The Badab War: Cut and Run

We are continuing our (re)fighting of the Badab War, with the Marines Errant trying to smash the Mantis Warriors line on Bellerophon’s Fall.

In our last battle, the Marines Errant had delayed their landings on the industrial moon to take advantage of the disruption the Salamanders’ landings had caused. Deploying swiftly on the moon’s surface, the Marines Errant tried to break through the Mantis Warriors’ line – but the Secessionists held.

As the Marines Errant committed more units to the fight, the Mantis Warriors enacted one of their classic strategies. Melting away from the assault, they would attempt to break contact from the Marines Errant so they could reengage on their own, stronger terms.


The Mission

We are adapting one of the scenarios from the old Battle Missions book for this fight, Cut and Run. Ostensibly it is supposed to be used for Orks, but the general strategy shown works well for the Mantis Warriors, so we will swipe it for our campaign!

The Mantis Warriors will be deploying first, close to the centre of the table, and throughout the battle their units will be able to shoot and/or charge if they flee from combat (representing the cut and run tactics). They will have the option of standing against the Marines Errant and fighting or, from turn three onwards, skipping backwards off the table to fight another day.

Victory is based purely on Kill Points – 3 for an HQ, 1 for Troops, and 2 for everything else.


The Mantis Warriors prepared a hasty line at the edge of a disused refinery, intending to stall the advance of the Marines Errant, giving them a bloody nose for good measure before retreating.

Almost immediately, things started to go wrong for the Mantis Warriors as the close combat Terminators of the Marines Errant thundered through the barricades, slaying every Terminator except the sergeant.


The Mantis Warriors Sergeant managed to escape the destruction of the barricade, and through the smoke and debris, he spied the Chaplain leading the Marines Errant force. Determined not to let his brothers go unavenged, he charged, seriously wounding the Chaplain with a vicious cut from his Chainfist. Unfortunately, the Chaplain recovered quickly and smashed him to the ground.


Meanwhile, the Marines Errant flew a Thunderhawk overhead, dropping an Assault Squad right behind the Captain of the Mantis Warriors. Taking advantage of his surprise, the Assault Marines piled into him, but the Captain made good account of himself, cutting five of them down before finally succumbing to their greater numbers.


By now, the surviving Mantis Warriors had retreated to a second line of barricades, and a Tactical Squad faced off against the oncoming Terminators. The Tactical Sergeant managed to dispatch the Marines Errant Chaplain with his power Sword but, by now, the Marines Errant just had too many units in the area. As the second Tactical Squad fled the battlefield alongside a heavily damaged Land Speeder, the assault Terminators carved through the last of the Mantis Warriors before tearing apart their Rhino.


The State of the Campaign

The Mantis Warriors are taking a beating from the Marines Errant and in our next set of games, they will be trying to stage a Fighting Withdrawal in an attempt to slow the advance of the Loyalists.

However, it is not all bad news, as they have had success in disrupting the landings of the Salamanders, and are now preparing a deadly ambush as Vulkan’s marines try to advance into Secessionist territory…

Relics of the Mantis Warriors

I was not going to add much more to my Mantis Warriors, really I wasn’t. Just the odd bit and piece here and there, and most of the focus was going to be on the Tyrant’s Legion, who have the lion’s share of duties in our Badab War campaign.

But then 8th edition came out, we started up the Badab War campaign once again and, well, I had a couple of models that had been knocking around for a bit, and they really needed to get onto the table…


Introducing two valued relics from the armoury of the Mantis Warriors – a Deredo Dreadnought and Deimos-pattern Vindicator Tank Destroyer!


The Deredo (Eddy) wades into battle with a Plasma Carronade, finely tuned to blast apart enemy marines who just do not get the Tyrant’s (entirely legitimate and legal) point of view.

Vehicles get painted in the same fashion as the rest of the Mantis Warriors, with the exception that the all over Nuln Oil wash is reduced to just lining the cracks between armour plates. This makes them very quick to do, and the Mantis Warriors transfers set the models off perfectly.


