Cities of Sigmar

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Cities of Sigmar
Stormkeep inside City 01.jpeg
City of Sigmar with a Stormkeep and a Realmgate
Grand alliance Order
Associated factions Collegiate Arcane
Freeguilds
Dispossessed
Ironweld Arsenal
Darkling Covens
Scourge Privateers
Shadowblades
Phoenix Temple
Wanderers
Order Serpentis
Main grouping Free City
Major characters Galen ven Denst
Doralia ven Denst
Drusa Kraeth
Arcobalde Lazerne
Allies Daughters of Khaine
Fyreslayers
Idoneth Deepkin
Kharadron Overlords
Sylvaneth
Stormcast Eternals
Races Aelf
Duardin
Human
Ogor
Seraphon
Stormcast Eternal
Sylvaneth
Mounts Black Dragon
Demigryph
Drakespawn
Deer
Griffon
Horse
Phoenix
Vehicles Steam Tank
Gyrocopter
Gyrobomber
Creatures Gryph-Hound
War Hydra
Kharibdyss
Spell lores Lore of Cinder
Lore of Leaves
Lore of Smog
Lore of Whitefire
Lore of Dark Sorcery
Lore of the Phoenix
Lore of Eagles
Lore of Umbral Spite
Prayers Prayers of Morrda
Artefacts Darkling Covens Armoury
Dispossessed Armoury
Freeguild Armoury
Greywater Fastness Armoury
Hammerhal Armoury
Living City Armoury
Phoenicium Armoury
Wanderers Armoury
Archetypes Trade Pioneer
Excelsior Warpriest
Darkling Sorceress
Black Ark Corsair
Battlemage

The Cities of Sigmar also known as the Free Cities were cities built by the forces of Order after the Realmgate Wars. Most of these cities are built around Realmgates, many of which have a Stormkeep. These Stormkeeps will most often be garrisoned by the same Stormhosts that conquered the lands upon which the cities were built.[1a][10a][17b][47a]

Founding of the Free Cities

In the wake of the Realmgate Wars the foundations of the first of the Free Cities began. The Seeds of Hope in the Everspring Swathe, comprised of Living City, the Phoenicium, and Greywater Fastness would be the first of these bastions of Order. Soon after the Twin-Tailed City of Hammerhal would be built around the Stormrift Realmgate, on both the Ghyranite and Aqshian sides, it would become the greatest metropolis of Sigmar's Empire outside of Azyr. The cities of Tempest's Eye, Hallowheart, Anvilgard, and Brightspear in the Great Parch would be raised mere decades later, but quickly rose to match the Seeds of Life in grandeur.[52a]

These cities and all those that were built afterwards were constructed at the behest of Sigmar himself, strategically constructed around Realmgates or on Geomantic Nexuses, though often both, along the ley lines of the Mortal Realms. In his grand war efforts to drive back the forces of Chaos, Sigmar works tirelessly to determine what resources and strategic locations will most benefit his expanding empire. When an ideal location is selected, Sigmar will send forces from his Stormhosts to lay claim to these locations, as they are rarely unoccupied. Typically such cities are founded to lay claim to Realmgates, though the forces of Azyr seeks to claim any resources that can benefit Sigmar's empire and crusades.[37a][52a]

The first of the Cities of Sigmar would have their groundwork lain during the Realmgate Wars, when the Stormhosts of the Sigmar valiantly fought to wrest control of the Gates of Azyr from the lingering legions of Death, the vast war hordes of the Orruks, and the manifold forces of Chaos. Around the claimed Gates of Azyr, and many other Realmgates besides, the Stormcast Eternals built their mighty Stormkeeps, these great bastions allowed the Free Peoples of Azyr to follow without fear of the horrors of the Mortal Realms.[10a]

These early colonists erected settlements around the Stormkeeps, build new defences around them, and work the fields. As the years wear on these frontier settlements around reclaimed Realmgates grow into some of the most magnificent and important metropolises scattered across the Mortal Realms. First among these great cities are the Seeds of Life known as Living City, The Phoenicium, and Greywater Fastness built in the [[Realm of Ghyran. But it would be Hammerhal that became the grandest of the Cities of Sigmar. Hammerhal, also known as the Twin-Tailed City, is constructed around the Stormrift Realmgate, it is a sprawling city that stretches across both Capilaria in Aqshy and Verdia in Ghyran.[10a]

But these great cities were just the first among many. The Stormhosts continue to liberate Realmgates and constructing their citadels around them. These Stormkeeps are as varied and diverse as the Stormhosts themselves. Soon after mortals will arrive and begin the arduous work of making the plans made by the greatest architects and engineers of Azyr a reality.[10a]

