During the invasion by the forces of Chaos, many Duardin fortresses were destroyed. Some of the survivors escaped using air-ships and started building outposts in the sky. Some became traders, explorers or pirates. The Kharadron Overlords became rich, building sky-ports across the Mortal Realms.
In the beginning of the Age of Sigmar, the Kharadron Overlords saw the newly arrived Stormcast Eternals. Realizing that they might have a chance, the Kharadron Overlords began to fight against the the forces of Chaos again.
After the failure of the old ways, these Duardin rejected "gods and kings" and instead developed the Kharadron Code, a set of rules that governed their culture. The Kharadron Code focused on profit instead of honour, leading the Kharadron Overlords to ignore the other races during the Age of Chaos if there was no benefit to helping them. Though the Kharadron Overlords value their oaths as much as other Duardin, they are more likely to look for loop-holes if it can make a profit.
Kharadron culture is a meritocracy, with each position in the ship, clan or guild being chosen based on their skills and successes. Though they value family, inheritable positions is considered a recipe for disaster.
A Rising PowerEdit
From mere waystations for refugees to thriving sky-ports, the Kharadron Overlords have grown their skyborne domain. Now, in the Age of Sigmar, the Kharadron Overlords have cast off their isolationist ways, revealing a new power in the Mortal Realms.
- Birth of the sky-realm - The last of the great karaks fell during the battle of zaruk. The few sky-ports and airborne mining colonies of the duardin became swollen with refugees from the sky exodus that ensued. Those early settlements were the foundations of the sky-ports. The strife-filled era that followew was known as the time of reaving, a period when rival sky-ports fought each other over mining rights. To avoid civil war the conference of madralta was held, resulting in the kharadron code - the document unifying the varying sky-ports under the same laws.
- Beyond Detection - Aether-gold is imperceptible to magical scrying and detection. Even the science-minded Endrineers were yet to devise a machine that could reliably track the substance. As fortune would have it, however, the aethermatcially powered sky-fleets and sky-ports of the Kharadron Overlords actually benefited from this invisibility, and not even the gods themselves could see the growing enclaves of the sky duardin.
- Barak-Nar Victorious - Led by their founder, Bulwark Norgrimsson, the fleets of Barak-Nar defeated the airborne Waaagh! of the Great Ghazbag and laid claim to the Gleaming Banks, a region rich in deposits of aether-gold.
- The Grundcorps - After the repeated successes of ships bearing Thunderers from the Grundstok clan, Master Gunner Olgrimm Grundstok went into business, organising the Grundstok clan into the Grundcorps. Soon, elite warrior training academies were situated in each of the major sky-ports. Hiring the best Endrineers, the Grundcorps began equipping its Thunderers with their own line of aethermatic weapons, as well as the Grundstok Gunhauler fighter craft. Before long it was standard practice to hire Grundstok-trained warriors to protect airships and mining operations.
- Necessary Amendments - A series of short but fierce battles were fought between fleets from over a dozen sky-ports, although it is notable that the ships of Barak-Mhornar were nearly always involved. To discourage such internecine fighting, two amendments were made to the Kharadron Code, despite contention from Barak-Thryng.
- The Legend of Grungni's Forge - Seeking aether-gold, an airfleet of Barak-Zilfin instead found clues that led them to the lost Forge-City of Grungni, only to find that fabled place infested and overrun by the rat-like skaven. Seven expeditions set off to reclaim the mountaintop halls, or, failing that, to salvage any of the artefacts left by the Great Maker. Those few who returned from such ventures brought back nothing but memories so horrific they would not speak of what they had seen.
- War of the peaks - Several of the richest aether-gold seams were found amongst the cloud banks ringing the Azgal Mountains, and fleets from every sky-port struck out to stake their claims. However, a great number greenskins, ratmen and monstrous beasts were also drawn towards the aetheric energies given off by the concentrated deposits. The sprawling peaks became the site of battles untold as aerial and ground-based armies duelled for supremacy in that cloud-shrouded region. Barak-Nar ultimately claimed the most resources using strike forces of Grundstok Gunhaulers and Skyriggers to navigate the great floating rocks that made battling within the dense aether-clouds treacherous in the extreme.
