At the Battleforge tournament I heard a lot about the changes coming in the new chaos codex, to be released sometime later this year. This Bell of Lost Souls blog installment describes some of the major stuff. Tonight I was reading through the Eye of Terror codex, specifically the quote from Eldrad at the beginning, and I was thinking how much more entertaining it would be if they actually wrote the fluff and unit descriptions in the new chaos book from the point of view of a traitor marine. The classic story of the heresy has always maintained the good (emperor loyalists) vs. evil (chaos-warped traitors) framework; what if instead they emphasized the betrayal or weakness Horus and his disciples perceived leading up to the whole debacle?
As far as the structure, I still don't really know how I feel about the new codex layouts (Eldar, Dark Angels). This fellow Andy Hoare, who is apparently involved in development at GW, discussed in his interview here how the big plan behind the new codex structure intends to "rationalize all the lists," but honestly I really don't get what he means by rationalize. Does he mean rationalize, as in, to make rational? What was so irrational about the old lists, I mean, besides them being completely fantastical works of fiction that augment a complicated system for simulating battle between a multitude of factions represented by science-fiction miniatures using dice to determine the major sequence of events? I think all of the books since fourth edition have been just fine, outside of a few missteps where they could have (and sometimes did) fix things up with a note in a faq. How exactly does putting the unit/wargear descriptions and their cost/statistics in two separate places make the books more rational? I'll say this, it's rationally a pain in my ass to flip back and forth until I memorize all the shit, which depending on how much they've changed can take a while.