- 1 Kranox, the Graven
- 2 Swarm Princes
- 3 Telthor, Unborn
- 4 Sardok, Eye of Oryx
- 5 Mormu, Xol Spawn
- 6 Phogoth, the Untamed
- 7 Blades of Crota
- 8 Sardon, Fist of Crota
- 9 Might of Crota
- 10 Hand of Crota
- 11 Eyes of Crota
- 12 Heart of Crota
- 13 Urzok, the Hated
- 14 The Forsaken
- 15 Omnigul, Will of Crota
- 16 Ir Yût, the Deathsinger
- 17 Crota, Son of Oryx
- 18 Wretched Knight
- 19 Gulrot, Unclean
- 20 Urrox, Flame Prince
- 21 Oryx, the Taken King
- 22 Oryx: Rebuked
- 23 Oryx: Defeated
- 24 Echo of Oryx
- 25 Alak-Hul, the Darkblade
- 26 The Warpriest
- 27 Golgoroth
- 28 Ir Halak, Deathsinger
- 29 Ir Anûk, Deathsinger
- 30 Krughor
- 31 Lokaar
- 32 Alzok Däl, Gornuk Däl, Zyrok Däl
- 33 Vorlog
- 34 Balwûr
- 35 Thalnok, Fanatic of Crota
Kranox, the Graven
"Their keeper of secrets."
Kranox, the Graven is said to be the Keeper of the Worlds' Grave, a vast repository chronicling the Hive's history of interstellar conquests. Every world they have devoured, every life they have eradicated, every enemy they've faced.
Defeating Kranox and cracking the secrets of the Worlds' Grave could provide the City with the keys to unraveling the Hive's true goals and their ultimate plans for Earth.
"The royalty of nightmare."
The Swarm Princes are terrible legends. It was their will that forged the Sword of Crota, a weapon meant to ravage worlds - the Great Render of Light, the Darkest Edge. They have waited in the shadows of the Hellmouth for their master's return, guarding the Sword and sating its ravenous hunger with the Light of Guardians who have dared to challenge them.
"If you see an Ogre, you know you're close to something the Hive values."
The Unborn are those Ogres who have yet to be given the honor of a summoning. Brute enforcers with a singular hunger for destruction, the Unborn serve the will of their greater Hive overlords. Those Ogres that display loyalty and strength will be called for an agonizing ritual that earns them the title "Reborn."
Telthor, protector of the Chamber of Night, is kept hungry and chained, awaiting the moment when an interloper breaks open the Chamber and threatens the Hive's hateful ambitions.
Sardok, Eye of Oryx
"Until the Darkness reigns, the Eyes must never close."
There are whispers of shrines to the fabled Oryx peppered across the entire system. Stories tell of walking nightmares, protectors of bone and fury, towering over these prized chambers.
Mormu, Xol Spawn
"How many horrors have they summoned?"
Behind every dark ritual lurks a coven of Wizards, the architects of the Hive's unspeakable designs. Mormu, born of the blood and flesh of Xol, is said to conduct terrible rituals upon the Hive's Ogres.
Phogoth, the Untamed
"The summoning tempers their rage...but first that rage must be stoked."
Phogoth's presence in the Summoning Pits reveals yet another of the Hive's depraved designs - a ritual of rebirth, where an Ogre's ravenous hunger and violence is honed and given purpose.
Blades of Crota
"They are the heralds of our destroyer. Ushers of this coming storm."
Vell: They’re more than Knights.
Eriana-3: They look like Knights.
Vell: That’s like calling you a tin can.
Eriana-3: Excuse me?
Vell: I’m saying calling them Knights is an understatement.
Omar: What are they then?
Toland: World carvers.
Toland: Those swords are neither bone nor steel. There’s a dark purpose to their edge.
Eriana-3: Darker than death?
Toland: Death is peace compared to the shadows.
Omar: Those Blades cut down more Guardians than I can count.
