Unless you’ve been living under a rock with limited internet access and a general disinterest in the news filtering out of the Nottingham’s premier Dark Citadel, you’ll have seen that we are a couple of weeks away from 7th Edition Warhammer 40,000. This of course has huge ramifications for all us denizens of the hobby-warp and from what I’m hearing, I’m really rather looking forward to it all.
There have been a bunch of rumours coming out as well as some things being confirmed by none other than the Grand Master Jervis ‘The Lion El’ Johnson himself, and here, I’m going to go through them in my trademark smiley, happy way because, honestly, there’s nothing I don’t like about what I’m hearing. Oh, and as a side note, there are no new rumours here – just my take on what we already know, or think we know.
It’s All In The Mind (phase)
A lot of rumours seem to be about the dedicated psychic phase (which has been pretty much confirmed I believe) and I’m very much in favour of this. Being only a casual player, I was forever forgetting to use my psykers, or forgetting how much warp charge I had or had left. A dedicated phase helps to lodge it into my brain and I’m far more likely to take full advantage of it now. So that’s a big win for the likes of me.
Pooling warp charge and deny the witch dice makes sense to me too. We often hear of psykers working together in the fluff, so it’s a nice touch that they can now do the same on the tabletop. If some ghastly psychic threat is about to ruin a plan or kill a warlord, it makes sense that some or all of the psykers would move to stop it from happening and the new rules supposedly allow for this.
As for the stuff about everyone being able to summon daemons, I like this too (though it does smack of GW trying to shift expensive stock so I can certainly understand the warranted cynicism) – can new, plastic Greater Daemons be far behind? In fairness, the models desperately need updating so that would be no bad thing either. I can see desperate psykers turning to the darkness in their bleakest hour, and it opens up the idea of more armies blending with Chaos in their themes. Nurgly Orks? Khorne-corrupted Necrons? I’m guessing Grey Knights might have some restrictions/counter-boons, and the Tau’s well documented non-psychic status might need to be accounted for, but this looks fun.
Force Disorganised Chart Organised
Ok, so it was getting a bit unruly. Between allies, data slates, formations and fortifications it was all getting a little much for the casual player to really get to grips with and the serious mob were getting headaches from working out the optimum lists too. Now though, there seem to be much more defined rules on the way. Taking the standard chart armies means you can go for objectives and get extra buffs, but if you just want to try something different, for fun, fluff or perhaps tactics, you can now do that too.
One problem will be people abusing it. No one wants to face an army that is just Heldrakes. Or Riptides. Or Wave Serpents. But we should be good enough at enforcing good sportsmanship now to collectively not allow this in the majority of cases. Then again, for fluff, this is brilliant. Imagine playing a campaign and being able to add these conditions to one army. For an example, take a Space Marine force taking on a Tyranid invasion. The first game could be just scouts and landspeeders taking on lictors and deathleapers. Then each game afterwards could focus on the Space Marines attacking each set of falling spores, some containing only big bugs, while others hold only swarms. You could define your total Space Marine force and assign them to each battle before hand as well. The possibilities make this very exciting.
Add to this the new allies matrix (could Blood Angels and Necrons be getting a divorce?!) and I think we’ll see some fun new games and combos. It really feels like GW have managed to combine making more money (they are a business after all) and listening to the fans as well. As a CSM player who’s always hearing about Nightlords fans wanting to use the Blood Angels Dex to have a purely jump army, and their ilk, this should be a real win.
It’s On The Cards
I haven’t seen a good objective card in years (must dig out my old Dark Millennium box), so I’m really looking forward to seeing what’s in store here and seeing how they fit in with the game play. The six standards missions (which are retained) are good, but they were getting a little samey, but then again they’re now ‘kinda’ classics, and we get six new missions too, using these objective cards. This will allow players to take on completely new challenges, and that can only be a good thing. These are going to be called ‘Maelstrom of War’ missions and that just sounds so awesome.
Red And Green To Be Seen
A new box set is always a little exciting, even if you don’t collect the armies included. Rumour has it that it could be a smaller box than usual (presumably to make painting and gaming more accessible to newbs, which is nice) but that it will feature Blood Angels and Orks. This means firstly that we can pretty much say for sure that their codices are almost upon us (orks next, I believe), and secondly that I’ll be transported back to my early years in the hobby. From the front cover of 2nd Ed to one of the first Battle Reports I read in White Dwarf, this was always the fight I relished the most. It was the match up that got me hooked on the hobby, so it’ll be great to see it coming back.
What Else?! What Else!?
There are plenty more rumours out there and lots to be looking out for I’m sure, with not only belloflostsouls.net but also the GW official blog and White Dwarf giving us snippets and tidbits on an almost daily basis. I’ve not seen anything that makes me shudder just yet, and even the fact that three years haven’t passed since 6th isn’t that annoying. Ok, so I’d just got really comfortable with 6th, but we’ve had so much info, and things were getting a little unwieldy, so I think the time is about right.
There will be issues. The vocal (hopefully) minority will throw its toys out of the pram about something, but all in all, I’m optimistic and looking forward to 7th landing in just a couple of weeks. Doesn’t stop me thinking like this though…