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AoS abandoned by my gaming group. Would like to see more QoL improvments for the game!


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Preface to the post before I start: I wanted to avoid any negativity and have tried to stick to being as constructive as I can with the issues I'm facing with the game. I mostly wanted to vent a bit and get the ideas floating in my head out (Mostly so I can get back to painting!)

My group have pretty much moved away from being interested in playing AoS. This is mostly due to a few factors, some of the more obvious ones (which I will avoid discussing on the forum) and the lockdowns did not help. A lot of the 'AoS resentments' have come from the release schedule and the like, which GW could possibly improve.

In short, there are a few problems with the quality of life of the game that I'd love to see GW address going forward.

  1. Release schedule. Most of my group have gotten sick of the release schedule, whilst we are all aware that GW need to release content regularly to keep the cash flow coming in there are a few things they could do to improve the QoL for buyers. For instance, AoS books are very hit or miss if they will remain in stock pass the pre-order window. I personally hate the rush to get online to order an AoS book just because its releasing alongside a 40k LE, or that it might even sell out instantly itself.

    It would be nice if they released AoS books or other 'in demand' or short print run items away from other huge game releases.
     
  2. Review embargoes. For example this weekend- the chaos set. The reviews appeared from the third party chaps, just as the local store sold out of the set. It would be nice if GW allowed the reviews to appear before the set has been put out for release (and potentially sold out). I wanted a more independent review of this set (not GWs BUY BEST SET EVER promotion) to see if the models would really be worth adding to my force (as its massively converted)

    Same thing with their books. GW will send an email out promoting the books release- usually about half an hour after the book is already sold out and never to be reprinted.
     
  3. Thondia. Whilst I'm not keen on 'season of war' as being a thing, campaign books are my jam and are something I wish they did a lot more of. However, thondia had a really bizarre release and the big terrain set was off putting (I know technically you don't need it, but if they are releasing a campaign book with a new model, it would have been nice that the new model wasn't behind a €200 paywall at release) We did toy with the idea of splitting the bundle, but after trying to hash out who would get what (or what would be left with me to paint for the group gaming table) interest just kind of fizzled out.
     
  4. Terrain. AoS terrain is weird. They seem to bring out a new building, release it in multiple sets and then it gets scrubbed from the store almost instantly or only available in much larger sets. It would be nice if we could go back to having a terrain range that was available all the time (or just go full on back to white dwarf articles encouraging people to scratch build again!) or provided more lore friendly terrain. (Where is the AoS housing & shops?)
     
  5. I've seen more than one post around that 3rd edition isn't doing as well as people would like to see, which can be off putting when trying to get people into playing. Things like Dominion (hyped to be a 'buy now or forever miss out', but now sat on store shelves discounted) or the old world is coming...soon...one day...maybe...sometime. None of this helps GW promote that AoS is going to be around a long time (even if they have been clear that the old world is just going to be a side game, it doesn't seem to have been taken in!)

    AoS needs something like a long term road map, or more promotion of the long term (not just showing a random mini part once a month!)
     
  6. Underworld/beastgrave etc warbands. Probably some of the best models GW are putting out, but they are so flakey when it comes to availability. I'd much rather buy them without the cards, but never know if and when they are being moved over to the main range.

    The costing also doesn't make much sense, you can buy the 4/5 models in a warband for slightly more than the cost of an individual character from the main range. Its an odd thing to do when warband is often moved to the main range alongside the same range character (For example, the kharardon overlord set is utterly bizarre. Thundrik's Profiteers which has a khemist sculpt is €2 less than the Aether-Khemist alone) It would be excellent if there were more consistency to these sets being moved over to the main AoS range once they are done with their run of underworlds.
     
  7. Warhammer+ content. Happy to be corrected if wrong- I dislike W+ massively so don't have it. But where is the AoS content? We are into the 2nd year of W+ and other than one hammer & bolter episode, where is the AoS series? Whilst I'm well aware that 40k massively out profits AoS, GW doesn't seem to want to put any effort into the lore/non-hobby side of the game. This reads to me that GW are not confident with the setting.

