Fire & Warp Energy! Chaos Space Marines Vs Salamanders!

April 4, 2014 by brennon

“Tyrion looked down the length of his crackling warp blade and felt the power pulsing within it. He had tapped into far too much warp energy in order to deal with the current situation but he hoped encasing it within the ancient weapon would be enough to save his mind from being ripped apart.

It did not help that Skullstealer was so close by. The pathetic blood worshiper of Khorne was draining his essence and he could feel the eyes of his ‘comrade’ burning through the back of his skull every time he reached into the warp. He was under no illusion that as soon as his back was turned he would have that axe of his buried in his spine.

Looking around at the surly faces of his fellow dark brothers he wondered if it had been the right decision to enter the cabal of Cyrus Bloodswathe.”

Warp & Fire!

Holding the Objective

For this battle report I was taking up the reigns of the Chaos Space Marines once again and marshaling the dark forces against the fire loving, forge working Salamanders. We were going to be playing another 500pt game and here is what I went with…

Disciples Of The Raven Chaos Space Marines

Sorcerer (60) +1 Mastery Level (25)
Mark of Tzeentch (15) Aura of Dark Glory (15)
Spell Familiar (15) Gift of Mutation (10)
= 140pts

5x Chaos Space Marines (75) 5 More Chaos Marines (65)
Plasma Gun (15) Plasma Gun (15) Power Sword (15)
= 185pts

5x Chaos Space Marines (75) 5 More Chaos Marines (65)
Close Combat Weapons (-) Power Axe (15)
Marks of Khorne (20)
= 175pts


I decided that after the shambles I had faced with my Lord (mostly my fault but being Chaos I never accept responsibility) I would try out a Psyker and I knew my friends army was going to include a Librarian so it would be very useful. I decided to deck him out to the nines with a range of psychic enhancing abilities making him quite the master of the warp.

Sorcerer Set-Up

My other choices boiled down to wanting to wear as much power armour as possible and so I dropped any illusion of Cultists for a rather standard pack of marines with the two Plasma Guns and then bloodthirsty combat team with the Mark of Khorne to give them the special rule of Rage.

Khornate Set-Up

Gift of Mutation might also give me a little bit of an edge in the early game. Turns out it didn’t and I ended up rolling Fleshbane and you will see later why that didn’t help much! His rolled Psychic Powers ended up being both from the Tzeentch list and were Doombolt and Breath of Chaos.

Salamander Space Marines

Librarian with Storm Bolter

10x Tactical Marines with Flamer & Heavy Bolter

5x Tactical Marines with Heavy Bolter

Master of the Forge with Power Axe

Razorback with Twin Linked Assault Cannon


My friend was bringing a Librarian to match my Sorcerer albeit without all the bells and whistles. He would then reinforce him with a strong ten man squad with Heavy Bolter and Flamer alongside a Razorback which held the Master of the Forge and five more marines touting a Heavy Bolter as well. That Master of the Forge was my main worry but I thought I might be able to deal with him.

The battle we were playing was a simple solo objective based affair in the middle of the table. I rolled Master of Deception as my Warlord Trait so let my friend set up all his units and then deployed in the midst of buildings and walled off areas hoping to give myself as much cover as possible and therefore a nice route to the objective on top of a familiar looking landing pad.

Let The Burning Begin!

Since I had opted for Infiltration I was going to be setting up last and surprise surprise I didn’t steal the initiative. My friend moved up his Razorback and other Tactical Squad containing the Librarian and managed to loose off a few shots towards the Khornate warriors running through the buildings. Despite the death spitting Assault Cannon ripping up the ground it only managed to claim the life of one dark brother who was simply laughed at my his fellow Khorne worshipers.

Salamanders Advance
In my turn I used the opportunity to move up as quick as I could and ran my Khorne warriors into the building and up towards the landing pad. My other marines with the Sorcerer jogged forward too making a better job of the running but still couldn’t get a bead on the Salamanders with their bolters.

Turn two was another running affair and a few more snaps of bolter fire rang out over the ruined facility but failed to bring any Chaos Marines down. Turn three was where the real dangerous fighting began and my Chaos Space Marines moved up to face off against the Razorback. I had lost one or two marines in some ensuing fire but I was able to bring a plasma rifle and the Sorcerer’s spell down on the vehicle.

