Possessed Marine

From 1d4chan
And that's when they are in a good mood. Maybe those T'au will believe in the existence of Chaos now.

Possessed Marines are Chaos Space Marines who decided that just worshiping the Dark Gods was not enough, and decided to show their devotion by allowing daemons to enter their bodies. It is worth noting that, unlike in most cases of daemonic possession, the daemon inside a Possessed Marine never devours the soul or mind of its host; the two minds instead work in concert to bring as much death and slaughter to their enemies as they can. However, according to the Death Guard Codex the soul of a Possessed Marine becomes a plaything of the Daemon who possessed him upon death, so in the long term they still sold their soul. The bodies of the hosts are wracked with unpleasant looking mutations as the daemons inside gear them towards RIPPING AND TEARING, often growing talons and pincers easily capable of shredding or crushing power armor, yawning maws filled with razor sharp teeth, and copious amounts of tentacles, spikes and horns. Some Possessed might even develop the ability to spit out torrents of warpfire from their mouths or sprout wings which allows them to fly. Possessed Marines also occasionally serve as Navigators for Chaos ships, the daemon gazing into the eddies of the Warp and the (post-)human 'translating' what his daemon pal sees into orders for the ship's crew. It doesn't take a genius to see how bad it is for the Imperium that their arch nemesis can basically mass-produce Navigator analogues.

In the Black Library books, the first Possessed Marines belonged to the Word Bearers, specifically the Gal Vorbak Chapter (Blessed Sons in Colchisian), so dubbed by their Primarch Lorgar after they survived their journey into the warp. The Gal Vorbak in fact had the unique ability of looking human (well, Space Marine human) and then shifting into a daemonic form at will. They were the future of the symbiosis that Lorgar saw between Space Marine and daemon. They also doubled as being the Possessed Marines that every Chaos player wanted for forever, with statlines that show what a rape-engine daemonically possessed Space Marines should/can be. In 40K, units of Possessed count as core choices for WB armies.

Exactly how Traitor Marines view possession will vary depending on which Legion they're from. Possession is highly favorable among the Word Bearers and the Black Legion. The World Eaters do not actively seek possession out, for it reeks of unmanly sorcery; however as seen with the Daemonkin, when mortal and daemonic servants of Khorne do team up Possessed eventually turn up as well. The Iron Warriors will occasionally utilize Possessed Marines, though their idea of possession usually involves using an unwilling daemon as a reactor to power a bunch of crazy bionics and servo-arms. The Night Lords disdain possession because they disdain Chaos itself. The Death Guard do not frown upon the Possessed, but only the most zealous do it because most of them are content with the blessings Nurgle already gave them. There is no knowledge of how the Alpha Legion feels, but like so much of the Alpha Legion, that's normal. Amusingly enough, there's also no indication what the Emperor's Children think about it either.

On the Tabletop[edit]

The Possessed Marines of the 41st Millennium lack some of the nifty features of their Gal Vorbak brethren (which are implied to have been wiped out with the close of the Horus Heresy), though Possessed do still have some nifty tricks up their sleeves and while they might not be the best shock troops they are pretty good at what they do. Possessed otherwise have had an awkward existence since their inception in 40K, the recurring issues being their cost and having to compete with other elites choice options. Their design seems to indicate that the GW is trying desperately to fit them into the army somehow although without stepping on any of the other elites slot toes, which has become increasingly crowded and competitive.

Third Edition[edit]

Possessed in this edition were... underwhelming. They were basically CSM without any ranged weapons and D6 random abilities, most of which weren't very good in the Space Marine meta. Things improved dramatically halfway through Third Edition where they got a better stat-line and could buy their powers instead of rolling for them randomly. Obviously, rending claws, ranged attack and a strength bonus were the go-to improvements here, but they were still hampered by having to compete with Terminators, especially when loaded up with daemonic gifts.

