Warhammer Has Ruined Other Games For Me

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Pimpcron has a confession to make.

Hi ya peeps! It’s confession time for the Pimpcron, and wait until I tell you about all of those suppressed memories from summer camp! You’ll laugh, you’ll cry … mostly laugh. I’ll do the crying [sob]. The doctor said they’ve never seen so much damage to a large intestine.

Burrito night went south real quick.


I just crapped my power armor.

But For Real Though

My background as a gamer is thus: I have been making board games and card games since as far back as I can remember. I have always been fascinating with the rules of games, and collect game rulebooks just to see how it works. I have a stack of RPG rulebooks that I have never played but cannibalized rules from to make my own stuff.

Back when I had a regular group of non-Warhammer friends to hang with, we literally had weekly board game nights. I have some board games I purchased, but mostly it was ones that I made. I loved board games and card games. I loved the competition, and the strategy.

But I ended up abandoning them, just like my normal friends. I no longer had use for my board games when I met 40k, just like my normal friends. I rounded all of my board games up in my car, drove about two states over, and left them for dead in the middle of a State Park; just like I did with my normal friends.

I’ve Been Scarred By 40k

I know this is going to come off as fanboyism, and … whatever I guess. I don’t mean for it to be, but once I started playing 40k years ago, everything changed. I loved how I could create my own characters, chapters, and backstories. There is a sense of continuity from game to game as my beleaguered army of [insert race here] was going from one battle to another in this terrible yet fascinating setting. The narrative aspects and the hobby made my games more meaningful.


Maybe not scarred that bad.

I try to go back and play board games now, and I’m like, “What’s the point?” Every game is a one-off with no effect on any subsequent game, and I can’t customize my army. I’ve found that these games are only time wasters. If you have a bunch of non-wargaming friends, also known as Heretics, you can break out the board games and let the “Normies” play with it. But the sheer depth and strategy of wargames makes perfecting your pizza recipe, or mapping a highway system in a game, kind of weak.

You can settle Catan all you want man, but next time you break it out, it’ll need settling again. Like seriously though, who keeps unsettling my Catan? A mystery for another time I suppose.

Even Other Wargames Don’t Hold My Interest

I won’t name names because of my far-reaching and ever-powerful blogging influence. I know that most of you devout Pimpcron followers would instantly set fire to the miniatures of any game I didn’t like. Even as tears streamed down your face and you watched as your favorite minis were consumed by hungry flame.

plfirefightcover dead zone

And that one Guardsman looks at you like, “What have you done?!”

So I won’t name names. But I’ve played a great many wargames besides Warhammer iterations. And most of them fall into a couple categories.

No Customization

You pick an army of nearly all named-characters and play. What if I want to make my own character and backstory? Too bad, I’ve been pigeon holed into just named characters that already have established backstories. I was pigeon-holed for real back at summer camp, and I don’t want to talk about it.

And the lack of options in many games makes everyone’s army of “So-and-so” the exact same.

Hero Hammer

I didn’t play back in the days of 40k and fantasy Hero Hammer, but I heard it wasn’t that great. You’re HQ was nearly a god, and your troops were just meaty little speed bumps for him. I have found a certain other game to be very much like that, and I don’t like it. I want all of my troops to have an important role, not just my leader. Who, chances are, is already named for me and I can’t even customize.



No Backstory At All

You crack open a new wargame rulebook:

“Once, there was a place. But not just any place; a place where things happened to people sometimes. Other times it was fine there. But this is not one of those tolerable times I just mentioned. At this moment, terrible things are happening to people and things that would rather not have it happen to them. They’re all like ‘Oh no! Stop doing that thing that I don’t prefer to me and my possessions!’ But the perpetrators just wouldn’t stop. For like a moment, they paused and thought about stopping but then decided against it. And thus, it began …”

So why are we fighting? Like, what’s my motivation here?

~How Can You Live With Yourself When You Play Board Games After Being Exposed To Warhammer?

Pimpcron signature 3

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  • Benjamin E

    Man, that’s a shame, because I’ve played dozens and dozens of wargames that are far superior to Warhammer 40k. The only real hold that the 40k universe has over me anymore is my love of the lore, but i’d be hard pressed to think up a wargame that’s Less fun to play, or more time consuming. And pretty much any big gaming company has a corporate atmosphere or even just general attitude that is far more worthy of support than GW.

    • Karru

      My problem is that I have yet to come across another game that has the same or better availability, customer service and quality of products (in terms of models) than GW. It’s also the lack of customisability in terms of modelling AND rule representation.

      • Benjamin E

        Warlord Games, Battlefront, Fantasy Flight, they’re all pretty ubiquitous anywhere I look. And there’s a reason there isn’t a thriving black market for their products (they aren’t insanely over-priced.)

        Warlord Games, Perry and Victrix all have absolutely incredible multi-part plastic model kits that still manage to run less than a dollar a figure for the most part. And the nice thing about historical wargaming is that nobody owns the IP rights to WWII or the Napoleonic Wars, so you’ve actually got dozens of manufacturers to choose from, which pushes them to stay competitively priced.

        But GW knows that their die hard, brainwashed fanboys will pay absurd amounts of money for individual models, and there’s no incentive for them to ever change, until they drive enough people away from GW games that they start to shrivel on the vine and die.

