Shall They Know Fear ...

The Bolter & Chainswords guide to playing Space Marines in 5th Edition - Version 1.13


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Written By: OwlandMoonGuy, Bannus, Morticon, Iago, Brother Nihm, Isiah, Chaplain Lucifer, Lord Ragnarok, Littlbitz, Number 6, SCC, Gillyfish, Sigismund Himself, Battle Captain Corpus & Brother Argos. Cover Art: Mad Scuzzy. Conceptual Design: Brother Argos. Illustration: Mad Scuzzy, Nalro, Bloodsaint, Brother Argos. Production: Brother Argos, SCC, OwlandMoonGuy. Special Thanks: Mrs. Argos



Produced by The Bolter & Chainsword Copyright © The Bolter & Chainsword 2008. All Rights Reserved.
The Bolter & Chainsword litany and The Bolter & Chainsword Skull emblem are © The Bolter & Chainsword 2008.

The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

elcome to ‘Shall They Know Fear?’, an electronic magazine produced by the Bolter and Chainsword, the Ultimate Space Marine Resource Site, as a guide for Power Armoured armies at the dawn of Warhammer 40,000’s recently released 5th Edition. Created in secret by the Moderating Team of the B&C as a surprise for our members and the general 40K community, we hope that you enjoy our guide and find it useful as we all begin to deal with the changes brought on by the revamped rules. ‘Shall They Know Fear?’ is laid out simply, the first section deals with the changes and additions to the core rules of 40K, the second section deals with the effect thes new rules have on the specific armies that the B&C caters for. Last but not least you’ll find some articles that don’t fit neatly into either of those categories throughout the e-zine, these pieces give the opinion of members of the B&C Moderating Team on 5th Edition, both on specific issues and on the general state of the new rules too. Please bear in mind that these are our first impressions and they’re most definitely subject to change, we’re not making any claims of 5th Edition omniscience here but we believe our analysis to be sound, though we are a little worried about our ‘MathsHammer’! As one of the editors I’d like to take the time here to say a very special thank you to all of our contributors and especially to our leader, the man who kick-started this whole project - Brother Argos. Without his drive and enthusiasm, not to mention his layout skills, ‘Shall They Know Fear?’ would just be a good idea sitting on a shelf somewhere gathering dust. SCC - Editor

A Living Document?
We like to think that ‘Shall They Know Fear?’ is a little different from the average, run-of-the-mill web based 5th Edition guide, it’s been designed to be a living, evolving document. ‘What does this mean?’ we hear you ask? Well, it means simply that this guide will be updated over the coming months to catalogue the experiences, good, bad and in between, of Space Marine armies across the world as they adjust to the new rules. If you feel you have something to contribute that others would benefit from, you can simply click on the B&C emblem at the end of each article to take to you the discussion forum for that article, where you can post your ideas and discuss these articles with other players. In addition we invite you to join us at where you can join a variety of activities such as rules debate, painting and modelling, writing battle reports or simply taking part in the Ultimate Space Marine website.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

o, here we are, 5th Edition is officially upon us, the rumours have been confirmed or denied and we’re finally able to begin assessing what the changes mean to the armies of the Bolter & Chainsword. Before we begin to examine the effects upon specific armies and the changes to individual rules let’s take an overview of the changes and the implications not just for the Astartes but for the game itself.


4th Edition was something of a mixed bag for many 40K gamers, whilst GW began to tighten up the rules and tried to present a generally more coherent game many players actually found the game less fun than previous versions. Evidence of this can be found on 40K forums across the web and in GW stores, basements and spare rooms around the world, even within the confines of the Bolter & Chainsword we saw many veteran gamers give away the game during 4th Edition. Some argued that the background had gone stale, others that real life - a partner, a career, a mortgage and even darker and more dreaded things such as children! - had finally caught up with a generation of gamers, but most simply drifted away from a game that no longer intrigued and excited them. Even younger gamers weren’t immune to this perceived 4th Edition malaise, many were caught by the models that seemed to get better with every release or the novels or computer games but few ever seemed to really get caught up in actually playing the game on the tabletop. Warhammer 40,000 is hardly threatened with oblivion as a result of 4th Edition, but it may be in danger of losing some of the passion that makes the 40K community once of the most vibrant on the ‘net and that makes playing a game of 40K against a fellow enthusiast one of the best ways to spend an afternoon, evening or even a whole summer vacation. Can 5th Edition bring back the ‘golden days of yore’? Can it entice a new generation of gamers to the tabletop or, indeed, an older generation back? The team behind ‘Shall They Know Fear?’ have immersed themselves in the rules and regulations of 5th Edition for the past few weeks in preparation for the release of the B&C’s first e-zine and we’ve reached some broad conclusions about 5th Edition. They’re not definitive, they’re not even unanimous

awn broke over the horizon and the roar of bolters and the harsh buzz of chainswords faltered, then fell away entirely as the enemy hordes retreated. The long night was over and the Brothers of the Legio Bolter & Chainsword had once more vanquished their enemies. For four days now they had battled their foe. On the first there had been a welter of confusion as Astartes and their foes had slowly come to grips with the battlefield and their place on it. On the second day the heroes of the Legio had stood tall, their equipment and power had swept the enemy from the field and even the enemy's champions had struggled against these mightiest of Marines. n the third day the efforts of the Battle Brothers of the Legio had been the key, the weakness of one shored up by another, though slowly the enemy had gained the upper hand in the ever changing conditions. On the fourth day once again it was the Brothers of the Legio who held the key as their Power Armour and boltguns had seen them through once more, the battle had been more ordered but the Angels of Death had been dulleyed throughout the day, the joy of battle in the Emperor's name dulled by some unnamed sorrow. The fifth day though was upon them now and each weary Astartes warrior wondered what changes and challenges it would bring...



but they’re representative of our thoughts, and we think, the thoughts of much of the community out there. GW have actually been listening I know, I know, it’s a surprise but it does seem GW have paid some attention to the problems of 4th Edition and gone some way to try to address them. We don’t agree with all the answers by any means, but by and large we like the direction and shape of 5th Edition. One of the key changes here is the emphasis through the book on having fun whilst playing, in the past GW books have paid lip service to this ideal but one gets the idea that in 5th Edition it’s at the forefront of their vision. Scattered throughout the book are helpful hints on simple yet


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
common problems like ‘Wobbly Model Syndrome’ or ‘cocked dice’ that should induct a new generation of players into a manner of playing ‘hard but fair’ that will be appreciated by veterans and fellow new-comers alike. GW have at least re-read the rules they’ve written this time Unlike some recent (and not so recent) GW publications, 5th Edition has at least been proof read and someone has asked the seemingly obvious questions, the type that players have been asking Rulez Boyz for years, of the developers. As a result there are more, and clearer, explanations of rules in 5th Edition. The language used for actual rules has also been tightened up in many cases, though we’ve already seen in the production of this e-zine and on the Bolter & Chainsword forums some ‘enthusiastic’ discussion of some of the finer points of the rules. It’s not all about fine-tuning an army list any more It’s an old argument that we’ve all heard during the reign of 4th (and even 3rd) Edition 40K - he with the most powerful (or ‘cheesy’ or ‘beardy’) army list wins. And in many cases it was true, the old rules did tend to produce very focussed army lists designed with making the most of the limited options available to players during deployment and, tactically, on the tabletop once the game had begun. In 5th Edition though all this is shaken up a bit, missions and victory conditions have been re-designed and games are now of variable length, thus forcing players to act throughout a game rather than sit and wait until the last turn to show their hand. None of this is to say that 5th Edition is perfect, it isn’t and there are always going to be elements of the game that chafe some players more than others. We predict that the change to ‘True Line of Sight’ is going to cause as many headaches as it fixes and there are undoubtedly still areas of the rules where a rules lawyer can find loopholes and wriggle room. For all of that it’s the collective opinion of the team behind ‘Shall They Know Fear’ that 5th Edition is a Good Thing™ and that Space Marine, Chaos Space Marine, Inquisition and Daemon players are going to have more fun, less hassles and generally enjoy 5th Edition more than 4th Edition. Whether it heralds a return to the faintly remembered and oft-lamented ‘Golden Age’ of 40K (whenever that was for you dear reader) we’ll leave it to you to decide. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

Beyond the Rules Despite early rumours that GW might decide to move the storyline of the 40K universe on such isn’t the case, at least not yet. What GW have done instead is give us more detailed fluff than we’ve seen in many years, the newly expanded Imperial History timeline is one of the highlights. Much of the focus of the additional background is on ‘The Time of Ending’, where a detailed timeline covers the last 250 or so years of Imperial History and catalogues the increasing catastrophes and setbacks that the Imperium has suffered. For Marine players especially there’s some interesting stuff there and some interesting debates sure to be had as a result, for example why do the Imperial Fists, and their Successors, seem to be the most interventionally inclined of the Astartes and what do the increased responsibilities and freedoms granted to many Chapters in ‘Mankind’s darkest hour’ as a whole mean for the Legiones Astartes?

And you'll now need a battle plan in addition to an army list!
And you’ll now need a battle plan in addition to an army list and 3 colours on your models to really play a game of 40K, for the changes to deployment, the first turn, objectives, line-of-sight, reserves, victory points and more core mechanics, as well as the addition of new rules like ‘Run!’ or ‘Go to Ground!,’ have made the 40K battlefield a more tactically open place than ever before. Only time will tell how well these changes hold up to the addition of revised Codices and new supplements, not to mention the ingenuity of players, but we think the core rules of 40K are stronger, more flexible and better written than ever before.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

From an introductory perspective, 5th Edition bears a strong similarity to its predecessor. Those familiar with 4th Edition will find that the basic structure of game has remained the same. As before, there are seven Unit Types that define models on the 40K table top: The rules for Transports are where the Vehicle rules and the Infantry rules meet. Previously it was somewhat ambiguous as to what transported models could do on the tabletop. 5th Edition has clarified that, given certain limitations, transported infantry are still considered, “on the table.” This means that transported Troops/Infantry can claims tabletop objectives from within their transports. Also the concept of, “Dedicated Transports” has changed. Now, any appropriately sized infantry squad can board a friendly transport, not just the dedicated squad. Those two rules combine to allow a lot more options and flexibility to the concept of transporting models on the battlefield. In the sections that follow, further treatment will be given to the specific changes surrounding each of these Unit Types in turn and how that will affect the outlook of 40K gaming of the near future.

• • • • • • •

Infantry Beasts Monstrous Creatures Jump Infantry Artillery Bikes & Jet Bikes Vehicles

There are a few points of note that will be elaborated on further in this series of articles. Though there are some exceptions, for most armies only infantry units that fall into the Troops slot on the Force Organization Chart (FOC) count as “Scoring Units” in two of the three standard missions. Infantry will gain a whole new level of importance in the 40K gaming experience.. Vehicle rules underwent a large number of changes so their basic role remains the same but their specific use changes somewhat tactically. The concept of, “Vehicles shooting while moving” remains the same in principle but certain parameters have changed; “Defensive Weapons” were reduced to Strength four (S4) or below. This will further constrain the amount of damage a vehicle can dole out while moving. Tank commanders will need to plan their shooting attacks much more carefully on 5th Edition battlefields .

Those gamers familiar with 40K will note that the statistical attributes assigned to each model match those found in 4th Edition. There are a few new rules to mix in with the established concepts behind certain attributes that are worth noting: Ballistic Skill: In previous versions of the rules, there was no reason for a model to have a BS skill above five (5). This represented a shooter that would hit on a 2+. The “To Hit” table for shooting has now been extended so that models with a BS skill between 6-10 will enjoy increased chances to hit in the Shooting phase.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Leadership: A model’s (or unit’s) leadership has always had an influence in 40K games of the past. The concept of the Morale check remains the same but the armies of 5th Edition may find some new negative modifiers applied to their Leadership saves, especially in the Assault phase. Upon losing a close combat, the hapless unit will suffer a -1 modifier for every wound they sustained beyond those their enemy sustained. A wide margin of loss after a particularly large scrum may impose some significant modifiers to his roll. Thankfully, there is the “Insane Heroism” rule; if you roll a two (2) on 2D6 you always stay in the fight no matter the odds. Point Values: In the 40K missions of 4th Edition (and earlier) a unit’s point value was relevant to determine the Margin of Victory. 40K was not just a win/lose/draw proposition but measurements were in place to dictate the degree of one win versus another. This was calculated by comparing the number of Points Value in unit costs that were destroyed by both players. Beyond the victory conditions of the mission itself, given the level of play, Victory Points separated the Solid victories from the Victorious Slaughters. These concepts are now removed from the 40K system, thus the actual points spent on a given unit are only relevant for army building purposes.

This is of special importance when determining the frequency and duration of the affects of special abilities and psychic powers. When a rule states that it can be used “once per turn[” it’s important to note if that’s a Game Turn or a Player Turn. Determining “Who goes first?” is still determined by a die roll but a new twist has been added to the “First turn advantage.” In 40K games past, there was a real value to going first; i.e. Player #1’s position above. The first player will get their first chance to shoot at enemy units before they are able to take any action. Therefore, that first turn of shooting could remove valuable military assets before the other player could make a move. Now the standard missions dictate that whoever deploys first, must deploy all their models at once and then also take the first Player Turn. The rule where units were deployed, one at a time, going back and forth between players is gone. The player that gets the second turn gets to deploy their forces with the full knowledge of the enemy’s exact placement. This might be seen as an overwhelming advantage for Player #2 but also note that new rules have also been added to the Movement, Shooting & Assault phases. The 5th Edition 40K game is much more dynamic; many models can move farther, shoot straight through area terrain, etc. Expect this to add a new dimension to army deployments and the downstream effects to game thereafter. To mix this up even further there are times when players may take action in their opponent’s Player Turn. The “Go to Ground” rule is one example.

The familiar three-phase turn of 40K remains the same but 5th Edition has done well to differentiate the “Game Turn” and the “Player Turn”. This is actually the same concept described in 4th Edition but the authors have put in the necessary clarifying language to make the term ‘turn’ clear as it applies to different events on the gaming table. A Player Turn is one where one side conducts all their Movement, Shooting and Assault phase activities, one after the other until finished. A Game Turn is where both players complete their respective Movement, Shooting & Assault phases. So in Game Turn 1: Player 1 Moves, Shoots & Assaults; (Player 1’s Turn 1) Player 2 Moves, Shoots & Assaults; (Player 2’s Turn 1) In Game Turn 2: Player 1 Moves, Shoots & Assaults; (Player 1’s Turn 2) Player 2 Moves, Shoots & Assaults; (Player 2’s Turn 2)


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
In this case, after a player has finished a unit’s shooting, recording the number of hits and wounds, but before saves are rolled, the defending player can declare that the affected unit is going to “Go to Ground” or best attempt to use cover to reduce shooting casualties. The End Game and Victory conditions have changes as well. All standard missions come with a random game length; lasting 5-7 Turns and also have different criteria for holding objectives and even annihilating units. Please refer to the articles following for a full description of these impacts to the 40K game system. Overall, the new rule will make those distances between the deployed armies seem much shorter than before. Setting up more than 24” apart meant that an assault for conventional infantry units marching across the tabletop towards an opponent’s defensive position was at least four turns away. With a good roll, it can now be done by the third turn. This will give armies that depend on shooting less opportunity to wear down their opponents before getting to grips and those armies that depend on assault will suffer fewer casualties as a consequence. It isn’t as bad as it seems for the ‘shooty’ army though, since it is possible for the game to end earlier than before. Moving units to claim or contest an objective can be done from further away with the ‘Run!’ rule, so it will be critical for players to lock opposing units in place that are within 12” of an objective or risk losing their prize when the game ends. One fortuitous roll of the dice could snatch victory from defeat or vice versa. Whether you look at it as advantageous for your army or not, this change will certainly add more than a few surprises to the game.

One of the most exciting changes about the Movement Phase is the addition of the ‘Run!’ universal rule. Now all infantry units & Walkers in every army have the ability to move up to six additional inches during the shooting phase instead of firing a weapon. The most significant impact of this rule is that it reduces the advantage of the ‘Fleet’ Universal Special Rule for those elements that could employ it. The only advantage units with Fleet have will be the ability to assault after the special move – which is still significant. But when your opponents can match you move for move before the assault begins, its effects will be reduced.

True Line of Sight
We’ve all seen it, the Daemon Prince mounted atop an outrageous pile of skulls on a 40mm Terminator base, yep it’s dramatic and showy but had no real in-game consequences – apart from allowing you to identify him quickly – due to how models were categorised and sized by type. Until now that is. Due to the new TLOS (True Line Of Sight) system that has been included in 5th Edition, anything on a base that is deemed to interact unfavourably with the rules is now an opponentask item. So yes you could refuse that beautifully painted and based Chaos Lord to play in the game. Seems a bit churlish? Maybe but it’s for a good reason. There is much to be gained by mounting your model on a bigger base. Imagine our Daemon Prince was a psyker with the Lash of Submission psychic power that requires line of sight, being mounted on a tall scenic base would give him an obvious additional advantage, an unfair one maybe, as he could see over intervening models and cover using


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
TLOS. However, it must also be said that this works the other way too because he might well himself be easier to target by enemy shooting. So the logic of GW’s thinking here is plain – using nonstandard bases is having an effect on how the game mechanics works with that particular model and is something to be avoided. By making dramatic bases an ask-only item, GW is sending out a clear message that gaming and modelling are in this instance quite separate entities. Incidentally using ‘out of the box bases’ extends to skimmers too that are now quite clearly required by RAW to be mounted on their flying base, an inconvenience because these often break off – but it does mean they can’t sneak about on cut down flying base stems hugging cover – unless permission is granted of course. So does this mean re-basing some of your precious models? Yes, I think it does if you want hassle-free gaming. In a tournament setting I can see this being an issue not worth taking the risk over, but for a game with a mate over the dining room table maybe it isn’t such a big deal. Either way, basing is one of the many subtle changes in 5th that, easily missed, can creep up and cause embarrassment... Forewarned is forearmed.

"The roar of your bolter is not your own but a gift from the holy Emperor of Mankind"
- Sgt. Moon


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

I’m sure it has happened to you at least once: One of your units attracts a bit more attention than you expected and takes far more wounds than your battle plan intended. You had no choice but to remove the casualties and figure out something else to do to achieve your goals. Well, now there is another option: ‘Go to Ground’ allows a player the option of his unit to shrug off some of those wounds and possibly live to fight another day. It works like this: After your opponent has made his rolls for hits and wounding – but before making any saving throws – the unit may ‘Go to Ground’ and receive a +1 to the already generous cover saves provided by the terrain (or a 6+ cover save if caught in the open). However, the unit must sacrifice its actions (other than defending itself) for the complete turn following. This is a desperate measure in most circumstances, but can mean the difference in the right situation. Here’s one particularly valuable scenario: It could prove particularly valuable for a scoring unit holding onto an objective against overwhelming opposition. Remember that in 5th edition units are still scoring down to the last man and the Last Man Standing rule has been removed. Where before a defending unit may face assured annihilation, a few models may now survive to hold the objective and win the game. Even when marines are caught in the open there’s a use for this new rule. Given the myriad of AP3 weapons there are out there, some save is at least better than no save at all. This rule sheds a ray of hope against the blast of a Battle Cannon once more.

than on the current To Hit dice. This is a big, big change as overall the chance of an assault cannon in the hands of a Space Marine rending has gone down from 1/6 to a measly 1/9 per shot. The other difference is that Rending now confers an automatic AP2 wound, this is quite good as it’s enough to get by the most toughest of armour, with invulnerable and cover saves allowed for those that have them of course. But, the target has the option to “Go To Ground” (covered elsewhere in this guide) and ignore the rends anyway! Hmm.. maybe we’ll be seeing a little less AC spam in Deathwing and Ravenwing armies.

Against vehicles
Against vehicles is operates pretty much the same way as currently – but with a twist. So, it rends on a 6 of the penetration dice, but is now just has a +D3 bonus, not a +D6. This makes little difference to the best result possible as it adds to 15 anyway which is enough to pen AV14, but it does effect the chance of getting to penetrate AV14 when using this bonus dice. The chance of getting the required 15 on any rending shot has decreased from 2/3 (a 3, 4, 5 or 6 on the D6 bonus dice) to 1/3 (a 3 on the D3 bonus dice). Quite a change. So providing you rend, the minimum result per shot against armour will be to penetrate anything up to AV12 or glance AV13 which is as now. But the average

A remarkable combination of changes has been made to this weapon, unfortunately changes that aren’t good for us. Well actually that’s an understatement, but before we all panic let’s have a look at what’s happened to the most feared weapon in the Space Marine Armoury – and then panic!

Against infantry
Against infantry etc, the assault cannon now rends when a 6 is thrown on the ‘To Wound’ dice rather


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
rend will fall to penetrate AV13 or glance AV14, from the 4th edition’s penetrate AV14.5 or glance AV15.5. This is quite a reduction in capability caused by the armour rending bonus dice now being a D3 rather than a D6. The combination of rending reduction and the cost of the weapon (especially in the DA/BA codexes) makes this change quite brutal, so much so that the assault cannon has probably lost forever the ‘cheese’ tag it once had. It’s by no means bad, it’s just not as good as it was. Still given the alternative weapon options for some units the assault cannon should remain a staple of Space Marine armies - it is still a 4 shot S6, AP4 weapon after all. In terms of game mechanics the use of this weapon has been brought into line and tidied up. The rending on the ‘To Hit’ roll (first dice) versus nonarmour AV targets was different to the rending on the Penetration roll (second dice) versus AV targets. At least now rends are only occurring on 6s on the second dice against both target types. Logical maybe - but not without significant ramifications to the weapon’s hitting power. Where it’s going to hurt most are in certain units where only one heavy weapon is permitted, as although still pumping out the shots, those shots will be for the most part more survivable. Even so on a Dark Angels or Blood Angels Dreadnought I can’t help thinking that the four dice is still marginally better than the single of the auto-hit/scatter plasma cannon for example – but only just. With the Codex Space Marine Dreadnought (currently), the assault cannon is still the cheapest weapon option available so stick with it – what are the alternatives for general usage? This will all change when the 5th Edition of the Codex Space Marines comes out and assault cannon costs are hiked to match the DA/BA levels. It seems to me GW have overcompensated in the double-hit of price increase and effectiveness decrease.

Don’t expect the assault cannon to reap all before it as it once did, as even if they are still being used to the same extent, it will no longer be the weapon to fear.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

For those who love plasma weapons within Space Marine armies (and being a Dark Angel’s player I certainly do), it might be worth a quick run through on the subtle changes that have occurred to them in 5th Edition.

Gets Hot!
Plasma weapons on non-vehicle models are still subject to overheating. There is nothing wrong with overheating providing that you a] never throw 1s, or b] always make your armour saving throws; and after all it’s only a 1/6 chance right? Plus, it also helps to have an Apothecary nearby too to negate any overheats. Overheating impacts on individual plasma weapon types in different ways and as shown below – the picture is quite complex.

These have changed too and for the better. When rapid firing you now benefit from needing to throw just a 1 on either of the two ‘To Hit’ rolls rather than a 1 or 2 as currently – this is effectively cutting your overheat chance in half on any one shot. How good is that!? But to counter that, the rapid-firing model might actually end up with two wounds – not so good. Even so plasma guns are now a great choice as the specialist weapon in a fire support combat squad, even if you can’t shoot and assault with it. Or indeed in any bike squad that can take them where on bikers not only are you safer from overheat, but due to the Relentless universal special rule you can fire them to full effect and still charge. Also expect to see more Plague Marine squads with two plasma gun specialists.

Combi-plasma weapons
Despite being rapid fire the plasma element is still a one-turn wonder and I’ve never been a fan of their use anyway (preferring the combi-melta). Granted the reduction of risk of the overheat has conferred a slight boost and makes them worth looking at for ICs (who also might have extra wounds to help with overheating), Veteran Sergeants/Veterans and anyone else who might have access to them. But even for someone addicted to plasma like me, to be honest it’s not one I would want to bother with.