The Vindicator Tank Destroyer will do to ‘loyalist’ tanks what the Deredo does to their power armoured infantry. With more heavy lasers than you can shake a dead scout at, it should keep our roads clear for a while.

So, is any more coming for the Mantis Warriors? Well, leaving aside I put together the first Tyrant’s Legion squad this week, I could really use another Tactical Squad for the Mantis Warriors, and probably some Scouts too. Whirlwinds look useful in this new edition. And a Land Raider never goes amiss…

Badab War: Enter the Marines Errant!

We have not been doing too much with the Badab War campaign of late, mainly because someone who will remain nameless (James) has been taking his own sweet time painting up his forces, leaving the poor Salamanders fighting the Tyrant’s allies all by themselves. However, the gamer who will not be mentioned (James) has got his act together for the coming of 8th edition…

The Marines Errant have arrived!

Like the Salamanders, they are landing on the industrial moon of Bellerophon’s Fall, but are taking advantage of the distraction the Salamanders have already created with their own landings, and catching the Mantis Warriors offguard.

We are using a tree campaign structure for the Marines Errant, alongside a similar (but different) tree for the Salamanders, to represent the Loyalist landings on Bellerophon’s Fall, as you can see here.

So, the first battle for the Marines Errant is the Vanguard mission from the (old – perfectly serviceable though) Battle Missions book, where the Mantis Warriors managed to string together a ragged defence that the Marines Errant tried to punch through to expand the perimeter around their landing areas.

The Mantis Warriors were strung across the battlefield in an effort to take on the Marines Errant from any angle, and were gratified to see their enemies advancing in two formations, one with two Tactical Squads led by a Chaplain, the other a Devastator Squad led by a Venerable Dreadnought.

However, the Marines Errant had a trick up their sleeves as two Terminator squads teleported right in front of the Mantis Warriors, while an Assault Squad dropped in behind them. However, the Assault Squad veered a little too close to an enemy Dreadnought, which quickly tore them apart.


The Terminators proved to be a real problem, and a Rhino selflessly crashed into one of their units an in effort to stall them until sufficient heavy weapons could be massed.


In the end, one Terminator Squad entered the bunker and killed the Mantis Warrior Captain before they were finally shot to pieces, while the Terminator Assault Squad took its time to destroy the Rhino, and then charged and killed the Mantis Warrior Librarian who had been holding the centre objective before the Dreadnought once more waded in and stomped them into the snowy ground.

Meanwhile, the Mantis Warrior Stormraven had free reign of the skies and after pounding the advancing Tactical Squads, it veered across the battlefield to explode the Marines Errant’s Venerable Dreadnought with a single salvo of Multi-Meltas, Lascannon and Stormstrike Missiles.


This freed the two Marines Errant Tactical Squads to assault the central objectives, and they had only a single Mantis Warrior Tactical Squad to hold them off.


However, the Mantis Warriors dug in around the refinery, and weathered a great deal of punishment, all but finishing off one of the advancing Tactical Squads before the Marines Errant Chaplain broke their line.


The two forces continued trading fire, but it was rapidly becoming clear that the Mantis Warriors were secure around the objective on their back line and it was the central one that was being contested.

The Assault Terminators of the Marines Errant had already been driven off by the Dreadnought, who was in turn destroyed by the rampaging Chaplain, who was then blasted apart by the last Mantis Warrior Attack Bike after the Stormraven destroyed the last of the Tactical Squad who had been shielding him.


The battle ended with the Stormraven moving in to hover over the objective before the last Marines Errant Tactical Squad forced it away.

With one objective each, the battle was a draw!


Summary, Thoughts and Conclusion

We have managed to get a handful of 8th edition games under our belt now, but this was our first ‘serious’ campaign game with the new rules.

First things first – we like the new rules, let’s get that out of the way.

