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"Champions of the Dark Gods!"

"Call us savages because we strike at you. But know this — it is we who are the closest to the Ruinous Powers. We most favored of the gods shall raid your lands, revel in your suffering and destroy you. Despair! For all that remains for you is the taste of northern steel and the end of your world. Such is the will of the gods."
Hallbjorn, Norse Marauder

To explain Chaos is to define the undefinable; it permeates the world — the ultimate foe against which the forces of Order must battle to survive. Chaos — and all magic, for that is of Chaos — seeps into the world from the two poles, one of which lies at the Realm of Chaos in the far north. This is the legacy of the Old Ones, an ancient star-faring race who, in their arrogance, used the immaterial dimension to travel and manipulate the tangible. Unknown to them, the empyrean was home to the sub-conscious desires, aspirations and emotions of all sentient races. Over time, this force coalesced into the Chaos Gods – the Ruinous Powers. It is these omnipotent beings that control the fates of all, viewing the world as a game board, the mortal denizens on it as nothing more than playing pieces to be pushed aside and destroyed at will. The Chaos Gods have many names and aspects. For most in the Old World who are aware of such things they are Khorne the Blood God, lord of murder, rage, violence and battles; Tzeentch the Arch-Manipulator, master of magic and weaver of time; Nurgle the Lord of Decay, father of plagues, poxes and contagions; Slaanesh the Dark Prince of Chaos, the great summoner of excess, desire and perversion.


To the north of the Old World lies Norsca and beyond that the Chaos Wastes, which lie in the shadow of the Chaos realm — its people the Gods’ primary pawns. The Northmen congregate in tribes. They are savage and brutal, for the lands are harsh, full of ice-covered fjords and roving monsters. No crops grow here so they must raid south to survive. They do this not just out of necessity but for glory and the chance to be recognised by the Chaos Gods. Those that do well will be gifted with all manner of mutations, and for the very few, even Daemonhood. However, those that disappoint the Ruinous Powers will be turned to Chaos Spawn — mewling mountains of flesh, teeth and tentacles.

And so Chaos armies march south, consisting of Chaos Marauders, the aforementioned fur-clad barbarians, and Chaos Warriors — particularly ruthless fighters chosen by the Ruinous Powers and gifted with arcane suits of all-encompassing armour. A Chaos force is also accompanied by a mass of mind-fraying creatures – from Hellcannons to Dragon Ogres and abhorrent Spawn. These hordes can be raiders that cross the icy seas in longships, large armies that raze entire cities, or full-scale invasions where entire nations quake in fear, convinced the End Times are upon them… And quite possibly they are, for now is the time of the Three-Eyed King. Archaon the Everchosen gathers his countless servants, who are ready at their Lord’s whispered command to bring doom down upon all!


Chaos Warriors are playable in custom game the Grand Campaign, and Mortal Empires (with the Chaos Warriors DLC installed).

