40K: Chapter Approved Designers Speak

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Chapter Approved brings a lot of changes to the tabletop–here’s what the writers and designers are excited about.

Apparently there are pages in Chapter Approved that don’t talk about the adjusted point costs of units or contain stratagems, warlord traits, and relics–weird, I know. But, bear with me, apparently the book is packed full of things that you can use to have…”fun” whatever that is?

I don’t understand it either. From what research I’ve been able to do into the concept, fun is apparently what happens when you win the first turn of the game and your Mortarion gets to move, warp time, and then charge into your opponent’s Mortarion before the same happens to you. But what doesn’t make sense to me is that–Mortarion isn’t really in Chapter Approved.

It’s a mystery, I suppose. But. Perhaps the designers themselves can lend some insight as to what “fun” is supposed to be.

Kidding aside, it’s always nice to get the designer’s perspective on what they really enjoy out of the book. They talk about the new missions, including the Maelstrom of War (which contain the tactical objectives–incidentally, has anyone used them, they are conspicuously absent from the local scene here)–and more importantly Apocalypse Rules.

The Apocalypse stuff is pretty great, the Linear Campaign rules are in it to help you win it, and so on–the gist of it is that the designers are viewing the Chapter Approved books as not just an update to the core game, but also a chance to expand the “fun” things you can do in the game. Whatever that may be.

Apparently you can build a fun army that doesn’t include both Mortarion and Magnus–instead just swap out Magnus for a Traitor Knight and a some extra malefic lords.

  • Fraser1191

    I don’t really have an opinion, seeing as how I don’t have an advanced copy of the book…..
    Seeing as how I want the campaign and apocalypse rules I’ll get the book and make my own decisions.

  • Karru

    It’s nice for GW to put these things into one book, but it would be nice if they released Matched Play changes as a free PDF. This isn’t because I’d like to have this thing for free as the chances are I won’t be using the book for anything else, but because that way you don’t have people going “Wait what? That’s a thing now?!?!” since they didn’t bother to get the book and have no intentions of getting it. At the very least, as I am not aware if this is a thing or not, release the point changes as a separate PDF.

    • Dennis J. Pechavar

      It would be foolish to not release points cost changes as a PDF for free as it would mitigate the negative feelings people have right now about having to pay for yet another book to be play “legal” matched games. The rest of the book is mostly filler for me so I don’t plan on buying it. If this is marketed as more of added content and not being forced to buy so as to get updated unit cost then most people (LOL) will stop complaining. I know I would.

  • BadMrPumpkin

    (dont buy it and just use the new points costs)

  • kobalt60

    I don’t get the negativity towards this product. Every single edition of 40k has had living rules. Wether it was WD articles, expansions, chapter approved, whatever version you started with had changes to the core set of rules. 8th is no different. If you hate it now, you must have hated it then, so why are you still playing?

    • ZeeLobby

      I mean to be honest, the content within WD articles that impacted the core rules was pretty small in the past. At most it was fun stuff for a single faction (CSM) spread over a year. I think the issue most people have now is the pace. I’ve barely scratched about a third of the strategems, and now they’re adding more, along with a huge spread of gameplay additions on top of point changes and core rules changes. 6 months after the edition launch. I mean regardless of whether these changes are good or bad, they are a lot in a short period of time for a game system which barely budged over the course of several years.

      Now to stay current your buying a yearly book, on top of army books, plus printed FAQs, etc. They really need an app, or downloadable rules. Or to actually update their digital purchases. All of these things would definitely ease the reactions to the release speed.

      As for me personally, it’s just feeling bloated again, and I’ll probably wait til CA2. See what happens there.

      • zeno666

        Yeah, its a farce.
        Getting into Eldar means you have to buy the rulebook, the index, the codex and now chapter approved.

        Its very bloated, and it got there really fast.

        • Dennis J. Pechavar

          I wouldn’t even be that annoyed if they hadn’t sold this edition as bloat free and “you won’t have to carry your library with you”.

          • ZeeLobby

            Hehe. But wait, buy this library to carry with you!

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            Well it’s fun and exciting!

      • Spade McTrowel

        The entire Craftworld concept came about through WD. Ahh… Good times. 🙂

        • ZeeLobby

          Hehe. I mean there’s nothing wrong with that. A lot of the CSM legions got fleshed out in chapter approved prior to the 3.5 Dex. Most of this was spread over months, and most factions had the same rules and options for years though while waiting. I don’t think there would be anything wrong with releasing multiple units for every faction every year, but I think it’s the constant game-wide rule mechanic additions which make it feel heavy.

