Sláine: Kiss My Axe! is the brand new skirmish tabletop miniatures game, set in the world of Sláine – out this week from Warlord Games! Based on the legendary comic book by Pat Mills and Angela Kincaid, axes and swords clash whilst Earth and Sour magic lash out across the Land of the Young, as the Earth Tribes of the goddess Danu battle the decaying Drune Lords and the relentless Fomorian Sea Demons.

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With nearly 40 years of storytelling as its core, it only makes sense that you might be wanting to know just who’s who!

Slaying ancient evils, swinging axes, ruling kingdoms, and conquering invaders might seem like any ordinary fantasy tale from the past few centuries, but with the help of some truly top-tier writers and artists, and real-life Celtic mythology to draw from, Sláine and his band of characters are far from run of the mill. If you’re looking  to catch up on just who you’ll be dealing with when it comes to Warlord’s new skirmish game, there’s no better place to start than the heavy-hitters of Sláine’s own pantheon. 

SLAINE MAC ROTH

Armed with his stone axe Brainbiter, a lust for blood, and the ability to channel the power of the very Earth itself into his “warp spasm” – the ability to transform into a near-unstoppable monstrosity – Sláine Mac Roth is a mighty dark-haired warrior of the Sessair tribe in ancient Ireland. 

Exiled as a teenager following the discovery of an illicit affair with the chief’s fiancee Niamh, Sláine’s adventures have brought him face to face with dragons, time travel, gods and goddesses, and a world full of blood-splattered adventure alongside trusted sidekick Ukko. As if that weren’t enough, he has also been sent across time by the Earth Goddess Danu to defend his homeland against various historical threats, including invading Roman, Viking, and Trojan armies; at some point during all of this, he also became the first High King of Ireland as well as the mythical Horned God himself. 

It’s not all been threats that we mere mortals can’t relate to, however. During his 30+ years in the Galaxy’s Greatest Comic, he’s also found time to marry Niamh and become a father. Don’t worry; they didn’t keep him back from warping out and slaughtering all who stand before him when necessary. 

UKKO THE DWARF

While Sláine’s world consists of any number of heroic warriors, beautiful damsels, or unworldly threats, his most loyal companion manages to be exactly none of these things. Instead, Ukko is, to be blunt, Sláine’s cowardly dwarf companion and sidekick. 

Named after the Finnish god, Ukko is anything but godlike, instead acting, most times, as a contrast to Sláine’s bravery and cunning with lecherous commentary and a business-mind that’s greedy for gold; he is, however, appointed as royal jester or “Royal Parasite” upon Slaine’s reign as King of Ireland. Technically the property of Sláine — he was “won” by the hero in a board game — the relationship between the two is closer to one of unspoken respect masked by public contempt and mockery, on both sides.

Despite his shortcomings, Ukko is tasked to record and chronicle Slaine’s adventures and mishaps, and is responsible for the majority of the strip’s narration. That’s not to say that he doesn’t have ambitions of his own, whether its to amass as much wealth as possible through whatever means possible (preferably thievery) or to own and manage his own tavern, giving him access to as much drink and women as he can handle. 

THE LORD WEIRD SLOUGH FEG

Ruler of the mythical land of Tir Nan Og, the Lord Weird Slough Feg was a ruthless beast that resided in the underground Cave of Beasts and fed on children offered by the four tribes of man as tribute for keeping them safe. 

A rotting and decaying figure known as the Horned God and leader of the Skull Sword army, Feg appeared to be a figure none would dare cross… making it all the more notable that Sláine would repeatedly — intentionally and otherwise — stand in the way of his ultimate plan to destroy Tir Nan Og entirely, whether it was preventing a sacrificial killing in Feg’s honor or fighting back the Fomorian Sea Devils working in Feg’s name.

Feg would be killed by Sláine, who had successfully united the four tribes to claim power for themselves, with the hero claiming the title of the Horned God for himself. That wouldn’t be the last the world would see of him, however; he would eventually return, reborn in an alternate timeline to try one more time to destroy his accursed foe.

NIAMH

Despite originally being destined to be the wife of Grudnew, the chief of the Sessair tribe, and kept in a guarded hut so that she may not be seen by other men, the Warrior Queen Niamh is anything but a damsel in distress. 

After a youthful dalliance with Sláine — the act that would both see him banished from the Sessair for years, and see her bearing his child — Niamh was left to raise their son Kai alone in the prison of her solitary hut until Grudnew’s death. Upon Sláine’s return, Niamh eventually softens to him once again despite her anger at his abandonment of her and their child; the two eventually marry and raise Kai together, even if they disagree about whether or not their son should follow in his father’s warrior footsteps. 

Despite being raped and murdered by Moloch, an evil commander of the Fomorian Sea Devils, Niamh is still present in the strip after her death, often through Slaine’s time traveling adventures, or her apparent constant reincarnations as figures of English myth and history, including Sister Marian, the love of roguish hero Robin Hood’s life. 

DANU

The Earth Goddess worshiped by all four tribes of Tir Nan Og, Danu rewards the unwavering  faith of her warrior subject Slàine in a number of ways — most notably, by giving him the power to warp into a stronger, more invulnerable form in the heat of battle by channeling the power of the Earth itself. 

One of the true constants in Sláine’s life, Danu doesn’t just watch over him but pushes him through time in order to defend Ireland from numerous threats as her champion. She rarely acts directly in such conflicts, but has on occasion possessed those around Sláine in order to get the job done. 

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