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!