Getting Started: Blades of Khorne

An article by and    Generic Junk        0

Do you hate ranged and think that is cowardice? Do you think magic is dumb and meant for nerds that need a good beat down? Did you play Doom Eternal and need a way to unleash that pent up anger on the table? Then grab the skull of your recently killed enemy for a drink, and maybe his flesh for a snack, and have this read first before you make that bloody journey.   

Who are the Blades of Khorne?

Mortal cultists and daemons alike, these followers of Khorne seek to embody their god in the best way they know how, with a lot of blood and violence. The army reflects this quite well, with a deceptively complex army of musclebound worshipers who will inflict absolutely punishing attacks on their opponents. The trick here is most of your army is pretty so-so. There are some really standout units, Bloodthirsters, your Greater Daemons, are some of the best heavy hitters in all of Age of Sigmar, but in general Khorne units are an untrained lot who only care about violence and not so much about the training to get there. All is not lost though, Khorne armies tend to rely on Heroes to buff them, which can launch the otherwise mediocre units to new heights. So while Khorne might seem simple, it requires a suprisingly tactical mind to coordinate your auras and blessing to maximize damage output. If that sounds like fun, read on.

Strengths

  • Blood tithes make it so you benefit heavily from killing enemy units and even losing your own, effectively making you stronger as the game goes.
  • Elite units are very strong in melee combat.  
  • You get access to priests, which are like magic (but absolutely isn’t!) but don’t count as magic, so it can’t be unbound.
  • You get to drown your opponent in dice. 

Weaknesses 

  • Almost no ranged attacks to speak of.
  • No magic either, Khorne hates magic! This also means your ability to stop your opponent from casting is limited as well, though you do have a few answers to that.
  • Not a lot of defense in melee, these guys are meant to go on the attack.
  • Most of their mortal wounds come exclusively from characters, Bloodthirsters, or their prayers (Which I will remind you, are absolutely not spells).

The Bloody Tomes (or What Books to Buy)

Credit: Games Workshop

Since there’s no magic nonsense going on here you don’t need no supplements. Just grab yourself the Battletome for the Blades of Khorne and go nuts kid, just make sure it’s the current edition alright. Since then, The campaign book Wrath of the Everchosen has debuted, which contains a few new subfactions for Khorne, You really don’t need it immediately out of the gate, but it’s something to look into down the line if you feel limited by your choice of subfactions. Man I knew all this business with books would be a hassle, you buy one and then they got you buying even more.

The other thing I would recommend picking up is something to work as tokens. Some faux gemstone tokens (obviously get them in red, as befits Khorne). Why do you need tokens? Because the Blades of Khonre have a Metal As Fuck mechanic called Blood tithes. Each time you or the enemy lose a unit you get one blood tithe. Yep, even if your own guys died, for Khorne cares not from where the blood flows only that it does! You can spend these blood tithes you can use them to give your self buffs, damage a unit or mess with them, or summon Khorne demons at no point costs.

Starting Your Army

There are three major boxes you can get that are still made by GW that can serve as a foundation for a new Blades of Khorne force. First, it behooves you to consider if you’d like to focus on Daemons or Mortals. There is nothing restricting you to one or the other, but there is a lot of synergy between the same “type” of unit that really favors sticking to one or the other. Generally speaking, mortals come in bigger numbers, while daemons are more elite but you don’t have as many of them. Neither are truly bad and you can mostly choose based off of which aesthetic looks cooler.

If mortals sound more your style you have the Khorne Bloodbound Goreblade Warband. That name alone cannot scream “I love Violence” more even if it tried. This one contains a Lord of Khorne, a Bloodsecrator (the banner guy), 5 Blood warriors, 10 Blood Reavers (their cultist cannon fodder), a Bloodstoker (the guy with the whip), and a mighty Khorgorath (one of their medium sized monsters). You can buy like 2 or 3 of these and be pretty set for a while.

If daemons are more your speed, you can get the Start Collecting Daemons of Khorne. This box comes with a Herald on Blood Throne (their leader on a chariot), a set of three Bloodcrushers (big awesome demon cavalry) and a set of ten Bloodletters (their main infantry). The blood throne can also make the skull cannon which is probably the only good ranged weapon for Khorne, which is generally much more melee centered. Finally we have the Realm of Chaos: Wrath and Rapture. This is a big two player box that comes with Khorne daemons and Slaanesh daemons. For the Khorne side is the same as the daemons start collecting except instead of the throne you get Karnak who is literally Cerberus and some daemon doggys. This box is no longer in print but if you can find it sitting on the shelf of your FLGS, and have a friend to split it with it really isn’t a bad way to start.Playing Daemons also has a fringe benefit that if you are looking into getting into 40k (or already play it) you can use all the same models in both games. I’d argue daemons get a lot more mileage in AOS right now than 40k, but it’s always nice to have the option.

