This article is an overview of the lore and story for each Grand Alliance in Age of Sigmar, as well as description and lore for some of the biggest factions in Age of Sigmar.
If you want to get an overview of the Age of Sigmar Faction Lore, you are in the right place.
If you are looking for an overview about the factions in the game of Age of Sigmar (so not lore and background) you can look here instead at our Age of Sigmar army overview.
Completely new to Age of Sigmar lore?
You might want to start with the basics and timeline of AoS Lore (as the rest can be a bit confusing if you do not have a baseline knowledge).
We mention the “Mortal Realms” quite a lot. These are essential to understand the Age of Sigmar lore. We have a primer on the mortal realms here.
But enough about all of that other stuff, let us get to it!
A note on the artwork
In this article, I have used the amazing artwork from the different factions books. I have done this to convey the right aesthetic and feel of the different faction and armies. All rights for the images are reserved by Games Workshop and the very talented artists that have made them (and I hope they will not get mad by me displaying the army artwork here).
What is the Grand Alliance: Order in Age of Sigmar and what factions are included?
Order represents the various civilizations found within the realms of Age of Sigmar.
There is a large amount of diversity within the alliance, as many of the factions come from radically different cultural backgrounds and often have conflicting goals and values between them.
What Order as a grand alliance represents is the desire for structure, law, and/or hierarchy to govern the realms. While Order embodies many things in Age of Sigmar, it is not necessarily morally good.
Many people assume, when looking at the game for the first time, that the Grand Alliance of Order are the good guys, and while it’s easy to look good when compared to the reality corrupting forces of Chaos, Order is not synonymous with any form of moral standing.
Order is just as much home to paladins of Sigmar and treants of nature as it is to fanatical murder cults and soul-stealing raiders.
The common thread that binds these factions together is the hierarchies and laws that form their societies, and the threat of Chaos consuming it all is the cause that unites them together.
The pantheon of Order was once the mightiest force in the realms, and their cooperation ushered in a golden era during the Age of Myth.
However, in the face of Chaos, that alliance eroded until betrayal and mistrust broke the pantheon from within.
Now, the forces of Order engage in an uneasy, but necessary alliance against Chaos once more.
As the largest of the Grand Alliances, what follows is some of the most prominent or noteworthy forces of Order.
Lore and background of the Stormcast Eternals faction
The Stormcast Eternals are undoubtedly the face of the Grand Alliance of Order, and of the game of Age of Sigmar itself.
They are the defining force that began the historical era of the Age of Sigmar, and were the element that began to turn the tides against the dominance of Chaos across the realms.
When the pantheon of Order split, and all hope was lost, Sigmar retreated to his realm of Azyr and sealed it off, seemingly abandoning the realms. While the forces of Chaos ravaged and desecrated the lands, Sigmar worked on assembling a force to combat the threat of Chaos. The Stormcast Eternals are that result.
Reforged from the souls of valiant mortals who died fighting Chaos, the Stormcast Eternals are an army of warriors reborn in Sigmar’s divine light.
They carry with them a touch of Sigmar’s power, with strength and fortitude beyond that of any mortal being. Furthermore, the Stormcast Eternals share Sigmar’s affinity with lightning, able to be transmuted and cast across the realms in great storm bolts.
Among the most magically inclined chambers of Stormcast, wizards are able to wield lightning freely, burning away any who would cross their path.
Additionally, all Stormcast wear armor forged from Sigmarite, a durable metal drawn directly from the core of the world that was, which sits now in Sigmar’s capital city of Azyrheim as a grim reminder of what is at stake against the forces of Chaos.
Finally, to cap off all of these divine boons, if ever a Stormcast should fall in battle, their soul will be drawn back to Azyr, where the Stormcast Eternal will be forged anew and be given life once more.
All of this comes at a cost, however. Each time a Stormcast is reforged on the Anvil of Apotheosis, a piece of that individual is lost. At first, it will be memories.
