Wondering what Age of Sigmar 2.0 starter set is the best option for you? Well, you have come to the right place!

In this article, I will go through the three current starter sets released for Age of Sigmar 2.0 – Storm Strike, Tempest of Souls and Soul Wars. I will list the differences, how many points of models you will get in each one, how much you save by buying the different versions and the general pros and cons for each starter set.

The goal is to give the information you need in order to make your purchase decision regarding the starter sets.

 

Warhammer Age of Sigmar starter sets: what are your options?


There are currently three different starter sets and around 18 different ‘start collecting boxes‘. The Age of Sigmar starter sets are spread out in three different price points and gives players various entry levels into Warhammer.

The starter sets will give you models from two different forces. Alternatively, it can be quite easy to sell the models from one of the forces in the box (or you can split the cost with a friend).  If you are only looking to start one army, a start collecting box can be a better option. This article will go in depth on the three starter sets, so look elsewhere for info on the start collecting boxes. 

At any rate, let us take a look at each one of the three sets to find out what will suit your needs. First, we will look at the small box, then the medium-sized and finally the biggest version.

Disclaimer: a note about affiliate links, sponsorship and prices


Games Workshop did not provide me with any review copies and this is not a sponsored review in any way. Throughout this article, I use the official GW prizing to compare the savings of each set.

I use affiliate links that will direct you to places where you can purchase the starter sets way cheaper than at GW. If you click on a link and buy anything, I will get a small kickback from the store (affiliate link). That money will go into supporting the site and writing more articles to help people with their Age of Sigmar hobby.

Storm Strike review starter set review (£25/$40)


How good is the price of Storm Strike and what kind of players is it aimed at?

Storm Strike is the smallest available starter set for Age of Sigmar. Storm Strike is very similar to the old small starter set called Storm of Sigmar, but this time around the two factions are the new chamber of Stormcast Eternals and the renewed Death Faction: Nighthaunt.

You get 15 models in total, so the price pr. model is £1.6 – which is a very good price. On top of that, you get several different nifty accessories.

The models from the starter set are made up of exactly the same models you would get if you bought the 4 easy to build sets for the same factions. Each of those boxes is £10, so that would come out to £40 for the exact some models. So compared to that, you save £15 on this starter set and you even get all the other things besides the miniatures.

As you will see later, the saving of £15 is not that high compared to the other sets, so in that area, the value of the set is not that high.

What models are included in the Storm Strike starter set?

 

7 miniatures from the Stormcast Eternals faction:

3 Sequitors (mace and shield wielding magic Stormcasts).

One model is a Prime (champion) with a Stormsmite Maul and Shield, one is armed with a Stormsmite Greatmace and the last guy is armed with Stormsmite Maul and Shield. The prime can be assembled without a helmet.

3 Castigators (Stormcasts with crazy big magic x-bows). One model is a Prime and all are armed with Thunderhead Greatbows

1 Gryph Hound (Sigmars favourite hound-bird-hybrid pets)

8 miniatures from the Nighthaunt faction (evil ghosts):

4 Glaivewraith Stalkers (flying ratlike ghosts with pointy spears). All are armed with Hunter's Glaive. One of them can be assembled as a drummer (and the drummer is a must have to make the unit effective).

4 Myrmourn Banshees (ghost ladies that hit hard and can dispell magic). All of them are armed with Chill Daggers (although I doubt these ladies are very chill…).

What are the total points of models in Storm Strike starter set?

  • The Stormcast models will comprise about 178 points (three Sequitors 72, three Castigators 80 and one Gryph Hound 23)
  • The miniatures from the Nighthaunt side will give you 140 points of models (60 points for the Glaivewraight Stalkers and 80 points for the Myrmourn Banshees).
  • That is a total of 318 points in the box

Note: the unit of Sequitors has a minimum size of 5 in the newest Generals Handbook, but there are only 3 in this set. The minimum unit size of Gryph Hounds is 6 and there is only one in this box.

If you are intending to use these units for matched play, it would be wise to find some ways to get the units up to the minimum size (you can play with them, but they would be ‘understrength unit” which means you pay points for models not on the battlefield). I have calculated the points as if you could buy them in smaller units size. If you just a want way of dipping your toe into Age of Sigmar do not worry about this. This is only important if you later want to play with the

What other items are included in the Storm Strike starter set?

