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So I got into warhammer with 8th ed. Leading up to it I would watch all these batreps from 7th ed and it made me like space marines and chaos space marines with all the different weapons and such. Then 8th ed came out and it is nothing but boring primaris and CSM sucking. So which oldhammer edition is your favorite, cause I am thinking about talking my friends into trying an older edition for funs.
   
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5e is probably the most playable out of the box; there are power lists and weird exploits, but you'll find those in every edition. It's the most straightforward in a lot of ways (USRs didn't start to grow all out of proportion until 6th, the morale/vehicle damage rules are streamlined from 4th), almost everyone had a Codex from the same edition (which isn't a guarantee when going back to oldhammer), and you'll find most of the models from today still work.

Mind also that the core rules didn't change a lot between editions between 3rd and 7th, so if someone really likes a Codex from one edition and someone else really likes a Codex from another you could experiment with running them against each other. Mezmorki's Prohammer (https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/796101.page) is a core rulebook deliberately set up with doing that in mind.

If you want a currently-supported product rather than having to play around with house rules or digging up FAQs for out-of-print rulebooks you might try 30k, which is a 'historical' game set during the Horus Heresy using the 7e core rules, and is written with a grittier/less superhero-y tone most of the time (Primarchs throw that out the window a bit).

If you want to go far to the weird 1e and 2e had a lot of RPG elements (XP gain, different die sizes, a GM, turning radiuses on vehicles, that kind of thing) that have largely disappeared from modern 40k (some of the remnants are visible in Necromunda).

The only oldhammer approach I definitely wouldn't recommend is playing out-of-the-box 7th, just because there was some poor integration between game scales (Destroyer-strength weapons on relatively small models), some really badly-balanced stuff you won't necessarily notice right off (about 1/3rd of the Craftworld book is unplayable, 1/3rd of it is fine, and 1/3rd of it is some of the most broken stuff ever written), and the rules cross-referencing is almost as bad as it is now in 9th.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/11/03 07:06:38


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Simplycasualgaming wrote:
So I got into warhammer with 8th ed. Leading up to it I would watch all these batreps from 7th ed and it made me like space marines and chaos space marines with all the different weapons and such. Then 8th ed came out and it is nothing but boring primaris and CSM sucking. So which oldhammer edition is your favorite, cause I am thinking about talking my friends into trying an older edition for funs.

If you want to avoid that particular thing, you'll want to play either 3rd or 4th with the 3.5 Codex, or something like Prohammer that allows you to choose any codex for a particular faction from the 3rd - 7th era, as every codex CSM have had since has been woefully inadequate in its representation of the Legions. Though the 6th edition codex can work if you also use the Traitor Legions supplement and maybe IA13 if you want to use fw units.
   
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4th edition. Solid rules, best codexes until the last 6mo or so of that edition maybe. 5th opened up too much Line Of Sight and introduced a big boost to lethality through high AP weapon propagation.

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Definitely 3rd. But it's entirely down to how my factions performed.

4th and 5th are also good, but the armies I played (and still play, SW and orks) were more fun to play in 3rd.

In 4th they were a bit outdated and in 5th their codex were fun but both with a lot of cheese and spammy.

 
   
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5th before it got out of hand (or with house rules).
More mobility and a little less swingy than 4th.

----------------

Which codex books you use and how WAAC the players are is as significant if not more significant than the edition of the rules.

The memetic 3.5 chaos codex for example was 50% ordinary codex, 40% useless tat, and 10% solid steaming grade A gorgonzola.
   
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London

2nd ed with the GT limits to characters and psychic powers.
   
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Mine would probably be 4th for rules and 3rd/4th for codices. 5th had a bunch of stuff I didn't care for, like wound allocation and undying vehicles.

3rd had some funny codices, like the 3.5 Guard and CSM, but for example Tyranids had a real blast with their revamp in 4th with units that had all the options in the galaxy (looking at you, Carnifexes) while not dying immediately when the enemy singled out your synapse beasts.