The faces of loved ones, memories of childhood, details of their lives. But soon after, as the Stormcast are reforged again and again, their personalities will begin to fade, and the individuality of the soul will be lost. In the end, some Stormcast are reduced to mindless automatons, a fate that many would argue is worse than death.
The Stormcast are seeking a cure for this, despite the fact that the issue is rarely discussed openly among the ranks. The Stormcast operate in a highly regimented and militarized structure, with faith in Sigmar being the core pillar of their order.
The various chambers that compose the Stormcast Eternals can range from ranks of infantry to spellcasting wizards to even rangers on the frontlines. This diversity and determination results in the Stormcast Eternals being one of the most dominant forces of Order in the realms.
Lore and background of the Sylvaneth faction
The Sylvaneth are the children of Alarielle, goddess of life. Woven from bark and branch, these spirits of the wood can vary in size and form, from human sized dryads to towering treants.
It is believed that a portion of the Sylvaneth are formed from the souls of beings Alarielle saved from the destruction of the old world, giving them an ancient connection to the world that was.
Regardless of their origin, all Sylvaneth are connected deeply to the land, and seek to cultivate growth and life within the wilds. They bear a particular hatred of chaos, especially Nurgle, who corrupt and defile the land itself that the Sylvaneth are a part of.
The Sylvaneth wield with them the might of nature, bringing creatures and spirits of the wood against those who would threaten their groves.
The Sylvaneth do not have societies and cities as the other factions of order do, but they are an elemental guardian of nature and seek to preserve and protect the land, regardless of the aggressor.
Lore and background of the Fyreslayers faction
The Fyreslayers are a brotherhood of duardin fanatics, who worship the dead god Grimnir. Grimnir was a warrior god who was freed from imprisonment by Sigmar in the Age of Myth along with his brother Grungni.
While Grungni placed himself in Sigmar’s service to repay his debt, Grimnir demanded immediately for a task to settle what was owed.
Sigmar tasked Grimnir with slaying the great salamander Vulcatrix, the mother of fire.
Grimnir set off at once to do battle with the great beast, a battle that shook the foundations of Aqshy, carving mountain ranges and raining fire.
In the end, both divine entities slew each other, and Grimnir shattered into an innumerable rain of gold upon his death.
Today, the Fyreslayers seek out this divine gold. Branding it into their flesh, portions of Grimnir’s power can be bestowed upon them, giving them extreme resilience, speed, and strength. By releasing this energy, the Fyreslayers seek to give form once more to their long dead god, and as such, they seek it out tirelessly.
Much of this Ur-gold has fallen into the hands of the other mortal races, so to avoid having endless conflict with all other races, the Fyreslayers sell their services as mercenaries.
This places the Fyreslayers in the somewhat morally grey area that the grand alliance of order can entail.
While the Fyreslayers do have a high sense of honor, they place the hunt for Ur-gold above all else, meaning that Fyreslayers may fight for Order one day, but turn against it the next.
While the Patriarchal lodges of the Fyreslayers are most prominent in Aqshy, the Fyreslayers can be found all over the eight realms.
Lore and background of the Kharadron Overlords faction
The Kharadron Overlords are a race of Duardin who have abandoned their traditional ancestral homes to take to the skies.
Using advanced technology powered by aether-gold, an extremely valuable gas like substance, the Kharadron Overlords live in sky ships and floating cities high above the warring realms below.
During the end of the Age of Myth, at the turning of the Age of Chaos, the Duardin felt as though their god Grungni had abandoned them.
While Grungni worked for Sigmar, crafting marvelous technologies, he ignored the plights of his people, thinking that his people would survive best under pressure and through trials.
However, as the tides of chaos grew and war spread across Duardin land, the Duardin people found themselves abandoned by their god.
Unable to continue existing as they were, these Duardin found themselves taking to the sky through their technological achievements to survive, and so the Kharadron Overlords were born.
