Due to the amount I have to show you and talk to you about, I’m splitting the weekender review into a two part article, with the second part to come tomorrow, so check back for that!
My favourite bit of street art from Nottingham. Three of my favourite cats in one.
Well, I have returned from the Horus Heresy and Necromunda weekender in Nottingham, and boy do I have many a tale to tell you guys. It was an awesome weekend – many cool things seen, many cool things heard, and many lovely people met. From staff to attendees, everyone was great. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. You’ll no doubt have seen a billion photos from the event on the internet over the last couple of days, so I’m not going to try to compete with all of that – my photos aren’t great and there are many better on facebook and other blogs. But I took a lot of notes (this will be a hefty read), so hopefully I’ll be able to provide you with a lot of details from the event, and as much gossip about the Heresy and Necromunda as possible. Let’s start though by looking at the venue and host city…
Nottingham remains a fair city (which turns into a complete warzone on a Saturday night) and there’s lots of cool things to see and do. My weekend started with drinks with friends in a quieter part of town.
We (I went with Henry South of 4gotowar.blogspot.com) elected to stay in the Ibis in central Nottingham rather than the Belfry where the event was held. We chose to do this because we wanted to spend some time in Nottingham and the Belfry is a long way from, well, everything really. It’s in a business park to the north west of the city, and about 4 miles from the centre. Next time though, if I go back (and hopefully I will), I’m going to try and stay in the Belfry. For one thing, despite it not being advertised as such, the Forge World store up there opened on Friday night and so when we got in early on Saturday morning, the Hive Scum had sold out, along with a couple of other new releases. They could have held off on that a bit, or let us know that it was open. I’ve got some on free shipping order though, so all’s well.
Secondly, despite emailing the events team about Golden Demon and following their reply of “All things Golden Demon are on Sunday, so registration and all parts of the process happen then” we were told on Saturday first thing that you actually needed to get the models in and registered before 6pm on the Saturday. There were many curses uttered, and many taxi rides to and from my hotel to the event that day. But as you can see, I got my entries in there all on time:
No, it’s not a duel – the sign is on the shelf below. But check out that plinth!
So, organisationally, the event gets a bit of a black mark, but that pretty much covers all of the negatives – almost everything else was a plus. And it was great to see my miniatures in the display cabinets.
The Belfry has charming, helpful staff and plenty of space, and the teams from Forge World and GW have got the whole thing set out really professionally. What’s more, everyone working that weekend was friendly and chatty and up for a good time too. The hotel has plenty of space, comfy seats and outdoor areas to mill around, and it’s just generally a very nice setting – and by all accounts the rooms are good too.
New Models On Show
There were various upgrade kits which I won’t post up here – if you’re a Space Wolves or Custodes fan, you’ll be able to find them elsewhere. The big news of last week was the release of Dorn and I have to say he’s one of the best looking Primarchs that we’ve had so far. The detailing on the armour is gorgeous, and I love the stoic pose – was great to see him in person.
Valdor looked pretty good too, and while there are bits of the miniature that I don’t exactly love, it looks a lot better in the flesh than in the photos.
The new Orlocks were on display, as were the new Hive Scum – both kits that I wanted to get my hands on this weekend:
More would come on day two, but I’ll show those off in tomorrow’s blog post (although you’ll be able to find images of everything everywhere – it’s not about suspense; it’s about the story).
Welcome To Necromunda
The first seminar I attended featured a number of Forge World and Specialist games team members (including Andy Hoare) talking to Tony Cottrell. They gave us a bit of a guided tour of Necromunda, and we got lots of juicy tidbits. Here are some of the highlights:
We started with an exploration of the planet. Yes, the planet. Necromunda will not just be focussed on Hive Primus, and in the future, you will see your gangs walk through the ash wastes beyond the walls, and into other hives like the haunted and malevolent Hive Mortis, and the Xenos-infested Hive Secundus.
We also found out more about the Eye Of Selene – the Helmawr-controlled space station and dock that sits in geo-synchronous orbit above Hive Primus and controls all of the off world traffic to the hive. And yes, at some point gangs will have the opportunity to go up there and fight space dockers and space pirates.
Then we got a look at the concept illustrations for the as yet unreleased gangs, and I can tell you now that Cawdor, Van Saar and Delaque are all going to get some very cool treatment if the illustrations are anything to go by.
We also got some more information on the gangs. The Orlocks are “rock hard road warriors” who not only keep an army of slaves to work the mines, but they also take heavily armoured convoys through the wastes to the Goliath smelt-facilities. And they have surprisingly modern (as in 2nd Millennium) names like “Jack” and “John”.
Van Saar have this secret and unsafe STC that helps them to develop weaponry, but it is also killing them slowly through radiation poisoning. But on the plus side, they are going to have some mechanical spider buddies/pets to help them out in a fight.
The Delaque are “Creepy noir assassins” while the Cawdor will be “beggers and thieves” with a fanatical devotion to the Emperor. The latter also wear candles on their hats, which is kind of cool.
Then we got into a bit of a terminology-based distinction. There are no plans to bring out any Adeptus Arbites models for Necromunda. However, there will be a release of the Enforcers. Tony Cottrell wanted to keep that distinction clear and pointed out that the Arbites are an Imperial force, working for the Emperor – a bit too top level perhaps. Enforcers though are the local beat cops of the Underhive, paid for by the noble houses and the Hive city taxes. So, fans of batons, riot shields and cyber mastiffs need not fear.
The Future Of Necromunda
This was a fun one with lots of concepts and miniature ideas revealed. They kept stating that this wasn’t all confirmed, and that it was all early stages, but we got to see plenty of the miniatures they were talking about, and you could see how excited they all were, so I’m sure most (if not all) of this will see the light of day.
