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Warhammer 8th Edition out in July! Here are rumored changes.

Warhammer 8th edition rulebook cover

More reliable rumours

* Army construction is moving back to percentages.
* Strength in Depth/ Stepping up
* Crush attack for larger creatures
* 40mm models moving to 3 model-wide ranks.
* Multiple objective driven scenarios in the rulebook
* All non-english rulebooks are moving to inches.
* Power dice aren’t generated by the number of spellcasters. The pool is decided by 2D6. Magic users add their magic level to the score rolled. All Wizards have a chance to generate more power dice.
* Archers fire in two ranks (not just High Elves but all archers)

Warhammer 8th Ed Rulebook to be released July 10th

Other rumours (and description of above)

These are all listed in no particular order.


* Army construction is moving back to percentages.
There have been not been strong rumours yet to support any specific % for all categories, however, 25% min core, 25% max special and 25% max rare seem to be undisputed.
* Slot system may or may not be dropped
* Categories for core/special/rare are remaining.
There have been no rumours yet of a system wide errata to specify which things are limited as a result.


NOTE: The magic rumours nobody seems to agree on, so rather than try and find what exactly the truth is I will just put here most of the theories

* Power dice aren’t generated by the number of spellcasters. The pool is decided by 2D6. Magic users add their magic level to the score rolled. All Wizards have a chance to generate more power dice. – Avian
* Giving irresistible force a downside
* If a wizard fails to cast (not counting dispels) twice in a row he miscasts
* Making miscasts harder to have but much more devastating.
* Dispel scroll only adding dispel dice (+2 dice to the dispel dice pool once per game). (edit – possibly speculation)
* Something rumoured is carrying over power dice, but holding too many could lead to a ‘magic backlash’.
* All the book Lores will have more supportive spells than they have now, and will all be getting a major overhaul. Each lore to get a mega spell.
* Dispel attempts to be made by specific wizards (presumable your casting level is beneficial for dispelling spells)
* A higher chance of miscast with multiple casters.
* If a wizard fail to cast a spell he can’t cast other spells in the same phase.


NOTE: Trying to nail down what the truth is here is very hard. Once it is explained properly by someone who knows categorically what it is I will update this

Some of this is only my understanding of what has been discussed.


There are basically 2 big new rules here; what I have named ‘Stepping up’, and a ‘Horde’ rule. – Harry.

What is 100% clear is that models in the second rank will have some role to play in most combats.

* Stepping up. – Harry/ Avian

Basically how this works is that the second rank get to fight only if the guy in front is killed. But they only get a single attack regardless of what their profile attacks are, or what weapons they are carrying* . It is not clear yet whether they get to use special rules in addition to this or not at all (frenzy, hatred and killing blow etc). Only once there are insufficient models left to replace those that are killed in the attacking rank will the overall attacks of the unit drop.

*It has yet to be clarified exactly how models with spears get to use them.

No word on the impact for High Elves.

Cavalry still only fight in 1 rank.


You have a unit of 20 guys, 5×4, 5 of which are in base contact with the enemy and 15 are not. The enemy strikes first and kills 6 of your guys. As you now have 14 models you have sufficient numbers to step up and replace casualties.

Because the front 2 ranks consists of 10 models overall, 6 of which are now dead, you still get to fight back with 4 models. In the next round of combat, the ranks are reset, so 5 models are in base contact, 5 in the second rank (capable of ‘stepping up’) and 4 in the third (remember, you still have 14 models). This time the enemy kills a further 8 models, leaving you with 2 models that get to fight back and a unit of 6.

This is the same regardless of which side they are attacked on.

* Horde
Fight in 3 ranks if 10+ wide (4 with spears). – Avian.
Some benefit to fighting in large units, may automatically become stubborn beyond a certain unit size. – Harry

* One Save to ruin them all!
Models will only ever get one save (be it ward, mundane or magical armour). No word yet on whether regeneration is included. From Alessio himself!

* 40mm models
40mm models moving to 3 model-wide ranks. Ogre sized models are officially being put into their own size category (finally).

* Crush them!
Additional stomp/crush attacks for big infantry (ogres, trolls, etc) to represent them trampling lesser races underfoot. Bigger bonus for large creatures like giants. These are not impact hits.

