"A man's worth is no greater than his ambitions."
- – Marcus Aurelius
"I see fear in their eyes, right before they die. I see shock as they realise too late what it is to pit their pitiful strength against true power!"
- – Kranon the Relentless, Chaos Lord of the Crimson Slaughter
The Chaos Lord is an HQ choice for the Chaos Space Marines, in the game of Warhammer 40,000. They are basically the traitor counterpart to a Space Marine Captain or Chapter Master; a Chaos Lord is usually, though not always, a Heretic Astartes himself. They are not necessarily those who rose through the ranks properly in a hierarchical fashion, but are often those most blessed by the Chaos Gods, which means they gained favoritism points or simply the most powerful or charismatic individuals among the Forces of Chaos. In typical Chaos fashion, they are very powerful, but they want more.
The greatest of the Champions of Chaos become Chaos Lords and are often granted hideous mutations and physical alterations by the Ruinous Powers to further their cause. Chaos Lords are so powerful as to be able to bind the other Forces of Chaos to their will, although this often brings a dangerous position as advancement among the Forces of Chaos is commonly achieved through the death or murder of another Chaos Lord or Champion. Some Chaos Lords lead through brute strength, others through cunning and some are maniacs bent solely on self-aggrandizement. Others are true-believing worshipers of Chaos and possess a zealous dedication to the Dark Gods. Overall, their motives and appearance are highly varied and diverse within the realm of Chaos.
You could say that they are basically your edgy and brooding supersoldier that has reached 'peak Edge'. And it seriously shows, just scroll down and look at the list of delightfully and unintentionally hammy and over-the-top hilarious Chaos Lords that have been spawned from Dawn of War itself. They are basically a factory churning out as many memes as possible.
Types of Lords
|Lord of Chaos Undivided |
A lord who refuses to follow any single god. You COULD say they are boring, but saying that's like saying Sindri, Araghast, and Carron are boring, which is hilariously inaccurate. In seriousness the success and power of these lords can vary greatly. They are super vanilla in a....'Chaos-y' way. Still, the fact they aren't completely sucking the cocks from the gods means that they are the most flexible of the bunch. Then again, this is in the end, a Chaos Lord we are talking about and they are ultimately always a tyrannical warrior-king who lives to bathe in the blood of worlds. Hence, despite their generic blandness, they are not to be fucked with. The most famous Undivided lord has no arms.
|Lord of Khorne |
A crazed maniac who drinks blood, and eats whatever he just killed. Raw. Each of these Chaos Lords is a looming brute in gore-stained armor. Many such lords retain their intellect and conqueror's instincts, but their blood-greed is so strong that, upon the battlefield, they could easily be mistaken for mindless savages. It matters little, for so frenzied are the warriors that follow them that they are lost to reason; for lord and follower alike, only the sight of blood holds sway. They like using absurdly sized battle-axes and swords and mauls and all that shit, and are generally the most savage and physically strongest Chaos Lords. Kharn is the craziest motherfucker of all Khorne Lords, who'll kill you in his psychotic blood-lusting rage, but damn is he a great guy.
|Lord of Nurgle |
AKA the Lord of Contagion. Some disease-filled piece of flesh (Asbestos Aidstartes). Better not give him a hug, or have any physical contact whatsoever, because you'll probably get some disease worse than AIDS (like an incurable version of Syphilis.) They're also nigh-indestructible which is not that much of a surprise. These devout sons of Grandfather Nurgle revel in their foulness, leading Heretic and daemon alike to war. Each Lord of Nurgle has a Mantle of Corruption - a doctrine as set out by Mortarion that defines their weapons and strategies. The Lords of Contagion (as shown above) are the most aggressive of these, and embody the brute-force approach of taking punishment and then dishing it back out, aided all the more in this by their Cataphractii Terminator Armor and Manreapers. By contrast, the Lords of Poxes focus more on attrition and the spread of airborne plagues, while the Lords of Virulence prefer the use of massed bombardment. Other, more obscure Mantles are also said to exist, such as the Mantle of Flux and the Mantle of Parasitism. Legend has it that there's a Mantle out there somewhere that nobody is yet worthy of, as it would make them a being of pure entropy.
