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Literature / Gotrek & Felix

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A series of novels set in the Warhammer world.

Felix Jaeger was the son of a wealthy Imperial merchant, a student and aspiring writer/poet until the day he accidentally killed a man in a duel. Disowned by his family, he ran away from home, where he eventually became a bit of an activist, and inadvertently started a riot over an unfair Window Tax.

Just as he faces the lance tips of a squad of oncoming knights, Felix's life is saved by Gotrek Gurnisson, a Dwarf with an odd hairstyle and a huge axe. After a night of discussion (and much drinking), Felix discovers that Gotrek is a Troll Slayer, a warrior who seeks his death in combat to atone for a past failure or shame.

And that the previous night, Felix had sworn an oath to accompany Gotrek in his travels and record his doom in an epic poem. And Dwarfs take oaths very seriously.

Now Felix travels the world with his Dwarfish companion, finding the truth about just now nasty the world really is, fighting Evil and Chaos at every turn, and wondering how the hell he's going to survive anything that would be tough enough to kill Gotrek long enough to write about it?

The books were originally written by William King but have since been taken over by Nathan Long. The books are notable for the fact that in the largely grim and depressing world of Warhammer Fantasy, Gotrek and Felix usually manage to make a real difference in the fight of Order vs. Chaos. After twelve books, they've probably killed more enemies of the Empire than anyone who isn't a legendary hero.

Given this series' popularity, it is unsurprising that yet more novels are on the way. The primary storyline was Left Hanging for some time, with the new novels starting with The Road of Skulls being set during the various time skips in the earlier books, but with the big "The End Times" event, the old storyline concluded with new stories bringing Gotrek's saga to a close, to the point they are subtitled "The Doom of Gotrek Gurnisson".

Or not, as Gotrek has appeared in Warhammer: Age of Sigmar, alive despite his supposed doom (which he is not happy about). He is voiced by BRIAN BLESSED in the audiobooks. Gotrek, Felix, and Ulrika also appear in the Total War: Warhammer trilogy as Legendary Heroes (with BRIAN BLESSED reprising his role as Gotrek).

    The Stories 

The First Omnibus


Trollslayer: The initial tales of Gotrek and Felix's travels together after fleeing Altdorf with a price on their heads for their involvement in the Window Tax Riots. Technically a short story collection rather than an actual novel, it covers various unrelated adventures they experience in their journeys, one of which does involve an enormous, Chaos-mutated troll.
Skavenslayer: Also technically a short story collection, though all the stories in this one form a single cohesive plot line. Thanks to most of their adventures not paying very well, Gotrek and Felix are forced to stop in the city of Nuln and get jobs in the city watch, patrolling the local sewers for goblins and the like. But there are worse things than goblins in the sewers of Nuln, as the Grey Seer Thanquol and his horde of Skaven are lurking in the depths, plotting to claim the city for its own.
Daemonslayer: The first Gotrek and Felix novel to actually be a novel. Gotrek has signed himself and Felix on to an expedition to fly an experimental airship over the Chaos Wastes in search of the lost Dwarven city of Karag Dum to reclaim the lost relics and treasures left behind during the last great war against Chaos. But the forces of Chaos are still strong in the wastes, and they seek the lost citadel as well.

Short Stories

A Place of Quiet Assembly: A failed merchant pays a visit to the monastery where he studied as a youth, accompanied by Gotrek and Felix. But the monastery holds a dark secret...
Blood Sport: Gotrek enrolls in a gladiatorial beast-baiting competition for travel funds.
Kineater: After a young maiden is kidnapped by the Ogre Tyrant Volk Kineater, her older sister enlists the aid of Gotrek and Felix to rescue her.
Mind-Stealer: After ordering an attack on a caravan because he thinks Gotrek and Felix are among the guards, Thanquol is cursed by a witch travelling with it, and finds his mind trapped in Boneripper's body.
Death and Glory!: Gotrek and Felix return to the city of Hauptmannsburg after a troll-hunting expedition to find themselves conscripted into the army being raised to repel an orc invasion.

The Second Omnibus


Dragonslayer: On the return flight from Karag Dum, the party spies a great host of Chaos soldiers marching south. But as they try to warn the people of Kislev of the approaching horde, a storm sends them off course and into the range of the dreaded dragon Skjalandir. With the Slayers swearing a grudge against the dragon for the losses suffered in the resultant battle, they set out to slay the dragon and avenge their fallen.
Beastslayer: Gotrek and Felix make their way to the city of Praag, likely to be the first major target of the forces of Chaos in the coming war. But they have more to fear than just the usual risks of warfare in the coming battle, for Tzeentch has sent a vision to the besieging army's leader. Gotrek's axe is a relic forged by Grimnir himself to fight against Chaos dating back to the days when it first arrived on the world, and the Lord of Mutation has ordered that its bearer be slain and the axe taken out of reach of those who would oppose Chaos once and for all, at all costs.
Vampireslayer: The rise of Chaos is awakening other creatures from their long sleep, one of them being the Vampire Counts of Sylvania. When one of them kidnaps Ulrika while stealing a relic created by the Great Necromancer Nagash from a noble's collection, Gotrek and Felix set out to slay the monster and save the girl.

Short Stories

The Tilean's Talisman: Skaven warriors, emboldened by their possession of a magic talisman, seek to kill Gotrek and Felix.
A Cask of Wynters: A brewmaster hires Snorri Nosebiter to clear his brewery of the monsters infesting it with the promise of allowing him to help himself to the surviving stock.
Prophecy: The tale of how the Chaos sorcerers Khelmain Goldenrod and Lhoigor Blackstaff influenced the events of Dragonslayer and Beastslayer.
Lord of Undeath: Gotrek and Felix hunt a necromancer seeking to resurrect the legendary vampire Count Mannfred von Carstein.
The Two Crowns of Ras Karim: While passing through the city of Ras Karim while hunting for a beast known as the Lurking Horror, Gotrek and Felix inadvertently end up getting entangled in a coup against the corrupt caliph.

The Third Omnibus


Giantslayer: Gotrek and Felix are lured into a trap by Khelmain Goldenrod and Lhoigor Blackstaff, but are rescued by the elven sorcerer Teclis. In return for his aid, Teclis asks for their assistance on a quest he is undertaking, to cleanse a Temple of the Old Ones on the Isle of Albion that has been overrun by Chaos, and is guarded by a Warp-tainted giant.
Orcslayer: The first Gotrek and Felix novel to be written by Nathan Long. After having spent twenty years abroad in various adventures, Gotrek and Felix return to the Empire. Upon their return, Gotrek is charged by Prince Hamnir of Karak Hirn, who he owes a favor to, for his aid in retaking his city from the orcs.
Manslayer: Gotrek and Felix return to the city of Nuln, which is hard at work building weapons to help fight the war against Chaos in the north. But when a shipment of gunpowder goes missing, their old friend Malakai asks them to track down the cult seeking to sabotage the war effort before the entire city is destroyed.

Short Stories

Redhand's Daughter: A clash with pirates brings Gotrek and Felix into contact with the daughter of a famous, long dead pirate, who carries a map to his lost treasure.
The Oberwald Ripper: Felix is accused of being a serial killer.
Red Snow: The caravan that Gotrek and Felix are travelling with finds itself snowed in on a mountain village by an avalanche, while a bloodthirsty monster lurk in the crags.
Last Orders: A bartender turned cultist uses a tale of Gotrek and Felix to lure victims to their doom, only for the actual Gotrek and Felix to track him down.