It is the Lord-Ordinators and Lord-Castellants of the Stormhosts who work tirelessly to identify ancient ley-lines and fonts of magical energy upon which a city's Stormkeep will be laid. In some cases, depending on the size and importance of a city, additional Stormkeeps will be constructed to ensure the city is well-defended. The grand city of Hammerhal has no less than six Stormkeeps.[17b]

Once plans are determined for the structure of the Stormkeep, the Lord-Ordinators and Lord-Castellants get to work implementing them. Working alongside them are human masons, artisans, and work gangs as well as Dispossessed labour-clans and even small groups of aelves. With the inventiveness of the Duardin, the adaptability of the Humans, and mystic mastery of the Aelfs at their side the Stormcast can raise their awe-inspiring fortresses.[15b]

After the Stormkeep is complete, engineers of the Ironweld Arsenal and regiments of the Freeguild will arrive to erect temporary defences, such as earthen emplacements and wooden palisades, around the Stormkeep. Months will be spent testing these defences and building upon them where needed.[10a] In addition, Freeguild bastions will be constructed at key, strategic points; each of these imposing citadels capable of housing thousands of soldiers.[17b]

Once these defences are secure members of the Devoted of Sigmar begin their arduous task of cleansing the area upon which the great settlement will be built of the foul taint of Chaos and undeath. Sigmarite priests will pray to the God-King as great lines of Flagellant will strike themselves with barbed flails, the blood of these faithful will seep into the earth and burn away the taint within it. Agents of the Collegiate Arcane and Sacrosanct Chambers will then work to purify any lingering traces of taint.[10a]

Once the lands have been sanctified and purified, the next task is clearance. Trees are felled to make room for tents and barrack-halls, which will serve as domains to the early colonists, dams are built, irrigation systems are implemented, and the ground is made ready to be turned into farmland.[10a]

Once the land has been cleared and sanctified, the labour clans of the Duardin, the Dispossessed and Ironweld, build the roots of the city. These foundations often take the shape of a twelve-pointed star in honour of Sigmar. Starwater, blessed metals, and realmstone will often be used in the construction of the outermost walls of the city, as an added protection against daemonic and ethereal incursions.[10a]

In the months that follow the city will begin to take shape. Walls will rise in concentric circles, with the Stormkeep as the central-most defence. Next, the citizens of the city will build the first streets and thoroughfares, with statues of great heroes lining them. Soon after the first major wave of settlers will arrive, most of whom will be Azyrites but there are often many Reclaimed, the untainted natives of the regions around the new city, as well. Once they are settled in, the sounds of industry will earnestly begin to echo through the streets.[10a]

Eventually, the population will outgrow the plans for the city and inevitably more land is cleared and sanctified, new walls are built and streets are extended. Oftentimes the cities may grow faster than resources can be developed and slums will spring up beyond the outer walls of the city. These slums may be beyond the protection of the walls, but many local magnates and criminal enterprises will work to build crude walls and palisades around them.[10a]

This entire process can take decades, or far longer, and generations of settlers and citizens will be dedicated to building their city. But the result is a settlement that can claim to be among the greatest in Sigmar's burgeoning empire.[10a] Such cities become a haven for the many varied cultures and races of the Free Peoples, who live and work side by side.[17b]

Each Free City is drastically different and shaped by its history and the lands around it. The nature of the Stormhost that first founded their city, the factions and cultures that followed in their wake, the arcane and mundane industries that the surrounding land can support, the dangers that surround these newly built bastions of Order, all these things and more will shape a free city, it's people, cultures, and even it's policies.[37a]

For every Free City that has withstood the trials that the Mortal Realms have thrown upon it and grown into a great bastion guarded by sturdy walls, dozens more have been ground to dust by the battles that rage across the Realms. The ruins of these failed cities dot the lands of countless nations.[52a]

Expanding Beyond the Walls

The Free Cities of Sigmar's empire are not merely solitary polises, whose people cower for safety behind the imposing walls and Stormkeeps constructed to protect them. Rather they are the centre of, often extensive, civilizations. As a free city swells in size and population, many townships, mines, watchtowers and other signs of civilization will spring up around them.[10a][47a][47b]

Border Forts will also spring up around the territories controlled by the free cities, many of them garrisoned by Freeguild soldiery.[47a][48a]

Dawnbringer Crusades

Grand caravans known as Dawnbringer Crusades flood forth from the walls of the Cities of Sigmar to explore the Mortal Realms and establish new settlements known as Sigmarite Strongpoints. As with the Cities of Sigmar, far more of these colonization attempts fail than succeed, but several serve to greatly expand the borders of Sigmar's Empire.[49][52b]