Bloodcrusher of Khorne – Credit Beanith

Where to go next

So, the rage has begun to consume you and you want more? These are some units I would highly recommend for your bloody feast. 

  • Slaughterpriest – A priest, except its metal as hell cause his powers come from blood and rage. He’s practically required to play as you will need to cast some rage magic of your own and have some nerd magic defence. He can also cast prayers to buff your units too.
  • Mighty Skullcrushers – These are the mortal knights of Khorne, warriors riding the Juggernauts of Khorne much like their daemon brothers. These ones are actually a bit better in tankiness than their daemon counterparts, at the cost of more points. They have more armor, wounds, and even have a nasty charge. You can even make an entire battalion of these guys and it’s very good. 
  • Skullreapers/Wrathmongers – These are the biggest and the baddest of the berserkers. They both come in the same box and both choices are great so its based on what you want more. Do you want a unit that hits hard and has reliable melee stats, build some Skullreapers. Or do you want to go full berserker and just unleash as many attacks as possible, build some Wrathmongers.   
  • The Bloodsecrator –  If you did not already get him from getting a Start Collecting box I recommended you grab this, because he’s way too useful to ignore. He gives every Khorne unit near him another attack. He also has “The Loathsome Sorcery” ability, forcing enemy wizards to re-roll successful casting rolls if they are within 16″ of them. Great for both pissing off your nerdy magic using friends and protecting you from harm.
  • The Bloodstoker – This is the taskmaster with the whip. There is not much to say about him but he’s useful for one ability alone. He can whip a unit to add 3” to both run and charge rolls and even let them reroll wounds when attacking. So if you REALLY need to make sure something gets into combat and does well, give ’em a good whipping.  
  • The Skullgrinder – What you thought that their blacksmiths would be these fibble old men that are slaves to them? HELL NO! This pissed off blacksmith is very good at killing enemy characters since he does so much damage with his Avil on a chain. That’s right, his avail he uses to make weapons is also a weapon. He even has an ability where he picks an enemy character in combat with him and just causes mortal wounds just because. I don’t care how tough you are, your being hit with an anvil and this ain’t no cartoon boi!  
  • Bloodthirsters – The box makes 3 versions and they are all great. It flys, has alot of health, does an unfair amount of damage, you can summon one via the blood tithes, and it’s the most metal as FUCK thing in their roster. Seriously, LOOK AT IT and tell me you dont want one of those.If not, why are you even here?
  • Skarbrand – The biggest and the baddest of all Bloodthirsters. He even tried to challenge Khrone himself to a duel. He lost, but still lived so you know what, B for effort. The downside is he can’t fly but he hits like five 18 wheeler trucks duct taped together going 200 MPH while on fire. One of his best quirks is that he actually becomes stronger as he gets hurt, making your opponent seriously consider how to kill him as fast as possible without leaving him alive with a few wounds. If he’s not in combat for one round he instantly goes to max rage anyway!
  • The Judgments of Khorne – These are their “endless spells”. Spells you can put down and they stick around until they are dispelled. Awesome part about these is they ARE NOT SPELLS! They are Judgements! So you can’t dispel them! They do have, an upkeep to see if they stay but the point remains that your opponent has to hope they just go away!
  • The Skull Altar – This is your terrain piece. It also costs no points, so take it! It lets Priests reroll their prayers and even makes enemy wizards have a -1 to their casting if they are within 16″ inches of it.

Credit: Evan “Felime” Siefring

List Building

Here are some sample lists you can make  as an example of what works for them and also as a shopping list for what to get. Bear in mind these are based on your average 2000 point game which you will play most of the time. Let’s get started on this bloody feast! As a running theme in these lists, we try and stick to multiple small units (sometimes abbreviated as MSU) because Blood Tithes are granted based on units killed, so the more units you have, no matter the size, the more you’ll generate if they die. There are times to break this rule, such as if you need to buff a really big unit, but in general stick to small units.

Start Collecting Goreblade List

Allegiance: Khorne

Slaughterhost: Goretide

Leaders

  • Mighty Lord of Khorne (General) (140)
    • Command Trait: Hew the Foe
    • Artefact: Gorecleaver
  • Slaughterpriest (100)
    • Blessing of Khorne: Resanguination
  • Slaughterpriest (100)
    • Blessing of Khorne: Killing Frenzy
  • Slaughterpriest (100)
    • Blessing of Khorne: Bronzed Flesh
  • Bloodstoker (80)
  • Bloodsecrator (120)
    • Artefact: Thronebreaker’s Torc

Batteline

  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 10x Bloodreavers (70)
  • 10x Bloodreavers (70)
  • 10x Bloodreavers (70)
  • 10x Bloodreavers (70)

Battalion

  • Gore Pilgrims (140 pts)

Other

  • Khorgorath (100)
  • Khorgorath (100)
  • Khorgorath (100)
  • Khorgorath (100)

Judgements of Khorne

  • Wrath Axe (40) 
  • Hexgorger Skulls (40) 
  • Bleeding Icon (60)

