When Lizards Ruled the Earth

My second post on possible new races for WAR will focus on the Lizardmen. Not only are these reptiles the second most-popular race being asked for by players, they also fit nicely into my vision as an adversary for the Skaven — the focus of my prior post. Reptiles vs. Rodents sounds like an intriguing feud that would satisfy the masses of players asking for both these races.

They truly are an odd looking fit for the Forces of Order. However, researching their history it seems looks can be deceiving. Secluded to the far off continent of Lustria the Lizardmen are not pulled into the conflicts seen across the Warhammer world. They will fiercely defend their jungle homeland having successfully beaten back attacks by the Dark Elves from the north, purging most of a Skaven invasion, and repeatedly defeating assaults by the Vampire Count Luthor Harkon who lives on their eastern shores. Preferring to be left alone the Lizardmen exist within their jungles at peace.

B A C K G R O U N D   &   L O R E
The story begins with the arrival of the Old Ones — godlike beings from beyond the stars. They settled in the lands now known as Lustria where they first created the Lizardmen. The race of Slann came first followed by the Saurus, the Skinks, and the Kroxigors. Laying claim to the planet their newly created followers purged all original inhabitants to pave way for their master plan. The world purified, the Old Ones created the races of Elves, Dwarfs, and Men.

The specifics of their master plan remains unknown, and as they furthered along this path they created incredible warp gates at the north and south poles. These would act as gateways to their home in the stars. Chaos soon came to the world, whether of their own accord or through the warp gates, posing a grave threat. All the races created by the Old Ones united to fight back the coming tides of Chaos. Victorious, the Slann cast mighty spells and wards to contain the polar gates and to hold back the daemons of the ether. Chaos was defeated but the Old Ones … disappeared.

Since that time the Lizardmen faded into myth. Their presence remains hidden from most of the world as they remain isolated in Lustria. Through the years, various small settlements of men have taken hold along the Lustrian shorelines. Those living peacefully there go about their lives unmolested while those with evil intent are soon met with force by the continent’s original inhabitants.

R A T I O N A L E   F O R   J O I N I N G   T H E   W A R
The Age of Reckoning rages in the Old World and Ulthuan, this does not go unaware in the jungles of Lustria. The united Forces of Destruction pose the gravest threat known since the great war with Chaos. After so many years of isolation the Lizardmen join forces with their allies of old to try and stem the tide of evil sweeping the land. If they don’t join now, all could be lost.

Is this great war a sign that the Old Ones will return?

Unlike the Skaven, the Lizardmen have fewer choices for potential classes. So it makes things easier for me to pick and choose some interesting options that might make good additions to the game. With the Lizardmen society being molded after real-world Aztec / Mayan / Incan societies … the look of these toons could be pretty cool and colorful.

The logical choice for this class would be the Kroxigor due to their size … but they tend to not be the most intelligent of their race. So let’s hold them for later. Tanks are not lumbering beasts rather they are protective damage absorbers who are there to defend those around them. In the Lizardmen society, that sounds like a Saurus Temple Guard. These were bred to protect the Slann and come armored with the thickest and stronged armor. Sounds like a tank to me.

Now let’s talk about the Kroxigor. These huge lizards were bred to be laborers — perfect for building their massive pyramid cities. When used in battle, these hulks are set loose as line-breakers to shock the enemy forces with ferocious attacks. To boot, they also sport a huge mouth filled with razor-sharp teeth.

Let’s change the standards a little and try something different … I gave the Skaven a stealth class and immediately those in favor of balance would say: “Order should also get another stealth class.” I agree. For the Lizardmen, this will be the RDPS archetype using the Chameleon Skink. They have the ability to blend in with their surroundings which fits well with stealth. Their weapon of choice is typically blowguns or javelins. It would need to be worked a bit so as not to transfer the devastation a Witch Hunter or Witch Elf can unleash coming out of stealth to a ranged class. In this case, the stealth could be more a survivability tactic rather than a quick-burst damage dealing mechanic.