- The armies of the man-god - Although they had watched them from above, the Kharadron Overlords had thus far avoided the Stormcast Eternals. Although many duardin had voted to aid Sigmar's cause and join the fight against Chaos, the Code stipulated when alliances could be forged. They watched the failed attack upon the Ironholds that guarded the Allpoints, and did not intervene. Only when the God-King's followers began to build their cities did the sky-fleets join the fight alongside the Stormcasts.
- The Mines of Muspelzharr - Seeking to claim the abundant lodes of precious metal in the Muspelzharr Mountains, an Ironweld Arsenal artillery train from Azyrheim chanced upon a Kharadron trading post being overrun by greenskins led by Spindrik, greatest of the Spiderling Kings. After driving off the raiders, the two forces forged an alliance and cleared the high passes in a series of devastating bombardments.
- War of the Wyrdquartz - Travelling through the secret Realmgates of Barak-Urbaz, the Kharadron Overlords were able to help their Fyreslayer cousins in Aqshy stave off the daemon legions of Tzeentch. Nine different mountain ranges in the Realm of Fire were assailed, for the minions of the Changer of the Ways sought the strange crystal veins that could only be found in those smouldering peaks.
- Aetherstorm - Using an aetheric storm as cover, Chaos daemons ambushed the floating fortress that guarded the airways above Vindicarum. Its winged Stormcast Eternal defenders fought nobly, but were overwhelmed by the forces of the Dark Gods. Yet before their seemingly inevitable defeat, the clouds parted to reveal the sky-fleets of the Kharadron Overlords, come to aid Sigmar's champions. Since that first alliance, the two sides have been frequent allies.
- The blockade of Barak-Zon - Kairos Fateweaver led a daemonic convocation of Tzeentch in the creation of a vast arcane barrier that surrounded the sky-port of Barak-Zon. For ninety-nine days the Kharadron city was besieged by daemon hosts, despite numerous attempts by its fleets to breach the cordon. Responding to the city's pleas for aid, a confederation of fleets from all the sky-ports - assembled under the leadership of Brokk Grungsson - smashed the barrier asunder in a daring massed ramming action, thwarting the Fateweaver's plans.
- The menace of Tzeentch - The kharadron discovered a chain of crystalline sky-castles near the edge of the known atmosphere. The geldraad's fears of a tzeentchian plot in the making were well founded...
- Drek-urb - The opening of trade with other races.
- Galkhron - The dividing of plunder.
- Rhyngul Vengryn - Redmetal Vengeance.
- priffa dreng - prosper or die.
- Grund Ang - Hammer of Iron
- The Gromthi-a-Grund - Ancestral Hammer.
- hun-ghrumtok - heavy bomber wing
- mighromtok - scout patrol wing.
- zhaktopper – a symbol of great status amongst Arkanauts.
- Kuzzbryndal - A hero's welcome.
- mehret- a combination of success, profit and experience
- Trommraad- lit. 'the Bearded Council'; an informal group of the eldest, wisest or simply longest-bearded individuals in a group. In duardin society, where age, experience and beard length are much venerated, such individuals are seen as the givers of sound counsel.
- krenkha gorogna- lit. 'leadership driving us to a place of no alcohol'; a term most commonly used to describe a vote of no confidence, usually occurring when leadership is either ill-fated or insistent upon following a path along which lies little or no profit.
- Brynruf - when the sun shines gold over Chamon,
- kazar valrhank - protect with nonour,
- unguz throlt- a lost cause; lit. 'undrinkable batch'. When an error occurs in the brewing of alcohol and good ingredients are lost, it is regarded as a tragedy among duardin.
- Zil Vengryn - Vengeance of the Wind,
- Urki Zank - Foecleaver,
- Barak-Urbaz - Barak-Urbaz is the most cosmopolitan sky-port and one of the richest, with income from transport through hidden Realmgates and harvesting of aether-gold. They are also the most proficient in the use of aether-alchemy.
- Barak-Zilfin, the Windswept City - Barak-Zilfin is the second richest sky-port and is known for its skilled pilots.
The Kharadron Overlords rely on their sky-fleets, crewed by Arkanauts, to explore, defend and attack. The Arkanaut Ironclads are the capital ships of the fleet, helmed by the Admirals. Arkanaut Frigates are the the mainstay of the fleet. The Grundstok Gunhaulers are two-man ships developed by the Grundstok Corporation. Krontankers are massive ships which store harvested aether-gold.