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View Full Version : This Chaotic Mindset: An attempt at a Thematic WoC force



Desalbert
17-10-2010, 02:58
Explanation and Preamble
I've been looking at getting an elite styled army for some time, and the focus on Gods and dark religion has always interested me regarding Chaos. I have never played them before, so I may be out of my element but...

My brother used to be a Chaos player back in the Hordes days but is getting out of the game altogether. This means that I can acquire some of his force cheaply, which further means Warriors of Chaos would be a good option for me in this oh-so-expensive hobby.

Now I'm usually not one to play 'the most popular armies'... just never appealed to me, but as a student of philosophy, religion and so on, the themes here are just way too cool to deny....

But what do I see when I look around for lists? A general view that seems to suggest WoC has to field certain units because they're just too good not to ( Khrone marked GW marauders, Halbred Warriors, etc etc just for the prowess, it seems, but not the image!). In essence, I see point and click slaughter and not so much of the randomness one might expect from the very phrase: "Chaos"... and:

That's not exactly appealing to me. So I noted that: Yes, while I want to eventually be a competitive player, I need to build an army that screams 'Chaos' to me.

So what is a Chaos army to me? Not so many regiments of armoured warriors, for one... Because that sounds a lot like 'order' (evil order, sure, but an ordered, regimented army, to say the least)

Instead: My Chaos army needs to be filled to the brim with oddities, beasts, possesions, random bloodshed, whatever strange and bizzare things I can grab-- in addition to fielding a more 'poorly equipped' rank and file that more mirrors what I would expect men of the north to be.

So, a mock rundown (after much ado): This is Chaos to me. A poorly equipped rabble-core enhanced by daemons, monsters and fell magics. They are a people (The Norsemen) with enough gall to dream to be great, but briming with cowardice in the face of defeat. I find the usual "plate armour" forces to be too...stoic and well behaved, in some senses... so:

What I envision fielding

Daemon Prince (regardless of how terrible they may be they are the very fact of the army-- the reason why men fight for the dark gods!) I believe they must be fielded whereever, and done with great pleasure!

Marauders with poor equipment: Flails, maybe hand/weapon and shields, maybe some armour, but no great weapons-- Just too 'well off' seeming, for them to have in a true tribe, in my opinion.

Marauder horsemen with javalins (the image is wayy too cool not to do! I mean, that's totally "low budget" and chaos-y feeling, no?-- Hit for the favour of the gods and run if things go poorly!

Gotta have a warshrine. Must have Ogres/Trolls/Shagoths-- all those crazy beasts! Perfect image! Wardogs, of course.

A single unit of forsaken or chosen-- THEY are the ones that ought to be armoured in full, but, I feel-- not so strongly about general warriors. (Maybe I'll have a small unit of 10 warriors just for bulk but, even they should be held up as noble and not a prolific sight on the field)

Spawns en masse-- The failed products of Chaos. Love this image. Damnation given form! Uncontrollable; this way and that way-- Chaos the way it was meant to be! (but how many can we take? I know the rule used to be 2 spawns was a single rare, but how does that work in the new % system?)

Hellcannon-- Again emphasising the random, chaotic nature that seems less and less played up these days in favour of reliable point and click forces.

I plan to:

Be greedy with sorcerors: roll the big dice or go home, baby, because Chaos isn't about moderation! It is about power! So, I plan to play my magic phase by the seat of my pants--rolling many dice for that beautiful IF-- and not trying to mitigate chances of miscast either-- Because if it goes wrong, the Gods fated it anyway, and he wasn't worth living! :D

Emphasize the randomness by taking units which are grotesque, bizzare, and uncontrollable as much as I can. (as discussed a bit earlier)


Thoughts?

-- Now, I know I've layed out several rare choices and all, so this isn't a list per se, as much as a mind set I want to have IF I decide to etch a pact with the stuff of Chaos itself-- but what do you think?

Am I mad for focusing on the weaknesses inherent to Chaos rather than their power-gaming strengths? Stupid Trolls, daemonic cannons, greedy sorcery, daemon lords. hordes of random spawn-- Deformaties galore! These sound great to me... am I alone in that?

