I wrote a guest blog post for Miniature Musings of a Bear recently. Here’s that article again…

Us wargamers tend to be a fickle bunch. How many toy soldiers do you have sitting on a shelf or stashed away somewhere that haven’t seen battle in a long time? Whether it’s that new model smell, the fresh modelling/painting challenge or simply some cool new rules, the latest releases always have a strong lure. There are others reasons too that a model, unit or army can sit unused. For example, if you see yourself as a competitive player you may find yourself gravitating towards the ‘better’ models, the models you know you can get to work. You may have a preferred play style or a local gaming scene that favours certain types of models.

At different times I’ve found myself in this rut, where I get caught up in the new releases and neglect my old toys. I think I’ll use my Legion of Everblight as an example as there are four quite forlorn looking warlocks sitting on my shelf. In the run up to the Irish Masters I almost exclusively used the three warlocks that were leading my lists – Saeryn, Absylonia and Kallus. These and their respective armies are tightly packed into my army case as they see a lot of tabletop time. They were definitely chosen for competitive purposes and because they fit my preferred melee-focussed play style. After a bit of reflection I realised that these warlocks have dominated my games since MkII of Hordes was released. It’s easy to see why Saeryn has gotten a lot of play – she is one of Legion’s best warlocks and one of the best warlocks in the game. She and Absylonia share something in common – an affinity with beast heavy forces, so you can see my play style coming through there. Kallus is the new kid, a curve ball in my list selection. Again he’s melee focussed, but this time he favors a force made up mostly of infantry.

Glancing again at the shelf it’s clear why two of the warlocks, Lylyth and her Epic version, are sitting there. Both are ranged focussed warlocks and while I have a lot of ranged troops it really isn’t my preferred style. I like charging and power attacks. That’s not to say my armies never include ranged options (it’s hard to resist the Striders!), but I’m not excited by the idea of a ranged heavy force. Since this article is about those neglected toys maybe I should give them a try… I might learn something.

The third shelved warlock has two things in common with the Lylyths – she is Fury 5 and is also a bit one dimensional. Rhyas must be terribly jealous of the attention I lavish on Saeryn. She should fit my play style, right? She’s a melee centric warlock, but Rhyas is a warlock I haven’t taken the time to figure out. I think I’ve fielded her only three times. Maybe I’m being put off by the Fury 5 stat.

The final shelved warlock is Thagrosh1 and I think he’s there for a different reason to the others. I overdosed on him in MkI and haven’t managed to get back to him. He has all of the right ingredients – melee focussed with a high Fury stat, so there is really no excuse not to revisit him.

If I look at my other factions I see both versions of Irusk, Epic Butcher, Sorscha, Harkevich and Fiona hav all been neglected. They’ve all be shelved for different reasons, but now is the time to get them out to play. How am I going to do this? I’m going to roll a die of course! Here’s my D10 chart –

Whenever I have a friendly game or campaign coming up I’m going to roll a D10 and start building my force from there. As these neglected warcasters/warlocks see more play I’ll either reroll on the chart or remove them entirely.

Maybe it’s time for you to reinvigorate your gaming by bringing some of your neglected toy soldiers out to play…
Until next time,