Eriana-3: Thousands. The Vanguard should’ve known better.
Toland: I tried to warn them.
Omar: But we’re prepared?
Vell: I am.
Omar: Not exactly the question.
Eris: I have a feeling Light won’t be enough.
Eriana-3: Then we’ll take their swords from their ashes, and cut them down one-by-one, Blade-by-Blade.
Eris: You would wield a weapon of the night?
Eriana-3: For her—them? I will butcher any who stand in my way with even the darkest blade.
Eris: Pray it doesn’t come to that.
Vell: Heh. To cleave our enemies with their own tools of destruction? We should be so lucky.
Omar: You’ve got a strange view on luck.
Toland: When you’ve got your hand around the hilt and their ash under your boot, you might change your tune, Hunter.
Sardon, Fist of Crota
"One sword stands tallest among them, leading the charge against us all."
Vell: So this Sardon is one of these Swarm Princes?
Toland: In a stretch of the concept, sure. He is their lord and master. They are his generals.
Vell: Sounds like my kind of fight.
Omar: What isn't?
Vell: Eris and Eriana said the Blades rose first and slaughtered our brothers and sisters. If the one who leads their charge is within reach, I mean to end him—to end them all.
Eris: We are here for Crota.
Toland: I'm afraid each disciple is Crota.
Vell: Then it must be done. Know that I have faith in your Light, as I do in my own.
Eris: This isn’t about faith.
Eriana-3: It’s about vengeance.
Vell: It’s about the only thing that matters—victory. It’s about doing what we must to end this terror.
Eris: We will face them all, together. We have no time to fight individual battles.
Toland: I have no doubt the Fist will welcome your challenge, Titan. When we face him, you will lead the charge. Come, Crota's Temple lies ahead. If we can breach it, I'm sure another fight awaits.
Might of Crota
"It is a mountain of rage, summoned to leave only destruction in its path."
Toland: When a god's Will is met with force, its Might will be unleashed in the form of those raging beasts we call the ogre—monsters bred of pain, tormented by the Light, nothing but hatred for all who bring its suffering forth.
Eris: And how do you know this?
Toland: It was told to me.
Eris: By the Speaker?
Toland: By the Darkness itself.
Hand of Crota
"It crawls from the shadows to claim our Light in the name of Crota."
Sai: Can you track the others?
Eriana-3: No. There is too much interference. The shroud is too thick here. Ghost?
Ghost: <chhk> Yes. <chhk>
Eriana-3: We in bad shape?
Ghost: <chhk> Could be better. <chhk>
Eriana-3: Any charge?
Ghost: No. Something is siphoning the Light. <chhk> I’m getting weaker by the second. <chhk>
Eriana-3: And Sai’s Ghost? Same?
Ghost: Faint charge detected <chhk> but it’s fading. Its shell is damaged beyond repair. <chhk> No comms. No transmat. <chhk> Even if there were a signal—
Eriana-3: Use whatever juice you’ve got and relay this transmission to the others.
Ghost: They won't receive it. <chhk>
Eriana-3: Not the point.
Eriana-3: This is Eriana-3 of the Praxic Warlocks. Marked by the Cormorant Seal. I am alongside the Hunter Sai Mota. Our Light is nearly gone. The ash of untold Hive covers the ground in our wake.
Unknown: [inaudible scream]
Eriana-3: From what Toland has described we are on the path of Crota's dreaded Hand.
Sai: The Hand is falling back toward the screams beyond these tunnels.
Eriana-3: Screw it. You ready?
Sai: My knives are eager for another dance.
Eriana-3: You speak little, Sai Mota, but always say the right things.
Eyes of Crota
"The Eyes watch us all, gathering our secrets in hopes of ending the Light."
Eris: Something is watching us. I can feel it.
Omar: I hate when you say that.
Toland: Crota has many Eyes. Every god does.
Eris: We have to go.
Omar: If they know our every move, what chance do we have?
