Start Competing: World Eaters Tactics (Updated May 16, 2023)

Are you a simple person, with simple pleasures… and those pleasures are “murdering your enemies in close combat?” Do you find the phases outside of the Movement and Fight phases boring? Do you really like the color red? Then the World Eaters may be the faction for you. As the Khorne-devoted legion of Chaos Space Marines, they revolve around the principle of “wrecking things in melee combat.” Most of the World Eaters’ abilities and rules are based around helping them either get into combat, or fight better once they are there.

TheChirurgeon: The legion recently received a brand-new codex in the waning days of 9th edition. While that book’s lifespan is short, I still wanted to write something on it while the editionw as still around.

Legion Overview

Driven into a frothing rage by the Butcher’s Nails implants in their skulls, the World Eaters worship Khorne, hate psykers, and excel in melee combat. Their core benefits are all about getting into combat early and often and absolutely shredding anything they come into contact with once they do.


  • Melee Combat. The World Eaters are the best of the Chaos legions when it comes to melee combat, owing to their extra attack, stratagems, and the ability to take Berserkers as Troops choices. If you want to smash things in melee, this legion can help you get there. Their units put out a ton of attacks, and even Jakhals can put out some nasty damage.
  • Fast. World Eaters have a few ways to get to combat faster and Eightbound are incredibly fast. Factor in Lord Invocatus’ extra movement and the ability to pre-game move and you’ve got some nasty movement tricks.
  • Secondary Objectives. Pile the Skulls may be the single most inevitable secondary objective in 9th edition, and is pretty much a free 14-15 VP waiting to happen each game. The others aren’t bad, either.


  • Shooting. There’s almost no shooting in the army, and even the units which can shoot won’t typically show up in competitive lists as it’s not something you’ll want to spend points or time on.
  • Psychic powers. None of your units in a World Eaters detachment can be psykers. You’ve only got a stratagem for denying psychic powers, and your ability to shrug off mortal wounds is relatively limited (though you can get a 5+ with 2 blood tithe points).
  • Wound phase caps. The inability to do damage in the Movement, Shooting, or Psychic phases makes enemy units with phase wound caps a nightmare. The Exalted Bloodthirster in particular is going to completely wreck your day.
  • Re-rolls. There are only two units in the army which give you re-rolls, and neither is particularly worth including. This means you’re going to rely on pure volume for getting reliable results.

Competitive Rating: High

World Eaters are a skew army, but they skew really hard in that direction and are very good at it. Some games are just straight unwinnable for them, but a lot of matchups are perfectly doable thanks to a mix of strong, fast units and fantastic secondary objectives. There’s a limited number of ways to build competitive lists, but the options you have are very strong.


Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones


The World Eaters are a simple folk with simple desires: Murder things in melee, offering up skulls for Khorne’s skull throne. Their rules reflect this single-minded goal. They’ve also got the most streamlined codex of the edition, with fewer rules and units than most others and a ruleset that seems to match the format of 10th edition books, based on the previews we’ve seen.

Chosen of Khorne

Your detachment can only include on DAEMON PRINCE (though you can up this to two for 1 CP in Ark of Omens). 

Mere Mortals

Your detachments can’t have more CULTISTS than BUTCHER ASTARTES CORE units. This will never be a problem.

Daemon Engine

Units with this ability have a 5+ invulnerable save and regain 1 lost wound in your Command phase. 

Legion Trait: Relentless Rage

Regardless of which Subfaction you take, your units will gain this rule. At the start of the Fight phase, if this unit made a charge move, was charged, or performed a Heroic Intervention this turn, then add 1 to its Strength and Attacks until the end of the phase. This is a great bonus and a clear improvement over the old trait. It makes World Eaters units difficult to charge and while 1 attack isn’t massive on units which already get 4-5, it’s still a big enough boost to help wipe out the targets you charge into.

The Blood Tithe

The monofaction rule for the World Eaters is the Blood Tithe. If every unit from your army (excluding Agents of Chaos and Unaligned units) has the WORLD EATERS keyword, then you gain Blood Tithe Points (BTP) over the course of the battle. You gain points as described:

  • Each time a unit is destroyed, you gain 1 BTP.
  • At the end of each phase, if any CHARACTER, MONSTER or VEHICLE units were destroyed that phase, you gain 1 additional BTP.
  • At the end of each phase, if any TITANIC units were destroyed that phase, you gain 1 additional BTP.

At the end of each phase, after you get your BTP, you can spend them to purchase a Blessing of the Blood God. You can only buy one per phase, but you can buy any number over the course of a game, though only once per blessing except for Reborn in Blood. Using a Blessing costs your points, and they tend to affect your entire army and last the rest of the game once purchased.

This is an incredibly powerful rule and one which will heavily underpin your strategy. There are some great effects you can get access to, and there are some you need to get online as soon as possible.

The Blessings of Khorne

There are 8 different blessings to spend your BTP on, and there are some amazing effects among them.

  • Spiteful Nullifcation (2 BTP) – World Eaters models get a 5+ roll to ignore mortal wounds. This is the cheapest ability you can get, and likely the first one you’ll buy against psyker-heavy armies which throw out lots of mortal wounds. That said, it can soemtimes be better to just eat a few mortals and save your points.
  • Rage-Fuelled Invigoration (3 BTP) – Add 1 to charge rolls made for World Eaters units in your army. This is a big one for turns 2-3 when you’re putting reserves on the table, as the difference between a 9″ charge and an 8″ charge is massive in terms of improving your odds. This is one you won’t always need but you’ll know when you do and in those times you will always take it because getting into melee is like 70% of your game plan.
  • Warp Blades (4 BTP) – Improve the AP on your World Eaters’ melee attacks by 1. This is one you’re going to skip most games. Going from AP-2 to AP-3 for your berzerkers is nice, but won’t matter against most units with a 5+ invulnerable save and for your Eightbound are already working with -3 so your mileage may vary on these. In short, +1 to hit is marginally more valuable on Eightbound than AP-4 against 3+ save targets with no invuln, but AP-4 is obviously better on your Exalted Eightbound who already have a 2+ to hit. And neither is as good as exploding 6s.
  • Wrathful Devotion (4 BTP) – Each time a World Eaters model would lose a wound roll a D6; on a 6 that wound isn’t lost. This is fine but probably going to lose out to either Spiteful Nullifcation or one of the offensive buffs.
  • Martial Excellence (5 BTP) – Each time a World Eaters model from your army makes a melee Attack, an unmodified roll of 6 scores an extra hit. This is amazing, in part because your guys get so many attacks this is going to produce a ton of surplus value and unlike the AP or hit boosts, it’s useful on every unit. You want this one as soon as possible.
  • Total Carnage (6 BTP) – Each time a World Eaters model in your army makes a melee attack, an unmodified hit roll of 6 automatically wounds. This is just kind of whatever, to be honest. Most of time you’re wounding on 2s or 3s and the benefits of extra hits, AP, or a bonus to hit rolls is significantly better. This one is really only going to help you against knights and chaos knights, where you’re up against a bunch of T7-T8 units.
  • Reborn in Blood (6 BTP) – If Angron is in your army and he’s been destroyed, you can put him back into reserves with 8 wounds remaining. Then he can deep strike back in during the Reinforcements step of your next Movement phase. This is hilarious, and if you take Angron you’ll end up using it 2-3 times per game. Unless your opponent doesn’t kill Angron, in which case you probably won.