        Now the recent return to some of their classic games is a good sign, even if Bloodbowl is the specialist game I’m least interested in. If Necromunda and Battlefleet gothic get good, solid releases, I’ll happily give GW my money, if the pricing is reasonable. But I’m not going to pay 2x what Infinity models cost just to play a GW skirmish game. Just like I’m not going to pay out the nose for space ships when Firestorm Armada already exists.

        GW isn’t the only company out there, and if they try to expand their appeal without actually trying to be competitive against any of the other big companies, I don’t see it working.

        • Karru

          The problem is that here in the backwater parts of the Northern Europe, getting products from those companies isn’t that reliable. It can take up to a month just to get a single product, because most stores in Finland that carry miniature products, don’t carry anything outside GW. If they do, their supply is extremely limited and can take months to get anything.

          It’s not a case of “brainwashed die hard fandom that causes this. GW still holds the first place in terms of model quality. They are also extremely consistent in their supply and availability.

          Also, there is still no solution being brought up about the customisability of units in those games. This is thanks to the limited resources these companies have. It is much cheaper to produce kits that go together in mostly one way and have little to no choice in weapons. GW is currently the only company that does kits with multiple options and I mean multiple. From posing to multiple heads to weapons.

          Historic games themselves are limited by their very definition. They are historic. It doesn’t make sense to see a unit of 10 US Riflemen with Colts and knives running around. It’s just boring, plain riflemen. That’s why Sci-fi and Fantasy was created.

          • euansmith
          • Severius_Tolluck

            I will say that GW is slowly taking away the customization for the sake of good looking dynamic models again. I mean unless you play marines…

          • Karru

            I agree with you there. They should tone down on that once again.

          • Muninwing

            “customization” means two things here, both of which GW has been great about while other games have not.

            first is with options. i can have a commander… with any number of loadouts. i can tailor the unit to fit with all sorts of different abilities.

            but i can also mod the model to look like it has those abilities or equipment. or i can riff on an idea with counts-as or interesting bitz.

            if you were to find ten Sorscha Khador lists by prolific painters and players, and spread them out on tables in the same room, you’ll notice a few things immediately. they all have one of a select few models in the same pose. some of them might have minor modifications, but most will be pretty straightforwardly out-of-the-box. the armies will all have the same overview color palettes, though people might use more white or more red or a variant shade here or there… or maybe slightly different painting techniques that yield different finish or shade.

            neither the paintjob nor the model is customized to any great degree. and there aren’t a whole host of varying wargear or roles for that character to use — afaik there’s no “sorscha mounted” or jetpack version, or the like either.

            the lack of kitbash/mod was what made WM/H so flat for me to start with. i could literally create a counts-as army using DE cold ones as SM bikes from a feral planet, and i’d get compliments on my creativity (especially if it was done well)… but more than minor variation with some models in certain games is cause for argue and attitude because of what it implies or signifies.

            for that reason alone, GW games — as flawed and as unbalanced as they are — will always hold primary spot in my heart, unless they keep screwing up their system and i just burn the lot for good measure.

          • Severius_Tolluck

            You are really trying hard there. I will give you that there may be a few options more than warmachine which has none, but its how you build your army that makes it play different. Same goes for 40k, cant tell you how many armies I see painted to GW official colors, and all posed to the basic hobbyist ability with pretty much the same list load out time after time. So its all subjective I suppose and what is in your local area. Also in both games if you are a hobbyist you may go the extra mile and do this old thing we old timers do, and convert stuff. Which gets harder and harder to do when both companies go for mono pose dynamic sculpts. Which GW as of the last two years or more has been slowly going, going for more and more dynamic poses that are hard to convert or change load out. Unless again, you are a space marine player where everything is much more uniform and modular.

        • Hawt Dawg

          I do.

        • euansmith

          I do love minis by other companies; but I’ve become conditioned to Heroic 28mm, and so everything else looks disappointingly small and slight when I get them out of the box.
          For example, Perry Twin’s dismounted foot knights are lovely minis with great anatomy and really cool animation; but they still don’t grab me like GW’s roly-poly chunky minis.

          • I know what you mean, love them or hate them GWs minis do have a presence on the board that few companies can match.

            Having said that I think FWs minis have a better sense of scale yet still retain that presence.

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            Death Korps are beautiful.

          • euansmith

            I fancy getting a few Solar Auxillia.

          • kloosterboer

            True, but when they’re all mobbed up in a game of Bloody Barons, they look amazing.

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            I’ve been playing 40K for decades and fantasy since 7th, my love of the models is from a more realistic(for lack of a better term) scale. Perry brothers and others got my interest with models like Dogs of War(fantasy) and valhallans back in the day. The new models aren’t bad for the most part but I prefer non heroic scale. The Harlequins are amazing especially the Solitaire.

          • euansmith

            My favourite ever mini from Citadel was the Ian Livingstone one; though the Normans they brought out around the same time were excellent too. My favourite plastic minis from GW are the Empire Archers… with a box of Flagellants, of course, for extra skulls and scrolls. But I guess I like the “heroic” proportions as they remind me of 2,000AD artwork.


        • Aezeal

          Will you please not compare the undetailed ugly WWII models or other nearly as ugly historicals with 40K or AoS models. I’ll not talk about the rules (since I don’t really know them) but in terms of miniatures it’s just not a comparison that should be made.

          • Severius_Tolluck

            Perry historical are some of the best sculpts out there… Hell they used to do sculpts for GW… Most of the Iconic figures from yester year were done by them.. mainly the whole LotR line.

