Goatboy’s 40k: Slaanesh Daemonkin Ideas


Goatboy here again on another lovely day and I want to chat about some thoughts on the rumored upcoming Chaos Codex releases.

Now I won’t go into how I think x unit should change – instead I want to think of a broader thought on how the army could work differently and hopefully make it a bit more interesting.  GW seems to be embracing some different thoughts on army design and while the Chaos books do have the initial Marine shell, this could be the time to really work on a design that isn’t just super good single units and instead focuses on making it a complete force.  Every piece working together and trying to create an army that is cool, unique, and hopefully actually pretty good.


Tzeentch – moving along…

Right now the rumors point to a Tzeentch one coming out – so I won’t try to rework that one.  We’ll see what they will come up with in a few months and hopefully it will be good, interesting, and fun to play.


The Dark Prince

So instead of looking at them let’s start with the red headed stepchild of the 40k gods – Slaanesh.  This is the god that seems the most lackluster when you compare it to the other gods.  It is of course the most “adult” themed god as well – thus making it a hard sell when GW is trying to push into the kid markets.  This makes me think that maybe they could push that adult aspect to the side a bit and focus on a few other things.

If they go with Emperor’s Children as the backdrop for the army then we would want to look at some kind of “sound” aspect.  I like the idea of trying to utilize that as it is one of the biggest aspects of the Chaos Space Marine Slaanesh options with all the Noise Marine weaponry and back story.  I have always thought that this is the part of the army they could really expand on as the weapons are unique, their effects are different, and they have the set of USR’s that could actually be good for the game.  With this in mind here is my first idea.


Rock on

The Battlehost/Decurion/Warband could have a rule that allowed them to play specific “songs” with the Noise units in the army.  They could get extra abilities based on the type of “song/sound” they wanted to play.  You could have abilities like forcing Disorderly Charges, Pinning Checks, and even modifiers based on the type of sound they throw at the enemy.  This is again all based on the amount of Noise weapons you bring to the table top.  Think of this like the Adetpus Mechanicus prayers and you get to use them once a turn.  I think this idea could be very interesting and brings something different to the table that isn’t just a Deathstar, cheap rending troops, or a way to cheat assault/points/etc.

Another idea is to have some kind of scaling based on how many times you hit with the sound weapons.  After the first unit the strength increases as the sound gets louder and louder.  They might chain and do more damage or cause the unit some other types of effects.  I think the game is missing some non psychic power effects that mess with movement/choices of an enemy.  This idea of suppression could be very powerful and interesting.  Pinning is an effect that just doesn’t come up too much and I think some form of that might be useful to keep Deathstars slow and other deadly units at bay.


After that we would have to look at how to combine some of the Daemon Aspects into the army.  I think a big miss from the Khorne Daemonkin was figuring out a way to make the Possessed something more then just a tax.  There could be ways to either up their powers or allow them to be something good.  I think these guys could be the bridge between the CSM side and the Daemon side.  That is the biggest miss and hopefully something they could be fixed in any of the upcoming Daemonkin books (if they keep this naming structure and just doing go with the Traitor legions).  If they decide to go with more Traitor legion style set up – then don’t expect the Daemon side to get heavily focused on.


~What do you think a Slaaneshi Daemonkon force should look like?


  • Spacefrisian

    Posessed with the old buyable Daemonic upgrades, thats how i would fix them, being Slaanesh they could even have a screaming option that prevents the opponent from overwatching.

    • Karru

      That or give them the option to choose one upgrade for free from a list. For example, just combine the normal Possessed table from the CSM book and the one in the Crimson Slaughter. This way you could at least modify them to work just the way you want them, which would make 100x more sense that the current system.

  • Karru

    I have always felt that Slaanesh should always focus on LD checks on the enemy. For example, instead of buffing your units like the Bloodtithe table does in the KDK book, it would cause severe LD based debuffs on the enemy army. It should also work trough ATSKNF and Fearless. Basically make the enemy army lose ability to shoot or charge. Lower their stats, like WS/BS or even just make them flee altogether.

    Disabling certain units, make them turn on their own or move them a short distance. These would make Slaanesh armies extremely terrifying. Fearless Deathstar coming your way? Nope, they stay right there or even move back a bit. It should be something like pick a singe unit that suffers greatly should it fail an LD check and even if it passes, it would still suffer slightly. This would make the enemy have to use more smaller units, instead of placing all of their eggs into one basket. Then some abilities work on multiple units, but they are much weaker. Mostly things like Pinning or debuffs to stats. I would start a Slaanesh army in a heartbeat if that were to happen.

  • WaarrggBobo

    I think they should keep the faction– (girl demons) but they need to move away from the highly sexualized/fetishist elements. 2016. Girl Gamers, Kids, etc.. Kinky sex demons is just not a mainstream option. They previously tried to move the faction out of “desire” and into “music” — but i think that only worked ironically for the heavy-metal crowd. If Khorne is Hate/anger, Nurgle is Despair, and Tzeentch is curiosity– that still leaves several untapped negative emotions. –Ambition, Fear, insecurity, pride, and cruelty. Any of which could work with less sexualized demons (deamons (c) ) and allow them to gradually shift the faction into a safer ESRB

    • euansmith

      I think that Tzeentch traditionally has Ambition in his portfolio, along with Hubris.

