Warhammer 40k 10th edition guide

Warhammer 40k 10th edition is coming in Summer 2023, so here's our complete breakdown of the new Warhammer 40k rules, lore, and starter set.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition - artwork by Black Lab Games from Warhammer 40k Battlesector, depicting a Blood Angels Space Marine Librarian fighting a winged hive tyrant

Warhammer 40k 10th Edition is coming this Summer! Revealed at Adepticon on March 23, 10th edition promises a big overhaul to the game’s core rules. The title fighters for the new editions are the Space Marines – of course – and the Tyranid Hive Fleets, whose tendrils has spread around the galaxy as they never have before.

If you’re gearing up to grow your play group with 10th, hit up our guide on how to get your friends into Warhammer 40k. Otherwise, while we wait for more news from Games Workshop, here’s everything we can predict about Warhammer 40k 10th edition.

Warhammer 40k Leviathan starter set

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Leviathan will be the bumper launch box set for 10th edition. With 25 Space Marines and 47 Tyranids, plus a massive hardback rulebook, and mission cards, and a price “less than the Horus Heresy starter set”, this will be an incredible way to get started with the game.

Check out our rundown of the Leviathan starter set contents to discover the oodles of awesome new models inside, as well as our Leviathan review to see what team Wargamer did with the minis.

Warhammer 40k Leviathan price

Games Workshop hasn’t yet confirmed the Warhammer 40k Leviathan price point. Warhammer Community spokesperson Eddie Eccles confirmed at Warhammer Fest 2023 that the price will fall between Indomitus at $200 (£125) and Age of Darkness at $299 (£185), so we expect a price of $250 (£150).

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Leviathan launch box set Terminator captain, full photo

Warhammer 40k 10th edition release date

The Warhammer 40k 10th edition release date is around Saturday, June 24. Games Workshop confirmed in a Warhammer Community on June 3 that pre-orders would open for the 10th edition Leviathan Box set on June 10, and would remain open for two weeks.

This continues GW’ tradition of releasing new editions of its big tabletop wargames during the Summer.

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Warhammer 40k 10th edition rules changes

GW has gradually revealed Warhammer 40k 10th edition rules changes we can expect, and the full 10th edition core rules are now available to download from the Warhammer Community website.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition battle-shock

GW stated when it announced Warhammer 40k 10th edition at Adepticon that the new edition won’t have a morale phase. A Warhammer Community article on April 3 clarifies that ‘Battle-shock tests’ can be forced on a unit by “many factors”, including “being under half-strength during the Command Phase”.

This means that once a unit is sufficiently battered it’s at risk of losing its nerve for the rest of the battle. Units test for Battle-shock by rolling 2d6 and trying to equal or beat their Leadership value. If they fail they will “struggle to capture objectives, use Stratagems, or Fall Back from combat”.

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Warhammer 40k 10th edition indexes

10th edition rules are different enough that GW is doing away with all the current Warhammer 40k Codexes – but don’t despair.  They’ll be replaced, for free, with Warhammer 40k 10th edition indexes, which have all the datasheets and army rules for every faction.

That’s right – according to Games Workshop, at launch you will be able to play Warhammer 40k 10th edition with all your existing models from any army. The rules will be made available, for free, digitally.

This is just the second time GW has released full rules for every faction all at the same time. For 8th edition, GW redesigned 40k from the ground up, creating a new framework and releasing new Indexes for all the models. Before that, you have to look to the 3rd edition of 40k in 1998, which put all the army rules in the core rulebook. Those rules (and army lists) were iterated on until the end of 7th edition in 2017 – in fact, you can still find a version of that rules engine powering The Horus Heresy wargame.

Interview with Warhammer 40k studio manager Stuart Black about Warhammer 40k 10th edition - product photo by Games Workshop of the contents of the Leviathan box set, a force of Space Marines battling alien Tyranids

Warhammer 40k 10th edition codexes

Will there be Warhammer 40k 10th edition codexes, if all the army rules are going to be available for free in indexes? Games Workshop says yes, but hasn’t yet specified exactly what will be in them. We hope that GW continues to update the indexes with new models as they’re released so that you can play a basic version of Warhammer 40k, and uses Codexes to provide a greater breadth of options (as well as all the lore and advice on painting miniatures we expect).

Warhammer 40k 10th edition army rules

Warhammer 40k 10th edition army rules will fit onto a single one-page spread. This is a massive shift, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the game is losing a lot of complexity. According to Games Workshop’s preview, a lot of the rules that might have been a Stratagem, Psychic Power, or bonus for building a battle-forged army before will now be built into Datasheets for models.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition sub-factions

Warhammer 40k 10th edition sub-factions will be streamlined so that your choice of sub-faction doesn’t add new army rules and stratagems – instead, it swaps out one set for another.

This is how the subfaction rules work in Codex World Eaters, the final Codex book in 9th edition. Check out our World Eaters codex review for details – we were complimentary about that system there.

How to get your friends into Warhammer 40k 10th edition - Games Workshop image showing the front box art for the Leviathan box, featuring a face that's half Space Marine, half Tyranid


Warhammer 40k 10th edition starter set

GW has revealed the limited edition Leviathan box set, and it’s likely that models from this set will make their way into Warhammer 40k 10th edition starter sets.

If that ends up going the way previous editions have, expect to see three Warhammer 40k starter sets for 10th edition. The cheapest Recruit edition will come with a few minis and starter rules; Elite edition will have more substantial forces; and the most expensive Command edition will in terrain and a rulebook along with the contents of Elite edition.

Warhammer 40k 10th Edition - Warhammer Community image showing the new Lion El Jonson model, Primarch of the Dark Angels Space Marines

How does Arks of Omen lead into 10th edition 40k?

The culmination of Arks of Omen will launch 10th edition 40k. Across four books we’ve seen Abaddon launch deadly assaults across the Imperium aboard Space Hulks, Daemon Primarch Angron returning to reality in a storm of gore, the new Daemon Prince Vashtorr the Arkifane invading the Dark Angels’ fortress monastery, and the T’au separatist Farsight reaching new levels of influence.

The fifth and final book, Arks of Omen: The Lion brings an end to the narrative in a momentous event – the re-awakening of the Dark Angels Primarch Lion El’Jonson.

Using narrative books to bring an end to the story (and sometimes rules) of a game edition is a familiar pattern from Games Workshop. 7th edition 40k ended with the Gathering Storm supplements, which gave rules and narrative for the fall of Cadia, the opening of the great rift, the birth of the Eldar god Ynnead, and the resurrection of the Ultramarines Primarch Roboute Guilliman.

8th edition 40k ended with the Psychic Awakening supplements, which brought updated rules for the Warhammer 40k factions and explored the psychic impact of the great rift across the Imperium of Man.

Likewise,  the Broken Realms books ushered in the leap from second to third edition for Warhammer Age of Sigmar armies.