Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Heinrich Kemmler, the Lichemaster

Heinrich Kemmler, the Lichemaster

Painted by: Paul Whittaker / Orclord

The first version of the Lichemaster was released as part of a set supporting the Warhammer scenarios Terror of the Lichemaster / Vengeance of the Lichemaster . It was sculpted by Aly Morrison and was only briefly available. The second was sculpted by Gary Morley and was released in the mid 1990s. Both are now OOP.

One of the oldest undead characters in WFB, having been the subject of two scenarios for the earliest Editions of WFB: Terror of The Lichmaster (a boxed set for 2nd ed in 1986 complete with card buildings) and in an edition of the Citadel Journal in a three way fight with Skaven and warrior monks of Taal as his enemies (called "The Battle for La Maisontaal"). There was also Lichemaster for Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (WFRP) in 1990 and a scenario for Warmaster that returned to the theme of this battle of "La Maisontaal". More recently (White Dwarf 309) he appeared for later versions in Return of the Lichemaster.
Kemmler was a master Necromancer, leading huge legions of the undead, with his own court of ambitious apprentices. As they grew they became rivals and one day attacked their master. Kemmler fled them, nearly breaking his body and mind in the process. For years he wandered the World's Edge Mountains on the run, until he stumbled upon the tomb of Krell, a powerful champion of Chaos in life, and later returned to Undeath by Nagash himself to become a 'Dark Lord of Nagash'. Krell was defeated after Sigmar's banishing of his master and entombed in a secret location. There Kemmler struck a pact with the Chaos gods to restore his power in return for spreading death and destruction in their name. They also granted him Krell as a gift—a powerful Wight Lord accomplice and bodyguard. Now the name of the Lichemaster once again strikes fear into the hearts of mortals, though with the shadowy hand of Nagash guiding them from behind the scenes...
A Recent event involving the two was the infamous battle at La Masiontaal Abbey where a Bretonnian monk stole a warpstone artifact from Skavenblight, home of the ratmen. Kemmler seeing the warpstone as potentially being very helpful in his own sorceries attacked the monk's home abbey at the same time as the Skaven did, seeking to take back their property. With the arrival of Bretonnian reinforcements the famous three-way battle ended with the Skaven taking their property back and Kemmler driven off by the knights of Bretonnia.
Even more recent was the 'Winter of Woe', a campaign against the Wood Elves where Kemmler tried to harness the power of the ancient standing stones in their woodland home. Attacking during winter, when the gods incarnate of the Wood Elves were in hibernation, gave the Necromancer great advantage over his living foes. Thanks to the assistance the famous treeman Druthu and other native spirits of the wood, the Necromancer was driven off, but not before causing serious damage to the forest. He returned to life later in history and a zombie horde led by him besieged castle Reikland only to be this time thwarted by the Dwarf Slayer Gotrek Gurnisson and his human companion Felix Jaegar.

A gift from the Chaos gods to Heinrich Kemmler, Krell was once a Chaos warrior, and now he serves the Lichemaster in a terrible mockery of life. More fearsome now than he was in life, Krell serves as Kemmler's bodyguard.


  1. In Terror of the Lichmaster, the assault on beloved Frugelhofen, didn't he have a second underling along? Mikhail Jackson comes back to my mind, even though Krell was more powerful.

    Ah, those golden, self-glorifying memories coming back, nearly as good as sitting in that German cinema when Darth Vader spoke 'I did NOT kill your father - I AM your father'... OK, Luke's squeamish bitching was cute, too.


  2. he did in the battle de taal never got TOTLM


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