Fourth and Fifth[edit]

Universally derided as the worst elites unit in the book, they were expensive and totally underwhelming. Going back to random abilities really hurt them and they ended up competing with Terminators rather directly, which could rely on the termicide tactic. Conversely, Possessed required a transport on top of their unit cost.

Sixth and Seventh[edit]

Their initiative suffers a bit being at 4, but they get the combo of 3+ (Space Marine), 5++ (daemon). 2 Attacks, Fear, Fleet, Fearless, and Vessels of Chaos: Roll a d3 for each Possessed unit (NOT model) locked in combat before they start combat, and get a mutation that lasts the turn. On a 1 they get to re-roll all failed to-wound hits, on a 2 their weapons are AP3 (Power Armour murder mayhem ensues) and on a 3 get +1 to Attack and Initiative. Plus their squad leader is a Champion of Chaos that can get some really nifty gear to facilitate all the bloodshed and death they'll be causing. Don't expect them to last long, because if you're doing your job right they should always be in melee combat to abuse whatever equipment you gave them and their mutations. Against anything less than Space Marines they are a nightmare. MEQs and up can deal with them, but even they will have a hard time when you're rolling 2 attacks per model (3 with the proper mutation for that turn).

The Codex Supplement Crimson Slaughter brings a new view to the Possessed, shifting them to Troop Choices and giving them a new table of powers to roll on. They can now gain either Shroud (which applies to their transport if they're in one), turn into Beasts (and getting the movement bonuses associated with them) or gain a 3+ invulnerable save and Rending. They are much less killy, but a lot more survivable against shooting and on a good roll can close the distance much faster than before. They're still extremely expensive, but no longer compete with other Elite Choices and counts as scoring (where 2 out of their 3 powers can go a long way to helping them camp out objectives). The Crimson Slaughter also gives the option of turning one of your characters into a Possessed, giving him the Daemon, Fleet, Fearless, and the Possessed's roll for special abilities (renamed Slaves to the Voices instead of Vessel of Chaos).

Traitor's Hate gives the option of a Formation of 3-5 squads led by a Daemon Prince. If they're within 12" of him, they get all three abilities. Effectively, that gives all of them a set of S6 I5 Lightning Claws. This will eat alive anything that doesn't have T8, 2+ or 3++, or AV 12. If the DP has Daemonology (why wouldn't he?), and rolls Cursed Earth, a Tzeentch squad gets a 3++ to troll plasma & grav gunners. If the DP also has Wings (why wouldn't he?), then squad Rhinos (why would you spend so much on units that die to bolters like Tactical Marines and then leave them to walk?) can keep up with him. With Dirge Casters on them, you should be able to get one to last long enough to deny a dangerous Overwatch attack. This is the nearest Possessed get to being worth their price tag - though without supporting units, you're relying on the DP and volume of attacks to deal with counter-attacking Terminators.

Eighth Edition[edit]

Over time, Possessed have had a difficult time in this edition. They effectively have power axes and random attacks with them. Eventually, they got a second wound on their profile but otherwise had difficulty synergizing with the rest of the army and, once again, competing against other elites units - this time around competing against Cult Marines (especially Berserkers), Mutilators and their primary opposition, Terminators.

Daemonkin gave them some improvements and also introduced the Greater Possessed, a bigger, badder Possessed Marine that grants buffs to daemon units in the CSM book. The Master of Possession also grants them buffs, such that if you really want to take Possessed, you can make them at least halfway decent.

With the new rules in Faith and Fury and another points drop, Possessed are now a big part of the competitive Chaos Space Marine meta. Big blocks of them with psyker and/or Dark Apostle support and very helpful new stratagems make them a huge threat that's not easy to get rid of in the middle of the board. Word Bearers can double their damage output for a turn, Emperor's Children can get guaranteed long-range charges, and Night Lords can protect them in combat so that enemies can't fall back and blast them after a charge. This definitely breathed new life into the unit in 8th edition.

