Death world is a term used by the Imperium to designate a planet with a climate, terrain, or ecosystem that is highly dangerous to human life. Nonetheless, many of these worlds have large human settlements, notable for the strength and self-reliance of their people. Many of the people of these worlds are inducted into the Imperial Guard, or recruited by the Space Marines, a fact which is often the sole reason for the continued habitation of those worlds. Notable death worlds include Catachan and Fenris.
Death worlds and the Tyranids
It has been theorized by Imperial biologists that many death worlds are the result of seeding by ancient advance fleets of the Tyranids. Many of the monstrous creatures inhabiting these worlds, such as the Kraken of Fenris and the Catachan Devil have many features in common with Tyranid organisms, and may in fact be descended from them.
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