But, be honest, am I crazy for trying to get the 'Chaos' back in WoC? Should I choose a different army if I want to go this route, or can Chaos be fielded with this flare and still be viable and fun?

Gooner
17-10-2010, 03:48
I fully agree about chaos seeming to be order now, most armies I face have masses of warriors and knights and chosen.

I do face one army that has maruader hordes, spawn, ogres, dragon ogres, and a bunch of other crazy stuff.

This army was the hardest to beat by far. Chaos warriors are so damn expensive my DE can outmanouver them easily, with a more diverse list they become a different army altogether.

I like the idea, the only thing i have to say is that spawns are not very good to be honest even if they are cool, have a few but not a ton.

and lastly dont give up on the marauders, the way I see it, its not very chaosy to use hand weapon and sheild, flailes are decent but nothing compared to great weapons. Great weapons fit the role for the unit and the fluff better than anything but additional hand weapons( these suck compared to GW) so just go for it. To make them not look like they are some rich greatsword mix in a few dual HW guys , flails and sheilds, and make the GW less greatsword like. the unit doesnt need uniform weapons , it needs over a majority. Change it up abit make them look like a mass of crazy northmen but use GW its too good to miss.

Alric
17-10-2010, 04:57
You might want to try playing one of the chaos god themed armies. I play Khorne themed armies or Slaanesh themed. Khorne is prolly the more regimental of the chaos armies fairly single minded in its goals , death , plus more death with a little death added on the side.

Slaanesh and Tzeentch are fairly chaotic armies. The older slaanesh and tzeentch models looked chaotic with the various mutations.

Its not as easy to create a chaotic looking army since they split the chaos armies. I think you are on the right track , maybe add some chaos spawn and a warshrine.

Vadth
17-10-2010, 05:45
(but how many can we take? I know the rule used to be 2 spawns was a single rare, but how does that work in the new % system?)


You have 2 limits. One, you can spent up to 25% of your point total on rare choices which includes Spawns. With that in mind you can have up to 4 Spawns in your army (maybe 5 if you include the special character) and 8(9) if you are playing a grand battle.

I think your ideas are fine. I haven't used trolls and the Hellcannon yet but I very much want to. They seem to be very solid choices. I currently play with 3 wizards and I can tell you they make the game very random. My personal opinion of Spawns have change since I fielded one for the first time today. Even though he couldn't do a single wound, my Spawn held a unit of knights in place which allowed my Chaos Knights a flank charged. I mainly brought a box of Chaos Spawns for the bits but now I'm thinking of buying another box so I can field 4 Spawns at once!

DenWhalen
17-10-2010, 06:33
A friend of mine put together a great looking unit of GW marauders. He used a wide variety of weapons (swords, axes, clubs, picks, hammers and maces) that he either got as extra bits or modeled by splicing two weapons together to get elongated handles. The finished product looked great and the variety looked like they had picked up their weapons from the field after crushing many enemies. I thought they were very flavorful and chaotic.

gaarew
17-10-2010, 08:19
Two things:

Have you considered Beastmen?

I love the way you are going about this.

Desalbert
19-10-2010, 14:56
Two things:

Have you considered Beastmen?

I love the way you are going about this.

I indeed have considered Beastmen, and am still doing so! In fact, I nearly had a whole army picked out in an online cart at Wayland until I felt rising doubt and ran away! (LOL)

I guess a few things that worried me about them was the way in which they don't...feel...Chaos enough-- I mean, there's not enough variance in the beast-form and not enough tentacles (basically). From a fluff standpoint even more, there's barely a mention of the Gods, which for me is problematic-- and it frankly seems like the Gods don't care for them.

As well, the sub-part shooting (worse than WoC imo considering the hellcannon) and a lack of any warmachine had me scared. As did their relationship to Orcs and Goblins in terms of playstyle. [an army I own currently]

Now, if someone could convince me that any of the above wasn't a problem, I would strongly consider them again--- but even still, though Beastmen seemed a more natural draw for me [ambush, yes please?], humans who have chosen a life in the dark arts is equally as intriguing (and chaos magic is so apealing!)

