Monday, September 15, 2014

Nagash: Tally of Destruction

If you haven't read the Nagash book yet stop here and go no farther, this article is 100% SPOILERS! Get ready for a long and sometimes sad roll call of who bought the farm. There haven't been this many deaths in a GW storyline since the Heresy was developed for 40k. SPOILERS!!!!!!!!

I think the writers and game designers at GW must be trying to compete with George R.R. Martin here, because no one is safe. Heck, the deaths start in the prologue to the main story. The prologue!

King Louen Leoncoeur

Only a few pages after cracking open the cover we come across our first significant death. That's right, the king of Bretonnia meets his end, and at the sword of his bastard son no less. His death isn't even described in much detail, more of a passing mention. So Arkhan and Mallobaude rampage across Bretonnia and steal the throne, oh by the way, King Leoncoeur dies. That's about all we get. I assume the story will get fleshed out much more in the upcoming Bretonnians army book. It sounds like they had a pretty epic civil war with intrigue matching Games of Thrones. Do not worry though, Leoncoeur's death was avenged when the Green Knight returned, revealed himself to be Gilles Le Breton, the first king of Bretonnia reborn, and quickly disposes of the traitor and his army. 

Heinrich Kemmler

The Lichemaster plays an integral part early on, aiding Arkhan with his quest to recover the relics of Nagash an lending the support of his magic and his best buddy Krell. After they assault the La Maisontaal abbey in Bretonnia, he shows his true colors, quickly abandoning his old alliances in an attempt to steal the relic for himself. Arkhan having none of this confronts Kemmler in the basement of the abbey. In an unexpected plot twist he reveals that he no longer serves Nagash and has instead turned to the Chaos gods, who of course do not want the Necromancer to return. A suitably epic magical duel ensues, with both combatants unable to best the other. Eventually the winds of magic overload from being concentrated into such a small space and the whole abbey explodes. After the dust settles only Arkhan is left standing with Kemmler presumed to be dead, although no body is mentioned. I'm pretty sure he is actually dead, since I can't picture what part he'll play in the future, but who knows, he may turn up in Archaon's hordes or he could even be the Nameless...

Zacharius the Everliving

Some of you may not know who this is, but he was the original zombie dragon rider from 6th edition. He had a pretty epic model too. Essentially he is the most powerful necromancer-vampire in the Old World. When Nagash returns he puts out a magical call to all those worthy enough to be one of his Mortarchs. Zacharius, thinking he is the Lord of Undeath's equal, refuses. Angered by this Nagash quickly destroys him with barely any effort. This was clearly to tie up a loose end since this character disappeared after 6th edition. It was a nice little bit of fan service though, unless you were a fan of Zacharius of course.

Volkmar the Grim

Poor Volkmar, he just always seems to get the short stick. During the Storm of Chaos campaign he was defeated by Belakor who then resurrected him and strapped his weakened body to his standard. All of this has been retconned of course, but now he has been captured by Mannfred. He was used as part of his ritual to isolate and empower Sylvania, although he remained defiant through out. While Morgiana and Aliathra were merely sacrificed, poor Volkmar got the worst of the deal. Shackled within Nagash's armor he was used as the vessel for the Lord of Undeath to posses. There was never actually any mention of him dying, so for all we know Volkmar is still alive, witnessing everything through Nagash's eyes, just waiting for someone to free him from his torment.

Morgiana Le Fay

Morgiana is also known as the Fey Enchantress from Bretonnia. She is the earthly representative of the Lady of the Lake and the leader of her cult. She fell into Manfred's hands when Drycha, the branchwraith, delivered her captive. She was ultimately also sacrificed to bring about Nagash return, but with much lass fan fare then her fellow captives.


Aliathra is also known as the Everchild to the High Elves, the daughter of their queen, the Everqueen. Her storyline has been spanning several army books, from High Elves, to Dwarfs, Wood Elves and the Sigmar's Blood campaign book. Mannfred Von Carstein abducted her and fought off all those armies as they attempted to free her. She was kept imprisioned along with 8 other captives for use in a dark ritual. This ended up being Mannfred's plan to swathe Sylvania in permanent darkness, where he slowly drained each victim of blood but sustained them with magic. Once Arkhan arrived in Sylvania he ended up using these captives in helping ressurect Nagash. Aliathra was the key to his plan, having been of a holy blood line. When she was brought up to the ritual circle she was able to briefly escape Arkhan's grasp and performed some sort of magic on him. Pressing her hands against his chest there was a brief flash of light which didn't seem to do anything. When Arkhan asked her what she'd done her reply was that he'd find out in time. With nothing more to say he slit her throat of the ritual and brought about his dark lord. Little did he know that she is only half holy since her father is actually Prince Tyrion, this left Nagash much weaker then he had planned on. 


Eltharion the Grim is a mighty High Elf general who is famed for having led the only successful invasion of Nagarroth. He also stopped the invasion of the Goblin warlord Grom the Paunch. When Aliathra was captured, Tyrion was determined to rescue his daughter, no matter the consequences. Teclis knew that his brother was needed at home though and got Eltharion to agree to lead the rescue attempt instead. Reluctant at first, Tyrion eventually conceded, trusting in Eltharion's abilities. At the battle of the Nine Daemons he led the charge against Mannfred, losing his griffon, Stormwing, in the process. He succeeded in breaching the barrier and almost killed Arkhan, hoisting him up by the neck, but was brought low when the liche unleashed his magical powers and turned the elf to dust.

Thorek Ironbrow

Thorek is the master Runelord of Karak Azulans, and the only dwarf alive who can wield the Rune of Doom. Not having the Dwarf army book it was really hard to find any information on this character beyond what I wrote above and the fact that he is a special character and that the Anvil of Doom model is supposed to be him. In Nagash we see him face off against Neferata at the gates of Valaya, attempting to hold the vampire at bay long enough for either help to arrive or for him to unlock the ancient dwarf runes that lie dormant there. In the end he can't stop the might of the undead but goes out with a bang, almost taking down Neferata, collapsing half the cavern and destroying the Anvil of Doom. So passes another Finecast model into the annals of history. I suspect we will not be seeing it next Dwarf book.


The first god to go down to Nagash (that's right I said FIRST god), Valaya is a deity for the Dwarves. While it can be debated whether she really died or not, we know for sure that Nagash consumed all of her magic to empower himself. So make of that what you will...

Crom the Conquerer 

Crom is back! Crom is dead! That's right, fan favorite Crom the Conquerer, who made his debut during the Storm of Chaos was brought back once again to be Archaon's herald. I personally loved Crom so I was very excited to see him return. I could only imagine the epic story lines that awaited him in the End Times. He personally led the hordes of Chaos down from Kislev into the Empire in the Nagash book. The section of the battle line that he led at Heffengen had him facing off against Luthor Huss and Valten, a suitably epic combat. I have to say, at least he died with style. Taking on both of them at the same time, he actually held his own for quite awhile. It seemed like he might win until a blow to the head from Ghal Maraz ended him. If he had to die, at least it was Valten who delivered the blow.

Walach Harkon

This guy is another one some of you might not be to familiar with. Walach Harkon, a distant relative of Luthor Harkon, the Lord of the Vampire Coast, is the head of the Blood Dragon order. It seems like most of the other vampires dislike him for his overly belligerent attitude. When Vlad came to the Empire's rescue against Chaos, Harkon and his Blood Knights came with him. During the first battle Harkon and his companions ended up trapped on the other side of the Auric Bastion, a giant magical wall created by Balthasar Gelt to keep chaos out. The next time we see him, several months later at the battle of Heffengen, he has turned to the worship of Khorne and now rides with the hordes of Chaos. Karl Franz and him have a suitable epic duel in the air, griffon versus zombie dragon. In the end though the emperor couldn't stand against the might of the Blood Dragon and was cast down. Seeing that the battle was lost, Vlad confronted Harkon before fleeing the field. At first it seemed like the original Von Carstein may have met his doom yet again, but in a reversal of fortune Vlad took over control of the Zombie Dragon. With this beast under his command Harkon didn't last long, literally ripped into pieces.

