My name is Chris, and I think you should play Kill Team.
Well, ok. Let’s back up a little. What am I talking about?
Kill Team is a skirmish-style spinoff of Warhammer 40,000, produced by Games Workshop. While it still uses the same miniatures as its bigger brother, Kill Team tweaks 40k into a new set of rules for smaller-scale battles between teams of specialist operatives in the shadows of the endless war of the 41st millennium. I think it’s great, and there’s a bunch of reasons why it’s a fantastic choice if you’ve never tried Warhammer before, or if you’re a seasoned veteran with cases of miniatures already. Here’s a bunch of them that I’ve organized into a handy numbered list!
1. Smaller, cheaper and less commitment
This is really the heart of what makes Kill Team great. I love 40k, but especially for newcomers it’s a daunting prospect. A typical army costs several hundred dollars and requires dozens (if not hundreds) of hours of assembling and painting to finish, and then requires enough terrain and space for a 6’x4′ table. Kill Team, however, only requires a handful of miniatures and can fit comfortably on a coffee table. This means that you can capture the unique feeling of 40k while spending far less money and time before you can really start playing. Which makes it…
2. Great For Beginners
40k is a hard sell for a lot of people. It demands a lot of its players before you really get to “the good parts”. Kill Team is a fantastic shortcut – you can dip your toe into Warhammer without committing a lot of time or money, while also being a complete game in its own right. You can experience the “good parts” up front and decide if you want to dive into 40k proper, or stay with the smaller-scale experience and try out different teams and factions, taking nibbles from all the different weirdness in the universe and models.
3. Easy for veteran players to play
If you already have a collection of 40k miniatures, chances are good that you already have everything you need for Kill Team (except perhaps the rulebook). Since most models in Kill Team are drawn from the core troops of the various armies, it’s a good bet that you already have a team ready to go as part of your larger army. Organizing a full-size game of 40k can be hard – it takes lots of space and several hours, and transporting all the stuff you need around without damaging anything can be difficult and nerve-wracking. But you can play Kill Team easily on a typically-sized table in as little as 90 minutes.
4. Self-contained and modular
Kill Team really is its own game apart from 40k – while it’s based on the same system, there’s no direct crossover between rules, stats, force construction, etc. This means that you don’t need any of the stuff you’d have to get for 40k, like codexes or datacards. The Kill Team Core Rulebook is all you need to start playing.
Now, there are indeed rules expansions out for Kill Team, and more on the way too. But what’s nice about those is that they are very clearly designed as separate, “bolt-on” modules that work as their own thing. For example, the leader units in the Commanders expansion can’t just be added into a standard game – they come with their own rules about building forces around them and with specific missions to use them in. Picking what kind of game you want to play is as easy as selecting which expansions you want to use.
5. Lots of room for customization and character
Each model in Kill Team is its own character with a name (and if you take advantage of the campaign system, its own history and experience). Specialists also feature additional traits and personalities that can make them stand out. These are great opportunities for painting and converting to make each of your team members unique, or add a theme to your whole squad that would be difficult to apply to a whole army.
Here you can see the start of my Imperial Guard Kill Team, converted with alternate heads from Pig Iron Productions and backpacks from Kromlech. It would be a real chore to do this to an entire Guard army, but it’s much easier to create a Kill Team that stands out on the tabletop.
I’m sure I can list plenty more reasons – I love this game and I think you will too! If this sounds interesting to you, keep an eye out for future articles where I’ll be going through each faction in the game and discussing how best to get started playing them. If you’re already on board and looking for somewhere to play, check out our Kill Team Battle League on alternate Sundays – you can find more details on our store Events Calendar. Perhaps I’ll see you there.
Thanks for reading!