Welcome to July’s edition of the Month In Miniatures, all the news that’s fit to print from the world of Warhammer, brought to you by Tiny Plastic People. This month’s news is also delivered by our patented newsies technology, and so will be distributed to you by a gaggle of ragamuffins in flat caps (it’s customary to tip the urchin).
What Was Released
The biggest release this month was the Beast Snaggas box, and with it an early look at the new codex for Warhammer 40k’s favourite green hooligans, the Orks. Similar to the boxes released for the Lumineth Realm-Lords or Sisters Of Battle over the last few years, the Beast Snaggas box includes a couple of squads of brand new models and a limited edition codex – currently the only way to get the new rules until the full release in lets-guess-at-October-ish. As with many of the recent big releases, it sold out online pretty quickly, but GW have already made clear that all of the models will be available separately in good time. They also accompanied the release with some previews of the Orks rules – they’re receiving (or have received, if you got the new book) extra rules for their vehicles, a new type of weapon, and two different kinds of Waaagh! Earlier in the month, several extra additions to the line were previewed in the “Octarius Mission Briefing” stream – my favourite is probably the Kommandos that will be in the Kill Team box, about whom more anon.
Also for 40k, the second book in the Charadon Series, the currently-running narrative campaign, featuring special rules for the Sisters of Battle, Chaos Space Marines, Adeptus Mechanicus, and the “Disciples Of Be’lakor” list, featuring a sort of general collection of Chaos Marines, Daemons, and associated wrong’uns. Following that, the final pre-orders for the month will be the remaining models for the Sisters Of Battle range, including their shiny new tank, the Castigator.
New releases for Age Of Sigmar have been a little thinner on the ground this month, since the massive release of the new edition at the end of the last month, although next month looks to be big, with new rulebooks for both the Stormcast and Orruks on the way. A very cool release, though, was the Starter Sets for AOS: three boxes that will be available for the rest of the edition, each making for a differently sized way to get into the game. All three come with a mini rulebook, plus a varying amount of models and, in the largest box, a set of the new Dawnbringer Crusade terrain. I love that new terrain by the way, not least as it proves the old Game Designer’s adage that the two ways to make an environment more interesting are “being built up” and “falling down”.
Kruleboys and Stormcast
Though not being released, a good chunk of the news this month was dedicated to the new units for AOS3, the Kruleboyz faction of Orruks, and the Thunderstrike Stormcast Eternals. In fitting with the new edition’s theme of Monsters for Everyone, both have some big centerpieces. For Stormcast, this takes the form of two massive dragons, Krondys and Karazai, the offspring of mythical god-beast Dracothion. It’s not easy to identify scale, but they look possibly comparable in size to some huge models like Morathi or Teclis, so could make for an even more impressive centerpiece than the Stardrake, the Stormcast’s previous star drake.
The Kruleboyz have several new monsters, each more ooky and gribbly than the last: the Sludgeraker Beast and Corpse-Rippa Vulture (both available in generic and named character versions), and the Marshcrawla Sloggoth. Look at that thing. It’s hideous. It’s gorgeous. It’s like they’re trying to create a new kind of sleep paralysis hallucination. I love it, and if anyone puts one on the table opposite me I’ll concede immediately in order not to have to look at it.
I alluded before to a new Kill Team ruleset, which was one of the most anticipated things this month. Kill Team is the catch-all term for a couple of different rulesets that have previously been the smallest scale of combat in Warhammer 40k, usually working on the level of individual soldiers. It was officially announced as part of the Octarius Mission Briefing, with one of the most dramatic and impressive videos we’ve seen from GW, which I’ll embed below.
Rad, eh? This was followed by a look at the contents of the box, and then over the month we saw a series of rules previews, all of which I’ll summarise below:
- The starter box contains two Kill Teams, a load of Orky terrain, and the necessary rulebooks and accessories.
- Those two teams are beautiful, characterful miniatures for a veteran unit of the Death Korps Of Krieg, and Ork Kommandos. Both units have been around for a while, exclusively in resin/metal, but have received what the kids call a “glow up”, becoming considerably more dynamic and individual – and in the case of the Kommandos, adding a few entirely new units, including a Kommando Flamethrower and Bomb Squig.
- The accessories are necessary because Kill Team uses templates for its movement rather than the usual inch-based measurement. Different sides of the template are different distances (in inches, so a tape measure will do fine as a replacement) and models will move in increments of those.
- Generally the rules look to be a pretty radical change from what’s come before, especially in contrast to previous editions of Kill Team, which have usually been pretty close to the contemporary 40k rules. Some significant changes: games are balanced without points, activation rules are very different, most ranged weapons have no maximum range.
Kill Team definitely looks like one to watch – as does the possibility of an expanded Death Korps of Krieg range to accompany it.
Fire and Magic
We’ve now seen the release of Hexfire, the
worst nightclub in Croydon the Warhammer 40k battle box between the Thousand Sons and Grey Knights. Both sides are getting a new character, and if it continues following the pattern of previous boxes, these characters will be exclusives for at least a month or so after release. The Infernal Master is the new character for the Thousand Sons, and introduces a new magic-adjacent mechanic for them, Infernal Pacts, summoning minor daemonic spirits for buffs or debuffs. The Grey Knights, however are getting a new model for Castellan Crowe, a classic character with a cursed sword. They’re accompanied by Tzaangor and Rubric Terminators, and a Dreadknight and Purifiers respectively.
This month’s “assorted extra news” includes my very favourite way a new product has leaked…
- … that is, they sent it out to people early. Some folks who ordered Maloghurst The Twisted received instead a brand-new and previously unannounced Sons Of Horus Praetor. He’s a handsome young man.
- There’s some very interesting news about Old World: previously there was almost no information about this announced game set in the original Warhammer world before the reboot into Age Of Sigmar, but it’s starting to sound more and more like a spiritual successor to old Warhammer Fantasy. We now know it’ll use square bases, keep the same scale, and use rules similar to Warhammer Fantasy’s 8th edition.
- The next Middle-Earth release is going to be Brand, Bard II, and the Knights of Dale, bringing the armies of Dale into the timeline of the War Of The Ring. I’m going to assume you recognise those names as well as I do.
- The regular Arena Mortis expansion is back for Warhammer Underworlds, allowing you to pit individual fighters against one another, including new universal tactics and a deck of “Hazard” cards – previewed was a kind of fly that prefers to attack people with heavier armour.
- House Of Shadow, the Delaque expansion for Necromunda, has since been released, but the preview article comes with an updated roadmap for Necromunda – including more weapons packs and a brand new gang by the end of the year.
- Of all the dozens of video games due for Warhammer 40k, Battlesector was not the most memorable one in the preview – but it’s out now. Seems to be some kind of RTS, and it’s from Slitherine, who made the acceptably-reviewed Sanctus Reach games a few years back.
So what’s happening next month? It’s already been announced that both the Stormcast and Kruleboyz releases for Age Of Sigmar will be coming out then, and of course we’ll have our hands on Kill Team boxes by then – perhaps to be followed up by a full Ork release? What can we do, but look to the future and dream?
Or put “warhammer schedule leaks” into google, but where’s the fun in that?