Warhammer 40,000: From 3rd to 8th
Warhammer 40,000 is a game I really enjoyed in high school and into college. I tried out Space Marines in the early days, but quickly learned that Tyranids held a lot more appeal for me. They with tough to win with sometimes (and the Hive Mind help you if you were playing against Chaos), but those discount Xenomorphs were a lot of fun to assemble and paint. Unfortunately, when 4th Edition rolled out, I had other priorities in my life, including young kids with very busy fingers. So I boxed up my bugs and moved on to less time and money intensive hobbies.
Last month, my brother called me up and told me that he was thinking about getting back into the game, so I closed the sale. We talked for an hour and a half about the old days and the fun we had, then decided we’d both get back in.
As it turned out Games Workshop had just released a new edition of the game, and boy is it different. The 8th Edition overhaul looks really good to me. It takes a lot of the more complicated aspects of the game and streamlines them–and this from the perspective of someone who completely skipped editions 4 through 7 (I’m frankly glad I missed the byzantine nightmare that I’ve heard 7th edition’s psychic phase had become).
One key difference that I noticed is that as of 8th edition they changed the way vehicles work; and now treats them the same way that it treats my Tyranid monstrous creatures. This is a good thing. In my experience with 3rd edition at least, the armor rules for vehicles tended to give a serious edge to other armies, assuming that someone playing those armies was clever enough to keep their vehicles out of reach of the bigger monsters like the Carnifex, which could tear them open like a kid at Christmas but only if they got close enough. Under the new rules, vehicles work like my monsters always used to–high toughness, good armor saves, and a lot of wounds.
With that said, the biggest difference for a veteran Tyranid player who hibernated through the last four editions is the army list. When I last played Warhammer 40k, Codex: Tyranids featured thirteen unit types, the toughest of which were the Carnifexes. The new Tyranids list in Index: Xenos 2 contains a whopping 42 strains of glorious, horrible monsters, many of which put the old Carnifex to shame.
As a modeler and painter first and a player second, this is looking like a good edition to me. I’ll leave you with a picture of one of my favorite “new” monsters: the Maleceptor!