It’s been at least a decade since I last attended any kind of Games Workshop event, so it was was something of a novelty for me heading to the Ricoh Arena for Warhammer Fest. New venue and new format from my perspective and I had a pretty fun day truth be told. Between the retail areas, the studio demo pods, seminars and of course Golden Demon I had no trouble filling my day (and emptying wallet!) with all manner of Horus Heresy and Warhammer paraphernalia. After picking up a pre-release Alpharius (no, not that Alpharius, the other one) for Kev I scored myself a nice event only 30th anniversary Land Speeder with MkVI crew, the Warhammer World only Praetor and Traitor Librarian, an Ixion Hale and some rather nifty Warhammer gear ideal for the forthcoming Tarssis Heresy event.
Previews and teasers of the forthcoming 2.0 release of Age of Sigmar notwithstanding the big news for me was understandably the long-awaited official reveal of Adeptus Titanicus with confirmed release date of August. The re-imaging of the war engines in a larger scale was something I was originally unsure about as, but now I’ve seen them in the flesh I am a convert. The Warlord in particular has a far more dominant presence on the field than its smaller ‘Epic scale’ predecessors creating a far more dramatic impression of a true engine war. The Knight Questor Banners are not just there to show off the scale, but serve a function of harassing fast movers in comparison with the lumbering Battle Titans. The Warlord, Reaver, Knights and Buildings are all plastic with all bar the Warlord coming with a variety of weapon options. The kits are already magnet friendly by design (although not included), so planning for inevitable alternative loadout expansion packs looks simple. The Warlord that comes both in the Grand Master boxed set and separately has a fixed configuration of twin Volcano Cannons and Barrage Missiles. Decals appear to be included for at the very least Legio Gryphonicus (War Griffons) and Legio Mortis (Death Heads) along with Knight familiar households. I’ve little doubt more decal options will follow from Forgeworld.
Release is not too far away now and ideally after Tarssis thank goodness as I need no more distractions. The core rules book, Warlord and Knights kits and the Grand Master box bundle are due for release August with the Reaver to follow a month later and the Warhound (not shown) likely the month after that. The Warhound is apparently done but Specialist Games were keeping their powder dry one assumes to keep some surprises back for the Forgeworld Open Day in July. The weekend I am at Tarssis, oh the irony!
The other big event was of course Golden Demon, which I entered for the first time in 20 years with a Leviathan Dreadnought in the 40K Vehicle category. Technically it’s Horus Heresy but whose splitting hairs. There were some stunning entries as expected being the Golden Demon classics, particularly I felt in the fantasy and specialist games categories, which I thought was really encouraging. Age of Sigmar seems to have really fired a lot of painters imagination and I can only see that getting better with the wave of new releases and a new version of the game. Sadly my Word Bearers effort didn’t meet the cut for a finalist pin but there’s always next year and/or a different category. I think my mistake was playing it safe and not choosing a theme outside of my comfort zone or doing a miniature not part of an army. I’ll be uploading some proper photos of the Word Bearers as they progress in their own gallery section, but for now you can check out my efforts on Instagram, or of course live as they are painted on Twitch TV!
Until then I’m going to leave you with my absolute favourite mini of the entire day; Simon Egan’s forthcoming Horus Heresy Character series Knight-Commander Jenetia Krole. This was completely unexpected as I had no idea he’d been working on sculpting her but one of the nicest figures in my humble opinion so far. Not the biggest but certainly makes up for it in dramatic poise. A miniature I cannot wait to paint in the future.