Mass battles between scores of units and thundering war machines are great, but there’s always been an undeniable appeal to skirmishes – those moment-to-moment struggles where victory rests on the efforts of a mere handful of troops and their individual heroics – when every warrior is a distinct character with their own story.
This was originally published on the Warhammer-Community page.
Over the years, Warhammer fans have enjoyed a range of skirmish games, from past iterations of Kill Team to the recent Shadow War: Armageddon.
We’ve taken the best of these systems and combined them to create a brand new gaming experience.
The new Kill Team takes the stuff we know you love – deep squad customisation, narrative progression and development, low model counts – and marries it to cutting-edge rules design, bringing in the team behind Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire to ensure the ruleset is as tight and balanced as possible.
Here’s Dave Sanders, who heads up the Kill Team rules project, on what you can expect from the game:
Dave: Kill Team is a standalone skirmish game set in the world of Warhammer 40,000. The game’s focus is on covert operations – players hand-pick their kill teams of die-hard special operatives to get a specific job done, whether that be reconnaissance, sabotage or assassination. The games are fast-paced with a rapid back-and-forth between players (and can include up to four players). There’s something in it for everyone: there are narrative missions and a campaign format for those who love telling their own stories, countless new challenges for hardcore gamers in the matched play rules, and for people new to the hobby, it’s a great place to start – the game has a low model count, and with the fantastic generator tables you can get a really thematic kill team up and running very quickly.
The result is a high-octane skirmish battler where you’ll command a handful of elite troops in action-packed squad combat.
Your kill team is a squad of elite warriors, hand-picked by you, consisting of about 5-10 individuals. You construct your kill team model by model – a squad of Space Marines could consist of two Reivers, a missile launcher-wielding Tactical Marine Gunner, a Scout with a sniper rifle and a Primaris Sergeant with a power sword, for instance.
Once you’ve assembled your kill team, you can customise them even further with a deep system of specialisms and advancements. These allow you to really distinguish your key troops – creating sharp-shooting Snipers, fearless combat Medics or vox-hacking Comms specialists.
Kill teams can be used in one-off missions or in campaigns where they grow in power, levelling up and developing their abilities with bespoke skill trees.
Take Demolitions, for example:
Follow one branch, and you’ll be able to build a flamer-wielding pyromaniac – follow another and you’ll have a grenade-lobbing siegemaster.
As well as rules, you’ll be encouraged to customise and develop the lore and narrative of your kill team. The book is packed with generation tables covering the names and backgrounds of your unit, right down to the quirks and demeanours of individual troops. Every kill team will be truly your own – this is as much about creating stories and roleplaying opportunities as it is delivering fast-paced strategic action.
Kill Team has been designed from the ground up as a brand new gaming experience. If you play Warhammer 40,000, you may be familiar with some of the core principles, but there are several key differences to represent the dynamic, lightning-fast nature of squad combat.
Kill Team uses a form of alternating activations – in some phases, you’ll take it in turns to use each of your fighters, acting and reacting to transform every moment of the game into a tense battle of wits where a single mistake can be deadly.
Terrain is core to the Kill Team experience. The field of battle in Kill Team is known as a Killzone – varying from lush jungles to churning manufactorums, each presents challenges and opportunities for your fighters. Your troops will interact with their surroundings more than ever before – diving from ruin to ruin as they close on the foe, disappearing into hidden tunnels and taking point in a sniper’s eyrie where they can survey the battlefield.
Kill Team games are played on a 22″ by 30″ board – tightly packed war zones that’ll fit perfectly on your coffee table. Every game takes place at close-quarters, troops trading shots across ruin-streaked firing lanes while trying to flank their foe. And it’ll be easy to find space and set up your games.
Once you’ve mastered the basics of Kill Team, you’ll be able to harness Tactics, a new mechanic similar to Stratagems that add additional depth to the game and allow you to represent the heroic deeds of your individual fighters. With only one Command Point a turn to spend, you’ll have to use them carefully – do you act decisively, save them for a key re-roll or use one of the many other Tactics available to your squad?
Kill Team places your units behind enemy lines in missions of subterfuge, assassination and sabotage. From planting bombs to slaying VIPs and sabotaging supply lines, these missions are a far cry from the take-and-hold pitched warfare of Warhammer 40,000.
You’ll be able to play Kill Team with a single opponent or in fast-paced multiplayer arenas with up to 4 players. Multiplayer is a core part of Kill Team, and you’ll find the game just as balanced, fast and fun with 1, 2 or 3 foes.
Like Warhammer 40,000, you’ll have three ways to play with Kill Team. If you’re looking to try balanced, fast-paced and competitive squad combat, you’ll love matched play, while narrative play lets you duke it out in thrilling interlinked campaigns. Likewise, if you just want to throw down models and have fun, there are plenty of open play missions in the book too.
This is just the beginning for Kill Team. This is a fully fledged Warhammer system that we’ll be supporting for years to come with rules, models, expansions and more – not to mention organised play, store tourneys and independent events. You can get started with Kill Team in confidence that we’ll be providing continuing support for your hobby.
