What is the Slaves to Darkness?
The Slaves to Darkness is a release for the Chaos: Grand Alliance in Age of Sigmar.
The army merges the Slaves to Darkness and the Everchosen. This means the Everchosen Battletome is about to become outdated (it pretty much was already).
The Slaves to Darkness are the armies of Archaon, the Grand Marshal of the forces of Chaos in the Mortal Realms. Before the Age of Sigmar, during the Age of Chaos, they dominated almost all of the Realms, and they still march anywhere Archaon leads them.
The Slaves to Darkness can be both a horde army and an elite army (and anything in between). The Everchosen and the elite Varanguard are powerful chaos champions that can take anything the Realms could throw their way. The shamanistic barbarian hordes of aspirant Chaos worshippers such as the Darkoath Barbarians and the warbands of the Eightpoints find their strength in numbers and their devotion to gaining Archaon's favor.
The warriors of the Slaves to Darkness all have one thing in common, though: every single one of them, from a captain of the Varanguard to a plainsrunner of the Untamed Beasts, are on a quest to gain enough attention to be favored by Archaon and the Gods of Chaos. They are all the individual heroes of their own path to eternal glory.
In the recent lore articles from GW on the Slaves to Darkness, there is much focus on the Varanspire, Archaon's mighty fortress in the middle of the Eightpoints. It's his seat of power, but he is never there (since he is out conquering all the time), and now the forces of Death are preparing an invasion of the Eightpoints. It seems the ongoing story of the Slaves to Darkness is going to be about enduring a siege of the Varanspire.
When will the Slaves to Darkness release?
The new Start Collecting box, the battletome, the Endless Spells, the Warscroll Cards and the expanded Warcry infantry boxes will be available for preorder on December 7 and release on December 14, 2019.
There might be more releases after that, but none are officially confirmed.
What new miniatures will be in the Slaves to Darkness book?
The New Start Collecting box will contain:
- 10 new Chaos Warriors, 9 regular and 1 Champion
- 5 new Chaos Knights
- 1 new Chaos Lord on Karkadrak
The new miniatures will be monopose assembly, much like the starter sets, but with several head options for each model and an option to assemble one Warrior and one Knight as a Champion.
The release ties strongly into Warcry, the Warcry Chaos warbands such as the Iron Golems and Untamed Beasts will be playable in a Slaves to Darkness army. Updated boxes for the warbands with double the sprues from the original box will be available for preorder at the same time as the Start Collecting: Slaves to Darkness box. The Warcry warbands will not be battleline units, however, so a full Warcry army isn't an option.
The full list of models that will have rules in the Slaves to Darkness Battletome includes:
- Archaon Everchosen
- Chaos Lord on Manticore
- Chaos Sorcerer Lord
- Exalted Hero of Chaos
- Godsworn Hunt
- Thedra Skull-Skryer
- Chaos Lord
- Darkoath Chieftain
- Darkoath Warqueen
- Gaunt Summoner on Disc of Tzeentch
- Lord on Daemonic Mount
- Chaos Marauders
- Daemon Prince
- Gorebeast Chariot
- Chaos Chosen
- Chaos Chariot
- Chaos Warriors
- Iron Golems
- The Unmade
- Splintered Fang
- Untamed Beasts
- Chaos Marauder Horsemen
- Corvus Cabal
- Chaos Sorcerer Lord on Manticore
- Chaos Knights
- Chaos Warshrine
- Fomoroid Crusher
- Ogroid Myrmidon
- Mindstealer Sphyranx
- Spire Tyrants
- Chaos Lord on Karkadrak
Slaves to Darkness Terrain
There have been no hints of new Slaves to Darkness terrain so far, and no faction-specific terrain is going up for preorder on the same day as the Battletome: Slaves to Darkness.
Slaves to Darkness Endless Spells
The Slaves to Darkness release will feature a box of three faction specific Endless Spells:
- The Darkfire Daemonrift is a Predatory Endless Spell that deals D3 mortal wounds to anything it moves over or ends within 1 inch of at the end of its move. It deals additional mortal wounds when near Wizards or spells being cast.
