Like any other 40k player with a pulse, I'm getting excited about the upcoming I.G. release. Though there's things I'm very excited about, there are a few things that I'm slightly concerned about. Not that I'm afraid of facing Guard, but rather I'm wondering what the implications will be for the 40k universe as a whole.
1. Valkyrie plastics. These kits are some of the most interesting and well detailed models that I've seen Games Workshop produce. I especially love the interior heavy bolter gunners.
2. Cheaper guardsmen, point-wise. Now there might be a horde army that even Orks will fear. 50 guardsmen in a squad is just friggin' nuts!
3. Some of the new independent characters, especially Sly Marbo. That guy is ridiculously powerful!
Not excited about:
1. New Cadian Battleforce set. The old ones were perfectly fine and gave you a Leman Russ. Sure, giving us a command squad in the new box is great, but no tank? Lame.
2. The psyker squads. Though they may not be terribly tough in terms of survivability, they seem to be breaking the fluff by having so many of them grouped in the same place at the same time. 10 mutant psykers acting together in the same place at the same time? I wonder if the Inquisition is aware of such tactics. And finally, have you seen their powers? They may put Librarians to shame, in some respects. They're also dirt cheap, which is great for those who are going to field them. However, this kind of power seems to be given out very, very liberally for such a cheap unit.
3. It seems like with the new Imperial Guard Codex, the Space Marines are becoming less and less the awesome clenched fist of the Emperor and more and more canned meatloaf. Heavy 20 weapons? AP 3 Hellguns? Why then would any guardsmen hold the Space Marines in any kind of respect if they could kill them reasonably easily? Don't get me wrong, I'm glad they're getting stronger in respect to 5th edition, but it seems to be at the cost of some of the fluff.
4. The loss of Gaunt from the independent characters. What's up, GW? What'd he do to fall from grace?
5. Dropping the Cadian troopers box from 20 troopers down to 10. Makes sense from a marketing perspective, but it makes all of us broke gamers cry when we realize how much extra money we would have to spend in order to get a Guard force going. (No, I'm not going to be starting guard until I get the Dawn Crusaders where I want them to be. But I can dream, can't I?)
As with anything, time and experience will tell how effective these changes are, and my perspectives will likely change. But I am noticing the trend that each new Codex is more about being the biggest and the baddest because it's the newest, as opposed to trying to keep a closer line with what the established fluff is. That's fine, and depending on how the I.G. perform, I may be entirely wrong about the fluff issue. But I hope that GW doesn't sacrifice a faction's character on the altar of sales figures.
Please feel free to leave me your thoughts on the Imperial Guard.