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  1. Version 2019/10/01


    Rules for using Aeldari Black Guardians of Ulthwé (could be any elite Guardians of any craftworld) in the Shadow War: Armageddon game.
  2. http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/index.php?app=downloads&module=display&section=screenshot&id=651 File Name: Dire Avengers Kill Team for SWA File Submitter: Ioldanach File Submitted: 01 Oct 2019 File Category: Wargaming Downloads Rules for using Asuryani Dire Avengers in the Shadow War: Armageddon game. This is essentially the official "Craftworld Eldar Kill Team" with different special operatives. The Autarch remains, but the Dark Reapers Exarch has replaced the Wraithguard and the Howling Banshees Exarch has replaced the Wraithblade. Click here to download this file
  3. http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/index.php?app=downloads&module=display&section=screenshot&id=650 File Name: Ynnari Kill Team for SWA File Submitter: Ioldanach File Submitted: 01 Oct 2019 File Category: Wargaming Downloads Rules for using Ynnari in the Shadow War: Armageddon game. Click here to download this file
  4. http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/index.php?app=downloads&module=display&section=screenshot&id=649 File Name: Striking Scorpions Kill Team for SWA File Submitter: Ioldanach File Submitted: 01 Oct 2019 File Category: Wargaming Downloads Rules for using Striking Scorpions in the Shadow War: Armageddon game. Click here to download this file
  5. http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/index.php?app=downloads&module=display&section=screenshot&id=647 File Name: Black Guardians Kill Team for SWA File Submitter: Ioldanach File Submitted: 01 Oct 2019 File Category: Wargaming Downloads Rules for using Aeldari Black Guardians of Ulthw
  6. I've tweaked the official Craftworld Eldar Kill Teams rules. The only real change was to the special operatives: (click the thumbnail for a full size version) First, as you can see by the links in my signature, I figured that the Asuryani probably have more than one type of kill team that they might send on missions. While the Dire Avengers are probably one of the go-to teams, there may be times that other skills are necessary, or when Dire Avengers aren't available. Since the official kill team focuses on the Dire Avengers, I figured that it might be tweaked just a tiny bit. I've basically re-named the kill team to better capture its focus. The big change was to the special operatives. Aside from the surprise in potency, the autarch seemed okay. However, neither the wraithblade nor wraithguard seemed appropriate from a lore perspective. The ghost warriors suffer from wraithsight - disconnection from reality. They only operate well under the guidance of spiritseers. Now it might be argued that the types that might accompany Dire Avengers on secret missions are above average, but that still doesn't seem quite right. So I replaced them with other exarchs. My intent there was to give some balance/specialism. The Dire Avengers are decent generalists, better at shooting than assault. The autarch brings some definite assault oomph. I figured that Dire Avengers might find use for a combat specialist. When choosing between the Striking Scorpions and the Howling Banshees, I figured that the athletic Howling Banshees were more generally applicable than the sneaky Striking Scorpions, so the Howling Banshees got the nod. On the other end of the spectrum, shooting was between the Fire Dragons, Dark Reapers, and those guys from Mymeara whose names I can't remember. Shadow War: Armageddon doesn't have a lot of flying types, and the Dire Avengers already have access to a flyer via the autarch (who comes with Swooping Hawk wings). Fire Dragons are great when they're up close, but the Dark Reapers are good generalist shooters, so they got the nod. If you want to see the rules for the weapons/wargear, check out the Howling Banshees Kill Team link in my signature. Aside from those changes and some small things (like changing "Eldar" to "Aeldari"), everything else stayed the same as the official kill team. You can see that in the larger version of the rulebook, and it used to be online (though it looks like GW has killed all SWA stuff on their website).
  7. Though I’m pretty sure that Games Workshop has abandoned Shadow War: Armageddon, I’m going to continue in my efforts to expand the kill team options for the Aeldari. The final Aeldari kill team I have is fitting: Ynnari. Just to get you to the good stuff first, here are images of the current version of the rules: (The images originally posted no longer work as the rules have been revised. You can see the current version here.) Like the Eldar Corsairs, the Ynnari are a mish-mash of Craftworld Eldar and Dark Eldar, so there are going to be a few bits of similarity in execution. I see two ways of playing Ynnari, though, and both require the development of a special faction-based rule. This rule is the Strength from Death rule (modified from Index: Xenos 1 as necessary for the Shadow War: Armageddon game). Both alternatives will use this same rule. The first alternative would be to use any of the other Aeldari kill teams, except the Harlequins, and simply replace their special rule with the Ynnari special rule. So a Dark Eldar Wych Cult kill team that has joined the Ynnari would replace its Combat Drugs special rule with the Ynnari special rule. Everything else about the kill team would remain the same (fighter options, armory, skills, and special operatives). The second alternative would be a true Ynnari kill team with its own fighter choices, skills, etc. That’s the one that would resemble the Eldar Corsairs slightly. That’s also the more difficult kill team because there are some hard choices that have to be made. For now, I’ve made some very questionable choices that I’d like feedback on. The first questionable choice is the leader. This is where it gets questionable. I’ve used the “Soulbound” as the leader choice, but this is representative. In the Gathering Storm books, the Soulbound is a detachment of the most elite warriors (other than the Harlequins) that serve Ynnead and Yvraine. This detachment is composed of Dire Avengers, wyches, and incubi. So I’ve made the leader option the lowest common denominator, but require the player to choose one of the three paths, with both the Dire Avenger and incubus having a cost to upgrade. The tradeoff (I think) is that leader option doesn’t have quite the freedom that they have in the other kill teams. It’s not much of a tradeoff, though. There were two alternatives I considered for the leader. My first inclination was to make the leader a spiritseer, but I felt that it made the Ynnari look too much like the Black Guardians (who are led by a warlock). Also, from a lore perspective, I don’t know that spiritseers would be the default leaders of such kill teams. The second alternative was a generic hero type of character, like a generic exarch level that might be equipped with Aeldari equipment from all three factions (Asuryani, Drukhari, Anhrathe). The two problems I saw with this is that there isn’t a good precedent in terms of standard WH40K units, and the list would then look too much like the Eldar Corsairs