80 page book

Warscroll cards for all units in the box

16 page core rules (can also be found for free online or in the AoS app).

Double sided playing mat (printed on paper so not very durable).

6 dice (normal six sided ones)

12″ measure stick

1 Transfer sheet (symbols you can transfer onto the Stormcast Miniatures)

The insert box can be flipped over to be a small terrain piece

Pros of the Storm Strike starter set

  1. The miniatures are push-fit (easy to build for beginners), so they do theoretically not need any glue to assemble. If you are going to paint them though, I would recommend getting some plastic glue on them so you avoid too many gaps when the models are assembled (there will be at least some gaps if you use no glue). The miniatures are very easy to assemble either way you do it.
  2. The miniatures are not pre-painted (GW does not do that kind of stuff), but the plastic is coloured. The gold of the Stormcast actually looks really good, so games without painted miniatures can look okay (I find that normally the coloured plastic looks pretty rubbish, but the gold in all of the starter sets is an exception).
  3. The models are all unique and are of the highest game workshop quality. Even people who already collect either army might be tempted to get these unique poses for miniatures to put in a unit. Even though they are push fit, the seam lines are very well hidden in the way the models are constructed.
  4. The set includes rules for the game and rules for the models in the box as well as everything you will need to play. For £25 you can get playing AoS and that is just incredible for children and beginners!
  5. You will get models from the good guys and bad guys, giving you some models you can lend to an opponent for a quick pickup game.
  6. The small printed version of the core rules is really neat to have, even if you end up buying the big core rulebook.
  7. The book is very good for beginners. Besides the story stuff in it, it also goes into great detail about painting. It is written for the complete beginner, so will take you through undercoating, base-coating, shading, dry-brushing, and layering. Basically, it breaks it down into small understandable pieces for a hobby beginner. The book also includes 4 battleplans (mission), that actually act as four tutorial games for Age of Sigmar. Great value for the beginner, but not really that interesting if you are a seasoned player.
  8. The physical Warscrolls are pretty neat for beginners, and finally, they have made some versions that are not printed on a huge sheet with too much white space.
  9. The bases on the miniatures are pre-made in plastic (normally the bases are just flat and you have to texture them yourself). For a beginner, this is much easier to get painting.

Cons of the Storm Strike starter set

  1. The cheap price point of the set also means you are pretty far from making an actual army. While you can have a great intro game with this set, a fight between such small forces does not really resemble what an actual battle between armies will feel like. You might be better of playing with these models with the Skirmish AoS rules (but it would require a bit of self-ruling as these models were not released when the skirmish book came out so no rules for them). If you really want to see what Age of Sigmar can offer in terms of tactical depth, you need more and bigger units on the battlefield than this box contains.
  2. If you intend to play matched play in the near future, it is very awkward that there are only 3 Sequitors when you need 5 for a minimum sized unit. You could buy a push fit kit with three more, but that would leave you with 1 dude spare and it would give you a unit with very identical miniatures. Not having the correct sizes can make a beginner player feel like they made a bad purchase later on.
  3. Even though the ghosts are push fit, the Banshee does not go well together without glue (very fiddly parts that do not snap together well).
  4. I think the opposing forces in the box are badly balanced against each other. After a few games with just the miniatures in the box, it will quickly become apparent that the Stormcast are quite a lot better.
  5. The Warscroll cards are finally cool and worth something, but as we have seen before they can quickly become outdated.
  6. Even though the plastic bases are wicked (especially on the ghost ladies) they can become a problem if you intend to build a big army. Are you going to have different bases in your army? Are you going to try and replicate them? This poses some problems that I think a beginner could be better off without.
  7. The map and the box are cool for beginners, but that paper mat is going to die very quickly.
  8. Is it really ideal as a new player to start collecting two factions? Think about that before you buy this instead of a “Start Collecting” box.
  9. The savings are very small – so if you are not buying this to be an easy entry into the game via the booklets, you are better of buying something else.

Overall verdict on the Storm Strike starter set

There is no doubt this is the best pickup if you want to spend as little as possible to try out AoS. This is the best set if your children are interested in the hobby, and you want something that will not overwhelm them. The book will guide them through the hobby and getting a hang of the gaming side.

If you are serious about taking the plunge into the hobby, you are probably better off looking at one of the ‘real' Age of Sigmar starter sets. You will get more models (and save much more money than this set will) and your first battles will feel much closer to what Age of Sigmar really plays like.

