Part 3 of our IA 2 Snd ed coverage, this time focusing on Chaos.
Part 1 covering Imperial Guard can be seen here.
Part 2 covering Space Marines can be seen here.
Chaos got some love in this book with some really useful units.
Chaos Contemptor Dreadnought
The Chaos Contemptor is very similar to its Imperial counterpart.
He is very pricey, has fleet, and also explodes more impressively (+D3″ radius). He also ignores glances on a 4+ and punches on a 6+, and any psyker in base with him suffers a str2 Ap2 hit at I10 every round of combat.
Otherwise he has the same stats and standard kit as the loyalist version apart from a twin linked bolter as opposed to a storm bolter in his DCCW.
Where he differs is in his options. For one, you can give him a mark. Awesome.
They all cost 25pts.
The mark of Khorne gives him Rage and +D3 extra attacks on the charge, meaning a max of 6 possible attacks. Not bad, and rage can be mitigated if you play smart or stuff him into a Dreadclaw, which we will get to later.
The Mark of Slaanesh gives him both kinds of grenades and +1 Initiative. Not bad. Makes him a Dreadnought killer. The extra I isn’t so hot against most targets though as typically anything that can hurt you swings at I1 anyway.
The Mark of Tzeentch makes his flame and bolt weapons AP3, and he can reroll 1’s when attacking (HtH and shooting). That reroll is pretty fantastic, and the AP3 is pretty cool, too. Definitely not a bad choice if you kit him with 2 heavy flamers.
The best though, IMO, is the Mark of Nurgle. Why? -1 to results on the damage table! Wowzers. Achilles junior should be this guy’s name. That makes him very resilient, and well worth the 25pt cost.
What about the weapon options?
Lots! You can kit him out for HtH with an extra DCCW (one of which can be a chainfist), or make him shooty and choppy.
He has standard options like the multi-melta, twin auto cannon, plasma cannon, twin las cannon, and twin heavy flamer. He can also take a heavy conversion beamer, carapace mounted Havoc Launcher (I <3 havoc launchers, great weapon) as well as the Plasma Blaster in one of his DCCW’s. He can also take Chaos specific Relic Weapons such as the Soulburner (24″ str5 ap5, small blast, rending, no cover) at 20pts. A bit pricey, IMO, but a cool piece of kit.
The Butcher Cannon though, is the business. 36″ Str8, Ap4, Heavy 4, 25pts. That right there is hot.
That makes the Chaos Contemptor a very viable shooting platform. With a DCCW on the other arm with heavy flamer and the MoN, you have a tough beast, but very expensive. That combo weighs in at 255. Ouch. You can get 3 Oblits for that with spare change.
If you take just the Butcher Cannon, he’s 220pts. Still ouch.
Final Verdict: Awesome model that has the potential to be game changing with the Butcher Cannon and good combat ability, but honestly, too expensive for a real competitive choice, IMO. I think it is a great model for larger point games though….and FW, which flippin FOC slot does it take up?
Giant Chaos Spawn
Well, he’s big. And ugly. And according to the description, is armed with bad breath….so he’s got that going for himself.
Honestly though, this guy isn’t that great. Yes, he has Slow and Purposeful, but he is also a Monstrous Creature, which means he rolls 3d6, take the highest. But wait…he also has rage. Doh! So he goes somewhat slowly at a target of your opponent’s choosing….
He also has D6 random attacks. Not too bad, averaging 3.5, but still. Oh, and no Invul save. Yeah.
Feel no pain is his only redeeming characteristic, along with his relatively low point cost of 120. With a decent statline (T6 and 4 wounds) I wouldn’t say he is awful, but close to it.
Final Verdict: Use him if you have the model and want to try something different. But he doesn’t belong in a competitive list. His only use as I would see it (beyond a fluff list) is discussed in the next entry.
Spined Chaos Beast
140pts, so not too expensive. What else? A good statline, about on par with a Daemon Prince. He can also be marked, which is always fun. Khorne gives him Furious Assault and Rage. Slaanesh grants +1 Initiative, Nurgle grants Feel no Pain, and Tzeentch improves his invulnerable save form 5++ to 4++. Nice. All of them cost between 10 and 20pts.