* Fewer armour save modifiers

* Chariots
S7 autokill is gone. (edit: possible speculation)


* Measure the distance for the furthest moving model, and perform whatever manoeuvres you wish within that lax limitation. Command models will have some role to play in giving free manoeuvre as you move (Musician bonus similar to Ancient Battles?).
* Charging.
An added ‘bonus’ of getting an ‘extra’ +D6 or +D3 inches of movement to your move range (presumably the D6 or D3 decided by the category of warrior; infantry/cavalry/ogre sized).
* Heavy cavalry no longer able to march
– Heavy cavalry, defined as any cavalry with a 2+ or better save, cannot march. They can double their move when charging as normal, but they are not allowed to make a March move.
– “Medium and Fast cavalry remain the same”.


* As it happens to be the same rumour; fewer armour save modifiers.
* Archers fire in two ranks (not just High Elves but all archers). – Harry


* Fear and Terror
When in combat, units or monsters with these rules gain 1 or 2 or 3 points of Static Combat modifier. This is added to the number of wounds caused by the Fear/Terror model/unit, as well as ranks, banners, etc. These bonuses may be cumulative between fear/terror causing things attacking a unit.
* Autobreaking from fear or terror is gone.


* Multiple objective driven scenarios in the rulebook (no kill points). See GW grand tournament and doubles scenarios.
* 15 or so missions in the new rulebook. 9 or 10 of the missions required Core units to capture objectives. Units must have banners to capture objectives. Several missions had multiple objectives
* Victory Conditions
Interestingly something I picked up from a post was that ‘victory conditions’ have been referred to in the last 3 books, not victory points.
* Terrain
Difficult terrain may be merged with very difficult and encompass more things (presumably more than just affecting movement).

I may do a full analysis, if I have the time, but briefly a lot of rumored changes that may bode well for the High Elves. Army composition, Heavy vs Medium Caverly, and Archers firing in 2 ranks are some examples. Enjoy and I hope to also hear your thoughts!

Extracted, as usual, from the awesome rumor mill: Warseer forums.

32 Comments, Comment or Ping

  1. michael

    this is bullshit crap, i like the 7th ed and 6th ed better..

    the rules are better when in 6th ed… 7th ed is still acceptable, but come on man, 8th ed is stupid.

    only 1 saves, ward or mundane is stupid, please don make it 40k ok… it is warhammer fantasy get that straight… allessio

  2. Jeremy

    I would hope they would make every army capable of being a top tiered one. Otherwise they should change the lore and say that the dwarves, and orcs and goblins and any other lower tiered army would have been totally wiped out or enslaved by the higher tiered ones. I started collecting dwarves only to find out that they suck in game terms oh well

  3. Adam


    You are deluded. There are so many flaws with Warhammer Fantasy Battles, I cannot believe you think that it doesn’t need to be streamlined & stripped of it dated & ridiculous rules.

    The game is far too in-depth for a… GAME.
    Arguments occur far too often for the game to be acceptable.

    I do love the game & have accepted that arguing is just a part of the “fun”.


  4. Jhun13

    sounds like some one is upset that their power list wont auto-win them games anymore. seriously i cant believe people cry about not getting 2-3 different stacking saved on heroes. learn to win with troops and tactics

    i think these rules are great. it means melee arms can rack up a large amount of kills in about the same amount of time that power magic and shooting can. which means troops matter now

    it also means characters wont be un-kill able tanks that flying around the battle field with no support with out fear of being overwhelmed.

    6th was broken as hell. it was a sloppy rule set that had to many grey areas.

    7th ed was better but had to much power creep and ended up way out of balance.

    5th edition was pretty interesting, lots of great mechanics, but heroes where to powerful and it was a hero hammer edition with overly long games.

    3rd – 4th edition rules were just wayyy slow and was not balanced. they were geared towards fun rather than serious play

    i never played 1st or 2nd edition rules

  5. Adam

    A part of my enjoys Hero Hammer versions… mainly because I play Bretonnians…
    But I agree, those games are slow, & cause arguments / cries of “beardiness”.

    A fine balance is what I’m hoping for.
    Where tactics & troops matter – But I can still have a Wizard that can do some point stealing, & a Lord that can tear people open… Yet are themselves killable!

  6. Dave

    Sorry to be a dick, but troops never needed to attack!
    It was always about ranks and outnumbering!
    How can you say learn to win with troops!

  7. Adam

    Actually Dave, your argument actually supports the use of troops…
    Seeing as they don’t need to attack… As long as you have enough of them you’ll win the combat, lol.

    So in summary…
    You should all learn to win with troops!

