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Chariots of Fail...
New good looking model...check...great stat line...check...priced just right...check...Awesome abilities...check...design team rules oversight...priceless. The biggest mistake (intentional or not) by the Games Workshop design studio in the Daemon codex will always be the Burning Chariot of Tzeentch. The Burning Chariot is the ultimate evidence for rules directly correlating to sales. To understand why, let us first take a closer look at the Burning Chariot of Tzeentch rules.
(Click to Enlarge)
Compare & Contrast
- Fast Skimmer
- Aura of Change
- Exalted Flamer
- Blue Horror Crew
- Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch
--A Decent Ride--
The Burning Chariot of Tzeentch is a good value price Chariot. At only 100 points get you get an AV 10 3 Hull Point Vehicle with Tzeentch defensive abilities. As a Fast Skimmer the Chariot gets a Jink Save. Sweeping Attacks, and 18" Flat out move. This makes it really easy to get your Chariot from point A to point B, and with a little luck the Burning Chariot can survive most things unscathed.
--Aura of Feel More Pain--
Phil Kelly wants to make sure everything Tzeentch have Warpflame and most likely Feel No Pain for your opponent's units. Aura of Change makes Hammer of Wrath attacks Warpflame. I assume this "bonus" only increased of the Chariot cost by five points, but I rather have those five points back instead.
Exalted Flamer rider is a pretty bad ass dude, especially if you give him a weapon. At three wounds and T4 only hard-hitting things can take him out in one round of Assault. It also means those high strength weapons are not targeting the Chariot instead. Making the Designer Note for Daemon Chariots all the more sad for your shackled Exalted Flamer.
Blue Horror Crew isn't typically worth it, but in tandem with say Fiends of Slaanesh you can really cripple enemy Psykers and maybe make life harder for some other units. Blue Horror Crew is only for those ten points you don't know what to do with. Now, if only it was a cumulative Leadership penalty!
--All the Hubbub --
Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch I firmly believe was intentional, it just seems like the type of thing Phil Kelly would do for the sake of "balance". Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch is powerful making the Burning Chariot a death dealer like no other in the codex. If you haven't heard, the one problem is the weapons are not mounted on the Chariot, but instead the Exalted Flamer, and as Heavy Weapons the Chariot must remain stationary for the Exalted Flamer to use. This oversight instantly transformed the Burning Chariot from a must have to a never have.
The Burning Chariot is the ultimate evidence for rules directly correlating to sales.
Putting it all Together...
The Burning Chariot of Tzeentch is a tragic tale-- one almost unforgivable. Still, unlike the Slaanesh Chariots, the Burning Chariot might have some redeeming qualities. Before we get to the positive, let us rant for a second. GW many times hides from their shitty rules, by telling us the players that we can change any rule we don't like with a magic rule wand. As if it was that simple, like every player loves asking their opponent if they could mount the Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch on the Chariot instead. The proof is in the sales, ask yourself when was the last time you seen someone using a Burning Chariot of Tzeentch? It shouldn't be the players responsibility when one FAQ taking two seconds could multiply sales and happiness for all instantly. Instead, GW chooses the lazy route forcing the players to make changes, but ask yourself how is that coming along? Anyway, enough off-topic ranting, what can be done with Burning Chariot we have?
The Burning Chariot has uses beyond the Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch. Starting at only 100 points you can make a pretty good Assault platform for the Exalted Flamer. By buying a magical weapon Staff of Change. The Staff of Change makes the Exalted Flamers Sweeping Attacks pretty deadly. Sweeping Attacks hit on the rear of vehicles and better still Sweeping attacks hit Flyers and Flying Monstrous Creatures on 4s! You can also spend 20 points and get a Greater Reward for the Greater Etherblade and AP2 S5 Sweeping attacks.
