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Warhammer 40k: Kill Team 2nd Edition’s unit activations work like a tabletop RPG

GW has revealed how Kill Team 2nd Edition's operators can spend actions from their APL stat - and it feels like a TTRPG

Warhammer 40k Kill Team Octarius 2nd Edition actions rules Warhammer Community photo showing Orks Kommandos and Krieg veteran models fighting

Kill Team 2nd Edition’s new resource of ‘action points’ – as measured by units’ Action Point Limit (APL) stat – will indeed be used for everything your operatives do as part of their activation, including moving, shooting, fighting, falling back from close combat, and more, according to a Warhammer Community reveal article on Wednesday.

The article clarifies that the core actions Normal Move, Charge, Shoot, and Fight (all priced at 1AP), and Fall Back (2AP) are common to all operatives – while many operatives will also have unique actions listed on their datacards, at different AP costs – and that actions can be taken in any order. We’re reminded that most “baseline humans and xenos” have two AP, while the mighty Adeptus Astartes (and Heretic Astartes) get three – but we also get the revelation that the gold-clad Adeptus Custodes get three AP each.

This new system replaces the more rigid Warhammer 40k-style turn structure previously used in Kill Team, where units perform actions in a set phase order: move, shoot, charge, fight.

These new rules look sure to move Kill Team 2nd Edition further towards a tabletop RPG style of play, where players carefully economise and strategise their character’s actions each turn, for maximum effect – rather than the more zoomed-out perspective of a tabletop wargame.

Warhammer 40k Kill Team Octarius 2nd Edition actions rules Warhammer Community graphic showing the available actions in Kill Team 2nd Edition

Despite Wednesday’s article, there are still unanswered questions about action points and APL, of course.

First, we don’t yet know whether operators can repeat the same action multiple times in one activation – perform a double move, say, or fight twice if they’re already locked in combat. This might work differently for the ‘basic’ common actions, versus specific operators’ unique actions, too.

And GW’s previous article on Kill Team 2nd Edition’s new stats confirmed that in-game effects can apply modifiers to an operator’s APL (by means of showing us the Hardened By War ability, which prevents it happening) – but can these modifiers go both upwards and downwards? By how far?

We can certainly imagine the Drukhari’s combat drugs giving them more AP, or perhaps psyker abilities sapping targets of AP – but such things would likely be limited by balancing. Time will tell.

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The new Kill Team: Octarius box set, launching the game’s second standalone edition, was first announced in a Warhammer Community preview livestream on July 10, and we’ve since enjoyed a series of reveals about unit stats, movement, shooting, and close combat – you can catch up on the lot of it in our Kill Team: 2nd Edition guide.

Alternatively, if you fancy a trip into the Mortal Realms, check out the latest massive masterpiece Age of Sigmar model: Gobsprakk, the Mouth of Mork, atop his trusty Corpse-rippa Vulcha, Killabeak.