|Lord of Slaanesh |
Slaanesh's boy toy. The guy is most certainly a drug-addicted
|Lord of Tzeentch |
AKA the Sorcerer Lord or Exalted Sorcerer. Sorcerers who got their first magic tricks set for Christmas from Tzeentch. A notable Lord of Tzeentch is Ahzek Ahriman of the Thousand Sons. Their primary pastime is creating webs of lies and plots that serve to somehow give them possession of some chaos McGuffin or summon some Daemons or just in general do some thing that the protagonists must stop. Usually spellcasters who ignores armor and cover, causing much BAW. Curiously enough, in 3rd Edition they could be psykers or mundane, and the rank of Chaos Lieutenant existed as the second-in-command of a Chaos Space Marine force. Since the release of Warhammer 40,000 4th Edition, however, Chaos Sorcerers have been moved to a role more resembling that of the Loyalist Space Marines' Librarians rather than possessing variable psychic abilities. However, the Thousand Sons from the 7th Edition onwards have reintroduced Sorcerers with Lord statlines and abilities.
|Lord of Malal |
The most mysterious of the Chaos Lords. Number one rogue killing fucktard. Their patron god is the dubiously canon Malal. Those who are champions of the paradox god strive for only one thing. The utter annihilation of the very concept of chaos and order.....by causing as much chaos as possible. They are known to use anti-daemon daemon weapons to slay daemons and other Warp critters and are known to be highly antisocial and territorial. But hey, at least you get sweet ass wargear that can only be found in one area. Most noticeable trait is their obsession of dressing up like a Marilyn Manson clown or an emo goth cannibal. Yeah, eating people is just a pastime for these lords. Then again, we are pulling that out from Sons of Malice who are the only known Malal/Malice worshippers in 40K, so it may differ from worshiper to worshiper.
I Can't Believe They're Not Chaos Lords!
|Dark Apostle |
A Chaos Chaplain, usually from the Word Bearers, but available to all Chaos Space Marines from the 7th Edition onwards. The most notable Dark Apostles are Erebus (the architect of the Horus Heresy) and Eliphas the Inheritor, the most goddamn sexy voice since Sindri.
Chaos Lord, Iron Warriors style. Unsurprisingly, likes starting sieges against things. They tend not to like chaos very much and replace their mutated bits with bionics. Most famous example would be the sick fuck Honsou. Much like the Dark Apostle, now available to everyone.
Warhammer Fantasy's Types of Chaos Lords
It should be noted that the average Chaos Lord in Warhammer Fantasy has +1S and +1T over his 40K cousins. So essentially, these normal (though quite Norse) men empowered by the Chaos Gods are stronger and tougher than the aforementioned genetically engineered superhuman demigod warriors empowered by Chaos. Just goes to show how tough people in Warhammer Fantasy are, eh? (Actually, Strength and Toughness scale differently in 40k than it does in Fantasy. For example, a Captain of the Empire (who is a normal human) has S4 whilst the equivalent Strength in 40k would be a Space Marine. So a Chaos Lord in Warhammer Fantasy having S and T 5 would probably be the same as S and T 4 in 40k)
Lords of Khorne: Ten foot tall, four foot broad Viking warlords in inch-thick plate armour with serious fucking anger management problems. They will fuck up your shit up from Norsca straight to the Golden Shithouse. They tend to favor fuckhuge battle-axes, swords, hammers and, in the case of one helluva woman, a giant fuck-big spear. Primarily enjoy raiding, pillaging, burning, and getting into fights with huge fuck-big monsters and then killing them and ripping out their skulls. Also, if there's one thing Lords of Khorne amongst the Norscans love almost as much as spilling blood, it's boasting about how much blood they've spilled. Valkia the Bloody is a fine example of a Khornate Chaos Lord and is essentially a crazy Valkyrie who carries the souls of the valorous dead into the halls of Chaos Valhalla, because the Warriors of Chaos are motherfucking Vikings.
Champions/Exalted Champions of Tzeentch: Sorcerers, just like the ones in 40k, but the main difference is that they wear XBAWX HUEG ARMOR (although Sorcerers in 40k wear your typical pauldrons, so there really is not much difference between these Sorcerers and those Sorcerers). Funny thing, is that in some of the older rules, champions of Tzeentch could only be fielded as Chaos Lords, not as Sorcerers.
