Warhammer Fest 2023 Recap and Comments – Part 1

This prolonged weekend (April 29th to May 1st 2023) was the Warhammer Fest 2023 hosted by Games Workshop in Manchester. This is the annual big Warhammer party, currently only held in the UK, but all the reveals and a lot of coverage can be found as well directly published by Games Workshop on their twitch or Warhammer Community page.

Warhammer Fest 2023

The last time we had a Warhammer Fest in Central Europe was in 2018, when it was hosted in Düsseldorf, Germany. We were there and covered the event on this blog.

Games Workshop published a schedule for this 3-day event, for everybody to join in for the sessions and teasers. You can read the whole thing on Warhammer Community. We're going to give a brief recap, but mostly a comment and my 2 cents on the announced novelties.

Warhammer Fest 2023 - Twitch Overview

The first session was covering the 10th Edition of Warhammer 40k. No surprise on the topic as they already spilled the beans, that we will see the new edition onf Warhammer Fest. With Leviathan we will see a themed Space Marines vs. Tyranids boxed set to get you started and it will cover the very interesting 4th Tyrannic War, an ongoing battle between the various chapters (but mostly Ultramarines) and Hive Fleets.

With this release, we see various new units of Primaris Marines, (the Infernus Squad looks a bit silly) but most importantly upscaled Terminators including very stunning new characters. I hope to get my hands on these as I would love to replace the Terminators in my Space Hulk boxed set (2014) with these and have generic / Imperial Fists ones instead of the Blood Angels. I could imagine that Word Bearers will love the new Librarian armour and convert this into a Dark Apostle or something.

Warhammer Fest 2023 - Warhammer 40k Leviathan Terminator Captain Warhammer Fest 2023 - Warhammer 40k Leviathan Terminator Librarian Warhammer Fest 2023 - Warhammer 40k Leviathan Terminators

As for the Tyranids, a lot of new options and units. Picking up the distinguished tyranid-design, but most surprisingly an update on the Carnifex kit, returning to the old naming Screamer Killer, from the Rogue Trader / 2nd Edition era. For comparison, I added a picture from the old Tyranid Codex.

Warhammer Fest 2023 - Warhammer 40k Leviathan Screamer Killer Warhammer Fest 2023 - Warhammer 40k Leviathan Screamer Killer

With this big bang, the expections for the other slots were quite high and we only got a bit of "shots" for the rest of saturday. Beginning with WarCry - The Nightmare Quest.

Another kit using the bamboo style terrain, and not much new in here regarding to that. We see two of the trees from the older Warcry sets, a variant of the Realmshaper Engine (without the topper shown, but it is included as it is part of the sprues), but a new sprue covering connecting pieces for the walkways. As for the warbands, not really feeling it. The Stormcasts are 2 sets of 3, you can see very clearly the doubles. The Royal Beastflayers to a better job on that, a lot of people from the Mordheim Community were quite excited for these, but the ghoul wolves things, who look more like ghoul baboons (I'm waiting for the first ones painted with red bottoms) are not my cup of tea. Due to the latest warcry boxes, who are not stand alone, with not that much of scatter terrain and usually a rather steep pricing, this is not really getting me excited.

Warhammer Fest 2023 - WarCry Nightmare Quest Warhammer Fest 2023 - WarCry Questor Soulsworn Warhammer Fest 2023 - WarCry Royal Beastflayers

Continuing with Warhammer Underworld next with the Headsmen's Curse. Again, not really hyping me. For several reasons. There is once again some card deck, that you will need to buy and then we have another Nighthaunt warband, that really is not that impressive or different - at least design wise - from what we already had (like in the Nightvault starter set or 2021 starter set). If you take a look on the schedule for this game, we just had the new core box for pre-order this weekend and in 3 months time we will see an updated starter kit, where is the incentive to buy this now? And another core box with different warbands three months after that, and another rival deck. That was one of the reasons, why I stopped with Underworlds after season 3, it went too fast and too far from a casual game.

Warhammer Underworlds - The Headsmens Curse

The last session for the first day, was the Middleearth Strategy Battle Game / Lord of the Rings. People expected plastic characters or something a bit more exciting than this diorama. It is a multipart resin vignette, using the technique we have seen from Forge World in the Horus Heresy Character series, where you have a nice display variant for example for the Primarchs and can remove the main character for gaming purposes on a smaller base. The idea is pretty neat, but I expected a bit of a broader teaser on this slot, especially as you don't have any transfer goodies from other systems (an Age of Sigmar player can use the announced miniatures from WHU, Warcry etc. for their main games).

Warhammer Fest 2023 - Lord of the Rings Middleearth Strategy Battle Game Get off the Road Warhammer Fest 2023 - Lord of the Rings Middleearth Strategy Battle Game Get off the Road

Closing Saturday, moving on to Sunday - some big hitters were expected and Games Workshop delivered.


Posted by Dennis B.

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