Codex Traitor Legions: The Night Lords

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BoLS will be bringing you Codex Traitor Legions coverage all week. Today we look at the 8th Legion, the dread Night Lords’ rules!

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The Traitor Legions are upon us! Fourteen years after 2002’s release of the beloved CSM 3.5 codex full rules for all nine traitor legions are here! These are each a unique army that will open up the game to dedicated CSM players who find the default codex a little plain.  Every one of the nine gets some serious love.

GW has pulled off giving each Legion a distinct feel via 9 sets of Legion restrictions and special rules, warlord traits, relics (some very very distinctive and fluffy), and of course a detachment.  While I personally think some are more fluffy and cool than others, everyone got some of the GW design studio love.  There are however some standouts that will be altering the meta.  More on those this week.

Now, onto what you came for, let’s crack open the covers and see what makes the Night Lords tick:

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Behold the basic Night Lords Legion restrictions and special abilities.

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Meet the Night Lords Legion Detachment – the Murder Talon.

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Finally here’s one sample relic, the mind numbing Vox Daemonicus

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Scions of Nostromo

OK, what we have here is an evolution of the Night Lords. Over the editions, (and 30K) the Night Lords have gone back and forth between being “all about” bikers and/or jump pack troops. In their 30K rules, the Night Lords have special rules emphasizing dirty tricks in assault. Fundamentally the Legion has always been about maneuver and assault. This is not a stand back and shoot you off the table army.

Looking at the Legion special rules, we see the hand of GW come down firmly on Raptors (now troops)  and assault. No chaos marks is more than made up for by the mandatory and free Veterans of the Long War.  That should save you a bunch of points.  Now add in the free Stealth, Fear and Night Vision rules to get an idea of how GW is adding flavor and partially balancing out some of the default CSM point cost deficiencies.  For the cherry on top, note the -2 Ld for enemies making those fear tests.  That’s pretty good as all those LD 7-8 units out there will be making tests on a 5-6, which will fail over 50% of the time.

Next look at how the Murder Talon Detachment builds atop this foundation. I think we can safely expect the Night Lords player to make it night every chance they get, so get used to it.  The +1 cover saves, added to the Stealth will frustrate many enemies and the re-rolls on charge distance means the 8th Legion will reach you reliably once they get in close.  It seems likely to expect Night Lords players to go with lots of high speed infantry armed with short range and assault weaponry and to come at you fast while the lights are out.

Finally, savor the sample Relic we are showing off, the Vox Daemonicus.  What I like the most is that is completely fluffy, while having a useful in-game effect. Making enemy reserves unreliable will either splinter armies that try to show up after the fact, or force the majority to the opponent’s force to deploy, giving the Night Lords a known target to fight against.

Grade: A

Codex Supplement: Traitor Legions $35

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The Traitor Legions of the Chaos Space Marines have waged terrible wars of hate and vengeance upon the Imperium of Mankind for ten thousand years. From the Daemon worlds of the Eye of Terror, they plot the destruction of the empire they once helped to build. They have neither forgotten nor forgiven the loyalists, nor the False Emperor whom they serve. These warriors will not rest until the galaxy is burning, and the Emperor’s putrid carcass is cast down from the Golden Throne into the filth where it belongs.

Codex Supplement: Traitor Legions is a 136-page, full-colour softback supplement to Codex: Chaos Space Marines. It contains a wealth of additional content and rules that any Chaos Space Marines army can use, with a huge array of rules for all nine of the Traitor Legions.

In The Book

– Datasheets for the following models:
– Kharn the Betrayer
– Ahriman
– Exalted Sorcerer
– Tzaangors
– Rubric Marines
– Scarab Occult Terminators
– Khorne Lord of Skulls
– Magnus the Red

– 26 Formations for Chaos Space Marines
– Chaos Warband
– Maelstrom of Gore
– The Lost and the Damned
– Helforged Warpack
– Heldrake Terror Pack
– Cult of Destruction
– Fist of the Gods
– Raptor Talon
– Terminator Annihilation Force
– Favoured of Chaos
– Trinity of Blood
– The Chosen of Abaddon
– The Bringers of Despair
– The Hounds of Abaddon
– Daemon Engine Pack
– Cyclopia Cabal
– The Tormented
– Black Legion Warband
– War Cabal
– War Coven
– Tzaangor Warherd
– Sekhmet Conclave
– Ahriman’s Exiles
– Rehati War Sect
– Plague Colony
– Kakophoni;

– Chaos Artefacts, Warlord Traits, Tactical Objectives and an exclusive Detachment for each of the 9 Traitor Legions;

– Updated Disciplines of Tzeentch, Nurgle and Slaanesh, as well as the Sinistrum, Heretech, Ectomancy and Geomortis Psychic Disciplines;

– Armoury of the Chaos Space Marines.

