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Subject: tabletop minis as a one time investment rss

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Eric Staswick
United States
Chicago
IL
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I would like some opinions on which tabletop minis game to buy "as a board game" I.E. a single investment of approx $100-$150 instead of buying here and there. I have the group to play with so it doesn't matter if it's current and as long as sides are even doesn't have to be latest editions. I think at-43 is currently the best bet, but would like others advice. We have star wars minis and mutant chronicles so now we want something without a hex/square board but instead measured movement. Are older editons of warhammer available cheaply? Any other options? Thanks.
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Knick Burton
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http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/4741/warmachine

Been eyeballing this for a while. Beautiful minis! You can start fighting with just a few minis too. But like most table top mini games, its awesome to just dabble....But you will want more. Just stay away from Whorehammer. Games workshop loves bending you over for money.
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Bwian, just
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For that price range, I might look at skirmish games. The ones I know of aren't pre-painted; I wasn't sure if that was important, since you mention AT-43. But some skirmish games to try and find:
Rezolution: A Dark Tomorrow: Cyberpunkish SF game. Comes in a variety of starters: most are for one player a piece, but iirc they have some two-player starters as well.
Necromunda: SF skirmish game in the Warhammer 40K universe. Was once sold in a boxed set, although I suspect that is hard to track down now. You can get the rules online, though, and I believe minis are still available.
Mordheim: City of the Damned: As above, only for Warhammer fantasy.
Gangs of Mega-City One: More SF gang fights, in the Judge Dredd universe. I don't recall if the box set comes with minis, or if you buy a starter gang separately.
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Stephen Cartwright
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If you are interested in ancient battles, medieval or napoleonic era type wargaming, ZVEZDA does 1:72 scale minis which are quite detailed and can be used for wargaming. for $100 you could get around 400 minis (200 per side) with infantry, cavalry, and artilllery (depending on the era). As for rules, there are loads of free rules available on the net, or even in the file section of BGG. Or you could invest in some books that have battle scenarios already planned out.
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Knick Burton
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http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/66403/battle-royale

Use any miniatures you want, free pnp game I did. A skirmish game of sorts, you can make several characters and run them as the same team if wanted.
 
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Wayne Hall
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You might want to check out Mutants and Death Ray Guns. Just purchase the PDF, print out the rulebook, and use it with the Star Wars minis you already have.
 
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Robert Sweeney
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You could easily spend that much on each genre and each side(s) of that genre.... and I have.....





Images and Emoticons are taken from various threads throughout the geek - except for the tanks - they are my American WW2 European miniatures!
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Confrontation: The Age of the Rag'Narok







 
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Pontus Olin
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One question that needs to be asked: Are you interested in the hobby side of it, i.e. assembling, painting etc? Or are you more interested in playing a game?

If you're not particularly interested in painting and so on, I can heartily recommend AT-43. It's a great game with lots of tactical and strategic depth. And on the plus side, their new army boxes make it one of the cheapest games to get into. If you look online, you can find an army box for about $50, and that includes a complete pre-painted army of 2000 points as well as tape measure, dice, relevant templates and some terrain. You'll also want to buy the main rulebook and the army book for the faction you've chosen. Those are about $20 + $10. You should also buy the Frostbite box, since it includes additional rules, errata and a few additions to the army books of the first four factions. Frostbite costs about $22. In total, that should cost you about $100. You could stop there or you could look through the army book when you get it and then decide on a few extra units to allow for more choices when composing your army.

If you're into painting and such, Infinity is a great miniatures game. It's skirmish level, and each army consists of about 10 miniatures. Beautiful miniatures and innovative, flavorful rules. You can find out more at their site, including full rules: http://www.infinitythegame.com/infinity_ENG/
 
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Mike zebrowski
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estaswick wrote:
I would like some opinions on which tabletop minis game to buy "as a board game" I.E. a single investment of approx $100-$150 instead of buying here and there.


While I have lots of love for AT-43 (I own almost everything for it), it doesn't meet your criteria.

