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Warhammer 40K: Warzone Octarius Book Leaves Astra Militarum In Dire Straits

4 Minute Read
Oct 19 2021

The new Warzone Octarius book is out, but it might be a bit of a disappointment for Astra Militarum players.

The Astra Militarium, the Imperial Guard to us old players, is not in a good place as a faction. Its got an aging book that was never a powerhouse to begin with. Outshone by most other armies, its got one of the worst win rates in the game, and only really shows up competitively in soup lists. Lately players have, however gotten their hopes up a bit on the faction. First was the news of new Krieg models, a sign of interest in the army, and next came the news that they would get rules in Warzone Octarius Book 1. Well the book is here, and I can say it does little to fix the faction. Let’s take a look.

What’s In the Book?

Octarius is home to Codex Supplement: Cadia, which adds new rules for the poster boys of the Imperial Guard. The supplement comes with:

  • 3 new warlord traits.
  • 4 new relics.
  • 7 new stratagems.

And uhhh, thats it. That’s all the faction gets. No army of renown, no faction wide, or sub-faction rules. Just that.

Is Any Of It Good?

So are any of these news rules good? Well, yeah, sure some of them are fine. The stratagems are pretty decent overall. Cadia Stands for instance can be used with some of the other options to give you a decently hard to move block of Conscripts (or Whitesheilds) that you can plop on an objective. Gatekeeper is a D3 battle cannon that is basically the relic cannon from Vigilus (RIP) but locked to only Cadians, so worse really. Maybe half the new options are good/decent ones that you could use regularly. But not of them are great. None of them are game changing. How Does This Help?

The fact is the Astra Militarium need a game changer. They are in big trouble and need a massive shake up, and this book isn’t it. This book gives Cadians some solid new options, but Cadians were a sub-faction that just didn’t get played. AM had better, if not really competitive subfactions. Let’s be honest, a relic that changes the range of orders from 6″ to 12″ isn’t that major. Nor is a Warlord trait that lets units shoot and take an action, AM already have tons of cheap units they can use to take actions, without missing out on much shooting.

Nothing in this book fundamentally changes the army. Nothing in it really unlocks any particularly new options, outside of making Conscripts slightly less horrible. This supplement doesn’t actually do anything to make Cadians good. At best it makes them competitive… with other Guard sub-factions. It might now be a tad bit harder to figure out which bad choice you are going to make, but at the end of the day, they are still are non-competitive on the larger scene.


Lesser Then Everyone, But Some Hope?

Honestly for me this book is an Astra Militarum disappointment. A large part of it is reprinting Inquisition and Tyranid rules from Psychic Awakening. Outside of those it is kind of all over the place, with Inquisition, Deathwatch and Guard all getting little bits, but nothing major. Tyranids on the other hand do get a major update. Comparing the Guard and Tyranid updates is rough once you see just how much more the Bugs get.

While the two Codex Supplements are fairly similarly, Nids do get three more stratagems. On top of that they get some major army wide rule buffs, the kind of things Guard really need. My only ray of hope here is that the lack of major new stuff for Guard means that they hopefully have a new book coming soon, while big updates for Nids might mean they are perhaps a while out and this is meant to tide them over. I guess I’ll hold on to hope for now.

Let us know what you think about the Codex Supplement, down in the comments! 

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