Scenery

  • Skull Altar (0)

Total Points: 2000/2000

This is a list that’s perfect for buying the Start Collecting Khorne Bloodbound Goreblade Warband four times. If you’re planning on just getting that box multiple times this is perfect for it. Gore Pilgrims allows you to add 8″ to the Bloodsecrator’s abilities, allowing you to cover more of the field with those sweet buffs. On top of that you got the mass numbers to swarm the board and lots of blood tithes for you if they die!  Khorgoraths give you a bit of a heavy hitter option amongst all the weaker cannon fodder you send to die. Finally, you will want to take every Judgement of Khorne they can get. You have 3 slaughterpriests so bring all 3 judgements and really ruin your opponents day. With all that anti magic, most lists will struggle to keep up with it and given how important the magic phase can be in Age of Sigmar you’re crippling your opponent out of it, meanwhile you don’t need it!\

Balanced List

Allegiance: Khorne

Slaughterhost: Goretide

Leaders

  • Skullgrinder (General) (80)
    • Command Trait: Hew the Foe
    • Artefact: Gorecleaver
  • Korghos Khul (180)
  • Bloodsecrator (120)
    • Artefact: Thronebreaker’s Torc
  • Skarr Bloodwrath(100)
  • Slaughterpriest (100)
    • Blessing of Khorne: Killing Frenzy

Battleline

  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 5x Blood Warriors (100)
  • 5x Flesh Hounds (100)
  • 5x Flesh Hounds (100)

Battalion

  • The Bloodforged (120)

Other

  • 5x Wrathmongers (140)
  • 5x Wrathmongers (140)
  • 5x Wrathmongers (140)
  • 5x Wrathmongers (140)
  • Karanak (140)

Judgments of Khorne

  • Wrath Axe (40) 
  • Hexgorger Skulls (40) 

Scenery

  • Skull Altar (0)

Total Points: 2000/2000

 

This one is a straightforward basic list for Khorne. You got some front line infantry, some fast dogs to cap points and suppress wizards, and then you got your great big beat stick with the Wrathmongers. This battalion will allow the wrathmongers to be able to pile in and attack again if they are near the skullgrinder. Which is great because when wrathmongers die they ALSO pile in and attack before they die. This means a frankly absurd number of attacks. Korghos Khul is lord of the Goretide, but we’re not letting him be in charge because then you don’t get a command trait. He’s a combat monster and has a command ability that allows a unit to reroll ones to hit. This is HUGE for these guys, since the Khorne boys dont have alot of ways to do that. Fortunately you’re playing as the Goretide, which allows you to reroll wound rolls of 1 if you’re 12 inches away from an objective. Bear in mind you don’t have to use Goretide if you don’t want to but you will have to downgrade Korghos to a normal Mighty Lord of Khorne, as without Goretide his command abilities don’t work. Goretides pretty awesome so that’s not really a drawback anyway.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Bloodthirster Party

Allegiance: Khorne

Slaughterhost: The Baleful Lords

Leaders

  • Wrath of Khorne Bloodthirster (General) (300)
    • Command Trait: Thirst for Carnage
    • Artefact: Black Brass Crown
  • Bloodthirster with Whip and Axe (270)
  • Bloodthirster with Great Axe (270)
  • Skarbrand (380)
  • Bloodsecrator (120)
    • Artefact: Banner of Rage

Battleline

  • 10x Bloodletters (110)
  • 10x Bloodletters (110)
  • 10x Bloodletters (110)

Battalion 

  • The Tyrants of Blood (140)

Other 

  • Karanak (140)

Extra Command Point (50)

Total Points: 2000/2000

RIP AND TEAR, UNTIL IT IS DONE!!! If you have the cash to spend, this is hands down the most fun and scary list in Blades of Khorne. This looks like a gimmick list but no! Greater daemons are actually very scary and Bloodthirsters are the worst of them all! Are you someone that says “man screw strategy I just wanna run at them and hit em!” Well then this is the list you wanna do and it’s hella good.The battalion makes it so after one Bloodthirster has fought they can then pick one bloodthirster 3 inches near them and they immediately fight, not giving your opponent a chance to react back. Keep in mind you can chain this to yet ANOTHER bloodthirster and do it again. Skarbrand counts for this ability, as he has the Bloodthirster Keyword. Karanak is there to help deny spells when needed and capture points as the enemy will be too busy with your big nastys. As for the Bloodletters, we’re focusing on a basic battleline here so we can give attention to the stars of the show. If you drop Karanak and the Bloodsecrator (and your extra CP) you can fit another Bloodthirster in if you’re feeling really adventurous. 

Conclusion

Khorne is the god of blood, skulls and battle. This should be all you need to know if you’re willing to give your life over to him and let him save your soul. Are you ready to give your life to save Khorne? Let us know on social media or at Contact@goonhammer.com

 

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.