Apocalypse has evolved, and GW has found a way to expand how we play in the Dark Millennium.
Apocalypse has a long history. So long in fact that people were playing “it” before it even existed. For decades now, players wanted ways to recreate those giant battles they read about in the background.
Thus the early days of “Mega Battles”. Back in the day, this was just any big group of players who would come together with everything they had to play giant games of 40K. Usually on the floor and lasting all day (or days), these were great fun!
But the game was really never designed for this kind of thing, and the rules strained and often buckled under the pressure of such large endeavors.
Then Apocalypse arrived, with its streamlined rules, detachments, strategems, and “big guys” like super heavies and titans. Suddenly those games could actually finish, be even bigger, and have the giant warmachines clashing that the players always wanted. Times were good.
But… It was always a sideshow.
Apocalypse 2nd Edition came around and brought it up to date with the game’s current edtion, added more units, but kept its place in the pantheon of GW games.
An EPIC Aside
Way back, if you wanted a separate game that had tight rules and was really designed for large scale combat – you played EPIC (Space Marine), or it’s predecessor, Adeptus Titanicus. It was a popular game system, but alas was cancelled after a long run. At the end of the day, GW doesn’t like making parallel game systems at different scales. Occasionally you would see EPIC games played at 40K’s 32mm scale at tournaments or events, but it was a rare occurrence.
Meet the New Apocalypse
Fast Forward to Now…
The New Apocalypse seems to be a very different beast this time around. This isn’t an expansion for 40K, but an altogether different game. At long last GW has combined the streams. They have a new ruleset, that seems to share some or EPIC’s lineage and statlines, while being played at 32mm scale, so you get to use your existing minis. We know it has a system for constructing armies with units having a “Power” cost. If you can do that – you have everything you need for a standalone community of players, and meta.
EPIC and Apocalypse Stats – You can see the heritage.
With 2018’s introduction of Kill Team, Apocalypse makes perfect sense now. GW has created a progression of three different scales to play in the Dark Millenium. You start with Kill Team, and build up some small units. Eventually, you expand out to have full company level force and become a Warhammer 40,000 player. Now you have to option to keep on expanding your collection to build truly giant forces with Forge World “big guys” and advance into being an Apocalypse player. We’ve talked before about how all wargame companies need to find ways to continually expand their miniatures games to stay healthy. Apocalypse fills that niche for a 30 year old game with players who have decades old massive collections.
I have no doubt we will see separate communities and a meta start to emerge for this new game, alongside games at tournies and events. I have a feeling that GW will be dropping Apocalypse branded releases into the mix in the future. Who knows, in 5 years, maybe it will be the true “way to play” 40K.
So let’s say goodbye to the old Apocalypse, and say hello to what it has grown up into.
~The King is Dead, Long Live the King! Will you become an Apocalypse Player if the rules are solid?