Grand Alliance Order
"To punish the oppressors of humanity is clemency; to forgive them is cruelty."
- – Maximilien Robespierre
"Much is demanded of those to who much is given."
- – Stormcast Saying (they got it from Jesus)
"Justice, like lightning, ever should appear; to a few men ruin, but to all men fear."
- – Thomas Randolph
The Stormcast Eternals (aka Sigmarines, Ground Marines, Fantasy Marines, Stormcunt Eternals, Stormchad Eternals, Adeptus Sigmartes, "The Fuckers Who Raided Dante's Wardrobe" and Sigmar Males) are the primary type of soldiers used by Sigmar in order to fight Chaos during the Age of Sigmar, and thus are the posterboys of the new line.
As will be made evident many times over, they're literally just Space Marines transplanted into the Age of Sigmar, in purpose (An elite military force of engineered super-soldiers grouped into color-coded divisions, personally designed by a god-ruler to be his warriors to combat unfathomably terrifying Lovecraftian horrors that normal men would simply despair at), model design (bulky dudes in all-enclosing, easy-to-paint armor with huge pauldrons for kids to freehand designs on to make themselves feel special), story role (elite members of the main protagonist faction that are renowned or reviled throughout the setting) and being shoved down the throats of the entire hobby by GW's marketing department. Three more strikes for (or against, depending on your view) them are the fact that some of them have crossbows that resemble bolters, some of their weapons are literally thunderhammers with a fantasy twist and the winged ones resemble some of the Blood Angels models.
Their fluff origins, on the other hand, do give them some important differences from the autistic warrior monks we all know and tolerate. Instead of distant super-warriors that are barely even humans, Stormcasts function more like a nation-spanning order of knights under Sigmar, who performs his will where needed - they are all warriors, but can have regular functions like being administrators and nobles, but also builders, artisans and guards. They consider themselves largely apart from the common folk, but not by much; more like a stronger version of a human but with more responsibility to use it well. In other words, they are Space Marines with a Custodian’s mind and an Ultrasmurf's purpose.
For all everyone enjoys making fun of them, they really are pretty cool and their art and models are genuinely awesome. But, hey, give the Internet something to bash and we'll come swinging with thunderhammers.
Also, the apparent global dislike and perceived disdain towards the golden boys out of the "lack of grimdarkness" from them have probably a part in why the books who are currently advancing the settings, "Broken Realms", has turned into "let's see who shit harder on the stormcast for appeasing the fans". Seriously, in 4 books the amount of pain they suffer is unthinkable; they lose many Stormcasts in the Eightpoints and Anvilard who aren't recovered for the greater part, the city of Anvilgard is taken over by Morathi, the Lumineth steal their thunder (heh) as "good guys who achieve something" by worfing the entire Death faction from the Ossiarch Bonereapers to Nagash himself, Vindicarium and Excelsis are nearly destroyed, the Hallowed Knights and Celestial Vindicators are severely depleted, the entire Sigmarite Brotherhood stormhost is wiped out to the last with Olynder claiming their souls and Chaos storms have emerged that can block Stormcast souls from returning to Azyr. Stormcast fans can only dread what may comes next, because those fucking neckbeard grimdark fappers can't get enough of it apparently. (Well, at least the Chaos storms weren't too much of a problem.)
Age of Chaos
So the Age of Chaos left Sigmar in a really bad position. His proposed alliance between the gods against Chaos was shattered with Nagash's betrayal and the others going off to do their own thing. For his part, Sigmar collected as many people as he could and shut off the Realm of Azyr to the rest of the mortal realms. Worst of all, the loss of Ghal-Maraz meant that he couldn't really fight at his fullest.
As the forces of Chaos ran rampant across the realms, Sigmar tried to focus his energy towards making a special project with Grungni, an army forged by the God-King for his own purposes rather that relying on the other gods to help him out. To this end, he plucked the souls of countless worthy heroes from the grasp of the skelepope and made them all manner of fancy golden armor using the remains of the Old World. All the while, Teclis and Malerion's magics kept his projects a secret from all outsiders, giving him precious time to prepare his armies. While he couldn't accomplish all he set out to do and he had very valid fears that the flaws in his reforging would prove to be their undoing, he had to throw them out all the same.
Indeed, Sigmar knew very well that he was in a race against time. Little by little, what few pockets of civilized and uncorrupted land remained in the other Mortal Realms was being overrun and consumed by the hordes of Chaos, and there was a fear that the Realms would be beyond the point of no return for Order if they waited any longer in Azyr. However, a window of opportunity presented itself; After centuries of steamrolling the Realms, the thousands of Chaos warlords and daemon princes had begun to run out of powerful enemies to fight. As such, as Chaos tends to do, with no external enemies to pounce upon, they began to turn on each other, splintering into their petty squabbling war bands as their patron Gods schemed and plotted against each other. With his foes distracted and beginning to lose cohesion, Sigmar decided it was now or never.
He gave the order...and the Realmgate Wars began...
The Realmgate Wars
When the Stormcast emerged, they did so in brute force, bursting through the many realmgates to reclaim the mortal realms from the forces of Chaos. Though their forces were limited, the victories they claimed were critical to helping reform the Cities of Sigmar, who tended to establish around the realmgates.
The Hammers of Sigmar touched down in Aqshy, the Realm of Fire, and immediately began mauling the massive Khornate horde known as the Goretide, led by Korghos Khul. Meanwhile, the Hallowed Knights made their way into Ghyran to help Sigmar's ally goddess Alarielle.
Perhaps the most important of their victories during this time was in Chamon, where Lords-Celestant Vandus Hammerhand and Thostos Bladestorm managed to discover the location of Ghal-Maraz inside a massive Tzeentchian fortress. After smashing through the various fractious armies and traps, Vandus finally reclaimed it and returned it to the God-King.
Sigmar would use his legendary hammer to awaken the Celestant-Prime, a super legendary project that he had been unable to finish without the hammer. With the help of this super-Stormcast, the forces of Order would manage to save the realm of Ghyran from Nurgle's clutches and re-awaken Alarielle so she could reinvigorate the Sylvaneth to kick the pusbags out.
