PDA

View Full Version : Average Cost of an Army



JDub
20-01-2010, 00:03
So I'm thinking about getting into the game but I'm a little strapped for cash at the moment so I'm wondering what the the average cost for an army? Not including paint or glue or even rules, just the cost of the minis.

I've never played so what is the most common amount of points people play (500 points, 1,000 points, etc)? And how much would it be on average to build a 500 point, 1,000 point army etc? Not sure on any specific army that I want to play right now so I don't really know if certain armies will be more expensive then others.

Just trying to see if I have the funds to be able to jump in now or I will have to wait a little while. Thanks!

GenerationTerrorist
20-01-2010, 00:14
I'd say that Warriors of Chaos are pretty good value for money.
The Battalion easily gives you 600-750pts of troops. The Knights and Marauder Horsemen kits (the most commonly used!) are dirt cheap compared to some recent GW releases. 2 Battalions, and a Marauder Horsemen box or two would set you back just over £100 if you shop online, and you would have the basis for a fully legal 1500pts army. Then just add a few Characters.

*Plug for the dark side, over*

Most games in clubs and things tend to be played at around 2000pts, as that is when most armies get their full flexibility from their respective army lists. Small games of 1000-1500pts are also fun to play, but can be a bit more one-sided depending on which army you choose.

Your best bet would be to visit a gaming night and watch a few games to get the general feel of how things work, meet some fellow gamers who would more than likely point you in the right direction, and that sort of stuff.

enyoss
20-01-2010, 00:20
I found Wood Elves to be quite cheap. I bought back in 2007 and I think it cost me about 150 quid for 2250 pts. I went through an online retailer which was offering 15% off WHFB models, and 20% off LoTR, which I used for my Treeman. That wasn't including the book though, which I'd bought I couple of years beforehand. I'm pretty sure you can get similar offers now if you look around. Ebay can also be handy.

It may feel like a big whack, but realistically you'll be using these things for a while (potentially until you kick the bucket), so I think it's worth it.

Also, if you buy from a discounted retailer, you can keep to the same budget but then plan one or two extravagant or unusual unit purchases with your savings to cheer yourself up. I guess you could just keep the cash though...

EDIT: To answer your other question: for a `proper' game I'd say think the minimum points you'd want is 1000, maybe even 1500. The standard these days is 2250 though, although I'm sure no one would begrudge you if you could only go to 2000, as that's when a Lord choice becomes available and things get really interesting.

EDIT#2: I'd avoid getting an army simply because it's cheap. Each one has it's own character and playstyle, and it's far more important that this suits you. Otherwise you're likely to spend the money but then get bored as you're not that into what you have.

Shamutanti
20-01-2010, 00:39
I tend to find a typical 2,000pt fant or 1,500pt 40k army costs me £200.

Anything more than that means I'm chasing after specific models for conversations or I'm heading into the territory of usual weapon/unit combination.

Lars Porsenna
20-01-2010, 01:59
IIRC my Necron 1500pt army cost $226 to assemble all the troops. My DE army (currently in the purchasing stage, as funds become available) will cost $338.75 retail for everything at 2000pts. I usually figure on $500 to "max out" an army at 3000pts for fantasy.

Damon.

starlight
20-01-2010, 02:02
$150/500pts of useful gaming is a good guide. You can spend less if you buy Battleforces/Battalions, use discounters, and convert, or you can spend more if you buy individual units, or go for OOP metals and rare models/etc.

Lord Malorne
20-01-2010, 02:22
For those in the audience that is AUD :).

For myself I cannot say, I usualy just get the book and see what I like, treading the middle path between nice models and nice rules to make an army.

ChaosVC
20-01-2010, 02:44
You can get around $500 (133plus pounds?) for a competative playerable army with some variant possibility. $1000++ for full collection usually. AUD i think.

Thurizdan
20-01-2010, 03:00
I've made 2,250 points of Dark Elves for AUD$250 and that included 40 metal infantry and a huge centrepiece.

