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Old Editions and Codex's
Old 07 Jun 2010, 05:51   #1 (permalink)
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Default Old Editions and Codex's

I've noticed that it's not just the content of codex's thats changed over time but also how they are written (this isn't such a mind blowing observation though is it now). When I think about it, my favourite codex is my 3rd edition space marine codex, it's the reason why I play Crimson Fists today. But I still look, and read that codex more then my 5th edition one. When looking at the 5th edition and other newer codex's in comparison to the older ones, one thing that stands out are the recounts of battles etc. A lot of the older ones are first person narratives and written in character. All of the 5th edition ones though are just recounts of what happened. Also the layout, the older rulebook has pages where it seems like your looking through classified documents, pages are stamped etc.

These types of changes make the fact that I'm playing a game more obvious, and the characters and material within seem less real.

Off older codex's I only have the 3rd edition rulebook, space marine codex and the Daemonhunters codex to compare, all of these have in character material. The 4th edition Tau codex doesn't seem too and I've already mentioned C:SM 5th edition.

Have these types of changes been universal? What were other older codex's/editions like? Have there been other types of changes as well?

Also, what is your favourite codex/rulebook and why?

As I mentioned, mine is the 3rd Edition Space Marine Codex, the way it portrays space marines is different to nows, back then, it seemed like the imperium feared the space marines almost as much as the needed there help. They appeared to be much more autonomous, brutal and scarce. I also love the stories within, my favourite being the one on the 3rd page, Inquisitor Bastalek Grim's recount of the White Panthers chapter restoring order to a system, his final words being:

"To think that there are a thousand Chapters, each a thousand-strong, of these warriors poised to strike anywhere in the galaxy fills me with reassurance and dread in equal measure"

And also, the 3rd edition codex had Captain Cortez, how I long for his return...
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Old 07 Jun 2010, 06:28   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Old Editions and Codex's

Codex: Catachan. Simple because it is, IMO, one of the fluffiest codices written. They're really a Catachan army; booby traps, WS4, Sentinels etc. I really wished they had a separate codex for them but alas...
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Old 07 Jun 2010, 08:05   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Old Editions and Codex's

My favorite we're the 3rd editions in general. But in particular the Blood Angels Codex and by Extension (as Blood Angels required it then) the space marine codex.

3rd edition was just nice because it had all relevant unit specific information and points cost on one page, none of this flipping 40 pages to find out what a Blood Chalice or a Glaive Encarmine does and then going back another 40 pages for their points costs. Even the nid codex was easy to flip through back then.

Sadly the only reason for the new codex organization is GW making a terrible attempt at stopping PDF makers, but all they did was make the PDF-makers make bigger PDFs.
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Old 07 Jun 2010, 09:23   #4 (permalink)
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That is not it at all. The reason GW changed the format is so that Fantasy and 40K both use the same layout.

Yes, that's right. When 3rd Edition 40K was out, 6th Edition Fantasy was out, and 6th Edition Fantasy used the same format that 5th Edition 40K does now. As such, I have always laughed at people who complain about the modern format, given that Fantasy players have been using it for years!
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Old 07 Jun 2010, 09:56   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Old Editions and Codex's

I really like the 3rd edition codexes mainly because they offered up so much more then the 'this is how it is' that the new ones portray. They gave you in-character stories, evidence of what really happens and secret documents that you can read and take away from what you can manage to decipher.

This gives the reader some food for thought, and reveal secrets about the race the codex is about in subtle ways that at first glance may not be apparent. The new codexes simply don't do that and everything is laid bare in plain sight.

I appreciate that there is more fluff in the new codexes especially considering each unit gets their own page now instead of a tiny bit of blurb at the side like they used to and that was it, but I think a mixed approach would be good especially if they reveal the core of the character of the army in plain text, but let you unravel the more complex elements of their character from less transparent pieces of fluff.
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Old 07 Jun 2010, 15:34   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Old Editions and Codex's

I liked reading the 4th ed tyranid codex fluff. I think a lot of it was in the third person but it still showed kryptman's strugles from an imperial veiwpoint. It also had more detailed fluff on battles rather than an borad overview of way too many hive fleets like 5th has. Also I liked the scientific names for the tyranids. The in character story with the wounded gaurdsmen in the old tyranid dex showed great charecter into how the fear of the tyranids.

The new codices fluff is mostly generalizations.
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Old 07 Jun 2010, 20:14   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Old Editions and Codex's

What irritates me most about the newer books is how GW has changed the background fluff. The biggest rewrite has to be the orks, going from aliens with algae symbionts to sentient fungus!!!!!
I love the old Freebooterz book, with its renegade minderz ( "Nice Land Raider. Be a shame if it burned down.") to the Bad Doks with their squig-brained dreadnoughts! I can't remember whether it was "Ere We Go!" or "Waa! The Orks" but one of them was an entire book devoted to orky background material. The other was an army book.
And then there were the "Realms of Chaos" books. Ah heady days, indeed.
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