    • ZeeLobby

      Not to mention some of their latest lore is pretty dismal writing. It’s more like a cartoon or comic book style, that I’m just not a fan of.

      • Aezeal

        It’s another style… it’s not worse than it was though.

        • ZeeLobby

          Er… As a fan of sci Fi novels over sci Fi comic books, it’s pretty bad for me personally

          • Arthfael

            Agreed. It used to fall in categories of either “really deep, true mind boggling horror”, “powerful mythopoiesis” or “really funny stuff’. Now, it just feels bland. Probably, in a way, because of how verbose it is. It used to be “Abaddon attacked planet X and reduced it to cinders”, now it takes pages upon pages of bad writing…
            We don’t play 40k for what is coming out now, we play it for what it used to be.

          • ZeeLobby

            Yeah. Agreed. They tend to add a lot of words that sound cool. Thesaurus is used heavily.

            I still think one of my favorite codexes was the Tyranid one written from the imperial perspective. The great stories where a lines guardsmen goes through impossible odds before being dragged down at the last second. Now it’s always things are going bad, BUT WAIT!, A Necron shows up, unfreezes an Inquisitor and then Eldar appear!

    • Sythica

      Agree completely. 40K as a game has lost all interest in my gaming group. If our wives would let us, we’d play a different game each night of the week. There are so many other great games out there.

      • ZeeLobby

        Lol. I’m still technically going to “Warhammer Night” even though we rarely play it anymore.

    • Dennis Finan Jr

      Ya, thats the point. Doesnt matter if its superior if the lore isnt up to snuff

    • denzark

      ‘General attitude far more worthy of support than GW’? I get it. You just got out of cryogenic freeze, and haven’t seen GW on facebook, Deathwatch, Plastic heresy, admech, Blood Bowl, specialist games, adeptus titanicus inbound etc etc etc….

    • grim

      does axis and allies count? What a horrible game lol

    • Thorolf

      Man this is exactly how I feel.

    • DeathBy SnuSnu

      Exactly this. Playing other war games very quickly revealed how archaic and painful 40k’s rules are (and I stopped playing in 4th Edition). You only have to look at the systems ex-GW designers have created to see how easily 40k could be improved. Bolt Action, despite the WWII ‘fluff’ (it’s not a historically accurate game by any means) feels to me exactly what 40k should have become. Alas it was not to be.

  • Other games have ruined Warhammer 40k for me.
    Notably X-Wing and Infinity but the main culprit are the 40k RPGs from Fantasyflight.

    With Dark Heresy I can sit down with 4+ friends, get out some books and paper and indulge myself in the world of 40k with better written Fluff at my hands, easier rules (depending on the GM but I’m pretty down-to-earth with the rules), all the while paying only a fraction of the price.

    • ZeeLobby

      I wish our group had just stuck with 5th. Instead we went all the way to 7th and people have just lost interest. We do love the other games we play now.

      • Dennis J. Pechavar

        I feel that way about fantasy. I preferred 7th but 8th started the end times and AoS finished it.

        • ZeeLobby

          Our group loved 7th. We quickly lost interest in 8th when irresistible force + purple sun would basically wipe out an army, or a horde of graveyard would face off vs a horde of daemons for hours…

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            Add also that in 7th when I fielded a unit of 30 skeletons in a unit for my TK people thought I was crazy for having such a huge horde. In 8th that was considered a small unit…

  • Manwiththedogs

    Few if any can compete with 40k’s universe, but rules-wise? 40k just ain’t that hot.

    • Parthis

      Agreed, completely, but universe/setting is a much harder thing to realise than rules.

      • Manwiththedogs

        Perhaps you’re right but they’re two different skill sets. It’s likely the setting suffers because most games companies are focused on rules and see fluff writing as something they can ‘wing’.
        For instance, lets take the Game of Thrones writers and see how they do creating a wargame ruleset.

  • King Renegado

    Man… I read that last part in Stamper’s voice. Been playing battleblock theater??

    • … now that you say it, yes, that absolutely could be from Stamper. xD

    • I have no idea what that is. :/

  • Karru

    I’m in total agreement here. It’s not just the rules and background that I usually find to be the problem, but its usually a mixture of factors regarding models themselves. Quality, conversion possibilities, availability, price. GW nails pretty much all of these, except price sometimes.

    When it comes to non-GW games, the model quality is usually very poor, their pricing is all over the place, there is no real conversion possibilities or they aren’t really that widely available. WarmaHordes has some amazing looking models and their metal models are nice, but their resin models are medium quality at best. They also lack any great conversion possibilities thanks to very “dynamic” posing, lack of extra parts and fixed equipment.

    Almost same problem with Infinity. Great models and good quality, but the models themselves are sometimes fidgety to assemble and pretty much impossible to convert or modify. The game also suffers from the lack of extra parts to do all this.

    These are just some examples. More often than not it usually just falls down to availability. Currently GW has the only products that has a great availability. I can get pretty much anything I need within a week of my order. Sometimes I can get some minor things like paints, brushes or random model(s) from a webstore that can bring it in within 2 days. In Finland, especially out here “far” away from all the major cities, there is no hope for “FLGS”. Everything has to be ordered in or you have to take an almost hour long train ride to Helsinki if you wish to visit any proper game shops.

