Ok I'll give as quick review as best I can as I now own the Codex, came in the post this morning ^_^
As you've heard its all about the Ultramarines in this, the artwork and short fluff strips are all based on the UMs. Very cool stuff, my favourite being the large pic with all the UMs on parade praying. The stories tend to give a bit of depth to the units or characters its placed with, also there's fluff detailing (in short) the Horus Heresy, the creation of the SMs, the types of warriors in the SMs codex force (a description of the chapter masters, captains etc), a page or two on the wargear of them and the litanites they speak, the UMs section they protect and a small part on the Battle of Macragge.
Now the list is setout pretty cool, a nice looking pic for each squad/character/tank. The main SM rules stay the same, "they Shall Know No Fear" is basically modified slighty to fit with the 4th ed rules for falling back etc.
Characters - Three ways to be used
- With command squads, which they can't leave
- Or attached to other units
A new thing too is Vet sergs, there is none. The normal sergeant may be upgraded to have Termi Honours, which now adds LD and an A to his profile as well as allowing him access to the armoury.
Also terminators, a new rule they may always deepstrike. No matter the mission.
Nice clean rules on them, and they can be used in standard missions without consent, but must have permission in non-standard games. Basically act like deepstriking, all using them remain in reserve and most squads can use them.
Basically stays the same, with a few exceptions. A new section called "Relics and Artefacts" basically stuff like the Iron Halo, and it one off the list per army. And a few new items, combat shield (what the comp champ has), Adamantine Mantle (think sallie mantle ).
Libaraians can have 1 power, the basic being Storm of the Emperors Wrath. A S4 ap2 assault1/blast power, but this maybe replaced (at a cost) with another. These other powers range from extra attacks, to tearing open a warp rift and lsaying entire units! Very cool ones, makes the Librarian seem a better choice.
Now a slight change, all characters come in two types. One is better than the other but more expensive and has +1 W & LD. Most options stay the same, choose from armoury, led command squad etc But a few new rules -
Commanders all can use his LD
Chaplains allows re-rolls of failed to hits and the squad he joins is fearless.
The Librarian is as said but comes with Force weapon and psychic hood in cost, and the higher level Lib can have a second power.
Power Armoured ones
As previous codex, then the upgrades to Apothecary (Narthecium & reductor included in cost) Company SB (Comp Standard included) and Comp Champ - PW, BP and combat shield (5+invun but allows second weapon). Normal transports and can have Furious charge, infiltrate or tank hunters vet skills.
Again same as last codex but squad can have FC or TH vet skills.
Termies - Both Types
Same as before, but with vet skills
Like the command squad
Same as before, but less options now can only have assault cannon, TL Lascannons or a multi-melta. Though it can be upgraded to a vet dread with vet skills, TH or VA.
A big change now, he comes as an elite with 0-4 servitors. The sertvitors are the same as the =I= get but with one extra Techinal servitor, basically makes it easier for the TM to repair vehicles. And as the nice new looking harness you see is an upgrade, it gives him two servo arms, articifer armour, TW Plasma Pistols and a flamer. And allows a reroll for repairs.
Tactical Squads & Scout squads
Same as last version, but the tac squad may now have Plasma cannons and multi-meltas. The scouts can only take HBs and MLaunchers as their heavies, and the serg may not carry special weapons (ie sniper rifle etc).
Points drop, but ultimately the same but can now have a flamer.
Land Speeder Squad
Now as we know all LS no form one unit, but the versions are basically upgrades. If a LS has a HB then it can take a Assault Cannon and a HFlamer if it has a multi-melta. Typhoon is now a TL wepoan S5 AP5. Oh and LS may deepstrike.
Bike Squad, Scout Bike Squad & Attack Bike Squad
Same as before but now come with frags as standard, and scouts version can still "scout" with the special rule.
No real changed except must choose between MLauncher or Multi-melta, Plasma Cannon OR Lascannon.
Vindicator, Predators (Both Type)
No real change.
New nice model, and can now fire mines not missiles but must be chosen before game starts.
Land Raiders - Crusader & Normal
Crusader no longer 0-1, both come with machine spirit upgrade. Cruasder also has extra armour at no cost.
Now the part you all want to know about....
Now this is an optional part but you must choose whether your chapter will have a Minor, Notable or Significant divergence from the Codex, now these mean -
- Minor - 1 advantage from 1 trait, 1 minor drawback
- Notable - 2 advantages from 1 trait, 1 major drawback
- Significant - 2 advantages from any trait, 1 minor & 1 major drawback
The traits are in categories depending on how you want your chapter to be, these are
Basically they give you a number of advantages you can take, but only those from that trait eg Pious you can have - Suffer Not The Work of Heretics, Purity Above All or Suffer Not The Alien To Live. I shall not go into trait details here, due to legal reasons but a a quick general idea of what they are - Some allow certain sqauds to be taken as elite but with vet skills, or get an extra turn, true grit.
The disadvantages are generic, so you can choose any. These are mainly limiting squads or vehicles, ie one makes Termins and dreads a 0-1 choice another doesn't allow drop pods to be used.
And the chapters included are -
- Imperial Fists
- Raven Guard
- White Scars
- Crimson Fists
- Iron Hands
- Blood Ravens (like there was any doubt they appear )
Well it includes Shrike, Lysander, Chaplain Cassius, Tigurius,Tyrannic War Vets squad, UM Honour Guard (a very powerful command squad, 2 A each with PW + Bolters and can be used to replace a tact, command or dev marine), Marneus Cagar (may have termi armour but can have a PA command squad).
Then we have nice looking pics of each slot (UM colours of course), as well as a "How To Paint UMs" guide.
A great section is "Ultramarine Company Colours", this details the Codex Organisation of the chapter, the company markings for squads (ie the shoulder guard banding) as well as denoting squads via helmets and sqaud markings on the shoulder pads. It also shows various ways the pads can look and the company banner for each one of the UM companies.
Last few pages are full of action packed pics involving the Ums, IFs and RGs in battle, as well as the chapters listed in the trait varient lists look and colours used. The last page is a showcase of various marine models and the backcover is the Ultima Segmentum.
So thats a quick look though the new codex, any questions?