Generally speaking, your plan with World Eaters is “1. Get into Melee, 2. Kill Things in Melee.” So your priority when buying effects should be in that order as well. You’ll typically buy one or both of FNP 5+ vs. mortals and +1 to charges, then one of +1 to hit/AP and exploding 6s once you’re getting there (remember you can buy blessings at the end of the charge phase).

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Secondary Objectives

One of the major factors keeping the World Eaters at a top level of competitive play is that they have very, very good secondary objectives.

  • Blood for the Blood God (Purge the Enemy) – Scores you 1 VP for each enemy unit destroyed by melee attacks from WORLD EATERS units during the battle round (or 2 VP for each MONSTER/CHARACTER/VEHICLE), provided no WORLD EATERS units from your army fell back. This caps at 4 VP per battle round. You’re pretty much going to take this in most games where a better option isn’t on the table (i.e. vs knights and Bring it Down), because melee is the only way you have to kill things and if you aren’t killing things in melee you aren’t winning the game. It’s not the best secondary, and losing VP for falling back isn’t great but it aligns with your goals very well and if you’re playing well you shouldn’t be in situations where you’re the one who wants to fall back anyways.
  • The Blood God’s Due (No Mercy, No Respite) – At the end of each player’s turn, score 1 VP for each objective marker on the battlefield that had 1+ non-VEHICLE units destroyed that started the turn in range of that objective marker. This one is really interesting – it has a very high floor, since just parking your units on objectives means you’re likely to score them, and it also has weird consequences – if an opponent starts on an objective with a unit, then moves off the objective and charges one of your units and is destroyed that turn, they still count for drowning the original objective in blood. This is another one that aligns closely with your goals and is likely to be an auto-take for World Eaters in most games. Good when you expect to be trading a lot. If things are more one-sided in your favor though this one is going to be touch-and-go. And it’s bad against vehicle-heavy armies.
  • Pile The Skulls (Battlefield Supremacy) – At the end of each battle round, before you buy any blessings of the Blood God, you can discard 1, 2, or 3 BTP. If you do, you score 2 VP for each point discarded, to a max of 5 VP per round. This one is really interesting – most of the time you’re going to want to spend your points early in the game, particularly because they help you get more out of fewer models late in the game. But then late game, on rounds 3+, this becomes inevitable. You can max this easily in 3 rounds pretty much every game. Even when you’re getting killed, you’ll still be racking up BTP you can spend on this, making it a real fun way to win while losing.


The World Eaters are interesting in that they don’t really have subfactions. When you build a World Eaters army, you choose one of two Subfaction options:

  • World Eaters, which are just regular World Eaters armies using the book’s rules.
  • Disciples of the Red Angel, a mixed World Eaters and Khorne Daemons army that is really an Army of Renown disguised as a subfaction. It even comes with restrictions on how you build an army.

What makes these particularly interesting is that they have access to different Stratagems, Warlord Traits, and Relics – A Disciples of the Red Angel army does not appear to get access to any of the regular World Eaters Stratagems, Traits, or Relics, and instead has a separate set it must use. This has weird consequences, such as Red Angel Land Raiders being unable to use Smoke Launchers.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

World Eaters

The standard way to run World Eaters, and basically what you’d expect from the army, with no restrictions. Going this route gives you 8 Stratagems, 3 Warlord Traits, and 3 Relics to pick from. This is the mode you’ll want to go if you’re making Lord Invocatus your Warlord, and that makes this the most competitive choice.

Warlord Traits

There are three options here to work with, and you’ll likely not use any of them in competitive play since you’ll be taking Lord Invocatus.

  1. Favoured of Khorne – In your Command if this WARLORD is on the battlefield, you gain 1 Blood Tithe point. This is very, very good and probably the one ability you’d take if you weren’t taking Invocatus. Extra points early are a big deal as you want to get to 4 or 5 as soon as possible.
  2. True Berzerker – Each time a melee attack is allocated to this WARLORD, halve the Damage characteristic of that attack (rounding up). Another good one I’d take if I could take two traits.
  3. Battle Lust – This Warlord can Intervene if he’s within 6″ of an enemy unit and can intervene 6″. If at the start of the Fight phase, this Warlord is within Engagement Range of an enemy unit, it can fight first that phase. This one has less value than you’d think, and is the worst of the three.


The World Eaters have three relics to play with.

  1. Helm of Brazen Ire – Attacks against the bearer get -1 to hit. This is fine. Best on a Daemon Prince. Not as good as the Glaive.
  2. Berzerker Glaive – This replaces an exalted chainblade or axe of dismemberment with one that’s S+2, AP-3, 2 damage, and on 6s to hit you score 6 extra hits. This is a tasty upgrade for your Lord on Juggernaut and combos nicely with Martial Excellent to get triple hits on exploding 6s. The most likley addon you’ll take.
  3. Talisman of Rage – In your Command phase, pick a WORLD EATERS CORE unit within 9″. Until your next Command phase, when that unit makes a melee attack, unmodified hit rolls of 6 automatically wound the target. This is fine but the worst of the three and you can get the same effect from Blood Tithe Points.