Government

Long ago the city of Azyrheim was ruled over by a senate that represented the greatest factions of the city, but during the Age of Chaos it was infiltrated by agents of the Dark Gods, eventually a disastrous and bloody civil war broke out across the city. In the aftermath of this war, the senate was dissolved and its membership purged. The God-King himself summoned two-hundred forty-four of the city's leaders, the God-King bestowed upon each of them a title and command, these mortals would be the first Grand Conclave, the Lords of the Heavenhall. This Grand Conclave rules Azyrheim to this day, and the governing bodies of every Free City is modelled after it. Though the number of representatives varies according to any given city's size.[17c]

Known Free Cities

Seeds of Hope

During the tumultuous era known as the Season of War, the foundations of the very first Cities of Sigmar were laid. These three cities were all built in the Everspring Swathe of the Realm of Life. These are vibrant Living City, defiant Phoenicium, and industrious Greywater Fastness.[52a]

Cities of Flame

In the Great Parch several cities have arisen that can rival even the Seeds of Life, even though they are decades younger. These cities are vigilant Tempest's Eye, shrouded Anvilgard, magic-obsessed Hallowheart, and cosmopolitan Brightspear.[52a]

The Seven Great Fortress-Cities

Foremost amongst the Free Cities of Sigmar's Empire, outshining even the Seeds of Hope and cities of the Great Parch, are the Seven Fortress-Cities that serve as the capitals of the Sigmarite nations within each of the Mortal Realms, except for the Realm of Azyr wherein the Eternal City of Azyrheim is supreme.[52j]

These seven great cities are Hammerhal Aqsha, the Bright City in the Realm of Aqshy[52l], Hammerhal Ghyra, the Verdant City in the Realm of Ghyran[52m], Excelsis, the City of Secrets in the Realm of Ghur[52n], Vindicarum, the Bulwark of Faith in the Realm of Chamon[52o], Lethis, the City of Bleak Ravens in the Realm of Shyish[52p], Misthåvn, City of Scoundrels in the Realm of Ulgu[52f], and Settler's Gain, the Enlightened City in the Realm of Hysh.[52q]

