by Darius Hinks
Review by Declan Waters
Straight off, I want to say this – if you’re just after a story from the Warhammer Age of Sigmar this is a fine book, well written with an interesting underlying story.
However, I picked it up because it was the companion book to the recent release of Age of Sigmar 3, which is the first edition to have Destruction (one of the Age of Sigmar factions) as well as the Stormcast. As such, I’m looking forward to more expansion of the history and background of the Destruction races – especially the new Kruleboyz released in the boxed set…
… Unfortunately this book didn’t achieve this. There was the (now reasonably common) Black Library usage of a human as the main character to make them more relatable – in this case a brother and sister whose father had been killed by Orruks (Orcs) before they escaped to Excelsis (a very large city in Ghur – the Realm of Beasts). If you’re not into Warhammer I’ve made this sound a bit confusing, but you can honestly read this book with no knowledge of the background.
The Realm of Ghur becomes one of the things that the siblings must overcome and they encounter monsters not released by Games Workshop (Kraken), and some that have (Kraken Eater Gargant), on their Crusade. If this is familiar to those who have read the Age of Sigmar rule book, it’s because Crusades are a new way to play the game… all good so far.
But… the story revolves around the brother (Niksar), with his sister being relegated to a supporting role. This is unfortunate given the need for Warhammer to appeal to more women readers and gamers, and missed a perfect opportunity in a big release book.
And then my biggest complaint – there is a little background on the Stormcast from the box, but the Kruleboyz (Orruks) only make an appearance late and are hidden behind their mist, only appearing to attack and then be attacked by the Stormcast. There was little development for them and – as they are a new race – I expected a lot more. It’s about time Black Library released some books from the perspective of the ‘bad guys’ which we know they can do, but which is sadly lacking for the new army – and indeed all the Destruction forces.
The book is available from Black Library direct, your friendly local book store, or audible (audiobook)