Megan has agreed to play a bit of Warcry and Age of Sigmar whilst I am restricted to the indoors for 12 weeks, and Lindsay said she might try some too.
Hence why I am looking to complete all of my Warcry/Age of Sigmar terrain as quickly as possible.
In my head I often give stories to the stuff I am painting and so I think we are going to be giving a background to the setting these games will be played on, and thus I give birth to Esasa, the city of Silversmiths.
The terrain right now consists of the Ruined City from the Warcry core box, a Shattered Stormvault and a Defiled Ruins.
I plan to add to this the terrain from Mortal Realms, a set of Azyrite Ruins, Baleful Realmgates, Magewrath Throne and Timeworn Ruins, and if room and the budget allow an Ophidian Archway.
I already have the first scenery sprues from Mortal Realms, the first copy of issue 11 with the three small mausoleums. I have doubled up in these issues so I have the equivalent of a Sigmarite Mausoleum.
The colour scheme for the buildings is from the December 2019 edition of Whote Dwarf, with a few minor modifications.
The buildings are primed in Grey Seer, then painted with Gryph-Charger Grey, and then drybrushed with Corax White. The sandstone is Aggaros Dunes over Grey Seer then drybrushed Screaming Skull.
Weathering is stippled on Stirland Mud, then drybrushed with Steel Legion Drab and Ushabti Bone, followed by some patches of Athonian Camoshade to represent algae growth.
The wood is Wyldwood, then drybrushed Baneblade Brown, with sharpened points being Aggaros Dunes. Skulls, bones and skeletons are Morghast Bone then Skeleton Horde.
The silver metals are mostly Iron Warriors washed with Nuln Oil and golds are Retributor Armour washed with Agrax Earthshade. Some of the statues are Balthasar Gold, then covered with Nihilakh Oxide and drybrushed with Brass Scorpion.
Esasa was once in the Age of Myth a city of great renown in the realm of Chamon, the land of metal, located not far from the Silver Road Realmgate which connected it to Ghyran. The city was able to trade its ample supplies of refined and precious metals with the peoples of the realm of life in exchange for crops which were difficult to grow in the region.
The abundance of precious metals meant that the city became rich, and was well defended. It gained its nickname from the large number of artisans working with the regions near perfect silver to create items of jewellery in demand across the mortal realms.
The demands of its mines meant that soon it attracted migrant workers from across the mortal realms, with those from Ghur, the Realm of Beasts being seen as the most valuable and hard working. But these people never gained full citizenship of the city and existed as a permanent underclass to the cities indigenous inhabitants.
The cities rulers were held in high esteem by Sigmar and its artisans crafted many wonders, not only of jewellery but also of war, some of which were built using the magics of the cities sorcerers and mages.
Many of these wonders were put to use in Esasa’s wars, but some were considered far too dreadful to be used and so Sigmar ordered the construction of Stormvaults in the city to contain these arcane wonders and the knowledge to create them. Hidden from people thoughts by the Penumbral Engines they soon were lost to all, even Sigmar himself.
When the Age of Chaos came, the city held out for several decades, but when the city of Oakenhallow on the other side of the Silver Road Realmgate fell to the forces of Nurgle, the city found itself under siege as legions of the plague fathers servants poured through the Realmgate.
The siege lasted nearly three years thanks to powerful wards put in place by the cities sorcerers guild. Although many of the city’s inhabitants succumbed to plagues introduced to the city by trebuchets hurling infected corpses over its walls. But ultimately they were betrayed from within.
The recovery from plague of the Vyrus, an apprentice sorcerer from one of the cities ruling families, was seen as a moment of joy for his family, but in truth he had let grandfather Nurgle into his soul and pledged himself to him in exchange for his life and the power he craved above all else.
Working with a small number of other traitors, they worked to undo the wards preventing the manifestation of Deamons within the cities walls. He passed Nurgles contagion to his own wife and slit her throat before pushing her into the cities main water source, contaminating it and spreading the taint to more of the city populous, creating more despair, which in turn weakened the strength of the magical wards.
Nurgles plan was to bring the city and its inhabitants directly into his garden, and with plague spreading amongst the downtrodden underclass in Esasa, Vyrus and his fellow conspirators turned the despair of the people towards the worship of Nurgle. These people had been left with little access to medicine and food during the siege and were ripe for being turned against the cities rulers.
When the cities despair and the number of worshippers of the plague god reached a critical mass, Vyrus began a ritual to transport the city to Nurgles realm, in secret within the sewers they changed profane words and used the despair to channel their power against the magical wards from within.
But he was undone, when Tzeentch took advantage of the weakening of the wards to open a portal to the realm of Chaos, allowing Khorne to send forth an army an army of daemons into the city who proceeded to slaughter the majority of its population before Vyrus could complete his ritual.
Nurgle was furious, instead of being able to infect the rest of the city and bring them to his garden, his prize was snatched from his grasp by his most hated rival.
The cities defenders were unable to counter the attack from within, but one lowly volunteer Elric, a labourer who had come to the city in search of his fortune from his home in Ghur, lead a valiant defence of the cities main house of healing. With his dying breath he vowed vengeance on those that had had betrayed the city and against the ruinous powers, and as the final words crossed his lips, he was whisked away in a plume of light.
Vyrus, who had been promised accession to daemonhood, and the rule of Esasa, was instead banished and sent into service of a Lord of Plagues and took the new name Vyrungus Festerbelly.
Esasa left a ruin, was fought over through the age of chaos by various bands of roving chaos worshippers, whilst a small remaining population eked out a meagre existence among the rubble.
At the coming of the Age of Sigmar, Esasa was largely ignored, although many of its people were reclaimed by the free people’s of Azyr. Esasa lay just 9 days march from Vindicarum, and this is where many of the reclaimed settled, some going on to join the famed Freeguild regiment the Gold Gryphons.
Then came the Necroquake, and a number of Penumbral Engines located in the heart of Esasa faltered unveiling entrances to extensive catacombs below the remains of the city and the Stormvaults contained within.
Now various groups have moved towards the city, a rabid band of Khorne worshippers, destructive Ironjawz, a procession of Nighthaunts, and Signars champions the Celestial Vindicators if the Stormcast Eternals led by Elric, now reborn as the Lord-Aquilor Elden Wolfforged.
But, there is one returning to the city who may have knowledge of what is contained within the Stormvaults, the traitor Vyrungus Festerbelly who is returning to his place of birth and rebirth in an attempt to regain the favour of his patron god.