Notable Free Cities

Name Realm Region Sub-Region Patron God Founder Resources Status
Alshime[15a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Anvalor[10b] Aqshy Great Parch Flamescar Plateau Sigmar Various Foundings Deep-Water Mineral Wells,[10b], Ore[10b], Great Desert Snakes[10b] Active
Anvilgard[37a]
Har Kuron[37a]
Aqshy Great Parch Charrwind Coast Sigmar(Former)
Morathi(Current)
Anvilgard: Anvils of the Heldenhammer
Har Kuron: Morathi
Hides and Scales of Sea Monsters from the Searing Sea[52g] Conquered
Anvilheim[34a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Anvils of the Heldenhammer Unknown Destroyed
Anvilspire[45] Chamon Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Argentium[45]
Glassware[45]
Active
Arbitrium[26] Shyish Prime Innerlands Penultima Sigmar Azyrite Arbiters Bonewheat[26]
Corpsemaize[26]
Destroyed
Barbed Promise[52a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Blackwall[42a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Unknown
Brightspear[10b] Aqshy Great Parch Aspiria Sigmar Celestial Warbringers Floatsilk Active
Brighthall[41a] Aqshy Great Parch Reaver Wastes of Aridian Sigmar Unknown Unknown Destroyed
Cartha[30a] Ghur Hinterlands of Ghur Carthic Oldwoods Sigmar Astral Templars Destroyed
Catransa[29a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Destroyed
Celestrius[38a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Celestial Lions Unknown Destroyed
Colonnade [50a] Ghur Sigmar Assorted Noble Houses Destroyed
Colostrum[40a] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Jade Kingdom of Erosia Sigmar An Unknown Stormhost Unknown Destroyed
Darkdelve[36a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Desperance[52a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Draconium[9] Aqshy Great Parch Capilaria Sigmar Destroyed
Excelsis[37a] Ghur Ghurish Heartlands Coast of Tusks of Thondia Sigmar Knights Excelsior Glimmerings[37a]
Monster Bones[37a]
Silksteel[37a]
Salted and Cured Meats[52h]
Active
Duskhenge[53a] Ulgu Shadrac Convergance Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Destroyed
Fort Denst[52c] Aqshy Great Parch Capilaria Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Fort Gardus[52d] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Verdia Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Glymmsforge[6] Shyish Prime Innerlands Lyria Sigmar The Glymm Cats[6]
Fish[6]
Unguent Oils[52e]
Active
Gravewild[6] Shyish Sea of Dust Sigmar Captain General Albain Lorcus
Hallowed Knights
Aurochs[14] Unknown
Greenfire [46a] Chamon Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Spyglasses
Telescopes
Active
Greyspire[36a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Greywater Fastness[37a] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Jade Kingdom of Verdia Sigmar
Grungni
Artillery Pieces[37a]
Blackpowder Weapons[37a]
Runic Munitions[37b]
Active
Hallowheart[37a] Aqshy Great Parch Golvaria Sigmar Hallowed Knights Whitefire Tomes[37a]
Gems[37a]
Emberstone[52g]
Golvarian Minerals[52g]
Active
Hammerhal Aqsha[37a] Aqshy Great Parch Capilaria Sigmar Hammers of Sigmar Cogforts[37a]
Shadeglass[10b]
'Ivory[10b]
Megalofin Teeth[10b]
Amber Beads[10b]
Salted Meats[10b]
Fyresteel Blades[10b]
Hammerhalian weapons[52g]
Active
Hammerhal Ghyra[37a] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Jade Kingdom of Verdia Alarielle
Sigmar
Hallowed Knights Grains[37a]
Meats[37a]
Ironoak[10b]
Active
Harkraken's Bane[52a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Heldenhammer's Triumph[52d] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Verdia Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Helmgard[7] Chamon Unknown Ironroot Mountains Sigmar Metal Ore[7] Destroyed
Holdash[17a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Hollenwald[53a] Ulgu Shadrac Convergence Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Houndsgate[17a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Unknown
Izalend[8] Ghur Ghurish Heartlands Coast of Tusks of Thondia Sigmar Unknown Salted and Cured Meats[52h] Active
Kurnothea[44a] Ghyran Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Active
Lethis[37a] Shyish Prime Innerlands Styggx Morrda Anvils of the Heldenhammer Peacewater[37a]
Talismans of Morrda[37a]
Lethisian Lakewater[52e]
Active
Living City[37a] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Jade Kingdom of Thyria Alarielle Alarielle Ironoak[1b] Active
Matarka[39a] Ghur Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Destroyed
Mhurghast[24] Shyish Prime Innerlands Athanasia Sigmar Active
Misthåvn[52f] Ulgu Klarondu Cape Tenebrax Sigmar Celestial Warbringers Misthåvn Narcotics[37a] Active
New Sadoria[53a] Ulgu Shadrac Convergence Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Destroyed
The Phoenicium[17a] Ghyran Everspring Swathe Jade Kingdom of Humidia Ur-Phoenix Phoenix Temple Active
Ravensbach[28] Chamon Unknown Unknown Sigmar An Unknown Stormhost
House von Koeterberg
Unknown Active
Scant Hope[52a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Settler's Gain[37a][52i] Hysh Xintil Sigmar
Teclis
Tempest Lords Active
Seven Words[30b] Ghur Ghurish Hinterlands Gorkoman Sigmar Astral Templars Lumber[30] Active
Skythane[31a] Ghur Ghurish Hinterlands Gryphspine Mountain Range Sigmar Unknown Minerals[31a] Active
Taberna[42a] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Unknown
Tansis[54a] Chamon Spiral Crux Rusted Wastes Sigmar Unknown Unknown Destroyed
Tempest's Eye[37a] Aqshy Great Parch Khul's Ravage Sigmar Tempest Lords Active
Thanator's Manse[52e] Shyish Prime Innerlands Amethyst Princedoms Sigmar Unknown Warding Crystals[52e]
Enchanted Rings52e
Active
Thraesh[15c] Unknown Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Tor Limina[52a] Hysh Iliatha Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Twinned Towns of Belvegrod[43a] Shyish Graveswater Sigmar Westreach: Azyrite Settlers/Eastdale: Native Reclaimed Destroyed
Umbramox[36a] Ulgu Unknown Unknown Sigmar Unknown Unknown Active
Vandium[10b] Aqshy Great Parch Capilaria Sigmar Hammers of Sigmar (Presumed) Crusading Armies from Azyr[10b] Active
Vindicarum[37a] Chamon Spiral Crux Prosperis Sigmar Celestial Vindicators Quicksilver[37a] Active

Great Cities of Azyr

Azyrheim the Eternal City

These are the great cities of the Realm of Heavens. They are not considered Cities of Sigmar in and of themselves, but it is from these cities that the first Azyrite settlers and crusading armies set forth to aid in retaking the Mortal Realms. These Azyrite cities share many similarities to their offshoots.

