GW: The Gamer Favorites That Got Away

Over the decades GW killed off a lot of fan favorites. Some have been miraculously revived, but others still lie in the grave – for now…

The Lost

First we will go over the fan favorites that are still long gone:

Squats – Everyone’s favorite Dwarfs in space.  Bikers, Land Trains, Overlord Airships kept them safe from all of the galaxy’s horrors except the editor’s red pen! One could argue they have returned as homages in the 40K Demiurge and AoS’ Kharadron Overlords.


Mordheim – Fantasy’s skirmish warband game.  It looks like that all consuming comet eventually claimed the game itself. But they could rise once more in the 8 Realms. If GW can do Shadespire, they can do Mordheim.


Battle Fleet Gothic – Itself an offshoot of Spacefleet, BFG brought us into the cold depths of deep space fleet actions.  It was all fun and games till that nasty Necron fleet showed up! It’s all video games these days, but no tabletop.


Dogs of War – Variety is the spice of life and from Gotrek & Felix to the Birdmen of Catrazza, nothing could top the zany mercenary units in Dogs of War. Maybe just maybe we might see these guys come back as a compilation for either Age of Sigmar, or even better – 40K.


Zoats – What has 6 legs, is built of solid muscle, wield organic weapons, may or may not be affiliated with the Tyranids and have been disappeared for 20 years?  How we all miss the mighty Zoats!

 

Exodites – Yes, those hardy Eldar Amish – the Exodites had rules in the 2nd Edition Codex – then they vanished forever, yet still make common appearances the background stories.


Menfish – Patiently waiting their turn in the coastal waters since Warhammer 1st Edition!  Have faith – one day the Menfish will strike!

 

 

The Resurrected

But not all is lost. Just take a look at these games – once cold as the grave but now in gamer hands – or slated for an official release.


Necromunda – Everyday is a good day to be Underhive Scum!  The game that took your warband from the heights of the spire to the depths of the rad-sump is still sorely missed. The new game is just out and full of promise. gotta love those new Escher minis!

 


Adeptus Titanicus – 6mm never looked so good.  EPIC let players throw groups of titans and entire companies  of Astartes and Xenos into brutal combat on a grand scale that was never seen again. It’s been gone for far too long, but 2018 promises an all new Adeptus Titanicus with plastic minis.

 


Genestealer Cults –   There was a hole in the soul of 40K for 2 decades and and it’s name was Genestealer Cults. But at last – they have returned to keep the Adeptus Arbites busy! They were worth the wait just for that mini up there!

 

Lost, Returned and Gone Again..

 

Man O’ War – After the “Dreadfleet Incident” I think we can safely say this one is staying at the bottom of the sea…

~ Did we miss any you think should return in grand style?

  • Sonic tooth

    Eh……Bretonnia? Tomb kings? At least they brought my beloved Fimir back (even tho they’ve forgotten about them again)

    • Robert Thornton-Kaye

      They also brought back zoats in storm of magic, to everyone’s surprise. I still can’t believe they killed off the tomb kings in particular and think they should have put more work into the Brets. Perhaps by adding more fantastical units to their range with lots of exotic mounts instead of limiting them to pegasi.

      • euansmith

        Maybe they could combine the Tomb Kings and the Bretonnians with a range of Grail Hunting Knights pillaging tombs in the desert and falling under the sway of Nagash? Undead Grail Knights.

        • benvoliothefirst

          Dear 5lb, 6oz baby Jesus, please make this happen…

        • Spade McTrowel

          I’m currently working on a Risen Bretonian Death army.

          • euansmith

            “For the Grail! For the Maiden! For Braaaaaaaains…”

    • Kabal1te

      I genuinely don’t know why they ended the tomb kings instead of finding a way to fit them into the AoS fluff. The fan made battletome for them shows off how easy it is to make them fit the AoS lore.

  • Robert Thornton-Kaye

    I’d be astounded if 40k didn’t get a solid range of mercenaries to add to armies within the next year or two. I’ve been writing up some simple rules for them and it is really simple to represent them. Their ‘Klan/legion/sept’ etc becomes MERCENARY, their LD is 8 for turns 1-2, 7 for 3-4, then 6 for 5 onwards. They also gain a lot of faction words. It’s being developed on fandexes on fb if you’re interested.

