I’ve just finished reading the rules part of the new rule book and while I’ll need to read it through at least one more time before I try it I think I got a pretty good picture of how the changes work.
As I said in a earlier post, the book itself is quite impressive, the binding looks good, the whole thing is in full color and the layout is much better then the last rule book. From my first impressions of the writing is that they have gotten better at it. I don’t think there will be as many discussions about RAW vs RAI and so on (I’m hoping at least).
One of my biggest wishes turned out to come true, yes you are now allowed to measure any distance when ever you want. I don’t have a very good ability to estimate distances with my eyes so it’s a welcome change and an expected one considering FB got it and this edition has taken quite a lot of inspiration from that set of rules.
As for the rules, I’m quite happy with the changes they have made and it does feel a bit like what 2ed could have been. They have incorporated rules from most of the previous editions and streamlined them somewhat to weed out the bad parts.
There are some things that I feel they could have left out. There’s way to many small rules that requires 6+ rolls that I think will mostly slow down the game without adding much to the experience but I haven’t tried the rules yet so it’s purely theoretical right now.
As for the shooting phase, they have changed quite a lot but still uses the same, somewhat flawed system. The biggest change for me is the new wound allocation system and the snap fire rule. The allocating wound now depends on what models are closest to the shooting unit, what’s withing LOS and cover, which I don’t have a problem with but it gets a bit slow when the unit has mixed saves. They also added a rule from WHFB that I don’t really see the point of having in 40k, the Look out Sir! rule. But it will make your characters live longer and it does make the game more cinematic (and that’s one of the goals for the edition I think).
The snap fire rules gives you more options in how you play your units as it adds more possibilities to when your unit can and can’t shoot. Snap fire shooting is almost never done at the normal BS of the unit
Another pretty big change is that they reintroduced overwatch, something that hasn’t been part of the rules since 2ed. It doesn’t work in that way now though, it’s more like the stand and shoot concept frpm WHFB.
The assault rules also got some big changes and the most talked about seems to be the random charge distance and adding AP to close combat weapons. You also have the look out sir! rules here as well plus they added a way to try to break away from a combat where you can’t hurt the enemy models you are fighting. Another rule tjay I really like is that there’s a drawback for charging more then one unit at the same time.
The moral system hasn’t changed much, they mostly changed it so that you can only fire snap fire in some circumstances.
The special rules has gone through a big overhaul and many of the have changed a bit and been renamed. There’s a couple of the that got nerfed quite big, a couple of them got better and some were made more or less useless *cough* Acute senses for SW *cough* .
The unit types are mostly the same except that they added flying MC’s that look really nice. I’m looking forward to trying them out with my Daemon army.
The weapons got some big changes, rapid fire got much better and the big overhaul of CCWs with the adding AP to them and giving more types of weapons a profile. Now there’s a difference between a power sword and a power axe for example.
Characters got quite a lot better in most ways. They can now sometimes allocate wounds they make to specific enemy models. Then we have challenges, I do not understand why they put this in the rule book. It should have stayed in fantasy-land.
Vehicles got slapped with “wounds” called hull points and when they reach 0 you’r wrecked. They have also changed the damage chart, what bonus low AP weapons give and how they are hit in close combat. There’s also some changes for transport with the biggest one how far a vehicle can move if the unit in it disembarks.
The terrain also got the fantasy treatment, adding terrain with random effects for units in it.
For every battle the one of your characters will be titled your Warlord and has the option of rolling on a couple of tables to get a special ability for the game.
The missions, deployment types, objectives and all that see,s pretty good but I have to play some games before I decide.
Over all, a damn good book!
That’s my small first impressions of the new rules.