    This hinders my interest for games that have low availability. It can take up to a month for an order to arrive if its not GW products. I once waited 3 weeks just to get my Khador army, because two models were missing from my order. Had I done this with GW, I could have gotten it within 2 days easily. It’s not the wait that’s the problem as well. It’s the unreliability. For example, I ordered a Dwarf army from Mantic. I got everything I ordered, except my Dwarf Lord on the giant Honey Badger. Well, technically I did get him, but the box was opened and the lower half of his body was missing. Well, I contacted Mantic and they said they would get back to me within 2 weeks. This happened a year ago and I never heard from them again.

    When it comes to the game itself though, I tend to find that its the way armies are build to be the issue. With games that are 10-15mm in scale, I don’t find problems with set equipment due to obvious reasons, but when it comes to games that are 28mm and have actual armies on the table, I do expect some modification possibilities rule-wise. Unfortunately, most games tend to go with a set selection. You just choose a unit and that’s it. You have no ability to modify it. This makes the hobby part less interesting for me.

    • Shelltoon

      I’m noticing most of my FLGS are dumping Warmahordes, Malifaux, and Infinity. They’re just not moving them, no matter how much people claim they’re superior to GW. Only ones that are surviving are X-Wing and Kings of War, but KoW players are using fantasy models and giving GW money, despite their claim that they aren’t because they’re not playing the game.

      This is why I can’t see myself getting into the other games, is the toxicity in their communities was the first thing I encountered, compared to 40k where it was friendly back and forth banter over who truly is the master race in 40k.

      • kingcobra668

        Money and army size tend to be a big issue for these people, so no wonder once they get their small skirmish force they sop buying.

        • Karru

          It’s also the “fixed” nature of the models that causes problems. I have no reason to buy another unit of Widowmakers for example, because they are monopose and I have everything I need from that one box. Meanwhile, I can always buy myself another box of Sniper Scouts, Terminators or Assault Marines. If not for using them in the battlefield, I can go wild with them and kit them out however I wish and maybe use them instead of my normal Scout Sniper, Terminator or Assault Marine unit.

        • Drpx

          I loved playing battlebox games of Warmahordes. The standard sized games not so much.

      • ZeeLobby

        Take everything you put here, and reverse it, and that’s our stores community. Guess it just depends where you are, haha

      • Hawt Dawg

        The same were I live except for one store (and they still sell mosty GW stuff).

        It shows as well on sales. Board Games, prepainted, and GW is what moves around the stores.

      • ChubToad

        Exact same thing in my area. Infinity is always regarded as great but the player base fizzles in a very short time. WMH is loosing players as we speak since MKIII arrived. KOW players don’t like to admit they still buy things from GW, specially minis and look curiously to AoS.

        The only game that I have seen looses gamers, but always end up coming back is 40k.

      • Mira Bella

        Wait a minute. You consider other communitys to be more toxic then the GW one?!
        You can’t be serious.

        • Xodis

          Well seeing as most of those communities were previous members of the GW community it kind of makes sense lol

        • Sorien

          Yes, very serious.

          When I was selling off my X-wing because I wanted to spend my resources on 40k and Star Trek Attack Wing, the toxic comments of “wow are you picking the wrong games” were quite unbelievable.

          • Karru

            Indeed. GW fans start getting toxic when the playing starts. Non-GW fans can get toxic as soon as you mention you enjoy something GW produces.

        • Karru

          It’s actually not that surprising. There are people in both groups that look down on others that don’t still play or don’t play GW games. This is extremely bad with many non GW games, I tend to find. Maybe its the bitter veterans that lost their favourite edition or army builds to time as GW games evolved or they are just bad apples in general.

          The point is that its usually those outside GW that are toxic, believe it or not. The problem is that they usually go with the standard “why are you still paying for that overpriced garbage?! Can’t you see that they don’t care about your as a player, but only as a walking pile of cash!”

          They are bitter about new edition changes and because of it some completely boycott GW. Since they do it, they expect that others should do it do. They will make sure you hear why they hate GW and why you should hate too.

  • sonny2dap .

    Unrelated to post, but Inferno pre-orders now live on forgeworld.

  • This sound very much like … “Wait until you start playing RPGs, then you’ll get really hooked”. 😀

    • Lol. I’ve been playing RPG’s my whole life (and still do).

      • Karru

        Had to re-read your comment after I read it as “I’ve been playing with RPG’s my whole life”. I was getting worried and started thinking I might contact someone about a dangerous, possibly homicidal and dapper machine man.

        • LOL! I’ve had non-nerds question what i meant before when i say RPG. 😀

  • David Leimbach

    Don’t forget scale and aesthetic. 28mm for me is small enough to have a “large” army but big enough to paint detail and give individuality to models. 40k also has a fairly consistent internal scale and mostly avoids a cartoonish look.
    There’s just enough “realism” behind the design to draw you into the sci-fi aspects. That box with wires is a controller, that muzzle with heat diffusing holes is a flamer. There’s a purpose to design beyond “this boxes sci-fi purpose is X because we say it is and sci-fi magic”.
    For me, 40k hits a sweet spot of all these elements combined that no other war game meets.

    • Aaditya Rangan

      Very well said! I definitely enjoy 40K (and AoS) for these reasons.

  • jeff white

    amen brother pimpcron, amen.