Toland: With their great age comes even greater wisdom. I have no doubt the Hive led us here with intent.
Omar: What are you saying?
Toland: For these disciples, we offer the greatest sacrifice.
Eris: What does that mean?
Toland: Do you feel your Light fading? They are offering it to Crota. Us coming here, we are the ones waking him.
Omar: He’s mad.
Eris: Why do you hold these secrets like weapons, to damn us all?
Toland: Because they are weapons. And we are going to use them to show the Hive they are not the only ones who breed fear.
Toland: You’re hunters—hunt. Find the Eyes that are upon us.
Toland: We blind Crota and use what's left of your dying Light to lead us to where these monsters seek to conjure their master.
Heart of Crota
"It's not the first and surely is not the last. But until the last Heart stops, their hate will spread endlessly across the black."
Eris: Record this.
The Heart of Crota.
It is her blood that feeds their fury.
I thought Omar dead until I heard his screams. I followed them down, to the darkest night of the caverns below. What I saw—I witnessed all we fear—the villainy of the Hive on full display.
Among a sea of cocoons, and surrounded by thousands more freshly spawned hordes, the Heart held Omar's broken body in a vice of bone and pain. She was peeling the Light from his body. How? I can’t imagine, and I have tried. Tendrils of luminance tore away like flesh.
With every strand Omar's scream cut the dark and was met with a chittering chorus from the unborn. I can’t say if they were feeding off the Light itself, or the pain, but my guess is both—somehow, both.
The Heart, though I can't believe she actually has one, seemed to be conducting some nightmare orchestra, nurturing Crota's children, with the echoes of Agah's Light.
The Hive must end for all they had done, and some day, by my hand or another's, the Heart will meet with an end fitting of the pain she, herself, has dealt.
Urzok, the Hated
"By pleasing their gods, the Hive carve scars on the fabric of our realm." -Toland, the Shattered
Among the lesser Hive, there is no higher honor than that of the Hated.
Not all can be hallowed, fewer still gods, but all can do their part to smite the Light. The Hated, though, holds a unique place among the Hive. It is a singular position. Only ever one. And the emerald marrow on its blade is not from combat, but the ritualistic execution of those the Wizards have deemed Forsaken.
"Conjured with but one purpose... to die." -Toland, the Shattered
How does one call through the Darkness? Through the void of the eternal night sky? Through the pathways that link the Hive to their ancient, rotting deities? With suffering.
The Forsaken are conjured and birthed through ritual, meant to serve as worship to gods of a higher plane of misery. To perform a ritual of sacrifice is to tempt a god's hunger. What then, if a being of the Light were to taint such a ritual? Would the Hive be punished? Would their gods grow angry?
Omnigul, Will of Crota
"That shriek, that wicked laugh. If you listen closely, you can hear power in its song.”
Eris: Those screams.
Omar: And I was just starting to tune them out.
Toland: It has been told that with these screams another spawn is awakened, birthed in the name of the god it holds.
Toland: I am afraid so. They call this one Omnigul, mother of the spawn.
Sai: How do you—? I'd rather not know.
Toland: Commands, echoed through the dark, fetid caverns—orders carried out with grinding stone and squeaking claw, skittering thrall and blade against bone.
Omar: Well, now he's on a roll.
Eriana-3: I hear them, even when I don't. I will tear this Omnigul's throat out.
Toland: If you were to do so, our work here would be done. Without a Will to raise its army and herald its ascendance, there is no Crota to fear, at least here and now.
Eris: Then we follow the screams.
Ir Yût, the Deathsinger
Eriana! Let's sing. Sing with me. No, no, you rattling machine, not yet, it's too soon: we don't know the words.
We'll learn the song down there. We can learn it from Her. She comes up from the deep dark places where the greater Hive await to sing it to us, and here's a puzzle for you—
The song is death. To hear it is to die. To know the words is mortal. Oh, good point, Eriana, death is just a word, isn't it? A catch-all term for the failure to go on, nothing spiritual, nothing with its own quiddity. We all died once, and it did not prove insurmountable.