Archaon would eventually hear word of his old rival's forces and go on the offensive, attempting to harness the power of the God-Beasts, ancient and mighty behemoths with the powers of gods. Of note was his attempt to twist the God-Beast Behemat to his will, only to be thwarted by the Stormcast. The Realmgate wars would soon end when Sigmar, confident in his armies, tries to siege the territory of Eightpoints, the one spot that holds realmgates to each of the mortal realms. Though the place remained in Chaos hands, the realmgates to Aqshy and Ghyran were sealed off, dealing a telling blow to the control of Chaos.
Malign Portents/The Soul Wars
With many territories and realmgates reclaimed, the forces of Sigmar set about to garrison themselves and figure out how to best maintain order within the free cities. Some of Sigma's finest...were far from the kindly heroes they were made out to be and were especially ruthless in their hunt for the disloyal and the heretic.
All the while, Asshole Necromancer Supreme Nagash bided his time in a mighty ritual, gathering as much of the death magic as he could. The only reason Sigmar figured out was thanks to a vision by Vandus Hammerhand as well as the reports of a strike force that just so happened to witness it in the middle of fighting a chaos force in Shyish. The result of this was the Necroquake, a massive explosion of magic that not only resurrected countless dead (and thus established the Nighthaunt and eventually the Ossiarch Bonereapers as major forces of Death) but also created all sorts of predatory sentient spells and exposed Sigmar's Stormvaults. These vaults held all manner of ancient weapons and magic that the God-King viewed far too dangerous to be left in the open and thus he locked them away in all manner of locations in the mortal realms - and the Necroquake just exposed them to all manner of potential potential defilers and plunderers. This would force the Sacrosanct Chamber, an order of warrior-mages originally responsible for guarding the Anvil of Apotheosis, to depart for the mortal realms in order to protect these ancient caches. Thanks to this addition to the stormhosts, the unsteady wins that the forces of Order had would eventually be solidified...
The Broken Realms Saga saw some particularly grueling setbacks for the posterboys of the franchise.
The first major battle is during Book 1: Morathi, where the titular villain (now elevated to full-godhood by siphoning some stuff from Slaanesh) laying siege to the free city of Anvilgard. The stormcast stationed on the city were defending the city with everything they had, even when they were also beset by a raiding party of Idoneth mercenaries. People had thought the battle was over the moment the Celestant-Prime swooped down to fight Morathi, but that hope soon turned to despair when they went to parley and the Celestant-Prime actually conceded, ordering all the Sigmarite elements of Anvilgard to pack their shit up and go home. What the conversation was about, nobody knows.
Fight number 2 was during Book 3: Be'lakor. In that one, the First Prince of Chaos decided to lay siege to the free city of Vindicarum in Chamon. Not only were they already battered by Lady Olynder's forces, all part of a deal with Be'lakor, but then the forces of Chaos under his thrall began smashing into the gates. Not helping things was the fact that the skies above the realm were clotted with dark sorcerous storms and the realmgate had collapsed - all the result of some other fuckery he had ordered. The end result was a matter completely alien to the Stormcast: actual vulnerability. The skies no longer allowed the souls of the Stormcast to reach safe ground in Azyr and be reforged, but they were instead devoured by the clouds. The losses they suffered here were permanent and it wasn't until some fleets of Kharadron had arrived (with Grungni himself among them) that they were able to push back the Dark Master's legions. Even then, though, the skies remained bleak, blocking most attempts to return to their maker, and the Celestial Vindicators stormhost was practically annihilated. Worse, the entire Sigmarite Brotherhood stormhost was wiped out, with all their souls being captured and given to Lady Olynder.
The last fight was in Book 4: Kragnos, where the free city of Excelsis was besieged not only by the forces of destruction, led by Gordrakk and Kragnos himself, but also the legions of Slaanesh under his newborn twins. After this, the Celestant-Prime put Morathi, now Morathi-Khaine, on trial for what she did to Anvilgard. But he was told to give her clemency by Grungni of all people saying that they had bigger problems.
Age of Beasts/The Dawnbringer Crusades
Hearing about what Be'lakor did obviously distressed Sigmar. If the forces of Chaos had a way to block his soldiers from being reforged, then he was going to lose his warriors faster than he could reinforce them, dooming his forces to a gradual defeat via attrition.
He contemplated on ways to do get past this handicap, but fortunately he had found Grungni again after hearing about the hidden dwarf god's actions in Excelsius. Together, they decided to make Stormcast armor that was even tougher than before and enchanted to create a massive explosion upon the wearer's death. This would become the Thunderstrike Chamber, the newest and most elite of his forces. Also reinforcing the ranks are the Draconith, dragon-children of Dracothion himself who were kept by the Slann for such a dire situation like a certain ancient god breaking free.
The Dawnbringer Crusades were called to bring order back to the realms after such a mess following the Soul Wars and hunt down any coming threats from Ghur and beyond. The forward base of Amberstone Watch would be their first exposure to the new forces in play: The Kruleboyz.
The Stormcasts played an integral part in supporting the Dawnbringer Crusades, escorting settlers to their new homes and garrisoning forts and Stormkeeps along the new frontiers. Due to the Chaos Storm, the Stormcast have become a bit more supportive and defensive in their overall strategy, not quite being the all out attack from the Heavens that they were during the Realmgate Wars. While they still very much rely on lightning strike forces from Azyr, especially with the new Thunderstrike Chamber, the now likely chance of having their souls not being Reforged has meant that regular Stormcasts have to be more conservative of where they commit their forces to avoid unnecessary losses. With the Thunderstrike chambers often being the speartip when assualting heavily chaos infested lands allowing the other Stormcast forces to enter and cleanse the surrounding areas of corruption.
In addition to the new Thunderstike armour the Stormcast have developed new countermeasures to dark skies infested areas. With stormkeeps and new dawnbringer settlements making use of Star Bridges powered by the willing sacrifice of souls from Stormcast who have been reforged too many times and wish to have a more permanent death (essentially like a form of assisted suicide). These devices act like anchors that draws in Stormcast souls from miles around and helps non-thunderstrike stormcast return to Azyr with greater safety. In addition to Stormcast mages in newly counquered lands working in tandem with dawnbringer forces to cleanse surrouding lands of corruption to diminish the chaos corrupted skies above.
These new strategies have forced Stormcast to work more closely with Cities of Sigmar forces than ever before, and Stormcast stationed in stormkeeps across the realms developing new combat tactics to fight alongside their mortal allies.
"Look. See. Memories are wounds in the psyche, Little Spirit. They leave deep scars and tell stories. You were born in this Realm, as all living things are born only to die, and you recognized that truth in your torment. You sought to find peace in the dark of Creation's light. Was that not your right? Did you not deserve it? You served, and fought and died, and now only desired peace. Silence. Oblivion. Not to burn and become someone new...someone else. But they would not stop. Again, and again and again. They tried to drag you back. They took those you loved from you, and then, when that was not enough, they sought to take all memory of them. To leave you empty, save for the Storm. Bow, and become greater than that which was lost. Bow, and justice will be yours. Bow, and see again the faces of the forgotten...Now, sleep and be made whole..."
- – Nagash to a lost Stormcast soul, from Soul Wars by Josh Reynolds
The Reforging is the process in which the Stormcast are either converted from mortal men into nigh-immortal demigods or where the not-so-immortal demigods are returned to Azyr to be remade anew.
The former process was originally started back during the Age of Chaos. While locked away in his palace, Sigmar kept an eye on countless defiant warriors, preachers, and countless others who fought the forces of Chaos to their bloody last. Rather than allowing these fearless mortals succumb to the deathly clutched of the great necromancer, he would snatch them away on bolts of lightning and bring them upon his facilities. There, the long and perilous journey of making Sigmar's finest would begin.
The painstaking Process of Reforging itself was devised by Sigmar and Grungni. The procedure takes place in the Sigmarabulum, the orbital ringed fortress that encircles Mallus, the core of the World that Was, floating high above the city of Azyrheim in the Realm of Heavens. This structure also serves as the mining facility of the Sigmarite metal, the material Mallus is comprised of, which is used to make the weapons and armor of the Stormcast, as well as a training facility and headquarters of all the Stormcast hosts. -[UNDER CONSTRUCTION]- Those scarred mortals who survive the processes and come back from the mighty Anvil of Apotheosis would become far more than mere men, gifted with the strength of many men and extensive tutelage in the arts of war. At this point these warriors could be considered the Stormcast Eternals, Sigmar's finest.
But even the finest fall. Upon death, these warriors would break down into a flash of lightning and be returned to Azyr, where they'd be brought to the Anvil of Apotheosis and reforged into new warriors. This process is unfortunately not without flaws. As a Stormcast is reforged time and time again, the traumas of their many deaths and rebirths press upon each other and the essence of the original person decays as they lose their personality and memories until they become little more than lightning-powered automata. Also troubling is that their morality gets bent further and further into something uncompromising and authoritarian - a troubling warning for what may come if war were to ever end. Apparently the Sacrosanct Chamber, who originally tended to the apparatuses that were responsible for the Reforging, were able to ease some of the traumas that come with this process thanks to their magic. Now that this chamber sees active duty in combat, that trauma may now be amplified.
Apparently Vandus Hammerhand has been haunted by visions of what the end-state of these Reforgings may be in the form of a literal ghost made of lightning. This lightning-gheist told Vandus that this flaw is an unfortunate inevitability of the flawed Reforging process and that the only way to prevent this from happening is to reclaim certain ancient artefacts.
Rank and Military
When each mortal is reforged, they are immediately put into a strenuous training ritual meant to hone them into superhuman hammer-swinging engines of holy war. Once the big man is satisfied, he then groups them into Stormhosts, and there they train with each other in a massive coliseum that Malerion gifted him back when there was an alliance. These Stormhosts are then broken into Chambers with each having several conclaves organized by specialty. The Strike Chambers consist of your standard boring troops (divided further into Warrior, Harbinger and Exemplar Chambers based on exact makeup), the Extremis Chambers consist of riders of Dracoth and Stardrake cavalry, the Vanguard Chambers consist of outdoorsy ranger types and the Sacrosanct Chamber consists of priests and magicians. In addition, there are three known Chambers Sigmar has yet to unveil to the world; the Ruination, Covenant and Logister Chambers.
Each Stormhost is lead by a Lord-Commander, a supreme leader through which Sigmar's will is realised. As of now, there is currently one Lord Commander in playable miniature form, that being Bastian Carthalos of the Hammers of Sigmar. Supporting the Lord Commander are the Chamber Command, who governs each individual lesser Hosts, of which there are between 3 to 9 Retinues (squads), each with between 6 to 20 Stormcasts. For example, the Hammers of Sigmar Chamber has 301 Stormcasts of 7 Commanders, 36 Paladins, 180 Liberators, 18 Prosecutors (yep; half as many jumpies as elites) and 60 Judicators.
- Strike Chamber Command:
- Lords Celestant: The top dogs in the Supporting Chambers, these are the mightiest of heroes among the Chambers, gifted a larger portion of Sigmar's power in order to become great leaders. Some opt to fun with hammers and swords, while other find Dracoths (Large wingless dragons that shoot lightning) to ride like horses or Stardrakes (Even larger dragons with wings that can also cause meteor showers).
- Lords Relictor: These guys are priests, and are able to see the spiritual realm and all the spooky souls that swirl around in it. Their job is to use their skeletal relics to anchor the Stormcasts to Azyr so their souls don't accidentally end up as Daemon chow or part of Nagash's kingdom of skellingtons. Off-duty they function much the same as a Chaplain, warding the relics a Chamber finds and guiding their members in matters of faith.
- Lords Castellant: The Paladin to the Warlord and Cleric above. Their initiation tests involving conquering their fears by traveling some mountains in Azyr and befriending a Gryphound. If successful, they get special warding lantern that illuminates his fellow Sigmarines and incinerates Chaos. As "Castellants", they each oversee a Stormcast Hold or Free City; they don't generally take to the battlefield unless necessary for the protection of their castle. Some of them don't have castles to babysit and instead act as their Lord Celestant's right hand man.
- Lords Veritant: The resident anti-magic specialists of the Stormcast. Hunts down enemy spell casters, and also removes their corrupting influences from the land. Is accompanied by a graph hound, like the Castellant.
- Knights Heraldor: These guys have giant horns that shoot lightning. Because STORMS. Their helmets are weirdly segmented around the mouths; assumed so the warrior inside can actually blow the fucking horn.
- Knights Vexillor: Unlike the other jobs, these guys are actually chosen in a contest. A shitton of Stormcasts enter the Coliseum, smack each other to not-quite death (The Coliseum makes sure everyone leaves refreshed because... Malerion didn't have a mood swing when he made it. Or did he, recent lore states that he actually has treacherous intentions towards Sigmar and his Coliseum has a sinister purpose). The winner gets to hold an awesome standard, or a big plate with a glowing orb on it that can be used to throw around fuckin' comets.
