Nihilanth Sect A large, secretive group of alien cultists, who worship the Nihilanth like a god. Their goal is to one day bring him back from death, and kill anyone who stands in the way. The highest caste, the Controllers, were enslaved by the Combine shortly after the Nihlanth was killed. They have the strongest connection to the Vortessence out of their peers, being able to harness the powers of levitation, telepathy, telekinesis, and balls of electrical energy. They also exhibit a form of mind control, being able to bend wildlife and weaker Vortal Beings to their will. Despite this, they are physically weak. They broke free of their bindings shortly before the Uprising and escaped, vowing to destroy Humanity, the Combine, and Earth. The Alien Grunts are the warrior caste of the Vorts, a strong and beefy soldier covered from head to hoof in muscle and alien armor. They wield the Hivehand, a powerful organic alien weapon. They're dumb, but what they lack in brains, they make up for in brawn. After the Resonance Cascade, they were mostly put to work in off-world camps, and had a large role in freeing the Controllers. The Alien Slaves are the lowest caste of the Vortal hierarchy. They consist mainly of Vortigaunts, covered in ancient bindings that bind their will to the Controllers. They're typically weaker than their freed brethren, but they are not to be taken lightly.