Warhammer Age of Sigmar – (Storm)Cast List

I’ve been making a concerted effort of late to catch up on Black Library’s Age of Sigmar fiction, of late. I’d previously read the first few in the Realmgate Wars series, and all of the short stories that had been released over various Advent Calendar campaigns, but then I’d rather let things slip in favour of 40k and the Horus Heresy. I’m now making good progress with the Realmgate Wars, and looking forward to the books set away from that particular campaign, but there’s something that I’ve been rather struggling with – remembering which Stormcast are which.

I think it comes down to familiarity, in the end. Age of Sigmar, and the Stormcast Eternals as a faction, are barely two years old as I write this. In the setting’s short life so far, the vast majority of Black Library stories have revolved around a the Stormcast Eternals and, by necessity, authors have had to work hard to provide a sense of identity to the different characters and groups within this brand new faction. I don’t think there’s ever before been such a large amount of fiction produced for a new faction in any Games Workshop setting, or such a clear need to introduce so many characters within such a new and, to be honest, homogenous faction.

Let’s be clear, I’m enjoying Age of Sigmar so far, and I’m in no way trying to belittle it as a setting or suggest that it’s inherently worse than what came before. I’d actually say that I think it gives smart, creative people more scope than ever before to tell cool, varied and interesting stories. That said, I’d been reading stories set in the old Warhammer World for about twenty years at the point of its destruction, and I was deeply familiar with its nations, factions and key characters. For better or worse, that simply isn’t the case any more.

I don’t think it’s unfair to say that, unlike the Space Marine Chapters/Legions, for example, the Stormcast don’t (yet, at least) have a great deal in the way of identity to differentiate between the different Stormhosts. It’s just not as obvious – while someone who’s unfamiliar with 40k could probably hazard a guess as to the character of the Space Wolves or the Blood Angels, I don’t suppose they’d have much luck identifying what sets the Celestial Vindicators apart from the Astral Templars.

And so…when Gav Thorpe writes about Arkas Warbeast or Josh Reynolds showcases Zephacleas Beast-Bane, I can see a pretty strong sense of identity building up around each set of characters. What I struggle with, however, is remembering which set is which without the accompanying stories to remind me. If you sat me down and asked me to name my favourite Stormhost, I’d have to say something like “the turquoise ones”…which doesn’t exactly lend itself to in-depth discussions.

What’s your point?

In an attempt to clarify things in my own head, I’ve come up with a bit of a cheat sheet based on the main Stormhosts that I’ve come across so far (books 1-7 of the Realmgate Wars plus Black Rift).

For each Stormhost I’ve identified the relevant Warrior Chamber(s) and, where possible, the three main leaders – the Lords Celestant, Relictor and Castellant. So far these seem to be the three key archetypes, and while there are plenty more characters across the different stories, they’re very varied and less standardised…so I haven’t included those.

This is absolutely not meant to be an exhaustive list of characters, just a quick reference for the main who’s who of each group. I’m hoping it’s going to help me keep things clear in my head, especially if I end up leaving a gap between books like I did between Hammers of Sigmar and Call of Archaon.

The Hammers of Sigmar

The Hammers of Sigmar are, visually at least, the archetypal Stormcast Eternals – predominantly gold, these are what you’ll see the most in Games Workshop’s artwork and photography.

So far I’ve identified five different Warrior Chambers within this Stormhost, from a range of novels. I’ve included the two that have had the most page time so far:

Hammerhands

  • Lord-Celestant Vandus Hammerhand
  • Lord-Relictor Ionus Cryptborn
  • Lord-Castellant Andricus Stoneheart
  • Featured in:
    • The Gates of Azyr by Chris Wraight
    • War Storm – Borne by the Storm by Nick Kyme
    • Ghal Maraz – The Eldritch Fortress by Guy Haley

Adamantine

  • Lord-Celestant Orius Adamantine
  • Lord-Relictor Moros Calverius
  • Lord-Castellant Gorgus
  • Featured in Black Rift by Josh Reynolds

I’ve also come across the following lesser-referenced Warrior Chambers:

  • Goldenmanes, led by Lord-Celestant Jactos Goldenmane, who feature in War Storm – Borne by the Storm by Nick Kyme.
  • Stormbound, led by Lord-Celestant Tylos Stormbound, who feature in Hammers of Sigmar – Stormcast by Darius Hinks.
  • Thriceblessed, led by Devyndus Thriceblessed, who feature in Hammers of Sigmar – Scion of the Storm by CL Werner.

Celestial Vindicators

This Stormhost has a more unusual colour scheme, predominantly a striking turquoise, which nicely contrasts with the gold of the Hammers of Sigmar. Again, I’ve identified several different Warrior Chambers – three so far – and have included two of them here.

Bladestorms

  • Lord-Celestant Thostos Bladestorm
  • Lord-Castellant Eldroc
  • Featured in:
    • War Storm – Storm of Blades by Guy Haley
    • Ghal Maraz – The Eldritch Fortress by Guy Haley
    • Bladestorm by Matt Westbrook (or at least I assume so, going by the title!)