- Knights Azyros: The closets thing to Scout Leaders, these guys have lanterns to help illuminate the realms so Sigmar can see all the way from his palace. Also, the lanterns burn chaos.
- Knights Venator: Shootier flying Sigmarines, these guys are master archers with magical arrows and own pet
Star-EaglesArticunos. One of their Stormsurgeboltthunderblowsuperarrows can kill almost any regular leader character in one shot.
- Strike Chamber Troops:
- Liberators: The ground-floor. The goons. The average Liberator is a walking tank, capable of wielding either melee weapons or shields to protect his pals from anything deadlier. They use either swords or hammers, sometimes dual wielded, or Grandhammers and Grandblades (Bigger versions of the usual Hammers and Swords).
- Judicators: Warriors skilled with both sword and bow who put to use their uncanny shooting ability in the ranks of the Justicar conclave. They wield devastating long-range weaponry (Skybolt Bows or Boltstorm Crossbows). Some even get luckier and get a mega-bow that fires thunderbolts. THE BOWS ARE MAGIC! YEEEEEEEEEEAH!!!! They also hit Chaos-stuff better, because fuck those guys.
- Prosecutors: They're like Liberators, but they got wings. They tend to spearhead the assault with their speed, throwing either magical reforging hammers or magical reforging spears. Or they could just smash with hammer and sword weapons. Like the Liberators, they can wield big-ass weapons like two-handed axes or war hammers.
- Retributors: Massive piles of Sigmarite who serve in the Paladin Chambers. These guys carry massive hammers to squash things, which has Rending +1 which can completely remove everything not a leader or monster in a turn. These guys love to pummel anything with more than one Wound, since they do two Damage standard, and can turn that into Mortal Wounds. There's really not something these motherfuckers can't do. Well okay, they don't stand up to high Rend or MW shooting, but then again that's an SE problem in general.
- Protectors: Despite the name, these Paladins only wield glaives. Glaives that are actually capable of generating magical force fields, and cut down big-ass monsters, should they get close. They are also very, very long range, so put them behind a Liberator wall and skewer that Mawkrusha something fierce while the goons get slaughtered.
- Decimators: Paladins with fuck huge axes, these things are made to make sweet murder out of hordes. These guys have a massive range on their axes, which is important - because they each get as many attacks as they have enemies within range - because fuck Reaver Hordes amirite. They are also very scary, so people take more heavy Battleshock casualties. Don't try to axe the knee of a Monster or Hero, though; with only one attack, their axes are laughably weak.
- Extremis Chamber
- Drakesworn Templars: Usually a second-in-command for a Lord-Celestant, a Templar is one of those few fortunate Sigmarines to encounter a Stardrake. Their loadout is more versatile.
- Fulminators: Paladin Protectors on Dracoths.
- Concussors: Paladin Retributors on Dracoths.
- Desolators: Paladin Decimators on Dracoths, same as the rest.
- Tempestors: Paladins with crossbows riding Dracoths.
- Vanguard Chamber
- Lords Aquilor:Recon Commander riding on a Gryph-Charger (giant wingless hippogryph-things).
- Knights-Zephyros: Dual axe wielding Stormcast assassins. They magically imprint themselves upon their chosen quarry, and ride aether wind currents to teleport/move at super speeds.
- Vanguard Hunters: Liberators with small crossbows, cloaks and utilizing infiltration tactics.
- Vanguard Raptors: Elite Sharpshooters with Longstrike Bows or Hurricane Crossbows (Elite Versions of Judicators). They also have aether-wings to bite and harass enemies that get too close.
- Vanguard Palladors: Vanguard Hunters on Gryph-Chargers. Armed with javelins. Can ride magical aether wind currents to teleport/move at super speeds.
- Sacrosanct Chamber
- Lords Arcanum: Wizard lords of the Sacrosanct chambers. Sometimes ride Gryph-Chargers, Dracolines (dragonoid big cat things), or Tauralons (Derp-faced pegasi).
- Lords Ordinator: Builders of Sigmar's works and babysitters of his artillery.
- Lords Exorcist: Wizard Stormpope.
- Knights-Incantor: Stormcast wizards without Lord rank. Can use magical soul flasks to suicide bomb surrounding enemies.
- Evocators: Magical paladins with a few spells at their disposal. Some ride Dracolines.
- Castigators: Magical Judicators whose crossbows shoot flasks of Dracoth breath.
- Sequitors: Liberators with maces and a self buff to either their weapons or shields. Not having the Prime take a great weapon actually has a benefit, giving them a ranged soul vacuum that hurts nearby Chaos and Death units.
- Celestar Ballista: Lightning ballista with options for either rapid fire or one big blast.
- Thunderstrike Chamber: So due to certain shenanigans in the Broken Realms Saga, Sigmar realized that the whole "die to be reforged in Azyr" deal wasn't all-encompassing when the realm of Chamon was cut off thanks to Be'lakor being a fucker. To combat this and with the hope that they won't keel over so quickly, he along with his ally Grungi developed new Thunderstrike armour reinforcments to the existing chambers that can better combat the darkened skies. The new Thunderstrike Armor gives off a powerful burst of lightning magic upon the Stormcast's death, in the hope that it'll be enough to punch through Be'lakor's ritual and allow the soul to make it back to Azyr to Reforge. This development has led to Thunderstrike brotherhoods often leading the speartip of warrior chamber assualts. With non-thunderstrike stormcast being aided by newly created Star-Bridge devices that help stormcast souls in miles radius return to Azyr in Sigmar controlled territory.
- Lords Imperitant: Strategist-leaders who have gryph-hound companions like Lord-Veritants.
- Knights-Arcanum: The big question right now is "How do these mages differ from Lords-Arcanum and Knights-Incantor?"
- Knights Vexilor with Banner of Apotheosis: Knights Vexilor with a banner containing a fragment of the Anvil of Apotheosis, fortifying nearby Stormcast in a similar manner to the Anvil proper.
- Vindictors: The basic foot soldiers, each carrying a spear and shield.
- Annihilators: The equivalent of Gravis-marines, these are big bulky walls with big shields. Apparently, their size also allows them to channel their momentum when charging.
- Praetors: Cloaked bodyguards carrying halberds. Presumed to not share the same proclivities as Roman Praetorians.