Initially a reclusive people, today the Kharadron Overlords are a mercantile group, moving between realms and trading.
With the return of Sigmar and the fight against chaos resuming, the Kharadron Overlords now descend upon the mortal realms in their skyships to unleash their fantastical weaponry upon the enemies of order.
Lore and background of the Daughters of Khaine faction
The Daughters of Khaine are a murderous cult of witch aelves and fanatics who worship the god Khaine.
They exist within the societies of order through deception, posing as gladiatorial warriors and entertainers in private circles.
In truth, the Daughters of Khaine are killers, sacrificing others to maintain their youth and empower themselves. Sigmar tolerates the presence of these fanatics for the simple reason that they are invaluable in battle.
The Daughters of Khaine are battle hungry warriors who spend their whole lives training, and when the skills they have cultivated are required, they are a terrifying force to unleash against the enemies of Order.
The Daughters of Khaine are led by Morathi, the high oracle of Khaine, who has fashioned their society in her likeness. The entirety of the Daughters of Khaine’s society is built on lies, and in truth, Khaine is a false god.
It is Morathi the demigoddess to whom the Daughters of Khaine’s really worship, though they do not know it.
Absorbing their faith and growing on their spiritual power, Morathi seeks to grow enough as a demigoddess to achieve true godhood.
Lore and background of the Idoneth Deepkin
The Idoneth Deepokin are a race of aelves who, until recently, had existed in isolation and secrecy. During the End Times of the world that was, Slaanesh, the Chaos God of Excess, devoured much of the Aelven race.
When Tyrion, Teclis, and Malekith captured the Chaos God Slaanesh, they attempted to extract Aelven souls from Slaanesh in the hopes that they could be saved.
While the race that would become known as the Deepkin were salvaged, their souls were seemingly tainted by the Chaos God.
Fearful of Chaos worship, they fled to the deepest recesses of the sea to live in isolation.
There, they discovered that only one in a hundred children they would sire would be born sentient. Over time, the Deepkin struggled, but slowly they rebuilt.
They constructed vast secret cities in the deeps, and learned to tame the underwater creatures that dwelt in the ocean depths.
They mastered magic that allowed the Deepkin to transfer souls; by stealing the soul of one being and imbuing it into on an empty shell of a aelve, a new life could be born.
Thus, the Idoneth Deepkin raid the shores of the mortal realms above the waves, stealing souls and retreating back below the waves to expand their ranks.
Using magic that allows their sea mounts to swim through the air as if it were water, the Idoneth Deepkin strike hard and fast, using magic to also confuse and slow their victims.
Only recently exposed to the common eye of the mortal realms, The Idoneth Deepkin join the Alliance of Order due to their hatred of chaos.
However, the Deepkin are a tenuous ally at best, for once Chaos is defeated, they will surely turn on their allies in the search of more souls.
Lore and background of the Cities of Sigmar and the Freeguild
The Free Guild and the Cities of Sigmar are the numerous collectives of civilizations that are scattered throughout the realms.
Normal mortals like you and I, these collectives fight valiantly in the face of impossible threats beyond their understanding. Some are just normal plebs, others part of the Freeguild and others are criminals.
The Free People includes Humans, Aelves and Duardin (and maybe other races?).
Right now we mostly know about the Cities in the Cities of Sigmar book, but other humans and cities could be build or uncovered in the future.
Lore and background of the Seraphon
The Seraphon are a race of primordial lizard people from the world that was.
They are led by the Slaan, and race of ancient and powerful spellcasters, who escaped the destruction of the old world in large ships.
Unfortunately, all of these lizard people died on the ships with the exception of the Slaan as they wandered through the cosmos, before eventually ending up in the mortal realms.
Now the Slaan summon tangible copies of the Seraphon through memories into battle, making them a sort of Order Deamon faction.
