Nighthaunt

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Nighthaunt
Nighthaunt 01.jpg
An army of Nighthaunt.
Grand alliance Death
Associated factions Legion of Grief
Major characters Kurdoss Valentian
Olynder
Reikenor
Races Malignant
Mounts Skeletal Steed
Vehicles Black Coach
Creatures Zombie Dragon
Terrorgheist
Spell lores Lore of the Underworlds


Nighthaunts are tormented and bitter spirits that leave nothing but withered corpses in their wake.

Overview

Gateways to the underworld that lurk beneath the Realm of Shyish discharge malignant spirits that gather together in hatred and rage to form nighthaunt armies. Cairn Wraiths only joy comes from the souls they reap with their scythes, many being murderers or merciless executioners whereas Tomb Banshees are betrayed spirits and whose piercing scream can freeze the heart of a living warrior. Hexwraiths were once knights cruel and proud who once again bring terror and death to the living whilst Black Coaches contain a forsaken soulblight vampire that seeks to gather power to escape its prison. Clouds of Spirit Hosts are full of rage and hate, the souls of the damned that have lost all identity and seek to express their unending rage at the living. [1]

Nighthaunts come in hundreds of varieties but most can be categorised into a dozen broad groupings such as Chainrasp Hordes and Dreadscythe Harridans. [3a]

These spirits can be created in several ways, one is the necro-maledictus – a curse on a soul recently separated from its physical form, forcing it to remain and haunt the Mortal Realms for eternity. Drifting pockets of amethyst magic or deep deposits of grave sand can also bring them into existence. [3a]

Most are created by Nagash or his followers, using the necromantic magics he has perfected and which the Collegiate Arcane believe he created. All such spirits suffer an ironic punishment, as the god of the dead inflicts a penance for crimes either real or perceived. So a criminal seeking escape through death may find himself in undeath still bound by spiritual chains. [3a]

The curse of the Nighthaunt cannot be easily broken. Even though the necromantic forces holding together the spectral bodies can be broken by sorcery or violence driven by sufficient willpower, over time their shattered essence reforms in the underworlds. Few weapons or spells in the mortal realms can destroy a Nighthaunt once and for all.[3a]

History

Age of Myth

Nighthaunts have haunted the Mortal Realms since the Age of Myth often seeking vengeance on the living themselves or serving more powerful entities such as Soulblight vampires. Occasional in this almost forgotten age, a host of Nighthaunts would arise and devour entire towns. [3b]

Age of Chaos

Nagash summons the spirits of the entire underworld of Nordyrie, part of Hallost following a defeat by a daemonic horder of Khorne at the Battle of Dirge Peak. These former herores rise up and destroy the daemons with only their leader, the Bloodthirster Khazkhan escaping their wrath. [3d]

Idoneth Deepkin raiders enter the Vale of Chains and accidently release a host of spectres cursed by Nagash to be held and tortured there for eternity. The wraiths seek revenge on both the lord of death and the living. [3d]

Following the defeat of Nagash by Archaon, most of the dead are subjugated, imprisoned or destroyed – but the Nighthaunts including such forces as the Glowing Host and the Grimguard remain effective. [3d]

Age of Sigmar

During the Necroquake there is a huge rise in nighthaunt attacks on the living, with hosts nearly overwhelming the Stormcast defending Phoenicium but grew distracted with tormenting the population of the city. Gnarlok, a Sylvaneth fortress was conquered but the ghiests ignored the magical woadstone that it guarded and beastmen were able to take control of it. [3c]

Nagash decided that in order to fully exploit their power, the nighthaunt hosts needed a commander to control and direct them. So it was that he created a new Mortarch to join the trio of lieutenants that served him and commanded his legions. Having once curse the lady Olynder now he sought her out again and gave her a sliver of his divinity. [3c]

Her first great act was to send out a siren call, a soulful lamentation that summoned them back to the Realm of Shyish and her service. From all across the Realms, they came and she formed them into mighty legions or Processions with a Knight of Shrouds to command each spectral host. [3c]

Then she unleashed them against the enemies of her lord, launching attacks first against those who sought to command the Underworld of Lyria. She defeated the hosts of the Chaos warlord Thur and Stormcast Eternals at the siege of Morlaix, her sub commanders reclaiming the Calcified Realmgate and the Mausoleum Mountains. [3c] On occasion, Processions form brief alliances with Flesh-eater Courts as the dead seek to reclaim Ossia but after each successful campaign, the spectres turn on and destroy the ghouls. [3d]

