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Arks of Omen Farsight Review – Warhammer 40k

Abaddon’s quest for the ultimate weapon contiues apace in the latest installment of the Arks of Omen series. This latest book, Arks of Omen Farsight, shifts the focus to Eastern Fringes of the galaxy where the legendary Commander Farsight contends with Orks, servants of Chaos and even his own personal daemons!

Arks of Omen Farsight clocks in at just over 100 pages and in addition to continuing the narrative also includes a new “Dark Depths” mission for Boarding Action games, new faction rules for the Aeldari, Adepta Sororitas and T’au Empire and even twelve exciting new ‘multiplayer’ Boarding Action scenarios! Alongside this new book we also get two brand new miniatures in the form of Commander Farsight and Boss Snikrot who come as part of their respective Boarding Patrol boxes (all of which are up for pre-order today and you can ). We’ll take a closer look at the contents of both the Arks of Omen Farsight book and the new Boarding Patrols in this post!

We have to say thank you Games Workshop for sending us free review copies of Arks of Omen Farsight and the Boarding Patrol : Orks and T’au Empire. If you would like to support the site then why not order your copy through our affiliate Element Games and save yourself some cash too? Also, make sure to check out out Patron!

Boarding Patrol: Orks Unboxing

Boarding Patrol: Orks includes five Flash Gitz, 10 Beast Snagga Boyz and 10 Kommandos in addition to the brand new plastic Boss Snikrott himself. Without Snikrot you’re looking at around £112.50 worth of content. I’d guess Snikrott himself is worth between £20-25 so all in not bad for an £85 box!

Matt has done a fantastic job of building and painting the contents of this box and I think the almost comic book style he has achieved on Boss Snikrot looks great! The model itself is quite similar to the previous version with the addition of few scenic details (such as the smoke grenade on his base). I do miss the funny ‘shhhh!’ pose of the old model though.

Boarding Patrol: Tau Unboxing

Boarding Patrol: T’au Empire is another fantastic value box and includes £85 worth of T’au Empire models in the form of three Crisis Battlesuits, a ten man Fire Warrior Breacher Team and eight accompanying drones. On top of this you also get the awesome new Commander Farsight model who I estimate to be worth around £30 to £40.

Commander Farsight himself is a beautiful miniature in my opinion and a fantastic reimagining of his previous incarnation. The dynamic positioning of the Supernova Battlesuit’s limbs and weapons to the eyecatching display elements on the model’s base, I really love everything about this model. It’s also quite a large model, much bigger than the ordinary Crisis Suits on a par with the bigger Commander or Broadside suits. There is some limited flexibility in terms of how you put the model together as well, allowing you to reposition the arms and the head if you should wish. I decided to paint Commander Farsight in his old Vior’la Sept colours to match my own Vior’la T’au Empire force.

Arks of Omen Farsight Review

So we come to the main event, Arks of Omen Vashtorr! Like the Broken Realms series for Age of Sigmar before it, I’ve been a massive fan of the Arks of Omen series. Games Workshop have absolutely nailed it with these edition bridging story series, and Arks of Omen in my opinion has been some of the most fun 40k lore we have seen in a long time. In addition to containing new lore, the books have also introduced and expanded the Boarding Actions game mode, which allows players to enact small scale fights onboard spacecraft. Again, this has been a really fun addition to the game and a refreshing breath of fresh air as we get to the end of 9th edition.

Now we come on to book itself which continutes the story already laid out in the previous ‘Ark’ books. Vashtorr and Abaddon’s ongoing quest to secure the component parts to Vashtoor’s promised ‘super weapon’ sees them dispatch an Ark of Omen and accompanying forces to the Eastern Fringe where perhaps the most important and critical key fragment can hopefully be retrieved. But Chaos are not the only players in this chapter of the Ark of Omens story as we learn that Commander Farsight is embroiled in a battle for survival against a might Ork opponent. Throughout the book Commander Farsight must not only contend with the Orks and approaching Chaos force but also with his own inner daemons as he wrestles with his past.

As ever we do not want to reveal any spoilers so we will save them until the bottom of this post, if you want to read the spoilers just scroll past the rules section below. Either way I really enjoyed the story in this book, it was great to read about events from the perspective of both T’au and the Orks and I am looking forward to seeing how this story ultimately concludes!

The Rules

Firstly we get some new faction specific rules which expand upon the free rules that Games Workshop provide for download on the Warhammer Community website. The T’au Empire, Asuryani/Ynnari, Drukhari, Harlequins and Adepta Sororitas all get a selection of Adaptions, Enhancements and Stratagems allowing you to more fully utilise these factions in your games of Boarding Actions.

