View Full Version : Selling People on Fantasy

30-06-2011, 16:06
This came up as a concept in a Storm of Magic thread and I thought it might be fun to get some ideas floating around as to how to bring in new people to the game.

However, I want to put down some "rules" for the conversation here:

1) Price. Yes, it's high, and yes it's something that needs to be overcome. Unfortunately, price almost obliterates the argument of model quality. Trying getting a non-tabletop gamer to pay $41.25 for 10 tiny plastic skeletons. If I could take a picture of all the reaction expressions, that could be a thread in and of itself. Long story short, I don't want this to devolve into "Ohh, have them play Game X instead." I can sell people on other games - Fantasy is a bit more difficult.

2) Comparison to other games. This is great and welcome. Why should someone play WHFB over Kings of War, for instance? Why play WHFB over War of the Ring? Etc. etc.

3) Awesome stuff. What are some of the coolest things that happen on a semi-regular basis in your games? What's a rule, character, scenario, or spell that just gets you excited to use in a game?

4) Terrain. This is one of the places that I like to sell GW - their terrain is very cool in that 80's metal band sort of way. However, I can use the terrain in any old game/display piece. What's something cool that Warhammer does with terrain that other games don't?

5) Storm of Magic. This one isn't a hard sell, despite it being brand new. Objective-based gaming full of monsters, in-game power growth (in terms of Fulcrums opening up more spell access), and the video game staple of "Finish Moves" or "Limit Breaks" is something that's not really present in other games. However, that's just the expansion pack - I'd like to focus on the core ruleset if possible (mainly because I have no problem getting people excited for SoM :p)

Anyway, thanks for looking and responding. Feel free to be critical of concepts in the game as they're brought up, but please be constructive and polite.

30-06-2011, 16:28
I just converted six people over to warhammer. I did it primarily through the imagery.

Price-wise, I had enough armies that I sold some off on the cheap to get people started. Went over how to build an army on ebay or whatever without going broke.

We have painting parties. We keep everyone engaged.

I think that's the biggest thing. KEeping everyone engaged. That is where the fun seems to be most, hanging out with your friends and painting or playing. We also do a campaign instead of just one-off games.

One-off games are fun but can burn you out. It's kind of like playing one off RPGs. They are fun in doses but people love seeing their characters develop (I find).

Tournaments can be fun but you have to be of the right mindset and know how to deal with WAAC and other bad attitude players who are there to curb stomp your teeth in and that's it.

So it's a little by little process.

30-06-2011, 17:12
Warhammer is about playing the game, however, some things to keep in mind-

In a player's first game-
1) Keep it simple- so mostly units, with a few special rules thrown in, and a magic user and characters with few magic items

2) Fluffy- Diverse lists with lots of different units, and very few if any identical choices

3) Balance- make sure the match-ups are fairly even and that neither army has a simple and overwhelming advantage-

4) If you are playing against a new player make sure you do things to keep it close- your primary goal is not to win but to make sure your opponent is having a good time (this can be hard sometimes as a lot of us have that switch in our head where we turn it on and all we do is focus on winning the game- so whatever you need to do to turn that competitive switch off do it- for me it involves making quick decisions rather than calculating things in my head before hand, others may choose to down a beer or two before hand, another option is to field an army that doesn't stand a chance against your opponent, playing with an all goblin army vs WoC comes to mind)

30-06-2011, 18:43
Host demo games with rules noted above.

For #4 I basically act like a teacher, not an opponent. I tell the opponent what I'm doing and why, and give him tips/tricks and help explain probable outcomes:

"yes, you could attempt a charge against my unit of Spearmen, but if I don't flee the resulting combat, you'll get caught in a trap with my dragon princes over there..."

Also, I've introduced this game to a friend of our which is a really sore loser and the way I explained Fantasy Battle to him was to view like your re-creating a famaous battle (or watching one in a movie), even if your army gets trashed, it's still nice to look at and makes your next "revenge" battle even more dramatic... WHFB is the only game that he never loses his temper.

Kai Itzah
30-06-2011, 19:38
These tips are helpful. I'm currently trying to get some friends into the game. One of them used to play Warhammer in the distant, distant past. What edition would someone who is 40 now and would have played somewhere between 20 and 30, and how can I positively associate that edition with this one? He played Dwarves, for any specific tips you can provide.

30-06-2011, 20:17
Here is how a few people got Warhammer up and running and alive in a local non-GW store. We had a few issues convincing people to play WH:FB. A few liked the idea of WH:40k better and saw they could play with fewer models. A few balked at the price. A few wanted to play but didn't want to paint or were totally unsure of their painting ability and so were hesitant to buy models. Some wanted to paint the models, but really were not sure if they would like the game.

So I and a friend who were very interested in starting the game sat down and tried to figure out how to get things rolling. Luckily I had stumbled across the Warband rules. Armed with that we started with 250 point armies.

To help those who did not have cash on hand or were not sure which army they wanted to play we started out with proxies. I labeled bases with color coded card stock carefully noted with details. Then we slowly progressed to unpainted models, larger armies (500 point Warbands), and then on to painted models.

Those of us who bought models ended up indirectly encouraging others to get models as they realized how nice it looked on the table. We also held some painting classes where we showed them different techniques like drybrushing, washes, and inks and such.

Soon people who had been previously hesitant to buy into the game and risk buying models they didn't like for an army they decided not to play or were unable to paint were hooked on the game and knew what they wanted and were buying, assembling, and painting.

The clue is start small. It's easier to borrow the BRB and an army book and make a proxy army than to go out and spend over $100 in books and $100 more in a few boxes of units. Once they find out if they like the game their are more interested in getting their own books and real models.

Lord of Divine Slaughter
01-07-2011, 11:52
You start by giving people a battalion and an army book. A couple of months later, they'll have a huge collection :)

01-07-2011, 12:23
Let those who are interested use your models, temporarily, if you have more than one army. Before long they will want their own army

Dante blackfur
02-07-2011, 05:38
1) price always seems to be the determining factor, people see the price tag and think "To expensive for a game I'm not sure I'm going top like." So I have like 4 armies currently, so I tell people that if they want to see how the game works, just let me know and I will provide everything they need and teach them how to play. I also inform them that they can easily assemble a decent sized army from second hand dealers. this goes a long way to help recruit new players.

2) As for comparison to other games, I just show them photos of complete armies on the tabletop and the pics themselves usually convinces them that if this is the style they like (Big armies) then Warhammer has the best looking forces. IMHO

3) I describe the funkiness of many of the armies I use, like Skaven for example, the fact that one day, I lost 2k of pts without my opponent even getting to go. or that you can have long story driven battles that end up being decided by the roll of a dice and many other examples. the fact that the game can be seen in so many different ways depending on your army, play style and luck makes a lot of people leaning in WHFB direction to decide to play it.

4) I agree entirely with you about the terrain, its simply stunning both in uniqueness and quality. :D

5) SoM, is kinda a self-sell. big monsters, uber spells huge games and story driven campaigns/missions, plus all the bonus factors like Falcrums and such, I think that this will help a lot ofr players to decide to get into WHFB.

Just tonight I got 2 more players to join and a couple of weeks ago I convinced another 2 so in a month 4 new players :D