    I'd certainly have gotten over my W+ issues a lot quicker and brought in to it this year had some actual AoS/fantasy content been there.
     
  8. Warhammer community has gone back to reading like a business newsletter (which I know first and foremost it is!). I'd really like to see more staff models and the like. I total get that its just their advertising space and not really for 'hobby content'. But I'd be more tempted by so many more new models or projects if we saw a bigger range of painting on show.
     
  9. 'Community policing'. This isn't something that GW has any control over, so this isn't anything they can resolve but I've seen some pretty bad practices in the last 24 months (and thus venting!). I've had one person in my group buy into AoS, only to drop the game due to having been booted off a facebook group after some from that community (including a fairly well known content creator) dog-piled into them for wrong doing (in short- they brought more than one copy of the hachette magazine and thus the logic was they were "stopping new children getting into the game"). They lost all interest after seeing what the community was like and went back to playing older games. The facebook moderator removed them for defending their purchases, citing that it was more trouble to moderate the rude people than removing the one person completely.

    In addition, after seeing someone else being told by a stranger they were ruining the game for using plastic dinosaurs for their seraphon army, and not a week later the same complainer was posting pictures of the unpainted 3d printed models they were taking to a tournament.  The jump in logic was mind boggling!

    Discussion online of AoS have shifted in the last 12 months or so to more and more of the rules talk, meta chasing, complaints on how others enjoy the hobby. I don't think its anything anyone can control but its a strange shift and I know some narrative only players feel pushed out of the spaces made for AoS conversation. (Discord seems to have a ton of narrative groups, but very few seem to cross post to here any more)

    Anyway, that's me having vented! To brighten the thread up a bit, here's my WiP Slaanesh mortals army. (Yes, they are based on squares as they are going to be pulling double duty as a a 6th Ed WFB army). I've been slowly pulling apart last years battleforce to make more conversions for the Slaanesh-cast warriors! I am not looking forward to the cleanup of the daemon chariots! Those wheel spikes are horrid! 😅


    O90uSNx.jpg.95c1b1db4e359c8233ce7a488723fb7a.jpg




 

Edited by RexHavoc
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  • RexHavoc changed the title to AoS abandoned by my gaming group. Would like to see more QoL improvments for the game!

I've been painting Age of Sigmar since 2015. Switched this year to 40k and chaos space marines. The moment I did I found tons more people at the local store who were interested in what I was doing, enthusiastically asking me questions and engaging in hobby and lore talk. I knew 40k was much larger than AoS, but the magnitude at my local scene surprised me. The other reason I switched was the AoS release schedule. The new Slaves to Darkness box is great, but other than that it's been crumbs. I think I read somewhere on the rumour thread here on TGA that Necromunda got more releases in 2022 than AoS.  

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I'm thinking about this post
I understand that half of this hobby is about the community, and the shortest way to follow it is using internet and social network. But it seems that it's not working for your and your gaming group, and the perception you take is completely the opposite of what you want... so, my take is to ignore them, try to make your own hobby, ignore people on facebook (I didn't know people are still using it!), reddit, discord, twitch, etc... and ignore GW (that's important).

My suggetion is to look for what you (and your gaming group) like and copy it: Play games, talk about lore (youtube has some good reviews, and there are some TGA users that have their own blog with more GW stuff), make your own "beer&pretzel" time (that's important) and use a fancy bar if needed (remember: beers and snacks!). If your gaming group follows your plan and understand that this hobby is not something that needs to be "followed", maybe it will change their gaming perception. Try to switch that "GW hate AoS" for "We don't care about GW". 

Btw, I completely understand the FOMO policy, it's horrible. We need to deal with it (****** Black Library books...). You will be always be prepared to buy their stuff, but it's up to them to make it easy for you. If not, maybe look at other companies (or 3D prints) to make your point clear with your wallet.

Edited by Beliman
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4 hours ago, Sonnenspeer said:

Maybe I should get the raven guard box and learn to play 40k

Stay strong brother Isharann, 40k is the Archenemy ;)

 

5 hours ago, RexHavoc said:

Discussion online of AoS have shifted in the last 12 months or so to more and more of the rules talk, meta chasing,

This can definitely be more of an issue of the spaces you've chosen or find to talk about AOS. I find myself talking more about lore or the business side of GW more than AOS metas for the same reason. Overall agree with your post, it's very frustrating being an AOS fan right now and being unsure if we've lost the momentum of 3.0's release!

However if you're not already into it, I don't think buying into 40k is ever the answer for being frustrated with AOS. At the very least, it is exactly what GW wants you to do--instead of finding another game or using a different ruleset you're stuck with them.

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I'd use a different system with the same models. Something like Onepage rules or Oathmark.

If there's a new edition that fixes all your grievances, your models are ready for it. AoS is a great setting, and most models are great as well.

I agree the first few seasons of Underworlds warbands were great value, but this has been rectified. I no longer recommend them to new painters because they value infantry heroes way too much (that single khemist just isn't worth that).

Many of the issues you have with AoS won't be solved if you switch to 40k, and most armies would need a lot of time, money and effort investment to try.

Though the Nundam and knight battleboxes looks tasty.

Edited by zilberfrid
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I would dare say that 40k is even worse than AoS in terms of balance and FOMO. 

I also think that Thondia and similar rules updates/ addons are really just that. It is there just to spice things up in case u get bored. No need to buy all this unless u want to go meta heavy gaming. There is this thing about this hobby that nobody tells u about. U dont have to do or buy everything GW wants u to. Lots of things are completely optional. I am in this hobby since 8th edition whfb and i never really needed anything more than the base rules and a tome. 

Same thing with terrain. They are just limited runs u can buy if u want to and are completely optional. I made my own terrain by buying some simple trees in a modeltrain store and cutting up some foam, works just as good as any GW terrain. And with X-mas coming up i want to try and find some cheap snow and pine trees. And i do buy some GW terrain from time to time but i dont want to go and collect everything because i would be broke if i did.

And it was kind of hard for me to find a community to share the hobby with until i stumbled upon TGA. Here i found a healthy/positive community that wants to share their joy in this hobby. This also made me want to paint up and share stuff to give back to this community. I think its ok if someone doesnt like the hobby or AoS, i think its not ok if they go out of their way to be toxic about it and ruin the fun for others.

Edit: I do think GW could improve on a lot of things but just wanted to share my opinion on these things.

Edit2 : Nice models !

Edited by Gitzdee
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I've seen a similar reduction in my local group with the odd exception.  The pandemic killed off all of the random games that we'd normally play across all systems and now we've started to come back to a bit of gaming, we're choosing to mostly play skirmish sized games such as Necromunda and Aeronautica.  The thought of playing a 3 hour game just doesn't appeal to most of us at the present time, when we also want to catch up from a social aspect too.

I would agree that the release schedule is brutal from GW and I'd love to see it being spread out a bit more.  5 years between editions of the game rather than 3 and put a bit more into each army revision rather that one model and a new book.  However I cannot see that changing.  What I am hoping is that when 4th edition appears we see a lot of the chaff being removed and a general streamlining of the rules.  The joy of 1st edition and to a certain extent 2nd edition was that it wasn't a difficult game to learn, the core rules were short, concise and although some bits were open to interpretation, generally you could have an enjoyable and pretty quick game.

What has recently inspired a few of us is doing smaller path to glory style forces.  Although it's super impressive to play a massive game with huge monsters, there's something appealing about a lightweight army that doesn't have those powerhouses in.

17 hours ago, RexHavoc said:

Review embargoes. For example this weekend- the chaos set. The reviews appeared from the third party chaps, just as the local store sold out of the set. It would be nice if GW allowed the reviews to appear before the set has been put out for release (and potentially sold out). I wanted a more independent review of this set (not GWs BUY BEST SET EVER promotion) to see if the models would really be worth adding to my force (as its massively converted)

I see this more as a supply issue rather than anything else.  I've long been of the opinion that once the initial stock of a new release is sold out, that product needs to go into a made to order phase for the rest of the pre-order period.  You shouldn't lose out on a product because you weren't quick enough in the queue.