~Have fun folks, and check back all week for more Traitor Legions reviews and more.

  • Mitch Noble

    So cool. Not OP but a very nice bump in power and a heap of flavour. Thank you games workshop. Wasnt expecting much and am therefore overjoyed to finally get to play CSM the way they are meant to be played.

    • Djbz

      Objectivly speaking this is probably one of the least useful legions to fight with because of the limitations of fear.
      (Loyalist marines completely ignoring it, other armies easy access to fearless etc.)
      The Stealth and +1 cover during night fighting should help keep them alive against “alpha strike” armies if they don’t have ignores cover and re-rolling charges is always useful

      • mysterex

        If it’s any consolation, they had the least useful rules under 3.5 as well. They gave up a heavy slot for a fast attack one and gained stealth. Problem was that, in that edition, fast attack were horribly expensive (35 point raptors) and heavies were a lot more useful.

        I still have a 40k Night Lords army (the first army I built) and while the new rules are fluffy it will probably continue to be only used for casual games.

        • Agent OfBolas

          well, CSMs are only for casual playing.

          Remember GW words: Chaos must be stopped at all costs 🙂

          • Painjunky

            So true.
            Until a new CSM dex the NL will be for casual play only,

          • Karru

            Not really. I think that Death Guard will see the competitive scenes a lot. 16pts for a guy with Toughness 5, Fearless, Relentless and FNP is quite nice. CSM finally has a build they can use on their own, instead of being made just the Cabal ally.

          • Agent OfBolas

            You need 9 squads of Plague Marines to get it work. I’m sorry, but it’s a waste of time.

            They are already in the book – you can have Plague troops … and still – no one is playing this.

          • Karru

            What? Why do they need 9 squads of Plague Marines to get it work? If you want the Detachment benefit, you don’t have to take Plague marines at all. Just take the Warband with Nurgle Marked units that are a lot cheaper than Plague Marines. They also get Toughness 6 Bikes with Objective Secured in that formation.

            Plague Marines costs 24pts a piece and require you to take a Nurgle Lord. That’s why no one is really playing them in tournaments. With the Death Guard benefits, you have 16pts Plague Marines. That is a HUGE difference.

          • BeastOfShadow

            I think you’re getting confused between a regular death guard detachment, Typhus’s formation and the Thousand Sons stuff.

          • BurpinforDayz

            I REALLY like the Death Guard bonuses and will work on expanding my nurgle army. But it does still sort of seem like a lack luster version of necrons to be honest and even they are slipping out of the tournament scene so yeah casual play it is.

  • Kritarion

    The Night Lord with the Jumppack has comically small arms.

    • William Jameson

      Dude’s been hanging around in the warp for too long. It’s not his fault he caught the eye of some deity or other and received their “gift” of tiny arms.

      • Kritarion

        T-Rex Gene-seed

        • Tyrannus Rex – one of the missing Primarchs? I like it.

          The Emperor has them destroyed because he got fed up with the tiny arm jokes.

          • Iron Father Stronos

            Or was he just a little….out of reach?

  • William Jameson

    Was half expecting the Night Lords to be allowed to take Huron as they’ve worked together before (or at least one unit/warband has), but then again considering what happened during their arrangement I can’t say I’m surprised that he’s not willing to hang around with them. ;^D

    Glad I magnetised my 30k Night Lords backpacks. Now I just need to get my hands on some 40k Chaos ones and I’ll be set.

    And maybe some cultists.

  • Karru

    Night Lords got some very nice buffs. The best part about this is the fact that they get all of that for free, even though they are restricted to Undivided, but that is understandable. This is the big thing I enjoy about this book. Finally CSM gets rules for free that will actually see use. We have had enough of the almost completely useless Boon table, it’s time to get something that will actually help CSM.

    As for the effectiveness of these buffs, I think they are on the better side of things. Getting that +1 to Cover and getting Stealth is always nice. According to the leaks, Night Lords can take the Raptor Talon as their Core Choice. Take two units of 10-man Raptor Squads with the Lord leading one of them and deploy them normally, while leaving one unit of Talons in reserve. Then take a CAD with CSM squads equipped for CC and Tank Busting in Rhinos to cover your Lord and Raptors and you’ll be in business. With that many things charging at you, the enemy will have a hard time picking targets.

    • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

      I would go with bikes for the support. Jinking bikes with a 2+ cover save will be able to get close turn 1.