I’m really not doing them justice here, but their lore is quite outdated, and they have largely been ignored in the lore of Age of Sigmar.
They deserve an update, because Aztec lizard people riding dinosaurs that shoot lasers is too ridiculous to not have in the setting.
Make it work, Games Workshop!
What is the Grand Alliance: Chaos in which factions are in it?
In Age of Sigmar, there is a realm known as the realm of chaos. It is a primeval place, constantly shifting and changing, where thought and emotion can become reality.
No mortal being could survive here for long, as the nightmarish and ever-changing realm is incomprehensible and unnavigable by mortal standards.
It is unclear exactly how the realm of chaos is connected to the rest of the mortal realms; however, it is known to be connected to the dark desires and impulses of mortals, formed from their emotions and deeds.
None exemplify this law of reality more than the Dark Gods themselves.
Within this realm of chaos, there are beings known as the Gods of Chaos.
These are beings of immense power, formed from the dark impulses of mortals, that are just as much a part of the realm of chaos as they are rulers of it.
They are able to form more stable territories within the realm of chaos, and as their influence over mortals grows, their power grows as well.
Ultimately, these Chaos Gods seek to corrupt the rest of the mortal realms and merge the realm of chaos with all of reality in the ever-ongoing pursuit of power.
The Chaos Gods are incomprehensible in their machinations and motives, as they truly are beyond any mortal understanding.
They are a primal force that always has, and most likely always will, exist. Beating upon reality as a tidal wave beats upon a rock, chaos endlessly and tirelessly pursues it goals.
Generally, when people refer to the Chaos Gods, they are referring to the four main gods of chaos:
However, there is also a newly ascended God of Chaos, The Great Horned Rat.
These gods will often compete with one another, and are not above waging war on each other in their eternal struggles for dominance.
However, when the gods unite under one banner, they become near unstoppable.
Lore and background Khorne and his armies
Khorne is the god of war, bloodshed, and violence. He cares not from where the blood flows, but only that blood is spilt.
To Khorne, any battle is a ritual in his honor, and any war cry is a prayer in his name. More than anything, Khorne craves endless battle filled with brutal violence.
However, despite Khorne’s seemingly mindless lust for bloodshed, Khorne does seem to have a twisted code of honor.
Khorne detests magic, seeing it as weak and cowardly, and seeks to punish those who would use it in battle.
Khorne sees no glory in sneak attacks or cheap tactics, and as a result, demands that warriors face their opponents head on in open challenge.
While Khorne does not shy away from the killing of innocents, the skulls of the weak are pitiful trophies, not worthy of Khorne’s throne of skulls – so Khorne’s followers will not often seek battle with the weak.
In Age of Sigmar, an age known for its widespread wars and fierce battles, Khorne has become a powerful God.
Still, his thirst is endless, and he continues to seek greater battles and further incite violence across the realms. Symbols of Khorne include blood, skulls, and brass.
Lore and background Tzeentch and his armies
Tzeentch is the god of change, knowledge, and magic. More than any other Chaos God, Tzeentch eludes mortal comprehension.
His plans are convoluted at best, and his machinations can stretch on for centuries.
What may seem to be a loss for Tzeentch really might be an intentional ploy that will only bear fruit decades or centuries down the line.
While we might see reality in a limited, linear sense, Tzeentch seems to be able to see all realities at once, manipulating the strands of fate for its own desires.
Tzeentch will often promise power through knowledge, seducing wizards into its service – however, this knowledge will often come at a terrible cost.
Mutations are seen as blessings of Tzeentch, granting power to those able to handle the extreme changes to their bodies, while consuming the unworthy and turning them into terrible beasts.
‘Of all the Chaos Gods, Tzeentch seems to care for its followers the least, treating them as pawns in the grand scheme of things.
In Age of Sigmar, an age known for its widespread wars and as a period of unrest, Tzeentch lures into its fold revolutionaries who seek to change their societies and wizards who crave knowledge to survive.