- The Realmscourge Rupture is a Predatory Endless Spell that has to move in a straight line in a direction decided at its deployment, but it deals mortal wounds and halves the movement of any unit it passes for the rest of the battle round.
- The Eightfold Doom-Sigil is an Endless Spell that allows a player to roll a dice for each slain model close to the Endless Spell at the end of a turn. For each 3+ roll, a unit of that player's choice gets +1 attacks to its melee weapons until that player's next hero phase. Confusing but thematic.
What other items will be released for Slaves to Darkness
A new battletome has been confirmed. It will be available as both a standard version and a limited edition.
Warscroll Cards are also confirmed, and a box with Warscroll Cards for all the units of the Slaves to Darkness army alongside a sheet of tokens will be available as part of the initial release.
Warcry Warbands reboxed
These are not new miniatures, but all of the Warcry Chaos Warbands are getting a new box. It is just the old box but with 2x the content in the older ones, but it means it is a bit easier to field an army and big units with these awesome minis.
You can click the images to find a good place to preorder them.
Rules and changes from the old armies to new
It seems the new Slaves to Darkness army will continue to work much like it did before, with some important changes. The army still uses Marks of Chaos like in the allegiance abilities for Slaves to Darkness in recent versions of the Age of Sigmar Player’s Handbook, so that your warriors can take the Mark of either Khorne, Tzeentch, Nurgle, Slaanesh or Chaos Undivided in order to receive different bonuses and abilities.
One of the ways the army uses Chaos Marks is the allegiance ability Aura of Khorne, which gives your units bonuses when they are close to a Hero with the same Mark of Chaos as their own. If the hero is your general, his Aura gives better bonuses than that of a regular hero. The Warhammer Community Faction Focus article gives the Aura of Khorne as an example:
Your entire army doesn't have to have the same Mark of Chaos, so different Marks can be used for different regiments in your army. This sounds very promising for the flexibility of your army and encourages players to bring as many heroes as they can to cover most of your army in Auras of Chaos.
It has also been confirmed that the new Chaos Warriors, Chaos Knights and Chaos Lord can all be used in Disciples of Tzeentch, Hedonites of Slaanesh, Maggotkin of Nurgle and Blades of Khorne armies.
The other main allegiance ability is Eye of the Gods. This ability tells you to roll for a result on a random table of effects whenever one of your heroes slay a Hero or a Monster. If you're lucky, your hero transforms into a Daemon Prince or receives a powerful bonus. If your roll is really bad, your powerful hero can turn into a much simpler Chaos Spawn.
A new addition to the Slaves to Darkness army rules is the four new subfactions:
- The Ravagers is the “Path to Glory” subfaction, where every hero is trying to become the next Chaos champion. This means you can have up to 5 different heroes with command traits that they can use even if they are not your General. Every hero phase, you can choose which of your heroes will be the general until the next hero phase.
- The Cabalists is the magic-focused subfaction, and they can sacrifice units to control Endless Spells. The lower the wound count of the unit being sacrificed, the more models will be slain, and the more powerful the magic of the Wizard casting it will become:
There are probably more Rituals with other effects for the subfaction, and we will update this article with more of them as soon as we know anything about them.
- The Despoilers is the monster subfaction, with most of its bonuses tied to Daemon Princes and Chaos Monsters. One example is Twisted Dominion. It allows a Daemon Prince to turn any terrain feature into either a complete line of sight blocker or a Mortal Wound-dealing trap:
- The Everchosen is the subfaction that continues the legacy of the original Everchosen army that now becomes part of the Slaves to Darkness army. One way it does this is to turn what was once an Everchosen battalion ability into a subfaction ability which lets you manipulate when you get to take a double turn:
This should lead to some fun poker face standoffs between players trying to either guess or hide if the Everchosen player is hiding a high or low roll.
Review and other conent about the new Slaves to Darkness
“Guy-who-reads-book-aloud” has done his usual “review”. You can find it on youtube here:
Community Articles about the Slaves to Darkness
Below you can find the various GW articles concerning the Slaves to Darkness: