Warmachine the Way I See It. Did this really happen overnight though? Yes and no. I am a bit of a reluctant gamer. I am not prone to handling change well. Such is the story of my life. It takes something fairly large to get me moving in a different direction.
That said, I started wargaming playing Warhammer Fantasy. I still claim to play it though I haven't played a game in about 5 months and that is probably the only game I played in all of 2011. It's funny because in 2009-2010 I was playing in tournaments and doing pretty well. Then came 8th edition, which was an over-reaction on GW's part in my opinion. The thought of make large, fundamental changes to how I collected my armies (horde units anyone?) and how I played the game, just burned me out on contact. I think I have perused the 8th ed. rulebook once and have played less than 10 games since it came out. So, how did I stay in the hobby? 40k!
40k is great and definitely a good change of pace from Fantasy without creating too much of a learning curve. If you can fantasy you can 40k. They both have the same foundational elements. That said, I have dabbled in 40k for nigh on 2 and a half years now, but I guess the sameness of the GW model has made it start to go stagnant. That and the proliferation of top tier armies that mean you rarely play a wide variety of armies. Thus, it was with reluctance that I picked up an original metal Menoth starter box that a friend "paid" me for doing a commission job for him.
Why hadn't I done this sooner?! Privateer Press has, in my opinion a wonderfully refreshing game system (Warmachine) that not only is a great stand alone, but also meshes quite well with its other game system (Hordes). What's the difference?
For me it boils down to a few things.
1) Awesome minis. I'm a hobbyist first, and a gamer second-first. I love looking at and painting amazing looking minis. Privateer Press doesn't disappoint. Their line of minis is creative, highly detailed, and epic in appearance. I love the huge steam-powered jacks and monstrous warbeasts. The warcasters always have amazing armaments and look the part of their statlines. The few models I have painted for my Menoth army so far (pKreoss, pSeverius, and a Crusader) have been a joy to paint.
2) A reasonably balanced ruleset. Now before naysayers go crazy, I am new to the system, but it seems to have more inherent balance than GW's games. There aren't really any terrible units. There are just good units and better units. Many unit selection choices come down to having the points budget to include them efficiently, not playability.
3) That said, another reason that I like PP is that they seem to be fairly in touch with their fan base. The stories of their loyalty to their customers abound. They even have well frequented Privateer Press-run forums! GW got rid of those forever ago and before they went, they sucked! What's more, the forums are actually helpful to a noob like me and not full of bloated, egotistical trolls.
4) A fresh gaming dynamic. Warmachine and Hordes are a totally different gaming system. There are a few similarities to GW game systems, but their games have a feel all their own. It is exciting knowing that things will be different.
Privateer Press has really impressed me in the short time I have been actively involved with the games. I really hope that it isn't a bunch of smoke and mirrors, but I think they truly are a pretty decent company. I look forward to getting to know more about the games it makes for the forseeable future.
Other articles you might find interesting:
Dante, Lord of the Angelic Host
Sanguinary Guard- A Different Look
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