Necromunda is a tabletop skirmish war game produced by Games Workshop. In Necromunda, players control rival gangs battling each other in the Underhive, a place of anarchy and violence in the depths below a Hive City. Necromunda is the name of the planet that the games occurs on, and is the same world from the Warhammer 40,000 universe,[1b] and likewise the play centres on 28mm scale models.
Necromunda focuses on how your gang develops and grows in campaign style play with gang fighters gaining experience and serious injuries along the way. As gang fighters continue to gain experience, they may pick up characteristic increases or skills such as Infiltration, Rapid Fire or Weaponsmith, making them more versatile and deadly. You may also send these gang fighters out to work territories or forage, together with credits earned for successfully achieving certain objectives in scenarios, for example, collecting loot counters during a Scavengers scenario, you may purchase new recruits, weapons, equipment and other rare finds.[1b]
Necromunda stands out from other games by Games Workshop by the way the table is laid out: in most of those games the table is mostly flat, with the only terrain features being a few hills, trees, and maybe a bridge or a building.
However, in Necromunda you can play in large buildings which may have many floors, as well as have bridges and walkways connecting the buildings together. There is other terrain such as chemical wastelands, barrels, watch towers, abandoned factories and other dystopian environments that add a large amount of variety in playing areas. [1b]
Confrontation was a set of skirmish rules published in White Dwarf magazine in 1990 and 1991. It laid the groundwork for most of the concepts used in Necromunda, like the Hive Worlds, the Underhive, and the gang wars.
Rules-wise, the game was based firmly on the Warhammer 40,000 2nd Edition Rulebook[1b], and the ruleset is commonly considered to be better suited for the type of skirmish games Necromunda encourages.
An extensive range of miniatures was released to support the game. The design of the world and its gangs was a collaborative effort by the artists John Blanche, Jes Goodwin, Wayne England, Mark Gibbons, and others.[1a]
Released in 2003, the Necromunda: Underhive rulebook compiled the Necromunda Rulebook and Sourcebook contents, with a few updated rules (such as removing the need for sustained fire dice and hand flamer templates, and making House specific weapon lists).
The Outlanders material was gradually republished in sometimes radically different versions through the Necromunda Magazine Volume 2, Fanatic Magazine and Fanatic Online. Games Workshop's Specialist Games division occasionally published new rules as part of Fanatic Online, as well as making weekly news updates.
The 2003 Rulebook was made available for free as a PDF download in 2005 as the Necromunda Living Rulebook and was to be updated every two years, the changes based largely on the work of avid volunteers and playtesters in the official specialist games forum (saved archive, dated 29/03/2007) which was closed in 2007.
Necromunda was relaunched in 2017 after more than a decade hiatus with the release of the Necromunda: Underhive (2017) boxed set. A new Rulebook was made available in 2018, and was expanded by numerous books giving new rules for the various factions, gangs and miniatures released since the relaunch of the game.
New boxed sets released after 2017 typically include a bespoke rulebook which includes the core rules from the 2018 Rulebook, but also all of the tweaks and improvements from all of the errata released since the relaunched Necromunda came out.
Released Boxed Sets:
- Necromunda: Underhive (2017)
- Necromunda: Dark Uprising (2019)
- Necromunda: Hive War (2021)
- Necromunda: Ash Wastes (2022)
Six main gangs try to control the streets of Necromunda:
- House Orlock Gang
- House Goliath Gang
- House Escher Gang
- House Van Saar Gang
- House Delaque Gang
- House Cawdor Gang
While other factions intervene in and out of those wars:
- Enforcers: The Law of Necromunda
- Redemptionists: Fanatical priests
- Spyrer: Children of Hive Nobles sent down to prove their worth by hunting in the Underhive
- Ratskins: Primitive natives of the Hive Bottom
- Scavvies: Diseased and ghoulish creatures
Black Library has published a variety of novels based in and around Necromunda's largest hive, Hive Primus. Listed from earliest publication:
- Kal Jerico
- The Redeemer (Graphic Novel)
- Status: Deadzone
- Kal Jerico Contracts & Agendas
- Survival Instinct
- Blood Royal
- Kal Jerico Cardinal Crimson
- Back from the Dead
- Lasgun Wedding
- 1: White Dwarf 190 (UK)
- 3: Warhammer Community: Necromunda: Hive War is the Ultimate Way to Start Your Gang Warfare Adventures (posted 26 April 2021) (last accessed 5/6/2021)
- 4 : Warhammer Community: Warhammer Preview Online – Faith & Damnation (Posted on 20/03/2021) (Last accessed on 20 March, 2021)
- 5 : Warhammer Community : Necromunda
- 6 : White Dwarf 130 (UK), pg 10-25 - White Dwarf 131 (UK), pg 65-73
|1995-1996||Rulebook (Sourcebook • Outlander Rulebook)|
|1998||Necromunda Hardback Rulebook|
|2017-2018||Necromunda: Underhive (2017) (Gang War • Gang War II • Gang War III • Gang War IV)|
|2018-2021||Necromunda Rulebook (2018) (Gangs of the Underhive • The Book of Peril • The Book of Judgement • The Book of Ruin • House of Chains • House of Blades • House of Iron • House of Artifice • House of Faith • House of Shadow • Book of the Outcast)|
|2022-||Necromunda: Ash Wastes • Book of the Outlands • Cinderak Burning|
|In other media:|
|Novels||Necromunda (Novel Series) • Status: Deadzone (Inferno!) • Underhive: A Necromunda Anthology • Wanted: Dead • Terminal Overkill • Sinner's Bounty|
|Comics||Kal Jerico • The Redeemer|