Plasma blast weapons
As we have seen plasma blast weapons are, unfortunately, still subject to overheat despite all blast weapons in 5th Edition no longer throwing a ‘To Hit’ dice. Here ‘Gets Hot’ is determined by throwing a separate D6 to see if an overheat occurs, prior to using the scatter dice. Where a 1 results you have overheated and must take a wound, saving throw allowed. The overheat 1 also means the shot has missed. All this will enevitably have an impact on Marine armies. Massed blast plasma cannons in a squad are obviously preferable given that overheat potentially kills off the single shot weapon plus the benefit of giving you more chances of making those vital HITs on the scatter results. So if you are really unlucky with your dice throwing then four plasma cannons in a Devastator squad would seem sensible in order to make the shot at all, rather than taking just a single plasma cannon in a Tactical squad, and that’s not even considering the effects of scatter which complicates the issue somewhat. Overall the weapon is better and I expect to see many more plasma cannons around in 5th just for the fun of them. Also just to point out that Sammael (BS5) on his jetbike is now the proud owner one of the most accurate plasma cannons around in the 40k universe! And I say again that blast plasma weapons on vehicles do not overheat.

Plasma pistol weapons
Pistols are now Assault 1, which means you miss the double-tap if you remain stationary, which is a shame. As a result the plasma pistols are not looking so great given their points cost and overheat risk. So for the sergeant of a Tactical squad or an IC they are not the no-brainer they might have been when paired with say a power fist or power weapon. Funnily enough this doesn’t affect Space Marine Assault squads so much because they rarely doubletapped anyway (prior to assault) so they are probably still an OK choice in that context, especially given the lack of alternative weapon upgrades available to them.

As we have seen a few changes here and there have been incorporated to freshen up the family of plasma weapons, mainly based around the new individual ‘Gets Hot’ roll and new blast rules that might make plasma cannons more popular; and the plasma gun with only a 1 resulting in overheat on each shot; while the change in type of the pistol

Plasma rapid fire weapons


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

weapon will undoubtedly make the plasma pistol less popular I think. But that won’t matter to some – so for plasma lovers everywhere, screw in those plasma containment flasks and bless the weapons’ Machine Spirit. Go light something up!

The powerfist has always been the staple choice for the humble Veteran Sergeant and an ignored weapon for any HQ character. A number of reasons were present for this under 4th Edition Rules. But now we are into a new Edition and the winds of change have not left the power fist untouched. But are they enough to hurt the popularity of this choice? The old Lightning Claws rule of only being able to get the bonus attack for a second close combat weapon if it was paired with another Lightning Claw now also applies to powerfists and thunderhammers. So taking that ridiculously cheap bolt pistol will no longer give you another attack. Only by taking

two powerfists or two thunderhammers will you be able to get that bonus for having two close combat weapons, at a ridiculous cost. This is only an option in the current Space Marine Codex, Black Templars Codex and Space Wolves Codex. Don’t go out converting models with twin powerfists as this option will probably vanish in a few months time in the new 5th Edition Space Marine Codex. It looks like Calgar is really quite unique and will only get more unique under the next Space Marine Codex. So will this weapon see a decrease in use by the Veteran Sergeant? One of its primary reasons for inclusion was so that a Tactical Squad could not get locked in combat with a walker or other enemies it couldn’t wound with their normal strength. With the new Run rules applying to walkers, this reason will only be magnified. The powerfist’s potency has been increased against all the other vehicles as it can now knock with S8 on the back door of a vehicle while assaulting any part of it. Less attacks but more potency against vehicles. However, the potency against Infantry remains the same but the amount of attacks decreases. A number of players now may


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
consider the cheaper option of the power weapon, given the lower price and more attacks that you can put out with it. But it is likely that the powerfist will still be chosen over. Will HQ characters consider taking these weapons? The large amount of attacks on their profile is now important as Sergeants cannot match them but the loss of initiative is still a large hurdle. Add this to the fact that having two different “Special” weapons (for example, a powerfist with a Force Weapon or power weapon aka. Crozious) means that the extra attack for two close combat weapons cannot be gained. So you cannot give a Chaplain a powerfist and get that extra attack for two close combat weapons. Also the prohibitive cost of giving the two powerfists or thunderhammers to a commander is a large incentive not to, since there is not an option to take a pair at a discount, like there is with lightning claws. So will this change affect the choices of players? I don’t particularly believe so. It will cause some more thinking than it did before but the powerfist will more than likely continue as the weapon of choice for the Veteran Sergeant and continue to be ignored as a HQ choices weapon. It is a not a death blow for the no brainer choice but it will have some impact, causing players some thought on what their veteran sergeant will be armed with. Against vehicles, a 10 man sniper squad can, on average, expect to at least glance light vehicles (AV10-11), although it should be done as last resort since it’s against infantry that they shine.

One of the major changes to 5th Edition is how blast weapons now operate. In Space Marine armies this will effect plasma cannons and frag missiles, also any psychic power that uses the small blast marker. This article does not cover large blast Barrage weapons which work in a slightly different manner. The good news is that all blast weapons are now auto-hitting, in that they do not need to make a ‘To Hit’ roll – the bad news is that they are subject to and must roll for scatter. Scatter is resolved by throwing a 2D6 and subtracting the firer’s Ballistic Skill from the result. The other good news is that any part of a target model caught under the template will count as a full hit, there are no more partial hits anymore. The way this works is that you first declare your target and check that the weapon is in range, if it isn’t then you miss obviously. You then roll the scatter dice to determine if you get a ‘HIT’ or not. If you hit great, any model or part model under the template is a casualty and takes a wound or against vehicles the effects of vehicle damage is determined. Should you scatter, throw the two dice, consult your firer’s BS value and work out how far and wide you go. Move the template as scatter directs and then determine hits on whatever is underneath.

Sniper weapons have changed quite a bit from 4th to 5th Edition. On the one hand they’ve gained the ‘Rending’ USR, on the other hand they’ve lost the ability to always hit on 2+.They’ll hit less now but in return they’ll be more lethal with those hits, especially against the foes that they were most often used against - high Toughness creatures. Also note that the changes mean they can start to put some dents in foes that previously simply shrugged off their shots, for example units with the “Feel No Pain” USR. The new True Line of Sight rules also mean some changes for sniper weapon equipped squads, where previously a Scout Squad could only dominate a fire lane or two, nowadays they can see through some terrain/cover and thus are often able to engage more targets at longer ranges, keeping them safer from the enemy’s return fire. Additionally, snipers rifles are now likely to force an enemy unit to ‘Go To Ground’ effectively depriving them of further activity for the rest of the turn in return for a cover save against your fire.

Ork Kannon is just as likely to hit the target before scattering as is a Space Marine frag missile!
On the face of it all very straightforward, but it does mean an Ork Kannon is just as likely to hit the target before scattering as is a Space Marine frag missile (33%) and to me this seems odd. The only thing that renders the Ork less accurate is when scatter is considered. If it scatters, average distance scattered by a Space Marine trooper firing will be 3” (coincidentally the diameter of the template), the Ork 4” (based on Gretchin BS). Also just to point out that if your shot scatters onto another unit/vehicle then those models under the template become casualties as well as or rather than the aimed-at target – this aspect is great and is one way of making up for the loss of outright accuracy.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Now the example above was with a single weapon firing, so what happens with multiple blast weapons, for instance multiple frags or plasma cannon shots from a Devastator Squad? Well exactly the same thing – with every model testing range and scatter etc individually. But the casualties are not removed until all templates have been placed.

infantry and I can see this causing some confusion to be honest. Nevertheless, with a Space Marine averaging a 3” scatter, over a big vehicle you could get lucky and still score a hit. Here’s hoping.

So is it a better system? Well of course assuming the weapon is in range, in 4th Edition a Marine would hit with his frag missile on average 66% of the time, in 5th Edition it will be 33% of the time as a direct HIT, or 66% of the time with some scatter. Without ‘Mathhammering’ it I think it’s pretty much even with one weapon but the amount of damage you can cause rises more in your favour with multiple blast weapons firing from a single unit as you have more opportunity of getting ‘HIT’s using multiple scatter dice. Not only that, but multiple blast templates can cover a lot of ground, and even with a degree of scatter, as all hits count as full there is a lot of potential for good results. So I can see plenty of missile launcher and plasma cannons in Devastator squads, and two Cyclone Missile Launchers form a cheap and effective weapon for Terminator squads while they can still get them. On the face of it only hitting what you aimed at 33% of the time might not sound too brilliant. But the thing you can’t quantify is what happens when it scatters. Yes it could just hit fresh air, but, it could

Blast and multiple blast weapons shooting at vehicles
Against vehicles the scatter mechanic is slightly more complex. The placement of the first template is exactly the same as above with the centre over the vehicle’s hull. However any subsequent blast weapon’s marker are centred and stacked directly over the first. Now test for scatter for each weapon firing. If you hit all well and good and you work out the damage result based on the face of the vehicle that is presented to the firing unit. If you scatter, then any markers that are not over the vehicle’s hull at all miss the vehicle (but remember could obviously stray upon other targets). If some markers stray so that their holes miss the vehicle but the template is still over it, then the armour penetration is worked out using the face of the vehicle nearest the hole’s centre and the weapons Strength is modified 50% downwards. Sounds complex and it is as it’s certainly different to the way multiple blast weapons fire at


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
also scatter into the unit next door. As such it will be a blast (no pun intended) to use against massed Orks, ‘Nids or IG or against anything where tightly bunched or large or multiple units are fielded, as you can still scatter a long way and hope to hit something. What about if you’re the target? Spreading out to maximum coherency is going to help versus a single incoming blast to minimise anything caught underneath scatter or not. But against multiple templates it isn’t so simple – if you’re tight and the templates HIT then you are doomed – your hope then is scatter and pray it’s dramatic! But if you spread out, even with scatter large areas of ground can still be covered, in fact with scatter spreading out could work against you as potentially more models will still be covered by the multiple templates, but, there will of course be less models under any one template. All in all the new rules are fun and intuitive, don’t appear to downgrade blast weapons’ capabilities and only marginally slow up gameplay. So go forth and smite.

Independent leaving units




ICs now automatically join a unit if they are within two inches of it. If within 2 inches of multiple units you now have to declare to which unit your IC is attached. If you do not intend to attach your IC to any unit you must not move them within 2 inches of an eligible unit. Once the IC is attached, the unit may not move further in the movement phase. Further, unlike the 4th Edition rules, the 5th Edition rule set clearly explains that ICs that join and leave a non-moving unit do not change the status of that unit from non-moving to moving. Now it should be clearer, through measuring, whether the IC is attached or not. In 4th Edition players could run IC’s right next to a squad and it was unclear whether they were indeed part of the unit or not causing confusion for example, when shooting at an IC adjacent to, but not joined to a unit. Also note an IC may now join other ICs and form a single unit! They follow the same rules as joining a traditional unit. I can’t think of a very good reason to do this as in most cases it is much more cost effective to have your IC join a squad of troops. Typically most armies may only field two ICs and having two expensive models attached at the hip would make a delicious target for any enemy general worth his salt. Still, it does offer the chance to mix and match the skills and equipment of various HQ units, for example you could have your Commander or Librarian re-rolling wounds thanks to a Chaplain’s abilities, whether this is worth the risk is debatable however. Further, if your IC joins a unit that has ‘Gone to Ground’ they immediately ‘Go to Ground’ with that unit. He may not leave as long as the unit has joined is still under the ‘Go to Ground’ strictures. This also applies in reverse if a unit joins an IC which has gone to ground. One hugging the deck, all hugging the deck is the order of the day.

There are some major revisions on how characters operate in 5th Edition. It appears that Games Workshop is trying to ensure that characters, and more notably, Independent Characters (IC) are affected by each phase in the game. For example you can no longer can rely on the old ‘Target Priority’ rules to prevent the enemy targeting an IC when another squad is closer. Let’s look at the major changes in detail.

Shooting at Independent Characters
Unlike 4th Edition you may now target ICs like any other unit in the game. The IC no longer has to be the closest unit when targeting units for shooting. This change is big news as many players were good at positioning their IC’s in the open, offering them greater fields of fire or more opportunities to charge, by ensuring other units would be closer targets. For example, a powerful IC on a Space Marine Bike could formerly be screened by running them up a flank with a few regular bikes in front. Your enemy would be required to target the Bike squad first and only after all were dead could they target the IC. The IC receives no such protection now, so watch where you place them!

Independent Characters in Reserve
One really fundamental change to reserves generally and one that will come into play many times, not just in Space Marine armies but in pretty much any army. In 5th Edition ICs held in reserve can now be attached to any unit also held in reserve prior to the start of the game. This means that squad plus any attached ICs can roll just one reserve dice roll for all them to come is as opposed to one for the squad and one for each IC. The other thing to mention is that you must declare your reserve intentions to


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

your opponent and this includes letting him or her know which IC is joining which unit and in which transport. The advantage for Marines is that you are not forced to take proper Command/retinue squads with your ICs giving you a lot more flexibility in squad size/ choice and weapon options. I suspect that in the forthcoming Codex Space Marines (5th Edition), retinues as we know them will be no more anyway as they will go the way they have in the DA and BA books. So for now for many Marine armies this isn’t currently an issue as you have proper retinues that are fairly flexible. But for DA for example it is a great boost as it allows an IC to tag along with a Veteran squad and in their transport too, dropping in via Drop Pod if desired. Currently there is no way we can do this. So will we see many more jump pack Chaplains and Assault squads coming in from reserve, or Company Commanders and another IC attached to Company Veteran squad tooled for close combat packed into a Rhino? Maybe. Whether we do or not isn’t the issue but to have that kind of option is a great improvement.

For those few armies which still have a Retinues rule your IC now counts as an upgraded character for that unit until all its members are killed. Only once the Retinue is destroyed does the character become an Independent Character as per the rules. This now means your IC cannot be targeted singly in close combat until his entire bodyguard is dead. If you have some type of uber IC this will provide extra time to hack your foes to pieces. This is muted somewhat by the new wound rules where each model takes a wound, but still a boon.

Independent Characters and Assault
ICs now have to move first during consolidation moves or when reacting to being assaulted. This is to ensure they have an opportunity to fight, otherwise models in their unit may block them from getting into base to base contact. This means that if you were planning on hiding your IC from combat by keeping them out of base to base contact you can forget about it, they are now forced to take every opportunity to get up close and


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
personal with the foe during an assault. and, since units can claim objectives from within a transport, it is entirely possible to have a Troop unit in a Land Raider sitting on an objective at the end of the game (it’s not very heroic, mind you). Since units can still shoot out of vehicles this could potentially turn your transport into a mobile bunker. Transports may finally be a truly useful addition to your army. Perhaps even a ‘must have’.

Special Characters
The 5th Edition book mentions that Special Characters and special upgraded characters are ‘Unique’ and may only be selected once when fielding an army. You cannot have multiples of Ragnar Blackmane for example. The updated rules also remove the old 4th Edition language which suggested that you needed the consent of your opponent to field Special Characters, this should make life easier for those who enjoy the unique abilities of these characters.

Pedal to the Metal: Ramming
One neat addition to 5th Edition is the ability to use your tanks as mobile battering rams to cinematically smash into enemy vehicles with the aim of destroying them. Perhaps this should have been included long ago (I have certainly seen plenty of homebrew/ house rules around for this) and I certainly like this new toy. OK, it could be considered a bit gimmicky, but it does have the potential to be a game-winning gimmick, besides let’s face it, it isn’t going to happen in many games anyway.

Battlefield Taxis
The new 5th Edition rules give one very important boost to dedicated transport vehicles; whereas in 4th Edition every dedicated transport seemed to contain a jobs-worth driver who refused to transport anyone not in the unit he was deployed with, this has now been jettisoned and any transport can transport any unit once the battle has started (provided they can fit into it of course – you still can’t transport Terminators in Rhinos). This, combined with the increased durability of vehicles, means that you will be able to zoom about the battlefield, transporting your marines to where they are most needed. This will be particularly important for the objective based missions where you’ll want to get your units onto an objective to claim it or, at least, contest it. So with only a few Rhinos and/or Razorbacks you can radically increase the manoeuvrability of your army.

It's basically a glorified Tank Shock
A quick test drive It’s basically a glorified Tank Shock. Any Tank vehicle can be the rammer, even a Skimmer Tank. During the turn that the ramming Tank makes its move it may not fire. The other thing to mention is that, like Tank Shock, you must declare how far your ramming vehicle will move. So you need some degree of accuracy in guesstimating distances in order to actually make contact with the target vehicle – no easy task in the heat of action. Without giving the actual rules away in their entirety, ramming takes place during movement where the ramming tank is moved towards the target vehicle and placed against one of its front, sides, or rear facings. Damage is determined by a simple calculation of each vehicle’s mass, armour value and the velocity of the ramming vehicle to determine the strength of hit each vehicle will confer. Resultant hits are immediately taken on both vehicles involved using the standard vehicle damage table. Now it gets interesting. If a vehicle suffers a, “destroyed” or “explodes,” result it is removed from the table. If it is the target vehicle that is removed, then the rammer can continue its declared move (if it has any move distance left) to either tank shock or ram something else or roll onto an objective or just move on. If no vehicles are removed, both remain on the table and the ramming vehicle can make no further move that turn.

Passenger Survivability
Another boost that has been given to transport vehicles is the fact that their occupants are far safer than they were in the past. In 4th Edition, all occupants of a vehicle would magically pop out of every available exit as soon as a shot went through their vehicle’s hull. The cowards! Now this no longer happens; units can happily hunker down inside their vehicle until it’s turned into a smoking wreck. Even then, they’re only likely to be injured if the vehicle actually explodes. Interestingly, each model now takes an automatic hit at a defined Strength, rather than rolling to see if they were hurt, so high Toughness, good Save models are going to be safer than say, guardsmen. This makes transports a far safer place to travel in


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Due to the nature of the determining factors used, we can see that “tanks” with heavy armour, moving fast, hitting side or rear armour will get greater strength hits in most collision/ramming scenarios – which means something for Space Marines Land Raiders. That’s not to say a Rhino won’t be just as effective against lighter vehicles, it will just be more a matter of the careful positioning of it first and some mental distance and attack angle reckoning to work out if the ploy is to have the desired effect. At first glance fast vehicles will benefit from the additional movement bonuses to offset their lighter armour, however confusingly these movement bonuses also help the target vehicle! Seat restraints on... So when to use it? Well the obvious use is against enemy vehicles when your own vehicle has had all its weapons destroyed – give it something useful to do, why not? Using it at any other time means you can’t shoot. Shooting is usually preferable in most situations when the vehicle can bring to bear weapons of similar strength to ramming. For those vehicles it might not get used that frequently.

Skimmers can also be rammed, but due of their additional mobility they get a special “dodge” roll which means that they could move out of the way at the last moment to save themselves from any damage. Given their largely lighter armour, etc. they are hardly ever likely to win out in any aggressive ramming move anyway. Note that when a Tank skimmer attempts to ram another skimmer there is no dodge throw.

Dreadnoughts : Death or Glory!
Dreadnoughts can be rammed, in which case they can choose to attempt a “Death or Glory!” attack against the ramming Tank, in which case this is resolved in a similar way to that of infantry version. If it fails however, the poor dready is considered hit in the rear armour. If the dread chooses not to “Death or Glory!” then ramming damage is resolved as per against any other target vehicle. Fun and games to be had there I suspect.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Another by-product is the ability to trap a transported unit within their transport. A unit may not get out of their vehicle if all the exits are blocked and can only Emergency Disembark if within 1” of an enemy model. So one could ram it and remain against an exit point for instance, forcing the unit to disembark via another access point – certainly a nifty tactic versus any transport with only one exit point (Chimera for instance) or with other already blocked access points. And don’t forget if the passengers can’t get out and the vehicle is “Destroyed – Wrecked” then they are lost. ...for a white knuckle ride The ramming rule works for your opponents too though, things to watch for would be Imperial Guard with lots of armour coming at you as I am sure that many treadheads with plenty of Leman Russes will love this new ability and will use it to target your own transports and tanks. But in Space Marine armies the main threat will be from Land Raiders – which combined with other changes are now looking so good in 5th Edition – it’ll give Crusaders something to do once their cargo is unleashed. Not sure how often you’ll see a Tau Hammerhead ram anything mind, but with front armour 13 it could be a handful. So, the 5th Edition battlefield has just become even more of a hazardous place than it was already. Vroom Vroom... This is where the similarities end. A marked changed from 4th Edition is ‘Selecting a Mission’ and ‘Deploying the Forces’. In 4th Edition, the mission determined the deployment. In 5th Edition, mission selection and deployment are chosen separately. With three standard missions and three methods to deploy, there are already nine possible scenarios to play. Add to this that all games are random in length (between five and seven turns) and it means that no two games will ever be the same. Another interesting (and somewhat controversial) change from 4th Edition deals with Scoring Units. Not just mandatory army selections anymore, the units coming from the Troops allowance are the only scoring units (except for vehicles and swarming units, among others). The rationale behind this is that the more valuable and exotic selections must continue to move forward pressing the initiative (keep in mind a 1500 point game in 40K isn’t much more than a large skirmish), while the more mundane units secure the ground gained until reinforcements arrive. Whatever the reason, it should increase the presence and importance of these often-shunned under-valued units. It is significant to note that while only Troops may hold an objective, any other unit type may contest it. This caveat alone will provide players with a variety of strategies to employ.

Like many aspects of the 5th Edition rules, ‘Organizing a Battle’ shares much in common with its predecessor. Agreeing to a points limit and force organization charts remain largely unchanged but suggestions are included concerning the sizes of battles relative to experience or time allowed. A few clarifications are also included to round out this section and leave little guesswork. The ‘Preparing a Battlefield’ section offers a plethora of recommendations (but no hard and fast rules) on how to set up the tabletop for a fair and exciting game. A particularly helpful addition is a ‘checklist’ of sorts for defining each piece of terrain before a game begins to reduce (if not eliminate) potential confusion later on during the game. There are even a couple of example battlefields provided to give new players some ideas on the way the tabletop may be set up and demonstrating the pro’s and con’s of each of the suggested setup methods.

Victory and defeat are no longer measured in degrees, but are now all or nothing!
The missions themselves have been overhauled and streamlined. Victory and defeat are no longer measured in degrees, but are now all or nothing. There are three mission types: Seize Ground, Capture and Control and Annihilation. The first two are variations of the age-old ‘capture the flag’ – where scoring units will play a major part. The final mission type, Annihilation - as its name implies – is all about wiping your opponent’s army from the tabletop. Gone are adding up the points costs of the units and credit for dropping a unit below half-strength. Only completely destroying a unit will earn you any points – one for each unit and one each for a character and his retinue. As mentioned before, deployment is now completely autonomous and any deployment method may be


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
combined with any mission. Like the mission choices, there are three deployment options: Pitched Battle, Spearhead and Dawn of War. Pitched Battle follows a typical deployment with each player choosing a side and deploying no closer than 12” from the centerline of the table. Spearhead is similar to table quarter deployment in 4th Edition except that neither side may deploy any units within 12” of the center point. So it is no longer possible to back your opponent into his corner by deploying first. Finally, Dawn of War allows players to set up anywhere on their own half of the table, so long as it isn’t within 18” of any of their opponent’s units. This scenario is also the only one with a deployment restriction – only allowing up to one HQ and up to two Troops to initially deploy. An interesting change is that players no longer make separate rolls to choose sides, to deploy and to start the game. Now only a single roll is made, the winning player getting to choose to go first or second. The player who goes first gets to pick his side of the table but must set up the entirety of his army before his opponent – much like the in real life, the side who picks the battlefield prepares for the arrival of the enemy. All missions allow the Reserves and Deep Strike rules to be used. No special restrictions are in effect. To place a unit in reserve, all a player has to do is inform his opponent. A few nice additions provide some explanations about handling dedicated transports and some suggestions (not rules) about how and when to reveal your army list to your opponent. Absent from 5th Edition are the Alpha, Gamma and Omega levels. Players are free to individually choose whether or not to hold units in Reserve, Deep Strike or Infiltrate. The new Reserves rules are clear and simple. They cover what units can be held in Reserve and clarify what happens with dedicated and undedicated transports and characters joining units. There should be no more guesswork involved in what has been previously a confusing situation. Reserves and units Deep Striking deploy pretty much the same as they did in 4th Edition, but there is an all new ‘Deep Strike Mishap’ table that can make for some interesting outcomes should the scatter dice roll unfavorably. The Deep Strike rules are better defined than before and even include which level of a ruin a unit will appear on should they land in one. There is also a new option for units with either the Infiltrate or Scouts USR called ‘Outflank’. A player may elect to keep any units with either of these abilities in reserve and have them arrive from one of the other table edges other than the opponent’s. However, you are not always going to have a choice as to which edge! It certainly would be a bold gamble for any bold commander. Night Fighting – as always – remains an optional rule for any scenario to add further variety and is always in effect for the first turn of the Dawn of War deployment.