    • Yes, let’s sanitize Slaanesh to appeal to children and the easily offended. That worked so well for video games that tried to cater to those audiences and didn’t get various comic series canceled in record time.

      Tabletop gaming has become a lot more popular, but is a FAR cry from a “mainstream option” in itself. Its a niche hobby and shouldn’t need to change its identity to appeal to audiences that just a few years back blatantly mocked “nerds” that participated in that hobby. People interested in these types of games will end up in the hobby regardless, as the hobby grows naturally. There is no need to retcon and throw out iconic aspects of the IP.
      Besides, Khorne and Nurgle are hardly child-friendly. Barely anything in the background is, least of all the fiction. We just had Genestealer Cults which literally mind-control and impregnate innocent civilians to breed hybrid offspring. But a few nipples on daemonettes are totally unacceptable in this franchise…

    • Kevin Buesse

      Just focus on excess. Gluttony, pain are easy sensation is kind covered with noise Marines. As others have said there are lots of sins beyond lust Slaneesh can cover.

      Have these guys be the army with stretched faces, like super bad face lift style, huge piercings through arms and legs, make a face distorted in endless screams.

      Gluttony might be more of a nurgle issue so there might be too much cross over between morbidly obese and bloated with rot. But still it’s another facet to expand upon. Make a cannon or catapult that flings over stuffed daemons that splatter into technicolor riots of light and bizarre smells and sensations. Lucius the eternal shows some of the pride aspect, but make an entire unit where they are duelists with minimal armor who are fast lethal and beautiful, but if they lose the glamour wears off and you see scarred mangled forms.

      • 6Cobra

        Obese gluttons is totally Slaaneshi – it’s actually a shame that Nurgle has subsumed “fat” from a design aspect. Nurgle stuff should actually be starved and emaciated looking. Think about people dying of terminal disease – they don’t look bloated and obese, they look emaciated.

        • Kevin Buesse

          Those that are dying look emaciated, and those that are dead bloat up. But you’re right it’d be better if nurgle hadn’t taken the “fat” look.

    • kobalt60

      So, decapitating your enemies and building a pyramid of their skulls is a kid friendly passtime, but a boob is a bad thing. 2016, or 1916?

      • WaarrggBobo

        Yes. Cartoon skull violence is a lower rating in the us and in most territories (I work with ESRB all the time). And actually GW needs to cut the human skulls if they want to sell in china and korea

        • kobalt60

          Except, if you read the fluff, it’s hardly cartoon violence. It’s full on rated R type violence. Same with Slaanesh. All the pervy sex bits are in the fluff. On the tabletop, it’s the occasional 3 mm boob, to compliment the cartoony pile of little skulls. Not every adult wants their hobby sanitized for 8 year olds. There is nothing in this hobby, even it’s most ‘adult’ parts, that can compete in shock value with any 2 minute Google image search.

  • Majere613

    Since I’ve actually written and play-tested some Slaanesh Daemonkin rules, I’ll just say, “this”: http://thetheleniccurriculum.blogspot.co.uk/p/homebrew-slaanesh-daemonkin.html

    • Djbz

      That looks pretty decent.
      I would say that the Chaos Space marine units with the daemon rule (possessed/warp talons/defilers etc)
      should gain the Daemon of Slaanesh rule (Like the Khorne Daemonkin ones gained the Daemon of Khorne rule)

      • Majere613

        Yes, I quite agree- in fact it does say that, in the Unit Roster section where it lists the eligible CSM units. You’re not the first person to miss it, though, it’s an inevitable consequence of doing it this way rather than risking legal issues by actually providing the unit datasheets themselves.

  • krisbrowne42

    Sound weapons for Slaanesh should basically get the same rules as the Vibro cannons for CWE, and either keep the pinning from those, or replace it with Ignores Cover like their current sonic weapons… Then adjust the range and S/AP according to the tier of weapon… Blasters start at S4AP5/24″, Blastmaster S5AP4/36″ blast, Doom Siren S3AP6 Template, Cannons as an upgrade for Havocs with S4AP5 Torrent.

    “Vibro: For each model in the same unit after the first that scores at least 1 hit on the target unit with a weapon that has this special rule, add 1 to the Strength (to a maximum of 10) and subtract 1 from the AP (to a minimum of 1) of each hit for that round of shooting. For example, if three models in a unit all score hits on the same target unit with weapons that have this special rule, all hits would be resolved at +2 Strength and -2AP.”

  • eehaze

    Slaanesh units in the CSM codex could use some mobility, but Noise Marines are regardless one of the best values in the whole book.

