I saw a review on Space Hulk and it sounds like a fun game. I like the team vs alien horde theme. But What are the differences between editions? I've seen up to 4 and want to see if there are any opinions on one vs another. Also how easy do you feel this is to learn/play? Thanks in advance! Here is a quick summary from a DakkaDakka post answering the same question. The author is not just brilliant, he is undoubtedly 6'2" and a hell of a guy.
Availability and miniature quality are part of the equation. Depends on your Ebay-Fu, and if you have existing miniatures. For instance, modern terminators work fine, but 40mm bases are bit of a pain. Genestealers are everywhere. The older models are good. The latest SH models are great!
If you find a working copy of SH1, it will cost you. Those Termie models are hard to love, but easy to find. The boards are dated. The rules are very good. But, dated. And, the expansions are a mixed bag. Still, a classic..
SH2 had better plastic Termies (same genestealers). It's more streamlined then SH1. No timer, no using Command Points during the GS phase, unique dice, storm bolters can kill two GS with one Action Point, but can't get a bonus for sustained fire in Overwatch, radically different flamer rules, different blips (0,4,5, & 6 GS's). It comes with 18 missions. The boards are compatible with SH1, but cleaner and more SciFi. SH1's are a little cartoonish. SH2 is 10 years newer and it is easier to find a complete set. There were no expansions. The game is flamer happy. You live and die by the flamer. Well Termies live, Genestealers die. I like it, but it's not the classic. I think it's easier and faster to play.
SH3 and SH4 are nearly identical (same models, almost the same boards and components), and differ in a just few rules details. And, SH4 has more scenarios and a few more tiles (boarding torpedoes and elevator). Enough to buy SH4 over SH3, but not if you get a better deal on SH3. Both are lush and voluptuous. Boards are thick and glossy, models are diorama quality. Yes, they do fall over, but man are they nice! The newer rules capture most of the original's goodness. They make it a bit easier for marines, because of changes to Overwatch. That's a simple fix if it bothers you, information is on the web. In fact, there is enough on the web to play any version with any rules. SH3&4 bring in all the esoteric weapons that came out as additions to SH1 (loves me some Assault Cannon!). And, simplified, but workable psychics. SH4 has minor (better) rules changes to Overwatch and LOS (again, a pdf has all the changes). And, boarding torpedoes and 4 more missions. Again, NOT a deal breaker over SH3.
I'm passionate about SH, but I don't really think one version rules. Like asking which of my children is my favorite (answer, neither if they don't get their damned rooms cleaned). If I was going to pay top dollar (i.e., didn't find a copy at a garage sale) I'd get SH4 or SH3, in that order. Self-contained, and really high quality product with modern production values. If I was Old School (easy for me to say, I own all 4 versions, plus expansions), SH1 is so good they made 3 more versions. If I was a player that valued the game experience over nostalgia, or flash., SH2 is quick and easy (for some reason, it reminds me of my Disco Days). In any case, the sure bet is one of the newer versions.