The Old Ones were an ancient, hyper-intelligent, and near omnipotent starfaring species that may have been reptilian in nature and who served as the mysterious shaping hand of the Warhammer World, creating its current geography and climate. They arrived on the world in what would become the continent of Lustria more than 17,000 years before the present and proceeded to shape its geography and inhabitants according to the mysterious demands of some greater plan, moving the world closer to the sun to make its environment more temperate and creating new sentient races or modifying already existing ones to inhabit it, including the Slann and Lizardmen, the Elves of Ulthuan, the Dwarfs and the Humans.
In addition, the Old Ones constructed two great warp gates at the poles of the planet. These were used to cross into an immaterial, interdimensional plane known as the Realm of Chaos, which allowed the Old Ones to traverse immense distances of space in a mere instant.
At some point between 8,100 and 7,000 years before the present, these gateways collapsed, puncturing the barrier between the physical and the immaterial universes, thereby allowing Chaos to come into the world. After this event, known as the Great Catastrophe, the Old Ones disappeared from the world as they were unable or unwilling to stop the flood of Chaos from destroying their creation, leaving their endeavors on the Warhammer World to be completed by their servants, the Slann and the Lizardmen.
As a result of the departure of the Old Ones, the knowledge of their true nature and power have been lost to the Lizardmen. With no living Slann remaining to recall any firsthand knowledge of their long-departed masters, the Lizardmen no longer regard the Old Ones as benevolent rulers, but now worship them as long-lost gods of war for whose return they patiently await.
Known Old OnesEdit
It is unclear how many Old Ones existed, however within the glyphs of the sacred plaques of the temple-cities, there are many Old Ones which are described and/or made mention of. Piecing together bits of information from ancient texts, the Slann and Skink Priests have associated various traits to certain Old Ones. Specific gods are invoked before battle whenever the Lizardmen desire the blessing of an Old One, in the hope that the characteristic of that deity will be infused in the hearts of the warriors as they take to the battlefield.
Prominent Old OnesEdit
Of all the Old Ones in the Lizardmen pantheon, certain gods are venerated as possessing greater power and influence over Lizardmen society.
Sotek, The Serpent of Blood and FuryEdit
Perhaps the pre-eminent of the Old Ones, Sotek is a god of blood who is portrayed as a great serpent. The favored spawnings of Sotek produce warriors infused with the vengeful deity's blood-fueled anger, and will attack their foes with great fury. The physical representation of Sotek's blessing can vary from red skin and scales, to subtle hues of red on tall, sporty head-crests. The sacred color of Sotek is blood red.
The coming of Sotek was heralded by the prophet Tehenhauin during the second coming of the twin-tailed comet, a common omen of good tidings to many of the intelligent races of the Warhammer World. The Skinks of the Red Host began to worship Sotek, despite him not being recognized by the Slann. When the Skaven of Clan Pestilens attacked the continent of Lustria, Tehenhauin led his army of red-crested Skinks in a bloody war to eradicate and eventually defeat the rat spawn which lasted a century. As a result of their victory, the Slann ushered in the Age of Sotek, which would be marked by blood and sacrifice to appease the new god.
Ever since the coming of Sotek, the Lizardmen have built blood shrines in their temple-cities (where mass sacrifices take place) in order to satisfy the serpent-god's eternal thirst for blood.
Chotec, Lord of the Sun Edit
The solar god Chotec is closely associated with the sun, and it is said that his followers are imbibed with great vigor and energy. Hexoatl, the Solar City is aligned so as to harness the power of the sun, within which Lord Chotec is sometimes said to reside. The sacred spawnings of Chotec produce Lizardmen whose bodies burn with the heat of the sun, giving them greater energy than that of the other cold-blooded beasts. The sacred color of Chotec is fiery red-orange.
Some temple-cities possess a sun temple of Chotec, and it is there that the Saurus gather before marching out to make war, so that Chotec's energy may invigorate them.
Tlazcotl, The Impassive Edit
As the Old One of patience and determination, Tlazcotl embodies the emotionlessness and cold intelligence of the Lizardmen. A tinge of yellow is often noticeable on those spawned under Tlazcotl's cold eye, and these Lizardmen reflect his impassivity, remaining fearless and unaffected even during the most harrowing of experiences. The sacred color of Tlazcotl is yellow.
It is not certain if the Lizardmen build structures specifically to honor Tlazcotl. However, in Tlaxtlan, City of the Moon, the Great Temple of Tlazcolt stands at the center of the city, within which the great Slann Mage-Priest Lord Adohi-Tehga of the Second Spawning resides. There is also the Great Statue of Tlazcotl, which stands in the city plaza, overlooking the Spawn-Pools of the Guide.
Tzunki, Lord of Water Edit
The Lizardmen praise Tzunki as the god of water, agility and keen eyesight. Those spawned in his sacred waters sometimes have mottled sea-green skin hues, their claws are often webbed, and they have powerful gills hidden in the folds of skin on their necks. The sacred color of Tzunki is sea-green.
Within the compounds of a temple-city, there may be a blessed pyramid honoring Lord Tzunki. The priests who attend to shrines can only enter them through water-gates by diving into the placid waters that surrounded the pyramid.
