Friday, 30 July 2021

Psychic and heirlooms


For the last post before we get in to the actual units I have combined the last two sections that are not covered anywhere else, the relics or heirlooms as the guard know them, and the psychic discipline, the Pyskana discipline. We will start with the relics and once again they are split in to general, regiment and Scion relics. There are actually not that many of the relics that I think need work, as a) there are not many relics and b) most are fairly balanced. 

The only general relic I think needs looking at is Kurov's Aquila. This is because it is a CP regeneration relic and with the changes to the way CP can be regenerated it has lost a lot of usefulness. It use to be combined with the Grand Strategist warlord trait to CP farm, somethi g I have done very successful in the past, but now it's really a choice between one or the other and if you want to go this way, grand strategist is the better option as you roll a dice for each CP spent not per stratagem. I think this needs changing to either reduce certain CP spends, say regimental specific ones, or be reworded to make the CP regeneration more certain, say on a 2+.

Of the regimental specific heirlooms there is only two relics that I think needs changing, the first being Valhallans Pietrov's pistol. Now I don't think the pistol profile or the actual ability needs changing here, what I think needs changing is the wording to bring it up to date with 9th edition, as currently you only loose one model as a result of a failed morale test, you loose others as part of the combat attrition test. As written, you would loose a model for the failed morale and then more for the combat attrition test, when it's intent is that you should only ever loose one model in total for both parts. A quick up date to state that any nearby units who fail morale, loose a model and than auto pass combat attrition tests. 

The other relic that needs some work is the Armageddon Skull Mask of Acheron. Again, this is a moral modifying relic, in this case causing a moral debuff and again it needs bringing inline with 9th. I think that having a negative to leadership is fine but it also needs to come with modification to combat attrition tests. Causing fails on 1's and 2's in addition to the negative to leadership is the way forward for relics and Stratagems, and that what needs to be applied here I think. 

In addition to the Regimental relics, there are Scion relics, one generic one and 6 specific ones. Of these there is 9noy one relic that I think requires adjustment. The Kappic Eagles relic, Distraction Charges, comes in to effect during overwatch. Now, with overwatch being a Stratagem, your effectively having to pay twice for a relic. I do like this relic, it actually has a real use, helping your guys stay out of combat, however, I think that if you take this relic, you shouldn't have to pay for overwatch as well. You have to be within just a couple of inches of the model with the relic for it to take effect, so it's not going to mean that half your army can fire overwatch, but it will mean that it has a real value. Overwatch isn't some overly powerful ability, but it is useful and with it now being a Stratagem, this relic is pretty useless. One other way to limit it would be that you had to nominate just a single unit within a short range that could use the ability and overwatch for free. Still restricting overwatch but also making this relic useful. 

Lastly we have the guards psychic powers, the psykana discipline. While it's not a very powerful discipline it does have a number of 7seful defensive powers. One of the few offensive powers is the one that I think needs work. Gaze of the Emperor is short range mortal wound dealing power and my issues with it come from the randomness of it. First you have to pass the test, then roll for range, the roll to see if you actually do anything. That's 3 lots of dice rolling, with no guarantee you'll actually achieve anything. The main issue for me is the random range. If they would make the range fixed, at least you could work out your chances of successfully doing wounds, but with out even knowing the range it's difficult to plan anything. Personally I would like to see the casting value rise, an 8 would still be fine, the range be fixed, say 8 or 9 inches, and the chance of doing mortal wounds increased, even a 3+ would be fine. All these things would really make it a good l, reliable power but not overly so.

So, this is the last post from the rules before we get in to actual units, starting with HQ units and you probably have spotted a general theme to my complaints. Anything relating to moral needs to be brought inline with the new ways of 9th edition, as does anything relating to overwatch. Randomness needs to be removed or at the very least toned down and finally guard are not good at combat, so stop giving us stuff to use in combat because chances are we'll die before we get to use them. How many of these things will be fixed, especially in a way I want them is debatable but hopefully they will change a few of the more obvious ones. 


Thursday, 29 July 2021

Some more kill team details


Ok this post is quite a bit later than I wanted to post, but I think it needed posting anyway. So we've had a few more detail of the new kill team, in the form of another 3 posts from the Warhammer Community pages. These is not a lot of new information here but it does clarify a lot of things that I've been wondering about, although there is still a lot of information missing.

We'll start by looking at the first of the three articles, which gives us more details on Action Points. We get confirmation here of the basic 1AP actions of move, charge, shoot and fight, with the addition of fall back, at a costly 2AP. It's also noted that there will be other actions, but we were aware of this thanks to the Comms specific action we've seen before. Extra information that is noted is the fact that you cannot typically repeat action, although I suspect that you will be able to double move, and that most units will have a 2AP limit, except for marines, both chaos and imperial, and Quin's, who will have 3 and custodies who get a massive 4AP.  And that's it for that post, like I said, not a huge amount of information there but it's nice to get some clarification on the actions available.

