BoLS logo Tabletop, RPGs & Pop Culture

Welcome to the Boardgame-Skirmish Bandwagon

3 Minute Read
Oct 30 2017

GW, Privateer, and Corvus Belli all introduce similar games – at the same time – but why?

You know how when one Hollywood studio makes an asteroid movie, you just know another is around the corner? It turns out the tabletop game industry does the same thing.

In just the last two weeks the following three games went up for pre-orders:

Games Workshop – Shadespire

Privateer Press – Company of Iron


Corvus Belli – Aresteia


You could group these in the same general category of FFG’s Imperial Assault from last year.

What’s Going On?

All of these games feature small model count skirmish game action. Three of them have actual boardgame boards – and in particular both Aresteia and Shadespire are on hex-grids – not seen too much these days.

But what’s going on here?  Is there actually a giant demand for smaller and shorter playtime games?


Are these simply seen as gateway drugs into the bigger grander games offered by these manufacturers (Warmachine, Infinity, Age of Sigmar, etc)?

Are Millennials really moving to these skirmish-boardgame-deckbuilder hybrids?

All of these games just came out and I haven’t heard of Imperial Assault being a giant runaway hit like X-Wing is.  So I’m left scratching my head. I can’t tell if this is a case of manufacturers keeping up with the Jonses, or there is some data behind these games that is driving their sudden appearance in the market. They all seem to have one foot in the tabletop wargame side of things and the other in either boardgames and possibly deck-builders.  My question is – what is the goal?

Do you introduce games like this to get your existing wargamers to by something new and make incremental revenue – OR – are these dangle products meant to draw in boardgamers and deckbuilder fans into tabletop?

~What do you think is going on?


Author: Larry Vela