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5th was very memorable for me
   
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4th was my favorite edition as far as close combat rules. 5th was, for me, a step down from 4th in a lot of ways. Prohammer is probably a good way to get into older edition type rules as you'd just need to find a codex from an older edition. Les investment to get things going.
For CSM's I'd rune from the 3.5 codex and for SM's I might use the4th or 5th edition codex. Nitz had a fun codex back in 3rd or 4th with a lot of unit customization, you could add back the models from 5th probably.
Lots for good choices to pick for most all of the factions with a little negotiations. but the cost to get in should be very low as far as books.

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Northumberland

3rd Edition was certainly my favourite and easiest to pick up.


This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2021/11/03 13:23:11


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4th edition is my favorite, but I think 3rd, 4th, or 5th (or one of the homebrews like Prohammer that are based off of these rulesets) would provide a much nicer alternative to the current edition of the game if you prefer more of a tabletop "wargame" type of game versus the card game with unnecessary rules bloat that the current edition has become.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/11/03 13:34:13


 
   
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3rd.

It collapsed under the weight of all the additional rules and whatnot, but at least that was towards the end of the edition, rather than right from the start like 9th.

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"GW really needs to understand 'Less is more' when it comes to AoS." - Wha-Mu-077

 
   
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Hello OP - ProHammer author here.

I should probably write something up that compares 8th/9th edition to ProHammer, and does so in a way that highlights from what prior "classic" editions the rules are pulled from. ProHammer started out based on 5th edition, but pulled in a number of features from 3rd and 4th edition, added a few things to support compatibility with 6th and 7th edition codexes, and finally added a number of completely new elements that blend well as core rule changes and don't require making adjustments to codexes.

Let me see if I can summarize what it does overall and by game phase.

==========================================================
OVERALL APPROACH
==========================================================

- Reinstate the classic 40k (e.g. 3rd - 5th edition) gameplay feel
- Rules based on 5th edition, but are heavily modified to resolve common complaints with that edition (more below)
- Adds additional nuance and decision-points to the gameplay where it adds to tactical decision making
- Efforts made to reduce lethality and instant-wipe situations across the board (even from a classic 40k standpoint)
- Distinct and clarified vehicle rules (details woven into items below)

==========================================================
CORE METHODS
==========================================================

Measuring
- No premeasuring / free-measuring (if both players wish, it's optional to allow free measuring)

Moving Models
- Individual models in a unit may move or remain stationary, and count as having moved or remained stationary when determining a model's own shooting. Does allow a heavy weapon unit to remain still (firing at full strength) while other members of the unit make minor moves.

Line of Sight
- Clearly defined where LoS is drawn from on vehicle and non-vehicle models
- Clearly defined the "targetable" area of models, which is the body and upper limbs for non-vehicle models and the "hull" of vehicle . Clearly defined what counts as a body or hull (no shooting antennas or sword tips!)
- Uses hybrid Line of Sight rules based on the type of terrain. Area terrain blocks LoS beyond 6" of depth up to the height of the terrain feature. Intervening terrain works based on true LoS (with above clarifications on needing to see the body or hull)

Making Attacks on Non-Vehicles
- Uses classic wound charts for non-vehicle wounding. Depending on the matchup, can be impossible to wound certain targets.
- Instant death causes D3 wounds instead of.... instant death
- When a weapon's AP equals the Armor Save, instead of ignoring armor it instead reduces the armor save roll by 1 (helps everyone's survivorship)

Making Attacks on Vehicles
- Clearly defined vehicle arc's using a standard template and approach relative to the position of the firing models.
- Heavily revised the vehicle damage tables to achieve a better balance point WITHOUT having to use hull points (which are ignored if using 6th + 7th edition codexes). Basic table is less lethal, only destroying on penetrating hit of a 6 ... but....
- Added a +1 to die roll when vehicles are already damaged.
- Added "engines damaged" results, having the movement speed
- Open-topped and AP1 weapons add +1 to the damage roll as well.

