On November 15th 2019 Games Workshop shattered the gaming world with its huge announcement that the Warhammer Fantasy world was returning. It was big…
Since that announcement we have had some dribbled information about square bases, a couple of maps and some teased pics of some Kislev Polar Bear riders…
Needless to say, this has fueled an immense amount of speculation. Some about which factions will be in the game? Could they move away from the old Warhammer Fantasy Battle rules? What period of the games extensive lore will it be set in?
Lately, there has been a lot of wishlisting about what scale people would like to see the game in. I think it will be 15mm and I’m going to tell you why.
There are actually a few really great arguments for the scale change.
The Technology is There
Way back when Games Workshop first released Epic: Space Marine and Epic: Titan Legions the models were pretty plain. This was the first of their large scale battle systems based around 8mm figures. They later followed up with the all metal miniatures range for Warmaster.
At the time, even by Games Workshop’s simpler standards, these models didn’t have a lot of detail. When the last iteration of Epic was released, Epic: Armageddon, the models had gained a little more detail but were pretty clunky.
Technology has significantly moved on. Games Workshop have released a whole bunch of stunning new models for Adeptus Titanicus and Aeronautica Imperialis. These spiritual successors to the old smaller scale games have a lot of the DNA of their predecessors, augmented with some of the best models manufactured this era.
With computer aided sculpting and the much more advanced methods for injection molding, Games Workshop could make some truly revolutionary and detailed models for a new 15mm rank and flank game.
Games Workshop Aren’t Afraid to Scale Change
They have done it with all their latest releases.
Bloodbowl – Upscaled to heroic 32mm.
Adeptus Titanicus – Upscaled to 8mm. (Updated: I originally wrote 15mm)
Aeronautica – Upscaled to 8mm. (Updated: I originally wrote 15mm)
Necromunda – larger scale models and terrain.
Age of Sigmar – there’s some scale creep there.
It’s Going to be a Forgeworld Range
“Oh, but Forgeworld do a large range of 28mm fantasy models.”
Yeah they do, but they are expensive. This game is two years into a three year development cycle, if the rumors are to be believed. They are going to want to sell a serious amount of models to get back that investment.
A massive battle game with 28mm or 32mm models isn’t going to sell well at Forgeworld prices. Most fanbois are out if they want have to pay those kinds of prices for a two or three hundred model army.
In 15mm Games Workshop can still charge an arm and a leg, but it will feel like value because of the increased number of models. Same production costs for 30 models in 15mm, same price as 10 models in 28mm. All that equals happy customers, happy companies.
It Stops You Using Your Old Armies
You have to agree with me here. Games Workshop destroyed the Old World a while back because sales were down. We all know why.
Everyone had way too many models. They had been selling iterations of the same concepts for 40 years. Eventually people had enough goblins.
In 15mm scale, good luck dusting off those old fourth edition High Elves or sixth edition Kislev Kossars. Sure you could play with them at the start. We could all just agree on some house rules for how the distances work. We can proxy whatever new models Games Workshop releases.
Then someone will get a case of “The New Shinies” and buy some of the 15mm. They will be good. Games Workshop has gone from strength to strength in the last five years. The models are so great now. So many options.
Then before you know it, someone else will follow and those Kossars will go back to gathering dust.
Games Workshop Do Market Research Now
They know their market. They have had great success with Aeronautica, Adeptus Titanicus, Bloodbowl 4th edition and Necromunda.
Businesses follow the bottom line. The community has shown an appetite for change. As a whole the Games Workshop gaming community has embraced all the scale changes.
Record profits for them this financial year. Thank about that.
It Will Probably Be Pretty Good!
I’m excited! Games Workshop still make pretty good games. All the current specialist stuff is just fantastic. I’m saving up.
Bring on the 15mm revolution…
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Tabletop gaming is in my blood. My father used to play miniature war games in the 70′s and 80′s (Napoleon, Rome, World War I and II, etc) and then discovered Dungeons & Dragons in the very early 80′s. He taught me how to play D&D when I was only 10 years old. I’ve been hooked on tabletop gaming ever since. Growing up I spent a lot of time playing D&D, Hero Quest, Fighting Fantasy, Magic: The Gathering. Fast-Forward 1000 years and here I am now. I use to own a tabletop gaming store in Bayside Brisbane (twice) but now I focus mostly on ATGN and playing tabletop games with my friends. Life is good.