Gorbad Ironclaw
19-10-2010, 15:53
Beastmen does sounds a lot more like what you are after if you want a random mix of various monsters and chaotic lifeforms. The horrofying monsters at the edge of human society and sanity.

The Hordes of Chaos book is really invading armies/raiding parties. So they are going to appear a lot more like a proper military force because that's what they are. The best fighters any given Champion could gather to his banner and while there motivation and ultimate goals might be mind blastingly insane they will fight and campaign as you might expect an army to do.

But first and foremost it's the mortal followers of Chaos who have choosen to walk down this part. Beastmen don't really have a chose, they are born to Chaos, but even then chaotic tribes men technically have a choice, although going against there culture would be difficult. Anyway, my point was that I honestly don't think Demon Princes are that thematically fitting. Once you have risen to that level you get to leave the whole warband fighting and campaigning behind and get to focus on the real struggle the gods are involved in. Let the mortals still waiting to prove themselves trudge around in the mud trying to bash each others brains in, you got better things to do once you become a Demon.

(I'd also disagree about great weapons being "wealth/well equipped". Swords yes, but generic great weapons? Not so much. Besides, warrior tribes would put a premium on good wargear)

astornfleshlay
19-10-2010, 16:08
Have you considered a mixed army?
If you're playing friendly games, this will work without too much moaning :)

With my current WoC army, I feel it's fluffy enough to mix anything from Daemons or Beastmen into my army. I don't have much from the other armies yet (currently just a unit of Bloodletters added to my WoC), but it definitely adds flavor to the army. I'm really thinking of adding some Beastmen Ungors too (not because they're a "good" unit...quite the opposite...but more because I like the models).

With the new "Allied" rules, this shouldn't be much of a problem anyway.

And what's great about it is the fact that it opens up your army selection considerably, and you can really stick to the models/themes that you enjoy or that make sense to you and your style of play!

I guess the only draw-back is that you need the relevant army books from the armies you're using, and play by multiple army rule-sets (which may, or may not, get confusing).

I really like the idea of bringing all the Chaos armies back together like they used to be (ie. Warriors of Chaos, Daemons of Chaos, Beastmen)

gaarew
19-10-2010, 16:12
I guess a few things that worried me about them was the way in which they don't...feel...Chaos enough-- I mean, there's not enough variance in the beast-form and not enough tentacles (basically).



Look at this as a challenge, rather than a roadblock. Take the opportunity to convert every single model in the arms.

If you don't limit yourself to goats/cattle, you could have all sorts of anthropomorphic beasties running about. The Lizardmen and Skaven kits would give you a lot of parts to work with, and, harking back to the older (much older) Chaos miniatures, some Beastmen look almost human, save for small horns, or a small mutation.

Beastmen are the Children of Chaos after all... You just need to figure out whether they have been blessed or cursed.

I think it is strange you advocate taking the path less travelled with WoC, saying you aren't going for a comp list, but worry about trivialities like shooting phases for Beastmen. And, as far as warmachines go, there is a very big, very scary catapult hiding in the Rare section of the Beastman book. Check under the heading Cygor. ;)

Also, they are very different to O&G. The Ambush rule gives you something that will immediately make the army play differently to O&G, plus you get Primal Fury rather than Animosity.

Ultimately, you could always just plan for a really big army, and drag the most monstrous parts from both the Beastmen and WoC lists.