The Fourth Omnibus


Elfslayer: Felix is charged by his dying father to recover a letter that could ruin the family name. While doing so, he crosses the path of his old friend Max Schreider and ends up entangled in a dark elf plot to cripple the Empire's economy.
Shamanslayer: The Order of the Fiery Heart, who were the original owners of the sword that Felix has carried for more than twenty years, finally track him down. They then set upon him a quest so that he might prove himself worthy of carrying said blade: tracking down a unit that had gone missing while hunting beastmen and recovering either the survivors or their relics. But the herd of beastmen they hunted proves to be larger and more dangerous than anyone could have expected...
Zombieslayer: The beastmen herd has been destroyed, but moments later it rises again, resurrected by the necromancer Heinrich Kemmler. The survivors of the battle retreat into Castle Reikguard, only to find themselves dealing with an indisposed lord, internal disputes tearing themselves apart, and a traitor in their midst...

Short Stories

Slayer of the Storm God: With Hans Euler dead, Gotrek and Felix make another attempt at retrieving his father's letter from his home, only for a piece of loot they collect incidentally while doing so turns out to be far more important than the two adventurers could have expected.
The Funeral of Gotrek Gurnisson: Gotrek is struck by a Skaven dart containing a deadly poison.
Slayer's Honor: Gotrek and Felix join up with another Slayer to purge a mine of orcs, only to find that Agnar's Rememberer has grown tired of waiting for his Slayer to find his doom, and has decided to engineer it himself.

The Fifth Omnibus


Road of Skulls: The first novel to be written by Josh Reynolds and the first interquel novel. Taking place between Vampireslayer and Giantslayer, Gotrek and Felix travel to the Dwarven city of Karak Kadrin, to join the muster of an army about to march against Chaos. But a prophecy has been made: If Gotrek joins the march, he will at last achieve his Doom, but in doing so, the world as a whole will be doomed as well.
The Serpent Queen: Another interquel, taking place between Giantslayer and Orkslayer. Gotrek and Felix travel to the New World in search of new Dooms. In the deserts of Nehekhara, they are captured by the Tomb Queen Khalida and ordered to complete a quest on her behalf, or a poisoned bracelet she locked onto Felix's wrist will kill him.

Short Stories

Charnel Congress: Gotrek and Felix are recruited by a witch hunter to help reclaim a relic stolen by a heretic, only to find a plot by a cabal of necromancers to revive a notorious Vampire Lord.
The Reckoning: When a vault designed by Gotrek in his pre-Slayer days is broken into, he is charged to find the artifact stolen from it or be held responsible for its loss.
Into the Valley of Death: A Felix tale without Gotrek. Having recently been expelled from college for killing a classmate in a duel, Felix crosses the path of an Amethyst Wizard seeking to claim a book of lore from a necromancer's tower and gets drawn into the quest.
Curse of the Everliving: Gotrek and Felix take shelter from a blizzard in an abandoned castle, only to find that a daemon had been sealed inside it.
Marriage of Moment: While drunk, Gotrek decides to arrange a marriage contract for Felix as a joke, entangling Felix in his new bride's family politics.
Berthold's Beard: Gotrek and Felix get involved in an inheritance ritual concerning one of the richest families in Wolfenburg, which involves retrieving a lock of the family founder's beard from the ancestral tomb.
The Contest: Gotrek gets challenged to a drinking contest.

The Sixth Omnibus


City of the Damned: The first novel to be written by David Guymer. Gotrek and Felix travel to Ostermark to hunt a creature known as The Beast, which has apparently kidnapped the Baron of Sigmarshafen. But The Beast lairs in the City of the Damned, a den of Chaos that has been trapped outside of time since the days of Magnus the Pious, and is home to the Daemon that will anoint the Everchosen of Chaos who will bring about the End Times if it ever escapes.
Kinslayer: The first novel in the "Doom of Gotrek Gurnisson" duology. Felix Jaeger, now living with his family in Altdorf, is drawn back into his life of adventure when an old friend is captured by a monstrous foe. But where is Gotrek, and will he be able to help?
Slayer: The final Gotrek and Felix story. After decades of adventures, Gotrek and Felix, brought together by fate but torn asunder by Gotrek's brutal actions towards an old friend, face their final challenge as the world reaches the End Times...

Short Story

Rememberers: While returning to Altdorf after the events of Kinslayer, Gotrek and Felix encounter a Chaos army on the march... and choose not to fight it.

Age of Sigmar

Audio dramas

Realmslayer: Long after the death of the Old World, Gotrek emerges from the Realm of Chaos and into the Mortal Realms. With his fatal redemption spoiled and without Felix, his axe or any idea what is going on in the bizarre new world he finds himself in, Gotrek embarks on a new adventure to find his old friend Felix, who he believes must have been brought back as a Stormcast, only to find himself a new fate that is entangled with a powerful ur-gold rune and the aelven warrior Maleneth — much to his displeasure.
Realmslayer: Blood of the Old World: In the endless forests of Ghyran, Gotrek learns of a being with the power to guide him to what he craves above all else: a destiny, and a purpose worthy of his legend. What he seeks is a prize more terrible than any he could have imagined, fought over since the dawn of time by powers beyond even his indomitable strength. He is not the only scion of the Old World to be drawn by its promise, and Gotrek will have to overcome the greatest nemesis of his past if he is to claim his future.


Ghoulslayer: Gotrek and Maelneth cross through the bleak, haunted underworld of Shyish to seek out Nagash, the Lord of Undeath, but are caught up in the invasion of the kingdom by the Flesh-Eater Court of King Galan. As they fight to protect themselves, Gotrek will find much more than he expected.
Gitslayer: Gotrek travels to the city of Barak-Urbaz in the hopes that the Kharadron alchemists might have a way of removing the ur-gold rune from his chest. But the Ork chieftain of the Gloomspite Gitz has received a vision of that rune and the power it possesses, and plots to claim it for himself.
Soulslayer: Gotrek travels to the Fyreslayer keep of Karag-Varr to learn why they have ceased to fight against the Chaos and greenskin forces in their realm. There he finds a city under siege by the Idoneth, who seek Gotrek's soul as the ultimate prize.

    The Spinoffs 

Thanquol and Boneripper


Grey Seer: Thanquol is sent to Altdorf to retrieve the Wormstone, a long-lost Skaven relic. But before he arrives, the stone is found and taken by a group of small-time smugglers, resulting in a five way conflict over it between Thanquol, the smugglers, the local Skaven community, a local crime boss, and the followers of a wizard working to protect the Empire from the shadows.
Temple of the Serpent: Thanquol is sent to the New World to assassinate a hated Lizardman prophet. But the Slaan the prophet serves has also arranged for an expedition of human treasure hunters to arrive at roughly the same time for the sake of an experiment of his.
Thanquol's Doom: Thanquol is sent to join an expedition to attack the dwarven city of Karak Angkul, not knowing that the leader of the expedition seeks to make a Doomsphere, a long forgotten Skaven weapon capable of shattering mountains... that unfortunately doesn't have much of a lead time for the person activating it to get clear.

Short Stories:

Mind-Stealer: After ordering an attack on a caravan because he thinks Gotrek and Felix are among the guards, Thanquol is cursed by a witch travelling with it, and finds his mind trapped in Boneripper's body. Also appears in the first Gotrek & Felix omnibus.
Thanquol Triumphant: Thanquol single-handedly saves a clan of Skaven from destruction by Orks... a clan of Skaven that he was supposed to be destroying himself.

Ulrika the Vampire


Bloodborn: Ulrika's mistress is ordered to travel to Nuln to investigate a serial killer who is murdering members of the local Lahmia coven in a way that publicly exposes them as vampires. Ulrika is instructed to follow due to her still needing training in controlling her bloodlust. While investigating the killings herself, Ulrika finds herself crossing paths with and falling for a vampire's greatest natural enemy: a Sigmarite Witch Hunter.