I think players will be very happy with the new missions
While the missions and deployment options seem to have been simplified, the sheer number of combinations allows for a greater variety of gaming possibilities than allowed in the previous edition. New options like ‘Seize the Initiative!’ and ‘Outflank’ will add a level of boldness to any plan and the random game lengths will ensure that players don’t hold back and make a decisive push in the final turn because neither player will know when that will be! Overall, I think players will be very happy with the new missions. They are also free to invent their own. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

There is one more time when a player can roll to see who goes first. In an interesting twist, GW has provided a new rule called ‘Seize the Initiative!’ Where the player going second can attempt to change the order by rolling a D6 - if he rolls a ‘6’, he may seize the initiative and go first instead.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

With a new Codex looming on the horizon, the changes this year for Space Marines will be many indeed. But what does 5th edition bring to Codex Chapters in the meantime? What effect will 5th edition have on our current Space Marine armies? For a time, we will be employing a 4th edition Codex with the 5th edition rules. While we have heard a number of rumors concerning the future of our beloved Chapters, this article focuses on the present. Seize the day, as it were. The Space Marine Codex represents the vast majority of the about one thousand Chapters serving the Emperor of Mankind and there is a tremendous amount of diversity between them. Combine the flexibility of the Codex list and the Trait system and you have a bewildering variety of possible armies. To attempt to explain how the 5th edition rules would affect each and every one would be a daunting task and a difficult one to do justice. So for the sake of efficiency and clarity, this article will cover these concepts only with broad strokes of the brush and leave the subtle nuances to each Space Marine Commander. In my opinion, the three most significant changes for Space Marines will be intervening models, cover saves and the new vehicle rules.

Intervening Models
Intervening models will play a big part in how a Space Marine army will deploy and operate throughout the game. In a nutshell, the new rules concerning intervening models allows a unit to fire through another unit (be it friend or foe) to hit another target (be it a unit, vehicle or monstrous creature) without taking any kind of priority check – but the target receives a 4+ cover save instead. As a general rule, Space Marine armies have fewer models that can take a lot of punishment. This will be both a strength and weakness under this new rule. The boon is that the vast majority of our armies will be able to maintain clear lanes of fire with few friendly units actually blocking the shot. Consequently, the bane will be those units will be fired upon in return and cannot be effectively screened. This rule will also have a significant impact on our opponents as well – especially horde armies. Horde armies will find themselves with serious logistical problems in dealing with this rule. Place their assault units forward and their support elements will not be able to fire effectively. Place the support elements in front, then they will have to advance to allow the assault elements to close and reduce their effective firepower. On the flip side, by careful placement and maneuvering of units, a Space Marine player will be able to “shield” particularly vulnerable units until they are ready to make a contribution on the tabletop. A few examples include a unit of Tactical Marines screening an Assault Squad until it gets in range to assault the enemy; a Land Raider can maneuver to shield a Tactical Squad from some small arms fire that is less likely to damage the tank; a Tactical Squad could shield a Dreadnought from a specialized anti-tank unit and ensure it advances across the battlefield uncontested. If such tactics become prevalent, the ramifications may be that we may see the death of the specialized shooting units in favor or more flexible compositions, Rhinos may screen their charges instead of

So what will impact Codex Space Marines the most?
So what will impact Codex Space Marines the most? That is hard to say for sure. But we can make educated guesses based off of our previous experiences – and that is what I will attempt to do here. I have played 40K and Space Marines since the days of Rogue Trader. I have seen the game change many times and I have seen how those changes have affected the way the game is played. So this article is not based solely on theory – nor can it be claim that it based completely on fact either. It is simply a guess and an opinion. Opinions can vary and opinions can be right or wrong. I don’t expect this article to be 100% accurate, only time will truly tell just how close it will be to the mark. This is its face value - so take it for what it is.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
carrying them (or vice versa for a Razorback) and Dreadnoughts will no longer need drop pods to close with the enemy, just to name a few. However, it will no longer be possible for a Tactical Squad to screen a Devastator Squad – as the Devastator unit will not be able to fire through the Tactical Squad without conferring a 4+ cover save on its intended target either. The best place for Devastators will remain the high ground. Be sure to keep your IC’s attached to other units – as they can be singled out at range now and don’t be afraid to join a Devastator Squad. They will still be considered as stationary if they didn’t move – even if the Independent Character moved to join them. counter this obstacle. Cleanse and Purify armies will be especially pleased to find that hits and wounds are determined before any models are removed. So it is possible for multiple template weapons to inflict a horrific number of wounds if positioned correctly. Even without the Cleanse and Purify trait, there are a number of Space Marine units that can take more than one flamer and these units could prove invaluable against poorly armored opponents.

The vehicle rules have changed how all vehicles will operate in 5th edition and Space marines will be no exception. Overall, vehicles will gain some in survivability but lose some in offensive capabilities as a trade-off. Vehicles can gain some hansom protective qualities by using the terrain around them. Vehicles with sponson-mounted weaponry could fire against the enemy with near impunity if placed properly. Dreadnoughts can benefit from this clever tactic as well. Defensive weapons are now Str4 and under instead of Str5 and under. The Crusader will not be affected by this change at all, so expect it to continue to as the most popular Land Raider variant. Because barrage weapons are treated just like blast weapons when they have line-of-sight, it will be interesting to see if the Helios variant gains any popularity as a Space Marine “Leman Russ”. I wouldn’t try this tactic with the Whirlwind. Its weak frontal armor won’t tolerate the attention that would be lavished upon it when it moves into the open. When it comes to being assaulted, a vehicle is only as good as its weakest armor. Consequently, the Land Raider will excel at surviving such an attack, while all of our other vehicles – with their very thin rear armor – will be quite vulnerable. As history continues to prove, tanks are vulnerable without proper infantry support. Hardest hit by the new rule changes will be the dreaded Land Speeder Tornado armed with the assault cannon. Under the new rules, it will have to poke along at a sluggish 6” to use its weapons to full effect. I suspect this variant will be dropped in favor of the basic Land Speeder equipped with a heavy bolter or multi-melta. The points saved will be better spent elsewhere. It isn’t all bad for the Land Speeder though. They receive a generous cover save if they move fast (but cannot shoot when they do) and effectively have the benefit of extra armor when formed into squadrons. Rhinos and Razorbacks will not be negatively

Cover Saves
Cover saves have become very, very generous in 5th edition. While our power and Terminator armor provide impressive protection for our own units, cover saves will make our opponents far more resilient. A clever opponent will be able to protect his cheaper and numerically superior units to a similar degree as our own simply by placing them in the appropriate terrain. This will have a significant impact on traditional “shooty” Space Marine armies. Armies of this type may struggle more with these changes to the rules since their opponents will be able to absorb a lot more firepower than in 4th edition. It could lead to players adjusting their army lists in favor of more balanced capabilities. Because they provide no cover save, the humble flamer and heavy flamer may appear in greater numbers to


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
impacted by these changes. As dedicated transports, it is nice to see that they can transport other units and become true “battle taxis” once the game begins. This could be invaluable as they could get a scoring unit that lost its own transport into a critical position as the game draws to a close. Dreadnoughts gain some and lose some too. While their firing arc has been reduced, they may run! like any other footslogger and can be screened by intervening models as mentioned earlier. So a Dreadnought can now survive marching across the tabletop. Other vehicles may benefit from the intervening models rules too. They can be protected by the Marines in front of them or by screening the Marines themselves instead. weapon - unless it is the same type. While it does reduce the effectiveness of these weapons, I don’t think it will eliminate them from the tabletop. Instead, we may see a few more power weapons among the ranks of the Space Marines. The new assault rules will ensure that units will remain fully engaged throughout the turn. It will no longer be possible to strategically remove models to prevent the slower power fists from attacking at the end of the round. With this in mind, Independent Characters with these slower weapons will be formidable. Make sure they are equipped accordingly as it is now mandatory for them to “lead the charge” and engage the enemy fully. You do not have the option of holding them back. Also note that the formerly “hidden” power fist is no longer hidden and larger units will be favored in this respect. This applies equally to removing casualties from shooting and close combat. As casualties mount during an assault, morale will be a key factor in keeping your units from breaking. The “Rites of Battle” ability will be highly valued among Space Marine players.

The ability for units to run will make the battlefield more fluid than ever before.
The ability for units to run will make the battlefield more fluid than ever before. The new run rule is similar to the current “fleet” ability. Those units with fleet will be able to assault after running in 5th edition, while those without the ability cannot. You may think that this change will reduce the dependence on transports and make the Rhino all but useless. I don’t think we will see this happen because the game will now be variable in length. Getting troops to objectives quickly will be crucial and should not be left up to the variables of fickle dice. In either instance, expect to see armies getting to grips with each other more quickly than ever before. It will even be possible to see units in close combat that are not normally expected to. The new run rule (which allows units to move an additional D6” instead of shooting) will have an impact on all armies and bring them closer together in fewer turns. Combine this with the brutal new assault rules and we should see more close combat upgrades throughout most Space Marine armies than before.

Rending gets a few tweaks. This will have a positive and negative impact on Space marine armies. As a whole, rending will be less effective against units and has a marginal reduction in its anti-armor capability. This will reduce the appeal of the assault cannon somewhat. On the upside, rending now applies to our sniper weapons (but BS now determines the chances to hit instead of the previous 2+ roll). This will improve the effectiveness of our sniper units – especially against monstrous creatures. With a unit of up to ten Marines firing 36” range weapons that can rend, “nidzilla” armies may prove to be more vulnerable.

These examples concerning the rules and their effects are by no means exhaustive – but serve only to inspire Space Marine Commanders to think outside the box and develop new tactics for a new game. There is no doubt that the game is changing and we must change with it. Some of the changes favor our armies and others do not. Regardless of the circumstances, the ability to prevail against our opponents is there, all we must do is exploit it. May the Emperor guide you and victory be yours. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

Close combat
Speaking of brutal close combat, the changes to close combat and weapons may affect the traditional mix of weapons we see as being the “norm” for Space Marine armies. Power fists and thunder hammers now join the lightning claw as an “awkward” close combat weapon that gets no bonus for a second


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

o this author 5th Edition actually feels like a different game. The addition of running makes infantry almost as fast as vehicles (albeit with a good roll), this adds a lot to the game as many armies are now a lot more mobile. Each game now also has a random game length, this can be from 5 to 7 turns, this change alone comes with great tactical implications, will you dive for the objectives early in the game and commit or will you gamble for a longer game and wait till the last moment? I have played, collected and modelled Black Templars for nine years and have seen the advent of 3rd and 4th Editions on the Black Templars and now I shall impart my thoughts on 5th to you, the avid Black Templar general.


Changes to the way consolidation moves work will also come into play when you eliminate an enemy after a close combat as you can no longer sweep into another enemy unit, this could leave you stranded in front of a firing line if left unsupported. Mixed Armour: This often confusing rule is now gone! No need to worry about it ever again. Kill Them All: Becomes a redundant rule, as target priority is a thing of the past. Abhor the Witch: As with ATSKNF the switch to 5th Edition has no major impact on this rule.

Accept Any Challenge No Matter The Odds: This Vow gives everyone, except neophytes, the Preferred Enemy Universal Special Rule (USR). This Vow is now worth its hefty price tag. Give it is useful against everyone it seems like this will become the default vow for many Templar commanders. Templars essentially become a “Master Crafted” army, so sit back and watch your opponent cringe! Suffer Not The Unclean To Live: Grants everyone, except Neophytes, +1 strength in close combat, but at a cost of -1 Initiative. Less useful now that the revamped grenade rules allow you strike at initiative when you charge. Given the small number of circumstances where this rule provides a major advantage it is unlikely to be a common choice for Templars except against opponents themselves burdened with a poor initiative. Uphold The Honour Of The Emperor: Cheapest of the Vows, it provides a 6+ invulnerable save all around. However given that it stops us benefiting from cover saves and, since 5th is the edition of cover saves, thamakes this vow in my opinion, fairly useless. With the amount of 4+ saves you can get from intervening units, I would rarely trade that for a 6+ invulnerability save. Abhor the Witch, Destroy The Witch: No major changes for most games of 5th Edition. The extra move granted if there is a witch amongst the enemy can almost guarantee a first turn charge, especially in Dawn of War style missions were you to deploy

"Let Him be the judge of our deeds. Our Crusades are his benediction, His strength our resolve" - Marshal Augustine
Below is an examination of the effect 5th Edition has had on the Special Rules of the Black Templars. These rules are key to defining a Templars army and a solid understanding of the implications of 5th Edition on them is crucial. And They Shall Know No Fear: ATSKNF itself remains unchanged from how it worked in 4th Edition. Righteous Zeal: The rulebook now clearly states that the move granted by the Righteous Zeal rule is “up to” D6 inches. The greatest change here is that consolidation moves can no longer be used to engage an enemy in close combat. This means that enemies will no longer have to fear firing at us when they are up close for fear that they will lose the charge. This has happened to me a few times, charging a large unit into a smaller one , eliminating it and then getting fired on and losing a substantial number of models


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
18” from the enemy and in a Land Raider Crusader, this would take any army by surprise. Not so good against some of the new “shooting” powers like the ones the new deamon codex has, because they are not “powers” but weapons Chaplain: Will still be a popular choice for many, but due to the change in the ‘Accept Any Challenge’ Vow many armies will see less of them as most units will already be granted a Close Combat re-roll. The benefits of fielding a Chaplain remain that he can control the direction and increase the speed of ‘Righteous Zeal’. Consider using one in conjunction with large foot slogging squads, together with his Cenobyte Servitors and the new ‘Run’ USR this could potentially mean an extra 5 to 15” of movement per turn (if we ran previously) if the unit is the target of heavy incoming fire. Emperor’s Champion: The Emperor’s Champion is slightly improved by some of the 5th Edition changes, especially when paired with the ‘Accept Any Challenge’ Vow. This Vow allows him re-roll his attacks, making his relatively low Attack value less relevant. Command Squads: One of the most overlooked units under 4th Edition rules this is likely to change under the new regime. In 5th Edition characters

Marshal: In this edition the commander will be the backbone of any force. His high Initiative and Leadership will come in handy with the new assault rules as frag grenades make you strike at initiative. A power weapon will be a popular choice as it will allow for a cheap extra attack together with a bolt pistol. The ever handy Holy Orb of Antioch will also become even deadlier with the new blast rules as there will be no partial hits, more hits means more dead enemies of the Emperor, a situation any Templar worth the name would approve of.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Although you pay a premium price, this will be a unit that the enemy simply cannot afford to take lightly. For a more mobile ‘tactical reserve’ type unit, arm them with bolters and mount them in a Rhino. This gives them greater mobility, protection and fire power and still leaves them a formidable opponent in close combat. Dreadnought: 5th Edition vehicles are harder to kill all around with changes to cover rules and the new damage chart. Given the relatively low price BT armies pay for Dreadnoughts and their increased survivability (and mobility - Dreadnoughts can now ‘Run’) expect to see many Dreads in BT armies, even with the changes to the rending rule toning down the power of Assault Canons.

Ploughing across the derelict square the Black Templar Razorback slewed to a halt. Thudding shots barked from the heavy bolter turret as the squad advanced out of the rear ramp, bolters blazing in short bursts. Chainswords rose and fell for what felt like a lifetime to initiate Falko as he snapped a pistol shot at another target in the whilring melee. Parrying quickly, he slid his sword under the Necrons guard and plunged it fully to the hilt in its baleful glowing chest. Drilling a round through its eye, Falko tore his sword free and turned to find the rest of his squad finishing what remained. "Good work brother Frako!" Sgt Decius' shadow fell over him, his gauntlet resting on the smaller mans shoulder, "Well executed! Templars redeploy for the second phase!"
with a retinue become what are called ‘upgrade characters’, this means that they become like Veteran Sergeants in regular squads and cannot be targeted independently in CC. It also means that the whole unit, command squad and attached character(s) will only count as 1 kill point to the enemy. Taken to extremes the Black Templar commander could potentially take a Marshal with Command Squad and attached Chaplain and it would all count as 1 kill point and would provide the characters with much needed support against power fists and the like. The same applies to Terminator Command Squads and characters although their greater survivability naturally comes at an increased points cost.

Rhino: The workhorse transport unit of the Astartes benefits from several key changes to the rules under 5th Edition. The new damage to passengers table makes transporting units less hazardous and the ability to act as a ‘battle taxi’ for any friendly (non-Terminator) infantry unit make the Rhino a much more viable purchase than in 4th Edition. With a guaranteed 12” move and the infantry being able to disembark and ‘Run’, getting units into place has never been easier. And with only a guaranteed 5 turns and variable game length in every game speed now counts more than ever on the 40K battlefield. Drop Pod: Cheaper than in any other Codex Drop Pods give the BT commander the ability to drop a unit on top of an objective and either take it or contest it. Its value has increased now that the Emperor’s Champion can be attached to a squad inside a drop pod before the battle begins, this means that the full drop pod army is now viable for the Black Templars! Combine this with counter charging Sword Brethren and you have a very nasty army, especially with the revised rules for drop pods landing in deadly terrain or on top of enemy units. These changes now allow a chance for the unit in such circumstances to survive rather than automatically leading to the destruction of the Drop Pod and unit, in turn this encourages a more aggressive use of Drop Pods as befits the most zealous of the Astartes. Razorback: Do not underestimate the razorback, for cheaper than a 5 man squad with a heavy bolter you get one that is twin linked and can move and fire. Usually take 2 in competitive lists, this adds

Sword Brethren: Probably the unit that is most improved by the new rules. With so many, now, effective, wargear and skills options this unit is now worth taking a serious look at. ‘Infiltrate’ will allow you to place the Sword Brethren up close as normal, but you could also outflank the enemy with them to compromise a static opponent. Alternatively you could use them as your elite shock troops and give them the ‘Counter Attack’ USR. Pair this up with Terminator Honours and close combat weapons, you will then get a unit that should get 4 attacks both on the charge and when being charged.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
some anti infantry to the bulk of my force. With the new rules, especially in “dawn of war” deployment missions you should rely on them to be able to get their squad to where they are needed the most and support them with either anti tank or anti infantry support. This combined with the added suvirvability of tanks will add up to better tougher razorbacks. are still a force to be reckoned with. In addition they can deepstrike, and vehicles that deepstrike count as moving at “cruising speed” so landspeeders can still fire one weapon after deepstriking, this makes multi melta landspeeders quite attractive as the enemy will have no one safe from the heat of their guns. Attack Bikes: Decent option, tough use them in a dedicated role, so dont mix and match. Use them wisely and in close support to your army, you dont want them to get stranded and assaulted now do you!

Crusader Squad: The only Troop choice available to BT commanders is also one of the most flexible of any army. The ability to take up to 20 men in one Troop choice makes this a very attractive option as Troops now count as scoring to the last man, so the enemy will have to kill a lot of Marines to prevent you taking or contesting an objective. The ability to ‘Run’ combined with ‘Righteous Zeal’ also means that the enemy will have to take into account the possibility of such a large squad moving rapidly even without transport. Adding a Chaplain and Cenobytes can further increase this movement taking away much of the safety cushion enemies previously enjoyed against large Crusader Squads.

Land Raider/Crusader: The new vehicle rules has made these vehicles the monsters they are supposed to be on the battlefield. Expect them to survive the entire game, and soak up a lot of damage! Not much more can be said on these other than fill them up with troops and grind the enemies bones beneath your tracks. Predator: As always very flexible, a workhorse gunship if you will. If you give is sponsons do not expect it to go very far as it will have to remain stationary to fire at full effect. But I can see predators with a stormbolter and just the main gun moving and firing. Vindicator: This beast has become so accurate on the move that the enemy will tremble at the sight of them. The removal of partial hits makes this behemoths gun one o the most feared weapons in the space marine articles. As black templars we can still purchase power of the machine spirit for these nasties!... so go forth and pound the enemy into submission!

Assault Squads: Yet another unit benefited greatly by the new rules. Not only can they run, almost guaranteeing a second turn charge, but they benefit from vows. This makes them as good as a squad with a chaplain, if you by accept any challenge, but without spending the points on the chaplain. Assault squads should be used as close support for your larger crusader squads. Take them in smaller units so that they do not eliminate units in one go. They will tie up more shooty units so that the large crusaders are safer from ranged damage after eliminating units and not being able to consolidate into a fresh enemy. Bikes: Mobile anti tank support. They zoom in get a few shots off and continue, or zoom out. With their boost movement of 24” they move faster than almost anything in the game. A mobile multi-melta attack bike is a good addition. You could also take 3 power weapons and launch them into combat, but I would only do this with accept as the re rolls would help against the low number of attacks. Land Speeder Squadron: Now, take them in squadrons. They will benefit from the new vehicle squadron rules, they are more fragile now but if you play with them correctly they will be able to turn the tide of battle in your favour, land speeder tornadoes

The changes that us Black Templars have to endure make us, now, one of the hardest armies out there in both friendly and competitive play. The positive greatly outdoes the negative and I predict Templars moving up the charts pretty quick. Our hard hitting troops, game breaking vows and plethora of options in the form of wargear will see us through a Golden Age, and don’t expect a new Templar Codex in the near future, so sit back and just enjoy the ride. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

he following sections are a brief analysis of some of the changes that Warhammer 40,000 5th Edition will have on your Chaos army's composition, play style and tactics. transport any friendly infantry unit, subject to the normal restrictions on capacity etc and unit type. Is that a rebalanced Rhino rush I hear in the distance? True Line of Sight: Line of sight must now be traced from the eyes of the firing model to any part of the body of at least one of the models in the target unit. The torso, legs and arms fall under this but, wings, tails, banners, weapons etc. is a no-go. This should encourage and validate existing and impressive converted models! Intervening models: Or Target priority tests are gone! The Target Priority checks have been removed and replaced with an interesting rule called Intervening models. Now, if a target is partially hidden from the firer's view by other models (including your own), it receives a 4+ cover save. I wonder if this will make spawn useful as screening units now, or does their low unit sizes restrict them? Interesting change to say the least.

Scoring units: Or why we may need to load up on basic CSM. All units taken from the Troop section are now the only scoring units in the game. This includes Troops that are inside a transport (and where applicable - within range of the objective). Also, a unit reduced to below 50% etc. still counts as a scoring unit. Other units (Elites, Heavy Support choices etc.) can contest objectives but they cannot claim them. Note that Swarm and vehicle Troop choices do not count as scoring units. This new rule favours Horde type armies but it will also be useful to us if we can keep our (normally) smallmedium sized CSM squads relatively safe. Kill Points: Victory Points are gone. They have been replaced by 'Kill Points'. Some missions have specific criteria that must be met to claim a Victory and in those Kill Points do not apply then but there are however, some missions where at the end of the game, each player receives one Kill Point for each enemy unit destroyed (completely). The one with the highest number of KP wins the game. Defenders React: Or Counter attack for everyone! That's right, all units being assaulted must move all models not in base-to-base contact up to 6" so that they end up in base contact with the enemy. This is a huge buff for Chaos Lords with Daemon Weapons as it lets them use their superior initiative against basic troops to put a ton of wounds (or stand around and do nothing, depending on the will of the Dark Gods) on the enemy unit. Note that the counter attack Universal Special Rule (USR) has been changed so that it now gives bonus attacks (for charging) to the 'reacting' defenders. Transports: Entanglement is gone, it has been replaced with the need for embarked infantry to disembark and take a pinning test should the transport vehicle be Wrecked or Destroyed. Dedicated transports may (after the game begins)

"The warm embrace of endless life is ours. Mortality is overrated." - Typhus
Powerfists: Powerfists now only give a bonus attack now if they are paired with another powerfist, thunder hammer or lightning claw. (Editors note: There has already been some debate on this issue, hopefully GW will clarify this shortly.) I don't see this as a problem for Khornate champions as they get a bonus attack from their Mark/Icons. Nor should it change much for Deathguard/Nurgle players as their (DG) low initiative and resilience is a fairly good reason to go for a killy weapon. Overall though I don't think that powerfists are the no-brainer choice that they used to be. This new rule may mean that Power weapons will be used more often. It is something to consider when you're outfitting your Champions. Run Forrest, run!: All units can now forego shooting and move an extra D6” in the shooting phase, they may not assault after running however (unless they have the Fleet USR). And on that note, running Dreadnoughts are also a possibility now! This makes our (currently too unstable) Dreadnoughts a bit more attractive, if only just a little - our Defilers remain a potent melee threat.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Psychic Shooting attacks (and Daemon Princes) : Daemon Princes can use two different psychic powers that counts as a shooting attack in the same turn. This may make a walking, and thereby a nonwinged, Daemon Prince a valid choice for a gunline CSM army. Vehicle Defensive Weapons : If a vehicle moves at Combat Speed (up to 6"), it may only fire a single weapon and all defensive weapons (S4 or less). This means that Lascannon + Heavy Bolter sponson Predators may only fire a single weapon when on the move. If not for Tank Shock and the following rule I might be tempted to leave my Predators on the shelf, in favour of Obliterators. Ramming: It's back, and better than ever : Should your tank find itself shaken and/or without any weapons left, ramming enemy vehicles is an interesting (and fun!) option. The strength of the ramming attack is based on several factors.

