Last Christmas I received the Warhammer Fantasy Battles box set: Island of Blood. Part of my master scheme to be able to demo as many games as possible. I hadn’t even looked at the box twice until I got to my new place, but now I have some time, space and privacy. Here’s my takeaway:
-First I assembled the High Elves. Fantastic models. However the join points on some of the models are on a crossguard that is less than 1 mm thick. I ruined three getting them off the damn sprue. Two were salvageable, one will have to be rebuilt with putty. Models went together with ease, but there was a little confusion on the Lothern Sea Guard Musician. I got it eventually, but an assembly guide would have been nice.
-Next I got the Skaven together. Also fantastic minis. At first I thought that I was missing something with the Clan Rats, but some of the long knives look like short spears. Once I took stock, it made sense. With some creative allocation I made all the hand weapon Clan Rats have round shields and the spear rats have triangle shields except for the champion. Some of the clan rats and characters did not want to fit into the slotted base, and required some filing.
-Then I read the Island of Blood intro book thoroughly. I had ASSUMED that, like the 5th ed 40K box, Assault on Black Reach, actual RULES would be contained therein. No rules. This is not a deal breaker. I have the rulebook and I’m not afraid to read.
Here’s the deal breaker. No stats. No army list. No Special Rules. No nothing. You need to buy BOTH the Skaven and High Elf books to play with the Army of Blood box set. That’s not cool. It’s advertised as being able to play right out of the box. Truthfully you get 95% of the way there. But this isn’t chemistry class. A 95% isn’t a pass. If you only get 95% of the way to the moon, you’re stranded in space. That’s kind of how I feel about this box set.
EDIT: I got the last 5% of the way there! Check this link. This has all the missing stats. The link is NOWHERE in the box, and Google doesn’t put it on the first page, but my friend Andy read the above and remembered this existed. So, Thank You Andy. You got us to the moon.