The Best of Warhammer Fest 2021

Last week was Warhammer Fest 2021, and this year – thanks to Covid – it was held online and open to anyone with a computer and an internet connection. I had thought I might put together a blog or two as events progressed, mostly so I could indulge myself and froth with excitement over each new model that was revealed, but sadly for me (and to the possible relief of my readership) I just didn’t have the time. However as I was reading the review of the event on No Rerolls (which is entertaining, informative and well worth a look by the way) I realised that I could “borrow” (read: blatantly steal) his idea and pick my favourite reveal from each day.  

So without further ado let’s take a look back through the past week and thrill at the sight of me squirming to pick only one thing per day out of the veritable tidal wave of new models, books and other goodies soon to be available.

WarhammerFestLogo

Monday:

Monday was all about the Age of Sigmar. I’ve already talked a lot about the mighty centaur Kragnos who’s soon to be shaking up the Mortal Realms. However despite being very curious to see where this new addition to the Destruction range might be leading my attention was mostly focussed on the shambling masses of the living dead. I’ve been a fan of the Vampire Counts for a long time so I’ll definitely be spending some of my hard earned pennies here as soon as these are released (and the first few will be going on sale in just under a week). There was a lot of very cool stuff shown here, and you can expect a review of the full range soonish, but for now I’ll have to make the difficult choice and decide on a favourite. I swithered over this for some time, I really like the twisted  creature that is Lauka Vai, the Mother of Nightmares and so I’m going to bend my own rules and give her an honourable mention anyway.

Lauka Vai

However my current favourite has to be Belladamma Volga, the matriarch of the Vyrkos clan of vampires. That’s right – we’ve seen Radukar the Wolf in the game Cursed City, now we get to meet his grandmother!

Belladamma Volga

Tuesday:

Time to switch over to the 41st Millennium for the first of the week’s two 40k themed sessions. This one was focussed around the Sisters of Battle and as a result excited me less than most of the other days. Not that I have anything against the Sisters, and I’ll be the first to tell you that they’ve deserved every single one of their new models after so many years in the wilderness, but they’re not a range I’m particularly thrilled by either. That said there are a few really nice models in the army so perhaps, someday, I could see myself putting together a small crusade. Given my well known appreciation for a phalanx of troops it’s fair to say that should that day dawn a squad of shielded Celestian Sacresants will be marching at the head of my holy warriors.

Celestian Sacresants

Wednesday

Wednesday was all about the books published by Black Library, and as someone who reads even more than he paints I was especially keen to see what was revealed here. Having read almost the entire Horus Heresy series so far (I’m part way through the most recent novel – Mortis by John French) I can’t wait for the next instalment. Sadly wait is exactly what I’ll have to do, Black Library having the irritating habit of releasing special limited editions of their novels then keeping the rest of us hanging around for months before the standard release (I suspect this is because rich people read very slowly and have to be given a head start but I’ve yet to have this confirmed). Warhawk is written by Chris Wraight, to my mind one of the best authors in the Black Library stable, and stars Jaghatai Khan (the eponymous Warhawk of Chogoris), who’s probably my favourite loyalist primarch, as he makes his famous strike for the Lion’s Gate space port in one of the key battles of the war. Needless to say I think it’ll be worth the wait.

Warhawk

Thursday

Thursday was boxed games day, which meant it was probably the day I was looking forward to the most. Still I feel I could be excused for being a little disappointed here. Partly that’s because the bar was always going to be set high, the range of things they might possibly cover being much greater than the time they had available. Still it would be nice to see what’s next for Blood Bowl, since the release of the most recent edition things have been very quiet on that front and I felt certain we’d be seeing a new team. Equally Warcry has been kicking along almost entirely on models borrowed from Age of Sigmar since its release back in 2019 and, given its ongoing popularity, it would be nice to know if GW have any more models planned specifically for it. Then there’s Adeptus Titanicus which just received a book dedicated to the loyalist legios who fought in the Horus Heresy – and thus surely deserve a book to cover the traitor legios (and more importantly some warped Chaos Titans to unleash!). Finally, and it was always going to be a long-shot, it would have been nice to see some kind of official comment on what the hell happened to Cursed City. I know they’re not going to stand up and say “Oh, we’re terribly sorry, it was all a big misunderstanding, the game is back in stock and expansions are on their way” but a man can dream eh!

However, enough about what we didn’t see, because what we did see was downright awesome. The Delaque are back in the underhive of Necromunda, bolstered by some wonderfully weird new recruits. Honestly I didn’t expect to see the new Delaque so soon, the Redemptionists haven’t even been released yet – hopefully that means the twisted fire-starters are just around the corner.

The Nacht-Ghul are just fun to say, and stand ready to spring from the shadows and do some murdering on behalf of the House of Secrets.

Nacht-Ghul

Alongside them we have the creepy Psy-Gheists, one of whom appears to be… ahem… wrestling with a snake.

