I've finished my marines, finally - after a long struggle with apathy my 1000pt RT-era 'Antiquadors' () are finally done.

I immediately thought of collecting a Thousand Sons army, but then realised that my main problem isn't boredom with the models or the painting, it's that I know the game isn't really that in depth.

Previous to this I've tried to start Tomb Kings, Chaos (Mortals) and Dwarfs and each time have totally lost interest.

I love the skeleton models and the idea of the VC army just sounds too cool - Liches, Black Knights, Zombies, Ghouls, Ghosts - lovely jubly.

I know how to play WHFB roughly speaking (although I don't have rules and values memorised just yet) - but I'm really out of practise as you can imagine.

So ,a few questions:

1. GW hosts 'games nights' in a massive clubroom above the shop on a weekday evening for 'veterans and beginners alike' - am I going to be lambasted for turning up with an army but only tertiary knowledge of how to play the game? (i.e. is the rulebook required reading to start?)

2. What is the 'average' points value for a small-medium game. In 2nd Edition 40k I would've said about 1500pts would have done you down to the ground. In 4th Edition 40k about 1000pts is a good number for me. What's the equivalent?

3. What would be the basic choices for a small VC army? Without looking over the points costs I would assume:

Vampire Count in a regiment of Black Knights (Wights?)
Regiment of Skeleton Horsemen
2-3 Regiments of Skeletons (one with spears)
1 Regiment of Wights
1 Regiment of Ghouls
2 Regiments of Zombies

Is this about right?

I'm not particularly fussed about winning - I'm more of a "play the game to play the game" instead of "play the game to win" kind of person.

4. Am I going to be overrun with problems in the magic phase, given it's past importance (before Undead was split into TK and VC - it was almost mandatory to have Vanhel's Danse Macabre, etc.) and my lack of knowledge?