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Goatboy 40k: CSMs, Do You Feel Betrayed?

10 Minute Read
Sep 12 2016



Goatboy talks Traitor’s Hate and breaks down The Good, The Bad & the Ugly for the new CSMs.


What the Imperium fears most.

Goatboy here again and today we want to talk about what my “favorite” army in 40k is getting this week.  While overall – it feels a bit lackluster I still think it gives the Chaos Space Marines a lot of tools to actually bring them from the bottom ranks.  I don’t know if it will get past the gate keeper armies (Tau/Necrons) but they at least have a shot – especially when utilizing some of the other formations available to them.  Will get a basic rundown of what I think is Good, what feels kinda ok, and what is probably never going to be seen on the table top.


The Good

First of all – the powerful spells from Angels of Death have come to the Chaos Space Marines.  I am still a bit miffed they are no changes to the actual rules – it still is a good thing as using the Cabal should mean you have a few chances to throw out a Null Zone or two.  This will be a huge boon to keep the Bark Bark stars at bay as well as some other “death stars” that rely  on low invulnerable saves.  Lucky for Chaos – the Null Zone power “discipline” is full of other great things that are useful to any evil sorcerer of Chaos.  The Sinistrum Discipline will be most likely used the most – after the Cabal gets the Sanctic powers and Biomancy powers they need.

The other disciplines are the exact same so most events ban the other powerful ones.  Still if you are playing against Knights or utilizing a ton of Maulerfiends – the Heretech aka the Technomancy discipline isn’t terrible at all.  It really just lets Chaos have access to any kind of Psychic answer they need right now.  Their version of Phase Form is great for this armies using the Chaotic Rapier batteries of a few “double gun” knights that would love to throw in 24 bullets of death.

Overall the new powers are a good thing – but it again doesn’t change the top “Chaos Space Marine” army as it just gives more power to the Cabal and any friends that join up with the gang of Black Legion sorcerers.  I expect more Cabals to show up – either combo’d with KDK Ally and Daemon CAD – or some other kind of formation block utilizing a Gore Pack and dual Cabals for maximum jerk bag utilizing two take over a unit and shoot powers.



Is the CSM psychic glass half empty, or half full?

After that there are a few good formations in the book.  The “best” one to me seems to be the Raptor Talon.  Chaos have a hard time getting to people and crossing the killing field.  This formations gives you a Chaos Lord with a Free Jump Pack, 3-5 units of Raptors/Warp Talons, and the added ability of being able to deep strike, land, and assault with a disorderly charge.  There are a ton of games where just a formation like this would be all Chaos need to help disrupt your opponents plans, get a cool close combat character stuck in, and maybe get lucky with some sweet boon rolls.

Speaking of Boon Rolls – the new “core” battle company for Chaos is not terrible as well.  The biggest extra rule it has is everything is objective secured.  There are a few too many taxes in the formation but having everyone be objective secured is huge.  The other add on is the ability to roll 2 times on the boon chart and pick he one you want.  When you combo this with the new “decision/battlehost/etc” you get to roll twice and keep both rolls.  The Battle Host adds the extra rule that the beginning of any friendly turn you get to pick a character, roll twice, and then pick one or both of the abilities.  This means that Chaos Lord is going to be bonkers pretty quickly.  The granted of free Veterans of the Long War as well as Hatred: Imperium is pretty spicy.  Just wait to see powered up Spawn Stars coming to your town, taking your candy, and driving down your property values.


I love candy – especially your’s 🙂

The Maulerfiend formation (it lets you take other evil machines but we all know the Maulerfiends are the best) is also a very powerful addition.  I have always loved the model and the ability to take 3-5 is pretty awesome.  You get an Alpha beast that gets a +1 to their Inv save and when he dies the other robots get rage.  6 Attack Maulerfiends sound delicious to me. Even the “Warp Smith” tax is ok as he can easily join up with a unit of Chaos Space Marines and give them some added punch.  They also get to use their Daemonforge twice which is pretty fun. If you take them in the big Battle Host he can even get a boon or two as needed to help give him more punching power.  I have always loved the idea of running a ton of Maulerfiends and this might be the chance I get.  Heck I got an idea using a Tetrad and this formation too.  Robots just coming at you hard core.


The final decent formation is the Lost and the Damned option as I think you can take Typhus and take a ton of reanimating zombies that are going to be a pain in the butt.  They lose objective secured so I don’t know if just taking a CAD and Typhus is better but it is a thought as the Battlehost/decurion can just take a Chaos Lord/Sorcerer etc.  I like how you have all the HQ options as right now in most Marine armies – there is no way to just take a single Librarian as an HQ choice in the core options.  Overall I think there is a ton of good in the Formations.


The Ugly

The possessed formation would be awesome if it could be field as a Crimson Slaughter faction.  I was almost excited to play some of the FW possessed, a rad mutated daemon prince, and utilize some of the other Chaos Space Marine options.  Oh well – it is probably for the best as a ton of 3++ guys who got a Cursed Earth off would be rough for some mid tier armies.  Still I applaud how the formation is designed as it feels pretty fluffy and fun.

The biggest Enh for me is the fact the powers are direct copies of the good guy powers.  I like that we got them – but with so many abilities nerfed (for good reason) in the ITC (the system I play in the most) it makes it kinda of a moot set of options.  I would have loved to see a revamped set of Chaos Powers like the Daemons got as well.  I think we could have just gotten them and then the “Librarius” version and had a really awesome book.