      • Karru

        That’s actually a lot better idea. Chaos Warband with Lord on bike, Three 5-man Bike Squads (4x Melta, 2x Plasma), Two 10-man CSM Squads in Rhinos (2x Melta, 2x Plasma, A unit of 5 Chosen in a Rhino (2x Melta) and a unit of 10 Havocs with Autocannons in the backfield to hold an objective and take out weaker vehicles. There you have options to go with quite a few things, but with this you have a lot of scoring units that are quite hard to kill before they are way too close.

        • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

          As part of the Chaos Warband they would be objective secured too 🙂

          • Painjunky

            So the raptors as troops det is not obsec?
            That’s very disappointing.

          • Karru

            The Chaos Warband is the one that gives them Objective Secured. You can take Raptors in the Warband and that way give them Objective Secured.

          • Painjunky

            Oh yes of course. Thankyou! 🙂

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            They will be OS in the warband or a CAD.

          • Painjunky

            :-). Thankyou.

    • Agent OfBolas

      Still nothing close to 10 free transports in loyalist army, free fear (Raptors got it already in the armybook?) and free Razorbacks on the other side.

      Sounds legit.

      • Karru

        It’s almost as if I don’t only play against double Demi Space Marines. It feels like my list is designed to fight against multiple different armies like Orks, Imperial Guard, Tyranids, Dark Eldar and all the other armies. No, can’t be. There is only SM to fight against.

        • Painjunky

          Against those factions, yes, you will have yourself a game!
          I only seem to be playing against decurions and formations. Just FYI I play pure DE mainly then some CSM and then maybe some orkses.

          • Karru

            Different groups, different experiences. I know that I’m going to have loads of fun with my group, even if I play against SM.

          • Painjunky

            Me too. Here’s what I’m thinkin…

            NL CAD
            DP – wings, armour.
            Chaos lord – bike, twin claws, sigil.
            5 raptors – 2 flamers, PW.
            5 raptors – 2 flamers, PW.
            5 raptors – 2 flamers, PW.
            5 raptors – 2 flamers.
            3 bikes – 2 flamers.
            3 bikes – 2 flamers.

            NL CAD
            DP – wings, armour.
            Chaos lord – Jet pack, twin claws, sigil.
            5 raptors – 2 melta, melta bombs.
            5 raptors – 2 melta, melta bombs.
            5 raptors – 2 melta, melta bombs.
            5 raptors – 2 flamers.
            3 bikes – 2 melta.
            3 bikes – 2 melta.
            – 1955 pts… I think.
            I play between 1850-2000pts so can scale as needed.

          • Adam Ćwik

            You should lost night fighting for this ammount of flame.

          • nurglitch

            It’s scarier at night!

          • Iron Father Stronos

            Question,

            is there a way to fit a Night Lord Contemptor in a 40k list?

            Or would it just be called a Hellbrute?

            Does Chaos get access to Contemptors in 40k?

        • Agent OfBolas

          Those books are so terrible I can’t remember when someone bringed Orks, Tyranids or Dark Eldar to my local club.

          Just TAU, SM, Eldars, Daemons and … basically that’s it.

          • Karru

            Sorry to hear that. My group cares more about the looks and having fun than actually only aiming to have a crushing victory. We have one Eldar player, one SM player and few others, including myself, who owns those armies as well. None of us has ever had a problem facing each other since we always use what we like and not what the meta dictates.

            It also helps that we have gentleman’s agreements on things like Flyers and Super Heavies/Gargantuans since we know that not everyone can afford getting them or the exact counters to them, so we always ask our opponent beforehand if it’s okay to bring them.

            I personally play Eldar, SM, IG and Orks. I now have plans to start a CSM army with the Traitor Legions book and I know I’m going to have loads of fun playing it.

    • Traitor8

      Nice buffs? +1 Cover Save and fear? Really?

      • Karru

        So you would rather have none then?

        • Traitor8

          Standard response for CSM players. Just be happy we got anything at all. Sheesh! Why give praise for something that’s obviously mediocre at best and frankly lazy effort just because we have been starved of content.

          • Karru

            As I pointed out before, just because your Legion didn’t become broken doesn’t meant that these buffs are useless. They are good, all you have to do is use them correctly. It requires, wait for it… THOUGHT AND SKILL! I know these might be foreign concepts to you, but bear with me. You now have access to Raptors as troops. They are better than Assault Marines, no matter what you try to say. Pesky Grav giving problems? Well, here is my 3+ Cover Save. Take the Detachment and make it a 2+.

            The fact that you refuse to acknowledge these benefits is the problem. Because you can’t just deploy and win the game without ever touching the dice doesn’t mean they are useless or even “mediocre”.

      • BeastOfShadow

        How is it not a nice buff?

