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Thread: The Average Cost of Armies

  1. #1
    Chapter Master Brother Muninn's Avatar
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    The Average Cost of Armies

    I won a Battalion army box in a competition lately, which led me to wonder which Fantasy army would get me the most army for my buck.

    To figure out which army was most cost effective I went to the Army Lists Forum & compiled 3-4 2000 point lists from every army, then figured out how much it would cost to build each list, then averaged the data.

    I treated it as though I was just starting out, had no bits, or friends to trade with. So if the list called for 19 Glade Guard I purchased two boxes (which would mean I bought 13 extra minis)

    To be as cost effective as possible I tried to use the cheapest mini available for the unit selection (usually meant “buying” generic HQ minis and battalion boxes when it was cheaper to do so). This probably isn’t totally accurate for a few reasons (such as listing minis there aren’t actual models for), but it’s a pretty good stab at it.

    For High Elves & Skaven I also figured out how much the armies would cost if I bought Island of Blood Sea Guard, Swordmasters, or Clan Rats from a bits website, it made quite a difference.

    So here’s the list from cheapest to most expensive:
    Daemons of Chaos ~ $329.38
    Warriors of Chaos ~ $333.25
    High Elves ~ $342.08 (316.25 with bits)
    Brettonians ~ $363.67
    Wood Elves ~ $391.00
    Tomb Kings ~ $401.58
    Lizardmen ~ $412.92
    Ogre Kingdoms ~ $420.00
    Dwarves ~ $421.25
    Beastmen ~ $428.17
    Dark Elves ~ $451.67
    Vampire Counts ~ $465.25
    The Empire ~ $498.33
    Skaven ~ $603.67 (539.50 with bits)
    Orcs & Goblins ~ $684.67

    You can see that Daemons top the list for cheapest Army unless you account for buying Island of Blood High Elf bits. the two biggest horde armies are sitting at the bottom, and I was surprised to see O&G at the very bottom (since I already have an O&G army).

    The cheapest single army was a balanced Wood Elves list at $276.25, and the most expensive was an O&G Night Goblin Squig heavy list $740.40

    Hope you find this interesting.

    ~Muninn
    Last edited by Brother Muninn; 25-01-2012 at 21:46.
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  2. #2

    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Quite interesting, a lot of people placed OK as the cheapest, didn't realise it'd sit around the center mark...although I had expected Beastmen to be a bit cheaper than that O.o...still nice to see VC aren't in the bottom two although you might have to tack on 2-3 boxes of Zombies for "summoned units" since they don't count against PTS allowance but the typical VC player can summon up to 100 of them in a game.

  3. #3
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Not really suprised about beastmen. The typical army* is based heavily around the battalion but it's expensive for what it is.



    *@Brother Muninn was the typical beastman lists based around gor/ungor/bestigor (i.e. spamming the battalion)?
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  4. #4
    Chapter Master Rosstifer's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Wish it was that cheap to build armies in NZ. Still not over it!
    Currently working on - The Blood Herd of Vorgoth (Beastmen)

    Rankings - 3rd in New Zealand, Best General - Warriors of Chaos (And that's enough vanity for now....)

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  5. #5

    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Well using conversion rates

    the $75 BRB is only 45 here in england

    so that $600 O&G army is more like 300+

  6. #6
    Chapter Master someone2040's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Orcs and Goblins are a bit of an odd one though. Most of those lists probably have a huge amount of Night Goblins based on cheapies gotten from Battle for Skull Pass.
    So buying smart would probably cut costs quite a bit. But of course the OP mentions that he doesn't really include strolling through ebay for cheaper deals.

  7. #7
    Chapter Master Feefait's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Kinda hurts to see it in black and white. Nice job on running this though. Guess my TK army is stll wish listed...

    I think OK are up there simply because of the new prices on the models and their lowered points values. In previous editions they'd be the cheapest I'd think.
    Sterling: Yeah, I know it's sexy Woodhouse, that's why I bought ten. Now arrange those by color.
    Woodhouse: These are all black.
    Sterling: Oh, are they? Or are five in a dark black, and are five in a slightly darker black?

