Greetings everyone, Gary here aka Meleth, this is my first (but hopefully not last!) article for the table top gaming section of Following the Nerd.
40K 6th edition has been out just over a month now and I’d like to share my initial impressions of the game in this new edition and how the game differs from 5th. I have managed to get nearly 20 games under my belt so far, from casual 1000 pointers to 1850 point games with my more tournament minded friends, so while still far from an expert I’ve managed to see first-hand how the game plays.
One of the biggest changes we’ve seen is to vehicles, especially with the addition of hull points. For the uninitiated a glancing hit causes a hull point of damage only, while a pen causes a hull point and a roll on the damage table. A typical tank now has 3 hull points and when these are gone so is the tank in a similar way to the “vehicle destroyed result” of 5th edition. The damage table itself is now less punishing with only a roll of 6 wrecking a vehicle and causing an explode result
The changes make single shot weapons such as missile launchers a little less valuable compared to 5th (but still a very solid choice); meanwhile weapons with high rates of fire have certainly become more useful to have around. Also of note is AP 2 giving a +1 bonus on the damage table and AP1 giving a +2 bonus, melta weapons are therefore just as deadly as 5th edition and AP2 such as lascannons and plasma guns are looking good as well versus vehicles. Whether or not this means missile launchers won’t be as prevalent as in 5th edition is yet to be seen, will we start seeing more Plasma cannon and lascannon Long Fang units?
Autocannon Dreadnoughts especially those with psybolts (*cough* Grey Knights *cough*) have become stronger than ever being amazing at stripping hull points of everything bar AV 13 and 14 and are especially effective Rhino killers. Grey Knight’s psycannons have also become even more effective at knocking out enemy transports with their mass strength 7. Necrons deserve a special mention with the AP- of Tesla destructors no longer being a problem and with an average of nearly 6 strength 7 hits thanks to the Tesla rule, they absolutely wreck enemy armour on mass, a Necron force built around this fearsome weapon is a huge threat to vehicles and infantry alike (not to mention that Nightscythes with Tesla destructors are also Flyers).
Close combat has received a massive buff versus vehicles with stationary vehicles being automatically hit and importantly a vehicle that has moved no matter the distance being counted as WS1 and generally being hit on 3s, gone are the days of moving over 6 inches to make your vehicles hard to hit. This is hugely helpful to close combat based armies such as Tyranids, Orks and Jumper Blood Angels making them less reliant on fire support to help open up enemy armour. On top of this these types of armies are much less vulnerable to counter assault from units inside transports due to not being able to assault out of even stationary vehicles.
But it’s not all bad for your vehicles, the new damage table means that they are much less likely to be locked down, with glances causing no damage roll, shaken and stunned is going to be seen less often, on top of this a standard tank can now move up to a total of 18 inches with the extra 6 inch flat-out move in the shooting phase. This means that your vehicles will be shooting more and moving faster than in 5th edition making them more dangerous than ever. Cover while now mostly a 5+ is much easier to get with 25% of the vehicle needing to be covered down from 50%, it’s quite easy to get cover saves on even larger tanks by just having infantry models in front of them. Skimmers receive a 5+ jink cover save just from having moved as well.
Overall mech is still powerful and faster than ever while players are rewarded for putting out weight of fire and not needing to rely as much on lucky shots. I’ve found these changes good for the game as whole and facing a full mechanized force isn’t quite as daunting anymore.
Next time I’ll be covering the big addition to 40k in the form of Flyer. Thanks for reading!