- "The fact that the Warlock-Engineers sell to all sides in the constant Skaven struggle for dominance is well known; the fact that for a very high price they offer to withhold their services is widely guessed. None but the Grey Seers know the exorbitant extent of Clan Skryre's double-dealing and treachery."
- —Underground Arms Dealers.[3b]
Clan Skryre is one of the four great Skaven clans. Its speciality is the horrible combination of arcane sorcery with mad science and engineering to create some of the greatest and most diabolical warmachines to have ever graced the tunnels of the great Under-Empire. Its members, known as Warlock-Engineers are both inventors and magicians alike, whose expertise aids in the manufacturing of all kinds of War-machines and weaponry for the use of those willing to pay. Many of them are full-fledged wizards themselves, capable of manipulating the Winds of Magic to cast spells on their own, but their most potent of weapons lies in their use of their own deadly weaponry.[1b]
From their Warpforge workshops underneath the great swampland capital of Skavenblight, these tinker-rats have produced a vast arsenal of terrifying weapons in their long and glorious history, which includes the invention of the deadly Poisoned Wind, the Warpfire-Thrower and the Warp-lock Jezzail. Clan Skryre is thought by many as arguably the most influential and powerful of the Great Clans, due to their clan having the largest arsenal of weapons in the entire Under-Empire, that can rival that of any other Human nation in the world. The Clan is also fairly wealthy from their exploits of "renting" out their powerful machines and special expertise to the highest bidder, being almost as rich as their brethren within Clan Moulder. Along with that, their leader, Lord-Warlock Morskittar, is the second most influential member within the Council Chamber, occupying the 12th Seat of the table.[1b]
- "Skryre’s most powerful engineers meld sorcery and science until the two are indivisible. These individuals are called Warlock Engineers, and they are more akin to walking arsenals than to Skaven. Warp energy crackles from the blades that emerge from the flesh of their arms, and their rat-like bodies are covered in all manner of bizarre artifice. Tubes and wires pulse and buzz with unholy life as they connect the Engineer to his harness and its fantastic apparatus. Fearful and horrible, indeed, is Skryre’s technology, if it allows such an unholy alliance of flesh and machine."
- ——Steffan Paulus Adelhof, Scholar of Wolfenburg.[1c]
Clan Skryre holds sway in Skavenblight, a teeming Skaven metropolis considered by many to be the capital of the Under-Empire. Access to the city’s plentiful veins of Warpstone allows the Clan to expand upon the technologies for which they are renowned. The city reflects the nature of its Skryre masters, being atypically modern when compared to most other Skaven settlements. Without a doubt, Skryre is the wealthiest and most powerful of all the Great Clans. The Clan’s strength rests on artifice and sorcery in equal measures. Much of their technology is geared towards war, mixing equal amounts of magic and Warpstone to create weapons unparalleled anywhere in the Old World.[1b]
Fortunately for Clan Skryre’s foes, their weapons are often as dangerous to the Skaven as they are to their targets. Because weapons are Skryre’s stock in trade, the clan’s other mechanical feats are easily overlooked. Skryre succeeded in creating many exciting devices, from the Warprail, connecting one end of the Under-Empire to the other, to the Farsqueaker, a device allowing instant communication between Skaven over great distances. Indeed, much of the Under-Empire’s mining is accomplished by way of Skryre-manufactured earthmovers and rock drills.[1b]
The Clan’s Warlock Engineers are constantly researching new technologies. Skryre’s experiments are just as likely to succeed as they are to fail, however, often with catastrophic results. The Warlock Engineers feel that such failures are to be expected, especially those riding on the cutting edge of technology. The number of labourers, mechanics, and engineers that die as a result of this research is irrelevant when compared to the value of a successful experiment.[1b]
Service to the Council
By supplying the Council of Thirteen with infernal machines, Clan Skryre ensures its own position of power within the Under-Empire. Each member of the Council is well aware of Skryre’s value, and the Clan will never allow them to forget it. New inventions and devices of war are constantly demonstrated to the Lords of Decay, and the most promising of these receive funding from the rest of the Great and Lesser Clans. Many victories have been achieved by the deeds of the Warlock Engineers and their lackeys, who were in turn supported by the inventions of Clan Skryre.[1b]
Other, less destructive, devices are also put to use in the name of the Skaven people as a whole. The Farsqueaker, for example, allows the Council to communicate with its agents in the field. In addition, Skryre maintains the Warprail, a system of tracks and warp-powered transport cars allowing fast subterranean transport of troops and equipment. The powerful machines that are used to mine tunnels and move rocks and soil away from the Under-Empire’s byways are also Skryre designs. So long as Clan Skryre continues to supply the Under-Empire with valuable services and (somewhat) reliable weaponry, it shall remain the most powerful of the Great Clans.[1b]
- "Whatever the truth of the cannon, it is clear that Skaven weapon technology is far, far beyond that of the Empire, and even beyond that of the Dwarfs. The sole mercy of this is they still lack much attention to craftsmanship, and these terrifying weapons are extremely unreliable. In a sweet irony, they often do more damage to their Ratmen wielders than they do to their enemies."
