The Empire is the most powerful nation in the Old World. They worship Sigmar , the founder of the Empire, as their patron god. Their might comes from the state armies and from the inventions of the dwarfs. They use gunpowder and steel, and a millitary saying goes: "Three things make The Empire great – faith, steel and gunpowder!"
The Empire of man stands resolute against the onslought of innumerable foes. Orcs, Chaos, the blasphemous Beastmen, and even triator Elector Counts threaten their existence. Led by their Emperor, Karl Franz , and united by their faith in Sigmar the soldiers of the Empire have proved victoriuos time and time again against all odds.
The men of the Empire were originally nothing more than a loose confederation of barbaric times. Then, over 2,500 years ago Sigmar came to the Warhammer World. It is said that Sigmar fell from a star as a gift from the gods. Sigmar was the supreme warrior, the best warrior men have ever produced, who never met his match. Through much war and bloodshed Sigmar united the tribes into a cohesive unti called the Empire.
In the Imperial calendar, year 1 is the year Sigmar ascended to the throne of the Empire. He wielded a mighty warhammer called Ghal Maraz that is better known as the Hammer of Sigmar. It was and still is the bane of the enemies of mankind. Slayer of blasphemous demons, evil Beastmen, and hulking Orc Warbosses the Hammer of Sigmar has never known defeat. During the reign of Sigmar mankind was in the ascendancy. Chaos was on the retreat, the Beastman threat was quelled, even the Orcs withdrew from Empire territory.
However, the Golden Age did not last forever. The Empire is faced by enemies without and triators and heretics within. In all aspects, Karl Franz has seen to the improvement of the Empire and its citizens yet there is still much to be done. Beastmen still swarm in the dark forests of the Empire, Orcs, Goblins, and the warriors of Chaos threaten its safety and the borders with Bretonnia are ever a place of tension. So it is that Karl Franz, the greatest statesman the world has ever known stands ready to take to the field of battle against the enemies of man.
The drumbeats of war grow louder. Far to the North, ancient prophecies are being fulfilled. Rumors abound of Archon, lord of the end times, the Everchosen of Chaos who is gathering a massive horde of Chaos warriors in preparation for an unholy crusade that will destroy the Empire. The Beastmen are growing restless. Massive Orc warbands have already caused much destruction in the southern Imperial provinces. The Skaven horde, led by the Grey Seer, prepare to launch a massive assualt from their underground lairs that will shake the Empire to it's core.
Darkness is in the air. Evil closes in upon the Empire like a hangman's noose.
May Sigmar protect us all.
The Empire army is a diverse force. Ranging from regiments of well-paid professional soldiers, to rag tag militia, powerful knights, and mighty battle wizards the Imperial army has it all. It is also well known for its use of blackpowder weaponry with devastating success.
At the very heart of every army of the Empire are the state troops.State troops form the mainstay of the Empire's armies. As well as forming a standing army, state troops serve as city guards and enforcers of all local laws. They may be armed in a variety of ways although the most common is either halberd, sword or spear. They are profossionals who devote themselves to a lifetime of service to the Emperor. State troops are raised by Elector Counts and generally wear the heraldy from their own province. For this reason, no Imperial army has the same uniforms of another. All armies will be organized they same way and have the same weapons, but not an identical color scheme. Empire armies often include large numbers of missile troops, armed with either Handguns or Crossbows. These troops support the larger infantry units as either detatchments or in larger units that form part of the battle line. These soldiers are also professionals who fight for a living. They are essentially state troops who are armed with handguns or crossbows. They are well trained and add some much needed firepower to an Imperial army's battleline.
Next in the core choices is the Empire Free Company. Broadly referred to as 'irregular troops', militia units are called up as required, and none can foretell how many men will turn up. These troops receive no formal training or discipline and have to equip themselves at their own expense. For many it is a way to earn some much needed extra gold crowns. Most Empire armies will have a few units of militia to provide some a stronger numbers advantage for the professional soldiers. No one expects the militia to do much, but they can be used to tie down an enemy's rank and file so the State Troops can take on the enemies stronger troops.
Another choice is the Empire Archers. Empire Archers are normally organised into small groups of skirmishers who support the regimented units in battle. Trappers and hunters from the wilder, less 'civilised' provinces such as Ostland and the Ostermark, are often called to serve in special units called Huntsmen. Empire Archers are probably the most overlooked unit in the Empire. After all, when blackpowder weaponry is available, why take old-fashioned archers? Nevertheless, they can still pack a punch and make excellent scouts.
Last, but most assuredly not least are the Knights of the Empire. Ultra-powerful shock troops, their armored assaults are feared by all enemies of the Empire. The sons of the Empire's nobility often choose to join one of the select brotherhoods of Knightly Orders. There are many such brotherhoods throughout the Empire. Some select their members from the local nobility others only allow members who are worshippers of a particular god. The Knightly Orders are very powerful and only the strongest warriors stand a chance of surviving their charge. Encased in impentrable armor crafted by Dwarven blacksmiths, the Knights are the finest warriors in the Empire.
