By The Emperor! Issue #10

Games Workshop to Balance “Space Marine Meta” in Competitive 40k by Releasing Sisters of Battle

NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND – In what many are calling a truly professional move for a gaming company, Games Workshop announced recently that their solution to the “Space Marine Meta” dominating Warhammer 40K Competitive, is to release Sisters of Battle. Jacob Havershim, a production manager for GW, sat down with BTE!’s own Alium Cepa, Editor Praetor, to discuss the developments further.

Alium Cepa (A.C.): Hey Jacob! Great to have you with us.

Jacob Havershim (J.H.): Great to speak with you as well! Why the teal helmet? It’s just a normal Skype inter-

A.C.: No need to worry about that! Having some work done around the house and the dust is an issue, hence the breathing helmet I have on. Also the vocal distortion you’re hearing is also because of the construction. So! Tell us about GW planned on solving the issue of the “Space Marine Meta”?

J.H.: Right, um ok. Um,so, while working with the 40K Rules team, we knew that Space Marines were going to seriously impact the competitive scene. We also anticipated that this would lead to a large upheaval too, with many players switching to marines, while many more still staying absolutely loyal to their chosen factions, be it Chaos or Xenos. So, planning ahead of our Space Marine release, we recognized the best way to balance marines in the competitive 40K meta was to release Sisters of Battle.

A.C.: Wow! Incredible forethought of your own releasing patterns. Now, does the new Sister’s army act as a counter balance? Do their rules allow for players to go toe-to-toe with Space Marines, or counter various builds they have?

J.H.: Um, surprisingly no, the rules are not actually the crux of how they act as a counterbalance. See, our vision was that, as the hype for Space Marines started to cool off, but the residual disagreement with their balance remained, we would release a very anticipated, extremely well designed army to not only distract players from these issues, but in fact lure players away from both camps. Specifically, the disgruntled Xenos and Chaos players, and the 30% of players who jumped onto the Chapter bandwagon, as it were.

A.C.: That’s a pretty clever solution! I mean, all of us here at BTE! are absolutely in love with the model sculpts, design aesthetic, and the Miracle Dice element. They truly do feel like a new-again army that can fit right in. Is there any sense of how many players will switch over to Sisters of Battle?

J.H: We anticipate a large number of sales, as hobbyists and painters are dying to get their hands on these models. That said, our current estimates show that approximately 35-40% of players currently playing Space Marines now (which is to say about 75% of players who switched to Marines in the first place when the codex was announced and previewed) will switch to Sisters. We also estimate about 25% of Xenos players and a surprising 15% of Chaos players will also switch to Sisters as well.

A.C.: Quite the estimate! So 25% of each Xenos faction or?…

J.H.: Actually yes, approximately 22-25% of each Xenos faction will switch to Sisters, with the exception of Aeldari players, whom we’ve found prefer to complain about other codexes, labeling their armies as victims, and pretend their dominance for 5 editions hasn’t occurred. Tyranid players we don’t expect as much of a shift either, as they take the whole ‘world eating swarm’ concept for their armies pretty seriously, and won’t stop collecting Tyranids. That’s why we keep producing “Start Collecting” boxes for that faction; they keep buying them! We’re honestly not sure if they understand the ‘Rule of Three’ either.”

A.C.: Great stuff! Well thanks for stopping by to talk with Jacob! We appreciate it and we’ll be seeing you again very soon.

J.H.: Of course! Happy to be here and, uh, you’ll be what now?

A.C.: Hmm?

That concludes our broadcast day! To ask our staff or editor questions, feel free to email, and get a chance to have your question answered in our monthly Letters to the Editor!

And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!



About Alium Cepa

Alium Cepa is just a man wanting to tell the truth how it is. He needs no fame or fortune, for his reward is to spread the truth...and he needs people to stop asking if he works for the Alpha Legion, because he's never heard of them, so quit it already.

23 Responses to “By The Emperor! Issue #10”

  1. JVail November 18, 2019 8:26 am #

    While I appreciate the humor of beating a dead horse, I actually am of the opinion that sisters have quite a few tools to deal with marines (Ignoring AP-2 for one). That aside another great REAL NEWS article, nothing like those FAKE NEWS other articles people write.

    • Alium Cepa November 18, 2019 9:35 am #

      Dear JVail,

      Thank you for your comment! We agree with your tactical assessment; there is a decent amount of flexibility and play that will allows Sister to take a punch and give it back. All will be clearer once these fantastic looking models land on the table.

      And thank you also for your kind words. It appalls everyone here at BTE! that anyone would ever consider writing, let alone promoting FAKE NEWS. Luckily, we have a Seal of Authenticity, which we can send you a copy of upon request. Please allow for 5 to 1,450 business days for processing.

