40k Chaos: The new Cult Troops

Chaos Lords and Ladies, welcome back to my weekly installment here at the Ailarian! This week I would like to go over a few of the units that have been included in the most recent version of the chaos codex and talk about their overall effectiveness.

I would like to start off by saying that there are quite a few good things in the new codex so I am just going to go over a few that I deem are the best of the bunch. To start off I would like to talk about cult marines. In general cult marines have become much more unique in the new codex; each has its own set of special rules that really serve to diversify them.

Plague Marines

Plague marines are now easily the most survivable power armored troops in the game due to their T5 and Feel No Pain. To top this off they can take 2 special weapons in units under 10 men and can really take a charge due to blight grenades. On the down side they are expensive and have a slightly decreased initiative but are still well worth it in my book. Having a decreased initiative also makes them prime candidates for the use of a power fist on the champion as the drawback of striking last is not as pronounced as on normal marine squads.

Noise Marines

Noise marines have become the masters of volume of fire due to the new stats for the sonic blaster. This gun is like a storm bolter in steroids and when stationary pumps out ea metric ton of firepower. At first glance the Blast master seems to be way overpriced but when you consider that it fire close to a heavy bolter on the move and as a plasma cannon while stationary the cost is justified. On the other end of the spectrum we have the option of kitting noise marines out for close combat through the use of a champion with a power weapon and doom siren. The doom siren is one of the naughtiest weapons to ever use the flamer template and can turn anything short of terminators into quivering mounds of goo.

Thousand Sons

1k Sons have received mixed feelings and these tend to come from the fact that they are no longer as survivable as they used to be against small arms fire. Most people that simply included them in black legion lists are quite happy with them while cult players have had a rough time of it. Their shiny new bolter rounds can be quite scary to MEQs but in order to truly be effective they have to get in range for a rapid fire. Being slow and purposeful the only way to really do this is through the use of transports and again this does not sit very well with some of the cult players.


When rumors were first flying around the boards about the new codex a lot of players were very upset over the changes to berzerkers but for the life of me I cannot understand why. In the previous edition a smart opponent would use faster units to endlessly lead berzerkers around the board, effectively removing them from combat or even picking them apart from range while they did very little. In my opinion they have finally become the brutal and cold blooded killers that they were always meant to be. With higher weapon skill and attacks than a normal marine and the addition of furious charge it is hard not warm up to these close combat monstrosities. You do have the option of taking plasma pistols in the squad and to be honest this is the only place that I would ever even consider using plasma pistols. The champion can be given a fist or a power weapon though I will recommend the power weapon nearly every time as it allows him to take advantage of the initiative boost received from furious charge.

Bringing it all together

The one downside overall to cult troops is their hefty cost and due to this all but noise marines will have trouble thinning out hordes enough before they reach your lines. This is why in my opinion cult troops are best used either in combination with each other or with normal marine squads to help provide support for each others weaknesses. For instance, use plague marines as a tar pit and counter charge with berzerkers or use 1k sons in combination with noise marines so that the lack of fire volume from the 1k sons can be offset by the volume contributed by the noise marines. The possibilities are as endless as the warp!

Thanks for reading...