However, this game did underline for us that a) we don’t really know what units do any more, even if they made regular in older editions and b) we don’t know how to use them!

I mean, consider the Rhino… we had two of them in that battle. Are they any good? No idea! One got destroyed pretty quickly by a couple of Tactical Squads, while the other held up Assault Terminators for a few turns and was instrumental in holding the Marines Errant back.

Or take Dreadnoughts. The one belonging to the Mantis Warriors destroyed an Assault Squad by itself, then finished off the Assault Terminators in a single charge. It only ran out of steam when the Chaplain came along, but that was partly poor luck and there was every chance it could have finished him off too!

However, the Venerable Dreadnought was typically out shot by the Devastator Squad next to it, and just exploded when the Stormraven swooped in.

So, is the Stormraven good? It killed the Venerable Dreadnought and then failed to repel the Tactical Squad from the central objective (it might have done better with a different weapons fit). That said, I am liking the Stormstrike Missiles in this edition, and they are a nice compliment to the Lascannon and Multi-Meltas that I have mounted on the gunship.

Anyway, looking forward to getting this campaign properly under way and finding out what more units can do!

Primaris Marines of the Flesh Tearers

A great many people are getting their hands on the new 8th edition of Warhammer 40,000 today. I have been lucky enough to have been playing the game for these past two weeks and, as well as the Death Guard, I also managed to get the Primaris Marines of the new box set painted up.


Are these easy to paint?

I would say! Despite being larger, they are much ‘cleaner’ than the older/original/classic Space Marines, and so you can rip through them at a high rate. As you can see, I went for the Flesh Tearers for these guys, for a number of reasons.

First off (he said, in all modesty), I was the chap who did the original background for these guys. No, seriously, take a look at the Index Astartes or White Dwarf article where they first appeared – you’ll see my name! Gabriel Seth, Cretacia, the Death Company Dreadnought… all my own work (you’re welcome). So, I figured it might be an idea if I actually had some Flesh Tearers on the table top.

Second, I figured that, of all the chapters who desperately need reinforcement, the Flesh Tearers had to be ranking right up there. I had written them so they were effectively a doomed chapter, unlikely to last more than a few hundred years (I did have this plot line where they tried to rush the creation of a whole new company for the Third Armageddon War, but it went hideously wrong – never reached print though). So, a bunch of these new marines might be welcome.

However, why oh why did I choose a chapter where I had to hand paint the chapter symbol (I cannot free hand at all)? I do have some of the resin shoulder pads that GW do, but the models from the box set do not have replaceable shoulders…


Anyway, Intercessors first. You get two squads of these and they sort of fulfil the role of Tactical Squads. Sort of. Their Bolters are slightly better but they do not have any heavy or special weapons.


The Helblasters are all equipped with oversized Plasma Guns, and are going to rip through enemy marines at speed. Expect to see these guys hanging around with their Captain a great deal, as he mitigates Exploding Plasma Gun Syndrome to a massive degree.


Then we come to the Inceptors, possibly my favourite of the bunch (bearing in mind that I have not actually played them yet). You might look at these and think ‘ah, Assault Marines’, but you would be wrong. It is better to think of these guys as ‘proper’ drop drops, close to Heinlein’s Starship Troopers. These guys literally get thrown out of an orbiting ship (there is a good piece in the new Dark Imperium novel that covers this – well worth a read if you want to catch up on what is happening in the 40k universe) and then plummet down where they attack the enemy with what amounts to handheld Heavy Bolters. Two of them.


Lieutenants are a new thing for Marines unless, like me, you were around for 1st edition Rogue Trader, many, many moons ago. They actually make a lot of sense, each taking command of a Demi-Company (so, two per company) so that the Captain, Librarian and Chaplain can concentrate on their actual jobs rather than ordering Tactical Marines around.


The Company Ancient is the standard bearer of old, but now he is split from the Command Squad and is a character in his own right (as is the Apothecary, for that matter). Again, my free-handing skills are non-existent, but at least this model has some raised detail on the standard I can follow.


