The interwebz have been chattering about the first pictures of the new Vampires.
And jolly nice figures they are to. I particulalry like the romanticism of the vampires riding in the Coven Throne.
And it does seem, judging by the pictures, that GW have given the book a thorough root and branch review. The new figures clearly fit into the rumours of the return to bloodlines. Which again is something else that I thorughly approve off. Indeed, if it is true, one can only hope that they follow this through when rewriting the Chaos books and put an end to the absurdity of troops carrying the marks of different Gods within the same army - or at least including a rule akin to absurdity as a penalty for mixing such units.
This book is important - imo - for a number of reasons.
The most obvious is that the VC are a 'top tier' army - gosh how I loathe that whole tiering business - and it will act as a marker as to whether the designers are genuinely attempting to balance the game.
Personally I will be interested to see if GW use the opportunity to shoot the Mantic fox. The new figures are certainly a cut above the opposition. However, if GW also take the opportunity to construct the lists in a way that eliminates the Mantic offerings, it will be a sign that the company is acting to protect it's game from cut-price opposition.
As a subsiduary to this, my hunch is that the army is going to cause VC much wailing and gnashing of teeth.
Already Vampire players - already some of the most tetchy and defensive in the 'community' - have been getting their retaliation in first.
However, all those players who have built up hordes of skelletons and ghouls may just find that when the new book hits the shelf, offering the possibility of an all cavalry, flying, fast moving army, with large parts of it ethereal, they will find their current army sadly lacking. After all, who wants to play the boring old game of grinding and re-raising when you can charge around the field, literally scaring the pants off people?
The Hexwraiths are confirmed as ethereal. And it depends on the Black Knights being moved to core - possibly dependent on bloodlines - but it doesn't appear beyond possibilities. Add to this the flying monsterous infantry, Terrorgeist, the Zombie dragon.
My other hunch is that the grinding and reraising, may be a thing of the past. From the pictures it is possible to read the signature spell - restore a single wound on a successful cast - and the rules for Wind of Death - which appears to have replaced the Wind of Undeath as the big spell in the deck. The interesting thing to me is that there is no mention of raising Spirit Hosts. Now obviously this may or may not be significant, but - and this is me wishlisting - hopefully it will mean that the zombies and skeletons have been upgraded in their fighting ability, but at the cost of the ability to easily re-raise them.
Still we shall see.