6th Edition Codices: How Are They Doing?


As I promised in my last article, I’m back again, this time to look at how armies without new codices have been faring in 7th Edition. Again, for the stat gathering in this article, I used the Ultimate Weapon’s Since Date function to sort out only data from since a book has been released.

I had to manipulate the data just a bit, but the set we’ll use shows all games up to the point of the next book. So the starting point of 7th Edition shows only games before Orks, but the Orks data point shows all games up to Space Wolves. This allows us to look at how armies changed over time in a slightly more natural way than if we only looked at games between books.

So first, let’s look at popularity. How have 6th Edition Codices fared in popularity as 7th Edition progresses?

While the general levels of popularity aren’t very surprising, it was interesting to see that none really saw a decline, with some factions like Imperial Guard and Chaos Space Marines actually seeing slight upticks so far in 2015. One possible explanation for this is that while we’re just looking at primary armies, we’re not seeing secondary detachments, which have become much easier to plug in with the abundance of codex-specific detachments and formations in the 7th Edition Books.

Next, let’s look at performance as an army over time:

The trend that jumps out first is the huge dip Sisters of Battle saw after Space Wolves were released, as well as their steady incline back up closer to a 50% win rate. In fact, I was very surprised to see that no army is doing markedly worse now than they were to begin 7th Edition, particularly if we consider Tyranids’ hot start to 7th an outlier. Tau has seen a slight decline (and is the only other 6th Edition faction to see such), but are still winning at a respectable rate.

So, what does this mean? For one, we can take away that strong 6th edition books are still strong, and at least so far, haven’t seen major declines in popularity or performance. This stands doubly true if we look at the top 6 armies by performance in 7th edition thus far:

Imperial Knights are the obvious outlier, and continue to win about 2/3rds of their games. If they were dropped, surprisingly, Tyranids would sneak in as the 5th place army by performance, despite a win rate below 50%. This list also omits Daemonkin, Skitarii, Cult Mechanicus, and Harlequins, as there are too few games to get a statistically valid win rate (under 15 games for most).

Regardless, 3 of the top 6 armies have not received new codices so far this edition. While I think generally we would assume newer books will dominate, so far that hasn’t been true. However, I also don’t think anyone would be surprised if, after NOVA, Space Marines and Dark Angels make a run for top 5 win rate, ousting Tau and Tyranids.

Speaking of NOVA, look for my upcoming NOVA Predictions post next week, and analysis of the results afterward.