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Warhammer: Age of Sigmar» Forums » General

Subject: Debating getting into the game... rss

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Caleb Wynn
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I have just started painting minis, and have been looking into several systems of wargames to get into, this is one of them. The armies that I am most interested in are Tzeench and Undead. Are either of these viable armies? I would rather not get crushed in games. Obviously, there will be a learning curve, but if an army just isn't competitive, the experience won't be any fun. The other thing I am worried about is how long it will take me to paint an army, being new and all.

The painting is the main thing that is making the minis games hard to get into. The thought of painting 140 napoleonic dudes or 70 AoS dudes is daunting.

What say you about how easy (both on the wallet, and on the hours of prep) it is to get into?

Oh, and is an intro box a decent first step?
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omnicrondelicious
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I can't speak to the competitive quality of Tzeentch and Undead - I haven't played with/against either. You might get good insights from Reddit or Facebook. DakkaDakka or Warseer, too, if they've gotten over their hostility towards AoS. I think those are all much bigger AoS communities than here on BGG.

Miniature wargaming as a general rule is not friendly on either the wallet or your free time. But that's also what makes miniature wargaming so special - it's a unique blend of visual spectacle, hobby, and gaming unlike any other pastime. Ideally, you enjoy all the aspects.

A competitive 2000 point AoS army will cost between $300 and $600 for the miniatures alone. Painting time varies wildly by your desired quality, skill, airbrush, model size, etc. but around 2 hrs per model I reckon would be about right for a new painter. So you're basically looking at somewhere in the 70-200 hours range for painting an army. Most likely you aren't going to want to play with just the same army over and over again, so your actual collection could be bigger, with corresponding cost and effort. Plus rulebooks/app purchases, miniature painting supplies, terrain, etc. It adds up.

The intro box is fine, especially if you want to play one of the factions and split it with someone else. If you don't want to play Sigmarines or Khorne, then you should look at the Start Collecting boxes. They are actually a pretty good deal.

AoS is enjoyable at the small scale, too. You don't need massive 2000 point armies to have fun. One option is to dabble with the game at the ~500 pts range (if you are using points. The narrative and casual formats are really fun, too.). Just to see if you like it before going in whole hog.

Escalation Leagues are a great way to get into a miniature game. Everyone starts with a very small force and once per round (week, month, whatever) adds a bit more to their force. By the end of the league, you've built up a proper army. It gets you stuck in pretty quick without getting overwhelmed with needing to paint 70 minis all in one go. You also get to adapt and try stuff out. Many FLGS will host a seasonal escalation league.

Other easy ways to get into the hobby:

* Buy painted minis on eBay or hire a painting service. If you have more dollars than free time, it's the way to go.

* If you have more free time than dollars, and want to play a "big" game on the cheap consider something like Kings of War. I mention that one in particular because it's manufacturer agnostic, and there are lots of great mini companies out there, and many are much cheaper than Games Workshop. Kings of War also uses fixed unit dimensions (all infantry troop units are mounted on a 100x40mm base, for example) so you can use fewer models per unit, or use cheap scenic filler to bulk out a base.

* If you don't have both free time and money, play something smaller in scope than AoS. The main barrier to wargaming for most people is having enough opponents for a satisfying meta. If players for X-Wing, Infinity, Saga, Song of Blades and Heroes, Blood Bowl, Battletech, DBA/HOTT, Malifaux, or any number of other skirmish wargames are in your area, consider them.

* You can also look at smaller scales. 15mm/10mm/6mm minis are all progressively much cheaper and much faster to paint. However, it can be harder to find opponents at those scales. There are also companies that sell "papercraft" miniatures that you print and cut out.

Happy gaming!
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Jared Voshall
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I would say that Age of Sigmar is a great game to get into for a variety of reasons. It's still pretty expensive, all told, but you get significantly more flexibility in what you buy and use compared to many other games - and it definitely scales down a lot better than previous versions of the game.

You'll want a copy of the rulesheet, be it from the GW website, a sheet from the GW store, or from one of the many books available for the system (yes, they all have them). The best value, IMO, is to grab the General's Handbook and run with that. While it doesn't have the point values for the newer material (primarily Tzeentch and the Fyreslayers), but it will give you enough points values to get in and get used to the game.

Next, I would definitely say that the Start Collecting boxes are a tremendously good deal, with the large figure included in them being worth most, if not all, of the cost of the box. I'm not sure how well they're balanced against each other, but they appear to be pretty equivalent, all told.

After that, just pick up what you think looks cool and would fit in your army. A lot of the subfactions have buffs that only affect their specific keywords - but you can freely combine anything you want, which means you can easily cover your army's weaknesses by grabbing something from another faction, potentially giving each army a unique and interesting blend.

And, since you asked about it, the Age of Sigmar intro boxes are a great way to get yourself and a friend (or get yourself two starting armies) into the game, providing a fun tutorial and two well balanced forces, but I would really only recommend that if you're looking at a Stormcast Eternal (I like them, but I know they've gotten a fair bit of ridicule for their look) or Khorne Bloodborne army. Otherwise, they're of limited use.
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Jon M
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If you don't relish painting minis then don't get into mini gaming. Stick with board games. Most of the pleasure in minis is painting the miniatures and building the scenery as that is what you will spend most of your time doing.

