Xeno Hunters. There are very few things in the 40k universe more “40k” than that designation. And now, I can field an entire army of them? Fantastic.
When the new Deathwatch Overkill box came out, I read the rules for using the models for 40k and gave a big “eh”; I didn’t typically play Imperial Armies, and I wasn’t a huge fan of the way that the squads were layed out. I was most disappointed in the lack of Battle Brother Allies for Nids from the other half of the box, but the Deathwatch half didn’t really register on my radar.
Until they announced that it would be its own codex several months later. So cool!
So, I got my codex a little bit later than I was hoping to due to some shipping issues (no biggie, it’s in my hot little hands now), and I’ve got to say that the quality is very high. I’m not sure they re-used any of the awesome art from the Deathwatch RPG, but since they’ve never had a codex before, I believe most of the art is original (and decent, at least). It seems like they’ve tried to use the squads from Death Masque as much as possible.
The rules are interesting; the formations really add something new to the game. In the Deathwatch formations, instead of just taking a combination of different units and a set bonus, they instead combine the units to a maximum size of 10 models; then give them a benefit. It’s sort of neat to have a unit that’s a combination of Veterans, Terminators and Vanguard all in one squad. The benefits are pretty substantial (re-rolling to wound or armor pen against a particular force org slot), but I’m not sure they overshadow the basic kill team formation, the Aquila Kill Team, which gets to re-roll to wound and armor penetration rolls of one against everything.
The special rule the army has is called Mission Tactics – this rule lets you gain a bonus against a certain battlefield role type when you enact it at the start of the game. It lets you re-roll 1’s to hit against said unit type (or a squad containing at least one model from that particular battlefield role). There are numerous ways to be able to switch is as the game continues.
So, with that in mind, I’d like to briefly go over all the various army selections.