They are the twisted, slavering horror lurking just beyond sight; they are the putrid, corrupt carriers of plagues; they are the armies of uncompromising brutality which crash like tsunami waves upon the walls of civilization. They are the Banebrood.
Their grotesque forms are diverse beyond reckoning, ranging from hideously mutated mortals through a myriad of hybrid, man-beast obscenities to the savage moon-spawn lycanthropes. All are deranged, vicious creatures hell-bent on hacking down the rotten tree that is civilized society. What unites these disparate barbarous breeds as a species is not something physical at all, but something psychic – for all Banebrood are cursed with an innate subconscious link to the force of feral fury known as the Urghast. Pools and currents of this primal power drift to and fro across the lands, unseen beyond mortal senses, and its howls echo through the dimensions of the cosmos making gods and demons shudder. Ripples in the Urghast stir the Banebrood to crazed brutality, heralded by the dissonant thunder of bestial howls which echo down through the valleys like the overture to a symphony of slaughter.
Banebrood can be roughly divided into four categories. Most recognizable are the Reavers – cannibal, barbarian tribesmen inflicted with various degrees of permanent mutation. The hybrid abominations of man and beast, known as Beastspawn, constitute the second subspecies, including such obscene and ruthless creatures as Minotaurs and Fomorians. Centaurs form the third group; nomadic quadrupeds including such unthinking brawn as the stag centaurs, buffalo-centaurs and rhino-centaurs. Lastly there are those mortals whose mutations are highly unstable, changing from entirely human to total beast in a matter of hours; these are the blood-drinking Lycanthropes.
Banebrood are motivated by the usual necessities of survival – water, food, and reproduction, but the craving for violence is branded into their psyche and sometimes eclipses all other needs! They embody the worst attributes of a filthy beast, married to the intellect of a madman. Contrary to the charcoaled picture painted by thousands of burned towns, the Banebrood do not harbour a master-plan for world domination, but the struggle for resources and territory does not adequately explain their unremitting violence. Probably they possess no rational reason for their carnage; they are simply driven to it by their own bestial natures and by the psychotic dictates of their puppet-master – the Urghast.