Warhammer lore is packed with some of the weirdest creatures. Some of these factions are mutated forms of what we know on Earth. One such group is the Skaven, an underground ratmen tribe.
Known as the Skaven, they are a race of humanoid rat-men who follow an irregular cycle – fighting amongst themselves, expanding their Under-Empire, multiplying their population, and bursting to the surface to cause havoc.
As a result of the clans’ violent treachery, the Skaven eventually weakened and retired to their lairs. They are decay and entropy manifested.
Skaven lived in the caves, tunnels, mines, and sewers of the World-that-was. Their vast Under-Empire reached as far north as Estalia, and from the Southlands as far south as Kislev.
Skaven origins are unknown, but it is probable that they were created in the ancient city of Kavzar by a mysterious stranger who finished the unfinished temple of the gods and hung the great horned bell from the top.
The thirteenth time the bell rang, lightning lit up the sky as dark storm clouds gathered. It never stopped raining and the vermin of the city grew bigger and bolder until they engulfed the citizens.
After two hundred and eighty years, the Skaven race began to expand. They began to work on a huge device they thought would open up large rifts under the ground for them to inhabit.
There were tunnels opening up beneath the Dwarf holds through which lava from deep beneath the earth spilled out through the great warpstone-powered machine failed. This released enormous waves of magical energy across the globe. The world’s edge mountains were hit the hardest.
A single building remained undamaged in Skavenblight, as Kavzar had been renamed. The doors of the Temple of the Great Horned Rat opened, and twelve gray-clad ratmen emerged.
The Lords of Decay were responsible for guiding the Skaven out of Skavenblight. Each group departed to expand the Under-Empire. This movement is known as the Great Migration.