Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Chaos Space Marines - Conceptualizing a List

So, as this blog is not just about Dark angels, but also covers the Fallen and Chaos Space Marines in General, I have really started going through the codex and getting ideas for a new list.  I would like this list to be somewhat fluffy as a Fallen list, but also competitive.
So, when making lists I always like to start with my HQ choice(s).  The nice thing with Codex: CSM is that it gives you a ton of options for an HQ without having to buy a special character to have a competitive HQ choice.  So, for my Fallen HQ, I am picturing a Fallen Angel that has turned to the Chaos gods completely.  I have one of two routes I can take here.  First I can build a Chaos Lord...or, we can make a Daemon Prince (I am actually leaning more toward this option).

For a Lord, I am thinking that to maintain a Fallen Knight theme, I should take a mounted Lord.  I can go for a Lord mounted on a bike, or if I choose to give my lord a Mark, I could mount him on a daemonic Steed.  As I much prefer the steed idea, let's look at the marks.  When I think of a Fallen Lord who has turned to Chaos, I picture either a mark of Slaanesh (which would speak to the pride of the Fallen overtaking them), or a mark of Khorne (if I decide to accent the combat prowess of the Fallen).  To a lesser extent, a mark of Nurgle could be stretched to fit my fluff, but as I do not like the Palanquin, I think I am going to stick with either Khorne or Slaanesh.  Since, I am going for a competitive list as well as a fluffy list, I am thinking that Khorne is my better choice here (plus I love the Juggernaught model).  Khorne gives me Rage, as well as unlocking the Juggernaught and a nice Daemon Weapon.  Also, as I am going for Fallen here, I think a plasma pistol is a must.  All said and done, I am looking at around 150-180 points for a very mean HQ who will get 7+D6 attacks on a charge (3 base + 2 Rage + 1 two weapons + 1 Jugger + D6 daemon weapon) and will have a nice Toughness value with a little short range firepower.  Since this lord will be in Power Armor, I think a Sigil of Corruption is a likely option as well, but I really would like to keep my lord under 200 points, so there won't be many other options.

For A Daemon Prince, I unfortunately see fewer fluffy options, but I think I could do a Daemon Prince representing a Fallen Angel some justice as a conversion piece.  I am picturing a larger than life Angel of Death here and the picture of Mortarion (of the Death Guard) sticks out as inspiration to me.  So, I could do a Daemon Prince with Power Armor, Wings and Daemon of Nurgle here.  This gives me a nasty Flying Monstrous Creature with a 3+/5++ save and Shrouded (which if used with Evade makes him very hard to hit).  Additionally giving him Wings pretty much negates the negatives associated with Slow and Purposeful.  To arm the Daemon, I think the obvious choice would be the Black Mace.  I do not need a mark for this Daemon Weapon (which circumvents this current argument about whether a Daemon Prince of the right God can take artefacts that require marks of that same god) and the best part is that since the Daemon Prince is a monstrous Creature, his attacks hit at AP2, which negates the obvious drawback of the Mace being AP4.  This option for an HQ comes in much more expensive than the Lord option, but obviously gives a bit more punch in hand to hand.

A final HQ option would be a Dark Apostle...but I am writing this one off as I like the other two options much more.

For troops, I am thinking Plasma goodness will need to permeate the army to represent the Fallen.  So the obvious choice here are Chaos Space Marines unmarked (or marked with Khorne or Nurgle) with dual plasma guns and potentially a plasma pistol or combi plasma on the Champion.  Cultists might also find a place in this list, but I am leaning away from them.  The last option here is Berserkers (if I choose the Khorne lord).  While not nearly as fluffy, from a competitive stand point, these units could give me the added punch I need in Assault...and I can also give them plasma (albeit, less effective plasma in the form of pistols).

As support Choices, I am seeing Chaos Bikers as a good option for a retinue for my lord, although Chaos Spawn come out cheaper and provide me more wounds per points spent.  The only thing here is whether I want to go more toward Fluff, or more toward effectiveness (a unit of Khorne marked spawn would give D6+2 attacks on the charge on top of the obvious multi wounds).  Either way, this makes for a nasty accompaniment for my lord.  If I choose to go with the prince, I can pretty much mark this unit off of my list...or just go with the bikes.  I think a Heldrake with the Baleflamer also will find it's way into my list.  For Heavy choices, Havocs look very enticing as do the the Fiends and Obliterators.  I think when it is all said and Done, I will likely go with Obliterators marked with nurgle for even more plasma goodness, although if I have the points, I may also take Havocs with missile launchers and Flakk for a little more anti-air capability.  Finally, depending on the points I have left, a unit of Chosen could round out the list.  Once again, lots of plasma love here...or I feel I need more assault punch I can go with Mark of Khorne and melee weapons/power weapons.

Anyways, just thoughts right now, but I am really pretty excited to build a Chaos army with the new Codex.  I may also drop some of my Support choices and instead bring some allies (likely IG), but I am not fully sure yet.


  1. Yea, there are so many good choices that none pop out as must-take, except maybe the Heldrake - I think 2 of these might become auto-include (especially with the baleflamer) they just bring so much to the table - AA and Anti-infantry.

    I'm not sure I am sold on demon mounts, because they make you cavalry and, since nothing else in you army is, the Lord is going to have to go solo to get full use of it (although I guess there are still buffs that they provide).

  2. Another thing I just thought of, since I know you want fluffy, but balanced by some competitiveness, is that a mount might make you character easier to pick out. If he is taller than everyone else in the unit, I can see people using their own Rhinos to block LOS to the Lord's unit, where only the Lord can be seen.

    Not saying don't take the mount, but something you should be conscious of if you do take a mount.

  3. Aren't cavalry like beasts? move 12" like bikes, just no turbo boost? I don't have my rulebook here, but I was assuming that they worked like that. If that is the case, he'll get plenty of benefit from walking around with either a unit of bikes or Spawn (beasts). If that's not the case then the Biker option is still there...for cheaper. I lose an attack and a wound, but it basically still does what I want and if I run him with a bunch of bikers, then I can turboboost and get him up in anyone's face early. Either option turns him into a killing machine. He beats almost any other unit in the game in hand to hand and the few other comparable options he is at least even with...even Grey Knight Deathstars thanks to Str6 and AP2. The other idea I have here is taking the Biker lord with mark of slaanesh and a biker unit of slaanesh with icon of excess for FNP goodness...a couple of less attacks and I'd have to take the crappy AP mace, but I think he would still be mighty effective against most things.

  4. As for the line of sight issue, if I run him alongside Spawn, he is only about 1/8" taller and there are virtually no scenarios where LOS becomes an issue.

  5. Yea, I haven't seen a mounted character, so I didn't know how tall they are - I agree that 1/8" is not going to be a big deal