        Like it’s not going to make them outrageously powerful but I’d hate to see them at the level the loyalists are at where the optimal demi company just isn’t fun to play against and I don’t think the answer is to make everything bent.

        They’re both decent rules that are generally useful, especially when compounded with other rules the legion can have (a further +1 to cover and the -2 total for Fear) have that are nice and fluffy for the legion.

        I get that Fear isn’t worth anything against loyalists but like I said, the loyalists are their most optimal are stupidly over powered anyway.

        • Karru

          He seems to belong to that group of CSM “fans” that won’t stop complaining until CSM is once again the dominating codex in the tournament scene. Either that or he is mad because his favourite legion isn’t overpowered. Well, at least now he knows how the Raven Guard and Black Templar players felt when 6th and 7th edition SM codex was released.

          • Traitor8

            I was a Black Templar player. Sold my 5000 point army after they got rolled into the main codex 🙁 I just annoyed that after waiting for years for legion rules all we get for NL is +1 cover save and fear. I think its just really lazy on GWs part and frankly pretty piss poor. It does not solve the biggest issue with the main CSM unit which is the actual Chaos Space Marines. They are still crap.

          • BeastOfShadow

            I’m genuinely curious what you could possibly have been expecting or even hoping for?

            This style of rule has been GWs bread and butter for years and is pretty on par with their one page of rules in the 3.5 book. Ignoring the fact that the main CSM book is a garbagefire these sorta rules are fluffy and at least on par with the chapter tactics the loyalists get.

            The bread and butter Space Marine on both sides has been crap since 5th Ed. It’s just gotten worse with the higher volume of S6+ firepower.

          • Traitor8

            Well I’m not a designer at GW but I would have thought that over the last 4-5 years since the release of the 6ed codex they could have maybe come up with something a bit more interesting and useful.

            I mean +1 cover save is just flat out boring and just feels like a copy paste job.

            Fear is just a lazy way to provide some attempt paying homage to the fluff. But rather than give us a situational rule that is completely useless against a large number of units/armies why not do something along the lines of Psychotroke Grenades. And/or why not provide an alternative effect against fearless troops. Terror = -2 leadership for fear tests. Fearless units roll the leadership test as normal and if failed instead are reduced to initiative 1 till the next turn.

            It doesn’t feel like any effort was put into these rules at all.

          • Karru

            You seem to completely ignore the fact that there is a reason why SM wouldn’t be afraid of the Night Lords. The hint is in the special rule. And They Shall Know No —>Fear<—. It's completely understandable that they don't care that your Night Lords are terrifying. That is how Loyalists work.

            Stealth, Fear and Night Vision fits them perfectly. It's not lazy just because you wanted to be the broken to the point of not being fun to play against. Show me pieces of fluff where Night Lords have brought terror into the hearts of Space Marines.

            Orks, Imperial Guard, Tau, Eldar and Dark Eldar. No massed Fearless in sight nor do they ignore your Fear. Try using your rule against these armies and suddenly you see more results.

          • nurglitch

            Raptor Talons re-rolling charge ranges and -2 to Fear on top of -2 to everything seem like they’ll do a number on Eldar and Tau.

          • Xodis

            I completely agree. Although I do think ATSKNF is way overpowered. Would be nice if they could be effected by fear and poor leadership rolls, even if its to a lesser extent than the other armies.

  • Old zogwort

    Cool, also my orks are going to poop their pants….
    LD5 😛

    • Djbz

      Just club some of your guys to death and you can ignore it.
      Great design that

      • Old zogwort

        Nope fear is not affected by mob rule. These things are really spooky

        • Djbz

          Oh.
          The mob rule is even worse for Orks than I thought then

          • Karru

            I seriously can’t understand the hate towards the Mob rule. I prefer having my Lootas, Tank Bustas, Kommandos and Nob units stay on the board, rather than run away because they took 2-4 casualties this turn. Considering that I have seen a few situations where the “deathstar” unit of Warboss and Nob Bikers would have just run off the table if the old rules were used, now they took no extra wounds and stayed on the board.

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean did you play during old mob rule? It was much better than the current rendition. It’s basically killed trukk boys, which used to be a mainstay for Ork armies. If my trukk blows up I’m taking S4 hits from explosion, S4 hits for mob rule pinning check, and then S4 hits for morale should enough models die. I’ve seen one meltagun wipe out an entire trukk full of boys, the only damage it inflicted being the explode result on the vehicle. Itd be an awesome rule if it never existed in a much better way. Actually, it’d still be pretty pants compared to what other factions get.

