Khorne Daemonkin: First Game

It’s been a long time since I got to play a new codex game. Meaning, a codex for an army I haven’t played. I’ve played Chaos Space Marines with Daemons Allies a bunch but Khorne Daemonkin is it’s own thing despite pulling in units from two different codices.

The Khorne Daemonkin list I brought along was pretty tame. I don’t like to jump into a new codex trying out all the new toys at once. I prefer to get a grasp on the basic army mechanics before throwing 20 special rules I need to know into the mix on top of army basics. Plus, I need more Daemons and had a pretty limited selection to pull from.

Disciples of Twilight: Khorne Daemonkin – 1,650


  • Soulgore (Chaos Lord) – Axe of Khorne, The Skull-helm of Khorne, Melta Bombs, Sigil of Corruption, Juggernaut of Khorne
  • Herald of Khorne – Hellblade, Exalted Locus of Wrath, Juggernaut of Khorne, The Brazen Rune


  • Terminators (5) – Combi-melta, Reaper Autocannon


  • Rampage (Berzerkers) (8)
    • Skull Champion – Melta Bombs, Power Sword
    • Rhino – Dozer Blade
  • Redemption (Chaos Space Marines) (10) – Meltagun x 2
    • Aspiring Champion – Melta Bombs
    • Rhino – Dozer Blade
  • Cultists (8) -Autoguns, HeavyStubber
    • Cultist Champion – Shotgun

Fast Attack

  • Flesh Hounds of Khorne (8)
  • Spawn (5)
  • Chaos Bikers (5) -Meltaguns x 2
    • Aspiring Champion – Melta Bombs

Heavy Support

  • Maulerfield – Lasher Tendrils

Again, a pretty tame Khorne Daemonkin list. A fast list but no silliness or attempts at abusing the codex. Oh, the Lord joined the Hounds and the Herald the Spawn…cause I can now!

The Game

There is absolutely no way I can do a real report on this game. If you want to know why, gander down at that gallery and look at those last three shots. Yeah, a big o’le melee sandwich. Oh right, my opponent was Orks playing with a Daemon summoning list…go figure!

In short, I sent the Maulerfiend, Hounds and Lord up the right flank. The Spawn with Herald up the left flank. Berzerkers ran straight down the center. The result you can see below.

I slammed into the Ork blob, in a single turn, with my Lord and Hounds, Berzerkers and Spawn with Herald. He had 30 Boyz with some various attached HQs, close to 40 models total. Bear in mind what I hit him with when I tell you that I only killed off around 8 Orks on the charge with all my units. That’s how that center combat went for the game. I’d kill a few, he’d kill a few but it was a game of attrition he could better afford and did. Ultimately he wiped out the Lord, Hounds, Berzerkers, Spawn and Herald.

That being said, the rest of my army wasn’t hanging around. My Bikers scored a few points and my Terminators did amazingly well. I notoriously have terrible luck with Terminators, despite loving them. This game they netted me 4pts on their own. I guess they just prefer Khorne over Nurgle.

We went six turns and the game ended 13-11, my win.

Khorne Daemonkin Lessons

Being able to get the Axe of Khorne on my Chaos Lord with Khorne Daemonkin is cool but I overestimated its use. It’s 30pts and is a user strength, AP2 weapon with Decapitating Blow (6’s to wound are instant death). No bonus to strength and it’s a specialist weapon, so no bonus attack with the bolt pistol, hurt. I mean, it did alright but for the points I think I’d rather stick with the claw/fist combo. I thought about Goredrinker (+1S, AP2, unwieldy and you gain bonuses the more you kill), but I don’t like unwieldy on an I5 character. Now, on a Prince, hell yeah but that’s for the next game.

The Skull Helm was nice though. Generating more attacks when rolling 6’s to hit doesn’t suck and it’s only 15pts. I can see using this one a lot more. The fear effect came up once too!

