The new GHB is out and in-use. Love it or hate it, we've got 6 months to experience the delights and pitfalls of a more narrative driven matched play experience with the introduction of game mechanics built around the Galletian Veterans (GV) units.
But is it really the battleline edition of AOS 3.0? I think the jury is still out on that one, but having witnessed the last couple of recent bigger events (60 players) one thing is clear to me. The meta has returned to a steady ebb and flow between the 4 grand alliances, balancing out in a way we haven't seen in recent history. Of course order is still the big dog at the moment, helped in some part by new editions of Stormcast, Daughters of Khaine and Sylvaneth books, a decent White Dwarf set of rules for KO and fan favourite Seraphon being left basically alone and equipped with everything it needs to handle the new edition. But here's the thing - the other 3 alliances are getting their fair spread of representation as well. Pretty even distributions of Chaos, Destruction and Death have resulted in a wonderfully mixed up meta.
To speculate on why this might be the case I offer a couple of suggestions:
Post covid sentiments of just wanting to play what you like because you haven't been able to play properly in ages.
Focussing on battleline in the current battlepack means everyone gets to play, as opposed to a heavy emphasis on monsters for example where they can be more limited in their representation in 'competitive' builds.
Exhaustion of a monster heavy approach in the previous GHB.
New battletomes across the board for alliances other than Order (Nighthaunt, Orruks, Nurgle, Skaven), and newish books like Soulblight as well.
As a player forced into a casual acquaintance with the hobby due to life/work responsibilities, I'm finding the current GHB to be a touch more complex than I enjoy to play. That said I'll still play and go to tournaments at every single opportunity possible. But as a wise man once said - "I like their old stuff better than their new stuff".
The good news is we still have a bit of time with this set of rules and battleplans. Maybe they'll grow on me in that time and maybe they won't. What I can appreciate however is the mix of armies I'm seeing in attendance at events at the moment. Well done to all the players out there that are mixing it up and thinking a bit more outside the box. Whether that's been caused by the change in rules and a shift of focus on battleline units I can't say. I am however, very excited to be in the hobby at this point in time.
What do you make of the new GHB? And the current spread in the Aussie meta?