      -Alium Cepa

  2. Jeremias Breckheimer November 18, 2019 9:54 am #

    Do you think that the new sisters codex is as good as the Space marinen Codex? I haven’t seen the new codex, but if it is one the same level as the old codexes, then GW has done a mistake and i don’t know how to fix it.

    • JVail November 18, 2019 10:43 am #

      I think it is as good, or at least close to, its definitely a step above the old codices, they have multiple layered rules that make them stand out with tons of options.

  3. Zweischneid November 18, 2019 11:57 am #

    Rule-of-3 is not an actual rule in the game.

    Some events follow that example from GW’s event recommendations a bit to literal, it seems, but you can use, not-use or modify it as you wish as a TO (e.g. an event interpreting it to mean 3 of any flyer/super-heavy/named character/whatever wouldn’t be more or less correct than the current interpretation).

    Similarly, events exempting things like Patrol Detachments (for that 6 Patrol Drukhari build) or Fortification Networks from the “limit-to-3-detachment” recommendation aren’t that uncommon either, as are events taking the event recommendation a bit further to a rule-of-2 or a rule-of-1.

    • Alium Cepa November 18, 2019 1:14 pm #

      Hello Zweischneid!

      Thank you for your comment. We have had our proof readers/sub-editors executed from their positions.

      However, our new proof readers/sub-editors have read through our original article and your response, and we’ve found the following:

      – The “Rule of Three” was introduced as a Matched Play Mechanic in the April 2018 Spring FAQ. You can find it added to the Main Rulebook errata here on page 15:

      — Considering that is the literal wording of the rule, Tournaments and TO’s professing to be using Warhammer 40K Matched Play rules are in fact literally following the literal wording as they should, so we agree with you there!

      – Every unique named character entry in Warhammer 40K has a rule stating “You can only include one of this model in your army”, or something similar, so we’re unsure of any event that allows for 3 of the same named character. We are aware that 40K Open format exists, however we have not seen any recorded instances outside of a garage or unpainted FLG pickup game on a lazy Wednesday afternoon. Most of our junior staff do not believe it exists at all.

      – We were very intrigued by events allowing various detachments increases or restrictions! BTE would love to investigate further and if you could, please send in the names of at least 10 events to our editors. Please only mention these events if they are recurrent on at least an annual basis and garner more than 20 people to play for each instance. We cannot wait to interview 40k enthusiasts who utilize such a delicious and entirely relevant format.

      Thank you again!

      Alium Cepa & the BTE! Editing Staff

      • Zweischneid November 18, 2019 10:58 pm #

        Quote from the “rule”.

        “Of course, if you are organising such an event, you should feel free to modify these guidelines to better suit your event’s own needs, schedule, etc. ”

        Thus a) it’s a guideline and b) it’s not necessarily meant to be used unmodified all the time unless you want to, obviously.

      • Zweischneid November 18, 2019 11:10 pm #

        “If you are using matched play for an organised event such as a tournament…” (e.g. specific to events that opt to follow the suggestion, not necessarily all matched play), “… we suggest.. ” (emphasis “we suggest”) “…using the table below.”

        “As well as a helpful guide…” (emphasis “guide”) “…to the size of the battlefield and game length, the number of Detachments each player can take in their army is restricted, as is the number of times a player’s army can include a particular datasheet.”

        “Of course, if you are organising such an event, you should feel free to modify these guidelines to better suit your event’s own needs, schedule, etc. ” (examples include events such as the recent Adepticon one, where they adopted a “rule-of-1” variant, which is just as much in line with these guidelines as the more common “rule-of-3” variant also played in parallel at Adepticon and elsewhere. Events such as No Retreat, etc.. also take their own spin on these guidelines and contrary to popular perception, they follow the matched play rules as literally as LVO or NOVA, even if they adapt the event guidelines (emphasis “guidelines”) on detachment and datasheet limitations differently than, say, LVO (in line with the rule-of-3-guidelines literally telling TOs to adapt them to their needs).

        • Michael Corr November 19, 2019 1:38 am #

          Zweischneid- I honestly can’t tell if you are seriously arguing this point or it is some sort of joke?!? Given the article I is written in, I hope it is the latter.

          • Zweischneid November 19, 2019 2:54 am


            I wasn’t even aware there was anything to argue.

            The detachment and data sheet limits are all clearly in a box outlining, quote, guidelines for organised events. None of it is part of any RAW actual matched-play rules used either outside of organised events or at events that opt not to follow these recommendations.