Psy-Gheists

And the box also contains a Piscean Spektor, which looks to be a bigger and weirder version of the Cephalopod Spekter  I was banging on about just a few weeks ago.

Spektors

Oh and there were also some fish elves and a tiny plane but who cares about that when there’s new Necromunda!

Friday

Friday took us back to the 41st Millennium and for me proved to be a lot more exciting than Tuesday had been. I’ve been gathering a mighty horde of Orks for many a long year (over a decade by my counting) but I can never get enough of the big green thugs. Now there’s a whole new wave of them approaching and it goes without saying I’m an overexcited boy already.

Orks

Much as I would like to choose “all of them” as my personal favourite my own rules say I can pick only one so if you put a shoota to my head and made me pick I’d have to choose this guy, Zodgrod Wortsnagga.

Zodgrod Wortsnagga Old

Oh who am I kidding, that’s what he looked like back in the early 90’s (and damn cool he looked back then too). Nowadays however he looks a bit more like this…

Zodgrod Wortsnagga

And because I simply can’t resist I’ll have to give another honourable mention, this time to this enthusiastic little git and his squig buddy. Those Space Marines won’t know what hit them!

Gobbo

Saturday

Rounding out the week we had a surprise reveal (although I’m not sure it was all that surprising) in the form of the new edition of Age of Sigmar.

AoS3

AoS has come a long way since it launched, the once controversial offspring of Warhammer growing into a respectable beast in its own right. With three years having passed since the launch of the second edition many people surmised that the third would soon be upon us. The real surprise however came in the form of Stormcasts that I actually rather like the look of. I know readers, I’m as shocked as you are!

Stormcast Eternal

Who am I kidding, I’ve been known to enjoy a Stormcast Eternal in the past (I’ve even painted one). Still I wasn’t expecting to be as impressed as I was, these are truly fine looking models and if I was a Stormcast collector (something I doubt I’ll ever be in a serious way) I’d be over the moon with these.

Annihilators

However I think I’m most curious about their adversaries in the forthcoming boxset. Games Workshop have already announced that the next edition will be era of Destruction, as the orcs, goblins, ogres and their allies finally get stuck into the fight in a big way. Furthermore the preview revealed that something is lurking in the swamps, ready to fall upon those unfortunate Stormcasts. Could we be about to see a return of the long lost Fimir? Either way something for the Destruction alliance that lurks in a mire is always going to be enough to grab my attention!

So, that was my pick of the week’s previews. Did I miss out your favourite or pick something you thought was rubbish? As ever the comment’s section is all yours.


21 responses to “The Best of Warhammer Fest 2021

  • Gavroche

    It’s nice to see that at least the Cursed City style of Undead will live on in the main range. The new skeletons, zombies & vampires are so much better than the current AOS ones. And who knows, maybe some CC miniatures will shown up at some point in different packaging?

    Also interesting: improved anatomy for the Stormcasts. I like 🙂

    • Wudugast

      I very much agree, the new undead are leaps and bounds ahead of the models they’re replacing. The whole range looks really good now to me. I hope you’re right about the Cursed City models. I suppose it depends on what happened to that game – if it was removed for legal reasons then I’m guessing they’ll not want to do anything that might draw attention to it but if it was a case of physical damage to the moulds then perhaps some of them can be salvaged (I’m speculating wildly here of course, I don’t think anyone outside of a dungeon in Nottingham really knows what happened there). At least with the new Soulblight models being a good aesthetic match for Cursed City it’ll work well to incorporate them into the game – I’m already thinking of throwing in a few extra zombies or skeletons if I think the players are having things too easy. 😀

  • Túbal Villar - Virakotxa

    As a newcomer to the “Space Karens” range… What can I say… As I saw that “important lady on walker” I felt it. A deep I must have this!

    • Gavroche

      “space karens” 🙂 that one’s going to stick :-p

    • Wudugast

      She’s pretty damn amazing isn’t she? I was hard-pressed to pick between her and the Sacresants. This may be heresy but I don’t really like the model for Saint Celestine but Yndrasta, the Celestial Spear is really cool – I keep thinking she’d be a good basis for a Celestine conversion.

  • InconvenientMoonRising

    4/5 no mention of crab

  • Alex

    Oooh, Fimir… Could it be?? They’ll have to rework their backstory though…

    • Wudugast

      I’m speculating wildly of course but here’s what we know: they live in swamps… and that’s basically it. However I think it’s safe to surmise based on the available information that they also: are part of the Destruction alliance and go around abducting people. The factions currently in the Destruction alliance are Orcs, Goblins, Trolls, Ogres, Giants, Kragnos (and whoever might hang out with him) and Fimir (who moved to Destruction from Chaos following the end of WHFB). Abducting people doesn’t sound much like the speed of any of the above apart from Goblins and Fimir (and Fimir are the ones who were famous for it). Goblins and Trolls might also live in swamps but Trolls seem a bit big as individual models for a starter set, these tend to lean heavily on infantry models. Fimir or Goblins are the only ones who tick all the boxes and we already have the Gloomspite Gits covering “Goblins which live in damp nasty places”. I would suspect that any future Gobbos would cover something a bit different, the crazy contraptions like the doom diver or something like the wolf riders.

