War of Heaven and the Underworlds

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War of Heaven and the Underworlds
Era Age of Chaos
Location Shyish
Outcome Nagash escapes retribution, but is left vulnerable to the forces of Chaos
Sigmar retreats to Azyr and begins The Long Wait
Some consider the Soul Wars to be a re-ignition of this conflict
Combatants
{{{3}}} Grand Alliance of Order {{{3}}} Legions of Nagash
Commanders
{{{3}}} Sigmar {{{3}}} Nagash
Losses/Survivors
Unknown Numerous lieutenants and heralds slain


The War of Heaven and the Underworlds refers to the conflict that raged between forces of Order allied to Sigmar and the forces of Death allied to Nagash after the Battle of Burning Skies during the Age of Chaos.[1a]

History

Origins

The alliance between Sigmar and Nagash had been strong during the Age of Myth. Nagash built many settlements with his undead thralls that mortal tribes then inhabited. This helped expand civilizations far faster than they ever could have without each other.[1a]

As the Pantheon began to splinter, Nagash found evidence that Sigmar was withholding souls from Shyish breaking their pact. When Chaos begins it’s incursions into the Realm of Death Nagash draws back the dead to defend his own holdings.[1a][2a]

Age of Chaos

Once Archaon begins the War of Bones by leading a monstrous host of Daemons, Chaotic Barbarians, Varanguard, and Skaven Nagash waits for his ostensible ally Sigmar to bring relief. When none arrives Nagash is incensed even though he was able to push back most of these invasions at great cost on his own.[1a]

At the War for the Allpoints Sigmar had sent for a great host of Azyrite armies to defend the Allpoints in the name of the Pantheon against Archaon’s forces that were already.[1a] The Amethyst Princedoms and Nagash do answer Sigmar’s to arms at the Battle of Burning Skies but Nagash does not commit his full strength and the Amethyst Princes are mostly slain.[1a][1b][2a]

Both Sigmar and Nagash perceive the other as committing an unforgivable betrayal, and declare their alliance over. Consumed by a need for revenge and an unyelding rage Sigmar abandons his God-King aspect and becomes a barbarian god of war once more, then leads his forces in a mass invasion of Shyish, beginning the War of Heaven and Death in earnest.[1a]

Sigmar carves a path of destruction across Shyish during which he slays many of Nagash’s lieutenants and heralds before retreating back to Azyr, beginning The Long Wait.[1a][1b]

As a result, Nagash is unable to stop Archaon's renewed War of Bones. Eventually he is defeated and forced into hiding, the Realm of Shyish left to become completely overrun by Chaos.[1b]

Consequences

Age of Sigmar

During the Realmgate Wars, it seemed that Nagash and Sigmar might be able to reconcile. Sigmar, though he still despises Nagash for his failure to present himself at the Battle of Burning Skies, recognized that the sent the Hallowed Knights some under Tarsus Bull-Heart to find Nagash and treat with him. After meeting with Mannfred Von Carstein and reaching Stygxx, they found Nagash but were forced to retreat without success while Tarsus Bull-Heart was captured.[1b][3]

Though there were some other signs of warming between followers of the two Gods who inflict a significant defeat upon the forces of Chaos in the Battle of Ossia, and during the founding of Gravewild, Gardus Steel Soul was able to negotiate with Nagash for the land of Gravewild and the return of Tarsus Bull-Heart, these signs were quickly snuffed out during the Battle of Gothizzar when Nagash’s legions failed to provide support and the Shyish Arcway Endgate remained in Chaotic hands.[1b][2a][4]

Meanwhile, Nagash continued building his Great Black Pyramid in his rebuilt Nagashizzar, as it neared completion many seers felt its malign portents. Sigmar, forewarned by Vandus Hammerhand’s dreams, sent an army under his Lord-Ordinators to stop this ritual. When they reach Nagashizzar they find another army sent by the Dark Gods. Unable to control their hatred for each other the two armies fought in the shadow of Nagash’s great citadel. While they fought the Great Black Pyramid was completed triggering the Shyish Necroquake.[5a]

Sources