            The number of times I’ve seen nob bikers with warlord run off the table, and I saw them at least 10 times in 5th is zero. I’d honestly say I saw more space marine units run off than Orks during that period. I mean what is your Ork warlord doing hugging the back table edge anyway? I never saw them not in the middle of the table tearing things up, deploying in reserves if necessary, and turbo boosting into enemy lines.

          • Karru

            Didn’t the old Mob rule count the number of models before you had to take your test? If the old rule was now used, out of the 12 boyz (one is the nob of course), you’d still be under the 11 required for fearless. Now you take your LD check on the same LD, you fail you are gone. It’s the Bosspole change that causes problems. Instead of getting the re-roll on the check, you re-roll the mob table result which is worse comparing the two.

            I play exclusively Trukk horde with my Orks and I love this rule. If I played them normally, I’m pretty sure I’ll be running away a lot more than I do now. Mostly because I consider having two chances to not run instead of one.

            The new Mob Rule also helps in CC a lot. Old version, you drop below 11 models you are no longer Fearless. Fail the check, run away and die to Sweeping. Now, you have a chance to hold the enemy unit in place even if you have to roll double 1’s on the LD check.

          • ZeeLobby

            To fail on average you’re dropping below 7 models. Add a nob and boss pole for rerolls and you have better chances. I’m sorry, but as an ex-ork player the new rule is just bad. Sure I may not run, but now I have 3 dudes left. By the time I even get close I’ll be gone. We’ll just have to agree to disagree. Based on your opponent list posted elsewhere you clearly don’t play a similar calibre of factions that I see on the regular.

          • Karru

            Different groups, different experiences. This I already know. Not trying to continue the argument in a massive amount, would you say that the Mob rule would be better if the Bosspole gave a re-roll on the LD check instead of the Mob rule table? I do agree with you that the Mob rule isn’t perfect, but calling it basically trash because now your big units can run away is way too harsh IMO.

          • ZeeLobby

            Completely, haha. A reroll on the leadership would be huge. It made the difficult rolls under the old rule much more likely to pass. Maybe that’s what made it hurt more than anything else. The issue with the new rule is that Orks still require outnumbering most opponents to succeed in combat (especially after FC wears off). In order to maximize bodies I can’t be killing myself on the way in, sometimes taking multiple sets of casualties from one units incoming fire.

            It’s def not trash, but it did little to improve, and I’d argue even hurt, in the current world of mass medium strength firepower.

  • Painjunky

    These rules are nice and fluffy and I will use them as a Night Lords player BUT without a new codex they will not be able to compete with anything even remotely competitive.
    No marks on anything is a big handicap.
    Sad.

  • Painjunky

    “It seems likely to expect Night Lords players to go with lots of high speed infantry armed with short range and assault weaponry and to come at you fast while the lights are out.”

    I agree.
    From what ive seen this will the most likely build for pure NL players.

    Sadly its something most loyalists can still do better and cheaper with all the free stuff and SR from various formations and CT.

  • Latro_the_Zombie

    2+ jink first turn, thank you 😀

  • Talos2

    “No units may be upgraded to take any marks of chaos””any unit that can must be upgraded to veterans of the long war”. Does this make any sense at all?

    • Niklas Persson

      It does. Night Lords are undivided and generally don’t care much for the warp and the gods – so no marks. And they did take part in the hours heresy – thus veterans.

      • Talos2

        Yeah but surely if “no” unit can take the upgrade then there is nothing in the “if it can” list

        • BeastOfShadow

          The rules says that no unit may be upgraded to take a Mark of Chaos. Not that no unit may be upgraded with anything.

          Veteran of the long war isn’t a Mark of Chaos so can be taken as normal.

          Completely separate rules.

          • Talos2

            Yeah read it on a phone screen so hadn’t really read it properly and I was thinking the two rules were linked. That’s how it read to me

    • BeastOfShadow

      Yeah it makes sense.

      They can’t take any of the Chaos Marks (Khorne, Nurgle ect…) on their units.

      And any option that can purchase the Veterans of the Long War rule (+1 leadership) automatically gets it.

  • Rainthezangoose

    Very cool and solid rules. Perfect in my opinion. Anyone saying its not because it doesn’t work on MEQ isn’t very clued in on fluff or any concept of balance. All armies should be aiming for balance rather then “being OP”.

    • Djbz

      It doesn’t help the balance to be useless against marines and super effective against the (already weaker) armies that are actually vulnerable to fear

    • Painjunky

      So your saying that anyone who compares CSM to SM doesn’t have any concept of balance…

      • Karru

        Better way to word his statement would have been to say that people who ONLY compare CSM to SM in extremely competitive scene have no concept of balance. People seem to think that there is only two ways to play and only two, Ultra competitive with only the strongest units being present and extreme narrative games. Tournament performance is the only indication if an army is good or not. There is no casual players and unless the army can stomp in tournaments, it’s utterly useless and should not be played.

