"Understand, mortals, that every one of you, each of your so-called champions with their petty ploys, is just a piece in the Great Game of my master."
Lords of Change are creatures born from some impossible nightmare, immense bird-like Daemons with shimmering skin, wicked curved beaks and multi-coloured, spectrum-shattering wings.
Those who gaze upon these twisted prisms of pure magic begin to feel their sanity shred and reason slip away. Faced by a being of change incarnate, bedrock beliefs crumble and twist, and the mind seeks firm purchase in vain.
Treachery, deceit, capriciousness: these are the hallmarks of the Lords of Change. Tzeentch's greatest servants weave scheme upon scheme, a dense tangle of intermingling threads, so convoluted and eon-spanning that none can grasp their true purpose.
A confrontation with a Lord of Change is likely to occur when and where the creature wills it. Few have ever managed to get the drop on these servants of Tzeentch, for the Changer of Ways is the master of destiny itself, and his greatest servants possess a portion of that power.
Sorcery, deception and knowledge are particular delights for Tzeentch. His Greater Daemons, the Lords of Change, are the embodiments of all of these. They are the chief agents of the Architect of Fate and the most powerful of his daemonic minions.
Despite possessing a small fragment of the immeasurable wisdom of their master, even they are unwitting pawns in Tzeentch's great and unfathomable plan, a plot of limitless complexity that will come to fruition at the end of time.
A Lord of Change's appearance is as bewildering as it is terrifying -- an ever-changing, multi-hued form that defies mortal reasoning or logic. However, its most haunting features are its eyes. Within their infinite depths lies the paradoxical wisdom of Tzeentch, and none can withstand the sustained scrutiny of a Lord of Change's gaze without losing their sanity.
It is said that when a Lord of Change looks upon a man, that man's soul is opened like a book, revealing his hopes and dreams, as well as the truth of his ultimate failure or success.
A Greater Daemon of Tzeentch is driven by the need to redirect the predictable course of history itself and to set it upon a new, unexpected path. Because of this, a Lord of Change revels in dashing the hopes of the ambitious upon the ground even while raising penniless nobodies to the pinnacle of power.
A Lord of Change is blessed with multi-layered cunning and blazing intelligence, as well as a deep understanding of the causality that drives the galaxy in its well-worn rut. There is nothing a Lord of Change despises more than the entrapping comforts of stability and familiarity, and nothing that will please one more than to see worlds broken and made anew.
A Greater Daemon of Tzeentch delights in bringing order to ruin so that all may be reshaped and directed to a new path, before that, too, is changed. His minions move throughout realspace, undertaking whatever task he has set them: the killing of a minor mortal, a whisper in a commander's ear, the stealing of a worthless artefact and a thousand other seemingly unrelated occurrences that are mistaken for happenstance. Yet each falls into the Greater Daemon's own devious plan and furthers his labyrinthine schemes.
Lords of Change tend to work behind the scenes, pulling puppet strings from the shadows. So subtle are these manipulations, and so skilled, that often the playthings of a Lord of Change remain unaware that they are in the thrall of a deadly Daemon. Secret Chaos Cults, heresies, revolutionaries, and even Imperial Planetary Governors have all fallen under the thrall of a Lord of Change at one point or another.
Even Tzeentch's bitterest foes can be manipulated into fulfilling the Great Deceiver's ends -- under his most powerful daemons' careful guidance, brother can be turned against brother, friend against friend, and the most zealous of Inquisitors can stumble from the path of righteousness. To confront a Lord of Change is to wander through a fog-shrouded mire of lies, ever unsure that one’s actions are correct, one false step away from sinking irrevocably.
In the rare instances that a Lord of Change is bested, its schemes sundered and its plans laid to ruin, it will fight like a cornered animal, drawing upon its incredible sorcerous powers to fell its foes directly where deceit and deception have failed. Lords of Change are the greatest Chaos Sorcerers in the galaxy, and their mastery of magic is without peer.