Culture

Society

The Cities of Sigmar are cosmopolitan municipalities that are home to Humans, Duardin, Aelves, and many other races who come from a staggering variety of cultures and religious faiths, who are collectively known as the Free Peoples. Though all of these groups have different methods and views on everything from worship, making war, and even crafting, they are reunited in their desires to defy Chaos and rebuild the realms so poorly affected by the ravages of the Age of Chaos.[51a]

Despite their collective goals, there are many divisions among the Free Peoples. The most profound and widely known is the divide between the Azyrites who returned to the lower realms after the reopening of the Gates of Azyr and the Reclaimed, those people who survived in the realms overtaken by Chaos for centuries.[10a]

Within many of the more industrialized Cities of Sigmar, innovative and well-run businesses have risen to power as their creations bring wealth and protection to their homes. This power has led to them gaining incredible influence over the Grand Conclaves of their cities. These businesses lobby for laws to grant craftspeople more priveledges and have statues of genius inventors erected.[51b]

Subfactions

Defenders of the Cities of Sigmar

The following are those organizations and factions that live and operate within the Free Cities of the God-King's growing empire:

  • Free Peoples: The Free Peoples is the collective term for the many cultures and subfactions that make their homes in the Cities of Sigmar. The majority of these cultures and subfactions are dominated by Humans, Duardin of the Dispossessed Clans, and the Aelves, the latter of which are sometimes collectively known as City Aelves. But members of other races such as Ogors, Sylvaneth, and Seraphon are occasionally counted among the Free Peoples.[20a][51a]
    • Collegiate Arcane: A loose alliance of tower and palace dwelling mages, seers, wizards, alchemists, elementalists, and other practitioners of magic. The organization is academic in nature and serves as a safe place for the magically gifted to explore their abilities and study. The most skilled of these sorcerous artisans create magical devices and artefacts to assist the Cities of Sigmar both on and off the battlefield. Others personally take to the field as Battlemages.[17d][10a]
    • Darkling Covens: These matriarchal cults are dedicated to the acquisition of resources, power, and influences. Each Darkling Coven is comprised of a Sorceress and her personal entourage of thralls, lieutenants, and followers. Members, or at least spies, of the Covens, can be found wherever the forces of Order congregate.[17h][10a]
    • Devoted of Sigmar: The Azyrite Church is led by Arch War-Priestess Asvai Stormwright and nominally her authority extends to the entirety of the Devoted of Sigmar, but there are many sects and denominations within the Devoted. Notably the Order of Azyr is said to answer to the God-King alone. Whatever their denomination or form of worship, the Devoted are the zealous followers of Sigmar, seeking to purify the Realms in his name.[10a]
    • Dispossessed: The Dispossessed clans are the remnants of the mighty Khazalid Empires that fell in the Age of Chaos, they have clung to the arts of smithcraft, masonry, and rune-shaping of their ancestors. They now use their expertise to build some of the mightiest fortifications of Sigmar's empire with their hammers and when the need arises they take up their axes and defend those same walls.[17g][10a]
    • Freeguilds: Many of the military guilds known as the Freeguilds serve as the standing military and city watch of the Cities of Sigmar, while many others contract themselves out as mercenaries. Still, others are employed in a wide range of duties from guarding palaces to clearing sewers.[17e]
    • Ironweld Arsenal: This conglomeration of human and duardin weaponsmiths was formed in the aftermath of the closing of the Gates of Azyr. They have since become the creators of some of the most innovative and deadly inventions made by mortalkind. Their guilds are scattered across the Cities of Sigmar.[17f]
    • Order Serpentis: An ancient order that once ruled over the empire of Narkath in the Realm of Ulgu, long ago during the Age of Myth. Though the empire was mighty indeed, it fell in only a few mere decades when the forces of Chaos invaded Ulgu. Those that survived the slaughter fled to Azyr like so many others and brooded over their losses during the entire span of the Age of Chaos. Though they fight alongside and within the armies of Sigmar, they are known to be cruel and brutal to both foe and ally alike. The Dreadlords that lead the order see the crusades of Sigmar as their best chance to regain power and influence in the Realms.[17m]
    • Phoenix Temple: This martial order serves the Godbeast known as the Ur-Phoenix and its members fight alongside the fiery and icy spawn of the great godbeast.[17k]
    • Scourge Privateers: Often employed by the ruling conclaves of coastal Free Cities such as Anvilgard and Excelsis. Once they were pirates and reavers who commanded vast, ocean-spanning empires, and there are any among the ambitious Fleetmasters who dream of one day rebuilding those empires, beyond the authority of Sigmar and his lieutenants. But for now, they turn their talents to hunting beasts of the sea and those fleets that would endanger the Free Cities, such as those of Orruk freebooters.[17i][10a]
    • Shadowblades: No one knows the exact origins or nature of this secretive order of assassins, but many tales and legends surround their legendary exploits, and the enemies of Order have learned to fear them. Whatever their origins may be, the Shadowblades are dedicated to destroying the enemies of Azyr.[17j]
    • Wanderers: There was a time when Aelven kingdoms and their inhabitants served as guardians of the Realm of Life and lived in its great canopy-cities. Initially when the legions of Chaos fell upon the Ghyran valiantly fought to defend their homes, but in the end, they joined Sigmar in his flight to Azyr, a betrayal that Alarielle and the Sylvaneth have never truly forgiven. With the coming of the Age of Sigmar, the Wanderers return to the Realms to save, secure and purify their wild places[17l][10a]

