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9th Edition 40k First Impressions: How Does it Play?

By Wesley Floyd | August 16th, 2020 | Categories: 9th Edition 40k, Editorial, News / Rumors, Warhammer 40k

40k ninth edition 9th wal hor

9th Edition 40k gameplay has quite a few tweaks from 8th, after getting a couple of games in, here are some thoughts on the way the game plays.

We at the Spikey Bits cat command managed to take a day and play the new edition just as it came out. After putting a few games under our belts, here’s what we’ve noticed about the game. Keep in mind that we used the missions out of the core book.

9th Edition Gameplay First Impressions: How Does it Play?

Space Marine dark angel walOverall, the game plays great. It seems like an evolved 8th Edition that’s been smoothed out a bit. There are still a few “rough edges” that’ll be talked about later which may be tweaked later down the line. But all things considered, we all walked away feeling great about the game. Now that was the TL;DR version. Let’s jump into some details.

Character Targetting is Much Easier

saint celestine 40k new by wrhero anehmaShooting characters with non-sniper units is much easier. Since they have to be within 3″ of at least three other models (or a Monster/Vehicle), if you don’t position things carefully, a squad of Intercessors can absolutely light up somebody. There were multiple points in the game where a character was hosed down just because old 8th Edition character protection was still in our heads.

Declaring Charges Requires Much more Thinking

ork walCharges were somewhat of a brainless operation in 8th Edition just because you could declare multiple targets and if you didn’t make it to the one that was 9″ away, you could still power slide into the one that was standing 4″ closer. In 9th Edition, you have to make it into combat with all the targets you picked for the charge. There’s a new level of risk/reward dynamic in the charge phase. When your opponent risks a 2″ and a 9″ charge against two units and fails to roll a 9+ it’s a fantastic feeling.

Going Second Is an Uphill Battle (Like Major Uphill)

grey-knight-surfing-land-raider-inquistor-movieWow, okay this one is big. Going second is an uphill battle (probably even more in 9th than ever before). Let’s say your opponent gets the first turn. They move up and sit on a few objectives and then start blasting your army here and there. You might lose about 200-300 pts in the first wave of shooting, but now comes the hard part.

It’s your turn and you have to try and kill off some of your opponent’s army, move onto an objective (which they probably are sitting on) and then outlast their entire next turn for you to score points (remember, you score at the beginning of the Command Phase which is at the very start of the turn).

This one was big. The only reason why I was able to capture some points was that I had a Knight in the middle of the table that was soaking up damage. Little infantry dudes running up and capping an objective might be a stark thing of the past. Only because they have to literally kick somebody off an objective and sit there for another shooting/charge phase to score points.

What has been your experience in 9th Edition? Did you run into the same problems going second? How did your list do overall?

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About the Author: Wesley Floyd

Imperial fanboy, tabletop fanatic, King of sprues.
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