Before I begin, I would like to say that my computer is a fish-fucking piece of shit.
Now, this is a subject that is very familiar to me. Since the mighty Balauss, Demon Dragon of Hate, gifted me with his Heart of Molten Anger, I have rendered my enemies to puddles of blood and gore with my blind fury. So, to honor those, like me, who kill first, kill more later, it's time to go berserk.
Let's start with the ones who coined the term. In the Old Norse sagas, there have been mention of warriors that wear the skins of savage predators, practice strange rituals to evoke the spirits of these animals, and tear the fuck out of their enemies. The Vikings not only produced the most famous berserkers, they also gave us the name "berserker." In Old Norse, berserkr translates to "bear shirt," which referred to their wearing the skins of bears or wolves, such as the Ulfhednar warriors (some people say that it should be berrserkr "bare shirt," which they claim refers to them never wearing armor, but I'm not buying that).
When these Nordic meat grinders enter berserkergang, they take on the form of a mountain of inhuman strength and horror, wading into a sea of battle, slaying all within reach. Legends say that they cannot be wounded by bladed weapons or fire, but blunt weapons could harm them. They were used by Norse kings as shock troops, however, they were very hard to control and were prone to raping, pillaging, and killing everything in sight.
There are some theories on how the berserkir go into their battle rage. Some believed that they used psychoactive substances, such as hallucinogenic mushrooms, or excessive amounts of alcohol, to enter berserkergang. There is evidence that the berserkers had a more ritualistic method. Byzantine emperor Constantine VII recorded that Norse warriors serving his empire performed a "Gothic dance," using animal skins and masks, which some believe were remnants of berserker rites. It was also said that the berserkir exclusively worshiped Odin and may even be considered a cult of the Norse god.
Regardless of how they invoked their berserker rage, the berserkir were the epitome of bestial fury, leaving a mountain of corpses wherever they roamed. If you ever, in death, go to Valhalla, make sure to stay away from the berserkers on the battlefield.
All right, it's 3 AM. I need some fucking sleep.