Musings on Warcry

I’m really into Warcry right now. I think the fast-paced gameplay is a real big factor, because time is definitely at a premium for me at the minute. Having a game that can be played during a lunch break is a huge draw, and it helps that the whole thing is actually really enjoyable, of course! GW models are mostly amazing, after all, so the whole thing is quite a feast for the visual senses, and with that fantastic scenery you can get some incredible cinematic moments. Of course, it would help if I’d actually got round to painting mine up!

I’m very slow at painting, not helped by the fact I’m definitely a hobby butterfly, but also of course I don’t have time for much of anything right now! I’ve managed to grab a couple of moments – possibly an hour and a half in total, spread across a few days – where I’ve been able to do some painting as well, so I’ve been really excitably working on The Unmade, who have always performed pretty well amazing in my games of Warcry, so definitely deserve to have some love. They’re so weird, and that Blissful One is possibly the most disturbing model GW has ever produced, but I love just how disturbing they are. I’m still very much early days with them all, but I think things are coming together now, and once the basing has been done, I think I’ll likely be daubing liberal amounts of blood all over the place.

For a while now, I’ve had just the four warbands built – Iron Golem, Untamed Beasts, Cypher Lords, and Unmade – with only two of those in varying stages of painted. While I really don’t want to go off the deep end with having so much stuff, I also feel a bit like I want some more variety, and have been thinking about building up some more minis, as time allows. I have all of the Warcry warbands, and for a while have been considering either the Corvus Cabal or the Spire Tyrants, just for a bit of variety in games. However, after playing two games recently where the minis have been primed black, I realise how drab that can make the game feel. It’s difficult to make out any level of detail, and so you feel very much like you’re playing with a lump of plastic – it’s like the Chaos Black spray sucks all definition out from a distance! The Iron Golem look like they should be very nice to paint, too, so I’m thinking I might give them my attention once I’m done with the freaky Unmade.

Of course, there is all this terrain, as well.

I have the Defiled Ruins terrain set as well, and I’d like to get cracking and build some of that so that I can try out different environments, but again, I’m very mindful of the fact that I have a ton of the stuff from the original core set to get a grip with! Then there’s the Catacombs box, which I suppose I could try out at some point because the terrain there is mainly doors and bridges, and I am quite curious about giving that a try. But I guess we’ll see. I need to rein myself in, generally, so for now I think I’ll plod on with painting the Unmade.

Playing Warcry, and painting the models, has naturally got me thinking more about the game in general, and I’m curious as to where this is headed. It’s obviously not meant to expand like Necromunda, where we have codex-like books for each gang. Though I suppose the case could be made that the Grand Alliance books effectively are the House Of equivalents). With the advent of a new gang for Necromunda, though, I do wonder if we’ll get more new Warcry warbands, as I feel that would be a natural way to go.

For a while now, I’ve been wondering how it could look if we had a warband that is properly dedicated to each of the Chaos gods. I know we have the AOS stuff to use for this, of course, but I would really like to have a proper, bespoke band that maybe comprises a couple of cultists, a wizard (or priest, for Khorne), and a daemon. I think it could be interesting, seeing as how the original bands were all pretty much Chaos Undivided, fighting for the attention of Archaon. Getting God-specific, Warcry-specific warbands could be an interesting way to take things?

I think it would be good, as well, to have a sort of narrative book, a bit like how Tome of Champions 2020 focused on the narrative with Soroth Kor and built up a real sense of the locale etc. Incidentally, Tome of Champions 2020 has got some really good stuff in it, I’m just gearing myself up for a proper look through that sometime soon.

Maybe we can see this kind of thing really expanded upon? New terrain, maybe a new warband, and a new narrative campaign focus? A bit like the 40k campaign books, with lots of fluff in there, and then new narrative rules that would support the wider release? I don’t know – I’m sure, whatever I do think might happen, we’ll have something totally different!

Of course, all of this useless speculation assumes Warcry should have the kind of aggressive release schedule as Necromunda. The initial box was released in summer 2019, with a small flurry of expansions to give us the new warbands and terrain, with Catacombs released at the end of 2020 with the grand alliance books, although it is believed that the pandemic had pushed that back from the summer. Can we expect anything more in 2021? It seems that we’re all about Kill Team right now, with a rumoured new Horus Heresy box set due in the November slot for the year, which makes me think we don’t have anything big coming out this year. I’d hope for a Tome of Champions of course, as those books are pretty great. I think we’ve had a few Warcry features in White Dwarf now, which might be good to have collected into an Annual of sorts.

I suppose it doesn’t need a slew of releases all the time, though. It would definitely be good to have more Warcry, just because the game has brought us so many incredible miniatures as it explores such a unique aspect of the Mortal Realms. I really hope GW don’t just let this one slide.

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