Betrayal at Calth 1: A Gateway

So, it’s Christmas day, you’re opening presents with family and loved ones, and lo and behold, your parents/significant other/sibling have bought you Betrayal at Calth! You look at the box, and your mind instantly begins to wander, and one of a few thoughts might go through your head, possibly at the same time.

1 “Betrayal at Calth? What’s that? Oh it’s a board game.. but you have to paint the miniatures? No thanks… I’ll take it back and get something else.”

2 “Betrayal at Calth? Sweet! I’ve been wanting to play this for a while. And I know a few wargamers, I wonder if I paid them would they paint the miniatures for me?”

3 “Betrayal at Calth? Sweet! I’ve always wanted an affordable Horus Heresy army! But I can only be Ultramarines or Word Bearers? Ah well, I guess I’ll choose one of the two…”

4 “Betrayal at Calth? Sweet! My Legion could use some support! And if I sell the board game bits I can buy some more toys on eBay!”

I find myself torn between the last two statements. I originally approached Mr. PaintingChap about blogging about my burgeoning Ultramarines army, which due to financial crisis I’ve since had to sell on. Needless to say I’ve been trying to find the money to get back into the Horus Heresy ever since – and with the release of Betrayal at Calth, it’s given me a gateway back into the hobby that I love.

I know there are people out there who will be happy to play the board game with unpainted miniatures, and there are those who will not. These are what I call “gateway gamers” they play games in one of any number of categories, be it card, board or video games, and Calth has shown them the gateway to table top gaming. Those who play without painting may find themselves getting more into board games, whereas those who are prepared to paint the miniatures, either themselves or pay people to paint for them, they may find the miniatures and the games rich background interesting, and look deeper into the world of wargames, which leads us on to scenario 3 and 4, and where I find myself.

I am a gamer. I play video, card, board and war games. I have been a wargamer since late 1999/early 2000. During my time in the hobby, I have had my “beer and chicks” phase, where I forsook my beloved hobby in pursuit of alcohol and attractive ladies. But like all things, my mistress called me back sometime in 2010 when I began to explore the Horus Heresy properly, and fell in love with the Thousand Sons. The story of the Thousand Sons, and the fall of Magnus grabbed me, and I instantly felt compelled to put paint to model. Unfortunately, there were no rules for us to play Heresy-era games, so my enthusiasm waned, and I focussed on other creative projects.

Then, with the release of Horus Heresy Vol. 1 – Betrayal, Forge World cunningly came up with a rules set that would work with the existing Warhammer 40000 rules, and allow you to use some of their miniatures to make an army and play Heresy-era, or 30k games. This gave me no end of joy as not only did I have a whole new group of geeky online friends, but some of them were coming up with really cool ideas. So I bought some basics, and considered how to make best use of them. However, with each passing book release came more and more interesting miniatures that I wanted to get my grubby little mitts on. So I found myself chopping and changing Legions more often than I care to mention. And now with the release of Betrayal at Calth and Forge World are now releasing Thousand Sons conversion parts, I can renew my beloved Thousand Sons project with vigour.

Next post in this series is due soon, keep your eyes peeled. 🙂


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