There’s no better place to kick off your first Kill Team campaign than with the Kill Team boxed set, containing everything you need to start gaming, including two kill teams, the full rules and a complete board setup featuring the new Sector Imperialis terrain. If you wanted to, you could only buy this set as a board game in its own right and still have hours of fun with it.
Here’s what you’ll find in the box.
As well as being available in the Kill Team boxed set, you’ll be able to pick up the manual separately – great if you’re intending to split the set with a friend or want to get stuck in with the game but have plenty of scenery and miniatures already.
The Kill Team Core Manual is your complete guide to skirmish warfare, containing all the rules you’ll need to assemble your kill team, pick your specialists and fight anything from quick open play operations to deep narrative campaigns. In the book, you’ll find datasheets, Tactics and rules for all 16 factions in the game (so far), missions for every type of play, generation tables for your lore and much, much more.
Kill Team is as much about where you play as who you play with, with terrain being integral to victory. In your games, you’ll dive for cover, travel through hidden tunnel networks and release deadly deathtraps, with unique datasheets, tactics and rules available for a huge range of terrain.
To help you make the most of terrain in your games, we’re making it simpler than ever to collect with a brand new kind of expansion – Killzones. These are your one-stop shop for scenery, each containing a double-sided board, a full set of terrain and unique Tactics, all for less than getting the items inside separately.
Each Killzone is a fully fledged Kill Team expansion, with a range of unique rules content – fighting in a Sector Mechanicus will feel completely different to battling on a death world or in the close confines of a spaceship. The Kill Team main set is packaged with a Sector Imperialis Killzone, while at launch, you’ll be able to grow your collection with the Sector Mechanicus Killzone:
Combine the main Kill Team set and a couple of Killzones, and you won’t just have a wide range of choices for where you play your games but the beginnings of a sizeable collection of terrain you can then use for your games of Warhammer 40,000 – both games are designed to complement each other for those who collect both.
Kill Team Starter Sets are the perfect way to get stuck in with a new kill team, each featuring specially selected models, new rules, custom tokens and terrain to bolster your collection, all at a lower price than picking up the contents separately. Each can be used as a pre-made kill team in its own right, or as a starting point for one of your own making, featuring unique faction tactics cards you won’t find anywhere else. Let’s take a look inside the Krogskull’s Boyz set.
In short, each set will enhance every part of your Kill Team experience and is a must-have if you’re looking to play a particular faction. At launch, you’ll be able to pick up Krogskulls Boyz, as well as The Fangs of Ulfrich, a Space Wolves kill team that’s a great starting point for ANY Adeptus Astartes player. There are more Starter Sets on the way, each featuring even more terrain, models and unique Tactics, so keep your eyes peeled…
It’s worth taking a closer look at the new Sector Imperialis Terrain. Put simply, this is some of the best Warhammer 40,000 terrain ever made.
Designed by the team behind the Sector Mechanicus sets (and 100% compatible with them to boot), these marry the modularity and expandability of these kits with our most detailed vision of the dark and gothic cityscapes of the 41st Millennium yet.
Every single section is exactingly detailed, moulded and designed to the same specifications as our multipart plastic kits, made to characterfully bring to life the world of the 41st Millennium while being flexible enough to build anything you can imagine. Each piece is compatible with every other, allowing you to build anything from low-lying ruins for close-quarters firefights to towering, imposing high-rises with fully detailed interiors.
Of course, looking awesome is one thing – but we know that the true test of these scenery pieces will be how you use them in your games. The new Sector Imperialis range has been designed specifically to work with modern Warhammer 40,000, each piece acting as practical cover for a range of units. You’ll comfortably be able to fit your Redemptor Dreadnoughts, Deff Dreads or any larger units within the new, upscaled buildings, while doorways, flooring sections and balconies are perfect for models with larger bases – whether you’re rappelling in with a squad of Reivers or skittering across walkways with Sicarian Ruststalkers, you’ll have plenty of space to do so.
Whether you’re looking for a practical and tactical way to add cover to your boards (for Kill Team and beyond) or you’re ready to recreate Holy Terra itself on your tabletops, the new Sector Imperialis terrain is for you – and there are even more kits on the way.
Last, but not least – accessories! As a distinct game in its own right, Kill Team is getting a range of unique gaming aids and merchandise for your collection. The Kill Team Carry Case, for example, is a mini-sized version of our foam cases that easily fits in a backpack and is great for transporting your squad between battles.
You’ll also be able to match your dice to your warband with a range of specially designed dice sets, featuring unique colours and iconography. Each set features six D6s and two D10s for your games.
There’s even a Kill Team Tape Measure, featuring unique Kill Team iconography:
Finally, blank datacards are great for keeping track of your fighters, allowing you to check out their stats, wargear, experience points and demeanours at a glance.
Want to get stuck in right away? We don’t blame you – but we’re sure you’re wondering just which factions will be available when the game launches. So, we figured we’d just tell you:
Each of these factions uses a specially chosen pool of units, designed to represent the kind of forces you’d find in a kill team, as well as unique tactics they can wield on the battlefield. We’ll be previewing every faction in the game in the run-up to the game’s release with a series on Warhammer Community, starting tomorrow with a closer look at the Adeptus Mechanicus.
Got any more questions? We’ve got answers – in the form of a nifty PDF:
And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!