40K Rulebook FAQs: The Big Ones

The Warhammer 40,000 8th Edition Rulebook FAQ has dropped and we’ve been combing it over for answers – Here’s what we found!

Yes indeed – the 40k FAQs are out. We’ve been digging through the Main Rulebook FAQ to find the important stuff and here is a short list of some of the important questions that were clarified:

Rulebook FAQ

This one was important just because it helped to clarify how units with Fly interacted with floors of Ruins. Sorry non-flying, non-infantry. Prepare to get shot from the 2nd floor a whole bunch…

I’m glad to see this clarification as well. Characters are NOT safe from Overwatch fire – Good!

This seemed pretty clear to us here at BoLS – it’s the same way it worked in AoS, but if you didn’t play AoS then this should clear things up. Are you creating a new unit? You better have points set aside. Are you adding models to an existing unit? You don’t need to pay points for those. (Tervigons + Termagant Hordes = good times for Tyranid players.)

Seems pretty simple: identical aura abilities don’t stack. The keyword is identical. Note: Index: Imperium FAQ – Blood Angel’s Blood Chalice and Red Grail do NOT stack. Better double check your armies FAQ to be sure…

This is pretty interesting! You can still use abilities that happen in lieu of shooting even if you fall back. Good to know…

I’m really glad GW spelled this one out. You have to be MORE THAN 9″ away when you use one of those “deepstrike” deployments. That means you have to roll a 9 (not including modifiers) to be within 1″ of an enemy to complete a successful charge.

This one came up in one of our games and it was a good question to ask. The target unit still takes the mortal wound – and based on the wording that’s what we though, too. Mortal wounds are also inflicted after “normal damage” is applied. That makes those types of weapons pretty reliable in terms of damage output.

Wow! Berzekers just get two Fight phases!

Here come the dual chainsword wielding Berzekers! (Well, technically, only the Berzerker Champion can pull that one off. But other characters can, too!)

That’s all for now – were there any rulings in the Rulebook FAQ that you didn’t agree with? Let us know in the comments below!

  • Heinz Fiction

    “I’m really glad GW spelled this one out. You have to be MORE THAN 9″ away when you use one of those “deepstrike” deployments. That means you have to roll a 9 (not including modifiers) to be within 1″ of an enemy to complete a successful charge.”

    Im a little sad that basic logic (I wouldn’t even call it math) like this has to be explained. How old is the typical player of this game? Five years? Six?

    • electricsheep89

      I find it amusing they actually had to clarify what an inch is.

      • Horus84cmd

        Thats what she said…

        (sorry someone had to go there)

        • Ironheaded Painting

          (dont be sorry for going there) You win the thread.

      • NNextremNN

        Hey that’s not an easy task I don’t know what an inch is. The metric system would be far easier to explain.

    • Horus84cmd

      Soon they’ll be questions about what the different sides of a dice mean…

      • BT

        How to read a tape measure….

        • Horus84cmd

          Lol or How to pick up a model…

          • John Henry III

            What counts as a table?

          • Horus84cmd

            What counts as a point?

          • John Henry III

            Is it possible to build a list with no models?

          • Horus84cmd

            Q. I understand what is meant by within 1″. Please could you define what is meant by within 2″.

          • John Henry III

            Am I allowed to not end my turn in order to stall the game so that my oponent forfeits from frustration?

          • John Henry III

            Where in the rulebook does it say I can not pick up and hurl my opponents models across the street?

          • Horus84cmd

            When the rules say I must “place my model” How heavily should should I placed them?

          • Horus84cmd

            If my opponents model falls over when playing does this count as destroyed?

          • John Henry III

            Because of electromagnetic repulsion between electrons it is impossible to actually have two molecules touch without forming a chemical bond or the use of a particle accelerator. Does this mean that it is therefore impossible to have models in base to base?

          • John Henry III

            when I destroy an opponent’s model does that mean I get to destroy the physical model as well?

          • Horus84cmd

            If me and my opponent can’t agree on anything. Can we play the whole game using the “Most Important Rule” rules?

          • NNextremNN

            “the “Most Important Rule” rules” … which one do you mean “there is only war”?

          • NNextremNN

            See that’s why they made the 1″ rule.