We also get a new mission, “Dark Depths” which can be used to represent boarding actions deep in the unexplored and warp-riddled hearts of the mights space ships. Alongside the mission briefing itself are selection of ‘half-sized’ mission maps from which each player must choose when building their army. Each map shows the location of the different terrain features and objective markers. At the start of a game each player will combine their chosen maps together to form the complete battlefield and it’s quite possible for one player to block hatchways and openings with walls etc. as they combine the two sides, representing the fact that the parts of the ship these maps represent are twisted labyrinths and ramshackle in nature.

In addition there a whopping twelve missions that have been specifically designed for a variety of different player count multiplayer games. This includes 4 players (either 2v2 or free for all), 3 players (free for all) or 2 players. There are rules to help determine a suitable turn order and deployment entry zones in addition to some small modifications to the shooting phase rules to accomadate the additional players. This all looks really fun and I’m looking forward to trying some multiplayer games out with the rest of the Sprues and Brews team.

Do you want to see those spoilers? If so scroll on…

The Spoilers…

As the story begins we learn that one of the last and perhaps most critical of key fragments that Vashtorr has been seeking lies buried on world within the T’au Empire. To retrieve this prize Abaddon and Vashtorr have dispatched one of their Arks of Omen captained by a mighty Black Legion Daemon Prince.

Prior to the arrival of the aforementioned Chaos fleet however we see that Commander Farsight is currently embroiled in battle with the Orks upon the planet Wurrbork. The Orks, led by Warboss Nazdregg, are attempting to ‘out-gun’ the T’au forcing Farsight to develop a new counter tactic, the way of the short blade, in an effort to defeat them. The T’au successfully manage to force the Orks to retreat and in doing so discover that Nazdregg is secretly constructing a new kind of super weapon, “da ‘tellyfragga”, with which he intends to lay waste to entire worlds! There is a really cool scene which sees Farsight, armoured in his new Supernova battlesuit, engage with an Ork Wierdboy where upon he is beset with visions of himself covered in blood and festooned with skulls, a large axe grasped in one hand…

Unbeknownst to all however is the presense of a Deathwatch Frigate in the system, itself cloaked in appropriated T’au stealth technology, upon which several members of the Ordos Xenos have been observing the T’au commander. They appear to be biding their time, waiting for the right moment to strike and assassinate the xenos leader but all is not what it seems and we learn that Vashtorr has placed several Alpha Legion operatives amongst the warriors of the Deathwatch, tasked with their own secret objective to recover the key fragment.

The Orks retreat to the planet Dregrokk where Nazdregg intends to complete the construction of his new weapon and Farsight leads the Eight and the rest of his forces in chase. Nazdregg is ultimately slain by a combined assault from Brightsword and Farsight but before the legendary commander is able to initiate a cull of the remaining Ork forces the mighty Chaos fleet arrives in system, scuppering any chance of a lasting victory against the Orks. There is another really fun scene in this section which sees Nazdregg activate a ‘teleportal’ device on his own custom Battlewagon!

Farsight quickly concludes that they can not meet this new threat upon Dregrokk for the Orks are still too numerous and they cannot win a battle on two fronts. Nor can Farsight lead his forces in retreat back to the Enclaves lest he risk drawing both the Chaos and Ork armies in chase. Still plagued by the very ‘Khorne-like’ visions Farsight reluctantly decides to instead lead both opponents to Arthas Moloch but not before sending a messenger drone back to the T’au Empire with a message for the Ethereals – Farsight will surrender to them in exchange for reinforcement.

What follow is a series of escalating battles upon the Surface of Athas Moloch as the T’au forces attempt to play the Orks against Chaos in an effort to buy enough time for reinforcements from the Empire to arrive. The situation becomes ever more desperate and we see several of the famed Eight, including Brightsword, fall in battle. Word eventually arrives from the Ethereals but it is not good news and Farsight learns that no help will come. The only apparent option before him now is to unleash the same daemonic forces which overan Arthas Moloch all those years ago with the hope that both the Orks and Chaos armies will be destroyed by it. To enact this plan the T’au begin to fall back towards the Great Star Dais and in doing so stumble across the wreckage of strange single manned fighter craft bearing iconography of the Dark Angels which appears to be at least 10,000 years old. The location of this wreck is recorded by the T’au who are unable to ponder this mystery for long as the Orks and Chaos forces close in upon them.

Whilst the three factions are embroiled in battle the Alpha Legion aboard the Deathwatch Frigate launch their attack, take control of the ship and deploy to the planet’s surface. They arrive at the wrecked Dark Angel’s craft and retrieve the sought after key fragment – mission complete.

As the fighting intensifies so to do Farsight’s blood thirsty and rage-filled visions and we see him fighting to control a growing inner rage and turmoil. It’s only a recollection of his time under the tutelage of Commander Puretide that brings Farsight back from the edge. With his mind now clear Farsight leads a successful evacuation of his remaining forces from the planet’s surface.

Arks of Omen Farsight is up for pre order today and released Saturday 1st of April

Games Workshop provided Sprues & Brews with a free copy for review purposes.

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