If you are only interested in dipping your toes in the most shallow part of the pool, this is the Age of Sigmar starter set for you. If you want a cheap way into the hobby, but you are not so keen on buying models from two different factions, you could get the “Getting Started Magazine” and some models and it would be about the same experience.

Anything else I should know about the Storm Strike Starter set?

Tempest of Souls starter set review (£50/$80 or with paint £75/$120)


How good is the price of Tempest of Souls starter set?

Tempest of Souls is the medium version of the starter sets. 

You get 24 models in total, so the price pr. model is around £2. On top of that, you get several the different accessories.

The price of the Stormcast part:

If you were to buy the Stormcast models separately it would roughly cost you £70.

  • Knight Incantor is not available for purchase, but the trend is that Stormcast heroes on foot will be about £15-20.
  • The 2 Evocators normally come in a box of 5 for £30, making them £6 for a total of £12 for the two models in this set.
  • The 3 Castigators can right now only be bought in a push-fit 3 man box that includes a gryph hound. That is going for £10.
  • 5 Sequitors can only be bought in a box of 10 for £37.5, making these around £19.
  • The Ballista is only available as an easy build push fit set for £15 (but note that those are some different sculpts).

The price of the Nighthaunt part:

If you were to buy the Nighthaunt models separately it would roughly cost you £63.

  • You can get a Lord-Executioner in a different sculpt for £.15
  • You can normally buy 10 Grimghast reapers for £27,5, making the four dudes in this set about £11
  • You can only buy Glaivewraight stalkers in a push fit set of 4 for £10, making 5 about £12,5 (different sculpts).
  • You can buy 10 Chainrasp Horde as a push fit for £25. So 20 models would be £50.

The total price of the Tempest of Souls set compared with buying all the models separately.

Buying all of the models separately (if that was possible) would be around £133. Buying this set represents a saving of £83. On top of that comes the book and the other accessories you get.

Now the saving is very nice and the price of £2 pr. model is not bad at all, but it does not really compare to the savings of the biggest starter set (but that is to be expected).

What models are included in the Tempest of Souls starter set?

 

12 (or 14 if you count the two crew members) miniatures from the Stormcast Eternals faction:

1 Knight-Incantor (Stormcast wizard guy with auto dispell scroll).

3 Castigators (Stormcasts with crazy big magic bows). One model is a Prime and all are armed with Thunderhead Greatbows.

2 Evocators (Stormcast wizard unit with a melee buff). Both are armed with Tempest Blades and Stormstaves.

5 Sequitors (mace and shield wielding magic Stormcasts).

One model is a Prime (champion) with Stormsmite Greatmace. One is armed with a Stormsmite Greatmace and the last 3 guys are armed with Stormsmite Maul and Shield.

1 Celestar Ballista and two crew members (Stormcast war machine. Cheap and effective!).

20 miniatures from the Nighthaunt faction (evil ghosts):

1 Lord-Executioner with a Decapitating Greateaxe (ghost lord with ghost axe. Has part of a hangman's gallow strapped to his back just for kicks).

5 Glaivewraith Stalkers (flying ratlike ghosts with pointy spears). All are armed with Hunter's Glaive. None of them can be assembled as a drummer (and that is a real bummer).

4 Grimghast Reapers (ghosts with big nasty scythes). The leader is armed with a big bell called Death Knell.

10 Chainrasp Horde armed with Malignant Weapons (smaller ghost guys with random rusty weapons). 1 is a Dreadwarden (leader) armed with a candelabra (because why not?).

What are the total points of models in the Tempest of Souls starter set?

The Stormcast models will comprise about 520 points.

  • Knight Incantor: 140
  • The Evocators can only come in a unit of 5 for 200 points (in matched play) so two would be 80 points.
  • 3 Castigators: 80 points
  • 5 Sequitors: 120
  • Ballista: 100

The miniatures from the Nighthaunt side will give you roughly 291 points of models.

  • Lord-Executioner: 80
  • 4 Grimghast reapers are 140 points for 10, so 56 points (if you could buy them in units of 4 in matched play).
  • 5 Glaivewraight stalkers will be around 75 points (only units of 4 in matched play for 60 points).
  • The 10 Chainrasp Horde: 80

The total amount of points will be about 811.

