds.

A further alternative source is Mierce Miniatures, in particular their Vras faction of models. They have two warrior characters, more hamster-like than rat-like in proportions but with a paintjob serve as spectacular bloated disease-spreading characters (or just fat rat bastards). More importantly, Mierce has five large creatures that serve as Hellpit Abominations or as Verminlords. "Flint-Fang, Kill-Thing of the Infernal Pits" is preferred by some as an Abomination for its less Akira and more Frankenstein appearance (some praise or are horrified by its...anatomical correctness). "Back-Cracker, Goz-Horror" is an Abomination looking more like some kind of mad science genetic horror, while "Three-Faces, the Verminous Horror" takes the basic Games Workshop Abomination and replaces "steam-powered" with "tumor". "Scar-Claw, Rat Fiend" and "Scar-Scath, Vermin-Fiend" are alternative Verminlords, and thanks to the monopose nature of the End Times Verminlord kits make decent alternatives or just sources of kitbashing materials when fielding more than one.

Otherworld Miniatures produces both small rats and naked ratmen, although the latter sadly only come in two poses.

Mirilton Ratscum resemble Slaves or Clanrats, have ratmen gunners, and ratmen cavalry riding weasels, although the sculpts are in different proportions to the Skaven in many cases and resemble older Games Workshop models (this can be a bonus to some people however).

Curious Constructs produces weapon sets including a Gatling Gun, Mortar Launcher, and Flamethrower which could be kitbashed with any ratmen models to produce the various weapons teams of the Skaven.

Black Tree Design produces ratmen monks, assassins, warriors, a rat ogre creature, and rats in gas masks with poison bombs.

Impact Miniatures produce not-Bloodbowl ratmen models that require little to no alteration to become Skaven soldiers. Or that Skaven Blood Bowl team fielded as Stormvermin for a silly army.

Of course, Screaming Bells and Plague Furnaces can be made with balsa wood and the kinds of things one can find at any head shop or similar purveyor of hippie paraphernalia.

Gallery[edit]

See Also[edit]