Kirb your enthusiasm!


"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
"...generalship should be informing list building." - Sir Biscuit
"I buy models with my excess money" - Valkyrie whilst a waitress leans over him

Monday, November 14, 2011

Circle Orboros Explained

Circle Orboros Explained
Why the baby-stealing, human-sacrificing cannibals are the good guys.

An ancient struggle

Before one understands the nature of the Circle Orboros, they must first understand one of the most fundamental rivalries in Caen. When mankind first appeared on Caen, they found themselves exposed to the many predatory animals, driving cold winds, and the scorching sun. It wasn't until they discovered the True Law of Menoth that they were able to establish civilized societies safe from the indignities of nature.


However, as humans ripped rocks from the ground to build shelters, chopped down forests to clear areas for farms, emasculated wild animals and bred them into docile domestic creatures and stopped up rivers behind dams. These unnatural actions have the effect of disrupting the flow of natural energies across Caen. It is these energies which strengthen the Orboros, the embodiment of natural chaos, and, more importantly, from the Devourer Wurm.

The Devourer Wurm is the embodiment of the predatory spirit of Caen. Before the appearance of mankind, the Devourer and Menoth battled across Caen before Menoth retreated to Urcaen. The two struggle there even to this day, locked in a vicious stalemate. Should the Devourer's flow of energy from Caen ever become so disrupted that Menoth begins to get the upper hand, the Devourer will return to Caen and destroy all humanity. Should the Devourer receive so much power from Caen that he can overcome Menoth, he will return to Caen and destroy all humanity.

This tenuous balance between two disastrous outcomes is what the Circle Orboros wishes to preserve. The secretive order carefully siphons the power of Orboros to cull human society and keep it from disrupting the flow of power to the Devourer. At the same time, the Circle is careful not to destroy too much of civilization for fear that the Devourer will actually win his eternal stalemate.

One should not mistake the altruistic actions of the Circle as benevolence. While their actions ultimately preserve mankind from destruction, their motivations are entirely selfish. The Druids of Orboros realize that failure in their task will result in their own destruction.

Wielders of natural magic

At the head of the Circle Orboros is a coven of natural magic users. Each and every one of these druids has experienced the Wilding. The Wilding is an anomaly which enables the possessor to tap into the energies of Caen and the power of Orboros. In most societies, the Wilding is considered to be a curse and children who display the Wilding are killed outright.

Deviant Art

Each child born with the Wilding is precious and the Circle will go to great lengths to recover them. This is the source of the stereotype of the Druids of Orboros being kidnappers or baby snatchers. Often, the Druids are saving the child from a grisly death or a life of madness.

Those few Wilders who survive their training may become Druids of Orboros. Druids can specialize in many aspects of Orboros. Some Druids master storms and the fury of nature while others master rock and the lines of power of Caen. Still other Druids master predatory beasts or tapping into Caen’s flow of energy.

The Druids will use whatever resources are available to accomplish their objectives. Often these resources come in the form of ancient alliances or dark rituals. The Druids have no qualms about throwing these allies to their deaths. The dark rituals of the Druids and the blood sacrifices of their victims can create massive warbeasts made of stone and wood or through warping human flesh into something wholly unhuman - ever-shifting beasts of all forms which are bred and engineered by the Circle to serve the purposes of the order.

Unholy alliances

For thousands of years, the Druids of Orboros have been cultivating relationships with other populations. Oftentimes, these groups are beset by some threat which the Druids can solve. This indebts the group to the Circle and the Druids have no problem calling them up to pay the debt, even if this destroys their allies.

Some of the long-term allies of the Druids of Orboros are so entrenched in the order that they can be considered one and the same. These are the barbaric Tharn tribes and the wilderness dwelling Wolves of Orboros.

Deviant Art
The Tharn were once human but their depraved blood rites led them into evolve into something else entirely. When the Tharn enter battle, the men become hulking monstrosities, living embodiment of the Devourer. The Tharn women assume more predatory forms, agile and silent as they hunt their prey. When the Tharn overcome an enemy, they carry out vicious blood rites, feasting on the bodies of the slain and absorbing their power.

The Wolves of Orboros are also Devourer worshippers like the Tharn but are human in all ways. The Wolves seek to emulate pack hunters, stalking their prey in groups and striking from the shadows. The Wolves are the rank and file troops of Orboros. They are carefully cultivated lines which are known to produce Wilders. Those who are not Wilders can still become Wolves and Reeves, acting as the army of the Druids.

Still darker and more ancient allies exist within the Circle. Living avatars of the Devourer such as Wurmwood, the Lord of the Feast and the Gallows Groves speak to the primal power that is Orboros. These allies cannot be summoned at will and are dangerous even to the Druids of Orboros. The Devourer is not a force that the Circle can tame. To even attract the attention of one of these avatars is to invite ruin. However, man is increasingly powerful and the Druids are desperate to stop the encroachment of civilization.

The Devourer vs Orboros

The nature of Orboros is a mystery perhaps even to the members of the Circle. Orboros seems to be one aspect of nature upon Caen. Orboros is the embodiment of natural chaos. Orboros is the hurricane, the earthquake, the wildfire, the blizzard. Orboros' bones are the rocks of Caen; the power of Orboros flows through Caen by means of Ley lines like some circulatory system of power.

The Devourer Wurm is an aspect of Orboros. The Devourer is known as the Beast of All Shapes. It is the predatory spirit of Orboros. The Devourer is described as being ever hungry, stalking any being and killing its prey violently.

The Druids of Orboros worship neither Orboros or the Devourer. They have merely tapped into the power of the natural god. They use this power as a resource and protect nature out of their own self interests.

The allies of Orboros, however, tend to be Devourer worshippers. They view the Druids' power as a divine example of the Druids' connection to the Devourer. These cultists engage in bloody rites of passage, bringing severed limbs as offerings to the myriad sacred sites of Orboros and the Devourer.

As a rule, the Druids disdain worship of the Devourer. They view such rites as short-sighted and ignorant. The Devourer is not a god to be worshipped but a wild force to be feared. To worship the Devourer is to wish destruction on yourself should you garner attention from the predatory god.

Wielding nature’s fury

When Circle Orboros players bring their armies to the table, many aspects of that army emulate the essence of Orboros or the Devourer. Circle armies can produce staggering amounts of terrain in the form of forests and other rough terrain. This terrain is not a problem for Circle models as many can move through it or see through it without penalty. But the effect is to slow the enemy down or block their ability to engage the Circle forces.

This generation of terrain can be coupled with rapid movement and extreme mobility. Circle Orboros models can often stack movement like other factions stack damage or armor. This ability to move, place, and charge huge distances allows Circle players to engage the enemy where their opponent’s forces are most weak while minimizing their own risk.

This mobility is not without a cost. The Circle Orboros does not product armor like other factions do. Many of their forces are easy to destroy and attrition battles almost always end badly. While they hit hard, they cannot afford to be hit back.

The Circle Orboros excels at one thing better than any other: killing living models. Many models in the Circle’s arsenal have abilities which key off of attacking or killing living models. This makes Circle lists uniquely suited for dealing infantry-heavy lists or other Hordes lists. Circle struggles the most against Cryx (which brings loads of undead models) and warjack-heavy lists in Warmachine. It may be that the new dynamic of the Blindwater Congregation may also be problematic for Circle Orboros players.


This concludes my overview of the Circle Orboros. Next week, I'll begin to review the Circle forces, beginning with the Circle battlebox. If you have a request of a topic you'd like to see here, please feel free to post it in the comments section.

As always, thanks for reading.

Follow us on Facebook!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...