I'm nearly finished with 2,250 points of Wood Elves which has cost me AUD$120 because I'm reusing a lot of old models.

Best way to save is to convert your characters out of troops and if you want a unit that has metal models, make them yourself by mixing plastic kits.

Pacorko
20-01-2010, 03:02
Well, I have been lucky as I've got all of my armies from local trades for leftover stuff I've bought at rebates (i.e.: 80% of my Dark Elves, the metal part equalling 80 minis, I got for 100 quid at a liquidation from a store), or over the net from people downsizing their collections.

So, to me, a nice army has never set me back for more than 250 Pounds Sterling after all is said and done. I think I'm buying smart and in bulk to get the armies I want to fit exactly with my vision of what it should be like.

That's why I just borrow High Elves from a couple of mates. The models are horrid or lame for me to go fleamarket-hunting for them.

P.S.. Recently, I completed a trade buying from mate over at the States, and for just shy of a hundred bucks, I got a SM battle force and a squad of bikes sent to a fellow Warseer. So, I'd say that the 100 dollars for 600 points is right on the money. If you get more points for that amount, you scored big. Congrats.

kaubin
20-01-2010, 03:27
I've pretenda-purchased armies on discount stores a lot when trying to choose a new army, and a nice flexible force will cost you between 250-500 CAD...

Stuffburger
20-01-2010, 03:35
I just recently got a roughly 1000 point force (with a fair amount of metal even) for a little under $100 on eBay- If you're willing to get some terribly painted used models and strip them it's quite possible to get a 75%+ discount over new GW.

I think all told I got my 3500+ point orc and goblin force for under $300. The trick was using 6th and 7th edition starter boxes that a lot of people were unloading (6th had orcs and 7th had night goblins), along with getting some kind of abused models from ebay and taking the time to spiff them up. Also keep in mind you can convert heroes from rank and file troopers with a little patience and avoid that expense as well.

Also orc and goblin is a horde army, which tends to be more expensive per point than a denser force despite the individual models being cheaper. If you pick a more compact force like warriors or elves you can expect even less expense.

Basically, never buy at full price, watch ebay like a hawk, get some pine-sol to strip away those awful middle school paint jobs and green stuff for broken parts and you will be able to afford a full size force almost no matter how small your budget.

tezdal
20-01-2010, 03:46
It really depends on what army you choose, but Ogre's would be pretty cheap, buy two battalions and convert Lord' and Heroes from plastic and you'd have a pretty point hefty force.

dragonlancr
20-01-2010, 04:33
My advice would be the pick the army you are most interested in. Go to your local gamestore and read the army books, look at the models, and talk to the other players about how the armies play.

Once you have made a decision, then start 'collecting' your army - it doesn't have to be all at once. Most players at gamestores would be willing to let you "field in" a regiment and even play a game cooperatively with them with your limited troops until you can fill out a 1000 point/1500 point game on your own.

But this is the way you will be happiest. Most people would say that Ogre Kingdoms are the cheapest to build for the point ratio, but if every time you play you were wishing you were commanding an elf army, you will not enjoy this hobby as much.

That's my advice.

Taishar
20-01-2010, 05:22
I'd say around $500 retail is about right for most armies. 2250 is the standard.


Cheers

Pacorko
20-01-2010, 06:33
I'd say that buying 500 dollars at retail prices is really shooting your wallet full of holes. As mentioned ba a few of us before, you can have a built and primed 2250-point army for half that amount.

But to each his own.

ChaosVC
20-01-2010, 06:50
I'd say that buying 500 dollars at retail prices is really shooting your wallet full of holes. As mentioned ba a few of us before, you can have a built and primed 2250-point army for half that amount.

But to each his own.

Indeed, but then you only have one army, one type of list and no option to use other troops type and the only thing that changes in your list is the magic items or perhaps characters.

