"In this galaxy, there is only war!"
- — Adrastus, Bodyguard of Captain Fenrix the Fated
The most experienced and dedicated Chaos Space Marines are known as "Chosen." Even at a glance, it is obvious that they are favoured amongst the bitter brotherhood of Chaos, for their baroque armour is embellished with forbidden runes and their grimacing helmets give them the aspect of raging daemons.
Equipped with the finest wargear the warband can provide, the Chosen are even more hard-bitten and callous than other Chaos Space Marines, and think nothing of sacrificing the lives of their comrades to increase their own standing with the gods.
Squads of Chosen have many centuries of combat experience to draw upon and are typically found in the vanguard of any attack, fighting from the front where they can earn the most glory and take the greatest spoils. Sometimes the Chosen will use their battle skills to infiltrate enemy lines and set up ambushes, or outflank an enemy army to launch surprise attacks on the opposition’s strongpoints.
Confident in the extreme, and contemptuous even of those that march to war alongside them, the Chosen bow only to the gods themselves and to the Chaos Champions who command their allegiance.
Like Chaos Champions, there are many Heretic Astartes who may be called Chosen; dedicated, deadly soldiers. Chosen often band together with other such veterans and may be defined as much by the wargear they wield and the tactics they prefer as their dedication to a particular Chaos God.
Both weapons and tactics can be extremely varied, from close combat weapons such as Chainswords and Lightning Claws, to Reaper Autocannons and Lascannons, and the ever-redoubtable Bolter. Chosen come in many forms, from the raging World Eaters Berserkers to the jaded Noise Marines of the Emperor's Children, and likewise their personalities vary wildly.
Some leap into battle with unrestrained savagery, trusting in their berserker rage to overwhelm their enemies, while others may rely on a methodical, stoic approach or even simple, practical sorceries and dark charms to win the day. However, many Chosen are professional and pragmatic. They use all tools at their disposal to their fullest extent to ensure victory, making them consummate and terrifying warriors.
Many Chosen are far more focused on the art of war than they are upon spreading the influence of Chaos. Disdaining lofty goals or devoted worship, these Chosen dedicate themselves to battle instead, becoming avatars of militant destruction. They live for fighting and embrace its countless forms.
When not actively engaged in war, they train for it, and even when unable to train, their minds run ever ahead to the next conflict. Though they may acknowledge the Dark Gods with rites and sacrifices, this is done in a pragmatic and often perfunctory manner. These Heretic Astartes offer tribute to the gods so that the gods will help them engage in their speciality and their greatest passion -- war in all its countless forms.
Their constant study and practice has invariably borne fruit. Chosen are virtually peerless warriors. While they may have a chosen speciality -- melee combat, heavy weapons, or some other combat doctrine -- they are generally familiar with a broad array of different techniques.
Chosen constantly analyse the techniques used by their opponents and their allies. Between battles they often spend time either incorporating new techniques into their arsenal or identifying ways to counter tactics that they have seen others use. This endless dedication and training sometimes grants them the capability to identify an opponent's background based upon their fighting style and prepared to counter their foe’s moves long before they are undertaken.
Chosen embrace the challenges of battle with their whole being. They accept risks without question and, for many, battle is an end in itself. Glory, power, and material possessions are trivial concerns to these warriors, simply benefits that come from victory and allow them to continue waging war.
The opportunity to vanquish a foe and revel in their triumph is the reward for which they strive. While they are grateful for the blessings of their Dark Gods and any tools of battle they might wrench from the stilled hands of their foes, the time after battle is not one for celebration. Rather, it is a time for recovery so that they might ensure victory over their next opponent.
The life of a Chaos Space Marine is a hard one, but the life of a Chosen may be even more challenging. The constant training and overwhelming thirst for battle can begin to stress even their superhuman physiques. Consequently, their lives are often snuffed out early, as they continue to accept ever more dangerous assignments. However, those who survive become ever more dangerous.
