Finally finished the beta version! It might look a little bare-bones and unfinished at the moment as there's still quite a lot of things left to be finished in regards to the layout, diagrams, artwork etc, but I will hold that off while I gather some feedback for the rules themselves, and can work on the army books in the meantime. For now, please refer to the 8th ed books in case you need a graphic representation of the various diagrams. As far as the rules text is concerned, this should be pretty much complete, except any future update content of course. I plan to add rules for both campaigns, sieges and more scenarios later on as well.
9th Edition is somewhat of a "Best of" collection of Warhammer rules, using a mixture of 6th, 7th and 8th edition all in one, as well as several additions. These rules will not make everybody happy, and that's fine, satisfying every single player would be impossible. I therefore leave it to the community to pick and choose the rules changes they like, and ignore the rules changes they do not like. I aim to have all 8th Edition books be compatible with 9th Edition as much as possible, so there will not be a need to change everything in all of them as well.
This book focuses solely on the rules of the game. For simplicity's sake, I have mainly used the rules as written in the 8th ed book and simply rewritten the rules changes. I do suggest both new and old gamers to read through everything carefully, as there are quite a lot of small tweaks that might otherwise be overlooked if you just assumed everything works the same as 8th Edition.
I've added nearly all things from the official errata and the FAQ, and I've added several small tweaks here and there that removes a lot of straight up cheesy tactics like conga lines, corner-to-corner charges, rail-roading, double flee etc. This means that a lot of old tactics will be invalidated, just as they should.
In general, the game will allow for the use of more smaller units, similar to 6th ed, while still keeping the infantry in the fighting with steadfast. Flanking and manoeuvring is now much more important, war machines need to be positioned more carefully, and basic missile weapons have gotten a needed boost. Monster Lords are more resilient but not overly so, and spear-armed basic infantry will be more useful compared to great weapon wielding elites. Panic will be a lot more important factor to the game, making ItP units more useful, as is keeping your leadership high due to no re-roll from the BSB.
In short, I think you will find the game will be a more about tactics and less about exploiting the game mechanics. Of course, there might still be a holes that needs plugging, which is why I hope you guys will playtest the crap out of these rules and let me know how they work out for you.
I'm going to get to work on making the Ravening Hordes lists soon as well, so you can start using them as quickly as possible.
- For one model to have line of sight to another, you must be able to trace an unblocked line from its base to the base of the target.
- A unit may never have more ranks than it has files, i.e a unit must be at least as wide as it is deep (no more conga lines, enforces frontage rather than columns.
- Unit Strength (US) is back, affects several factors such as aligning, steadfast, panic and so on.
- Max 2 duplicate special choices, no duplicate rare choices in less than 3000 pts. Certain characters are likely to lift that restriction to allow making themed lists.
- Charges cannot be completed unless you can get at least half the models in the front rank into base contact with the enemy (avoids corner-to-corner charges). The exception to this is if the enemy unit have too few models in the arc you are attempting to charge for this to be possible, in which case you may charge as normal.
- Charge distance is 2D3+M" for infantry, 2D6+M" for cavalry (still measured from closest point with free "close the gap").
- Units with less than US5 align to the charger rather than the other way round (removes lone models from directing the entire flow of battle).
- Units that fail to roll high enough to reach their charge target may still complete their charge against another unit as long as they roll high enough to move into a new unit in a straight line ahead (makes double-flees less abusive).
- Units may turn/pivot on the spot within 1" of an enemy unit, as long as they won't end their movement within 1" of an enemy unit. You may also nudge your unit so this is not the case (removes rail-roading of units like Abomination and Steam Tanks).
- Wizards roll D6 for each wizard level, 4+ to channel extra dice. Wizard level divided by half for dispel dice.
- Wizards choose spells instead of rolling for them. Spell level availability = wizard level + 2.
- The number of power dice allowed when casting = wizard level + 2.
- Miscast is based on number of dice rolled. Miscast result = D6 + number of dice used, the higher score, the worse result.
- Wizards do not get bonuses to cast/dispel based on wizard level (makes lower-level wizards more playable).
- Long range penalty removed, +1 To Hit on short range (4" or less)
- Supporting attacks and horde is gone, making spears and additional hand weapons more useful, and nerfs halberds and great weapons.
- Models with more than twice the WS of their opponent will hit on a 2+.
- Rank and file models may always be targeted, even if only characters are in direct base contact (removes character walls).
- Steadfast does not work when disrupted, requires US10+. It's based on the unit's unmodified Leadership value (so no more Goblins or Slaves being steadfast on Ld 9/10, and makes placing several close combat characters spread out over multiple units more important).