- —Ammelie Meyer, Priestess of Verena, 2522.[1a]
Clan Skryre utilises its technological superiority to great advantage on the battlefield. Though Clan Skryre relies on Clanrats to shoulder much of the military burden, their warriors are far better equipped than typical Clanrats of other lesser Clans, and their weapons are capable of destruction on a massive scale. Heavy weapon teams use Ratling Guns and Warpfire Throwers, while the better-trained Clanrats are equipped with Warplock pistols. Enemies are softened up by Poison Wind Globadiers, specially-trained Skaven who fling poison gas-filled glass spheres into the ranks of their foes.[1b]
Skaven snipers are set up away from the front lines with their Warplock jezzails, where they pick off important targets at will. Closer to the rear of Skryre formations sit large cannons that are capable of launching bolts of destructive warp lightning. Serviced by numerous technicians and engineers, Warp-lightning cannons are prone to exploding if they are improperly maintained. Like all other Skaven clans, Skryre is willing make great sacrifices if it means that they will achieve ultimate victory over their enemies. Firing a Warp-lightning cannon or Ratling Gun through their own troops in order to destroy a powerful enemy or weapon is perfectly acceptable to Skryre’s warlords.[1b]
Clan Skryre Infantry
- Poisoned Wind Globadiers - Similar in appearance to Warlock-Engineers, and in some cases Engineers themselves, these Globadiers are one of the newest in Clan Skryre biological weaponry. Utilising deadly Poisoned Wind globes, these ratmen are trained to throw their glass orbs filled with vile substances at the thickest of the fighting, using the poisonous fumes to their fullest effect. Although lasting for only a mere moment, the fumes released by the Globadiers are notoriously toxic to all that breath it, and those that do, die an agonising death within a few short seconds. As such, Globadiers are required to wear a variety of protection from the fumes, such as goggled metal-masks and re-breathing apparatuses.
- Death Globe Bombardiers - Death Globes are filled with deadly Warpstone gas, like Poisoned-Wind Globes but far more potent. When thrown, the sphere shatters, releasing billowing clouds so lethal that mere skin contact can cause severe pain or even death. Breathing the vapours causes lungs to spontaneously fill with bubbling pus - a horrible and nearly instantaneous death. For this reason, Bombardiers wear all manner of elaborate masks, goggles and cumbersome rebreathing apparatus in an effort to protect themselves against accidental gassing. Armour offers no protection against poisoned gas, but this does not stop the Bombardiers from wearing arcane body armour underneath their robes.
- Weapon Teams - Clan Skryre makes use of specialised groups of Skaven Engineers to handle and deploy weaponry in to the front. These Weapons Teams will naturally be attached to other blocks of Infantry to provide Clanrats with much needed firepower.
- Warpfire-Thrower - One of the deadliest hand-held weapons in Clan Skryre's arsenal, this weapons team has within their possession an extremely potent and dangerous piece of machinery. The Warpfire-Thrower is a very crude hand-held flamethrower, that showers their foes within a whirlwind of greenish flame, fueled and fed by Warpstone substances. A regular weapons team requires two Skaven to operate, one would hold the container and gear, while the other holds the muzzle of the gun and directs its fire. So dangerous is the Warpfire-Thrower in combat that it would eventually lead to the death of the weapons team, as the deadly but imperfect machinery will sometimes melt down and explode, causing death to the team and all those near them.
- Ratling Gun - A multi-barreled whirling death-dealing machine known as the Ratling Gun is one of Clan Skryre's newest of inventions. So successful and deadly this piece of machinery is to the other Warlord clans that Clan Skryre will always run out of Ratling Guns long before they run out of customers to sell them to. The mechanism starts with an external ammo pack held by one Skaven, from which the loader will crank the lever to allow the gun to spin while the gunner aims the shot.