These Heretic Astartes are unusual in that they seldom fear the transformation to Chaos Spawn to the same extent as most other servants of the Dark Gods. Though they are hardly anxious to undergo such a conversion, they know that even those wretched creatures are used in battle by the Ruinous Powers for all eternity. While they would certainly prefer the powers and privileges granted to a Daemon Prince, Chosen typically are less interested in the responsibilities involved in leadership or rule.
As long as Chosen are granted opportunities for battle, these Chaos Space Marines embrace those chances with their whole being. Their actions may earn them glory and the blessings of their Dark Gods, but such praises are not their goal.
This is not due to any sense of false modesty. Rather, to these stalwarts, the only glory that can be savoured is that earned on the battlefield. The only praise worth remembering is the cry of agony wrenched from the throat of a defeated foe.
Unless the recognition they receive enables them to engage in further battle or defeat more and ever more capable opponents, then that recognition holds no meaning to them. These Heretic Astartes live for the rush of conflict. All other matters are to be dealt with by those the Chosen view as lesser beings. They demand only their armaments and a foe upon which to test them.
- 4-9 Chosen
- 1 Chosen Champion
- Power Armour
- Bolt Pistol
- Frag Grenades
- Krak Grenades
- Chainsword (Optional replacement for Boltgun or for any one of Chosen Champion's weapons)
- Chainaxe (Optional replacement for any one of Chosen Champion's weapons)
- Plasma Pistol (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Bolt Pistol or for any one of Chosen Champion's weapons)
- Power Weapon (Any type as optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns or for any one of Chosen Champion's weapons)
- Lightning Claw (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns or for any one of Chosen Champion's weapons)
- Power Fist (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns or for any one of Chosen Champion's weapons)
- 2 Lightning Claws (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns and Bolt Pistols)
- Combi-weapon (Any type as optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns)
- Flamer (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns)
- Meltagun (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns
- Plasma Gun (Optional replacement for 4 Chosen's Boltguns
- Heavy Bolter (Optional replacement for 1 Chosen's Boltgun)
- Meltagun (Optional replacement for 1 Chosen's Boltgun)
- Autocannon (Optional replacement for 1 Chosen's Boltgun)
- Lascannon (Optional replacement for 1 Chosen's Boltgun)
- Missile Launcher (with Frag Missiles and Krak Missiles) (Optional replacement for 1 Chosen's Boltgun)
- Chaos Rhino (dedicated transport for squad)
- Dzargon Draznicht - Dzargon Draznicht is a Chaos Champion and Chosen of the Renegade Space Marine warband known as the Crimson Slaughter. Once the wisest mind in the Crimson Sabres Chapter before their corruption by the Ruinous Powers, he was renowned for his preternatural perception, which caused him to mutate when his Chapter fell to Chaos. His mind was opened to the power of the Warp and a hideous third eye opened upon his forehead, always seeking out new paths for slaughter, murder and mayhem. Now Draznicht follows the Chaos Lord Kranon the Relentless as his chief subordinate and leader of the warband's Chosen.
- Verzekh - Verzekh was a Heretic Astartes and Chaos Champion of the Black Legion who served as the primary lieutenant of the Sorcerer Chaos Lord Xorphas and commanded Xorphas' unit of Chosen. Verzekh served by Xorphas' side during the Diamor Campaign just before the 13th Black Crusade. He was killed in action by Captain Aphael of the Blood Angels Chapter.
- Codex Heretic Astartes - Chaos Space Marines (8th Edition), pp. 63, 136
- Codex Chaos Space Marines (6th Edition), pp. 36-37, 96
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (4th Edition), pp. 27, 94
- Crimson Dawn (Novella) by C.Z. Dunn, Chs. 2, 9, 12, 14
- Crimson Slaughter - A Codex: Chaos Space Marines Supplement (6th Edition), "The Long Spiral into Madness," "Into the Eye of Terror," "Fractured in Body and Soul"
- Black Crusade: Core Rulebook (RPG), pp. 56-57
- Black Crusade: Traitor's Hate (7th Edition), pp. 74-79