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Long answer Containing the knowledge gathered by Richter Kless, it retains four volumes on each of the primary Chaos Gods. Examining their natures, forms, and champions, it combines the madness of a man gaining knowledge of beings beyond his comprehension with glimpses into aspects of Chaos which are often glossed over.

Yet with all things involving Chaos, madness and half-truths dominate the pages, and you can never be wholly certain just what information can be relied upon. The Good: To cite the obvious first: The book has stunning art. While it reuses many elements from other past armybooks, codicies and the like, it also has a plethora of its own designs. Each of these follows in the John Blanche style of sketchy stylised horror, and it fits in perfectly with the madness of the book in question.

Atop of this, even when you are skimming through, the various displays of papers layered upon one another gives it a great visual distinction. You could easily skim through the pages and still find engagement just in the visuals. Liber Chaotica delves headlong into both the lesser known elements of Chaos and the symbolism behind it.

While all of this has a "By the way, this guy is insane" escape clause hanging over it, the details present are both broad and deep. It explores and outlines how the very nature of Chaos has a grip on varied societies across the Old World and other regions, but it also goes further. Even without these, the tomes also explore how Chaos feeds upon actions of mortals, and utilises both positive and negative emotions to feed themselves.

Yet perhaps the best factor within the book is how it tries to be vague on so many points. While it outlines a great deal of lore from many viewpoints, and covers familiar territory, it nevertheless avoids pinning down Chaos to a few distinct elements.

It reintroduces the purely chaotic side of Chaos itself, and build upon that to some degree. You can clearly see how broadly applied many defining aspects of each god truly are, and how everyday life can so easily fuel them. Saying more would sadly end up spoiling the book but, even when Liber Chaotica does cover obvious points, it still goes into great detail over them. It also further solidifies a link that was thought to have been long abandoned, as he starts to see increasingly less vague visions of what looks very much like the Horus Heresy.

The Bad: This might be surprising to some, but the trouble with madness is that it can be very hard to follow. The patchwork combinations of story elements, other documents and ideas scribbled down from half-seen dreams creates atmosphere.

It also helps to evoke a far more alien and genuinely disturbing element to Chaos that the faction sometimes lacks due to overexposure. Yet, even with that said, you can find yourself re-reading certain bits to just try and confirm the information present.

The incoherent quality of certain bits is only further exaggerated by certain stylistic choices throughout the book. However, even without that, you then have bits where it is fitted between lines in books, or on backgrounds which make it genuinely unreadable.

Finally, the book is also irritatingly structured in how it combines its volumes. One after the next is fine, but they retain the weaknesses of the original individual ones as well. As such, the likes of Khorne and Nurgle both retain weak opening and middle parts respectively. It can make the quality seem to vary heavily if you are going from cover to cover and, even with the benefits of coloured pages, the lack of an index only exaggerates the problem. The newly printed hardcover compilation is more than worth your time, and even just as a general reference book it offers an immense wealth of background knowledge.


Liber Chaotica: Complete edition






Liber Chaotica


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