  • CloakingDonkey

    Godslayer doesn’t fall into your categories, thus your argument is defeated, sir. HAH! 😛

  • Luca Lacchini

    Opposite field here.
    Warhammer(40K) has almost always had better availability and a greater range of models with great aesthetic, but that’s it.
    The lore has been retconned/revised/modified/altered so many times it’s bordering on unrecognizable, sometimes within the same edition of the rules. 4th and 5th edition took the gothic factor and polymorphed it into stupidity for its own sake.
    Other games have sprung up in the meantime. They have a maybe not quite as an engaging lore. They have fewer models available, with kits way more difficult to get hold of, assemble, and find painting tutorials. But rules wise and play wise they are far superior. More consistent, not as power creeping between forces/editions/characters, faster in gameplay, and most of the time, cheaper too. And pretty much not inferior in visual quality.
    Warhammer(40K) may still be the king of miniatures, but in every other aspect it’s suffering. Badly.

    • Karru

      You basically just nailed my reason why I just can’t get interested in any other game outside those that GW produces. I don’t really care about rules, because I still have to get the models to play. Those models define my interest into the game. Then comes the setting itself and last part is the type of game it is rule-wise. Is it a skirmish game or large scale? Stuff like that.

      Basically every game I have played outside those produced by GW fails at the first part. While GW fails miserably in the balance and rule section, their models, kits and the entire hobby side defeats all other companies so easily its not even funny. Their availability, quality and flexibility is top notch.

      • Luca Lacchini

        Good for you. In a hobby the aesthetic factor is a very important one. But it alone can’t keep everything up.
        It seems that the concept “we’re a miniatures company, we care only the needed minimum for the gamers” brought GW to a dangerous low in recent years.
        It’s starting to get back on its feet as it listens to customers and brings them better rulesets, games, and minis.
        In this order.

        • Karru

          I do hope that GW can bring back the days of fun and great rules. As much as I do love the models GW produces, it won’t keep them floating forever.

          GW has already taken the first steps towards that. They have started communicating with their customers and their products have started to include more value in them. Next they should start looking into their competitors rulesets a bit more and realise how much their own design team is doing wrong with the rules.

  • Hendrik Booraem VI

    I agree with Pimpcron. WH40K gives me the tactical depth on the table, the strategic depth with the list-building, the ability to create scenarios, the background for creating a campaign all my own, everything I need to make my own custom Space Marine chapter, and is metal enough that people see it and are either turned off immediately, or excited about trying it immediately.

    No other game is as cool, that I’ve seen. And, thank God, the game has changed through its seven editions, but not as much as AD&D, which is now a completely unrecognizable hodge-podge of BS and tom-foolery, if you played 1st and 2nd Edition.

    • Karru

      That is one of the amazing things about the 40k universe that shines so bright. GW made the world so huge and gave people loads of generic options that they are able to freely create their own “stories”. They can make their own chapters or craftworlds and still make complete sense.

  • orionburn
  • Drpx

    Ticket to ride is a fun game. You should try it PC.

  • BeardMonk

    The fact that you think 40K or AoS gives you “tactical depth” is simply hilarious. Whenever I have played either game I feel like I’m playing with huge child safe crayons. |the interactions are so basic

    • To each his own I suppose. I win or lose games all the time due to errors made by either me or my opponent. To me that means there is tactical depth.

      • ZeeLobby

        While crayons is a little extreme, I don’t think errors are necessarily indicators of tactical depth. It could just be bad play (please don’t beat me :O).

        • Karru

          He is already taking his dreaded pimp cane out.

          • ZeeLobby


        • Well, on the flip side of that. If errors didn’t matter, then your choices wouldn’t matter. If your choices don’t matter to the outcome of the game, then it’s all list matchups and dice rolls that soley determine it, which is not my experience. Unless you’re playing against uber cheese which I don’t tolerate.

          • ZeeLobby

            Haha. Well Uber cheese aside, I think most errors I’ve experienced in this game tend to be people losing sight of the objectives. Not sure how much that relates to depth. Usually units have pretty clear intended purpose, with high priority targets on the opposite end of the field. I honestly think the game has lost most of its tactical depth as ignores cover and average gun ranges of 36″+ have become more prevalent. Now it’s more about the haves and the have nots.

            Now if you eschew formations, allies, and limit powerful units to balance the field, depth returns, so I can’t argue that if that’s how you play. In that case the core ruleset still has depth, but the factions around it are pretty shallow.

    • Hawt Dawg

      On the internet only whiners will hear you cry.

    • Compared with the sandbox wargames I’ve done in the army and games like ASL, there are no current wargames on the market that have any real “tactical depth”.

  • ZeeLobby

    For me it’s the lore, nostalgia and simple rules. Those 3 things are huge draws for me to 40K. Rolling buckets of dice can be fun, I still remember my days playing as a youth, and the background has been one of my main sources of science fiction for years.

    All that said, I just no longer enjoy supporting the corporate nature of GW. Their profit chasing nature has seen them just abandon the gaming ideals that used to drive them. Those simple rules are now bloated, imbalanced and sales driven. The lore now has a comic book/cartoon level ADHD writing style (along with the newer artwork minus some exceptions). And their releases seem to just be spamming the nastalgia button without really cherishing what they’re releasing. Most of their “new” boxed games are simply the same rules as their old box games. And the price for all of this just seems ridiculous compared to alternatives.

    Currently I’m playing a mix of other games and the gameplay difference is just amazing. It’s refreshing to play games where you can truly find a designers hand again. Where the changes and updates clearly make the game better, and where decisions are made that might negatively impact sales, for the sake of making a better game.

