“The heart is as a new-strung bow. It knows not its strength til tested. Yet though it wound its target deep. Tis the bowmans flesh that festers. A woman is as a new-cut axe. She needs no strength for rending. Yet though she bests at every clash. She yields at battle’s ending. A fray is as a blazing hearth. Where life and death are found. Our enemies driven back in fear. Our hearts with brothers bound. Death is like the winter chill. No door can keep it from us. And summer yet may bloom again. Though ice be all upon us.”
— Prayer to Dazh, God of the Sun
Total War: Warhammer III is the sequel to Total War: Warhammer and Total War: Warhammer II and the third and final game in the planned trilogy. The game was announced on February tiga, 2021, and the races for launch are the Tzardom of Kislev, the Daemons of Chaos, the Empire of Grand Cathay and the Ogre Kingdoms. It was released on PC in February 17th, 2022, on Steam and the Epic Games Store.
Its borders include the bitter, frozen country of Kislev at the very edge of the Old World’s North, the vast easternlands that encircle the Darklands, as well as far Cathay, as well as the forsaken, impassable nightmare that is known as the Realm of Chaos, so far North it goes beyond frozen Norsca. It focuses on the eternal threat of the Chaos Gods, and the damnation they bring to so many. Like its predecessor, it has a campaign centered around its own factions; but if the player owns all three games, they can play a larger campaign map that combines the environments of the previous campaigns.
Far beyond the world and its petty wars there exists a dimension of pure, malevolent magic: The Realm of Chaos. It is a terrible place, incomprehensible to the mortal mind. It whispers promises of power, but to behold it is to be seduced by it. To relinquish your soul to it. To become it.
The four Ruinous Powers rule over this place, ever seeking to slip their bonds and engulf the world in a tide of daemonic corruption. Nurgle, the plague god; Slaanesh, the lord of excess; Tzeentch, the changer of ways; and Khorne, the god of blood and slaughter.
On the border between the worlds, two mighty kingdoms stand sentinel: the stern warriors of Kislev, led by Tzarina Katarin, and the vast empire of Grand Cathay, under the rule of the Celestial Dragon Emperors children. But each is beset by its own trials, and now both have cause to cross the threshold and send their armies into the Realm of Chaos.
Within the Mountains of Mourn, the Ogre Kingdoms are mostly unbothered by the world-encompassing TV conflict. However, they still see a great opportunity for power, loot and food to be had by throwing their hat into the great game, something that Tradelord Greasus Tribestealer Drakecrush Gatecrasher Hoardmaster Goldtooth the Shockingly Obese is quick to take advantage of, rallying the many tribes into battle.
The world stands on a precipice. A single push will plunge it into cataclysm – a push that has already been achieved. Ursun, the bear-god of Kislev, is dying, sealed within the Forge of Souls deep in the Realm of Chaos. There, Be’lakor, the Master of Shadows and the first Daemon Prince, is slowly draining the god of his remaining life and power, eager to enact his revenge on the Dark Gods, with Ursun’s desperate flailing for life tearing holes between the mortal world and the Realm of Chaos. This has caught the attention of The God-Slayer who through the powers of Chaos Undivided seeks to complete what he set in motion and to get his revenge on Be’lakor for exploiting him.
But with apocalypse comes opportunity – to free Ursun in return for a legendary boon, or to finish the job, and take his power for oneself.
The coming conflict will engulf all. Will you conquer your daemons? Or command them?
Many tropes that apply here also apply to Warhammer, and vice versa.