Another month, another White Dwarf to review. This month is notably different with the dropping of The Rivals, to make way for the Golden Demon feature advertised on the cover.
I think I preferred it when the cover was artwork, rather than a photo.
Inside Front Cover
Credits, contact details, legalise, and mug shots.
There’s a move away from marketing, towards the content of the magazine and an appeal for reader submissions, which is good.
I'm not sure why this needs to run to two pages, with such in depth summaries and page shots.
34 pages of new releases, not including however you want to count the gatefold (which do at least give an idea of the huge size of the Slaughterbrute/Vortex Beast kit). I think some of the descriptions run on too long, with characters not really needing two pages each. It does feel out of date already, with the web having revealed these long ago, but then that couldn't have been done without them being in here, so it's swings and roundabouts.
There's a nice break away from the marketing spiel as we get what almost feels like a book review for Gotrek & Felix: Road Of Skulls, and Yarrick: Chains Of Golgotha getting a page a piece, with the other releases spreading out over two pages. It's interesting to get the WD's teams opinion of a book, particularly of Mephistion, as it walks a very circuitous route around a negative opinion.
Forge World Latest
Forge World really deserves more than the two pages it gets here. It's almost as though GW don't want to promote the Horus Heresy books, having had neither big articles or a battle report (they'd make a hash of it, but it'd be good to see) since the initial release.
A single page to cover an increasing amount of output seems a shame, but then again I'm only going to be interested when this becomes available to iPhone or PC
I'd be interested to see GW run one of the 40K set RPGs over a couple of months, just to give people a flavour of the game. Its seems sort of half hearted to only give it a page.
Full Release Listings
This feels increasingly like an odd throw back to the old days of having a price list in White Dwarf, but no longer serves a function, given how the new releases are organised. I'd far rather have the price of the model on the page I'm looking at.
Games Workshop Online
Two pages to tell us about the fact GW has a website seems rather redundant. Maybe when they have a big redesign and make it sensibly navigable this would be worthwhile, until then it's a waste of pages.
Army Of The Month
A rather impressive Space Marine army this month from Paul Gayner, that's let down by not having an extra page or two to run on, and hence little text to accompany the pictures.
Tweak the font size and lose the unnecessary head shot and this would happily fit onto a single page, or give space on a two page spread for an illustrative picture if needed. Jervis talks about the limits placed on the Hobby by others, and how it's best to avoid them.
Still using the same horrible format, I maintain my dislike of this style of battle report.
Four glorious pages of INQ28 models, that will be familiar to those of you who keep an eye on Dakka Dakkka. I really hope this is building up to a feature on the game, and the repurposing of old rules.
Citadel Hall Of Fame
Juan Diaz's Sterguard Veteran gets chosen this month, and although I'm not sure about it myself, reading the studio opinions is always worth while.
16 pages of Golden Demon winners, takes over the pages this month. It's great to see what can be achieved with plastic, paint and effort.
6 pages of conversions, with 5 of them focused on space marines seems to show a little too much bias, it's a good article, but more variety would have been nice.
A bit of a different tack this month, than the previous terrain articles, with a 6 page focus on Armies On Parade boards. It's certainly impressive to see what people have done with GW's plastic terrain kits, be it Imperial buildings or Empire towers.
Things are improving here slightly, with some text accompanying the strings of photos. There are some good things to take away, but still not enough discussion about the techniques.
As I siad above in the Jervis piece, some space for photos would be good, and the point is proved in this piece which talks about making hills without showing a single one of them.
What's On and Where To Buy
This feels like a real waste of 16 pages that'd be better used for something other than a list of global stores. For all that GW are moving forward with digital products, this does seem stuck in the past.
The Month In...
I don't think we really need an introductory page to the mini section.
It's interesting to see what the team are getting up to.
The Design Studio
We get a focus on the new Chaos models this month (unsurprisingly) and it's worth a read to get an look at the ideas behind the models, as well as a page on the Army Book, painting the Mutalith, and the artwork in the Army Book. There's also a look at some models from around the studio.
Two pages of teaser for Forge World, take a look at the models for Abaddon and Loken as well as a Necron specific Realm Of Battle tile.
Two pages of in depth interview with David Annandale round out the month.
A picture of the Necron Night Scyth.
This remains a hideous way to display things. The only useful bit of information is that next months White Dwarf is out on the 23rd.
The Slaughterbrute it all it's glory.
A total of 61 for 153 pages is fairly poor. There's a lot of good content, but the fact that it's mainly in the form of pictures from the community doesn't bode well for the magazine, as there's little here the internet couldn't provide. There needs to be more focused placed on the things only the White Dwarf team has access too, making the magazine a companion to the hobby rather than an advert for it. Give part of the book over to concept sketches for the armies, or pictures of one of the pieces of artwork from blank canvas to completion. Expand the inside the studio sections. You'd get a good few months worth of features on going through the design process from sketch to sculpt to casting.