If you have read previous posts on this site before, you will almost certainly know that I love the models Games Workshop is putting out at the moment. And when it comes to 40k, even with how poorly I typically end up playing, I still enjoy the process of putting together a list and going into a game full of hope and optimism. But I have a problem with Age of Sigmar which I need to get off my chest.

First, as always, a caveat. During this post, I will make exclusive reference to Stormcast Eternal and how this problem has and continues to impact me when playing Age of Sigmar.

Right, we all know the Start Collecting box sets and starter box sets are great value for money if you can afford them. Some more than others, but you almost certainly end up with at least one ‘free’ model in these sets and even once you have an army, they tend to be a great way to add either new units or extra numbers to existing units.

But here is the thing. In 40k, units will have minimum and maximum sizes and you simply pay a points cost per model. In Age of Sigmar though, things work differently. You have a minimum unit size and you pay a number of points for each multiple of that minimum size.

So far, so reasonable. But the issue comes in how Games Workshop includes certain units in Start Collecting and starter boxes. I bought the Thunderstrike Brotherhood which, while it contained a healthy amount of Liberators and a couple of characters, you only get three of the Retributor models, which have a minimum unit size of five.

Three Retributor models from the Thunderstrike Brotherhood box set
“Hey, has anyone seen Alan and Larry? Our costumes don’t work unless there are five of us!”

Look, I try to be reasonable. This is an old Start Collecting box that they have removed from the stores and made available online only now. And it’s not like the actual Retributor box doesn’t have enough models.

But then we look at Soul Wars, the actual Age of Sigmar starter box. Again, there is no doubt that you are saving money with this box. A good chunk of money at that. And when my wife mentioned she was interested in playing Nighthaunt for her next army, I started having a serious look at the box as a way to pad out my Stormcast army and give Abi a good start to her Nighthaunt list.

Soul Wars, the Age of Sigmar Starter Set

But low and behold, I find myself disappointed again. In a slightly different way, but effectively for the same reason. In the box, you get three Evocators, which again have a minimum unit size of five, and you get eight Sequitors, which have a minimum unit size of five and to use eight models you pay the same points cost as ten, because of the way the points system works.

So why does this bother me? Why do I have a problem with AoS? I have already acknowledged the box sets save a nice chunk of money. The reason I have a problem is that it comes across to me as lazy. And just forces more spending.

And really, this is my issue. Money is an issue for me. I do not have the same level of expendable cash that I have had at previous points in life. Decisions on how to expand my armies are not made primarily with what improves them in mind.

Number one decision is what can I afford, and then I consider what impact the unit(s) can have on my list. Which is why it took me so long to get the damn Centurions I had my eye on for months.

And so whilst I appreciate these box sets that save us money, a decision has either been made, or missed, that they will sell a box set with a non-standard number of models for a unit as their main entryway into the game.

Right, hopefully, that gets my point across. Really I just want to know that if I buy a multi-model box, especially one like the starter box, that it won’t provide me with headaches around unit sizes and points.

So, until next time. Peace out.