If the ramming vehicle is a tank the strength is increased. If the ramming vehicle has an AV higher than 10 the strength is increased. For each full 3" moved, the strength of the ramming vehicle is increased, if all these factors are considered ramming attacks can cause some serious damage to even the hardest targets. Template weapons: No more partial hits ! Any models under the template, regardless of whether they are fully or partially covered by the template, are hit. Also, wounds from template weapons can be put on any model in the unit and doesn't have to be put on the models actually covered by the template. I predict a resurgence of flamers in CSM lists, especially in small Raptor squads where their higher mobility helps you chose when and where to 'light a fire'. Blast weapons: 2D6-BS scatter unless you roll a Hit. Models no longer roll to hit when firing blast weapons, you roll the scatter dice and unless a 'Hit' is rolled, the blast marker scatters 2D6" in the direction show.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Restrictions like range, scattering off the board (but not scattering beyond the weapon's range) still apply. Finally, as with template weapons, any model whose base is completely or partially covered by the blast marker is hit. Note that you still roll a die to check for 'Gets Hot!' prior to rolling the scatter dice. An interesting side-effect of these changes came up during my first game under 5th. Where one of my Obliterators fired his Plasma Cannon at an Ultramarine player's Rhino. The shot scattered 8" and landed on top of a Tactical marine squad walking behind the player's 2nd rhino. The result wasn't pretty. Blast weapons, from the mighty battle cannons to the lowly frag missiles will be a good way to deal with screening units. Plasma weapons and Rapid Fire: Rapid Firing plasma weapons in 5th Edition will only 'Get Hot' on the roll of a 1. Note that several wounds may be suffered this way if you roll 'snake-eyes'. (e.g. one wound for each roll of 1' that comes up) Feel No Pain: Feel No Pain cannot be used against AP 1 or 2 weapons, power weapons, perils of the warp, rending weapons that roll a 6, and wounds from weapons that never allow an armour save etc.

"Fear? Fear?! I have spoken to daemons and whispered to gods. Know fear through me!" Unknown Marine of the Wordbearers
Assault grenades & the Mark of Slaanesh: The effect of assaulting into cover and frag grenades have been changed. More on this: here (link to article). I find this particularly beneficial to Slaaneshi champions who are wielding power weapons. Combined with their superior initiative a Slaaneshi champion can reap a bloody harvest on the defenders before they get to act.

Having played Warhammer 40k since Rogue Trader, I welcome the changes in 5th Edition. After having played 6 test games, both against friends and strangers, I find the new rule set to be more streamlined, better balanced (though there will always be issues) and more fun in general. And having fun is what it is all about. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

Below are some comments specific to units or characters only available in certain units, by no means are these the only changes to look for, just some of the more obvious or important. Chaos Undivided: Of the fearless units that we have access to, Plaguemarines will probably be the ones least affected by the “No Retreat!” rule. For Undivided/unmarked armies, the Icon of Chaos Glory looks a lot better now and is worthy of serious consideration. Armies of the Fell Four: Typhus and the Manreaper: Under the 'Poisoned Weapon' rules if Typhus's Strength is the same, or higher than the Toughness of his victim, then Typhus must re-roll failed to wound rolls in close combat. Very nasty! Force Weapons, The Mark of Tzeentch, and Daemon Princes: The wording on the rules for psykers has been changed and it now allows for a Tzeentch marked model to use a psychic power and the powers of a Force Weapon in the same turn. Thousand Sons and Rubric users rejoice! Also, Force Weapons are now considered to inflict 'Instant Death', as a result our Daemon Princes are immune to its psychic effect making Space Marine Librarians and similar units less of a threat to these expensive characters.

Bolter casings cascaded briefly, flashes of muzzle fire strobing the darkness. Blood, thick and sticky, washed over the helm of Grake as he flung casings cascadedabriefly, flashes of Bolter the chainaxe in wide arc. Its edge bit chunks from the chest of the Blood Angel, muzzle fire strobing the darkness. Blood, before the World Eater fell on him. Hammering thick and sticky, washed over the helm of the Blood Angels helm with his fists Grake Grake as he flung roared in triumph. the chainaxe in a wide arc. “Blood for the Dark Gods!”

Its edge bit chunks from the chest of the Blood Angel, before the World Eater fell on him. Hammering the Blood Angels helm with his fists Grake roared in triumph.
"Blood for the Dark Gods!"


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

ith its recent inception, it’s somewhat difficult to discuss the impact of 5th Edition 40K as it relates to Codex: Chaos Daemons. 40K gamers have hardly found time to play the army within a 4th Edition context. Suffice to say, the codex was written in the full light of the new core rules and was certainly play-tested accordingly. With the number of rule changes, it’s still important to draw out some integral points that are sure to have an impact on Daemon armies on the 5th Edition tabletop.


In the case of Daemons the Deep Striking limitations are the same but there are some additional and distinct disadvantages. They don’t have Drop Pods to ensure that they will be delivered unfailingly to the table. Likewise, there’s no mobile cover to hide behind. Most daemons don’t have any shooting attacks at all to leverage when they arrive.Most must rely on a 5+ INV save to protect them if exposed in the open. At times like these, a 3+ regular armour save would be much more welcome. That being said, there are still many new rules in 5th Edition that can be leveraged to turn the tide in favour of the marauding Daemons.

Among the special rules for Daemons are the Daemonic Incursion rules governing how they deploy. This rule, above all others, differentiates the Daemons among the armies of 40K. This rule alone makes it difficult to draw examples from the playing styles of other armies. The closest parallel is the all-Drop Pod deployed, Loyalist Space Marine army. This is the only other case where an entire force is deployed from Reserves, via Deep Strike. The Drop Pod assault army has one very distinct tactic to leverage. When arriving on table, transported models must disembark and then all the typical Deep Strike limitations apply; they can shoot as if moving and can’t assault.

When dicing off for, “who goes first” the Daemon player almost always wants to take the second turn for several key reasons. First and foremost, daemon units must avoid coming under heavy fire. Deny your opponent a turn of shooting and that’s one less turn of dodging bullets for the daemonic ground forces. Since half the daemon army arrives from reserves, winding down the clock only helps speed their arrival. The Reserves Table has changed in 5th Edition. The version that we were used to in 4th included the chance that certain units held in reserve may never reach the table. Rolling consistent ones (1’s) in the final turns could leave hapless units out of the game. No longer in 5th. The new table indicates that all reserves will arrive on the 5th turn unfailingly. All your Daemonic forces will now get their turn on the table every game. All standard missions also have random game lengths. Typical 40K games in 5th Edition will last between 5 and 7 turns determined randomly. Despite that fact, it’s still to the Daemon player’s advantage to grab objectives with newly arriving Troop units. Daemon players will be wise to exploit these benefits to the utmost whenever possible.

"I feel your doubt, your moment of anxiety Space Marine. Your determination shall only prove to unbind you" - Quilaxos the Keeper of Secrets
The tactic is straight forward and initially very deadly. Drop close in to your enemy, unload all Rapid Fire and Assault weapons into your foe, hope for withering losses and failed break tests to ruin your enemy’s line. Since the troops involved are Space Marines, their power armour and Dreadnought support helps keep them around for subsequent turns.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Two new rules make Deep Striking a more interesting prospect; taking Dangerous Terrain tests and rolling on the Deep Strike Mishap Table. Each one will have a bearing on where a Daemon player chooses to set units on the table. In the past, models arriving via Deep Strike could arrive safely within Difficult, Area Terrain. In the new rules, models arriving via Deep Strike count Difficult terrain as Dangerous terrain on the turn they arrive. It won’t take much of a bad scatter to place a full unit of daemons in harm’s way. Thankfully, a 1/6 chance of loss per model is fairly low. Yet, given a bad day a greater daemon may drift off course and effectively get telefragged by an errant tree branch or outcropping of broken rockcrete. Such risks may further force the use of Chaos Icons to remove the risk factor for such valuable assets. That’s relatively high cost war gear but carries with it a high tactical value with these new terrain rules to consider. At the same time, the new Run rule allows a unit to make a D6” move during the shooting phase if they opt not to shoot. These D6” are unhindered

by the same difficult terrain that made deployment more challenging in the first place. A Run move can be performed after arriving via Deep Strike. This is important for several reasons. Via the run move, the daemon unit can spread out their formation making them less vulnerable to template and blast weapons. Also it presents the opportunity to get into cover without incurring the dangerous terrain test. In the past, Deep Striking onto other models, on top of impassable terrain or even off the table edge resulted in the worst possible outcome; the unit was simply lost as casualties. In 5th Edition, this is not always the case. If an arriving unit cannot be placed legally for any of the above reasons they are not immediately lost but a roll is made on the, “Deep Strike Mishap Table.” One third of the time a “Terrible Accident!” occurs and the unit is lost, removed from the game as a casualty. Equally likely a “Misplaced” result could occur which lets the Daemon’s opponent place the unit anywhere on the table they want (dangerous terrain checks still apply). The final result is “Delayed” in which cases the unit to be placed back in reserves and will show up again later on in the game. So 2/3’s the time, the unit is still able to contribute to the game. This may embolden players to attempt more risky placement of arriving troops.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Another factor that proves daunting to Daemon models are the new rules governing Line of Sight (LoS). In 4th Edition, the torso of the model had to be visible along the “model’s eye view” of the enemy shooter. In 5th Edition, the model’s legs and arms can also be targeted for the purpose of determining LoS. Also, if any model in a unit is visible the entire unit may be hit by incoming fire, even if the rest of the target squad is outside of LoS and the max range of the shooting attack. So one arm of one Bloodletter model is all it takes to provide enough visibility to jeopardize an entire squad of 10+ daemons. The Soul Grinder, as impressive looking at it is, makes for a very high profile target, literally. The new rules for tracing LoS to a vehicle’s hull now specifically includes Defiler legs. LoS also works in three dimensions so the Grinder is both tall and covers a very large area. That will make claiming the “hull down,” 4+ cover save very difficult for them to achieve. Winning the Daemonic game will rely heavily on exploiting terrain to be effective. Players need to make sure that they understand the terrain rules. This includes the terrain being employed on any given table. Agreeing with your opponent on what terrain models invoke which rules was always challenging. Now that these rules are much more WYSIWYG, agreement before the game begins becomes an even more challenging but all the more important issue for the Daemon player.

The Daemon’s shooting game is a difficult prospect even under the most ideal circumstances. Most shooty daemons have Ballistic Skill three (BS 3) and most of the really heavy firepower resides with the unique characters and HQ choices. At the same time, almost all daemonic shooting is classified as ‘Assault’ fire and therefore can be shot freely on the same turn they arrive from Deep Striking. Likewise, such Daemonic shooting can always be conducted after moving and thus enables the canny Daemon general to optimize every shot fired despite terrain, LoS or other issues. It will be a real temptation for Daemon players to Deep Strike their shooty units with an immediate, clear line of fire to their enemy. A word of caution here comes in carefully considering the enemy’s response on the following turn. A large squad of Pink Horrors can lay down a lot of shots, their Warp Fire attack being Assault 3. Yet, at BS 3 they will only be hitting half the time. At S 4 they will only be wounding Marine Equivalent opponents (3+ save, Toughness 4) with half the hits scored. At AP 4, many units will still get armour saves further reducing enemy casualties. Horrors themselves are Toughness 3 so they will often times be wounded on a 3+. Their 4+ INV save will be of great help to keep them around but they will find it difficult to win the sustained shooting game. It becomes clear that the real strength of the Daemonic army lies in their close combat abilities. And yet, the best assault units in the game must still be supported as they close with their opponents. In every case, the daemon player must force their opponent to make hard target priority decisions; “Do I concentrate on the advancing ground troops or try to keep from being shot by their fire support?” To fulfil this role, one unit in particular makes some massive strides forward in the 5th Edition shooting phase. The Soul Grinder is the only vehicle in the Daemon army list and carries along with it a wide range of particularly deadly weaponry. This includes the Harvester gun (Assault 6, S4) and the Maw cannon that can be upgraded to fire in three modes: Template (S6), single shot (S10) and large blast (S8, AP 3). Vehicle rules in 5th Edition have also changed considerably. The multiple vehicle damage tables have been reduced to one table that governs all vehicle damage with modifiers based on different

Chaplain Xerxes slid noisily down the glacis, his armour smoking. Painfully he raised his head, warning runes flashing before him. Ignoring the pain Xerxes rolled onto his knees and hands, retching blood from his visor's mouth piece. The ground itself shook as the Blood Thirster smashed before him. Pulling himself to his feet, the Chaplain brought his Rosarius up in his left gauntlet, flaming whip chains hammered down at him as the Daemon of Khorne bellowed. Braying at the thunderous sky the Daemon glared down at the chaplain with pure hatred seething from his form!


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
factors, e.g. Open Topped, Glancing hits, etc. The Soul Grinder is AV 13 front and sides and ignores all Stunned and Shaken results. Since it is a Walker, all close combat attacks must be against its front armour (as opposed to the rear armour for all other vehicles) and boasts four Dreadnought Close Combat weapons. The fact that it is also Fleet makes for quite a deadly shooting and close combat platform. Expect this to become a well feared element to any Daemonic force on the table. To make matters worse, when launching an assault from within, across or into area terrain, the attacker’s initiative is reduced to one (I 1). To clarify, say a Daemon unit skulking in cover starts the assault phase in charge range of an enemy unit in the open. Even if the Damon unit passes their difficult terrain test, they still fight at Initiative one (1). The target unit being in the open does not negate the penalty. The fact that the daemons started in terrain is enough to invoke the initiative penalty. The Slaaneshi faction has a good grip on the use of grenade like rules to help offset this penalty; i.e. the Aura of Acquiescence. This serves to further reinforce their role on the table. Get your Daemonettes through cover, fleet to clear it and get them into close combat. Their offensive grenades allow the she devils to leverage their high Initiative unhindered. After they have engaged the enemy, bring in your non-grenade equipped assault elements behind them. Once the enemy unit is fighting in a close combat, intervening cover no longer imposes the I 1 penalty no matter what terrain may be involved. Flesh Hounds of Khorne, especially lead by Karanak, have a nice collection of advantages given these changes. Karanak provides the Move Through Cover USR while the fact that they are Beasts gives them the Fleet rule and gives them a 12" assault move. A very nice combination with these new terrain impacts considered. All Daemons are also Fearless so the result of losing a close combat automatically invokes the “No Retreat!” rule. In 4th Edition, overwhelming odds dictated how many wounds the enemy unit would sustain. In 5th Edition it’s all about the number of unsaved wounds inflicted vs. the number of unsaved wounds sustained. If the Daemon player inflicted two (2) unsaved wounds and received four (4) back; 4 - 2 = two (2) additional wounds that require (INV) saves from the losing daemons. Non-fearless units are subject to taking Morale checks when losing close combats. Based on the same equation mentioned above, more unsaved wounds equates to a negative modifier to that morale check. In the same equation above, if the Daemons inflicted four (4) unsaved wounds and sustained two (2) unsaved wounds their opponent would make their Morale check at minus two (-2). Note well the Instrument of Chaos war gear item available to many Daemon units. Having a few of these available in a Daemon army will turn drawn combats into minor victories for the Daemons.

"Again and again the dead arose. Lasrifles spent we laid in with our blades, yet they come, like an endless tide of filth ..."
Last Diary Entry : Sgt. Hawkins, 5th Nadir Regulars

What Daemons lack in the Shooting phase they more than make up for in the Assault phase. Bloodletters are Weapon Skill 5, Furious Charging and all come equipped with Hellblades – effectively two handed power weapons. Daemonettes boast 3 Rending attacks (still powerful even with changes to the Rending rule) striking at Initiative 6. Plaguebearers are Toughness 5 and have the Feel No Pain Universal Special Rule (USR). Daemons literally span the entire spectrum of highly skilled close combat abilities. As stated above, Daemons become particularly deadly in assaults and 5th Edition has introduced several new rules in the assault phase worth some infernal attention. Area Terrain : more of a curse than a blessing (or do Daemons prefer curses?). Terrain rules underwent significant revisions between the 4th and 5th Editions. As a net result, Daemons have a lot less to hide behind than they did before. In the last edition, all Area Terrain would block Line of Sight (LoS) for those models positioned behind it and 6” within it. This is no longer the case. Not only can you see through it freely, only under certain circumstances will it confer cover saves. Daemons do not weather well vs. shooting attacks and the terrain board of 5th Edition 40K offers less cover for the intrepid Daemon player.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Force Weapons: Formerly the Bloodthirster’s bane, Space Marine Librarians equipped with Force weapons used to be the sure cure for rampaging Greater Daemons. All daemon models, both great and small, have the Eternal Warrior USR which makes them immune to Instant Death. The killing blow of the Force Weapon is now considered an, “Instant Death” result, the same as being struck by a weapon that has a Strength value double the target’s Toughness. All multi-wound Daemons are now immune to the “soul drinking” power of the Force Weapon. The “Blessing of the Blood God” even passes along a 2+ INV save vs. such attacks. Space Marine Librarians will now need to direct their multi-wound killing powers elsewhere.

Bone splintered as the Daemonette drove the smooth claw clean through the shoulder of the Marine, leaving a foul wound behind. Bringing her face close to his, she tilted her head to one side as if in consideration, lifting the Space Marine clear of the ground as if he weighed nothing. Curling like a snake, her tongue darted forth and coiled round his neck guard, grinding the vertebrae tighter. Her taut purple skin shivered in delight. "Blood Raven ..." her voice was as silk and honey, as a razor across palid skin. Streams of her hair fell about her perfect face. "Thank you for this sumptous moment!"
The crux of both the Seize Ground and Capture and Control missions require that Infantry units from an army’s Troop choices capture the mission specific objectives. Such units must be within 3” of the set objective without any other enemy unit, of any type, in the same range in order to fulfill the victory condition. Nurgle units represent some of the hardest Infantry/Troops in the 40k game system. They are Toughness 5, have a daemon typical 5+ INV save and a 4+ Feel No Pain (FNP) roll vs. most attacks. (Note that the rules for FNP have changes so they will not get this save in all cases.) Plaguebearers become the ideal, “take and hold” unit for these mission types. Deep Striking allows the unit to quickly seize the objective. Deploying from reserves keeps them safely off-table until the later turns of the game. Once in place, the unit can freely “Go to Ground!” the new rule that increases a unit’s cover save by +1 while forfeiting their next turn’s actions. If an objective is in or within 3” of area terrain, the stalwart daemons could also be protected by a 3+ cover save on top of their other defensive attributes. Note also that in 5th Edition, a unit is still considered “scoring” until the last model is removed from the table. Given such hearty troops, killing them to the last man is a difficult task. Capture and Control: The primary difference between this mission and Seize Ground is the number and placement of the objectives. In this case there are only two objectives, one in each of the player’s deployment zones. Again, Deep Strike deployment can be leveraged to make this work out well for the encroaching Daemons.

The following are a few special considerations for Chaos Daemon armies as they relate to some of the new Missions and Deployment patterns found in 5th Edition. Seize Ground: For this mission, 3+D3 objectives are set about the game table, each player placing an objective in turn. The Daemon player’s tactics must be put into play at this point. Objectives that are close to cover, outside of enemy shooting lanes make for the perfect opportunity to exploit the unique way Daemons deploy to the table. Note that there is no longer a sense of the Margin of Victory as with 4th Edition missions. If you hold one more uncontested objective over your opponent you win the mission.

"More! Bring me more skulls! My Lord needs MORE!" - U'Zuhl the Skulltaker
Troops in Transports: 5th Edition has now adopted the rule that units in Transport vehicles are still considered, “on the table” for scoring purposes (and most others for that matter). This will be a big boon for armies that have excellent transport options like Tau and Eldar. Unfortunately, Daemons don’t have any at all. More unfortunate is the general lack of anti-tank the Daemon army can bring to bear. This rule may mandate that Daemon armies leverage what anti-armour units they do have. Screamers and other Tzeentchian units with high Strength attacks could become very popular for this purpose.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
For this mission, most armies will need to “castle” up their defenses while sending out an attack group to take the enemy’s objective. They cannot just sit back and shoot and still expect to win. This is the perfect mission to draw your opponent down table and into the open. Note that the mission requires that only Infantry/Troop units can claim the Daemon’s objective or hold their own for that matter. In most cases, they must foot slog or rely on troop transports to make their way across table to win the game. The new Run rule will help them but running units aren’t shooting which again works well for the Daemon’s cause. Use your first wave of Daemonic incursion to foil the advancing units. Once overwhelmed, use the units coming in from reserve to mount the Daemonic attack against the enemy defensive to secure the win. Dawn of War: This is one particular deployment where the Daemon army may have a distinct advantage over others. The 5th Edition rules clearly state that army specific rules found in the various codices supersede those found in the core rules. In the mission setup rules for Dawn of War, not all units start out on the board at the beginning of the game. Therefore, a full half of the daemon army will arrive on the first turn compared to a relatively small number of units on the part of their opponent. Also, enemy units arriving from reserves must come on from their own table edge while the daemons retain the full reign of Deep Striking anywhere.

The Daemon army is by no means a “power army” to any extent. Veteran 40K players have noted that GW usually errs on the side of caution when introducing new armies to the game. That may well have been the case with Codex: Chaos Daemons. Winning with Daemons will take a lot of quick thinking and for many, a little luck too. The Daemon player must constantly be accounting for bad scatter results, failed reserve rolls and lots of other factors left to the mercy of the Dice Gods. It’s a thinking gamer’s army, one that requires constant spontaneity and improvisation in each and every game turn until the final roll of the dice.

"Child...why waste so much time for a life so short? Let the pain become a tool, let Grand Father take you in his warm embrace? Yes?" - A Preacher of Nurgle
That being said, the 5th Edition game of 40K may lend itself nicely to strong assault armies. The Horde may still rule the day but Daemons have their own antihorde elements to rely on. Overall, compensating for weaknesses is the first order of the Daemonic tactician. That’s the army’s acute downside. Naïve opponents may see how Daemons struggle in the first few turns and become overconfident. The satisfaction will come when the close combat strength of the army is brought to bear. Lofty overconfidence will fall quickly at the mad slashing attacks of U’Zuhl the Skulltaker, backed up by his entourage of blood drenched Crusher and Letter units. But don’t let Khorne have all the fun. Proper placement and leveraging opportunity will let all the four faces of Chaos combine into one horrific visage for those who dare oppose the marauding denizens of Chaos, spurred to war. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

"Magick, spells, call it what you will human, it is all the Lord of Change. And you will feel him upon you this day."
- Psaros the Seeker
This is one instance where the daemon player may want to ‘Seize the Initiative!’ and try to take the first turn advantage. Fewer enemy guns will be on the table to hassle the arriving daemons. Take full advantage of having more of your army on the table sooner. Concentrate on eliminating enemies piecemeal, always attacking with overwhelming odds.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

th edition should benefit the Dark Angels; after all, the Codex was designed with the new edition of the game in mind. Indeed, when you read the rulebook there’s a new sense of understanding towards over some of the rules queries you might have had. For example, it’s now explicit that characters can be deployed attached to units from reserve without making a separate roll for them; a great boon for Deathwing Assault!


The new rules will change the way that the army plays as a whole, with some units getting a nice polish and others losing a little power. I’ll go through each section of the army list and highlight the areas that I think will change before discussing how this might affect Deathwing, Ravenwing and mixed wing forces.

man you’ll want to ensure that they don’t run away. The possibility for heavier modifiers as a result of combat is also going to make this a key ability, ensuring that your units keep fighting until the bitter end. The ability to take standards that allow re-rolls for morale and pinning may also be very helpful and the new emphasis on simply causing more casualties in close combat means that the benefits offered by the Deathwing, Ravenwing and Chapter Standards are going to be more attractive than ever before.