But what if what if what if, shhh listen, what if death were reified, described in its totality, made autonomous and universal, separate from any context or condition? What if She could invoke the ending of anything?
How, then, would She know the song, and sing it, without Herself dying?
Perhaps they know a way to make themselves part of the song, part of something vast and burning that rots and peels into ash but never ever ends. Perhaps She has engineered this for Him, and pinned His power up against the quiddity of death itself.
I am so terribly curious to know.
Crota, Son of Oryx
My Thoughts on Recent Events
He hides in the dark below: the monster of Luna, the titanic god-Knight who walked the regolith beneath a sky of green fire and butchered the greatest army of Guardians ever assembled. We abandoned the Moon rather than face him.
Whispered lore and fragmentary theories suggest that Crota represents a distinct class of Hive entities, not resident in our material world. My latest synthesis of this scattered esoterica suggests that Crota's 'home' is a universe created or remade by his power and occupied by Hive organisms of immense age. Any Guardian formidable enough to return with information on this dark reality might help us understand the Hive's goals for our own world—and, more pressingly, such an expedition might provide the key to Crota's defeat.
The epithet Son of Oryx is an ambiguous translation, often disputed. At this time, no direct action by Hive entities of more expansive power has ever been observed. Those who trade in Hive lore bicker over the exact positioning of Crota—is his world the apex of Hive power, or is it the youngest and most accessible of a string of netherworlds, each host to a more terrible Hive archentity?
The nature and possible interrelationship of the Vex gate system with Hive netherworlds remains unexplored.
"They who walk as bone, would walk upon your bones."
As the Worm Keepers wrestled for control of the disparate broods within the Prison of Elders it was the Wretched Knights they turned to as their enforcers.
The Worm Keepers solidified their hold over the Wretched Knights by promising them the spoils of the Light. After growing weary of the Awoken, the newly arrived Guardians have finally secured their loyalty.
"It is the physical form of sickness and rot; a walking disease. Cure it."
That the Worm Keepers held within the Prison of Elders would even attempt such a delicate metamorphosis so far removed from the full resources of their Summoning Pits speaks to either desperation or madness.
Challenge the Worm Keepers and cure the Prison of the hulking sickness they have birthed, or drown in the bile and mess of a festering abomination.
Urrox, Flame Prince
"The ground upon which you walk shall burn. YOU shall burn."
Prince to none, Urrox kept watch over a long-forgotten brood long ago. With the remnants of that spawn at his side, Urrox calls out to all wielders of the Light— to burn away all they are until only the Darkness remains.
Oryx, the Taken King
Where is my son?
Where is Crota, your lord, your princely god, your godly prince?
Tell me no lies!
I feel his absence like a hole in my
Where once his tender tribute whetted burrowed mouths,
Now only hunger remains.
Hear me, O waning stars, O tattered rags of Sky —
I will stopper up this tearing gulf
Dearest Eris, Crota's Bane (now we shall see how well you wear that title!),
It's not all bad.
Yes, the father of all your burdens comes to you with hate on his sword and hunger in his heart. But don't look at it that way. Did you not, when you lost your sight, gain another?
Sharpen your intentions. When life is strength and strength is death, what is death, if not hope?
You just have to reach out and take it.
In World the stars never shone,
The worm never bred in our flesh,
We lived for a day
Our teeth were too short
We were hungry for things we could not eat
Hello again. It’s me. I’m sure you know my name. Let me talk a while, let me talk, I do take a debased joy in speaking again to small human-form heads.
When Crota’s victory over our little blue world seemed certain (a moment of silence, now, for Wei Ning, whose directness I admired) it was Oryx who called His Child back into the nether world to plan final victory. It was to Oryx that the violence of His spawn was tithed.