Bloodforged: Chafing at the restrictions placed upon her by her mistress, Ulrika flees Nuln and makes her way back to Praag. There, she stumbles upon a cult conspiring to cripple the entire leadership of the city with a single stroke, with her only ally being a fellow vampire who is considered just as unwelcome by the local Lahmia coven as she is.

Bloodsworn: Having learned of a Slyvanian plot to destroy the Lahmias, Ulrika returns to Nuln to find the problem is worse than she feared: the von Carsteins seek to murder Emperor Karl Franz and pin the blame on the Lahmias, so that the Empire will focus upon internal witchhunts and leave itself vulnerable to foreign invasion. But with the Lahmias too busy arguing with each other to effectively act against them, Ulrika is forced to act alone to stop the plot, a plan that could very well cost her the last of her humanity...


  • The Alcoholic: The typical Slayer is generally trying to do one of two things at any given moment: trying to get killed, or trying to get drunk.
  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: If Felix had remained sober after Gotrek pulled him out of the military crackdown of the Window Tax Riots, he probably wouldn't have sworn to be his Rememberer, and thus the stories as we know them wouldn't have happened.
  • Amazon Brigade: Giantslayer features the Maiden-Guard; spear-wielding warrior-women charged with protecting the female druids known as Oracles.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: Octavia the necromancer from The Serpent Queen can function by the time of the story, but in her backstory was so dependent on routine that major changes made her completely lock up for weeks. She got into necromancy in the first place because she sees predictable mindless undead as superior to chaotic people or intelligent undead.
  • Anachronic Order: While the novels are (mostly) in chronological order, the short stories are not, and many of them are impossible to place in any sort of order whatsoever.
  • Animal Motifs: Garmr Hrodvitner (whose name is basically Old Norse for "Hound Fame-Wolf") is a Norscan Chaos Lord of Khorne whose title is "Gorewolf" and has a wolf-shaped helmet.
  • Ancestral Weapon: Gotrek's axe was literally forged by Grimnir, the Dwarf ancestor god of war and vengeance. It's so powerful that it's turning Gotrek into some kind of super-dwarf, possibly even Grimnir himself.
  • Angel Unaware: In Blood of the Old World Grombrindal joins the party for a while. He does so little to conceal his identity, including introducing himself by a variant on his more famous nickname, that it's frankly astonishing Gotrek didn't figure it out.
  • Archnemesis Dad: Felix's dad, Gustav, disowned him for being a poet and only agrees to see him to get him to destroy evidence used to blackmail him.
  • Anyone Can Die: Being a recurring character is no protection, especially in The End Times.
  • Barrier Warrior: Max Schreiber. He's a deadly battlemage in his own right, but his real forte is protective enchantments and wards, which is why Borek Forkbeard hired him to ward the Spirit of Grugni.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: Pretty much sums up the big plot in Shaman Slayer.
  • BFS: Technically a Big Frickin' Axe but hey, it is pretty big.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Gotrek and Felix, all the damned time. Gotrek has this with Snorri and even Teclis occasionally. Felix has tons with the other half of his Battle Couple (whomever that might be), and with Max Schreiber. Most named characters who fight with Gotrek and Felix will generally have this with one or the other eventually.
  • Bash Brothers: Gotrek and Felix. Humans and Dwarfs in general, too, thanks to an ancient oath sworn by the Dwarfs to Sigmar and all his sons; Sigmar rescued the ancient King Kurgan Ironbeard from a party of Greenskins in -15 IC.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension:
    • A possible case between Felix and Siobhain in Giantslayer, which is a Series Continuity Error.
    • In Giantslayer they only speak one sentence to each other in the entire book, and it's a hostile one. Siobhain's only other interactions with Felix are fighting alongside him or glaring at him when he gets too close to her. Throughout the story she also expresses a a strong crush in Teclis. Interestingly, it's implied Felix is jealous of Teclis over this.
    • Later in Elfslayer, when Felix is musing on past women he's had sexual encounters with, Siobhain is listed among them despite their previous lack of chemistry.
  • Bestiality Is Depraved: One of the short stories reveals that beastmen consider the thought of mating with a human as repulsive as human would consider mating with a beastman.
  • Beyond the Impossible:
    • Felix and Gotrek start as relatively typical heroes of the setting. By the end of the third book, they've done things that should by all accounts never happen by the rules.
    • Kelmain Blackstaff, and Lhoigor Goldenrod are ludicrously powerful sorcerers, two of the most powerful wizards ever in the setting, and all alive at the same time, with the possible exceptions of Teclis, Malekith and Nagash.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Getting between a Slayer and alcohol is a bad idea.
    • Do not hurt Felix's friends.
    • Just mentioning the Dawi Zharr amongst the Dwarfs is hazardous to your health. It's one thing to lose your continent-spanning empire to interlopers and have your race worn down by Forever War against evil ratmen and goblins. It's a whole other level of insult for your own people to cast aside the Ancestors and embrace Chaos and start messing around with [shudders] magic.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: The Jaeger clan. Gustav, Felix's father, is an unbearable dick who exhibits everything wrong with the Nouveau Riche, and Otto, Felix's older brother, is very much like him. Still, despite their many disagreements and having nothing in common, Otto's still a pretty decent (if decadent and Holier Than Thou) guy, who tries to help Felix whenever he shows up in Nuln (where Otto runs the largest branch of Jaeger & Sons). Inevitably, Otto tries to hard to get Felix to rejoin the family business, which leads to them resenting each other powerfully. The only normal and reasonable member of the family (Otto's and Felix's mother) died when Felix was a child.
  • Blessed with Suck:
    • Gotrek is perhaps the most badass hero in all of the world, as the combination of his skill, legendarily powerful magical weapon and his own strange destiny means he is practically unkillable... and he's a Death Seeker who needs to die in battle if he's to have any hope of attaining redemption for his sins.
    • Felix is honor-bound to follow Gotrek so he can compose a saga of Gotrek's doom. But the sheer epicness of the battles that Gotrek has survived so far means that Felix is more likely to die himself once Gotrek does, as he's lampshaded. Furthermore, either his magical weapon or his role in Gotrek's fate means he's been adventuring for 20 years and hasn't aged a day, and he probably won't start aging until he untangles himself from Gotrek's fate. Also, nobody is willing to believe his tales because of Arbitrary Skepticism.
    • Ulrika ends up being transformed into a vampire.
  • Blood Knight: Gotrek and Slayers in general. But Garmr in Road of Skulls is arguably the most extreme. His entire purpose is to shatter the barriers holding back the Realm of Chaos and transform the Old World into an endless daemonic battlefield.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: When Thanquol captures them, he recounts the plans they have foiled, and they don't even remember him at first and weren't actively trying to thwart his plans. Thanquol is angry, to put it lightly.
  • Canon Discontinuity: Nathan Long's novels set during and after the events of Storm of Chaos, as that storyline was entirely retconned in the jump from 6th to 7th edition. Some of this is given a lampshade in Giantslayer, as Felix is pulled through the Paths of the Old Ones and sees in it visions of events which happen in some of the short stories that were later retconned by newer stories. Felix thinks that these are divinations of possibilities of things that could have happened if things had been different.
  • Cast From Hitpoints: Max is a very powerful wizard, but his endurance is sharply limited, and he performs a number of magical feats that come close to killing him.
  • The Cavalry: In Daemonslayer, at the end of the first Skaven assault on the dwarf outpost, the defenders are badly drained and outnumbered after and fight they were unprepared for and are about to be rushed by the regrouped Skaven army, and their lot looks extremely dire — until a flight of gyrocopters arrives, starts bombing the Skaven and sends their army into a rout.
