Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Review: December White Dwarf

The December White Dwarf was released on Saturday.

This was always going to be a difficult issue....cue cliches about the crucial third album etc. It was always going to be difficult because GW had drawn a line in the sand with the re-launch in October and the cynical among us - those who have an allergy to corporate Kool-Aid - were wondering how long they would keep things on the up.

It was always going to be difficult too because December was "The Hobbit" month and the "veteran gamer" is not necessarily the target market for what they are peddling.

The December Issue

Okay, first up a warning. If you are not interested in "The Hobbit", the releases around the movie and the skirmish game system, then this isn't the issue for you. Far better you save your money and buy next month's when you'll get either Daemons or Drak Angles. The issue is wall-to-wall the new releases with little or none of the other two systems.

I'll leave the content of "The Hobbit". You are either into it and as a result may be into the game or you are not. The cover is very nice though. I like the simple layout which I think captures the essence of the book [As an aside, how can you stretch a 300 page book to three full length movies? I suspect the speedboat has been warmed up and Peter jackson has finally doned the waterskis.]

For 40k there is a showcase of readers' flyers - which is quite nice. Fantasy, the Army on Parade is a very large Ogre Kingdoms army - not so sure on the retro Goblin Green base rims (I suppose that at least they are not Lonestar orange).

There is a shortened John Blanche and Jeremy Vetock's normal quirky column. There is also Jervois Johnson's article on "Spirit of the Game". I'm sure he just phoned this in. It's a rehash of the article he does about every nine months. Perhaps it is time to just let him go. His articles for the past two years are regurgitations of previous "Standard Bearers". Maybe this is an indication of the length of readership of most White Dwarf readers.

The best for last. The sections at the back which show what the White Dwarf, Forgeworld and Black library teams are working on. These have been an excellent addition to the magazine.

Also included is a poster showing (all) the 40k models. of course this means plastic and Finecast - metal is sadly missing. It is a nice inclusion and illustrates the quantum of great models GW have produced.

So not the best issue for those of us with Fantasy or 40k bent. The content was always expected with the movie release. As I said, if the movie isn't your thing then you are probably better saving your cash for next month.


  1. Did the Dec issue include the official update for the warriors of chaos?

    Reason I ask is that the Nov issue, which was supposed to have it, did not in fact contain the official update. The only reason that I purchased the issue.

    When I contacted the local independant store that I purchased it from they informed me that GW had made a mistake, the update was not included in the Nov issue, but would be contained in the Dec issue. Obviously informed the store owner that was acceptable and would I get the update free when it came out in Dec? He replied that he would contact GW and get back to me. Never heard from him again.

    Emailed GW, and all I got was a poor quality one page pdf emailed back to me.

    Given that this was my first purchase of anything GW since the embargo, it goes without saying that I was not impressed.

    Really hits home to me that GW really just dont care. They have made minimal effort to put things right. I would have expected them to at least ask me my address, and offer to send the update to me once it was available.


  2. Obviously should be unacceptable.

  3. I get the UK issue Stuart so got mine in November.

    I can seen you a scan if necessary

    1. Will take you up on your offer. No rush, you concentrate on your build up for Masters.

      Good luck to all participants.


  4. "How can you stretch a 300 page book to three full length movies?"

    Couldn't resist replying to this one as an avid Tolkien fan! Given how much the LOTR books were left out of the movies, and given how much of the LOTR Appendix stories are being included in The Hobbit movie, (beyond what is in The Hobbit book) it seems about right to me :)

    1. I should add that even though I am a huge fan of GWs LotR games, the Hobbit releases do not appeal very much at all. The LotR rules and miniatures are great as is, and the Hobbit sculpts are a bit pricey. As a gamer, the new rules system is a bit unnecessary. I guess I'm in the wrong demographic for this particular release.

      Would you recommend the new White Dwarf format though, to someone who relatively enjoyed the old format? Digital products or print? I haven't picked up any of the new ones yet, so am still curious.