        • Painjunky

          You do word it better but SM and CSM will obviously be compared. To say they wont or shouldn’t is absurd.
          I am not the person you are describing.
          As you can see above I’m already making NL lists because I desperately want them to work at the more competitive level that surrounds me.

          • Karru

            Oh, I am not saying that you are one of them. I was just saying how it could be worded better. You clearly care more about games that are fun for both sides, not just a competition of which side is more broken.

          • Painjunky

            Cheers mate!
            I wish you 6s!

  • Robert Watson

    As a Veterans of the Long Wait (for descent CSM rules) colour pretty disappointed 🙁 Rubbish rules that don;t address the core issues with the core CSM unit. And to make matters worse we can’t supplement the weakness of the legion with marked units. NL back on the shelf…

  • Traitor8

    As a Veteran of the Long Wait (for descent CSM rules) colour me pretty disappointed 🙁 Rubbish rules that don’t address the main issues with the core CSM unit. And to make matters worse we can’t supplement the weakness of the legion with marked units. NL back on the shelf…

    • Old zogwort

      I would say that those free cover saves and Jump troopers is quite a boon for this cool army.

      • Traitor8

        Enlighten me. +1 cover save is what is…meh. Raptors? Really, how many games have you played where people actually field this over-costed and ineffective unit? CSM is nurgle biker spam and if anything this release just re-enforced that trope.

        • Karru

          I haven’t run Raptors a lot, mostly due to them being Fast Attack and I prefer Bikes. We saw how fun BA players were having when their Assault Marines were Troops. Take a guess who can do the same now? I know you will start to scream “SM BETTER, CSM OVERPRICED”. SM Assault Marine is 17pts a model with Jump Pack. Raptors are 17pts a piece as well and have access to far better weaponry than SM, since these guys can take Meltas and Plasmas.

          • Traitor8

            Just so you know, I have never played at a tournament. I also played space marines for years before switching to Chaos. Mainly because I love the fluff. I’m not interested at win at all cost and I don’t want an auto win army. I just want fair, balanced and fluffy army rules that gives me a level playing field to enjoy the game. I don’t feel that has been achieved for chaos for last 4 or 5 releases including this one. And once again the faction is stuck with bikers as the only unit that is worth fielding. This sucks for me because personally I think bikers are the most stupid model in the whole game. And regardless of their point efficiency I refuse to field them for this reason. It would be nice to be able to field a competitive CSM army that actually included chaos space marines and didn’t have to rely on biker spam.

          • Karru

            Then. Use. Those. Raptors.

            They are now Troops so you can field them with Objective Secured. If you want the Detachment Benefit, then take Chaos Warband with the Raptors/Warp Talons as your “fast attack” choice. You don’t need the bikes. You can take Raptors. CSM finally has the potential to move fast with massed Raptors. Night Lords are all about terror tactics and lightning fast movement. You can now accomplish this better than any other CSM army.

            Raptors, CSM squads in Rhinos, Heldrakes, Maulerfiends. These are all things that move very fast and can dish out a lot of damage. All you have to do is use them properly.

            Think it like this. CSM didn’t have anything special going for them. Now we have. We can bring Obliterator as Troops, we can bring Terminators as Troops, we can bring Raptors as troops. Finally we can field our CSM collections as the things we painted them as and actually have them represented on the field properly. No longer does my Iron Warriors play the exact same as your Night Lords.

          • Karru

            The problem is the ruleset, not the CSM Codex at this point. There is nothing that GW can do to the CSM codex that would make it “perfectly balanced” against other books without destroying the fun out of the game.

          • Dr.Clock

            As ‘hammer’ units, it’s true that Raptors are not the be-all-end-all. That’s why they are Troops here – you can take them for many of the same roles as CSM, but they have better movement and assault capacity. Realistically, they will be effective shock troops vs. ~1/3 of units, just fine vs another third, and outclassed vs the ‘really dedicated’ assault units. What they ARE, is relatively cheap, and potentially ObSec.

            Chaos has ‘hammer’ units in other places… for a ‘heavy assault’ list, that basically looks like 2-3 Maulerfiends for cheap and cheerful smashing, maybe some Spawn for additional screening/distraction, and maybe even those 3 DSing Helbrutes. Find something for a little long-range tank/transport busting and you’re mostly there in terms of ‘fast and terrifying’ at normal point value.

            Further, I think it’s easy to forget that the unique detachment has 4 HQ slots – sticking 2+ Sorcs into a Raptor Wing is one way of making them a bit more interesting IMO.

