Way Too Early
I am going to try to keep this short, simple and saltless. Try being the operative word. The Book of Rust is a mistake. It will sell, of course, mostly because Games Workshop has already bred their own personal species of ‘whale’ who will lap it up and gladly spread their cheeks in anticipation. Swathes of shameless shills bending over backwards to defend their monolithic, obviously defenceless, corporate Gods.
Let’s dial it back a bit though. As an idea, the Book of Rust is fine, I guess. A narratively driven book that might advance the 40k timeline and some funky new campaign rules to keep the less competitive of the community happy. It even stars a cast of factions that are all the rage at the moment (mostly). What’s not to like? Everything else.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of campaign books. They inject a nice amount of flavour into the game. This is especially true during a pandemic that is stifling the competitive scene of 40k (or was). The Book of Rust, like a particularly pissed off baboon, couldn’t help but smear it’s later chapters with bollocks.
It’s Also A Supplement
You see, the Book of Rust is also a supplement and adds rules for regular, and competitive, games of 40k. The factions in question? Ad-mech, Imperial Knights, Death Guard and Drukhari. Out of those four, only one I am ok with. Let’s be honest here, Imperial Knights don’t have a new codex lined up and they are, for lack of a better term, unplayable. Sure, update them. Knock yourself out. An index would have done mind you.
But what about the others? The Death Guard got a codex last month. Last fricken month. If players want to have all the rules related to their faction they need to invest in a second book. Why was this not included in their codex? A new psychic discipline and additional rules for a popular named character and terminators – one of the most popular units in the book? Isn’t it obvious? Because of greed. Why sell one book when you can sell two?
Drukhari got it the worst though. Their entire codex release, which is slated to be at the same time as the Book of Rust, is tarnished. Not only are they getting practically no new models to celebrate their swanky new book, but their book has been butchered and parts have been shamelessly slotted into the Book of Rust. To take a video game term, Games Workshop has released ‘Day One DLC’ for the Drukhari. It’s practically on-disc DLC that is locked behind a bloody paywall.
Shafting Eighteen Factions
We all know that the Big-G is behind schedule. As a result, Ad-Mech hasn’t gotten their codex yet, but for all intents and purposes, they should have. Bearing that in mind, the Book of Rust is basically DLC for 3 factions who would have just been updated and a patch for a faction that should have been fixed half-a-year ago. It’s a disgrace. There are EIGHTEEN factions waiting for codices, and instead of prioritising that, GW is releasing rules they tore out of other books.
I can hear the shrilling screams of shills shouting out: “You don’t need to buy it!” If past books are anything to go by, then if you want to be competitive, having access to these rules is a must. If you want a complete codex, then having these rules is a must. No, I don’t NEED to buy them. I also don’t NEED to purchase models. But if I WANT to play the game in its full form, then this book becomes more and more mandatory. Especially if you play one, or more, of these factions. This is highly likely considering how popular all of the new releases have been – and likely will be in the future.
I feel bad for Xenos and, more specifically, Chaos players. Players were not only shafted during the Index drop way-back-when (Orks still have short-range flamers, Chaos still have 1 wound etc.) but now they all get to sit back and watch as armies who have just been updated, get updated for a second time. It wouldn’t be so bad if GW just indexed these factions properly, but here we are. We are in a timeline that has fans that advocate this nickel and diming. Whales for the Whale God, money for the money throne – so to speak.
Day One DLC…what a joke. If this had come out in one, maybe two years, then this would not have been so egregious. The greed was too strong and I have well and truly opened up the salt mine…and I bloody play Death Guard.