- "Is there one single greater threat to civilisation than these savages? Physically powerful, armed and armoured with both steel and sorcery, filled with evil intent. Are they even Human? All the evidence is that they are not; rather, these creatures are spontaneously generated deep within the Pits of Chaos in the Icy Wastes north of Norsca, born from the cosmic flux of creation that is primal Chaos..."
- —Albrecht Kinear, Professor Emeritus at the University of Nuln.[2a]
Chaos Warriors are evil men that have decided to forsake their former lives and give themselves wholly to Chaos as an instrument of destruction.
Amongst the Northmen there are those who feel the pull of Chaos stronger than others. Such gifted men are said to tread the path of the gods, and head in search of glory, power and, ultimately immortality. Chaos Warriors are fighters of great prowess, raised from strong Northman stock, their skills honed over the years by constant battle amongst themselves and against other races. Their strength is infernal and their bodies are as tough as the Iron Mountains. Imbued with the power of Chaos and gifted with suits of hell-forged armour, a Chaos Warrior is equal to several battle-hardened mortal men. They are no longer truly Human, but living weapons, honed perfectly for the bloody tasks before them. A Chaos Warrior has no need of food, drink or sleep, for he is nourished by the carnage that he wreaks. To be a Chaos Warrior means to literally exchanged your humanity for a life of constant war in the name of the Ruinous Powers and the dark promises of power and immortality they have to offer.[1a]
As a result of their transformation, Chaos Warriors occupy a highly prestigious position within both army and tribal societies. To don Chaos Armour means that the man is truly a great warrior amongst his peers. Within tribal societies, the most favoured Tribal warriors are often gifted with a suit of hell-forged armour as a reward for his service to his Chieftain. In army hierarchy, Chaos Armour is often used as a clear sign of status or rank amongst the Northmen. Only the most gifted and powerful warriors are allowed to wear such armour, with the majority of Champions often donning armour of their own.[1a]
Chaos Warriors generally congregate around others of their kind, often in warbands consisting entirely of Chaos Warriors who are sent to the thickest fray as powerful elite warriors. When roused to battle, a Chaos Warrior becomes a roaring, unstoppable force. Arrows and bolts patter from his hell-forged armour like hailstones upon a glacier as he strides into the enemy ranks. The thrusts of spear and halberd are deflected contemptuously, and the lifeblood of his foes spatters his armour as his jagged blade rises and falls. It is said that for every Chaos Warrior that lays dead in the ground, a circle of his enemies will also lay around him as a sign or testament to their ruthless skills in combat.[1a]
- Warhammer's lore is contradictory on whether or not Chaos Warriors are permanently attached to their armour. Most sources state that it is only an occasional "gift" from the Chaos Gods, one that drives its recipient insane. Several characters such as Vardek Crom, Sigvald and Egil Styrbjorn have also demonstrated otherwise.
- 1: Warhammer Armies: Warriors of Chaos (8th Edition)
- 1a: pg. 31
- 2: Old World Bestiary (2nd Edition Fantasy Roleplay)
- 2a: pg. 9
- 3: Total War: Warhammer
- 4: Warhammer: Battle March