"The Fallen I will not speak of" - Imrael I would expect to see a lot more of both Belial and

The big change here is that it’s clear in the rulebook that you no longer need your opponent’s permission to field named or special characters. So they’re all up for grabs. In addition, HQs can be used to deny your opponent an objective in the endgame, so holding one with the ability to move rapidly may well be of use. Company masters, Azrael, Belial and Sammael: Generally speaking, Rites of Battle will become even more important than in the past; with the ability of troops to count as scoring until the last

Sammael, even in mixed armies, simply because they give you the added leadership bonus of a company master and they allow you to take Deathwing or Ravenwing units as troops, giving you the option of making even more of your force count as scoring. There’s been some debate about which version of Sammael should now be taken, with some people viewing the Landspeeder as redundant as it can neither stand its ground in close combat nor fire as effectively as before. I suspect that the jetbike may now be the preferred option, but I wouldn’t completely discount the speeder; it’s still hard to shoot down and is now more durable than ever with the new vehicle damage table. In addition, it gains a nifty saving throw if moving quickly, making this an HQ to use at a distance.

Cream robes spattered with gore, Ishmael reversed his broadswords grip as he drove it down through the abdomen of the Striking Scorpion. His green armour glinting in the dawn, he leaned on the pommel for a moment then slid it free of his enemy. The stark white symbol of the Dark Angels shone at his chest as the sun rose on the 12th day of fighting. "Brother Ishamel to Azrael, northern quarter still holds."

Librarians & Ezekiel: Librarians have proved to be extremely unpopular since the Codex came out. However, with the advent of 5th they now get a slight polish. First of all, their shooting power has one ability that will be important in 5th – it ignores cover saves. So units you’ve pinned in place or which are lurking in cover will be vulnerable to this attack, making a bike mounted librarian rather attractive (and don’t forget characters still get skilled rider and move through cover). The other reason is the new wound allocation rules; now if you’ve taken a lot of wounds and it looks like you may lose a specialist or two, allocate one of those wounds to the libbie to save with his psychic power, allowing your special weapons to survive that little bit longer.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Chaplains: Chaplains have lost out a little in the new rules; they can no longer consolidate into a new unit which means they will have to weather return fire before charging again. That said, the ability to run combined with the new assault calculations mean that their ability to give re-rolls on the charge could prove to be deadly. In addition, their ability to make their unit Fearless may also be a boon. I would also expect to see a little more use of the Sacred Standard, to make a Dark Angel gun-line or troop units parked on objectives that little bit harder to shift.

Deathwing: With the new deep strike rules, Deathwing Assault is far more viable without the Ravenwing, meaning that the Deathwing could cause some real havoc on turn one, teleporting onto objectives and putting pressure on your opponent right from the start. Even if the teleport scatters, the run rule means that the Deathwing can try to dash behind cover or wherever else you wanted them. However, terminators may now be more vulnerable to close combat specialists because of the very same run rule, meaning that it will be harder than before to stay at range. As before, combat should generally be avoided unless the unit is tooled up for it, although those units may be more deadly than before as they can close more quickly with the enemy. Dreadnoughts: Dreadnoughts are now worth their higher cost; unlike most other vehicles they can move and fire at full effect but they still benefit from the new damage chart. The prospect of several venerable dreadnoughts is now more attractive than ever. However, the new assault rules may make dreadnoughts more vulnerable in close combat than before as ‘hidden’ powerfists are almost guaranteed to get a chance to attack.

"I said I would not speak!" - Imrael
Command Squads: With the potential for a greater number of casualties from incoming fire, apothecaries will become even more important than before, as will standard bearers. They will still perform at their best in a supporting role, either shooting at threats to your troops or pitching in to turn the tide in close combat. Given the new assault rules, command squads will make a brilliant secondline support unit, able to counter-charge or pour in fire as necessary.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Techmarines: The ability to repair vehicles may be more annoying for your opponent than before, but otherwise techmarines remain mostly unchanged. Company veterans: Company veterans will primarily see changes in the way they are equipped, with cc veterans squads gaining combat or storm shields for powerfist-armed models to try and ensure they get to strike. Shooty vets may also be more attractive given the new line-of-sight rules. Scout squads: Scout squads are now a far more attractive proposition. Their infiltrate ability will either allow them to deny an objective to the enemy (or at least threaten it) or give them the option of appearing later on the game in your opponent’s half of the board. Whilst that may leave them stranded on the wrong side, it also means that they can seriously disrupt your opponent’s battle line, with option of destroying vehicles, launching assaults or otherwise making a nuisance of themselves without facing enemy fire. The combat squads option also means that you can attack multiple targets.

"Descend 3rd Squadron, for the Lion!" Screaming like an avenging angel the Ravenwing speeder punched down from the thunderous clouds, rolling on its axis as incoming tracer fire stitched between its wings. Three more swooped after it, their assault cannons roaring shells, heavy bolters pounding with their stocatto barks.

plus side, they can run, allowing them to close more quickly with the enemy and you can screen them with your own units, to protect them from incoming fire (or even use the combat squads ability to do that). Deep strike may now be more viable, especially if done with an attached character, and you can run afterwards to protect you from shooting. Ravenwing Attack Squadron: Just as with Scouts, Ravenwing bikes and attack get the option to make an outflank move which can seriously ruin your opponent’s day (multi-meltas turning behind an opponent’s tank and within 12” anyone?), especially since most Ravenwing bike units have relatively short range weaponry. This may be of use if you want to Deep Strike Terminators accurately towards the end of the game. A question remains about whether you can use the outflank move with only one combat squad or if you bought a Landspeeder as part of the squadron (the rulebook would suggest you can, the Codex that you can’t). The Ravenwing see a slight downturn in the usefulness of turbo-boosting, but they also gain the option of going to ground to improve their survivability, although that isn’t an option that should be taken lightly. Ravenwing Support Squadron: This is now a far more interesting option. Although vehicle shooting on the move is less effective, Landspeeders can still move a little and fire at full effect. They also get a save if they move fast enough. Individual skimmers are no longer destroyed if they are immobilised, making a single speeder slightly more durable. However, squadrons become more interesting as they treat all stunned results as shaken. Given the amount of cover saves available in 5th, expect to see more Speeders with heavy flamers.

"Clad in bone, with weapons of zeal we will hunt the fallen!" - Deathwing catachism TROOPS
Tactical squads now have a bit of a polish. The combat squads rule means you will be able to have multiple scoring units and there’s the possibility of using one squad to screen the other to grant the allimportant cover save. Smaller squads will remain vulnerable in cc, but will be less vulnerable to blast markers and will remain scoring to the last man. Every tactical squad is now a threat to the majority of enemy tanks and the polish to frag grenades means that an assault into cover can be more viable than before.

Assault squads: Assault squads have a lost a bit of their bite in that they can no longer sweeping advance into another combat, leaving them far more vulnerable to enemy fire. They are also more likely to suffer from dangerous terrain tests. On the


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Devastators: Devastators are pretty unchanged; combat squads are still a useful viable form of deployment. Expect to see more plasma cannons, especially against hordes. Missile launchers may once again become the predominant weapon, given their dual abilities. Tanks: All tanks have gained a increased measure of survivability in the new addition. That said, expect to see fewer Predators, as they are, once again, reduced to being mobile pillboxes. On the flipside, Land Raiders are now more potent than ever as they don’t have the same close combat problems that other tanks have. In addition, power of the machine spirit will ensure that the Land Raider can fire more weapons than other tanks when on the move. Vindicators become more mobile as they can fire their demolisher cannon whilst on the move without ill effect. Whirlwinds also offer an interesting option with their castellan missiles meaning that cover saves are ignored.

that they keep away from close combat. With the new vehicle assault rules they will see an increase in their effectiveness vs. armour.

"You will break! You will bleed! You will tell me all! Before this day is done Traitor!" - Interrogator Chaplain Vareus
Mixed forces: Using all elements of a Dark Angel army should now be an attractive option. With the ability to make certain unit types count as troops a DA army can be varied whilst still having a high number of scoring units. The new deployment rules for Scouts and Ravenwing bikes combined with a less risky deep strike option and cheap transport vehicles means that the DA can be extremely mobile and apply pressure anywhere on the board. The combat squad rule will mean that tactical squads could be extremely useful, giving the DA player an even greater advantage in the number of scoring units they can have over other MEQ armies. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

Gone are the days when a ten-man squad was stuck with a Razorback because the unit was in reserve. The rules would suggest that combat squads can always be deployed separately. In addition, dedicated transports can ferry any unit round the battlefield, allowing a Rhino or Razorback to take your units to where they are most needed. Drop pods no longer give away victory points so they are, if anything, more attractive than before.

Pure Deathwing/Ravenwing: The ‘pure’ armies still seem to be viable, although both types may need to include additional ‘troop’ units in order to ensure that they score. Mechanised Deathwing are still likely to a force to be reckoned with, although they may need to tool up a unit for cc to counteract the danger posed by units such as large ork mobs or cc specialists that use run to close with them. Ravenwing may have problems holding objectives, although they also have an advantage in going for ‘objective grabbing’ towards the end of a game. In addition, the new benefits of the scout rule will mean that the Ravenwing will be a hard army to predict. However, it will be more essential than ever

"Stand firm brothers! Hold the line!" Tactical Squad Memnes fanned out, whining lethal discs zipped around them, some ringing out as they hit power armour. Bolters at their shoulders, the squad pounded forward, snatching shots off in brief bursts. Dark green armour glinted in the pale sun above as the Dark Angels swept into the ruins, a scream of energy as the plasma gun blew another wall down. "Hold the line!" 41

The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

he 5th edition rules introduce a vast amount of changes to the 40K rules set, both large and small. Games Workshop claims that these changes were necessary to make the play less “gamey”, abstract, and technical and more cinematic, dynamic, and fun. Only time will tell whether they succeeded, though, personally, I tend to believe that 5th edition is indeed a significant improvement to the system.


as successive 5th Edition designed Codexes arrive, they will only become more so as heavy weaponry becomes both more scarce and more expensive. Shooty forces, on balance, don’t appear to be helped or hurt by the new rules. Static gun lines will no longer be rolled by a single squad of assault specialists, and the new WYSIWYG terrain and LoS rules mean they’ll be able to draw beads on more targets than ever before. As mentioned above, vehicles will be tougher to damage as well. On the flip side, vehicles with multiple weapons systems must remain still to be fully offensively capable, and almost everything that the army shoots at will likely have a significant cover save. Two steps forward, two steps back. Assaulty forces got a slight boost in potency. Even without transports or Fleet, such armies can get to grips with their foes in a hurry, and bounce from cover to cover while getting there. And once in close combat, they’ll be able to inflict the maximum amount of damage, more than was possible under 4th edition. The danger is that they may be so effective that they end up stranding themselves in the open once too often (it is no longer allowed to consolidate into the enemy) and get shot up or counter-assaulted as a result.

In general, the new rules seem to favor hordes. They reap all the benefits of the new system without suffering any noticable downsides. Such armies have increased maneuverability and protective options well beyond what they had under 4th edition. This is especially true if it’s an assault-oriented force, but will also be applicable to shooty, infantry-centric armies as well. Horde armies are much harder to kill, and they will hit harder both at range and in close combat. Mechanized forces also got a slight boost, as vehicles overall have greater survivability, if having their shooting potency weakened by the redefinition of “defensive weapons”. Even so, vehicles have been made more attractive by the new rules, and

Screaming lances of raw energy speared the dusk. Pounding legs, flailing arms and horned features streamed towards the outpost. Justicar Pablo adjusted his incinerator before unsheathing his force sword from his back sling.

The most significant change here is that infantry and walkers have gained the ability to Run. This is exactly the same as a Fleet move under 4th edition. (I.e., instead of shooting, a unit may opt to move an extra D6 inches.) Units that Run may not initiate an assault, however, unless they actually have the Fleet USR. One new twist is that units that arrive via Deep Strike may actually Run upon arrival, but not even Fleet units can initiate an assault upon the turn they Deep Strike. Also, the Deep Strike mishap table is significantly more forgiving. Only 1/3 of the time is a unit destroyed by a bad landing. (1/3 chance of being legally redeployed by your opponent, 1/3 chance of remaining in Reserves.)

"Time we stemmed the tide brothers!"
He cheered as he leapt to the ground, pulsing bursts of promethium pouring forth.

The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Units that have either the Scout or Infiltrate USRs may be put in Reserves and enter play via a special “Outflank” maneuver. When their Reserves roll is made, such units will entire along either of the short table edges. (1/3 chance it’s the left edge, 1/3 chance it’s the right edge, and 1/3 chance the owning player gets to choose.) Finally, dedicated transports may now transport any friendly unit. Only the unit the transport was bought with may begin the game embarked, but other than that restriction, the transport is free to be used by any eligible unit.

Running makes assault-oriented forces significantly more dangerous. Such armies can more easily cross the battlefield hugging the safety of cover and more quickly position themselves for their assault. Because of the adjusted Deep Strike mishaps table and Run, Deep Striking will likely be seen more often and more decisively as the consequences aren’t quite as dire as they once were, and landing units will have an opportunity to adjust their position favorably upon arrival.

Daemonhunters: Kiting, where you maneuver your units in a shooting, fighting retreat, hugging cover as much as is possible, is still probably the best defense. You should already have learned that Grey Knights are no match for assault specialists, and nothing about 5th edition changes that. Sadly, Run means that we are likely to have even less time to effectively whittle down opponents with stormbolters before they reach our lines. The upside is that we can’t be rolled by these guys any longer; no more consolidation into enemy units! Thus it can be practical to feed a few smallish, sacrificial units to the assaulters and set them up for a shooting or counter-assault trap. Using small IST squads, or those inducted Guardsmen, would do the trick nicely. Never forget that Grey Knights work best when supported. Keep them together to maximize their potency on the battlefield.

"May He pass judgement on you through me"
On the offensive end, it’s difficult for me to envision any real benefit to Running our Grey Knights around. It’s a rare situation in which no targets present themselves for stormbolter dakka, and such


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
opportunities should never be wasted. Of course, if no shooting is possible, then making a quick Run towards armour, cover, an objective, etc., is at least now in our toolbox. Using unmounted ISTs, however, suddenly becomes significantly more viable. Take small squads to serve as speedbumps, or large squads to take objectives and harass the foe. Getting your ISTs a transport is probably still preferable in most situations, but no longer will it be a virtual necessity. However, in a pinch, you can use those Rhinos or Chimeras to pick up some Knights and get them someplace fast and in relative safety. (And so the dream of truly “mechanizing” our GKs has finally come to pass....) Witch Hunters: Running breathes new life into the Witch Hunters. Rarely used units like Arco-flagellants, Sisters Repentia, and Penitent Enginges can all make excellent use of this new rule. Run also makes footslogging Sisters a much more viable choice, and so-called “horde” Sisters builds are entirely viable in 5th edition. No longer will mechanized Sisters be the only “competitve” army build; every unit in the army will have the capability to get up close and personal in a hurry! ISTs in Hereticus armies can be used pretty much exactly as they would be in Malleus armies (see previous section), although, clearly, you don’t get the same value per point that you do with Sisters. Unless you have a soft spot for the models you’re using, or the fluff, or Chimeras, or plasma guns (none of which a Sisters force really need), why bother?

Rolling the venomous pocked blade to one side, Brother-Knight Zandat blew the plague bearer apart with a flurry of bolter shells. Greasy, foul vapour washed over him as paced over the remains, his stern face grim with determination he swung the halberd in a double handed arc, carving two more down. Crackling energy ran its course down the weapons haft, illuminating the dank tunnel with its raw glow. Zandat tore through the remaining abominations like a whirlwind of vengeance..
Area terrain does not block any lines of sight beyond what the modeled terrain really, truly blocks. To offset this somewhat, most terrain provides a cover save, and more often than not, this will be a 4+ save. Even intervening models, be they friend or foe (but not including those models that are part of the firing unit itself), count as terrain for this purpose, providing a 4+ cover save to units behind them. So while you don’t need a LD check to hit such units, they are well and truly screened by those units that are closer, shrugging off wounds they might not normally be able to under the 4th edition rules. Also, wounds inflicted may be put on any models in the target squad, even on models that are neither in range of the firing weapons nor in line of sight of any of the firing models! That is, it is no longer possible to “snipe” enemy models with clever positioning. So long as at least one model in the target unit is in range and line of sight, the entire unit is eligible to receive wounds, at the target unit owner’s discretion. Speaking of which, wound allocation has changed. The owning player decides which models receives wounds. The only restriction is that wounds must be distributed as equally and evenly as possible throughout a squad. No doubling up on wounds until every model has at least one. No trebling up on wounds until every model has at least two. And so on. Once wounds are distributed -- and the owning player may distribute the wounds from sources with differing AP values in any way s/he sees fit -- you pick up the dice for all the models with exactly the

"Arco flagellation awaits you heretic..." - Inquisitor Arquemis Flambaeu

Most of the rules changes here can be summed up thusly: if you can see it, you can shoot it, period. You never have to take a LD test to shoot at a more distant unit, there are no special protections for Independent Characters, etc. If you can see it, you can shoot it. This may mean that our basements and game stores will require a bunch of new terrain, because now the game is “true line of sight”. Unless the terrain actually, really blocks the line of sight from the model’s point of view, then the guys hiding inside or behind it can be seen. “Area terrain” has been redefined to simply mean that models inside the terrain may take a cover save if being shot at.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
same game characteristics (i.e. same statline, same weapons loadout, same special rules, etc.) and roll all their saves at once, removing as many models as failed saves. Then you pick up the next group of all-the-same dice, and continue until you’re all done. (When you have squad upgrades like a model carrying a special weapon or a veteran sergeant, it’s entirely possible that some of these model groups will consist of just one model.) In general, this means that special/unique models buried in squads are both more and less survivable than before. They’re more survivable because you can, initially at least, pawn wounds off onto the more basic models in a squad. Less survivable because, if the unit suffers enough wounds, you may be forced to put one or more onto these important game pieces. It’s a double-edged sword, to be sure. Regarding cover, infantry units have the option to Go To Ground. You can decide to do this after wounds are calculated but before saving throws are made. Going to ground means you voluntarily pin your unit but in return it gains a +1 bonus to its cover save, or a 6+ cover save if in the open. The downside is that the unit remains pinned until after its next turn. While vehicles can’t Go To Ground, they will have ample opportunity to benefit from 4+ cover saves, outright nullifying glancing or penetrating hits. The revised damage table also means that glancing hits can do no worse than immobilize a vehicle. (Only when a vehicle is immobilized and all its weapons systems destroyed might it be possible for a glancing hit to destroy it.) All in all, vehicles got a massive survivability boost in 5th edition. absorb more firepower, as there will be much less totally sight-blocking terrain on most tables. Those cover saves will be very important! As of this writing, it’s unclear whether or how much players, clubs, stores, and tournaments will revamp their terrain collections such that there will be a decent amount of sight-blocking terrain (or at least sight-blocking terrain available in the amounts that we might be currently used to it). Daemonhunters: When facing hordes, which are typically weakly protected, we need to ensure that we’re minimizing the amount of cover available to the enemy. Be sure to spread your GKs out, never let your units unintentially screen the enemy. (Assaulting units can no longer consolidate through firing lines, so spreading out carries less risk for the force as a whole.) Spreading your models has the additional benefit of increasing the number of models that can potentially deny cover. The more models that can draw unobstructed lines of sight to enemy models, the more likely it is that you can deny cover and insta-gib them with stormbolter dakka. Against relatively well-armoured foes and enemies with a significant amount of AP 3 or better firepower, it’s more important to take advantage of cover, using our own units to screen ourselves if need be. The DH army’s capabilities slide off significantly with just a few losses; it’s usually safer to err on the side of caution and conservation. Our traditional scoot-nshoot, mobile firepower force isn’t going to be hurt too badly by all the cover in many, perhaps even most, game-time situations.

"By order of the Ordo Malleus I sentence you to battlefield excommunication ... Sinner!" - High Inquisitor Balorphin
Opponents: Screening will actually mean something in 5th edition. Expect cheap troops to be used as fodder and protection for more valuable units behind, especially for hordes and assaulty armies. This tactic will be far more effective in 5th edition than in 4th edition. Gun lines won’t be quite as offensively effective as before because of the common availability of 4+ cover on the average game board. Even the army’s own units will provide cover, so deployment strategies will have to adjust accordingly. On the other hand, you can probably expect to

Sprinting from cover, Sister Grace snapped up her bolt pistols. Chattering death they pummelled apart the Dark Eldars Incubis armour. Throwing herself forward, she slid on one side through the next doorway, spewing rounds at the gaurds above her, watching them tumble bloodily to the floor. Rolling to one side she hammered the pistols on full auto at the floorboards above, splintering the wood into shards. Screams sounded, then heavy thuds as blood soaked and dripped down.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Overall, I would expect the new shooting rules to mean much more reliance on our power armour and cover. Especially in the early game, the Shrouding will be tested more often than usual. It can prove to be a game saver, so be sure to deploy with that special rule clearly in mind. If you can position your GKs about 30” away, the Shrouding will, statistically, deny about 50% of the incoming shots, yet a single turn’s worth of movement will bring your stormbolters into range and able to effect every model of the enemy provided you can get sightlines and range to at least one model. Sadly, the increased vehicle survivability rules exacerbate what is already the greatest weakness of the army. All we can do is maximize our access to lascannons, missile launchers, and melta weapons in every way we can. Despite the increased need to bulk up on Troops choices, no Daemonhunters army can afford to shortchange themselves on anti-armour weaponry. This is even more true in 5th edition than in 4th edition. Witch Hunters: As with the Run rule, the ability to use your own units to screen other units adds entirely new tactical dimensions. And again, seldom-seen units in 4th edition (like Repentia and Arco-flagellents) come out as the clear winners. Run them behind your footslogging or mounted Sisters, and then clear a path for them once in assault range, leaving the bolter-toters free to seek out other targets.

There are five significant changes to assaults, which combine to make them quicker, deadlier, and more decisive than in the 4th edition. Firstly, when a unit charges into assault, the assaulted unit must consolidate into the assaulting unit, exactly as per the 4th edition Counter-assault USR. (Counter-assault, under 5th edition, gives a +1 Attack bonus to the assaulted unit if the unit passes a LD check.) The rules are unambiguous and designed, through step-by-step instructions, to ensure that the maximum number of models are in base contact and/or engaged (within 2 inches of a model in base contact with the enemy). Secondly, the concept of the “kill zone” has been eliminated. Wounds may be allocated to any model in the enemy squad, even those that are neither in base contact nor engaged. In fact, wounds are allocated and saves are rolled in exactly the same manner as for shooting. (And thus special or unique models are both more and less vulnerable than under 4th edition.) Thirdly, each and every model that began the close combat in base contact or engaged, and that is still

"Sisters of the Rose vanquish all who sally forth!" - Cannoness Angelique
And because most Sisters shooting is handled at short range, it should be easy to provide cover saves for your own troops while minimizing the amount that is available to the enemy. It is highly unlikely that vehicles will benefit from a cover save when you are in melta gun or inferno pistol range. Really, only the Exorcist is significantly effected by the new cover rules when considered from the offensive angle. As with the Daemonhunters, you should expect your Sisters to have to absorb more firepower than before, relying on their power armour more than was usually necessary in 4th edition. Fortunately, unless you feel you really need those 3+ invulnerable saves, there should be enough 4+ cover available to save you the need of burning Faith points to keep your girls alive as you make your approach.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
alive when its Initiative step arrives, will get to fight even if the model is no longer in base contact nor engaged! That is, the tactical element in 4th edtion combats of deciding which models to remove as casualties as a way to control who gets to fight in the later/slower Initiative steps is no longer possible. Each and every model that began the combat able to fight will fight, so long as it is alive to do so when it’s turn comes and there are enemy models. Fourthly, the winning and losing of close combats is decided purely by the number of unsaved wounds inflicted. There is no more outnumbering, or ratios. If one squad inflicts at least one more wound upon its enemy that it receives, it wins the combat, pure and simple. Furthermore, the losing squad must take a Morale check to remain locked in combat, but taken with a negative modifier equal to the number of wounds by which it lost the combat! (Fearless units who lose close combat must instead take a number of additional wounds, which can be saved, equal to the number of wounds by which it lost the combat!) We can expect to see units fleeing from combat much more often under 5th edition than under 4th edition. And as I’ve noted elsewhere, units who win assaults are no longer allowed to consolidate into a fresh enemy unit. This includes close combats that are already underway. Assaulting into cover has changed under 5th edition as well. Instead of the defenders going at Initiative 10, the assaulters go at Initiative 1. If the assaulting troops have “offensive” grenades (e.g., frag grenades), then the assaulters get to go at their usual Initiative. Finally, while vehicles are harder to kill from range, they are easier to handle in assault. Assaults against vehicles are now always resolved against the rear armour.