The next post has significantly more information in it and tell us about how to build you list. The first thing to note is that points no longer apply. Now I have mixed feelings about this but I will come to that later, let's have a look at what's in the article first. We get confirmation that fosters are still a thing and that these will still form the basis for all your games. The rosters will still be up to 20 models but that's where the similarly ends. We now pick our models from fire teams, and depending upon what faction you are, depends on how many fire teams you can pick and what's in them. The Ork kommandos for example have one team they can pick from and a total of 1 leader and 9 other models from a list of 10 potential options. There are addition restrictions of the list, like how many of each type of operative you can pick. This does restrict your option quite a bit but hopefully will balance the game. We also get a view of the guardsmans list, not the krieg\vets list but the standard guard. Here we can see we can choose 2 fire teams from a selection of 2, guard and Scions. Be we haven't seen the Scions but I suspect the selection will be similar but numbers more restrictive. For guard we can choose up to 7 guardsmen from a selection of seven plus we can take a sergeant in place of one of these options if we don't have a leader. 

This means that a guard team will be a maximum of 14 models, which is less than the 17 I usually ran previously. Yes, the maximum plasma content will be 3 (two guns, one pistol) but it still feels like we're down on bodies. We've still go all the options, but there are some other, more subtle changes, such as 8f you take a Comms, you loose a special weapon. Previously you could take one in addition to any special weapons but not now. Also there will no longer be multiple Sergeant type models on the table, just one. No more combat specialists for guard. 

In the article they also mention the death guard list, of 3 marines and 8 pox walkers. Now they call it a fire team but I suspect that you might only be able to bring one fire team, this is due to the old points values. Now, I know points are t in use now, but I had a little play with the current costs to give a rough guide to how things might stand. The guard team, with 14 members maxed out on weapons gives you around 90 points. The Ork kommandos is harder to calculate as only standard kommandos currently exist, but it works out at 98 points. The death guard again is a little hard but with a plague marine fighter, gunner and champion plus a normal marine and the 8 pox walkers (a reasonable assumption I think) it brings you out to 99 points. While it's only a rough guide it does suggest that there is a little bit of an imbalance but we will have to wait and see what then full rules bring before we can make a proper assessment. 

There are a couple of other things about the article to mention. First the roster, there are lots of specialists listed in the left column, some we've seen before and some we haven't. The standard, like leader, Comms, sniper are there but so are confident and bruiser, both of which are new and unknown, at least from what I've read. It'll be interesting to see what these all mean. The second thing is at the bottom.of the article, where it talks about special and rare equipment that can be requisitioned or captured during campaigns. Now I know this is for campaigns only but it still sounds cool, imagine a guardsman welding a Eldar shuriken weapon or a tau pulse rifle, very cool, although I don't suspect they mean capture in quite that way. 

The last post for the week revealed a couple of data cards and also how we will be getting all of them. As many of us suspected, we will be getting a core rules book and an army book, or compendium as GW are calling it. This book will include all the data sheets we need the game a d apparently there may well be some surprises in there too. Anyway, we will need this book to play any of the factions outside the two in the started box. 

We were then given several data sheets, a poxwalker, dire avenger and custodian guard. There is t much to say about these that hasn't already been said but there were a few things that were picked out as note worthy. Firstly the GA for poxwalkers is 2, rather than the usual 1. This gives weight to the idea that this is the group activation stat, or how.many can be activated per turn, in this case two models as they are very much a horde unit. Secondly, Dire avengers are going to be lethal. 

It is the custodian guard data sheet that has some of the biggest reveals though. Firstly, it has 18 wounds, which would appear to the highest we will get in kill team, everything else will, to start with at least, have less than that. Secondly, everyone appears to have 3 defence dice. Now this is a surprise. Yes the save number changes but I would have though that the number of dice would change to. I would not expect a pox walker and a custodian guard to have the same defence dice. We also see information about some of the other rules and actions. There are pick up actions and overwatch is also an action. How these work is still anyone's guess. There wasn't a lot of content in this post but there was a lot of I formation to get us going for the release of KT2. 

Friday, 23 July 2021

Warlord and tank aces


For this section I will o my be looking at the warlord traits available from the various guard books and not from the main rule book. 

The main codex consists of the 6 standard traits and the regimental traits, with Psychic Awakening introducing 6 MT traits plus the 12 tank ace abilities, split across three sections. First up we'll look at the original warlord traits. Here there are two that stand out a needing some work, namely Grand Strategist and Draconian Disciplinarian. Grand strategist falls down mostly on the CP regeneration. With the changes to the rules for retaining CP, this trait lost a lot of its usefulness, add to this the 9th edition CP system and being able to regain s CP on a 5+ becomes almost pointless. The ability to re-roll 1 dice in a whole game doesn't make up for this lack of usefulness. Yes, gaining one or even 2 CP in a game and being able to re-roll that games loosing roll might be good occasionally, most of the time it's not going to help. I would like to see this trait changed to give a single re-roll per turn. This would make it actually usable in a game. 