    The only tricky bit is figuring out how they can be put in the army list. Should they just be added to any detachment like normal troops, be required to use a separate detachment, or some other system?

    • Bakvrad

      Last part is pretty simple: can only taken per auxiliary detachment. So you actually pay them to fight for you. Quick and simple solution.

      • Robert Thornton-Kaye

        But what about people who want an army of mercs, or use lots of them?

        • Bakvrad

          If it’s an army you obviously use just them 😀 so you use the normal detachment (like in the old dogs of war book)
          If you use a lot, you have to pay a lot. Otherwise they wouldn’t be mercs 😀

        • EnTyme

          This could be a simple fix:

          “Any army can ally with Mercenary units. Allied Mercenaries must be taken in an Auxiliary Detachment. However, if your Warlord is a Mercenary unit, you may not take any units that do not have the ‘Mercenary’ keyword.”

          Basically, you can either add a few mercenaries to any army, or you can have a full mercenary army.

          • Robert Thornton-Kaye

            Pretty good, but what about freeblades? Imperial knights are sometimes mercenaries and this system gives them an equal penalty as a normal unit, which doesn’t feel right.

            I was thinking that mercs have to be taken as separate detachments, and their HQ can only be the warlord if there are no non-mercenary detachments. The diminishing LD is already a penalty to using them as it is without losing command points as well

          • EnTyme

            In my scenario, “Mercenary” would be a specific keyword, so the rule would only apply to models with that keyword. I would expect “Freeblade” to be a Knight-specific keyword that could potentially be used in favor of a “” keyword. They wouldn’t necessarily have the “Mercenary” keyword.

  • AntonisLak

    I would really love to put my hands on some eldar and imperium Battlefiled Gothic spacecrafts and paint them… I really hope we get see this game revived at some point.

  • Rainthezangoose

    No body misses Zoats, I’ve seen this page mention them a few times, they are ugly and goofy looking and the fluff was lame. I miss Tomb Kings and Bretonnia. The former especially, death has always seemed to lag behind and its because GW chopped one of its legs off for no good reason before nuking the old world.

    Also its probably more likely to see Mordheim return because of Necromunda not shadespire. But I don’t think it will happen, the AoS rules don’t really jell well with that kinda thing. It be interesting if they pulled a bloodball and just left it in the old world, along with old warhammer stats.

    • Joel Fowler

      I miss Zoats.

      • Andy Wise

        I’m missing the extra two legs the writer attributes to them… Maybe he means 4 legs and 2 arms. Also. yes they’re tyranids. Unless they’re in the warhammer setting in which case they’re… elf pals?

    • Spade McTrowel

      But Skirmish does… more-or-less.

  • pil kalai

    Drawfs are the worst thing in all of Fantasy and Sci-Fi, and it dosen t matter what kind of them. I glad they dosen t exist in 40k any more ○/

    • Mathew G. Smith

      Freaking Elf apologist…

  • orionburn III

    Battlefleet was listed as one of the games that would be coming back when they announced the Specialist division of GW. While it isn’t out yet it shouldn’t be listed as dead & buried either. Athough I want BFG back more than any other specialist game I’m okay with GW taking their time with these rather than rushing them out (i.e. reworking Titanicus with plastic models rather than resin). http://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/ffb889eb3413c5adc2b4b685241cfe847206d23a2e91eba4da7b45d5d4ddb224.png

  • The_Illusionist

    Squats were never a “fan favourite”. They had horrible models, a silly theme, terrible rules and their sales underperformed like you wouldn’t believe.
    99% of people who say they want Squats back, have never seen one and are just being a part of the meme. Of those rare people I have met that did own squats back in the day, at least half of them have said that they’re glad they’re gone, and stayed gone.

    Shame about Mordheim, though. That was a great game with a lot of well presented story and scope, that fell victim to GW’s budget cutting just as it was getting going. The video game version was good, but it wasn’t “proper” Mordheim.