and Kabalite Trueborn kill teams that I’ve already developed. I’m not firmly opposed to this idea if it can be made to work, but I definitely want to ensure that this kill team is distinct from the others. The trooper, recruit, and specialist choices are much like the Eldar Corsairs, so they can be a combination of corsair reavers, guardians, or kabalites (though the trooper version isn’t as good as the Black Guardians or Kabalite Trueborn kill teams). There’s a lot of flexibility in being able to equip them across this range, but the slightly lower scores should balance them a bit. The skills were determined by finding the basic skills common to the various lists (focusing on Black Guardians, Kabalite Trueborn, and Eldar Corsairs), then filling in the rest in order to (hopefully) mesh with the lore while distinguishing this list from the other Aeldari kill teams. Hopefully the Strength from Death translation works. My chief concern is clarity. There are interesting potentials in this special rule in terms of game play, giving this faction a distinctive representation of speed and mobility compared to its counterparts. Since I opted to not use the spiritseer as the kill team’s leader, I felt it appropriate to make him one of the special operative choices (which echoes the void dreamers in the Eldar Corsairs list). I wanted to distinguish the spiritseer from both the void dreamer and warlock, doing this by focusing on the revenant psyker powers (in The Gathering Storm – Fracture of Biel-Tan). Also, since the Dire Avengers Kill Team* that I’ll be presenting will lose the wraithblade/wraithguard special operatives, I felt those were appropriate for the Ynnari, giving them a hand-to-hand special operative (wraithblade), a shooting special operative (wraithguard), and a generalist special operative (spiritseer). The spiritseer and wraithdoohickies just seem very appropriate for the Ynnari. Since the ranks of the Ynnari are composed of Aeldari from all factions, though, it occurred to me that players might want to represent the other types of kill teams that we might see from the Ynnari. To that end, you can take any of the other Aeldari kill teams (minus Harlequins, who still worship Cegorach), and have them represent Ynnari by removing their standard special rule and replacing it with Strength from Death. Everything else about the other kill team’s rules would remain the same (skills, special operatives, etc.) – all you would change would be the special rule. A Kabalite Trueborn kill team with Strength from Death is going to play slightly differently on the tabletop compared to the standard Kabalite Trueborn kill team with Power from Pain. I left a few things highlighted since these need to be validated (everything else came from other kill team rules, so, barring cut and paste errors and fat fingers, should be okay). Overall, this is just the first stab at the Ynnari for Shadow War: Armageddon. I’d love to get some feedback to help me improve this. Thanks in advance. * When I said that this Ynnari kill team list was my “final kill team” I suppose I sort of lied. Two other kill teams that I haven’t presented are Dire Avengers and Wych Cult kill teams. In truth, though, these are just minor modifications of the official Craftworld and Dark Eldar Wych Cult kill teams. The only real changes I’m making to them is in the area of their special operatives. I don’t think that the wraith~ constructs are appropriate for the Dire Avengers/craftworlds as special operatives because of the disconnect that they have with reality, needing spiritseers to keep them in line (those that align with the Ynnari are a bit different in this, I think). Similarly, I think that the Wych Cult kill teams should have wyches as the special operatives, so the scourges are being replaced with hellions (I’ve appropriated the scourges for the Kabalite Trueborn, who use the mercenary type units as their special operatives). And with Brother Tyler's evil suggestion below, it might actually be three as I explore whether or not the incubi can be developed into a balanced kill team. Edited to remove original images and replace with link to updated version of rules below.
  8. While the official Craftworld Eldar Kill Team rules are decent, they don't do a good job of reflecting the variety to be found within the craftworlds. A wise Autarch will use all of the tools available to her, and sometimes the shooty, but flexible, Dire Avengers just aren't the right tool for the job. Sometimes you need someone that knows how to stick sharp objects into soft flesh. Here's the good stuff before I bore you: (The originally posted image links no longer work as the file has been updated. See this post for the current version.) I initially wavered on whether or not this kill team should be Howling Banshees or Striking Scorpions. Both are stabby, each in their own unique way. Lore-wise, the Striking Scorpions are the folks you send in when you need someone to sneak in and spill some blood. The only problem was that their signature weapon is the chainsword, which has the Noisy rule in Shadow War: Armageddon, making it less than ideal for a few of the missions. Also, I really wanted to give the screaming and leaping ladies their time in the spotlight. They're a good counterpoint to the Wych Cults of the Dark Kin, and sort of a shadow of the Harlequins. Truth be told, I could easily create a variation on this list that replaces the Howling Banshees with Striking Scorpions, with the rest of the rules remaining unchanged (I'll probably do just that, but later). So I pulled the Dire Avengers out and replaced them with Howling Banshees. I also replaced the Guardian Defender squad, identified by the option to take the weapons platforms and not special weapons, and replaced them with Storm Guardians. This change, more than anything, defines the shift from the Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avengers] Kill Team to the Howling Banshees Kill Team. Able to take power swords and special weapons (flamer or fusion gun) and not able to take the weapons platforms dramatically changes the whole dynamic of how this kill team operates compared to their blue-armored brothers. Sure, the Guardians are the New Recruits of both squads, so they'll be half or less of the total kill team composition, but a shuriken cannon weapons platform operates in a vastly different manner from a flamer, providing good covering fire from a distance without having to get within charging range. Other than those two (monumental) changes, everything else remained the same - Battle Focus, skills, and special operatives. I really don't like the special operatives choices in the Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avengers] Kill Team rules (you can see why here, scroll down to the fifth paragraph below the images), and I really wanted to change them. However, it didn't feel right in that it would have changed too much from the Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avengers] Kill Team list. So much as I'd like to change those special operatives, any Aspect Warrior Shrine kill team lists I come up with will keep those three - Autarch, Wraithblade, Wraithguard. This is just my first stab at this list, and it will be revised based on playtesting and feedback. Thanks!