The second trait that needs work, Draconian Disciplinarian, mostly needs updating to bring it fully inline with 9th. As it stands you are potentially in a worse position than you would be. With a normal, a non commissar warlord that is, you just get to re-roll moral, a nice bonus but nothing to get excited about. If you have a commissar though, you could actually end up worse off as you loose a model then re-roll, potentially loosing another and then D3 more, for a minimum of 3 models total or up to 5 models. Under normal circumstances you with a full squad, you probably wouldn't loose that many for moral and combat attrition. While the main re-roll for moral is fine and can be left, the second half needs changing. I would like to see it move to loosing a guy and re-rolling, with a second failure either causing another model to be removed and the test considered passed, or loosing another model and combat attrition only counting on 1's. Auto passing the test would be my preference, as that fits more with the fluff of a commissar but either would be acceptable. 

Another issue with moral also occurs with the Mordian Regiment warlord trait. Under the old system, where you just lost models when you rolled your initial test, having a chance to keep them was useful. I see this new system, you roll you initial test, then combat attrition, then roll again to see if those models that failed the attrition test actually run. This is very long winded and requires lots of dice rolling. I like the idea but think that it should be simplified along the lines of halving the number of models that flee. 

There are three other regimental warlord traits that I think need looking at, these are the Vostroyans, Tallarn and Armageddon traits. My issue with these has nothing to do with the actual traits, they are all reasonable traits, the issue is more about the type of trait that they are and that is Combat traits. All three of these give benefits to combat and combat is not really where you want your warlord to be. Even the most tricked out warlord for any of these regiments is going to struggle against pretty much any units out there except maybe tau fire warriors or grots. Against a full on combat units like vanguard vets or Watches, they are going to be little more than mince meat in seconds. The Vostroyan and Armageddon traits actually require your leader to be in combat and if he is, everything has probably gone horribly wrong, you've more than likely lost already. With the Tallarn trait this is less so, as it enables units to fall back and charge again in the same turn. However, this does mean that your warlord is now well within counter charge range and in real danger. While I get the idea behind all three traits, they are geared towards something the guard are not very good at, that being combat. I think these need changing to more reflect what your leader will actually be doing. For Armageddon it could be to do with disembarking transports, for Vostroyans it can to do with weapon ap and Tallarn it can be to do with movement, maybe always advancing 6 inches, which would tie in nicely with the Tallarn doctrine.

Of the Militarum Tempestus warlord traits there is really only one that I think could use some reworking. The Iotan Dragons warlord trait that means that units near by can ignore cover when shooting. While this isn't to bad, I think that it does limit the ability somewhat. I think that a straight +1 to shoot would be a better option. This would mean that it would be usable more often and also not limit shooting options.

On the whole, none of the warlord traits in their current state are unplayable, some are definitely better than others but all are actually usable. The changes above, or similar changes, would mean that all the traits are as equal as you could get them and make them all options when picking a force. With Psychic Awakening we also got another option instead of a warlord trait, these were tank aces. These were split in to MBT, Support or super heavy aces and there are a few that I think need looking at. 

Within the main battle tank aces, or Leman Russ aces as it actually is, there are two traits that I think need work, Armoured Rush and Weapon Expert. Armoured rush enables you to advance and still shoot, however what you really want to be doing is firing that turret weapon twice, so you'll rarely move over half speed. What this trait should enable you to do is move full distance and still fire twice. This would make this a really good trait and one that would actually be taken more often. Weapon expert gives turret weapons an extra ap, however I would have liked this to apply to all weapons. Yes, taking a battle cannon from -2 to -3 is good and having a punisher be -1 ap is also good but if your a weapons expert, surely you would apply your knowledge to all your guns right? Having all weapons be an additional-1 ap would really make this a good trait.

The next one I want to talk about is a support ace trait. Shatterer of Wills causes a leadership debuff, which while useful, isn't quite as good as it was. Yes it means that your more likely to fail, but it's not going to cause as many casualties as before. I think this needs adding to, to make 1's and 2's on combat attrition tests cause models to flee, even if the unit is over half strength. This would bring this trait more inline with the 9th moral system and really make it a Shatterer of Wills rather than just a bit of a tickler. 

Lastly we have a trait that I think is really good, probably too good and I expect that we will see some kind of nerf to it. Full Payload is taken in pretty much all lists, usually in the form of a Full Payload Manticore or two. I'm not sure how they will nerf this trait, as it just maximises the damage characteristics of the weapon, so without a full rewording there isn't much they can do. One thing I guess they can do is to restrict each ace trait to only allowing each trait to be used once per army. This mean that you couldn't take 2 full payload manticores in the army. I real do expect this to get nerfed, hopefully it won't be to bad.

As for the super-heavy aces, I think these three are all spot on. None of them really need any work, the only one that I might change would be inspiring might, to enable combat attrition tests only on 1's regardless of casualties. 

So, overall a few things that I think need changing for the next codex but on the whole, not a bad lot of traits. Next up we'll have a look at relics, or heirlooms, and psychic powers. 

