Chaos Daemons Begin to Pour Forth from the Warp

The other week Stealthy Stealth, regular 40K player and extremely infrequent author here, made a comment when I saw him last at the shop where I play. He saw the Orks I was using as proxies for Possessed, thinking they were actual Orks, and said, “Finally! Tony’s playing 6th edition.” Stealthy thought I was allying in Orks with my Chaos Marines. He was wrong but very right in the fact that playing with allies is something I very rarely do even though it has existed since 6th edition.

I have nothing against allies and, if not done as a dick-move, is a very fun way to play an army. A while ago when I started my Chaos Marines I decided to hold off on allies until I built up a more solid core to my army. I like to focus on one thing at a time and having options in my primary army was the focus. Years have since passed and it’s time I start reviving my Daemon allies.

Chaos Daemons: Bloodletter
Credit to Dmitry Burmak

Chaos Daemons are a cool army but I have no desire to build out a full army, just an allied contingent. Of course, I may change my mind on that later, we’ll see. I think Daemons work great to supplement Chaos Marines though. I really like power armor. Too many years of playing Marines has made the 3+ a mainstay for me. However, pulling in a few units of Daemons to run with all the power armor works for me.

What I have to work on now is determining how I want to go with Daemons. My current collection of Daemons is minimal with just:

  • Keeper of Secrets
  • Karanak
  • Skulltaker (on foot)
  • Bloodletters (10)
  • Screamers (5’ish)
  • Seekers (5’ish)
  • Flesh Hounds (10)

KhorneAt the moment I’m leaning towards Khorne. Nurgle is cool but generally too slow for my liking. Tzeentch is neat but I’m not a big psyker user and prefer punching things over shooting them. Slaanesh is a close second though. They are similar to Khorne but going with higher initiative over strength of attacks – generally speaking. I really wish they didn’t change the hatred between gods as they did so I could, in a fluffy way, put Khorne and Slaanesh together.

Khorne is a cheaper base for me to build up since I have 2 HQs, 1 troop and 1 fast attack. As of typing this though, I have a few eBay bids going that may drastically alter that for Khorne, Slaanesh or both depending. However, I can’t build based off maybes and what-ifs.

I do know I need more Bloodletters though so I can either do two squads of 10 or a larger squad. A single squad of 10 Bloodletters is just bolter bait and never works out. I also want to get some Khorne Heralds for cheap HQ options that can help bolster the Bloodletters. A Khorne Herald on a Juggernaut would do well with the Flesh Hounds as well, not to mention Skulltaker on his.

Of course, there’s the meatier HQs as well like Greater Daemons and Princes. Although I think those are great, I’m leaning away from them for now. I think I would rather build up a cheaper to field (points-wise), Daemon ally army to begin with and then later add in the bigger guys.

Any Daemon players have advice? I will admit my knowledge of Daemons isn’t as good as I’d like it to be, so advice on the more subtle nuances of the army would be great.

  • Could always just add summoning into your current CSM force. :)

    • True enough. Either way I need more Deamons :)

      • I am always a big fan of the juggernaughts…because they are one of the coolest models ever. Shame they dropped to T4, but hey, they might be buffed back to T5 again when the codex gets updated!

        • The T4 is tough. At least they’re cavalry now but that T4…

  • khorneinquisitor

    For Khorne allies, use a herald on the chariot. He has 2 W and the chariot is 12/12/10. If he gets into close combat, they are hitting it on the front armor and you suck him into a challenge which he will likely win. The chariot itself gets 2 S4 AP 3 attacks as well. But the key is that his loci extends by 12″ so you can get him and confer rage or hatred to all of your khorne daemons around you.

    For bloodletters, it really depends how you want them to be used. If you have other high priority stuff, squads of 10 can work. Also, the MSU concept works against huge units, low unit count as they suck up the shots. I personally like 16 with the Banner of Blood for 180 points.

    I would recommend a unit of crushers. 4 with karanak with Banner or Blood are going to be launching an assault turn 1 if you go second (scout, move, fleet reroll of 6″+D6). I like crushers with Skulltaker on Juggernaut though as he has EW and can suck down those S9 hits and LOS the bolter fire.

    • A chariot is something I can look at a bit later once I bulk out some other stuff. The 12″ bubble is pretty nice, didn’t realize that.

      I was thinking of a large unit of Bloodletters with a Herald in there and to try my luck with the Grimoire. The Banner is Blood almost seems required if they are to do anything really; at least if starting on foot.

      You can’t assault turn #1 if you scout regardless of first or second turn. It specifically says you can’t charge on the first “game turn”. I was looking at a Herald on a Juggernaut and Skulltaker and for the points it’s hard to pass up Skulltaker.