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I’ve barely played aos since 3rd dropped and it’s the same for both groups I go to. The pandemic killed second ed off before it got going and I wish gw had delayed third as a result. I’m seeing 40k go a similar way since the pandemic. One group which was heavily 40k now plays a huge variety of games and almost all 40k and aos has gone, the other has switched to Horus heresy. 
I am very much enjoying the wide mix of games I play now - soulbound and alien rpg, core space, Bloodbowl, memoir 44 and a range of modern board games. Plus more are on going at the club. It’s lots of fun and always packed.

we will be doing a path to glory, but I worry it will fail mainly due to the too many games to enjoy and not enough time factor leaving limited dates for people to play. Bloodbowl on the other hand has been a huge success

Edited by Praecautus
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1 hour ago, Gitzdee said:

And it was kind of hard for me to find a community to share the hobby with until i stumbled upon TGA. Here i found a healthy/positive community that wants to share their joy in this hobby. This also made me want to paint up and share stuff to give back to this community.

I totally agree. I'm not sure how I stumbled on TGA but I'm SO glad I did.

Shout out to the Mods who do a great job, particularly of allowing a little bit of grumble before they reign us in and get us back on track 😃

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Honestly most of your reasons could apply to lots of different game systems, GW especially, so if other GW games seem to be doing fine in your local area maybe the reasons are more systemic and down to AOS specifically and also the local AOS scene.

Games are basically kept alive by their communities and it sounds like you've got a pretty bad one for AOS. Trying to find regular AOS games in my local scene is like trying to find hens teeth; a lot of the locals have just decided to do a single monthly meet up where they all just.... play each other like they always do, and often with a very competitive bent. It's exceptionally hard for newer players to break into that group or find games on the reg. This is in stark contrast to games like 40K, LOTR, Saga, Gaslands, Blood Bowl and others which have regular organised weekly meet ups and gaming nights, and where 40k especially has people always looking for a game on most days, not just the club organised ones. Guess which systems are thriving down here right now.

So yeah, a bad local scene and very AOS specific game issues are probably why your scene is struggling.

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I’ve got the sinking feeling that 3rd edition rules definitely hurt it a lot over here. 
 

Before 3rd edition we had a lot more activity in the local discord group. Last post regarding AoS was ages ago.  Meanwhile 40k has so many posts you can‘t keep up despite crappy rules. 40k can afford weak rules, AoS cannot. GW need to hire better rule writers IMO. The minis are certainly not the problem, even if the releases slowed down. 

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41 minutes ago, MitGas said:

The minis are certainly not the problem, even if the releases slowed down. 

But the lack of GW's attention is. This is less of an issue once you have a solid gaming community, but still. They are updating the army books - a mandatory exercise not really connected with any coherent story and rarely stirring any emotions. They check the meta and react; I applaud this, but the battlescroll is hardly an emotional event. After the Broken Realms hasty conclusion, they left a number of storylines on the back burner and focused on Kragnos & Kruleboyz - a narrative disaster.

The rules are fine, people learn in time; instead of the carousel of new editions the game needs a thought-out release schedule within a decent narrative arc.

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1 hour ago, Flippy said:

But the lack of GW's attention is. This is less of an issue once you have a solid gaming community, but still. They are updating the army books - a mandatory exercise not really connected with any coherent story and rarely stirring any emotions. They check the meta and react; I applaud this, but the battlescroll is hardly an emotional event. After the Broken Realms hasty conclusion, they left a number of storylines on the back burner and focused on Kragnos & Kruleboyz - a narrative disaster.

The rules are fine, people learn in time; instead of the carousel of new editions the game needs a thought-out release schedule within a decent narrative arc.

I dunno, I only have a small sample to work with, so obviously my statement isn‘t the whole „truth“ but the general consensus over here was that people liked AoS also because it had simple rules. You play 40k for the setting and minis but the game itself was/is far from optimal. AoS you just played to have fun. The felt drop in GWs support for AoS after 3rd ed hit is definitely also a factor but that was to be expected, really. AoS had an amazing support by GW for the first years, so it was obvious that there will be slower times. 
 