Tuesday, 20 July 2021

The new kill team, not the same as the old.


So, I've been waiting a while to post this up, waiting until we had some more information through and a better idea of the new game. While we still don't know all the ins and outs of the new game, we do now have a better idea of how it all will work and so far, I like it.

There is a big fundamental change to the game, pretty much everything about it is changing and while I did t have an issue with most of the old rules, there were certainly some aspects that really didn't work and some that just made the game clunky to play. I had always thought that the next edition of kill team would clear these rules up but I didn't imagine that they would alter everything. 

Let's have a look through what we do know so far, as we have had quite a bit of information from the Warhammer Community pages. 

The first thing we learnt was that the box would contain new guard and Ork models, in the form of DKoK and Commandos, plus we learnt, though some observation of the box contents, that we weren't going to be measuring in inches any more. The first of these reveals seemed to get the community really hyped up but the second seemed to annoy quite a few people. Personally I think it's all a good step in the right direction and had me hooked straight from the off. 

The next post we got listed the 5 major changes to kill team and while this did give us some new information, there was not really any solid facts in there. We did learn that the new rules were nothing like 40k proper, which annoyed some more people, and that these would include a proper alternative activation system, as opposed to the semi-alternative system we currently have. We also learnt that we were getting all new data cards for units, which annoyed some more people. We also learnt some information about the Octarius setting, which most people don't seem to care about. Lastly we learnt that these models would be proper MPPK, or multipart plastic kits and not mono or limited pose models, which is great, especially after all the mono-pose marines.

All in all, there are some really good bits to this reveal. The new system sounds good, as it is a proper skirmish game, rather than a small version of 40k and reducing the dice rolling is always going to be a good thing. Alternative activations is also good, meaning there will never be any dull  moments waiting around. The alternative activation system is one of the things that has always drawn me to the likes of Bolt Action. I'm really intrigued by the new data card system and how it's all going to work when picking a full roster of troops. The data cards themselves seem pretty straightforward and easy to use,which is a change from previously, when things could get a little complicated.

The next Warhammer Community article we got went into more detail on the new data cards, giving us lots of information on what the new symbols and stats mean. We'll start with the simple bit, the new measuring symbols. This again, has been causing quite a stir in some parts of the community but it's just replacing actual numbers with symbols and is really easy to use. There are plenty of combat gauges out there which you can use instead of the GW ones. As for the data cards, we have learnt that there are 6 basic stats, Movement, Action Point Limit, GA, Defense, Save and Wounds. We know what most of these mean, the only ones that we don't really know about is GA. There are several thoughts on what it is but we don't know for sure yet. Having these limited few stats again means that things will be quicker and easier in game. Talking of stats, two stats that we are use to being set in stone, WS and BS, are changeable. This is a good move, meaning, weapons like snipers will have a better chance of hitting than a lasgun. Again everything shown in this post is encouraging, all apart from one thing. Right at the bottom of the article it explains the 4 symbols that can be found on the cards, labelling them as Combat, Staunch, Marksman and Scout, but also saying that these are for narrative play only. From this we can infer that there will.not be specialist like in the last game but any specialization we get will be a lot more focused and be done through individual data cards. I.e. we'll not be able to make anyone with any weapon a combat specialist but will have a combat specialist data card with restricted weapon options. Again, I think that this is a better system, as it means that specialist will be more important and well, more specialised.

The last article we had on Warhammer Community gave us an insight into how combat will work and some extras for movement. I'll start with the movement, even though it's at the bottom of the article. It looks like moving over an obstacles will reduce movement by a set figure, regardless of actual size. It seems that an obstacle will reduce movement by a 2" or a circle full stop, so no more measuring up and down or width, nice simple and easy. As for combat, it has, like everything else, been made a lot simpler. The fighters all roll their dice and then either cancel each other out or inflict damage, depending upon what you want to achieve. We don't know full stats for all the models yet, but it looks like another good move. There are just a couple of questions that I would like answering, like what happens when you have multiple models in combat, do they all roll off at the same time or separately? Also do you keep going until a model suffers enough damage to kill it, or until all the dice are used up? I mean a marine with a powerfist will be able to splat a guardsman in one hit, but if it has 2 hit Vs a guardsman's 3, could the guardsman just take the hit knowing he can put damage on the marine, or does he just die and that's the end of it?

