Thursday, May 19, 2011

Hobby Pillars

Kip and I are feverishly working on the pics of my Ultramarines and the progress of my Night Lords. I was hoping to have it up and ready to go this weekend, but my future father in-law in coming into town.

I do want to take a little time and talk about the craziness about GW on the interwebs. It seems to happen this time every year, but gamers and especially mouth breathers go nuclear over GW’s price raises. Now I guess the first couple years you could feign shock and surprise but this happens every year. Just like moths to a flame the internet trolls are drawn out of their mom’s basement to post the ills of GW pricing them out of the hobby or bemoaning big business and how life is so unfair. My simple answer is get over it or get out of it.

Now that is a very heartless way of looking at it but let’s be adults about it. At some point the hobbyist needs to look at his hobby and himself and evaluate what type of experience he is deriving from it. It looks very expensive if you’re a casual player that maybe paints, maybe collects and sometimes play a GW game. Diehards like me and my gaming group enjoy the four pillars of GW games. Let’s break down the four pillars and find out where you fall. This will help you evaluate whether the hobby is worthwhile.

1. Collecting:
This is for the guys that have to have every model the army has or you purchase models solely for the esthetic look of the model. I for example have a lot of Eldar models because I love their look. I do not play that army nor do I have enough to play said army. I do love the Eldar models immensely.

2. Building:
This is for the hobbyist who enjoys the model aspect, whether it is building a lowly grot to a Storm Raven. Ninety percent of you Ork players fall into this category. These are the crazy Ork players who kit bash to make their own unique vehicles. This is a category for the gamer who loves to do army wide conversions or making his leaders unique to his army.

3. Painting:
This pillar is one of my personal favorite. This is for the guy that who enjoys painting themed armies or just loves to paint a model at a time. You may see this guy at the paint table/paint bar of your FLGS. Sometimes people become a slave to this pillar, you know them as contract painters. It is a fine line to walk and it is fraught with pitfalls. It’s a lot like drug dealing, the money is great and one day it will kill you (First 48 is my reference)!

4. Playing:
This pillar is can be a culmination of the three previous pillars. You can play small games at your house to travelling hundreds/thousands of miles to go to a tournament. There is a thriving business of running GT and tournaments across the world. I personally love to play in my garage or my FLGS. This pillar can also get intense for some and it consumes their life.

If you find yourself deriving fun or enjoyment for any of the pillars why would you not stay in the hobby. Like all hobbies they have their expense and GW is a premium hobby. GW is the Royals Royce of the gaming industry and you pay for that. If you like playing games and don’t care what your models look like then move along to Warmachine and Hordes with their bootleg ass models.

Let’s tackle the argument that others games are cheaper. I will use GW’s top two competitors for comparison.

Flames of War will be the first company we focus on. Now before for we get into it, I want to let everyone know that Flames of War is my second favorite game behind 40k. I will use the example of my 5. SS Wiking army from page 49 of the River of Heroes book.

This 2,000 point army cost the following:
1x Panzaergrenadier Kompanie Box $40
1x Panther A Platoon Box $70
1x Panzer IV H Platoon Box $58
1x Panzaergrenadier Kompanie box $65
1x Panzaergrenadier platton blister $17.50
10x Panzerfaust $17.50
10x Panzerschrecks $17.50
1x Pioneer Platton $23
6x SDkfz 251/7d $75
3x Opel Blitz 3-ton truck $37.50
3x SDkfz 4/1 Quads $37.50

Total: $405.50

As you can see that it is comparable in size of army points as well as cold hard cash. As you can see running of into the awaiting arms of Flames O’, you will pay similar prices. I really do love this game and it would be my first recommendation if you choose to leave the light of the Emperor.

#1 World Ranked Warmachine/Hordes player

Onto Warmachine/Hordes ala the bottom feeders of the gaming industry. First off, this steam punk craze is as cool as guys wearing skinny jeans. In the immortal words of Ron Burgundy “It’s just plain dumb!” This reminds me of the days when Heavy Gear in the late 90’s was supposed to surpass GW. I have never seen such a collection of unwashed booger-eaters that can barely build their models, let alone paint them for god sake! At least No Quarter removed its head out of its ass and stopped putting unpainted models in their magazine. Now I actually used to play this game but the players killed it for me. I finally had understood where all the 40k mouth breathers went after 3rd edition 40k was released.

This is a 50 point Khador army list:

1x Kommandant Irusk $10
2x Spriggans $76
1x War Dog $10
2x 5 man Shocktroopers $168
2x 6 Pikemen unit $100
1x 4 widow maker $20
1x Yuri the axe $15

Total: $399

Once again it is comparable to the cost. Don’t let the booger-eaters use their jedi mind tricks to make you think that WarmaHordes soooo much cheaper.

Now we will compare the other armies against my 2,000 point Night Lords Army. Here is my Night Lords army breakdown and cost.

2x CSM boxes $74.50
2x SM Tactical boxes $74.50
4x Rhinos $132
2x CSM termie boxes $100
2x Vindicators $88

Total: $469.00

At the end of the day we are talking at most a difference of $70.00. With that difference you get better quality/detail plastic models compared to subpar and out of proportion sculpts that PP vomits out. I will say Battle Front comes close to the quality of GW. At the end of the day you get what you pay for and if you are happy with subpar models go with PP. If you like quality and getting the best bang for your buck, go with Games Workshop or Battle Front.


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