Tzeentch is the God of Chaos most accepting of the recent changes to the Chaos pantheon.
Symbols of Tzeentch include Birds and Avian features, mutations of flesh, and the eye… though of course, all these are subject to change.
Lore and background Nurglee and his armies
Nurgle is the god of pestilence, rot, and decay. Nurgle may initially appear to be a god of death, but Nurgle actually embodies the cycle of life in full.
Every diseased, rotting corpse is host to a multitude of lifeforms, and will lay the foundations for life to come.
Nurgle enjoys life but demands that when death comes, it is to be embraced. Nurgle wishes to spread plague and disease across the realms and offers a strangely familial embrace to those who would accept his teachings.
In an age where war and famine spread across the realms, Nurgle continues to grow in power from the festering corpses of the fallen.
He continuously concocts new poxes and illnesses to spread across the realms, and his followers are his vessels to do so.
A few of the symbols of Nurgle are the bell, the fly, and exposed diseased entrails.
Lore and background Slaanesh and his armies
Slaanesh is the chaos god of excess, pride, pain, and pleasure.
Above anything, Slaanesh wants you to feel and embrace sensation. Slaanesh continuously seeks greater and grander sensations or experiences, usually at the expense of others.
Slaanesh is a god that infiltrates and corrupts more so than any other chaos god. In times of peace, when there is no war, unrest, or pestilence, it is Slannesh that corrupts society through opulence and comforts.
Pride over one’s position, excess through carnal pleasures, even ambition in the arts can all be doorways in which Slaanesh’s influence can emerge.
As a god of excess, Slaanesh is also a particularly dangerous god in an age where the ruinous power of chaos reign.
As the chaos gods indulge themselves in their forms of worship, they too engage in excess. This excess can fuel Slaanesh and empower the god in the same way mortals can.
This can make Slaanesh a God particularly feared by the other gods of chaos.
Currently, Slaanesh is actually imprisoned by the gods of order in a prison between realms. It is theoretically a prison impossible to escape, but Slaanesh’s influence seeps out from it prison while its chains slowly break, one by one.
In the meantime, Slaanesh’s followers desperately seek put their god, growing ever closer to unleashing Slaanesh upon the realms once more.
Lore and background of the The Great Horned Rat and his armies
The Great Horned Rat is the Dark God of the Skaven, a race of chittering, all-consuming rat people.
The Great Horned Rat has only recently ascended into the pantheon of the Chaos Gods.
As a newcomer, the god is often regarded as weaker compared to its peers, but make no mistake, the Great Horned Rat is a powerful and dangerous god.
Commanding the endless hordes of Skaven, the goals of the Great Horned Rat are simple: to consume and infest every realm in its entirety.
The symbols of the great horned rat are (unsurprisingly) the horned rat, the Skaven, and the number thirteen.
What other factions are there in the Grand Alliance: Chaos?
In addition to the followers of these dark gods, the grand alliance of Chaos also includes a few other factions worth mentioning:
The Beasts of Chaos: Born from Chaos corruption, the beast men are violent, chaos worshipping creatures that appear to be a cross between a man and beast.
Often resembling that of a Goat or bull, the beastmen roam the realms in great herds, raiding and defiling all they find in their wake.
Slaves to Darkness: Also known sometimes as the Darkoath, these are Chaos worshippers that follow no specific major chaos god.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of lore on these guys at the moment, but with Warcry coming out we are seeing more fluff on these diverse chaos tribes.
Each tribe can be radically different from each other, so this is a great faction for creative ideas from a creator stand point. Many of them worship gods that are simply aspects or local versions of the major chaos gods.
What is the Grand Alliance: Death and what factions are in it?
Order and Chaos are two sides of the same coin. As civilizations rise up, and mortal races become more prominent in the world, the emotions, desires, and ambitions of these mortal races give birth to Chaos.
