40K: 5 Awesome Fluffy Rules for 8th

I’ve been looking over and playing a ton of armies for 8th. Here’s my favorite faction rules that really bring the fluff to the tabletop.

There is a lot of love about 40’s 8th Edition.

It’s an edition that MAKES me WANT to play, over and over – in a way I’ve not felt since 3rd. EVERYTHING is new again and every few minutes I make a rediscovery that blows me away. Looking over the five army compendiums feels like meeting old friends I haven’t seen in years.

But perhaps my favorite thing about 8th is how the Datasheets really bring the fluff right off the page and onto the tabletop. Some of these things are large faction rules, while others are little subtle gems that make a unit finally sense.

Here’s five of my favorites so far:

Chaos Marines

Death to the False Emperor: To hit rolls of 6 in the fight phase generate extra attacks for Chaos models targetting units with the <Imperium> keyword.

It’s just perfect. The CSMs are bitter and twisted, but boy do they HATE the lackeys of the Emperor. They kind of go berzerk when they are up close and personal – just like they should.


Dire Avengers

Battle Focus lets the squad advance and still fire weapons at full effect. That’s 7+d6″ a turn. Defense Tactics lets the Avengers hit on Overwatch fire on a 5+ instead of a 6.

For decades these most numerous of Aspect Warriors have been described as “deadly on the attack and immovable in defense”. Now their rules reflect that duality in an elegant way.


Callidus Assassin

Reign of Confusion: Means on 4+, any Command Point abilities used by your opponent cost an extra point. You roll after they spend the default points and if they dont pay the tax, the power doesn’t work AND the CPS are gone-wasted… Extra mean and a very cool way to represent the misdirection and confusion an enemy force faces when there was a Callidus in their midst for days before the battle.

Farsight / Shadowsun

Both these commanders emphasize the opposing Mont’Ka & Kauyon philosphies. Normally A tau commander may call one of these once per battle to gain army special effects for a single turn. Farsight may call an addition turn of Mont’ka while Shadowsun can call in 2 turns of Kauyon per game.  It’s very cool and illustrates their contrasting styles of command as well as their genius compared to standard Tau Commanders. It’s also awesome!

Lukas the Trickster

What a master of mischief Lukas is. Master of Mischief lowers the LD of ALL units within 3″ (even friends), Pelt of the Doppegangrel make enemies suffer a -1 to hit Lukas in the Fight phase. Best of all is The Last Laugh which promts a d6 rolloff between players if Lukas dies in the fight phase. If he wins, the enemy takes d6 mortal wounds – BOOM-HAHAHAHA!


~That’s only the merest scratch at the rules. What are the most fluffy rules you’ve discovered?

  • Jeremy Larson

    Ohhh, I love that Callidus one. Might have to bring out the old girl again.

    • Callie is my favorite!

    • Yea, I already can see it being included in every comp army. It’s a nice way to screw an opponent who tried to get many CP and was thus forced to more or less have a well balanced force while you yourself decided to go all out on death-stars which don’t grant you much CP.

      • NNextremNN

        *included in every imperial army

        They still can try to kill her first.

        And hey at least each faction can now field superheavy only detachments.

        • Can they try to kill her first? Isn’t she a character and thus pretty well protected from most weapons?

          • NNextremNN

            They can kill her if she is the closest unit. Okay this is unlikely if she was chosen for that reason. But you can Sniper shot her or deepstrike charge her. Special Deathstars (if you want to call them that) will probably have a lower unit count (at least when they chose such detachments) which makes protecting her in bubble wraps harder.

            I’m not saying this is fair or balanced I think there are some flaws with the detachments. ut she is not invincible and when she’s dead you can use your CP without fearing extra costs. It still remains to be seen if CP are more useful at the start or end of a game.

      • PrimoFederalist

        What do you consider to be a “death-star” in this edition?

  • Matthew Manall

    The abilities listed for the Dire Avengers aren’t new to 8th. They had these abilities, and more, in 7th.

    • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

      Likewise the cool Chaos rule hardly makes up for the fantastic fluffy rules from Traitor Legions we just lost.

      • NNextremNN

        All factions rules are incomplete and will have to wait for real new codices.

        • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

          Well I had an OK Codex and a fantastic supplement I bought just a few months ago. Now I have to spend another £60 to get temporary rules for my two armies.

          Not a happy customer.

          • Valourousheart

            Be sure to link the video when you burn your army.

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            Its just going on the shelf. What can be used for 30k will be stripped and repainted.

            I’ll also be playing more SAGA and Bolt Action.

            A couple of guys here are happy to carry on playing 7th so I guess I’ll have the odd game of that too.

            Enjoy your games of Blandhammer. Or is a game where a grot can force a baneblade to retreat better called Dumbhammer?

  • Xodis

    Im just enjoying how all Terminators and Jump pack models can strike pretty hard and fast with Teleportstrike or whatever. Always wanted chaos appearing from the warp and slicing enemies down, and now we got it

    • petrow84

      I’m just enjoying, how all the shock troops can do, what they’re supposed to do for a long-long time.

      “- Command, teleport successful, we’re behind enemy lines. Launching shock assault now!
      – Hold your charge, Beta 7, you are not allowed to charge.
      – Repeat command. Confirm deny order. Are we expecting fire support?
      – Yes, Beta 7, but from the enemy. It would be totally jerk thing to catch them by surprise. Let’s give them some time to recuperate and properly prepare for your assault.”

      • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

        Except that a few tiny crappy units (sentinels, minimal cultists etc) stop that deepstrike with their 9″ bubble.

      • Shawn

        It’s a nice addition, but now that termies can telport safely and assault, dreadnoughts suddenly forgot how to use drop pods. Tell Robo Girlyan not to touch the codex, again!

        • petrow84

          Codex Astartes does support this action.
          *Revised works of the Primarch, Cawl edition

  • SacTownBrian

    Holy cow Lukas, you have a big hand.

  • Karru

    My personal favourites are the Guard Commissars with their Summary Execution as well as Master of Ordnance and Officer of the Fleet. The Summary Execution is more fun and fluffy now, as it allows the player to choose the model every time, because even if the Commissar is a fanatic who doesn’t who the coward is, he isn’t exactly dumb enough to shoot the special weapon or the heavy weapon guy. Even if the guy is running away, another one will just take his place.

    Meanwhile the MoO and OotF have fluffy rules as well, pity that the units they benefit aren’t really that great. Both the Air Raid and Artillery strike are funny looking but their “buff bubble” for Flyers and Artillery is where their true power lies. Of course, the units they buff aren’t particularly great, maybe the Manticore gets some use out of the buff, but beyond that, I really don’t see them as that useful.

    Still, the rules are very fluffy.

  • Nyyppä

    The CSM rule yet again proves that GW just does not understand how the game works. ATSKNF is just as free and by default better by a huge margin.

    • Chaosrex

      Yeah the splash damage is cool and all, but a Morale special rule would have been nice.

      Either a reroll on Morale or a -1 on the morale roll, or ” on a roll of 6 the unit passes its morale roll”

      • Nyyppä

        Or just make the extra attacks 5+ and not only against imperium.

    • Walter Vining

      my cup of chaos tears is over flowing, I need a new one please hold on a moment

      • Nyyppä

        I’m sorry that your entitlement prevents you from seeing the facts.

        • Walter Vining

          its almost like….*GASP* they are different armies. Id hate for them to have something similar then chaos complain that they are too much like SM. its a win win getting my tears of chaos players filled for me

          • Nyyppä

            Oh damn, you really are special. I’ll try to explain this. I doubt that your capacity is enough for this based on your history but I’ll try.

            Ok, so, rerolls to morale tests are a factor in every turn of almost every game. That’s just a fact because of the rules. It’s a great rule. Helps unless you roll really badly. Any case any time a marine squad suffers more than 1 casualty this rule is there to help them.

            Now extra hits on 6+ when facing a very specific faction.

            – First you are going to have to face that faction for it to matter at all.

            – Then you are going to have to make a melee list for it to have a potential impact.

            – Then you are going to have to get in to melee with your opponent which is pretty doable now.

            – Then you are going to have to roll a lot of 6s for it to matter which means that you need a huge amount of attacks and that those attacks are usually going to have to be something more than what a regular marine punch is. So, essentially something like 5 melee orientated terminators times….let’s see, 8…assuming that they are all in melee and all get to hit and that their targets are suitable for such a purpose. That kind of terminator squad costs around 320p so essentially if the game is for 2500p and the whole list is just melee terminators then it might have an impact of some sort.

            So, everything has to go perfectly for several turns vs. success for existing. I’d say that that’s a pretty significant difference when both of these cost the same amount of points for a model. Are you smart enough to understand that?

          • Walter Vining

            you need to cut down on this

          • Nyyppä

            Nothing salty about stating facts. You fanboys just don’t like it when someone points out a major design flaw your object of worship pushed out, again.

  • Kritarion

    LUKAS, mah boy!

  • Rainthezangoose

    So are datasheets gonna be free like with age of sigmars warscrolls?

    • NNextremNN

      Nope you have to buy the incomplete indices or wait for the actual codices to get all rules.

      • Lyca Atteneder

        Really? I’m not sure about it any more I have to admit… but wasn’t there some talk about an App like the AoS-one?
        But maybe it’s just wishful thinking or I hallucinated.

        • NNextremNN

          I think they mentioned one for later with purchasable rules.

          • Lyca Atteneder

            Oh… well…

  • Alexis Muscat

    I like Lucius the Eternal ones: If you attack the same model with all your A you get 2 extras. And that his Lash can shoot at 1′ from enemy models, and also his armor but that’s no big change from 7th

  • Graham Bartram

    Doctrina Imperatives…oh no wait, they’ve gone.

  • ILikeToColourRed

    most of these are significantly different to 7th (i mean, the command points ones are new, because so are command points)

  • Fergie0044

    I like that the tech priest dom is now an support character hanging out behind the front lines. Fits the fluff better than him being upfront, tanking wounds for one of the billion battle servitors he owns.

    • Mr.Gold

      my only issue with cult mech & skitarii is that they have gone from everything has relentless in 7th to almost nothing has relentless (or equivelent rule of not needing to stay still to fire heavy weapons) in 8th making other bonuses like the Dominus especially useful…

  • Severius_Tolluck

    OOh the Lukas reboot is actually decent, I will take that! The callidus is interesting. I see that popping up in a lot of builds.

  • davepak

    Well, except for the tau Kauyon requires no movement – which in 8th, where movement is king – this is almost wasted.