==========================================================
MOVEMENT PHASE
==========================================================

- Added explicit reserve sub-phase
- Major revisions to deep strike rules. Units can still scatter but landing in an invalid location no longer instantly-deletes the unit. Instead, your opponent gets to reposition the unit within 12" of the original drop location (this works super well!)
- Units that deep strike MAY still assault (if within 6") - however they lose their charge bonus and the effect of any offense grenades they may have.
- Units may charge after disembarking from vehicles that moved up to 12", but lose their charge bonus and the effect of any offense grenades they may have. Assault vehicles (including open-topped) exempted.
- Units can advance (i.e. run) D6" instead of shooting (per 5th edition). Can't charge afterwards unless the unit has fleet.
- Revised difficult terrain rules to be less punishing when entering difficult terrain. Individual models can move full movement up to the terrain, and may then move into the terrain provided the difficult terrain role (highest of 2D6) allows for that additional movement. More forgiving this way.
- Clarified tank shock rules for vehicles

==========================================================
SHOOTING PHASE
==========================================================

Shooting Sequence
- Active player declares all shooting targets for their units BEFORE making any shooting attacks (declared fire both adds depth to the game AND speeds up the gameplay in our experience)
- Units may split fire ONCE on a successful leadership test, targeting two separate units of their choice. Vehicles may split fire and are treated as having Ld 10.
- Overwatch and reactive fire (see below)

Overwatch + Reactive Fire
- Classic overwatch (from 2nd edition) with refinements. Stationary non-vehicle units may enter overwatch. Overwatch shooting is resolved on the opponents turn at either the start of their shooting phase (but after their movement phase) or after charges have been declared (may only then shoot at a charging enemy unit).
- Overwatch limited targeting enemies within 24" only
- Shooting reactions - units hit by normal shooting attacks (not overwatch fire) may choose to "go to ground" (gain +1 to cover saves, per 5th edition, but lose mobility and only shoot with snap fire next turn) or may choose to "reactively fire" simultaneously with the opposing shooting unit. Reactive fire only allows for 1 shot to be made per firing weapon at AP "-", and the unit then strikes last in close combat (and loses and CC cover benefits).

Resolving Shooting Attacks
- Revised wound allocation process into something that is (we feel) perfect. Clearly define "hittable" models.
- All shooting attacks from one unit to another are "fast rolled" and the method properly handles the allocation from there, even accounting for units with mixed armor of cover saves, multiple wounds, different weapon attack profiles, and where individual models may be out of LoS (all in all a big improvement over 5th).
- After allocating and rolling for wounds + saves, casualties may then be removed from any model in the unit (and already wounded models must take new wounds first). This speeds things up tremendously and "keeps the fun" by lettering the defender decide what models they want to keep alive (and captures the spirit of look out sir and other rules)

Other shooting phase highlights:
- Pinning weapons (per 5th edition) can pin units
- Screening rules (adapted from older editions). Shooting "through" one enemy to hit another means 50% of the successful hits hit the intended target, and the other 50% hit the screening unit.
- Suppression rules - units taking more wounds from a single enemy shooting attack that it has in wounds, and that suffers a casualty must also take a pinning test.
- Can shoot into close combat, with a 50% chance of successful hits hitting your own unit instead.
- Can throw grenades (1 grenade attack per unit)
- Blast weapons: roll to hit as normal. If it hits, template is on target model/location. If it misses, then the template scatters. Models wholly under auto hit, partially under on a 4+
- Rapid fire weapons: can't charge if you shot rapid fire. Shoot once at max range or twice at half range.
- Heavy weapons: if the model moved, only hits on snap fire (6+ to hit)

==========================================================
ASSAULT PHASE
==========================================================

Assault Sequence
- All units declare charges. Must declare charges at a unit you shot at. May declare charges against multiple enemy units.
- Units with charges declared against them may perform overwatch fire (if still in overwatch) OR take reactive fire.
- Charge moves occur
- Melee engagement resolved
- Units engaged in close combat at the start of the phase may choose to voluntarily withdraw at the start of the assault phase. Opposing unit, if not still engaged, may choose to pursue or consolidate.

