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Apocalypse Preview: Thousand Sons and Deathguard

Getting your Chaos on.... the Thousand Sons are up today.

via the Warhammer Community
For 10,000 years, the Death Guard and Thousand Sons have been fighting the Long War against the Imperium of Man. Today, we’re taking a look at the units and Command Assets that they’ll use to ramp up the scale of their revenge.

Play Style

Both the Death Guard and Thousand Sons have many similarities to their heretical brethren, but each also has their own unique way of war – enhanced by their patron gods – which influences how they play on the tabletop. As disciples of Tzeentch, the Thousand Sons can field a staggering number of Psykers, perfect for decimating their enemies with psychic powers. AhrimanDaemon Princes of Tzeentch and Exalted Sorcerers will dominate the battlefield, massed ranks of Horrors will overwhelm foes with coruscating fire and multiple Mutalith Vortex Beastswill crush enemy strongpoints.
The Death Guard are the favoured of Nurgle, and so many of their units benefit from the Ignore Damage (6+) special rule, helping to keep them in the battle for longer. They also have a choice of two elite Terminator units, both of which make their implacable way across the battlefield, shrugging off enemy fire while hordes of Poxwalkers engulf the enemy.

Top Units


Both Mortarion and Magnus the Red are excellent choices for an Apocalypse army. They’re both Psykers, they can both Fly and they are both utterly deadly in shooting and close combat. As an added bonus, both of them also grant benefits to any members of their Legion who are close by.
Magnus’ supreme command of the warp is represented by his Master Psyker rule, which gives you great control over your psychic power Command Assets.
Mortarion has a few tricks of his own and isn’t affected by wounds in the same way as other units. Usually in Apocalypse, if the number of damage markers that a unit has is equal to or more than half of its Wounds characteristic, but it’s not destroyed, then it is critically damaged. This represents the battle damage that the unit has taken and means that it can’t fight as effectively – halving the unit’s Attacks characteristic. However, thanks to his armour, Mortarion ignores this rule, ensuring that he remains effective for as long as he’s on the battlefield.
These two Daemon Primarchs have been at the forefront of some of the galaxy’s largest battles, making them ideally suited to lead their forces to victory in Apocalypse.

Rubric Marines

Fearless, remorseless and utterly implacable, Rubric Marines are a great choice in Apocalypse. In a Thousand Sons Detachment, they count as a Troops choice and they are Psykers, meaning that they can manifest Command Asset psychic powers. They are also armed with inferno boltguns, deadly Small Arms that cut down other infantry with ease. This versatility means you won’t regret having loads of them on the table.

Plagueburst Crawler

Designed by Mortarion himself, the Plagueburst Crawler is a superlative mobile artillery piece. It has great weapon options – plaguespitters cut down infantry while entropy cannons leave vehicles as rusting wrecks – but in Apocalypse, you don’t have to choose between one loadout or the other – you can just field multiple Plagueburst Crawlers and lay waste to all of your foes.
Of course, there are loads of great units available to both of these Legions in Apocalypse, from the largest of demi-gods to the smallest wrigging mites – Rubric Marines and Plagueburst Crawlers are but a taste of many ways you can wage war with the Death Guard and Thousand Sons.

Top Command Assets

Similarly, there is a lot of flexibility when it comes to choosing Command Assets, since Heretic Astartes Command Assets that can be used by your Chaos Space Marines units and Legiones Daemonica Command Assets will affect any Daemons in your force.
The Death Guard are never happier than when spreading Father Nurgle’s blessings and, with Nurgle’s Rot, you can gift them to multiple enemy units at once.
The Thousand Sons, meanwhile, will be taking advantage of their psychic mastery to destroy their enemies with blasts of sorcerous witchfire.
The Death Guard have some particularly nasty psychic powers of their own to unleash, such as Plague Wind, which causes havoc to densely packed enemy formations. Meanwhile, Coruscating Beam for the Thousand Sons lets a Warlord call upon the power of a Silver Tower to blast apart the enemy ranks.
If you’re looking to unleash these heretics on a truly frightening scale, Apocalypse is the game for you! Check out the rest of our Faction Focuses in the Index – while if you’re eager to get your hands on some Traitor Legions right away, why not pick up the Harbingers of Decay for your Death Guard or the Supreme Command bundle for the Thousand Sons to make sure that your armies are ready for the biggest battles ever!

Apocalypse is available to pre-order from June 29th