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    General Tropes 
  • Achilles' Heel:
    • Their lack of proper ranged units. It is true that the Hellfire Cannon is rather powerful and that their Marauder Horsemen and Horsemasters can be a great annoyance, but outside of that, the Warriors of Chaos have no reliable way of trading fire from afar, leading to them possibly taking heavy damage on their way to the enemy. This is most likley to compensate for how almost nobody can stand up to them once they get into close quarters.
    • Since the Warriors of Chaos rely primarily upon Heavily Armored Mooks, armor-piercing damage (which is always dealt in full regardless of armor value) is especially dangerous for them. Part of why the Warriors are considered a fairly low-tier army in competitive play is because they're so easily countered by stockpiling anti-armor weaponry.
  • A Commander Is You: An Elitist/Brute/Gimmick faction, focused on having a few very powerful soldiers who pound the enemies into the ground and easily instill fear into the heart of the enemy. As a horde faction they maintain no settlements, which means that their hosts must be autonomous and keep their forward momentum going because they have nowhere to fall back to.
  • All Trolls Are Different: Chaos corrupted trolls commonly travel alongside hordes of Norscan Warriors, in search of fresh meat. And when we say Chaos corrupted, we mean Chaos corrupted, Chaos Trolls being infamous for the sheer insanity of their mutations, and practically an image of Chaos itself. They come in two variants, "regular" Chaos Trolls, and the more expensive Armored Chaos Trolls, which have a good deal more survivability to them.
  • Ax-Crazy: A side effect of worshipping the Chaos Gods is the gradual erosion of ones sanity, until they're reduced to screaming, and salivating at the prospect of battle. Most Chaos Warriors in-game will be screaming at the top of their lungs, demanding blood and skulls.
  • An Axe to Grind: A weapon favoured by the majority of units. Some wield one-handed axes whilst other variants wield massive two-handed axes for extra infantry-killing power, alongside armor piercing damage!. What do you expect? They're Vikings!
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: How Chaos Lords and Marauder Chieftains get their positions. The strongest survive and thrive. As of the Foundation Update it's much easier to turn a Norscan tribe into a vassal if you defeat their leader, showing their respect for the leader with the most strength.
  • "Awesome McCool" Name: Evil Vikings and Tatars, so this was a contractual obligation! Most of the randomly selected names for the heroes and generals sound pretty badass.
  • Badass Army: The Northern Hordes are made up of warriors without equal. The armybooks tend to take great pains to emphasising just how scary, badass and manly the Norscans are compared to everyone else in the setting. Imagine an entire army of hulking 8-foot-tall Viking warriors, the strongest among them clad in several-inch thick steel plate forged in the fires of Hell, while even the weakest ones are still giants and clad in the hides of the various monstrous beasts they've killed, and they all wield massive axes and swords that lesser men would struggle to lift nevermind wield effectively.
  • Bald of Evil: Some Chaos Warriors are clean shaven.
  • Barbarian Tribe: Most of the Chaos Warrior faction consists of Northmen from Norsca, which is composed of dozens of tribes with their own unique customs and culture (even entirely different ethnicities). Like most stereotypical examples of this trope, they live off plundering, and looting the more wealthy and fertile lands to the south
  • Badass Boast: Their entire announcement trailer is one of these.
  • Badass Cape: Several of their units have these (and ones with fur-hides on the top), mainly regular Chaos Warriors.
  • Being Evil Sucks: Don't let all the talk about how badass they are fool you. The Warriors of Chaos are a textbook example of this. Sure, the lucky few become immortal and godlike Daemon Princes, but the vast majority are doomed to become consumed by their emotions and end up as blood-crazed berserkers who live only to kill and die in battle, jaded hedonists who have to keep doing more and more depraved things simply to feel something, sorcerors who are forever driven to expand their knowledge in an attempt to reach an impossible goal, or disease-ridden husks who are kept alive by supernatural powers despite their bodies rotting away. That is all if you don't simply end up a mindless mass of be-tentacled gribblyness because of all the mutations you've been receiving, or simply sacrificed as cannon fodder, as an experiment, to slate the hunger of ravenous daemons, as a sex toy to rapacious daemons or simply For the Evulz. Never mind the part where they live in a frozen wasteland populated by horrible Chaos-corrupted monstrosities on the whole, or that you will probably be killed point blank if you say a single thing against the Chaos Gods. Wulfrik in the Norsca trailer seems to understand this, lamenting the fact they've all become monsters.
  • Beard of Barbarism: Crossed with Badass Beard. The Marauders and their chieftains have them, at any rate, usually long beards of brown, though occasionally you can find a grey one belonging to an elderly marauder. Being an entire race of evil Vikings, they do love their beards. Lorewise, Chaos Warriors and the other units in the roster also have beards; since they too are Norscans by and large and shaving isn't exactly common in the Umbra Chaotica. This isn't shown in-game because the majority of Chaos Warriors tend to be helmeted, and the few that aren't are clean-shaven.
  • Beast of Battle: Chaos Warriors can beckon dark beasts to their armies, such as Manticorees, and Chaos Warhounds.
  • Black Knight: An entire faction of them, mixed with Norse Warriors essentially but Chaos Knights have both the name and the horses.
  • Blood Knight: Yep. All of them, doesn't matter which God's they worship, they all live to main, and burn anything gets in the path of their raving hordes. Followers of Khorne triple this, being living weapons of destruction. Also, being a Blood Knight is practically a survival mechanism in the North.
  • Body Horror: Nearly all beings in the thrall of Chaos exhibit this to some degree, but the Forsaken and Chaos Spawn are the most extreme, the former being horribly mutated Chaos Champions that have had their armor fused to their boil infested bodies, with disgusting crab-like claws for hands, the later having completed mutated into raging balls of pink flesh, tentacles, and gaping maws with giant barbed tongues! Especially the Regiment of Renown known as The Daemonspew, Forsaken who are infected by Nurgle and surrounded by flies who nest in their bodies at all times.
  • Bright Is Not Good: Followers of Slaanesh (Like Sigvald and his mirror guard) are Sense Freaks who wear hideously garish clothing and choking perfumes at all times, being so blasé it's the only way they can feel anything.
  • Canon Immigrant: The Regiment of Renown Chaos Spawn, are the Wyrdspawn, which surprisingly, weren't featured in the tabletop but a spin-off game, Warhammer: Mark of Chaos, which somewhat ironically, was a Total War clone.
  • Canis Major: Warriors of Chaos can field Chaos Warhounds, massive wolves bred for savagery and blood lust. They come in regular, and poisoned variants.
  • Clingy Costume: Becoming a Chaos Warrior involves long rituals where their armour is fixed permanently around the body. The rituals fuse man and armour together. Petty biological necessities like eating and excreting are shed by this process: once complete, battle is the only sustenance a Chaos Warrior needs. Of course, in the greater tabletop background, some sets of Chaos Armour have been shown to be removable, and even in the game itself there are helmless Chaos Champions.
  • Cool Helmet: Scary, badass great helms, made of dark iron. Chosen have the coolest out of the lot, usually covered in Chaos iconography.
  • Crippling Overspecialisation: They have exceptionally powerful infantry, alongside strong monster options...but are sorely lacking in ranged damage. Their units are also really expensive, meaning when they fight, they'll almost always be fighting heavily outnumbered, which offers it's own host of problems. There's a reason most veteran players consider them Awesome, but Impractical, in contrast to their Game-Breaker status in tabletop.
  • Dark Is Evil: Most of them wear dark iron armour, and black fur cloaks. They also fight for the greatest evil in the setting.
  • The Dreaded: Without doubt, the most feared race of humans in the setting. Fitting, they have come perilously close to destroying the world several times, after all.
  • Elite Mooks:
    • The Chosen are essentially a direct upgrade from the standard Chaos Warrior units, viking Huscarls blessed by the power of Chaos Undivided, and even share the same three variations of axe-and-shield, halberd and greataxe. Their also far stronger then regular Chaos Warriors, wearing even tougher armor, and wielding stronger weapons. They cost a ton but are easily the best infantry unit in the game, and will handily stop their equivalents into the ground. Not even Phoneix Guard can truly stand up to them.
    • Marauder Horsemasters are just a rather hefty upgrade to the regular mounted marauders, their main advantage being there actually decent in melee combat, and have solid upgrades to damage, speed, and armour.
  • Evil Is Burning Hot: A common motif. Many of their units feature flame effects of some kind, Archaon has access to the Lore of Fire, and lands suffused with Chaos corruption become scarred with rivers of lava.
  • Evil Is Easy: Inverted. The Chaos campaign is infamous for its punishing difficulty compared to the other races. You start only with a single stack of units, and are already at war with most of the Empire, Kislev and the Norscan Tribes. A wrong move at any point can easily see your invasion ended before it even begins.
  • Evil Is One Big, Happy Family: Zigzagged.
    • Averted, because If two Chaos Warrior armies are parked too close to one-another, they'll both suffer attrition. Obstinately, this is due to the leaders of both armies starting to compete for space and Chaotic favor. Also, as Chaos Armies are tribal in nature; being drawn up primarily from the Norse clans, there is a lot of animosity due to blood feuds and unsettled weregelds. As of the Foundation update this is further Downplayed, with all their elite tier units no longer causing infighting among themselves, because of their discipline.
    • As a whole however, this trope is also played straight, as Archaeon's horde seems to be "Chaos Undivided". Different warriors within a unit will say different prayers to each Chaos God, some praising Nurgle, others offering pledges to Khorne, for example. More often then not, having followers of different Chaos Gods inside the same warband is not a good idea, but in this case, followers of all four Chaos God are fighting side by side, which is a rare feat.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: To the Vikings, Huns, and Göktürks. The Viking counterpart Norscans make up the majority.
  • Fantastic Racism: Norscans despise any humans from the south, thinking them to be weak-willed, cretins that stole the land that should have been theirs! They are also on the receiving end of this, as the people of the civilised Old World view them as nothing more then savages who want to bring down everything they hold dear.
  • Geo Effects: Chaos-aligned armies and heroes, whether they belong to the Warriors of Chaos, the Norscan Tribes or the Beastmen, spread "Chaos Corruption" in provinces they occupy. This corruption is represented by the landscape slowly warping into a Lethal Lava Land the higher the corruption gets. While they suffer no penalties for a region having low corruption, Chaos armies receive bonuses to army leadership and unit replenishment when corruption is high. Non-Chaos factions, however, suffer mounting public order problems and attrition, and rebel armies formed in high-corruption provinces become themed after the Warriors of Chaos rather than the local empire.
  • Grim Up North: Norsca, a barren land of ice, snow and mountains, is the homeland of the Warriors of Chaos. Go even further, and the snow will abruptly give way to the Lethal Lava Land known as the Chaos Wastes.
  • Heavily Armored Mook: Every non-Marauder in their warhost is clad in full-body heavy plate armor, often covered in profane sigils declaring their patron gods' favor and further protecting them with eldritch power. Needless to say, Chaos Warriors are some of the toughest forces in the game.
  • Hellish Horse: The steeds of the Chaos Knights, with flames adorning their hoofs and muzzles. Even the more normal looking horses ridden by the marauders are covered in sinister armor, and in the lore their noted to devour human flesh, and have horrible tempers.
  • Horse Archer: The Kurgans are described as having something like this as a hat. However in game, Marauder Horsemen and Horsemasters only get javelins or throwing axes as shooting weapons.
  • The Horde: A rampaging Horde of Daemon-worshiping marauders whose ultimate goal is the destruction of civilization, the Warriors of Chaos have this trope built into their gameplay. They act as hordes in-game, meaning they don't settle cities, but carry their infrastructure with their armies — infrastructure notably lacking in anything except buildings for recruiting and boosting units and heroes. They have almost nothing in the way of internal revenue — their great bulk of their income comes from sacking cities and defeating other armies.
  • Horns of Villainy: The hordes of Chaos decorate their helmets with horns of various shapes and sizes. The Chosen of Chaos get to wield the more impressive helmets, with Archaon's essentially acting as a crown with those enormous horns of his.
  • Horny Vikings: An entire army of them what worships demonic gods and thrives off slaughter. Essentially, the most hardcore Vikings in all fiction.
  • Humans Are Warriors: As the strongest humans in the setting, it's a given. The Norse have a hugely war-like culture.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: These humans choose to worship the Chaos Gods, making this faction one of the more legitimately evil ones in the setting. This is also the reason they enjoy favour with the Dark Gods beyond the Beastmen; the fact they have options and pick Chaos anyway makes their worship much more meaningful.
  • Humans Are Special: The Norscans and other tribal confederations that worship the Chaos Gods, are all human, and are noted to be Chaos's most favoured servants, besides the daemons themselves, mostly due to the fact unlike say The Beastmen, who are born into the role of the monster, humans choose it of their own free will.
  • Hybrid Monster: Dragon Ogres can fight alongside the Warriors of Chaos. Being centaur-like mix of muscly humanoid up the stomach and scaled quadrupeds below, Dragon Ogres are strange but powerful monsters who act as a Lightning Bruiser shock monsters.
  • Irony: Their current leader used to be an Imperial Templar of Sigmar, this is both ironic for them and the Empire they fight. That the greatest servant of Chaos in the Old World is not a Norscan, Kurgan or Hung warlord but a one-time worshiper of Chaos' greatest enemy.
  • Killer Gorilla: The Gorebeast, a powerful, but dim witted, corrupted gorilla-esque abomination. The Warriors of Chaos capture them, cover them in thick, hell forged black plate, and use them as living rams, and beasts of burden that pull their elite chariot riders into battle.
  • The Legions of Hell: Or the closest thing to a hell this setting gets, and with a big emphasis on the legions part. This, however, is somewhat subverted as it's more accurate to call them the servants of The Legions of Hell, as the true legion are the Daemons of Chaos, who aren't in the game yet. Though Sathorael, whose officially part of the cation is a true daemon.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Areas corrupted by Chaos will gradually turn into this, dealing attrition damage to non-Chaos armies.
  • Magic Knight: Chaos Sorcerers are decent in melee, especially when you compare them to other wizards, and can be mounted on Chaos Dragons.
  • Magikarp Power: Each horde starts with only the ability to recruit Marauder-tier units, which are lightly armored and unreliable. As the horde grows, however, it will eventually gain access to a roster of heavily armored troops and deadly monsters.
  • Mark of the Supernatural: One of the special rules of the Warriors of Chaos in the tabletop is the Mark of Chaos mechanics, representing a model swearing allegiance to a particular god, earning him special stigmatas or other symbols signaling to whom he belongs, and giving him bonuses in game. In Total War, marks are represented, but only available to Lords and Heroes (giving special bonuses, like Khorne granting frenzy), a reason why many people believe the Chaos Warriors are lacking compared to their tabletops in terms of versatility is that they lack the marks system.
  • Mordor: The lands they travel through slowly turn into this, with lovely additions such as jutting masses of obsidian, rivers of lava, and floating arcane portals where settlements once stood. Other factions trying to travel through Chaos-corrupted lands have to deal with constant attrition damage.
  • Mooks: Chaos Marauders; warriors of Norsca that regularly raid the coasts of the south. Marauder units barely hold a candle to the actual Chaos Warriors, but they're cheap and numerous, and the two variants of Marauder Horsemen serve as your primary ranged units. Despite this, they still beat most other factions' basic infantry extremely handily, and are the most powerful unaugmented human troops in the game.
