With only 3 years since the release of 8th edition, Warhammer 40,000 sees a new iteration of the core rule set via the hotly-announced 9th edition announcement. I won’t lie, I was very hopeful to see a certain 1st legion Primarch make an appearance, but I suppose this reveal of 40K 9th edition will have to do.
Let’s get a quick rundown on the go of the core beats of this announcement. The new 40K 9th edition rules have been built with all the current army codex books and the Physic Awakening supplements in mind. Thus, nothing should be invalidated by the new release, which is great news.
Apparently, there aren’t enough Space Marine models already. Thus, this was of course an opportunity to show off more upcoming Primaris Marines releases. This came in the form of a new Primaris Assault Intercessor. The chosen model feels a little bare-bones and a bit uninspired and new Space Marine models are rare a surprise. However, what is quite exciting are the new Necron models that will be dropping soon alongside the new Space Marines. It is likely these will all come in a starter box launching alongside the new edition.
The Necron models (especially the Warriors) were starting to show their age, so the timing feels right here. This is especially true considering the love that many Xeno factions within Warhammer 40K need at this time. I suspect we’ll see an almost-entirely new range of Necron models. After all, look at the Death Guard back in the release of 8th edition. I am particularly glad to see the odd green rods removed from the Guass Flayer weaponry!
Crusades, Game Sizes and Key Beats
Crusades will offer a new way of playing that will expand with you and your collection. This could be really intriguing and investing way to get people playing Warhammer 40K outside of a solely-competitive setting. It could also help players to form more of an attachment or association to their armies. Could this mean fewer “armies for sale” Ebay listings after every single points adjustment?
It is claimed that 9th edition will also offer games that can be played in a wide spectrum of size/scale. These can range from a lunch hour to an afternoon. I’m quite curious to see where this will leave the Kill Team skirmish game and where the divide might be between the smaller games of 9th and the skirmish-focused boxed game as a somewhat separate entity.
Games workshop also shared 9 key beats and changes about 9th edition, teasing what we can look forward to.
- Polish and Refinement – We’re always happy to hear that our favourite games are being tweaked and sharpened with improvements. However, without the rules to hand there’s little we can say on this.
- Crusade – “The new Crusade format is the most immersive and fulfilling way to play Warhammer 40,000. Ever!”. With an emphasis and focus on narrative gameplay, I am exceptionally excited to hear more about this.
- Command Points – “Everyone loves Command Points, now everyone gets more!”. Well, I’m not so sure about that sweeping statement, but it’s said that this will be in aid of turning people away from soup armies. Another one that I’m eager to hear more on before I reach a strong verdict.
- Tanks can shoot out whilst in combat – I have so many mixed feelings about this. In many ways, it’ll feel far less “damp” for those whose armies are quite tank-heavy. After all, it doesn’t make any sense that one Grot can stop a Land Raider from firing its weapons just because it’s close to it. On the other side of it, I now need to think up new strategies on how to deal with those damned Basilisks…
- Terrain’s been rebuilt – Another vague but hopeful promise of improvements to rules, but focusing on terrain. From defensive bonuses within terrain, to surprising and charging foes from within cover, this is one I’ll be keeping a very close eye on. I’ve just built and painted loads of Sector Imperialis terrain, so that’s good timing!
- Warhammer at every size – As touched on previously, 9th aims to provide Warhammer 40K games and many feasible scales and sizes. From coffee tables to gaming rooms, 9th is toted as being a dynamic system that can accommodate lunch-break skirmishes to colossal bouts.
- Strategic Reserves have changed – Another somewhat vague entry. I’ve never relied too heavily on reserves due to my armies of choice but for Genestealer Cults and other sneaky armies, this could be a game-changer.
- Big Guns Never Tire – Explosive weapons are now more effective against hordes, dealing maximum hits. I can hear the salivating Imperial Knights and Iron Warriors players from here.
- Flyers Improved – Flyers will no longer be hindered by ground-units on the table (and visa versa). They’ll also no longer be destroyed as soon as they leave the play space of the table, permitting strafing runs that any fan of war movies would salute.
We’ll likely hear more over the coming weeks as we’re told Warhammer 40K 9th edition will be landing “very soon”. I’m told it could be a few weeks, let’s hope that by then we’ll all be able to safely get out there and roll some dice with our friends.
For further information, head to the brand new Warhammer 40,000 website. As ever, check back regularly for news, reviews and previews of everything tabletop. Don’t forget to stop by our Facebook page, too. Stay safe and be well, wargamers!