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            Also White Dwarf was a great buy back then.

    • Nosebleed

      Times have changed. GW needs to look at how PP manages a living ruleset in this era.

      Slowly consumers are beginning to realise paying for rules only for it to get a paid-revision within a short period of time is not sustainable.

      Also, people are still playing or have interest invested in it is because they love Warhammer 40k. Whether they can afford it is a different matter.

      Some argue constructively <— the good legit ones
      Some vent online with no reasonings i.e. some of the negativity you probably have witnessed <— take with a grain of salt

      • ZeeLobby

        Agreed. There’s good examples out there.

    • marxlives

      I think some people are upset because they thought CA would essentially change the DNA of the game. However, it looks like the designers feel as if the edition is working as intended. The edition is about horde armies and alpha strike.

      • Nyyppä

        Fearless horde armies. Not just hordes. You can’t make a horde out of CSM without IW or Abaddon for example. With those you absolutely can, but without them it’s impossible…unless you want to get trashed that is.

        • marxlives

          Nothing in God’s garden can stop a man from turning himself into a living breathing dumpster fire. You know there is someone out there taking a hordes list without IW or Abaddon.

  • Heinz Fiction

    Not so excited for this book. Point changes? They will either put them online or no one will use them. Stratagems? Wait 3 month max for your codex. Apocalypse? Not my cup of tea but nice for those who like it I guess…

  • ReveredChaplainDrake

    I don’t get why Apoc is supposed to be so huge when it adds literally nothing to the game. 40k games can already feature:
    -unfathomably large armies
    -named characters
    -forge world
    -lords of war (which may or may not cross over with the above)
    -titan armies (which only sometimes cross over with the two above)
    -no meaningfully restrictive force organization
    -random objectives
    -a complete lack of enthusiasm after turn 2

    …And that’s just Matched Play. The other types of play that nobody talks about (less in the Fight Club sort of way and more in the Phantom Menace sort of way) are even *less* restrictive. What could Apoc possibly do, aside from slightly bigger stratagems and legalization of even more flagrant cheating?

  • Dennis J. Pechavar

    Not surprised that the trickster is part of the design team. Only once has he made me happy and that was with an old IG Codex. I still haven’t forgiven him for the travesty of an army book Tomb Kings was in 8th. Not that it matters as Fantasy and TKs are dead.

  • Crablezworth

    It’s good thing this new edition is avoiding bloat… oh look, another trip to the buffet

  • BroxusMaximus

    So frustrated Mortatian didn’t get a points drop. As the author eluded it is so hard to have him actually survive. You have to take a soup list, pray your opponent is an idiot, get every psychic ability off, and get lucky your opponent doesn’t dispel one. Sucks he has no real synergy with the rest of the list like others.

  • euansmith

    Designer notes are always welcome in my book.

    • Nyyppä

      Unless they essentially say “we messed it up, but admitting it like an adult, taking responsibility for it and fixing the issue is not something we can do so here’s something to divert your attention to something elsewhere”. This is what they’re doing now and it’s just reinforcing my intention to skip this edition too.

      • euansmith

        I’ve always found the disconnect between the studio (narrative) and the players (competitive) expectations illuminating. I’d like to have seen what Alessio Cavatore would have done with 40k if he’d been given a free rein. Maybe it would have been Bolter-Action or Beyond the Gates of Terra 🙂

  • Tushan

    Now we just need a new GK codex since it is so bad I dont see it being fixed by a few point alterations..that never arrive.

    • Nyyppä

      CSM is right there with you.

      • Tushan

        What in the CSM is crap on pair with GK? I dont play CSM as often so I´m not as versed in it.

        I know they have ok point costs on most things and their psychic power are awesome contrary to the SM ditto that are like bleak copies.

        You certainly have more then two CSM units that are playable with upgrades that arent pathetic jokes.

  • Damir Setanta

    Who cares what these random people have to say about a game system that is slowly dying due to greed, superficiality and arrogance…

  • Ninety

    I’d rather they talk about the dumpster fire that was the point adjustments, from not touching the daemon primarchs and barely grazing Guilliman to actually buffing Cawl when their own community site said he’d be nerfed (and then editing that out) to essentially squatting most FW units.

  • Nyyppä

    Well, the book really does nothing to fix the existing problems and it may create a bunch of new ones. I don’t see this as a good release. What it is is proof that GW is still firmly in the mindset where they think they know how things should be done and even facts that directly show that they are 100% wrong about certain things will not sway their minds and make corrections possible.

    Yeah, yet again a generalist product that I will never own as long as things in game continue on their current paths.