  • Obviously Evil: The spiky black scary armor, glowing runes, Hellfire motiff, and throaty vows of destruction are dead giveaways.
  • Our Centaurs Are Different: The Dragon Ogres, although instead of the usual human above and horse below body plan, they're a monstrous horned humanoid on a wingless draconic lower body. In the lore, their one of the most ancient races in the setting, having made the storm shrouded crags of Norsca their home since before the coming of the Old Ones. They made a deal with the Chaos God's some time after for immortality, in exchange their undying service in war, and are known to go into century long hibernation, awakening only to cause destruction and mayhem.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Two-headed Chaos Dragons are an available mount for Chaos Lords, and are the corrupted offspring of Galrauch, the first Chaos Dragon, and progenitor of countless other monsters. They are twisted monstrosities covered in growths and corruption, that spew out warp-fire. To other Dragons, they are the worst of the worst, and consider them stuck in A Fate Worse Than Death.
  • Our Dwarves Are All the Same: The Hellcannon artillery unit is crewed by a team of Chaos Dwarfs (Dawi Zhar in their own language); a corrupted offshoot of the main Dwarf species native to the barren lands beyond the World's Edge Mountains. Notably, they are their own faction in lore; it remains to be seen if their presence here is an Early-Bird Cameo.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: Lumbering, and heavily mutated Chaos Giants fight against the Southerners for food and drink, being horned and covered in Chaos iconography.
  • Our Manticores Are Spinier: Ferocious leonine monsters with bat wings and scorpion tails found in the Chaos Wastes, which the mightiest champions of Chaos can, at great personal peril, attempt to capture and break into a war mount. They also can field feral Manticores, whose savagery often comes them to loose control, and enter a state of frenzy.
  • Paper Tiger: Ironically, for such a powerful and scary army, the Warriors of Chaos have a big problem with mass routs. This makes sense as the Warriors are individualistic and fight for themselves, and lack the martial discipline and motivation to knuckle down and keep fighting when things look bad. The Warriors all go to war absolutely certain that the Chaos Gods (or at least their chosen one) will protect them, and should that conviction waver then the courage of the warriors will melt like snow in midsummer. A Chaos Lord can only convince warriors to follow him because they believe he is favoured by the dark gods, and should he die abruptly in battle... Yep, you guessed it, they take it as a sign that they have offended the gods and lost their favour.
    • For all their strength, durability, and apocalyptic reputation, Chaos hordes can be beaten through good tactics or sheer numbers. Since the Warriors of Chaos have no settlements or cities, they have no staying power compared to all other factions. Factions can take a beating and retreat to their holdings, or at least recruit new armies to replace losses; any Chaos horde that gets totally destroyed will lose all their infrastructure. This prevents a swift recovery and in most cases, this means that particular horde will never get the chance to recover their strength again.
  • Praetorian Guard: One Regiment of Renown are Sigvald's eunuch Mirror Guard; elite warriors who wear ornate armor and wield mirror shields for Sigvald to gaze upon his beauty when not using his own mirror shield. Another example are the Chaos Knights known as the Swords of Chaos, the personal bodyguards of Archaon himself, who have been with him from the very beginning of his journey to become the Everchosen. Whilst they trade even the small numbers regular Chaos Knights have, they are individually incredibly powerful, and bring forth an extremely strong army wide buff,
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: Every culture in Warhammer counts as this due to the nature of the setting, but the Norse tribes are the most psychotically obsessed with bloodshed and strength in arms. Given that the principle god of Norsca is Khorne, the Blood God, Lord of Battles, this is to be expected.
    Chaos Warriors: FACE US!!! MY LORD OF MURDER DEMANDS IT!!!
  • Rape, Pillage, and Burn: Like the Greenskins, this is their modus operandi. They actually have very few buildings that give them internal income, and those they do have aren't all that good. As a result, their only reliable source of money is from sacking and pillaging defeated cities and armies, or raiding enemy held lands.
  • Religion of Evil: The Warriors of Chaos are more of a heavily armed cult, than an actual tribe. Several of their building chains are built in reverence to the Chaos Gods, and all their warriors wholeheartedly worship them.
    • There's actually quite a bit more to their beliefs then meets the eye, being a double subversion, and dosed with a heavy case of Blue and Orange Morality. They claim the Chaos Gods are not evil, maintaining that such powerful entities are beyond human judgement and should be venerated and respected for their power; the Kurgan and Hung hold similar views. And yet, their actions towards the other races and factions are this trope in full force. Khornates butcher armies and raze cities for bloodshed's own sake and treat non-combatants with open contempt, Tzeentchians manipulate anyone they meet and make it a point of pride to stab superiors in the back, Nurglites spread disease and decay in all its myriad forms in the demented belief that their work is good, and Slaaneshi embrace all three parts of Rape, Pillage, and Burn with equal abandon and relish. The warband featured in Total War is heavily centred around the concept of Chaos Undivided.
  • Religious Bruiser: The Warriors of Chaos are usually very eager to prove themselves to their gods, and if they are sworn to one in particular, fight in his name. That makes them generally very devout and hard to discourage, as they know the Gods are watching and rewards for exceptional feats of arms are as easily given as punishment for cowardice.
  • Religion Is Magic: Norse, Kurgan and Hung holymen tend to be Chaos Sorcerers or tribal shamans who gained some divine power from the Dark Gods. Averted by followers of Khorne's faith, who slaughter any sorcerer or magician as a matter on principle
  • Savage Wolves: The Chaos Warhounds, wolves that have been mutated by chaos. One variant glows green and can deal poison damage.
  • Screaming Warrior: "BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD!"
  • Shock and Awe: Dragon Ogres and Shaggoths are empowered by lightning, and the Dragon Ogres' Regiment of Renown, the Summoners of Rage, can cast a chain lightning spell once per battle.
  • Sickly Green Glow: The poison variant of the Chaos Warhound glows bright green, and its maw constantly drips with luminescent saliva.
  • Sigil Spam: The unit models usually mostly display the eight-pointed star of Chaos Undivided, one of the most famous symbols that represents Chaos as a whole and is guaranteed to not piss off ¾ of all Warriors of Chaos on sight.
  • Skeletons in the Coat Closet: Let's just say the Chaos Warrior's love putting skulls on their armour.
  • Spikes of Villainy: They love this trope, adorning many of their armour parts with spikes. Some even grow out of their body due to chaos mutations. Greenskins derisively refer to them as "spikey boyz" as a result.
  • Tin Tyrant: A whole army of them, ranging from Chaos Lords to Chaos Warriors, all of them equipped in heavy plate armour.
  • This Is Your Brain on Evil: Anyone who worships Chaos deeply will end up all kinds of wrong in the head.
  • The Need for Mead: Northmen like drinking mead, so much so that it is even brought up in their codex descriptions because they're Vikings.
  • Was Once a Man: Chaos Spawn and Forsaken.
  • Warrior Heaven: Khorne's domain in the Realm of Chaos is implied to be something like this for worthy warriors who die in battle, basically an evil version of Vahalla. Once again playing off the heavy Nordic flavor of this army, this is more like War 'is heaven.
  • Unstoppable Rage: The standard state of mind for Warriors of Khorne, sprinkled with a Proud Warrior Race Guy mentality and a little Honour Before Reason. Lords with the mark of Khorne get frenzy as a result.
  • Weapon of Choice: Axes. Lots and lots of axes, coming in plenty of different flavors. A fair number, especially those devoted to Khorne, use two weapons and eschew shields. They are no-nonsense born warriors and boisterous vikings, so close combat is what they're all about. They also have no traditional missile weapons beyond the odd throwing axe or throwing spear. Most of the weapons used by the Warriors of Chaos are forged by Chaos Dwarf smiths, and thus tend to be of high quality, and occasionally intricately detailed. Some of their heroes wield sentient weapons possessed by daemons.