Resolving Melee engagements
- Clarified the hit/wound/casualty allocation process to be consistent in application with the shooting phase, fast resolving all attacks at a particular initiative step.
- All AP 2/3 weapons (from 6th & 7th ed) treated as power weapons, and negate armor saves

Close Combat Results
- Units on losing side take a break test. If failed will fall back.
- Revised pursuit (e.g. sweeping advance) rules to not be so punishing. Falling back units moves 2D6" and then pursing unit moves 2D6". Each model re-touched in base-to-base gets to make 1 auto-wounding hit with no armor save allowed (invulnerable saves are allowed). If any models are still in base-to-base contact or within 2" engagement range, the units remain locked in combat.
- Units may consolidate into other enemy units (but not sweeping advance into them)

==========================================================
MORALE PHASE
==========================================================

- Consolidated morale phase. Take break tests from suffering 25% or more of current strength or when loosing assaults.
- Clarified how falling back moves, giving players some flexibility to move logically into cover while moving away from enemy models.
- Clarified effects of being broken ad pinned, trapped, reaching the table edge, etc.

==========================================================
PSYCHIC POWERS
==========================================================

- No defined psychic phase.
- Powers drawn from the applicable codex edition for the psyker.
- Modified (rebalanced) standard powers provided for 6th & 7th edition psykers
- Unified approach to determining mastery level for psykers (based on the number of known powers).
- Cap of two powers per turn (even if mastery level is higher)
- Re-worked perils of the warp (slightly less lethal)
- re-worked deny the witch (requires a psyker unit within at least 6" to deny the witch).

==========================================================
UNIVERSAL SPECIAL RULES + UNIT TYPES
==========================================================

- Concise and streamlined list of USR's, pulling across all editions. Tweaked and balanced for consistency.
- Some of the more "spammy" USR's added to unit types (i.e. Hammer of Wrath) toned down in their power/impact.
- Vehicles have "main weapons" at Strength 6 or more. Defensive 5 or less. Can generally fire two main weapons on the move. Only 1 ordinance weapon can be fired.
- Flyers made easier to hit/destroy than standard 6th/7th edition rules. Flyer specific USR's are icing, not a requirement.

==========================================================
ORGANIZING A BATTLE
==========================================================

Army Construction

- Armies may only use a single detachment with a standard force organization chart or an alternative standard chart provided by their codex. Multiple detachments of the same codex force may be taken with opponent's permission.
- No formations (6th/7th edition) may be used.
- Warlord traits and psychic powers, if normally randomly determined by the codex, may instead be selected directly (player choice). Standard warlord traits are available to all codex editions now.

Mission Selection

- Standard 72" x 48" board (6-feet by 4-feet)
- New mission selection process developed, with a greater range of competitive / matched play mission types.
- Clear process for assembling terrain on the map
- Clear process for determining mission parameters and variables (see separate ProHammer Mission Briefing file)
- Clear process for determining exclusive / majority control of objectives based on the types of models/units in proximity

==========================================================
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER
==========================================================

Compared to 8th/9th edition, I'd summarize the overall difference as follows:

- More tough & tactical decisions: declared fire, declared charges, no-premeasuring ranges, better movement rules, split fire, flanking vehicles. Larger board opens up decision space in early turns.
- More interactivity: reactive fire & overwatch (feels quasi-alternating activation), going to ground, charge reactions, voluntary withdrawals, casualty removal process, deny the witch, etc.
- More fidelity: Proper morale system with pinning, fleeing, regrouping. More thematic vehicle rules.
- More clarity: processes standardized, streamlined without loosing flair where it counts. Clunky systems like challenges, precision strikes, psychic phase from 6th/7th edition removed.
- More good feelings: Less chances for instant unit destruction, greater survivorship overall, less impact from critical die roll failures, more ways to keep models alive and the battle raging

=========================================================

Well ,this went way too long!

