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First look at Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights

Games Workshop has revealed new rules for the Imperial Knights, the largest war engines a single human can pilot, in Warhammer 40k 10th edition

Building bad army lists with Warhammer 40k 10th edition points Imperial Knights Armiger Helverin, a bipedal warmachine with two huge shoulder mounted cannons and a hunched carapace, in pink and cyan armour

The first rules for Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights have been previewed in the latest Warhammer 40k Faction Focus article from Games Workshop. Published on Thursday, the Warhammer Community Article reveals the Knights’ Code Chivalric army rule, datasheets, Stratagems, and some of the ridiculously potent weaponry these massive warmachines wield.

In the lore of Warhammer 40k, the Code Chivalric is a complex web of laws and customs that defines Knight society. On the tabletop, Imperial Knights players will select an Oath they will pursue during the battle. This isn’t part of army building – you’ll make the selection after reading your mission objectives.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Code Chivalric faction rules

The Oaths grant the Knight army an ability, and task them with completing a heroic Deed. The Oath ‘Lay Low The Tyrant’ lets each Knight in the army re-roll a hit roll of one and a wound roll of one each time they attack or shoot; its Deed requires the player to slay the enemy Warlord.

The Oath ‘Reclaim the Realm’ grants all knights +1” movement and +1 to run and charge rolls; its deed required the player to claim one or more objective marker in the enemy deployment zone.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Armiger Warglaive datasheet

Claiming objectives will be less painful for Knights in Warhammer 40k 10th edition than it has been in previous editions thanks to the new Objective Control stat. A preview of the Armiger Warglaive Datasheet shows that these (relatively) small Knights have OC 8, equivalent to four battleline infantry.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Noble Lance Detachment rules

Should a Knight player fulfil the Deed required of their Oath, they will immediately gain three command points, and their army will become Honoured. That in turn can trigger other abilities. The article gives the first Knight Detachment as an example: the Noble Lance Detachment has a 6+ Feel No Pain ability, which increases to 5+ when the army is Honoured.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Shoulder the Burden stratagem

The article reveals two 40k Stratagems for the Noble Lance Detachment. ‘Shoulder the Burden’ costs 2CP – quite pricey in the new edition, as CP are now very hard to come by – and can only be used once per game (or twice if your army is Honoured). It gives a wounded Imperial Knight +1 move, toughness, Save, Leadership, Objective Control, and +1 to Hit.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Trophy Claim stratagem

Trophy Claim costs just 1CP and grants a knight +1 to wound a single Monster or Vehicle. Kill your target and you’ll get that 1CP refunded: fail to slay them and your Knights will be so ashamed that they can’t use the Stratagem again this battle.

Another Faction Ability appears on the datasheet for Canis Rex, “Super-heavy Walker”. There’s no explanation in the article about what it does; it’s distinct from the Titanic or Towering classes of unit, as those are both listed as Keywords. Knights have tended to have abilities letting them walk over, disengage from, or shoot despite being engaged with smaller units, so that seems likely.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Canis Rex datasheet

We also get to see some of the new stats for the extremely potent weapons that Knights port around. Canis Rex’s ‘Chainbreaker las-impulsor’ can be fired on two settings, high intensity – which has D6 attacks, S14, AP -3, four damage – and low intensity – which has longer range, twice the shots, S7, AP -1, two damage. Both fire modes have the Blast and Sustained Hits Weapon Abilities, inflicting extra hits on a ‘Critical Hit’ roll – which Rex scores on unmodified hit rolls of 5+ instead of six, thanks to his Chainbreaker ability.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Rapid-fire Battle Cannon weapon stats

Weapon Abilities also make some classic Knight weaponry really interesting. The Rapid Fire Battle Cannon remains a Blast Weapon, with D6+3 attacks and respectable strength, but it now lives up to its namesake by gaining the Rapid Fire D6+3 weapon ability. At close range it’ll fire at least 2d6+6 shots, more if the target unit has enough models.

Warhammer 40k 10th edition Imperial Knights rules - Thundercoil Harpoon weapon stats

The preview also reveals the Thundercoil Harpoon, which has fewer shots but even better armour penetration than the Titan-hunting Astra Militarum volcano cannon. With S24, AP-6, and Damage 12, its raw stats are absurd, before you add in the Weapon Abilities Anti-Monster 4+ and Anti-Vehicle 4+, meaning there’s no target so tough it can’t be wounded on a 4+ or better; and Devastating Wounds, which bypasses invulnerable saves when the Wound roll is a critical.

In eighth and ninth edition 40k, Knights could be pledged to either the Imperium of Man or the Adeptus Mechanicus. There’s no hint of that in these previews, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see those distinctions show up in future Detachments, perhaps with the eventual Imperial Knights Warhammer 40k Codex.