      • khorneinquisitor

        Ahh, ok. I haven’t run that combo in 7th. In 6th it was FAQ’d so you could assault bottom of turn 1. I misquoted the rules. It is a 6″ bubble (not hard to get 1 model partially within, especially seeing you just need it at beginning of charge).

        • I’ve definitely learned, last night’s game was a reminder, that Hounds need something to give them a punch. Hounds end up just stuck in combat FOREVER, so going to try giving them a Herald on Juggernaut to get some power in there. I like Skulltaker for the job too but the Herald lets me get Grimoire and Locus of Wrath.

  • khorneinquisitor

    Other units that you may find useful would be a soulgrinder of slaanesh (fleet walker with some nasty close combat power). Slap a template on it and it can fire two guns per turn then get into assault. Also, the masque and blue scribes are both good alternative HQ options. Neither is a powerhouse, but both suck up a TON of fire. The blue scribes is a jet-bike so can move up, summon, turbo-boost back and benefit from it’s jink save. Slaanesh chariots. Spread out some of the anti-armor fire from your walkers and they weigh in at only 40 points each for a heavy (or 75 for the exalted). You take 120 points of them and you have 6 HP to HoW the enemy. Turn 1 you can move and then flat out. Turn 2…you’re assaulting. Yeah, 1 might die or you may lose even 3 HPs, but 3D6 auto S4 rending hits, THEN the 2 alluress riders comes up to be like 16-20 hits on average, all rending. Against guard blobs it’s devastating. The biggest advantage there would be very cheap target priority conflict for the enemy, because NO ONE who has ever played against a well run Slaanesh chariot says “meh, let’s ignore those”…and bolter fire can’t hurt them.

    • All great advice, thanks. I was hoping you might chime in on this :)

      • khorneinquisitor

        HOWEVER, I would suggest all models of the same alignment, and include instruments and icons. As daemons do not require the icon to be on the table from the turn prior, you drop one unit with an icon and instrument, and rip in another unit. So, you could run 2 small squads of bloodletters as anchor points and run crushers and hounds. Instruments and BoB on the letters and crushers. Roll letter squad 1, 2, then crushers. Optimally, you get 1 letter squad or both. If you get one, you dump them, then pull in hounds, then if you get the 2nd letter squad you place them off the first letter squad and rip in the crushers. NOW, you just dumped, largely without scatter, to place 4 heavy assault units anywhere you want.

        • The problem there is that’s a lot of stuff off the board. The less I have on the board the more likely it is I get pounded until reserves arrive and by then it may be too late and they are the only valid targets left.

          I was looking at the instruments and icons but, for now anyway with what I do own, just doing 2 x 10 Bloodletters in reserves with the banner and instrument. Let the Hounds harass and draw fire. What’s the thought on just two squads in reserve like that? Meaning, banner and instrument on one squad with the other naked or give the second squad a banner too in case the first doesn’t make it in?

          • khorneinquisitor

            That works. Worth only two squads,I would drop the instrument. Make sure you have a banner of blood on both as it is key in getting into combat as it guarantees at least a seven inch charge. I would take a herald on a juggernaut in one squad to use the squad as ablative wounds. The herald could have a greater and lesser reward and a greater loci. The herald is a little pricier but has the punch to do a lot of damage, even alone.

  • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

    CSM need to be fast, and fast Daemons are a great help. Flesh hounds are best, but 20 is better than 10. I use them to multicharge as much of the enemy army as possible to tie up their shooting, ensure they remain locked in combat, and basically be a pain in the arse. I run spawn and a juggerlord with them and sometimes bikes. I’d add a maulerfiend if I had one. I usually keep bloodletters in reserve to deepstrike and try to take stray objectives or destroy weakened units.

    • Barring the 20 Hounds, since I have 10 at the moment, that’s pretty much what I’ve done in the past. Jugger Lord with Spawn, deep striking Bloodletters and I do have a Maulerfiend to throw into the mix. I’ve had moderate success with it but just felt I needed something more.

      • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

        I think this is the best CSM list of its type that doesn’t use Forgeworld/IA13. After this its micromanagement of options, like using the Daemonheart on a CS Juggerlord and Axe of BF on a CSM one, assuming you can pay the cultist tax on two FOC.

        • I think that’s the thing, getting those options right, and where I’ve mostly failed with it in the past.

  • Berman

    Bloodletters are best when summoned. They just tend to be bolter bait anyway. But if you can stack some pressure on the opponent with a unit or two summoned to reinforce a charge next turn they can really turn up the preassure.

    • Once I have more models I can start playing with summoning. I do want Daemon allies, not just summoning, so gotta flesh it out some more so I have allies plus units to pull in with summoning.

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