The Butcherhorde is a large warband of Chaos Space Marines comprised of a coalition of multiple World Eaters Traitor Legion warbands. Led by the infamous Khârn the Betrayer, the Butcherhorde was formed originally from the frenzied Khornate Berserkers who followed The Betrayer. Over time, as Khârn has slaughtered his way across the galaxy, the warband has grown to encompass all manner of Khornate devotees. These include ordinary Chaos Space Marines, Chaos Cultists, Daemon Princes, and Daemon Engines.
The Khornate horde known as the Butcherhorde is a ragged and fractious alliance of bloodthirsty lunatics, held together by the unbreakable will of Khârn the Betrayer. During the invasion of the world of Amethal located in the Diamor System, where they fought the valiant Blood Angels Space Marine Chapter, they were separated from the invasion force led by Chaos Lord Xorphas. Khârn's Butcherhorde nonetheless furthered the will of the Black Legion thanks to the machinations of Abaddon the Despoiler. Khârn the Betrayer led his monstrous Butcherhorde to Amethal with but a single goal. He sought to take the heads of the most worthy Blood Angels heroes, to hack their skulls from their necks and place them at the foot of Khorne's great throne.
Khârn had not set out with the intention of forging a vast army of conquest to aid him in his quest. Indeed, to Khârn's mind, those who needed others to fight their battles were weaklings undeserving of victory. Rather, the Betrayer's brutal deeds had spread through reality like ripples upon the surface of a bloody pool. So spectacular was the carnage he wrought, so monstrous the butchery of his passing, that Khorne's faithful were drawn in his wake. At first, Khârn fought alone, then at the head of a warband of Khorne Berserkers.
After slaughtering his way across the Sundered Reach, the Betrayer had found himself the master of a murderous army. By the time he had exterminated all life in the Pandoric Colonies, a whole fleet of spike-prowed warships were his to command, their holds crammed with maniacs, murderers, and hellish war engines. It was not power that Khârn had sought, but neither did he cast it aside. Like any true servant of Khorne, the Betrayer knew a deadly weapon when he saw one. If it was the Blood God's will that he wield that mighty implement of death, then who was he to question it?
So was the Butcherhorde forged, and a terrifying engine of war it was. Great masses of Khorne Berserkers formed its thundering heart, the warriors from dozens of disparate warbands drawn together in the name of unholy murder. Only the overriding will of the Betrayer kept this psychotic horde of killers from ripping each other to pieces, and even then, blood was spilled daily between them. Khârn cared nothing for the lives of his followers, and so did nothing to intercede. So long as they wrought fit slaughter upon the foe when the time came, it mattered nothing to him if the weak were weeded out by the strong in the meantime. Every warrior slain was another skull for Khorne.
Though the Berserkers of Khârn's horde followed him as an avatar of their bloody god's will, many amongst their ranks saw him as both a hated rival and the ultimate skull to claim in order to win Khorne's favour. Such is the way of the Blood God's servants. It was a rare day that the Betrayer did not have to strike down a handful of his own followers as a result of their frenzied attempts on his life. Many more servants of the Blood God followed in Khârn's wake, lending their strength and numbers to the Butcherhorde. Seething masses of Chaos Cultists screamed praise to Khorne as they followed their demigods of slaughter into battle. Looming Daemon Princes led their own bands of followers to war in the Betrayer's name, bringing with them rumbling battle-tanks and deranged Helbrutes that lent the horde heavy firepower.
Most terrifying of all were the massed Daemon Engines of the Butcherhorde. Amongst the packs of prowling Maulerfiends and Defilers towered super-heavy abominations such as the scuttling Brass Scorpions and the Lords of Skulls. Driven by the caged fury of Khorne’s most powerful daemons, these engines of annihilation were nearly as deadly as the Betrayer himself.
- Bloodtorrent War (Unknown Date) - The Bloodtorrent War was a campaign fought by Khârn and his Butcherhorde amongst the factorums of the Imperial world of Ulsa. During the conflict, his mighty Chainaxe Gorechild became jammed in the hull of an Adeptus Mechanicus war machine and his Plasma Pistol fractured from overuse. The Betrayer turned the sharp edges and hard surfaces of the factorum to his own violent ends, impaling screaming Imperial Guardsmen on grinding gears or flaying the skin from their faces by pressing them on howling conveyers. Such was the carnage that the vast manufactorum ground to a halt, its workings clogged with the mangled remains of over a thousand pulverised corpses.
- Diamor Campaign (999.M41) - The Diamor Campaign took place during Abaddon the Despoiler's 13th Black Crusade within the Diamor System. Initially led by the Chaos Lord Kranon the Relentless, his Renegade Chapter, known as the Crimson Slaughter, spearheaded the attack on the Imperial world of Amethal, on behalf of Abaddon in order to obtain something the Despoiler desired. Due to the madness and unpredictability of Kranon, the execution of the invasion instead fell upon the Black Legion's Chaos Lord Xorphas. Leading his monstrous Butcherhorde, Khârn the Betrayer descended upon Amethal with but a single goal -- to take the heads of the most worthy and mightiest of the heroes of the defending Blood Angels. The resultant slaughter weakened the barrier between the Immaterium and the material realm to such an extent that the Blood Angels were forced to call for aid from the daemon-hunting Grey Knights Chapter.
Notable Members of the Butcherhorde
- Khârn the Betrayer - Khârn the Betrayer is a member of the World Eaters Traitor Legion of Chaos Space Marines, and the greatest mortal Champion of Khorne.
- Korbadash - A Berserker Lord of the Butcherhorde.
- Vrakha - A Berserker Lord of the Butcherhorde.
The Butcherhorde's colours are typically blood red with gold or brass trim. Those warriors who worship Khorne are anarchic individuals, their armies little more than ragged coalitions of rival warbands ready to turn upon one another at the slightest provocation. Only the leadership of a truly mighty individual can hold such a force together for long. So it was with the Butcherhorde, whose numbers included many former World Eaters fighting alongside dozens of minor cults and reavers.
The Butcherhorde's badge is the distinctive symbol of the former World Eaters Legion which depicts a planet being devoured by a monstrous maw.
- Black Crusade: Traitor's Hate (7th Edition), pp. 56-63