Razakel
20-01-2010, 07:16
@ the OP, it depends, are you also looking to paint your 500-1,000 point army right away or is leaving them unpainted for some time a problem? I reckon you could get a 500 point army for €120 or under. (I live in Ireland, we use the Euro so I'm not sure what currency you use).

outbreak
20-01-2010, 07:53
If you buy smart through online retailers or forums you can get an army very cheap if your willing to do some fixing. I got most of my dwarf army from buying skull pass sets on local forums very cheaply and then have just added extra units as i find them online cheap. Has cost me about $180ish australian (battalion retail plus one blister here) for over 3000points (and yes i have added units of besides just skull pass warrior blocks)

Condottiere
20-01-2010, 08:15
Retail, I think the cheapest are Ogres to establish an army.

However, if you have the time, you need to locate people who are desperate to get rid of their miniatures, whether by auction, swap meet, yard sale or hanging around the local gaming store. This may limit you to playing armies that might not be on top of your list, but it's the most economic method.

Pacorko
20-01-2010, 08:34
Indeed, but then you only have one army, one type of list and no option to use other troops type and the only thing that changes in your list is the magic items or perhaps characters.

No. Not at all. If you buy smart, you can get those same 2250 points or even more, for 250 dollars or less.

So, I'd venture that no one is in no way limited in their choice of units, number of troops in each one, and heroes, monsters or warmachines by buying on the cheap rather than paying full retail.

The deals are out there, be they with discounters, fellow players who are getting rid of their excess armies or perfect strangers trading at fora and ebay.

As I've said before: hunting down bargains can be quite rewarding in its own right in this hobby, and most occassions you waste less time fixing certain used things than having to build, then clean, then prime, then paint all of your shiny new toys, then be left with a pile of unused bits.

Personally, I just can't bear the sight of so much rammage in the newest GW sprues without thinking: "Gosh! So much plastic just lying there, practically wasted."

I'll give you that we now have easier access to bits from many sources, so we can actually use all those leftover parts. Still, it causes me mild distress to just think about the appropiate numbers of extra torsos, arms and legs I'll need to use all those those Ghoul and Ogre heads... :shifty:

DarkMark
20-01-2010, 13:46
Realistically you're looking at £200-£400 for a 2k army. Do not let price dictate your army, spend a month or two looking at books and checking out their associated sites.

This isn't a cheap hobby but its no more expensive than others.

UberBeast
20-01-2010, 17:29
Don't buy retail is all I can say. Resale on GW products is insanely cheap if you're patient enough to search around.

Jind_Singh
20-01-2010, 18:34
Most armies I collected to 2250 cost between $300 to $500 depending on the relative points costs - for eg the Ogres were much cheaper to buy than the Empire or Orcs as their units are costly in points! An Irongut is what, close to 50pts?
My new Skaven though is going to be a headache - I can see over the course of time it's going to close to $1000 to get the army I want, 2pts a slave is a killer on the budget books!

Skyros
20-01-2010, 18:39
A good way to create an army for a small cash outlay is to go for smaller elite armies, especially ones that can really bulk up on the characters.

Horde armies (Skaven, empire) are not necessarily ideal as they tend to run multiple regiments of 30 infantry.

You should be able to find battalion boxes for about 60-70. Most selections are pretty decent, so buy two of those, now you've got your core troops pretty well filled up, spend another 100 on monsters and rare/war machine slots and you should have a decent force at about $250.

Characters can generally be converted with all the plastic bits you get nowadays. Or maybe you can find some of the older models cheaply on ebay.

Sifal
20-01-2010, 18:52
skaven still represent better value for money with their plastic kits actually having a decent number of models in. Ghouls and the new beastmen plastics and greatswords etc are all very expensive for plastic multi-part kits.
Vampire counts cost a bomb with all the troops needed in reserve to raise new models and things like cairn wraiths, varghulfs, black coach and characters etc still being made from metal.