Oryx is the wielder and the servant of a terrible truth. He has predicated Himself on it, He has pursued across thousands of cairn worlds His quest to embody it, and you have seen the force of that truth expended to create these Taken.
He is not a simple thing to kill. He wants to be isomorphic to conquest, to triumph, to killing and death. He is a syllogism, now, but in time He hopes to become an axiom.
This is His strength and His fatal weakness.
For if he ever falters in His performance, if the inflow of devastation ever falls behind His expenditure of ruin, He will be consumed. If He is ever outmatched, then by the terms of His own existence, He will cease.
It is to Oryx Himself, in the heart of the Dreadnaught that armors and encapsulates his throne-world, that you must make your last and surest argument.
Good luck! Do let me know if a vacancy opens.
Death is the last part of living
and life is learning to die
The song is the same as the singing
The last truth commands me
to eat all the light in the sky
I will go on forever. I will understand.
Dwell a moment on the weight of what you’ve done. Contemplate the story you just ended. Will you ever do anything that screams down the millennia? Will you ever hammer your will on the universe until it rings and rings and rings? Oryx was an awesome power. Show reverence.
All right. Enough. Enough. A vacancy has opened, hasn’t it?
How interesting. How very interesting.
Do you ever pause, dear listener, to consider who benefits from all this heroism you commit? Do you ever look around you and feel the faintest chill? As if you are the tiny little ball bearing placed beneath a great mass, so that it might, if pushed, begin to roll?
You’re a god yourself, now. You’ve consecrated yourself. Emulate me. Use your power to learn.
There are worse things to practice being.
Echo of Oryx
Abase yourself, weapons and instruments
Submit yourself, shapes and gliders, automata all —
I am Oryx, Lord of Shapes, Carver of Tablets
Behold my performance of the Last True Shape
The final axiom
Witness the space that I define
I approach the asymptote.
I grow vast across topologies.
I am not simply connected.
I write to you from a place of high contempt. No no no, don’t be offended, don’t be so superficial — it’s in the architecture of these spaces. They look down on you.
I wander out here, in worlds cut by sharp Hive swords, and I send back these messages for you.
Of Oryx, that admirable monarch, I have only a little to say. Why? Because He is all in the action, fellow traveler, His philosophy is all on display. He has twinned himself so closely to the power He admires. He has become many-placed, many-formed, sending out emissaries of himself to ask after the truth.
In each act of His power Oryx seeks to incarnate the self-sustaining, immortal suzerainty that He worships. The power that He uses to wash his Taken clean and etch them into useful shapes.
LISTEN! LISTEN! Understand, you simpleton, it’s entirely obvious —
Oryx inhabits a world where power is truth. To win is to be noble, and to be real. When He departs from that world, out into the material universe, He is lessened.
The echoes of Oryx go forth to ask a question: are you the truth? And that means — well. You see, I’m sure.
Alak-Hul, the Darkblade
From a median point
Alak-Hul tossed back his head and defied me
Oryx gave me no task
Therefore I must task myself
With Oryx's ending.
So I slew him,
And buried him close to me,
Rejoicing in the success of his great, secret task —
To be as the sword:
Keen, hungry, cyclical, ontological —
This was the task I gave to Alak-Hul,
O sharp-edged Darkblade,
O beloved foster son.
Five hundred and eighty five times he paced the way
Under each circuit was a world
He took up the worlds, he placed them in his hand, he weighed them
From the Golden Amputation to the Gift Mast
The principle he put upon his brow was slaughter
constant and escalating
The principle he put behind his eyes was victory
which is the last true shape
The principle he put into his hands was tribute —
to Oryx, King of Taking
Tithing to his Lord, that the First Navigator might escape
the need to kill for subsistence, the worm need
That He might use His power to lead the final work
A most faithful servant. Most faithful.