Legendary Lords

    Archaon the Everchosen 

Archaon the Everchosen, Lord of the End Times
"I will prove once more that I am the Everchosen... for I am the Anointed, the Bringer of Woes — the one, true Lord of Chaos!"
"So soon the hour of fate comes around. The Everchosen stirs from his dark throne and prepares the blow that shall split the world asunder. Realms of old have fallen, lost beneath the fury of the northlands, or smothered by vermin from below. Some heroes battle on, too stubborn to realise all hope is lost. Their time is past, and a new age of Chaos and dismay beckons. Perhaps I am foolish also, for I fight with no hope of victory. I seek only to weaken the Dark Gods, to shake their hold upon the future. No other course remains; not to mortals, nor the Divine."

Voiced by: Gary Martin

A former Sigmarite Templar, Archaon stumbled upon an ancient doctrine that contained within the secrets of his faith. Renouncing his allegiance to Sigmar he journeyed north to the dreaded Chaos Wastes to offer his service to the Chaos Gods. Here, the Ruinous Powers gave him their blessing to set out on his quest to become the Everchosen; the Lord of the End Times. Out of all the Everchosen of Chaos who have assailed the world over the ages, Archaon is by far the most ruthless and perhaps the most powerful. He is an individual that shall decide the fate of entire nations, whose sword can lay waste to heroes and armies and whose unbreakable will can break and dominate those of Gods. Archaon is truly the Herald of the Apocalypse, blessed with dreadful artifacts of ancient evil, each one bestowed as a reward for accomplishing impossible trials. In his journey, he received the legendary Six Treasures of Chaos:

Upon retrieving the Crown, the daemon prince Be'lakor performed the coronation that made Archaon the Lord of the End Times. As the crown was fully placed, the last spark of Archaon's humanity was finally extinguished, finally accepting the Gods of Chaos to be the true Gods of the Cosmos. With his quest finally complete, Archaon now set forth upon the World as the Herald of the Apocalypse, a warrior who did the unthinkable and succeeded where hundreds of other Champions had failed.

  • Amulet of Concentrated Awesome: The Eye of Sheerian is a powerful talisman of protection granting Archaon a variety of buffs that increase his stats.
  • Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence: If one goes down his unique skill tree (added by the Foudation Patch) the flavor text indicates he becomes a Daemon Prince. Becoming a Daemon Prince is more or less synonymous with becoming a demigod. And the difference between a God and a Daemon in Warhammer largely depends on where one is standing at the time anyway.
  • The Anti-Christ: The Warhammer world's equivalent, being the man destined to bring about the End Times on behalf of the Chaos Gods.
  • Anti Anti Christ: An unusual evil example. Archaon is very unhappy about his destiny but since he can't defy it he wants to get revenge on the Chaos Gods instead. Unfortunately the only way he knows to hurt them to deprive them of sustenance and to do that he'll have to kill every living thing in the world.
  • Badass Beard: Grew one out after going north and becoming a champion of Chaos, though you can't see it underneath his massive helmet.
  • Badass Cape: Extra points for being bearskin.
  • Badass in Charge: Of the Warriors of Chaos.
  • Big Bad: Of the first game and Mortal Empires, to the point where wounding Archaon (either in battle or by assassinating him) is a campaign victory requirement for every single faction, meaning even the evil factions are out to stop him. Of course, there's also the possibility of you playing as him.
  • Black Knight: Has this look down to a tee, even moreso then other Chosen. It fits him even more, since he was a Templar Knight when he served humanity.
  • Child by Rape: His mother was raped by a Norscan Champion during a raid on the village of Hargendorf.
  • Child of Two Worlds: As a half-breed child born out of rape between a Norscan Champion and a Nordlander woman. He was raised as a man of the Empire, but later became Everchosen of Chaos and leader of a vast horde of northerners.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Crossed it long ago. After finding out about his destiny as the one to bring the End Times, he went into a temple of Sigmar and begged his deity to aid him, but received not a whisper or sign of Sigmar's presense. He took this as a sign that it was hopeless to defy his fate and decides to become what he was destined to.
  • The Dreaded: The 'entire Old World fears him. So much so the mere thought of him rampaging across the world is enough for all the Order factions to band together under the Shield of Civilization.
  • Elite Mooks: A few of his unique skills heavily buff Chaos Chosen, and Chaos Knights, the best infantry, and one of the best calvary units in the game respectively.
  • Evil Overlord: A textbook example of the archetype, although he wants to destroy the entire world rather than simply conquer it.
  • Evil Sorcerer: His thrall to Chaos has granted him immeasurably powers, including the gift of being able to cast magic from the Lore of Fire.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: If you thought Mannfred's voice was deep, Archaon's harsh, reverberating tone makes him sound tame.
  • Fallen Hero: As a devout Templar of Sigmar, he was considered a peer among the paragons of the Imperial Faith. But now...
  • Final Boss: Of the Empire, Vampire Counts, Greenskin, and Dwarf campaigns, and one of two possible Final Bosses for the Bretonnian campaign.
  • Flaming Sword: Wields one, known as The Slayer of Kings. It was created when the second Everchosen, Vangel, defeated a greater daemon and bound it into his sword.
  • Four-Star Badass: Is also known as the "Grand Marshall of Chaos", which is the same name as one of his unique skills which grant him better Lords. Not only is he a peerless strategist, a powerful warrior, and competent mage, his will is the only thing strong enough the unite the various factions of Chaos into Chaos Undivided.
  • For Want of a Nail: One of the main reasons why he fell was being convinced, no matter what he did, he would be the Everchosen. And not just an Everchosen, the Everchosen, the one to herald the End Times, and bring ruin to the world. This revelation convinced him he couldn't fight fate. As it turns out, not only can he be defeated, Wulfrik or Throgg can usurp his position, and gain the favor of the gods over him. Archaon's destiny was never set in stone, and he was fed lie after lie by the Chaos God's, making him even more tragic.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: He was once a very devout Templar of Sigmar, but after reading a book called the Liber Caelistior, which detailed that he would be Everchosen of Chaos and bring about the End Times to the world, he went insane and forsook Sigmar and became the Everchosen of the Chaos Gods.
  • Hellish Horse: His mount, Dorghar, Steed of the Apocalypse, a massive primordial demon of flame, and shadow.
  • Heroic Bastard: As a Templar of Sigmar anyway. Then the revelation that he was basically the anti-christ turned him into a Bastard Bastard.
  • Horsemen of the Apocalypse: Takes a lot of inspiration from them, being a horseman who brings forth the end of the world. Notably though the implication here is that there is no need for four horsemen, since Archaon alone is enough to herald the End Times.
  • Horns of Villainy: His helm sports a truly impressive set of horns.
  • It Is Pronounced "Tro-PAY": His name is pronounced as "Arr-Kay-On".
  • Knight In Shining Armour: Used to be one when he was serving in the Order of the Twin-Tailed Orb. He was even regarded by the Grandmaster as the most skilled, courageous, heroic and devout member of the order.
  • Large and in Charge: Even compared to other massive lads like Wulfrik, Archaon towers over them.
  • Large Ham: Probably the biggest in a World of Ham, mixed with Evil Is Hammy.
    Archaon: "Speak through your meek mouths. Mumble your pitiable words, so that I may use them as a lash to flay your soul!"
  • Legacy Character: Archaon is in fact the fifth Everchosen of Chaos, and wields artifacts that once belonged to the first two (The Armor of Morkar and the Slayer of Kings, respectively).
  • Lightning Bruiser: When mounted on his horse, Archaon becomes incredibly fast, while retaining his power. The bruiser part comes in when you realize he has very close to monster levels of HP.
  • Magic Knight: A mighty, mounted warrior who can also use the Lore of Fire.
  • The Magnificent: When referred to by name, he's almost always referred to by his full title of Archaon, the Everchosen.
  • Nay-Theist: In the lore his motivation is to destroy the world and everything in it to spite the Chaos Gods; starving them of worship and the constant stream of human emotion that sustains them. Presumably this is also his motivation in the game. This is probably also why Tzeentch sends an army led by a Lord of Change to stop you in Archaon's campaign.
  • Nothing but Skulls: Count the amount of them just on his shoulders alone.
  • The Paragon Always Rebels: Was once a devout Templar of Sigmar, now he's the greatest threat to the world and the chosen leader of Chaos's mortal hordes.
  • Playing with Fire: Can use the Lore of Fire.
  • Rape as Backstory: See Child by Rape
  • Red Baron: He's racked up a fearsome list of aliases for himself, including the Lord of the End Times, the Kingslayer and the Three-Eyed King.
  • That Man Is Dead: He abandoned his original name, Diederick Kastner, once he completed the tests of the Chaos Gods and became their Everchosen.
  • Third Eye: He is called the Three-Eyed King for a reason. Mounted on the Crown of Domination is the Eye of Sheerian, which grants him the powers of prophecy and omniscience.
  • Tin Tyrant: Archaon wears the Armor of Morkar, which was worn by the original Everchosen of Chaos, Morkar the Uniter, during his war against Sigmar at the dawn of the Empire.
  • Tragic Villain: To a degree, Archaon never had any choice but to become what he did. He was a pawn of the Chaos Gods before he was even born.
  • 24-Hour Armor: He is completely sealed off inside his armor.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Believes himself to be this. He legitimately believes that destroying the world will subsequently destroy the Chaos Gods along with it, due to his knowledge that Chaos needs living people around as sustenance. Only problem is that he isn't aware that there are other worlds for them to play around with, making his goal meaningless in the end.
    • Little of this is plainly evident in game however, where he mostly comes across as a borderline Generic Doomsday Villain who, based his in-game quotes, seems to relish his position as the Everchosen.
  • World's Best Warrior: Yeah, when you've taken down a Bloodthirster in single combat one-on-one with no outside interference, there's not much that'll ever be a serious threat to you other than an actual Physical God.