      If it is Fimir I think a reworking of the backstory would definitely be in order but apart from old grognards I wonder how many people would remember the unsavoury details, I presume that was all brushed aside when Forgeworld brought them back a few years ago and/or when they showed up in Total War? Moving to the Mortal Realms and cutting all ties to Chaos sounds like a fine time for them to make a fresh start!

      • Alex

        There is an undeniable logic there mate – fingers crossed because there is some awesome potential in that range 🤞

  • theimperfectmodeller

    Some great looking models coming our way by the look of it! 🤗

  • Kuribo

    I think there was plenty of good stuff but I was surprised overall that there wasn’t more surprises or things that knocked my socks off. Maybe it was because some of the reveals are for factions or games I’m not heavily invested in too. Either way, I didn’t see any sculpts in this lot I’d be likely to pain in the future. With that said, there are things like the Orks with Squigs that will make many very happy and I’m glad for anyone like that 🙂

    • Wudugast

      Aye, you get some reveals like that. Vampires and Orks are two of my favourite factions in AoS and 40k respectively, and obviously anything Necromunda makes me happy, so I enjoyed it a lot but I can see how if your favourite factions weren’t represented it’d be different. Previews like that can be a bit of a relief though, you feel like you’ve got some breathing space to catch up on your painting rather than trying to spread a limited budget around an increasing pool of exciting models. I’d have liked to have seen some more attention paid to Blood Bowl, Warcry and Adeptus Titanicus but I guess we can’t have it all at once. 🙂

      • Kuribo

        I wanted to be excited by new stuff but realistically, I have tons to paint as it is so I’m more in the relieved camp than the disappointed one. Its funny how that works but you described it well 🙂

  • Faust

    Sounds like it was pretty fun, despite being online. I like the looks of the assassin Delaque models. They are one of the cooler looking Necro factions, though I never got around to assembling or playing them.

    • Wudugast

      Yeah, it was good fun I thought. Not that I’m doing down the way they’d usually do things, packing a few hundred people and their BO into a hotel must bring a great social and community feel, gives people the chance to meet up, play games, see friends etc etc. This one gave hundreds of thousands of people a chance to see things “live” and for free though and that was really cool. Hopefully they’ll keep some of that when things become a bit more normal, maybe have the presentations at an event in the way they used to bit stream them live at the same time or something. 

      As for the Delaque I really rate them, one of the coolest looking Necromunda gangs. Haven’t got very far with painting mine either but they’re on the list as soon as I can find the time. 

      • Faust

        Yea, they really should stream some of the events post-pandemic to include the people who can’t attend. I’ve heard a number of people/businesses who just plan on going back to the way things were before pandemic and makes it no sense. At my work, one of our bosses said we need to get everyone back in the office. He didn’t see how people could alternate working from home because “ how would people would take their computers back and forth to the office?”. Ummm, WTF?’ Being in IT, I’ve taken my laptop home ever since I got one. Probably more than half of the people at my work have laptops now as well, and guess what…most are taking them home. People should open their eyes and learn to adapt.

        Yep, Delaque are cool looking, but the one team I really wanted to put together and play was probably my least favorite team initially “Orlocks”. I don’t know what it is, I guess they are the middle of the road guys, like “humans” in D&D. But they sort of appeal to me. Maybe someday.

      • Wudugast

        Poor bloke, is he feeling lonely by any chance? 😂 Seriously I’m not sure I understand the rush to get everyone back into the office. Maybe it’s because I’ve worked from home at least some of the time in every job I’ve had (well, apart from when I was a shop assistant… or when I worked as a cleaner but that’s splitting hairs). In this country there’s talk of keeping people working from home so that we can get everything else out of lockdown which seems like a good move. Not that I don’t see the benefits of office working but something has to give and that seems like a good compromise for now. Honestly though I don’t think things will ever go back to the way they were before the pandemic, if for no other reason than that our way of doing things and thinking about things has changed. Old habits will die hard, but a lot of new habits will linger as well. 

        Aye, I really didn’t get the Orlocks either to begin with. They’ve really grown on me though and I think for similar reasons, if I found myself on Necromunda they’re the guys I feel I could relate to (and who might be willing to help a brother out). I’ve only painted one of them so far but I must have built more of them than any other gang (except maybe the Cawdor). Another project I’d like to crack on with someday soon. 

      • Faust

        Yea, actually I’ve heard a few people at my work are pretty lonely and can’t wait for everyone to come back. Good grief.

        Cool, hope to see your Orlocks someday soon! 😀

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