          • zemlod

            Fun fact: There’s people in Old Irish tales dying from getting playing pieces thrown at them. 🙂

          • John Hell Bailey

            the rule that says ull get a dreadsock (puter dread in a sock around the head)

          • NNextremNN



            That’s a list with no models 😉

          • zemlod

            Well, you sometimes do have to clarify that. If you kill one of my tiny lead men, just point at him and I’ll put him away. Not you. If you pick him up and drop him, I’ll get very cross with you, so just let me do it myself…

            But maybe that’s just me…

        • Kayreios

          What counts as a neckbeard… oh wait.

      • memitchell

        True story. Monolith lands on 3″ high ruins. Knight moves to assault. Knight base is not high enough to get within 2″ of the Monolith, counting the vertical distance. Mono player says the Knight cannot assault. Argument ensues. You had to be there.

        • Horus84cmd

          HaHa. Assume you mean 1″, but whilst strictly right by the rules the Knight can’t hit the Monolith. However, that is where some common sense comes in to play. Players need to think this is a bit silly, just let the Knight hit the Monolith.

          • memitchell

            True. The Monolith guy really thought he had found a loophole. It was premeditated. As I recall, base-to-base distance in 40K has always been horizontal, with no rules for a vertical component. However, when playing Shadow War, we do use diagonals for distance.

          • Ironheaded Painting

            ShadowWar is 2nd Edition Warhammer40k. Different game, different perspective, different era in game creation.

          • Horus84cmd

            Yeah previous edition this would be true. In 8th all distances are measured directly, so you do take diagonals into account.

        • Guido Hockmann

          They run through a similar situation in the June WD battle report; where the renegade knight attacks marines standing on a platform right in front of his face. They say that it just seemed to make sense and was ok with both players.

        • Graham Bartram

          If it’s a tournament game, then I’m with the Necron player. It’s a tournament…. what did the Imperial player expect? mercy?…lol. On the other hand, if it’s a friendly, than he is just being a >inset expletive<.

          • memitchell

            I remember when “tournament” was not a dirty word.

          • Graham Bartram

            Truth is, plenty of tourneys are still friendly and will be more like friendly games, but be prepared if money, or prizes of any value are involved. In that situation the rules must always be to the letter for legal reasons, just like any other competition for cash. No one wants to get sued over a hobby.

      • Ironheaded Painting

        “I rolled a 1, but I live in Australia.. it should be a 6 to me”

  • BT

    Kinda makes me a little sad that we needed this big of a FAQ this soon after the release. Maybe instead of 12 pages of rules and 150+ pages of fluff, take a little extra space to explain those rules.

    For example, the thing that got me was the rules for melee weapons. At first it reads ‘choose a melee weapon for all attacks’, but in their example they have the Nurgle champion using two different weapons. Well, for @$%! sake, explain that you choose a weapon for each attack before rolls are made.

    I remember having a discussion on the AM Facebook page about Rough Riders where some folks thought that just because RRs had chainswords they got a extra chainsword attack when charging using the Hunting Lances. It took a while to figure out that no, you have to choose to use the chainsword to get that extra attack.

    Take out a page or two of pictures and add in a example or two for your rules next time GW.

    • Horus84cmd

      However if you READ the whole rule section on “Choose Melee Attack” it quite clearly says you can use multiple weapons in the same fight:

      “If a model has more than one melee weapon and can make several close combat attacks, it can split its attacks between
      these weapons however you wish – declare how you will
      divide the attacks before any dice are rolled.”

      People just don’t READ and COMPREHEND.

      • BrassWitch

        This, these FAQ’s have become kind of a running joke in our little circle.

        The seventh edition ones were particularly laughable.

      • Lyca Atteneder


      • euansmith

        I never read the rules, I only ever read the comments.

      • kingcobra668

        Sad. That dude needs to get off message boards and actually read the rules he is complaining about. Sad.

    • eMtoN

      Rule authors have to fight two problems. The first is that people fail to read anything longer than about 3 sentences. So giving more explanation up front is just going to be lost.

      The second are those that fail at comprehension. This failure can occur when people try and apply old rules to new games or when they really want things to work one way even if the rules say it’s a different way. Another failure is when a player doesn’t have a solid command of their language.

      The only way they can work around this is to publish the rules and then monitor feedback to see where a lot of people are getting hung up. Then publish clarifications for those areas.

      The charge after arriving on the board is a perfect example. Rules were crystal clear but enough people weren’t playing it right that they had to address it.