Then there is the Hammer of Wrath attacks. The Burning Chariot gets D6 S6 Warpflame attacks along with the Exalted Flamer attacks. If you combine Burning Chariots with other Assault units you can deal tons of damage and protect the Chariot from possible retaliation. This is another way of playing the Burning Chariot without trying to rely on the Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch.
If you want to use Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch you have to think strategically and build an appropriate army to utilize those powers. It is all about being in position for the next turn with a Burning Chariot. It is also about throwing enough other threats at your opponent to deal with first. Take Beasts units to run alongside the Burning Chariots forcing your opponent to make a choice. The reverse can work if you want use the Burning Chariot as decoy to protect other units; by Deep Striking you can force your opponent to deal with Chariot immediately, instead of more important units. 100 points isn't that high a price for this kind of fire magnet.
If you want to make the Burning Chariots more a focal point of your army, you have one more avenue. You can combo the Burning Chariots with Nurgle Heralds, Great Unclean Ones, or Daemon Princes. Why? Well because of Biomancy, but more specifically the power Endurance. Besides Feel no Pain and It Will Not Die, you generate something every Exalted Flamer craves: Relentless.
If you can get lucky and get Endurance a few times you can move Burning Chariots at Combat Speed and use Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch. This is the best consolation I could find for all the pain and suffering Phil Kelly has caused by having Blue & Pink Fire of Tzeentch on the Exalted Flamer instead of the Chariot itself. Lastly, you can run Burning Chariots with Heralds of Tzeentch on Chariots to maximize the amount of Sweeping and Hammer of Wrath attacks possible.
-- Burning Chariot of Tzeentch Sample Lists--
A Word about Allies
You could try to find a reason to take a Burning Chariot as your one Heavy ally choice, but they're better choices out there. As it is, if you need some anti-air you cannot go wrong with S6 Sweeping attacks from the mounted Exalted Flamer.
Remember unlike other Battle Brothers Daemons ICs cannot join with Chaos Space Marine units under any circumstance.
Overall, Heralds of Tzeentch suffer from an inexcusable execution of the rules. If you want a case study on how to screw over a unit this would be the case. Literally GW is missing out on hundreds of sales, because someone in the design team thought it would be cute to nerf this unit in such an insufferable way. If you have the model use it, but if you don't, don't buy it by making an object lesson for GW to learn from.
Finished late so please don't mind the extra grammar errors 🙂
It's Like Tactics is rated theory hammer because these are general observations and assumptions based on only few tested games.
For tactical articles feel free to email me to continue the discussion or if you discover an inaccurate interpretations of the rules-- edits will be made accordingly.
Also check out other articles in this series...
- Chaos Space Marine Tactica Link Page
- Chaos Daemons Impressions
- Breaking Down Chaos Daemons
- Bloodletters of Khorne Review
- Pink Horrors of Tzeentch Review
- Plaguebearers of Nurgle Review
- Deamonettes of Slaanesh Review
- Bloodcrushers of Khorne Review
- Flamers of Tzeentch Review
- Beasts of Nurgle Review
- Fiends of Slaanesh Review
- Flesh Hounds of Khorne Review
- Screamers of Tzeentch Review
- Plague Drones of Nurgle Review
- Chaos Furies Review
- Seekers of Slannesh Review
- Soul Grinder Review
- Skull Cannon of Khorne Review
- Nurglings Review
- Skarbrand Review
- Kairos Fateweaver Review
- Ku'Gath the Plaguefather Review
- Bloodthirster Review
- Lord of Change Review
- Great Unclean One Review
- Keeper of Secrets Review
- Daemon Prince Review
- Skulltaker Review
- The Changling Review
- The Blue Scribes Review
- Epidemius Review
- The Masque Review
- Herald of Khorne Review
- Herald of Tzeentch Review
- Herald of Nurgle Review
- Herald of Slaanesh Review
- Exalted, Seeker, Hellflayer Chariots of Slaanesh Review
- Burning Chariot of Tzeentch Review