The last thing to mention from last week's reveals is the new website. While this doesn't tell us a lot of information, there are a couple of bits that I want to point out, all to do with the way the factions are laid out. According to the website, there are now 21 factions, none of which are the special team from before, i.e. starstriders or Geller pox. I had none of the special teams, so I'm not bothered, no, what really interested me was the names of some of these factions and also the composition of the teams. To start with deathwatch are now part of Marines and not separate as before. Admech are not AdMech but Forge World, sisters are Ecclesiarchy and the golden boys are now part of Talons of the Emperor along side Sisters of Silence. It's a bit of a shake up of the common names but probably more accurate depending upon what units are in each faction. Likewise, CSM are now Traitor Space Marines, Eldar are now Craftworlds,  Quin's are now just called Troupes and dark Eldar are commorrites. Then for the rest of the Xenos races we have Green skins, Tomb world's, Hunter Cadre and Cadre mercenaries for Orks, Necrons, Tau and Kroot. Lastly we have Hive Fleets and Brood Covens for Tyranids and Genestealer Cults. Now a few of these are fairly obvious but the change in me does lead to questions. A couple that give me hope for future releases are Cadre Mercenaries, which at the moment is just Kroot but I guess could include all Tau allied races at some point. The others that interest me are Ecclesiarchy and Hunter Cadre. This is because they are very different from their "parent" terms, Ecclesiarchy is a lot more that just sisters and Hunter Cadre is a lot more specific that Tau. 

The other two entries that are interesting are the Veteran guard and Commandos. These are the starter box teams but the question is, will they be a full teams of just set teams as per the box. Either way, i think I'll be picking up some other units to build up veterans. 

Well, as an initial look in to the new kill team, I am very excited by it and will most likely get the new box set. Hopefully with the new rules, a few more people might want to get in on the kill team action!  

Friday, 16 July 2021


Before I started writing this post I though that it was going to be a long one and that I would have to split it up in to several different posts. However, as I read through all the various stratagems from across the three different books, I found that there was actually not that many Stratagems that I thought needed work. Granted there are some that are more powerful than others, such as Vengeance for Cadia and Grenadiers, but there are no Stratagems that I think are over powered. 

There are a couple of Stratagems that work with overwatch, such as defensive gunners and drilled to perfection, which may see some changes, due to the change in overwatch. I suspect that if they do change, which I'm not convinced they will, it will mostly be a wording change and a CP hike to combine the two Stratagems together but still maintain the only one unit can overwatch part. In some respects it makes sense to just leave them as they are, as they work perfectly fine.

So what stratagems do I think need changing? We'll from the general AM stratagems there are four that I think need some work. The first is Vortex missile, a stratagem for the Death strike missile launcher. Now the Deathstrike itself is a fun but deeply flawed weapon that needs work (which we'll get to in the Heavy Support post) and this stratagem has a couple of issues. The stratagem cost 3cp and while it does give the possibility of doing extra mortal wounds it is very hit and miss. In most games, by the time you fire the weapon you'll be lucky to hit more than a couple of units. Then having to roll a dice with no guarantees of actually doing any damage to other units. For 3cp I would like a more guaranteed output, even giving max shots, the full 18 shots, even without re-rolls would be great. Doubling the range to hitting other units would be good as well. There are lots of different options for improving the stratagem but really for 3cp there need to be less randomness. Fire on my Position is a very similar strat, also costing 3cp and inflicting mortal wounds and it too is very random. Not only do you pay 3cp but you have to roll a 4+ for it to take effect, for 3cp I think you need some guarantees. Even if they took it to a 2+ roll, that would be a big improvement. Either that or drop the price. With a 2000 point match generating 17 CP using a 3cp stratagem is pricey. Also due to the range of the Stratagem, 3 inches, chances are you'll be in combat with the unit your using this on, so you've usually got a 50\50 chance of actually doing something, for 3cp! 

 The next stratagem that needs looking at is Jury Rigging. My issue with this is that it only repairs 1 wound. I would like to see this increases to d3 at least. Yes, one wound can make the difference in profile on occasion but I still think that being d3 is a lot better and would bring it in to line with a lot of other similar Stratagems. Lastly we have Gon Recon. This stratagem affects Sentinels and enables them to move in there shooting phase. The trouble with this is that it's a 2d6 move, so it could be a 2 inch move or a 12 inch move. I would much rather see this become a normal move with compulsory advance move. This would make things more reliable and usable, as you could actually plan things, rather than having to gamble. It wouldn't make things over powered or anything, as your giving up firing and charging for the extra move so it balances out. 

As you can tell, most of the issues I have with Stratagems is down to randomness. When we're paying CP's for something I think there should be very limited randomness or at least only a minimal chance of something not working. Paying 3cp for a 50\50 chance of something is not great. When it's an ability a character has that can be used turn after turn then yes, having it go off on a dice roll is fine but the whole point of cp is to gain extra abilities at a cost, not spend cp for a random dice roll. 

One other stratagem I would like to mention here but not one I necessarily think needs changing is Preliminary Bombardment. My issue with this stratagem is less to do with the cost or the rolling required but with the 1 mortal wound it does. Yes having to roll a 6 is not great but I can live with it due to the fact it covers a lot of units. No, it's the one mortal wound that needs changing due to the increase in multi wound models on the table now. I think this needs changing to d3 mortal wounds to at least give the chance of removing a MEQ model from the table. 