  • Red Butchers (2 CP) gives a World Eaters Terminators or Eightbound unit +1 damage in the Fight phase, and this is just insanely good value. This Stratagem is more than enough reason to bring either, and suddenly World Eaters Terminators with 4 base attacks (going to 5 on the charge and hitting 6 with an Accursed Weapon) are insanely nasty threats when those 30+ attacks hit at 2 damage. Though where you’ll use this the most is on Eightbound to get them to D3 against really tough targets.
  • Gory Dismemberment (1 CP) – is used in the Fight phase to give a CORE or CHARACTER unit additional mortals on 6s to wound, to a max of 6 inflicted. It’s a solid buff for Berzerkers who can otherwise throw out a ton of attacks with less to show for it against tougher targets. At 1 CP it’s priced to move and good for helping get over targets with good invulnerable saves, damage reduction, transhuman, or whatever else.
  • Skulls for the Skull Throne! (1 CP/2 CP) – Is a Stratagem you use when a Character in your army kills an enemy Warlord. You can either get 2 extra BTP or get +1 to advance and charge rolls for that model for the rest of the game. Or, if you spend 2 CP instead of 1, you can get both. This is neat, though it’s something you’ll rarely use. When you do get it off, 2 BTP will be more useful than the charge bonus most of the time, unless you’ve gotten caught out early.
  • Scorn of Sorcery (1 CP) – returns here, giving you the usual ability to deny Psychic powers on a 4+. That’s massively useful, and you’ll throw this out a lot in games with psykers. It’s also super useful for keeping opponents honest if they think they can get off Warp Ritual or Interrogate free against you.
  • Blood Frenzy (1 CP/2 CP) – lets a single CORE unit fight on death on the Fight phase – no roll required. It costs 1 CP on a Troops unit and 2 CP otherwise and is something you’re bound to use in a lot of games as well, particularly on Berzerkers who get ambushed or interrupted. A useful way to make opponents pay for touching your models at all. Hilariously also works on Helbrutes and Contemptors.
  • Aggressive Intervention (1 CP) – Used in your opponent’s charge phase to let a single CORE unit Heroically Intervene as if it were a CHARACTER, and move up to 6” when it does so. This is insanely, incredibly good, and makes Berzerkers, Eightbound, and Terminators incredibly mobile, nasty threats. It also hilariously makes Helbrutes quite a bit more useful, since finishing a turn within 6” of one suddenly means eating a faceful of helbrute fist and scourge. When you combine this with the Berzerkers’ Blood Surge ability, they become much more mobile.
  • Smokescreen (1 CP) is the same as always, but hilariously isn’t in the Red Angel list. Gives your SMOKESCREEN unit -1 to be hit during the opponent’s Shooting phase.
  • Icon of Wrath (1 CP) – lets a single ICON unit roll an extra D6 when charging and drop the lowest result. It’s basically the reason to take an Icon in your Berzerker units, since having it in your back pocket is very powerful.

You may notice there’s no Stratagem to get a second Warlord Trait or Relic up there. There isn’t one. This stinks, since it means you can’t get traits for two different characters and also means that if you take Angron you can’t get a trait for anyone else. What this means is that in standard World Eaters armies you just won’t be taking Angron, since the trait you get for Lord Invocatus is too good to give up.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Disciples of the Red Angel

Billed as a subfaction for the World Eaters, we’re going to call this one what it is: An Army of Renown. If you choose this subfaction, you take on some additional restrictions to army building. Specifically, your army has to include Angron and he has to be your Warlord, and it can only include KHORNE DAEMON and WORLD EATERS LAND RAIDER units (this means you can include daemon allies, daemon engines, etc). As a benefit, EIGHTBOUND units in your army gain Objective Secured.

Despite seemingly being tailored to allow for the inclusion of an allied Khorne Daemons, there’s really nothing here for them, though they may be part of your army anyways as Flesh hounds are incredibly good while also being your cheapest objective holder option and they give you some much-needed defense against psychic powers. Disciples armies tend to run either heavy on Land Raiders or Flesh Hounds, depending on what they’re currently trying to value more.

On top of that, the Disciples have no Warlord Traits; this makes sense as Angron has to be the Warlord and World Eaters can’t get a second trait. Instead, they get Daemonic Infusions, upgrade options for EIGHTBOUND units.

Daemonic Infusions

When you build your army you can pick one upgrade for a single EIGHTBOUND unit for free. You want this to be a unit of 5-6 models if possible, to get the most out of it. This will almost always be standard Eightbound.

  • Drawn to Power – Models in the unit count as 2 each for objective control. Meh.
  • Mutable Form – When a model with this unit makes a melee attack, an unmodified wound roll of 6 does an additional mortal (to a maximum of 6 per target per phase).
  • Brazen Skin – This unit gets a 4+ roll to ignore mortal wounds.

The real value here is for Mutable Form, which you’re going to slam on a unit of 5-6 Eightbound, depending on whether you want to stuff them in a Land Raider.


Eightbound have three relics to pick from.

  • Burning Plate – The bearer gets +1 wounds and +1 to its armour saving throws. This is great on a Daemon Prince and OK on most anything else.
  • Soulburner – Replaces an Infernal Cannon (the gun on a Daemon Prince) with one that’s 12″ range, Assault 2D6, S7 AP-2, 1 damage auto-hitting. It’s not terrible but you don’t really need a S7 heavy flamer for your CP.
  • The Skull of Ann’gr’ant – In your Command phase pick an enemy unit visible to the bearer> Until the start of your next Command phase, each time the bearer makes a melee attack against that unit you can re-roll the wound roll. This one is also best on a daemon prince, mostly because they’re the only one who can really make good use of this.


The Red Angel subfaction get their own set of Stratagems, and they feel less like a complete set and more like the other half of what the World Eaters should have. There are more Movement phase tricks here than in World Eaters, and some of these give you support for Eightbound units.