The Herald worked out pretty well. It does suck not being able to get a cheap Axe of Khorne on him with Khorne Daemonkin, he’s stuck with the AP3 Hellblade, but those are the breaks. Having the Exalted Locus of Wrath, gives hatred, was awesome to have with those Spawn. First charge they got they rolled the 6 for random attacks, 2 for rage, so 32 attacks with re-rolls to hit. It was beautiful. *wipes a tear from his eye*

The Blood Tithe for Khorne Daemonkin. Holy shit. It was great. First off, it’s super easy to generate these, seriously. For turn #3-5 I ran Feel no Pain, which requires 3 points. I honestly think it’s one of the better ones. At 4 points you get +1 attack, neat but I think I’d rather stick with FNP at 3pts, which is what I did ;)

On turn #6 I summoned 3 Bloodcrushers. Now, I could have gotten a Prince, I had 7pts, but the Prince having wings meant I wouldn’t get to charge anything before the game ended and likely the Orks wouldn’t rush to charge it either. Jeremy, my opponent, had no S8 shooting left so figured I’d mess with Crushers for the hell of it.

One of my favorite moments, speaking of the points, was on turn #5. I had 6pts for the Blood Tithe and had my Bikers fighting a Big Mek in mega-armor. I was in a challenge with him and took three wounds. I had FNP up that turn and rolled my dice one by one. The last wound I failed my FNP, lost my Champion and I cheered. I fucking cheered the death of my own Champion. That meant one more point for the Tithe, putting me at 7 for a Prince! Now, at the time I wasn’t thinking about the deep strike stuff noted above. I was simply excited I could summon a Prince. I was cheering on my own death and I loved it.

What an absolute blast of a game. I haven’t had that much fun playing a game in a while. It was like Jeremy said, “Even when you lose you still win,” in regards to the Blood Tithe. So, very true. I’m really loving the Khorne Daemonkin.

Anyone else out there get to try their Khorne Daemonkin?

  • Nice game, glad to see deamonkin isn’t too shabby. Khorne is my favorite chaos god, so this would be the chaos army for me. Looking forward to seeing more

    • I think they’re great. It’s still Khorne and still about smashing in heads but it plays differently than other Khorne oriented lists from other codices. As such, lots of bitching and complaining but I like it as it is. It has the glaring weakness of a lack of shooting but that’s to be expected and people just need to figure out how to work the codex. Running lots of fast units like I did with one to deep strike in worked out well.

      • Yeah, it’ll work well in a multi wave style, continuously hitting their lines over the course of the game with units and summoned deamons with blood points.

  • Sounds awesome Thor! Glad to hear you had so much fun with the codex. Definitely looking forward to possibly adding these guys to my forces!

    • Sooooo much fun. It felt like a Khorne army and played like one and that’s the most important thing to me.

      • I just love it because I feel it might really work with the ork dread mob. All the daemons go flying in and causing havoc, the orks hear the commotion, but take a bit to get there, then as they hit the line, you start popping DP’s and Bloodthisters from all the dead units they wiped out :)

        • A two phase assault like that could definitely work out. Let the Daemons draw fire since they’re faster and can take the hits better and then reinforce.

          • Aye, and almost all the ork walkers are Str 10, AP2, and have D3 hammer of wraths due to the dread mob…so having something hold someone in place means you can do some utterly tremendous damage when they strike home.

  • Sounds like it’ll be a fun codex to play. Lots of little nuances and options to take?

    • It’s pretty straight forward really. For anyone familiar with CSM and Daemons, the only new rule is the Blood Tithe, beyond formation specific ones. The wargear is the same stuff as before. Who can take what altered some but still pretty close to before.

      Overall a really simple codex to pick up and run with. That surely annoys some people but that’s been the way of 7th codices.

      • Ah. Do you think the trick will be grabbing and maintaining your Tithe points at a point they’ll matter? You mentioned the choice of summoning the Prince on the last turn of the game, when he would make no difference at all. Does it become a choice between killing and sacrificing units early to get points and summon backup, or keeping them alive to play the mission?

