GW has just dropped their latest Warhammer 40000 balancing sheet on the wider Warhammer Community (if you haven't seen it, click here). These datasheets are intended to balance the game out and GW tends to release them after watching some big tournament.
Although personally I sometimes think these come about because GW isn't doing enough playtesting.
So in the next few paragraphs, I'm going to take a look at the Universal Rules, changes to the Imperial Guard (Astra Militarum) and updates for the Sisters of Battles (Adepta Sororitas) and will quickly break them down into what they might mean for future games.
Note: If I misread any of these rules and misinterpret then I apologise in advance.
So starting off right at the top of this document is a universal rule that seems to only be applied to folks wearing power armour.
As we can see it looks like the flurry of -AP that's flying around is hurting power armour units. So if you are hitting marines with a -1AP then they are still going to be saving on a 3+. I do like that if you have a shield or some ability that would worsen the AP then this rule isn't applied. I would have prefered the rule having no effect if you are getting the benefits of cover. The reason for this is that a weapon with just a -1AP hitting marines in cover arent affecting anything. The unit will ignore the -1 and get a +1 while in cover. Meaning it will get a 2+ save. It would have been a bit more balanced if this rule didn't apply if the unit was getting a benefit or + to its armour save.
This is just limiting the amount of aircraft that you can take in games. 1 in games of Patrol and Incursion, 2 in Strike Force and 3 in onslaught. I don't really have a take on this as I don't use that many fighters and haven't come across many.
Indirect fire Weapons
Now, this is a very big change to a particular weapon type. One thing to notice with this rule is that this rule isn't a -1 to hit. It 'worsens' the user's Ballistic Skill, so this might be the only rule that effectively gives a -2 to hit (worsen the BS by 1 and enemy unit is in dense cover).
The bodyguard rules change is just making it a bit simpler to follow and I welcome the change that it brings. It does mean that with good positioning you can still take down those pesky characters.
The Sisters of Battle are getting some more additions with this balance sheet. Not only getting the armour buff but also getting a buff to the Miricle Dice rule. Having a Dice each Turn (remember that a turn means per player turn) means that you will be getting at least two dice per battle round. This could see units being a lot more survivable. The change to the Stoic Endurance rule is to balance off the new rules for the power armour. Although this is a rule I've not really seen before and I'm guessing against certain armies (thinking Necron Destroyers) it could be pretty annoying.
Now the Guard have ended up with some huge changes from the list. They are still keeping the 2+ save on the Leman Russ, Tank commanders can still order Vehicles and Orders can now be passed onto other squads.
However, Guard are getting some upgrades to their mass firepower.
6's auto wounding is going to be a big change for Guard units. As a Guard player myself I really welcome something like this. Guard struggle to hit most of the time and with the dense rule, it makes it even more difficult to get those lasguns to cause at least some damage. I have seen some counter-arguments online saying this isn't fluffy and is stupid to allow Lasguns to autowound anything, However, we haven't seen how these new armour rules will affect the game, making some units particularly hard to take down. Guard has needed something, and this could be the balance.
Also, Guard infantry squads are now a straight 60pts regardless of how you arm them. Lascannons and Plasma guns everyone??
If anybody has any opinions on the others races I would be love to hear them and if they are coherent enough I would put them into a future blog post, leave a comment below or send us a message using the contact form.