We’ve got the Codex in hand and are going over the units in the book along with the rules, traits and stratagems of the Deathwatch!
They really should call this one Primaris-watch because with this new codex that’s what you can expect. The core concepts of the Deathwatch (an elite fighting force with access to some of the best xenos killing technology and techniques in the Imperium) hasn’t really changed. They are still super deadly against the Xenos armies but now they also have access to all the Primaris Marine stuff that was added into the Space Marine Codex.
If you play Space Marines and have the latest codex then you’ve got all the major stats in the book. The Deathwatch are still Marines and they haven’t changed that facet of the army. They might be veterans, but they are still rocking the same basic Marine or Primaris stat-line. The BIG differences are that they get 1) Special Issue Ammo 2) A Ton of different Stratagems, Warlord Traits, and Relics, 3) and can make some pretty crazy Intercessor Squads.
We go over that part in a lot more detail than as that’s really what makes them different that just playing regular marines. You also don’t have chapter tactics – the trade off is the Special Ammo which can be both a blessing and a curse. There are times when you probably wish you could have the Raven Guard Trait or something, but you’ll just have to “make due” with your trusty bolter.
Earlier, we also covered the different types of weapons that have access to the special issue ammo.
Intercessor Squads are going to be able to really put out the hurt. Plus you’ll be able to add in other Primaris models like Aggressors and get cool special rules like being able to advance and fire assault weapons with no penalty or move and fire heavy weapons (like Stalker bolt rifles for instance).
Personally, I really think that is where the army is going to shine. Players are going to have a level of customization for their Deathwatch Primaris Marines you don’t have in the standard codex – much like the previous codex allowed you to mix-and-match you veterans (aka Tactical Marines) and get crazy rules.
Overall, It’s a different way to play a Marine List without running a traditional Chapter. The Codex brings some cool options with it and the stratagems are a literal toolbox of options for when you’re playing. The Deathwatch are like the Batman of 40k – they have a plan for everything.
Codex: Deathwatch is up for pre-order this weekend!