    Kholek Suneater 

Kholek Suneater, The Herald of the Tempest
"The whole world will burn before I rest again!"
Voiced by:

Kholek is a Shaggoth of tremendous age. He is one of the first-born kin of Krakanrok the Black, father of the Dragon Ogres. Kholek was present when the terrible pact with the Dark Gods was forged, pledging their race to an eternity of servitude in exchange for immortality. The sagas tell that Kholek’s part in the bargain was such an affront to nature that the sun hid its face behind a bank of stormclouds and has never looked upon Kholek since that fateful day. True enough, Kholek’s coming is heralded by roiling black thunderheads. Where the Herald of the Tempest walks, a raging storm blots out the sun.

Like all Dragon Ogres, Kholek is energised and enlivened by the power of lightning, roaring with triumph as crackling bolts of pure power play across his ancient and scaly body. He wears great plates of brass as his armour, the better to attract the tempest’s kiss, encrusted with the patina of age and blackened by soot. In his shadow march the mountain tribes that worship him as a primal god of destruction.

If the rumours from the north are true, Kholek is abroad once more. Whenever the sky darkens with cloud and thunder rumbles on the horizon, all who know of the legend of the Suneater shiver in fear, for how can mortals stand against a being who has waged war in the name of the Dark Gods since before the dawn of Man?

  • A God Am I: Worshiped as a living God by many Norscans (considering his pure power and abilities it's hard not to blame them) It's unknown what Kholek thinks of this, however.
  • Ancestral Weapon: Wield a giant hammer that predates humanity.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: One of the largest units in the game, if not the largest. The average human stands barely higher than his ankles.
  • A Storm Is Coming: A walking literal example. His part in the pact with the Chaos Gods was said to be such an abomination, the sun never looked upon him since then. Wherever he goes, a thunderstorm follows.
  • The Brute: Even compare to the other Chaos warlords, Kholek only exists to kill and maim, and isn't that subtle about it. He's also The Big Guy, as he's the the biggest being in the Chaos Warrior faction at over eighty feet tall.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: His campaign bonuses, if you chose him as your starting Lord, are geared exclusively towards buffing Dragon Ogres and decreasing their upkeep. While his army starts with a unit of Dragon Ogres in it, you aren't likely to be employing them regularly until around the mid-term of the campaign.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Whilst his giant size makes him practically a living siege engine, it makes him really visible. One of his special skills makes him more powerful, and grants him a bonus during sieges, but also increases his chance to be ambushed because people can see him from a really far distance.
  • Deal with the Devil: The Dragon Ogres made a deal with the Chaos Gods, that in exchange for immortality, which is acquired through being struck by lightning (which rejuvenates them), they would fight for the Chaos Gods whenever they called, which would be through storms.
  • Drop the Hammer: His warhammer Starcrusher, the biggest in a setting chock-full of warhammers.
  • Evil Is Bigger: A Lord of Chaos, and one of the few Giant-sized creatures in the game who can command armies.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: In the lore, wherever Kholek goes, storm clouds follow (which is the reason why he's called "Suneater"). However, nothing of the sort occurs when he is present in battle, aside from Kholek's body crackling with electricity whenever his lightning strike power is charged.
  • Guttural Growler: To the point of being almost unintelligible during his Quest Battle speech.
  • Horned Humanoid: Sports a set of three massive horns on his head.
  • Large and in Charge: Very much so. Dragon Ogres are already gigantic beings, Shaggoths are even bigger, and Kholek towers head and shoulders over even other Shaggoths. This guy is massive.
    • In the lore he is only the second largest of his race. His father, Krakanrok the Black, was described as being so large that Archaon and his followers (on a quest for the Slayer of Kings) mistook him for a mountain!
  • Lightning Bruiser: Pun aside, Kholek is deceptively fast for his massive size, and in some cases being able to outrun cavalry. And yes's he hits incredibly hard with Starcrusher.
  • Luke Nounverber: A pretty intimidating example to boot.
  • One-Man Army: One of Kholek's unique skills gives him a 20% ward save. Add the right magical items and a Mark of Tzeentch to this and Kholek will break the cap on damage reduction (90%) and can solo entire armies while taking only Scratch Damage in return. In the current meta, Kholek is considered the most powerful lord by a large margin, with the measuring stick for others being if they can trade effectively when facing him. Let alone with his various campaign upgrades.
  • Shock and Awe: Like other Shaggoths, he is empowered by lightning, and can even learn a spell to summon lightning strikes in battle.
  • Time Abyss: He is the second-oldest of the still-living Dragon Ogres, meaning that he was present before the arrival of the Old Ones which makes him tens of thousands of years old.
  • Tin Tyrant: Unlike the rest of his race, who generally go without much physical protection beyond their scales, Kholek is covered from head-to-tail in thick, black armor, which gives him a really large armor rating (especially compared to most monsters) which just adds to his insane durability.
  • The Older Immortal: Holds the greatest claim to 'oldest playable character', being over 10,000 years old.
  • With Catlike Tread: Averted. Kholek (as well as whatever army he joins) suffers a hefty -20% penalty to ambush chance, because it's very, very easy to see him coming.