    Finally: No love for Gorkamorka? One of the most short-lived of all GW games that none the less was responsible for the revolution that was plastic vehicles becoming common place across all of their range, and not even a passing mention by BoLS? For shame! =P

    • orionburn III

      I never understood the appeal of dwarves in space. In Fantasy/AoS settings yes. I will say that if they gave 40k rules to the Overlords I’d probably play them as the models are so fantastic and could work in a 40k setting.

      • SpaceDwarf

        Check out the new Forge Fathers from Mantic, might change your mind.

        • EnTyme

          Forge Fathers seem more like Demiurg than Squats, and I think that would be a better way to bring Space Dwarfs back if GW decided to do so. Squats existed in a time when 40k’s tone was completely different, and I honestly think that’s where they should stay. Demiurg, on the other hand, fit really well in the current setting, and I wouldn’t mind one bit to see them get a model range and codex (or just add them to the next Tau codex).

          • Griffin

            Space dwarves are so stupid it makes my brain melt

          • But space elves, ogres, half lings, orcs, goblins, undead and knights are cool?

          • Griffin

            Exactly!

          • vlad78

            lol

      • Mike Forrey

        Squats were kind of bad in 40 K proper. I remember having a small army and they never performed well. However in the Epic range they were a very good force and had some of the coolest model concepts in the Epic range at the time. IF they brought them back it should be in that scale not 40 K.

    • vlad78

      Well then I’m part of those who owned a few of those stunties and still mourn the day of their passing. ^^

      But you have to realize you’re still looking at Rogue trader squats when judging them. Given how all the other ranges evolved, we can presume their range would still be awesome if it had been updated for 30 years.

      And I’ve never met in the flesh a player being glad they are gone. ^^

      • The_Illusionist

        Hey, fair play to you, man. I’m not going to disparage you if you are a genuine fan =)

        Even so, I think you’re a rare thing. Thanks for the alternative view, but I am hard pressed to think how “space-dwarf motorcycle-gangsters” could be improved without being completely rewritten. The Demi-Urg are a possibility for example, but they’re radically different from Squats.

        • NikosanPrime

          They were pretty neat actually and their motorcycles were some of the best units in the game. They were whimsical and fun and yet some of the best performing units around.

          Their entire philosophy was a breath of fresh air in the stale “grim dark” that was evolving at the time. I still play Mentor Legion (refuse to call them the Mentors) and they were the other group trying to draw the Imperium into a better future.

          Now I didn’t play them, although I had a few models, but I did have friends who did play them. So I may not be fully able to claim to k ow from a player’s point of view. But I do know that the setting is worse without them as I have played and collected since the beginning of 40k.

          And same thing goes for Zoats. They were a smarter version of what you could do with Tyrannids than what you have now. Or at least a most stable version that would be easier to build on than what you have now. But that doesn’t matter. We have what we have and I just will mourn the less bleak days: but hey we have Guilliman to start bringing back the better times!

        • Kabal1te

          Well they would have been rewritten. Almost all the armies got some level of rewrite between rogue trader and 3rd edition or so. Necrons saw notable fluff change and even space marines don’t hold true to their early days fluff. A lot of the fluff across the board from the days of the squats has failed the test of time.

        • vlad78

          No offense taken. ^^

          Sure thing the “space-dwarf motorcycle-gangsters” thing is quite limited.

          But we could imagine how humanity could evolve under nighmarish conditions for 38000 years, if they had to dig underground on gravity heavy worlds, to face orks daily invasions and had access to much well preserved STC constructs which would make the mechanicum green with envy, that could end up with the squats, a very tough and unsubtle and warlike technologicaly advanced and culturally really different human sub-species yet ferociously independant even if the accept the distant rule of the Emperium.

      • I loved my stunties, they were the first bike army(yes I’m looking at you ravenwing copycats)…with terminators.

    • bobrunnicles

      Um, I loved Gorkamorka! Mad Max Orks for the win!

      • Jonathan Ellsworth

        Until you got a ‘undred-‘undred-‘undred teeff to retire and wait for the mekz to finish the GorkaMorka

    • NikosanPrime

      They were pretty neat actually and their motorcycles were some of the best units in the game. They were whimsical and fun and yet some of the best performing units around.