Lord_Elric
19-10-2010, 16:19
I personaly see greatwepons as being the most fluffy for norsemen mauraders not greatswords of corse but 2H Clubs/Hammers/maces and axes! being exceptionaly nordic nothing screams crazy demon worshipping viking like a 2 handed axe i would however if you dont want to use regimental chaose warriors then i would use chaos warrior models for things like command group and especialy your lords, Having the horde of uncontrolable mad men being led by the biggest heavy armoured SOB there is there

If your going chaos in the true sense of the word then there is only one GOD to dedicate your army and sorcerers too and thats Tzeench all the way, Hes called the changer of ways for a reason lol

Lord_Elric
19-10-2010, 16:27
O and if u plan on doing WoC dont forget your forsaken there the most chaoticy than anything lol

mrtn
19-10-2010, 22:46
I see gaarew is carrying the beastman standard, so I can mainly say I agree with him. :D

You're right that the fluff in the newest armybook is toning down the chaos influence, but the old stuff is still out there, and I know a lot of people who ignore the latest fluff and still dedicate their armies/characters to the chaos gods. Personally I'm painting up a beastlord with a Khorne shield and a bird headed Tzeentch shaman ATM.

There's quite a few "non-standard" beastmen in the fluff, and they're not too hard to convert. I myself have horsegors, liongors, cowgors and wolfgors in my army, and a fair amount of general mutants as well. See the link in my sig if you're curious. :)

I don't think the beastmen are very similar to O&G in playstyle, Primal Fury make your units dependable, while Animosity does anything but. Check out the Herdstone (link in my sig) for a beastmen forum.

I agree with others that great weapons shouldn't be a problem, just make a majority wield axes and clubs and similar.

If you finally end up going with WoC you can still add a bunch of beastmen to your army, just use them to convert marauders into mutants. Oh, and I'd love a painting diary.

seraphile
19-10-2010, 22:51
I wholehertedly agree, chaos, epsecially WoC have turned more and more from the "Chaos" they are supposed to embody.

I've been toying with a similar idea and have considered some other options such as;
1. Instead of mixing the army books and taking allies, how about just using Beastmen models as "counts as" marauders?
2. Convert, Convert, Convert. Beastmen and chaos should not be so ordered, as mentioned the lizardmen and skaven are perfect for conversion opportunities, I have some daemons converted from lizardmen and a Daemon Prince from an old stegadon - let nothing but your warped imagination limit chaos models - this is how it should be.

Whichever route you do take, make sure to take pics and keep us updated

Desalbert
20-10-2010, 00:07
But first and foremost it's the mortal followers of Chaos who have choosen to walk down this part. Beastmen don't really have a chose, they are born to Chaos, but even then chaotic tribes men technically have a choice,

This is exactly what I actually like about WoC over beastmen-- The inherent damnation of the CHOICE to tread the path. While I certainly want to include monsters in my army, it's not wholly because I just want to field Monsters (and therefore should go Beastmen) but rather because I feel that this is what walking beside Chaos would look like. Replete with Trolls, Ogres and god knows what else...

Other posts are quite right though about the ordered nature of WoC as a raider force-- true-- but yet, that can be changed if one fields it like I'm hoping to.

Now, I'm not discrediting Beasts (I really do love them) but the lack of a focus on the Gods and their role in the army is odd. The arbitrary references to the fact that they are, by nature, Chaos children doesn't exactly spark my imagination. I mean, at least no where near as much as the notion of those who CHOOSE it. That's what excites me too. The image of damned by choice-- fallen by choice-- and not by birth.

I'm still considering the Beasts, but right now, WoC just seem more interesting. Especially as someone with a generally poor hand for converting and so forth.

But, again, Beasts are truly possible-- I just wish we had horsegors, wolfgoars, boargoars, lionagors, and so on BUILT into the sprues of the beasts already-- One would figure that Chaos doesn't simply mutate all things into forest-goats....

IF I were good at converting, Beastmen would be exceedingly interesting despite their.... '1 dimensional' fluff.

Desalbert
20-10-2010, 02:57
Having said all this, I thought I'd offer up a 1750 list (basically what I plan on buying and subsequently fielding until I expand. It's just one permutation of the kind of "true Chaos WoC" I feel like I'm being drawn to. It doesn't have everything that appeals to me about this idea, but its just one example.

