Jun 15, 2006

U.K. White Dwarf 318: An angry review

Let me see if I understood correctly. First, I have to wait a ludicrous amount of time for Games Workshop to finally manage to supply its Greek stockists with the latest White Dwarf (apparently Han Solo wasn't available to smuggle it in and the Senate was reluctant to lift the bleeding embargo), then I have to pay something like 8 euros for a less than 130 pages magazine and finally I have to put up with 20-odd pages of ads. Is it worth it? Perhaps, but only if the content of the magazine is exceptional, and this, unfortunately, is not the case with the current WD (no. 318 if you didn't notice). This is one of the worse issues ever published; a peak in the recent streak of sub-par White Dwarfs.

So, don't buy it. Simple as that. Convinced? Not yet? But why?

Should I then elaborate, even though it will remind me of the painful and disappointing hour it took me to read through the whole mag? Well, I shouldn't, really, but I will. Albeit briefly.

General WD stuff: All around bigger and admittedly beautiful pictures, sparse and poorly written text (the word 'cool' is really overused), good quality paper, nice layout, and everything you'd expect included in the New Releases, Frontline etc parts. Nothing to actually recommend it for.

Warhammer 40k: Mostly based on the Cities of Death expansion. Think of it as a really elaborate and quite interesting advertisement: the new plastic buildings are showcased, the new book is briefly described, there are some mildly interesting painting and modeling/conversion ideas, a visually impressive (and nothing more) Battle Report and an excellent and quite relevant Dok Butcha's Convershun Klinik. Other than that you get repeated references to this year's summer campaign (The Fall of Medusa V) and a very handy WH40k reference sheet. All an' all an overtly generous 5/10. (That's a grade. For each of the mag's sections. Got it? Great!)

Warhammer: Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. This is the really horrible part. It might sound nice, but don't be fooled. The Regiments of Renown is nothing more than a half-arsed presentation of some minis and (another) pathetic plug for the new Giant. The Tomb Kings 'article' is a slightly camouflaged advertisement, while the proposed tactics, beginner's stuff if not outright wrong. The Horde article is rather good and quite an interesting read, even though it could definitely have been longer. Anyhow, it does help raise the grade to 3/10.

Lord of the Rings: Not special, not horrible, and by far, not extensive. What's offered is a 500 points Battle Report, a short banner painting guide, some miniature previews and, believe it or not, nothing else. That's a 2/10.

Conclusion? Don't buy it. Buy an overpriced Citadel miniature instead. You'll be doing yourself a favor and -in a way- protesting White Dwarf's (total lack of) quality.

Related Gnome's Lair articles: WD 317 review, a beginner's guide to diverting, the latest Warhammer news and rumors

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  1. Send in an article, it sounds like you could do as good a job with your eyes closed. If it's any consolation it costs just as much here.

  2. Nah... they don't seem to be loaded with cash those days. No point then.

    And yes, that's something. At least we aren't the only ones getting ripped off.

    (Oh, and the tea was great)

  3. (puts the kettle backs on, kicks white dwarf magazine)

  4. I stopped buying White Dwarf several months ago because my return to roleplaying had reduced my minis gaming to absolute zero, and my interest in minis in general was waning as a consequence.

    I have read some real angry (and quite interesting) rants about recent WD's at Warseer forums (you can find them under 'Other GW Discussion'). What struck me as most disturbing regarding the future of the magazine was the news that the editorial team had been reduced to 2 people. I guess I might buy a future copy of the mag out of curiosity, but I imagine the days when I buy every copy without thinking twice are gone.

    Cheers. ;)

    "Roll dice and kick ass!"
    Snapshots from JMcL63's lands of adventure

  5. Glad you agree then my friend... and thanks for the link... I'll check what the Warseer crowd has to say right now...


  6. I agree to much emphasis on one new product . Not enough readers input and to slick , it dosnt take half an hour to read and it's not worth a re read . Summers nice though .

  7. You are absolutely right. I ecstatically agree :)