Ninth Edition[edit]

New models and statline change Possessed from a horde unit into a beefier terminator equivalent (40mm bases included) - looking to occupy the void left by zerkers essentially leaving the CSM roster to go join World Eaters in their brand new codex. The plus side thus far is that they get a galloping 9" move and throw down with 5 attacks of their otherwise unchanged weapons coupled with three wounds apiece. The downside? Well along with losing Berzerkers and Mutilators, we're also losing the Greater Possessed in 9th. Mind, if that comes at the expense of better possessed that have a distinct battlefield role separate from termies or chosen, then that sounds like a more efficient streamlining.

Greater Possessed[edit]

The largest and strongest of their kind, Greater Possessed are host to a Daemon Herald as opposed to a lesser Daemon. Daemonkin warbands revere these beings and loyally serve Masters of Possession in the hopes that one day they will get the privilege of becoming one themselves.

More can be read here.


Forces of the Traitor Legions of Chaos
Leaders: Chaos Champion - Chaos Lord - Daemon Prince - Dark Apostle - Master of Execution
Sorcerer - Warsmith - Master of Possession - Lord Discordant
Unaligned: Chaos Chosen - Chaos Raptors - Chaos Space Marine Squad - Chaos Spawn - Chaos Terminators
Cultist - Havocs - Mutilators - Obliterators - Possessed - Tech-Assassin - Warp Talons - Warpsmith
Negavolt Cultist - Greater Possessed - Dark Disciple
Faction Aligned: Khorne Berzerkers - Berserker Dreadnought - Plague Marines
Noise Marines - Sonic Dreadnought - Rubric Marines
Structures: Noctilith Crown - Skull Altar
Vehicles: Bike Squad - Chaos Dreadnought - Helbrute - Infernal Relic Predator - Kratos Heavy Assault Tank
Land Raider - Mastodon - Predator Tank - Rhino Transport - Sicaran Battle Tank - Stalk Tank
Vindicator - Typhon Heavy Siege Tank - Spartan Assault Tank - Rapier Armoured Carrier
Whirlwind Scorpius - Termite - Cerberus Destroyer - Fellblade
Flyers: Harbinger - Hell Blade - Hell Talon - Fire Raptor
Storm Eagle - Xiphon Interceptor - Thunderhawk - Stormbird
Spacecraft: Dreadclaw Assault Pod - Kharybdis - Doomfire Bomber - Swiftdeath Fighter
Titans: Daemon Knights - Chaos Emperor Titan - Feral Scout Titan
Ravager Battle Titan - Chaos Warlord Titan - Woe Machine
Daemon Engines:
Decimator - Defiler - Death Wheel - Forgefiend - Heldrake
Maulerfiend - Soul Grinder - Wirewolf - Venomcrawler - Helstalker
Daemon Engines
of Khorne:
Blood Reaper - Blood Slaughterer - Brass Scorpion - Cauldron of Blood - Death Dealer
Doom Blaster - Kytan - Lord of Skulls - Skull Reaper - Tower of Skulls
Daemon Engines
of Nurgle:
Blight Drone - Contagion - Foetid Bloat-Drone - Myphitic Blight-Hauler
Nurgle Plague Tower - Plague Hulk - Plagueburst Crawler
Daemon Engines
of Slaanesh:
Hell-Scourge - Hell-Knight - Hell-Strider
Questor Scout Titan - Slaanesh Subjugator
Daemon Engines
of Tzeentch:
Aether Ray - Doom Wing - Fire Lord of Tzeentch
Mirrorfiend - Silver Tower of Tzeentch - The Auruntaur
Auxiliaries: Chaos Daemons - Death Guard - Thousand Sons - Emperor's Children - Fallen Angels
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
Structures: Miasmic Malignifier
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
Plagueburst Crawler
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
Chaos Vindicator
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
Hellflayer Chariots
Auxiliaries: Cultists - Slaangors
Allies: Chaos Daemons - Chaos Space Marines