      Their entire philosophy was a breath of fresh air in the stale “grim dark” that was evolving at the time. I still play Mentor Legion (refuse to call them the Mentors) and they were the other group trying to draw the Imperium into a better future.

      Now I didn’t play them, although I had a few models, but I did have friends who did play them. So I may not be fully able to claim to k ow from a player’s point of view. But I do know that the setting is worse without them as I have played and collected since the beginning of 40k.

      And same thing goes for Zoats. They were a smarter version of what you could do with Tyrannids than what you have now. Or at least a more stable version that would be easier to build on than what you have now. But that doesn’t matter. We have what we have and I just will mourn the less bleak days: but hey we have Guilliman to start bringing back the better times!

    • Watcherzero

      A lot of the reason Squats underperformed was price, they were more expensive than their fantasy equivalent and it was cheaper to buy Dwarfs models and swap out their weapons.

  • JonaRoth

    I still believe that people are blowing this whole Squats thing out of proportion. They were dumb back then and they are dumb today. People mostly like to reminisce but if they actually brought them back nobody would spend money on them. It’s the same with Necromunda where I live. People complained about specialists games being gone but when Necromunda rolled around they didn’t put their money where their mouth is and it was pretty much dead on arrival. This whole “DAE silly space dwarfs/nuns/6legged space cows?!” thing is a really annoying part of the hobby.

    • Navaren

      How did the SoB get roped into your argument? I was with you until then.

    • vlad78

      I would spend money on them just like I bought Mantic forge fathers.

      Furthermore specialist games did not die because they were losing money but rather because Kirby decided GW had to focus on the few games which earned the most money.

      Maybe you should stop repeating GW VRP talk.

    • memitchell

      Necromunda? Are you talking about the New Necromunda? It’s doing well where I live, thank you very much.

  • Wythel

    Where is Warhammer Fantasy Battle in this list ?

  • Garr Davies

    This website seems unusually obsessed with the squats. Constantly spamming that same damn picture and referring to them as fan favourites.
    I came into this hobby in the late 80s and never played against a single squat army, not during the time they were available at stores….and not since they were pulled.
    From my experience they were anything but a fan favourite. Now give me my plastic sisters or just remove their rules for good and end our misery.

    • memitchell

      Back in 40K V2, I knew two guys with Squat armies (large city, large 40K population.). I never saw either played. When they went away, one of the guys quit the hobby. I had an SoB army, and I know one other guy who did. They need more than plastic models.

  • marxlives

    couldn’t you basically take the space dwarves from Mantic and just field them as an IG army?

  • piglette

    Dreadfleet had some really cool models, but the game was so bad.

  • JL

    No mention of Sisters of Battle. This must be an intentional omission.

    Confirmed!

  • Kabal1te

    Can we add the lost rules for characters over the years? So many characters in both 40k and warhammer fantasy that never got models (or had archaic models that never got updated like vect) whose rules in later editions were surely misplaced. Surely they are simply lost, waiting to be found once more.

  • AmorousBadger

    I used to love Chaos renegades in Rogue Trader Traitor Legion lists. For a smallish outlay of around 150 points, you got to roll up a chaos champion, their followers and kit. If the Dice Gods were kind to you, you could generally some proper beast-like units that steamrolled all before you.

    Worst case scenario, you got some cannon-fodder you could throw in as distraction.
    Dear old Jonas Dapper-Slapper, Slaaneshi renegade Inquisitor and his rage taggle gang of Beastsmen, Gretchin and Emperor’s Children Devastator Squad were a proper force to be reckoned with.

    • AmorousBadger

      Oh, and the mad crazy weapons and kit Orks used to get. You could take out half your opponent’s army with a hop-splat gun or two. Or simply end up having a comedy misfire that killed 75% of your boyz, your mob of nobs and wrecked a battlewagon full of stormboyz.

  • BeardMonk

    the only GW games that would play would be 54mm Inq and a new released BFG. I think we will see a new BFG, but given how GW works these days it will probably end up being a HH only games with Space Marines vs Space Marines because, nothing else seems to matter in the 40K universe.