Lords and Heroes

Daemon Prince- Lvl. 2 Wizard, Mark of Nurgle (Lore of Nurgle) w/ Acid Ichor

"The Scryer"- Chaos Sorceror- Lvl. 2 Wizard, Mark of Tzeentch ( Lore of Tzntch) w/ Chaos steed; the obligatory fate-weaving shaman of the tribe

Core
20 Mauraders w/ Flails Light Armour + standard & musician

20 (shambling) Marauders w/ Great Weapon, Mark of Nurgle + Musician & standard

"The Fated": 10 Warriors of Chaos w/ hand weapon, shield, Mark of Tzeetch-- supposed to represent tribal 'nobility' that advance implacably against their foe, full in the knowledge that they are fated for glory... heedless of course, of the fact that they are but ten of thousands who believed the same, yet bled or fled all the same.

5 Chaos Marauder Horsemen w/ spears and Javelins
5 Chaos Marauder Horsemen w/ spears and Javelins

These guys will give the tribe, speed and range, in addition to having the feel of Steppes-based horse-archers, what with the ranged ability

Special
4 Ogres of Nurgle (mark of nurgle) w/ heavy armour and Great Weapons

I'd be likely to do some fun converting on these guys if I'm up to it, or at least a disgustingly decaying paint job eventually. Nurgle Ogres. Love that image

Rare:

2 Chaos Spawn (could see myself fielding up to 4 and reworking the whole list, but I wanted to include:

1 Hell Cannon for obvious reasons.

Now, this is a simple list, but I wanted to capture some of my favourite aesthetics in it. I just drew it up in about 10 minutes, so it will change, but, just for flavour of the kind of "True Chaos" Tribal vibe I'm after.

Things I would surely add as points went up or as a swap: Trolls. Sorceror on Disk. Warshrine. War Dogs. Forsaken.

Now, I wonder what a 1750 Beastmen tribe along the same lines might look like.

spiderman5z
20-10-2010, 04:54
pshaw we all know the most chaosy army out there is chaos dwarves =P

Desalbert
20-10-2010, 05:03
pshaw we all know the most chaosy army out there is chaos dwarves =P

That may be, my good man!

I'd love to start them if they were fully supported; even if it were a few years old army book like Tomb Kings, with an equally old (but available) range of miniatures.

Sadly, they have neither, and are not even supported in the latest iteration of the Blood Bowl PC game! So... GW just hates the Chaotic Bearded ones, and it's a shame... because I have not the energy to build that army without the above conditions.... :(

Gorbad Ironclaw
20-10-2010, 13:49
One would figure that Chaos doesn't simply mutate all things into forest-goats....


But there is a reason Beastmen look the way they do on the sprues. They are the Beastmen you find in the Empire and one of the theories are that the form Beastmen takes are at least influenced by the local believes, expectations and fears. So in a sense Beastmen will be the local populations fears and nightmares given form.

Anyway, two questions for your list.
Do you really think a Demon prince is appropriate for leading what's essentially a couple of dozen guys?
And why the Tzeentch and Nurgle mix? Traditionally those two hate each other as they embody opposite elements, just as Khorne and Slaanesh do.

Obviously you can always just make up your own fluff to explain why it's the way it is, it just struck me as a weird mix.

Idle Scholar
20-10-2010, 15:11
Was I the only one who half expected a Byzantine inspired army?

Desalbert
20-10-2010, 16:33
But there is a reason Beastmen look the way they do on the sprues. They are the Beastmen you find in the Empire and one of the theories are that the form Beastmen takes are at least influenced by the local believes, expectations and fears. So in a sense Beastmen will be the local populations fears and nightmares given form.

Anyway, two questions for your list.
Do you really think a Demon prince is appropriate for leading what's essentially a couple of dozen guys?
And why the Tzeentch and Nurgle mix? Traditionally those two hate each other as they embody opposite elements, just as Khorne and Slaanesh do.

Obviously you can always just make up your own fluff to explain why it's the way it is, it just struck me as a weird mix.


As to the Beastmen; good point... that devilish goat/ satyre look. Interesting. I didn't know men helped form them, imagination wise, like Daemons...

