Games Workshop – Balancing the Hate

Now, you all know from having actually read this site that at time it appears that I am extremely vocal against Games Workshop despite (or perhaps because of) the fact I’ve personally pumped thousands of pounds through their coffers since my father introduced me to it in the late eighties/early nineties. I don’t like to come across as a hate fuelled detractor so therefore thought I’d try to redeem myself by balancing things out a little.

In days of yore one of the greatest criticisms that was dealt to GW was the fact that, even though they were a world-class miniatures outfit, they would release army books and then years later, when the book came around for re-release; some of those items were still missing. I can think back on such models as Dark Elf Dark Riders, the Eldar Falcon Grav tank, Wave-serpent and Vyper Jetbike. More recently we’ve also see the likes of a large swathe of the Tyranid big monsters and other oddities like the Warriors of Chaos missing their Warshrine, the Daemons line getting all the Core troops in plastic with the bizarre omission of the Plaguebearers…

Sometimes these options could be filled with rather expensive conversion parts, or even entire models, from the Forgeworld line. The problem was not necessarily that these pieces were missing, it was that for a lot of them, these were core pieces needed for the army to be effective. Yes, eventually we got those models released, but this was often many years after the books for which they were required was initially released. To my mind this was never sensible and I know it caused a lot of consternation, certainly among the players that I have surveyed with regard to this.

Therefore what I would like to do is to commend GW that this seems to be a dwindling trait of their business. Over the past few weeks we’ve seen a few new 40k box sets that have plugged holes in the Space Wolves and Tyranid lines (although I’m not sure how they can release umpteen different boxes of Space Marines and still leave the bugs missing things like the Harpy). The Dark Eldar are currently only missing some special characters and the Void Raven, there are only a few pieces missing from the new Necrons book too.

With a new edition of Fantasy things are going well there too! The Ogre Kingdoms have their entire range ready for selection right now. The Tomb Kings are only really missing a Hierotitan and the weapons options for the Necrolith Colossus. January’s Vampire Counts also got a massive batch of stuff (OK, I’ll concede that most of it was Finecast re-dos of current models) but they also are not wanting for stuff. I can do nothing but tip my hat to the Sherriff and give a congratulatory round of applause. People should be getting all their army choices available to use. I am aware that with any book certain models aren’t going to be used as often as others and that each model has a development cost attached to it but considering how much core stuff you need nowadays I am sure that even the worst selling models can have their costs clawed back within the core choices. (The Internet knows how much folks like to complain about how expensive GW stuff is after all). There are people that will buy one of every model for the army just so that they have all the choices available to them.

So GW, this disgruntled veteran tips his hat to you for a job well done. Here’s hoping that you keep up with the speed of the Fantasy releases (and the balance they exhibit so far) and that we get all the options for our books too!