  9. One of the diversions I had when reading the Craftworld Eldar Kill Teams rules was that those rules were a bit too limited. The Eldar of the craftworlds have a rich diversity that just isn't represented in that list. That list should really have been called a "Dire Avengers Kill Team." It occurred to me that there are probably plenty of occasions on which crack Guardian squads, whether Guardian Defenders or Storm Guardians, have been dispatched on special missions that are within the realm of what Shadow War: Armageddon covers. So I've crafted this set of kill team rules as an alternative to the official Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avengers] Kill Team. Here's the good stuff, before I get all boring with words: (The originally posted image links no longer work as the file has been updated. See this post for the current version.) I used the Black Guardians of Craftworld Ulthwé as the package, though the list could easily represent a crack Guardian (Storm or Defender) squad from any craftworld. I retained the Battle Focus special rule found in the Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avenger] Kill Team rules since it seemed appropriate. I also kept the same skills options. I used the [Ordo Xenos] Inquisition Kill Team rules as a model for the basic enhancement that the [Trooper] Black Guardians get, allowing the player to make each separate Guardian a "Storm" or "Defender" Guardian. As with my Eldar Corsair Kill Team rules, I've introduced the wildcard of a psyker into the kill team, this time the kill team's Leader is a Warlock. That appropriate from a lore perspective, but it does create problems, especially since the Warlock, unlike the Eldar Corsair Void Dreamer, has psyker powers that affect the enemy. Okay, one power, but it's a good one. Destructor. It's not as good as the 1st edition version, but a witchfire shooting attack can be a pretty dramatic thing if you're on the receiving end. By my estimation, the Ammo Roll does a decent job of introducing a sort of drawback. Instead of suffering Perils of the Warp is in regular WH40K, though, the Warlock loses the psyker power for the rest of the mission. The way I see it, when used "correctly," the Warlock won't be a walking gun. He should be using his powers to improve the performance of the other members of the kill team (via his other two psyker powers). Your input on this is welcome (especially if it's based on playtesting). Otherwise, the basic kill team rules, along with the weapons and equipment, do a fair job of representing either a Guardian Storm Squad, a Guardian Defender Squad, or a mix, all depending upon how the player applies their bonus WS/BS and equips the fighters. One area where I deviated strongly from the Eldar Craftworld [Dire Avenger] Kill Team rules was in the special operatives. I didn't like the Autarch in the Eldar Craftworld [Dire Avengers] Kill Team because it just didn't seem right that the army's general would lead a small mission. Nor did it seem right that the ghost warriors would go on a special mission without either a Warlock or a Spiritseer to keep them from getting lost in the sauce. So I swapped out all three for other elite warriors. I decided to use Exarchs of various shrines. I figured a decent spread of three special operatives would include one that was shooty, one that was stabby, and one that was "other" ("jumpy" in this case). The Shining Spears and Crimson Hunters weren't options (neither bikes nor flyers really have a place in Shadow War: Armageddon). The Shadow Spectres were out because they're a niche Forge World Aspect Warrior Shrine and not in the main WH40K codex. So my shooty options were either the Fire Dragons or the Dark Reapers; my stabby options were either the Howling Banshees or the Striking Scorpions; and my jumpy options were either the Swooping Hawks or the Warp Spiders. Since the Fire Dragons are meant to be used against armor/vehicles/fortifications and none of those really has a place in Shadow War: Armageddon, I went with the Dark Reapers. The stabby option was another story altogether. In the end, I decided to go with the Striking Scorpions because I was using the Howling Banshees for something else. The jumpy option was a toss up. In the end, I went with the Swooping Hawks for no other reason than they were introduced to the game first. I don't really have a dog in the fight, though, so if there is strong feedback to shift over the Warp Spiders, I might be compelled to do that. One thing I did was make the kill team larger than normal by allowing it to include up to 12 fighters. That was a complete SWAG, so I'll be playtesting against a Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avengers] Kill Team of 10 models to see how the two different kill teams balance out; and I'll adjust the maximum size of the Black Guardians kill team accordingly. Anyways, the rules you can see by clicking the images above are my first draft, pending revisions based on playtesting and feedback. Thanks in advance.