- Poisoned-Wind Mortar - A form of mobile light-artillery, instead of hand-throwing the Poisoned Wind globe at the enemy, a projectile launcher strapped to the back of another Globadier fires the globe while another Globadier loads the ammunition in. The mortar will lob the globe at a longer distance than any Globadier could, giving the weapons team both range and mobility needed to support the troops.
- Warp-Grinder - A smaller variant of a similar machine, the larger machinery of this weapon was meant to carve large tunnels within the earth with relative ease, meant to allow passages for whole armies of troops to move with speed through the underground tunnels of the world. Although those machines were larger than the biggest Empire warships, the smaller version acts as a more portable and hand-held one, used for the same purpose, but also as a weapons platform to be used against infantry. Similar also is the need for a two-skaven team to operate; one to hold the ammunition and another to aim the shot.
- Warplock Jezzails - When the need for a more precise shot is required by its Paw-leader, most clans would employ the use of the deadly jezzail team to pick off key individuals within an army. Jezzails are a two Skaven team of highly trained snipers employed for the use of assassinating important targets from an extremely long distance. Their rifles, called jezzails, have the longest range of any other rifle in the Old World, due in most part to the dangerous use of warpstone bullets as ammunition. The warpstone gives the jezzails their impressive range, but it also means less shots fired than any normal gun, for a warlord will always have to pay for the ammunition the jezzails will have to use during battle. The jezzail requires a two-Skaven team, one to hold the rifle up (the rifle is so long that it needs to be stationary) and another to fire the shot.
Clan Skryre War-machines
- Warp-Lightning Cannon - The warp-lightning cannon is the very pinnacle of Skaven ingenuity, a marvel of both magical and scientific engineering. This machine has the power to fire a concentrated blast of pure warp-lightning at the heart of an army. It is so powerful that not even castle walls could hold against such an onslaught. When fired, the lightning would arc earthwards toward its victim, and erupt into a cloud of warp-lightning upon impact. The shot flash is too quick to follow, so only its vapour trail could trace the trajectory of the shot. This machine, although potent, under closer scrutiny reveals it to be crude in design still, the outer hull barely looking stable enough to contain the energies within it, and on parts of the machinery, there is evidence of the device crumbling down over its long-term use. Though imperfect, the machine has very few equals, as none could match the ingenious minds of these mad techno-magi and their machinery.
- Doomwheel - At first sight, the Doomwheel may look less menacing and even comical compared to the other war-machines of the Skaven, but those that have faced one in battle know full well of its prowess. The design of the machine is so simple and yet so complex, so utterly Skaven in its inception that it is well beyond the understanding of even the top minds at Nuln's College of Engineers. The treadmill-like design is meant to allow the machine to rumble at the enemy at full speed, made possible by the two Skaven powering the treadmill inside. This in turn, creates electricity needed to activate the attached warpstone generator, which will fire bolts of lethal warp-lightning at their foe. If their shots don't kill you, then the great iron-reinforced wheels with spikes will.
Clan Skryre Lords
- Warlock Master - The Warlock Masters are those Warlock-Engineer's that have moved up in the Clan Skryre hierarchy, so much so that they have become the former's supervisors/bosses. Their role is to oversee and steal any credit that may be due to an inventive Engineer.
Clan Skryre Heroes
- Warlock-Engineers - The notorious Engineers of Clan Skryre are among the greatest minds in the entire Under-Empire. These tinker-rats are the artificers of Skaven society, blending arcane sorceries with mad science technology in the creation of one of the deadliest machines ever invented in the world. When not manning war-machines or watching over a weapons team, the ordinary Warlock-Engineer would naturally have the power to channel and cast magic in the traditional way as other races. Thought not as potent or masterful as the Grey Seers, these ratmen rely heavily on their advanced weaponry to annihilate their foes. They are armed with a variety of weapons, ranging from the traditional Warplock musket or poisoned wind globes, to arcane blades empowered by crackling warpstone energies.
- Ikit Claw - Ikit Claw, Chief Warlock Engineer of Clan Skryre, is one of the most ambitious and talented Warlock-Engineer of his age and the infamous Right-Fang of Lord Morskittar, the one true ruler of Clan Skryre. Ikit Claw has taken Clan Skryre's mix of science and sorcery to new levels of complexity and depravity.
- 1: Warhammer Fantasy RPG 2nd ED -- Children of the Horned Rat
- 2: Uniforms and Heraldry of the Skaven
- 2a: pg. 14
- 3: Warhammer Armies: Skaven (7th Edition)
- 4: Total War: Warhammer II