Chaos then rises up, corrupts and devours the world, and after the energies of the world reform, the cycle begins anew.
Who knows how long this process has gone for? What is the point of it all?
As long as Order and Chaos exist, one will always rise up to combat the other, the cosmic wheel will keep turning.
Death, on the other hand, seeks to stop the wheel, to freeze it in place.
Death seeks to do this, quite simply, by killing everything. If all of existence exists in a state of undeath, in a state of unmoving, unchanging reality where the whims of mortals can no longer take shape, then the cycle of destruction will cease.
Led by Nagash, Supreme Lord of Undeath, the Death Grand Alliance is largely an embodiment of his will.
All of the dead answer to Nagash, and Nagash rules over his undead hordes with an iron will.
Those who would slight Nagash find themselves swiftly punished for eternity – for while Nagash has a sense of justice, he does not forgive. Nagash seeks to expand his will across all of the mortal realms – as the god of Death, all souls belong to him in the end.
This mentality leads to many conflicts with the other Grand Alliances. Chaos seeks to corrupt souls, so that they may send them to the realm of chaos for their own ends, reforming them into daemons.
Sigmar and the other Order factions often seek to cheat death, stealing souls from Nagash to be reforged into the Stormcast, or seeking immortality through their patron gods.
As for the hordes of destruction, what little soulstuff they have is claimed by GorkaMorka, making them an irritating threat that needs to be destroyed.
Lore and background for Legions of Nagash
The Legions of Nagash refers to the mindless dead that swell the ranks of his undead, as well as the vampire lords and Mortarchs that led them into battle.
A bit of a catch-all faction within death, this faction contains legions of skeletons and zombies, acting as undead thralls and meat shields, as well as more intelligent beings, such as vampires and necromancers.
Truly, any being from any other death faction can be found within the Legions of Nagash, and all seek to exact his will.
The most notable beings within the Legions of Nagash, besides Nagash himself of course, are the Mortarchs.
Nagash’s personal lieutenants, these powerful beings can still exact their own will (to an extent) and lead Nagash’s forces.
Lore and background of the Flesh-Eater Courts
The Flesh-Eater Courts are a faction composed of flesh-eating ghouls that are cursed with delusion.
Despite being raving mad monstrosities that desire to eat flesh with an insatiable appetite, the Flesh-Eater courts see themselves in their minds are nobles, princes and crusading knights of high standing.
In their minds, they embark on quests to free their people from the tyranny of others, and when their battles are won, they gather in their halls for great banquets and feasts.
They see the other factions as irredeemable monsters, and the undead hordes they ally with as fellow countrymen.
Home to all manner of undead that crave flesh, the Flesh-Eater Courts are a disturbing force to behold.
Lore and background of the Nighthaunt
The Nighthaunt are vast hosts of spirits, geists, and other incorporeal beings in the service of Nagash.
While the worshippers of Chaos go to their respective gods, and those who fight chaos valiantly are stolen by Sigmar, Nagash is often left with the cowardly and unworthy who have committed atrocities throughout their lives.
Nagash punishes these poor souls in eternal enslavement, always trying to match the punishment to how they lived their sinful lives.
The wailing hordes of the Nighthaunt are a terrifying force to do battle with.
Incorporeal in nature, it takes a being of strong will to be able to land a blow on such spiritual adversaries; otherwise such attacks will simply pass through.
Nowhere is safe from the Nighthaunt, as they pass through walls and other barricades that would slow any other army down.
More than any other death faction, the Nighthaunt are fueled by emotion. Hatred, sorrow, desperation; these spirits are often trapped in the eternal throes of these feelings, doomed forever to be used as troops in Nagash’s wars.
Lore and background of the Ossiarch Bonereapers
The Ossiarch Reapers are Nagash’s answer to the Stormcast Eternals. While Sigmar has his might Stormcast, what does Nagash have?
A lot of dead dudes and some ghosts.