The last model you get in the box set is the Captain in Gravis Armour, which as you can see is much heavier than the normal Mk X of the rest.


Finally, I figured someone would ask for a comparison picture, so here is a Flesh Tearers Intercessor alongside a Terminator and Tactical Marine of the Mantis Warriors, the latter of whim is probably feeling a little inadequate.

So, have I started a Flesh Tearers army as well now? Well, it kinda looks like it!

I took the opportunity to start the Terminators from the Space Hulk set (they have been sitting idle all this time!) in Flesh Tearer colours, and we all know there are new Primaris goodies coming very soon from GW (I am guessing they will start appearing in two weeks, as next week is all about Age of Sigmar). That will be a new tank, a new Dreadnought, new Primaris Marine squads called Reivers and Aggressors, plus I imagine we will see box sets (with new options?) for the Intercessors, Helblasters and Inceptors.

Good times ahead!

Battle Report – Skulls for the Skull Throne

The new Battletome: Blades of Khorne added lots of new goodies for Khorne armies of all stripes, along with two new Battleplans. While the temptation is always there to always add lots of ‘cool’ and powerful models to an army, we thought we might go in the other direction for one of these Battleplans, and field two forces of the ‘average’ infantryman…


The Story So Far

The Godbeasts campaign had left a powerful mark upon the Realm of Fire. The Land of the Chained Sun had been scorched into a blasted ruin by the Fyreslayers who once lived there, and the balance of power in Orb Infernia had been irrevocably altered by Lord Khul. The great and the powerful had moved on from this fiery land, to wage war and fight battles across the Mortal Realms – but some still lived and fought here.

The Devoted of Sigmar had successfully beaten back the Bloodscorch Bulltribe from their homes in the Tauroi Archipelago but while many of the Devoted had followed the Stormcast Eternals to fight for Sigmar and claim a place in his great cities, a few remained. Pledging to defend their homes and continue the fight against Chaos, they were a hardy bunch led by the most devout of Warrior Priests.

Many of the greatest champions of Khorne’s Bloodbound had also departed, following war and strife wherever it led them. Some, however, remained. Whether it was a desire to fight for territory, an eagerness to finally defeat the Devoted of Sigmar, or simply a blood-filled fury that drove them to fight the closest enemy, the reasons varied between each Bloodreaver and Blood Warrior.

The wastelands of the Tauroi Archipelago would soon see another great confrontation between Bloodbound and Devoted, as the minor champions who led both sought to defeat their age-old enemies once and for all.


The Forces

We are keeping things low key in this battle – a fair few models will be on the table but under no circumstances will any of them actually be any good!

Khorne Bloodbound
Exalted Deathbringer (Blood Drinker)
Aspiring Deathbringer (Gorecleaver)
Slaughterpriest (Collar of Khorne)
Bloodstoker (Talisman of Burning)
Bloodreavers x 40 (two units of 20)
Blood Warriors x 10

The Blood Warriors are fulfilling their role in this force as elite troops, but we have deliberately not put a Bloodsecrator in. If the Bloodbound want skulls for the skull throne, they will have to work for it!

Devoted of Sigmar
Warrior Priests x 4 (Phoenix Stone, Obstinate Blade, Relic Blade, Talisman of Blinding Light)
Flagellants x 60 (three units of 20)

Like the Bloodbound, the Devoted of Sigmar have not got any real ‘choice’ units here, having to rely on just Flagellants and Warrior Priests (a War Altar of Sigmar would have been too powerful!), and lots of both!


The Battleplan

This Battleplan is all about collecting worthy skulls. Each army has four Heroes, each of whom can choose an Artefact of Power from their allegiance list. After both armies have been deployed, each player randomly determines which enemy Hero he needs to slay to gain a worthy skull.

When they have got that Hero’s skull, they randomly determine the next target, and if they run out of Heroes, they start on unit leaders.