- Hammers of Sigmar: The first Stormhost. They wear Blue and Gold and pride themselves on being the posterboys of AoS. With the release of second edition, the posterboys finally have a personality! With the people of the realms seeing them as the foremost stormiest, they now fear that any unsavory rumor or failing on their part will lead to the undoing of Sigmar's plans. Those amongst them who die too many times are now plagued with visions and generate lightning around themselves. Vandus is awesome.
- Hallowed Knights: The fourth Stormhost. They wear silver and blue and are pretty zealous about killing Chaos. They're known for their DETERMINATION and incredible faith in Sigmar, making them the ideal choice for jobs like wading through Nurgle's horrifying and disgusting kingdoms despite all the filth and plagues that pollute the lands. This Stormhost is in general one of the more popular Hosts, with their metal armors and very faith-based culture. Also, have a cool battle cry ("ONLY THE FAITHFUL!"). They are having their own novel series done by Josh Reynolds. Some of them have been infected by Nurgle's plagues, however their faith is so strong that it purifies their skin, causing their armor to be melted and permanently fused to them. They are occasionally aided by a winged, androgynous being called the Silver Saint who manifests from lakes and pools of water (aka Lileath trying her Lady of the Lake gimmick again).
- Celestial Vindicators: The Sixth Stormhost. Angry. They're vengeful motherfuckers who declared vengeance back as mortals, and then had 500 years to brood while they waited for Sigmar to find his front door keys. Their armour is turquoise with white trim, so the blood reaaaaally stands out. They also tend to kick it with the duardin, so that's pretty cool. Also, they have a sword fetish and revere a spirit called the Father of Blades, heavily implied to be the manifestation of the Empire's Runefangs combined into one being. Each Vindicator seeks to become a living weapon. Some of the better known herobros include Thostos Bladestorm and Arkas Warbeast.
- Celestial Knights: A Stormhost that is on a constant crusade to bring the light of Sigmar to all benighted lands. Pretty much these guys.
- Lions of Sigmar: Rocking the bronze gold and purple look there is little-known about this Stormhost save for their heraldry and thunderous roar in battle. Most people auto-assume "Dark Angels" from hearing the word Lion, though the connection is iffy. The Dangles weren't the only chapter to keep to themselves to that degree.
- Knights of the Aurora: Sporting grey armour with green and gold trimmings, this Stormhost are claimed to strike more quickly and are masters of rapid assault, overall having the need for speed.
- Knights Excelsior: This Stormhost run around in white armour with blue and gold trimmings. These guys are said to have built up a fierce reputation for totally massacring their enemies so brutally that even other Stormhosts think its a bit excessive. Their claim to fame is that they stepped up to bail the Hallowed Knights out when a Lord of Plagues was about to capture Alarielle, with their Knight-Azyros, a pretty fly badass called Diomar, personally charging the powerful Nurgle lord. They have a massive hard-on for Order and see most attempts at individuality or freedom as dangerously Chaotic. Recently featured in the Malign Portents short story collection massacring unwell civilians in their attempt to instill uncompromising authority in the Realm of Life, despite the fact these civilians were loyal to Sigmar in the first place. One of their number, the White Reaper, is used by the Order of Azyr as the bogeyman to make rebellious nobles stay in line, to say it works extremely well gives you an idea of how scary these guys have become. When an order aligned human has a less than flattering opinion of the stormcast it's usually because they had a run in with these guys. Their extreme black and white morality and habit of slaughtering the innocent by the thousands seems to be turning popular opinion against Sigmar himself. Great job, guys.
- Celestial Warbringers: A Stormhost made entirely from the uplifted survivors of one human tribe who Sigmar really liked the look of. They wear burgundy armour with white trim. They have some prophetic juju going on that lets them see the hour of their death, which means if they're fighting in a battle that they didn't dream themselves get torn to shreds in, they fight with no fear. They're also pretty good fun to be around, feasting and drinking like frat boys at an all you can eat murder buffet. Remarkable insofar as they're the first host of the second striking, which means they get different shields and shoulder guards, because reasons. They also have more Sacrosanct Chambers than usual.
- Astral Templars: If you're tired of holy knights, go no further; these fuckers have taken to like it in the Realm of Ghur, and has become one with the beasts. Their color is purple, and their armor is adorned with pelts, bloody markings and other tribal stuff. To be allowed into the Templars, a warrior must be a hunter of beasts and monsters, which honestly isn't a big deal when they all come from Ghur, the Realm of Beasts! The Space Wolves to the Hammer's Ultramarines, but with less wolfs and more barbarians. They honour a godbeast called Ursricht, a giant white bear though he is often depicted as a white haired man. So an expy of Ulric and Ursun than.
- Tempest Lords: Donning the Ultramarine blue with an addition of white shields and shoulders are the Tempest Lords. They're described as the most regal and proud Stormhost, probably because every single one of these guys was a monarch, lord, or other such noble before being chosen by Sigmar. Despite this, they're actually pretty baller and down to earth guys, being perhaps the most selfless of all the Stormhosts, flat-out seeing it as their duty to protect those less fortunate than themselves (which is basically everyone,) often inspiring downtrodden mortal tribes to break their chains and fight Chaos alongside the Tempest Lords. They're also pretty literal it seems, because Sigmar once joked that the Stormcast were each worth twelve mortal men in a fight and since then the Tempest Lords have kept count of how many kills they score before dying, taking it as a massive personal disgrace if they don't reach twelve kills. That said, they do a pretty damn good job of reaching that score, leaving them as one of the hardest Stormhosts to kill simply due to their sheer pride refusing to let them die. Each one of these stormcast is a native of Hysh and follow the teachings of Myrmidia, who they revere as much as Sigmar.
- Anvils of the Heldenhammer The Anvils of the Heldenhammer are a Stormhost of the Stormcast Eternals, wearing black armor. The warriors of the Anvils of the Heldenhammer are dark and brooding, as they aren't made from recently-dead heroes but from long dead warriors who've been resting in tombs and barrows for ages. Most of them are from Shyish as well, so death is central to their mindset - They see themselves as bringers of death, and if turned around against them, death is just another step in the defence of Sigmar's domain. Now that Papa Bones Nagash is getting his spotlight, the Anvils have to deal with him specifically... until Teclis and the Lumineth stole their thunder in the Broken Realms saga and trapped Nagash in his capital city.
