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Horus Heresy: Games Workshop Where are the Heresy Narrative Events?

5 Minute Read
Feb 7 2024
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Where the heck are all the Horus Heresy events? Isn’t 30K supposed to be one of GW’s main games?

While its still early in 2024 and things can always change, I can’t exactly put into words my dismay at the tentative schedule of Games Workshop events.

Well, my dear dozen readers, its nearly spring here, and for Texas that means we’re presently in false Spring and second Winter is around the corner.  As March speeds toward us that generally marks the start of Tournament season.  With the merger of ITC and Games Workshop, this will make for an interesting 2024 as far as events are concerned.  Like the vaunted Adeptus Custodes returning to the galaxy, so too shall Games Workshop return to the convention scene in a big way.  2024 marks a point where most large events will likely be sponsored and results communicated in the Warhammer Community pages.

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This week we saw the debut of the 2024 official Games Workshop events schedule.  I was happy as always to see them…until I started loading up the ticket pages only to discover that none of them offer any kind of significant Horus Heresy gameplay.  Even the Grand Narrative (the king of all narratives) is void of any 30k action and will only include Kill Team and Warhammer 40k. My little nerd heart broke at that moment.  I felt with the release of The End and the Death Pt3, this would be a flagship year for Heresy to hit the narrative tables.  The whole story is there and I couldn’t think of a better time to get into the spirit of things than at these narrative events.

WHY…am I so disappointed you ask?  Let me tell you.

The Grand Narrative is the Coolest Event.

If you’ve not attended the Grand Narrative before, it by all accounts, is top-notch, A+, AAA experience worth doing at least once.  I’ll start by saying this, it is a premium event, with a premium price tag, typically held at premium venues.  Expect to spend at least $1500, and that’s after travel expenses. That’s being conservative in my estimations.  Most of the hotels that they tap to be venues will be in the $250-350 per night range, along with food, spending money and of course tickets to the event.  Some friends attended in 2023 and came away saying things like, “It was the best event, not just narrative event, I’ve ever been too.”  Almost everyone I spoke with, online or otherwise had similar feedback and are itching to attend in 2024.

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Terrain Maketh Story

From the pictures and videos of the gaming hall that I’ve seen, the effort put in by armies of volunteers and GW staff is next level.  Last year, the tables were amazing.  Each table is all painted or converted GW terrain, a truly one of a kind experience if you’ve never attended a tournament.  Generally speaking Terrain in tournaments is functional.  Its a collection of…well collections cobbled together over many years.  Most events simply can’t afford 32 or 62 or more tables of Games Workshop plastic terrain, let alone having it all painted to a thematically appropriate high tabletop standard  Each series of tables, generally around 5-8 were set up to be different planets or biomes.  Missions are printed on high gloss cards along with objectives and any special rules for the game.  These are also handed out freely and given away to players to keep and take with them.

A Pairing Tarot?

The infamous pairing system.  This might be the most unique and interesting thing that the narrative does and it sounds downright awesome.  Each player in the Grand Narrative event is given a brief fortune-telling outlining your legendary victories, grave defeats and hints at the perils that you face.  At the end of the session you’re given a tarot card to keep (the tarot decks are awesome, they are all GW themed, try and snag one if you can).  This card has a number of other pairs, each person given the same tarot card are your opponents for the event.  In its simplicity this might be the coolest way to do pairings for a narrative that I’ve ever heard of.  I appreciate that its not just draw a number…or look in BCP.  Discernable effort is put in by the organizers from the moment you sign into the venue to the day you leave to immerse you in the games, the lore, the fandom, the community.

It’s like Disneyland for Wargamers

Between games costumed actors would give updates and push the narrative along regaling players with round results, standings, stories, and so on.  These professional actors and cosplayers make an effort to immerse players in the world, adding consequence and severity to player actions while also keeping people engaged, providing humor and being agents of chaos.  They will sneak up to your table and move things around, drop care packages, add new objectives, etc.  On top of all of the professional actors and cosplayers you have plenty of participants dressing up and playing as well.  I wouldn’t do a double take if I walked up to a table and found myself face to face with a Commissar, a Guardsmen, Chapter serf, Skittari or /shudder T’au Fire Warrior.  The effort the community puts in is just as valued as the pros and adds to the fun environment.

If the above doesn’t sounds like a good time, I don’t know what in Warhammer would engage you otherwise.  I’d love to see this type of event brought over to the Horus Heresy side of the house as I’m biased and I think the Heresy community would take it leaps and bounds further.  But again, I’m biased.

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Final Thoughts

Alright…you caught me, I’m incredibly jealous of the Warhammer 40k and Kill Team community this year for yet another amazing looking Grand Narrative event.  I’m sitting here surrounded by my new White Scars (Bike Scars), making motorcycle noises and pew pews while waiting on bated breath for another round of announcements for more Narrative events.  Here’s to hoping /fingers crossed.

Do you prefer competitive or narrative events?  What’s the best event you’ve been too and why? What 2024 events are you most looking forward to?  Tell us in the comments below!

Ryan Hilton
Author: Ryan Hilton
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