            Moreover, all of it comes with the explicit recommendation to tinker and modify to suit any given event’s specific needs.

            What part of, quote, “Of course, if you are organising such an event, you should feel free to modify these guidelines to better suit your event’s own needs, schedule, etc.” is or ever was ambigious?

          • Michael Corr November 19, 2019 4:26 am

            It’s more that you are arguing about wording of rules in an obvious spoof article. It’s not where I would be going for accurate information about the rules.

          • Michael Corr November 19, 2019 4:27 am

            Do you happen to visit The Onion and the Daily Mash and correct them on all the errors in their articles?

    • abusepuppy November 19, 2019 8:03 am #

      >Similarly, events exempting things like Patrol Detachments (for that 6 Patrol Drukhari build) or Fortification Networks from the “limit-to-3-detachment” recommendation aren’t that uncommon either

      I’m gonna second the parody account that is flying over your head here: please name at least three GT-sized events (30+ players) that have been running for more than one year that do this. Because it really seems that despite your dedication to “what the rules say”, you’re really just pulling things out of your ass.

      • Zweischneid November 19, 2019 10:19 am #

        Not sure where the GTs come into it in the joke that apparently flew over my head.

        The premise was that Tyranid players buying a 4th Exocrine or whatever are dimwits because they fail to understand the rule of 3, which is IMO a joke somewhat missing the mark because the rule of 3 is neither a rule nor a universal feature of matched play outside of organized events that follow that particular suggestion by GW.

        It’s like joking people buying e-bikes are idiots because the tour the France doesn’t allow them.

        It’s the joke that missed the mark IMO, but if you consider any joke a “good joke” because any criticism clearly only “didn’t get it”, you have a somewhat basic view of comedy.

        • SaltyJohn November 19, 2019 10:55 am #

          Man, if only FLG could ban commenters. You are easily the worst, it’s a fucking joke article. Thanks for killing it with your comments.

          • Zweischneid November 19, 2019 1:50 pm


            If you don’t want it out in the world for people to react, don’t make it public. Easy.

            Keep it in a private WhatsApp or Facebook group or wherever and you’re golden.

            Why publish stuff on the worldwide web when you don’t want people to read and respond to it?

          • SaltyJohn November 19, 2019 3:16 pm

            Not people. Just you, kill joy.

          • Pyrothem November 19, 2019 4:18 pm

            John it is 2019. You do not engage trolls on the internet. If you feel you must; do not respond with logic or any real sentences.
            Just short dismissive words suffice, just take the latest used one for best effect.

            The next time you feel the need to type a response to Z use a simple “Ok Boomer”

        • abusepuppy November 19, 2019 9:01 pm #

          You still haven’t named any events that allow it (even though they “aren’t that uncommon”). Keep on chuggin’, little engine, the finish line is still a long ways away.

          • Zweischneid November 19, 2019 10:25 pm

            I listed a few events above.

            But again, the joke I didn’t get uses the perspective of GW sales (with the premise apparently that not even GW employees/product managers know why certain products sell and allegedly being in on some kind of joke of their customers being idiots).

            You still haven’t explained how competitive events even relate to that particular joke’s premise.

          • abusepuppy November 19, 2019 11:13 pm


          • Zweischneid November 20, 2019 2:06 am

            I guess it is a hard joke for me. So help me out.

            Is it really a „good joke“ insinuating other people are idiots because they are allegedly unaware of a rule (irrespective even of the other question of whether the rule even exists as an actual rule)?

            Is it inconceivable that even competitive players playing primarily in ITC format such as Brian Pullen might have a 4th Riptide or Coldstar somewhere, or that Skari might own more Ravagers than he could legally bring to the LVO?

            If so, is the „joke“ of „Skari has 4 Ravagers, what a hare-brained moron! Even GW HQ is having a laugh at his expense!!! HAHAHAHAAH”, a good example of the kind humour FLG wants to be associated with?

            Or is the joke only funny when it’s being made about anonymous stereotypes this site likes to peddle to make readers feel superiour about themselves?

            Is that really, genuinely, honest-to-god the stuff that has you and Salty John rolling on the floor giggling?

            I am eager to learn why that is so hilarious and supposedly not the most dimwitted kind of backbiting (not to mention sorta exemplary of the kind of cliquish TFG hubris that podcasts like Chapter Tactics have repeatedly (incorrectly?) tried to disown as allegedly foreign to or at least rare among competitive players).

          • JVail November 20, 2019 5:57 am

            Wow, someone doesn’t understand satire AT ALL. The entire POINT is that it is ridiculously rigid and to make fun of groups of any type. But thanks for ruining yet another comment section you overgrown sewer rat.

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