Firstly, beyond the pyromaniac Cawdor, sneaky Delaque, and very serious Van Saar, we will be getting Chaos and Genestealer cults. We’ve known this for a while of course, but we were told that the rules to come in White Dwarf will allow you to use existing miniatures, though they’d like to do more specific Necromunda minis for these factions in the future. This includes the feral genestealers of Hive Secundus.
Palanite Enforcers (as already covered) are planned, along with more Chaos cults, outlander gangs, and Guilds. The guilds seemed to be most people’s favourites from this, and the concept sketches for potential future miniatures looked amazing – full of imagination and certainly a great way of expanding the setting.
From the Water Guild, who hunt for this most precious liquid (which they mostly get from inside people, living or dead), to the Promethium Guild and the Corpse Guild, who all act as brokers and deal-makers for the houses and help to keep the hive running, the concepts looked amazing.
We may also get the opportunity to visit the Sump Sea and meet the pirates, rig workers and, I’m guessing with this one, underground space sharks, that inhabit the ocean-sized sump at the base of Hive Primus.
There will also be big monsters (think giant spiders and rats), and crazy psychic nonsense in the form of Wyrds returning to the game at some point.
We won’t be getting much in the way of Xenos – the team are really keen to keep this as much of a human (or maybe abhuman) setting and story as possible, but some lesser known elements and the occasional bit of tech might make its way through from the races beyond humanity. But don’t expect to see any Orks, T’au or Eldar appearing in the Underhive because they really don’t want it to happen. You’re more likely to see a Hrud!
We will however be getting Goliath Overlords and Escher Queens, who look insanely cool, and add a new tier of leadership to your own gangs.
Along with gang-specific bounty hunters, there will be a continual flow of bounty hunters, and indeed the new Gang War Book (more on that tomorrow) has some very cool rules to help you create your own.
Star of this particular part of the weekend though, was the pets. Each gang will be getting pets and animal aide. The Cawdors will have bomb rats, Escher will have Phyrr Cats, and the Goliath gangs will have Sumpcrocs, which are going to be called “Croco-dogs” whether they like it or not (that’s the studio name for them). These pieces will add some fun new mechanics and even more character to your gangs.
In the future, we should also be seeing gang-specific brutes, as well as slave ogryns, mining robots and much, much more. You really got the feeling that the sky is the limit with this game – it’s like a whole new frontier for gamers, painters, modellers and designers alike!
All in all, the future is looking full of fun and amazing miniatures for Necromunda, and it was a real treat to get the early glimpses of this from this event.
Or as the organisers joked, “the worst misspelling of ‘Angelis’ that you could possibly come up with”. The new book is due out at some point this year, but don’t expect it any time soon – there’s still a lot to be worked out for the two legions that will appear in full, with their primarchs: The Blood Angels and the White Scars. Sorry, Dark Angels players, but you’re going to have to wait a little longer, but you will be paired up with the monsters of the Dark Mechanicum when it does happen. There will also be a full Horus Heresy daemons list, along with additional rules for the Alpha Legion and Space Wolves.
Interestingly, the daemons you see in the heresy might be a bit more powerful than what you’re used to in 40K. This is because of the Ruinstorm which will be buffing the armies of the Empyrean, and that makes sense in a terrifying sort of way. What’s more, they’d like to include rules for every named daemon included in the Heresy series so far to help give your armies even more flavour.
Even more flavourful is the fact that daemons may react differently to different types of weapons – a blade may have a lot more strength against this enemy than even a bolter, so we’ll have to see what they do with that.
Signus Prime will dominate the book, but, as stated, the White Scars and Blood Angels will both get the full on legion treatment – Primarchs, new unique units, characters (Raldoron was the only one they spoke of at length), new ways to build your armies, new tactics… the works. There may even be two versions of the Khan – one where he’s on foot, and one where he’s on a jetbike, but we’ll have to wait and see if that happens.
Also, the “what’s the point” unit, the legion destroyers, will get an update in the form of a Blood Angels unit that will become the archetype across the legions, and they will have better rules. A lot of people seemed happy about this.
At some point in 2018, I think the owners of these two legions are going to be very happy indeed. And they’re aiming to bring out a book a year, which given the amount going on, sounds fair, even though some players are bound to find it frustrating. With these studios doing so many wonderful things, some sacrifices have to be made.
Next up, we were shown some new miniatures that are coming up, and there are some real crackers to look forward to in there. Like I said at the beginning of this (now enormous) post, you’ll have likely seen all of these elsewhere, so I’m just going to show you some of my favourites.
Moles and Termites! Another Epic scale classic is being reimagined for 40K by Forge World. The termite is a bit bigger than a rhino but smaller than land raider, and the Mole will be around the same size as the other Ordinatus engines, albeit with a massive tunnelling behemoth on top.
The classic landspeeder is coming back. This got a real cheer from everyone and it’ll be wonderfully fun to see this thing shooting around the tabletops again.
Scorcia meanwhile is a genuinely beautiful model and this image got a lot of oohs and aahs when it was shown off. But not quite as much as this guy…
Like I said, my images aren’t the best. For far better pics, I suggest heading over to the Warhammer Community website where the shiny official photos look much better.
Day 1 End
And that’s all I have for you from day 1. It was a busy one, and when I got back to my hotel room that night, I had a lot to process and think about.
Tomorrow, I’ll take you through Day 2 and all it had to bring, including the Golden Demon contest, new Necromunda stories, new Heresy miniatures, and why you should ask Josh Reynolds to tell you his grave-robbing/hog-hostage story. Oh, and I snuck on to Warhammer TV too! I hope this gives you plenty of information to keep you excited about both the Heresy and Necromunda. Tomorrow, I’ll give you even more. Onwards!