[Archive] Why should I play Warhammer Fantasy?

Tarrakk Blackhand:

Hi everyone!

This morning I thought up a question that a modern kid may ask about our hobby and how we might respond to it. I am curious to know what your response would be.

Here’s the question:

“I�?Tm a kid between 9 and 14 years old and on weekends and after my homework is done, I turn on my Xbox 360 and play Halo Reach. I love playing Halo as it is so awesome and exciting, especially when I can blast away at the enemy!

A few of my friends play Warhammer Fantasy and I am curious to know why. How can building a model of Chaos Dwarfs be as much fun and rewarding as playing Halo Reach, if not more so? Am I missing something by not playing Warhammer Fantasy? Would I get as much excitement spending my allowence on a unit of Chaos Dwarfs than buying the next installment of Halo? Please let me know!


A kid looking for answers.”


You can realy let you imagination run wild on the models your building and painting, nothing is to crazy. Further more you can show the models to your friend to how cool your models are. And ofcourse the battles itself, they ask for a great strategy to win.


The armies have a historical basis, so its a great way to learn history or develop an interest in it. The game is built around ancient/medieval military tactics (to a point) so it might lead to an interest in that too.


well, if your into “first person shooter games” you have no imagination at all! hehe just kidding:P


It’s fun to paint, its fun to make an army up, but i’m speaking as a 11yr old version of me in 1996.

Nowadays I don’t think I would have got into it as sad as it is to say. It would have cost to much compared to the old prices (even considering inflation). That and I didn’t own my first console with a game I enjoyed until 14 (N64 Goldeneye & Zelda OOT), nowadays my son has played on a game and he is 5! Although he has shown an interest in the models, i’m trying to hold him off a bit, he gets a bit distraught if he can’t do something, painting like something detailed might take a year of two.

So I’d say stick to some older models and try it with your friends and you might enjoy it. I’d be tempted to say don’t go into the GW stores, its (from what I heard) not how it used to be when I remember it. It used to be ‘come in play with the models we already have with the staff’. The only think I ever thing was ‘bigged up’ to me was a ticket for Games Day in around 2002, and tbh I quite enjoyed that.


Well, from a parent’s point of view, a hobby that allows a child to express his/her imagination, learn patience and perseverance and practice basic math is all good.

However, Warhammer is inconvenient. You can’t just turn the console on for 20 minutes or so. You need to plan and coordinate with other people. And the big thing, I think, is the cost. I bought Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion for $70 (I think?) and played it for 100+ hours. So did my wife. Pretty hard to beat that value… and with the ‘cost of playing warhammer’ being much bigger than that… it’s tough to recruit new players.

When I was younger, I could buy a couple of miniaturers with my allowance, which I would bring home and use when I played D&D. Sadly, Unless you’re giving you kid a REALLY generous allowance, I can’t see them opting in.

The best bet (I think)? Have some ‘in-house’ armies for people to use  for small games, etc… and have a league or club where people pay dues to participate. After playing some skirmish-level games and building some terrain, they may realize that although playing requires effort, there is an opportunity for self-expression that it’s hard to find in other hobbies.


If you like (board)games but think there is no real challenge in Monopoly or tic tac to. enter the world of warhammer, a game based on tactics and skill wit a dash of luck. oh and on top of that you get to collect and paint awesome miniatures you will cerise for quite some time.


If you have to ask why, then its probably not for you :wink:

Its a much more in-depth, fun game than anything on a computer when played with the right people.

Hashut’s Blessing:

I would recommend pointing out why you enjoy it. If they really want a comparison between gaming and wargaming, simply state how cool it is to be involved in an army-wide tactical struggle and you don’t need to be on the Internet to play it. You get to customise models and whole armies and to a far greater extent than your Spartan’s armour colour. The background is far richer, there’s magic involved, you get to see your hardwork paying off in an expanding army and seeing the effort you’ve put in. You get to be more active with your fun and the rewards are so much sweeter. It has the added bonus of you not having to buy “the next instalment” every few months to keep playing with your friends. If they find that Fantasy is the problem, then suggest some 40k - it’s far closer to Halo and there have been many Halo themed armies too.


I did and still do it as an escape from everyday life. It’s a way to get away from everything. I think it’s much better than Games as you can physically create something that you can look at whenever you want - something a game cannot always give. That, and I’m pretty sure Archaon could kick the Master Chief’s ass.


Thommy H:

If you have to ask why, then its probably not for you ;)


If it doesn't appeal, it never will. Some people are instinctively attracted to the world of miniatures and scale modelling, and some people can't imagine a bigger waste of time. It's the same with, say, cars - another passion of yours I believe, Tarrakk. I, for example, can appreciate the aesthetic and technical aspects of motor vehicles in an intellectual sense, but they don't exert any kind of hold on me beyond that. I can't even drive, and have no real desire to do so.

Warhammer, and miniature wargaming as a whole, is a largely unproductive activity, like almost all hobbies, but it has to recommend it at least the fact that you tend to end up with a tangible, physical reward for your efforts. Most computer games are necessarily ephemeral - one the game has been played through, there may be some replay value in trying to achieve "100% completion", or unlocking new characters, guns, vehicles, outfits or whatever else, but I don't think any of that can compare to the sensation of having a completed army on the shelf.