You need 3 basic items for miniature games: Rules, miniatures, and terrain.

Rules: There tons of rule sets out there that are "generic" so that you can adapted them to miniatures. My current preference is the "Song of" series of games by Ganesha Games: Song of Blades and Heroes for fantasy, Flying Lead for shooting, and Song of Drum and Shakos for Napoleonics .

Miniatures: Again lots of choices if you go with a generic rule set. Historical miniatures are often cheaper that models tied to a specific fictional setting. 1/72 historical models are extremely cheap. I just purchased a box of 50 WW2 Russian infantry for $10. If you don't want to paint miniatures, there are several companaies that make paper miniatures that you simply printout and fold-up.

Terrain really makes miniature games come to life. While you could play with felt cut-outs, 3D terrain makes the games more fun. Companies like Battlefront, War Torn Worlds, and Pegasus make prepainted terrain in the 25mm to 28mm range for a fair price. Other companies, like World Works, makes paper terrain that you can print out and assemble.

The above assumes that you want to play a miniatures game of ground combat. If you look at navel, arial, and space combat, there are lots more options for playing on the cheap and the pieces are far easier to paint.

If you go with fantasy naval, you can get a bucket load of Uncharted Seas ships + a blue cloth to play on for under a $150.

For gridless space combat, the current game of choice is Full Thrust, which is available for free from Ground Zero Games. There are a slew of choices for space ships.

I'm not much of a fan of arial combat, but the most expensive part are the 3D flight stands (TopGun Marketting sells a real nice flight stand for $12); however, you typically only need 4 to 6 at most. You only need to purchase the flight stands once as you can swap the planes on the them.

Mike Z
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Jeff Brown
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Battleground

This game is not miniatures but its a miniatures game with cards. You can get tons and tons of units with $150 and its a great game that I love to play.

Actually you can get a starter pack for just $10 online. (with which you can do a full battle with two armies.
 
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Karl Schmidt

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One game that is getting a lot of attention right now is Malifaux. It is a steampunk/western/horror skirmish game with a card based combat mechanic where each side has 5-7 minis. You could easily get the rules and a few starter boxes for $100 (each is $25-$30).

And since someone said pics are good..




If you do go with AT-43, you can find good deals on AT-43 at the Warstore and Miniature Market
http://www.thewarstore.com/AT-43Blowout.html
http://www.miniaturemarket.com/at_43





 
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estaswick wrote:
[...]a single investment of approx $100-$150 [...]


estaswick wrote:
...so now we want something without....


These two small pieces of your sentence should make you aware of one thing to be considered: there will always be other systems, other mechanics, other settings tempting you. Especially when it comes to tabletops. Nobody I know stopped after this "single investment" or after that "just give it a try since it's so cheap" investment. And even the guys who gave up this hobby keep coming back.
Plus - if there's the slightest chance that you enjoy gorgeously sculpted miniatures you won't stop after a single investment. Just think about all these great minis out there...

I don't want to destroy your illusion (single investment ) or stop you from getting deeper in the tabletop hobby. Far from it!
But I wanted to mention some points to be considered...
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Kai Bettzieche
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If you don't mind ordering from Germany, I can strongly recommend Fearless - a cyberpunk gladiatorial combat game.
A miniature is between 5€ (human combatant) and 15€ (guardian - kind of a big mech).
You only need 3-5 miniatures per player (a common tournament consists of 3 miniatures per player in the arena + 2 as sideboard versus different opponents), so it is actually quite cheap compared to other systems ..

Homepage of the publisher:
http://www.excaliburminiaturen.de/
Yes, it is looking trashy - but those folks are gamedesigners, no webdesigners
 
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Eric Staswick
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Chicago
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lots of tasty options here, thanks for the recommendations. I'm very excited about a couple of these. I particularly interested in a game I remember seing about a year ago that was a very open rule set. I remembered it because of what Knick Burton. It was deisgned to be played with whatever minis you had, seems most of the images in the gallery at that time were steam punk. Any ideas? Thanks again all.
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