Notable Fan-created Stormhosts
Help us expand this list:
- Wardens of the Ember: A Stormhost composed of mortals who died standing firm against the most insurmountable Chaos incursions. Former priests cut down mid-prayer, standard bearers who fought and died rather than abandon their colours, musicians who played songs of hope until their very last breath - stoutness of heart is often more important than strength of sword-arm in deciding whether a mortal is bound to this Stormhost. They wear grey armour with black and orange trim, and are notably more jovial than other Stormhosts; it is not uncommon to hear rousing speeches and booming laughter as these heroes urge their mortal comrades onwards.
- The Celestant-Prime: The alpha, the first Eternal ever forged by Sigmar. It's unknown just who he might be, but it's said he was a mighty king from the past (making people immediately guess
either Settra, orKarl Franz). Despite how much power he put into it, the process was still incomplete, so Sigmar decided to put him in a chamber to preserve the project because he spent too much as it is. However, once he recovered Ghal Maraz, he was able to finish the process and get a giant golden angel to join the ranks armed with the warhammer. Needless to say, he can easily wipe out any Chaos LordGreater Daemon who has the misfortune of facing him. Recently got ganked by Nagash's newest Mortarch, Lady Olynder, while trying to keep an ancient evil and ally of Nagash contained. Not someone to fuck with, seeing as it took a personal champion of Nagash to take him down for the first time while he was busy with an Eldritch Abomination. Also this beast one-shot a Daemon the size of a country with supernova-level force.
- Vandus Hammerhand: The first named hero among the Eternals, a Lord-Celestant of the Hammers of Sigmar who rides a Dracoth. Apparently, he once fought off against a Khornate Lord known as Korghos Khul as a mortal and almost died before being forged, and instead became a giant gold-plated badass instead of just a human one. He's considered the hero of the Starter Set and is responsible for finding Ghal Maraz. Also, he was the first one to tame a Dracoth. Currently having visions where he sees his future self, who has been Reforged so many times that he has lost all physical form and become an emotionless being made out of pure lightning (what the Stormcast call a lightning gheist), warning him about what would happen if the Stormcasts cannot fix their flaw.
- Bastian Carthalos: The Lord Commander of the Hammers of Sigmar, shining pillar of black excellence, probably sounds like the Allstate guy. As a mortal, he fought alongside Sigmar during the battle that began the Age of Chaos. Tried to fight Abaddon and got utterly fucking mauled by his mount Dorghar, but managed to limp back to Azyr alive, the last to do so before Dollar Store Thor closed off the realm entirely. Jokes aside, Sigmar was impressed by his resilience and went to work reforging him. Yet the mount of Abaddon bit deep and even now there is a massive gaping wound in his chest, with only the crackling essence of the Ninth Great Bolt Skjordamar keeping Bastian alive. After his reforging he led the effort purging any Chaos, Destruction, or Death taint from the realm of Azyr and for doing such a great job was made Lord Commander of the Ultra-I mean Hammers of Sigmar. Was stationed in Azyr 'coordinating the war effort' for a good long time but has re-entered the fray in light of current events. Recently went to confront 'something' in the Stormvault below Hammerhal Aqsha and came out even blacker than before and with a fraction of his men, so that's probably not a good sign.
- Neave Blacktalon: The first female stormcast released for the setting. Neave Blacktalon is basically an eversor with tits, with the mentality of a vindicare. As a mortal she was raised from childhood by a particularly vicious Tribe of Sylvaneth. They basically raised her to be an assassin and all around mean bitch ala Xena warrior princess. Unfortunately, her first target was a chaos lord way out of her league and she would have died had Sigmar not decided she'd make a great stormcast.
- Gardus Steel-Soul: Lord Celestant of the Hallowed Knights Stormhost. The best (by fan-view, not author fiat) of the Lord Celestants. What makes Gardus great is that he was no great lord, but a common man. Born Garradan, he was a hospice worker (a doctor for young uns) in the port city of Demesnus. When the forces of chaos invaded the city, he worked tirelessly to heal the defenders, spending whole nights without sleep. As the forces of Khorne shattered the walls and attacked the hospital the tired hospice worker took a chandelier (showing brass balls in the process) and tried to save his patients with good old ultra violence. The rest... is history.
- Lorrus Grymn: Former Lord Castellant of the Hallowed Knights, and a close friend to Gardus Steelsoul. The only other Hallowed Knight to fight Gardus to a standstill in the Gladitorium Arena, Grymn was a master defensive strategist and often an instructor for many fellow Knights. Fought in the Realmgate Wars during the Hallowed Knights' conquests against Nurgle in Ghyran. Helped lead the defense of Vindicarum when Be'lakor besieged the city during the Broken Realms Saga. Is snatched up by Be'lakor and killed in front of Gardus. His soul is not beamed back to Azyr due to Be'lakor's storm of Chaos, and is permanently dead. RIP.
- Yndrasta: One of several renowned Stormcast personally forged by Sigmar himself, like Teclis did with the Cythai aelves and his hunting champion. She ranks below the Celestant-Prime but far above most Stormcast, and is considered near-mythical. Unlike most Stormcast, her wings look completely avian and she lacks a descriptive last name. She rocks some ornate armor personally made by Grungni, making her look awesome depending on how you feel about Half shaved hairstyles. In her mortal life, Yndrasta was a warrior queen from Ghur, skilled with sword and spear and a renowned monster hunter. During the Age of Chaos, a Chaos army attacked her hometown and she soloed the Chaos Lord leading it in an attempt to save them. But despite getting a good hit with her spear he was too much for her and would've died if not for Sigmar. Recently, she's been tasked by Sigmar himself with killing the newly freed Destruction god, Kragnos. Ironically, she's got a few things in common with Khorne's waifu, Valkia, as both are spear-wielding warrior queens reformed after hopeless battles into immortal, inspiring winged warriors by an Odin-esque god. She behaves like a cat, bringing trophies from her kills and throwing them at Sigmar's throne during meetings then leaving without saying a word.
