When Warhammer Visions first arrived we were all excited to see what the new monthly magazine would offer. Many readers were disappointed with the change and cancelled subscriptions. I infamously wrote in my review “It’s a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist”. Here we are 16 issues later and we’re confronted with Warhammer Visions 2.0, after the jump I’ll tell you what’s in this issue and what the changes are to previous Visions.
For those reading this that have never read Warhammer Visions, let me start by explaining the previous format. It’s was a small format (roughly half the size of a normal magazine) that was predominately staged photos of gorgeous models on gorgeous scenery with light and smoke effects. Text was limited to captions and descriptions and was in three languages. (English, French and German). The format was heavily criticised because the small size wasn’t ideal for viewing the models and the lack of text didn’t make a lot of sense when they were posting photos from Battle Reports.
The first 58 pages are glorious photos of the previous months releases. Following that hefty section is my favourite section, Army of the Month, this month my friend James Karch has his Imperium Army featured over 22 pages and it’s a real treat for the eyes. 26 pages of Golden Demon entries from last years Warhammer Fest event are next. The photos are very large and clear. This is the first part of the Golden Demon coverage from last year. 18 pages are next from a section called War Machines, and it showcases vehicles from staff at Games Workshop head office.
One of the new sections called In the Spotlight is a lot like Army of the Month, but it’s focussed on smaller collections that don’t necessarily belong to an army, this month they’re the Blood Angels and Dark Angels from Paul Norton (a popular painter on the Facebook page Eavier Metal) he gets 8 pages. Just the 4 pages next for Eavy Metal painters to showcase their projects. 6 pages for another favourite feature of mine called Reader’s Parade Ground. I like this feature because us the reader have a chance of sharing our work. My Imperial Knight is actually in this issue as well (I’ll try not to be biassed). My friend Dan Harden shares his Waaagh Ghazghkull army over 10 pages.
Parade Ground receives 8 pages and the month features Fast Attack choices. Blanchitsu is 4 pages of Phil Kelly’s Daemon Engines and they’re lovely, I wish they had a couple more pages. Skitarii fans are going to be happy with 6 pages of paint splatter guides. 6 pages of Store Finder listings, 2 pages for subscription offers and a Parting Shot image of Iyanden Ghost Warriors rounds the issue off.
My 10th issue including models I’ve painted.
So the first change is the size. It’s now slightly larger than old White Dwarf. The photography hasn’t changed, it’s still the same quality, they’re just larger and easy to study the details. The weak sections such as the wordless Battle Reports and the Kit Bash articles are now gone. I was never a fan of Kit Bash because it was predominately head and weapon swaps, rarely was there a flash of inspiration and looking at grey plastic unpainted models isn’t very interesting. So the new sections that replace these sections such as In the Spotlight are much more interesting to look at. Another important change is the Warhammer Visions features more original content. It went through a stage when I would open up my monthly Visions and recognise all the pictures that had already been in White Dwarf weekly. That has changed now for the better. There is definitely more text in this magazine and it really helps. It’s still limited to picture descriptions so don’t expect articles to read.
The articles are all identical. Parade Ground, In the Spotlight, Reader’s Parade Ground, Army of the Month, could all be one big section called Painted Models. I think they need something different. Terrain Showcase. Diorama Showcase. Gaming Table Showcase. Man Cave Showcase. Gaming Club visit. So many areas of the hobby that could do with advertising and could break up the magazine and give it more depth than just painted models. I’m not even saying add more words or articles because White Dwarf weekly is doing a fine job of that.
So the big question… is it still a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist? Well actually, it isn’t. I think the weekly release schedule from Games Workshop has grown so fast that White Dwarf weekly is now a companion to the release schedule with the majority of the pages dedicated to explaining the releases, how to paint them and the rules. This has created the problem that if you don’t collect the new release there is nothing for you. Visions goes some way to fix by sharing a huge swathe of models from different factions. Visions feels like a community magazine with lots of reader contributions and competition entrants.
Oh and if you collect Warhammer or the Hobbit, you might want to skip this issue. There is nothing in it for you. A sign of GW winding down the Hobbit and Warhammer End Times perhaps?
There are new subscription prices, including subscriptions for White Dwarf weekly. Check out the games workshop website or this new Issue of Visions for details if you’re interested.
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