  • Chaotic Stupid: The Skaven are usually too busy scheming against each other and getting egoistic about their race's "superiority" to accomplish much. Which is a good thing cause even when they fight each OTHER their plots threaten cities, when the work together to combat a common threat they can destroy nations.
  • The Chew Toy:
    • Grey Seer Thanquol is somewhat like this, bordering on Cosmic Plaything. Every time he is about to make it big, Gotrek and Felix ruin his plans...and kill Bone Ripper. You'd almost feel bad for the guy if he wasn't HIDEOUSLY evil.
    • This happens so often that he concludes they are hunting him down, and for a while they thought he was following them... and then, in Elfslayer, he captures them at last and learns they've never even heard of his name before now.
    • He has his own books now. He doesn't manage to fulfill his plans there, either.
      • In the novel "The Serpent's Temple", a Slaan (in essence a physically incarnated godling with prophetic and magical powers unmatched by any individual Greater Daemon) is about to destroy Thanquol with a mere thought, when it notices something about Thanquol's fate-line. It promptly calls off its Lizardmen goons and creates a temporary current to speed Thanquol safely back to the Skaven under-empire. Why? Because it realises that letting Thanquol live would bring unspeakable doom, death, destruction and disaster... to the Skaven race. That's right, Thanquol is officially one of the worst enemies the Skaven have.
      • However, in the next book the Slann realizes that he made a mistake and didn't look far enough into the future, trying to send an agent to assassinate him after all. Come The End Times and the time skip before Age of Sigmar and Thanquol is pretty much single-handedly responsible for the Skaven race surviving the end of the world and spreading to others. Oops.
  • Cliffhanger Copout: The third disc of Realmslayer has Gotrek's current companion suggest that they simply explain to the monster they're facing that using the Realmgate it contains to send them on their way would be to defy Nagash (who it hates), only for Gotrek to convince him that they should fight it out of sheer principle and the two charging into a seemingly unwinnable battle. The beginning of the next chapter reveals that it was listening to their argument and sent them through without a fight whether they liked it or not.
  • Continuity Drift: The stories have been written over a long time frame and some parts of the setting have changed since then. Notably the description of Kislev (and especially Praag) feels a lot less distinctly 'foreign' than in later books dealing with the country.
  • Crapsack World: When it's not a straight-up World Half Empty. Warhammer is not a very pleasant setting.
    • Bizarrely, averted as the novels drag on. In much the same way as the Ciaphas Cain novels, Gotrek & Felix have started to do enough damage to the bad guys that the world is starting to get glimmers of hope. Since Warhammer is already a brighter world than Warhammer 40,000 you might actually argue that the duo's twenty-five in-universe years of adventuring have proven mortals can make a difference.
  • Continuity Snarl:
    • The Drachenfels semi-sequel Beasts in Velvet is at least partially a follow-up to Skavenslayer and references events from Beastslayer, but in this series the events of that series are treated as having happened almost a generation before.
    • Ghoulslayer is set some time after Blood of the Old World, but they were worked on seperately and released the same day. This creates multiple small inconsistencies, mostly connected to his character growth and coming to terms with his new situation.
  • Cursed with Awesome:
    • Gotrek, despite throwing himself at the most dangerous enemies he can find, repeatedly fails to get himself killed.
    • Felix to a lesser extent. This is after he finds out he hasn't aged a day in 20 odd years of adventuring.
    • In Zombieslayer another slayer believed that Gotrek is literally cursed with awesome. It culminates in a scene where he punts Gotrek through a door with the retreating survivors that locks behind him before a fight to keep that ridiculous luck from preventing his own doom. Before going off to die against Krell, he actually shouts through the door that he just knew that, if he hadn't done that, even despite the fact he's suffering a belly wound that has his guts hanging from his body, Gotrek's curse would have ensured he survives.
  • Death Seeker: All Slayers are dwarves who have taken an oath to seek heroic doom in recompense for something so disgraceful or shameful that death can be the only recompense. It highlights the importance of death in a Slayer's role that Gotrek is considered the worst slayer of all time — he might be a hero, but until he gets killed in combat whatever disgrace he committed cannot be atoned for — and at the rate he's going, he's going to die of old age, which is the worst possible death for any Slayer.
  • Defensive Feint Trap: In Trollslayer, Felix and an amnesiac Gotrek are surrounded by the same mutants they drove off earlier. With Gotrek helpless because of his amnesia, and the mutants outnumbering the pair, Felix prepares to make a last stand. Fortunately for the two, the mutant leader (wrongfully) believes that the duo are trying to trick them into a trap, and knowing how dangerous the dwarf slayer is, orders his band to retreat. He even scornfully mocks Felix for thinking them stupid enough to fall for it, and Felix barely manages to shut himself up in time.
  • Despair Event Horizon: This is what pushes just about any Dwarf to shave their head and join the Slayer Cult. Gotrek's in particular is never spelt out explicitly, but is eventually revealed over the stories to be the result of three things happening one after the other; he was the sole survivor of an expedition into the Chaos Wastes to find the lost Dwarven city of Karag Dum, he returns home to find his home village razed and everyone slaughtered (and his wife and child amongst the dead), and, finally, a Dwarf thane provokes Gotrek after this until he goes berserk and winds up slaughtering the thane and his entire court, the act for which Gotrek's shame forces him to shave his head and become a Slayer. Snorri's gets revealed in Kinslayer and is intimately intertwined with Gotrek's, as he finally recalls.
  • Did Not Think This Through: The Slann that's behind everything in Temple of the Serpent realizes at the end of the story that there's a critical flaw in his experiment, making the entire thing worthless. When informed that he could potentially salvage it if he cooperates, the last human survivor takes his own life as revenge.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?:
    • Gotrek is tossed aside and left for dead by a Chaos Daemon. The last thing it hears before being blasted back to the black realms from which it came is:
      "Oi! You! I'm not finished with you yet!"
    • Gotrek and Felix have never quite equaled that feat but the events of Elfslayer, Shamanslayer, and Dragonslayer have all gone to up to eleven levels for mortals in Warhammer's setting.
    • Another Greater Daemon met them, remarked it had no chance since the Slayer was fated to die fighting something much more powerful than itself, and promptly fled the planet.
  • Dirty Coward: The Skaven, naturally. Especially Thanquol, who flees whenever the odds turn against him and leaving his minions to their doom without a second thought.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: In Skavenslayer, the Eshin Assassin Chang Squik stumbles upon the ballroom and is spotted by the partying nobles. Fortunately for him, the nobles are wearing costumes and most are drunk and mistake chang as another party-goer wearing a realistic costume. Chang takes this as an opportunity to locate Countess Emmanuelle and hopefully redeem himself in the eyes of Thanquol for placing the scrying stone far away from the objective. Unfortunately for him, when Thanquol and his Stormvermin reach the ballroom, Thanquol, who humorously enough initially mistakes Chang for a costumed human, blasts him with his magic for his constant failures.
  • Downer Ending: In a sense, the entire series: Gotrek meets his doom at the hands of Grimnir himself, but rather than respite he gets resurrected as his avatar and is sent on an unending rampage through an army of Daemons, which he dosen't seem to mind. Felix on the other hand ends up trapped in a collapsed temple with no apparent way out and a limited supply of food, water and air. Almost every other named character is dead, including Felix's young family, and the End Times are in full swing which will ultimately end with a Chaos victory and the near-total annihilation of the Warhammer world.
