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2017 – Best Wargame Book – Winner

4 Minute Read
Dec 27 2017

The Judges have debated and the verdict is in – come check out our pick for Best Wargame Book of 2017!

Last week we listed off our top picks of the year. This week we’re going through our picks and selecting one to be the BoLS Pick of the Year! The fields were tough as lots of really impressive products came out this year – but, just like the Highlander, there can only be one! We’d say you won’t believe who it is, but that’s a lie. You know. We all know. A hermit living in a cave with WiFi access knows. There’s been one big single release that has dominated the tabletop this year. But I’m still going to make you scroll down all the way to find out that out was Eighth Edition.

The Finalists

Battletome: Kharadron Overlords – Games Workshop


These were the first new non-Sigmarine army for Age of Sigmar. To clarify: yes, there are Fyreslayers, etc., but aside from the Stormcasts, we’d mostly only seem repackaged Fantasy–Kharadron Overlords changed that, setting the tone for what an army that’s truly grounded in AoS Lore looks like. Here are forces that give the world weight and impact. They’ve been shaped by the world; through their adaptations, be it living in sky fortresses, mining stuff, roaming from realm to realm to trade, being sky pirates, we’ve gotten a better sense of how that world works. For all that the Stormcasts are the heroes of AoS, they’re also kind of weightless. They could exist anywhere. But the Kharadron breathe new life into the Mortal Realms by needing it as much as it needs them.


Warpath has really been pushing their game in the last year–this package of source and rule books have helped them carve out a home in the tabletop. Aggregating their warring factions with radical robot minis, they’ve really made an impact this year.  This collection a good launching point for Warpath as it did a great job of introducing how the game(s) worked as well as introducing the greater universe as a whole. The foundation is laid out with these books – let’s see where Mantic takes it from here!

Grymkin – Privateer Press

Ah yes, the proof of concept for Privateer’s new model. The Grymkin are the first army released through their CID. And what a release. In addition to the all new army with wicked miniatures, the book itself does so much work. It embodies the faction, reading at times like a faerie tale, while still managing to deliver all the rules, lore, and rumors needed to make a complete faction. This book really raised the bar for PP, in all the best ways.


Codex: Space Marines – Games Workshop


Oh hey, Space Marines. They had a codex release this year? And it has some guy named Robert in it, I guess.

Look, they were the first codex–the model for all future codices in 8th. They introduced new stratagems, full rules for the Primaris, and really showed that Eighth was an Wooton you could sink your teeth into. It also set the tone for the Primarch on Primarch on Primarch love fest that’s stomping around the meta right now.

The Winner:

Warhammer 40,000 8th Edition – Games Workshop

Okay, are you surprised by this? Is anyone? This is a huge deal. 8th Edition could’ve been another iteration of the 3rd Edition rules, which have been the name of the game for the last five editions of 40K. Instead of 7th with tweaks, we got a reboot of the game, basically. But one done well. The rules are streamlined and easy to play, but there’s still depth and tactical complexity. Sure there are a few crazy interactions of rules, and it’s not perfect, but anybody who thinks this edition is terrible is trying to sell you something. It’s accessible to newbies and veterans, it is “fun” which I’ve been told is good, it can sometimes be settled on turn one, or it can have last minute reversals and turnings of the tide.

This book is a literal game changer. Everyone has played it, and if you’re still playing 7th edition, I feel bad for you, son–this book might have 99 problems, but a large playerbase who respond well to hamfisted Jay-Z references (that aren’t the least bit dated or stale) ain’t one.


But, with the CID spun up to full speed and Star Wars Legions on the horizon, who knows what the next year will bring?

What wargaming book really hit your game nights hard? What wargame made 2017 to you?

Author: J.R. Zambrano
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