Of the regimental specific stratagems there are three I think need changing. First up is the Tallarn Ambush stratagem. Now there are two issues with this one, firstly the distance, 7 inches. This is only just big enough for certain units, namely superheavy tanks. I think it needs extending to 9 inches to give more room to get these bigger units on the board. The second issue is that it costs 3cp. Now, this price hike came due to the original stratagem not specifying you could only use one vehicle, so people where using it to flank 3 Leman Russ tanks. As usual GW went and nerfed it big style, limiting the number of vehicles and hiking the price up. As it stands I think it needs to drop to 2cp, at which point it become a good stratagem, rather than expensive.

The next stratagem is the Catachan Vicious Traps stratagem. Again my issue with this is the random roll. Yes, it's only 1cp but still requires a 4+ roll to go off. I would much rather see the mortal wound change, so to roll a 2+ for 1 mortal wound and 5+ for d3. This means there is still a change of it not going off but it becomes a lot more reliable. Either that or put the price up to 2cp and automatically inflict mortal wounds.

Lastly we have the big one, probably the most complained about stratagem in the guard codex, the Valhallans Send in the next wave. This stratagem is almost never used in any games, certainly never in matched play games and who in their right mind would, you would just start with the extra unit on the table in the first place. For 2cp you can recycle a unit that is destroyed but you have to pay points for it as well. Oris have unstoppable green tide, a very similar stratagem that cost 3cp, can recycle up to 30 Boyz, is one use only and you don't have to pay extra point for the unit. Going on that logic, this should cost just 1cp for 10 men, or multiples there of ( i.e. 1 for 10, 2 for 20 and 3 for 30). With the precedent set by the Ork stratagem, I really don't see why we can't get a very similar Stratagem. I really think a 1, 2 or 3cp one use only stratagem for recycling a destroyed unit of (non combined) infantry or conscripts can't be done. This would still be very Valhallan, not overly powerful and be usable. Oh and let's not mention the fact that 30 boys cost 240 points Vs 30 conscripts at 150 and that doesn't include the upgrades Boyz can have. 

Lastly we have the Militarum Tempestus stratagems and really there is only one Stratagem I would like to see changed. The stratagem in question is Tactical Misdirection, which is the Kappic Eagles stratagem. The main reason I think this needs work is that it took me about 10 times reading it through before I actually understood what it was saying. It's about as complex as you can get and could be worded a lot more simply. The stratagem itself is fine, a little pointless if you ask me but apart from that there is nothing wrong with it. Hopefully they will word it more simply and make it easier to understand.

Well that's it for stratagems, surprisingly short actually. There may well be some others that people might not like or thing are in need of reworking but I don't think so. Most of them are workable as they are, some are definitely stronger than others and there are quite a few which are very situational but on the whole I don't think there are many bad Stratagems available to the guard. 

Next we'll look at warlord traits and Tank Aces.

Tuesday, 13 July 2021


With the release of the new kill team and the new Death Korps of Krieg models, which look amazing, there are now a host of unanswered questions. 

The primary one has to be "when will the codex come out?". Well, if you believe the rumours, September. Honestly I don't know but it does sound plausible. We have new sculpts in kill team, released at the beginning of August and then the new codex in September. I'm hopeful that this will be the case and am looking forward to seeing what new goodies we will get. 

Which leads me in to the next set of questions, and I say set, because there are a lot of them. First and foremost in my mind is "are we going to get a full DKoK line?" which is followed very closely by "is this a 3rd guard line or a replacement line?". For the first part of we look at the models from kill team, these are very much mono-pose looking models, with their respirators and extras. This means that a full line up might be harder, but then we may well get a more multipart kits later, as we have done with other releases similar to this. I for one feel that we will see a full line up, with units like the engineers and mole mortar squads as well. This however leads to the second question, if they do a full line up, will this stand alongside the current lines, the Cadians and Catachans, or will it replace one of them? I hope that it will stand alongside the others, giving 3 very different armies to choose from. However, I am very worried that we will see it replace one of the lines, specifically Catachans. The Cadians have just received an upgrade sprue and whole the sculpts are not new, they are not that bad and the new additions have done a lot to bring the boxes up to the level they should be. The Catachans however, really need a full overhaul, as the kits are lacking multiple options and the poses and sculpts are very old and odd looking. We know that they can do good Catachan sculpts due to the two limited edition models, the colonel and Ripper Jackson but two good models is not enough for a full range. I'm not sure they would have spent all the time doing a rework on the Catachans and a new full range at the same time, hence I fear the Catachans days are numbered. 

One bit of information that supports the idea of a full range is the rumour of new plastic Death Riders. Now, while this would be great, I would like to see this as a multi regiment option. I really like rough riders and I would not like to see this unit pigeon holed in to a DKoK only option. Having a generic rough riders unit would be much better in my opinion. 

Again, this rumour leads nicely in to the next question that I have "if DKoK are being ported across from forge world, what other discontinued items are?". While Forge World discontinues items all the time as moulds run out, there have been a couple of noticeable options discontinued recently and more importantly at a similar time to a lot of DKoK stuff. I am of course refering to Elysian drop troops and the Tauros vehicles. It gives me a lot of hope that we will see some of these units moved from forge world to GW main, mainly the Tauros and Tauros venator. I would like to see Elysian troops put across as well, however, this then causes the same problem to new DKoK models pose, because this would then mean 4 possible guard lines, something that I highly doubt if profitable and with Catachans being the oldest range, I can see them being the ones that are squeezed out. 