- Outnumber is back, gives additional bonuses the more you outnumber your foe.
- Flank attack can be gained twice, one for each flank.
- Rank bonus is combined for each unit involved, as long as they are fighting in different arcs.
- Units with wider frontage gets CR bonus (basic replacement for lapping around, and means having bigger bases is not always negative in combat).
- In combats involving multiple units, the Break test modifier for each unit involved must be calculated separately based only on the enemy units they are in base contact with (this will be described in more detail in an upcoming diagram). This means that if you choose to charge a unit in the flank while that unit is already engaged to its front and your two units lose the combat, the flanking unit will only suffer a Leadership penalty based on its combat result vs that of the flanked unit for example. This means that you will no longer suffer a Leadership penalty to your main unit due to the smaller flanking unit taking too many casualties (though it could still cause you to lose the combat as normal), and Unstable units will no longer crumble based on the performance of a weaker unit.
- Cavalry/MC/Mo uses the highest number of W and T value available. They also cause impact hits (D6 for Mo). No longer receives AS for being mounted.
- Monsters work like MC (means you won't require separate on foot models in case mount dies, is easier to keep track of, and makes Lords on Monsters more resilient).
- Shrines (Sh) added a unit type, replaces Unique Units.
- Always Strikes First and Always Strikes Last removed, replaced with Init. bonus/penalty.
- Ambushers may choose to deploy as normal.
- Devastating Charge does not apply to mounts unless specified.
- Ward saves capped at 4+, can be combined with other ward saves.
- Expendable rule added (for slaves and the like).
- Immunity (*) added, replaces ItP and covers all immunities like Flaming , Poison, KB, Fear etc.
- Regeneration more similar to 6th ed, cannot be used if slain (units can regen while some members are still alive). Can be combined with Ward saves.
- Hatred must re-roll successful rolls to restrain from pursuit.
- Fast Cavalry can make one free reform while moving. Characters with lower than 5+ AS can join. FC can't have better than 5+ AS.
- Fear gives -1 to Ld, Terror -2.
- Monsters and handlers include Monster Reaction chart, rather than ridden monsters.
- Stomp removed (replaced by Impact Hits).
- Magic Resistance works against all spells, including ones that does not allow saves.
- Volley Fire allows all models to fire with a -1 To Hit penalty.
- Frenzied units do not need to test to restrain from charges, but must instead move towards closest enemy within LoS (means less failed charges, and makes screening Frenzied units more important).
Weapons and Armour:
- All bows and slings can fire Multiple Shots (2) if the unit does not move. Does not work with stand and shoot.
- Slings have AP rule.
- Morning stars counts as hand weapons for simplicity (since there are no units that only uses morning stars anyway).
- Great weapons -2 Initiative instead of ASL.
- Bucklers added (tower shield would have no drawbacks for spear armed infantry, and limit model availability)
- Pikes added.
- Pikes and spears give Initiative bonuses when charged.
- Spears and lances give Initiative bonuses when charging.
- Medium armour (5+) and full plate armour (3+) added. Most units with heavy armour will have it replaced with medium armour, heavy cavalry will have heavy armour (4+) which makes their save the same as before in total. Elves and Dwarfs will have a mix of medium and heavy armour. Fast and medium cavalry will have lower AS in general, but will get cheaper in return.
- Champions can no longer make challenges or be attacked separately, allows re-rolling failed reforms, redirects, marching instead.
- Swift Reform does not allow decreasing/increasing ranks (avoiding slingshot tactics).
- "Look Out, Sir!" works against all templates, including spells. Can only be used on one character per missile attack (deters Deathstars with multiple characters, which is now much more risky).
- BSB only allow re-rolling break tests.
- War Machines have a front arc like normal units, pivoting outside it counts as movement.
- Normal Cannons cause D6 W on impact, D3 W on bounce.
- Cannon balls scatter D3" before bounce, "Hit" = no scatter.
- Bolt Throwers does not ignore armour saves, have AP instead.
- Magic weapons can use Parry with shields and additional hand weapon.
- Paired Weapon is replaced with additional hand weapon/two hand weapons.
- Magic Armour can only be taken if the character can take the same type of armour as a mundane option.
- Several new items added, some are removed.
Lores of Magic:
- Transformation of Khadon cast on 13+, can only change into one profile for simplicity.
I hope you guys will enjoy most of the changes, and as usual, let me know of any bugs, unclear rules, things you feel should be changed and so on.