"Faith in the God-Emperor is my shield!" - Holy Prayers of the Sisters VII-XX
Opponents: These rules changes combine to make it virtually impossible for an assaulting unit (or army) to roll through a series of enemy units, significantly altering the way assault specialists have been traditionally employed in 4th edition. One lucky charge will no longer be enough to decimate an enemy. Assaults will have to be coordinated and supported if they are to be converted into longterm gains. It is otherwise far too easy to strand one’s assault units in clear sight, sitting ducks for a barrage of enemy firepower or a decisive counterassault. Now an opposing general will be required to put at least a modicum of thought into organizing his or her forces, rather than just pushing them forward, rolling the dice, and watching the carnage. Units like harlies and DC are almost too effective in 5th edition. When they rush into combat, they are highly likely to run their opponents off the table (if not slaughter them outright), and then strand themselves in the open. Assaulting hordes are the great beneficiaries here. Not only will they be more likely to make it into assault, thanks to the generous cover save rules, but once they charge in, they will be able to inflict significantly more damage than was often possible in 4th edtion. They can also absorb significantly more damage without hurting their assault potency. Having a high Initiative is still of paramount importance in close combat for many of us. But if you’re a horde your supreme weight of numbers will often be enough. Units on the receiving end will have to generate a massive amount of wounds to offset those that they themselves will be receiving. Daemonhunters: The altered consolidation rules have to be seen as a great boon for us. Despite the best of intentions and game plans, sometimes there is just not enough time to halt or weaken the advance of one or more dangerous assault units. There is nothing sadder than watching a squad of the Emperor’s finest get rolled by a squad of Harlequins or Death Company ... and then to suffer the indignity

Grey Knight Makro pitched sideways, his chest plate spraying blood and gore. Bounding over his glinting armour the Blood Letter howled, lapping at the spray of crimson liquid briefly. Flaming bolter rounds punched its arms wide, cutting it to ribbons. Striding forward, Justicar Agamennon laid done a sheet of fire as he grabbed Makro's backpack, hauling him away from the daemons reach. "Throne! Begone filth!" Light flared for a blinding second as Agamennons screaming halberd beheaded the Blood Letter to his right, another fallling to his left from the chattering storm bolter at his wrist.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
of having them dance on over to the next unit of Knights and watch the whole fiasco repeat itself. At least now we will have an opportunity to recover from such an ignoble beating. If you see something like that coming, at least now you can set up our other units to pounce on the enemy once they’ve done their initial damage. Valuable Troops they may be, but in pinch you can feed them to the wolves as bait and setup for a shooting/counter-assaulting trap. Even if they are easily wiped to a man, ISTs can make fantastic speed bumps for a fast/assaulty army, forcing them to digest what you toss them and setting them up for some righteous retribution from your more capable Grey Knights units. Somewhat offsetting our increased difficulties with armour at range, our Grey Knights are now capable of destroying any vehicle short of a land raider, monolith, or soul grinder in an assault. Melta bombs should rarely be taken (those points will be more valuable spent elsewhere in the army), as it will almost always be more beneficial for our Justicars to take 3 swipes with his S6 NFW than just one with a single melta bomb. All of the aforementioned vehicles were always best dealt with at range anyway; 5th edition doesn’t change that calculus. Witch Hunters: Overall, the new assault rules are a great boon for the Sisters of Battle. In a game dominated by MEQs, Sisters are at the lower end of the assault power spectrum. The fact that close

"Hatred and fear are merely vessels of Chaos that we shall crush" - Heard at the Siege of Athros VI
However, being on the losing end of an assault is much more dangerous than before. 5th edition will be the game of large units, especially large Troops units. Buying 8 to 10 models for virtually every power-armoured Grey Knights squad will be a practical necessity, else the consequences for our Fearless troops, should they lose an assault, will be dire. In fact, we should be even more careful about initiating assaults ourselves. Not only must we be relatively certain that we can win them, but we must be prepared for the consequences of beating the enemy off. Be certain that you are ready to have your Knights exposed after every assault. Don’t leave them isolated and easy pickings. Also, it is no longer enough, when facing a foe with superior assault capabilities, to simplay kite/ backpedal your way into cover so that we can at least fight simultaneously. Many such foes will have superior Initiative stats and also frag grenades or equivalent, meaning their assaults will be just as deadly whether or not our Knights are in cover. This simple rules change, when combined with the inability to consolidate into fresh enemy units, has such a huge impact on how we deal with foes like Tyranids, Eldar, Death Company, etc., that I feel the very nature of the Daemonhunters army has changed. In 4th edition, it was almost perfectly balanced between shooting and assaulting, but in 5th edition it is a majority shooting army. Our default tactical approach will, more often than not, consist of scooting-n-shooting, trying to remain at some distance to take maximum advantage of the shrouding and our stormbolters. Assaults will only be used as a last resort, when forced upon us by circumstances, or when facing an enemy with clearly inferior fighting abilities (e.g., Imperial Guard). While ISTs are no better, perhaps even worse, in 5th edition assaults than they were under 4th edition assaults, now they can at least serve a true purpose.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
will probably be able to keep them around down to the last model. Take 10 models in mounted squads, 14, 16, maybe even more in footslogging squads! Such large squads can actually perform reasonably well on 5th edition boards. Besides, shifting 16 or more Sisters off of an objective would be no mean feat ... for anybody. They make ideal objectivetakers.

"Switch targets Emperor!"




Commanded Sister Chel, her auspex chiming a warning. With a grace not easily achieved in ceramite the four battle sisters swung their heavy bolters up and over the parapet once more, tracking the lead vehicle. Runes blinked red then green one by one in Chels helm, indicating the squad had range and target priority. "For Celestine!" Booming rounds spat from their position, the vibrations shaking debris and rubble. Chel aimed her own storm bolter, sending two howling shots into the furious explosions and dust.
combats will result in more casualties than before is easily outweighed by Faith, the relative inexpense of Sisters, and most importantly of all: the Book of St Lucius. That little item alone makes Sisters effectively Stubborn (a new USR in 5th edition), and means that you can depend upon your troops to hold the line no matter how grisly things get, thus giving you ample time to appropriately respond with the rest of your army. On top of that, even if the girls finally get beaten down, that leaves the victors open to a brutal Divinely Guided fusillade of retribution because of their inability to consolidate into another unit. On the other hand, if you want to go looking for a fight, the Sisters are amply prepared for it. Frag grenades are available virtually everywhere (and with Faith, means that you can always fight ahead of MEQs whenever you want, even if they’re being cowardly and hiding in cover), along with plenty of flame templates for denying those precious cover saves. And the new rules for template weapons means you’ll be inflicting more wounds than ever before. The number of wounds are calculated all at once instead of one template at a time, which could add up to double or more the number of wounds possible under 4th edition. As with the Daemonhunters, you will want to maximize the sizes of your squads whenever possible. So long as a Book of St Lucius is near, you

There are now only three standard missions: Sieze Ground, Capture and Control, and Annihilation. However, there are also three variant deployment patterns: Pitched Battle, Spearhead, and Dawn of War. Both the mission and deployment are determined randomly at the start of the battle, resulting in 9 different possible games. Sieze Ground and Capture and Control are both objectives-based. Victory is determined solely by who claims the most objectives. Importantly, only non-vehicular Troops units can claim objectives (though a Troops unit mounted in a vehicle can claim objectives while embarked). Any unit can “contest”, or deny an objective, but only Troops can score them. Troops are scoring down to the last man, and non-Troops are capable of denying so long as they, too, aren’t completely destroyed. (Thus,

"For Celestine!"
Was the last thing she could have heard as Sister Feria pitched suddenly back, a mist of ruby where her helm had been. Snatching the heavy wepaon up in a second, Sister Chel cycled the feed belt into action once more. Swinging to face the rapidly approaching vehicles quickly, Sister Chel pulled hard on the trigger of her heavy bolter. The thumping vibrations shook her diaphragm as she avenged the young sisters death.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
an immobilized Rhino, providing it’s sitting on top of an objective, can still deny that objective to the enemy!) In Annihilation missions, players score one “Kill Point” for each enemy unit they entirely destroy. Whoever has the highest tally of KPs wins. There are no Victory Points. VPs are mentioned, as a smallish footnote almost, at the very back of the book as an option that might be beneficial for tournament use, or perhaps for “bragging rights” in drawn games. But they aren’t even mentioned in the main rules of the game. It’s unclear how often they will actually be used. Pitched Battle is the normal deployment pattern (you have a 12 inch swath along your long table edge). Spearhead is table quarters deployment. Dawn of War is a new deployment. The board is divided in half and each player deploys two Troops and one HQ, everything else is off-table. (Note that dedicated transports do count as a Troops unit for this purpose! However, if you deploy the transport, then the unit for which it was purchased must also be deployed, though not necessarily embarked.) Nightfighing rules are in effect for the 1st game turn, and you have the choice of placing the off-table units in Reserves or simply moving them on from your own long table edge during your 1st turn. Speaking of Reserves, you may place as many units as you wish in Reserves. All, one, some, or none, it’s entirely up to you. In Reserves, you may elect to join Characters to other units so they will arrive at the same time, or embark a unit in a non-dedicated vehicle (perhaps with a Character joined as well!), and they will all arrive at once. There is much more flexibility than before. And as I noted above in the Movement Phase section, units that Scout or Infiltrate may either be deployed normally or they may be placed in Reserves and arrive via Outflanking. The other new twist regarding deployment is that whoever wins the roll-off for first turn deploys his or her entire force first. Only then does the opponent who lost the first turn deploy his or her army. Then the player who deployed first takes the first turn of the game. If the losing player chooses, they may try to “Sieze the Initiative”. If they choose to do so, and after all deployment can roll a 6, they get to go first.

"So it is, heretics and daemons all, my Knights will win this day!" - Inquisitor Hannos
Finally, all games will have a random length. 1/3 of them will go just 5 turns, 1/3 will end after 6 turns, and 1/3 will end after 7 turns. This is likely to create quite a bit of excitement as both players scramble to consolidate their positions while simultaneously preparing for an uncertain future. You will never know whether a next turn will actually be played until it is time for it to (possibly) arrive. Opponents: The pressure to include more than the required minimum of two Troops choices is, obviously, great. And unless one likes playing for draws, a practical necessity. At least three Troops will be necessary in games up to 1500 pts, and 4 or more Troops will probably be required for games of 1500 pts or more. Armies with great Troops choices (e.g., Chaos Space Marines, Orks, Necrons) have every incentive to load up on them. Daemonhunters: The necessity to maximize scoring Troops effectively sounds the death knell of the Fast Attack teleporting Grey Knight squad. There will never be a strong enough incentive to sacrifice a scoring unit just so you can Deep Strike. Deep Striking will now be under the exclusive purview of our Terminators. Besides, having Fearless Troops that are as potent and capable as Grey Knights must be considered a huge advantage for the army, one that we should push for all it is worth. The Annihilation mission may actually be an advantageous mission for us to play. The DH is commonly outnumbered, both in model count and in unit count, and victories have almost always required us to kill much more than we lost. That is, the DH won’t have a vast amount of KPs available

Fire swam across the surface of the planet, levelling all to ash. As a ball of flaming death the planet was cleansed in seconds. Inquisitor Hannos watched from the thick amroured glass of his battle frigate. Lance cannons withdrew behind shuttered port holes, their use now done.

"And with that, I declare this world fit for Imperial rule once more."


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
for taking and we’re already accustomed to accruing them at a faster rate than we lose them. It’ll simply be business as usual. Witch Hunters: The new missions and deployments don’t really affect Sisters army lists other than to make the taking of additional Sisters Troops virtually mandatory. Fortunately, they are excellent, flexible units. And while taking more Troops might inevitably mean fewer specialists (like Seraphim, Retributors, or Celestians) because of the tightening points pressures, it’s not like you’ll be trading down very far.

Daemonhunters - HQ
One change to the rules that has not yet been mentioned is that Independent Characters that have a dedicated retinue lose their IC status and instead become just another model in the squad. This was always a contentious issue under 4th edition because GW never FAQ’d whether the verbiage in the codex was overridden by the advent of the 4th edition rules, so there was considerable confusion as to how Grey Knight Heroes should be treated while they had their retinue. At least now the 5th edition rules and the rules in the codex sync up perfectly. And it also makes retinue a very attractive option, more attractive than buying a lone GK Hero and joining them up to an Elites Terminator squad, even with the changes in deployment rules.

Morale tests are a subset of LD tests, a unit containing an Inquisitor Lord can, so long as he is alive, hold up an assault indefinitely. Not being Fearless, the unit won’t suffer automatic wounds for losing an assault, yet it will never have to make a break test, either! It will either stick around or flee, at your pleasure. While a very expensive option, building a close combat Inquisitor Lord squad can prove valuable just because of Iron Will, making it the one of the ultimate tar pit units in all of 40K. (Can anyone say “Inquisitor Lord Coteaz”?)

Daemonhunters - Elites "Warp spawn filth! Let my force weapon be as the Emperors vengeance on you!" - Brother Captain Jurgens
Deep striking our GKT HQs is also more attractive than before. Not only has Deep Striking become less risky, but now our power-armoured Knights cannot afford that luxury. (They will be required to fulfill Troops obligations of claiming objectives.) I have always been a fan of foot-slogging GKT squads with a pair of psycannons (so much so that I rarely deployed them via Deep Strike), and that will still be viable under 5th edition. But there can be no denying that the fluffier Deep Strike delivery method for our Terminators should be seriously considered. Constructing shooty Inquisitorial firebases is still going to be the most effective build for them, but Iron Will has grown in power under 5th edition. Since Sadly, painfully, the new assault rules have significantly nerfed the combat effectiveness of assassins. Unless you send them up against relatively small or weak units, they are very likely to lose after the initial round of combat and either die outright or by taking additional wounds as a result of being Fearless. Death Cult Assassins must be bought en masse and used together to have any effect whatsoever. However, not being a unit, they can’t actually be used to provide cover saves to units behind them! The Eversor is no longer able to smash through unit after unit; he’s hardly going to be capable of taking down even one unit anymore! The Callidus will largely be useful just for A Word In Your Ear, as she’s hardly likely to do much beyond kill a couple of models in assault before biting it.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
It’s still an OK option if you want a cheap but at least somewhat effective way to unlock assassins (assuming you still think they’re worth the investment), but a shooty retinue is really a superior option, considering. Certainly, one psycannontoting model may not seem like much of a threat to the enemy, and you may even be able to sneak him over to an objective and contest it as a result, but he’s nowhere near the trouble-maker he was in 4th edition. And if you’re going to build a shooty Inquisitor, why not get an Inquisitor Lord? Iron will alone is worth the 25 pts, easily. Everything noted above about Grey Knight HQs applies here as well, of course, being virtually identical in nature.

Snow gusted round the kneeling silver armoured warriors, their heads low in prayer. Ancient words echoed in the circle, swords held upright, their surfaces burnished gold. Helms lay at their feet, angular plates with ornate scripture adorning them. Glowing runes hazed their suits power units, the exhausts gently idle. With a final word the Grey Knights stood as one, sheathing their swords into place. The Justicar placed his hand upon the sacred text, the mem-pages barely flicking in the strong winter gale. Each man placed his gauntlet in turn upon the book, saying a concluding private benediction before battle.
The Vindicare -- already a subpar choice because of his inability to predictably inflict wounds (he averaged less than 3 wounds per game under 4th edition) -- has been rendered virtually useless by the wide availability of cover saves. Even with his special rules, most units will be granted at least 5+ cover saves to his shots. Perhaps the only assassin that comes out looking better is the Culexus. He was never that effective in combat anyway (except in very limited circumstances), but his ability to force basic LD down to 7 could potentially prove invaluable in quickly running enemy units off the board. Keep him nearby in an assault, and even a slight victory could force the enemy to flee. About the only thing that brightens up the picture for assassins is their ability to Outflank. Even with a much less effective assault impact, getting several DCAs and/or an Eversor to suddenly appear on the flank could potentially cause enough mayhem to be useful. Of course, Reserves and Outflanking make the timely appearance of the assassin(s) unpredictable, so it’s nothing you can count on. With a little luck, however, they still have the ability to swing a game in your favor. Regarding Elite Inquisitors, without Independent Character status protecting him any longer, the psycannon-sniper-supreme is a thing of the past.

Daemonhunters - Troops
Grey Knights, Grey Knights, Grey Knights ... and more Grey Knights. Always highly regarded (if expensieve), 5th edition makes our GKs one of the best Troops choices in the game (even with the expense). Load up on as many as you can afford. But be certain to get large squads, 8 to 10 models, every time. Small squads are just not going to have that great of an impact when push comes to shove. 5th edition is a game that encourages and practically requires large Troops units to carry the day. There is still a use for “mini-purgation” squads (5-6 GKs, 2x psycannons), but they should be set up as firebases to hold an objective near or in your deployment zone. (Or just to rain dakka down upon the enemy in Annihilation missions.) If you really want to deep strike psycannons behind enemy lines for shots at rear armour, use Terminators instead.

"Run! They come! The Grey Knights come! We will all be dead by noon!" - Heretics at the Wailing wall on Askeron V
Inquisitorial Storm Troopers are very attractive choices, too. Their transports are more survivable, and even when damaged, won’t necessarilyy cause any harm to the guys riding inside. (The new damage results rules are quite forgiving.) And, of course, those Rhinos and Chimeras can conceivably be used to shuttle some Grey Knights around the field, too! Mounted or unmounted, ISTs can take objectives, screen other units, and serve as speed bumps to slow the advance of fast assault forces. There are very few downsides to these guys, almost no matter what configuration you take. (But always remember


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
to double up on special weapons, especially meltas or plasmas, as those weapons provide capabilities that GKs themselves simply cannot match.) That said, the “doormat” squad (5+ guys w/2x meltas or plasma, IST vet sgt with a TP homer, Rhino) is no longer as useful for bringing in GK reserves. It’s unlikely that our forces can afford more than a single Terminator squad (probaby as the HQ) to perform that role; all our power-armoured Knights should be bought as Troops. And with that few teleporting squads, plus the less harmful Deep Striking mishaps results, there is little need to waste the 20 pts on such an upgrade. In fact, there is no good reason to invest in IST vet sergeants that I can see. Those points would inevitably be better spent on just another IST model, if nothing else. If you’re playing pure GK, you should shoot for at least 3 Troops choices in games up to 1500 pts (2430 Knights), and 4 or more Troops GKs (32+ Knights) for larger games. You will never have enough. what dreadnoughts are for in this army. Assaultoriented dreadnoughts -- or any other weapons loadout -- are either suboptimal or redundant, or both. Don’t bother. Land Raiders, like other vehicles, got both nerfed and boosted. They’re more survivable than before because of the new damage reduction table and their ability to take advantage of cover saves. (Though it’s such a large vehicle that gaining Obscured status will be a bit more difficult to pull off.) However, the redefinition of defensive weaponry means that, on the move, a land raider can only fire a single one of its weapons at full BS. Land Raider Crusaders fared much better because not only did their survivability increase, but along with a Machine Spirit, remain capable of firing all of their weapons systems while on the move. While Land Raiders, in my opinion, still have a slight edge (because of our desparate need for long-range heavy firepower), the Crusader has become considerably more attractive. Orbital Strikes can still be fun, I suppose, but the pressures and requirements of 5th edition army lists has changed so much that I don’t see myself ever using them again. Sure, they can be targeted to an objective and cause havoc that way, but all I’ll ever see are points that could have gone to my antiarmour needs or to another precious 3 Grey Knights or so. It’s highly unlikely that a Strike could, on its

Daemonhunters - Fast Attack
There was never anything other than Teleport Attack Grey Knights here, and I cannot think of any good reason to ever use them again. The army was always short of small “t” troops, and the new edition now requires a hefty amount of capital “T” Troops. Grey Knights are needed on the ground, so don’t bother with these guys anymore. Fast Attack is now for the exclusive use of allied or inducted units (e.g., Seraphim) ... if you can even afford the points for such extravegances.

Daemonhunters - Heavy Support
Despite the absolute necessity to fill up on Troops, the DH army’s shortcomings in the heavy/anti-armour weaponry department have only been exacerbated by the 5th edition rules. Dreadnoughts with TLLCs and MLs have always been the traditional mainstay in this department, and they should continue to be so going forward. Unlike most tanks, they can fire all their weapons on the move, and they stand to benefit from the superior cover rules even more than other vehicles because of their relatively small physical profile. It is difficult to imagine any reason to not use the TLLC/ML weapons loadout on every GK dreadnought. GKs can pretty much tackle armour in an assault just fine in 5th edition, and are already superb at taking apart infantry from range or up close. What they don’t have is long-range heavy firepower: so that’s

Shards of light imploded around Trooper Jense as he was blown clear of the column. His back slammed against what he thought were a statues legs and he scrambled for his las-rifle but it was nowhere to be found. Gaping in awe at the lurching Death Guard mounting the steps he made to get up. Firm, strong silver gauntlets gripped him even as the traitors swung their bolters up at him. "Stay down for a moment brother!" Dragging him behind his armoured protection, Grey Knight Orpheo put himself between the Trooper and the plague Marines, ricochets whining from him as the dark enemies weapons coughed shots at him.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
own, prevent an objective from being claimed. Most objectives will be placed in terrain, and thus any potential claimants would benefit from 4+ cover saves. option -- she even has the option to Deep Strike, thanks to the new jump pack rules! -- building a Celestian retinue around around a Canoness or Palatine has been made significantly more attractive, and would make the perfect HQ for a footslogging Sisters “horde”. The increased survivability of vehicles and their occupants also makes mounting such a squad attractive and viable, no matter what kind of list you have. See the Daemonhunters HQ section, above, for my thoughts regarding Inquisitor Lords in 5th edition.

Daemonhunters - Allied and Inducted Units
Sadly, the points pressures on a Daemonhunters list are so extreme that the use of allies will need to be minimized. Inducted Guardsmen can help to bring mobility (in the form of Armoured Fist squads) and long-range heavy weaponry (in the form of lascannons and missile launchers), but they take up precious Troops choices that are probably better left for Grey Knights or ISTs, both of whom are more survivable and capable. Allying in units from the Witch Hunters remains an excellent option, and there’s nothing wrong with Sisters of Battle for Troops! However, in an army without much Faith, Seraphim remain the single best allying option for the DH. Even without Faith, they supply speed and -- with a pair of inferno pistols and an eviscerator on the Veteran Superior -- excellent and much-needed anti-armour capabilities as well. The problem is that Seraphim are a significant investment, and that usually means they enter the list at the expense of some precious Troops or a precious Heavy Support choice. They may still add something to the army, but there can be no question but that, under 5th edition, they come with drawbacks that must be weighed carefully. (See the Witch Hunters Fast Attack section, below, for more on Seraphim.) Of course, Radical DH gamers may have little choice, and for them inducting in some Guard or, preferably, Space Marines will be a necessary step in maintaining a viable list. Allying in Sisters of Battle, anywhere and everywhere, should also be a strong consideration.

Witch Hunters - Elites
As I mentioned earlier in this article, Arco-flagellants and Sisters Repentia deserve a second look in 5th edition. Running, the ability to Go to Ground, and the ready availability of cover saves makes both of these units entirely viable, even in a competitive environment. It will be much easier to deliver these units on target than ever before, and thus their inclusion should open up new vistas of tactical options for the canny Witch Hunter general. For my comments regarding Inquisitors and assassins, see the Daemonhunters Elites section, above.

Witch Hunters - Troops
Sisters, Sisters, Sisters ... and more Sisters. What more needs to be said? Yes, you can also take ISTs (and for my thoughts on them, see the Daemonhunters Troops section, above), but really, why would you? You’d have to really love their fluff or their models to consider it. Sisters are superior Troops choices in virtually every way. You should aim to field at least three Sisters units in games smaller than 1500 pts, and four or more Sisters units in every game of 1500 pts and larger. Filling out all 6 Troops choices with Sisters will not only be possible, it could even prove useful and decisive. I’d do it in any game I played that was at least 2000 pts in size. Another option worth considering is to ally in a squad, or even two, of Grey Knights from the Daemonhunters. A significant investment, to be sure, but they bring quite a bit to the table, including a MEQ statline, significant dakka at a longer range than the Sisters can generate, and superior close combat capability among the game’s elite units. They would integrate well with a footslogging Sisters force, drawing a significant amount of attention and laying down plenty of dakka -- and the threat of a decisive assault -- while the Sisters line up for Divine Guidance and/or a counter-assault of their own.