Wargaming is an activity that rewards investment of time and money. You don't get instant gratification. For most, it will end up being a largely solitary hobby - most of us spend more time painting than we do gaming - and it will never be "exciting" in the way a computer game, movie or even a piece of music can be. My best friend dabbled in 40K long before he ever met me, and never pursued it much because he thought the game lacked enough interactivity. He said to me once, only half in jest, that it would be better if the figures "actually moved around and fired their guns at each other." He has a short attention span.

So, ultimately, you either "get it" or you don't. You're never going to persuade a kid who doesn't want to play Warhammer to do it. I think there is a segment of the young market that get into it through peer pressure, who dabble for a year or two like my friend, but mostly the tactile enjoyment of the toys (because that's what they are) wears off when beer and girls come calling. Some come back (I did), and some don't.

Da Crusha:

hmm. I agree with thommy. its funny really, I love warhammer and spend a whole lot of time playing and working on models. I occasionally play video games but some times I think “wow Ive been sitting here for 2 hours pressing these 3 buttons.” then I turn it off and do something else. video games are not really for me just like miniatures are not really for some other people.


So, ultimately, you either "get it" or you don't. You're never going to persuade a kid who doesn't want to play Warhammer to do it. I think there is a segment of the young market that get into it through peer pressure, who dabble for a year or two like my friend, but mostly the tactile enjoyment of the toys (because that's what they are) wears off when beer and girls come calling. Some come back (I did), and some don't.

Thommy H
Bring back the beer and girls! The rest sounded pretty well right on the money.

Hashut’s Blessing:

I agree with Thommy H. He made all the points that I’d wanted and forgot as I was typing (it happens way too often, lol), but I would say that it’s not quite a “if you have to ask, it’s not for you” situation. If you have enough knowledge about it and have tried it and need to ask, then that’s completely correct. However, if you’ve just found out that your friends all play it and have maybe seen the models but don’t know all that much more, then it’s a valid point - you have to find out about a hobby before you can decide if it’s for you or not.

Still, there’s not much that you need to know before you can decide if it’s for you. Bottom line is that it’s best to give it a go (which could be good for your business), even if it’s borrowing someone else’s army or being allowed to build/paint some of their spares (may get them into it, but has the advantage of you not coming across as a money-grabber, lol).


In truth you shouldn’t play warhammer it costs too much it is unlikely to find you any girl friends it’s very time consuming and you gave to really think about what you are doing unlike halo where 90% of the stuff you do is instinctive.


Your friends all play warhammer. They have got sone awesome looking models that they have spent painting to get them to look like something that wouldn’t look too out of place in world of Warcraft.

They have spent time reading about orcs goblins trolls and undead stimulating their imagination and creative vision on what army they choose be it black clad chaos warriors or magical multi coloured knights from the moon that is the bretonians or themed colour scheme half nude elfen tree hugging hippies.

Invested no small amount of cash that could have gone towards a fair few video games in models not much taller or shorter than 28 mm tall. To glue blue tack together to then stick them to black plastic squares and disks.

And then comes the painting. 10 to 20 at most plastic models to paint in a carefully constructed colour scheme to go into your force ranging from 10 minuites to a hour a model to get it how you want it to go.

That’s without even playing your friends and winning or losing for the sake of fun.

Tactics deployment the list goes on

Why should a child play warhammer? Because they want too no other reason.


it costs too much it is unlikely to find you any girl friends it's very time consuming and you gave to really think about what you are doing
My entire life falls into this category.


There is beer and girls? o_0

Why wasn’t I told?


Honestly, you’re targeting the wrong kid. If he spends all his time playing Halo Reach he’s a much better candidate for 40k, because at least you know he should like the setting. Really though, it depends on the kid. I was the opposite. When I was a kid I played video games and Magic the Gathering. I used to laugh at people playing tabletop games because all I saw were grown men playing with toys. Something about the hobby has to appeal to them. My first introduction to Warhammer, was Warhammer Online. While playing it I just got absorbed with the fluff. I couldn’t get enough, and that took me down a dark, dark road indeed. Couldn’t absorb enough of the stuff, eventually I read up on Chaos Dwarves and found the greatest race in Warhammer. Luckily for me I had all the girls and beer I could handle before I started the hobby… though I still handle a lot of beer, and now I have a girl too invested in me and stuck with my expensive hobby (so do it in that order.)

Back on point though. Just appeal to their tastes. “So, you like Master Chief? Let me tell you about Darnath Lysander.”  Though I typically like villains so Honsuo would have been a better sell. The kid would have to be interested in medieval/fantasy settings to really get into Warhammer Fantasy. Something along the lines of, "You like World of Warcraft? Let me show you where those ideas originated, and how terribly they were implemented."

But that’s just it, it has to have some facet that appeals to them like was mentioned earlier. Otherwise it’s like trying to sell Blood Bowl over the most recent Madden installment.


I’m a teacher 4th, 5th and 10th grade.

I showed some of my students a bunch of my minis one day. And the answer is pretty straight forward.

“Wow. That is some badass dudes!”

Well painted and converted minis look awesome.

Thommy H:

This thread is two years old. The kid in question is probably in prison by now.