19 March 2019
I feel the warp overtaking me… it is a good pain!
What with Blackstone Fortress, Haarken Worldclaimer and most recently Shadowspear, the news that the humble Chaos Space Marine is getting an update is hardly unexpected news. Nevertheless, it’s still quite something to hear after a period of nearly two decades of using the same miniatures line.
If memory (and flicking through a couple of old White Dwarf back issues) serves me right, the current incarnation of traitor astartes first came out in around 2002 or so, back when 40k was in its third edition. I’ve been in the hobby long enough to remember when Dark Vengeance – the previous starter set – came out, and the hype surrounding the prospect of updated Chaos Marines. We got the Chosen from the starter box, then a new Raptor set, then a few individuals… but no new marines.
So here they are. It was probably inevitable that Chaos Marines would get an update for their core infantry ever since the Primaris hit the tabletop; in this current age of biggering of scale (cough … not to mention prices … cough cough), the heretic space marines had begun to look rather out of place compared to their loyalist counterparts. Even when compared to ordinary human-sized figures the miniatures had started to look a bit titchy, as the move away from 28mm heroic scale to 32mm has seen figures like Tempestus Scions and Genestealer cultists beefing up somewhat.
The new marines, it seems, are a mix of the look from the current plastic kit and the Chosen from Dark Vengeance. From the pictures shown so far, it looks like there are options to kit each squad out for ranged or close quarters fighting, with either bolters or bolt pistols and chainswords. There’s also the usual special weapons trinity of melta, plasma and flamer, as well as heavy weapons in the form of a heavy bolter or missile launcher. There’s also stuff for the aspiring champion like plasma pistols, power axes/ fists (It’s not exactly a shot in the dark to guess that a power sword will be there as well), as well as an icon for the icon bearer.
It remains to be seen whether this new look will be accompanied by a rules revamp or buffing at all. One of the big problems that Chaos Marines have had for a long time (including cult units, for that matter) is that the spikey armoured chaps themselves have tended to be the weakest element of the codex, with a fragility and lacklustre damage output that makes it hard to justify their points cost over cultists. For now, only time will tell.