Howdy everyone, it’s Severus. I managed to wrestle control of the blog away from that stupid ork, Kaptain Klaw. So, now that I am back I wanted to give you guys something we have all been waiting for, an Ork Codex Review! I have had the codex since friday night. I have done plenty of reading and played a few games. This is my early impressions on the codex.
First off, the formatting has changed. Gone is the standard template from the 6th ed books. Previously there was a long list of units with fluff, art, there stat line, and any unit specific special rules (glory hogs for example on the tankbustas). Then in the back you would find the unit entry with points, wargear options, ect. Now they are all combined into one data sheet, very similar to what we have been seeing in the white dwarfs. This makes it convenient, now you don’t have to flip back and forth to see those unit specific special rules. I do miss the art though.
The fluff is good old orky fluff. A lot of stuff you have seen before. There are some new variations to it. I think volume wise, we end up with more fluff in this book than we did the last one. Hell, my beloved freebootas used to be a single paragraphs in the 4th ed book, now I get a whole page!
Now to the crunch of it, the rules. A lot has changed with the green skins. I will spare you the details of going through it unit by unit. Instead let me highlight the big changes. First up, we get our own force org chart! 3 HQ’s (1 required), 9 troops (3 required), 3 elites, 3 fast attacks, and 3 heavy supports. That extra HQ slot is nice since there are so many hq options now (painboys are now hq choices). Taking this chart allows you to re-roll your warlord trait on the ork table. It also has a bit of a wonky rule. If a unit made up of 10 or models rolls 10 or higher on it’s charge distance, they gain hammer or wrath. Really situational, but extra hits are better than none.
Now, for a true orky guy, this force org chart is great; it really captures the army feel. Here is the problem, you will not have objective secured. You need to use the combined arms detachment to get objective secured. In the end, if you want to be competitive, I would probably use the combined arms detachment.
Up next, the army wide special rule ‘ere we go. I love this rule. It allows you to re-roll one die on your charge distance. So it’s like sort of fleet. That one die can really save you bacon. There is second part to this rule though. When a warboss calls his waagh, units with ‘ere we go can run and then assault. This is huge. A well position ork player can reliably get off turn 2 charges.
Now, learn from my mistakes on this. Mega armor still gives you slow and purposeful (so you can’t run). Ghazghkull’s waaaagh allows those type of models to run. But a regular mega-armored warboss can’t. I forgot this and ended up having my warboss watch from the sidelines for a turn since I ended up needing a 10 inch charge since I couldn’t run.
Fun side note though, multiple warbosses allow for multiple waaghs. Edit: Only your warlord can call the waaaagh, so that doesn’t work. Thanks to Boss Trav-Trav for catching that.
Now for that last army wide rule, the mob rule. Not going to sugar coat it, this one hurts a bit. Now, you take morale and pinning checks like normal (so, leadership 7 normally). If you fail, then you roll on the mob rule chart. On a 1, if you are in close combat you are consider to have passed the morale check; otherwise you fail. On a 2-3 if you have a character or independent character, you cause d6 strength 4 hits to the unit then pass the test; if you have no characters you fail. And on a 4-6, if have 10 or more models in the unit, you cause d6 strength 4 hits then pass; if you have less than 10 you fail the test. In review, you can damage your own boyz a lot just from morale and pinning checks.
The mob rule right now feels a little rough. Lets be honest though guys. Orks are not known for there courage under fire or leadership. I see this rule in two ways. First off, it is meant to be a draw back. ‘Ere we go and the waaagh rules are both better than the last codex, so it makes sense that the writers wanted to give a drwa back to balance out the buff we got. You don’t want your boyz taking leadership checks so play smart. The other way I see this rule is it starts to force you down a certain play style with your boyz. Bring lots of them with a nob and get into close combat as soon as possible. This fits the army theme so well! If you play the orks like that then theoretically, you would never run. You may lose some boys to a heavy handed nob, but who cares. We got plenty of boys.
Okay, down to the nitty gritty of it. In terms of individual units, there have been TONS of changes. I will probably save most of these for a group by group review as I get more experience with time (aka, HQ review, Troop review, ect). For now though, let me give you a few of my favorites.
Mad Dok Grotsnik! I loved this guy before, just ask Ralshenik and his daemons. Now he is even better! Gone is the rule that made us lose control of him. Now he gives the unit rampage instead. In review, he brings in a psedowarboss profile with a power klaw, gives the unit feel no pain, fearless (which is huge with the mob rule), and rampage. For 160pts. There are already deathstar’s floating about the net based around this guy. I am just going to throw him in with some regular old nobz in place of there pain boy. Good luck trying to tarpit that unit now. I would like to point out for the price conscious gamers, his model is cheaper than the new painboy.
Tankbustas, I always wanted and excuse to buy these guys. Now they don’t compete for slots against those darn lootas (who are heavy support now). They had a big change to there glory hog rule. Now if you kill a vehicle for first blood with tankbustas, you get 2 points instead of 1. Nice little buff, but also gives us control over them again. Bomb squigs got easier to use, they hit on a 2+ and no more accidentally hitting something else. Most importantly though, they gained two things. There tank busta bombs are now melta bombs. They also gained tank hunter. So what little hits you do get you can make count now. They can also bring a trukk, so no more wasted battlewagons. And they got 2 points cheaper. I think that about covers them.
Okay, long ramble aside, it time to wrap this thing up. My initial impressions are very good about the book. It is easier to get orks into combat now, where they have always belonged. For the most part everything got cheaper, so you can take more of them. Units that were not useful before got some tweaks to make them viable in my mind again. We gained tons of new options in existing units. We gained tons of new units. Yes, the mob rule hurts, but come on, we got to give the opponents some weakness to exploit. A kunnin ork player should be able to minimize the impact of the mob rule. Overall, I think the book is very good. I will hold off on a power ranking for now, expect to see that in the future.
In the mean time, I got to clean up all that damn graffiti that Kaptain Klaw left around here. Take care! Severus out.