  8. pierce

    i have a warriors of chaos army. obviously i like my characters. but im sure they will remain the best in the game anyway. Remembering we are all in the same boat here.

  9. Sam

    Got a confirmation from a chap who works in Warhammer HQ of the hordes rule. Bit of a disadvantage for Choas and Bretonnians, good for horde armys such as Orcs and Skaven imo.

  10. Time for a Hoard of High Elves Spearelves!

  11. I welcome the changes. Not because I think the current rules are particularly bad but because I’m looking forward to having to adapt to some new rules. The more changes the better in my opinion.

    I would like there to be some changes that can influence the game tactics a bit more. I find some battles have few tactics beyond asrmy selection and initial deployment.

    I’m happy for them to change combat, magic and shooting however they like but I would like them to simplify and make maneuvering easier and more realistic. Things like not being able to declare charges against enemies who are not exactly in your 90degree line of sight are a bit silly, esp for small units with maybe 10 models in them.

    Anyway, like I said. I’m really looking forward to it.

    my WFB new blog
    180+ Bat Reps
    my WFB gallery

  12. Guest

    Man what a bunch of f’in idiots. How on earth does more powerful MAGIC and more powerful SHOOTING mean you’ll have to rely on troops? lol

    I swear, bunch of fan boys who can’t see that the real reason they’re doing this is to make a ton of money. This isn’t about balance. It’s about making you buy more models and dumbing the game down so kids can play, just like 40k. I mean, how is rolling a bunch of extra dice ‘streamlining’. Now you have to roll for magic, dispel dice, charge movement, and prolly a lot more.

    These rules take away strategy! What’s strategic about not even having to guess ranges for war machines(confirmed) or magic destroying everything, or not having to carefully plan your charges for 3 turns because now you can just roll 2d6(confirmed, not 1d6 or 1d3) and charge from just about anywhere on turn 2. That’s not strategy, that’s blind luck. Either you roll high and can charge or you don’t.

    Yeah, I’m about done with WH now. I’ll keep playing with those who play the old rules. You know, grown ups. That way I won’t have to go get a ton more models just so I can get off some more shooting and get a ‘horde’ ability, oh yeah and the ‘stubborn’ rule too. Oh yeah, plus Unit strength is gone, so it’s all about ranks. Once again, more models.

    Let’s wake up here guys. Oh and I play Orcs and Goblins and they suck but at least a win with them feels hard won.


  13. quickfuze

    Well, if the rumors hold somewhat true, I will just continue to run “flying circus” and call it a day. Warhammer has traditionally been a more “in depth” game as one person put it, and you know what….i liked that. Notice at tournaments how fantasy had more adult players than 40k. Thats because it WAS a more complicated system and not just “how many dice can I fit in my hand WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!”. All GW is doing is trying to sell more models (horde rule cough cough) and attract kids into the game. Im not faulting them for this, they are a business afterall….but lets not pretend they are doing this to make a “better” game.

  14. Danimoth17

    I am holding out on giving an opinion till i can see the rules.

    But that being said, making 40mm units of Ogres, Minotaurs, etc. rank in 3’s instead of 5’s is finally going to make Ogre Kingdoms army usable.

  15. Guest

    God It’s so nice to see someone who gets it. I went a bit nuts on my comment and shouldn’t have used the word idiot.

    Oh and no more guess rolling for war-machines either lol. Seriously, I’m just so glad I have friends that are more into the fun of the game than tourneys. That way we can use the current rules.

    Yes they are a business. But it feels like they’re trying to trick us into buying more stuff from them. LIke, people actually believe these new rules are to balance the game, lol. Granted the percentage change might do that, but I doubt it. Everything else involves destroying more models or getting bonus’s for more models.

    Bleh, I’m done. My point is that you can make money by making decently priced good looking models and a fun game. You don’t have to resort to making it a kid’s game (And that absolutely is what’s happening, ever play Talisman?).

  16. Jason

    So people who think the new rules could be fun are fan boys and anyone who wants to flame any kind of change is a mature adult?

    Was there consideration from GW that the new rules could help them sell more models? I’m thinking there was. But do they have a buring desire to wreck there own game and move the base of people somewhere else? I don’t think so.

    Expanding the number of people that play fantasy is a good thing. Rules that allow more armies to be competitive is a good thing. Change in general is a good thing. I don’t like all the changes as proposed, (Roll distance for charging) but I’m not the king expert on miniature war games and I have not extensively play tested the new rules. I’d say play with the new rules and proxy models to find out if its the game you want to play. If not go do something else. If it is enjoy the update and have fun with the hobby.