The mightiest psychic powers and spells employed by feeble Human psykers and sorcerers are the idle cantrips of a Lord of Change, for a Greater Daemon of Tzeentch is a creature of undiluted Warp energy and the mortal world quakes at its touch. With the merest flick of an elegantly tapered claw, bodies mutate and writhe, buildings twist and melt, and beings of madness and horror spring forth, cackling, from running rivers of flesh.
Nothing that is done cannot be undone; nothing that is made cannot be unmade. To prevail against a Lord of Change, one’s faith and convictions must be firmer than the foundations of the stars. The Emperor protects...but one's faith must be ironclad in the face of such horror.
The constant appraisal of the galaxy and the interference in its progress is not always so subtle. Change can also be sudden and violent, and a Lord of Change will readily wage war to further their unknowable aims. Their most potent weapons are the magic that flows in their immortal veins and their masterful manipulation of mortals. Though these Greater Daemons prefer to remain uncommitted in battle, it is not through lack of courage or ferocity, but because they wish to direct its forces and control the ebb and flow of the fighting.
However, Lords of Change are masters of magic, amongst the most powerful Sorcerers in the galaxy. With a flick of a finger, a Lord of Change can engulf a score of enemy warriors in flickering Warp flames, inflicting a fate that is as unpredictable as it is deadly. With a single word, it can transform a mighty hero into a gibbering pile of mutated Spawn-flesh. Blades and bullets are rendered worthless against such power.
In the realm of realspace, these Greater Daemons appear as towering beings with gangling limbs and are deceptively delicate-looking. Their long, spindly bodies are topped by a savage, cruel avian head, resting on a long, crooked neck.
Their hunched shoulders are often draped with what looks like the robes of a high priest or a court wizard from ages long-past. Their bent, bird-like legs are scaly and end in vicious talons; their lank arms terminate in broad, clawed hands. Great feathered wings sprout from their shoulder blades, glittering and glinting with a thousand impossible colours.
The bones of a Lord of Change are hollow, and despite their enormous size, they barely seem capable of supporting their own weight, often leaning upon immense staffs, etched with innumerable eldritch signs and sigils. Most Lords of Change carry long ceremonial staves, which they use to channel their considerable psychic power. These powerful daemonic servants of Tzeentch carry themselves with a regal grace, though when driven to action their savagery is remarkable.
Their appearance, however, is yet another ruse: Lords of Change are fearsome fighters, serpent-quick with skin like iron. They are also lore-masters, and possess a thorough knowledge of the great feints and fighting techniques of the galaxy. To fence with a Lord of Change is to invite one’s own ruin; many overzealous warriors have been felled by their vicious claws, cruel curved beaks and terrible, reaping staves, disemboweled before they could even lift their blades.
Lesser Daemon Allies
The tubular Flamers of Tzeentch resemble hideous living columns, studded with still-melting mouths and faces and festooned with long, spindly arms. The gouts of magical, multi-coloured fire they spew from their mouth-like hands burn, freeze, blister, mutate and vaporise their enemies.
High above, drifting on the currents of the Aethyr, sail the manta-like Screamers of Tzeentch, twisted manta rays that trail slashing tendrils below their long, flat, strangely sinuous bodies. These tentacles are razor sharp, capable of flaying the flesh from even the most heavily-armoured foe.
Notable Lords of Change
- Aetaos'rau'keres, Slayer of Souls
- Kairos Fateweaver, Oracle of Tzeentch
- Ix'thar'ganix, Slayer of Destinies
- M'Kachen - M'Kachen commanded the Cult of the Red Talon on Antraxes in 855.M41. Brother-Captain Arvann Stern of the Grey Knights led the counterattack. The mighty M'Kachen was defeated, banished screaming back into the Warp by Stern himself -- a formidable feat normally. M'Kachen vowed to devour the mortal soul of his vanquisher.
- M'katchnar - M'katchnar led the Host Iridescent of Tzeentchian Daemons against the Fortress World of Cadia during the climax of Abaddon the Despoiler's 13th Black Crusade in 999.M41.