  • Gratuitous Bloodletting lets you spend 1 CP to get +1 to wound in melee against an enemy unit below Half-Strength.
  • Bloodscent is used in the enemy Movement phase to make a Consolidate move with an EIGHTBOUND unit after an enemy unit makes a Fall Back move, giving them the ability to move 6” when doing so. For 1 CP it’s priced incredibly well and helps basically guarantee that large Eightbound units can trap slower enemy units in melee. I’m not sure it makes up for losing Red Butchers, but it’s a hell of an ability.
  • Furious Surge lets you spend 1 CP to essentially give an EIGHTBOUND unit the Bloodsurge ability, letting it make a Normal move (up to 9”, mind) after it loses one or more models to a Shooting attack. This is also insanely good, thanks to the incredible movement Eightbound units have.
  • Diabolic Machines lets a DAEMON ENGINE unit operate as though it were at full wounds. Why it’s not in World Eaters is anyone’s guess.
  • Apoplectic Frenzy makes a comeback here, letting you auto-advance 6” with a unit for 1 CP. Useful, but note that World Eaters have no ability to Advance and charge.
  • Violent Dismemberment is used in the Fight phase after you destroy an enemy unit to give the unit that did the destroying an aura until end of turn that gives -2 Ld and -1 Combat attrition. A big drop, but not rough to really be relevant most of the time.
  • Terrifying Assault is another useful trick, letting a single World Eaters unit turn off Overwatch and preventing an enemy from Setting to Defend, plus giving that unit -1 to hit in melee. This one’s very likely to get use as a defensive buff, and is something I could see used to let a unit consolidate into multiple threats without much fear or reprisal.
  • Bloodthirsty Determination is another Charge phase Stratagem that lets you ignore modifiers to charge rolls. Useful for bounding across difficult terrain or laughing at Custodes players attempting to lob Tanglefoot grenades at you.


Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones


The World Eaters have a small selection of units – even fewer than Death Guard and Thousand Sons – but have their own unique picks to work with.


The World Eaters have five HQ choices, and two of them are named characters. That’s a bafflingly small number of options, given that there was nothing particularly wrong with the idea of World Eaters Chaos Lords, Exalted Champions, Terminator Chaos Lords, and Dark Apostles.

That said, the HQ slot is actually pretty packed for World Eaters, especially since it includes the Master of Executions. That’s not great for him, since he could have squeezed into lists as a “free” Elite HQ choice in the Arks detachment, but it made more sense in Nephilim where he was a cheap HQ alternative who didn’t eat up a slot for Eightbound.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Khârn the Betrayer

Ol’ Kharn has seen quite a few changes on his data sheet, getting a solid rework from his lackluster implementation in the 8th edition Codex: Chaos Space Marines and the reprint in White Dwarf. He’s lost his ability to ignore modifiers to hit and the ability to fight twice; instead he’s gained more attacks (9 base) and an improved melee profile – Gorechild now does 3 damage per swing (still at AP-4). He’s also regained his 2+ save from the old days (he keeps his 4+ invulnerable), making him quite a bit more durable.

To give him a bit more utility alongside a Daemon Prince or Angron, Kharn’s Lord of Chaos aura (re-roll ones to hit) has also been changed to Legendary Killer, which gives re-roll ones to wound instead, making him the the only Exalted Champion option for the army. And if for some reason you’re not taking Lord Invocatus as your warlord, (more on that below), you can take Kharns warlord trait, Arch-slaughterer, which gives him an extra D3 attacks anytime there are six or more enemy models within 3” of him.

Finally – and not to be forgotten – is his namesake rule, The Betrayer,  which has changed once again. Now instead hitting allies in melee or rolling at the end of the Movement phase to maybe do some mortal wounds to your friends, you roll at the end of the Fight phase to potentially do 2 mortal wounds to a friendly unit within 3”, meaning you’ll now roll twice per round. Regardless of what you lose by taking him as your warlord, just having him on the table will make for some very risky choices for your opponent. The increased damage and attacks at AP-4 make Kharn a solid champion for Khorne, but he’s going to do a little too much damage to your own guys unless you put him in a transport and he’s not quite good enough to make the cut in most lists.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Lord Invocatus

Forget Angron, this guy is the true star of Codex: World Eaters. Lord Invocatus is a named character and a master of swift raiding and hit-and-run strategies. He rides into battle on a Juggernaut which traverses a bridge of fire, Bifrost-style. This means he has the FLY keyword, immediately making him much, much more useful than other Cavalry units which are saddled with the inability to move through terrain. Invocatus has a solid profile – WS/BS 2+, S/T 6, 8 wounds, 7 attacks, and a 2+ save/4+ invulnerable save – with an AP-3, 2-damage axe that doesn’t allow invulnerable saves. Also, he can Deep Strike, but you will never use this.

And the reason why you won’t deep strike him is the same reason you won’t take Angron, and the same reason he’s the star of the book: Lord Invocatus has two amazing, game-definingly great abilities, one of which is a Warlord Trait:

  • Road of the Eight Bloody Steps is Invocatus’ Warlord Trait. At the start of the first battle round, before the first turn starts, you can pick up to two friendly WORLD EATERS CORE units within 9” of him and this unit and those can make a Normal Move.
  • Leading the Charge (Aura) – while a WORLD EATERS CORE unit is within 6” of this model, each time they make a Normal Move or Advance, add 2” to their Move Characteristic.

This is amazingly, stupidly good for an army which relies on its ability to get into melee early and often. The core combo here is to take two units of Eightbound (which have CORE), put them within 6” of the Invocatus, then use your pregame move to push them forward 11” (that’s 9” base move +2” for the Invocatus), then on your first turn, make sure the Invocatus is within 6” of them and move them another 11”, giving them 22” of Movement before they declare a charge (plus Invocatus himself can keep in lockstep with them). That is an incredibly scary amount of turn 1 movement for some of your army’s most deadly melee units.

On top of that, Lord Invocatus sticks around and makes plenty of other units better, like Helbrutes and Terminators, which can otherwise struggle with low Movement characteristics. Even if you don’t take his Warlord Trait, pretty much every World Eaters army wants Lord Invocatus.