  10. I was motivated to start an Eldar kill team recently, and decided to use my OOP 1st/2nd edition minis (some sold under the “Space Elves” logo) to represent an Eldar Corsairs kill team. Using the Craftworld Eldar/Dire Avengers kill team list is okay, but not quite satisfying because it’s a bit limited and doesn’t truly portray the corsairs as we’ve come to understand them. The Doom of Mymeara finally gave us rules for the corsairs, with a lackluster update to 8th edition in Index Xenos from Forge World. I've seen some great Eldar Corsairs minis in my wanderings around the internet and I'm quite keen on getting my own Eldar Corsairs army (for WH40K) and kill team (for SWA). So I've banged out some rules for friendly games. Since very few of you care about the lengthy explanations and want to get right to the main course, here are the initial rules I’ve come up with (click on each thumbnail for a legible version): (The originally posted image links no longer work as the file has been updated. See this post for the current version.) I've followed Brother Tyler's lead and am providing images for now. Once I get these rules finalized, I'll post the finished version in the downloads section here. I started with the Craftworld Eldar rules as a baseline, adjusting based on the Forge World rules. The rules from The Doom of Mymeara were where I looked first, but I expanded and updated according to Index Xenos. The corsairs troopers are a bit weaker than their craftworld counterparts (Dire Avengers), largely due to their skills, so their cost has been chopped. The new recruits and specialists are comparable to their craftworld counterparts, however (Guardians). The leader, a felarch, is a lot weaker than his counterpart (a Dire Avenger Exarch), so his cost is considerably lower. I’ve retained the Battle Focus rule for now because I’m stuck on turning the Reckless Abandon or Dancing on the Blade’s Edge rules (one of them) from Index Xenos into a properly balanced SWA rule. It works well enough for now since it’s a Craftworld Eldar rule, but I think it takes a bit away from the flavor of a fast, but reckless, force of Eldar corsairs (as opposed to the fast, but disciplined, force of the Eldar of the craftworlds). For the most part, the weapons are drawn from Index Xenos. Many of them already had rules, whether generic rules from the SWA rulebook or rules from either the Craftworld Eldar, Dark Eldar Wych Cult, or Harlequins kill team rules. Those were just copied over lock, stock, and barrel. Some others were new, but the 8th edition rules appear to match the format of the SWA rules, so I copied those where appropriate. There were only a few (from The Doom of Mymeara) that I had to apply some skull sweat to. I think I got the rules fairly close to where they need to be, though it never hurts to have others take a look. You might catch something I either missed or which I allowed my bias to influence me in the wrong direction. I’m not entirely sure about the points I’ve assigned, though. Anything that isn’t highlighted in yellow already has a points value assigned throughout the SWA rules, so I’ve just used those. Anything that’s in yellow, though, is something I estimated, so I’d definitely like some smarter people to take a look and see if anything is off. The skills are copied straight over from the Craftworld Eldar Kill Teams rules. They looked good enough. If anyone sees anything that they think needs to be changed, however, I’m open to making changes. The special operatives may be the most problematic, as these are where I’ve taken the largest liberties. The Corsair Noble was originally a Corsair Prince, nothing more than an Autarch with the serial numbers filed off. However, none of the other kill teams appear to have a WH40K HQ as a special operative choice, so while I can’t do anything about the craftworld Eldar being able to take an autarch (there really aren’t many options for them, I suppose), I can downgrade the corsairs version to be more in line with the counterparts from other kill teams. I wanted to call him a “Corsair Veteran,” but there’s already such a thing (see the Blade Sworn), and I didn’t want to screw that up. So I figured a “noble” is a step down from royalty (i.e., Prince), calling him a Corsair Noble. The weapons and wargear are based on what is available to the Corsair Prince (in The Doom of Mymeara), though I limited a few things (i.e., no option to take a gyrinx). I wanted the rule to allow players that already have street legal Corsair Princes (or autarchs, in a pinch) to take those minis in SWA. From a purely selfish position, I also wanted to be able to take some of my OOP minis as a Corsair Noble. Ultimately, the character is much less powerful that the Autarch in the Craftworld Eldar Kill Team rules, so it shouldn’t be a problem. The Void Dreamer is a bit more problematic because I’ve introduced a psyker to the game. The only psykers that I can think of in SWA are the Grey Knights, and their powers are very limited. This character has more choices, though I’ve stuck to powers that I thought were appropriate based on the background. The Soul Cry rule is a minor variation on the power of the same name in The Doom of Mymear. I saw the other two powers in that book as inappropriate to SWA. While I initially limited the character to the one power, I figured I’d test the waters with other similar powers. So I made some minor adjustments to original farseer and warlock powers (from way back when the Craftworld Eldar as we now know them were introduced in White Dwarf magazine) – Fortune and Battle Fate, respectively. The powers are minor enough (I think) and limited to friendly fighters within 12” of the Void Dreamer (I need to edit that into the Soul Cry rule), so they might be acceptable. The weapon and wargear choices are based on the rules from The Doom of Mymeara and Index Xenos, allowing players with street legal Void Weaver minis to use them in SWA. Otherwise I would have severely limited the options (i.e., he would have been fixed at a laspistol and witchblade, with the option to take a shuriken pistol instead of a laspistol). As it is, the character can take the Corsair jet pack, which makes him very useful. The last special operative is problematic in that it’s not a corsair. It’s an Eldar Ranger. I