Other Organizations

  • Aetherguard: Aelven and Human rangers who maintain watchtowers and Swifthawk rookeries throughout the Talons that encircle the Titanspear, the mountain upon which the Free City of Tempest's Eye is built.[4]
  • Blackscale Coil: A massive criminal syndicate that ruled Anvilgard from the shadows for years. When Morathi-Khaine and the Daughters of Khaine staged a coup in the city, the coil revealed themselves to be collaborators secretly working to destabilize the city for that very invasion.[37a]
  • Black Pipers: A freelance guild of Underjacks, who specialize in hunting Skaven.[10a]
  • Council of the Forge: This august body is comprised of the wealthiest and most influential Duardin lords and clan chiefs in Greywater Fastness. The power and influence of this organization far outweighs even that held by the city's Grand Conclave.[17p]
  • Everspring Circle: A group of druids that tends to the trees of the Living City. They work tirelessly to ensure bileworm and poxstinger infestations are kept at bay and away from the city's ironoak bulwarks.[17o]
  • Far Traders of Bataar: The merchants and traders of the legendary Floating Market have made inroads to rebuild their once-mighty trade empire. These merchants are not content to sit idly by and have made forays across the Mortal Realms, many have even established themselves in the trade districts and markets of Cities of Sigmar, such as Brightspear.[10a][10b][21a][21b]
  • Folly: A traveling troupe of Aelven acrobats and singers. They specialize in exposing Slaaneshi cults.[10a]
  • Guild of Certified Thaumaturgists: A guild of alchemists comprised of students expelled from the Alchemists' Guild for their unethical experiments. The organization has a dark reputation of being as dangerous and unethical as their experiments but will sell their products to anyone willing to pay their prices. Though they are based in Hammerhal, their guild's influence extends to many other free cities.[23a]
  • Hawthorns: A loosely connected network of professional killers, with a knack for rooting out and hunting Vampires.[10a]
  • Order of Azyr: While technically the Order of Azyr operates as an extension of the Devoted of Sigmar, its agents are said to answer to no authority except that of Sigmar himself. It is their duty to root out corruption and heresy in the Free Cities and the rest of Sigmar's empire.[10b]
  • Order of the Dove: A mendicant order of the Church of Azyr comprised of priests and priestesses who attach themselves to armies to act as healers and erect field hospitals to attend to the wounded. In exchange for their service, they are often granted the right to build hospices in newly conquered territory.[14c]
  • Order of the Eye: In the Free City of Tempest's Eye, this organization of mages, engineers, and observers are dedicated to watching over the city and keeping it safe.[5]
  • Order Posthumous: The Raven Priests are the clergy dedicated to Morrda, Master of the Bleak Raven. They are found widespread throughout the Free City of Lethis.[37a]

Economy

The vast majority of commerce throughout the Mortal Realms is done via bartering and trade, but currencies thrive among the Free Cities. Chief amongst these is a substance known as Aqua Ghyranis, which has potent restorative effects.[10c] Other currencies such as the Glimmerings of Excelsis and coinage such as Meteors and Motes are known to be accepted within the cities as well.[4a][37a] As are more esoteric currencies such as Quicksilver Ingots, Aether-gold Ingots, Bataari Firesilk, and Shyish black-salt.[4a][21b]

Equally diverse are the crafting styles and goods produced within the Cities of Sigmar, which vary wildly from realm to realm, city to city. Many Cities will even produce wondrous artefacts, unlike anything else in the Realms, using crafting traditions preserved from the Age of Myth. Such as the famed fletching of the Phoenicium and the Drakescale Cloaks of Anvilgard. In addition to those ancient traditions preserved through painting effort, many independent craftsfolk of the Cities have learned to incorporate regional resources into the designs of their creations, thus creating truly unique designs that could only be made in the realm their city is found in.[51a]

The regulation and stability of trade networks within a City of Sigmar is a primary concern of its ruling Grand Conclave, as well as the elements of the Ironweld Arsenal that operate in the city.[51a]

The Free Peoples within the Cities of Sigmar have all developed unique styles, items, gadgets, and tools which reflect their diverse cultures and backgrounds. The Collegiate Arcane the arcane foci used by its own members of other mages. The Ironweld Arsenal churns out the guns, Cogforts, and much of the machinery used by the cities. The Devoted of Sigmar create weapons to honor their warrior god such as the ever-popular warhammers, blessed swords, and flagellation whips. The craftwork of the Wanderers includes falconry equipment, cloaks, and floral compasses. Those City Aelves descended from the fallen nations of ugu have developed a style to give commonality to their diaspora culture, one that includes dark clours and sharp edges.[51a]

