We’re barely into the new year, and I’m already feeling productive when it comes to my hobby time. At the risk of repeating myself from last year, though, I’ve also been taking a bit of an inventory of my Genestealer Cultist models. I’ve been thinking about them a lot in the last week or so, as I was mainly wondering if I should try to commit to doing anything with the army in my hobby goals for the year. However, after spending a bit of time with the codex and all of my models earlier in the week, I have to say that I’m feeling a bit underwhelmed.
The 8th edition book had a lot of exciting things going on, which I have talked about before, and I thought it was really interesting to go through and see how I could construct my army around some of the units in there. However, this time around, it all just feels really flat, somehow. Like, GW are trying to really push you to use the army in a specific way. I don’t know if this is real, or if it’s just my imagined perception of things, but there doesn’t seem to be a great deal of stuff that you can do as Genestealer Cultists anymore. There were stratagems that could provide some wonderful buffs, as I’ve rambled on about endlessly, which have all been stripped away in favour of – well, I don’t really know what this is. True, some of the units have had buffs to their stat lines, from what I can tell, so you do actually get some good stuff going on there. But whereas a lot of the armies I play have got a lot of fun interactions and nice synergies, I don’t really see a lot of use for command points in this army besides the command re-roll. There’s very little that I would want to spend my points on, and it’s quite surprising, really.
At first, it had disappointed me and I was considering just shelving the cult until 10th edition came around. However, I think that’s a bit hasty, and just because the army wasn’t what I had thought it could be doesn’t mean that’s reason to ignore them. So I am currently in the process of drawing up another army list for my existing cultists, which will no doubt be the topic of a rambling blog in due course!
In the meantime, I’ve started to look at Necromunda vehicles rules, after building up the Goliath Maulers over the New Year weekend, and being thoroughly impressed with them. It’s difficult to not be impressed with the new Necromunda stuff, I find, so I suppose this was never really in doubt! The vehicle rules have so far been pretty spread-out, with rules in the main Ash Wastes rulebook, rules for creating your own vehicles (plus some standard templates) in Book of the Outlands, and then the Goliath and Escher vehicles in Cinderak Burning. I’m assuming that the next book in the Aranthian Succession campaign will have the rules for the Cawdor vehicles that we have seen previewed, as well, though things seem to have gone quiet on that front lately. Hopefully it won’t be too long before we have more news!
The vehicle rules in the Book of the Outlands are extremely impressive, and I must say they’re very comprehensive. Pretty much anything you would think you can do with a vehicle is represented across the 24 pages of rules. There is the usual stuff around actions that vehicles can take, conditions that vehicles can be subject to, how to attack, what happens if fighters are stood on top of vehicles, what happens if the crew loses control of the vehicle, collisions, and so much more. It’s the sort of thing that makes me want to just take a day to go through it all and work out how it all works.
Interestingly, I’ve also been looking at Genestealer Cultists for the Ash Wastes, as my basing scheme for those models is pretty much a desert wasteland, anyway. Excitingly, a lot of the Genestealer Cults vehicles have got templates in the Book of the Outlands, like the Wolfquad and the Goliath. I’ve had a brief look and my Ridgerunner for the Cult would set me back 365 credits with no upgrades, so it’s well within the 400 credit uplift that you get for spending on vehicles. Unfortunately, it seems that you can’t immediately populate it with Genestealer Cultists, as each vehicle needs crew, and we’ve not seen crew profiles for every gang yet. There are generic profiles for Scum Racers which means that someone can pop behind the wheel, but it does feel a bit of a shame that we haven’t got more yet, especially when we’re talking about the non-House gangs. Of course, everybody can use a “Waster’s Dirtbike”, which is basically the Atalan Jackal, so we’re good for that side of things, at least!
I’ve said this a lot, I know, but I am very excited by the Ash Wastes stuff. I think getting the Book of the Outlands for Christmas has really fired me up for more Necromunda, anyway, so hopefully I’ll get to play it soon and see if it lives up to the hype!