TheMav80
20-01-2010, 19:48
Retail, $500 US for around 2k seems about right. Just buying online you could easily knock 20% or more off that price.

Pacorko
20-01-2010, 20:02
But that's only if you strictly GW (for in-store or "official" tourney play), Sifal. There's plenty of options (just one example: Mantic gives you 30 ghouls which can double zombies for 20 quid, and 60 skellies for 30), you can buy older plastic models really cheap, and go Reaper or Rackham for your characters and adding little diversity to your core troops.

Actually, I'm in the process of getting a few Rackham skellies and zombies and some characters, and 4 detachment deals from Mantic (which will set me back a 100 quid for 180 minis!), to mix with the VCs second-hands I just bought. Then it's repairing, building and painting time. Finally, I'll grab a bargain or two with some newer GW models on them to round things up, go through the repair-build-paint phase once again, and that should be that.

I've made my math and if I stick to my plan, all in all I won't go over 250 Pounds Sterling for a solid 3k army with lots of skellies and zombies/ghouls.

So, it's quite possible if you plan ahead, and hunt the bargains--having the money to take on the opportunity as it presents itself, of course.

It's a matter of a little saving, some patience and lots of discipline... which are requisites in this army-building-n-painting hobby of ours. ;)

Sifal
20-01-2010, 21:26
But that's only if you strictly GW (for in-store or "official" tourney play), Sifal.

agreed. I don't like using non GW products for models personally, I think it removes coherency from the hobby. I'll concede that other companies do make beautiful minis at reasonable prices though

Pacorko
20-01-2010, 21:43
To my mind, our hobby is miniature collecting, painting and wargaming, not GW-only hoarding per sť, but to each his own.

Still, I really wish for you to get your armies for great prices, so you can save a few quid for some beers, black puddin and whatnot. ;)

shredshredxx
20-01-2010, 22:01
consider getting your character models from reaper or some other similarly priced company. their models are on the same level of quality as GW's, and seem to be getting drastically better with every new release. not to mention they'll run you about $6-10.

Sifal
20-01-2010, 22:19
and more importantly i do attend GW tournaments which sort of ties my hands in terms of the models i can use. They don't know I use Velagio paints though so HA! to you GW.... :-/

Lord Malorne
21-01-2010, 00:32
consider getting your character models from reaper or some other similarly priced company. their models are on the same level of quality as GW's, and seem to be getting drastically better with every new release. not to mention they'll run you about $6-10.

In some cases, some of the reaper models are to die for some are meh, but as you said I use some as characters, some even for spawn, sophie on pumpkin is my sorceror :D.

Lars Porsenna
21-01-2010, 02:52
Reaper, like any manufacturer, has its hits or misses. I'm a bit of a Reaper fan, so I'm biased, but they specialize in "character" models.

I personally agree with Sifal though: mixing in non-GW figures dillutes the effect of the army (most armies are based on stylistic choices), so FREX I probably won't mix in a Reaper character with either my High Elves or Dark Elves.

That being said, I won't touch GW models for either Bretonnains or Empire (I'll buy historicals for that -- cheaper and much less stupid looking IMHO). If you plan on building a Bretonnian army, buy from Front Rank. Considering the figures are only £1.05 (around $1.71) before shipping, for very good figures fully compatable size-wise with GW, well the deal is to be had.

Of course playing in tournaments and stores nixes the latter idea...

One other point: Getting a discount on GW product is always good, but also consider if you have a local independent retailer, it might be more worth your while to support them instead. My local store already gives me a 10% customer loyalty discount (plus they don't mark up old stock when there is a price rise -- I just picked up today a box of HE shadow warriors for $20 -- or $18 after discount), and it helps keep a local independent vendor in the green, giving me a place to play (and not JUST GW games -- I used to play Battletech there frequently for a while). Generally, if my purchase is going to be less than $60, I go to my local store instead to make the purchase...

Damon.