  8. #8
    Chapter Master therisnosaurus's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    and something like $1100 down here in australia
    Cathay v 2.0 for 8th edition is coming, get involved in a professionally produced army book!

    Currently painting: lizardmen // Current showcase model: lileath hesperax

  9. #9
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Surprised at brets and woodies being so low.

    They and dwarves are the armies that has the largest amount of metal left in them, so thought the'd be top-scorers.

    Odd thing is ... I just bought a 3000 pts army (with magic items and stuff though) of Vampire counts, which cost me 340 pounds... more than 100 pounds less than what you got.

    Maybe I got a slightly cheaper vendor, or maybe mortis engines are very expensive or sumthing. Amusing list though

  10. #10
    Chapter Master Korraz's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Righthandedtwin View Post
    Quite interesting, a lot of people placed OK as the cheapest, didn't realise it'd sit around the center mark...
    That's probably still from back, when you could essentially build the whole range (safe probably Gorgers and Scraplaunchers, if you couldn't scratchbuild one, and of course the Yhetees, which nobody used) from the Battalion. Two boxes, and you had something approaching 2k-2.5k points.

  11. #11

    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Korraz View Post
    That's probably still from back, when you could essentially build the whole range (safe probably Gorgers and Scraplaunchers, if you couldn't scratchbuild one, and of course the Yhetees, which nobody used) from the Battalion. Two boxes, and you had something approaching 2k-2.5k points.
    You can still theoretically built it from 2 battalions and a Butcher model at about let's see....144.50 for about a 2-2.5k army which is what in dollars? liiikkkeee....$200+?

  12. #12
    Commander eron12's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Well that was not the most encouraging thing for me to read as I start my O&G army, though I plan to use ebay and alternate models to bring costs down. I too am surprised WEs and dwarfs were where they were.

  13. #13
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Seeing how low brets and woodelves are highlights how well they've escaped the prices increases (perhaps in part due to a lack of armybook update :P)

    I ran up a fairly typical 2k beastman army (GBS in 30 bestigor with +1Ld, 206 BSB, 2 shaman, 40 gor, 4x6 unbows, 2x5 hounds, 6 harpies, 3 razorgor) and it came to $433* so your numbers seem about right.

    *mordheim warband, 2 battalions, 1 bestigor box, 1 hound box, 3 harpy blisters, 2 razorgor, 1 mordheim thing in the woods and 2 shaman blisters... you could save $16 by converting the 2 spare gor into shamans
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  14. #14
    Chapter Master Skywave's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    That's interesting, but is that using more "balanced list" rather than aiming for the lowest cost possible? Like said above about Ogres, you could get away with 2 or so battalions and a few conversions, so while it might not be optimum, some army army could probaby being made for cheaper.
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  15. #15
    Chapter Master Brother Muninn's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Harwammer View Post
    *@Brother Muninn was the typical beastman lists based around gor/ungor/bestigor (i.e. spamming the battalion)?
    Of the three Beastman lists I used one used two boxes, one used a single box, and the third didn't have any (it had 60 Gors, but no Ungors or Bestigors).

    Quote Originally Posted by someone2040 View Post
    Orcs and Goblins are a bit of an odd one though. Most of those lists probably have a huge amount of Night Goblins based on cheapies gotten from Battle for Skull Pass.
    So buying smart would probably cut costs quite a bit. But of course the OP mentions that he doesn't really include strolling through ebay for cheaper deals.
    Only one of the lists spammed night gobbos. Although I'd wager the one that did made extensive use of BFSP minis.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wesser View Post
    Surprised at brets and woodies being so low.

    They and dwarves are the armies that has the largest amount of metal left in them, so thought the'd be top-scorers.

    Odd thing is ... I just bought a 3000 pts army (with magic items and stuff though) of Vampire counts, which cost me 340 pounds... more than 100 pounds less than what you got.