When one thinks magic-user and Lizardmen … the Slann come to mind. They are simply too powerful to be a playable class. That and the fact they are carted around on pedestals make them not really viable. So the Skink Priest gets this slot.

The Lizardmen’s addition would bring with it some intriguing new landscapes. Fighting in a tropical jungle would provide an interesting environment with all sorts of thick cover and obstacles to make traversing Lustria more challenging (quicksand, man-eating plants maybe). For their inclusion, the Lizardmen are coming to the aid of their ancient “brethren” who are under attack by the Forces of Destruction. So I’d envision some of their zones to be in the Old World but not a total invasion like how the Dark Elf zones are depicted. Once their assault is launched, it would only be a matter of time before the Skaven fought back bringing the battle to the shores of Lustria.

Tier 1
Lizardmen hatchlings are recruited to Cape Cinno where an assault is underway against the Skaven. The powerful Slann have ascertained that with the Skaven’s release of the Red Plague the Age of Reckoning might be lost. Working with the region’s Greenskin inhabitants, the Skaven uncovered the locations of key magical relics that grant near limitless power. These long lost locations are in the southern tips of the Apuccino Mountains. The Gems of Amenemhetum and the Organza Crystals must not fall into Destruction’s clutches or all is lost.

Tier 2
Three small islands along the Scorpion Coast make up Tlencan … the launch point for the Lizardmen raids on the Skaven stronghold of Fester Spike. Several mystical portals instantly transport Lizardmen forces from Tlencan to the unground River of Echoes west of Fester Spike in the mountains known as the Vaults. Fester Spike is the key hub sending rats south to gather magic relics that will turn the tide of the war. This underground assault takes the Skaven by surprise and have caused them to capture a few of the Lizardmen portals for a counter-attack.

Tier 3
The Lizardmen temple city of Xlanhuapec houses the Slann Priests who concentrate keeping the transcontinent gateways open allowing the Lizardmen instant access to the Old World. As the Skaven quickly gain access to Lustria through the Gwakamol Crater, it doesn’t take them long to lay siege to Xlanhuapec in an attempt to shut the gateways down once and for all.

Tier 4
The Marks of the Old Ones are amazing line drawings of symbols only visible from high in the sky. They are amazingly carved into the earth of winding mountains peppered with jungle and tropical foliage. These ravines, mountains, and chasms provide excellent defense for the Lizardmen capital of Itza.

The neutral zone splitting the pairing is the Tarantula Coast. In an awe-inspiring display of sheer will and magical might, the Slann have opened a gateway the width of the entire zone. On one side of this gateway stand the shores of the Tarantula Coast … looking through this massive feat of mysticism can be seen a landing in the Isles of the Sirens. War rages across the ether in these two locations at once.

L O O T !
In similar fashion, what would all this be without all the goodies to go along with it. More loot to win and more things to do are a good thing. There are many possible locations that could house an interesting high-level dungeon … Vampire Coast, Chasm of the Condor, Piranha Swamps, Amazon Island. Or perhaps a portal to the isle of Albion where the Lizardmen currently work to build the temple city of Konqata.

Up next … let’s pull this whole Skaven/Lizardmen pairing together.

5 Responses to “When Lizards Ruled the Earth”

  1. Oh my gosh, I like these kind of posts!

  2. I agree, I enjoyed both this one and the Skaven one quite a bit!

  3. It seems that most people prefer Skaven over Lizardmen, I can’t fathom why. I fell in love with Lizardmen the first time I read about them. How could giant bipedal lizards modeled after ancient South American civilisations not be awesome.

    I’m pretty meh about the “about to be announced” new content but you managed to get me excited over the possibility of playing a Kroxigor, Choppas would no longer be the biggest and baddest!

    The only thing that bothers me is your outline of the careers. Two skink careers seem a bit dull to me. I realise there isn’t much choice tho.

    Great writeup. 🙂

    • Thanks, Blaq!

      Both of these races are popular and would be pretty cool. I just got back from Games Day and should be posting some stuff over the next few days. Many players are meh with the “announcements” … at this point I think players should know that Mythic isn’t giving up anything they don’t want to. They would be the worst people to play poker with.

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