I fired the plasma rifle first and the damn thing overheated. The marine failed to save and so melted himself into a pool of goo. The shot from the rapid fire that did hit just rang off the metal hull of the sacred vehicle. My Sorcerer, sensing his powers would do much better, shot at it with Doombolt. The beam power fired off in a straight line and managed to smash into the side of the tank. It also claimed the life of a poor marine who was standing in the way, my own marine. The Doombolt looked to be on for a winner with +2 to the roll thanks to being AP1 and I dearly hoped for a massive Detonate special rule to take effect. Alas I rolled a one and simply shook the crew inside their tank.

Bad Idea
With that I knew my Sorcerer might be able to bite the dust. The Salamanders got out of the Razorback and the other battle brothers closed in as well. Somewhere Tyrion could hear the Skullstealer laughing. A hail of bolter fire and a flamer claimed most of the squad and I genuinely thought they were all toast. Thankfully not all of them did die and so I was able to move forward and return fire. This time the psychic Doombolt was denied, fickle Gods, and my other plasma gun managed to melt himself before the bolters claimed few kills. Skullstealer tried to add to the body count with some bolt pistol fire but his guns did little to the Salamanders.

In return Tyrion got shot to hell and back. It was a sickening amount of firepower that ended up bringing him down but I would like it to be noted that he practically passed all of his eleven armour saves he had to make! It was just the last two that might have been a bit of a problem. Either way the Salamanders had cleared the way to the objective and Skullsplitter sitting atop the landing pad.

Here is where I should really have just stayed up there and fought them as the Salamanders ran up the landing pad. It was much safer. But…

Khorne-eye View

Ahem. So, yes Skullsplitter tossed his bolt pistol aside, gripped his power axe, and roared an oath to the Blood God. He charged down from the landing pad and stood before the Master of the Forge’s unit. A few cracks of bolter fire later (from both sides through overwatch) and I was down a man but it would be Blood for the Blood God!

With that he charged and we were embroiled in combat. Skullstealer challenged and the Veteran Sergeant stepped up to protect his mewling Master of the Forge. The fight was brief and Skullsplitter tore him apart with his Rage induced attacks. The rest of the squad didn’t do much better though and managed to score no kills, the Salamanders claiming on in response.

Khornate Combat
The next turn saw the combat continue and the rest of the Salamanders including the Librarian charged into combat. The Master of the Forge issued a challenge this time seeing his Veteran Sergeant in pieces on the ground and so he and Skullsplitter went at it. Before that the rest of the marines duked it out and despite a whole bunch of scuffling the Khornate Marines came out on top slaying four Salamanders for two of their own. Skullsplitter however met his match and despite scratching the paintwork of the Master of the Forge was given a taste of his own medicine as an axe lopped his head off. Khorne gets his skulls either way.

I had, weirdly, won the combat despite Skullsplitter hitting the ground with a thunk. The Master of the Forge decided to regroup and fell back while the Librarian fought on. But, that ended up being the last turn of the game and I shook my friends hand. He had bested my Marines.

Back Through The Warp!

If I was doing the battle again I probably would have been more forward thinking with my Chaos Space Marines. I should not have bottle necked myself so much with my movement and pushed into the open terrain on the other side. With that said it should have been the marines with the Sorcerer who found themselves on top of the landing pad, not Skullsplitter! That somewhat messed up movement and decision on positioning was my undoing but it’s all a learning experience for the next game.

I had also underestimated the power of Khorne being usually a lover of Nurgle or Tzeentch but it was quite fun watching them Rage in that combat at the end. Plus it’s so much fun just saying ‘to hell with it’ and running at the enemy screaming like a madman.

Oh Dear

“Magnus looked down at the blood covered helmet of the traitor marine he had killed. His axe still sizzled with the mans blood as his servo harness spun into action and picked up the helmet. The head within fell out and to his surprise it was still spitting vile Khornate curses despite losing it’s body. Foul chaos sorcery no doubt.

With little thought Magnus tossed the helmet aside and crunched the skull of his enemy under his ceramite boots. It had been vengeance for the death of his Veteran Sergeant as well as a deep rooted hatred of these Once-Battle Brothers that had led him to challenge the champion of the Dark Gods. The words and wisdom of the Emperor had guided his hand.

The Sorcerer however had escaped, the man known as Tyrion Blackstar. As Magnus turned and looked to his Librarian companion he saw him warring with something in his mind beneath a troubled brow. They had not seen the last of these traitor marines.”

What would you have done differently?

"The Doombolt looked to be on for a winner..."

"Skullsplitter tossed his bolt pistol aside, gripped his power axe, and roared an oath to the Blood God"