This message was edited 6 times. Last update was at 2021/11/03 15:08:35


Want a better 40K?
Check out ProHammer: Classic - An Awesomely Unified Ruleset for 3rd - 7th Edition 40K... for retro 40k feels!
 
   
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On an Express Elevator to Hell!!

The_Real_Chris wrote:
2nd ed with the GT limits to characters and psychic powers.


Yes this would be mine too.

The game worked wonderfully at Squad level, the individual combats and those fights being directly visible in the game. I think once the miniature count started being upped significantly, especially with later editions, you end up having to introduce a much greater level of abstraction and don't get the 'connection' with the miniatures on the tabletop. So, I prefer Epic then at that point

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 H.B.M.C. wrote:
3rd.

It collapsed under the weight of all the additional rules and whatnot, but at least that was towards the end of the edition, rather than right from the start like 9th.
Imo Codex BA "broke" 3rd ed in under 2 years, or something like that. Terrible codex.

And They Shall Not Fit Through Doors!!!

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I've been playing since the end of 5th edition and 9th is the best so far so I'd have to answer the OP's question with "none"
   
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 Insectum7 wrote:
Imo Codex BA "broke" 3rd ed in under 2 years, or something like that. Terrible codex.
3e had a lot of 'gotcha' rules and options hidden away, some easier to get to than others. First turn charges, pre-game shooting, invulnerable models, little gems like forgeworlds inferno shells.
Though the BA codex was so tiny it's hard to excuse a designer 'overlooking' its shenanigans.
   
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 AnomanderRake wrote:
5e is probably the most playable out of the box;


I'd argue that the most playable out of the box is 3rd Ed using strictly the lists IN the 3rd ed BBB.

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One thing I'll say about OldHammer is that you can find a lot of codexes for pretty cheap used on Amazon. I've gotten any codex I needed from old editions for usually just a few bucks, which is great.

The other upside of OldHammer, assuming you get a group to join you on the endeavor, is that you don't have to play the waiting game of "when will the next codex come out for my army!?" It's all released, it's static, the codex rules aren't going to change on you, etc. It's nice to play with a complete and static ruleset.

If I had to play a "pure" version of the game, I'd be a toss up between 5th edition vs. 4th edition. I'd probably go 5th edition and use the following codexes:

- Space Marines (5th)
- Blood Angles (5th)
- Dark Angles (4th)
- Space Wolves (5th)
- Black Templars (4th)
- Chaos Marines (3.5 edition)
- Orks (3rd) + Feral Orks (3rd, in chapter approved)
- Tyranids (5th probably?)
- Tau (4th)
- Necrons (5th)
- Dark Eldar (5th)
- Eldar (4th, but maybe stretch to 6th and break the rule)
- Imperial Guard (3.5 edition with regimental doctrines, 4th ed catachans also)
- Witch Hunters (3rd edition)
- Daemonhunters (3rd)

I made this crazy codex + edition chart once upon a time for reference:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1m5Opo0yRVuHDfnqBTlSDKExlxzpL20rL0jL5d-TeZ2g/edit?usp=sharing


This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2021/11/03 21:05:30


Want a better 40K?
Check out ProHammer: Classic - An Awesomely Unified Ruleset for 3rd - 7th Edition 40K... for retro 40k feels!
 
   
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Nuremberg

Prohammer looks like a good way to experience all of the best stuff from older editions to me. But there's something attractive about the simplicity of the 3e rulebook lists. It means no access to a lot of units and factions, but I had a lot of fun with those lists back at the start of 3e.

   
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 Platuan4th wrote:
 AnomanderRake wrote:
5e is probably the most playable out of the box;


I'd argue that the most playable out of the box is 3rd Ed using strictly the lists IN the 3rd ed BBB.

It's a pretty good point, that. 2nd ed also provided rules for each faction in the box set too. Including things like Adeptus Arbites too.

