Battle Report: Chaos Space Marines vs Blood Ravens

Wednesday night was my final play test to prepare for the Standish Standoff this Saturday, a 24-player 1,650 Warhammer 40K tournament. I played against Steve, a routine 1st place finisher at our tournaments, and his Blood Ravens force of Space Marines using Iron Hands chapter tactics.

We opted to play one of the Eternal War missions; the standard ones. We know the tournament will use missions like those but modified so it made more sense to play that than a Maelstrom of War mission, which I love. We ended up playing Purge the Alien, kill points.

My list, as a refresher, was:

Chaos Space Marines – 1,650


  • Huron Blackheart
  • Ghostwrath (Daemon Prince) – Wings, Power Armor, Mark of Nurgle, Spell Familiar, Psyker (M3)


  • Chaos Space Marines (10) – Icon of Vengeance,Meltagun x 2
    • Apsiring Champion – Melta Bombs
    • Rhino – Dirge Caster
  • Chaos Space Marines (10) – Icon of Vengeance, Plasma Gun x 2
    • Apsiring Champion – Melta Bombs
    • Rhino

Fast Attack

  • Spawn (5) – Mark of Nurgle
  • Heldrake – Baleflamer

Heavy Support

  • Obliterators (3) – Mark of Nurgle
  • Maulerfiend – Lasher Tendrils

The Game

Steve got to deploy first and also took first turn. Here’s some shots of our setup.

Deployment 1Deployment 2Steve moved his Razorback away from Huron and the Obliterators, consolidating his army to the board center. One Drop Pod of Marines landed on my right flank near a Rhino with CSM in it. The Dreadnought in a Drop Pod landed right next to them. Those two units fired on Spawn, plus a Predator, and a Spawn was killed off. His Bikers, with Captain and Librarian, advanced down the center and Predators positioned to shoot. Shooting saw both my Rhinos glanced and shaken that turn.

Blood RavensMy Spawn moved up on Steve’s Bikers and my CSM on my right flank jumped out and rapid fired Marines, killing only one I think (he made some great 6+ FNP rolls). Huron and the Obliterators moved towards board center slowly, as they do. Ghostwrath (Daemon Prince), moved centrally to get line of sight and the Maulerfiend advanced. Ghostwrath then got Enfeeble and Gift of Contagion off on the Bikers to make them S2 and T4. The Spawn then charged into the Bikers. I think I killed a few bikers and I lost a Spawn in combat.

Chaos Space Marines AdvanceSteve’s final Drop Pod arrived with Marines. It landed in the center mess. Both Storm Talons also arrived. Things get fuzzy here because the game dissolved into carnage board center. I lost the Rhino with my melta CSM and then 8 of those Marines. Most of his army unloaded into my Maulerfiend with shooting but I only took a glance. My CSM on the right flank got shot at, lost a few and were subsequently charged by his Marines. That combat was a big stalemate and the Biker combat saw a few more Bikers die and I took some wounds in return.

Ghostwrath Surveys the FieldMy army consolidated to the center of the board where all the fun was. My Maulerfiend charged the Dreadnought and ripped off the close combat arm and shook it. Ghostwrath got off Enfeeble and Gift of Contagion again on the Bikers to keep them S2 and T4. The Prince then charged the Drop Pod Marines near the center and got stuck in combat.

Maulerfiend vs DreadnoughtThe game became mayhem. His Predators and Razorback took pot shots on my unengaged units and I lost an Obliterator to a Storm Talon. Combats continued, most remaining locked except my Maulerfiend who destroyed the Dreadnought. The Maulerfiend then went into the Bikers to aid the Spawn and eventually killed off the Bikers, Librarian and Captain, though the Spawn were destroyed. My Heldrake arrived on turn #3 and with Vector Strike took down a Storm Talon.

MayhemThere was a lot of back and forth during the game and we remained within a few points of one another throughout. However, with his Bike unit broken, and my Prince eventually freed up, I was able to get a couple of quick kill points and the game ended with an 8-7 victory for me.


It was a damn close game with a few critical moments. Having two turns of his Bike squad being neutered to S2 and T4 really kept my Spawn locked up, which I wanted. As Nurgle Spawn that meant his normal Bikers couldn’t hurt them and his power fist wielding Captain, and Librarian with the relic staff, needed 6’s to wound. I was able to shut down Force in the early turns as well. Surprisingly, Steve never bothered shooting at my Prince. I’m sure he wasn’t really concerned with the combat ability of a Prince, which is great but he can be bogged down, but with the fact the Prince was casting maledictions and making his life difficult I figured would have warranted attention. The Heldrake’s lucky destruction of a Storm Talon went a long way as well in the game.

All the play testing is done so now I just need to wrap up a little base work on a few models and I’m ready for Saturday.

  • Another great bat rep. You are really tearing people up with this list!

    • Thanks.

      I’m really surprised how well I’ve been doing with the list. I don’t think I’ve ever done this well with Chaos, ever.

      Ultimately it’s the fact I just keep playing it over and over. It’s not a surprise that repeated play testing is effective of course. The most beneficial thing I’m learning in this process is how to handle my weaker match-ups, armies that I know I will struggle with.

      • Playing the same list over and over again is definitely the sure way to victory. There are so many special little rules and things we tend to forget when constantly changing up our lists. Just remembering them can swing the tide of battle.

        I can’t tell you the # of times my necron buddy has forgotten his destroyer lord has preferred enemy. That’s a huge deal!

        • Agreed. I was always forgetting to roll Huron’s power at the start of my turn. I’d remember when the psychic phase came up though. Seems minor but knowing what power you have ahead of time may impact your movement.

          Forgetting preferred enemy is a big deal for sure!

  • Ming

    Awesome report! Looking forward to tomorrow too!

  • Nafnaf

    Great read as always :). Good luck with your tourney tomorrow. Bring back some skulls!

    • I really, really hope to and thanks!

  • Nice writeup. It sounds like a fun match! As you and Greggles have already discussed, keeping a consistent list really does help you get better. I think you’ve also found a decent balance in a list that suits your play style.

    • I’ll be experimenting again after the SS but this list will get filed for future use. I enjoy experimenting but now I’ve learned to focus when needed. So, looking forward to working on goofy lists and making units people think suck work on the table :)

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