wanted to get a third special operative option in, but there weren’t any suitable options from the Eldar Corsairs lists (from Forge World). The opening given by Forge World, however, was that the Eldar Corsairs often operate in concert with outcasts from the craftworlds and Comorragh. Since the Corsair Noble presented a good close combat character and the Void Dreamer presented a good kill team enhancement character, I figured that the third special operative should be a bit more shooty. I wasn’t keen on the Dark Eldar shooty options (which mostly duplicated what the main kill team options can do with the weapons available to them), so I figured that the Eldar Ranger, another type of outcast, would be acceptable. Overall, I think that the list is slightly weaker than the Craftworld Eldar Kill Team rules. It mitigates some of that weakness by being much more flexible, though it still comes out slightly weaker. I might be wrong in this. One last issue is that I’ve included the “power glove” in the rules. The reason I’ve done this is because I still have those old bits from 1st edition and I really want to use them to convert some nifty corsairs. If GW/FW were to ever release official Eldar Corsairs Kill Team rules, I very much doubt we’ll see a “power glove” (or the more current “power fist”). It costs the same as power fist/power klaw, but works worse for the Eldar (than for Space Marines and Orks) because of the lower Str, so I don’t think it’s a problem from a balance perspective. It’s just not thematic to the Eldar as GW has developed them over the last twenty years. I’m still converting a corsair with a power glove, but that will be more of a vanity piece. You can see the power glove bits highlighted in blue (only for felarchs and the Corsair Noble). One last disclaimer – please excuse the color affectations. I’ve chosen purple as the main color for my own Corsairs minis, so I indulged that choice by also using the colors in the file (instead of colors closer to what is used in the official rules. So to sum up: Are the points for the kill team members and weapons/equipment okay? Is there a better army-wide rule that is more thematic to the corsairs? Do the skills need to be tweaked? Are there better special operative ideas? Please let me know where you think I can improve this (and thanks for your time – sorry for the wall of text).
  11. When Shadow War: Armageddon was released in 2017 it was a Big Thing. It took concepts that had previously been presented in the various iterations of Kill Team and wrapped them in Games Workshop’s familiar warband skirmish rules. Kill Team first saw life as a Chapter Approved article during the 3rd edition of WH40K, focused on the Last Chancers. These rules were then expanded in the WH40K 4th edition and received very limited updates and support through later editions. Meanwhile, Games Workshop’s brand of warband skirmish rules have been used for Necromunda, Mordheim, Gorkamorka, Legends of the Old West, and Legends of the High Seas. For many of us, Shadow War: Armageddon looked like the “new” Necromunda (since proven to be false, thankfully) and the replacement for Kill Team (still a distinct possibility). If you were lucky enough to grab the boxed set, you got a wealth of terrain in addition to the rules, counters, and models. Those rules were limited to three different kill teams, however: Space Marine Scouts and Astra Militarum Veterans for the Imperium, and the invading Ork Boyz. Games Workshop very wisely expanded the range of kill teams available to players, broadening the potential audience. Rules for kill teams for Grey Knights, Craftworld Eldar, Tau, and others were published, first as downloadable content (and still available as such), and later incorporated into the version of the book that replaced the box content. The game was very popular for a short time, but has since dropped off the radar. The transition to the 8th edition of WH40K played a big part in this, as did the release of the true new Necromunda, both of which vastly eclipsed gamers’ interest in Shadow War: Armageddon. However, while those were both major factors in the decline in interest in Shadow War: Armageddon, there were also internal issues with the game that contributed to this unfortunate phenomenon. The basic rules for kill teams imposed significant limitations. While there are over a dozen different kill team choices, that range isn’t sufficient to give players the range of options that they’re used to in WH40K. Lastly, the setting of the game, too, was overly specific and imposed significant limitations. Perhaps one final issue was a problem of player execution, with multiple anecdotal citations of players confusing campaign play with pickup play. As far as the kill team rules, there were three elements that imposed limits on players. First was the 1,000 point kill team size. Second was the limited fighter options available to each kill team. Third was the limited weapons and wargear options. Admittedly, none of these alone is “bad,” nor is the combination of the three “bad.” However, these limitations ignored a lot of the rich game background and prevented many players from using models that they may have already had. And while 1,000 points is a decent starting size for a kill team in a campaign, there’s no reason that players can’t agree to a higher points value to allow for some interesting games – players might come to the table with larger kill teams, or apply points to model advances and weapons and equipment that they can’t fit into a 1,000 point kill team. The Warhammer 40,000 game has plenty of options for players to choose from in building their armies, and the lore might support any number of different options for special missions such as those represented by a kill team. Yet each faction was limited to a single list, with one Leader option, one Trooper option, one New Recruit option (sometimes), and one Specialist option. There was a bit of flexibility in that some of these could be kitted out in a way that supported more than one option from the main WH40K game (e.g., the Inquisition list was extremely flexible) and the kill team as a whole didn’t have to be kitted out in a manner limited to a single squad from WH40K (e.g., the Craftworld Eldar kill team allowed for a composite of Dire Avengers