After getting in a game or two of Eighth Edition, I have become an expert.
It’s true–where last week I was but a humble n00b, greener than a frog in an algae factory, this week I come before you a seasoned veteran, already grown weary and jaded with the whole thing. After all I killed a single tyranid in battle? What’s left to do? Like Alexander, I am now weeping for there are no worlds left to conquer.
But, before I let the ennui of it all consume me, I figured I’d pass on a bit of the wisdom I gleaned from my eighth edition experience (two games). Here’s the gist of it–the system is a ton of fun. It’s fast, it still feels like there’s a lot that’s potentially viable, and the hope has yet to be ground from the mechanics. The core rules are simple, but the advanced/terrain rules and the individual unit listings add a lot of depth to the base mechanics. So without further ado, here’s what I, former n00b, now seasoned expert have to say about eighth.
I mean this one in every sense of the word. The game plays fast–it took a little bit to get past the hurdles of learning how to setup a game, but once that was done the game didn’t take long to play out. Individual units are fast–the first game I played on was on a 4 foot table, and by the end of the first turn a unit of Genestealers charged basically all the way into my deployment zone, and a
Mawloc Edit:Trygon and friends were on my doorstep. And–perhaps most importantly–the game can be picked up pretty fast. It didn’t take long to get the hang of the basics of the game. Now mind you I’d had a little wargames experience before, but by and large the rules were straightforward enough that I understood how they were meant to interact. Building an army wasn’t super tedious–admittedly we used the Power Rating Rules instead of the actual point costs which I’m sure makes me a philistine, but it was easy to get a sense for what a well-filled out army list might feel like.
Odds are real good that something exciting will be happening every turn of the game. It feels like they’ve stripped away a lot of the tedium–there was never a moment where it felt like there wasn’t something to do. Never a turn that was just “oh I guess I’ll shove my guys over here.” Like we said, the units are faster. Their threat ranges longer–even for supposed “short range weapons.” Whatever your army you’ll have no trouble bringing your weapons to bear on your foe. Which is another thing about the game–it feels like there’s always some option open to you. It feels like everything has the potential at least to hit hard when needed–whether the harvesting talons of Genestealers, the choppas mixed in with a mob of Boys or the massed fire of a squad of Fire Warriors–everything can be deadly. At least to some small degree.
Pictured, a whole council of people having “fun.”
Eighth Edition is fun to play. Even though I got swarmed by a horde of literally 70,000 Genestealers on turn 1, I still had fun with the game. I never felt like I was denied any options because of the rules–I never felt like I was completely and irrevocably hosed by them either (I mean there’s only eight or so pages of rules, not counting all the others, what do you expect?). It felt like even though I had been charged there were still decisions to be made–who should overwatch, which target do I try and hit, etc. Each of these decisions felt like it mattered. And that makes the game feel fun.
This last point might be a little more contentious. Because admittedly right now we only have the Indices, and have to wait for the various Codices to get released and an actual metagame to start forming–but it feels like the rules can support a wide variety of army types. Even the strictest battle-forged, matched play force org chart has a ton of options available to you. Want to take a lot of elites? We’ve got you covered. Fast attack guys? Sounds like you’ve got an Outrider detachment. And–at least right now, during the heady days of everything being new–it still feels like things have had enough of an overhaul to make just about any unit effective. I don’t know that there’ll be any one army list or faction that dominates the tournament scene–the game can support such a wide variety of playstyles, I feel like it’ll always keep the meta shifting and growing and interesting.
What about the rest of you? Have you played/watched people play the new edition yet? If so, how much did your mileage vary? What do you think of the new edition and how it plays?
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