Kill Team: Octarius – Rules to Remember

When a new game drops, it’s all too easy to get swept up in the new systems and mechanics. It is natural – forgetting rules is going to happen! However, I’d like to offer this chance to help you in remembering at least some of them. Below are some of the rules that I think you need to ensure that you keep in mind when playing Kill Team: Octarius.

The rules below were selected on a number of factors. Either because they’re very important to the game, might be difficult to understand or are simply understated in the written book! Let’s get this started.

0. This is NOT Warhamer 40,000

Yeah, it’s really weird starting with the number 0, but that’s because this isn’t strictly a rule. Be very aware and prepared that this isn’t anything like the last iteration of Kill Team nor is it like 40K at all. This is an entirely new system with pretty much everything built from the ground up. Keep that in mind as you trawl through the rule book!

Now, with that out of the way…

1. You can only perform each action once per activation

This is the first big mistake I made when playing the game. It’s mentioned at the very end of the rundown of the Firefight page as a single sentence at the very end. I’m not sure how I missed it but it fundamentally changes the game! As written above, you cannot perform an action more than once per activation. The only exception is for any actions that specifically state otherwise. Thus, you cannot activate a model and choose to move twice at the cost of 2APL, nor can you shoot twice in the same activation. Some rules circumvent this, such as the Malicious Volleys Strategic Ploy for Traitor Space Marines.

2. Do not forget your orders

Orders are new to this version of Kill Team and took a little while for me to get my head around. At the start of the game each Operative is deployed with an Engage or a Conceal token. Then as you activate each Operative you can flip the token to show they’ve activated, which is handy for marking with Operatives have acted and which haven’t.

However, the actual rules for the orders themselves are very important to Kill Team: Octarius. The over-simplified rule of thumb is that you should use Engage on Operatives that you need to be aggressive and then Conceal on Operatives you need to be defensive. Having the Engage order means an Operative can shoot, charge and other actions but are easier to see and shoot. Conceal orders make your Operatives harder to see and shoot-at but limits their available actions as they cannot shoot or charge.

Don’t forget to refresh the order for each Operative once you activate them as you need to be dynamic in these Killzones. Some turns you may need to skulk and sneak through some pipework, only to pop-up and shoot at your enemies next turn!

3. Obscuring Terrain is Important

This is where I found some rules got quite tricky. However, I’ll explain it as best as I can since in the rulebook this information is divided between several pages in numerous places throughout.

Enemy models must be visible to be fired at by shooting weapons. All of the conditions below (order depending) must be met for an enemy model to be visible from the firing model and able to be targeted.

Target Models with Engage TokensTarget Models with Conceal Tokens
Target model must be visible to the firing model.Target model must be visible to the firing model.
Target model must not be *obscured.Target model must not be *obscured.
Target model must not be **in cover.

*Obscured models are enemy models that are targeted by the firing model whilst a piece of Obscure terrain is in the way. Heavy terrain (usually high walls, heavy machinery, vehicles, containers, etc) has the Obscure rule and thus shockingly obscures models. If the Heavy terrain blocks visibility of any part of the target models base from the point of view of the firing model, then they are obscured and cannot be shot.
Note – The distance of the firing and target model from the Heavy terrain can impact on whether they are obscured or not. If the target model is within 2″ (○) of the Heavy terrain and is still visible to the firing model then they are no longer obscured and are in cover instead.

**In Cover refers to models that are using terrain with the Light rule (usually low walls, pipes, barricades, etc) as cover from enemy models. For a target model to be in cover it must be at least 1″ (▲) away from a terrain piece with the Light rule. The target model must also have the terrain in the way of the line of sight of the targeting model. A target model using Cover improves their Defence when following Engage orders and cannot be seen/targeted if following the Conceal order.
Note – some rules override Cover benefits such has Vantage Points.

4. Overwatch

Whilst it’s not really similar at all to the Warhammer 40,000 Overwatch that most of us know and love, it’s still very useful! Effectively, it is a 0AP action that an Operative can use in the Firefight phase if all friendly Operatives have acted, enemy Operatives still need to be activated and if a friendly Operative as an Engage order.

This way, when your smaller kill team of Space Marines is fighting a larger horde of Tyranids, you can still fire shots at them when you’ve finished activating and they still have another six Hormagaunts to active. Each time the opponent finishes an activation you may Overwatch with an Operative that has activated (providing all your Operatives have activated up to now) and has an Engage token.

Overwatch itself is merely a shooting action at -1 Ballistic Skill. You can only perform this action with an Operative once per turning point. It’s a nice little way to keep you busy when all of your Custodes have acted and you’re facing a kill team of many, many more models.

5. Strategic Ploys and Command Points

Do not forget to use those Command Points! Command Re-roll is back and allows you to re-roll a single attack dice or defence dice. However, there are many other uses for Command Points. Both players begin each game with 1CP each (and generating 1 during each Strategy Phase). You also get 2CP for fielding a Leader, so be mindful of that!

You can use Tactical Ploys for short-term, on-the-fly bonuses. Whereas Strategic Ploys can make a huge difference and typically impact your whole Kill Team for the whole turning point. For instance, the Craftworld kill teams can make use of Fleet for 1CP. This upgrades the speed of the team by giving them Dash for free when moving or falling back.

Don’t just flip through the Strategy Phase like I was tempted to early on in Kill Team: Octarius. These Strategy Ploys can make a big, big difference and can turn the game on its head.

There are likely other rules that warrant reminders, but I don’t think I can fit them all into one article. If there are any rules you think deserve the spotlight, be sure to let us know.

Until next time, may your Operatives be successful in their missions!

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Article originally written by the author for The Unrelenting Brush blog in affiliation with Boards and Swords Hobbies.

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