Great Game

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The Great Game is the eternal struggle between the Dark Gods as they seek to dominate the other.[1a]


The never-ending struggle of each of the Chaos Gods to gain dominion over the others is known as the Great Game. This endless struggle spans the Realm of Chaos where legions of Daemons fight at the behest of their masters and the Mortal Realms where the mortal agents of the Ruinous Powers seek to grant their patron an advantage.[2a] While fighting for power, bonds are formed and then broken as Khorne, Nurgle, Tzeentch vie for domination of not only the Realm of Chaos, but also the Mortal Realms. Even the pantheon's newcomer, the Great Horned Rat, attempts to sneak into the fead.[1a] The battles for control of the Mortal Realms have only added new challenges to the Great Game.[2a]


While Khorne finds the Great Horned Rat to be honourless and weak, Nurgle to be foolishly sentimental, and Tzeentch's reliance on sorcery nothing more than cowardice, it is Slaanesh that most stokes the Blood God's ire. Slaanesh represents all that Khorne most despises; his decadence is at odds with the Blood God's martial pride, and his wayward fetishes clash with Khorne's single-minded desire for indiscriminate slaughter. Slaanesh, for his part, found Khorne's artless brutality dull, and took perverse delight in agitating the Blood God. With the Dark Prince gone, Khorne ruled virtually uncontested during the Age of Chaos, but new challengers have since risen - and the Blood God eagerly seeks to grind each of them to dust beneath his iron heel.[1a]


Tzeentch loves the Great Game more dearly than any other pastime. To this most masterful of schemers, the game offers not just endless amusement but also boundless opportunity. Not only does Tzeentch constantly seek to further his own ambitions, he expends just as much of his focus on his desire to manipulate or counteract the best-laid plans of his rivals. Through convoluted stratagems, Tzeentch has subverted his brother gods time and again. One of Tzeentch's most infamous deeds in the Great Game was to beguile Khorne's greatest Bloodthirster, Skarbrand, into attacking his patron. It was Tzeentch's amgic that finally burned away Nurgle Ineffable Malady and it was Tzeentch's plotting that led to Slaanesh's captureby the aelven gods and the twist of fate that turned the Dark Prince's ultimate victory into a strange form of defeat.[2a]


In the Great Game, Nurgle is typically ranked third most powerful behind wrathful Khorne and duplicitous Tzeentch. Yet this is a misleading notion, for in truth Nurgle is in no way inferior to his brothers. Rather, his might surges and recedes in a never-ending cycle. When plague and pestilence run rampant, Burgle becomes so swollen with power that his leathery hide struggles to contain it. When remission comes, and his plagues fall fallow, so his power wanes until he becomes hollowed out shadow of his former greatness. Yet Nurgle is never defeated for long, for disease and decay are as inevitable as time and tide.[3a]


Due to his imprisonment within Uhl-Gysh during the Age of Chaos, the Dark Prince has largely been absent form the Great Game. However, Slaanesh has used his rivalry with Khorne to his advantage. Khorne would never willingly help the Dark Prince, nor would Slaanesh ever stoop to asking for it, but he had thought long and hard about his metaphysical chains' secrets. He sent a vision ti gus firenist Infernal Enrapturess, Alegaria Sen'sathra, bidding them to steal the sacred daemon axe Eigngrom and hence gain the attention of the Blood God. Enraged, Khorne sent his three-headed hound, Karanak, across time and space to destroy the Daemonette and reclaim his axe. As the two rival daemons hunted each other across the realms, Slaanesh twisted the Chain of Purist Hatred around himself. When the hunt reached its conclusion atop the Serried Peaks of Aqshy, the daemonette proved more cunning and slew Khorne's hound. The Blood God's volcanic, mind-shattering explosion of rage resounded across the cosmos with a boom so loud it awoke billions of slumbering mortals in a cold sweat of terror. The aetheric blast of hatred reached Uhl-Gysh, where its force rocked the runic obelisks like buoys in a stormy sea - and shattered the chain that wound around Slaanesh into a million shard.[4a]