There are many different orders of Knights. A few of the more famous ones are the Reiksguard, Knights Panther, and Knights of the Black Bear. The Reiksguard accompany the Emperor on the field of battle.
SpecialEditFirst of the special choices is the Greatswords. Members of the Greatswords are grim men who fight with massive, two-handed blades that can cleave an armoured Knight in twain with one blow. Clad in magnificent suits of Dwarf-forged plate armour, only Men who have taken part in the thickest and bloodiest fighting are ever promoted to the ranks of the Greatswords, and countless battles have been won by these honourable soldiers and their incredible feats of arms.
A solid choice that no Empire general should be without. They can hold the center of the line against all odds. They're expensive, but definitely worth it.The second and last choices in the special category are the Pistoliers and Outriders. In battle, Pistoliers act as light cavalry who gallop around the enemy flanks, disrupting formations and launching devastating hit-and-run attacks with their pistols blazing. Most of the young men who survive their time in the Pistoliers go on to join a Knightly Order, but a select few go on to become Outriders and wield the deadly repeater handguns. They work quite well in a scouting role, since they are able to move quickly and have good range. The Outriders can lay down a torrent of firepower and in terms of mobile fire support they are the best the Empire has to offer. Weak armor would leave them vunerable in an assualt, but if the Pistoliers can whittle an enemy force nad catch them in the flank in a charge, the Pistoliers should be able to pull through.
There have been many battles where a small unit of Pistoliers routed an entire unit of Orc Boar Boyz with a devastating volley and a full on charge.
RareEditI have only included one unit in the rare section because I included a section on war machines. (The Steam Tank, Hellblaster Volley Gun, and Hellstorm Rocket are actually rare chices. The Great Cannon and Mortar are Special Choices)
A unit of Flagellants makes the only rare choice. When war threatens, bands of crazed Flagellants instinctively gravitate towards battlefields, appearing unannounced and charging headlong towards the enemy without fear or hesitation. Flagellants fight in a crazed frenzy, driven insane by the horrors the world has inficted upon them and desperate for their pain to end.
Flagellants are rock-hard fighters who would be considered insane or mentally unstable at the very least in a modern society. They are Unbreakable on the battlefield. Lack of armor can be problamatic, but they seek death anyway so perhaps not.
War machinesEditThe Imperial Gunnery School at Nuln is the biggest cannon foundry in the world. It is here where the Great Cannons of the Empire are made. Mortars are shorter, heavier weapons than cannons, designed to lob an explosive shell high into the air so that it drops down onto the target. Great Cannons are included in practically all Empire armies. An Empire general would be a fool not to take one. The Mortar is relatively common as well and both are quite capable of demolishing a regiment of enemy soldiers with one shot. The Empire army employs several black-powder weapons in its arsenal, including the Helblaster Volley Gun and the Helstorm Rocket Battery. The Helblaster Volley Gun is one of the most infamous black-powder weapons ever invented, its devastating firepower able to tear apart an entire regiment in one thunderous volley. When the rockets of a Helstorm Rocket Battery do manage to land on target the results are devestating, with entire regiments blown apart by an earth-shaking cascade of shrieking, explosive rockets.
The Empire Volley Gun may have been inspired by the Dwarf Organ Gun. Both the Volley Gun and Rocket Battery are newer inventions, but have proved to be quite effective so far.The last in the war machines category is the legendary Steam Tank. Steam Tanks are monstrous, smoke-belching creations that rumble towards the enemy, firing deadly cannon balls from their steam-powered guns. The advance of these iron behemoths is terrifying to behold, as arrows ricochet from armoured hulls and enemy warriors are crushed beneath their immense bulk.
Steam Tanks are practically indestructable. Wherever they appear they bring certain victory to the Empire and destruction to its enemies. Easily the most powerful war machine that the Empire possesses. Most of the Steam Tanks are given a name or title by their crew as a symbol of pride. A notable steam tank was one called Deliverance that fought in the last Great War against Chaos.
Elector Counts Edit
There are currently 13 provinces of The Empire each has an Elector Count which can be electe to be Emperor. The Elector counts are:
- Averland - Marius Leitdorf (Dead as of 2520)
- Hochland - Aldebrand Ludenhof
- Middenland - Graf Boris Todbringer
- Nordland - Theodoric Gausser
- Ostland - Valmir von Raukov
- Ostermark - Wolfram Hertwig
- Reikland - Emperor Karl Franz
- Stirland - Graf Alberich Haupt-Anderson
- The Moot - Hisme Stoutheart
- Wissenland and Nuln - Emmanuelle von Leibwitz
- Telebecland - Helmut Feurerbach (missing)
There is also priests called warrior priests and Arch Lectors
famous archs are
- Grand Theognosist Volkmar
- Arch Lector Kaslain
- Arch Lector Aglim
- Ar Ulric Emil Valgeir