Huanchi, The Jaguar Edit
Revered as the jaguar-god of the earth and night, Huanchi's blessing bestows natural stealth to those Lizardmen spawned in his sacred pools, and allows them to pass effortlessly through the thickest of jungle undergrowth. Huanchi has no distinctive markings or color.
When a Slann wishes to meditate in utter peace, they may retreat to a dome of Huanchi. No light or sound penetrates these domes, so that the Slann may meditate to the point of oblivion.
Quetzl, The ProtectorEdit
The servants of Queztl are resolute and tough, as befits the chosen of this warrior-defender god. Quetzl is venerated as a divine protector, and Lizardmen spawned under his star are often gifted with especially thick, toughened scales, and bony spurs which protrude from their forearms. Foremost among those who honor Quetzl are the Saurus Temple Guard.
Tepok, The InscrutableEdit
The Lizardmen worship Tepok in his manifestation as the feathered-serpent god of the air and of sacred places, as well as magic and wisdom. Those blessed by Tepok exhibit an air of mysterious otherworldliness and possess a natural resistance to the harmful effects of magic. The sacred color of Tepok is bright purple.
As centers of magic in the temple-cities, the shrines of Tepok carry great importance. In the city of Tlaxtlan, where Tepok is greatly honored, the shrine sounds with the chanting of the city's priests, incanting a millennium-long spell.
Itzl, Lord of Cold-blooded BeastsEdit
As the creator-meld of the beast, Itzl is the god of the great cold-blooded creatures of the jungle, and it is said that he grants Cold One and Caurnosaur riders dominion over their mounts. Warriors spawned bearing Itzl's blessing exude a subtle musk which their mounts find comforting, and sport elaborate, bony head-crests.
In order for the armies of the Lizardmen civilization to march to war with great, fearsome beasts, it is necessary for the temple-cities to have a temple of Itzl and a corral-arena. It is there, in the complex of Itzl's temple-arena, that not only is praise offered to the lord of the beast, but also where the monstrous creatures of the jungle are turned to the service of the Lizardmen.
Peripheral Old Ones Edit
Beyond the principal gods, there are many other Old Ones to whom venerations are paid, albeit less often and only during specific celestial alignments.
Potec - Ward of the Supernatural Edit
Revered as a protector from the unknown, Potec is described as 'he who wards against the supernatural.'
Xholankha - The Lost One Edit
Sometimes referred to as 'Lost Xholankha,' this enigmatic Old One is rarely invoked, for he is believed to be lost to the Lizardmen and therefore unable to hear their prayers. Some Slann Mage-Priests believe that Xholankha is engaged upon an all-but-impossible mission at the very beginning of time, from which he may, if successful, one day return.
In a few temple-cities, tribute is paid to the Old One Xholankha with the contruction of floating gardens. Within these calm pools of water, drifting glades revolve in an eternal dance, and when they align in auscipious patterns, the Slann come to contemplate in the shade of the gardens of Lost Xholankha.
Quetli - The Warrior Edit
This One One is spoken of in the sacred plaques of Hexoatl as a warrior-god, and is referred to in the Prophecy of Xhalo as the 'Protector of the True Way.'
As an additional line of defense, temple-cities may possess a ziggurat of Quetli. In times of dire need, the Mage-Priests gather in the ziggurat and combine their power to create a dome of mystic energy capable of enveloping the entire temple-city.
Tlanxa - Lord of War Edit
Tlanxa is described in many glyphs as the embodiment of the warlike nature of the Lizardmen, and a pair of matching glyph sequences in Hexoatl and Itza make reference to him riding to war in a mighty sky-chariot.
Xhotl - Lord of Destiny Edit
The Old One after which the temple-city is named, Xhotl is described in every sequence that mentions him as the chooser of those destined for greatness. It is said that Xhotl protects those who bear his mark, ensuring their safety and striking down those who harm them.
Tzcatli - Lord of Strength Edit
Known as 'he who grants strength to the warrior's arm,' Saurus Warriors have been known to honor Tzcatli by swallowing whole the still-beating hearts of their vanquished enemies.
Xapati - Lord of Vengeance Edit
It is only known that this deity's name is invoked before vengeance is called down upon a foe.
Xokha - Arbiter of Duty Edit
Infrequently mentioned, Xokha is called the spirit of stone, the giver of strength, and the Arbiter of Duty.
Uxmac - Messenger of the Gods Edit
Referred to as the messenger of the gods, it is believed that he will one day return to the world, bearing the word of the Old Ones.
Caxuatn - The Predator Edit
Caxuatn is described as the predator; he who stalks the deep jungles, and whose passing causes the beasts to become suddenly silent and the winds to become still.
Rigg - The Outcast Edit
Unclear if actually an Old One, the name of Rigg, called the Outcast, is mentioned in a small number of glyphs. Highly unusually, this being is referred to in a feminine context, and in one glyph sequence is referred to as the 'Mother of Kalith', a term with no meaning to the Lizardmen.
Obscure Old Ones Edit
Some Old Ones exist in name only; the sacred plaques naming them, but providing no further details.
It is possible others exist, and that not even the Mage-Priests know the names of all the Old Ones.