The huge Warhammer 40,000 narrative event continues in the next installment of Arks of Omen, this time featuring Vashtorr, a demigod of inventors, engineers, scientists, and artisans, who created the Arks of Omen for Abaddon, citing the ability to find and construct an item capable of winning the long war. Now, after the Arks of Omen have set the galaxy alight with war, Vashtorr sails to war with his own fleet, targeting the home of the Dark Angels chapter of Space Marines. Arks of Omen is the next phase of the Warhammer 40,000 ongoing narrative and continues with Arks of Omen Vashtorr. In this article, we'll look at what's in the book and what it adds to games of 40K.
What Are The Arks of Omen?
The Arks of Omen are a series of Warhammer 40,000 books that, along with containing details of the next stage of the 40K narrative, also include new rules for playing, focused on the included narrative campaign.
The Arks themselves are great space hulks, drawn out of the warp by Abaddon and his new ally, the chaos demigod of inventors, engineers, scientists, and artisans, Vashtorr, who is the focus of the third Arks of Omen book. Abaddon and Vashtorr have twisted these space hulks from their floating mass of dead ships, into powerful frigates that Abaddon filled with his warriors and sent out in search of powerful key fragments, that would see the dreams of Abaddon and Vashtorr fulfilled.
In Arks of Omen Vashtorr, Vashtorr himself targets the Rock, the immense home-ship of the Dark Angels chapter of Space Marines seeking part of the ket fragment that will help him build the item that will see his and Abaddon's shared dream come to fruition.
What New Rules Are In Arks of Omen Vashtorr?
Games Workshop has said that following player feedback, there won't be any new rules in Arks of Omen for standard games, instead, in Arks of Omen, there are the rules for a whole new game type, Boarding Actions.
Boarding Actions take place in the close confines of the twisted corridors of space hulks, using the walled scenery recently found in Kill Team Into the Dark and Kill Team Shadowvault. 2 sets of the Kill Team scenery are required to play a standard boarding action game, so if you own both of those Kill Team sets, you already have all the scenery you'll need. If you don't, the Warhammer 40,000 Boarding Action Terrain set includes all the scenery you need to play in a single box.
Arks of Omen Vashtorr includes the rules for a variety of forces for use in Boarding Actions, which we detail below, along with several new missions, but you will need a copy of Arks of Omen Abaddon for the Boarding Action core rules that Arks of Omen Vashtoor builds on. You can check out our review of Arks of Omen Abaddon here.
Which Factions Have Rules In Arks Of Omen Vashtorr?
Arks of Omen Vashtorr focuses on a few factions, adding special rules and list-building options for the following:
- Chaos Demons
- Genestealer Cults
- Death Guard
- Adeptus Mechanicus
Each included faction has rules for Mustering a Boarding Patrol, Rules Adaptations, Enhancements, and Boarding Patrol Stratagems.
Genestealer Cults feature some great thematic rules such as Concealed Ambush, where your opponent must set up their entire boarding patrol before you set up yours, and the Insidious Infiltrators stratagem that lets them keep a unit back from deployment, and then place them anywhere on the board more than 9 inches away from an enemy unit in the reinforcement step. Tyranids can get the Warlord Enhancement, Wall-Climber, which subtracts 1 from all hit rolls against it, and Death Guard Terminators, who are incredibly effective in Boarding Actions, can use the Heralds of Despair Stratagem to subtract 3 from an enemy unit's leadership stat after destroying another enemy in the fight phase.
Arks of Omen Vashtorr also includes the Rock Besieged Campaign, which is a series of 8 linked missions that make use of the Killzone Shadowvaults scenery, which can now be purchased separately. The book ends with the datasheets for Vashtorr and the new Primaris Azrael which come in the battlebox released alongside this supplement.
What Are Our Final Thoughts On The Warhammer 40K Arks of Omen Vashtorr?
The narrative in Arks of Omen Vashtorr is of the same quality as the previous books, detailing the build-up and battle between Vashtorr's forces and the Dark Angels on the Rock. The included rules are focused on several factions, and really bring out the unique flavor of each and the included campaign is great to play through, even more so if you've picked up the Wrath of the Soul Forge King and are playing with Azreal and Vashtorr themselves. With the focus on that campaign, it would have been nice to see the Dark Angels' boarding actions rules repeated again here to have them all in one supplement.
Should I Buy Warhammer 40K Arks of Omen Vashtorr?
While the narrative in Arks of Omen Vashtoor is well-written and progresses the narrative, if you don't play boarding actions, then this won't have anything else for you as a player. If you do play boarding actions and not any of the factions included in Vashtorr, then other than the narrative and having a heads up on what your opponent might play, then this might not be for you either. If you do play boarding actions and one of the included factions, then this will be a great purchase. The faction-specific rules add some great depth and uniqueness to the different factions.
The copy of Warhammer 40K Arks of Omen Vashtorr used to produce this review was provided by Games Workshop.