All in all the new DKoK models are a great addition to the range and really do bring with them a lot of hope for guard players that we will get a major update to the infantry line. It also brings hope that we will see other Forge World lines come across to GW proper to add in options that are so desperately needed to the codex. However, for me there is also a note of caution, as new lines generally mean old ones are removed, and seeing as the oldest line is my beloved Catachans, this may mean their days are numbered. 

Friday, 9 July 2021


 Next up on the list are the various doctrines that can be found within the guard codex and supplements. This includes the original guard Regimental Doctrines, plus the new Militarum Tempestus Doctrines and the custom doctrines. We'll start with the original guard ones and work our way out from there. 

First up, the Stormtroopers doctrine. I think it's fairly safe to say that we will loose this doctrine from the list due to the new Scion regiment doctrines. This is not a bad deal as gaining 6 doctrines after loosing one is not a bad thing. Yes, you could argue that there is no need to loose the Stormtrooper doctrine as it's not specifically for scions but it was designed for them as so I think we'll loose it. There are two others which stand out as needing work, the Mordian and Catachan doctrines. The Catachan doctrine is not terrible, none of the doctrine are actually terrible, but very few people take it for both Half's of the doctrine. Yes, having S4 guard can be cool, but re-rolling the number of attacks for vehicle weapons is a lot better. If people take the Catachan doctrine, which they do, it is with vehicle heavy list, which is very counter to the Catachan lore. I think this needs a rebalancing but I don't really know how, as guard are not a combat army and never will be, and even if we were, our best combat units can't benefit from doctrines (i.e. Bullgryns). 

The other Doctrines that needs work is the Mordian Parade Drill. Now this has the benefit of a +1 to leadership but all of the main benefits are for overwatch. With overwatch now being a once per turn stratagem, taking a while regimental doctrine that gives you a +1 to hit in overwatch is not very useful. Changing this to a straight +1 to hit or ignoring negative modifiers if a model is in base contact with at least 2 other models in the unit, would be a good change, with a similar change to vehicles as well. This could carry over to overwatch as well but it wouldn't be essential. Another option would be to keep the overwatch buffs but make it so that other units within a few inches could also overwatch, a la Tau. 

All in all, the basic AM doctrines have managed the transition from 8th to 9th rather well and are all still useful. 

Alongside the AM doctrines we now also have the MT doctrines. These are for the 6 named Scion regiments, plus the original stormtroopers doctrine in the list of options. Now we've already stated that the original stormtroopers doctrine will disappear and when we look at two of the MT doctrines it makes it even more likely. Both Thetoid Eagles and Iotan Gorgonnes both have very similar doctrine, giving extra hits on 6's. None of the doctrine are bad and there is very little that I would change. The one I probably would look at changing would be the Psion Jakals. The doctrine affects moral tests, however, there are lots of ways to by pass moral or even just outright ignore it, plus there is no guarantee that even if a unit fails moral that they will loose more than the 1 model for doing so. Against some armies this could be very good but against most armies this will be very hit and miss. Personally I would like to see this changed to effect the unit in some way, possibly something along the lines of halving movement, (moves, advance and charge) or even making the unit -1bs for shooting. This would still fit with the lore and make them viable against many different armies. 

Lastly, I can see the Kappic Eagles getting a bit of a nerf. This is probably the best doctrine by some margin. The +1 to hit is a very powerful trait on its own, when paired with the ability to move with heavy weapons, effectively giving a +2 to hit over normal, makes it extremely good. Granted there is only one heavy wespon in the Scions arsenal, but when your taking between 2 and 4 per squad, it quickly mounts up. I think we might see one of the other disappeared from the doctrine, most likely the moving with heavy weapons part. 

Last up are the Custom doctrines. These were introduced in Psychic Awakening and give the option to mix and match bits from various Regimental Doctrines. While this is good, it does have various drawbacks, mainly loosing a Regimental order or stratagem. Anyway, some of the custom doctrines are better than others. Combined Auspex I can see changing, as with the changes to overwatch it suffers from the same issues as the Mordian, in that it's only going to come In to play a maximum of 5 times. I think this should be changed to an ignores cover type of arrangement. Keeping the same requirements will make sure it's not to over powered. Monster hunters is another one I think needs changing. I simply think it needs to include vehicles, as well monsters. A simple change that would broaden it's appeal and usefulness. 

Pyromaniacs also needs tweaking, as it's very narrow in scope as well. It only effects flamers, of all 3 varieties, and while re-rolling ones is good, I think it needs the extra bonus of ignoring cover. This won't be a very big change but would make the trait useful. Flamers are not very common, especially in infantry units, with most only being able to take 1 and others, such as vets and command squads being more useful taking other weapons. Only special weapons squads can really make full use of this upgraded doctrine. 