Slaves to Darkness Daemon Prince. Credit: SRM

World Eaters Daemon Prince

The Daemon Prince is here largely unchanged from Codex: Chaos Space Marines, except he now has an Infernal Cannon, a 24” AP-2 heavy bolter strapped to his arm. He comes with the Strength and Attacks bonuses built into his datasheet and is the only way to get the re-roll 1s to hit aura outside of Angron. And that’s pretty much the bulk of his value, since without any daemon weapons or warlord traits to give him that substantially boost his combat prowess he’s just as disappointing on the table as any other unbuffed Daemon Prince, only without the ability to boost himself with psychic powers or do psychic actions. He’s fine overall but likely on the outside looking in when it comes to cutting units for your army.

World Eaters Lord on Juggernaut

The generic version of the Juggernaut lord model, the World Eaters Lord on Juggernaut is the only Chaos Lord World Eaters armies have access to. He comes with a slower Juggernaut (10” move) which can’t FLY, a 3+ save, and an Exalted Chainblade, a S:User (6), AP-2 2-damage weapon. He sports a 4+ invulnerable save and has the same Leading the Charge Aura as the Lord Invocatus to give friendly CORE units +2” movement, but has no aura to re-roll 1s to hit. As a result, he’s mostly a lackluster melee combatant whose value is getting additional movement if you need another source aside from Invocatus (note that Invocatus does not have the WORLD EATERS LORD keyword). That said, this guy is a *very* solid second HQ option to back up your Invocatus, and if you give him the Berzerker Glaive he can be a surprisingly effective melee threat.

Credit: Swiftblade

World Eaters Master of Executions

The World Eaters can also take a Master of Executions. He’s the same as the CSM one, only he trades Let the Galaxy Burn for The Blood Tithe. The difference is that he’s an HQ now, so he’s harder to shoehorn into an Arks Detachment if you want to take extra characters. That said, he’s still a cheap and dependable HQ option and a nice threat to take on melee characters.


World Eaters have two Troops choices – Berzerkers and Jakhals, the World Eaters flavor of cultists.

Khorne Berzerkers

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Berzerkers are back! They’re pretty much the same as they were in White Dwarf, with S5, 4 attacks base, and Berzerker Chainblades with S:User AP-2, 1 damage profiles. The new plstic kit released with the Codex gives the unit a much-needed option to let one in five models swap their chainblade for an eviscerator, a S+3, AP-4, 2-damage melee weapon that significantly ups the unit’s output. Also, 1 model in 5 can take a plasma pistol.

The flashy new rule that Berzerkers sport is Blood Surge – every time an enemy unit shoots, if any of their attacks kill a model but don’t wipe the unit, then when they finish shooting the Berzerkers can immediately move D6” toward the closest enemy unit, and it can end within Engagement range of the closest enemy unit (and only that unit). You can’t Blood Surge the same turn you got out of a destroyed transport or if you’re already within Engagement range of a unit. Also, any actions that unit was doing immediately fail if it does this move.

Berzerkers can also take an ICON, and if they do then each time they make a Blood Surge move, they automatically complete any action they were doing instead of failing it. That’s the only benefit of an icon and while it sounds cool, it’s actually worthless – there are almost no actions in the game now which finish at the start of your next Command phase, and most of the ones which still do finish at the end of your turn if your unit is Troops/ObSec. This has the most value when it’s used on a Berzerkers unit included in a CSM army doing the Plant Bombs action in the Tear Down Their Icons mission since they lose ObSec by virtue of being Elites choices in a CSM army. This only seems to have value in Boarding Actions right now.

The Stratagems you get for them in World Eaters are solid – the 6” Intervention, the 3D6 drop the lowest charge, and fight on death are all very solid abilities to have, and ultimately those are the most useful tools to have in your pocket for Berzerkers in a World Eaters army. You’ll want to build around these guys when you build lists, and 5-model units with an Icon and Glaive give you plenty of flexibility, a solid punch, and the ability to intervene and fight on death.


The unit no one was asking for, Jakhals are the World Eaters version of Chaos Cultists. Clocking in at 7 points per model, what Jakhals bring to the table is a lot of really bad attacks. A basic Jakhal has 3 attacks that hit on a 4+ at S3 AP-1, and the unit comes with one S4 Dishonoured model per 9 other models. The Dishonoured can swap their weapons for a Skullsmasher, which give them 6 AP-2, 2-damage attacks, while one in 10 Jakhals can take a mauler chainblade, a S+2, AP-2 2 damage weapon that gives -1 to hit.

Jakhals can come in units of up to 20 models, and once per battle they can fire up Stimms, causing them D3 mortal wounds but giving them +1 Strength for the rest of the phase. This can help them push through damage against bigger targets and punch up, and makes them nasty little trading pieces that also happen to pack ObSec and with a 6+ save they’re BTP just waiting to happen. You could give them an icon to have them get +1 to attrition tests but at 5 points that’s likely a waste.

Jakhals are surprisingly interesting as a unit, and can be really nasty surprise trading units while in the worst case they net you more BTP and/or VP for bathing an objective in blood.


There are four World Eaters Elites units; two are new and two are returning units from Codex: Chaos Space Marines. They’re all worth talking about. Chosen are notably absent here.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones


The Eightbound are basically the World Eaters version of Possessed, with a 9” move, T5, 3 wounds, and 4 attacks each. They come in units of 3-6 and their basic weapons are a pair of Eviscerators, S:User (6), AP-3, 2 damage weapons that give an extra attack, which means that each Eightbound normally comes in with 7 attacks on the charge (+1 for each eviscerator). The champion gets a pair of Lacerators, which are S+1, AP-3, 3 damage, but you can swap the lacerations out for a heavy chainglave which does 1-damage sweep attacks instead (2x attacks). Don’t do this – the lacerators are pretty great and the 3-damage profile is relatively difficult to get in the army.

Eightbound have the CORE keyword, which immediately makes them one of the best units in the army as they can benefit from a host of other abilities. They also have the DAEMON keyword, the Fearsome Aura, and a 5+ invulnerable save like Possessed. Finally they have the Bloodscent ability, which lets them arrive from Strategic Reserves as if it were one turn earlier, which means they can arrive on the game’s first turn. This is also incredibly good.