  17. MARINI

    i agree it seems like another tactic to make more profit. buy more models,spend more money,ruin what was a good game. if a once every-other-month price increase wasnt bad enough..ive been collecting lizardmen for 8 years now and its sad that now more than ever i cant even play half the models i own in a single game (% lists?)..sure 6 stegadons with engines of the gods in a game can hurt,but EVERYTHING has a weakness that can be exploited!..i’ll cut my losses and shelf my GW stuff till 9th edition…hopefully it’ll be fun again then…enjoy the warrior of chaos and dark elf “meta”

    Warmachine/Hordes just got me back

  18. Hmm

    So… There are a lot of changes, some of which are a bit worrying.. But let’s not forget it’s warhammer, I’ve played warhammer since I was five and the game has only gotten better. Sure there were a few big changes along the way that people got upset about, then they tried em out and it turned out fine. I trust GW, over 25 years of WH has passes without fault, they aren’t about to mess up yet. Be patient and have faith, I sure do at least.

  19. Guest2.0

    Well, I just read through everyone’s post. Why, I was bored. I’ve come to the conclusion that some of you make valid points, I agree that Warhammer is a game more for adults and not kids which I why I stopped playing 40K a while ago ( the WEEEEEEEEEEE!!! mentioned above comes to mind along with acne encrusted egotistical teenagers). In the end I think it remains to be seen as to what will come of the new rules. Keep in mind the first post is based off of a ton of loose rumors none of which are 100% valid. Now that I’ve added my 2 cents all I will leave you fellow’s with is the hope (oh God please) that fantasy doesn’t become the watered down roll as many dice as you can carry type game that 40K has evolved into over the years.

  20. Nick

    The changes look interesting to me. Unreliable charge distance will hopefully put an end to “I spend three turns inching back and forth, then we finally do stuff on turn four.” Allowing the second rank to attack when they move up will make combat just that–combat. No more “I charge, I wipe your front rank, I win.”

    I just hope they have something in there about falling back from a charge. Retreating as a viable tactic takes the WAR out of warhammer.

  21. Ben

    just saying the new rules are very confusing, but it seems to make a lot of the stuff smoother. i love that now u can have lords in a 1500pt army. My bretonnian 1500pt list has 2 lords and 3 heros. Its amazing. And my wizard taking lore of beasts can change into a great fire dragon.

  22. Guys check this out. A first look at the 8th edition High Elves in a form of a tactica!


  23. Guest

    I don’t see why everyone is flipping out. Yes, it is true that Games Workshop is trying to make more money. Who doesn’t want to make more money? I think there are reasons for all the changes.
    1. The randomized charge distance removes the stalemate that is often created by two movement 4 armies facing off.
    2. The percentage based lists removes Herohammer from the game. There is no confirmation of the single save regardless of type. Even if that were the case, it certainly gets rid of the typical four unkillable vampires that make unlimited units in one 2000 point list.
    3. Changes in magic are welcome. Half the lores were, simply put, terriable.
    4. The horde rule is meant to benifite HORDE BASED ARMIES! It is meant to make it so skaven and goblin units don’t get torn to pieces by archers and run down. High Elves, Lizardmen, Daemons and Chaos don’t need to worry about getting wiped out in one round because THEY’RE GOOD!

  24. brendan

    the random charge range scared me at first, but now that ive thought it out its no so bad. assuming infantry charge movement+D3, that gives you a charge range of 5-7. it just means that you need to get closer to charge, grants more time to shoot, and more time to maneuver and try to redeploy. it also make makes failed charges more dangerous, which in my opinion is more realistic. before a failed charge for cavalry wasnt a big deal because you would still be 8+ inches away.

  25. Q

    I think that the new rules would work really well if they started selling a race’s standard warrior unit in boxes of 20 models rather than boxes of 16. Even with 7th edition, its pretty much necessary to field units in 20’s assuming they’re like High Elf Sea Guard, Lizardmen Saurus, Empire Spearmen. If they’re not fielded in 20’s, then they will lose every round of combat against any type of Daemon, Chaos Warrior or elite unit. I’m confident that most customers won’t mind the price of a box of models going up around three dollars(Canadian) to get 20 models rather than 16. That, and with the exception for characters, blister packs have become outdated. I know that for Lizardmen at least, you need three Kroxigors to field a unit, and a Kroxigor is $24(Canadian). If they just sold 3 plastic models in a box then all would be well. In short, Games Workshop should change their marketing and distribution along with 8th edition.