Krell (kind of)

Oh man was this death satisfying. Krell is a cool character, no doubt about that, but I was getting a little tired of how indestructible and unbeatable he seemed in this story. He pretty much waded through the Goblins, Dwarves and half the Tomb Kings before being stopped. What did it you ask? A surprise Tomb Scorpion attack. While fighting off what seemed like almost all of the magical constructs in Nehekhara he gets ambushed from behind. Being seriously wounded at the get go of the fight he gives it his all and doesn't go down without some vengeance first, burying his axe in the Scorpions face before losing his head to a claw. At the end of the story we learn that Nagash resurrects him yet again, but I guess he is undead.


Who? Star Lord man. Sorry, wrong universe. For those of you who don't know Khatep is the exiled Grand Hierophant of Khemri and a special character in the army book. Basically Settra banished him way back when the Tomb Kings first awoke from their eternal slumber since he blamed him for his mummified state. During the height of the battle for Khemri, Khatep reappears to tell his lord about the Destroyer of Eternities, a weapon powerful enough to kill Nagash. Settra then promptly kills him for daring to show his face again.


Yet another special character from the Tomb Kings book who dies. Nekaph was the herald of Settra and had a pretty cool flail of skulls. Unfortunately, he bites the bullet early in the battle, succumbing to one of Arkhan's magical attacks. 

Arkhan (kind of)

It seems like you just can't keep one of Nagash's Mortarch down for long. Although he eventaully comes back due to magic and all, Arkhan's brief death was extremely satisfying. Losing his mount in the battle he is forced to face Settra on foot. After a brief scuffle Arkhan comes out on the losing end, his body chopped in half and then dragged behind Settra's chariot on his way back inside the gates of Khemri to kill the liche for good. Unfortunately this was all part of the plan, as Nagash had hid himself within his lieutenant's body. Once inside the city a traitor Liche Priest brought forth the Lord of the Undead who then went knocking at his old home the Black Pyramid. Arkhan awoke awhile later with a really bad headache.


The lord of the Nehekharen underworld is the second and final god to fall to Nagash in this book. Wanting power over death, Nagash makes his way to the underworld where he challenges the faceless god. He is helped by all the damned souls that occupy the realm after they are bound to his will. Unable to fight off both Nagash and the denziens of he realm, Urisian succumbs and is devoured by Nagash who then becomes the lord of the Underworld and Death itself...

Settra (kind of)

In one of the most epic confrontations I have ever read, Settra fails to stop Nagash's plans. After charging him with his entire army, the two face off in a duel, with Settra able to land some blows but eventaully he is frozen in place by the Lord of Undeath's will. Holding the King of Khemri suspended in front of him, Nagash offers him the chance to bend his knee and serve as one of his Mortarchs. Settra's response is pure awesome when he yells, "I do not serve. I rule!" Man, he's got mummified balls of steel. In the end his defiance wasn't enough though and he literally gets ripped apart and thrown to the ground. Him being undead and all though, he doesn't die. Instead his head, trapped in the sand, must watch as Nagash tears apart Khemri brick by brick and then grinds it into dust. After Nagash leaves, Settra is left to rot in the desert, unable to move or do anything but yell at the buzzards as they circle above him to feast on his remains. A mysterious force reaches out to him though and pulls him back together into one piece. A voice that is four voices at once promise him power and kingship again if only he wants it. Giving no reply, he merely stares across his ruined domain in silence...

Well that wraps it up for the who's who of deaths in the Nagash book. Like I said at the start, it's a lot, and this is only book one of the End Times series!

Who do you think is going to die in the coming books? Which death here shocked you the most? I want my Tomb Kings characters and Crom back...

Until next time,

Tyler M.

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