and Guardian Defenders). However, most of the factions were still very limited and generic. All of these limitations that Games Workshop built in are akin to Ducati building a new motorcycle, but limiting it to 450 cc and only selling it in hot pink (sure, some people are going to buy it because it’s a Duc, but most others will move to the next rice burner that comes along). Expanding on the limited options, the kill teams didn’t cover the full range of options that players of WH40K expected. It has been argued that the limitations may have derived from the campaign itself, which was set during the Third War for Armageddon. However, that’s a false argument – factions that weren’t involved in that campaign were represented (e.g., Grey Knights and Tyranids) while factions that were present in that campaign weren’t represented (e.g., Deathwatch). It’s difficult to believe that Games Workshop published a game set in the WH40K setting that didn’t allow the most popular model line that the company produces, the iconic force of the setting, power armoured Space Marines, to be used. Sure, Space Marine players might take Scouts, but many really wanted to take their power armoured models; and they didn’t necessarily want to be limited to “Tactical” squads. Since when do the Black Templars send just their neophytes on special missions without the oversight of their initiate mentors? Similarly, why wouldn’t the Eldar possibly send Striking Scorpions? And why would the Dark Eldar only send Wyches? We might point to the campaign setting (more on that later), but Games Workshop violated that limitation with its choice of factions to include and exclude. Even if we accepted the limited options for the “starter” game (which is what we currently have, and which I have no problem accepting), there’s no reason that Games Workshop couldn’t provide follow-on support for the game by expanding the range of kill team options available to players. The name of the game limited the setting to the war-torn world of Armageddon, with the campaign specifically focusing on the Third War for Armageddon (Ghazgkull Mag Uruk Thraka’s second invasion of that planet). The campaign rules identified “promethium caches” as the objective, rather than a generic “victory points” or other campaign-agnostic term. Now these aren’t “bad” if you just want people that are interested in that event to maintain interest in the game, but they’re not a good way to sustain interest over the long run. Also, they limit immersion – when did the Tyranids land on Armageddon and why do they care about promethium? Granted, the wars fought upon Armageddon have been a major focus of coverage by Games Workshop through the years, with two invasions by Orks and an earlier invasion by Angron and his Chaos minions forming a backdrop for much rich lore and gaming over the years. The celebrity status of the planet, however, limits the antagonists that might take part (which really only matters to purists who care that their battles fit in with the “history,” but there are many of those). In a game setting where there is only war, though, and with 10,000 years of history and a galaxy (and dimensions beyond) within which the various factions of the game setting have crossed blades, the choice to confine the setting to one event missed an opportunity. The last issue I mentioned was poor player execution. The basic rules of the game indicate that a kill team is built to a 1,000 point limit. Later in the rulebook, rules for campaigns are provided and players are given rules to make their kill team more potent through recruiting additional/replacement fighters; advancing their fighters through skills, characteristic increases, and narrative development (e.g., hatred for opponents); and adding special operatives to games. All of these are great, but some players would use their kill teams improved through these campaign rules in pickup games. So Johnny Newguy might show up with his 1,000 point kill team of Space Marine Scouts and face Drake Campaignguy’s Ork Boyz that have been advanced in the campaign rules through six scenarios, with increased characteristics, better weapons and wargear, and more Boyz than the 1,000 point limit would allow. Lacking rules for compensating the gulf between the vastly more potent Boyz of Drake, Johnny’s totally outclassed Scouts fare poorly and Johnny leaves with a sour taste in his mouth. Never mind the fact that this should never have taken place, there are enough anecdotes running around to demonstrate that such matchups did take place, and probably far more often than they should have. Drake’s campaign kill team should have been confined to the campaign, not used for pickup games. Conversely, the game should have included provisions for playing at different point levels and/or balancing between kill teams of different point values (not just in campaign play). So we’re left with a decent game falling by the wayside, and homegrown alternatives such as the Herald of Ruin Kill Team game, Inquisimunda, and others, filling the gap. The homegrown alternatives all demonstrate things that Games Workshop could have done to improve the game, giving Warhammer 40,000 players a way to use their models in smaller battles. And this wouldn’t keep players from buying new models – many players would continue to buy models to flesh out their kill teams as they progress, to create additional kill teams within the same faction, and to try out kill teams from factions they might not otherwise play simply because the buy-in cost for a kill team is much lower than a full WH40K army (most can get by with a single boxed set or two to create a starting kill team). So what can Games Workshop do to revitalize this gem of a game? First, transition the rules to allow for a range of settings. Instead of “Shadow War: Armageddon” they can call it “Shadow War 40,000” or somesuch, then change the promethium cache objectives to something more generic. The setting wouldn’t limit the concept to one in which sneaking and skullduggery are the name of the day, but would allow for a range of warband skirmish engagements to take place (i.e., maybe allow for cavalry or jump packs or other things, obviously with significant penalties). The generic setting would allow for follow-on support, providing rules for special