        • The army really does revolve around the Tithe. Detachment, formations and even warlord traits push this.

          I don’t see a need to sacrifice units, though there’s a formation that lets you do that with Cultists. I look at it this way, if I’m feeding units into the enemy just to die, and maybe do some damage, to generate points for the Tithe then likely any backup I summon won’t make up for the losses. Summoned units have to deep strike, so even when you get that unit they are useless for that turn they arrive, and of course the risk of deep strike in general. I feel a unit on the board already that’s alive is worth more than gaining some new ones considering the circumstances.

          Same of true of the Prince and Thirster, more-so actually with wings. The designer note does state the models come as modeled and mentions wings on a Prince as an example. So, I’m going to make a Prince without wings just for summoning. Otherwise, even if you got them on turn #2, which would be nearly impossible, they won’t contribute until turn #4 when they can assault. Most players wouldn’t have the points until turn #3 at the earliest.

          I’m rambling. I feel it’s worth more to keep what you have on the table alive, IE: FNP like I kept doing, than it is to summon units to replace losses. I think if you can summon really early then it’s worth it and then switch to defensive spending. A late game summoned unit could turn the game by landing on an objective. The Blood Tithe is definitely a strategy.

          • Actually, just a little point to note here, winged monsters only swoop when brought on from Deep Strike Reserves, not just any time you deep strike. People get this mixed up because Conjuration Psychic powers say you come in from Reserves, nothing in BftBG summoning mentions reserves in any way. It’s the same reason why you don’t use Interceptor when a unit deploys using Skies of Blood out the back of a Storm Raven (unless it came in from Reserves that turn anyhow), just because you performed a Deep Strike, doesn’t automatically mean you came from Reserves.

            You still can’t charge same turn though (part of the Deep Strike rules), but you can charge the turn after just fine.

            • I’d love to go for that logic but I don’t see it. The rules cover an FMC starting on the board. The rules cover an FMC coming from reserves and the rules cover an FMC coming from deep strike reserves. What the rules do not cover is an FMC arriving by deep strike but not from reserves.

              Now, we have rules for deep strike but an FMC has exceptions, that’s why they are listed in the FMC section. I feel that GW missed this possibility of a deep striking FMC not from reserves and not that it just uses normal deep strike rules in that situation. If they are going to list all the special circumstances for an FMC and reserves then they would list all options, even those that follow standard process as is typical of them.

              I won’t argue that your interpretation isn’t RAW but I definitely don’t see it as intended.

              • Sean

                Just clarifying here. With the blood tithe isn’t the DP/Thirster not actually deep striking at all? A character is just turning into it which means it can do whatever it wants in its first turn. With the bloodletters, hounds, crushers and cannon they are all deep striking, but the DP and thirsters are morphing from/exploding out of one of your characters.

                • You are replacing a character with the DP or Thirster but the model does arrive by deep strike and it’s the deep striking portion that creates the rule fuzziness.

          • Dennis Harrison

            I completely agree on not sacrificing units. I am planning on fielding the Charnel Cohort with my Tzeentch daemons. It aligns perfectly with the models I have. While I am losing OS on the blood letters, I do gain counter attack on all the models in the cohort.

            • It still surprises me that they revamped the daemonic hatred so Khorne doesn’t hate Tzeentch and instead hates Slaanesh.

              • Dennis Harrison

                It has always been Khorne vs. Slaanesh since the Realms of Chaos books. Nurgle is anti-Tzeentch. That is why when building two powers I went Khorne and Tzeentch.

                • Huh. For some reason I thought it was different before but I’ll gladly admit when I’m wrong. Maybe it’s just because it makes sense for Khorne to dislike Tzeentch *shrugs*

                  • Dennis Harrison

                    Because of the anti-magic thing, right. It does seem to make sense. I guess since Slaanesh is pleasure and Khorne is blood they went that way. From the books pretty much everyone hates Tzeentch I guess. Someone was making the point the other day that they almost never do multiple powers working together in the novels and fluff as well. Which is why daemon armies on the table top seem a little strange. It is like take BIS units to make the perfect army. My hope is the Daemonkin books can ally, but we will see.

