Here’s a fresh set of rumors from Blood of Kittens. While they are usually pretty reliable, there seems to be some insane changes in the books. I’d take it with a grain of salt, but hopefully there’s some truth in here.
A few of the changes seem counter-intuitive to the direction that Games Workshop has gone in before. First and foremost, I don’t think adding in excessive tables will help get new players into the game. Having multiple Feel No Pain, Furious Charge, and other rules is also a step away from simplicity that won’t add much. The same is true for multiple BS tables to figure out To Hit rolls.
Similarly, many of the rules seem non-intuitive. There is no reason Deep Strike should be more accurate away from enemy troops. I also see a lot of confusion from wound allocation. Every fifth wound is assigned by the shooter? I think Games Workshop should go more towards the Warmachine paradigm of your opponent doing as little as possible on your turn.
On the other hand, there is a lot of good stuff to be had here. The more interesting special rules, like Stealth units vanishing, could add some much needed flavor to the game. I also think making squad leaders more important will add some needed realism.
Another thing I have a problem with personally is the inclusion of more “epic” and unique special characters. I think part of the fun of the game is getting to make a custom force and having a good way to make a force unique. Everyone taking the same special characters feels like it makes the game smaller, and more focused on the “official” storyline. I believe it stifles creativity. This is combined with the fact that build-your-own HQ choices almost unilaterally suck.
All said and done I think the next edition will be good for Wargaming, particularly with the terrain having more rules and less efficiency. I do know that I hate change, and so do a lot of people, so I’ll really have to see some resolve from Games Workshop that they want to make the rules work. Here’s to hoping they’ve learned something from the exodus of players to other games and the fact that rules forums are usually the busiest forums.