The cat is very definitely out of the bag now! A new edition of Warhammer 40,000 is imminent and you've only got five days to wait until you can try it out. Here in the office we've barely read any of the new rules yet - we got distracted by the outstanding artwork.. The guys in the Studio, however, are far more clued up on the rules and we'll be getting four of them - Adam Troke, Simon Grant, Phil Kelly and Stu Black, to tell us more about their favourite bits over the coming week.
An Alliance of Convenience or Desperation?
The addition of allies to Warhammer 40,000 is a big deal for many of us, but for a myriad reasons. There are some of you that will want to add allies to your army to optimise the amount of damage that your force can do. Imagine a Bloodthirster and a unit of Bloodletters allied to a Chaos Space Marine force. Or perhaps a unit of Grey Knights to a regiment of Imperial Guard. Alliances such as these fill in the natural weaknesses of your army - we all know that individual Imperial Guardsmen aren't great in hand-to-hand combat, which is why a squad of Grey Knights teleporting into battle would make for a useful addition to an army.
It's also a great opportunity to forge a narrative for your collection. This is an excuse for you to come up with a great background to your army. Perhaps you want to recreate the Macragge planetary defence force during the invasion of Hive Fleet Behemoth. What about the very desperate alliance of the Blood Angels and the Necrons at Gehenna? Or how about an Eldar/Dark Eldar alliance? The Eldar race as a whole is entirely self-centred so it's not unlikely that they would ally with their dark kin against a common foe.
And then you've got the modelling and painting side of the hobby and what better opportunity could there be to paint something that you've always wanted to add to your collection. A Tactical squad of Space Marines sent to reinforce the Imperial Guard or a unit of Eldar Rangers helping out the Orks would both be pretty cool additions to an army. Yes, Eldar helping out Orks. Why? Well, you'll have to ask the Eldar that - they are nothing if not mysterious.
Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines
The recent release of the Space Marine Stormtalon Gunship, the Ork Bommer and the Necron Doom Scythe were, as you've probably guessed now, not a coincidence. The Warhammer 40,000 book now contains extensive rules for flying units. Many 'winged' units in existing codexes now count as Flyers (as detailed in the rulebook appendix), including the Imperial Guard Valkyrie and Vendetta, the Blood Angels Stormraven, the Dark Eldar Razorwing and, of course, the three new kits mentioned above. So what makes Flyers so good? Well, you'll be pleased to know that they can move incredibly fast, which makes them ridiculously hard to shoot out of the sky. They can also fire a phenomenal number of weapons and, potentially, fly the length of a battlefield in a single turn (depending on the length of your board, of course). As Stu pointed out in the video, they also make a very large crater if they do crash out of the sky, so even in death they can cause plenty of destruction.
Incidentally, when the Stormtalon came out, many hobbyists asked us on Facebook if they could use it in their Black Templars/Space Wolves/Blood Angels army. Well now, if you pick it as an allied unit to your main army, the answer is very happily: yes.