My copy of Sanctus Reach: Stormclaw arrived today. Well, I say my copy, but I'm splitting it with my girlfriend (hi to anyone visiting from her blog). I did the ordering though, so I get the first look :) I've opened it up and gone through the contents, it all looks good. My first thought on opening the box was that there's a lot of plastic in there. I'm planning to hold off assembling any of it for the moment, I'm trying to make sure I spend my hobby time painting, rather than increasing the size of the assembled but not painted pile. That might go out of the window if we decide to play the campaign any time soon though.  The mini-rulebook is exactly what I expected and indeed wanted, just a smaller, more convenient copy of the main rulebook. The campaign booklet is only 32 pages, and contains: some introduction to the Sanctus Reach setting; 2 pages of story for each of the 3 missions; 1 page of painting schemes for each army; a 1 page mission description for each mission; datasheets for each unit in the box, as well as a formation for each force; an armoury and reference section. The missions look relatively quick and fun, only the last one uses all the models in the box, and I imagine experienced players could get through all three in a day's play. I would have liked to have seen more made out of the tellyporta array being fought over in the final battle however. It's an important part of the back story, but doesn't seem to get a look in as part of the mission. The pictures in the book also don't make anything of it, and I think it could be a cool piece of scenery. There could even have been a terrain datasheet for it.

Overall, I'm happy with the box, although I think the Space Wolves get a slightly better deal, as their sprues let you make Blood Claws or Grey Hunters where Orks only get Gretchin. I'd say Dark Vengeance is a better starter set, as you get more models cheaper (even if they are snap fit), but obviously for someone planning on Space Wolves or Orks this is the right choice. For people already in the hobby, the use of the standard model sprues means you get a lot more customisation than in Dark Vengeance which, given that I'm currently fighting my way through painting a lot of rather similar Assault on Black Reach boyz, I think is a plus. I like the idea of the campaign box to bridge the release of the two codexes and I hope we see more of them in the future. If you're thinking about Stormclaw though, you should decide soon as GW says stocks are running low. I've already seen a copy on Ebay asking twice the original price.