Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Warhammer 40,000 (8th Edition)

So, we’ve been kicking the idea of covering a little bit of Warhammer 40,000’s new edition since we heard about it the first time.  There are tons of people covering a lot of aspects of the game, filming battle reports and taking time to show off the game.  We honestly thought what could we add to that discussion?  We haven’t even gotten a game in of the new edition!  Then we started telling stories of past games and other terrible days that happened in Warhammer, and we decided to take a look at what this new edition of Warhammer looks like to us, and what it adds to our experiences.  We might get around to battle reports and list building ideas at some point (and probably pictures of our armies once they’re completely painted), but today we’re going to give an of what we’ve seen and what we like so far.  

Background and Perspective

So, I’ve been playing Warhammer since the end of 3rd edition (i took a break for most of 4th edition) and i have seen a lot of neat things come and go.  I’ve dabbled with other armies, but i keep spiraling back to my Space Marines.  Dependable, stupidly loyal, and always fun to play Space Marines.  I have a large collection of them, and i have picked up a few other armies along the way.  

The author has a massive backlog of models to finish fixing, painting and basing to get to at some point, and hopes one day to have a fully finished army.  Those hopes ebb and recede like the tides of the warp.  

My current fascination that i am going to work on next is my Deathwing army from the Dark Angels chapter.  I work on them every so often and i like to tinker with the lists a lot.  Then i heard there was a new edition coming and i was curious what sort of trickery this would inflict upon my poor Terminators.  From that perspective, i looked very cautiously at 8th edition.  7th edition was a trainwreck for my army of choice, and i once contemplated going to a tournament and losing every round i played just for the fun of playing.

Again, our author is neglecting to mention that the Deathwing Assault Rule (you can leave your entire army in Deep Strike reserve) means that you automatically lose the game at the end of a turn where you have 0 models on the table.  He was bored, and really wanted to play.

Initial Looks and Thoughts

So i started paying attention to releases and updates on a host of sites and very cautiously started to like what i saw.  The turn  sequence was vastly simplified and the army construction rules were sounding much simpler.  As I got more information i started to see the similarities between 8th edition 40,000 and Age of Sigmar.  AoS is Games Workshop’s Fantasy game of epic battles, and i very much enjoy that game a lot.  The rules felt much faster and easier to get into.  Other folks have talked about it taking them back to their roots in the game, and i would love to be able to do that, but my roots don’t run that deep.  What i started to see was an enjoyable game that scaled up and down at different game sizes with a variety of ways to play.  I was chatting with the Enraged Wookie about it (another long term wargaming addict) and he seemed pleasantly surprised by the changes.  The game felt like a pleasant change of pace.  I had heard that Warhammer 40,000 was referred to as a “beer and pretzels” wargame, but i had never seen that interaction from the game.  For the first time in a 15 year span of Warhammering things, I saw the joy and fun of the “beer and pretzels” experience that had been explained to me by my elders.  

Product Roll Out

I have an unhealthy relationship with starter sets for minis games.  I bought one of the original 3rd edition starters, i think i ended up with the parts out of 4 Assault on Black Reach starters, i bought three Dark Vengeance starters across both editions where that was a starter, and so i turned a watchful eye towards Dark Imperium.  Now i am still not entirely sold on the idea of Primaris Marines, and the price is higher than i have seen in a miniatures game in a long time.  However, this is one of the first sets i’ve seen in awhile that includes the full sized version of the rule book and two very solid armies for a pair of players that are looking to get into the hobby.  The models are solid, and this set looks like a very solid entry into the market.

The other concern that cropped up in my mind was that the rules changed so severely from the previous edition, how were they going to manage the rules for all of those armies?  Warhammer 40,000 has a LOT of playable factions with models and armies and that’s a lot of information to keep track of.  The good eggs at Games Workshop learned a lesson or two from the Age of Sigmar roll out, and had Indexes that covered every army in the game with all of the new rules for those armies and options they can take.  There are some other add ons, and doodads that can enhance the game, but i was very happy that everyone had rules to play the new game from the release of the rules.  

Thoughts Looking Forward

The other thing that i always worry about with an edition change is what new things do i have to buy to play the game?  Did any of the models i previously loved get seriously changed?  What new hot things do i need to buy to play the game?  Now, there are some changes to get used to with the new rules (My poor vindicators), but overall i have been pleasantly surprised.  I haven’t seen any models or kits that i absolutely have to have and it’s more of a “What do i want to add next?”  I haven’t been quite this happy about a war game in a while.  I am pleasantly surprised that i don’t have to buy the brand newest things to keep playing the game i enjoy.  

So next time i may dig a little into my beloved Deathwing and talk about the various units i can take and some other things.  If i get the Wook up and running he might put together something on his Grey Knights.  (He’s still a little mad my Deathwing are immune to Morale and his Grey Knights aren’t)  That’s our first look and thoughts at the future stretching out in front of us for Warhammer 40,000.  

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