Mole Rats in Space

Miniatures includes the miniature games and hobby, where detail of the figures and terrain are of primary importance. Many miniature gamers spend more time painting than playing.

The big news from Games Workshop was the Warhammer Quest re-issue, but that wasn’t on display at Toy Fair this year. Instead, the main booth was all about the recently-released version of Blood Bowl. I loved the old version of Blood Bowl, and getting to see the newer line — with the professionally-painted miniatures — was really neat. The new boxed set, retailing at $99, contains 12 miniatures for the Ork and Human teams, in green and blue respectively, ready for assembly and paint. Additional teams come in colored plastic to easily identify teams without the need for painting miniatures before play. Skaven and Dwarven teams are priced at $35.

New to this edition are different fields to play on. The board that comes with the base game has a human field on one side and a distinctively orkish field on the reverse. Additional themed pitches include the $38 Skaven/Dwarven double-sided board with rules for underground “weather” effects and a $32 Blood on the Snow pitch with a winter-themed pair of fields “covered in reindeer skulls, squashed presents, loads of blood and some slightly dubious patches of yellow snow.”

However, you’ll really need Death Zone, a 48-page book containing seven team types (Skaven, Nurgle, Dwarf, Elven Union, High Elf, Dark Elf and Wood Elf) with background, rosters and famous examples of each, to complete your game. The book also contains additional rules for the coaching staff, season play, star players, additional skills… Throwing rules like this into a separate product is what Games Workshop did for the previous version of Blood Bowl to keep the entry point to the game low. Arguably, the same case can be made for this edition, as the base game is just under $100. But if you really want to get into the new version of Blood Bowl, you’re going to need this $25 softcover book.

Cards replace the punchboard tiles from the earlier version, and — for those of you who remember the last incarnation of Blood Bowl — the box is actually sturdy enough to hold the game.

Downstairs in Games Workshop’s second booth, the two newest lines showcased are the Warhammer 40k Starter Sets and the Warhammer 40k Build+Paint series.

Both Starter Sets retail for $50 and will be shipping soon. Battle for Vedros contains 28 miniatures that require no glue for assembly: nine Space Marines (including a Dreadnought) and nineteen Orks. A basic rulebook and dice for the game are included in the package. Tyranid Encounter! is at the same price point but comes with 40 miniatures: twenty-four Tyranids and sixteen Space Marines.

The Build+Paint sets will be available in waves. Series 1 is being released now with miniature kits that contain glue, paint pots, and a brush starting at $14.99. Items on display included three Ork and three Space Marine kits. The Ork Blastabike and Space Marine Attack Bike retail for $14.99, the Ork Trukkboyz and the Space Marine Speeder Strike retail for $24.99, and the larger forces for Orks (Raiders) and Space Marines (Heavy Assault) are priced at $39.99. Like the Blood Bowl miniatures, the Build+Paint sets come in colored plastic to allow for quick play at the table before painting.

Game Bandit - Scouring the net to find the cheapest discount boardgames and best free boardgame prizesFor the next few weeks, the prizes that come with Chick-fil-A kid’s meals are mini games from Educational Insights. To get the full-sized versions of those games at 20% off direct from Educational Insights, use coupon code “GAMEPLAY”.

Spartan Games has packaged up some bundle deals in Halo Ground Command (Covenant and USNC) and Halo Fleet Battles (Covenant and USNC).

The Mum Diaries (UK) is giving away the Multiplication and Writing Letters games from Cartamundi’s Fundels series.

Over at Bundle of Holding, the latest offering is for the Classic Battletech RPG (originally published as MechWarrior third edition).

Buy one HexBug Battle Ground, get one 35% off.

EverythingBoardGames is giving away one copy Quodd Heroes from Wonderment Games and three copies of Truck Off: The Food Truck Frenzy from Adams Apple Games.

Animal-themed products are on-sale in Eagle-Gryphon Games’ Safari Sale.

Find 77 games in Fat Brain Toys “Biggest Sale of the Year“.

Warhammer Quest Shadows Over Hammerhal is a boxed game for 2-5 players, set in – and below – the splendid city of Order, Hammerhal. The game can handle 4 player characters with a 5th playing as the Game Master. Also, the game is compatible with Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower Hero Cards, so any miniatures you already have for that game can be used in Shadows Over Hammerhal.

Inside the box is 31 miniatures, a 72-page guidebook, a 32-page adventure book for the gamemaster to use, 18 double-sided board sections, 55 cards, 12 dice and counters/markers for tracking your heroes as they gain experience and skills.

Last published around 1995, Warhammer Quest is making a triumphant return thanks to Games Workshop finally caving into fans’ wishes. Releasing at the end of this month you can preorder the game for $150 and get some sweet extras for free, includin an art card of The Yncarne, Avatar of Ynnead and a free Gamemaster’s Screen.

Game Bandit - Scouring the net to find the cheapest discount boardgames and best free boardgame prizesDruid City Games is giving away a $500 shopping spree to Funagain Games.

