Last week we looked at the stats around secondary scoring for generic secondaries and Imperium faction secondaries in Arks of Omen – you can find that article here. This week we’re going to go through the Chaos faction secondaries and look what’s working, what’s not, and how they stack up.
You can find these stats and more, as well as filter them by date and faction – by heading over to 40kstats.
The Chaos Factions
We’re going in book order here and so the Chaos factions are next. The Chaos factions have mostly struggled since Armour of Contempt was removed, and unlike loyalist Space Marines they don’t have nearly the same avenues to trivially score 13+ across multiple secondaries regardless of opponent.
Chaos Space Marines
The one major area CSM scoring improved was on their Shadow Operations secondary objectives – Infiltrate and Subvert and Despoil Dominions both became significantly easier to score, with actions that finish at the end of the turn. This makes them much more reliable and in fact makes both adequate replacements for Raise the Banners, netting an average of 2.1 and 0.6 VP over banners, on average.
While Infiltrate and Subvert is the biggest winner here Adorn the Canvas Eclectic also got a major boost, becoming more reliable and with a higher floor. As a result, the secondary scores an average of 2.9 VP more per game, and is a better choice for Emperor’s Children armies, which previously often ignored the objective.
Chaos Players otherwise still often find themselves forced to rely on The Long War, which is mostly average. The other two options – Rise to Glory and For the Dark Gods – are decidedly less impressive, and see much less use.
The Death Guard were struggling before the loss of AoC but have managed to put up some top 4 results since. The faction received marginal help from secondary boosts in Arks.
Spread the Sickness is just as good here as it was and pretty much an auto-take for Death Guard, while the improvements to Fleeing Vectors makes it worth consideration in armies that go heavy on plague weapons and can rack up kills. Despoiled Ground got a slight tweak, but not enough to make it worth consideration for most games as it’s still very much a “win more” secondary.
The Thousand Sons got hit hard in Arks with the loss of Wrath of Magnus, and the nerf to Psychic Interrogation was another nasty blow that combined with the loss of AoC to boot them all the way from “perennial contender” to “dumpster garbage.” They still have some positive matchups here and there but the secondary game for the faction has become pretty dire.
Wrath of Magnus wasn’t an all-the-time secondary, but with an average VP score of 9.7, it was dynamite in those top-level matchups where it was available. Interrogation also went down an average of 2 VP per game and as a replacement Warp Ritual has a similar average but a lower cap, making it harder to compete with top armies which can score 100 per game. To add insult to injury, Mutate Landscape also got harder. Sorcerous Prowess saw a bit of an uptick, but that’s mostly a result of armies being forced to focus on it in most games.
The World Eaters are new to the scene and as a result don’t really have any valid comparisons to make to Nephilim scoring.
Those are some damn good secondaries, and it’s easy to see how World Eaters managed to make an immediate impact despite being a melee-only army. Pile the Skulls is possibly the most inevitable secondary objective in the game, worth a staggering 12.7 VP on average and picked in 88% of games by World Eaters players. When you’re winning, you blow extra points to score it. When you’re losing, you have extra points to score it. The only question is usually the last few points.
The Blood God’s Due is the hardest of the three to make work, but still shows up 70% of the time as World Eaters aren’t particularly great at doing actions or scoring grind them down.
Although Chaos Knights largely walked away from the Arks update as winners that hasn’t been reflected in the faction’s actual tournament success, where a mix of devastating Astra Militarum armies and resurgent Iron Hands armies have combined to push them out of top Four showings. The faction secondary options remain solid, though Chaos Knights generally have to contend with the fact that they give every opponent an easy path to 15 for Bring it Down.
Ruthless Tyranny continues to be an every game pick for the faction and one of the game’s strongest secondaries, but Storm of Darkness now essentially fills a similar role. It’s 1.9 average VP better thanks to the 4 VP tweak in Arks that makes it possible to score 15 for it and now sees play in 84% of games. This one-two punch gives Chaos Knights a solid path to secondary scoring while the change to Grind Them Down makes it an attractive third pick for the army in many games.
Chaos Daemons saw only a minor tweak to their secondaries (to Despoilers of Reality, specifically), but otherwise didn’t need a ton of help with what were already a very solid set of secondary objectives.
In Arks Reality Rebels remains one of the game’s strongest secondary objectives, with players averaging 12.2 VP per game when taking it – and doing so in 92% of games. If there’s a downside to this secondary it’s that it clashes with Behind Enemy Lines, but as a superior scoring option it’s a tradeoff Daemons players make gladly. Nourished by Terror remains the odd man out here, while Despoilers of Reality sees occasional play with above-par average results.
Next Time: Xenos Factions
That wraps up our look at Chaos Factions but there’s still one more set to do. Check back in on Friday for a special Hammer of Math where we look at secondary objectives for the game’s Xenos factions. Until then, if you have any questions or feedback, drop us a note in the comments below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.