Champions/Exalted Champions of Nurgle: Just like the ones from 40k. The only difference is that they have difficulty getting into their armor on account of their festering, huge, disgusting bellies. They will go out of their ways to hug you. An example would be Festus the Leechlord.
Champions/Exalted Champions of Slaanesh: Same as 40k but the horrors of Slaanesh seem to have deadened their fear, they will never break, and they are also described as very vain in the fantasy universe. An example would be Sigvald the Magnificent.
Champions/Exalted Champions of Chaos Undivided: See above.
Chaos Lords in DoW II
Since Chaos only came in during DoW II's first expansion, the only unique Chaos Lord featured thus far is a Black Legion champion named Araghast the Pillager, who is by far the biggest slice of chaotic awesome to break the previous DoW Chaos Lords' streak of awkward dialogue and meme production.
Araghast, Eliphas, and all other generic Chaos Lords (who are actually Eliphas) in skirmish are dedicated to Khorne, so that pretty much makes them a close-quarters monster. With goddamn health regeneration. At level one, with no wargear, he can easily take down anything short of a Howling Banshee squad. Unlike the other offensive heroes who have gear and abilities designed around helping their units break the enemy lines, the Chaos Lord is designed around making himself an unstoppable murder machine. Give him his Lightning Claws and the Harness of Rage (restores energy whenever he hits something) and Dark Halo (causes energy to take damage first before health, very good if you kept getting hit), or Icon of Khorne (restores health with each attack) he'll become, without exception, the most lethal melee commander unit in the game. Srsly, he'll outdamage the Warboss and Hive Tyrant. This combined with his immunity to suppression from the get-go, his fucktons of health (srsly, only the Hive Tyrant has more, and that only by a hair's breadth, though a Warboss with 'Eavy Armor or a Force Commander with Terminator armor will have a lot more health than he can have with any armor loadout. Though I guess that's offset by the fact that those two have paper-thin armor, and the CL was pretty durable, until they replaced his super-heavy armor with regular hero armor. Fuck it.) and his aforementioned health draining (Kill the Weak!) makes him one of the best/if not the best, commanders in the game.
Okay, he does have drawbacks. He's designed around melee and that's about all he's good for. Compared with other offensive heroes his upgrades do not give him as much health. As such he is exceedingly vulnerable to just getting shot to death, especially while tar pitted, and his ranged damage sucks and both his melee options take away his ability to gun. Since he's in Terminator Armor, he's slower than most other commanders, and Chaos' lack of transports means he has trouble fleeing if things go south. The Guard can mob him with cheap soldiers while meltaguns chew through his healthbar like nothing or the Commissar separates his head from his body with a las pistol execution, Orks can tie him up with sluggas and then dakka him to death, the Eldar can tie him down with banshees to let Wraithguard rape him, and Tyranids can spam hormagaunts to let venom cannons shoot him apart. So don't send him without support! Though that rely applies to all commanders in the game
Prior to Retribution, while he slaughtered infantry, he sucked against vehicles as none of his upgrades gave him much damage against them, up until somebody realized that nobody was using the Blood Maul since all it offered compared to the Lightning Claws was a better special ability, so it was turned into AV weapon.
His other global ability, Malignant Blindness is generally useless, it reduces enemies to 1/10th of their line of sight. Sounds great on paper, but in practice it doesn't do much since they can still see an enemy that's shooting them. You're hoping to nail a heavy weapon squad? They will still chew up your units when you start shooting them.
One other drawback is that picking him gives the least useful worship ability to the Heretic squads. The Chaos Sorcerer's worship Tzeentch infiltrates nearby units (i.e makes them invisible) and the Plague Champion's worship Nurgle speeds up health regeneration (which stacks with the healing aura granted by the HQ building, the ability is considered one of the Plague Champion's main strengths). Worship Khorne, makes units move faster. That might sound good, but keep in mind while Heretics are using their worship ability, they can't move, and the AOE for it isn't very big, so this ability will only give a very temporary speed boost before the units it's affecting move out of its range. It's not completely useless, but it is situational while the other two abilities are pretty easy to find uses for.
Notable Chaos Lords
- Abaddon the Despoiler (aka Failbaddon the Armless) - Chaos Lord of the Black Legion and Warmaster of Chaos. Spends his time trying to conquer Cadia, and losing to Creed. On his 13th Black Crusade right now and has finally succeeded in destroying Cadia.
