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40k: Warhammer Adventures – the Senseless Freakout

4 Minute Read
May 22
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In the day since GW rolled out their kid-friendly line of Warhammer books – the lunatics and the sane have laid into each other.

As I’m sure you all know, GW is rolling a new line of kid-friendly Warhammer Adventures.  The line is aimed at pre-teens with the aim of introducing them to the Warhammer 40,000 and Age of Sigmar universes. Here’s the two sentence summary from Nottingham:

via Warhammer-Community

“Warhammer Adventures is a series of action-packed stories about brave heroes battling monstrous enemies and winning great victories against impossible odds in the far future universe of Warhammer 40,000 and the fantasy realms of Warhammer Age of Sigmar.

Warhammer Adventures stories are perfect for bookworms aged 8-12 who want to read about heroes, aliens and monsters. They’ll be in shops and online later in 2019 – so keep your eyes open for them!”

As you can imagine, the well-adjusted, erudite, literary player community embraced the idea wholeheartedly and enthusiastically looked forward to meeting the next generation of players to our beloved pastime….

Oh – wait, maybe it didn’t quite go quite that smoothly…

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We’ve seen everything from brand-dilution-pearl-clutching, to what-about-the-children-ism, to kids-can’t-handle-the-truth, to tut-tutting. Then the truly lunatic fringe weighed in with 10-year conspiracy theories about GW trying to indoctrinate a new generation of gamers who think LIKE THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO.  It only got more ridiculous and ludicrous from there. I swear some people need to just back off the keyboard and go outside – it’s nice.

As you would expect almost everyone who works in the industry was aghast and fought back against the STUPID with sword and shield to defend the earth-shattering idea of marketing toy soldiers to a very slightly younger audience.  I know – CRAZY RIGHT!

As just one teensy example, here’s ADB swinging for the fences:

 

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What the Heck Is Going On?

I think this is a time for some simple truths.

40K and Age of Sigmar are GW’s and they can market it to whomever they want. If you disagree, buy your way onto the board and have a say.

Pre-teens are way smarter than what many adults think. It’s easy to forget how smart you were all those years back. You can drive a car at 14 in some US states!

GW ALREADY markets to people in this age group.  We just dis a survey of 40K boxed games from the last 20 years and found age-rating from 8+ up to 12+

This is simply a way to offer the 8-12 crowd some literature specifically aimed at them. GW have dome some comic books over the years which many “serious readers” who enjoy “real novels” think are juvenile – why wasn’t it a genre-dilution issue then?

You play and enjoy GW’s universes – how do younger players getting some attention in any way hurt your experience?

The yearly natural churn of players is quite high in tabletop wargaming and anything that attracts players as soon as possible will link them to the community with a longer stronger bond. We all want new fresh faces in the hobby – right?

Finally – we should all be enthusiasts and evangelists – not gatekeepers. I remember when videogamers had the same social stigmas and gatekeeper attitudes 20 years back. Now video gaming is a bigger industry than Hollywood and is completely mainstream.  Analog gaming so far could go the same route.

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~So sit back and chill. It’s the not end of the world – instead, tell the newcomers you were just an early adopter 🙂

 

Editor’s Note: This column was written by Larry Vela.

It briefly listed another author due to a technical error.

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