Warbeasts

  • Lord-Celestant Arkas Warbeast
  • Featured in Warbeast by Gav Thorpe

I’ve gone back and checked, and it doesn’t look like Gav mentioned either the Lord Castellant or Lord Relictor of the Warbeasts – Arkas’ main lieutenants were his Knights Heraldor (Doridun), Vexillor (Dolmetis) and Venator (Hastor).

There’s also the Harbingers of Vengeance, led by Lord-Celestant Cumulos, who feature in War Storm – Storm of Blades by Guy Haley.

Knights Excelsior

This Stormhost has only appeared (to my knowledge) in Warbeast and – briefly – Wardens of the Everqueen, but they’re on pretty much even footing with the Celestial Vindicators in Warbeast so it’s worth mentioning them here. There was no mention of a specific Warrior Chamber in Wardens of the Everqueen so I’ve only included the one that’s been detailed so far.

Silverhands

  • Lord-Celestant Theuderis Silverhand
  • Lord-Relictor Glavius
  • Lord-Castellants Neros and Durathos (not entirely sure if both are from the same Warrior Chamber or not…)
  • Featured in:
    • Wardens of the Everqueen by CL Werner
    • Warbeast by Gav Thorpe

Hallowed Knights

These guys have mostly featured in work by Josh Reynolds, including his latest novel which I haven’t yet read, but whose title makes it pretty clear which Stormhost is featured!

Steel Souls

  • Lord-Celestant Gardus Steel Soul
  • Lord-Relictor Morbus
  • Lord-Castellant Lorrus Grymn
  • Featured in:
    • War Storm – The Gates of Dawn by Josh Reynolds
    • Ghal Maraz – War in the Hidden Vale by Josh Reynolds
    • Wardens of the Everqueen by CL Werner
    • Hallowed Knights: Plague Garden by Josh Reynolds

Astral Templars

Another Stormhost which features heavily in Josh Reynolds’ work – in fact has only featured in his stories so far – these guys get a lovely colour scheme and seem ripe for continuation in more stories still to come.

Beast-Bane

  • Lord-Celestant Zephacleas Beast-Bane
  • Lord-Relictor Seker Gravewalker
  • Lord-Castellant Taros Nine-Strike
  • Featured in:
    • War Storm – The Gates of Dawn by Josh Reynolds
    • Ghal Maraz – War in the Hidden Vale by Josh Reynolds
    • Fury of Gork by Josh Reynolds

That’s it for the Stormhosts with lots of named characters and/or lots of page time so far – bearing in mind where I’m up to in the series. Plenty more have had fleeting mentions, but only two have had more than that:

  • Guardians of the Firmament, led by Lord-Celestant Ultrades of the Broken Spear, who featured in Ghal Maraz – War in the Hidden Vale by Josh Reynolds.
  • Sons of Mallus, led by Lord-Celestant Gaius Greel, who feature in Fury of Gork by Josh Reynolds – and will probably feature heavily, but I’ve not got that far yet.

I’ll add in other Stormhosts, Warrior Chambers and key characters as and when I get to them – until then, I hope this proves interesting or useful to anyone else, like me, who’s trying to get their head around these characters.

It’s interesting to note, if you hadn’t spotted, that Josh Reynolds has contributed more than any other author to the ongoing development of various Stormcast Eternal characters and Stormhosts. It’s not without merit that Age of Sigmar sometimes has the nickname Age of Reynolds!

***Final note – that beautiful picture of a Hammer of Sigmar at the top of the post? That’s Alessandro Baldasseroni’s artwork for the cover of Josh’s Black Rift, which won the 2017 Ravenheart Award at the Gemmell Awards!***

3 comments

  1. I have yet to start with this series, but a bit hesitant, seeing as I have not yet read all there is to know of old world. Thank you for this referance post, it was very insightfull.

    1. Cool, glad it was helpful! Have you read the five main End Times novels? I’d definitely make sure you’ve read those before tackling Age of Sigmar…whether you want to read everything in the Old World first is then up to you. On the one hand, the End Times novels reference quite a lot of stuff from across the range of the Warhammer stories, but on the other hand you could probably get stuck into AoS without having read the majority of the old fiction, as there’s not a huge amount of crossover.

  2. Thanks again for the post Michael. I would agree that you can start on AOS without prior knowledge of what went before. I would urge any previous fantasy fan to give it a go as while it may have had a rocky start, I really feel the setting is coming into its own and they are starting to tell some great stories. I have loved the Warhammer Old World since the early 90’s but the new setting definitely broadens the scope and gives the authors real flexibility in what can be done going forward. Warbeast winning the Gemmell award was great validation for that.

    There have already been some great stories and authors contributed to Age of Sigmar but it would be really awesome to see a real unexpected Black Library heavyweight write something for it –

    – McNeill – previously written awesome fantasy stuff.
    – ADB – IIRC he wasn’t a major fantasy fan but AOS has a very different feel and reckon he could do wonders with some of the Chaos background.
    – Abnett – AOS has elements of the superheroic with the Stormcasts and the everyday hero with all the normal people of the mortal realms, as well as scope for cataclysmic battles – all of which Abnett is brilliant at.

    That’s my wish list …. in the meantime I think the setting is in safe hands with Josh Reynolds and others.

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