The humble template has been with us since Rogue Trader – but it’s time to say goodbye.
Templates have been a staple of GW game design for decades. If there is anything that us 40K players savor – it’s some distant memory of that one perfect time you nailed something like 23 packed models with a single heavy flamer template. I can see you smiling from here.
Age of Sigmar was a hint of things to come 2 years back and now GW has made it official – templates are gone in 8th. I thought we should take a moment to remember all the good times.
The Early Days
Templates were funky and low-rent back in the 80s. Rogue Trader and 2nd Edition had some heavy card templates in the rulebook you could photocopy, or cut out of your rulebook if you were a heretic. They came in all kinds of weird shapes and sizes:
Yup, that’s all we had in 1987. Short and sweet.
Towards the end of Rogue Trader GW had added in some more exotic weapons and fancier templates to use with them:
Ahh, the semi-legendary “chubby” hand-flamer template, and yes those are rad grenade and webber tokens from 1992!
The Thudd gun has been fun to assemble and use for several editions!
Third Edition finally settled things down to just the basic three templates that have stuck with us for almost 20 years. Of course exactly why GW decided to introduce the “Guess Weapon” mechanic for blast weapons is anyone’s guess. I did know a couple of players back in the day who were uncanny at dropping “it feels like 93.5 inches” Basilisk barrages EXACTLY on target every shot. It still creeps me out just thinking about it.
Welcome to the Modern Era!
How could we talk about templates without mentioning both versions of APOCALYPSE’s insane templates! the first edition had the giant green templates with the odd to resolve cloverleaf.
Oh the Apocalypse flamer template – such “warm memories 🙂
Apocalypse 2nd Edition replaced them with the even larger blue templates!
Eventually Guess weapons went away, D weapons arrived but still the templates stayed with us. GW made clear ones, orange ones, fancy thick green ones and just last month Shadow War Armageddon got some sexy red ones.
Ohh, my World Eaters are so jealous…
So here we sit at the end of an era. For 30 years we 40K players have been placing and guessing where our templates go. It will feel strangely clinical to just roll X number of hits. It certainly will speed up the game, and clearly cut down on the number of arguments. But there is a part of me that will shed a little tear at never again being able to pull off that 23 wound heaver flamer dream shot.
So long templates – and thanks for all the memories!
~What’s your most memorable template shot ever in a game?