Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team

Embark on high-stakes missions with teams of elite operatives.

I played the last version of Kill Team only once, and found it … unsatisfying. Perhaps Games Workshop felt the same, because this new version is a completely different rules system. While the last seemed unbalanced and slow, this one simplifies things and puts a bigger emphasis on stealth and ease of play.

One thing the last version had was some fantastic ruined building terrain, and this time they went with a pile of ramshackle orky constructions, though the release that included them was too rich for my blood. So I thought I was going to miss out on this version until GW came out with this smaller starter set and sent me a free copy. The terrain supplied is minimal, but you still get the two kill teams: Veteran Guardsmen and the Ork Commandos, and of course the miniatures are the usual high quality.

As for the game system, I haven’t yet had a chance to play but will post my views when I do. It’s pretty simple and straightforward, with the main innovation being an engage or conceal order you play on your ‘operatives’ (as the game calls them) when you activate them, which modifies requirements for cover. That means there’s more emphasis on sneaking up to your objectives before the shooting starts. Thankfully, we’re not wedded to the creaky old ‘roll to hit, roll to wound, roll to save’ system here, and I’m really starting to wonder when GW are going to bite the bullet and finally retire that longwinded process in their main games. Instead it’s just ‘roll to hit and roll to save’, with an emphasis on the possibility of critical hits that do more damage, and some choice in melee combat where you can strike or parry. On the surface, it looks easy and fast.

Not so easy and fast is a new system of breaking movement into icon-coded chunks of distance, a system that someone probably thought would be ingenious but instead just introduces more confusion, not helped by some poor icon design choices. It remains to be seen if that system streamlines anything in actual play.

But on the whole, this is definitely an improvement over the last version, though we are again stepping onto the expensive treadmill of having to buy a succession of separate books to get information about new teams, a system pioneered by Necromunda that probably brings in more revenue but to me, reduces enthusiasm for expanding and playing the game due to the constant expense. We’ll see if Kill Team is worth the effort – there are so many good skirmish games on the market these days, competition is very high for the most fun!

Here’s my rules summary and reference – now let’s go hunt some orks!

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Update Log



Date Version Changelog
Feb 2022 1 Original release

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