            At the end of the day, compared to some of the other Legions I can see how NL come off as a little more niche. This is bound to happen from a book that’s got NINE forces it’s trying to make more or less unique using just one ‘base list’. the SM codex itself doesn’t even do that…

            For what it is, I think this is a step in the right direction, especially since for the most part they can now change that basic list and have this book remain relevant. It’s perfectly feasible, for instance, to change the cost and basic abilities of CSMs and to have the Legion traits still remain from this book… Heck, the way Fear itself works COULD change soon enough…

          • Traitor8

            Your argument falls a little flat when you consider that raptors are actually not particularly good. As far as I’m aware no one is particularly afraid BA assault marines and raptors are a worse.

        • Old zogwort

          You get +1 from the detachment and stealth from being Night lords. So this would be a 5+ in the open and a 2+ in ruins. Not bad if you ask me.

  • Malisteen

    Eh, I’d call them a ‘C’ overall. Maybe a ‘B’ if we’re being generous. Fluffy, but not particularly amazing rules. Doesn’t really change which units in the book are worth fielding for night lords or not. Doesn’t solve problems for the army or elevate signature units much. Making raptors troops, or a core formation, doesn’t really address the reasons why the unit isn’t very popular.

    Still, not bad at all, and the fluffiness counts for a lot. If I were a Night Lord’s player, I’d be ok with this. Not head over heels excited, but I wouldn’t be complaining about it. Middle of the road, solid C rank.

    • Karru

      I’d say it’s around a B. The fact that Night Lords can now do what BA could in 5th edition and spam Jump Troops has a lot of potential. Especially since Raptors are actually better than SM Assault Marines due to having the same price but they have access to all the special weapons, not just Plasma Pistols and Flamers. Moving fast around the board is quite useful these days.

      • ZeeLobby

        But wasn’t the whole reason SM assault squads were decent (they were never top tier) because you could throw in Sanguinary Priests for the FnP. Maybe if raptors had the equivalent easily accessible I could see a B, as is I think a C is a pretty fair grade.

        • Karru

          Meh, I still think that the ability to take Meltas and Plasmas is around the same as the Sanquinary Priests giving FNP, since they could only take up to 3 of them if I remember correctly and only give them to the unit they were in. In this edition, I’d say it’s not as good compared to the Night Lords, but then again I am not an expert on that field.

          • ZeeLobby

            Yeah. I played BA assault for a while. It was fun, but still paled in comparison to most other lists. What’s even worse is that it folded to lists that were weak meta-breakers. I don’t see how this will be any better. The sheer amount of firepower I face on the regular (Tau, SM and Eldar) will see very little actually making it to melts range.

          • Karru

            This is where the Stealth, Night Fighting and +1 to cover saves from the Detachment and Legion rules come into play. This is the part where things get interesting. Only Tau has the tools to ignore cover saves “on mass”. They can use their Marker lights, but Eldar and SM rely on Armour Ignoring weapons like Grav and the Bladestorm. Considering that the distance between both sides is 24″, move 12″ on the first turn and you are already half way across the board. From there the opponent can give up board control if he wishes or come into Melta Range, the choice is his.

          • ZeeLobby

            If you’re playing a gunline you won’t be 24″ away though. They’ll be hugging the back line (if smart). You’re still weathering at least 2, if not 3 turns of shooting. And once night fighting is over, you’re a bunch of power armor saves walking across the table at least with FnP you got an additional (what used to be 4+) save.

      • Malisteen

        What raptors don’t have is ATSKNF. Or that raptor+havoc-in-drop-pod formation. Or in-faction homing beacons to make deep strike at all a viable strategy.

        Honestly? Raptors are still a pretty bad unit, especially in a game saturated with super-powered shooting that casually deletes units like raptors with hardly any expenditure of thought or effort.

        But none of that is new, nor is any of it the fault of these supplement rules, nor would a subfaction buried in a supplement be the right place to try to fix any of that, so I find myself unable to get too worked up about it.

    • Traitor8

      As I’ve been saying, mediocre at best. But no reason to complain. Why is that? Because we’ve been getting shafted by GW for years so if they toss us a few table scraps we should get down on bended knee.

      • Karru

        Or we say this is a good direction for GW to take with the rules and thus they now know what Chaos Players want. If we say these are utter trash like you keep saying, then GW goes “ok, let’s try something else and scrap these”. Then we get even worse rules that might focus on something like the god damn Boon Table or worse.

        There is nothing BAD about these. They aren’t the greatest rules in the world but at least we have them. This is the part where we say good job GW, may we have some more, instead of taking a baseball bat and hitting them in the face while spitting curse words at them.