settings later on (e.g., void/zero gravity battles, Daemon worlds, etc.). This would also allow for multiple campaign settings to be used, each with different nuances. Imagine a campaign in which your kill team represents prisoners of the Dark Eldar forced to fight each other in the arenas, sometimes against the Dark Eldar (Wyches, obviously, but perhaps against other denizens of the Dark City; and this might also allow for rules for one-on-one battles). Or a campaign set on Medusa V. Or going back to the Horus Heresy. Second, expand the range of kill teams available to the various factions. Some might be specific to campaigns (e.g., the Horus Heresy offers a rich setting for the Legiones Astartes and other forces of the nascent Imperium that have changed or disappeared in the present time). Others might simply be additional lists (e.g., power armoured Space Marines are a no-brainer, but we’re missing the Deathwatch, Chaos Daemons, and others, as well as variations within factions such as the range of Eldar kill team rules that have appeared in the Homegrown Rules forum lately). I’ve been wondering if the current lists are the right way to go, or if an alternative might be better. The only alternative I can come up with is a bit complicated, though, so the current method is probably better – but we need GW to expand the choices of kill teams. Third, give the special things like the Army of One concept a little more limelight and expand the options. If Sly Marbo is running around on the side of the Imperium (along with some assassins), why wouldn’t the Eldar find Illic Nightspear? And how did Snikrot not make the cut for the Orks? Or why not some more generic armies of one, perhaps evolving into hero models (GW did this in one of the their 6th edition books compiling different missions and styles of play)? Fourth, adjust the rules so that the 1,000 point kill team is just a recommended standard, while allowing for players to build kill teams to other values. Also, allow for asymmetrical battles (i.e., kill teams of different point values). These should be descriptive rules rather than prescriptive, allowing players to apply judgment while providing a baseline for pickup play. Games of Warhammer 40,000 aren’t limited to a single point value. 8th edition Warhammer 40,000 gives us narrative play and matched play, but doesn’t prescribe a single framework for army composition. The warband skirmish game should similarly allow for flexibility so that players can make the game their own. Will Games Workshop do these things? Or will they do other things? I don’t know. Perhaps if enough players communicate this to them, they might see community interest in sustaining the game, and they might listen to the suggestions from the community. While my ideas seem obvious to me, they’re obviously just my opinion and other hobbyists have their own views. We can all tell Games Workshop that we enjoy the game and would like to see it supported and improved, even if we disagree on the exact methods for continued support and improvement. So I’m going to host an overall effort here at the B&C, a grass roots initiative to build additions and alternatives for Shadow War: Armageddon that we can enjoy and that Games Workshop might consider adapting for official support. We’ve actually seen efforts since the game was published, but I’d like to see what else the community might be interested in. @Lysimachus has presented rules for Rogue Traders/Void Pirates. @Ioldanach has presented rules for Black Guardians, Eldar Corsairs, Howling Banshees, and Striking Scorpions. He also pitched ideas about other ordos of the Inquisition. @Doghouse has been working on rules for an alternate Horus Heresy campaign. I’ve been working on rules for power armoured Space Marines, including the generic rules and the Chapters that participated in the Badab War so far, but with plans to develop rules for the Deathwatch, other Chapters, and the Legio Bolter & Chainsword (which is, admittedly, purely a B&C effort). I’ve also been working on the Hive of the Dead campaign (which is actually intended to be a series of campaigns). What other kill team rules do you think would help the game? What campaigns? What special rules for settings (such as void warfare, daemon worlds/the Warp, the Zone Mortalis, etc.)? Are there alternative campaign progression/advancement rules that you can think of? Are there things that you think I’ve missed above? Do you disagree with any of my opinions or the potential solutions? Do you think the game is fine as it is? If you’d like to discuss your views on the game, and if you have ideas about how GW might improve it and/or continue to support it, I’d love to see feedback in this discussion. If you have ideas about alternate rules, whether for basic kill team construction, additional kill teams, alternate campaign rules, special settings, etc., please post them in the Homegrown Rules forum and post a link here. Definitely use the tag “Shadow War: Armageddon” (the standard tag for any discussion about this game), and if you want, add the tag “Shadow War 40K” (for ideas that you think GW can consider adapting).
  12. As promised, here are the rules for using Striking Scorpion Aspect Warriors of the Asuryani in Shadow War: Armageddon. First, the rules: (The originally posted image links no longer work as the file has been updated. See this post for the current version.) As with the Howling Banshee Kill Teams rules, this list is based on the Craftworld Eldar [Dire Avenger] Kill Team rules, replacing the Dire Avengers Exarch and Aspect Warriors with the Striking Scorpions Exarch and Aspect Warriors; and the Guardians represent a Guardian Storm squad (so no heavy weapons, just special weapons). While I’ve retained the Battle Focus rule for the kill team, I’ve adjusted the skills to better (I hope) reflect the nature of the Striking Scorpions. Where weapons and equipment don’t already have rules in Shadow War: Armageddon (e.g., the Scorpion’s Claw is a power fist/power claw crossed with a shuriken pistol), I’ve rendered the rules as close to the 8th edition Codex: Craftworlds. There are a few items whose points I’m unsure of, and these are highlighted yellow for easy identification. Thanks for looking, and if you’re able/inclined, playtesting and providing feedback.
  13. With the Space Marine Kill Teams rules firmed up (link goes to the last version I posted, though a few minor tweaks are described in multiple replies), it's time to expand. One of my favorite events in the setting, and one that has a definite focus on the Adeptus Astartes, is the Badab War (coincidentally, one of my favorite Chapters, the Exorcists, took part in that campaign). So here's my initial stab at Chapter Honours and skills for the various Chapters that participated in the Badab War. For the most part, I took the 6th edition Chapter Tactics that Forge World provided for these Chapters, and I adapted them to Shadow War: Armageddon. For Chapters that have identified Legion lineage, I used the skill progression from those Chapters as a baseline, though I tried to apply some tweaks here and there in order to introduce some (very minor) differences. A few of the Chapters simply use their predecessors' Chapter Honours (e.g., the Novamarines are among the Primogenitors, so I reasoned that they follow the Ultramarines rules exactly). Others are very close to their predecessor, but have minor adjustments to Chapter Honours or skills or both. And some were very distinct (e.g., the Executioners are almost nothing like the Imperial Fists). Page 1 (introduction and timeline) Hidden Content Page 2 (skills - Astral Claws, Carcharadons Astra, Executioners, Exorcists, Fire Angels) Hidden Content Page 3 (skills - Fire Hawks, Howling Griffons, Lamenters, Mantis Warriors, Marines Errant, Minotaurs, Novamarines, Raptors) Hidden Content Page 4 (skills - Red Scorpions, Sons of Medusa, Star Phantoms) Hidden Content Page 5 (Chapter Honours - Astral Claws (includes rules for Tyrant's Legion kill teams)) Hidden Content Page 6 (Chapter Honours - Carcharadons Astra, Executioners, Exorcists, Fire Angels) Hidden Content Page 7 (Chapter Honours - Fire Hawks, Howling Griffons, Lamenters, Mantis Warriors, Marines Errant, Minotaurs) Hidden Content Page 8 (Chapter Honours - Novamarines, Raptors, Red Scorpions, Sons of Medusa) Hidden Content Page 9 (Chapter Honours - Star Phantoms) Hidden Content I've tried to keep balance on par with the main Space Marines Kill Team rules, but I'll need other eyes to help me with that. I have an idea that these rules might include campaign rules, at the very least a series of scenarios to play out shadow wars (i.e., squad/team level skirmish battles) within the setting of the Badab War. These might potentially include a modification of the Shadow War: Armageddon campaign rules (though that might be nothing more than changing "Promethium caches" to "victory points" or "campaign points" or somesuch. That's way down the road, though. For now, the focus is getting these rules accurate and balanced. Any input is appreciated.
  14. This is an effort to bring reasonable rules for power armoured Space Marines (aside from the Grey Knights and Chaos Space Marines) to Shadow War: Armageddon. The baseline is pretty easy - take the Chaos Space Marines rules (available here) to start. Remove the Chaos Cultist and replace it with a Space Marine Scout (found in the Shadow War: Armageddon rulebook - you've probably seen the images online by now if you don't have your own copy). This is just the bog standard Scout, not the Sergeant. Remove the Chaos Space Marine Special Rules and Using a Chaos Space Marines Kill Team bits. These will be replaced (see below). Retain the Chaos Space Marine Weapon and Equipment Lists, but replace the Inferno Bolts with Hellfire bolts and Toxic bolts (from the Space Marine Scout Weapon and Equipment Lists, they'll retain the restrictions shown therein) and remove the Blight Grenades. Remove the Chaos Cultists Weapon and Equipment Lists And then it gets a little more challenging. The first real challenge, and the piece that really is the focus of discussion here, is differentiating the Chapters. You've probably already seen the skills progressions charts, and there's no reason to change those (except to use the so-called First Founding Chapter names). We'll have to expand that list to cover down on all nine of the loyalist "First Founding" Chapters, though. Skills progression really doesn't look sufficient, though, especially considering the fact that every faction in the game has special rules of some sort. Something to differentiate the Chapters seems appropriate, but it needs to be reasonable. For the most part, the Chapter Tactics might be a decent starting place. We'd have to take a long hard look at the Blood Angels, Dark Angels, and Space Wolves in order to distill their codex special rules into something appropriately representative and balanced with the other Chapters. Ignoring that last bit, let's evaluate whether or not the existing Chapter Tactics are suitable. Or is there some other mechanism that would work? Ultimately, the results should allow for adequate representation of how each Chapter is different and remain balanced (with the Chaos Space Marines Special Rules serving as our measure of balance). We might even expand beyond the mainstream Chapters and consider those that are covered in various Forge World Imperial Armour books, but that should come after we finish the main hurdle. My gut feeling is that, if the Space Marine Scout is retained as the "recruit" option, the Using a Space Marine Kill Team will simply be a variation on the Chaos Space Marine version, allowing a Scout to be upgraded to a trooper. This might get a bit complicated, though, so we'll save that for after we hash out the Chapter differentiation (i.e., Space Marine Special Rules). Once we get past this bit, we'll discuss whether or not each Chapter might have a few unique items to choose from when selecting their weapons and equipment. Something else I've wrestled with is whether or not to expand the weapons and equipment. That should probably be saved for later, and should really be an expansion to all of the factions, with the baseline rules having limited options. For example, Chaos Space Marines could easily do with a power maul or some sonic weapons (for those followers of Slaanesh ). I have suspicions on this part, so we'll keep the list simple for now. And we'll also look at special operatives. For now, the baseline looks like adapting the Chaos Space Marines options and offering an Assault Marine, a Terminator, and something else (Techmarine? Librarian? Apothecary? Company Champion? we'll discuss and see). Once all of that is done, we'll move to the Deathwatch. For now, though, I'd like to focus on the really difficult element of the Space Marines Special Rules and Using a Space Marines Kill Team. So the question for now (ignore all of the other stuff I said we'll get around to, but keep it in the back of your mind for now): Do the Chapter Tactics provided in Codex: Space Marines provide a good starting point for the Space Marines Special Rules? Responses should be driven by two factors: Accurate representation of Chapters Balance with Chaos Space Marines Special Rules (as well as other factions)
  15. Version 2019/10/01


    Rules for using Asuryani Dire Avengers in the Shadow War: Armageddon game. This is essentially the official "Craftworld Eldar Kill Team" with different special operatives. The Autarch remains, but the Dark Reapers Exarch has replaced the Wraithguard and the Howling Banshees Exarch has replaced the Wraithblade.
  16. Version 2019/10/01


    Rules for using Ynnari in the Shadow War: Armageddon game.
  17. Version 2019/10/01


    Rules for using Striking Scorpions in the Shadow War: Armageddon game.
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