Friday, December 17, 2010

40K: A Golden Age?

You hear a lot hype around 40k 5th Edition. That it's the best version ever and that all the problem have been ironed out of the game.

I fell out of love with the game starting probably in 2007 and going on from there. A lot of the locals here have assigned my taking a back seat playing wise as a negative reaction to the 5th Ed rules. While I wasn't necessarily enamoured with the rules, 5 ed didn't come out until 12-18 months after I had given the game away.

The last three events I played were Liber Animus IV, V and VI - an invitational tournament held in Melbourne, Australia for Australasia's best players. At IV (2006) I played with an Ulthwe army, an Emperor's Children army at V (2007) and in 2008 I used a Space Marine army. TBH by 2008 I was well over 40k and it was a real chore to play.

So what was the turning point for me?

Well strangely it wasn't the rules or rumours of the new rules. It was pretty much entirely due to GW turning their back on the fluff they had created. Those who know me know I'm pretty much a Chaos player. I was inspired by the Index Astartes articles that appeared in White Dwarf (starting around #250). These gave army list tweaks that allowed you to build unique armies based on the Traitor Legions post-Heresy. This was expanded on by the 3rd Edition Chaos Codex which reinforced the variation between the various Legions. Over this period I built/acquired six of the Traitor Legions - Death Guard, Emperor's Children, World Eaters, Thousand Sons, Word Bearers and Iron Warriors. While all were Chaos all had their own distinct flavour.

GW had previously broadened the Eldar universe with Craftworld Eldar and the Orks with their Klan lists. I embraced this building Goffs, Ulthwe and Iyanden - in fact I think I was probably responsible for the death of more Wraithlords than Hivefleet Kraken.

This all changed in 2007 with the release of the new Eldar codex. Suddenly the craftworlds were gone. Yes you could still make a craftworld-ish list but it was a bastardised version that was totally unsatisfying. This was followed up by the new Chaos codex which GW was said was aimed at Chaos Renegade forces. Great. But it was a big F#@k You to all of us that had built disinct and unique armies. Instead of having six different forces now I had one big pick'n'mix bag of chaos units. Hey but don't worry, at least I can play Apocalypse games!!!!

So this was the tipping point for me. after dropping literally thousands of dollars building my armies, GW wiped them out in a 12 month period. Yes I could still play but it was a dilute, saccharine type of flavour.

So what would get me back to being enthused about the game - GW resurrecting the Craftworlds and the Traitor Legions. If I could have anything for Xmas it would be new codexes for both. It might not be 2011 but it will happen. I'm cynical enough to know these decisions are driven by marketing and the next cycle will see a return to both. So in the interim my 40k involvement will be focussed on painting my Iron Warriors.

And woe betide when we get our new codex, cos we are totally pissed off!!!!

1 comment:

  1. I think it would be completely in character for the chaos players to turn their back on GW and create their own codexes to use.

    I love my Tyranids and I've been playing them since I was in middleschool (11 years ago...) and their newest codex is so much better than all the ones that have come before it. I also like being the bad guy with Tyranids, which is strange for me.

    The Warhammer Universe is screaming for a bad guy other than another space marine chapter... Especially since everyone plays space marines seemingly.
    They could really do a World Eater codex, Death Guard codex etc and blow 40k off the charts sales wise.