- Thostos Bladestorm: Footslogging Lord Celestant of the Celestial Vindicators. Impulsive jackass. Died a couple of times so now Nagash has part of his soul, he still wants to give Chaos a beating. During a battle with a Chaos Lord Varash, Thostos was hit with extremely powerful lighting bolt which triggered a powerful reforging and the results of it was the return of his memories, emotions and a name he once was - Prince Caeran of Wolf Keep (this happening is more proof of Nagash being made of much fail, seriously, how did this ever happen?). Apparently he is now the first Stormcast to be renewed, healed and with fresh purpose but not the last. In the final days of the Realmgate Wars he fought in the Battle for the All-Gates and crossed blades with Archaon, it went as well as you'd expect it to and Thostos is officially lost forever.
- Tarsus Bullheart: Footslogging Lord Celestant of the Hallowed Knights, leader of a warrior chamber named after him. Broody guy who's obsessed with duty and lets his hammer do the talking for him. Once a human from the realm of Shyish called Tarsem, he lived in a place called Helstone. During the Age of Chaos he fought alongside Mannfred Von Carstein but Mannfred fled leaving Tarsem to get ganked by a Bloodthirster before Sigmar saved him. Sigmar later sent him and some of his warriors to Shyish to parley with Nagash. Along the way they found Mannfred and freed him from a Khornate warband in exchange for his assistance. After entering the underworld and an incident with Arkhan, Nagash appeared before them. This goes as well as you'd expect and all the surviving Stormcast save Tarsus were killed by Nagash. Tarsus managed to distract Nagash and free their souls, but then Nagash killed Tarsus and captured his soul to torture him for dirt on Sigmar, and by the time Nagash was done Tarsus was a gibbering wreck. Eventually Ramus, Gardus and freaking Mannfred broke into Nagasshizar and demanded Tarsus's Freedom. Nagash freed Tarsus, who was of no more use to him, and Tarsus was promptly mercy killed in the hope that reforging would cure his madness. The novel "Soul Wars" revealed that as Tarsem he had a fiance, and said fiance was so mad about him being Sigmarined that upon her own death she let Nagash turn her into a Nighthaunt executioner to get revenge for losing him.
- Ramus of the Shadowed Soul: Lord-Relictor of the Bullhearts warrior chamber and protagonist of the second set of Realmgate Wars audio-dramas. Once voice of reason to Tarsus and completely trusting in Sigmar and his grand plan, after Tarsus was lost to Nagash Ramus has been pressing for a mission to rescue his soul, despite the fact that at the moment Nagash and Sigmar are allies. The other Hallowed Knights are trying to get him to leave it alone and trust in Sigmar, but he hasn't been able to thus far. With Malign Portents pretty much destroying any alliance between Sigmar and Nagash, Ramus gets his chance to rescue Tarsus after all and puts aside his grudge against Mannfred with much difficulty.
- Tornus the Redeemed: Once known as Torglug the Despised, servant of Nurgle and Lord of Plagues, his soul was redeemed by Sigmar at the height of the last battle at Blackstone Summit in the realm of Ghyran when killed by Ghal Maraz in the hands of the Celestant-Prime. During his brief life as a mortal, Tornus was a righteous believer in Sigmar and his faith was unmatched by those that fought with him during the Age of Chaos against the nurgle invaders. At some point he was captured and left in a pit of filth and due to his stubbornness, faith and pride lived for many weeks only to succumb to the lies that Nurgle spoke to him during those months of captivity. Even then his soul, although corrupted and twisted, held out a spark of hope that his faith in Sigmar was not a lie and was rewarded with a chance for redemption as a Knight-Venator in services of the Hallowed Knights,
this is so far as we know the first comeback from Chaos ever done in any of GeeDubs franchises.Captain Leonatos of the Blood Angels (Read the Blood Quest Trilogy) actually did it first, but this is the first time it has happened outside 40k. Is currently forming his own group of ex-Chaos Stormcasts, much to the suspicion of other Stormcasts, including his own Lord Castellant Grymn.
- Hamilcar Bear-Eater: Astral Templars' Lord Castellant turned Knight-Questor. Hamilcar is, to put it short, a lovely braggart, claiming even Sigmar was impressed the result of his stormcasting, also, it seems like he has an uncanny resemblance with the God-King. Currently he's on a hunt for Mannfred Von Carstein over backstabbing Tarsus. Got his own series by his creator David Guymer! Did we mention he beat a gatling-gun-armed skaven killakan while under sniper fire?
- Balthas Arum: An Anvils of the Heldenhammer Lord-Arcanum. Revealed to be Balthazar Gelt reborn as a Stormcast, which was heavily suggested in the novel and he is explicitly recognized as such by Nagash (who said that he looks forward to the possibility of having Aurum serve him a second time). He still has his arrogance, mount Quicksilver, and a preference and talent for Chamon Magic over any other. Considered to be the best mage of all the Anvils of the Heldenhammer and possibly all the Stormcasts, which makes some sense given who he used to be. His only real friend is Tyros Firemane of the Hallowed Knights who Balthus felt an instinctive kinship with despite being a surly loner around everyone else. Tyros is a Lord-Arcanum who specialises in fire magic, has a fiery red beard, and prefers to get his hands dirty exploring lost tombs and ancient cities rather than study. Like Balthas though, he feels a connection with the World-That-Was and thinks he may have lived there in a past life. This guy was most likely Thyrus Gormann, Gelt's friend/rival from the Old World. Pretty cool huh? Did Sigmar arrange it so that these two would meet again or are souls from the old world instinctively drawn to one another? Perhaps somewhere in the realms Kurt Hellborg and Ludwig Shwarzhelm are fighting side by side again in fancy new Stormcast duds.
- Settrus: A Lord Celestant leading a chamber called the "Imperishables" and who holds a massive grudge against Nagash. Three guesses who this guy use to be. Has a reputation for getting shit done and commands the respect and obedience of guys like Hamilcar Bear-Eater through sheer gravitas and force of will alone. Was on route to reinforce Glymmsforge in Shyish. Almost certainly doesn't remember much of his past life, as that's the only way he would serve anyone. Unfortunately GW's higher-ups banning usage of Settra got the character nixed.
- Gavriel Sureheart: A named Lord Celestant of the Hammers of Sigmar who GW started selling one day and didn't bother explaining his deal until 2nd Edition. Grew up as a gladiator slave named "Grub" at the Khornate fortress of Ratspike. One month into his gladiator career, he killed Ratspike's king with a spear chuck and kicked off a short-lived rebellion, being saved by Sigmar at the last moment (like most Stormcast). Currently the only sword-and-board foot LC and known for never wearing a helmet (and looking like Tommy Wiseau).