I wish more thought was put in for the Renegade Knights as well.  I like that the Renegade Knights get the most weapon options but it would have been neat to see updated, marked, and relic options for the bad guys.  I am sure fluff wise these Knights are not too organized and important in the grand scheme of things like the other Imperial and lordy like knights.  I was just hoping for more Options but I think I would just replace them with being good and the Renegade knight is at least a good unit.

wd 116 knights cover

I’m super evil – my faceplate has a hole in it. 

The Heldrake formation is just an odd bird.  It has some powerful abilities but some of it doesn’t work.  The hitting more with a vector strike on a pin requires you to pin them before hand and not because of the Heldrake itself.  It just doesn’t really work.  But there is hope with this one if you design a list to abuse massed Psychic Shrieks.  I hear the Cabal, Gorepack, and this formation is a nice clean combo of force a ton of shrieks down your opponent’s throat.  Plus you get to burn all your enemies in massed flamer bits of death.

The Fist of the Gods, while having a fun name, is kind of an odd duck.  I think there might be a place for 3 Vindicators that are Daemonically Possessed and throwing out a huge pie plate of doom.  I am pretty sure that is too many points to make it worthwhile but it isn’t terrible.  This leads into the fact Chaos gets 1-3 units of Predators and Vindicators.  I like they got it but when was the last time you saw any kind of vehicle like that on the competitive table top?  The only time I have seen them is in the Iron Hands Medusa combo as it ends up being cheaper then a normal Demi Battle Company.  Plus you look different and winning with different stuff is what makes you better.

You would have thought the Cabal would have been a part of the big Chaos Warband host.  It is probably a good thing as it would have meant you could of set up some nutty Warband combos.  Still if this is a Black Legion they need the nerd crew to help cast spells, and break the system.



The Bad

Where are my new relics?  Where are my new Warlord traits?  Where is the beef?  There feels like a lot missing in this book.  I was hoping for me – the rumored Veteran traits, updated Chaos Marks, and heck having Kharn actually have Eternal Warrior.  I am happy for any Chaos love but this felt like the pity booty call cause you look so sad.  I just wish I could get the chance to help write and figure out some new Chaos stuff.

I think Kharn not being added to the KDK army list is a big miss.  It would have been awesome to have him lead some crazy doggies into a murder town.  He would have called ahead, asked them to have some non dairy food options for Steve the Lactose intolerant Flesh Hound, and then brought the pain during their home coming.  Still the model looks really good and I will have one coming to me soon (Thanks Jason at Frontline Gaming).    I wish it didn’t cost so dang much.


If I don’t get added to KDK lists I’m gonna kill someone!

The Cult of Destruction formation really needs to have the Obliterator/Mutilator fixed before it could ever hope to be good.  I don’t care how many extras you throw on it – the Mutilators just don’t don enough to justify using them.  I think a point drop, some rule changes, and maybe some updates to being fearless and other options would finally make this unit good – but for right now this formation is in the garbage pin.

Finally we have the why do you have this formation?  The Trinity of Blood is 3 Lords of Skulls smashed up into one big fat annoying formation.  The rules are alright and really the only saving grace is the FW Kytan walker that has some rules that allow you to swap out any Lord of Skull choice for one.  It is cheaper and actually not completely terrible.  Still – there is no way this will show up anywhere to be of use so it is just a junky and goofy formation.

Overall I give the book a B- as while it doesn’t give a ton of interesting stuff it does gives us new stuff.  Which is good and that will help bring Chaos up and above some of the lower tier armies.  I don’t see it changing a ton of things as the Cabal will always show up in any Chaos based list.

Goatboy Traitor’s Hate Army

Here is a dumb Boon heavy list that probably won’t work that well but it is a fully Chaos Space Marine army.

Black Crusade Detachment
Chaos Warband
Chaos Lord, Bike, Lightning Claw, Powerfist, Mark of Nurgle, Sigil of Corruption
Sorcerer, Bike, Lvl 3, Spell Familiar, Force Staff
Chaos Terminators X 3
Chaos Space Marines X 5, Meltagun, Rhino, Dirge Caster
Chaos Space Marines X 5
Chaos Bikes X 3
Havoc Squad X 5, Meltagun X 2, Rhino, Dirge Caster,

Chaos Spawn X 5, MoN
Chaos Spawn X 5, MoN


Lords of the Black Crusade
Chaos Lord, Bike, Lightning Claw, Powerfist, Mark of Nurgle, Sigil of Corruption

Cyclopia Cabal
Sorcerer, Bike, Lvl 3, Spell Familiar, Force Axe, Sigil of Corruption
Sorcerer, Bike, Lvl 3, Spell Familiar, Force Axe, Sigil of Corruption
Sorcerer, Bike, Lvl 3, Spell Familiar, Force Staff

This list gives you 2 Objective secured Stars (The Chaos Lord and Sorcerer from the Warband are objective secured), a decent amount of bodies, and some spell throwing power.  It again is just two rocks barreling towards smashing you but it gives you options to move around, go get stuff, and being objective secured will mean you are always a threat.  The Sigil of the Sorcerers are there if you throw into Sanctic to try and get Hammer Hand or Sanctuary.  The other Sorcerer will get the ability to have 2 boons thrown on them too so it will be pretty interesting army as you get all kinds of fun abilities and powers from the Boon Chart.  I would advise just printing out a sheet with little tabs you can mark as they gain them.  I would laminate it.


Right now rumors point to a Tzeentch thing coming and maybe a Nurgle item.  I don’t expect Chaos options to be finished anytime soon and while this isn’t the most exciting release it is still a strong one for my favorite army.  Now if I could only have the Orks updated in this way my 40k life would be better.

~Until next time – keep it corrupted.


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