For a CSM list, this guy is a Heavy Choice, so probably won’t see a lot of play time as he competes with Oblits. However, for his cost, I could see some players choosing to use him as a part of a cheap assault force. If you wanted to build a cool themed Choaszilla army, you could take 2 Deamon Princes, a Greater Daemon and 3 of these in Heavy, and have 6 monstrous creatures on the table. That would be fun! Mark them with Nurgle and they become very hard to kill. With that many threats charging up the board, you could overload a lot of armies and then smash them in combat.
Or….go even crazier and also take 3 Giant Chaos Spawn! That is 9 Monstrous Creatures! Now, the stupid Spawn aren’t so bad as they contribute to a critical mass of monstrous beasties running at your enemy.
The Spined Chaos Beast can also be taken for Chaos Daemons, and really does compete well for the Heavy slot with Deamon Princes as they get very pricey. 3 of these guys would fit quite well in a Fatecrusher list and I know Will has been eyeballing them.
Final Verdict: I am on the fence. I can seem them being quite good in the right list, but lacking fleet, they are pretty slow. For Daemons they deepstrike, so no big deal. For CSM they compete with their best ranged unit and have to trudge up the board. I would definitely be willing to try them though, and they do look cool (IMO). I think there really is some possibility in the Chaoszilla list with 9 MCs though. A lot of lists couldn’t handle that much coming at them.
Awesome model. Meh stats. Fast skimmer, supersonic, Av10 all around, 130 points. It has 2 Reaper Autocannons which are AA mounted.
So, you get 4 twin linked 36″ auto cannon shots on a fast platform. Not bad, but for 130pts, not hot, either. The fast slot for CSM isn’t exactly brimming with options, so hey. But, this thing needed a little more oomph for the price tag, IMO. You can Daemonically Possess it too, although anything that hits it, will probably kill it, so it is not the hottest choice.
Final Verdict: Too much points spent on it’s sleek styling and not enough on its kill power. On a flyer base, this thing won’t last long, and won’t kill much before it dies, either.
A chaos Drop Pod. Finally.
This thing is pretty awesome for Chaos. It costs 65pts, and takes a fast slot, but oh well, CSM Fast Attack choices are rarely used. It allows you to toss your cheap, crazy dreads into the enemy back lines where they need to be. At that point, who cares if the things go crazy, in fact, you WANT them to! Give those dreads the awesome looking weapons they can take and hope for that 1 or 6. The Contemptor can ride in this bad boy too, and with Fleet and a heavy weapon, can be a huge threat.
He also comes in from normal reserves, which means the standard anti-Drop Pod tactic of reserving won’t work as well against this guy.
It also makes Berzerkers a heck of a lot scarier. Forget the Rhino, or weak Chaos Land Raider, just drop the angry guys into the other guy’s deployment zone. It just opens up so many options for Chaos that they have been lacking. Warriors with dual melta and a combi melta become very attractive as do Plague Marines (although they already rock).
Since it is not a dedicated transport, it also means that you have the option of waiting and seeing what unit you should put in it after anaylizing what your opponent is playing. Nice.
Lastly, the thing can move again! Awesome. That means if you make a bad scatter out of position, just leave the guys inside if you need to. If they dropped down and killed what they needed to kill? Sweet, mount back up and scoot off. It can also go and contest objectives. Nice! It isn’t fast, but hey, for the price it’s great. Also, unlike Imperial Drop Pods, it isn’t open topped. He isn’t a fast skimmer, but moves as a normal hovering tank (like a Devilfish) and he can’t tank shock either, although that may have been a bit much for the points. He is a Flyer in Apoc games.
While it also doesn’t have the Drop Pod rules to avoid things that would kill it when it deepstrikes in, it can reroll mishap results giving it a little more durability.
Final Verdict: A great choice to spice up a Chaos list, and can add a lot. I would definitely take this in a competitive list.