The battle lasts for five rounds, and victory goes to the force that has claimed the most worthy skulls!

We will, of course, be using the Blades of Khorne Battle Traits, for lots of Blood Tithe goodness.



As the Bloodbound moved into enemy territory, the Devoted of Sigmar gathered to meet them, chanting prayers and devotions as they made themselves ready around the ruins of a once proud civilisation.


Both forces had already identified which enemy Heroes needed to be brought low. The Devoted of Sigmar saw the Slaughterpriest was responsible for holding the Bloodbound together, while the worshippers of Khorne had decided that the skull of the leading Warrior Priest was the most worthy to claim for the throne of their god.


Battle Round One

As chanting Warrior Priests blessed the Devoted with prayers of shielding and the power of the God-King himself, the flagellants tore forward, screaming bloody murder as they flailed about with their weapons.


They tore past the Ophidan Archway, desperate to bring Sigmar’s Justice to the heathen.


Across the battlefield, the Bloodstoker raised his whip and cracked it across the backs of Bloodreavers, galvanising the entire warband to action.


Battle Round Two

The prayers of the Warrior Priests became steadier in their devotions, and the whole leading line of Devoted were both protected and strengthened by the presence of Sigmar. With the Bloodbound now so close, they increased their pace, their fires burning bright and promising terrible retribution.


With a mix of cries and screams, the first Flagellants reached the Bloodbound, piling into Bloodreavers and Blood Warriors.


Undaunted by the massive brute forms of the Blood Warriors, the Flagellants flung themselves at Khorne’s elite, grabbing limbs and bashing with clubs as they reached a peak of religious fervour. The Blood Warriors were unprepared for this kind of attack and though they felled half a dozen Flagellants with their axes, two were torn apart and a third, to his immense shame, fled the battlefield.

On the other side of the line, the Flagellants took fewer losses and smashed or burnt the life out of six Bloodreavers, and here too another of Khorne’s faithful fled before Sigmar’s vengeance.


The Bloodbound had been forced onto the back foot, but they had no intention of staying there. As the Bloodstoker whipped Bloodreavers into a fury, the Slaughterpriest raised his axe in prayer and boiled the blood of five Flagellants, steam coming out of their eyes and mouths as they collapsed onto the ground.


Bloodreavers rushed in to support the Blood Warriors, much to the latter’s chagrin, but the though nearly half a dozen more Flagellants were killed in the counterattack, they remained firm and brought another Blood Warrior down.


The Gorechosen then emerged from the woods, and together they surveyed the battlefield.


It did not take them long to find a suitable enemy – not a prized skull by any means but, as the Exalted Deathbringer was oft heard to say, he would do. Together, they rushed a lone Warrior Priest who had been running to join the Flagellants.


The Warrior Priest fought bravely, and it took all three of the Khorne Heroes to defeat him. However, the end was inevitable.

Just a little behind that fight, Bloodreavers and Flagellants battered one another with the crudest of weapons. The Bloodreavers were steadily gaining the upper hand, but just as it seemed the Flagellants would be driven back, they would hurl themselves onto the blades of their enemies in an effort to kill in the name of Sigmar.

Soon, there was but one Flagellant left facing the Bloodreavers.


Battle Round Three

The Aspiring Deathbringer snarled in pain as he was whipped by the Bloodstoker as they prepared to assault the Ophidian Archway which remained in the hands of the Devoted.


Sighting the worthiest skull amongst his enemies, the Slaughterpriest raised his axe again to boil the blood of the Warrior Priest Lord, and was elated as the man collapsed to the ground, red steam arising from his body. The Slaughterpriest made a note to claim his skull later, and cast a disparaging look at the nearby Blood Warriors, who were still fighting Flagellants. Eventually, they dispatched the last, but it had taken too long – there were more skulls to be found and they would not claim themselves…

The Gorechosen rushed the Ophidian Archway, and the Flagellants guarding it ran to meet them.