Nighthaunt Processions defeat the Stormcast defenders at the Siege of Morlaix and took back the Mausoleum Mountains. [5a]

Processions

Nighthaunt Procession 01.jpeg

The legions or spectral hosts under the command of Lady Olynder are known as Processions, gathered initially by her siren call of lament and held together by her will or that of her chosen lieutenants. Some processions are constantly being changed or reformed as their Mortarch wills, others are the spirits of a given area or locale that have flocked together and remain in unison.[3e]

Notable

Hierarchy

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At the top of the hierarchy of the Nighthaunt lies Lady Olynder, the Mortarch of Grief. Beneath her lies other notable commanders like Kurdoss Valentian, the Craven King, Reikenor the Grimhailer, the Briar Queen of Shadespire and Morwyrt Blackheart.[3e]

Beneath the commanders in the hierarchy of lies a Shroudguard, composed of Knights of Shrouds guarded by Bladegheist Revenants. Beneath the the Shroudguard lies others types of formations like the Chainguard, the Condemned, the Deathriders, the Death Stalkers, Executioner Hordes and Shrieker Hosts.[3e]

Chainguard

Guardian of Souls 01.jpeg

The Chainguard are a formation of Malignants, constituted by Chainrasp Hordes and overseen by a Guardian of Souls. These hosts are frequently used to hold the centerline of a Nighthaunt army by engaging larger, powerful enemy units and pinning them in place. The Guardian constantly draws the Chainrasps back to battle, allowing the formation to constantly reform and press the initiative.[3e]


The battalion consists of:

Condemned

The Condemned are lead by Spirit Torments, hosts composed of the Chainghasts and Chainrasps, into battle - rampaging through the ranks of the foe.[3e]

Deathriders

Deathriders are the Malignant cavalry of a Nighthaunt Procession and are often drawn together around one or more Black Coaches, providing a powerful fast moving force.[3e]

Some of the known Deathriders units are:

Deathstalkers

The Death Stalkers are Nighthaunt Malignants that are put together to hunt out and dispatch specific enemies and foes.[3e]

Execution Hordes

Lord Executioner 01.jpeg

Execution Hordes are led by a Lord Executioner, these smaller hosts are able to weave across battlefields and strike powerful blows at enemy formations.[3e]

Shrieker Hosts

Shrieker Hosts are Nighthaunt Malignants. Protected from enemy magic by the Myrmourn, the Tomb Banshee leads her sisters into battle, as she unleashes her wail of doom, her accompanying Dreadscythe's tear into the shaken enemy.[3e]

Shroudguard

Knight of Shrouds 01.jpeg

Shroudguard are a type of Nighthaunt Malignants, usually Knights of the Shrouds frequently guarded by a bodyguard of Bladeghesit Revenants who are bound to their master or mistress by magical oaths.[3e]

Quotes

Ice cold fear heralds their arrival. Only ruined corpses mark their passing.

~ Lord-Exorcist Wynter .[4a]

Sources


Nighthaunt
Units Chainguard (Chainrasp - Guardian of Souls) - Condemned (Chainghast - Chainrasp - Spirit Torment) - Deathriders (Black Coach - Dreadblade Harrow - Hexwraith) - Death Stalkers (Cairn Wraith - Glaivewraith Stalker - Grimghast Reaper) - Ethereal Steed - Executioner Horde (Lord Executioner - Spirit Host) - Shrieker Host (Dreadscythe Harridan - Myrmourn Banshee - Tomb Banshee) - Shroudguard (Bladegheist Revenant - Knight of Shrouds)
Characters Celemnis - Entyr Rocha - Keldrek - Kurdoss Valentian - Lady Harrow's Mournflight (Anguished One - Lady Harrow - Screaming Maiden - Widow Caitha) - Morwyrt Blackheart - Olynder - Omphalo Dohl - Reikenor - Sabrodt - Thorns of the Briar Queen (Briar Queen - Ever-Hanged - Kreth Soulvoid - Varclav) - Vorgen Malendrek - White Witch
Processions Blood Mavens - Emerald Host - Glowing Host
Armoury - Artwork - Miniatures - Endless Spells - Lore of the Underworlds
Grand Alliances and factions
OrderChaosDestructionDeath
Beasts of the GraveDeadwalkersDeathlordsDeathmagesDeathrattleFlesh-Eater CourtsLegions of Nagash (Grand Host of NagashLegion of BloodLegion of GriefLegion of NightLegion of Sacrament) • NighthauntOssiarch BonereapersSoulblight