And They Shall Not Fit Through Doors!!!

Tyranid Army Progress -- With Classic Warriors!:
https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/0/743240.page#9671598 
   
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I would say 4th edition is my favorite.

There's just not that much wrong with it except a single piece of wargear the Eldar used (holofields) and if you want to use transports you actually have to maneuver carefully (instead of your squad just being fully protected until they destroy the transport vehicle completely).
   
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 Mezmorki wrote:
Hello OP - ProHammer author here.


I will definitely be checking this out and passing it along to my friends.
   
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 Unit1126PLL wrote:
...and if you want to use transports you actually have to maneuver carefully (instead of your squad just being fully protected until they destroy the transport vehicle completely).
I recall that the best place for a transported squad to be was hiding behind their vehicle rather than in it...
   
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Versteckt in den Schatten deines Geistes.

Every edition from 4th through 7th had what I called 'deal beakers"; things that otherwise spoiled the game for me. They weren't necessarily large things either, but they were enough to make me not bother and stick with what we had (which was 3rd at first, and then eventually doing our own rules when we decided we didn't like 4th and later 5th).

Things like "Units disembark on a Penetrating hit". Stupid. No. Hull Points was another. Really a lot of them were vehicle related. I'm very picky about vehicle rules.

It's hard for me to be picky about the vehicle rules in 8th/9th because 8th/9th doesn't have vehicle rules.

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A.T. wrote:
 Unit1126PLL wrote:
...and if you want to use transports you actually have to maneuver carefully (instead of your squad just being fully protected until they destroy the transport vehicle completely).
I recall that the best place for a transported squad to be was hiding behind their vehicle rather than in it...


Cool! Let me know if you have questions.

The link the ProHammer thread is in my signature and that thread will link to the docs.

If you're willing to use the 7th Ed codexes, Wahapedia has all of the 7th edition core rules and codex rules hosted in the archive. You can use those codexes with ProHammer.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/11/03 23:31:49


Want a better 40K?
Check out ProHammer: Classic - An Awesomely Unified Ruleset for 3rd - 7th Edition 40K... for retro 40k feels!
 
   
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 H.B.M.C. wrote:

Things like "Units disembark on a Penetrating hit". Stupid. No.
That one made a lot of sense to me, personally. The auto-pinning after disembarking post vehicle destruction felt a little harsh, although still made some sense.

But those harsh transport rules sure put a stop to Rhino rushes, thank god.

And They Shall Not Fit Through Doors!!!

Tyranid Army Progress -- With Classic Warriors!:
https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/0/743240.page#9671598 
   
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 AnomanderRake wrote:
5e is probably the most playable out of the box; there are power lists and weird exploits, but you'll find those in every edition. It's the most straightforward in a lot of ways (USRs didn't start to grow all out of proportion until 6th, the morale/vehicle damage rules are streamlined from 4th), almost everyone had a Codex from the same edition (which isn't a guarantee when going back to oldhammer), and you'll find most of the models from today still work.


This. 5th edition was probably the closest to a balanced game we ever got. It had issues of course, but nothing a solid FAQ and a few point adjustments couldn't fix.

Then if 5th edition had the same codex release schedule as 8th or 9th edition then it would have been perfect. Many codexes still had to use 4th edition books. Tau, Orks, Eldar, CSM, etc.

If 5th edition was allowed to have another 3 year cycle, we could have seen a lot of customisation come back into the hobby. Say for example an updated 4th edition CSM codex mixed with the flavour of their 3.5 edition codex. Or say a second round of 5th edition codexes, like a second 5th edition Guard codex bringing the restrictions and flavour of the 3.5 edition codex.
   
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5th. Wasn't that Tau Riptide, Grey Knight psybolt ammo spam, Paladin deathstars and the infamous leafblower?

Donno how I feel about.
I'd probably go with 4th. Every edition has its flaws but not having rhino rushes is probably a very good thing.
   
 
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