I have been playing this awesome game since Clinton was President of this country, and I've had the honor of seeing EVERY army get their love over and over. Add to that my time in the Emperor's service and I can tell you that my own Power Armor has taken every kind of shot the less-controlled gamers out there can throw. One of the many has been the incessant whining about the CSM book.
In second edition, the game saw a great Chaos codex- thicker than any other and packed full of great artwork and fluff! Then, the much-ridiculed third edition was released and the Chaos Marines were given their 'pamphlet', just like everyone else. Unlike everyone else, however, this pamphlet/codex worked for Chaos. The Ultramarines were terrible, the Eldar were useless, and the Orks didn't even know they were an army for the longest time. But all this came as hindsight and, eventually, GW produced addendum codices and Chapter-approved articles which helped flesh the armies out. For Chaos Marines, this equalled ridiculous 'up-gunning' in the form of Legion rules. Oh how frustrated I was, as a Word Bearers player, that the background and army-themes changed to better fit the models. But alas, it was cool and really allowed the CSM to exhibit that customary theme they so desparately craved.
Then came the days. GW released 4th edition and the greatest of all Chaos codices. This book was packed full of options- so much so that tournament-organizers such as myself had to judge those army lists separate from the rest of the pack just to dedicate the necessary time to check everything! Daemon Princes were broken, Bloodletters were beyond broken (even at 28 points or whatever they were at that time), and the Legion rules found in the back of the book were redonkulously broken. This book was so powerful that tournaments in the entire tri-state area I was in were dominated by the Chaos ilk. This book was stupidly good, but at least it was fun and could be beaten.
Now is the days of 'woe-is-me' from all those Chaos players. No longer do Legion rules exist. No longer do Chaos Marines 'pop out' Bloodletters with little the enemy can do other than die. No longer does the Chaos player simply need to show up to almost always win.
You see, GW released the newest book just before 5th edition was revealed. The codex showed a distinct format of 'simple and good'. No longer was there supposed to be an entire science to understanding the army-building, but instead focussed on the playing IN the battle itself. It wasn't the only book to get this format, either. Check out the Dark Angels and Eldar books.
So let's talk about what the gripes people have brought to me are and how I answer all those:
|My army sucks because I'm a moron!!!|
- The units aren't as good anymore! Apparently, Berserkers being WS5 and with Furious charge (while rockin' 4 attacks on the charge) doesn't make up for the lack of 'choppas'. Apparently, Raptors are useless even though they're nothing but special-weapon-wielding Assault Marines for only 20 points, which was cheap before normal Space Marines dropped in cost. Apparently, Daemon Princes aren't as good as Lords, despite being waaaay cheaper AND with better stats! See a theme here yet?
- Chaos Marines are no good compared to everything else! Yeah, because being cheaper than loyalists, with a higher Leadership (making up for not having ATSKNF) and being armed with bolters AND close combat gear is terrible, right? Second only to Grey Hunters, they are the most versatile troops in the game!
- There's no options in this book anymore! Let's see, of all the options in the 4th edition version of the army, players took the same things that are now listed in the 5th edition codex. In other words, GW did little more than remove the overpowered 'daemonic gifts' and leave the common options in the book. Did I mention this was the new format when that codex was released? Also, every single unit in the book has tons of options as it is. Did Lords lose their Daemonc Mounts? Nope. Did Terminators lose any weapon upgrades? Nope. In fact, they gained Lightning Claws! For cheap!!! Again, most common options, in. Stupid overpowered Daemonic crap, out. Easy.
- They can't take real Daemons anymore! Of all the daemons that Chaos could take, it was Bloodletters or Plaguebearers that were seen on the battlefield. I must admit that the 'summoning' rules mixed with Daemon Banners and holding Bloodletters were so broken that it frustrated the hell outta me (see the pun I did there?). That being said, GW wanted to make an all-Daemon army, and they could only do that if CSM no longer used them. Who would use all Daemons when they don't have armour, transports, or heavy weapons if the CSM book gave you all those PLUS the warp-spawns?! In addition, there is a great reason from a 'fluff' standpoint- When the Chaos Gods look to send help to their forces in the Material Realm, they'll send their best to help the poor Cultists and they'll send their average to help their nigh-unstoppable Renegade Marines. What help do the Legions need? Not much...
- Finally, the most important and common complaint of all- I can no longer do my themed list anymore!!! Man, it must suck to not be able to use Khorne Berserkers and Bikers to back up that Khorne Lord... Oh wait, you can! Seeing as Cult Troops are still troops, this isn't an issue. What's really missing is the bonus to summoning for 'sacred numbered' squads. Well, waaaaaah! The ability to still represent a chosen Chaos God or a basic Legion is still there. If anyone should be angry, it's me! I play Word Bearers. First, we lost our cultists to the damned Alpha Legion, but we gained Daemons and Dark Chaplains. Then we lost all of it. If any armies suffer from this sudden 'lack of theme', they're the Undivided Armies- Word Bearers and Alpha Legion! Black Legion, Night Lords, and Iron Warriors lost little or nothing at all.
Anyone who continues to whine about this deserves the final fate of all failed champions- Spawn-hood!!!