Well, in the Soul Wars Storyline Nagash is starting to pick up the slack and the Ossiarch Reapers is his newest line of toys.
They are a construct army made of bone. As in, they are bones reforged into big lumpy skeleton warriors, living warmachines and all manner of crazy constructs. Unlike the normal skeleton and zombies, the souls of the former owner of the bones are still (sort of?) inside the bone stuff.
How the personality of such beings is going to be, remain to be seen.
What is the Grand Alliance: Destruction and what factions are in it?
There are those who do not care for the comforts and trinkets of society.
There are those who only see laws as a method to protect the weak and who see morals as a way to rule those too meek to command their own destiny.
Destruction sees Order and its civilization as a cage, and wishes to be free.
Destruction cares not for the temptations of Chaos, as Destruction already has everything it could ever want. And Destruction sees Death as just another form of enslavement. The only solution is to tear it all down.
Going back to our wheel analogy from earlier, if Death wants to freeze the wheel in place, then Destruction simply wants to break it.
Destruction is a Grand Alliance composed of all sorts of races, ranging from Orruks to Ogors, and Gits to Gargants.
All of these races reject the ideologies of the other alliances, and above all else wish to be free to do whatever they want.
They mostly live in primitive societies, where might makes right, but only a fool would underestimate their simple lifestyle for a lack of intelligence and cunning.
Another uniting factor between members of the Destruction Grand Alliance is their worship of the God Gorkamorka.
But, as with everything else with Destruction, there is no agreement on who or what Gorkamorka really is.
The individual races and tribes interpretation and vision of Gorkamorka is very much what shapes their actions and society (if you can call it that).
Lore and background of the Ironjawz
The Ironjawz are a faction of Orruks that, like all Orruks, live for battle.
Gathering in large mobs and adorning themselves in great, twisted metal armor, the Ironjawz charge fearlessly into battle.
More military-minded than other Orruk clans, the Ironjawz will attempt to exploit tactics and formations to surprising effectiveness.
Often seen riding boars, or large, scaled, hulking beasts known as Maw-Krushas, Ironjawz are not afraid to use any weapon at their disposal as long as it results in a good fight.
The Ironjawz love fighting so much, that they get jealous if there is a good scrap and they are not invited.
The Ironjawz will roam from place to place and from realm to realm, trying to find the biggest and fiercest opponent to fight.
Lore and background of the Bonesplitterz
The Bonesplitterz are a faction of fanatical orruks who have gone berserk and never quite recovered. Large gatherings of Ironjawz can result in what’s known as a Waaagh!, which is a terrifying Orruk crusade across the realms.
Orruks are quite emotionally charged during a Waaaagh!, whipping themselves into frenzies as they fight.
Often, when a Waaagh! comes to an end, there are those who seem stuck in their primal state.
These Orruks will strip themselves of armor, paint tribal symbols on themselves, and will often be exiled from the group to wander.
Drawn towards some sort of primal energy, these Orruks will often find large groups of other Orruks like themselves. These are the Bonesplitterz.
Travelling in great hordes, these Orruk hordes are led by the Wurrgog Prophets, beings that engage in ritualistic hunts of great beasts in the name of Gorkamorka.
They believe that by slaying these beasts, they inherit the bestial strength these creatures displayed, leading to ever greater hunts.
Adorning themselves with the bones and entrails of the beast, they gorge themselves on the creature’s flesh before setting out once more.
Of course, the Bonesplitterz are not exclusively tied to wild beasts, and will often attack settlements and armies of other grand alliances.
We have recently found out that the Ironjawz and Bonsplitterz will be unified under one battletome later this year.
I’m assuming they will be mostly keeping their already established lore, but anything could change!
Lore and background of the Mawtribes and the Beastclaw Raiders
The Ogors and the Beastclaw Raiders are also a faction currently on the precipice of change in game.
We know a game update will be coming for this faction very soon, but as for what it entails, we are not entirely sure.