All of this combines to mean that Eightbound are going to be the core of your World Eaters army; the question is not whether you’ll take them but how many units and we suspect that most of the time you’ll be running three units of 5-6 of them. At 40 points per model they’re a bit steep but you get a ton of value out of them for the cost.

Exalted Eightbound

The even more elite version of Eightbound, Exalted Eightbound come in units of 3 models for 135 points (so 45 points per model). Compared to their non-exalted cousins, they’re a bit tougher – they have a 4+ invulnerable save instead of a 5+, and they trade the ability to come in early from reserves for the ability to Deep Strike. On top of that they hit on a 2+ in melee, which is a big benefit and helps make up for their smaller unit counts. Each Exalted Eightbound comes with an eviscerator and a chainfist, which means they have one fewer attack but can choose to make attacks with a S+3 AP-4 option instead. The Champoin can take a pair of Chainfists, and if they do their chainfist damage improves by 1, taking them to S9 AP-4 3-damage attacks, which is pretty great. Buuuuut they’re not CORE, which takes away several of the cool tricks you could otherwise do with them, and means that the regular flavour are likely to be your mainstay.

Exalted Eightbound still have a ton of value though, because as well as the threat from deep strike, the other thing Exalted Eightbound bring to the table is Blood Fury, an Aura which prevents non-VEHICLE units from falling back or doing actions on a 4+. That’s pretty solid, and gives you a reason to take 1-2 units of Exalted, though as they’re capped at 3 models they can be a bit more fragile than you’d like. That said, at only 135 points they’re excellent pieces for trading and making a late-game push, and you’ll often start by smashing Eightbound across the table and end with deep striking units of Exalted to crash into your enemy right as that initial push starts to lose steam.

Also you can only take 3 units of Eightbound, so these are a great second option.

World Eaters Terminators

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Look, there are no new models here and that’s disappointing. What’s not disappointing is that World Eaters Terminators come with an extra attack in their profile (4 base/5 for the champion), which means that with their Accursed Weapons they get 6 attacks each on the charge at S6, and you can bump that to AP-4 pretty easily with Blood Tithe Points and 2 damage with the Red Butchers Stratagem. Add in that you can get them 7” movement with Invocatus or a Juggalord and the ability to Heroically Intervene 6” and you’ve got an incredibly nasty midtable unit for holding objectives, and they’re only 35ppm, 1 point cheaper than CSM Terminators. They don’t really make it into competitive lists right now because Eightbound are just better and faster, but you could do worse if you really wanted to run them.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones


World Eaters Helbrutes also didn’t get the memo on updated points and so their ranged weapons will cost you extra points – but that doesn’t matter because you aren’t taking any of them. And while the Helbrute datasheet is the same here as in CSM, only with Blood Tithe instead of Let the Galaxy Burn, it’s worth noting that as a CORE unit, they get access to a ton of interesting tricks, like +2” movement and the ability to intervene 6” or fight on death. Give one a Fist and Scourge and take them at 105 points, giving them 9 attacks to work with on the charge.

Fast Attack

Chaos Spawn

World Eaters armies get extremely screwed when it comes to Fast Attack options – Bikes, Raptors, and Warp Talons are all missing here, with little rationale for removing them. The only Fast Attack choice left is the Chaos Spawn, sporting the updated profile from Codex; Chaos Space Marines. They benefit from Blood Tithe but not the legion trait. The reason you’re going to take them in your army is to run three units of one model every game for 3 free Blood Tithe Points. They’re great as distractions otherwise, can harass enemy units, and heal back to full health if an opponent can’t kill them with a single volley.

Heavy Support

World Eaters armies get access to all of the same Heavy Support options as Chaos Space Marines armies – Land Raiders, Predators, Defilers, Maulerfiends, and Forgefiends. They have the updated CSM datasheets, but that’s about it.

Land Raider

Land Raiders can carry Eightbound, which count as 2 models. This means you’re going to take them in Disciples of the Red Angel, where they’re interesting options for transporting your non-Invocatus-supported upgraded Eightbound unit across the table. There’s a surprising amount of play in a 2-Land Raider Disciples list where the T9, 2+ save tanks are tough enough to bring down without having to wonder if you’re making a mistake by not shooting down Angron. Otherwise they aren’t really worth taking.

Dedicated Transport

World Eaters can take Rhinos. They can’t hold Terminators or Eightbound, which is a shame, but there’s a good argument for taking one as a staging point for Berserkers, and hey, when you’re opponent blows it up, that’s some BTP right there!


Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

World Eaters can take Heldrakes. They won’t.

Lords of War

The World Eaters have access to two Lords of War – the Lord of Skulls, back in all his standard glory and ready to be the best shooting platform the army has access to, and the one you’re here to read about – Angron.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones


The Daemon Primarch of the World Eaters clocks in at 360 points and gives you an absolute melee monster to play with – 16” Flying movement, S9, T7, 18 wounds, 2+/4++ save, and 12 attacks base. His two weapons give him two attack options – either S+5, AP-4, D3+3 damage slashes or S9 AP-3, 1-damage sweeps that triple his attacks. That means if you’re keeping tabs at home, a charging Angron chooses between 13 big attacks or 39 little ones, though it’s worth noting that Angron has no way to circumvent wound caps or invulnerable saves.

Angron’s got the standard Chapter Master ability to give a CORE/CHARACTER unit re-rolls to hit, but he also comes with Wrathful Presence, which lets you pick one of three additional auras for him each Command phase – Infectious Rage gives WORLD EATERS CORE units within 6” +1 Attack, Glorious Bloodletting gives WORLD EATERS units within 6” re-roll hit rolls of 1, and Righteous Slaughter stops all units within 6” from Falling back. This is an incredibly good trio of abilities and each has its uses. If Angron’s in your army, he has to be your Warlord, and his trait is another aura – The Red Angel (Aura) causes enemy units within 6” to lose Objective Secured, which is another nasty ability, though note that Angron does not himself count as more than one model.

These are pretty nasty but the kicker on Angron is that he can be resurrected multiple times per game for 6 BTP per attempt. He gives you 2 BTP every time he dies, so it’s not impossible or even unlikely for Angron to show up 2-3 times per game. Though note that having to deep strike back in each time inevitably means that he’s not super likely to be doing a lot if he has to come back multiple times. Still, at 360 points Angron gives you a nasty melee threat who can act as a big force multiplier. The downside is that Lord Invocatus’ Warlord Trait is just plain better, and doesn’t require that you take a large monster who will be shot off the table turn 1 by Tau/Knights/Votann.