- Kharn the Betrayer (Pretty fun guy) - Chaos Lord of a World Eaters Warband. Spends most of his time killing everything in sight, including some of his fellow World Eaters. Reportedly has a hilarious sense of humor.
- Typhus the Traveler - Chaos Lord of a Death Guard Warband. Few can survive him in combat. Fewer still can live stand the smell long enough to try and fight him.
- Lucius the Eternal - Sick bastard extraordinaire, originally of the Emperor's Children, Slaanesh gave him an infinite lives hack.
- Ahzek Ahriman - Sorcerer of the Thousand Sons.
- Lord Bale (SSSSSSIIIIINNNNNDDDRRRRRIIII!!!) - Was a Chaos Lord of an invading Alpha Legion Warband on the planet of Tartarus. Got Sindri'd by the trope named Sindri Myr.
- Crull (BLOOD FOR TEH BLOOD GAWD!!!) - Was the Chaos Lord of a World Eaters Warband on Lorn V. Failed and got his skull taken by Gorgutz.
- Eliphas The Inheritor - Formerly a Dark Apostle of the Word Bearers and a bootlick of Araghast, he then betrayed him and is now a Chaos Terminator Lord of the Black Legion.
- Firaeveus Carron (METHUL BAWXES!!!) - Was a Chaos lord of the invading Alpha Legion Warband on Kaurava.
- Araghast the Pillager (Face me, if you dare!) - Was a Chaos Terminator Lord of the Invading Chaos Warband on Aurelia. Got Sindri'd by Eliphas.
- Nemeroth - Was a Chaos Terminator Sorcerer Lord of the Chosen of Nemeroth invading the forgeworld of Graia. He is noted as being the first Chaos Sorcerer in a Relic game with the use of Terminator Armour (with Araghast having the honor of being the first Chaos Terminator Lord of the Dawn of War series and Eliphas as the second Chaos Terminator Lord).
- Lugft Huron - Was formerly Chapter Master of the Astral Claws Chapter, then decided that looting and pillaging would be more fun and renamed his chapter the Red Corsairs. Is probably the second most powerful Chaos Lord after Abaddon (and is much less of a failure).
- Honsou - Warsmith and maker of sick shit.
|Forces of the Death Guard|
|Leaders:||Lord of Nurgle - Daemon Prince - Sorcerer - Chaos Champion |
Malignant Plaguecaster - Plague Surgeon - Tallymen - Lord of Virulence
|Troops:||Biologus Putrifier - Blightlord Terminator - Chaos Spawn - Deathshroud |
Foul Blightspawn - Noxious Blightbringer - Plague Marines - Possessed
|Vehicles:||Chaos Land Raider - Helbrute - Plaguereaper - Predator - Rhino|
|Flyers:||Storm Eagle - Stormbird - Thunderhawk|
|Spacecraft:||Dreadclaw Assault Pod - Kharybdis|
|Blight Drone - Contagion - Defiler - Foetid Bloat-Drone |
Myphitic Blight-Hauler - Nurgle Plague Tower - Plague Hulk
|Daemons:||Beast of Nurgle - Nurgling - Plaguebearer|
|Auxiliaries:||Cultists - Pestigors - Plague Zombie - Poxwalkers|
|Allies:||Chaos Daemons - Chaos Space Marines|
|Forces of the Emperor's Children|
|Leaders:||Chaos Lord - Daemon Prince - Sorcerer - Chaos Champion |
|Troops:||Noise Marine - Chaos Spawn - Possessed|
|Vehicles:||Chaos Land Raider - Helbrute - Chaos Predator - Chaos Rhino |
|Flyers:||Storm Eagle - Stormbird - Thunderhawk|
|Spacecraft:||Dreadclaw Assault Pod - Kharybdis|
|Defiler - Chaos Dreadnought - Sonic Dreadnought |
Hell-Scourge - Hell-Knight - Hell-Strider Questor Scout Titan
Slaanesh Subjugator - Heldrake - Forgefiend - Maulerfiend
|Daemons:||Daemonette - Fiends of Slaanesh |
Steeds of Slaanesh - Seekers of Slaanesh
|Auxiliaries:||Cultists - Slaangors|
|Allies:||Chaos Daemons - Chaos Space Marines|