Seville
21-01-2010, 04:16
So, it's quite possible if you plan ahead, and hunt the bargains--having the money to take on the opportunity as it presents itself, of course.

It's a matter of a little saving, some patience and lots of discipline... which are requisites in this army-building-n-painting hobby of ours.;)

Hey, we get your point. You don't have to pay retail. Sure.

But you really only save using the methods you describe if you consider your time worthless.

The amount of time you have to spend hunting these deals down is not worth it to some. And, for some, there is a value to having their models when they want them, not simply when they can find them for cheap.

Condottiere
21-01-2010, 07:11
That goes under opportunity cost, though bargain hunting can sometimes be an enjoyable sport on it's own.

If you are operating under a time constraint, really evaluate what you need to make a viable and satisfactory force, and just buy the minimum, slowly building it up as opportunity allows, whether further retail purchases or a windfall from somewhere else.

npow34
21-01-2010, 15:13
As much as I am thankful to gamestores and GW, I don't have the money to afford to buy at their prices...EBAY! I just bought, all brand new in box, 2 boxes of grail knights ($115), 1 box of questing knights ($50), box of men at arms ($35), king on hippogriff ($40), fay enchantress ($30), green knight ($30), and a blister with damsels foot and mounted ($17). That is $317 worth of minis for the bargin price of $107.

Also I got a chaos battalion for $50 and box of warriors for $15.

TMATK
21-01-2010, 18:45
If you buy new, avoid GW direct. In the U.S. order from The Warstore for the 20% discount.

EBay is great as others have mentioned, but also keep an eye on Craigslist. You can get lucky and find really good deals.

gorenut
21-01-2010, 18:55
I went the ebay route and my local retailer. All in all, i have a Lizardman army for about $150. Slann cost me $28 from local retailer and thats a huge amount of pts in-game. Stegadon, roughly the same. I got the 6th ed metal temple guards from ebay for $25 for roughly 40 of em. I'm using them as regular Saurus warriors (not a fan of the plastic ones and the old temple guards look like they're wielding spears anyways). Also bought some new plastic Temple Guards to use as Temple Guards on ebay for half the price. Just look around for deals.

kyussinchains
25-01-2010, 21:01
remember you can get hold of the goblins or dwarfs from BfSP on ebay pretty cheap, £25 is a good price for a unit of dwarf warriors, a unit of thunderers, a unit of miners, a thane and a cannon.... likewise for the goblins.... a couple of those sets would get a small army up and running very cheaply....

Pacorko
25-01-2010, 21:25
Hey, we get your point. You don't have to pay retail. Sure.

But you really only save using the methods you describe if you consider your time worthless.

The amount of time you have to spend hunting these deals down is not worth it to some. And, for some, there is a value to having their models when they want them, not simply when they can find them for cheap.

Funny enough, I don't get yours. If you need instant gratification, well, you'll pay the price. That doesn't make your time any more precious as it doesn't make mine worthless for, as a bloke who collects ARMIES (not just a few blocks of models), I can sit to repair, paint while I hunt for the deals to expand my armies making good use of my leisure/hobby time.

As I've said a few times now, I am not part of the "competitive" subculture that spawns from playing any of the major GW systems--I play the three of them--, so I really don't need to update or fine-tune anything for a tournament.

If once in a while, I want to participate in a RT trouney, I do so with what I have, even if its "outdated" models.

Sure , I also buy a lot of new stuff, but not from GW or my price-hiking local stores, so I think I do give worth to my time, my hobbies, my 8 WHFB, 2 40k and 8 LotR armies, as well as my money.

Heck... Especially my money! :p

Vermin-thing
26-01-2010, 06:56
My warriors of chaos army probably cost about $220 CDN, for 25 slannesh daemon warriors, metal slannesh riders, which were expensive, two boxes of marauders, a warshrine, and some older hero models, plus three minotaurs as ogres, as well as other random parts for conversions.