View Full Version : Lamentation about WD (US)

Bingo the Fun Monkey
25-04-2006, 18:01
I moseyed on into the store again (as I do once a month) to pick up the WD and flipping through it I remember why I never subscribed (and haven't bought an issue in months). My 1st WD was 231 with the release of the Dark Angels codex at the beginning of 3rd ed 40k. There was also a nifty article about the giants of albion and von hal and his priest friend.

What I thoroughly miss is the lack of "LOOKIT DEZE NEW NEFTY GNARLY AWESOME SHINY NEW MODELS!!! LOL" attitude that punctuates every other line of the modern (thicker and glossier, granted) white dwarfs.

When there's the release of a new plastic set, they show how you can make, for example, araby dwarfs, dead dwarfs, undead dwarfs, nippon dwarfs (which was a very nice conversion btw, although the article makes no indication of how to use greenstuff), space marine dwarfs, black templar dwarfs (Ok they didn't do that, they did make ad-mech ogres...lots of them. so did dave taylor).

It hardly seems like a HOBBY catalo-i mean magazine anymore. It hasn't for years. Maybe it's cuz I'm all emotional from quitting smoking but I'M FURIOUS!!!!:skull: :skull: :skull: :skull:

25-04-2006, 18:24
No offense to you, or anybody else who feels this way about White Dwarf, but why do people keep picking the mag up, flipping through it and complianing about it being what it is?
True WD has become more and more a promotional magazine, but you can either except it or stop reading it. Personally, I don't mind seeing ads for GW merchandise. I would rather see that then see it turn into a million other magazines with 50+ pages of outside ads that mean nothing to me, with stupid little subscription cards falling out everywhere, only to use the rest of the pages for crappy articles.
GW has to advertise somewhere, so why not do it in their own publication. There are plenty of websites showing conversions, gaming ideas and what not. I actually look forward to getting my WD in the mail, because I would rather sit outside in the sun and flip through a magazine than sit inside staring at a comp. screen. The only time I'm actually on the net is at work while on break. Recently WD has changed their formating, so apparently they're listening to peoples complaints, it just may take time to turn around.
Sorry for the rant, and like I said nothing against you, but I'm just tired of hearing how much WD sucks, and how much things cost.

By the way, congratulations on kicking the habit!

Bingo the Fun Monkey
25-04-2006, 18:32
I don't mind the catalogue section at the front at all. That's what it's supposed to do. I don't appreciate being urged, upon turning every page to either update my army, or buy this, buy that, etc. Anyways, the online store and the GW website do a splendid job advertising. I'm not saying I'm right and you're wrong. I'm glad somebody appreciates the WDs. But WD used to be something I looked forward to every month. Now it's something resembling a local coffee shop being put out of business by the two starbucks that opened up on the same block.

EDIT: Zomg!!! I'm Librarian now!!!11 :D

25-04-2006, 18:50
Wow. I don't know if it's the board, or the fantasy section, but I was expecting to get bashed or blamed for flaming. Kinda nice to actually discuss something rationally.
I do feel that WD is trying to come out from under their past mistakes. I also agree that seeing Black Templars and Tau for the past 3-4 months has gotten very old. Very Old.
The main reason I got a subscription is seeing the models. I can go back a few issues or whatever and find inspiration. I remember when they used to have articles on Epic, Warmaster, and such. honestly I think they should have a seperate magazine for them and LoTR, and leave WD to 40K and Fantasy. It's not perfect, but it beats nothing.

Lord Brrrp
25-04-2006, 21:00
WD is great if you play several GW games. Otherwise, I tend to like rules and am not much into the hobby side, personally. For me, when there is a battle report, new units/rules etc. I try to get a copy. When there is little new material for WHFB, I tend to skip it.

25-04-2006, 22:22
I actually thought the curent US issue 316 was very good with some great hobby articles as well as some tactics commentary for at least some of the systems. Yes there was the promotional info, but as previously noted in this thread and noted in other threads - take a look at your average magazine, particularly one targetted at a specific hobby and count the number of pages of advertisements compared to pages of actual material. (e.g. Guitar, Muscle Mag, Muscle and Fitness, GQ, etc.) Most of the magazines I pick up I look at and think boy that was a fairly useless article. Really my favorite magazine that I get however is WD, and that includes some "men's magazines" as well.

25-04-2006, 22:55
I used to religiously buy white dwarf for many many years after starting the hobby, but i stopped when the price got hicked up and lotr started taking up loads of space. The articles suddenly stopped appealing to me that much and i agree with what bingo is saying. I think some of the articles are abit boring and pointless, like some of the tactics "high elves are good at magic and are fast". I know also its another price complaint, but when a magazine is that price you do expect it to be of alot of interest and great quality. Though this is UK :P sorry i didn't see us on there.

Mad Doc Grotsnik
25-04-2006, 22:59
I don't really buy White Dwarf anymore. The Internet has utterly replaced what it once offered me. Rumours, rules and reports, all available online, and from a number of sources.