  • Ben Martin

    What they could do to tone down the sexuality is to go for a seven sins, or ‘senses’ type thing. As in, play down the ‘pleasure’ (keeping the main aesthetics and the current daemonettes), and focus of over indulgence. Noise marines, tanks with the backs converted into possessed organs (the musical kind, similar to the SoB tank who’s name I can’t remember), stuff like that. Shriekers, who’s faces are literally just screaming mouths, creepy, unsettling stuff like that, beacaus Chaos is meant to be scary, and focusing on ‘LOOK AT DA GORE’ doesn’t really do it.
    Gluttony could be another thing, representing taste as one of the senses. Cannibalism could be incorporated here. Whole planets whose food supplies were cursed, forcing them to turn on each other to suit their now ravenous hunger. Touch would be where the toned down sex stuff could come in, and smell can really have anything. Sight could also be expanded upon. Mirrors and Paintings who trap the souls of all who look at them, perfection in every way, things along those lines. There is so much stuff they could do

  • Dan

    Ehhh. The problem with this is that Slaanesh isn’t the god of Super Hard Rock or Epic Noize or whatever, She Who Thirsts is the god of excess. The linked experimental rules above are a bit better but seem too closely modeled after KDK.

    I think a more fitting system might be something along the lines of “every morale or pinning check any unit makes, including automatically passed ones, adds one to the Maelstrom of Excess. The Maelstrom is a roiling psychic storm of heightened sensation generated by the crescendo of agony and exhilaration on the battlefield. At 6 points all models in the Slaaneshi detachment gain +1LD, at 12 points all Slaanehi models gain +1 Initiative, at 18 points all models on the entire battlefield, friend and foe alike, lose the ability to automatically pass, ignore, or modify morale and pinning tests through Stubborn, Fearless, or ATSKNF and must take them following the usual morale and pinning rules.

    The specific numbers and powers are likely not balanced correctly (chances are tally numbers might have to be doubled or some such, likewise I only had 3 levels of tally to stay linked to lucky #6 but reducing enemy LD would make sense though might be OP) but I think this would fit a bit better. It fits in well with the fluff, and changes gameplay not just in a “this melee/shooting/whatever is better” way but in a few interesting ways.

    1) it encourages the player to try and use morale affecting abilities and fight using those means, even if the enemy is immune to them (and in so doing gives an actual use to morale vs. marines).

    2) It encourages a very aggressive play style and while it does to a very small degree reward losses (your own morale checks add to the tally) it is obviously geared towards trying to deploy fear and pinning (thus sonic) weaponry upon the enemy. So aggressive but with finesse and care. A scalpel to KDK’s cudgel.

    3) It adds a different tempo to the game. As you push the enemy your forces get stronger and their ability to mitigate your morale based attacks are reduced. This means you’re building towards a crescendo rather than the waves of assault KDK brings or the alpha strikes lots of other armies employ. The second that last tally goes off ALL MODELS are now fair game to be pinned, fall back, or get swept in combat. That’s when the massive casualties will pile up for most battles (your own as well, despite your bonus LD and I) in a massive orgy of violence. Just as Slaanesh would want it.

  • euansmith

    I could see Slaanesh’s massive evolving from the Metal origins on the Noise Marines in to rave culture; lots of neon colours and dubstep weapons.

  • AnomanderRake

    This is sort of a specific point but I’d hope sonic weapons had some trick to bypass Overwatch. Khorne Daemonkin get skull cannons, and Slaaneshi units benefit hugely in the Daemons book from having skull cannons on their team, it’d be a pretty obvious thing to include.

    • 6Cobra

      ..Which is exactly why they won’t do it. For some reason about ten years ago GW decided to sh**can the deamonic rivalry/hatred thing, and essentially force (for example) Slaanesh and Khorne daemons to fight side by side.

    • ReverendTiberiusJackhammer

      A good fix would to be give Slaaneshi Daemon vehicles access to the Chaos Space Marine Dirge Caster – no Overwatch near the equipped vehicle. Fluffy, since the Dirge Caster is basically a passive noise weapon, and it has the bonus of encouraging the use of Chariots and assault-focused Soul Grinders.

  • Kevin Buesse

    One thing I’d like to see is a variation of Grav weapons that are noise based. Like the sonic razors from skitarri. Shoot a unit once and they use the regular profile second time it becomes AP2 and wounds against armor.

    Call it harmonic resonance, also make a weapon the looks like a tuning fork on a spear, and have that be the same as the sonic razors.

  • Painjunky

    I hope they keep the sex/lust aspect of slaanesh.
    It would be bland and hollow without it.
    If an exposed breast on a miniature sex demon offends you your an idiot or a prude. Grow up.

  • Ronald A Price

    One idea I think would be kewl is one from Manowar game. Slann had a power were you rolled on a chart. Of course part of the chart caused little to nothing happening. but a good roll cause enemy units to either fight against each other and an even better roll made enemy units turn and join the slann fleet. And I believe combat drugs should come back too. make blast masters and sonic blasters salvo or templet as before. and bring back the “MAGIC” number for summoning.