- Oversimplified rules. Most of the units' unique rules are gone, with nothing to replace them. I'm all for streamlining, but there's a limit to that too.
- Changed unit names. While I understand that they want to avoid copyright issues (something I still haven't had a problem with from GW even after 5 years), they have changed so many of the names you don't even know what units they are supposed to be without looking at the stats and rules. Most of the name replacements are rather poor too, like "Elves of Nature" replacing Wood Elves, or "Monstrous Rats" replacing Rat Ogres and so on. They have said they want input from the community to improve this though, but they are going a bit over the top in their effort to not provoke GW's lawyers by changing already generic names into even more generic names.
- Whole units missing from the army lists. Not sure if this is just an oversight, or if they really intend to leave them out completely.
- Weird internal balance and points costs for many units, that does not really solve any of the previous problems they had.
- Very basic layout and formatting. I know it's an alpha version, but I would at least liked to see something akin to GW's RH-lists in terms of graphical quality. Right now, it's a strain on the eyes to read the unit entries.
- The time-span they are planned to be used. According to the 9th Age, they are a temporary solution until the complete army books are finished. It took me 3 years to put out my army books, and then I had nearly full creative control, did not have to make up all background or art from scratch, and I had a ton of free time as a student. So even if the 9th Age guys would be able to release one whole army book every 2 months (which is unlikely, coming from the DoW project which took over a year), it would still take them almost 3 years to just finish the official armies.
Apart from that, they seem overly ambitious. They have stated that they plan to release complete army books for all factions, and then even expand into uncharted territory, just like WAP (that is, this website) have done. However, based on previous community projects, there's only 4 books besides the ones made by me that I would hold up to a good enough standard as far as army books are concerned, and those were made by 4 different people each focusing on a single book for the course of at least a year.
The 9th Age consists of 6 top members who plan to make least 16 army books, without using any of the official background, any official art or any official names. In my experience, these projects tend to run out of steam in the first 1-2 months and then finally die down altogether.
They have said that they want the community to get together and want to assign 5 people or so working on each book, which they will then supervise. Call me a Negative Nancy if you like, but unless they have a member of each team being reasonably skilled at graphic design/editing/writing etc, I think we are in for a very inconsistent stream of not-Warhammer books.
With that in mind, I believe I will probably need to step in. So after I am finished with Skaven and Beastmen, I will probably try to go back to the official 8th ed books and give each of them updates to fix internal and external balance, as well as adding new units and background. And in the case of the Elf books, fix the awful additions to their fluff by Mat Ward. Yeesh.