Surviving an Edition Change

In The Grim Darkness, there is only the Next Edition.

    Hello, and welcome to another tactical tidbit by Skari. Changing from one edition to another can be a fun and rewarding experience. However, fear of the unknown and the urge to resist change is a common reaction. With change comes a sense of anxiety due to the upset of our routines and shake up our comfort zones. 

    Over the last few years, we have been learning the rules of 8th edition 40k. We have been investing time, money, and effort into new armies, new lists, traveling to events, and other hobby related activities. We are committed and invested, nay, totally sold on the hobby. When we hear that change is afoot, we can sometimes feel uneasy. Did we waste our money or time? Will I have to relearn everything? Why now, when I am in such a good grove? On the other hand, there are those of us that love change, the challenges ahead, the new combos and list ideas to explore, and new adventures to be had while we are blowing people away with our armies. These feelings motivate us and inspire us forward. 

    As one of those super-excited people who have survived five edition changes of the game (and now six), here are some tips that have helped me in the past and will help me this time as well. 

1) Face and Acknowledge What is Happening 

  • The edition change is happening. It has happened before, and it will happen again. This fact is one of the most important parts of surviving the change. You have to understand that things WILL be different. They might not change a lot from what you know, but they will not be the same. I have been playing the game since 3rd edition, and each edition has changed some aspect of the game: list building, terrain rules, interactions between units, how vehicles work, what characters did, and what special rules meant for units. 

  • We now live in a time when Games Workshop is communicating with their fans more than ever. This means that most, if not all, changes and tweaks people have talked about over the last few years have, at some point, crossed the path of the game developers. It’s a long process that requires money, resources, and time. Although the changes might not be perfect, they are made by people who care about what the game looks like, and are motivated to create something that we will enjoy as consumers of the hobby. 


2) Communicate and Find Positive Support

  • Talk to someone. Find a person who can act as a soundboard, who you can tell how you feel about the expected changes. This could be your coach, someone in your gaming group, your favorite YouTuber, or Twitch streamer. Make sure this person has a positive outlook on the changes ahead. The last thing you need is that person continuously looking for the worst in every new rule or change. A negative outlook helps increase the anxiety and fear of the changes ahead.

  • One of the things that I do with coaching clients is talk about how their current lists would interact with the new rules as they are revealed. Sometimes all you need is to see and hear that the army that you have been practicing with and have invested time into will still be playable in the new edition, that the changes that you can make are minimal to come out of the gate swinging. The last thing you need is someone telling you that your army will be garbage and that you will have to start from scratch. Communication is key here. 

  •  Leave a comment! Express what you like AND dislike about what you have seen will change so far. Venting is good. Sometimes all we need is to get it out and have a motivated person redirect that passion into something that will be productive for our hobby. 



3) Be Flexible to Reduce the Stress

  • Some people do yoga to be flexible and reduce stress. We can do mental yoga! Make a list of the changes that you are excited about, read a cool Black Library book that will inspire you to continue work on your army, purchase a miniature that you have always wanted because it looks cool, and then build and paint it. 

  • I like to reread my codex and think about all the things I have not done yet with the army. I look for cool combos that I would still like to try. I read the stories as well as the unit descriptions and what the lore says about them. Now, competitively this is not something that you NEED to do. However, this is a great tip for inspiration and motivation to reduce that feeling of change. Are there any units that you did not use this edition? What character gathered more dust on your shelf than trophies on the battlefield? Maybe its time to take them out again, and give them another chance, an opportunity to reinvent them on the table. 

4) Find Meaning By Being a Part of It

  • Get involved in the change and be a part of the grassroots of the edition. In the past, I have usually started a 20 game series. I take my favorite army, make a new list or revamp an old one, and document the first 20 games with that army. I do a write up for each game and break down my likes, dislikes, and the lessons learned. This helps keep my focus and gives me a sense of purpose. If you play games and get involved with the change, you can become part of that vanguard of players that comes up with cool new combos and ideas. If you share these with the world, you will be helping other players learn the new edition!

  • I am best known for my work with the Drukhari as a faction. At the start of the new edition I will be breaking down all the cool tricks and tips and ways to use the faction within the new rule set! I am very, very excited, to explore the Dark Kin in light of a new edition, and I can’t wait to share what I find with all of you. Will the Sslyth party bus become a thing again? We shall see. 


    Things like buying new books or revamping units with different weapon upgrades can seem daunting. However, I hope you found these tips interesting. What strategies will you employ as we move into the new edition? 

    As always, reach out to me for coaching, list building advice, and more on the Art of War. Thanks a lot for reading, and I shall see you on the next Skari Tactical Tidbit. 

Skari – Out

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