If you can hide Angron in the terrain for your event he’s a lot better, but ultimately he’s more a fun pick than a competitive one.

Wings: Worth noting that because you can activate Blood Tide abilities at the end of any phase, the turnaround on Angron coming back isn’t as bad as it could be – if your opponent punts him off the table in their Fight Phase, you can stick him straight into deep strike at the end of that phase, and bring him in on your turn.

The Lord of Skulls

The Lord of Skulls is also an option here, though without much support in the form of Stratagems or re-rolls there isn’t a ton to recommend about him. There’s potentially a fun list for Disciples which runs Angron and three Lords of Skulls but it’s unlikely to actually be competitive.

Playing World Eaters

World Eaters are an army which feels straightforward, but has quite a bit of nuance to it. While yes, your units are good at running to combat and fighting, a lot of your success will depend on understanding when to charge and when to hold back. You have several very fast units but it’s very possible to get out over your skis going too fast too quickly and ending up isolated and picked apart piecemeal before you can react.

Your Game Plan

Your game plan with World Eaters consists of three parts:

  1. Get into melee combat
  2. Do not fail at melee combat
  3. Spend BTP to score Pile the Skulls

As it relates to that first one, you have several options and ways to accomplish this but your primary method is going to be running across the board with Eightbound. The Eightbound gain a ton of mobility from Lord Invocatus, able to pre-game move 11″, then move another 11″ on their first turn before making a charge, giving them a 34″ threat range (though more realistically, 29″) on the first turn. That’s incredibly nasty if you’re going first, as it means that you’re able to send two units screaming up the table and into a turn 1 charge even if your opponent is trying to deploy conservatively. On its own, that can be enough to end many games.

That said, let’s talk about #2: Getting into combat, even on the first turn, isn’t enough. You need to ensure that you won’t fail in combat, which means wiping out a key unit, crippling the opponent, and putting yourself in a position to survive the counterpunch and maintain pressure on the opponent. There are plenty of games and opponents where you can’t just win with a decisive turn 1 charge, and you also need a plan for going second. As terrifying as your units are, there are units you will struggle to trade profitably with – melee Necrons are a great example here as they have good saves, 3 wound models, and Reanimation Protocols. Plus when they fight back they’ll hit you with their own 3-damage weapons and make you regret charging them. You need to pick your battles and ensure that when you do charge them, it’s going to fully wipe out the unit you’re charging.

So a lot of the game will be determining when to make that first strike – on turn 1 vs turn 2 – and what to strike against. Once that starts, your game plan will be maintaining a constant level of pressure while controlling the board with your Berserkers and trading up wherever possible. A competitive World Eaters list will typically have three larger units of Eightbound supported by three units of Exalted and 4-5 units of Berzerkers with Rhinos, plus 3 units of sacrificial Chaos Spawn. That’s more than enough to work with and you’ll find some armies just can’t remove your threats fast enough to handle the constant influx of threats.

Then starting on round 3, you’re going to throw BTP at Pile the Skulls to make sure you score 15 VP for that one. This is the easiest part of your plan, but just remember that to do it you need 2 BTP on each of rounds 3, 4, and 5.

Movement, the Fight Phase, and You

Something you need to do to play well competitively with World Eaters is learn the nuances of moving and fighting in the Fight phase. The Fight phase is going to be Where It Happens for your army and there’s a ton you can accomplish there. Generally, you want to start thinking about the Fight phase a second Movement phase for your units, where if carefully planned, the ability to pile in, Fight, and consolidate can allow a unit to take key positions around the table and on objectives. The Key is understanding how to pick your charge targets (and hopefully getting off multi-charges when it’s reasonable to do so) and learning how to play with the concept of “moving closer to the closest enemy model  – remember that you only have to end up closer in absolute terms; you don’t have to move in a straight line to get there, and can end up behind a model as long as the distance between your bases is less than it was before.

When you pile in with your berzerkers, you want to make sure you’re moving around the unit you actually want to trap or touch/wrap in the Fight phase – don’t come into base-to-base contact with anything and don’t move any closer than the bare minimum toward models – always move sideways and orbit your targets, moving marginally closer to satisfy the conditions of pile-in moves needing to end closer. Note that if you charged this turn, you activate regardless of whether you’re in engagement range, and so you’ll still get your 3″ pile-in move to try and reach another target or just further position yourself.


Note that if you haven’t charged this turn, the rules for being eligible to fight and targeting enemy units in the Fight phase are different – you can target units that you didn’t charge but you will only be eligible to fight if you are within Engagement Range of an enemy unit, so your consolidate moves need to ensure that you end up within 1″ of an enemy unit each time you finish them. The upside is that you can fight anything in this mode, so you can live the dream and wipe out as many units as you can come into contact with.


World Eaters are very good right now so there are a lot of options to choose from for successful lists but there’s not a lot of variety in them. We’re going to show one list each from a standard World Eaters list and a Disciples of Khorne list.

Anthony Vanella’s List

Anthony of team Stat Check piloted this list to an undefeated first-place finish at the All is Dust GT in late March 2023.

