Beasts of Chaos, are, at long last, receiving a battletome of their own – and few are as excited as Warhammer Community writer Rhu. When he’s not writing the Regimental Standard, Roll Models and words very much like the ones you’re reading RIGHT NOW, he’s usually building beastmen – in the first of a three-part series, we asked him to look at the biggest changes to the army with their new allegiance abilities….
This article was originally published on the Warhammer Community site.
It is safe to say that I am pretty excited about Battletome: Beasts of Chaos.
Indeed, you could say that I am VERY EXCITED about Battletome: Beasts of Chaos.
How excited? I literally cried real tears when I first found out this book was happening. And then admitted to crying real tears about a battletome in a public forum in that last sentence.
I was lucky enough to be part of the crack team of Beasts of Chaos fans (including Tony Pacheco of Warscroll Builder!) who got the chance to chat to the writing team before the battletome was released. My role largely consisted of geeking out and telling them things I thought would be neat.
This was pretty great, as it turned out most of the stuff I suggested (barring the renaming of the system to Age of Beastmar) was already in the book.
This is the Battletome Beasts of Chaos fans have been waiting for…well, basically forever. It’s managed to bridge that gap between making a force feel consistent and synergistic within itself while also feeling anarchic and uncontrollable. It’s full of cool touches and tweaks that add depth and flavour to classic units. Shaggoths are wizards now. It’s super great.
“Rhu, Slow Down, As I Have No Idea What You’re Talking About.”
For those of you new to Warhammer, let me take a second to tell you who the Beasts of Chaos are, and why they’re cool.
The Beasts of Chaos is a (Chaos star-shaped) umbrella that describes the serried hordes of monsters and mutants that live in the wilds of the Mortal Realms. They range from muscular Gor, hulking Bullgor, to the ancient Dragon Ogors.
The Beasts of Chaos see most Chaos Worshippers as posers and nerds who are waaaaay too keen about this whole Chaos thing, seeing Chaos as a primeval, uncontrollable force to be emulated and taken advantage of. Worship is for mewling man-things who need promises of power – the Beasts of Chaos reave, destroy, corrupt and burn because such is the law of all things.
Civilisation is but an illusion – a mask the weak place over a universe of disharmony, ruin, and murder. It is a mask that the Beasts of Chaos will shatter.
“Woah, That’s Pretty Raw My Dude”
It is indeed, Pretty Raw.
But I’m Getting Ahead Of Myself.
Let’s get back on track. Briefly.
Beasts of Chaos is a new kind of Battletome. You know how most armies get one allegiance ability, which they then get to customise with faction abilities and so on? You get THREE.
A Beasts of Chaos army can be made up of any combination of Brayherds, Warherds, Thunderscorn and Monsters of Chaos. Each of these first three gets their own Allegiance Ability when used in the army. For example, you could take a combined force of Bullgor and Thunderscorn, and both would get their unique abilities. And what abilities they are!
Did I say Three? I meant FOUR.
Every Beasts of Chaos army gets a Herdstone, absolutely free as part of their allegiance abilities – and it’s brilliant. Every turn, your Herdstone will project an aura of battleshock immunity to your allies and melt enemy armour in turn, creating an increasingly large sphere of threat and giving the Beasts of Chaos a much needed late-game boost.
That’s not all – you can also use it to perform Dark And Evil Rituals on your own troops in order to summon wild monsters. Throw some Ungor on the pyre every turn, and you’ll be able to bring on anything from some more Ungor (to then sacrifice again, so your opponent knows you’re hard) to Ghorgons, Chimeras and other foul beasties.
Did I say FOUR? Actually that was factually correct, but it’s a bit more interesting than that.
Wait up – so we’ve got our monster-summoning, overlapping beast-horde of death. And then it gets better. You’ll be able to dedicate your bestial hordes to one of the three Greatfrays – terrifying gatherings of Beastmen akin to Stormhosts only MUCH COOLER and HAIRIER and COVERED IN HORNS and come to think of it, only VERY PASSINGLY LIKE A STORMHOST.
Each of these has a set of unique traits. Like Brayherd Ambush? You’ll love it when your Thunderscorn and Warherds it in the Darkwalkers Greatfray:
Just want some free Chaos Spawn? Yep, you have those too:
Each Greatfray has a unique Command Ability, Warlord Trait and Artefact too; each gives your army heaps of extra character.
Did I say FOUR? I meant LOADS MORE THAN THAT.
Oh yeah – I almost forgot to mention. Battletome: Beasts of Chaos brings Marks of Chaos back to your army. Usually, the Beasts are too anarchic to dedicate themselves to the gods, preferring instead to rut and reave according to their own whims – however, should you want to, you’ll be able to field a chaos-marked army using four new special Warscroll Battalions in the book.
Each of these is incredibly permissive – essentially, you’ll be paying a point or two per model for your mark. And you get a powerful ability to boot! Take the Brass Despoilers – as well as getting access to the Khorne keyword, you’ll get an incredible boost to your army for fighting in formation:
I’ve been combining this with Bullgor to great effect – if you’ve already got a Chaos army, an allied detachment of god-marked beasts could be calling…
How It Works
On the tabletop, the new Beasts of Chaos are brutal army, capable of outmanoeuvring nearly any force in the game. Using your Brayherd units to control space and advance up the board, you’ll be able to grab objectives and control the pace of combat before striking with brutal hammer units from the Warherd. Meanwhile, your wizards will be pelting enemies with magic while enhancing your own units.
In the late game, the pace changes, as your Herdstone’s aura covers an increasingly huge chunk of the battlefield and your summoned monsters arrive to crush the shattered stragglers. If you’re looking for a fast, aggressive and flexible force (or just want to take loads of horrible monsters) then Beasts of Chaos are for you.
And There’s More!
I could continue to go on about Beasts of Chaos – so I will! Check back tomorrow for a closer look the most improved units in the new Battletome and more over-eager braying from yours truly.
Thanks, Rhu! If you’re looking to get the head start on some Beasts of Chaos, you can’t go wrong with a Bray-Shaman – order yours online today.
And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!