The Aspiring Deathbringer and Bloodstoker relished the fight as they slew seven Flagellants between them, but both were wounded in return.


The Exalted Deathbringer, however, had vaulted past the Flagellants to climb the archway, where he found a Warrior Priest.


The Warrior Priest was forced to give ground as the Deathbringer landed a solid blow, but he remained steady and fought back, badly wounding the Khorne Hero in return.

Meanwhile, a lone Flagellant, the sole survivor of the first attack wave, was incredibly still alive and fighting Bloodreavers. The God-King must surely have been watching his faithful servant, as the Flagellant killed a Bloodreaver while the weapons of his enemies seemed to strike only thin air.


With the Bloodbound amongst them and more Bloodreavers about to strike their line, the surviving Warrior Priests raised their voice to the Celestial Realm, praying for Sigmar’s healing hand… however, the God-King’s attention had now left this battlefield, and their devotions went unanswered.


However, Khorne was most certainly watching, and the Blood God filled his servants with a true Murderlust. Bloodreavers surged across the battlefield, much to the surprise of a Warrior Priest whom they quickly surrounded. Recovering, he started to fight back but the press of bodies around him was too tight, and he was quickly wounded by several sharp knives and axes.


The lone Flagellant battling Bloodreavers killed another one of his enemies, but was finally slain by an axe that thudded through his back – truly, Sigmar’s gaze had moved away from the Devoted.

As the Exalted Deathbringer continue his duel with the Warrior Priest guarding the Ophidian Archway, the other two members of the Gorechosen continued to tear through the last Flagellants on the battlefield.


The Devoted of Sigmar became crazed the closer they got to defeat, and they hurled themselves at the Gorechosen, careless of their own lives. The Bloodstoker was taken aback as the Flagellants all but relinquished their own lives, and his blood streamed from dozens of wounds.

Finally, though, only two Warrior Priests remained on the battlefield.


Battle Round Four

One Warrior Priest was surrounded by Bloodreavers and beyond hope. Though he had the God-King’s name on his lips, he was quickly overwhelmed and hacked into ever smaller pieces by his rabid foes.

On the Ophidian Archway, however, the last Warrior Priest fought on, refusing to give in to the inevitable. With a great cry, he rushed the Exalted Deathbringer and hurled his enemy to the ground.

Cursing his superior for cowardice and stupidity, the Aspiring Deathbringer climbed the Archway. The Warrior Priest greeted his new foe by twirling his hammers and crouching, ready for the charge.


However brave he was, however, the Warrior Priest had been just too badly wounded in his last duel, and the Aspiring Deathbringer smashed his cruel axe through the priest’s breastplate, glad that he had succeeded where the Exalted Deathbringer had failed, and claimed a worthy skull for Khorne…




The Devoted of Sigmar had fought bravely but in the end… they were completely outclassed!

We certainly had some decent last stands (which is all I really expect from these guys, to be honest!), first with the lone Flagellant who would just not die, and then with the Warrior Priest on the Ophidian Archway.

The Devoted might have done better if they had managed to get more prayers off – after the first two rounds (and the first was not great, with only two prayers active) Sigmar barely paid them a blind bit of attention, which really stuffed them up towards the end. Both Warrior Priests could have significantly benefitted from a little healing and, without it, the Bloodbound could simply steam over them.

Which was a shame, as while the Bloodbound retained the upper hand all the way through the fight, the Devoted had stalled the Bloodreavers on the right, smashed the Blood Warriors into insignificance, and slain the toughest Hero. With a bit of healing, maybe (just maybe) they could have beaten the last of the Gorechosen, leaving only one unit of Bloodreavers and the Slaughterpriest to face.

That would probably still not have been a fight they could win, but it would have seemed more convincing!


The Story Continues…

We are going to stick with the forces of Khorne in the next battle, to try out the next Battleplan in the new book. This will feature a veritable horde of Khornate daemons against some rather angry Ironjawz!