Industry

In many ways, the industry of the Free Cities is defined by contradictions, its citizens are both beleaguered labourers and artisanal geniuses, and everything in-between. The factories of the Free Cities constantly churn out mass-produced weapons, armour, machinery, and vehicles to supply efforts to reclaim the Realms, even while they experiment and innovate creating new designs that, with Azyrheim's approval, will quickly become widespread across the Realms. The Ironweld Arsenal and its factories are often at the forefront of this industry.[51a]

While the industrial districts of a City of Sigmar will be heavily regulated by its Grand Conclave, the works of independent craftspeople all across the city are allowed to flourish. It is often the latter that create the items that colour the daily lives of the citizens of the city.[51a]

The Ironweld Arsenal can adapt to any environment, in its own way, and convert the natural resources of those environments into the fuel and materials needed for crafting their firearms, cannons, and other weaponry. Such is their skill, no matter the resources used, the quality of these weapons remains largely consistent.[51a]

The Collegiate Arcane seeks to bring about innovation through arcano-science. Advancement is built upon the knowledge of the past, that has been meticulously codified and institutionalized by the Collegiate. Many of the greatest breakthroughs are built upon the thousands of small discoveries that came before or the skilful combination of two or more Lores of Magic. Among the most remarkable devices to come out of the research departments of the Collegiate are the Luminarks and Hurricanums.[51a]

Industry is often shaped by the religious organizations that make their home in the Cities of Sigmar. Such as the Devoted of Sigmar, Wanderers, and Phoenix Temple. These orders remember well the wonders they made in the distant past and seek to recover and replicate them.[51a]

Religion

Within the Cities of Sigmar all members of the Pantheon of Order, both current and former, are venerated and worshipped, as are many other deities. Each having cults and temples dedicated to them. Though the most well-known among these religious organizations are the myriad sects of the Devoted of Sigmar who worship Sigmar, the Wanderers who are dedicated to Alarielle, and the Phoenix Temple that serves the Godbeast known as Ur-Phoenix. Worship of Grungni the Maker is widespread among all those who would dedicate their lives to crafting, particularly the Dispossessed clans.[10a][37a][51b]

In the Free City of Lethis the Raven Priests of the underworld deity known as Morrda are a common sight and the city is known as the Raven City in honour of the deity. The Anvils of the Heldenhammer, whose main Stormkeep is found within this city, counts Morrda as their secondary patron.[37a]

Internal Conflict

Conflicts often erupt between the groups and subfactions that represent the many Free Peoples of the Cities of Sigmar, though these conflicts rarely descend into bloodshed. Instead, such conflicts play out in the Conclaves of the cities. Bribery, blackmail, filibustering, and politicking often plagues even the most stable Conclave's proceedings.[37a] Prejudice is also common among the Free Cities, in all of its varied forms.[10b]

In the cities found on the Great Parch, a citizen will rarely face prejudice based on their species or gender but rather based on their station within a city's hierarchy or due to where what Realm they originate from. The politics of these cities will often exacerbate existing prejudices, often in ways, native Aqshians do not fully comprehend.[10b]

Relations With Other Factions of Grand Alliance of Order

  • Daughters of Khaine: Nearly every major city hosts a Khainite sect, many play host to several, and their temples of bloodshed and murder dedicated to Khaine are forbidding edifices. These sects are known as covenite sisters, or Daughters of Khaine, and perform a wide variety of duties; many serve as such as the Witch Aelves, gladiators, spies, assassins, and sword-dancers.[10a]
  • Eldritch Council: The Council is comprised of Azyrite Aelves trained in the arcane arts by Teclis and given the lofty duty of preserving the ways of their ancestors. Members of the Council study all forms of magic, rather than focusing on one, and their mastery is called upon to cleanse areas too tainted for the Devoted of Sigmar to purify.[20a]
  • Fyreslayers: Elite Mercenaries, find much demand for their skills in the Cities of Sigmar, and their fyrds are a common sight, marching in and out of the cities to collect payment. Many Lodges operate Forges in the Cities to take advantage of this demand. Those such as the Gelvagd have taken this further, however, for their magmahold, not merely a secondary forge, is contained within the city of Azyrheim - although they do their best to separate themselves from the wider population.[19a][19b][19c]
  • Kharadron Overlords: Most Cities of Sigmar hosts a Kharadron Enclave. To ensure that their relations with others are to their benefit, the Kharadron Overlords establish ever-evolving webs of trade agreements and contracts with their trade partners.[17n][21b] They often invest in the construction of vital commercial infrastructure in foreign settlements by handling the contracts and providing the design, materials and labour.[21b] This allows them to establish monopolies over key trade routes and resources.[21b] As a result, kharadron enclaves have grown exponentially in both size and influence.[35a]
  • Lion Rangers: The Lion Rangers are descended from the rangers that once hunted along the mountain ranges around Azyrheim. They have become a warrior brotherhood specialized in close-quarter combat. In the Age of Chaos they were nearly wiped out but have since been bolstered with the aid of other Free Peoples. They do not linger overlong in the Free Cities, as fortresses failed them in the Age of Chaos, and instead prefer to roam the natural places of the Mortal Realms.[20a]
  • Order Draconis: In the Age of Myth, Sigmar united many of the aelves of the Realm of Heavens. Some of these aelves found kinship with the noble stallions and wild drakes, these were the ancestors of the Order Draconis. The noble aelven knights of this order follow in the wake of the storms signifying the presence of Sigmar's Stormhosts, ever eager to join the fight against Chaos.[20a]
  • Seraphon: Entire enclaves of Seraphon are found within some of the Cities of Sigmar, the clever and crafty Skinks offering their services as scribes, crafters, and even readers of mystic portents.[10a]
  • Stormcast Eternals: Most Free Cities of Sigmar's expanding civilization are founded around Realmgates captured and liberated by the Stormcast of the Stormhosts. These valiant demigod warriors then lay the foundations for the city to come and Stormkeeps are built around the captured Realmgates, from which the Stormcast Eternals direct their crusades across the Mortal Realms.[15b]
  • Swifthawk Agents: The Swifthawk Agents serve as messengers and agents between the armies of the Free Peoples, relay messages between armies and aiding in coordinating plans while simultaneously disrupting the communication networks of foes.[20a]
  • Sylvaneth