The great advantage of a mini game is that your hobby time is not totally dependent on other player availability as you can paint and make when you can't play.

I would advise downloading the AoS rules and buy Dragon Rampant. For Dragon Rampant you only need 5 or 6 figures to have one side for a game. If those figures are also usable in AoS then all the better.
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Michael Groll
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Jon_1066 wrote:
If you don't relish painting minis then don't get into mini gaming. Stick with board games. Most of the pleasure in minis is painting the miniatures and building the scenery as that is what you will spend most of your time doing.


Hm... I tend to disagree. I for one greatly enjoy painting, but I do not have so much free time and I am pretty slow at painting. Getting a large Horde army (e.g. Skaven or Tyranids) table ready would take me years and years and the prospect of painting the same model over and over again also is not very charming.
That's why I much more prefer skirmish games where you just need to paint a dozen models or so (Infinity comes to mind, or Frostgrave, Malifaux, Bushido, Freebooters Tale, Wolsung, or Saga) - and that is the recommendation I would give to the OP as well - look for a skirmish level game if painting a lot of models scares you. And if Age of Sigmar should be a decent skirmish ruleset, go for it as you will find plenty of opponents. If I remember correctly there is an extremely cheap 2-player starter set for AoS available with just a hand full of models per side - that might be a good entry point.
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Jon M
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Is painting the minis a means to an end or a thing in itself? To get the most from mini games it has to be a thing in itself. If it is only a chore on the road to playing a game then what is the point? Do something else with your precious time otherwise you will get half way through, end up loathing them and stick them on ebay and lose a load of cash.
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Wayne Hall
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I've been having a lot of fun getting into the game the last few months. Still haven't had any time to paint anything, just assemble the models, but my AoS opponents don't mind at all. We're just happy to be having a good time with the game. So far I've not played above 1000-point level games, and they have gone great.

There is also an unofficial expansion called "Hinterlands" that changes the game to a skirmish-level conflict (starting forces of just 4-6 minis per side, usually). For an unofficial project, Hinterlands is EXTREMELY well done and a lot of fun.

If you have anything around you can use for stand-ins, download the free rules and some warscrolls and try the rules out. (You'll need something to measure with and some dice.) Even better, buy the Storm of Sigmar starter set and try the game with the included models and scenarios. That starter usually costs around $33-ish.

The scenarios, or Battleplans as they are called, are my favorite part of the game.

Have fun!
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Wayne Hall
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zorander wrote:
I've been having a lot of fun getting into the game the last few months. Still haven't had any time to paint anything, just assemble the models, but my AoS opponents don't mind at all. We're just happy to be having a good time with the game. So far I've not played above 1000-point level games, and they have gone great.

There is also an unofficial expansion called "Hinterlands" that changes the game to a skirmish-level conflict (starting forces of just 4-6 minis per side, usually). For an unofficial project, Hinterlands is EXTREMELY well done and a lot of fun.

If you have anything around you can use for stand-ins, download the free rules and some warscrolls and try the rules out. (You'll need something to measure with and some dice.) Even better, buy the Storm of Sigmar starter set and try the game with the included models and scenarios. That starter usually costs around $33-ish.

The scenarios, or Battleplans as they are called, are my favorite part of the game.

Have fun!


One caveat, though.. Hinterlands requires the use of the points system from the General's Handbook, which adds to your costs.
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Michael Groll
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zorander wrote:
Even better, buy the Storm of Sigmar starter set and try the game with the included models and scenarios. That starter usually costs around $33-ish.

The scenarios, or Battleplans as they are called, are my favorite part of the game.


I bought Storm of Sigmar last week and must say that I am really impressed with how much you get for your money. The minis are very detailed and there are no duplicate poses (I played WH40k back in 2nd edition when most of the starter box minis were the same), the box comes with a proper assembly guide and a surprisingly hefty rulebook including the mentioned scenarios. There is a lot of game in that box. Add in a few more miniatures from ebay (or the ones that came with the White Dwarf recently) and you easily can play a few dozens of games before feeling the need to buy anything else.
Too bad that Storm of Sigmar doesn't get more love here on BGG because it very well might be the best miniature game starter on the market, period.

One of the great things about AoS - and that is something "Tabletop Minions" (on youtube) talked about is the low barrier of entry and that you can pretty much mix an match whatever you like. Back in WHFB 8th I was intrigued by building a Skaven or a Lizardmen army but never got around to it. Now I could easily buy a hand full of models on eBay and include them into an Order or Chaos warband - there is no need to buy and paint 100+ models. several years ago I bought a few boxes of Skaven and Beastmen as I wanted to built my own plastic BloodBowl teams. Now, with the official Skaven team available I can just use these few models that I have for AoS - what could be easier than that?

Games Workshop gets a lot of hate, but over the last 12 months or so they have made many good decisions and now they even have me interested in the much loathed AoS (ok, Joel Eddy and his glowing review is responsible for that as well.
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Jonan Jello
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Is $80 a decent price for a new copy of the starter box?
 
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