Note: again we have some weird unit sizes. If you intend to play matched play, be aware that the unit sizes are not aligned with the minimum unit sizes in matched play.

What other items are included in the Tempest of Souls starter set?

96 page book

Warscroll cards for all units

16 page core rules

Double sided playing mat

6 dice

12″ measure stick

1 Transfer sheet

The insert box can be flipped over to be a small terrain piece

If you buy the version with paint and tools, the following is also included:

  • Clippers
  • Mouldline remover (preeetty good)
  • A GW Starter Brush
  • Retributor Armour
  • Abaddon Black
  • Armageddon Dust
  • Kantor Blue
  • Reikland Fleshshade
  • White Scar
  • Leadbelcher
  • Mournfang Brown
  • Celestra Grey
  • Khorne Red
  • Nighthaunt Gloom
  • Rakarth Flesh
  • Bugman’s Glow

You would pay 25£ extra to get those items included. Paints are usually 2,5£ each and you get 13 in this set (worth 32,5£). On top of that you get the clippers, brush and mouldline remover (albeit in slighly cheapers versions than usual), this is also an okay saving if you need the paint pots. Fortunately it seems GW have ditched the very poor small versions of paint pots they had in earlier paint and miniature bundles. Those were horrible, but these are the normal pain pots.

If you buy the Commander Collection (only comes with the paint) you also get:

Astreia Solbright (named Lord Arcanum mounted on a Dracoline)

Reikenor Grimhailer (named Nighthaunt hero).

The Commander bundle is £125, so £50 more than the normal paint bundle set. Both models can be bought standalone for £25 each, so you save nothing for selecting this option.

Pros of Tempest of Souls starter set:

  1. The price is an okay entry point. You are not blowing too much on a game system you might not like, but you are also giving the game a fair chance to shine.
  2. The easy to assembly miniatures are good for beginners.
  3. The included books very good for new players, but not really useful if you are a veteran.
  4. If the printed core rules were available as a standalone purchase option, I reckon a lot of people would get it. You get in this set, making it a big plus.
  5. You can probably quite easily sell the miniatures from the faction you do not want to collect.
  6. Bases are not part of the plastic (as with the Tempest of Soul option), so easier to continue your basing scheme when you expand your army.
  7. The printed Warscroll cards are good and here you get a lot more of them than in the smallest version.
  8. The difference between new GW models and the older models is just staggering. Getting some of the newest models will make sure they are a joy to paint and will look great on the tabletop.
  9. The option with the paint bundle can be a good money saver, provided you need the paints.

Cons of Tempest of Souls starter set:

  1. If you are worried a lot about the condition of the miniatures, the gaps in the push fit miniatures will probably detract from the experience of the set. The colored plastic can also be a bit of a pain when doing a light primer on them.
  2. The savings are not as big as the biggest starter set, so if that is your main concern you should take a look at that instead.
  3. The sides are not balanced very well (not a lot of points on the Nighthaunt side).
  4. If you are interested in matched play, notice that you get two evocators (you need five for a unit) and 4 Grimghast Reapers (you need teen for a unit) so this is not exactly matched play ready.
  5. In many ways the big set and the medium set do the same thing – but the big set just does a better job across the board.

Overall verdict on the Tempest of Souls starter set:

This is a good medium sized entry level, and I can see what GW tried to do here. Sadly, I just think the Soul Wars set does a much better job. The savings are ok but outshined by the big set. The book is okay for a beginner, but why not get the set with the real book?

This is the set for the Age of Sigmar curious, that got some money to spend but is not that sure yet. 

 

Souls Wars starter set review (£95/$160)


How good is the price of Soul Wars starter set?

Soul Wars is the big premium starter set.

You get 54 models in total, so the price pr. model is around £1.75. On top of that, you get several the different accessories and the Big Core Rulebook.

The price of the Stormcast part:

If you were to buy the Stormcast models separately it would roughly cost you £119.5.

  • The model for the Lord Arcanum mounted on Gryph Charger is not available for purchase right now, but you can get the named push fit version for £25.
  • Knight Incantor is not available for purchase, but the trend is that Stormcast heroes on foot will be about £15-20.
  • The 3 Evocators normally come in a box of 5 for £30, making them each £6 for a total of £18 for the three models in this set.
  • The  Castigators can right now only be bought in a push-fit 3 man box that includes a gryph hound. That is going for £10. This means that 5 would equal £16.5
  • 8 Sequitors can only be bought in a box of 10 for £37.5, making these around £30.
  • The Ballista is only available as an easy build push fit set for £15 (but note that those are some different sculpts).