                    • The psyker part for sure. Also though, Slaanesh is comparable to Khorne in terms of combat on the field. Obviously they’re different but I see Slaanesh as the closest match to Khorne in this regard.

                      Each god definitely prefers to fight alone and it takes something really special for them to set aside their differences and fight together.

  • Sin Synn

    ‘Grats on the win, and I’m glad yer liking the book!

    • Thanks. I might have to go with it being my favorite codex.

      • That sounds great, I’m really looking forward to my first game with this Codex.
        Thanks for this report!

        • I can’t wait for my second game tonight. Blood for the Blood God!

          • And Skulls for the Skull Throne!

            Have fun, Thor!

          • druthu

            I really can’t wait to read about the list and how it performed. Very inspiring. I just ordered my book.

            • I don’t hear the word inspiring thrown about much here so thanks!

              The battle report will be up this weekend. It was yet another properly bloody battle for the Blood God.

  • Chaos Marauder

    Just a thought, couldn’t you run in the shooting phase after you deepstrike which states that you ‘move’ and under the changing flight mode rule it says when you ‘move’ (not necessarily in movement phase) you can declare to change flight mode? now in this case you couldn’t ‘shoot’ the lashwhip but would definitely save another turn changing modes

    • Changing flight modes is done explicitly in the movement phase. A deep striking unit forgoes their movement phase and thus you cannot change flight modes on arrival. So, you can run for sure but it won’t change your flight status.

      I’m really hoping GW covers this in an FAQ sooner than later seeing as the internet is up in arms over the whole thing.

  • khorneinquisitor

    Awesome stuff. Haven’t had the chance to play a game, and as my wife is going to college class for the next 8 weeks I may not for quite a while. That said, I would recommend the chariot. A lot tougher to crack than you would think (12/12/10 with 5++) and that 6″ bubble with the loci makes it an impressive unit. I put together a blood host initially but I am just not thrilled with the tax you have to pay on a lot of the formations, so I went with a list similar in concept. A LOT of small units that I can chuck at the enemy. I am looking forward to reveling in the carnage and dead models…his or mine, matters not. Last Sunday I had the opportunity to run my rebels and I feel that they compliment this codex perfectly. They add the bulk firepower and the flexibility that it needs. And as IA13 specifies that they use the same ally matrix as CSM, they are BB with Khorne Daemonkin as far as I understand. But looks like a lot of fun to play and I can’t wait. Now…just need to get bikes. I DO finally have a reason to run my warp talons again though as they are now DoK and I can plant them within 6″ with a Banner of Blood to get the blind effect to work.

    • I’ve been thinking about the chariot for just those reasons.

      It’s all those new possibilities that are great with this codex. The merger of the two armies into one lets us finally do some of those cool things we always wanted to.

      • khorneinquisitor

        Agreed. I will say this though, The bloodthirster with a D weapon is amazing. Used him last week in a game, though it was in my daemon army. I1 attacks don’t hurt too bad with his WS 10. With 8 attacks on the charge plus hatred due to my nearby chariot, he plowed through an entire squad of TH/SS terminators in a single round while only taking 2 wounds due to the need for a 5 to hit him. He also works to basically auto crack landraiders and tough vehicles. We also tested him against a knight. Upshot is that he will handily dispatch the knight. Downside is that the stomp normally gets him. Knights need to hit him on a 5 so their Strength D weapon is tough to bring to bear on him.

        • Thirsters are great but not indestructible, that’s for sure. I need cash to buy the new one :(

          • khorneinquisitor

            yep, they are just as squishy as always. I have the opposite problem I used to…I have the money now but damned if I have the time. I can sometimes squeeze in a game every week or so if I am lucky.

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