- Arkas Warbeast: A Lord Celestant of the Celestial Vindicators and one of two protagonists in Gav Thorpe's Warbeast novel. Sent back to Ghur and the tribes he once ruled as the mortal Arka Bearclaw, he has a huge, angry boner for smashing skaven to bits, especially one Verminlord who withered his mum to death. A self proclaimed brute with some special connection to the energy of Ghur, his chamber has a reputation for being wild and ill disciplined. He gets even more RAAAAGE after his beat down, but is at least able to control and direct it productively, unlike Thostos.
- The Shadespire Warbands:
- Steelheart's Champions: A Liberator Prime and his two flatmates who went into Shadespire to get a cure for the Reforging issues that plague the Stormcasts, but never made it out. The Champions are Obryn the Bold, a massive dude who's into his third Reforging and has become silent and brooding as a result, and Angharad Brightshield, a female Liberator and former smith who took to smashing in faces with hammers instead of smashing swords and metal.
- The Farstriders: A warband of three Vanguard Hunters in Shadespire. The Prime, Sanson Farstrider, has an accompanying star falcon, whereas his subordinates, Almeric Eagle-Eye and Elias Swiftblade, wield a shock axe and storm sabre respectively.
- Stormsire's Cursebreakers: Two Evocators and their Knight Incantor leader, set to Shadespire to seek out a cure for reforging-induced flaws. Averon Stormsire is a specialist of breaking curses, Rastus the Charmed fights with fathomless contempt, and Ammis Dawnguard treats her role with holy reverence.
- Ironsoul's Condemnors: Named versions of the Easy Build Sequitors. (more details when Dreadfane drops)
Stormcast Eternals naturally were a playable species from the get-go in Age of Sigmar Roleplay. Unusually, though, they are technically distinct from the Soulbound adventurers who make up the other playable species - Stormcast Eternals are already spiritually bound to Sigmar himself, and as such can't undergo the soul-melding Rite of Binding that creates a normal Soulbound adventurer... who, in turn, can never become a Stormcast Eternal themselves. For this reason, Stormcast Eternals are always, in a sense, outsiders to the adventuring parties of Soulbound (or "bindings" as they are known) - they are allies who join the Binding for their own reasons (or, more likely, are ordered to join) and this can leads to a certain amount of distrust. But not always. For every Stormcast Eternal who wonders why such "great heroes" weren't simply made into Stormcast Eternals, there is another who embraces their similar-yet-different allies with open arms, content to trust Sigmar's judgment and admiring heroism no matter the form it takes.
The Champions of Order supplement includes the following stormhosts for a Stormcast hero to hail from:
- Hammers of Sigmar: Naturally, the posterboys of the Stormcast are frequently assigned to aid a band of Soulbound in overcoming particular trials that would otherwise trouble them. They are also incredibly stubborn, incapable of yielding. Heroes of the Hammers of Sigmar have been reforged additional times, considering how they were among the first stormcast to have been made. In addition, if they are reduced to 0 toughness, they and nearby allies add extra die equal to the hero's Determination to all attacks, which is doubled when the hero is mortally wounded.
- Hallowed Knights: Being the most devout of the Stormcast, the Hallowed Knights constantly seek to test their faith against the most grueling of trials. Though their insistence to emulate their god-king irks other Soulbound, their dedication to withstanding any manner of trial earns the undying support of their companions and other peoples they help. Heroes of the Hallowed Knights know a single miracle (either universal or of Sigmar) that they can use despite not having the Devoted talent, though the talent is now available to all archetypes.
- Celestial Vindicators: Being a very violent and vengeful Stormhost means that they do not often find themselves assigned to join the Soulbound on any adventures. However, those that do join tend to cage up their simmering anger, often to the point where they can explode into a bloodthirsty rage once in combat. Heroes of the Celestial Vindicators must select one type of enemy to hate - they deal +1 damage to enemies of that type. In addition, the Old Enemy talent is now available to all archetypes, but it must be against the enemy they chose to hate.
- Anvils of the Heldenhammer: This Stormhost are often made of ancient heroes legendary warriors plucked from the realm of Shyish, much to Nagash's ire and to the frequent curiosity of the Soulbound they fight alongside (who tend to think that these guys are reincarnations of ancient ancestors or something). Because of this ever-present threat, these Stormcast are more than a little open-minded and seek to avoid dying if they can help it. Heroes of the Anvils of the Heldenhammer ignore the stunned condition that being mortally wounded entails and have an easier time dealing with Death tests. However, if they fail a Death test even once, they die immediately as the skelepope gobbles their soul up again.
- Knights Excelsior: This Stormhost excels at the application of total warfare, seeking the utter decimation of the enemy by throwing absolutely everything at them. This also means that they adopt a very myopic viewpoint of things, viewing others as either good or evil with very little middle-ground, and even those Stormcast that join Soulbound have been known to hold their mortal allies to such high standards that they may even execute those allies that fall short. Heroes of the Knights Excelsior that undertake any endeavor or action to reduce Doom reduces it by an additional 2. However, they suffer a serious disadvantage on Guile or Intuition checks when dealing with a particularly shady individual, and may in fact outright refuse to deal with such folks.
- Celestial Warbringers: Due to the vast Sacrosanct chambers of this Stormhost, they are more adept at reading particular omens, often allowing them to predict when their deaths may come. Many of them are brought to the Aqshian city of Brightspear, where they clash with the forces of Tzeentch. These troubles often see them join hands with Soulbound looking to make a difference in the war effort. Heroes of the Celestial Warbringers can predict if a day will not spell their doom. Doing so improves their melee and accuracy by one step for the day. However, if they are mortally wounded, they will fear that the portents went awry, and Death tests become more difficult.
Stormcast Eternals have access to the following archetypes in the corebook: Knight-Azyros, Knight-Incantor, Knight-Questor, Knight-Venator. The Champions of Order splatbook adds the Knight-Zephyros as an archetype.
Only thing missing are pseudo-bolters and they're officially Sigmarines, then you remember that they do.
Ground Marine Assault Squads.
- Tactics/Stormcast Eternals
- Space Marines - Their 40K counterparts. Compare and contrast.
- A quick overview on the stormcast eternals
- The price of immortality
- Birth of the Stormcast Eternals
- If you're using the Sacrosant chamber and versing Nighthaunt armies, play this for maximum lulz.
|Playable Factions in Warhammer: Age of Sigmar|