  • Dragon Hoard: Skjalandir has one, which provides a party of Slayers an additional reason to seek him out in addition to revenge for a wrecked airship. Shame it gets buried under tons of rubble after a cache of gunpowder is accidentally set off. Then again, Dwarfs can dig it out... eventually.
  • The Dreaded: A few of the more notable villains in the series, except to Gotrek. The only exception is that even Gotrek acts more reserved at the mention of Nagash. A few examples are:
    • The Bloodthirster in Daemonslayer. The Dwarfs, except for Gotrek, were terrified and Felix almost soils himself as soon as he sees it.
    • Skjalandir the Ancient, a mutated dragon from Dragonslayer. A local warlord fears him even though he literally has his army surrounding him.
    • In Giantslayer a Truthsayer of Albion says they regard the Witch King Malekith as this.
  • Drinking Contest: Gotrek and Snorri's meeting at the start of Daemonslayer is celebrated with one. Specifically, they order twenty pints of beer, and the one who downs their ten last has to pay.
  • Dumb Blonde: While not unintelligent, Aethenir and Claudia Pallenberger in Elfslayer are just complete and utter morons.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: In Daemonslayer Gotrek and Felix run across a flock of Harpies. Though the harpies are not described in great detail they are apparently ugly, not obviously gendered and completely non human looking, matching the genderless gargoyle look Games Works was going for in the late 1990s. From the early 2000s on Warhammer Harpies started looking far more female and far more human.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: In Trollslayer, Gotrek slays a Troll. In Skavenslayer, Gotrek slays a lot of Skaven. Guess what happens in Daemonslayer?
    • Subverted in Dragonslayer, when to everyone's surprise (including his own) it's Felix who slays a Dragon!
    • Also in Orcslayer, there are a lot of Orcs but the main enemy is a unique monster.
    • Played with in The Serpent Queen. The name implies they will be fighting the established character Khalida, who appears on the cover. In fact they end up allying with her against the real villain... who is also a snake-themed undead ruler, and is partly motivated by wanting a monopoly on the title.
  • Expy: The Van Hel lineage, which are obviously Van Helsing crossed with the Belmont family who, instead of all becoming Vampire Hunters, became Witch Hunters.
  • The Evil Genius: Lhoigor Goldenrod and Kelmain Blackstaff.
  • Fire Keeps It Dead: a troll mutated by Warpstone guards a great treasure, and it not only heals itself from all wounds, but pieces of it that are cut off also heal. Only fire can fix this.
  • From Bad to Worse: The Skaven attacks on Nuln have a cumulative effect and degrade the city in spite of our main duo's efforts. Skaven playing your city's head of the secret police like a fiddle? Check. Trying to steal vital war machines and plans from your central armory and accidentally burning it down? Check. Unleashing a bio-warfare agent into your city's water supply? Check. Unleashing a hoard of genetically-engineered rats who will eat EVERYTHING they can get their teeth into and breed like mad? Oh boy check. Launching a full two-pronged assault on your city, one front blitzing through the citizens while the other simultaneously goes for the local nobility at their ball? Big time check. Yes folks, this is what Skaven can do while being Chaotic Stupid and actively sabotaging each other.
  • Funetik Aksent: Makaisson's Scottish accent (in Reikspiel) is so thick even other dwarves have difficulty understanding him.
  • Fungus Humongous: While in the Chaos Wastes in Daemonslayer, the crew of the Spirit of Grungni encounters a forest of tree-sized fungi in a rainbow of sickly shades and dripping with toxic slime, as an example of the twisted and unnatural life found there. It also shows up quite a bit below Karak Eight Peaks, where the fungus farms have been slowly mutated by warpstone for decades.
  • Gadgeteer Genius:
    • Malakai Makaisson
    • Possibly subverted with Heskitt One-Eye. A tech genius certainly but rather than invent his own things he tries to steal them from humans and improve on them.
  • Genius Bruiser: Max Schreiber, Teclis, and Arek Daemonclaw. Teclis especially, who's almost as dangerous with his sword as Gotrek is with his axe, despite being an asthmatic cripple kept upright by powerful potions.
  • Genius Cripple: Teclis, as per his main lore, is extremely magically potent but barely able to walk without his potions.
  • Genre Savvy: Thanquol for much of Skavenslayer. After Gotrek and Felix stumble on to one of his schemes and ruin it he correctly pegs them for the sort of adventurers that do that sort of thing and sets about tipping them off to his Skaven rivals' plans so they can foil those and stop anyone else getting the credit for taking the city of Nuln.
  • Ghostly Goals: The dwarfen spirits of Karak Eight Peaks cannot pass on to their afterlife due to a Chaos Troll desecrating their tombs. A spirit begs Gotrek and Felix to release them from their torment by killing the beast. When the pair finally slay the troll, the spirits save the pair from a large group of greenskins before passing on.
  • Global Airship: When he boards the Spirit of Grungni, Felix ponders at length on the revolutionary possibilities it offers for commerce and travel. Unfortunately, dwarf engineers are very jealous and secretive, so there's little chance of a fleet of airships happening anytime soon.
  • Handsome Lech: Subverted. Felix certainly enjoys the company of attractive women, though not to the extent that he's a lech. It's just, well, the girls add up a bit over time. Gotrek and Max lampshade this on occasion. Up to eleven in 'The Serpent Queen', where the Herald of Khalida, the undead champion Zabbai, outright says she would take Felix for herself if she were still a living woman. Gotrek spends half the book trying to hook them up, although he's probably just screwing with Felix.
  • Have I Mentioned I Am a Dwarf Today?: Put a dwarf in presence of anything human-made and they will complain that dwarfs can make a better version.
  • Healing Hands: Max Schreiber. As a Gold wizard, Max's specialty lies in the defensive, but he's a reasonably skilled magical healer as well, which comes in handy when, during the Siege of Praag, Ulrika comes down with a magical Nurgelite plague. Max manages to cure her, but nearly kills himself doing it.
  • Heroic BSoD:
    • Through the first part of Elfslayer Gotrek suffered a BIG one of these.
    • Gotrek is actually permanently stuck in one of these. Really, the only time he ever really removes himself is when he's fighting. He's not exactly congenial company.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Gotrek and Felix, with the emphasis on the heterosexual; Felix's only sexual interest is in various women he encounters in his journey, while Gotrek's sole interests are downing beer & ale by the liter and fighting monsters in hopes of getting killed at last. Gotrek's life revolves around blood and booze because he's a widower, driven to take up the Slayer oath by the brutal deaths of his beloved wife and daughter.
  • Highly-Visible Ninja: Used in an assassination attempt on Thanquol in one of his spin-offs. He realizes almost too late that Skyre assassins are smarter than that and the real attack is from another direction.
  • Horny Vikings: The Chaos Warriors Gotrek and Felix meet in Manslayer and Road of Skulls. Especially the latter.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Thanquol's main schtick. When we see from his perspective he actively re-writes his memories and opinions moment to moment depending on how powerful he is in the group and how well his current plan is doing.
  • Idiot Ball: Claudia Pallenberger and Aethenir both pick it up and never let go in Elfslayer.
    • Claudia's moronic pursuit of Felix (in which she doesn't relent even after they're caught having sex) does nothing but drive another wedge between Felix and Max (though, in this case, Max is Claudia's guardian, not part of a Love Triangle), and her pointless anger over being snubbed by Felix (after she had come on to him yet again after they had been previously caught) causes her to keep the contents of one of her visions from Max and Felix, leading to Felix, Gotrek, and Aethenir being captured by Thanquol, leading to the brutal and horrific torture of the nearly-as-moronic Aethenir.
    • Aethenir's not nearly so bad, but he never stops being a naive idiot (though he does step up at the end), and his seduction by a disguised dark elf sets the whole plot in motion, and nearly leads to the destruction of the whole Old World by a Slaanesh-worshipping dark elf sorceress.
