The History of Warhammer 40k - Tyranids

Simona Gerasimovska

Posted on March 25 2022

The History of Warhammer 40k - Tyranids


Placing us in the 41st millennium, quite far from today, humanity has formed an empire that has spread throughout the galaxy. The galactic conquest was achieved thanks to the Emperor, a very powerful human being, and his primarchs, the leaders of different legions of superhumans. They fought aliens and colonized countless planets as they discovered mysteries hidden for millennia.

Thus, the story of Warhammer 40k is dark and gothic, where the threat of extinction of humanity is constant due to all the enemies it has. Only superhumans, space marines, among other brave humans, are the ones who keep the empire from disappearing.

In Warhammer 40,000 there is a good variety of factions, from those that drink from the most typical topics of science fiction to some that are completely innovative.

The main faction that have had more weight and relevance in the game and in the history of Warhammer 40.000 are the Tyranids. They are a mixture of Starship Troopers and Alien bugs. It is an infinite swarm that comes from beyond the limits of the galaxy, an enemy that puts all of existence in jeopardy by devouring everything.

Tyranids are one of the most hostile life forms in the Galaxy. They are predators who only see the other breeds as raw material they need to live and reproduce. They travel through space in formations of endless swarms ready to catch and devour all the organic matter that crosses their path. Tyranids feed on entire worlds, unleashing an avalanche of fierce warriors who crush any opposition. 

Tyranids do not belong to this galaxy, they have traveled the endless gap between galaxies for millennia. It is believed that the Tyranids have already consumed all the organic matter from their place of origin, so they have ventured through the universe to satiate their hunger.

The Tyranids work like a hive mind; drooling and hungry, fearsome in their attacks. Nobody knows the age of this species. Anyway, it is known that it is extremely old. Tyranids have always been characterized by ignoring the rules of leadership when they are under the mantle of their synaptic creatures. 

A critical aspect of the Tyranids is that they are not individual creatures; instead, it is better to think of them as cells of a massive organism. Individual Tyranids do not possess a real sense of self and are instead part of a collective Hive Mind.

Everything from the largest ship to the smallest Gaunt is an organic representation of the Hive Mind. While this sense of unity allows the Hive Mind to control its troops effortlessly, it has some drawbacks.

Tyranid forces are separated by genus, but Gaunt species and Synapse creatures are the most important. The Gaunts are the infantry of the species Tyranid, while Synapse is the command structure. If there are no Synapse creatures, the Gaunts lose all cohesion and become little more than animals.

The first sightings of Tyranids come to us from the ancient Eldar. They had built the first spacecraft with a revolutionary warp drive, and their mission was to explore another galaxy. When he reached a nearby galaxy and began his exploration, he found a chain of star systems being consumed by tyranids.

his happened about 10,000 years ago, just before the fall of the Eldar Empire. When the ship returned to our galaxy, the Eldar were too busy fighting the hordes of Chaos to further investigate the alien strangers who were destroying a nearby galaxy. And old Eldar rumors suggest that tyrannies may have been involved in the fall of the Eldar. 

But they are only legends and theories, not facts. The truth is, and will probably remain forever, unknown. The first definite contact mankind had with the tyranid swarm occurred about 280 years ago on the planet Tiran, in the southwestern tip of our galaxy. A mysterious phenomenon had been recorded in several systems along the eastern edge of the galaxy.

Where once prosperous life-supporting planets existed, small sterile planetoids were located. Strange but, since none of the planets were inhabited by intelligent life, they were mostly ignored. Reports of scientific ships exploring the region were archived in Earth’s databases, but nothing else was done.

However, over time the phenomenon began to move towards the advanced scientific station of Tiran, and the station archived more and more reports of dying worlds. Hundreds of worlds that once possessed ecosystems were dying, and in the end attracted the interest of the Inquisition.

And after a brief study of all the reports of dying worlds, they decided to send Inquisitor Kryptman to personally visit the outpost of Tiran and coordinate an intensive study of the phenomenon now deepening in the galaxy. When he arrived, Tiran had been completely consumed.

The future is uncertain, as Leviathan could consume the entire galaxy. Even so, there is hope, as the races of our galaxy have developed a plan to attack the fleet’s assault reactor, before it reaches our galaxy, and be able to sever the synaptic link with the swarm fleet, effectively ending the Tyranid threat for centuries.

And there is another hope, in an ancient Eldar prophecy. "When Leviathan touches the jungle world of death, the greatest swarm mind will eventually be born. The swarm mind will divide, and the Tyranids will consume Tyranids. Mortals will spare the wrath of the swarm, while it consumes itself.".

How to play the game?

Warhammer 40K is a board and strategy game in which two or more sides face each other on a board organized into territories. To win, one side must meet the conditions of victory of the game. 

The peculiar thing about Warhammer 40K is that in order to play you will have to assemble and paint by hand dozens (and even hundreds) of miniatures of soldiers and vehicles of your army. Although for some it might be annoying, for Warhammer 40000 fans, it is part of the fun.

Warhammer 40000 is a game with different modalities, each game has its own conditions of victory, and although players will still have to face their armies on the board, meeting the conditions of victory is the priority to win. 

However, even if some rules vary by heading, the central rules are always the same. The official Warhammer 40000 website makes them available for players to download and view at all times.

Roughly speaking, Warhammer works as follows: each game has 6 turns with one round for each player. In their round, a player can decide to move their units, get into combat, cast spells and much more. 

However, chance has its role, and is that you will also have to throw six-sided dice to make key decisions, perform piece movements and other actions. The times when you should use the dice, however, are defined by the Warhammer rulebook.

In short, to play and win you must meet the conditions of victory established in the game, while you must follow the rules imposed on your faction, those of the game mode you have chosen and the central rules. However, you should also defeat your enemy first, or at least not defeat you while trying to complete the missions. 

Knowing the basics, you should also take into account the particular rules of your faction for example the above mentioned Warhammer 40k - Tyranids: their abilities, miniature units, their special abilities and other elements that, combined, can make your fighting force devastating at the game table.

As you will see, Warhammer 40000 is a more complex board game than most, but very fun and incredibly popular. Above all, to play the game you have to have fun and have a good attitude.

Want to have everything this game has to offer? Visit our website and check out our amazing game workshop. I am sure you will want everything from it!

More Posts


Leave a comment

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing