Wednesday, 29 March 2017

30k - Have it your way!

I kicked myself this week for realising that I've actually missed quite a few things in the Horus Heresy big black books, namely different ways to play 30k. I'm a big fan of Zone Mortalis, so was fully aware of that, but didn't realise there were other ways. So, what I thought I'd do is go away and review them, and then make sure you guys haven't missed them too!

Book 1 - Betrayal

There are rules for 6 standard games and 6 Legendary Battles. Don't miss these Legendary Battles, because they really add a lot of flavour. I played a variation on Battle 4 with the Four Dads earlier this year and it was great fun.
There is also Zone Mortalis. If you love close quarters, fast-paced fighting, this is the game for you! This is my favourite style of game; small force, close confines, swift escalation. You get up close and personal very quickly and can easily play a 1500pt battle in under an hour. The only minor draw back is that you need a ZM board, but if you like this style you'll get plenty of use out of it.
From my experience, this type of game is suited to 1250 to 1750pt battles. Anything bigger and the table becomes congested, anything smaller and it's generally a one sided affair.
Image result for horus heresy book 1

Book 3 - Extermination

Book 3 contains the rules for Strike Force. I didn't even notice this the first time I read the boo. I'm more into the fluff and painting side of this hobby, so looking at any rules contained in these books is not usually on my radar. This year, however, I have been playing more games of 30k than I've managed in the last 5 years put together probably, so I should start paying attention!
Strike Force is pretty cool, it is essentially Kill Team in 30k and I love it.
The armies are made up of individual models which you can pick from any unit entry in the book. The limitations are 150pts for 'characters' to lead the force (these can be anything from a sergeant to a praetor, so long as they have the 'character' rule), and then an undisclosed amount of points for the rest of the army. Games Workshop are running a campaign soon, Victory is Vengeance, which allows 300pts for the rest of the army (so 450pts in total), and I have to say that at this points value the game takes a good amount of time to play and the battle is pretty even, despite the fact you will have very very different armies on the board. So I'd stick with that.
Book 3 also provides some updates and additions to Zone Mortalis gaming, don't miss that.
Image result for horus heresy book 3

Book 4 - Conquest

Conquest contains rules for City Fight. I must admit that of these three rule sets, this is the one I know least about. Book 4 is a book that I never really look at. Back in the day, this was meant to be the release slot for Inferno, so when a book about Imperial Guard was released instead of my beloved Wolves, I was really disappointed. And thus, it sits in the cupboard like an unwanted toy...
Maybe I'll crack it open and take another look. If the game is like the old City Fight 40k rules, it will most likely be a load of additional rules you can add to your standard games for 40k.
Let me know if you've used them please...
Image result for horus heresy book 4


In summary, I'm a big fan of small games. I don't often have time to take a whole day, or even half a day, to play a standard game of 40k, so getting a couple of Zone Mortalis games in of an evening over a couple of cups of tea (only the hard stuff for me these days!!) is ideal.
I always buy these books because of the fluff and the art and have never really looked at the rules they also contain. This goes some way to explaining why it takes so long or Forge World to publish them, they are essentially writing and testing a brand new rules system every time! They should make a bigger deal of it.
After speaking to a couple of friends, we all agree that we'd buy a book that compiles these ways to play, just to have all the rules in one place.

What's your favourite way to play?

Dave - a blog dedicated to The Horus Heresy and Warhammer 40k

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