"Flame and faith Sisters! Let the Letters of Blood know banishment of this realm!" - Sister Jannice Witch Hunters - HQ
As with Grey Knight Heroes, the Sororitas Heroines benefit from the new retinue rules, which are really a throwback to the 3rd edition (see that section, above). While the flying Canoness is still a superior


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
Being Fearless means they’ll have to be killed to the last man to be denied an objective; they can’t be run off the table by anything. Orbital Strikes simply don’t measure up. See the Daemonhunters Heavy Support section, above, for my thoughts regarding them.

Witch Hunters - Fast Attack
Seraphim are still the clearly superior Fast Attack option. And in 5th edition, they have the option to Deep Strike! You can even join a flying Canoness to them while in Reserves, and that single unit can enter play together on a single Reserves roll. Running them on the board is still viable -- and there should be plenty of cover for protection as you do so, and Run makes them even faster! -- but at least now you have a choice. On the other hand, Seraphim have also been nerfed slightly. Firstly, they can only successfully Hit and Run out of combat with a successful Initiative test. 1/3 of the time, therefore, they’ll stay put. Also, they cannot use their jump packs when exiting area/ difficult terrain without suffering dangerous terrain rolls. Even so, Seraphim still represent a serious threat to virtually any enemy asset, and are easily worth the investment. Dominions still don’t seem to be worth very much, especially considering the new reliance on Troops to claim objectives. The ability to double up on special weapons pales in comparison to the need to have as many Troops choices as is possible. If you want an Immolator that badly, take Celestians, or, if you have the slot available just get an undedicated Heavy Support Immolator.

Witch Hunters - Allied and Inducted Units
Other than bringing in some Grey Knights allies, there is virtually zero reason to consider bringing in units from other Codexes. Inducted Guard can help you out in the ranged firepower department, but as with the Daemonhunters, they cost you precious Troops slots that would be better spent on more Sisters. Besides, between Exorcists and Retributors -- and the ability to bring innumberable melta weapons to bear very quickly -- the need for Guard, their weaponry, or their vehicles is practically nil. Playing a radical Witch Hunters force is not even possible, rules-wise, like it is with the Daemonhunters (who can at least take Daemonhosts to represent such heresy), and I’ve never seen anybody even attempt it (except as the base for their radical Daemonhunters army!). There’s just no reason to consider inducting Space Marines when you can bulk up on Sisters and Faith ... not to mention the superior fluff and flavor that comes with them!

While I believe that Daemonhunter army list building changed radically -- and might even have become, necessarily, somewhat more restrictive -- the army has become somewhat more competitive under the new rules set. Grey Knights are among the game’s most potent, flexible, and valuable Troops, and that is worth a lot in 5th edition. Land Raiders, despite their expense, give the army significant advantages in surviability and mobility over and beyond what the average 40K army has. And our Terminators have been freed of the need to conserve Victory Points or take objectives themselves, and thus can be let loose to do what they do best: rip apart enemy foes with slashing Nemesis Force Weaponry. For the Witch Hunters, the 5th edition rules set has expanded the tactical toolset immeasurably. Built upon a solid core of dependable and capable Sisters, Witch Hunters generals no longer need believe that mechanized Sisters be the only practical army build of any significant strength. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

Witch Hunters - Heavy Support
Exorcists and Retributors have always been and still remain superior options. Both units provide the only long-range firepower in the army, making them invaluable additions to any kind of list you make. Both units should be more survivable and have more shooting opportunities in 5th edition. Immolators are undoubtedly cool, but should typically be bought as a dedicated transport for Celestians. But if you can spare the Heavy Support choice, then go for it. As mentioned earlier, Penitent Engines got a major power boost thanks to Run and the increased availability of cover. These machines of mayhem should be seriously considered for every Witch Hunters army that is intent about getting right up into the opponent’s face. Measured against this embarrasment of riches,


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

hen discussing Space Wolves and 5th Edition things can get a bit tricky. In this article I will discuss the changes and how they affect SW armies. Where things are not clear, I will give the consensus opinion of myself and my fellow B&C Mod, Lord Ragnarok. Note that my gaming group and I have been using these decisions in our 5th Edition play testing and have found them to be the most reasonable on the table interpretation of the SW Codex and 5th Edition rules. Having played a couple of games now using the 5th Edition rules I must say that over all the system strikes me as superior to 4th Edition and the changes made in regards to my beloved Space Pups are generally for the better.


potential upgrades available to a Wolf Guard unit. In particular Power Fist (PF) wielding models may now be better off with a combi-weapon of some sort now, as a pistol or CCW won’t grant an extra attack to a PF user (only another Power Fist will) and ‘True Grit’ isn’t going to help with a PF either. Our Wolf Scouts now gain the advantage of having the ‘Out Flank’ USR, at least for the time being, making them perhaps the most flexible Scouting unit in the game. The ‘Out Flank’ USR allows scout units to come into play from reserve along the sides of the battlefield, potentially giving the controlling player the chance to, well, out flank their opponent. This also makes it viable for more than one Scout pack in an army now. One can be use the ‘Operate Behind Enemy Lines’ rule from the Codex whilst the other uses ‘Out Flank’ giving you two elite units attacking from the weakest points of the enemy’s line.

What follows are some comments on specific changes and perhaps more tellingly some comments on how my army changed from 4th to 5th Edition to make the most of the new rules.

The ‘Retinue’ rule is a great boon here. As my group understood it and as we’ve been playing it, an Independent Character (IC) with a Wolf Guard bodyguard effectively becomes simply an upgraded character for the squad (much like a Codex: Space Marine Veteran Sergeant). This means that in close combat he cannot be singled out and also means that he only has to be within 2” of a friendly model to strike into close combat. ICs without a Retinue also benefit, as they can now be attached to a designated Pack prior to the game and come in a Drop Pod at the same time as the squad they have joined with a single Reserves roll. The rules for ICs joining squads have also been clarified, please see the article ‘Characters’ elsewhere in this edition for further information.

Grey Hunters don’t really change much with the new rules, they remain perhaps the most flexible tactical squad in the game but still lack the skills offered by more specialised units. Note that the benefit of a Wolf Guard Pack Leader with Terminator Armour is much more noticeable now with the new allocating of wounds rules. The changes to the ‘Counter Charge’ USR rule don’t really benefit us right now as we have True Grit, so the number

Wolf Guard Bodyguard units are now affected by the altered ‘Retinue’ rules and if attached to an IC now benefit from the changes outlined above. Changes in the way in which extra close combat attacks are granted by specific gear have affected many of the

Wolf Guard Raffon let the wolf in him have its head as he barrelled into the Thousand Son, smashing the hated enemies form across the plaza with his power fist. Swinging his ancient storm bolter up he blazed rounds into the recumbant traitor, shredding power armour. Fangs bared he grinned in triumph, before continuing the hunt.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
of attacks we make stays the same regardless of passing our Leadership check or not. I expect our new Codex will bring us back into line with other armies however, as I believe the True Grit rule will be removed from the rulebook and that we will be equipped in a very similar way to Chaos marines with a bolter, bolt pistol, and close combat weapon. But, this is purely an educated guess on my part. With the loss of an attack with Power Fist wielding Grey Hunters (as noted for Wolf Guard), Power Weapons become a more attractive option and those who mixed bolters and pistols within a Pack to maximize the effectiveness of PF wielders on the charge may as well go ahead and add those extra bolt guns in place of the pistols. I have been using the new ‘Run’ rule to great effect, by fielding a large Ten man pack with a Pack Leader in Terminator Armour, all on foot. With the new scoring unit rules in most scenarios this Pack is often the key to capturing an objective and are very hard to shift once they decide they are going to dig in somewhere. Blood Claws suffer the most from the changes to how additional attacks work with Power Fists, especially in after the first round of a close combat. As a result I’ve been working on making some changes from my standard PF heavy squads to a more Power Weapons oriented list. I think PFs are going to be the sole property of the Pack Leaders in these Packs for me. An interesting note here, the wording of the ‘Counter Attack’ USR and that of the ‘Berserk Charge’ Blood Claw rule leads me to believe that if a Blood Claw Pack passes its Leadership check when it is charged, it gains not one, but two attacks! This would make Blood Claws a much better supporting unit as they could then receive a charge effectively. Hopefully the upcoming FAQ will clarify this situation.

Plasma cannon toting Pack or a Pack armed with Missile Launchers very interesting. You can find the new rules for ‘Blast Weapons’ elsewhere in ‘Shall They Know Fear?’ As for Vehicles, these act in much the same manner as their Space Marine Counter parts, you can find more information on issues such as the new and improved Rhino ‘Battle Taxi Service’ and the changes to survivability of embarked troops in transports elsewhere in our e-zine.

"Russ was my lord, miss him? No! He returns to us at the Wolftime!" - Bjorn the Fell Handed.

As mentioned before the True Grit rule has been removed from the Rule book as a Universal Special Rule, this means that until we are told other wise we revert to the wording in the Space Wolves Codex. Now, I have previously heard some arguments that the codex allows us to use combi-weapons with True Grit but I have to say here that I’m not wholly convinced, the wording seems clear to me that it’s only regular bolters that are of use with this rule, but in the end as GW would say these rules are just

Long Fangs, like their younger Grey Hunter brethren, stay much the same with the updated 5th Edition rules. I would be remiss however if I didn’t mention that the changed ‘Blast Weapon’ rules will make a


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
guide lines and the aim is for you and your opponent to have fun, so if you agree otherwise then have at it by all means. The ‘No Matter the Odds’ rule is worthless as it is written, being outnumbered in close combat matters not at all in 5th Edition. The way my group and I have been treating this rule is that we ignore Modifiers for losing close combat. This seems to be the logical extension of the rule until the FAQ is released, when one of two things will happen. Either the rule will go away, or they will modify it. Again, reach a consensus with your opponent before the game starts on this rule. The ‘Wolf Pelt’ has now become a very worthwhile piece of war gear now, plus one attack on the Counter Charge, especially for only a few points, represents great value. I am taking these by the Packload whilst supplies last. Runic Charms, and Wolf Pelts. Two have Assault Cannons and a Single Lightning Claw, 2 two have Combi-Plasmas, one of these has a Lightning Claw and the other a Thunder Hammer. Used to support my Troops units they generally start on foot as does the bulk of my army. This pack is nigh on perfect for standing, shooting and then taking an opponent’s charge. In fact they are better when receiving the charge due to the ‘Counter Attack’ USR and their Wolf Pelts with an awesome 19 Lightning Claw attacks followed up by 4 Thunder hammer attacks. Go ahead, charge these guys, I dare you... As you can see from my two new ‘must have’ units and the analysis a foot slogging army is a much more viable selection with the 5th Edition rules than it was during 4th, a fact that should have Space Wolf commanders across the Imperium rejoicing. I am finding however that either some fast elements or at least some transports are going to be needed in order to handle all of the scenarios, and I am currently working on a couple of Rhino Transports to fill the gap. Keep an eye on ‘Shall They Know Fear’, as a living document it will be updated to reflect ongoing changes and challenges.

There are now two units that I consider a must take for my armies. First is a Troop choice as Troops are the name of the game these days, only they can capture objectives in 2 out of 3 standard 5th Edition scenarios. As I said above I have been using a large Grey Hunter pack as my core Troop choice whilst play testing the 5th Edition rules, the squad is configured as follows:

"Ale, bring ale for this foe is almost done with!" - Althred the Thirsty
10 Grey Hunters: 2 with Power Weapon and bolter, 2 with Plasma Pistols, 1 with a Plasma Gun, 5 with bolters. They are joined by a Wolf Guard Pack Leader with Terminator Armour,Runic Charm, Power Fist and a Combi-Plasma. This has proved to be a good solid core for my Army. With the ‘Run’ USR they can get where they need to be and are good in both short ranged fire fights and close combat. The second ‘must have’ on my list is my primary HQ - a Rune Priest in Terminator Armour with a pair of Lightning Claws and a Wolf Pelt. He is followed by a retinue of 4 Wolf Guards in Terminator Armour,

"Young Ragnar? Aye, he is still a pup! But with a fierce bite!" - Njal Stormcaller

Over all the Space Wolves have seen some much needed improvements with the 5th Edition. We are still in need of an update, and some of what has been discussed may become null in a few weeks when the FAQ is released but for now Wolf Lords have much to be thankful for. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

ine years after the release of a very powerful and forever despised/fondly remembered Blood Angels Codex (depending on your side of the table), June 2007 saw the long awaited, highly anticipated renewal of the Blood Angels. However, for many players our swift following of suit after the Dark Angels Codex left many players with either a bitter taste in their mouths or a complete loss of passion for the army – and ‘optional’ rending DC just wasn’t enough to re-ignite that doused fire. unit. I will do my best to avoid prescriptive advice and try stick to the facts and let your play style dictate your unit selection based on the information available. Also, please note, that this Tactica is written with a very broad reader base in mind. It tries to accommodate the readers that have not been scouring the internet for months on end for 5th Edition rumours and as a result the very basic changes that many (especially the online savvy) may already be aware of have been included.

Special Characters – a quick note "The Inquisition and the Administratum say we are weak, because some of us have given in to the Black Rage- they are fools! The Black Rage makes us strong, because we must resist its temptations every day of our lives or be forever damned!" - Chaplain Argustes"
Unbeknown to all but GW’s inner circle, the BA ‘dex, much like the DA ‘dex was done not only with the ‘new codex style’ in mind but, more accurately, with the new game system fully taken into consideration. Many of the missing puzzle pieces players had just assumed we’re non-sensical and simply the result of poor game design, suddenly fall into place when you look at the 40k 5th Edition rulebook. Going ahead to state the blindingly obvious, 4th Edition BA play decidedly differently from 5th Edition BA – much like every other Codex out there. However, we have the added benefit which we share with only 4 other Codices. We were designed for 5th. It is really important to note that while the majority of the puzzle pieces are in place, there are still one or two mysteries remaining. These unknown factors will only come to the fore 2-3 months down the line with the release of the new Codex: Space Marines and its subsequent interaction (if any) with our favorite .PDF. The concept of ‘Opponent’s Permission Special Characters’ was a decision that GW must have been regretting from very shortly after it went to print until now (Much like their fumbled: ‘A Word about Secrecy’ rule - which they have since changed too.). What inadvertently happened was players were no longer able to use ‘cool’ special characters in their pick-up games because opponents would simply not grant permission for them to do so. GW caught on to this fact very quickly and started excluding the ‘opponents permission’ Special Character provisory as early on as the last Necron codex. However, it wasn’t until the most recent Eldar codex where the concept of the ‘Special Character’ was totally abolished and replaced by ‘Named HQs.’ While this difference may be a mere matter of naming convention for some, it is in fact a decidedly different style of thinking that needs to be acknowledged by all. Too many players still post online saying they are unable to field a ‘Special Character’ in the tournaments or the gaming groups that they are playing with. Now, if a player is wanting to handicap or limit themselves for fluff reasons or personal justification that they don’t feel they should include a named HQ of legend on account of his rarity – great. They are more than within their right to do so. No-one can tell them otherwise. However, telling others to do so is exactly the same as telling your friend/ opponent that Dreadnoughts/Terminators are rare and you should not play with more than one, if any at all, or tantamount to prescribing what army their opponents/friends play. Furthermore, having an event (tournament) that specifically excludes certain aspects of your army which has been balanced for

As a general overview and introduction into this BA 5th Edition Tactica, I’ll review our army unit by


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

5th Edition on account of a 3rd Edition throwback is certainly beyond unfair – it’s blatantly stubborn. My advice to new and old players who experience unwarranted and unjustified pressure to not play named HQs is to simply ignore it as much as you can. Don’t use the named HQ as a crutch. Don’t model your army around one power piece and continue using it as a beat down stick to torture poor 12 year olds who can’t get around it, but don’t feel bad about including it to give your army a bit more punch. That’s why they’re there.

DC rending ability and a Chaplain’s ‘Litanies’ rule and you pretty much have your first ‘no brainer’. Unlike other Space Marine chapters, the use of our Chaplains ties in directly to the use of the DC. We don’t have the luxury of using the Chaplain as a regular or veteran assault squad booster. 5th Edition will see no difference in this for people wanting to play a Chaplain with a jump pack. However, 5th Edition has allowed us to open up some previously un-thought of possibilities which may see us experimenting without the standard jump pack Chaplain.

Lemartes & the Death Company
Blood Angel lists for the last year have been dominated by one universal point of obviousness. What person would not take +1W and a special ability to reduce the Leadership of the enemy for an extra 5 points? Couple this with the requirement for us to be able to control our ‘optional’ Death Company, the new

Points Of Change
Gentle Jogging: The ability for all units to now ‘Run’ (a D6” move) allows for the previously slow Corbulo to get a little more speed and possibly a little more action regarding DC control allowing our Chaplain to support elsewhere if needed. Mounted Support: It may be ambiguous but mounted troops may score from within a transport.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
As a result, there is precedence for models being able to use their controlling influence from within a vehicle. This allows for Corbulo or a Chaplain to control the DC from within a vehicle. Additionally, models with ‘Rage’ (a new Universal Special Rule – and undoubtedly a rule targeted at the Death Company) do not have to disembark from a vehicle to engage enemies, nor does the vehicle have to move if a unit with ‘Rage’ is embarked. Vehicles now follow a single damage table and are somewhat sturdier and more difficult to kill. This in turn may allow for us to use an entirely different primary HQ – Librarian/Master without fear of ‘wasting’ the points spent on DC. There are no more consolidation moves of 3”. Every consolidation move in combat is a D6” move. Additionally, if you wipe out your opponent you may NOT consolidate into a new opponent. The days of leap-frogging into clusters of weak enemy units using our DC as a steamroller are dead and gone. A good assault from DC will leave our main enemy dead and our DC standing in the middle of the battlefield with their collective chainswords in hand waiting for the next volley of enemy fire.

Chaplain + DC on the attack
A squad of 8 DC led by a Chaplain that charges a squad of 10 MEq will do an average of about 8 unsaved wounds and then, in all likelihood, with minimal return attacks will either fail their LD, be forced to take a barrage of extra saves or be wiped out by the massacre move. All of which will leave our DC out in the open. Remember to work out the new wound allocation correctly as it will sometimes help you on the attack with enemy special weapons. We now need to use the DC much, much more cleverly and carefully than before, or make sure


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
they don’t wipe out what they hit in one turn. All of this at least gives us more than just one ‘no-brainer’ to work with. With 5th Edition Rending and 5th Edition wounding allocation.. ie: on 6s to wound- not to hit. Regarding Rending: It is important to note that Vs. WS4+ the new ‘Rending’, even with re-rolls to hit, has taken a huge powering down with a loss of about 50% rends. (4 down from 8 in an 8man DC squad). Vs. WS3 or lower ‘Rending’ is only slightly better than WS4. (Almost 5 down from 8 in an 8man DC squad).

As useful as Mephiston was in 4th, Dante will be in 5th. Preferred enemy to all BA in 12”. Coupled with his Death Mask, Rites of Battle, his mobility and Melta gun – you have yourself an incredible unit that simply boosts the potential of your army many times over. Dante & Corbulo are already working their neo tagteam way into BA players lists online, trying to usurp the power from the previous Lemartes/Mephiston tag-team of devastation.

Other Options
The other non-named HQs will more than likely take a back seat to named characters for most tournament players.

"Rage and strength lend us bearing in times of strife." - Mephiston
Feel no Pain. No longer works with AP1 and AP2 weapons or weapons that ‘always’ ignore armour saves (including Perils and Dangerous terrain). This small ability which allowed Mephiston to shrug off Lascannons and lasguns with equal ease is now gone. Force Weapons – Now count as Instant Death wounds. Our big name bug killer and uber Chaos/ Eldar Character killer - gone. While Mephiston is still the squad killer he always was, he is now even more vulnerable to incoming fire and less useful as a big gribbly hunter. This may not be enough to dissuade many players of his usefulness in their lists, but it will definitely make them think twice about other options.

Librarians Unfortunately, in my humble opinion, I see the lowly BA librarian falling to the bottom of the list of potential HQs. Why? I’ll give you a few reasons. • • The forceweapon’s poor ability to kill big critters as mentioned. Poor synchronicity of powers (ie: you need to use wings to get to combat then can’t use your combat power/ weapon) Leadership 9 psychic hood breakdown: Chance to beat opponents power on your roll 1. Impossible 2. Impossible 3. 16.7% 4. 33.3% 5. 50% 6. 66.6%

• •

Combined with the above mentioned factors, and the fact that only Troops are scoring, Corbulo’s ability to boost BA units may see him getting much more use than ever before – with or without a power weapon….which is sadly not the case with…

Chaplains retain their usefulness, Lemartes will remain No.1 for players wanting a JP chaplain. Other configurations could see more use though, but possibly only as a secondary choice. Sadly, Special Weapon limitations - Models with two different special CCWs (eg; powerfist/Power weapon) will lose their +1 attack bonus for hand to hand weapons.

Tycho now gets a minor buff against Orks in that Preferred enemy now grants re-rolls to hit as opposed to hits on 3s. Sadly this is the limit to his usefulness as he is still merely a Captain with a special ability for himself vs. Orks.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

A lot of the Captain’s use will now rely on what GW decides to do with Rites of Battle. (This is relating 5th Edition Codex rumors rather than rulebook issues as the Captains of the new C:SM do not have rites of battle). Should GW decide to keep Rites of Battle as a BA/DA ability, then we may see some more play considering how important leadership is now. Foot slogging captains may become a little more popular with mechanized options becoming more prevalent, but those wishing to play a jump pack captain will always be conflicted with the fundamental question on BA players minds; why not pay an extra 65 points and get Dante?

The Narthecium of the Sanguinary Priest – preventing leadership checks from shooting or wounds within 6” (if we are to follow the DA description). The re-roll of leadership given by the banner bearer within 12”.

Add this to the fact they can get a similar selection of weapons as the VAS then you have a great support unit! Also – remember that just because they have a base of two attacks does not mean they need to be armed for close combat. Bolters will be a great weapon load out for a support unit. Also, to minimize the new wound allocation issues, don’t forget to arm your upgraded characters with your special weapons. This may seem like putting your eggs in one basket, but it can be wonderfully minimized by the priest.

Honour Guard
It’s my belief that the honour guard will start seeing more play than before. Two of its most important abilities will now be even more invaluable to army commanders.

"Forward? What other direction is there?" - Blood Angel Marine : Armageddon 63

The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Since I’ve already discussed the DC in depth we can move on to discuss the other elite choices available to us. In the last year, almost every BA list included at least one unit of VAS. For near identical points cost as a RAS we could get an 8 man VAS squad with more attacks and more weapon options. Likewise, very few lists had terminators, fewer still had scouts, regular dreadnoughts barely made it onto the field except in the cases of tread-head lists and techmarines were something that some players had “heard of somewhere.” 5th Edition will see the opening up of the gaming playing field so much more. More succinctly, players will find their own balance of what works in relation to killing ability vs. claiming ability. It will be entirely list and player dependent and finding that balance will be so much more difficult because of the way it will interact with the enemy lists. The “rock-paper-scissors” aspect will become much more widely defined in that general, uber powerful all-comer lists seem like they will be much more difficult to produce leaving us with big choices to make. The choice of a troop heavy army may see us being torn apart by elite heavy armies, while elite heavy armies may see themselves being unable to claim objectives. The majority of this list play will revolve around the selection (if any) of our Elites.

Outnumbering no longer exists like before, so dreads can rarely get dragged down. Death company and/or Venerable upgrades seem like they will be well worth their points and Extra armour- even at its exorbitant pricing will be(/should be) stock standard.

Furioso Dreadnought
Mobility has always been the Furiosos #1 issue – the result of which being that most players would only ever field one mounted in a Drop Pod. With the new Run rule, coupled with the above-mentioned factors we may see more use out of these guys.

Scout Squad
• Outflank – The new ability which allows us a chance to come on from reserve onto the left or right board edge will be the driving force behind taking the scouts. Sniper Rifles – Although losing their “hits on 2+” gain rending and retain pinning. Another very good reason to use them.

Seeing a 5/10 man squad come in from a side board allows us a lot of tactical play in objective interference. Not to mention, a side placed heavy weapon could come in handy. Scouts are nowhere near a “must have” but will fall into play more often than before – especially in certain assault heavy BA lists.