The last doctrine to look at is slum fighters. Now there is not actually anything wrong with this doctrine, gaining an extra hit is not bad at all, however, I would like to see this changed to an auto wound arrangement. This might be greedy but auto wounding is a lot more useful than an additional hit. Most of the time we're going to be wounding on 5's and only very occasionally on 4. Gaining an auto wound wound be a great ability and seeing as most things only have 1 attack, not overpowered at all. 

All in all the doctrines are one of the stronger areas of the codex and there really isn't much to change, just tweak here and there. Next on the list is stratagems and that might take a while!

Friday, 2 July 2021

Detachment rules

First up are the general, army wide rules that every army has access to. These are grouped in to two main areas, the detachment rules and army abilities. First up we'll have a look at the detachment rules.

Defenders of humanity is the most basic rule here and is shared by all armies under one name or another. The main difference here is the inclusion of Leman Russ tanks when in a Spearhead detachment. As things stand there is one main issue with this setup, taking a Spearhead detachment costs CP, even if your warlord is within that detachment. Hopefully we will get the same benefits as things like Dark Angels received and that if the detachment contains your warlord, the CP is set to 0. This will make tank heavy armies a properly viable option again, especially at the smaller end of the points scale. 

Regimental doctrines are, in my opinion, an excellent idea, giving each army a unique feel. There is little that needs changing to this core rules, although some of the individual doctrines need a little bit of work but I will go over those in a separate post. 

Militarum Tempests doctrines follow very closely to Regimental Doctrines, following all the same rules. However, there is one thing that I feel should change here. Now, I know that what I'm about to suggest will be controversial but I think that if you mix MT units and AM units then each should receive the benefit of their own respective doctrines. I.E. the guard units receive the Regimental Doctrine and Scions receive a MT Doctrine, even though they are within the same detachment. There are several good reason for this; firstly they are part of the same overall force, unlike things like space marines where each chapter is completely separate. Secondly, why would the Scion, the cream of the crop, not get to have any bonuses or abilities? Surely they should get something. Lastly, the Scions do not have the ability to field a full force, only being able to field a patrol, battalion or vanguard detachment, and need guard units to field anything else. This change would not break the game and enable all the units to act and operate as they should. The alternative is to move to a system similar to the Dark Eldar patrol detachments and give guard the ability to bring different detachments without giving up CP. Being able to bring a free patrol detachment of scions for every other detachment would be one way of dealing with the problem. Either way, I feel that there needs to be a change to the way that scions are handled.

Lastly we have Advisers and Auxilla. These units can be included in any AM or MT army without affecting the doctrines received by the army. I think that these are generally fine, however, there is a similar problem with Tech-priet Enginseer's as there is with scions. These are supposed to be Mars (or whoever) trained specialist but they seem to have forgotten much of this when they are attached to the guard. Now I don't really see a solution to this problem as it would be silly to put all of the forge world dogmas in the guard codex just in case you want to take a Tech-priet. I think that really this one will just have to remain as it is and we'll just have to assume that the AdMech send us all the stupid Tech-priets.

Next up are the general army abilities. These are a bit more specific but are still applicable across a whole army. The first one is Grinding Advance. Now we've had a similar rule for quite a while, from the Lumbering Behemoth rules of old through to the various iterations of Grinding Advance. The rule is a good rule, however I think it needs a little bit extra to it. I think that it should apply to all weapons not just the turret weapons, maybe this makes it a little too powerful but I don't think so. I don't see what the difference between the turret weapon and the other weapons is really, they are all on the tank and attached to the same systems. Giving all the weapons the Grinding Advance rule would really make the Leman Russ the true beast it should be.

Next are guard orders or as they are properly known, the Voice of command ability. The base orders, the seven original orders, are pretty good and there is nothing there that I think needs changing. With the inclusion of hot-shot lasguns in to FRFSRF, all the issues I had with orders were solved. We must also consider the Tank Orders at this point. While I have no issues with the orders that exist, I think there needs to be more of them though. 

There are also the Regimental orders, orders specific to individual regiments. Of these there are a couple which I think need some work. The two that jump out most are the Cadian and Tallarn orders. These are both tank orders and while there is nothing wrong with the actual order, it's the fact that they are tank orders that the problem. Personally I would have preferred to have each regiment get an infantry order and tank order, even if the order was the same for both, one such example would be the valhallan or vostroyan orders, which would work for both. Of the others the only others that I think need work are the Catachan order and the stormtroopers order. The Catachan order needs works as I think this is too focused, as most squads will only have 1 weapon that can take advantage of the order. Command squads and veterans can take more flamers but then your loosing out on the extra ballistic skill, so it's not very popular. I think expanding the order to include grenades and grenade launchers would be better. The stormtroopers order is a good order, however with the new MT regiments it needs changing. I suspect that what will happen is that we will loos the generic stormtrooper order and receive new Tempestus regiment orders, one for each of the new regiments. I think that there will be some duplication of the AM regiment orders but that's perfectly fine. 

Next, Doctrines.