Saturday, 27 June 2015
Post-End Times Warhammer Fantasy Images Leaked
Since the announcement of the Age of Sigmar, details have been leaked. While points here and there have suggested a world closer to Forgotten Realms than anything else, and the involvement of Andy Lanning in its creation, these have as of yet been unsubstantiated. Ideas and rumours have run wild for some time now, making it hard to know what retains substance and what has been faked. That said, if this is a fake it's a pretty damn convincing one.
Leaked via a few early issues of White Dwarf (isn't that always the way?) the images so far depict two armies involved. One a group of shining angelic figures in golden armour (who look as if they've practically been made for Blood Angels players to customise) and the other a rabble of Chaotic figures resembling your common or garden horde. Along with the former being identified as allied entirely with Sigmar or representing him in some way, the latter are quite clearly Chaos aligned, bearing both the traditional motifs and bearing a rather noticeable icon with the Blood God's symbol.
The view has been met with decidedly mixed results, as has almost anything involving Warhammer Fantasy following the End Times. On the one hand, no one is questioning the quality of these models, which are truly superb with some astounding designs to them. The mentions of new ideas an a very different world indeed are curious and have even opened up those jaded towards the idea of at least giving this new setting a chance, despite deriding what was done to get here.
On the other however, others have criticised this for trying to rub off Warhammer 40,000's success onto Fantasy, and trying to spark interest by removing what separates the two. This was, again, already a big criticism during End Times both in terms of theme and visual aesthetic. The golden horde is decidedly Space Marine-eqsue with the pauldrons and massive greaves you'd expect, and Chaos's champions resemble Khorne Berserkers more than ever before. Atop of this, seemingly all use of regiments and formations are gone, as seen with the prominence of round bases and the lack of unit trays of any kind. Many are worried that what we will see will not reflect the tactical edge or greater emphasis upon strategy Fantasy was famous for.
As with many things it's too early to tell, but the other interesting point is what the brief extracts mention. The "Mortal Realms" are mentioned, but we also have mention of some War of Vengeance (apparently not the Elf-Dwarf one) with Sigmar's forces on the offensive. Rather than holding out against Chaos, it's now the other way around, with certain forces attempting to break Chaos' hold on the lands. Something known as the "Realmgates" have been mentioned, suggesting that rumours of many dimensions have proven to be correct, and the article specifically mentions that this is a "first chapter". This perhaps means we might see Games Workshop taking more of a stab at an ongoing narrative akin to that of Battletech or Legend of the Five Rings.
Whatever's the case, we now have some idea of what is to follow, and what direction Warhammer Fantasy will take in the future.