Retweet Weird Hobbies for a chance to win WOTC’s Dungeons & Dragons adventure campaign, Out of the Abyss.

Use coupon code “rain17” to get 10% off a single order direct from Pazio.

The Advanced Adventures deal at Bundle of Holding features six OSRIC modules in the Starter Collection for $5.95 and nine more modules with the Bonus Collection starting at $15.80. The Bundle for Two deal collects games for two players (one GM, one player/character) in honor of Valentine’s Day.

Actualol (AKA Jon Purkis) is giving away five board games he says are much better than Monopoly. I’ve played three of them and I’d have to agree.

As part of the launch of its Kickstarter project, RAINN Studios will be giving away Lovecraftian-themed Elder Dice.

EncounterRoleplay is giving away three copies of the Dungeons & Dragons Player’s Handbook.

Use coupon code “RoosterSale” to save on purchases direct from Greater Than Games. How much savings the company’s email forgot to say.

Use coupon code “LOVE2017” to save 10% and get free shipping from

EverythingBoardGames is giving away Dice Throne from Mind Bottling Games, Element from Rather Dashing Games, and two copies of Affliction from DPH Games (or $30 gift certificates if the game doesn’t fund on Kickstarter).

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, Victory Point Games is discounting all bagged games by 25%. Zulus on the Ramparts is discounted 20%. And everything else is discounted 10%.

Mile High Game Guys is giving away Imperial Settlers from Portal Games.

@SmashUpDigital on Twitter is giving away a new copy of the Smash Up What Were We Thinking expansion from AEG each week this month.

Spectrum Games’ Heroic Valentine’s Day sale means discounts of 40% on Cartoon Action Hour, Retrostar, and Capes, Cowls and Villains Fowl.

Use coupon code “LOVE14” for 14% off purchases from White Wizard Games. Discount ends today.

Also ending today, Treasure Tokens are on-sale 50-70% off (depending on quantity) from GameTrayz.

Save 20% site-wide at Dog Might Games.

In-store only at Toys “R” Us, buy one get one 40% off on all arts & crafts, board games, puzzles, and collector cards.

Online from Toys “R” Us, save 20% on all Monopoly games.

Deadly Terrain for Warhammer 40K

Games Workshop is shipping later this week Deathworld Forest, a $130 box filled with the makings of deadly terrain for Warhammer 40,000. Included are 84 plastic pieces that can be mixed and matched to assemble grapple weed, shardwrack spines, barbed venomgorse, and eldritch ruins. Also in the box are the specific rules for each individual component.

As part of a broader effort to revitalize its steampunkish, super-science Dystopian Wars miniatures battle game, Spartan Games is turning the series’ main line of battleships in to modular figures. Parts provided for the different variants of each nation’s ships will also be magnet-friendly so players can switch out components as needed.

Other changes to the refreshed game include new Core Nation Expansion Box packaging, additional Alliance Nation factions, and a Dystopian Wars Core Rule Book version 2.5 with Fleet Action alternate fast play rules and a World Builder campaign construction system.

New from Turn One Gaming Supplies, a series of Space Invaders themed card sleeves ($5 for 50 sleeves), deck boxes ($4), play mats ($21), and dice ($7 for 6d6)—each in multiple designs.



Reaper 25th Anniversary Miniatures

This year marks the 25th anniversary for Reaper Miniatures. In celebration, the company is producing a special series of figures and giving them away to customers—one figure for every $40 ordered direct.

A new figure in the series will be revealed each month. The one for February is a reimagined Domur, High Mage from the Dark Heaven Legends line.


PETA Don’t Like Your 40K

Never mind the destruction of civilizations, the human skulls, or the other violent themes, PETA (specifically the UK organization of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) wants Games Workshop to stop sculpting its Warhammer 40,000 miniature figures with images of animal fur.

PETA has written to Games Workshop CEO Kevin Rountree asking that the leading British miniature war-gaming brand ban “fur” garments from all Warhammer characters. While we appreciate that they are fictional, draping them in what looks like a replica of a dead animal sends the message that wearing fur is acceptable – when, in fact, it has no more place in 2017 than it would in the year 40,000.

Come to think of it, how do they know it’s not fake fur?

Penny Arcade, partnering with ReedPOP, is launching its first tabletop-focused game convention, PAX Unplugged. The event, which is scheduled for November 17-19 this year at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, will join five other PAX shows with special attention to board games, card games, RPGs, and miniatures.

PAX Unplugged will take all the elements that have drawn millions of gamers to PAX – the chance to play and see the reveal of highly-anticipated upcoming games, attend game-inspired music concerts, participate in tournaments and watch panels with industry leaders – but with a renewed focus on fostering the best event for the burgeoning tabletop gaming community.

That makes the weekend before Thanksgiving a hot one for game events. PAX Unplugged is scheduled opposite BGG.CON and ChiTAG, though each serves different target markets.

Tickets to PAX Unplugged will go on sale in the spring.

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