  • Infinity +1 Sword: Gotrek's runic axe. It has killed or had a part in killing a Greater Daemon of Khorne, arguably a Greater Daemon of Slaanesh, a dragon, a giant, a vampire, werewolves, dozens of regular daemons, daemon-powered siege equipment, Chaos champions, and a dark elf CITY. It can also cut through enemy mooks like they were made of screaming butter. Even more than that, it was literally forged by the Dwarf god of war and vengeance. It might be the most powerful weapon to ever exist. Dual-wielding it with a certain runic hammer combined their powers, making him so powerful he cut through an entire army singlehandedly.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Felix sometimes, it is usually happens when he finds a girl he cares for and thinks about settling down. Felix is starting to realize that's never going to happen, having essentially become the Highlander. However, he's surprisingly resistant to every level of weirdness. He acts more like a middle aged man than what his twenty-something body would indicate.
  • Interrupted Intimacy: This happens to Felix in The Two Crowns of Ras Karim short story. As usual, Gotrek is to blame.
  • The Juggernaut: Gotrek, and to a lesser extent Felix.
  • Just Eat Gilligan: In Trollslayer, Felix is told by an alchemist to find a flower in the nearby mountains as part of an ingredient to cure Gotrek (who is suffering from amnesia). As they are being chased by a band of mutants, they happen to find the flower. Felix thinks that eating the flower will be enough to cure Gotrek, and orders the latter to eat it. It does nothing and Gotrek just spits it out.
  • Last of Their Kind: In Daemonslayer, Gotrek and Felix discover that there are still dwarfs living in hidden holds deep beneath the lost city of Karag Dum. It's explained that the surviving dwarfs of Karag Dum were split into five factions, each living in their own hidden holds. By the time the main characters arrive, only one remains whilst the other four were long lost to the besieging forces of chaos.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Gotrek and Teclis, as well as Felix, to a certain extent. Most of the various Big Bads are this too.
  • The Load: Claudia Pallenberger and Aethenir in Elfslayer. Claudia graduates to The Millstone when she has a vision of Felix getting abducted by Skaven and doesn't warn him about it because Felix had rejected her advances.
  • The Lost Lenore: Gotrek is implied to have been married, though his wife died, in a vision of his life before he became a Slayer. Kirsten and Ulrika serve as this to Felix. Gotrek's wife is confirmed to be dead in Kinslayer. Snorri Nosebiter killed her.
  • Mle Trois: In Dragonslayer, after the main characters slay Skjalandir, they discover that the armies of the greenskin warlord Urgek Manflayer and the bandit king Henrik Richter are outside the dragon's cave (each wanting the dragon's treasure). When Gotrek shouts that they killed Skjalandir, Urgek and Henrik's armies clash whilst the former and his bodyguards go for the main characters. Luckily for our heroes, the Spirit of Grungi arrives and and routs the two opposing armies.
  • Moses in the Bulrushes: One Tomb King character the pair met in The Serpent Queen was supposedly found this way and adopted by the royal family. The fact that Rhupesh is biologically a dwarf is considered an insignificant detail.
  • Musical Assassin: The villainous plot in Bloodforged centers around a demonically possessed violin that drives anyone who hears it insane, and a concert that virtually everyone of importance in Praag plans to attend.
  • Mutual Kill: In Daemonslayer, while exploring Karag Dum, Gotrek and Felix come across the skeletons of two Chaos warriors impaled on each other's blades, having died to simultaneous strikes during battle.
  • Nouveau Riche: The Jaeger clan. Felix's father, Gustav is an extremely successful and wealthy (if somewhat underhanded) merchant, and has spent decades and countless fortunes trying to buy his way into the nobility. His Screw the Rules, I Have Money! behavior is part of what led Felix to becoming a small-time Soapbox Sadie at Altdorf University. Unfortunately, it rubbed off rather strongly on Felix's older brother, Otto.
  • Noble Fugitive: As a result of his role in the Window Tax riots and the death of several elite and highborn knights (killed by Gotrek to save Felix), Felix is a wanted fugitive in The Empire. This is part of what brings him to keep his oath to Gotrek in the first place; he needs to get out of Altdorf.
    • It should be noted that Felix's memoirs stated that for all his fears about being hunted down over those deaths, in retrospect he doubted that anyone bothered to hunt them over that once they were a few days out of the city. Once the timeskip was over, it appears that the authorities have forgotten about them, even with his published memoirs being an outright confession to his involvement.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • A few references to adventures during the twenty year time jump between Giantslayer and Orcslayer, like the time the duo stayed the night in a Tomb King's... tomb. The Serpent Queen is full of these and was actually written to explain the previous example (it turns out that they were invited guests).
    • Nobody says what exactly happened during the infamous Window Tax Riots that started Gotrek and Felix on their adventures together, other than that the army started violently attacking the protestors (thus sparking the riots), Gotrek chose to save Felix by killing some of the soldiers (which got a bounty placed on both their heads), and then they went and got drunk together, causing the young, ambitious poet to vow to write Gotrek's death-saga.
    • Gotrek loses his axe at some point between Slayer and Realmslayer and has to get a replacement.
  • No Man of Woman Born: In Trollslayer, the female Chaos warrior Justine is prophesied by her daemonic master that no warrior can kill her. Just when she is about to kill Felix with her bare hands, her own daughter (whom she abandoned and came to kill to remove whatever weakness she had left) takes her sword and impales Justine from behind. Before she dies, Justine is amused by the irony that it wasn't a warrior who killed her but her young daughter.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: Thanquol's incompetence and inflated opinion of himself makes it easy to think of him as a comic relief villain after his first couple of appearances. It can come as a shock when we're reminded he really is a powerful Grey Seer, for example when he almost drags the Spirit of Grungni down to earth using his warpstone-enhanced powers alone.
  • Obligatory Joke: In Realmslayer, Gotrek is played by BRIAN BLESSED. You don't pass up an opportunity like that to get a "X is ALIVE!" reference.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different:
    • In "The Children of Ulric", a short story in Trollslayer, the due stumbles across a battle between a cabal of Tzeentch cultists and the titular Children, said to be the descendants of the wolf god Ulric and human women, while lost in the forest.
    • Hrolf Wyrdulf, a Norscan Khornate Champion, is basically a werewolf in Chaos Plate.
  • Pdo Hunt: To show how evil the Dark Elves in are Elfslayer (or just the ones on the Black Ark), a brothel madam visits and the captive children after removing their clothes, revealing that they have legalized child prostitution.
  • Percussive Maintenance: In Daemonslayer, Thanquol's new seeing crystal seems to work perfectly when he first tries it out, but its picture is quickly replaced by a haze of static that stays there until Thanquol gives it a sound thump to the side.
  • Phlebotinum: Warpstone, which seems capable of doing almost anything.
  • The Plan: A couple of Chaos sorcerers tried this in order to get rid of our heroes... didn't work. This caused the two or three they were successfully throwing at the entire rest of the world to also crumble.
  • Powder Trail: In the fourth novel, the dwarfs lay a powder trail (and a couple kegs of powder) to collapse the tunnel leading into a dragon's lair in case they're overrun by orcs or bandits. Their engineer's rocket launcher accidentally sets it off, leading to much swearing since the dragon had quite a large hoard.
  • Prophecy Twist: Gotrek is forbidden from marching to war with the dwarven muster of Karak Kadrin in Road of Skulls because of a prophecy stating what will happen if he does so. But it says nothing about what will happen if he travels to the war separately from the muster by alternative means...
  • Pyrrhic Victory:
    • Grey Seer: Scrivner's men stop Thanquol from poisoning all of Altdorf, but preventing anyone from drinking the powdered Wormstone he had dumped in the reservoir required them to blow it up. With the city's supply of clean water gone, the lower classes will be forced to choose between greater poverty in order to buy water from out of town importers and greater risk of illness from trying to drink river water. Not to mention greater taxes to pay for repairing the reservoir.
    • Thanquol's Doom: The Doomsphere is destroyed and the Skaven attack on Karak Angkul is thwarted, but between the Skaven raid on the city itself while the army was away destroying the Doomsphere and Thanquol's accidental summoning of a Greater Bloodthirster, casualties are extremely heavy. And with Klarak Bronzehammer dead, there is no one to speak against the Guild's claims that his innovations are dangerous (and the reason why the Skaven attacked in the first place), resulting in his life's work being seized by conservatives who promptly lock it all away for careful study, not to be openly used by anyone for centuries, if ever.
  • Rash Promise: The series starts when Felix (an unsuccessful poet) starts a protest against the Empire's latest tax (on windows), which is broken up by heavy cavalry. He's yanked out in the nick of time by the dwarf Gotrek (a Slayer looking for a heroic death), and drunkenly agrees to become Gotrek's rememberer (a chronicler accompanying a Slayer so their death can be immortalized). He's repeatedly tempted to give up once sober (and indeed throughout the series) since his oath leads to him being in near-constant mortal danger, but never does, despite Gotrek never managing to die in battle.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: Part of the reason why people tend to dismiss Felix's journals of his travels as fiction is because Gotrek's accomplishments are so outrageous as to be unbelievable. For example, in the short story "Kineater", a respected novelist who had dismissed Felix's writings as penny dreadful material because of the absurd feats attributed to Gotrek recants that position after seeing him kill an Ogre Tyrant in unarmed combat — something she would never have thought possible had she not witnessed it first hand.
  • The Red Mage: Max is a very well-rounded mage, and can do pretty much anything the plot demands, subject to his endurance limit.
  • Retcon: The later Nathan Long novels take place twenty years after the ones by William King. This was done rather neatly by establishing that the dates in the older ones (from a fictional document) were due to the printer mistakenly using the current year instead of the years they occurred in. It was necessary in order to fit the stories in more closely with the official timeline of the setting. Also, he modifies some aspects of several characters for no apparent reason:
    • Max Schreiber was retconned from a Gold to a Light wizard between his last appearance in Vampireslayer and his reappearance in Elfslayer, although his power set doesn't change.
    • Ulrika is now a vampire of the Lahmia clan, despite his vampire father being described as a Von Carstein vampire in Vampireslayer and other works. The Ulrika spin-off novels handwave this by saying that vampires can have lineage from multiple clans, and which they are a member of is determined by which bloodline's nature calls to them more. Ulrika's sire was of mixed Lahmia and Von Carstein lineage, and felt the Von Carstein side more deeply, while Ulrika's nature is more in tune with her Lahmia heritage.
    • Another change is about Snorri Nosebiters memory. In Dragonslayer, in an inner monologue, he already knows that he no longer remembers exactly the reason why he shaved his head and became a Slayer; however, it's not a big deal (in fact, he drinks to forget his crime). In Shamanslayer, not remembering his crime is now a great shame and an important plot point.
    • Felix himself. In Skavenslayer he has a good relationship with his brother Otto, in Manslayer his brother is the second person whom he despises the most after his father. In one point of Nathan Long's novels, he said that he had a romantic relationship with Siobhain, which never happened.
    • In the Spin-off novel Bloodborn, Nathan said that 3 years have passed between the events of Skavenslayer and those of Vampireslayer, when if you have read King's novels, not even a year has passed.
    • In Dragonslayer, Gotrek and Felix knew Thanquol by name and could recognize him on sight. In Elfslayer, they are apparently totally unaware that there was any connection between the various battles against Skaven that they had fought in the original William King novels, and have no idea who Thanquol is.
    • William King originally had Snorri Nosebiter die offpage in the short story Death and Glory as an incidental casualty of a larger battle — a troll he had killed fell on him and crushed him to death between scenes. His appearance in half the King novels, some of which take place after that story was written, can be explained by the fact that precisely when in the timeline that story occurred was never stated. Then Nathan Long had Snorri still be alive after the timeskip, and turned his Doom into a story arc in its own right, which ultimately came at the hands of Gotrek rather than an already deceased troll.
    • Gotrek and Felix witness the resurrection of the vampire Manfred von Carstein in two separate short stories - Lord of Undeath and Charnel Congress - which are otherwise totally unrelated.
  • Revenge Before Reason: The aspect of Dwarven psychology that ultimately spawns their Death Seeker traits and their need for the Slayer Cult.
  • Savage Wolves: There's the Ulfrgandr (Old Norse for "Wolf Monster"), a giant, indestructible Khornate Chaos Daemon that's in the shape of a massive daemonic wolf.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: The second Thanquol book Temple of the Serpent introduces a whole new cast of characters who are all killed in the course of their adventure, which was all secretly an experiment by a Slaan. At the end of the book he realizes that he knows so little about humans that his data are completely useless, and the last survivor commits suicide out of spite when offered a chance to surrender and submit to further tests. Even in-universe the events, including the deaths of the cast and an entire temple city were a complete waste of time achieving nothing. The only thing actually accomplished by anyone is the lizardman priest that Thanquol was sent to kill being an almost incidental casualty of the effort to escape the city.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: In Road of Skulls Canto the Unsworn (the only Chaos champion who doesn't worship Khorne) makes a run for it when Gotrek destroys his sword, then again just before the final battle (making him the only one to survive). He shows up again in The Lord of the End Times, the very last story in the setting, where he intentionally gets himself killed on the (correct, it turns out) reasoning that dying is the only real escape from what's coming.
  • Scry Versus Scry: In Blood of the Old World multiple factions foresaw Gotrek and Thanquol battling over the World That Was Gate and sought to manipulate the event. These efforts all ended up cancelling out and leaving it as a fair duel, which the heroes conclude was Sigmar's plan all along.
  • She Is All Grown Up: Kat when Gotrek and Felix run into her again in Shaman Slayer. Felix is a bit disturbed by her attraction to him. At first.
  • Situational Sword: Felix's sword is designed to destroy dragons. As such, most of its true power only works in the presence of dragons, and the sword actively seeks to push the wielder into combat with such beasts. It's also intelligent enough to activate itself against other foes if doing so means that the wielder will be able to fight a dragon.
  • Sole Survivor: Thanquol is nearly always the sole survivor of his adventures by the end, its become a running gag.
    • Grey Seer: Thanquol uses magic to escape his enemies and manifests alone in a random old woman's house somewhere in the Empire. After being spooked by her cats and killing her, Thanquol sets off on his own back to Skavenblight, plotting how to shift the blame for this onto someone else.
    • Temple of the Serpent: Thanquol is cast adrift from Lustria on a small boat with a dying Boneripper, who will likely not last long after Thanquol realises he has no food and starts to stare at Boneripper.
    • Thanquol's Doom: Yet again Thanquol is alone after surviving the battle between the Dwarfs, Clan Mors and Skarbrand. Boneripper is with him, albeit badly wounded and possibly dying (And since he is technically Undead he doesn't really count as a survivor), and once again Thanquol is the sole survivor of his mission and must find a way to blame the dead other guy for it. Ikkit Claw is the sole survivor from his own Skaven faction.
  • Spinoff: Thanquol and Ulrika have their own novels now.