    That said, I still feel the heart twangs whenever I look through my 40K stuff. I always talk to people about wanting to get a game going, and then starts the pregame discussion of what armies we should play, and what units should be blacklisted, and reading the 20 new formations released for our factions since the last time we played, and blacklisting those, etc. And interest just quickly dies out again. I miss the days of writing 8 lists and deciding on a favorite with no one else’s interaction, showing up on game night, and revealing my master plan. Sure it was never perfectly balanced, but it’s one of the things I remember most fondly from my youth that just isn’t there anymore. Maybe 8th and a reworking of the rules from the ground up could bring that back.

    • Karru

      I miss those days as well. Some people like to call your problem just laziness because you “don’t want to talk to your opponent before hand”. Those people just don’t realise that keeping people interested long term when they have to question if they are allowed to bring something or not because of the broken status of the game. The power gap is just too big right now. Certain units and weapons are just so broken that just playing the army that contains them in their book is enough to drive people away.

      • ZeeLobby

        So true. And maybe it’s just me, but I don’t want to have to tell my friend what he can and can’t bring to the table. Especially if I end up winning the confrontation, most likely due to those limitations. I might as well be playing myself at that point. And our group is by no means a power gaming, WAAC group. We only go to a couple tournaments every year locally, but still play we every week with no intention of practicing for said events.

        My friend just really wants to play his Wraithknights, he loves the models and the fluff. But now we either have to limit, blacklist or rewrite rules for it to get them in a game. Once you realize that other game systems don’t require any of this, you have to ask yourself why your paying so much for this one, haha.

      • wibbling

        What ‘power gap’? Is that the same one where a bad player complains about his army because he’s not updated his game?

        • ZeeLobby

          Lol. I hope you never change GWibbling. And let’s be honest. You never will!

          • Karru

            Do you think that Wibbling, TweetleBeetle and Randy are the same person?

          • ZeeLobby

            If they are they have to have multiple personalities. Just through structure alone wibbling and Randy’s posts are noticeably different. They could be flat mates with echo inducing wallpaper, haha.

          • Karru

            It’s not that difficult to be a just rude a** d*** and a madman who shouts random comments at those that disagree even slightly with anything GW does.

          • ZeeLobby

            True. I just feel like GW wouldn’t pay people to be a**holes. So there’s gotta be something deeply mentally seated there that just like gnaws at the GW teet. Lol.

            Honestly I find it more disturbing that people like his inane posts.

          • Karru

            I just think he is the perfect manifestation of an internet troll. He knows how easy it is to trigger people with comments of his calibre. There are so many people that don’t understand that he is just trolling so he keeps doing it to get some satisfaction in his miserable life under the bridge.

          • ZeeLobby

            True. Haha.

    • Sounds to me like your gaming mojo would come back with 1 rule: Only CAD. That’s your old 40k right back to ya. Simple, and cuts out what you don’t like in one fell swoop.

      • ZeeLobby

        Haha. Definitely helps. Removing allies is a bonus IMO as well. My group would benefit greatly, though I think the world would become even scarier every time I go out into it. Used to play a lot of PUGs at my local store, that never happens anymore, and tournaments apply a lot of band-aids, but that mostly just shifts where the power codexes stand at the top. Not saying it’s impossible, but I still feel like I’m paying high prices for a sub-optimal game.

        • I see where you’re coming from. PUGs with strangers doesn’t exist in my store. because if you play, you’re already part of our club. But to me, I see the game as absolutely NOT perfect, but a great toolbox of stuff to play with as I see fit. @holes will find a way to be @holes no matter the system.

      • Karru

        Well, not completely. There are still some issues, for example the Imperial Knight that can still be taken within a CAD. If CAD only included the old 5th edition options, 2 HQ’s, 6 Troops, 3 Elites, Fast Attacks and Heavy Support, then it would fix a lot. Super Heavies would still be a problem. Same thing with Flyers, since they need specialised gear to be taken down. It’s hard to “prepare” for everything in a single CAD game with so many different tools available to some armies.

        • ZeeLobby

          Not to mention some factions which couldn’t even see the table, haha.

        • Korvalus

          Um, nope. Imperial knight has it’s own faction and it’s own detatchment. You can’t include it in a, let’s say, Blood Angels army without teir “allied” 1-3 knights detatchment.

          However I see your point. Superheavies can be a total partypooper… if you don’t bring the beef dedicated to bring them down or you doesn’t say “no superheavies or gargantuan, plz” beforehand. Most people, even some WAAC players can understand and deliver.

        • My gaming group deals with cheese this way: before each game we say “Flyers? Super Heavies?” and we agree yes or no. Unbound is never a problem for us, but then again we will brow beat a power gamer to death.

      • Critic

        My gaming group tried that. Didn’t work out well at all.

    • euansmith

      Maybe you need to turn back the clock, and play 5th Edition.

  • Robert Meade

    Opposite way around for me…. playing other miniatures games/board games with more advanced rules makes me sad when I go back to 40k’s byzantine system. And i can get an interesting game even if i only have an hour available.

    im still there for the hobby aspect, but can only play casual and once in awhile or my hobby- oriented army will just get stomped.

  • I started off as a historical wargamer and battle tech player back in 1988. I was all of eleven years old.

    I started the GW thing in 1997 by accident. We were getting warhammer fantasy models for our D&D game and one of my buddies played warhammer and was like “you know this is a game right?”