I really liked the IMO clever argument that the constant tease of the Old World likely doesn‘t help the overall mood regarding AoS either.  I think a few more definite statements regarding TOW would help as currently people are torn between those settings. I loved the Old World’s mood and setting but now am invested in the new stuff. Playing „historic stuff“ is less interesting to me as we know the ultimate outcome. I‘d rather just read about it. Frankly, with a bit of luck, I could use my Chaos stuff in both settings but I‘m basically just looking for a decent game to play with my friends. 
 

on this note I also want to lament that Kill Team has way too complicated rules. It should be the ultimate introduction game but the rules aren‘t noob-friendly at all. Yes, we all learn(ed) them bit I don‘t see anything but drawbacks there. My friends play other non-GW systems too and rule-wise they prefer them. It‘s not something I like to hear. 🙈

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I have a similar problem with the current system I must admit.

the current skaven book brings no love to the horde idea of an army, which is upsetting.

a horde army that has no real horde.

rules were adjusted in ways that are questionable and inits were made useless.

units that haven’t seen the table before and definitely won’t now.

Then there are chances that removed old fluffy rules entirely while adding other kind of tules that don’t fit the the lore text of that ability.

personally the book was just badly done and is in dire need of a rewrite.

 

but till then I can at least make a fan made faq that should bring the skaven book back in line of that fluffy horde feeling it allways shoudl have had since the third edition but never got.

 

Edited by Skreech Verminking
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1 hour ago, MitGas said:

people liked AoS also because it had simple rules.

I agree. It was easy to get into.

I work in a mentally draining job, I don’t have the nerf for a massive mental load and confronting Mortal Wound spam Tournament wombo-combos every evening when I want to have a fun, fluffy, game to calm down.

Edited by JackStreicher
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I love the simplification of the warscrolls this edition. I think it was a good move to make some flavorful army wide abilities and have less text on each warscroll. I did not like the whole command abilities thing and the battletactics. It is just a lot of bookkeeping and remembering things instead of just playing the game. I think if they just made more interesting battleplans than the battletactics wouldnt be needed that much. I also like to keep things simple so i can play this game with casual gaming friends who dont want to study a battletome before a game.

 

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We’ve completely quit as well. Moved over to OPR’s Age of Fantasy for a much more sound and tactical (and fun ) experience . I couldn’t imagine myself going back to a GW game with all these books and now you guys have GHBs every 6 months?! Insane…

it wasn’t Covid which hurt AOS because other game systems are far more alive - especially 40K ( also poor rules system ). So there’s something wrong with the community - maybe too many people split over things like meta chasers , then Narrative guys over there - then hobby/ casual guys over there. It’s not focused and it never had the appeal of Fantasy - so when that re releases i fear it will have an even more negative impact on AOS. 
as a former fantasy guy myself I may try TOW but it won’t replace Age of Fantasy or Age of Fantasy Regiments due to GW always incorporating sales into their rules which destroys their games.

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1 hour ago, Gitzdee said:

I love the simplification of the warscrolls this edition. I think it was a good move to make some flavorful army wide abilities and have less text on each warscroll.

But the advantage of having more of the rules on the warscrolls was you could read more about what potential opponents were capable of without having to buy the Tome for all the factions you might want to fight...

...screech, change of opinion mid post...

...hmm, but maybe that's more about what GW choose to make free on the app rather than where it's located.

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5 minutes ago, EntMan said:

But the advantage of having more of the rules on the warscrolls was you could read more about what potential opponents were capable of without having to buy the Tome for all the factions you might want to fight...

...screech, change of opinion mid post...

...hmm, but maybe that's more about what GW choose to make free on the app rather than where it's located.

If i showed some of the old warscrolls to my wife she was like... nope. These look less intimidating in a way. And i agree that the app could use an update in certain areas.

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3 hours ago, MitGas said:

I dunno, I only have a small sample to work with, so obviously my statement isn‘t the whole „truth“ but the general consensus over here was that people liked AoS also because it had simple rules.

The rules... if I had to pinpoint the problem, I would say Battle Tactics & Grand Strategies. Without them you can explain really quickly what the game is about: control the objectives, kill the enemies - and focus just on that. With them AoS feels like a different game with a lot more thinking involved (and they change every 6 months).

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