Warhammer 40,000 – Wow ten years ago when i started this site I was pretty done with Games Workshop products. Between edition changes invalidating my army lists and generally just taking up to much time to get through a single game; I was done. I sold off everything but my Space Marines and Slaanesh Daemon models and started looking at the glut of skirmish games that were pouring out of smaller companies looking to fill that void for players that felt the same as I did. I launched this site when Malifaux came out and heavily invested in that game as well as Helldorado, MERCs, Relic Knights and a ton of mini-based board games. And then much like the real estate market things peaked and started to crash. Edition changes and updates to those skirmish based systems fundamentally changed how the games played, rather than just cleaning up the rules the upstart companies completely changed everything every time they brought in a new designer or did a mass beta test. Around this time 40k launched some new editions and revitalized interest in the game locally and even though the cash grab and rules glut that was six/seventh edition frustrated EVERYONE the game was fun and established enough that you could always get a game. (Unlike investing in the new hotness only to have the company fold due to mismanagement or never be able to play because there’s zero interest in your area). With the success of Eight Edition and the relaunch of numerous older games it seems like Games Workshop can do now wrong, the perfect time to launch a new way to play … Kill Team.
When Kill Team first dropped I was skeptical. Shadow War: Armageddon felt naggingly like the old seventh edition tactic of dropping something and then offering zero support. To be fair it was just a repackaged ruleset made to sell the new terrain line so I get it from a marketing perspective. Annoyingly Necromunda and Kill Team hit right around the same time so my group was torn as to which was better and ultimately I passed on Kill Team to focus on Necromunda. (which most of my group doesn’t want to play so see the rant above about Skirmish Games).
From what I understand from the half of my group that played in the initial release Kill Team was solid however the limited selections lead to it getting stale fairly quickly. Commanders offered some interesting options but was dismissed as taking the game game in the wrong direction. (I haven’t tried it yet but upon first glance, agree). Arena might have some cool additions to the game but the way it was package price it out of my impulse buy range so I might need to track it down if this catches on. With the release of Elites the game suddenly has an enormous amount of variety between unit selection and chapter tactics you can take the same 20ish man roster and have a completely different experience just by changing what benefit they get. I decided the time was right.
With Kill Team we haven’t tried the campaign system yet but have been paying about three games a night with a variety of forces. The games are fast and tactical, I get to build cluttered complicated boards and you HAVE to look from a models eye view which lets you appreciate the board and immerses you in the narrative.
It’s been about three weeks and no one seems to be getting board with the game. There’s still several factions that people want to try and I’ve put together a ton of “loaner” teams for anyone to use and try out something they don’t usually play. After next week I think I might attempt to do a full on campaign as well as possibly look at including the Commanders supplement.