  • Spanner in the Works Gotrek and Felix, possibly by divine mandate. These guys just putter around looking for something that will finally give Gotrek his mighty doom and somehow they stumble across the plots of the forces of chaos and foil them, sometimes by accident. Just ask the Grey Seer Thanquol, the Vampire, the... ok, just ask Thanquol since he is the only one of Gotrek's enemies still alive.
  • Sphere of Destruction: Max's other main attack, for powerful single opponents.
  • Springtime for Hitler: Gotrek is on a quest to die heroically in battle while killing as many enemies of the dwarven people as possible to atone for his sins. He is spectacularly bad at the 'dying' part.
  • The Starscream: Thanquol is this even by Skaven standards, to the point of actively sabotaging his own plans to keep anyone else from getting any credit. It's even to the point that he's more of a danger to his own race than any other.
  • Sub-Par Supremacist: In "Elfslayer", Aethenir (the haughty high elf leading the expedition to retrieve a magical book) turns out to have been responsible for the book's theft in the first place, after being seduced into it by a disguised dark elf's fake sob story. His captain of the guard (who's just as haughty, but at least has the martial skill to back it up) is not happy about the entire thing and swears to kill Aethenir if he screws up again, although unfortunately he's too competent to be allowed to live long.
    Felix found a lump blocking his throat, and fought down the unworthy thought that he would rather that it had been Aethenir who had died and Rion who had lived, for the captain had been the epitome of elven virtue that Aethenir should have been.
  • Thanatos Gambit: In Thanquol's Doom, a dying grey seer turns out to have replaced a relic that can summon daemons of their god with one fashioned from his own arm that summons a Khornate daemon to destroy its summoner.
  • Theme Naming: Most of the books are called "[blank]slayer" with the blank being filled in by whatever Gotrek needs to kill this time. In a few cases the slayer in the title is not him however. In Dragonslayer Felix is the one to kill the titular dragon and in Vampireslayer the vampire is killed by Snorri, more or less by accident.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • Felix and Max as become more competent and deadly as the books go on, although you'd have to accumulate Badass points simply by surviving that long in the Warhammer world.
    • Happens to Thanquol in Grey Seer. Upon seeing that his new apprentice Kratch, who the Council forced on him, has betrayed him and sided with Lord Skrolk, Thanquol unleashes such a powerful blast of magic against Kratch, annihilating him instantly. Everybody in the chamber, including an Imperial Shadow Wizard and Lord Skrolk, one of the most powerful Plague Priests of Clan Pestilens, himself are horrified by the magnitude of power that Thanquol commands. Unfortunately he used it all in that blast and was exhaused by it, which Skrolk quickly leapt on.
  • True Companions: The recurring companions Gotrek and Felix have had with them on their travels. Max the wizard and Action Girl Ulrika (starting earlier on) with the slayers Bjorni, Ulli, Snorri, and Makaisson joining in later. Several of the slayers obviously complete their oath, and the survivors make their enemies pay dearly for every member lost. With Ulli, for example, Felix notes that while he didn't particularly like him, Ulli had been a friend and comrade on a desperate adventure. Seeing him cut down causes Felix to fly into such a killing rage, he scares the crap out of the beastmen who did it...well, those that survived the initial onslaught.
  • Unknown Rival: Thanquol is convinced that the pair is hunting him since they manage to thwart his schemes at every turn. For their part they just thought they seemed to randomly run into Skaven a lot among all their other adventures and hadn't even heard his name until Elfslayer. After that they genuinely do have it in for him, but naturally it's the last time their paths cross before the breaking of the world. The first time they actually meet as rivals is in Blood of the Old World, thousands of years later.
  • Uriah Gambit: Every Thanquol novel has the Grey Seer sent on a dangerous mission far from Skavenblight in the hopes that he won't come back.
  • Valkyries: Valkia the Bloody, Sword-Maiden of the Chaos God Khorne, bearer of the great spear Slaupnir, and the Bringer of Glory, makes brief cameo appearances to the Norscan Chaos army in Road of Skulls.
  • Villainous Breakdown:
    • Grey Seer Thanquol is made of this trope. His biggest one comes in Elfslayer when, after two decades of ranting about how the titular duo are his worst enemies and plotting revenge for all of his plans Gotrek and Felix have foiled over the years, he finds out that they don't even know who he is, having ruined Thanquol's life essentially by accident!
    • In Manslayer, The Dragon of a band of Tzeentchian cultists utterly loses his shit when the pair thwart the cult's plan to detonate a massive bomb under the city of Nuln by flooding the chamber where the explosives are planted with the contents of the local sewer.
      " You ruined everything! Our glorious future, drowned in a tide of shit! I'll kill you! In Tzeentch's name, I'll kill you!"
  • Violent Glaswegian: Malakai Makaisson. The author does a very good job of capturing the accent — although seeing as Bill King is Scottish, he'd have no excuse for failing to do so. Something of a joke on the Scottish-light accent that most fantasy dwarfs, including the others in the books, usually speak in.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Felix and Gotrek, and how! Gotrek and Felix are generally fairly standoffish towards one another, and can sometimes be really viciously mean and/or sarcastic, but they're both close to the only thing the other has in the world. Felix also has this with Max Schreiber, due to their rivalry over Ulrika. Gotrek and Snorri are also this, but Snorri's so stupid and sweet it's all on Gotrek's side. Max and Malakai Makaisson start out this way, but they become true friends around Dragonslayer.
  • Weapon of X-Slaying: Felix's Situational Sword is especially effective against dragons, or when questing TO specifically fight a dragon.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Happens in both Manslayer and Shamanslayer, both by Otto to Felix. Guy can just never catch a break I tell ya.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?:
    • Gotrek, since his aim is to die a glorious death, is deeply bitter about his persistent survival. Felix is starting to feel this even though he's only middle aged.
    • Arek Daemonclaw of all people has what's left of his human morality who's sick of the eternal fighting and scheming and just wants it to end already.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Before beginning his adventures with Gotrek, Felix was this while he was a student at Altdorf University, which made him a bit of a Soapbox Sadie, leading to his participating in the Window Tax riots, in which Gotrek killed several of the Emperor's elite Reiksguard cavalry to save Felix's life. In the drunken aftermath, Felix swore to follow Gotrek and recount his doom. And the rest, as they say, is history.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds:
    • Gotrek.
    • Felix gets this a bit himself, becoming essentially more and more like Connor McLeod as the decades pass. He's already lost his first love murdered by a deranged nobel, his second to vampirism and is now becoming increasingly aware he'll outlive all the others. You know, if he doesn't get killed first.
  • Worthy Opponent: Gotrek comes to regard Garmr Hrodvitner as this towards the end of Road of Skulls, which is quite a lot.
  • Xanatos Gambit: The Council of Thirteen only send Thanquol on missions where his getting everyone he works with killed is considered almost as good as actual success. Even though he (or whoever he pinned responsibility on) are almost always rewarded for the destruction he accidentally inflicts on the Council's Skaven enemies he never figures out the pattern.
  • Year Outside, Hour Inside: Time works differently in the furthest part of the chaos wastes. The dwarfen city of Karag Dum is located in such a place. 200 years have past since the fall of Karag Dum, but to it's inhabitants, it was only 20 years. The main characters and the dwarfs of Karag Dum are all surprised by this revelation.
  • You All Look Familiar: Gotrek's outright states this about Skaven. The closest he gets to differing between them is counting certain ones as being alive or dead. Of course in Thanquol's own books he admits that he really can't either; Skaven identify each other by smell for the most part.