    Maybe I got a slightly cheaper vendor, or maybe mortis engines are very expensive or sumthing. Amusing list though
    I figured the dwarves would be lower because there weren't any "big ticket" models (Ghogons, Terrorgheists, etc) and many of their units can be made out of two different boxes. So if an army list called for Thunderers and Rangers, I could combine them from a single box. Good catch on the cheap VCs.

    Quote Originally Posted by eron12 View Post
    Well that was not the most encouraging thing for me to read as I start my O&G army, though I plan to use ebay and alternate models to bring costs down. I too am surprised WEs and dwarfs were where they were.
    I know how you feel. I've had a mostly started O&G army for a few years now. If I'd known about this I might've gone High Elves instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Harwammer View Post
    Seeing how low brets and woodelves are highlights how well they've escaped the prices increases (perhaps in part due to a lack of armybook update :P)

    I ran up a fairly typical 2k beastman army (GBS in 30 bestigor with +1Ld, 206 BSB, 2 shaman, 40 gor, 4x6 unbows, 2x5 hounds, 6 harpies, 3 razorgor) and it came to $433* so your numbers seem about right.

    *mordheim warband, 2 battalions, 1 bestigor box, 1 hound box, 3 harpy blisters, 2 razorgor, 1 mordheim thing in the woods and 2 shaman blisters... you could save $16 by converting the 2 spare gor into shamans
    Now that you mention it, I didn't take Mordheim minis or troop to HQ conversions into account. I just wanted to see pound for pound, how the armies stacked up against each other.

    Quote Originally Posted by Skywave View Post
    That's interesting, but is that using more "balanced list" rather than aiming for the lowest cost possible? Like said above about Ogres, you could get away with 2 or so battalions and a few conversions, so while it might not be optimum, some army army could probaby being made for cheaper.
    The lists were taken directly from the Army List forum here on Warseer. Some of the lists probably varied from what you'd usually see. A few of them were "theme" lists too (Like a Dwarven Deep Strike list) and these tended to be more expensive. I figured this would be mitigated by averaging several different lists together.

    Another thing to consider is that these are all 2k lists. At 1k they would look significantly different, with far fewer of the big ticket items. So smaller lists would likely stack up differently than what i've posted.

    ~Muninn
    Last edited by Brother Muninn; 25-01-2012 at 23:33.
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  16. #16
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    recently spent around 500 english pounds building quite a good beastmen army but this is around the 2500point range but also has enough in there to chop and change with who i am battling against such as pleanty of brute strength to face my friends ogres and strength in numbers against skaven and a good selection of magic and monsters to take on high elfs

  17. #17
    Chapter Master Korraz's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Righthandedtwin View Post
    You can still theoretically built it from 2 battalions and a Butcher model at about let's see....144.50 for about a 2-2.5k army which is what in dollars? liiikkkeee....$200+?
    Yes, but nowadays you want some fancy toys too, like Mournfangs or a monster or two. You can still do it, but it'll be boring and look pretty shoddy in the face of all the cool toys.

  18. #18
    Commander dementian's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Annnnd I own the two most expensive armies...

    Neat list really interesting in case I look to expand my number of armies in the future thanks!

  19. #19
    Chapter Master Skywave's Avatar
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Muninn View Post
    The lists were taken directly from the Army List forum here on Warseer. Some of the lists probably varied from what you'd usually see. A few of them were "theme" lists too (Like a Dwarven Deep Strike list) and these tended to be more expensive. I figured this would be mitigated by averaging several different lists together.
    Ok, so you went with more of a general cost rather than the cheapest army list possible, that's cool and it brings a different view of it. Did you used battalion for those cost even if it contained some unused units, like say, a Tomb Kings battalion or 2 without using the cavary in it, or were you using only unit box in those case?
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  20. #20
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    Re: The Average Cost of Armies

    My ork and goblins army only costs around 300-400€ and its around 5000pnts ( with a **** lode of goblins only have 2 units of orks in it).
    and oke my vampire counts hase cost me around 700€ and it will be around 10000pnts ( and that with the new book)
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