- Malfallax - Malfallax was the daemonic mastermind behind the manipulation and corruption of the Space Marine Arkio, all part of a grand scheme intended to plunge the Blood Angels Chapter into a civil war that would result in their inevitable destruction. His scheme was foiled by the actions of his brother Rafen, who was also a member of the Blood Angels.
- Marabas - Once active in the Calixis Sector, Marabas' machinations helped to oppose the Angevin Crusade that initially brought the sector under the control of the Imperium. Eventually, the Inquisition moved against Marabas on the world of Malfi and was able to banish him back to the Warp.
- Sar'tir - Sar'tir is a Lord of Change who rules one of the most infamous planets of the Cat's Cradle, a region of space affected by Warp currents and tendrils of the raw Immaterium seeping forth from the boundary of the Inner Ring of the Screaming Vortex.
- Skra'Kalichaust The Schemer
- Shim'dre'lex'kazar - Shim'dre'lex'kazar is an Exalted Lord of Change who is the commander of the Pyroclastic Conclave, a daemonic legion in service to Tzeentch. The Pyroclastic Conclave is a so-called Conflagration Legion, a legion dedicated to fiery destruction and centred around formations of Flamers of Tzeentch, capable of wielding the most powerful of Warp-flames. It was one of the many Daemon legions deployed to the Stygius Sector by the Architect of Fate in the aftermath of the Great Rift's birth, and played a critical role in the siege of the world of Mordian. As it entered battle with the beleaguered Imperial defenders of that world, it was composed of nine different hosts.
- Tarkh'ax - Tarkh'ax manufactured a conflict between the Imperium and the T'au on the world of Dolumar IV after corrupting the Imperial Commander of that world.
- Tyrant of Blueflame - After the 13th Black Crusade and the fall of Cadia in 999.M41, the Cardinal World of Ophelia VII was caught within the newly-formed Great Rift that divided the galaxy in twain and that planet sacred to the Imperial Cult was exposed to invasion from Daemons. The planet was enslaved by the Greater Daemon known as the Tyrant of Blueflame, a Lord of Change in service to Tzeentch. Ophelia VII was freed from the clutches of Chaos by the resurrected Primarch Roboute Guilliman's Indomitus Crusade and the forces of the Black Templars Chapter. However the Tyrant himself escaped Imperial justice.
- Codex Adeptus Astartes - Space Marines (8th Edition), pg. 20
- Black Crusade: Core Rulebook (RPG), pp. 13, 19, 272, 346, 357-358
- Black Crusade: Tome of Fate (RPG), pp. 15, 28, 33-34, 69, 94
- Codex: Chaos Daemons (8th Edition), pp. 16-17, 44, 91
- Codex: Chaos Daemons (6th Edition), pp. 37, 42
- Codex: Chaos Daemons (4th Edition), pp. 18, 49
- Codex: Daemonhunters (3rd Edition), pg. 59
- Codex: Grey Knights (5th Edition), pg. 39
- Codex: Space Marines (5th Edition), pg. 31
- Dark Heresy: Ascension (RPG), pp. 204-205
- Deathwatch: Mark of the Xenos (RPG), pg. 106
- Imperial Armour Apocalypse 2, pp. 62-63
- The Inquisition (Background Book), pg. 62
- White Dwarf 368 (UK), pg. 7
- Sanctus (Novella) by Darius Hinks
- Fateweaver (Novella) by John French
- Accursed Eternity (Novella) by Sarah Cawkwell
- Endeavour of Will (Novella) by Ben Counter
- Atlas Infernal (Novel) by Rob Sanders
- Fire Warrior (Novel) by Simon Spurrier
- Fire Warrior (Video Game)
- Warhammer 40,000: Rulebook (8th Edition), pg. 161
- Games Workshop Catalogue: Daemons of Chaos, Lord of Change
- Forge World: Lord of Change, Greater Daemon of Tzeentch