Battle Review: Experimenting with Chaos

Abaddon the DespoilerI’m stepping back from a more competitive mindset with 40K and my Chaos Marines and just looking to have fun. With that means finally trying out some units I’ve been meaning to and just haven’t for one reason or another. Last night I got to do just that.

The list I decided to bring featured Abaddon, 5 x Termies, and 2 squads of 3 x Mutilators. Yep, you read that right, 6 Mutilators. I have tried them once before and wanted to give them a go again. I figured by putting down two squads that I’d at least get to see one do something in the course of the game. They aren’t competitive, they aren’t point efficient and the actual models are bleh but I like the concept and it would be a fun conversion project.

Abaddon I have not run since the last codex in 5th edition and I believe I only ran him once. I tend to really enjoy creating my own HQs from your basic Lord, Sorcerer, whatever. This current Chaos codex lets you really do that well so I have yet to run a special character outside Huron in this codex.

I faced Khorne Inquistor’s Khorne force. In short, lots of Bloodletters, Hounds, Crushers, a few Heralds and a Bloodthirster. We opted to play one of the Altars of War missions. I forget the name but it was a Chaos one, of course, that was kill points and you could deploy up to the 24″ mark and it had the meat grinder rule, dead units return. Considering I was looking to test some stuff out I just threw everything on that 24″ line spread out across it a bit. Khorne Inquisitor deployed heavy on my left flank and we started rolling dice.

This game did not go well for me at all. I did have some bad dice rolling but it wasn’t my only undoing. To start, his heavy flank deployment was problematic for me. I decided to disengage that left flank and move my force up his left flank, my right. The idea being I could handle his weaker side while bringing the rest of my army over to reinforce it. Sound concept I thought but it didn’t pan out well at all. Between his Heralds having AP2 melee weapons, him having a lot of bodies and a rampaging Thirster, I could not hold up even with all my 2+ armor saves.

The idea was to test though so I just aimed for fun and experimentation. Abaddon, not surprisingly, was a beast. Early on he took out 2-3 Bloodcrushers. Next he killed off a Herald and, I think, a few Bloodletters. After that the Thirster smashed Abaddon in a challenge, one that didn’t need to happen but we wanted to for fun. When he came back on the board, meat grinder, he got into combat with a big squad of Bloodletters. The first round he took out 5-6. Next round he was in a challenge and killed that Herald. Next round he was charged by more Bloodletters and another challenge was made. That Herald died and double 6’s were rolled on daemonic instability for one of those units, poof to the warp the entire unit went.

The Mutilators did not do terrible but they were not Abaddon either. Most of the time they got buried under attacks and went down before doing much of anything. One of the Mutilator units came back in after dying off and charged Flesh Hounds. They smashed down 8 of the 10 Hounds and the last 2 died to daemonic instability. After that they went on to drag down a Soulgrinder on the charge.

A big loss in this game, we stopped tracking kill points near the end, but fun and interesting regardless. I did really like Abaddon, hard not to. The problem with him is always delivery though, which wasn’t an issue in this game with us being able to be so close. The Mutilators weren’t terrible, at least in this mission again with being able to get close early. I’m not going to write them off yet or sing their praises. I’ll get in a few more games with them, though probably just a single unit, and get some more experience with them.

I picked up a box of Raptors last night. I’ll be getting another box as well to put myself at 10. The Raptors will be my next unit test for next week. I’m aiming for Slaanesh Raptors with the icon of excess (FNP), being led by a Sorcerer of Slaanesh. The rest of the list will be very fast and melee focused as well so I can hopefully see what the Raptors are, or are not, capable of. I also really like Sorcerers and don’t run them all that often so it should be fun.