      • AircoolUK

        In all previous editions of 40K, I was never truly clear on all the close combat rules because I’d got bored of reading the rules by that time.

        Yet for some reason, I swallowed WHFB 3rd Edition whole… along with Warhammer Siege as well…

        • eMtoN

          If I’m being completely honest … it was my second or third game before I finally sat down and completely read through the 8 page core rules.

          And, I hate to admit this part, but it was still my 4th or 5th game before I got the 9″ placement and charge bit right… 🙂

  • Crablezworth

    “8 pages of rules…and 80 pages of FAQs.” MajicJuggler – Dakka Dakka

    • zeno666

      Yeah, so much for streamlining…

    • Horus84cmd

      Is it 8pgs of rules through?


      Is it 8 pages of core rules + 105 pages of advanced rules + 792 pages of Index Datasheets…..

      So 905 pages of rules and 80 pages of FAQ’s – kind of puts into perspective, no?

      • Kayreios

        At least we didn’t wait a year with only the 8 pager.

      • Crablezworth

        Perspective… yeah, you’re really sellin me on this thing lol

      • But it’s sooo much easier to learn! You only have to read the datasheets to know what your units do. And of course all the datasheets of all your enemies to know what they can do, because saying “FNP 5+, Furious Assault, Deep Strike” was far too complex to manage for GW to balance!

        • Horus84cmd

          Well from a core rule perspective, 8th Ed is certainly far far easier to learn. In regards to knowing your army and your opponents 8th Ed is, frankly, no harder or easier to learn. In 7th you still had army/unit special rules beyond USR, the swath of psychic powers to know and then you have all the formation craziness. Broadly speaking 8th ed still has USR through the use of keyword or on the datasheet; for example, when you see ‘Fly’ you know what it means or if you see ‘supersonic’ it’s the same on all vehicles that have it.

          In theory, it should be simpler to balance. In that, if that if a unit is under or over power or whatever GW can just tweak that datasheet, without having to worry another unit is going to suddenly become worse or better.

          In all fairness to GW they’ve only advertised the 8th Rule as easier to learn and pick up. Indeed, as far as I am aware, they’ve never claimed it would be easier to master. If anything I feel they intend the game to be harder to master and more variable.

          • Learning armies capabilities in 8th is far harder, because there is no universal special rules. There are just many rules on datasheets which you all need to read *very carefully*, because many sound similar, but are yet different.

  • Ronin

    They also need to address why a ghost ark can carry a group of destroyer lords. 😛

    • el_tigre

      Weird Science

  • GiftoftheMagi

    One of the key problems in designing or writing rules for a game is not not everyone comprehends things the same way. Rules must be simple, easy to understand and clearly AND completely get their point across. They must provide several examples that tacle all the standard variations of the rule.

    If a rule takes three or more sentences to express, you need to go back over it.

    People, don’t forget that we also have new players coming into the game. Spending hours trying to understand even the basics of a game is off-putting at best, insulting at worst. Complain all you want but if your opponent does not get it, it is now up to you to help them or risk losing people to game with. And that should be GW’s problem but they are notoriously bad at it. 8th Edition is no exception, point it fact it already has a few more issues than 7th when it started.

  • Ragimund

    How about tyranid biovores? When they miss a shot a sporemine is placed. They seems to a new unit, but this is not explicitly stated. If so, do I need to set aside 10 points per missed shot (points cost per model) or 30 points for a minimal unit of spore mines?

    • adamharry

      Short answer is no. Long answer is read the Spore Mine’s Living Bomb rules and how sporemines work in match play. (Hint: If you are playing a matched play game, the creation of new Spore Mines (e.g. from a Sporocyst’s Spore Node ability) is free, and the Spore Mines’ points cost does not come out of your pool of reinforcement points.)

  • 301stFeinminsterArmoured


  • Dragon2928

    I’m a bit confused by the FAQ charge range ruling. Consider the following example:
    My unit teleports in 9.5″ away from the target. In the assault phase I roll 2 dice and get a 9″ charge. Am I not now within 1″ of the enemy? (being exactly 0.5 inches away).
    Where does the book say you must make base to base contact for a successful charge? What am I missing here?

  • Drew_Da_Destroya

    That Chainswords question seems to answer the Trygon/Trygon Prime 3 sets of Talons question that had an article the other day. Guess they really do get 3 extra attacks!