The New Death Guard

I had hoped to get the Death Guard from the new Dark Imperium set all painted and ready for the ‘pre-order’ day we ran for the local club last Saturday – but that was a pipe dream. However, a few more evenings work, and I ended up with this:


So… it looks like I am doing a Death Guard army as well now…


For the paint scheme, I pretty much used the painting guide in the Dark Imperium set, albeit with Castellan Green as a base rather than Death Guard Green, which is not released until next week.


I also decided to do something new with the bases – using the Stirland Mud textured paint, drybrushed Screaming Skull, with patches of Nurgle’s Rot and tufts of Mordheim Turf. And that, it turned out, was a bit of a chore first time round.


First off, shaking Stirland Mud well is not enough – you need to turn the pot upside and leave it for a bit if you are not going to get just a gloopy mess on your base. It may be another few models before I properly figure out how to use it.


I am not too sure about the Nurgle’s Rot either – seems a bit ‘strong’, but maybe it will grow on me. Either way, that took 2-3 layers to get the effect shown.

Was it all worth it? Yeah, I guess so, not an amazing amount of more hassle and the bases are more interesting than those I have been doing of late for Age of Sigmar and the Mantis Warriors.


As for the models themselves, I am quite liking them, and am looking forward to seeing what GW do with the Death Guard range over the next couple of months (guessing we will see more Primaris Marines first though, as we saw new Stormcasts in the first month of Age of Sigmar, then the Bloodbound followed). The characters are solid, especially the Lord of Contagion.


The Plague Marines are also well-detailed and posed, a real step up from the last models.


The only real misfire in this little group are the Poxwalkers, and that is all about my painting rather than the models themselves. I went quite muted with their colours and, as a result, nothing really stands out,. Then again, that might be just the right approach for the faceless, shambling horde, and I may change my mind if I get some more of them (I assume a box set of them will be following soon enough).

So, that is the Death Guard from the starter set all done. Next up… the Primaris Marines.

But which chapter to pick?


First Games with the New 40k

Today, we had the local club round to try out the new 40k – and first impressions are good. Nay, excellent!


We opened the doors in the morning, and the first early birds immediately dived into the books, plotting their new forces.

We kicked off by pretty much ignoring the points, going with beginner’s forces of 1 medium-sized HQ and two squads. I walked everyone through their first turn, phase-by-phase… and after that, they were pretty much off and flying. There was the odd question here and there in their first game but, by the time they started putting ‘proper’ armies together, everyone had the core rules memorised and were just working off their unit datasheets.


This is an important point about the new rules, I think – after your first game, you will have the core completely memorised and there is a good chance that you will never refer to the main rulebook again for them. Ever.

They really are that simple.

That is not to say they lack depth – the datasheets (and some optional bits and pieces from the main rulebook) add additional rules and complications, and the club guys were quickly starting to figure out what worked for them, what didn’t, and what would be very tasty if they added it to their armies.


In the first round of battles, Tyranids came ahead by a good margin, managing a 100% win-rate – something they retained in the second round too (don’t read too much into that, we really were just learning the game and how the armies work under the new rules).


The Orks, especially, ran into serious problems when they received a Winged Hive Tyrant in the face, though a Leman Russ Demolisher completely flattened it by hurling a huge shell into its face in the third round of battles!


This really is a very good rules set, and I think everyone is planning to add more units to their forces, if indeed they are not starting brand new armies. The rules are just so easy to get to grips with that, like Age of Sigmar, they kind of become ‘invisible’ when you are playing, allowing you to focus on what is happening on the tabletop and clashes between great heroes and massive war machines, without stopping play every so often to consult the rulebook. You really will just be consulting the odd datasheet here and there, and the bulk of those you will have memorised in fairly short order.

The new 40k gets a big thumbs up from me, and I think the newly arrived Death Guard will be invading Ultramar pretty soon – watch out for the campaign!