    Sigvald the Magnificent 

Prince Sigvald the Magnificent, Scion of Slaanesh
"See how I stroll, stride, swagger and swirl, spin, slash and stab at stupid, senseless scum!"

Voiced by:

Sigvald the Magnificent, known also as Prince Sigvald, the Geld-Prince and also the Prince of the Decadent Host, is amongst the most infamous of Slaanesh's favored servants within the Old World, made legend by his prowess on the battlefield and his disturbing yet angelic beauty. Though he appears to be little more than sixteen summers of age, Sigvald the Magnificent has blighted the world for over three hundred years.

The personification of beauty on the outside, but rot within, the Geld-Prince rides at the head of an army of utterly devoted followers who would give their lives for him without a second thought. His elite bodyguard bear mirrored shields so that Sigvald might bask in his own divine glory, and dozens of exotic females attend to his every whim and desire.

Beautiful from birth, Sigvald’s fondness for hedonistic excess saw him exiled from his tribe but also gained him a powerful patron: Slaanesh, the God of pleasure and depravity. Now, he heads an army devoted to himself. Slaying anything he deems ugly or unsavoury, he fights as much for his perverse ego as he does for Slaanesh.

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: Sigvald's speech in one of his quest battles is filled with many words starting with "S".
    "Sickly, sinful, spectacles stand, shuffle, shamble and saunter shamelessly in mine scandalized sight! I suggest a solution... surely such sedition should sour and succumb to Sigvald — the salacious, scandalous and sensational servant of Slaanesh! Son of Succubi, scion of sordid acts and slayer of squalid serfs!
    See how I stroll, stride, swagger and swirl, spin, and slash and stab at stupid, senseless scum! Soon they shall swoon, shall seek solace and death from sundry torments wrought on them by my strategic, severing, scintillating shower of shimmering strikes!
    Send for the sword — summon Sliverslash!"
  • Agent Peacock: Yes, he's vain, foppish and ridiculously pretty. He's also a Combat Sadomasochist, a master swordsmaster, and a lethally skilled warrior whose cruelty is infinite.
  • Bastard Bastard: He was born of an incestuous union of his father and his sister, and is one of the most depraved people in the entire Old World, if not the most.
  • Beauty Is Bad: He's a very handsome man with flawless features, but he's also one of the most depraved and petty human beings to ever grace the Old World.
  • Berserk Button: Ugly things and getting the slightest scratch on his body. He will even kill his own allies if he finds them unpleasing to his eyes or if they happen to look better than him. This ended up biting him hard in the ass during The End Times, where he tried to kill Throgg, only for Throgg to return later on and crush Sigvald's head into paste before pissing on his corpse.
  • Bling of War: The Auric Armour a sculpted suit of plate mail made of solid gold, just as much for show as it is for protection. It also grants him Regeneration.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: His parents were brother and sister, which could explain Sigvald's...issues.
  • The Champion: Is this for the Chaos god of pleasure, Slaanesh.
  • Cool Sword: Sliverslash, a rapier forged from a tiny sliver of Slaanesh's own sword.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: One of his starter units is a giant phallic-looking unholy cannon. Considering who he worships, this is most likely intentional.
  • Evil Is Petty: In the tabletop lore he once invaded Ulthuan because he heard that the Elves had nicer hair than him. After the Elves kicked his ass he then went to attack Bretonnia because he randomly remembered a particularly bad bottle of Bretonnian wine he'd once drunk. He also burned an entire town becuase the villagers had the ''gall' to give him bad-tasting wine. If anyone exemplifies this in Warhammer, it's Sigvald.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Just like any follower of Slannesh, Sigvald speaks with politeness and courtesy. It's all to hide that he's a horrible human being.
  • The Fighting Narcissist: He may have an ego bigger then the entire Old World, but Sigvald never shies away from combat and leads from the front.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: In the lore, it is stated that Sigvald can never become dirty and that he floats a few inches above the ground so that his perfect feet don't have to bear the burden of walking on ugly surfaces. He also has a tendency to be distracted by his good looks when looking at his shield-mirror, even in the middle of battle. In-game, however, he has to walk on soil like everyone else and you better believe that he's going to shower in blood alongside his allies and foes once limbs start flying. But hey, at least he learned not to blindly gaze into his shield anymore when it's time to kill. The blood part was fixed in a later patch: Sigvald is now immune to blood-splatter if one has the blood-splatter DLC.
  • A Glass of Chianti: One of his quotes on the campaign map is "Shall I decant the wine?". In fact, he loves wine so much that he once burned down an entire village just because he was slightly displeased with the wine they served him.
  • Healing Factor: In order to keep his beauty eternal, his body can regenerate, even in battle, thus making him rather difficult to take down.
  • The Hedonist: As the champion of Slaanesh he is essentially the living embodiment of this trope.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: One of Sigvald's self-indulgences. It's what got him expelled from his tribe in the first place.
  • Inbred and Evil: His parents were brother and sister, and he's one twisted bastard.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: And he knows it.
  • Light Is Not Good: While his appearance seems almost angelic, his behavior is anything but.
  • The Magnificent: That's his title, alright.
  • Narcissist: His most famous trait. He is so in love with himself that his shield also acts like a mirror so that he can admire himself, even in the heat of battle.
  • Patricide: Ended up killing his own dad.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Although he appears to be fairly young (almost his late teens), Sigvald has in fact been a champion of Chaos for over three centuries.
  • Red Right Hand: The only physical flaw on Sigvald's entire body is the Mark of Slaanesh, which is found on the back of his neck.
  • Self-Made Orphan: He killed his father after his father banished him from the tribe for his fondness of eating human flesh.
  • The Sociopath: If anyone truly exemplifies this trope in Warhammer, it's Sigvald.
  • Spoiled Brat: Actually, calling him spoiled would be a huge understatement. His father apparently spared the rod when it came to his son. Only cannibalism was considered taboo enough to punish Sigvald, who made his father pay with his life.
  • Vapor Wear: A rare male example. It's pretty obvious that Sigvald wears little-to-nothing underneath his armor, judging by how his inner thighs are clearly visible.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Not towards his own father, but Sigvald is absolutely dedicated to his adoptive "step-father/mother", Slaanesh.

