When GW first announced 8th Edition, we were all overjoyed!
When I first Saw a Primaris Marine I thought “Finally! We’ve got true scale marines!”
Then I realized…it was actually only the Nurgle marines that had been sized up.
The primaris were something new.
But what will happen to our noble Tactical Marine and the other non-primaris variants.
First off, to answer this we have to think with 3 different hats.
The first hat is the hat of a Fan of the Game.
With this hat I think we can also agree the Primaris marines mean a TON of new epic fluff.
The Primaris Marines are actually an epic force on the table. The 2nd life and Extra A stat make them truly epic on the board, only held back by the fact they don’t have the tactical equipment options available to other marines.
These are the Marines of the Story books!
So with our Fan hat squarely on our heads, I think it’s fair to say the Primaris Marines May not be the exact thing we thought we would get in true scale.
(I think most of us just imagined newer sculpts)
But we got something a lot closer to the version of a Space Marine portrayed in the books.
Now lets put on another hat.
The hat of the Collector.
With this hat we see the situation from a slightly different angle.
On one hand we have some cool new minis to collect… on the other hand… we’ve got some miniatures that are potentially going to become redundant.
There’s a factor here we have to consider. In a Q and A I attended at Adpeticon before 8th was released, GW mentioned that 8th edition is the last edition of the 40K rules and they will just adapt and amend them going forward.
This may mean that Non-primaris marines are here to stay. Albeit without newer versions or updates.
They may go the way of the Indexes: rules we can use if we wish, but less optimized as time goes on.
That way our collections are still usable…though perhaps not playable.
Then again, with tournaments, many units are unplayable…but that doesn’t mean they won’t get played.
Our final hat is the GW hat.
Looking at it from their perspective.
Here’s the thing that many of us tend to forget…GW is a Company.
They are always trying to find a balance between 2 things.
1) our happiness
2) their profit for their investors.
GW isn’t a nasty money grabbing company, despite people’s thoughts.
But because they‘re a freely traded stock they’re driven by people who don’t care about the game.
Faceless investors they have to keep happy.
And as we all should know, the key income generator for GW is the Space Marines.
Thats’ their iconic look and model, and where most of the 40K money comes from.
The primaris is a more aesthetically appealing model. But more importantly…
It gives a chance for them to resell miniatures to people who already have HUGE collections.
New rules coming out for old miniatures is something we’ve enjoyed for many years!
However, at some point they needed to make a decision that would get old fans coming back and rebuying their collections.
Thats where we are today.
While in many ways we don’t want to over pay for miniatures, we also greatly benefit from a profitable company.
Look at other mini games, they lose support after a while, or dont have enough new minis coming out months after release (Star wars legion)
The better the company does the better their sculpts get (They’re still cheaper than gundam models and have a HUGE following in Japan because of this)
They’ve also shown a huge turn around in the way they treat their followers with the Warhammer Community and actually beta testing new rules (Sisters of Battle)
Ultimately, I think we will never see the complete loss of the humble Tactical marine.
However I do expect that Primaris will become more and more feasible as the rules adapt and go forward, and that eventually we will see that people naturally choose to move away from the original marines.
Though I suspect there will still be a place for them…
.. in our games with the support of rules from GW.
.. in the lore as they’re not going to retcon years of story lines.
but most importantly..
… In our hearts…. as for many of us, it was our first Warhammer 40K GW miniature.