Armageddon is a world of battle that has been pivotal in the history of the galaxy at multiple points throughout the last ten millennia. It is a world on which legends have been forged, empires broken and billions of lives are even now offered up to the meat grinder of battle. It is only recently, however, that we have truly understood just how important this world is.
At the time of the Great Crusade, Armageddon was known by another name: Ullanor.
It was on this world that the Space Marine Legions finally dealt the death blow to a massive Ork empire, the greatest alien force in the galaxy at the time. This effectively ushered in the age of the Imperium, and secured mankind as the dominant species in the galaxy. Things look rosy for Humanity for a little while, but as we all know, this doesn’t last long…
You can read of one of these great conflicts in the Horus Heresy short story ‘The Wolf of Ash and Fire‘.
Soon after the triumph at Ullanor, the Imperium was ripped apart by treachery and betrayal. Though ultimately it survived, it takes centuries to recover, over which time, the location of Ullanor is lost.
Over a thousand years passed, and then an old threat rose on Ullanor once more. The Orks had returned, led by the Beast. The Imperium faced the single greatest xenos threat mankind had ever encountered (at least until the 41st Millennium).
Ullanor is cleansed at huge cost, but scheduled for Exterminatus and utter destruction.
Unbeknownst to the wider Imperium, the Adeptus Mechanicus had other plans…
Millennia later, the planet – now known as Armageddon – had transformed into a populous Imperial hive world far from the Ullanor Sector. The world came under attack from the Daemon Primarch Angron and the daemonic forces of Khorne in what would eventually become known as the ‘First War for Armageddon’. The combined armies of the Space Wolves and Grey Knights, alongside many regiments of the Astra Millitarum, won a hard-fought victory against the Chaos forces, but the battle stretched the limits of the Imperial alliance to breaking point.
Read about this battle in the novel ‘The Emperor’s Gift‘.
The 2nd War for Armageddon saw, Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka led a vast Ork Waaagh! to lay claim to the planet. The invasion is held back by a defence force led by Commissar Yarrick at Hades Hive, and though their efforts cost the defenders dearly, it bought the rest of the Imperials the time they needed to drive off the Ork invaders.
A mere few decades later, towards the end of the 41st Millennium, Ghazghkull has returned at the head of an even larger force (last time was just a test, apparently).
The Imperium has mustered troops from hundreds of planets and dozens of Space Marine Chapters, while billions of Orks journey to Armageddon to take part in the greatest war of their lifetime – battlegrounds like Helsreach and Acheron have already become legendary, as have the heroes of the conflicts there. The battles are waged at every scale, from massive fleet-sized engagements in space to small squads fighting on their own in the tangle of industrial sprawl. Casualties are huge on both sides, and after years of war, the war shows no sign of abating.
Though many of its manufactorums are in ruins, Armageddon remains both a symbol of defiance and a strategically important hub of Imperial defence.
With the millennium drawing to a close, the battle rages on: Ork and human blood stains the planet’s surface, from hive cities to ash-wastes and jungle war zones, as new eyes turn towards the war-ravaged world…
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