As to my choices; I think the Daemon prince ought to be the centre piece, yeah, all through the force is variations of those who are "on the path" to glory and damnation... from the Prince, to the sorceror, to the rank and file... to the low and failed spawn. All degrees of the effect of chaos.

More importantly, the Nurgle and Tzeentch combo was more reflective of my feeling that they are truly the most interesting Gods. They both represent some kind of immortality push, as well as the 'change' that Chaos supports. From life to death, strong to weak, healthy to sick (in nurgle's case), to the fires of fate and the pure change of tzeentch.

Chaos is, I think, about the desire for change, altogether, and immortality in that. Death and Change. Together. death in fact, IS change, immortality is life, and knowledge is power. Power, Life, Death, Change. That's Chaos.


Nurgle and Tzeentch reflect this best.

These are just my first thoughts on it, but I'm glad you disagree with the flavour (or at least question it!)

To the last post: And byzantine? I'm sorry, was that expected of Chaos, or of my list, and how so?

Idle Scholar
20-10-2010, 16:56
To the last post: And byzantine? I'm sorry, was that expected of Chaos, or of my list, and how so?

The mid to late Byzantine Empire was organised into regions called 'Themes', and armies of that period are often referred to as 'Thematic Byzantine armies' to distinguish them from earlier types.

mrtn
20-10-2010, 21:17
Nurgle is portrayed as the god of decay, stagnation and acceptance of your fate, that's why he's diametrically opposed to Tzeentch.

Desalbert
20-10-2010, 22:19
Nurgle is portrayed as the god of decay, stagnation and acceptance of your fate, that's why he's diametrically opposed to Tzeentch.

I certainly recognize these trappings in Nurgle's image-- but is not decay a major aspect of change? I mean, sure there's a sort of stagnant balance, a kind of to-and-fro between life and death.

But, with the amount of physical changes one undergoes, continously, under nurgle it would seem as dynamic as ever. He himself is said to create new diseases daily at his pot.

Obviously, there's permanence in nurgle where there isn't in Tzeentch, but I want to stress that I do see elements of change in him too-- Death and Decay and the loss of Health to sickness are changes. The first two may be more forseeable, than the onset of disease, but they are changes nontheless.

Crimifa
21-10-2010, 11:21
... my post got rejected because i got interrupted halfway for 30 minutes lol

so i shall not go to the trouble of rewriting it and summarise it

tzeentch's ultimate thing is "hope"... rampent change just happens to be the physical representation of "hope" taken to the extreme
nurgle's ultimate thing is "despair"... decay and disease are the physical representations of "despair"

despair and hope are opposites of each other... which is where the friction between nurgle and tzeentch comes into play... otherwise they get on swimmingly (nurgle is pretty laid back about most things, he plays the long game and figured why not enjoy oneself in the enternal despair and futility of it all and tzeentch is everyone's second best friend's cousin's uncle's sister's mother's father's neighbour... or something like that... he changes his mind alot and will do anything for an advantage, ANYTHING, lol)

anywho, i also was inspired to make this list... i had full descriptions of its composition, tactics, themantics and minor alterations i would prefer (like how to outfit the daemon prince and dislike of the hellcannon in it in favour of more spawns)
but i will only go into them if anyone is curious
so here it is 2000 points (the character have a generous points allowance as i couldn't decide what to kit them with)
Lords
Daemon Prince

Heroes
exalted hero
BSB
sorcerer
Core

marauders x 30
weapon (any)
full command
marauders x 20
weapon (any)
light armour
full command
horsemen X5
javelins
musician
horsemen X5
javelins
musician
horsemen X5
javelins
musician
warhounds x 10

Special
forsaken x6

chosen x11
full command
shields
Rare
hell cannon
warshrine
spawn
spawn

i am not suggesting that this is what you should go with, its just what i was inspired to write after reading your ideas (a tribe that represents the "path of chaos")
oh but i will add... i purposefully chose not to mark anything to represent the tribe's dedication to "chaos" as a whole... the full gambit of the dark arts