        The biggest problem with GW and CSM since 3.5 codex was scrapped was the lack of focus. GW didn’t know what to do with CSM. CSM players whined and whined. For a reason, they lost their choices, they were made bland. Now they are bringing back our Legion rules and GW sees this as positive. Then they take that positivity and try it again. They give us some new formations/detachments in a campaign book that follow the same idea, fluffy rules with fun mechanics that see use during the game. They focus on the lore of the Legion and give them thematic rules.

        • Traitor8

          You might be bringing me around to your way of thinking. But it all seems a bit to pragmatic for chaos. I think smash ’em in the face and say try again is more fluffy 😉

      • Malisteen

        There’s plenty of reason to complain about the codex, of course. Then again, even if the CSM codex were better, the game overall would still be hot garbage. So, fine, there’s reason to complain in general, I just don’t see any reason to complain about this release in particular.

  • This supplement is not going to go over very well if it doesn’t raise the CSM rules up to tournament-level.

    • ZeeLobby

      Eh. There might be one or two gems in there. The continued issue is still that the main book is just awful, and these just build on that

  • MechBattler

    Awww, no Run and Charge? Still, re-rolling charges all the time means you can always Jump move 12″ and then charge, extending the threat range 6″. Combined with Stealth, those rules should get the Raptors into combat pretty reliably. I like it.

  • Bonesaw1o1

    Overall looking good, now here’s hoping that
    A. everyone else gets buffs that are just as good
    B. 8th gets rid of or tones down ATSKNF so that fear works on more than 1/3 of the armies in the game

    • Traitor8

      B. C’mon 8th edition!

    • Xodis

      Seriously right?!?! ATSKNF is completely broken, FLUFFY, but broken. It would be better if Marines could still be affected by Fear and poor leadership rolls, even if its to a lesser extent than the other armies.

      • Karru

        The old ATSKNF at least had a downside. If you got caught by sweeping advance, you took extra damage. ATSKNF ignoring Fear is understandable, but it shouldn’t be so powerful, make it something like you can regroup normally even if your squad is under strength and take extra damage if caught by Sweeping but not insta killed. That way it would be at least balanced.

  • AnomanderRake

    Not sure they are ‘firmly on the side of’ Jump troops over Bikes. Stealth for 3+ Jinks is pretty useful for a Night Lords bike unit.

  • piglette

    This makes my cold dead heart happy. Do Emperor’s Children next.

  • nurglitch

    Wooo!

  • Nyyppä

    Look at the opposition. Realize that it is still far superior. Decide to not spend money on this book. Contemplate on selling everything CSM you have to start another army that has a faction worth bothering for and/or stop playing the game.

    • Traitor8

      I’m with you man! But wait and see if a new CSM dex comes soon. Maybe with re-costing of units and 8th edition things will be better.

      • Nyyppä

        That might fix things. I doubt that they will go as far as making CSM as a whole viable but there is a chance. The problem is though that they are determined to keep all the stupid rules with the faction. Rules like the boon table, soul blaze and warpflame.

  • Muninwing

    the best way to make chaos more playable might not be to give them free extras, but it does account for the points differential and it does make them perhaps a bit more worth it.

    VotLW for free. extra abilities for free. suddenly, they can hold their own. maybe if they just had appropriate points costs all along, they’d have already been playable…

    • Not only that (I agree the pricing in points is bad for CSM) but look at what makes the OP lists OP.

      Grav spam. Thats just a nasty OP weapon in general.
      Biker rerollable 3 or 2++ cover saves.
      D Weapon spam.

      Basically weaponry and abilities that are over the top that CSM don’t really have access to.

  • nurglitch

    All I ever wanted was the truth…That and re-rolls to charge!

  • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

    Emperor’s Children or Iron Warriors, plz. This is nice, but hopefully we get something more shooty next.

  • Carey_Mahoney

    Night Vision on a short range / assault army… questionably impressive…

    Edit:
    Fluff-wise, it’s a winner, off course.

  • Mr.Gold

    but… there is only 4 days left before the book is out, therefore Bols will have to put out at least 2 legions per day..,.

  • Traitor8

    Not being able to take any marks at all is a bit limiting 🙁 So no Exalted? Cyrion? Uzas?

    • Mr.Gold

      Under the Special rules – the last bullet point – talking about demons of chaos aka: Demon Princes. Being A Demon of Chaos is different from a Mark of Chaos.

      • Traitor8

        Well that’s something at least. But no being able to represent NL marines that have turned to one of the chaos gods is a bit of shame.

        • Mr.Gold

          heres hoping DP can take Stormbolt Plate flying DP with 2+ save and 3+ jink…