10th Edition and Chaos Knights – What We Know, What it Means

Yesterday, Games Workshop officially announced the next edition of Warhammer 40,000, along with a bunch of tantalizing information for us to agonize over.

First, my overall impressions are extremely positive. GW is making changes that I think are great for the game and probably great for the player base as well. We’ll be doing a full reaction podcast releasing in a couple of days to go over that in more generic terms.

As for knights, there are a few extremely important tidbits that apply directly to us.

Lethality is Down

First, they mentioned that the overall lethality of the game is decreasing. Specific examples – including the only unit data card they showed off – center around weapons strength staying the same or getting worse and AP numbers generally being lower.

This is a good thing for Knights as our natively high toughness is offset by a pretty bad save for the points and no melee invulnerable save.

Speaking of toughness…

Toughness on Vehicles is Changing

The specific example mentioned in the stream was that some vehicles could have toughness over 11, which would be highly interesting combined with the aforementioned weapons staying at their current strengths. If Titanic knights all move to T9 or 10 and War Dogs/Armigers all go up to T8, our resistance to highly damaging weapons goes up by a large margin.

Let’s examine the current math on a melta-gun getting damage through a big knight.

It hits on 3s usually, so that’s a 67% chance to hit. Wounding on 4s gives it a 50% chance to wound, and then it has another 67% chance for the damage to go through our invulnerable save.

That gives the melta gun about a 23% chance of sneaking damage through to the big guy.

If we move up to T9 or 10, that changes to just about 15%, a nearly 10% decrease in successful damage.

Putting that in actual game terms, it takes – on average – 33 melta shots on a 3+ BS to kill a full size big knight with Toughness 8. (shoutout to UnitCrunch.com for these awesome simulations).

If we move up to T9 on the big knights, that number moves up to fifty.

Obviously this is not accounting for potential bonuses to hit, wound or damage or re-rolls at all, but it’s a pretty incredible boost in survivability.

Objective Secured is Dead, Long Live Objective Count

Objective secured is leaving us in 10th edition, and being replaced by a stat called Objective Count (OC). You can see it on the right side of the stat line for the Termagants they spoiled.

Objective Count tells you how many models each model in the unit counts as for securing objectives. The current speculation is that troops will be relatively high here (something like 3 or so per model), elites less so (1 or so each) and vehicles…will vary. We’re already seeing that Knights count as 10 models in 9th edition. With objective secured going away, this will allow big Knights to hold objectives against units of models thanks to a (presumably) high OC and War Dogs to continue to fill their role of fast moving objective stealers.

This is probably a net benefit for Knights players, as big knights will be able to contend with squads of formerly objective secured models and still hold primary points. We will, of course, need to see what the exact OC values shake out like, bu I think this is great for us overall.

List Building is Simpler

If you love the way list building in Arks of Omens feels, be glad! We’re basically keeping that structure for tenth edition. The new method is “pick a Warlord, then add up to 3 of any data sheet until your points run out”.

War Dogs will most likely continue to be fieldable in “units” of up to 3 when building lists, so this would make our list building fundamentally unchanged from Arks (which is a good thing because Arks list building is much less restrictive than Nephilim or before).

The only big question mark here is how bringing other Chaos factions might or might not work. It’s possible that models will gain a faction tag like “Agent of Chaos” which would let them be brought in detachments for other Chaos factions. We haven’t seen the full list building rules yet, but that seems an elegant way to accomplish that goal.


I think Games Workshop has hit the ball out of the park with every pre-release spoiler they have given us to this point. I love the swap to data cards, I love the rearrangement of the statline, and I am very excited about the future of Chaos Knights going forward into 10th edition.

2 thoughts on “10th Edition and Chaos Knights – What We Know, What it Means

  1. Thanks for the shout out!
    Interesting how GW have moved the Attacks characteristic to the weapons, just like UnitCrunch already has it 🙂

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