Monday, August 17, 2009


There were two big Games Workshop related news stories over the past week.

The biggest as far as I'm concerned was the announcement that the mystery box did indeed contain an updated version of Space Hulk. Here's the blurb from GW:

From the depths of space an ancient vessel drifts slowly towards the Imperium of Mankind - a space hulk. Within its confines, untold thousands of Genestealers slowly emerge from hibernation. The Space Marines must enter the cramped corridors and tomb-like chambers of the ancient ship to defeat this alien menace.

Space Hulk is a board game for two players, recreating the battles fought between the Space Marines and Genestealers. One player commands the Space Marines as they carry out deadly missions in the ancient Space Hulk, and the other commands the horde of Genestealers opposing them. Space Hulk's fast-paced rules simulate the tense atmosphere of a mission deep inside the cramped confines of a derelict space hulk, where split-second decisions are needed for victory.

This boxed game contains: a 23-page Rulebook, a 47-page Mission book and 35 finely-detailed, plastic Citadel miniatures, including: 11 Space Marine Terminators, one Space Marine Terminator Librarian, 22 Genestealers, and one Broodlord.

Also included are: 105 gaming counters, 24 corridors, 10 rooms, eight crossroads, eight T-junctions, six corner sections, four dead ends, four end pieces, 20 doors with plastic stands, one mission status display, and three plastic mission objectives, including: a dead Space Marine on throne, a Blood Angels artefact and a Cyber-Altered Task Unit. Plus a sand timer and five bone-coloured dice unique to this game.

My first impression is wow!

There is a lot of stuff in the box. I think it represents decent value for money. Given that a box of Terminators now costs £25 for five models, the eleven Terminators in Space Hulk pretty much accounts for the whole £58 game price. Then you get the twenty two Genestealer models, Broodlord, objective models, map tiles and counters on top.

It's particularly great for me personally as the Terminator models are Blood Angels, dripping with Blood Angel iconography. Talk about good timing!

I do however understand that making generic models for an unspecified chapter would have given them a wider appeal - I still have ten models from the Assault on Black Reach set that I'm wondering how to fit into my Blood Angel army.

The models look superb. The Terminators in particular are wonderfully sculpted with very fine detail. The Genestealer are very dynamic, crawling all over terrain and even bursting through the floor. This, coupled with the fact they are not mounted on slotta-bases, means it might make it tricky to fit the models into a standard 40k army. Still, with a little creativity I'm sure I can make them work.

The rules sound like they are largely based upon the first edition of the game, rather than the second (which I never played), including rules for a timer, large flamer templates, regular six-sided dice and even a C.A.T. There have obviously been some changes though - there is a Librarian and a Broodlord for a start. I just hope the psychic rules are balanced unlike the Genestealer expansion for first edition.

Overall then, I am stoked about this release. It stands alone as a stellar game in it's own right and with a little work could prove very good value for players of Blood Angels and Tyranids in 40k. It pushes the nostalgia button in me too, as Space Hulk is one of my favourite ever games and it shows some love for the Blood Angels. I just hope the rumours of a 2010 codex release for the Blood Angels are true (Tyranids are also rumoured to get a codex update next year).

Soon after the Space Hulk game announcement Black Library advertised their tie-in novel, written by Gav Thorpe. At just £3 it seems like it will be a novella in the same vein as the Assault on Black Reach book.

The other meagre news came out of Gamesday Germany. Rather like Baltimore this sounded like a bit of a let down on the news and rumours front.

The Forge World Chaos Reaver Titan was on display as was the Ork Big Trakk with a giant Kill Kannon. Presumably the Ork vehicle will feature in the forthcoming Elysian v Ork IA book.

Nothing exciting was spotted regarding Space Wolves despite them having an October release date.


  1. The best bit of nostaligia for me, from reading about the new Space Hulk, is that I can still use a cup to pick command points out of as recommended in the 1st edition!
    Also, when you figure out how to base the terminators, please post it!

  2. Good to hear the return to first edition for the rules. The dead marine terrain is what is really selling it to me.

    I am thinking of using the termies in my own army, getting some 40mm round bases and leaving the floor tabs on the models and adding plasticard to build up areas on either side of the floortabs, and either magnetizing the base and tab, or just using a little bit of bluetack to hold them to the base for regular games of 40k.

  3. I'll need to have a good look at the models to decide what to do with the bases.

    For the Genestealers I'm thinking of just basing the whole army, when I start it, with urban/ruins/techno stuff.

    The problem with the Terminators is that my existing Blood Angels have muddy ruins, so just leaving a gap on a 40mm base for them to slot into won't work visually. Similarly I could just snip the bases off a do them to match my existing army but the mud will look odd on on the Space Hulk tiles.