What I have really begun to dive into lately are the Horus Heresy rules from Forge World. Previously the game was wildly expensive as every single model was only available from FW in resin. Add the exchange and shipping and it made assembling even a small force a pipe dream. Or at least a pipe dream for me. I’ve seen plenty of blogs posts and battle reports replete with FW vehicles and models so clearly someone has the coin to pick those kits up.
With the release of the Betrayal at Calth and the Burning of Prospero boxed sets the entry price for the game has plummeted (again compared to Forge World prices). I have picked up enough plastic Marines (MKIV and MKIII armour), Terminators and other models to easily assemble a 1500pt force. Forge World has also changed the timeline for the current 40K vehicles to allow many of them to be used in Horus Heresy games. Which means that you can use current plastic Rhinos in your force even thought the Deimos Pattern Rhino is a delightful mix of old-school design and modern manufacturing.As you would expect from Forge World the books are very, very nice and wildly expensive. The army books (the Red Books) are moderately affordable, certainly moreso than 40K codexes, but the Black Books which have the background material are about $120 Cnd each. They are certainly worth every penny as they are filled with new writing, colour plates or Marines and vehicles and scenarios and campaign rules. $120 is still a lot of cash though.
I am currently assembling and painting an Imperial Fists force for the Horus Heresy rules. Normally I wouldn’t touch the Imperial Fists as painting all that yellow is a prospect that makes normal people blanche. I managed to stumble across a very good tutorial that uses Skeleton Bone primer and Lamenters Yellow glaze from GW to make putting together some bright yellow Marines a lot easier. I have the first squad on the table and will post some pictures of them when they are done.
Even if I don’t get a single game in, the idea of painting and exploring the period is quite satisfying. Its easily my favourite part of the Warhammer 40K universe and any time reading the novels and the background books is time well spent. If I manage to get in a game or two, well all the better.