"Our father helped fell Horus...who are you to question our honour or loyalties?" - Captain Corpus
While there is not likely to be a dreadnought revitalization revolution, they are much more likely than before to see the field. • Power fist attack reduction – Due to the loss of attacks on hidden fists, we can maybe get a bit more life in combat. New vehicle rules – As mentioned above, vehicles are much more resilient Infantry provide vehicle cover saves- If 50% or more of the walker is blocked by intervening infantry, you get a 4+ save. This adds a LOT to the walker’s survivability.

With regards to normal terminators, there is nothing that has changed from 4th to 5th rules wise that will make a monumental difference to the incentive behind taking these boys. The only two things I can think of are: • Initiative rules change in combat – ie: Models that were able to attack at the start of their initiative turn will still be able to strike if models in the attack zone are killed when it rolls around to their initiative. What this means is, the power weapon Sarge won’t mess things up for the Powerfists. A tiny change: Wound Allocation – Small squads both benefit and are disadvantaged by the wound allocation system which may allow us to wrap around low AP shots.

• •

However, beyond rules changes per se are the metagame changes that may make these guys worthwhile.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide

Horde Orks is becoming/has become the primary concern for many players out there. Horde Nids are also looking feasible. Furthermore infantry will be seeing the field more and more. Combine this with increased pricing of low AP weapons and you will start to see more high rate of fire weapons over low AP weapons. This makes for an excellent counter balance to use terminators. Hard as nails unit with a likely 2+/4+ (from cover) and some great shooting. Assault terminators benefit a lot from the new Run rule and that along with the new vehicle rules will make the Land Raider a VERY attractive option in higher point games in the new rules.

any generals army design. VAS will form a very big part of this thought process. The usefulness as far as pure power and in-unit versatility cannot be argued. However, putting in the 270 points for everyone’s favorite “Melta, Flamer, Thunderhammer” jumping squad will be taking 270 points away from scoring units. For some the pros still outweigh the cons, for others it’s the opposite. For some still, it’s tougher now more than ever to make a decision. Add to that the fact that the enemy will now be focusing on taking out your scoring units, you may even get the chance to keep them alive longer than before. There are some observations which will weigh heavily on people’s minds. Initiative rule change: As with the terminators, the ability to take mixed initiative based weapons (i.e.: Fists/Hammers and PWs) are now a blessing. Abundant Cover: The prevalence of cover in 5th Edition is what has made the Flamer a VERY powerful weapon. In fact, I will go as far as saying that IF


Veteran Assault Squad (VAS)
What a monumental conflict. Our 2nd most prized unit just received a heavy beating as far as use vs. cost comparisons are concerned. As mentioned before, coming up with the balance of units that can kill and units that can claim will be the foremost of


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
the only reason GW had to remove flamers from DA assault squads was to prevent BA assault squads from getting them in 5th, then they were VERY smart. It may seem a tad unfounded but I believe if our jumping Troops were to get flamers BA could easily be shifted into a top tier army. To cut a long point short – Flamers on jumping squads will be golden. Now, having a mobile close combat assault squad that is less able to kill, but able to claim will form the biggest point of contention for our list design. The awesomeness of the VAS will not decrease, but its frequency in players lists may do so as a result. Subsequently, players may find that different combinations work now, where they didn’t before. They will be more happy to branch out try new options which may or may not leave room for the VAS. their options are severely limited and the DC price inclusion makes them somewhat unattractive when compared to the VAS. This was an obvious no-brainer back in 4th Edition. However, claiming changes this all. Just remember… Entering and Leaving difficult terrain now causes Dangerous checks If you never took RAS or VAS before, then it’s highly unlikely that you will now. If your list focused on multiple VAS before, you may see a shift towards a single RAS. If, like so many of us, you just took one squad then you will find yourself in a tough place trying to decide. What I foresee happening is more use of RAS with Corbulo or Dante as support. Or alternatively, minimized 5man squads to use as last minute claimers.

Tactical Squads (TACs)
Undeniably and unequivocally, the unit that is going to find its way into our lists once again. And find its way with due force, I feel. • Now true LOS (TLOS) is used, the need for screening Rhino’s (that can ram at S8) will be plentiful. Objective Claiming by Troops only Availability of weapons to Tacs – flamers/ plasma/heavies etc. No consolidation into new combat Makes bolters (and even the flamer) very attractive. Dawn Of War – The “new escalation” can see us putting down 7 units. (4 combat squads, 2 razorbacks and HQ) as opposed to most peoples 3. •

• • New Vehicle Movement - Up to 6” and fire one weapon, 12” fire nothing New Defensive weapons Strength – ie: 4 means that HB preds can no longer move 6” and fire everything Vehicles are hit side armour by barrage weapons Vehicles are hit rear armour in close combat.

• • •

With arguably more tactical flexibility in that (for example) we can get 10 Tacs, a HB Razor, a Lascannon, a Meltagun and a power weapon for 5 points more than 10 RAS with 1 Power Weapon and 1 Plasma Pistol, you can place money on seeing more of these guys in our lists.

Regular Assault Squads (RAS)
We have a distinct advantage over most other marine players in that we can take assaulters as Troops. The disadvantage to this however is that


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
This sounds like “the end” of Preds, but it actually opens up the doors for all the variants of Preds now. Their durability also goes a long way to mitigate the above mentioned factors. So, choosing what weapon make up we want will be the biggest factor. Expect to see more Autocannon, Las sponson preds. The whirlwinds offer missiles with the ability to ignore cover – again invaluable in 5th Edition At 85 points, many armies may opt for this. Add the above mentioned ability to move and fire and we gain more tactical flexibility than before.

Baal Predator
• • • Over-charged Engines. The ability to move 6” and still lay down a hail of fire. The ability to ram at Strength 10.

• All blast markers scatter 2D6”- BS. Additionally, you tally up ALL the wounds before you roll saves. Devs with the standard 4ML seem even more attractive than before in their multi-role purpose. Plasma barrages seem terrifying, but as always, the lascannons still seem overpriced unless your army is really lacking tank hunting. Dedicated Transports can transport any unit in your army eligible for a ride – Need a ride for your HQ or the second half of a combat squad’ed VAS? No sweat. Makes for great support, albeit pricey.

The Baal becomes a HIGHLY attractive option. Sadly, heavy flamers are still not the best idea, but depending on how you play the Baal, this could change too.

"Stand with us or against us. A simple choice really don't you agree?" - Sgt Bartica
Land Raider & Crusader
• New vehicle damage system – Means that AV14 all around will only get destroyed by Missile Launchers by 5 hits thereafter all rolling 6s, and finally thereafter all rolling consecutive 5, or 6s. Anyone want to do the math on how many times you have to fire a ML to kill a LR?

Other than the template weapon changes and universal vehicle changes mentioned already, not much has changed for the trusty vindicator. The template may scatter an average of 3” but Partial blast marker hits count as full – The temptation to field one grows! • Hull mounted weapons have a 45degree arc of fire- This means more exposed side shots

If we get the new Power of the Machine Spirit rule, (again C:SM) where we can move and fire everything, then this will be a very attractive choice. Not even as far as transport capability is concerned, but the ability to block LOS to other units, vehicles or the ability to be an actual support tank firing everything on the move makes taking a LR seem like a wise choice. Of course, Melta and Lance weaponry are still abound to ruin its day. The Crusader has the added advantage of being able to fire all those bolters with no penalty either! Bonus!

If you were a fan before, you will be a fan now. If you were not a fan before, you may find yourself wanting to try fielding one.

Attack Bike Squad
• Kill Point Missions - There is a standard mission type where every unit killed grants the opponent 1 Kill Point (KP). This means that single “sniper” style attack bikes will be useful for claim distraction, but vulnerable in KP missions. AP1 & Melta Rule - AP1 gives you +1 to your vehicle damage result and Melta gives you a better chance of the Pen. All in all- VERY good against the added durability of vehicles.

• New ordnance rules – Give us the ability to move 6” and fire the weapon, if we are firing it directly however, firing out of line of site scatters 2D6” (totaled – and no subtraction of BS). •


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
• NO MORE Last Man Standing - There is no more last man standing, giving us no more fear to use units of 2 bikers. Turboboost – Grants us a 3+ cover save now.

Regular Bike Squad
Sadly, they’re still not inexpensive enough to warrant anything of serious merit. Their mobility is hindered by terrain (dangerous checks), but their toughness is good and their ability to dish out good firepower is there if they have numbers. Also, they are another unit that can give you a mobile flamer!

"This is fair resistance at best. I weep for their lack of determination." - Tycho
Land Speeder Squad
• Skimmers like all models use TLOS – this makes the previous practice of dictating the skimmers height as your felt a thing of the past. Skimmers moving more than 12” get a 4+ cover save - There is no longer the skimmer moving fast rule where you only get glances. Skimmers only crash on an immobilized result if they move over 12” Skimmers lose the ability to be hit on 6s only in combat. Vehicles in vehicle squadrons treat stunned results as shaken but treat immobilized results as destroyed

Change is something that old and new gamers alike struggle with. It’s something we don’t like to welcome with open arms as it wanders over to our house, wakes us up, and drags us kicking and screaming out of our comfort zone and forces us to think in different ways about things we were more than content having thought about previously. Admittedly, we can all acknowledge that this fact is not necessarily a bad thing. We may or may not like it. We may or may not welcome it but it’s certainly not a bad thing. Opening our minds to new changes will only make our lists and our gaming stronger. Trying things that have never been tried before will expand our gaming borders and develop our gaming experience which will, in turn, evolve into a much richer and rewarding experience. Fear not fellow BA Brethren. The BA are here to stay. And the BA are strong. The Blood Angels are as strong as ever before, if not imbued with a little more potential for victory in 5th Edition. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem

• • •

These changes do not bode too well for the cardboard armour skimmers who relied on the glances to save them. Additionally, moving 12” will allow them to fire 1 gun. This means two variants may see more play1. The Typhoon. On account of the range 2. The Multi-Melta /Heavy Flamer, since they can only fire one weapon anyway, neither weapon is “wasted”.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide



a bad thing as it kept the game easy to interpret. You didn’t have to worry about crazy large model bases or extremely dynamic poses. Likewise, Area Terrain seemed to make sense. A piece of cut felt could easily represent a clump of trees. Individual tree placement didn’t matter; a given model was in or out and cover was clearly evident at a glance for both players. Not so any more. The two basic abstractions common to the 40K system, height and area, were replaced with the new WYSIWYG system. Formally, a shooting model needed to be able to draw LoS to the torso of the target model. This was a good rule. The model could be dancing on their tip-toes with arms outstretched dressed in pantaloons but still be hiding behind some area terrain. Now, if a fine tuned laser pointer can tag the outstretched arm, that twirling dervish of a warrior can be shot at, along with his entire troop of buddies hiding behind him, even those outside of the range of the weapon firing. Huh?

The following is an editorial counterpoint to the release of 5th edition and as such offers a different viewpoint to previous articles. The latest edition of Warhammer 40K is upon us and maybe a bit earlier than expected. Before making judgement calls on whether or not 5th Edition is an improvement or a step backwards it’s only fair to lay out the criteria by which we are making that judgement. Here is a quick summary of considerations without spending time defining them. That will become much clearer in the context of the material following. For now, consider the following for evaluating the merits of 5th Edition 40K on a change-by-change basis: • Does the change make the game more streamlined; therefore faster and easier to play? Does the change make 40K more of a ‘real-life’ simulation; i.e. does the rule just make sense? Does the change simply make the game more fun to play? (this is a game after all) Does the change make good business sense?; i.e. it serves as a catalyst to sell models

Whatever happened to the principle of, "if it ain't broke don't fix it?"
Whatever happened to the principle of, ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it?’ Admittedly, the three height levels were a bit odd but it kept 40K easy to follow on a two dimensional plane. Exact height and scale didn’t matter so much which only encouraged more elaborate and dynamic model conversions. So net/ net, seems like this change didn’t help much in the area of streamlining or taking a ‘make sense’ approach but what did it do for game play? Q: How much terrain does it take to lend a 4+ save to a Land Raider? A: A whole lot. For those of us who now have a copy of July’s White Dwarf (US 324), check out that set-up in the Capture & Control battle report starting on pg. 48. I believe that gaming table tells it all when it comes to the most ideal way these terrain rules are meant to be used. Too bad we all don’t have studio artists at

You just can’t disregard that last one. Note also that each of these qualities come as an asset and a liability. A game that’s too streamlined can also be seen as overly simplistic; forfeiting simulation, fun game play, etc., etc. So change is change but change coupled with improvement equals progress. That being said, here is one gamer’s gut reaction to the latest incarnation of the Warhammer 40,000 rule system. Why did they change the Terrain & Line of Sight system? Is it all about the business? The new terrain and Line of Sight (LoS) system begs some questions concerning the designers’ motivation. What was wrong with the 4th Edition system? I can’t think of a single time I ever heard a 40K player complain about how terrain worked in a 40K context. It was abstract but that wasn’t necessarily


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
wonder about the discrepancies. WHFB players don’t seem to mind the arithmetic needed to gain a more fine-tuned measure of what happened during a given battle. They also don’t mind the concept of a Margin of Victory, another end of game activity which has been removed from 40K. The new Wound Allocation rules The one new element that seems to run counter to the Streamlining goal of the revised rules lies in the new Wound Allocation system. Previously, the defender always could minimize losses by removing any model of choice after determining the outcome of a shooting or close combat attack. In the new system, every wound scored must be assigned to a specific model and multiple wounds cannot be assigned to the same model until they “wrap around” all the models in the target unit. The defender still retains some control. Say, given a certain shooting attack, five (5) power armour equipped models sustain six (6) wounds from shooting; four (4) from bolters and two (2) from plasma. The defender must apply one wound to every model in the squad and then there’s one left over. To minimize losses, he rightly applies both plasma hits to the same model thus ensuring that he can take four (4) 3+ armor saves on the other models. In 4th Edition, those two plasma hits would remove two models outright. In 5th, given enough other wounds, they may only claim one. It’s easy to see the effects of this rule on the game. Upgraded models and special characters are always in the line of fire right along with the rank & file troops. Therefore the chance of losing one of these models before they can use their upgraded gear is much higher. This change seems to be a bit of a wash from a net effect to the game. It’s perhaps a bit more real, or makes more ‘sense’ from a simulation perspective (though that’s stated reluctantly). In 4th Edition, why did the Sergeant always seem to be the last man in a squad to go down? Is this a military game or a Hollywood screenplay? As far as a cumbersome element is concerned, it’s not all that difficult to master. Frequent gamers will have this system memorized quickly and be able to resolve very complex turns without much delay. So from

home to help build such elaborate set-ups. In the mean time, I suppose we can always draw trees on our pieces of cut felt and just claim that they happen to stand a foot tall. At least until we buy ourselves more of those GW forest terrain models. How much do those cost again? Ah yes, that will make for some good business for GW. Streamline the gaming experience With good cause, some cumbersome rules in 4th Edition were thankfully dropped. Chief among them was the Mixed Armour rules. For the unfortunate few units that were forced to make them, a ton of potentially argumentative issues could arise. Now, just like the mixed Toughness rules, the save of the majority of models in the unit defines the roll required. Nice, very straight forward, easy to remember and leaves no room for dispute. If only all rules were like that. So far, those who have played a few 5th Edition games report that a typical game doesn’t take quite as long as it use to and it’s easy to see why. Mission objectives have been simplified making it very straight forward to determine who won or lost (or more often tied). Kill Points now replace Victory Points when it comes to determining the outcome of the Annihilate style missions. It doesn’t take much to count up the number of units killed to the very last man. When you compare rule changes like this to Warhammer Fantasy Battles one might


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
an evaluation standpoint it seems like a wash. One ‘gamey’ system was exchanged for another with a slight net loss for the defender (see below). Why make changes to the Assault system? On pg. 27 of the July White Dwarf (US WD342) the designers note that certain aspects of the 4th Edition assault system were ‘gamey’. To put that into context: One of the banes of close combat squads in the previous edition was the way that casualties could be removed during assaults. Called Tactical Casualty Removal in certain circles, this often led to canny players deliberately choosing casualties in contact or close to powerfully armed models, such as characters with low Initiative, who could not fight when it was their turn to strike. Although this was sensible, viable tactic in 4th Edition, many found it very ‘gamey’ and counter-intuitive. Without question, this is another way of saying that the designers were actively attempting to make 40K more make-sense from a real world perspective and laudably so. Example of ‘gamey’ rules in 5th Edition; Drawing enemies out of cover There are still certain ways assault based armies can, ‘work the system’ to their advantage. Take the new, Combat Reaction rule. This rule states that once an assault has been successfully initiated and that all enemy models have made their assault move, the defending unit must move 6” in an attempt to get as many models in base to base contact as they can. Take for example a squad of ten (10) Space Marines lined up behind a barricade. At the start of the enemy’s turn, a squad of ten (10) Genestealers starts out within 10” of their position on the opposite side of the barricade. The SM player thinks that this combat won’t be all that bad. The ‘stealers will have to cross over terrain to reach combat which will reduce their Initiative to one (1). It still won’t be pretty but with the nerf to the ‘Rending’ USR the line should still hold after the first turn of combat. However, the savvy ‘Nid player has another plan in mind. During the movement phase, he places his ‘stealers on the near flank of the marines in cover purposing leaving 5” or so between them and the far edge Marine. The important thing here is that the closest stealer must be able to draw a line to one marine without crossing over the barricade. When the assault goes down, only the first stealer reaches b2b contact and the rest line up behind him. Because of the reaction move, the hunkered down Marines all jump 6” over the barricade to make contact with the encroaching ‘stealers. The bugs now get to retain their superior Initiative. Since none of them had to cross the intervening terrain they never suffer the penalty. Because of the new wound allocation system, even non-engaged models can suffer casualties. The bugs still might not kill off all the Marines but negating the cover in this fashion makes for a much more successful assault, as counter intuitive as the actions of the Marines might seem. Why are Infantry/Troops the only scoring units? To make the game more of a simulation. As we have discussed in the sections above, despite its fantastic elements, 40K supposedly mimics certain qualities of real-life combat tactics. It becomes more, ‘real’ when the fiction involved seems to be consistent with our perception of warfare. Just like when we read any kind of fiction, the, ‘suspension of disbelief’ is a wilful act on the part of the reader. We know it’s not real, but it’s at least believable. We suspend our unbelief for 40K in the same way


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
as we do when we see a scifi genera movie, read a novel, etc. No matter how high one suspends their unbelief, it’s always humorous when players state that such-and-such a 40K rule is more ‘real’ when compared to others. So has 5th Edition made for a more ‘realistic’ simulation? For the standard missions, the new definition of a ‘scoring unit’ is Infantry derived from the Troop slot on the FOC. So for objective based missions, one Infantry/Troop unit must be within 3” of an objective marker without any other enemy units in the same range. So only Infantry/Troops can claim an objective, but any unit can contest the claiming of an objective marker. Common wisdom seems to dictate that this is much more reflective of real life. Elite forces go in and perform surgical tasks and then the ground troops move in to claim the objectives. Without disputing this fact from a real life perspective, let’s examine it purely from a 40K perspective and see if it holds up: For the Dark Angel & Blood Angel Codices, Scouts were removed from the Troops slot and made Elites, while other units moved into the Troops slot, namely Assault Marines for BA armies. So the argument here is that the Troops slot position on the FOC really means, ‘can claim objectives’, and has little to do with what it means to be Troops, or Elite, or Fast, literally. So Blood Angel Assault marines are able to claim objectives and all other SM Chapters’ cannot. What do the BA’s know that other marines don’t? Regular Assault Marines of the BA ilk can capture objectives while Veteran Assault Marines cannot (The same being true for DA Tacticals vs. DA Veterans). Perhaps the training to claim objectives is forgotten when a regular assault marine gets their promotion to the 1st Company? The simple fact of the matter is that typical 40K games are conducted on must too small a scale to consider the larger roles of military units in a combat theatre. A 40K game is barely a skirmish. The rule is just a rule that does nothing to help the relative suspension of disbelief. While it may fail in that regard, does it offer other benefits to the game overall?

Ultimately, our criticisms as 40K players inevitably went back to the game designers. If only they would play test these rules thoroughly enough, they would find the abuses and remove them from the game. If there are no beardy rules to exploit then there are no beardy power gamers either. Making things more fair and balanced So did this rule make 40K more fair and balanced? As Infantry/Troops now step into the limelight, their role on the table cannot be disputed. It’s not just because the FOC requires that you take two of them. There is now a very real game mechanic that forces more Troops to the table. Show up with only two units at your own peril. Your enemy may show up with 6+ and walk away with an easy win. The question here then rests on the qualities of the Troop choices themselves. Among the armies that clash in the 40K universe, not all troops are created equal. Though this is a bit debatable, most of the 40K Codices were not written with this rule in mind. When army rules were written, Troops were just Troops, one of several kinds of scoring units that could make up a given army. They weren’t necessarily seen as the core driver that made that army balanced in comparison to all others. In fact, it can be argued that some armies had their Troops toned down to offset very high quality Elites, Heavies or Fast units found in the rest of the codex.


The Bolter & Chainsword 5th Edition Guide
All that sort of balancing is meaningless now as Infantry/Troops are the sole winners of the 40K tabletop in 2/3rd’s of all standard missions. Armies that now have a wide and effective set of Infantry/Troops choices have a whole new lease on the game. Armies that have few choices and those on the weaker end of the scale might find themselves struggling to keep up with the more able codices. So did this move balance the game or did the balance of power just shift? Did mechanized Tau & Eldar armires have their day in the sun during 4th Edition only to give it up to a horde of Orks in 5th? The 5th Edition rounds of the GT will tell the tale no matter what the case. Unfortunately, this change is a poor replacement for writing balanced army rules, something that GW continues to struggle with. Making the game more fun to play This was a very bold change to 40K and one that may have the most impact as it changes the entire game top-to-bottom; from army make-up to how units interact on the tabletop. Whereas it may not make for more of a simulation or do much to balance out the armies it may just end up making 40K more fun to play. The rule does serve to create more tactical interplay between units. Desperate gambits might pay-off as the last model of the last scoring unit climbs the hill to claim the final objective at the bottom of seventh turn. List crafters now have a new factor to consider when meticulously composing their lists. Should the army take on more Troop choices to mitigate the risk of loss or do you focus on raw killing power to ensure that your enemy has zero scoring units left to challenge the victory? Will one Codex’s strength bear more toward killing opponents while another is steadfastly holding the objectives? The change does open up a lot of new considerations to contend with. It will go a long way to make for more interesting scenarios as the game plays out on the table. So has 5th Edition improved 40K gaming? Let’s go back to the original criteria and see how we fared:Did the changes make the game more streamlined; therefore faster and easier to play? For the most part yes, with some exceptions and at times this was taken too far. Calculating Victory Points and determining Margins of Victory was a plus for the game not a minus. Why couldn’t they have kept the VP system as an optional rule for standard missions? So yes, determining the winner is quicker and easier but the old system wasn’t all that bad either. It may have been best to keep the Alpha, Gamma, Omega tiers they once had and retained the best of both systems. Did the changes make 40K more of a ‘real-life’ and/ or a ‘makes sense’ simulation? Hmmm, uh, no. For every, ‘gamey’ rule they removed they replaced it with one that was equally or even more ‘gamey’. Not that this is really a big fault. The designers should strive to make the game intuitive and to respectfully simulate the tactical aspects of real warfare. Many other games take this much more seriously and therefore make for more realistic war gaming. That being said, 40K has such a fantastic setting that it can hardly be held to the same standards as other genres, i.e. historical war games. So this is a bit of a fine line. It would be nice if 40K took this aspect more to heart when creating new game rules. Being able to shoot models around a corner or outside of the maximum range of the weapon might have been one to leave out for example.

Hopefully, fun gaming will also make for good business.
Did the changes simply make the game more fun to play? Given the sweeping new rules made to the game’s tactical dynamic the early outlook seems like this is an overwhelming yes. The game moves faster, units on the table have more options and the new mission goals keep players guessing from one game to the next. The changes between 4th and 5th are much more extreme than the transition from 3rd Edition. It’s a whole new 40K with enough of the classic element to keep the diehard fans engaged. Hopefully, fun gaming will also make for good business. I would be ideal if every good gaming decision GW made to also yielded the best financial reward but that’s not always the case. Here’s hoping that the improvements made to 40K will also come back to reward the designers for their efforts. 5th Edition will now be the rule of the land for the next four-five years. Fans of the game should look forward to some great experiences through this chapter of Warhammer 40K gaming. If you wish to comment on, discuss or submit an article for review concerning this section please click on the B&C Emblem


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