Daemon Update - Thoughts

This isn't about the content of the Daemon Update packaged with the month's White Dwarf, but far more focused on the fact of its existence.I'll leave the discussion of the rules to wiser heads than mine.

It's a long while since a rules update has been seen outside the pages of White Dwarf. The last one I remember is the Ravening Hordes with White Dwarf 250, that updated all the army lists for use with 6th Ed Warhammer Fantasy. Before that there was a copy of Codex Assassins that came out way back with WD 235, but that is all that comes to mind for me.

Daemons have always been a special case. There initial release broke new ground, being the first (and so far only (quite rightly so)) army to be released in both Warhammer Fantasy and 40,000 using the same models.


The book not only adds new units, but also tweaks those already found in the respective forces books. It does confine itself to the months new releases though, with the one exception being the Soulgrinder finding its way into Fantasy, filling out the army list as a monstrous creature, and presumably getting the model some more sales. 



Talking of sales I'd be interested to know how Daemons sit compared to other armies. Being available across two systems must increase the potential market, but then anyone who's prepared to fiddle the bases has one army that can work in both systems. It'd be interesting to know how that splits down.

The release seems well timed, with Codes Chaos Space Marines just around the corner, piquing collector's interest in Daemonic allies. Chaos are also one of the few forces in Fantasy I can see being used as allies, as while there are the rules provided there seems to have been far less of an interest from that quarter in using them (I suspect this is down to fluff as much as rules. 40K armies do seem to mix together far easier than those in Fantasy).

It's going to be interesting to see where the book goes from here. As a necessary update for people buying certain models I'd like to think we'd see it about in stores for a while, (even if it's still packaged with a White Dwarf), but after that might we see it packaged with the Daemon Codex/Army Book, so new players aren't stung for an extra £4.50. Could we even see a second edition of the rule books to add in these changes ? Quite what will happen in the digital realm is no less certain, with the introduction of GW's iPad publishing initiative making the standard expectation of a free pdf down the line somewhat doubtful. 

Two big questions come out of this release. Firstly does this mean the Codex/Army Books are going to be left as they are for now? While a minor point, it becomes far more important in light of the second question. Are we going to see more of these additions (and feeding back to the first question how long will they last)? I hope we do. It'll be a good way for GW to keep the model cycle ticking over without having to wait on a full Army release, but there are logistics questions wrapped up in that, as well as if time would be better spent re-sculpting some of the old units to bring all the forces currently out up to date with plastic regiment sets, or fully updating books.

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