From mighty Crota, Son of Navigation, Sword of Pits,
He learned to make his Oversoul
Saying: challenge me, by the law of my ascendance
Match me in bloodshed
Or in blood be drowned
Speak to the heart with burrowing things
The burrowing things will strengthen the heart
You, ab-Xol, you teach the new flesh out of the old
Xol issued you to eat us
The new flesh will be testament
O Eir, decree the shape of this new thing
Judge its testament to the last truth
This new shape is Golgoroth
Crota rose to petition
Father, cut the shapes into a tablet
Give me the tablet
I will bear it in battle
And tithe one side of my sword to you
Oryx cut the shapes into a tablet
But he guarded the shapes
He set the tablet in Golgoroth
Where the new flesh grew as Eir decreed it
Like ice on a stone he rebuked Crota,
From the temples of his son, from the left of his blade
in battle, he demanded
tithings of violence
To Oryx, the First Navigator, who directed the movements
of great masses
Ir Halak, Deathsinger
Oryx was dividing the spawn
he cut apart the larvae
with his sword
And the two divided pieces
Grew into twins.
She who stands ahead
at the prow of the ship of Oryx, her father,
she is Ir Halak,
She plies her blades upon the fabric of space,
cuts the seams,
pulls apart the cloth,
leaves worlds in tatters.
Ir Anûk, Deathsinger
Behind The Unraveler comes Ir Anûk,
She takes in hand the threads of her sister's work,
weaves them into the tapestry of Oryx's realm.
Anûk, who favors bitter things
Of the eleven axioms, choose one
Of the chosen, spare none
Upon Eir’s attendance, say
Come, Eir, look
This truth is dead
Listen, Yul, to the count of my Court
Listen to me, for I am attired in wrath
First I count Krughor, touched by Savathûn
I boast of Krughor, invincible
Distant Savathûn hid the death of Krughor
inside another curse
At the Golden Amputation, when I paced ten times
Krughor sent forth the accursed
Who is this nameless thing?
She fell upon Omnigul, whose aspects multiply, saying
I am diminished. Gift me your death.
My son Crota came to me, saying
This nameless thing moves sideways
I chased her, and she fled
Kill her now
So I raised her to my court
I named her Lokaar, which means Not There
Thus my son was rebuked against simplicity
Alzok Däl, Gornuk Däl, Zyrok Däl
First, before my daughters
I saw Alzok lead her sisters through the eye
Saying, death will be our coven
With black fire and gray blade
Gornuk consecrated their singing
They cut their deaths away
To Zyrok I said
Show me the place where you have hidden your death
I am Oryx, your lord
Oryx, my lord, she said
We have hidden our deaths in each other
So that we will never be alone
Ah, Vorlog! Delight of delights
You killed my Celebrants, and you gave their deaths to me
Preaching: I have seen the truth in bronze glass space
This shape is the only god
Your strength was manifold; it was knight strength
Mastery of armaments and techniques
It was wizard strength, the use of arcana
Praise Vorlog, general and pragmatist
Vorlog! Listen —
Your name means Less Than Me
I define it thus.
To Balwûr I entrust, with bitter tongue
A terrible work
Daughter of Savathûn, untouched by time
Your death is hidden well
You will be Suzerain of Metabolisms
Gather up the Lie Shapes
Neither eat nor mock them, as you crave
Instead, learn to chew them into poisons
Craft for me a flawless armor word
Separate the death from the dying
Cut the shadow apart from the fire
Make the fire burn hot
Arm us with weapons against our foe
Arm my court for the long crusade
Thalnok, Fanatic of Crota
Laugh and laugh at Thalnok! He is easily deceived
He will never hear this song
Diminished in sense
Small of purpose
In all ways Thalnok mantles Crota, My Son
He comes to the High War, My Court
Greedy to hear me say
My Son Crota, Hope-Eater, I taught him
with cold edge and spiteful word
To ask for nothing
I create Thalnok to My Court
So that I may observe my son
by faithful, foolish proxy
The last true shape
depends on, asks for, venerates