Core Units and Aura Abilities for 9th Edition 40k


New aura abilities and units that have the keyword- Core-

Now we are getting into the meat of what will define the new edition.

via WarCom

In last weekend’s epic preview, The Codex Show, we showed you a few brand-new datasheets that feature in the upcoming books, one being that of the Heavy Intercessors. Some of you eagle-eyed readers out there noticed the introduction of a new keyword – Core – and we wanted to take this opportunity to tell you a bit more about it and the impact it will have on the future of Warhammer 40,000.

Core Units

The Core keyword is used to identify units that form the fighting… well, core, of an army. These are most commonly represented by units of line infantry, though this doesn’t mean it’s exclusive to Troops, nor just Infantry.

In the case of the first two books, Codex: Space Marines and Codex: Necrons many Elite units such as Terminator Squads and Lychguard, as well as Fast Attack units like Bike Squads and Tomb Blades, have the Core keyword. Even some Vehicles will be Core units too, where appropriate.

But what does it mean to be a Core unit?

Aura Abilities

Moving forwards, many of the most powerful aura abilities will only affect Core units from a Character’s (sub-)faction. This represents a more realistic form of in-situ command, with Characters acting like they’re supposed to from a narrative perspective. After all, a Space Marine Captain should be issuing orders and inspiring units of his battle-brothers on the front line, not babysitting a squadron of Repulsor Executioners at the back of the battlefield!

As an example, let’s take a look at the updated Rites of Battle aura ability shared by all varieties of Space Marines Captain.

A crucial side-effect of this change is that Characters themselves won’t be affected by aura abilities that utilise the Core keyword – they’re supposed to be commanding others, not inspiring themselves to do better! In the example shown above, the Space Marine Captain won’t be able to re-roll his hit rolls of 1 and will instead have to rely on his own merit to strike home. To be fair, he’ll usually hit on a 2+ anyway!

Nor will the aforementioned Captain be affected by a Lieutenant’s Tactical Precision aura ability – a Captain has been there, seen it, and done it all, which is why he’s in charge and has such an amazing profile in the first place! However – and very much as intended – a nearby Core unit of Space Marines will be significantly more effective when in the presence of their Captain and/or a Lieutenant, just as they should be.

As mentioned earlier, these changes to aura abilities and the introduction of Core units will be rolled out with each new codex, starting with those of the Space Marines and Necrons. Head on over to the webstore today and make sure you’re fully stocked up on Core units to get the most out of your Characters’ aura abilities!

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  1. Good change, get the characters stuck in, rather than cowering at the back.......

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  3. This is a welcome change. Some will cry "nerf!" or, "now my [insert unit I never actually played] is unplayable!"

    No more characters babysitting tanks, dreadnoughts, and each other. No more hitting and/or wounding on 2's with re-rolls on 1's, which made everything far too reliable and practically a guarantee. Buff your core infantry, get into the thick of it with your characters, play on the same field as every non-Marine army. I say this as someone who also has several Marine armies, mind you.

    Space Marines, in particular, are about to have more playable units than ever, and will have the widest variety of options they have ever enjoyed. The last thing they needed was to continue to guarantee that everything hit and wounded 90+% of the time.

  4. Looks at the aura abilities tyranids get, looks at moaning of space marine players after this 'nerf'.

    Yeah no tears being shed here. This is how it should always have been, I would have gone further and made it so you had to pick a unit within 6" to give your aura ability to forcing even more tactical decisions to be made.

    1. Or at least make it "units wholly within", so people can't daisy-chain for their reroll castles.

  5. Or just put characters back in squads again, and only have that squad be buffed.

    No more keywords, GW! Playing a Nurgle army is hard, too many keywords are restrictive to playing a proper army. Why can't my Death Guard properly play alongside Nurgle Daemons without losing the Death Guard buffs?

    Its like GW makes rules to fight against WAAC players, but forgets that some people just want to have fun.

    1. Oh man I forgot how cool it was when characters joined squads, it was also great giving a squad extra modelling and painting attention because you knew they were going to be your big boss's retinue... definitely a superior system in every regard

    2. Aura abilities make so much more sense from a narrative/visceral perspective... I don't know why you would want to get rid of them. Having Guilliman surrounded by Ultramarines, but only the ones being part of his unit getting a benefit is just plain stupid.

      Keywords are generally a positive too.

      The example you give with Death Guard isn't a problem with the keywords, but a problem with the rules design that generally discourages people from taking units from multiple codices in a single detachment.

    3. Every regard? I for one remember being able to put ALL wounds inflicted on a 30 man blob of orks onto the character with the rerollable 2+ save. Or squads of Thunderwolves having 2+ saves, 3++ saves AND save-ess extra wounds in the form of an Iron Priest's wolves, one for every type and kind of weapon, making it a nigh invulnerable deathstar.

      I definitely don't wanna go back to that.

    4. Yes, and no.
      Deamons are in the Deathguard Codex, likewise for TS and CSM, but you can't have nurgle deamons in a deathguard army, horrors in a TS, etc....
      It's a bit of an oversight, when a) very fluffy, b) they are in the book!!

    5. @Boothy_p.
      To be fair, unless there's something in one of the campaign or chapter approved books, the Daemon unit options in the Heretic Astartes books are pretty limited (especially in the core CSM book)... so, for example, if you want to add a Great Unclean One to your Death Guard army, you still need the Daemon Codex.

      And you can absolutely have Nurgle Daemons in a Death Guard Army... you just can't benefit from their legion traits if they are all in the one detachment. With that being said, there's nothing to stop you from just summoning all your Nurgle Daemons during the game... since they aren't counted as part of the detachment...

      The best solution is to have separate detachments.... which is only going to be an issue in 500 pt games where you can only take 1.