Today we look at who I feel will be the winners and losers from 8th edition and how 40K will settle once the new rules arrive.
Goatboy here and wow what a fun week. We got a ton of stuff leaked about 8th edition, chatter on who play tested it, and answers on how much of a change the edition is going to be. I for one am very excited about the rumored changes as I feel 7th has hit a rather low point for me game wise and hope 8th can refresh my feelings and get me excited about plastic crack once again. Today’s little article looks at what I feel will end up being the winners and losers from this edition refresh and how I think the game will end up settling once we get our grubby little hands on the new edition rules.
I think the big winners out of this are the codexes with the longest time since a refresh. It starts to make sense why we didn’t get a fully new Chaos Codex or an update to the old Tyranid book. A full rework with all the units looked at and “fixed” will help these older books compete. I suspect a much more reworked set of Tyranid rules to be seen while some of the newer books will have similar rules and themes as they need less. It does make me sad that my Traitors Legion book only had a few months of usage so I hope some of those things show up in the Traitor legion keywords. We all know how much the Ork book needed a refresh too with a set of rules while fun for regular play just couldn’t hang with any of the “serious” competitive armies.
We’re been evolving… just wait!
Speaking of competitive, it sounds like this edition was balanced with competitive mindset which is great for players like me. They even looked at making other versions to help appease some of the other types of players out there as well. It really feels like the growing pains they felt when GW released Age of Sigmar was taken to heart when they started reworking 40k. They know we didn’t want a complete blow up of the game but a lot of mechanics could be removed, simplified and reworked to make a better experience. How many times have you had an army that took up 4-5 books to be even usable? How many times did you have an opponent screw up their rules? How hard was it to actually have a copy of all the rules that wasn’t some badly photographed PDF or just trusted due to word of mouth? This game got way to bloated and it the only reason why it wasn’t a complete waste was that most of the time only the new stuff was even valid for the table top events.
The big change to vehicles will do wonders for a lot of non super heavy options. The Dreadnought was leaked for the Marine side of things and if that is any indication then I can hope the Gorkanaut/Morkanaut, Helbrute, and even the Penitent Engine might actually see the table top beyond a weird conversion or some kind of FW Legacy abuse. The Land Raider might actually start to come out again especially if it doesn’t have to worry about getting grav’d on the first turn and left in your deployment zone. I am just excited to see armies full of dreadnoughts crashing into lines, stomping around like little jerks, and kicking over all your opponents models like they are a Lego City.
WE NEEDZ BETTA RULEZ!
The removal of the older version of the psychic phase hopefully ushers in a set of spells that are not nearly as back breaking as they were before. It sounds like all the “broken” ones will be gone and replaced by more effective shooting options. I am sure there will be some utility spells here and there and other forms of blessings but overall it is sounded like they got severely nerfed in a way that will allow other non psychic armies to compete. This is a big bonus as if your army couldn’t find a way to ignore the blessings of your opponents (stomps, more WC) or just didn’t care enough to worry about them (Gladius, Dark Angel Gladius Dog nonsense, MSU) then your army had no hope of competing. It also means all those armies who had a ton of “summoned” nonsense will be dumping a lot of daemons out in order to condense and rework their own armies into non abusive free mechanic nonsense.
Mortal wounds is an excellent way to bring the power of the idea of a damage equalizer without the over heavy handedness of the D table mechanic. I know that sometimes stomps needed to be there to ensure some things don’t get too crazy – but the nature of needing 6’s means that some games never see them while others just were covered in back breaking stomps. Mortal wounds gives you answers without feeling like it was luck you found the answer. I bet that Knight weapons do mortal wounds and some other big monsters while a bunch of spells also can throw them out. I hope it isn’t too much as while the idea of a Mortal wound is great – having too much spammed out will be a bit much as nothing big can survive.
My model’s so hot – my rules must be to.
