The Empire at War > Age of Sigmar

AOS, Oldhammer, greenskins, and the march of progress

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Old Stonebeard:
Branching off from the Dominion thread...

--- Quote ---Actually, I am not a huge fan of that either. it looks like saturday morning cartoons. I mean how the world was captured in the 6th edition era, or Mordheim. Grimdark. Dirty. I think its the more preferred way other fans here view the Old World.
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--- Quote ---Ok yes the early early editions are pretty gritty too. But I havenít looked into all of them to know for sure. I mean 4th and 5th edition appear very cartoony to me. Almost cliche. Itís why I stayed away from WFB. Then Mordheim and 6th came along and started sparking my interest. Granted it took me a long time to jump on board.
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--- Quote ---Not sure if I'm interpreting KTG correctly or not ... perhaps KTG prefers the art work more along the lines of what we saw with things like the early WFRPing material was like ... grim and dirty.  Or maybe what was seen on the 6th Edition Empire Battalion box set (or whatever that was called).
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So, what I'm hearing is that many of the, shall we say, "AOS begrudging" voices on W-E and in the wider remnant WHFB community are lamenting the loss of a "gritty low fantasy" aesthetic that truthfully only existed between 6th and early 8th edition. 6th was released in 2000, and 8th was released in 2010, with the End Times occurring in 2015.

What fascinates me is that 6th was as big a jump in aesthetic- both in the aesthetics of model design and artwork- as AOS has been from 8th Ed. Let's take a microcosm as an example (and this is far from the most egregious jump in design from this period), and touch on the Dark Elf Corsair.

4th Edition art:

6th Edition art:

4th Edition metals:

6th Edition metals:

Even now, I'm seeing people complain about AOS's post-2nd Ed art direction as becoming "too grimdark". What would fascinate me to know is, did 1st-5th Edition players feel that 6th Edition "ruined" WHFB? What makes that 2000-2010 period the "true" WHFB, and what's come before and after as silly nonsense?

The reason I bring this up is because, despite all the teeth-gnashing by "oldhammer" players, AOS 3rd Edition's Kruleboyz Orruks seem to harken back to classic WHFB Orcs.

I guess what I'm trying to say here is, it's all still Warhammer, and it makes me sad to see folks incessantly decry AOS over half a decade later because "why new thing not like old thing", when in fact old thing was once new thing that wasn't like old thing. Who's to say it wasn't, in fact, the 6th Edition aesthetic that ruined Warhammer?

Old Stonebeard

I look forward to this thread going swell. But assuming general peacefulness I think it is a neat discussion about how people see warhammer.

Old Stonebeard:

--- Quote from: Gankom on June 03, 2021, 02:23:22 AM ---I think it is a neat discussion about how people see warhammer.

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Same! I do not mean this to troll, but to provoke genuine dialogue  :happy:

In other news, I just placed a bid on a 4th Ed. O&G army book specifically so I can paint the Kruleboyz in 4th Ed. colors...

Old  Stonebeard


--- Quote from: Old Stonebeard on June 03, 2021, 02:15:34 AM ---So, what I'm hearing is that many of the, shall we say, "AOS begrudging" voices on W-E and in the wider remnant WHFB community are lamenting the loss of a "gritty low fantasy" aesthetic that truthfully only existed between 6th and early 8th edition. 6th was released in 2000, and 8th was released in 2010, with the End Times occurring in 2015.
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Well that isn't entirely truthful as your periodization omits the 3rd Edition. Now the 3rd Edition is no where near as unified in its aesthetic presentation as later editions but the elements of gritty low fantasy do have there birth there, particularly among human faction which were largely repurposed historical figure line. Game mechanics also play an important role as well being that the 3rd and 6th aimed more at traditional army from historical tabletop play feel rather than the extremes of hero based mechanics that the 4th and 5th edition play offered. Sure the time period is filled with all sorts of outlandish art but again the art by those of the low/gritty persuasion is just that, art. It is an appeal to an emotional response in the viewer not necessarily accurate representation of the "world".

In Western Art there have been cycles of various lengths, in which, the ideas of classical art, concerned with realistic representation, oscillate with  counter veiling periods, where imagery, symbolism, and emotion are far more important to the work. All of it being art doesn't mean one way is right or correct or that as one predates the other is thus the rightful form for presentation but that art is subjective and the viewers are the final arbiter of their own tastes and preferences. Claiming there is a proper Warhammer and that people must enjoy or embrace all of it is not productive or accurate. I really like rock as a music genre but there is no way in hell I'm listening to any of that arena rock bullshit of the 80's.

--- Quote ---Miniature and Art comparison

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In broad strokes, this representation does have some merit but in the context of this board, what with its human-centric nature it really misses the real issues many folks here have since the transition to the AoS. Which would be all the neutral/good human regiments and units we have gotten over the past half decade, lets have a look at them:

Infantry musician


Well, I am certainly no expert in WFB, I am still scraping the surface, but I have been aware of WFB for many years, as I did see the models and games while I was into Rogue Trader and 40k 2nd edition. 2nd Edition is pretty cartoony as well, and I played the hell out of it. At the time, I thought the rank blocks I saw in WFB was boring, and many of the models to be kind of silly, like

The collar, sword.

The bright colors. I guess you could paint them however you wanted, but the still come across as cartoony to me. It was one of the major reasons I stayed away. And its not like all the models of this time period were bad. There were some really nice metal minis I still like today. Just the atmosphere I felt they were capturing just didn't work for me.

I felt all that changed when I discovered Mordheim and then the 6th Ed Rulebook. One picture really stuck out to me, and that was the empire troops taking on the River Trolls.

(I tried to post the photo here but the link wont work. Its the one here with the River Trolls vs the Empire Troops)

It was this single pic that started changing my mind out WFB. I am still amazed by it. I feel the desperation, struggle, violence, darkness, filth, all in one pic, and this feels like the desperate world Warhammer resides in. Or should reside in, to me.

Why does that make a difference to me? I am not sure. Everyone is free to paint minis however they want. But I look to this stuff for inspiration. I have to imagine what its like for those empire soldiers too, and being grounded in some historical sense as far as the look and feel of the armor and equipment, I can imagine the stakes a little more. When I see the stuff in Sigmar, everything looking like its right off the assembly line in perfect condition, its just too far beyond what I feel is realistic and I am not as interested. And I say this about other fantasy settings as well, not just Sigmar.

No amount of literature is going to make me feel how desperate the struggle is when everyone looks perfect. The Empire, to me, was a pretty tough place to live, and I feel the uniforms, equipment, gear, and clothing all should reflect that. Worn so to speak. Used. Sigmar isn't like that. At least not what I have seen.

I do recognize that the Stormcasts are pretty cool in some ways. I feel the masks are great, but not for front line troops. Maybe a bodyguard unit or something. I don't know the lore on who is making all that equipment either, but everything in the old world looks like it was made by a blacksmith, while Sigmar makes me feel its all magical.

So I do look to the art in the books of the time for inspiration, and its what sells me on the mood, no matter what the models are doing. I think GW nailed it out of the park with Mordheim in particular, and 6th that followed. It does seem by 8th things were going a little over the top again, kinda flashy, but still a close derivative to 6th than earlier.

BTW, if I had friends who were old school WFB vets and had 4-5th edition armies, I would do one too for the hell of it.


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