Threats Beyond the Walls

Beyond the walls of the Free Cities are vast wildernesses full of predatory Living Spells, monstrous beasts such as Maw-Krushas, and Chaos-tainted entities such as Sphiranxes and Jabberslythes. The Beasts of Chaos also lay claim to many of the wilds beyond the walls of the stalwart cities of the God-King and these self-same imposing walls often attract the attention of ravenous Ogors, brutal Gargants, and rampaging Orruks.[10a]

Mortal servants of the Ruinous Powers are also attracted to these grand bastions of Order, eager to bring them to ruin in the names of their Dark Gods. These forces of Chaos range from the rampaging hordes the of Bloodbound and Rotbringers to the duplicitous cults of Arcanites and Sybarites hidden within the populations of the Free Cities. The verminous children of the Great Horned Rat have also set their sights on the Free Cities. Their mad machinations can undermine even the greatest among Order's beacons of hope. For those who survive the fall of a city to these dark forces, slavery and servitude to the Dark Powers await them.[10a]

So too do the followers of the Undying King threaten the sanctity of the Free Cities, ever more so since the Necroquake warped the Mortal Realms. Vast armies of Nighthaunt, Deathrattle, and Deadwalkers stalk the lands, preying on the living.[10a]

Quotes

‘There are places where valour reigns, my child, where death does not thirst so for the souls of the living. Some say that Hammerhal Ghyra’s gardens can feed a million mouths and that the Phoenicium has the power to bring a man’s spirit back from Shyish. But these places are few, and still assailed on all sides. We must fight the darkness each day so they may thrive, and our people will thrive with them.’

Elder Cahastor of Neos describing the grandeur of the Free Cities.[22a]


‘Everything they destroy, we’ll rebuild twice as grand.’

A common saying of the craftspeople of the Cities of Sigmar.[51b]

Gallery

Sources

Cities of Sigmar
Fortress Cities ExcelsisHammerhal AqshaHammerhal GhyraLethisMisthåvnSettler's GainVindicarum
Seeds of Hope Greywater FastnessLiving CityPhoenicium
Cities of Flame AnvilgardBrightspearHallowheartTempest's Eye
Free Cities AlshimeAnvalorAnvilheimAnvilspireArbitriumBarbed PromiseBlackwallBrighthallCatransaCelestriusColonnadeColostrumDarkdelveDesperanceDraconiumDuskhengeFort DenstFort GardusGlymmsforgeGravewildGreenfireGreyspireHarkraken's BaneHeldenhammer's TriumphHelmgardHoldashHollenwaldHoundsgateIzalendKurnotheaMatarkaMhurghstNew SadoriaScant HopeSeven WordsSkythaneTabernaTansisThanator's ManseThraeshTor LiminaUmbramoxVandium
Cities of Sigmar
Subfactions
Collegiate ArcaneDarkling CovensDevoted of SigmarDispossessedFreeguildIronweld ArsenalOrder SerpentisPhoenix TempleScourge PrivateersShadowbladesWanderers
Associated Factions Eldritch CouncilDaughters of KhaineFyreslayersKharadron OverlordsLion RangersOrder DraconisStormcast EternalsSwifthawk AgentsSylvaneth
Artwork