    Hero hammer was indeed a thing. Your troops were glorified pawns that cheered the heroes on in the late 90s (5th edition WHFB).

    As a historical gamer, I was always enticed by the look of painted ARMIES. To this day that still rings true. I prefer ARMIES battling.

    The part that has evolved over time with the gamer community that I have not evolved with is that I also want my troops to mean something, but most guys refer to those as “core tax” or something they’d take only because they have to. This is also why I’m not a fan of warmachine (that and the warmachine crowd tends to be 99.99% entirely competitive with no fig toward narrative or anything else and that is not compatible with me). I don’t really like super-hero games, I like army games where the army has to function as a cohesive to succeed and where you can’t dictate every little thing and cherry pick only the best things (like real war)

    Now I look at what entices me into games and its primarily two things. First – the story has to hook me. Second – the models have to not look like hot garbage. Rules are tertiary for me.

    This is how GW has kept me around for as long, though the rules… my god the rules and horrible balance… these things keep me on the edge of walking away forever pretty much daily.

    I really like the 40k story and I really like viking sagas so AOS appeals to me. But yeah I am also a game designer (tabletop and PC) and when I look at GW rules I am always constantly like “how did you let this in”?

    • ZeeLobby

      So what would you recommend for a game that highlights the core troops? I’m in the same boat. Not a fan of hero hammer, and 40K has been stumbling in that direction recently.

      • I’m at a loss bud. I don’t really know. Most games today are centered around super heroes.

        SAGA is a fun game that doesn’t focus on heroes. Also Hail Caesar (there’s a fantasy version you can snag) is great.

        Warmaster for epic scale battles that revolve around armies.

        The problem with all these games is that… no one wants to play them. I need to finish my tabletop simulator software.

        My game Primo Victoria centers around troops but is in beta and honestly is not for most people since its detail oriented but troop-centric.

        • ZeeLobby

          Let me know when you do. Warmaster was amazing. So sad when they yanked it…

        • Mr_Pickles

          Bolt Action is a good squad/small force game. Set in WW2, but the mechanics work and focus on the army as a whole, not just one or two models.

          • Yeah. But for someone not interested at all in WW2 games, there’s not much around fantasy or sci fi wise that is army-based as well.

          • euansmith

            I’m surprised that Warlord hasn’t yet brought out a fantasy version of Bolt Action; like they did with Gates of Antares for sci-fi. I guess that the expansion for Hail Caesar might cover that niche for them.

          • I’ve been waiting for several years for the fantasy version of Hail Caesar. I’d likely play with myself but thats fine… thats a game I could truly get fully behind.

          • euansmith

            MASSIVE Fantasy Battle 😀

  • ZeeLobby

    Speaking of alternative games, what would you allow suggest for the best example of well designed I Go You Go system? We’ve yet to play a game with that system (besides infinity’s response mechanic), so I’d love to introduce it to my group. Thanks!

    • maulifaux has a really good IGYG system. But the cards aren’t for everyone.

      • ZeeLobby

        Yeah. That’s probably my First consideration. I just wish the 2 player box had cooler models. But maybe we’ll give it a shot!.

        • I hear good things about Infinity too but it doesn’t exist in my area.

  • euansmith

    I’ve got in to playing this game called “Brutality”; it has got a living rule-book and the most amazing range of minis.

    • Commissar Molotov

      …You’re being sarcastic, aren’t you? I’ve Googled and Googled and can’t find hide nor hair of it!

      • euansmith

        I found it on some website called “facebook”?

        • Commissar Molotov

          Oh, now you’ve toyed with my delicate hobby sensibilities! I feel faint!


          • Commissar Molotov

            Thanks, Pimpie – I thought Agent Smith was making a sophisticated reference to the brutality of the current discourse on Facebook! I’ve got access, so I’ll digest the rules and get to playtesting.

          • Awesome! The few who have played it really like it. Any suggestions are welcome!

      • It’s my skirmish wargame he is talking about. We are in Beta at the moment and playetesting. Search for a facebook group called Brutality Play Test Group if you’re interested in joining.

    • That’s why I keep Euan on the dole! 😀 Subtle product placement.

      • euansmith

        It really is just a stupidly fun game, with enough interaction to keep things interesting, and sufficiently lethal to keep things short.

        • Now there’s a quote I can sell the game on! I appreciate the kind words! Your batreps are pretty funny. 🙂 “Oh no! My foot got stuck in the skull pit (again)!”

      • Mira Bella

        Aaaaand because he is a wonderful human being. At least I like to believe that. 🙂

  • Damistar

    Have you tried playing Warmachine / Hordes and generating your caster using the Iron Kingdom RPG? The games are easily compatible and then you can have your own character on the table top.

  • dreamwarder

    Pimpcron, you should try historical wargaming. Start with Bolt Action. That’ll get you over your schoolboy GW fan crush real fast.

    • I have wanted to try Bolt Action, but it doesn’t exist in my area at all.

  • Ira Clements

    As a decades long devotee to Warhammer in all its forms, over the last several years I have become almost strictly a historical enthusiast. It is exactly the deep drama of the characters and backstory that have hooked me. Some of the things that have happened here in our really real world in the centuries of nearly unending conflict make any made up history look juvenile by comparison.

    • Ira Clements

      Also given the explosion of manufacturers and periods and rules sets to choose from I save NO money by not spending it on GW LOL. Its just a radical shift in interests.