  26. Hey Q,

    That is a very astute insight. I could not understand why GW were not selling models in actual regiment sizes, rather than having to buy 1.5 regimental boxes to make a unit. The cynic in me keeps on thinking of how they are looking to make money. But even then a smart marketing company would focus on the experience first rather than money. Money comes when the experience is good.

  27. Q

    Although, in terms of convenience for the customer, boxes of twenty models would be vastly more convenient, it recently occured to me that changing the marketing and production would be a massive overhaul for them as a company. In a time of economic recession it would be difficult for Games Workshop to change a lot of distribution based matters.

  28. Drakew

    Ben, “My bretonnian 1500pt list has 2 lords and 3 heros. Its amazing.”

    Now Ben, I’m not putting you down because as long as you and your opponent are having fun then that’s cool. But this seems to put and end to the idea that the new rules will stop “Herohammer” armies. If anything, it seems to make it worse. I mean, 2 lords in a 1500pt game, wow. I can’t even comprehend how this would play out.

    Does your army do good? Is it really fun this way? I know you mentioned magic and with up to 12 power dice and stronger spells, I guess the rest of the phases don’t matter all that much, but still.

    You guys do know that 40k used to have magic too (psykers)? It was a blast. But I guess all those spells were confusing to the kiddies so they got rid of it *shrugs*

    And I always liked the “inching forward.” I loved aligning my guys up like a chess board. But that’s gone. March Blocking (a HUGE strategy) is gone, guess ranges (takes skill), that’s gone. Setting up a baited unit to flee with, while leaving your enemy open for a counter charge (another awesome tactic), that’s gone (you still charge up to an extra 12″ not 3″). Strategicly picking your lore and just the right #/levels of magic users to get what you want off while balancing out your troops(gone). You just get 2d6 PD anyways.

    But lets look at our new strategies! Adding more units to get off more special abilities (this takes a lot of thought). Blasting your oponenet to bits with magic yaay (this takes a considerable amount of luck, er I mean strategy). hmmm I guess that’s it.

    So look, I’m not saying WHFB is now a crappy game. All I’m saying is that now a lot of actual strategy has been taken out and replaced with more dice rolling (LUCK). That’s it in a nutshell. You absolutely cannot argue that the game has been dumbed down and now relies more on luck or that you’ll need more models to compete in tournament play. These 2 things are not opinions but facts. It’s up to you to decide if this is the Warhammer you want to play.

  29. Gareth

    I think everyone seems to be missing something that will unbalance the game for some armies for a while. Magic getting more powerful means that armies like Ogres, TK, Wood Elves, Skaven and OG that use their own Lores will become significantly weaker in magic phase (comparatively) until their new army books come out. For Ogres, TK, WE and OG this shouldn’t be too long, but for Skaven…ouch.

  30. Combat311


    When I heard about 8th edition I was happy because I was thinking going to fix the books like undead, Daemon and dark elves. When I heard the change in the rule I was sick to my stomach. I stop painting my O&G and started to play warhammer 40k. I used to make fun of this game a few years back but the new edition make me started playing the game.


    I play the undead and stop playing them because of there book.

  31. J

    I haven’t bought the 8th edition yet (but I was very tempted to when I first saw it on the GW site), but all these rumours about the rules changes makes me a bit worried. It seems as if though the game has been intentionally dumbed down to attract a younger audience (by removing guess range, etc). I’m not against change but this is not the warhammer I would like to play.

  32. LoneWolf

    i hate to say it friends, but WFB has just hit a new low.
    now dont get me wrong 7th wasnt perfect, but hell this make me think of Microsoft all over again. “fix your god dam system dont make a new one with more problems then the last one”. this game has now gone to the dogs, sorry the kids. having looked though the new rule book, DRAKEW, is right all they are doing is making people buy more, hell did anyone notice that this happened at the tail end of a recession (not to mention after talking to some of the employees , GW cut staff to a bare minimum at there stores for the last year).

    i started playing 40k because is looked fun, then moved to WFB because it required more tactics then chess and you needed more that 2 brain cells in order to play, and even more to win.
    this edition has the the same amount of tactics in it as a console fighting game (soul calibur anyone), with the slight chance of a nuke going off. now if you want to play get 60 d6 for each person a role, who ever scores higher wins

    for now i ll play 7th, until they actually make something worth playing

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