This edition sounds like a return to actually making it easy for New Players to pick up. I hit on how hard it was to keep up with all the rules right now in 7th and I am a seasoned veteran. I couldn’t imagine someone new coming into this game, trying to pick up all the rules for one army, and have any hope in keeping up. This new edition will mean shops will have a much easier time to sell something to a new player. A boxed set or two plus one book for their “army” will let them have all the rules they need for that army and most likely any “ally” that would fit with them. When was the last time your back pack for an event was filled with just one book or had to do with an overloaded tablet as you searched through your massive collection of PDFs? Removal of some of the more annoying aspects of the game – templates, scatter dice, etc – helps those newbs out so much. The rumors of the game rules only being 12 pages sounds great as it means it won’t take you forever to find the tiny nuanced rule issue. It should also make it easier for TO’s to run their event as everything you need to know should be within those 12 pages and on that data slate for the unit itself.
Still – all these wins still leaves us with some Losers.
If you just built a new “competitive” 40k army for this year/season then you are probably out of luck as those armies are not going to work. It sounds like Deathstars are getting kicked in the teeth and most likely won’t be on the table top like they are today. It also means all the “free” bits are most likely going a way too. Did you buy a ton of Daemons to bring on the table top when your Librarian in a conclave decided to go against their Oaths? How about that jerk of a Primarch – Magnus – throwing out a ton of chariots on the table top (I got 3 to play at LVO this year). What about all those free Rhinos in your armies Gladius whether they are green, white, or counts as white. I had to put on hold a new “for fun” but competitive Death Guard army as I am sure the new rules mixed with rumored boxed set should change that up. This problem means a lot of collections are going to be used differently but I think to have any hope for everyone’s army to be good we have to remove all these “bad” eggs from the mix.
I feel for those template makers who have done a good job creating interesting templates and other clear acrylic options. I know I have a rad set of Chaos Templates and it does make me sad to no longer pull one out to “flame” a unit to death. Of course the removal of my old Purifier army did more then enough to make me miss my old flamer templates. I wasn’t a fan of the blast templates but I had a lot of fond memories of that flamer template. The old day of burinating some Marine bikers with my Heldrake always brought a smile to my heart. Especially when you murder an entire Incubi unit and leave the Archon on fire the entire game as my opponent/40k wife complains the entire time.
Don’t let the door hit you on your way out…
I get the feeling a lot of “balance” that GW knew was needed will be showing up in this edition. I know they understood the Scatter Laser on every Eldar Jetbike was a bit too much but instead of “fixing” it right there they had to wait for everyone to get a good reboot. I get the feeling Jetbikes will be good but the auto choice of a Scatter Laser will end up being changed. Will just have to wait and see. I think the change of Vehicles to wounds also changes how certain auto take weapons work as well. I get the feeling Grav will have a decent rework and won’t be the auto death to a lot of things that it used to be. I also suspect a lot of other weapons will get a good refresh so a lot of armies will need “new” weapon options instead of the tried and true Grav/Melta that we see now. Wouldn’t it be great to see Plasma on the table top again?
I think the removal of WS effecting how opponents hits you will be really odd for some units. I know the Daemon Princes and big close combat monsters always utilized the ability to hide behind a High WS to keep somewhat protected when assault by something mean like a Knight. Now with a locked in “hitting” trait it makes that type of protection moot. Will see if there is something else there to help like more wounds, some kind of saving throw, and some other way to ensure the big bold monstrous thing doesn’t die to the masses of a big IG blob.
Hopefully back to being balanced.
There hasn’t been anything said on how Independent Characters work other then a few tidbits and rumors I hear from time to time. I have heard all kinds of things like they can only join units that have the same keywords as them (Jump, Beast, etc) or they cannot join any units at all. I don’t know about this as while it works in AOS due to the overall lack of shooting in a lot of lists (well more of it now that the gun dwarves have come about and Tzeentch is floating around) it gets a lot harder in 40k where everyone and their mom has access to a pistol/gun/etc. I keep trying to think how to work this in a simple and intuitive way but it only leads to just adding more wounds to characters and changing abilities to bubbles of effects. Hopefully will see how these units work soon so we can have a direct answer.
I just got a sexy new mini – my rules better be good!
Overall I am extremely excited about this new edition. Everything has me hopes that this will finally be a competitive game that can go beyond the weekend warrior type of thing and become something more. I came back to the game right when old GT’s that GW ran were ending and a lot of good memories come from them. I just hope the game can grab new players, continue to grow, and fill my hobby heart to the fullest.
~Are you excited about the new game? Has GW done enough to turn it around and make it the king of the table top?