    Sarthorael the Ever-Watcher 

Sarthorael the Ever-Watcher, Chosen of Tzeentch
"All are pawns to the Great Deceiver..."

Voiced by:

Sarthorael the Ever-Watcher is a powerful Greater Daemon, and one of the main antagonists in Total War: Warhammer, serving as a sort of end game boss, and true Big Bad.

Sarthorael is a Lord of Change, a Greater Daemon of Tzeentch, a powerful and cunning avian fiend. He is blessed with the multi-layered cunning and timeless wisdom of Tzeentch himself, a deep and subtle understanding of the mortal fears that drive the world within its well-worn rut. How thoroughly he understands and how much he despises the entrapping comforts of stability and familiarity. Nothing pleases him more than to see the world broken and made anew, to redirect the course of life or even history itself, to spill mortal hopes upon the ground while raising the ambitions of others up to an unexpected pinnacle of power. It is a playful and cruel mind that lies behind Sarthorael's bird-like gaze, deeply intelligent, as uncaring of consequence as it is fascinated by it. He is like a child playing upon an anthill, poking with a stick at its inhabitants and laughing at the hopeless antics of their defense.

Originally depicted in the announcement/cinematic trailer being summoned by a corrupted light wizard (whom in the Chaos Warrior campaign is revealed to be none other than the Adviser), Sarthorael has been manipulating the events of the game, and intends to usurp Archaon's position as Ever-Chosen of Chaos. He takes the form of a white crow that whispers lies and orders into the fallen light wizard's ear. Midway through the game, he murders him after he has served his role, before taking his true form as a mighty Daemon of Tzeentch!

The DLC Rise of the Beastmen has Sarthorael as a playable Legendary Lord for the Warriors of Chaos on custom and multiplayer battles, provided that you complete the Grand Campaign first and have the Warriors of Chaos DLC installed. He's also featured in the NPC Warriors of Chaos faction during the End Times invasion event.

  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: He's among the few Giant-sized creatures along with Kholek Suneater and Durthu who can command armies.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: As a Greater Daemon of Tzeentch he's pretty high up on the Chaos totem pole. Watch in horror as he blows apart entire units of soldiers with his spells and rips through your lines as he childishly giggles in laughter.
  • Big Bad: Of the Warriors of Chaos campaign.
  • The Chessmaster: Daemons are notorious for manipulating mortals and using them like pawns, Daemons of Tzeentch like Lords of Change triply so. Sarthorael has been pitting the various factions against each other, as if he was manipulating pawn pieces on a chess board.
  • Creepy Crows: A giant, blue corvid-looking creature, Sarthorael's visage reflects Tzeentch's association with ravens — one of Tzeentch's titles is even "the Raven God". When he's hidden, he takes the form of a white bird perched upon the Adviser's shoulder. Doubles as Clever Crows, reflecting Tzeentch's status as the god of intelligence and wisdom and Sarthorael being an extension of such.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: When he talks, he speaks in a deep, horrid, guttural voice.
  • Demon Lords and Archdevils: Being a Lord of Change, a greater daemon of the god Tzeentch, he sits fairly high in the daemonic hierarchy.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: All the events of the first game were carefully orchestrated by... the Adviser's pet crow.
  • Evil Laugh: Lets out a chilling laugh when he takes his true form, during a cinematic.
  • Extra-ore-dinary: He uses the Lore of Metal, the Lore of Magic associated with Tzeentch that is not his own.
  • Feathered Fiend: A monstrous bird-like creature, thoroughly evil, and responsible for instigating the game's conflict for his own amusement.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: If you're not playing Chaos he's just another high-level Legendary Lord that shows up for Archaon's invasion. If you are playing as Chaos, he appears with little advance warning and promptly starts chasing your forces across the map with a stack of elite units.
  • Genius Bruiser: Sarthorael is a master of plots, deceit, and very complicated gambits. He's also a highly skilled mage who can rip apart entire battalions of knights with his tentacle staff and talons.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: In the non-Chaos Warriors campaigns. While you do fight him in all campaigns during the Chaos Invasion, the true extent of Sarthorael's role and manipulation is only revealed in the Chaos Warriors campaign.
  • Magic Staff: He wields a towering staff crowned with writhing tentacles and a single staring eye, which he uses to cast his spells.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Oh yeah. Lords of Change, as shining reflections of their Chaos God, pretty much embody this trope. Case in point, Sathorael makes Tzeentch very proud. Not only does he manipulate all the factions into fighting each other, Sarthorael casts aside his pawn with mocking laughter after pecking out his eyeballs with his beak once he's done with him. Interestingly subverted at the start of the Beastmen campaign, where the Adviser heavily implies that Sarthorael is working directly with Khazrak with no misdirection, and is merely using the Adviser as a middle-man to direct the brayherds.
    The Adviser: I know you feel a yearning to kill me, for I am but a man, but you have received the vision; you know who has sent me...
  • Not the Intended Use: Despite being mainly a magician, many players uses him to charge into battle over and over again due to being unusually good at it.
  • One-Man Army: Sarthorael is a very strong contender for the title of most powerful character in the game. He's extremely strong and tough, he wields devastating spells, and he's more than capable of taking on multiple high-tier units at once and ripping apart enemy lines by himself.
  • Pet the Dog: After a fashion. In the Beastmen campaign it's implied he's formed an alliance of sorts with Khazrak the One-Eye, which marks the first time in many years that a God or Daemon of Chaos has offered the Beastmen a chance to be more than just a disposable first wave for an invading Norscan war party.
  • Promoted to Playable: The patch related to Call of the Beastmen enables Sarthorael to be unlocked for Custom and Multiplayer battles, provided you also have the Warriors of Chaos DLC and have completed the Grand Campaign. Subverted as he isn’t usable in single player campaigns no matter what you do.
  • Unique Enemy: Subverted. You might think he's this due to being the Final Boss, but another Lord of Change is encountered during Archaon's quest battles. Another one can be recruited after earning Tzeench/The Eagle's favor playing as Norsca, or faced in a quest battle if you pledge yourself to a different god.
  • Walking Spoiler: It's impossible to talk about Sarthorael without mentioning the Adviser's treachery or the daemon's status as the game's Big Bad.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: He wastes no time in ridding himself of the Adviser once he has no more use of him.


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