Army name: Violence Incarnate
Factions used: Chaos – World Eaters
Command Points: 6-1-1=4
Total cost: 2000 pts, 112 PL
Reinforcement Points: none pts

Number of Units: 18
Assassination: 7 points
Bring it Down: 4 points
No Prisoners: 14 points
Abhor the Witch: 0 points

== World Eaters Arks of Omen == 0 CP, 2000 pts, 112 PL

HQ1: Lord Invocatus: Bolt pistol, Coward’s Bane, Juggernaut’s bladed horn, Road of Eight Bloody Steps, Stratagem: Warlord Trait, Warlord [160 pts, 8 PL, -1 CP]

HQ2: World Eaters Lord on Juggernaut: Berzerker Glaive, Exalted chainblade, Juggernaut’s bladed horn, Plasma pistol, Stratagem: Relic [125 pts, 6 PL, -1 CP]

TR1: Khorne Berserkers: Berserker icon, Khorne Berserker Champion (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), 3xKhorne Berserker w/ chainblade (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), Khorne Berserker w/ eviscerator (Bolt pistol, Khornate eviscerator) [120 pts, 6 PL]
TR2: Khorne Berserkers: Berserker icon, Khorne Berserker Champion (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), 3xKhorne Berserker w/ chainblade (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), Khorne Berserker w/ eviscerator (Bolt pistol, Khornate eviscerator) [120 pts, 6 PL]
TR3: Khorne Berserkers: Berserker icon, Khorne Berserker Champion (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), 3xKhorne Berserker w/ chainblade (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), Khorne Berserker w/ eviscerator (Bolt pistol, Khornate eviscerator) [120 pts, 6 PL]
TR4: Khorne Berserkers: Berserker icon, Khorne Berserker Champion (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), 3xKhorne Berserker w/ chainblade (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), Khorne Berserker w/ eviscerator (Bolt pistol, Khornate eviscerator) [120 pts, 6 PL]
TR5: Khorne Berserkers: Khorne Berserker Champion (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), 3xKhorne Berserker w/ chainblade (Berserker chainblade, Bolt pistol), Khorne Berserker w/ eviscerator (Bolt pistol, Khornate eviscerator) [115 pts, 6 PL]

EL1: Eightbound: 3xEightbound (2xEightbound eviscerator), Eightbound Champion (Lacerators) [160 pts, 12 PL]
EL2: Eightbound: 3xEightbound (2xEightbound eviscerator), Eightbound Champion (Lacerators) [160 pts, 12 PL]
EL3: Eightbound: 3xEightbound (2xEightbound eviscerator), Eightbound Champion (Lacerators) [160 pts, 12 PL]

EL4: Exalted Eightbound: 2xExalted Eightbound (Eightbound chainfist, Eightbound eviscerator), Exalted Eightbound Champion (Two eviscerator chainfists (2xEightbound eviscerator)) [135 pts, 7 PL]
EL5: Exalted Eightbound: 2xExalted Eightbound (Eightbound chainfist, Eightbound eviscerator), Exalted Eightbound Champion (Two eviscerator chainfists (2xEightbound eviscerator)) [135 pts, 7 PL]
EL6: Exalted Eightbound: 2xExalted Eightbound (Eightbound chainfist, Eightbound eviscerator), Exalted Eightbound Champion (Two eviscerator chainfists (2xEightbound eviscerator)) [135 pts, 7 PL]

FA1: Chaos Spawn: Chaos Spawn [25 pts, 1 PL]
FA2: Chaos Spawn: Chaos Spawn [25 pts, 1 PL]
FA3: Chaos Spawn: Chaos Spawn [25 pts, 1 PL]

DT1: Chaos Rhino: Combi-bolter [80 pts, 4 PL]
DT2: Chaos Rhino: Combi-bolter [80 pts, 4 PL]

The Standout Features

  • A pair of juggernaut characters – Invocatus and a Lord
  • 3 units of Eightbound
  • 3 units of Exalted Eightbound
  • 5 units of Berzerkers

Playing This List

This list is all about applying pressure and not letting up. The Eightbound can cross the table early to apply immediate pressure where needed, while the Berzerkers in Rhinos move up behind them controlling the board. By the time your opponent digs out of that first wave, the Berzekers and Exalted Eightbound are arriving.

Chet Manly’s List

Our example of a Disciples of the Red Angel this, this list took 2nd place at the Capital Clash Winter ’23 GT in late February.

++ Arks of Omen Detachment (Chaos – World Eaters) [85 PL, 1,630pts, 5CP] ++

+ Configuration +

Arks of Omen Compulsory Type: Elites
Subfaction: Disciples of the Red Angel

+ HQ +

Lord Invocatus [8 PL, 160pts]

+ Elites +

Eightbound [12 PL, 200pts]: Mutable Form
. 4x Eightbound: 8x Eightbound eviscerator
. Eightbound Champion: Heavy chainglaive

Eightbound [6 PL, 120pts]
. 2x Eightbound: 4x Eightbound eviscerator
. Eightbound Champion: Lacerators

Eightbound [6 PL, 120pts]
. 2x Eightbound: 4x Eightbound eviscerator
. Eightbound Champion: Lacerators

Exalted Eightbound [7 PL, 135pts]
. 2x Exalted Eightbound: 2x Eightbound chainfist, 2x Eightbound eviscerator
. Exalted Eightbound Champion
. . Two eviscerator chainfists

+ Heavy Support +

Chaos Land Raider [14 PL, 270pts]: Havoc launcher

Chaos Land Raider [14 PL, 265pts]

+ Lord of War +

Angron [18 PL, 360pts, -1CP]: Stratagem: Warlord Trait, The Red Angel

++ Patrol Detachment 0CP (Chaos – Daemons) [21 PL, 370pts] ++

+ Configuration +

Chaos Allegiance: Khorne

Detachment Command Cost

+ HQ +

Karanak [5 PL, 90pts]

+ Troops +

Bloodletters [6 PL, 130pts]: Daemonic icon, Instrument of Chaos
. 9x Bloodletter: 9x Hellblade

+ Fast Attack +

Flesh Hounds [5 PL, 75pts]: Gore Hound
. 4x Flesh Hound: 4x Gore-drenched fangs

Flesh Hounds [5 PL, 75pts]: Gore Hound
. 4x Flesh Hound: 4x Gore-drenched fangs

++ Total: [106 PL, 2,000pts, 5CP] ++

The Standout Features

  • Angron
  • Karanak
  • Two units of Flesh Hounds
  • A pair of Chaos Land Raiders

Playing This List

The sheer amount of beef in this list is hilarious. Your opponent can’t likely remove the land raiders and Angron in a single turn – and the Raiders can hide – so they’re forced to focus on Angron while the Land Raiders move up carrying deadly Eightbound cargo. Then Angron comes back right after they crash into the enemy lines and start removing units. The Flesh Hounds give the army tons of speed and the Bloodletters can act as the army’s backfield objective holders and action doers.

Where to Read More

Click here to return to our larger guide on Chaos Space Marines. If you have any questions or feedback, shoot us an email at