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Tabletop Spotlight: Chapter Approved 2017

5 Minute Read
Dec 5 2017

It’s out now and waiting for your (Chapter) Approval!

Games Workshop’s Chapter Approved 2017 is out and in stores right now – want to know what you’re getting? Check it out:

Now, we’ve covered most of the big news from Chapter Approved 2017 already. If you were hoping for a book to come in and bring in big, sweeping changes – this book really isn’t that. Aside from points updates, this book did have rules for 11 factions that didn’t previously have any – each one got at least 1 Warlord Trait, a Relic, and a Stratagem.

The missions that are included in the book are great for people who want to play something different than the typical missions from the BRB. Will they filter there way into the tournament scene? That’s a big question that a lot of TOs will have to ask themselves. But for people not interested in tournaments, this book also has a bucket-load of new rules/missions/options for Open and Narrative play as well.

I think this book really shines in that regard, especially if you’ve never organized an Apocalypse Gaming night. The suggestions and tweaks are actually useful – for a lot of vets, however, they are just going to reinforce things you might already know. Evan and I discuss this in the video: This book doesn’t go far enough in some places and leaves us wishing it had. The Vehicle Design Rules (VDR) are a great example of this. They only involve the Land Raider and you have a bunch of variants to use. However, those variants are all 30 Power Level and a Lord of War choice. They also have a “Open Play” stamp on them so you’re not likely to ever see them in a Matched Play setting.

Chapter Approved 2017 does have some changes that players are going to want to read over. The points changes did affect a lot of armies and it’s a must-by for players of those 11 factions. It’s also handy for anyone looking to run a campaign, play a narrative game, or if you’re looking for tips on running an Apocalypse game. For everyone else – an FAQ/Errata for 40k is rumored to be coming in March. That might be the big sweeping change folks were hoping/looking for. Chapter Approved 2017 is out now – stop by your FLGS or GW store and check it out!


Chapter Approved 2017 $35

An enormous toolkit of rules, updates and ways to play, Chapter Approved is an essential purchase for any Warhammer 40,000 player. Expanding upon the rules found in the Warhammer 40,000 book, this 128-page softback book contains narrative-driven battles and scenarios depicting brutal sieges, exciting new ways to play, mechanics for designing your own vehicles and a host of new rules to take to the battlefield.

The Rules

Split into 3 sections – Open Play, Narrative Play and Matched Play – with explanations and expansions of the rules for each.

Open Play

Games of Warhammer 40,000 with few restrictions, where players are free to invent their own stories and frameworks with unlimited force sizes – this is Open Play. Chapter Approved provides the following guides to making your Open Play games as open and fun as possible:

– Apocalypse: huge, dramatic tabletop conflicts in which hundreds of infantry and squadrons of vehicles are locked in desperate conflict, games of Apocalypse are Warhammer 40,000 turned up to 11. Combine armies into immense forces, unleash terrifying super-heavy war engines – Apocalypse is your gateway to truly epic battles.Chapter Approved features a comprehensive guide to running games of Apocalypse, from 3 missions, ideas for multi-table battles and recommendations for an officiated game featuring an Umpire with special influence over the battle.
– Land Raider variants: this is a set of guidelines on designing your own datasheets for Land Raider conversions, meaning totally new variants for your games made completely by you! There are 5 example datasheets covering Ultramarines, Space Wolves, Blood Angels, Dark Angels, and Chaos Space Marines tanks, and a blank datasheet for you to create your own, whatever Chapter you choose.


Narrative Play

Narrative Play games are characterised by pre-generated storylines that often take in entire worlds embroiled in war, from the initial invasions to the bloody battles that follow. Chapter Approved provides rules and missions that the players can chain together, following a conflict from the initial spark to its brutal denouement:

– Planetstrike: rules for playing games of devastating planetary assaults, with one player taking the role of attacker and the other defending, each using the new Warlord Traits, Stratagems and detachments designed for this play style. Included are 6 Planetstrike missions, along with 6 examples of common battlefield deployments;
– Stronghold Assault: rules for games in which players fight over fortified war zones, again deciding between them the roles of attacker and defender. This includes unique Abilities, Warlord Traits, Detachments and Stratagems, as well as 6 Stronghold Assault missions;
– Rules are included for linking games together in linear, narrative-led campaigns, with losses and victories deciding advantages in subsequent games;
– Datasheets for the following 11 fortifications: Aegis Defence Line, Imperial Bastion, Imperial Defence Line, Imperial Bunker, Vengeance Weapon Battery, Plasma Obliterator, Firestorm Redoubt, Macro-cannon Aquila Strongpoint, Vortex Missile Aquila Strongpoint, Void Shield Generator, Skyshield Landing Pad.

Matched Play

For many players, the thrill of Warhammer 40,000 is in testing their mettle against equally-powerful opponents in games where the fight is not decided by who has the biggest gun. When battle-forged armies go to war, victory will go to the commander who has fortune, strategy and cunning on their side. Included in this book:

– 6 Eternal War missions, providing challenges such as hidden mission goals and reserve forces storming in, turn after turn, creating havoc on a catastrophic scale;
– 6 Maelstrom of War missions, offering new permutations of the game and introducing fresh challenges – secret orders, strategic gambles and split-second opportunity feature here;
– 4 new Matched Play mission rules, including rules for targeting characters, using understrength units, clarification on the use of the Command Re-roll Stratagem who which unit types can claim objectives;
– Faction rules: additional rules including Stratagems, abilities, Warlord Traits and psychic powers for Adepta Sororitas, Deathwatch, Drukhari, Genestealer Cults, Harlequins, Imperial Knights, Necrons, Orks, Space Wolves, T’au Empire, and Thousand Sons;
– A guide to creating your own objective markers, themed to your own army, with examples for Imperial, Chaos, Necrons, Tyranids, Drukhari, T’au Empire, and Orks.


The Appendix features a collection of supplementary content which can be used in any games of Warhammer 40,000. Included:

– Rules for a range of terrain, including Deathworld Forests (Eldritch Ruins, Grapple Weed, Shardwrack Spine, and Barbed Venomgorse) and Sector Mechanicus (Haemotrope Reactor, Thermic Plasma Regulators, and Thermic Plasma Conduits);
– Battlezone: Industrial Worlds – use Sector Mechanicus scenery to add height advantages and tap into plasma feeds to increase your weapons’ potential;
– Battlezone: Empyric Storms – rules for fighting amidst a violent warp tide, with 36 events that can affect your armies, surroundings and psychic powers;
– A guide to setting up and running Ladder campaigns;
– An explanation of Battle-forged armies, creating Detachments and Army Rosters;
– Updated points values for a variety of units and wargear for both Citadel and Forge World miniatures, based on feedback from the gaming community.



Bring on the Apocalypse!

Author: Adam Harrison
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