White Dwarf is essentially for NooB and non-Vets.

25-04-2006, 23:29
Unfortunately for me I renewed my subscription to WD about 8 or 9 months ago..

My logic was that if there were only 3 issues that were completely worthless, I'd break even and still end up getting the magazines a week early.

However, the quality has deteriorated so much.. the giant issue actually horrified me. Obviously I was expecting them to advertise the giant, but a good 1/4 of the whole of the magazine had been dedicated to it. The battle report was painfully hard to read and follow and there was no story or background - they didn't even try to explain why there were 4 giants fighting, even though doing so might have made it vaguely interesting.

Compared to a couple of years ago, WD has cut out most of the background articles and stories, never had enough tactica articles to begin with, and most of the hobby articles. I can't even remember the last issue with an Eavy Metal masterclass in it, and whilst the painting workshops are ok they are too infrequent..

If I could un-subscribe now I would, but sadly I will just have to wait it out..

26-04-2006, 05:22
looking at my collection, i would have to say that white dwarf has really lost me. Even as recent as a year or two ago, the content was still interesting. they featured interesting armies, the battle reports were decent, and they had background articles. taking the most recent few as an example, i can say that the actual content of the magazine has gone down hill. the battle reports are not as good, or as detailed as they used to be, and the articles sell a lot harder, and are even lower on interesting content. while this is the case for the australian edition, and i do not know what WD is like overseas, has anyone seen anything on par with the chaos warbands series, or the tale of four gamers, in the recent editions? I am not complaining about being sold to, i am just unhappy that the WD seems to have lost any content to justify me paying money for it.

26-04-2006, 05:26
I don't really buy White Dwarf anymore. The Internet has utterly replaced what it once offered me. Rumours, rules and reports, all available online, and from a number of sources.

White Dwarf is essentially for NooB and non-Vets.

Wow, what does that say about me? I've played since 1982 and have every WD back to 108 (except somehow I lost my 182). I don't think I qualify as either a noob or a non-vet, and yet amazingly, I like WD. I have subscribed now for roughly 12 years (my sub dates back to when I had to get it from the UK, there was only one version then).

While I agree that certain facets of the Dwarf have changed for the worse (the new battle report style comes to mind), it is ALL about a hobby I love. I could stand to see LoTR go away, heck I'd even prefer if 40K disappeared from the pages, but I continue to look forward to receiving my mag in the mail every month.

26-04-2006, 11:40
I agree I've been playing for 16 years now, and subscribing to white dwarf intermittently during that period. The draw and quality of the magazine has been up and down during that time but the current US period is actually quite good in the total spread of time.

I think there are two factors that are complicating this discussion
1) the individual national issues can have significant variation as the local WD production teams are likely quite different in their contributions. I personally think the contributions from the US team were the best part of WD 316 and most of the recent issues.
2) The needs of each of us as hobbyists and gamers change over time. The WD you remember from 5 years ago IMO wasn't that different from the current, but what you individually got out of the issue may have been quite different. The more experienced you are the less likely you will be to find something new in a magazine in any genre. Similarly like any hobby our personal level of interest will vary in the game over time, for most hobbies yor period of peak interest is fairly early with a subsequent drop off - if our interest levels change our interest in the magazine changes.

It's been 12 or so years since I looked at WD battle report and thought I've learned a new and useful tactic. But I've always read them and thought hmm that army looks interesting (which I suppose is the point from WD standpoint)

I'm a hobbyist and a tournament regular but I still find it interesting. From a strategy standpoint the Jeff Leong series of articles, and the matching 40K articles have been excellent reads and have improved my game play. From a hobby standpoint this months Matt Ledowski and swarm buidling articles were quite interesting to me, the recent articles by Jason Buyaki (who has left GW since) on building themed (lustrian) scenery, and his 40K crusade force have been food for thought.

But that's me, it's a game, and it's a game magazine. Some of us are going to get more out of it than others. Compared to other magazine subscriptions I find myself far more excited to read my monthly WD than other mags,.

Bingo the Fun Monkey
26-04-2006, 11:55
All valid points, and I hadn't really looked at it that way. On the other hand the Batrep format now is atrocious. WD used to be more disorganized and cluttered, but there was a charm about it when, upon opening the pages, you would find the Town Cryer, an Index Astartes story, possibly some new RoR's story and rules, etc.

Designer's Notes used to be an actual article. The last 3 (Black Templars, Dwarfs and Tau) had a brief nod at rules justification and concept-stuff. Primarily, however, it's geared to a very aggressive and (in my opinion) intrusive sales pitch.

It also seems to be aimed at a younger audience. When I was young WD seemed geared toward an age group above mine. Now it seems they've shaved off 20 years from their target audience.

Perhaps I'm just grumbling about changing times and how stuff ain't as good as it used to be...although there's glaring evidence that it is, it feels less and less real.

Basically, when I buy a publication, I intend to absorb information as opposed to stimulus and have the realization dawn upon me that I just spent $6 on a catalogue. By the by, there are some very worthy articles, but it's not worth the price, IMO.

