It’s been a couple of months of the new White Dwarf and it’s about time I started reviewing it again. After the jump find out what’s in March’s issue and read my thoughts on it.
Firstly, isn’t the cover beautiful. Subscribers get a special edition cover with a different image with no messages covering the art. I think that’s really cool.
Phil Kelly is the guest editor.
We’re introduced to the team and get an editorial from guest editor Phil Kelly. Phil has a witty writing style and I really enjoyed his introduction.
All killer, no filler.
The contents aren’t in chronological order. Instead, it’s arranged into sections. There are four games systems and then some articles which don’t fit with the four categories such as Black Library, an interview with the designers of a new game called Wrath & Glory and many more. Worryingly, there is no Lord of the Rings coverage.
What you might have noticed there are no pages for new releases. Previous issues of White Dwarf would have 30 to 40 pages listing that month’s releases. It was useful to get the dates and the prices in the magazine but honestly now it’s taken out I don’t miss it. Email newsletters and Warhammer Community have this covered now.
Well Done BanZai on being featured!
Despite being a brand new magazine Readers’ Models is still a feature. I’m pleased about this because I love seeing other peoples’ models. It’s a shame it’s only two pages this month. The letters page called Contact is back as well.
Phil Kelly – World Creator.
Worlds of Warhammer is a regular series written by someone from Design Studio. In this issue, Phil takes the reins and offers his world-class advice on creating planetary warzones for your scenarios and campaigns. There are lots of ideas here. The article is really interesting because it feels like there is no agenda to sell models. Quite refreshing.
After Phil’s article, Jervis Johnson picks up the pen and writes an article for Rules of Engagement another regular feature written by someone from the Design Studio. This month’s write up is fascinating as Jervis explains how points values are created for Age of Sigmar.
Nick Horth pens a tale of malevolent evil stirring in the free city of Lethis.
Four-page short story. A really nice addition to White Dwarf. Background on the models we collect and paint is a huge part of the hobby and it’s great to see it in the magazine pages. Once again, it’s not about the latest releases or trying to sell the latest models.
Four-way Battle Royale against Order, Chaos, Death and Destruction!
Battle Reports have been a staple of White Dwarf for decades and they are still part of the new magazine. At 20 pages long the detail in this report is amazing. Huge pictures capture the action and it’s easy to follow. They include the Battleplan at the start of the article so you can play your own game of Carnage.
Explore the Mortal Realms.
A new feature in the magazine takes a look at the Fantastical Realms of the Mortal Realms exploring the background and art that creates these worlds. The Realm of Life is the focus of this issue. There is advice on converting your heroes and paint schemes.
Realms of Battle is a regular hobby feature…
…with paint and building advice.
In this article, James Littler shares his skills in a really detailed 10-page piece. Some useful advice. It’s a shame it’s all Games Workshop plastic kits. No polystyrene hills or foamcore ruins here.
The man, the myth, the legend.
This month’s editor; Phil Kelly is interviewed over eight pages. It’s an in-depth piece. I love these insightful musings. I find it interesting, things like Phil’s job title is Warhammer Age of Sigmar Senior Background Writer, I didn’t realise he just wrote for Age of Sigmar now. It’s also a real treat seeing his Hive Fleet in the pages again. Great read.
Glory Points article has been in the last three issues.
This stands out as being an odd inclusion. OK, it’s not the only ‘Specialist Game’ as Bloodbowl has a feature as well, but I would have thought that these would fall under Age of Sigmar section and Lord of the Rings would have got its own section. However, if you’re into Shadespire (and I am) this article explains how they write the rules.
Index series gives you 100% official rules content.
Before we get to Index Imperialis, there is an article from Robin Cruddace (Lead Games Developer for 40k). He writes a piece for Echoes from the Warp. Interestingly, his opening is almost identical to Jervis’ but goes on to talk about something different. He shares his experience at Nova Open, a tournament held in the USA.
After that, we get the impressive 22 page Index Imperialis. This is like a mini codex with background info, art, bios, timelines, painted models, paint guides and rules and points values. I was going to say I wish this was a separate pullout, but I have a feeling the Index series might be released as a compendium just like they did in the early 2000s. The rules presented in the Index series are 100% official.
Our namesake returns with four 40k Warlords.
Sam Pearson, James Gallagher, Mark Bedford and James Karch take up the monthly challenge to paint armies. This is the first instalment of this series so we start to see the beginnings of their forces.
Army of the Month: Imperial Knights.
Regular White Dwarf contributor Damian Pedley shares his Legio Invigilata Titan Legion in this month’s Featured Army. I love this feature. It’s fantastic to see hard working hobbyists rewarded be being thrust in the spotlight. Well done Damian.
Wrath & Glory: 40k Roleplaying Game.
If you’re into RPGs and 40K then you’ll want to read this Interview with game designers Timothy Brown and Ross Watson. Some nice new Illustrations to look at in this section.
Bloodbowl Play book: Waaagh!
The Goblins and their allies get a tactics feature in this month’s White Dwarf. It’s a nice size at six pages long and has some sweet diagrams and advice.
Interview with Black Library author James Swallow.
The interview with James Swallow is about his latest book Buried Dagger. Part of the Horus Heresy series this book is the final curtain drop before the final act. The interview touches on some of his other novels and audiobooks as well. Pretty interesting but the final four pages are very useful, its a roadmap on the order to read all the Horus Heresy books.
After that, the magazine ends with four pages of In the Studio. This is another small insight into what the game designers do behind the scenes. This article is an evolution of the old In the White Dwarf bunker.
It’s plain to see White Dwarf has moved back under the wing of the Design Studio. Dan Harden is the only staff writer now and the team is the smallest it’s been for as long as I can remember. Main writing duties have been taken over by the Games Design Studio. The thing I love about this is White Dwarf feels official and that’s because it is Official. It’s written by the same staff who write the rules and background in the Army Books or Codices.
Overall, it’s full of interesting insights, beautifully painted models, rules for games, modelling guides and loads more. It isn’t bogged down with adverts or articles that are only there to sell the latest models. It doesn’t even list the new releases. It’s pure hobby content without an agenda. White Dwarf has it’s credibility back. Now if they can just squeeze in some freebies it would be a perfect score.
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