Valten was the Chosen of Sigmar and heralded the rebirth of the divine warrior-god. Valten's birth and appearance coincided with a time of great peril. To the north, a vast army of darkness awashed the shores of the Empire and it was said that in their darkest hour, Sigmar himself would once more return to his people and fight the final battle of the World.[1a]
Valten was born in a Reikland village called Lachenbad where he had an uneventful childhood, growing up as the son of a blacksmith and learning his father's craft as most sons do. He was blessed with a strange mark on his chest, shaped like the twin-tailed comet of Sigmar, and was also blessed with strength and intelligence, although nothing that would set him apart from another man. The comet is a powerful omen and his birth caused a great stir. Many believed that Valten would bring pain and suffering to the village and sought to have him cast out and left in the forests or drowned in a river. His parents declared he would be brought up and his father was big enough so that people respected him.[1a]
As he grew, he was seen to have an understanding of anything that fell before him: it was seen in his eyes. He was bigger and stronger than other boys of his age. He soon became a well-liked child and those who sought his death began to like him and forgot their prejudices. On his 18th birthday, however, hordes of Beastmen poured from the forests. They were led by a Beastlord known as Rargarth and his horde was ten times bigger than anything that had come in living memory. They plundered and burnt the village, those who could defend themselves tried but ultimately failed. They gave no quarter and killed any they found. Valten on the other hand, refused to die. He smashed his way to his father's forge, using his bare fists to kill Beastmen in his way. He picked up two heavy hammers and set about the horde like a possessed man. All who came near him were killed, and the villagers seeing this followed the boy towards the hordes.[1a]
Valten then found Rargarth. A great battle ensued, where Valten was sliced across the chest by Rargarth's scimitar. Rargarth howled in joy and prepared for the killing blow. Valten raised his hammer in defiance just in time and the titanic clash forced Valten to one knee. Valten slowly began to rise, his every limb shaking with the effort until he was on his feet. He kicked out and sent the Beastlord stumbling backwards and hurled his hammer at the beast's head, shattering its skull. With their leader dead, the Beastmen retreated in panic and the villagers chanted Valten's name. Though the village had been half razed, it had been saved from total destruction by a boy. Word of his victory spread quickly and a number of interested parties came to visit him, to learn of the boy who had become a hero. Soon, Luthor Huss heard of his deeds and with his conviction, he proclaimed to have found Sigmar reborn and would follow the young boy as he grows to become the leader the Empire needs during the apocalyptic age known simply as the End Times.[1a]
Storm of Chaos
After the armies Karl Franz had mustered reached their final staging point at Talabheim, Valten was gifted with a suit of Gromril armour from the dwarfs. It has originally been forged for Sigmar over 2,000 years ago, but was never claimed. From Teclis, the High Loremaster of the High Elves, Valten received the mighty Elven steed Althandin, sired by Prince Tyrion's own mighty steed, Malhandir. Cheered on by the rank and file, the army headed for Middenheim. Karl Franz's army relieved the bloodied yet victorious Middenheim defenders, forcing Archaon and the remnants of his forces to withdraw, before fighting a series of battles to drive them from the mainland. In the final battle, Valten finally brought the Everchosen, Archaon, his fated nemesis, to single combat.
In revenge for the steed he had lost to Chaos artillery, Valten first destroyed Archaon's daemonic mount, hurling him to the ground. As Valten raised the Hammer of Sigmar for the killing stroke, Archaon cowardly unleashed the daemon bound within his sword, granting him the strength to impale Valten. Valten's aim was spoiled, but not ruined: the blow opened Archaon's armour and dashed him to the ground.
As Valten tried to pull the daemon blade free, Archaon regained his feet and struck again, carving open Valten's breastplate and sending him to the ground. Seeing the mark of Sigmar on Valten's chest, Archaon slipped his guard and stood backwards, as in shock. Luthor Huss charged the Everchosen. Huss landed a series of mighty strikes, including a mighty blow to the side of the head that sent the Archaon down to a knee. Archaon swiftly counter-attacked, however, and hurled Huss across the battlefield.
Panting, bleeding, Archaon's head met that of the newly arrived Orc Warboss, Grimgor Ironhide. Splintering the Chaos lord's shield and sending him sprawling, Grimgor battered Archaon twice around the head before placing his axe on the tip of his throat. Rather than deliver the killing blow, Grimgor spared his opponent, letting him slump to the ground. The Orc proclaimed 'Grimgor iz da best!' and quit the field, cheered by his brutal followers.
Valten lay comatose within the temple of Shallya, after being carried there by Luthor Huss. Despite his own wounds, Huss kept a bedside vigil over Valten. Across the city, arguments for and against Valten's divinity and right to be Emperor re-emerged. Graf Boris Todbringer and Grand Theogonist Esmer asked for three days to resolve the situation. The next day Luthor Huss visited Karl Franz, his eyes filled with tears. Valten had been murdered. Shocked, Karl visited the room where Valten had been recuperating. The bed and the sheets were covered in blood; Valten's body had been taken. A green, glowing knife had been stabbed into his mattress, and the sign of the Horned Rat (a rune used by the Skaven) had been carved on the wall. Huss asked the Emperor what he should do. Karl Franz took the Hammer of Sigmar from Huss, and then gave the priest a new duty. He would proclaim to the people that Sigmar had left the land of man once more, that He had left his hammer to the Emperor as a sign of his trust, that Huss was still His prophet, and would look for his return when The Empire needed him most once again...
Attention, Empire Citizens!
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Valten was instrumental in the defence of the Empire during the End Times. He slew many of the Chaos Warriors' greatest champions, such as Vardek Crom, Mordrek the Damned, Engra Deathsword and Wulfrik the Wanderer.
Valten eventually met his own end, assassinated by a cowardly Skaven Verminlord whilst challenging Archaon to single combat - much to the latter's fury. His sacrifice was instrumental in Sigmar's return to the Old World, allowing the divine essence within him to return to its original host.
Wargear and Abilities
Valten was one of the mightiest warriors alive. Imbued with part of Sigmar's divine essence, it granted him strength beyond any normal man and allowed him to shrug off the most grievous of wounds. He was capable of matching the Everchosen himself in single combat, dominating the fight before Archaon called upon the assistance of U'Zhul.
- Ghal Maraz - Meaning "Skullsplitter" in the Dwarf tongue, Ghal Maraz is the legendary warhammer wielded by Sigmar himself when the Empire was forged over two and a half millennia ago. Given to Sigmar by King Kurgan in return for rescuing the Dwarf and his retainers from Orcs, Ghal Maraz is too powerful for even the most skilled runesmiths alive today to replicate.
- Armour of the Heldenhammer - Forged over two and a half millennia ago for the Warrior-King Sigmar, this ancient Gromril armour was never claimed by the founder of the Empire. Its many runes provide protection against attack and malign magic.
- Althandin - This was the mighty Elven steed of Valten, sired by the High Elf Hero, Tyrion's own mighty steed. It was equipped with fine Ithalmar barding, which didn't slow its impressive speed.