Major Thom
26-04-2006, 13:58
What I really don't like is the new haphazard arrangement of this months WD. It is completely jumbled. What a mess.

26-04-2006, 14:48
I think the battle reports are the worst thing in WD nowadays no substance no story hardly any details, just pics, if they gonna go that route they should just stop doing batreps altogether, sorry we didnt have time or people to do one this issue, etc. . At least then I wouldnt be opening the mag up and thumbing thru to actually read one.

Corporal Punishment
26-04-2006, 23:42
I used to buy religiously but I'm now reviewing each issue on its merits before buying. It's turned into a big long advertisement and the hobby sections are nowhere near as good as they used to be. Not to mention the lack of Chapter Approved. The whole thing has taken a turn for the worse in the last few months.

27-04-2006, 01:51
I would enjoy it if they made MORE magazines, I like Citadel Journal, I enjoy Black Gobbo more than White Dwarf for instance. A magizine that is nothing but battle reports and CA would be worth buying to me.

27-04-2006, 04:32
I would enjoy it if they made MORE magazines, I like Citadel Journal, I enjoy Black Gobbo more than White Dwarf for instance. A magizine that is nothing but battle reports and CA would be worth buying to me.

Amen brother. I find it harder and harder to actually squeeze a game in nowadays. Back during and after college in the early 90s I managed several games a week. Now I'm exceedingly lucky to get one. Batreps are a vicarious way for me to still enjoy the game. Mike Walker/Jeff Leong/Dave Taylor features all interest me too. While there does seem to be a trend toward more catalog-style content, it is still a good mag for fans of the hobby.

I have to admit that I really love to go back to issues in the late hundreds to mid two-hundreds for truly enjoyable reads, especially the Batreps.

Smoking Frog
27-04-2006, 04:57
Funny thing, I don't like the new format for the AUS WD, with the bigger text. It looks like it's trying to promote it to people who can't read small text, like old folks... do you guys in America get the same thing?

Though, I like pictures, and shiny *****, and I find some good articles in the WD's, and for all i know somewhere down the line I may want a specific article from a previous WD, so I like to have them all.

Personally I'm quite happy spending the money for it.

Light of the Emperor
27-04-2006, 05:33
I think that the US studio actually provides some great content.
The deathwing/ tau battle report was actually pretty good and played by the US studio...the cool cityfight table on which it took place was made and described in WD 315 by the US studio...etc etc. They have good conversion/painting/hobby articles too. It seems like most of the problems come from the UK HQ which will be magnified even more now that the WD will be divided into two parts:
UK and all the new release stuff (aka large font, shiny pictures and endless pages of the same stuff from different angles)
US and all the hobby articles.

So, I think I can proudly say that the best part of the White Dwarf is made in the U.S.A.

27-04-2006, 05:49
So, I think I can proudly say that the best part of the White Dwarf is made in the U.S.A.

After seeing this month's issue, definately agreed.

27-04-2006, 15:31
I actually like this month's White Dwarf. Had some nice articles, especially since I just picked up the base of my new Vostroyan army.

27-04-2006, 16:12
Had some nice articles
So where were they? I saw lots of pictures, about seven paragraphs of words and a shed loads of adverts. In amongst that lot where were the "articles" hidden?

27-04-2006, 16:32
It appears that whenever I get a subscription to a magazine, they immediately change something significant. It happened years ago with Dragon Magazine, where they canned Knights of the Dinner Table in the very first issue I received.

I personally don't care for the new style with the bigger fonts and way more white space. The catalog section has ballooned out significantly. Hardly any fluff/rules at all in the current issue. All this comes across to me as a desperate attempt to fill the pages at any cost. Hey, we need to fill 96 pages with stuff, but only got content for 25. Let's blow up all the pictures, make the borders bigger, and increase the font size.

On top of that, with the new split format of half the content coming from the UK, and the latter half of the mag being produced locally, everything is a mess. When I started reading WD again (somewhere in late 2004), I had my content nicely broken up for me. Catalog, followed by some event stuff, followed by WHFB, followed by a hobby article or two, followed by 40k and then LotR. It was easy to get to the content I was most interested in and easily identify the stuff I was going to flip through once.

27-04-2006, 19:12
I think a lot of the problem stems from perception. I've got pretty much every white dwarf for the last ten years, and whenever I start a new army (recently Tyranids and Space Marines) I go back through the collection, digging out editions which have relevant painting and fluff articles.

As a rule, I've found the more recent editions to be just as, if not more informative and helpful (from a hobbyist and collectors) standpoint than the older ones. The only real changes over the years are the now very definate split between the three core games and the specialist ranges, and the lack of card inserts with extra games and such. Apart from that, nothing much has changed.

Except that we, as gamers, no longer need WD to show us how to build an army, how to do basic conversions, how to paint, how to make terrain, what new models are being released, etc. Not only has the internet taken a significant portion of that job, but we simply know that stuff by now. We've been doing this for years already.