  • Commissar Molotov

    It’s the 40K background and lore over the years that makes the game so fun and addictive. It’s the same reason I won’t touch AoS with a 10 foot pole.

  • Xodis

    40K was the addiction that brought me into wargaming, but I have since left it behind for better rules however, like Lemun Russ, I will return when there is a fight worth having lol. I have never forgotten my Boardgame or RPG roots though.

    Starwars games (Xwing, IA, RPG) all by Fantasy Flight are amazing and each build upon each other while remaining totally autonomous if you would prefer. If FFG ever decided to make a Star Wars Skirmish/Wargame game with the quality of minis (or better) they already put out…..GW would have a hard time ever getting me back.

    D&D Boardgames and RPG (Tossing Descent in there as well) also fill that fantasy hole for me, while AoS gives me the Wargaming in a fantasy world I never got to enjoy before.

  • vyrago

    we get it, you’re a fanboy.

  • James Regan

    Similar here, though my main reason is that I was always far more of a hobbyist than a gamer. I get why people who play the game more than me are interested in better and more balanced rules, but for the few times a year I actually got a game organised, balance mattered less than nothing (because my main issue would always be ‘haven’t played this army enough’ even if it was the new super powerful force, and most of my opponents were similar).
    Even now when I don’t have the money or time to put into AoS or 40k, I don’t feel compelled to pick up a quicker, cheaper game with less prep needed (like x-wing, which I actually have a mate that plays) because I know I won’t actually get around to playing it anyway, and if i don’t get to assemble, paint and convert the models I’ve wasted my money, as that is always where the enjoyment was.

  • thereturnofsuppuppers

    Cosmic encounter with some good friends, good beer and funny hats.

    Nothing can beat it.

  • davepak

    Sooo…is this satire?
    I am asking because, this statement here describes 40K
    “Every game is a one-off with no effect on any subsequent game, and I can’t customize my army.”

    In the core rules, you can’t add your own unit to a game of 40k any more than you can add your own property to monopoly.

    Now, if you are saying “ah, but my play group allows me to use my homebrewed units and characters in 40k…”

    Stop right there.

    If your friends will let you make your own characters for 40k, they should be able to let you make your own ships/characters/fleets/properties/diseases/heroes etc. for any other game.

    If they don’t, sounds like its the players, not the game.

    Just sayin…..

    • Karru

      I believe he means, when saying the thing about not having the ability to customise anything, that there are no customisation possibilities in most games when picking units.

      For example, if I take a unit of Ork Boyz, I can customise that unit. I can give them ‘eavy Armour or Shootas. I can add a Nob to that unit and give him some special gear, like a Boss Pole and a Power Klaw. I can also give the unit a special weapon for every 10 models in the unit.

      Almost all games have the same thing going for them. They lack the resources to make multi-part/multi-option kits, so they have to restrict them in the rules as well. This means that those games lack customisability, because you are picking a “pre-made” unit.

      For example, Warmachine. If I take a unit of Widowmakers, I just take the unit of Widowmakers and that’s it. There is nothing I can add to them. They come with the exactly the gear their card indicates. No special weapons or character upgrades. Same thing with their “regular” units, like Winter Guard. I can buy them additions with Rocketeers or unit officers, but I am not actually upgrading the existing unit. I’m just putting additional models into the unit with it, thus basically just buying new units and combining them.

    • What Karru said. Plus, the continuity between games is that i made my own army, chapter, etc and watch them go from battle to battle. In other games where I must choose a named character,etc it doesn’t feel like MINE. I’m just playing with their property and I can’t make it my own. Plus, yes my group has no problem with me fandexing, but that wasn’t my point really.

  • Mondo

    40k has ruined other games for me, as well. Not because it’s actually good, mind. As a game it has almost no redeeming qualities (though the models are quite nice, especially these days). Unfortunately it requires a very large investment of time and money, and all of my friends have invested a very large amount of time and money, so every time I try to suggest any other game no matter how much better it is the response is “I don’t really want to go out and learn/paint/purchase a new game.” Most of them are straight hooked and if I want to even understand what they’re talking about at dinner, I’m absolutely forced to also play Warhammer 40k. The only positive I can pull from this is that it’s very cathartic to constantly point out the game’s many many flaws.

    • Sounds like your friends are pretty awesome people.

  • Juan Antonio

    I feel this a lot. When i started 40k a friend started with me, he with dark angels and me with chaos marines. The thing was a story about how some dark angels defected to chaos and how they were hunted by the loyals.

    Long story short, i confected a story about a dark angel who was able to delete his name from the lists of the dark angels. A dude who abhorred the four gods, who wanted to become the personification of absolute chaos

    There were demons, transformed to show as if they were reformed by this chaos lord (imagine bloodthirsters with varied sorts of techs) and even a demon prince made from a marine miniature from the game Inquisitor

    Then, unable to keep with the rules, priices and everything else i abandoned the wargames for a time.

    The game chosen to return was Warmachine. Pretty cool game, but in terms of personalization IS HORRIBLE. There’s almost no options, you can know more or less what you are going to confront just knowing the enemy faction’s name. Or games where there’s no generic characters, only named ones, giving no place to transform or make something different

    Wargaming today gets me that feeling that there’s no heart, no love, that it’s just about making a tournament breaking list, much like Magic or other TTG

    Even though is cool having good rules and all that (quicker games, more flexible, etc), i can’t forget that what got me into this world, the option to make a story and introduce your own army in that giant universe where every idea can turn into something tangible