As a result, take this section with a grain of salt!
The Ogors are a race of large, hulking humanoids who are always hungry. They often travel in large groups, raiding and pillaging in an attempt to sate their never-ending hunger.
One such group of tribes are known as the Beastclaw raiders, ogors who ride large, hairy beasts from freezing arctic lands. These raiders are forced to live life on the move, as an immense blizzard known as the Everwinter is always close behind them.
As for why this is, no one is quite sure. Some speculate it is a curse, cast upon them by Gorkamorka himself for some past transgression.
These Ogors live in tribal units with chieftains, who leadership is based on how much food they can bring in with each hunt.
Other Ogor groups exist in the realms, also living in nomadic tribes, but some act as mercenaries, selling their formidable combat skills in exchange for payment.
Surprisingly enough, they tend to adopt aspects of the cultures around them until deciding to move to their next destination in their wanderings.
Lore and background of the Gloomspite Gitz
THE GLOOMSPITE GITS are a large faction composed of a multitude of grots, all of whom share one thing in common: the worship of an entity known as the Bad Moon.
The Bad Moon is a celestial entity that sporadically travels the realms, with the Gloomspite Gitz following in its wake. In whatever form the legends of the Bad Moon take, it is always somehow connected to Gorkamorka.
This faction is composed of Grots, small goblins that like in dank, fungus covered caves; squigs, voracious fungal creatures with insatiable appetites that the grots are crazy enough to ride; Troggoths, hulking cave trolls that live alongside grots in their underground cave networks; and giant spiders, which many of the grots ride and built platforms upon.
These hordes of creatures chase after the bad moon, as under its moonlight, things get weird. Fungal growths sprout all over the landscape, other mortals go mad, and the grots are actually whipped into a fervor, growing in strength.
The ultimate goal of the grots seems to be to unleash the power of the Bad Moon all over the realms, and convert the landscape into something they call the Everdank, a clammy wet world covered in fungal growth like the caves they live in.
Beyond these factions, its worth mentioning the Gargants, giants that often ally with other Destruction factions, but have no faction of their own to call home.
They often fight in exchange for alcohol, which they tend to drink in battle, often causing more trouble then helping. That being said, a focused giant is an extremely dangerous combatant.
Other AoS lore resources you might be interested in
Still vague on the storyline and the mortal realms? Read intro to the lore of the mortal realms here
Now that we have covered the general story of Age of Sigmar, along with the various factions and what motivates them, you should have a pretty solid grasp on Age of Sigmar’s lore from a beginner’s perspective!
If you want to delve deeper into Age of Sigmar’s lore, here are a few starting points for you!
- The Core Book: the Core Book is about 319 pages long and about 219 pages of that is lore! Not only does the core book have all the rules needed to play the game, but it has got tons of lore and story in it that I couldn’t cram in here. Not to mention all the beautiful artwork.
- Your favourite faction’s battletome!: every battletome goes into the history, motivations and lore of its faction way more than I could ever hope to in a summary article like this.
- The Black Library novels: there are tons of books and other forms of fiction available for you to explore. I would personally recommend either “Soul Wars” by Joshua Reynolds, as it is a great starting that picks up around where we left off our history lesson, or “Realmslayer”, an audio drama featuring the popular character of Gotrek Gurnisson. Gotrek is a character from the world that was who is thrown into the thick of Age of Sigmar, and has pretty much no idea on what’s going on as he explores the world for the first time. It’s a great starting point as you will be learning about the Age of Sigmar world right along with Gotrek!
- Youtube Channels for AoS lore There are many Youtube channels that go in-depth on Age of Sigmar’s lore in interesting and engaging ways. I personally recommend 2+ Tough.
More so then anything, I hope you had fun reading this article and walked away more interested in Age of Sigmar.
It’s a great time to join in on the game or the novels, as more content is always being produced.
Welcome to the realm of Age of Sigmar!