You might want something beyond just Noise Marines and have a general force based around Slaanesh, be it Emperor Children or one of your own creation. Theme armies are known for fluff and being ineffective, that does not mean there are not ways to mitigate that. The intention of this particular article is give a few pointers on making an effective army based on Slaanesh.

Unique Characters:

Fabius Bile: See CSM Squad discussion

Lucius the Eternal: Lucius is one of the more unused characters, when compared to other characters. He does not have the terminator armor of Typhus, eternal warrior of Abaddon, or pure damage output of Kharn. What does he have? Lucius has a high Weapon Skill and Initiative. His armor causes addition power weapon wounds with his armor saves. His Lash of Torment reduces the effectiveness of his armor’s power, by reducing the number attacks made towards him. His greatest asset is his Doom Siren. It is the only way you can get two Doom Sirens in one squad. This makes Lucius worth considering. His main problem is his costs 160; more than a Lash Prince and five points less than Kharn, a much is a better character. That leaves Lucius for Prince burnout or wanting more MEQ template death.

Greater Daemon: Oh GW, how you tear out the hearts of so many CSM players with your greater and lesser daemon crap. Once you get over the initial shock, you come to wonder how you can use such a thing. What I like about the Greater Daemon for a Slaanesh army is providing some extra strength on the battle field, which Slaanesh typically lacks. The Greater Daemon can be used in addition to the two HQ choices you may have. The other great asset the Greater Daemon provides is its ability to assault on the turn it arrives. Problems with the Greater Daemon is the illusion of a bargain at only100 points, when in reality he is costing you a champion from one of your units. Chaos Marine champions do not come cheap. The best thing to do is judge is ask yourself what type of Slaanesh army are you playing? Shooty army maybe not. Assault army perhaps. Mixed force, you have to decide is he worth the champ you are replacing. Taking a champ without any upgrades, you risk him being dead or not in a position you want.

Daemon Prince: Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, Lash, enough with fucking Lash! I am not even going comment on why Lash is good. Just know that your opponent will be expecting it. As for the DP itself, they are bad ass. For 110 points you get a monstrous creature, invulnerable save, and sick stat line. Easily the best HQ choice you can use. As a monstrous creature it can become the DP greatest weaknesses. With 5th ed, no more easy hiding. It cannot join a squad and against shooty armies is so so. Mark of Slaanesh is the cheapest mark you can give your DP, allowing him to go first in assault almost all the time and really pissing off the Eldar. Typically I am against telling people what upgrades they have to take, but just take wings, otherwise you are being foolish. Besides the ability to charge 18 inches, you can also deep strike which against, say Broadsides proves invaluable. As for powers not named Lash of Submission the other popular one is Warptime. A Warptime DP almost guarantees hitting and wounding with every attack. The other powers are shooty and should be considered based on what your army lacks. Wind of Chaos is great when used on the deep strike if you are on target. Doombolt if you are not too sure about your scatter. Gift of Chaos is fun, but not so effective, you do get to use those Chaos Spawn models collection dust. Generally speaking, with the addition of run to the game you will always want your DP on the move, he is close combat beast first and foremost.

Chaos Lord: Poor underused Chaos Lord. When compared to a Daemon Prince it is hard to think of reasons for its inclusion. It can be instant killed by one power fist wound. To use him you have to be more tactical. Pick targets he and his squad can take out in the first round. A reason to take a Chaos Lord of Slaanesh is Blissgiver. This weapon allows you kill multi wound models like Space Marine characters and swarms. You want Blissgiver for the massive amount of attacks you will be dishing out. Since your lord will be made for assault, consider wings or a bike, make sure to take the appropriate squad otherwise you are one lascannon away from being down over 150 points. In perhaps maybe the rarest sight in the universe, is a Chaos Lord on a Mount of Slaanesh attached to a squad of Spawn. As silly as this sounds hear me out. Spawn are the only unit in the CSM codex that allows for 12 inch charge, and it’s so happens that a mounted Lord has a 12 inch charge. With a full squad of Spawn you are looking at nine wounds that must be punched through first before the Lord can be hurt. I am not saying this is effective, but it is damn fun and silly.

Chaos Sorcerer: Or poor man’s Daemon Prince the Chaos Sorcerer is usually the second choice for most CSM armies. They have many things going for them. Built in force weapon and access to psychic powers. They are for people tired of DPs dying or just DPs themselves. Treat them as DPs without the monstrous creature feature. My sorcerers usually find their way into my armies as terminators. This allows the sorcerer more protection within a very tough unit. With deep striking terminators, it allows a Lash sorcerer more flexibility when choosing targets. Shooting powers become more useful in the hands of a Chaos Sorcerer, because the goal of the Chaos Sorcerer is not always to get in to close combat. When considering what to do with your chaos sorcerer follow the same guidelines I expressed for both Daemon Princes and Chaos Lords. Also Sorcerer in a Rhino is not a bad idea either.

Units with Mark of Slaanesh: The same goal applies for any unit with Mark of Slaanesh, assaulting. Keep assaulting as your focus when you tailor a unit. In the case of Chosen and Terminators your upgrades should be consistent with initiative five. Do not load up on fists keep it cheap and simple. Power Weapons are your friends. Throw in one chain fist for good measure, but nothing more. Think about assault weapons not rapid fire ones. That means plasma is out, you want to shoot and charge if you can. Remember you do not have mark of Nurgle or Tzeentch so being shot at is not your friend. For Possessed chaos space marines, same thing and depending on your daemonkin ability you can be deadly. As for standard chaos space marines you are going with Mark of Slaanesh because, you wanted cheaper alternative to Noise Marines and access to special weapons. Just remember pick fights you can win; there is no room for error, they are not fearless and will run at the first sign of trouble. For bikers and raptors, go big in squad size to lessen the impact of not being fearless.

One final note, Havocs and mark of Slaanesh um….NO.

Fabius Bile: If you are in need of ghetto Khorne Beserkers, then he is the man for you. A basic Chaos Marine Squad with Mark of Slaanesh and Enhanced Warrior gets a permanent furious charge added to their characteristics. More importantly Fabius than the strength bonus. He allows your squads to run wild, without fear of those pesky leadership checks. If I am using Fabius Bile I usually run big squads for fun, a horde of fearless Marines charging at you is something your opponent will quickly take notice of.

Army lists will be the focus of my next report on everything Noise Marine and Slaanesh. As a warning, do not expect highly competitive builds. They will be effective against most opponents and balanced in order to deal with any type of army.