The price of the Nighthaunt part:

If you were to buy the Nighthaunt models separately it would roughly cost you £133.5

  • You can get a Lord-Executioner in a different sculpt for £15.
  • You cannot buy a mounted Knight of Shrouds as a separate model right now. My guess is it would be about £25 if it were available (you can get a non mounted for £20)
  • Guardian of Souls is not available for single model purchase. I would put it at about £10-15
  • Spirit Torment is not on sale as a single model. Around £10-15 would be normal.
  • You can normally buy 10 Grimghast reapers for 27,5, making the four dudes in this set about £11.
  • You can only buy Glaivewraight stalkers in a push fit set of 4 for £10, making 5 about £12,5 (different sculpts).
  • 10 Chainrasp Horde is bought as a push fit for £25 – making 20 be £50

Buying all of the models separately (if that was possible) would be around £253. So buying the set instead of the models will net you a save  £158. On top of that, you also get the different accessories as well as the Big Core Rulebook worth £35 – making the actual saving about £193.

This makes the biggest set the one with the best saving, but actually not the one with the cheapest model (but it is comparing it to the small set without characters).

1 Lord-Arcanum mounted on a Gryph-charger with an Aethstave (also called “just a staff”)

5 Castigators (Stormcasts with crazy big magic bows). One model is a Prime and all are armed with Thunderhead Greatbows.

1 Knight-Incantor (Stormcast wizard guy with auto dispell scroll).

3 Evocators (Stormcast wizard unit with a melee buff). All are armed with Tempest Blades and Stormstaves. One is a prime.

8 Sequitors (mace and shield wielding magic Stormcasts). One model is a Prime (champion) with Stormsmite Greatmace. Two are armed with a Stormsmite Greatmace and the last 5 guys are armed with Stormsmite Maul and Shield.

1 Celestar Ballista and two crew members (Stormcast war machine. Cheap and effective!).

33 miniatures from the Nighthaunt faction (evil ghosts):

1 Lord-Executioner with a Decapitating Greateaxe (ghost lord with ghost axe. Has part of a hangman's gallow strapped to his back just for kicks).

1 Guardian of Souls armed with a Chill Blade and a Nightmare Lantern (ghost wizard that can buff nearby ghosts and can heal or return ghost people with his magicz).

5 Glaivewraith Stalkers (flying ratlike ghosts with pointy spears). All are armed with Hunter's Glaive. None of them can be assembled as a drummer (and that is a real bummer).

1 Knight of Shrouds on a Ethereal Steed (ghost on a ghost horse. His sword is called “Sword of Stolen Hours”. I will let you determine if that is super cool or really lame…)

1 Spirit Torment (ghost who really likes big padlocks and particularly likes to bash them against his enemies. Can heal nearby units in combat).

4 Grimghast Reapers (ghosts with big nasty scythes). The leader is armed with a big bell called Death Knell.

20 Chainrasp Horde armed with Malignant Weapons (smaller ghost guys with random rusty weapons). 1 is a Dreadwarden (leader) armed with a candelabra (because why not?).

What are the total points of models in Soul Wars starter set?

The Stormcast models will comprise about 925 points.

  • Lord Arcanum mounted on Gryph Charger: 240
  • Knight Incantor: 140
  • The Evocators can only come in a unit of 5 for 200 points (in matched play) so three would be 120 points.
  • 5 Castigators: A unit of three is 80 points. Five would, therefore, be 133 points – but it is a weird unit size.
  • 8 Sequitors: five are normally 120 points. 8 would equal 192 points (if you could take it in that size).
  • Ballista: 100

The miniatures from the Nighthaunt side will give you roughly 751 points of models.

  • Lord-Executioner: 80
  • Knight of Shrouds: 120
  • Guardian of Souls: 140
  • Spirit Torment: 120
  • 4 Grimghast reapers are 140 points for 10, so 56 points (if you could buy them in units of 4 in matched play).
  • 5 Glaivewraight stalkers will be around 75 points (only units of 4 in matched play for 60 points).
  • The 20 Chainrasp Horde: 160

The total amount of points will be about 1676.

Note: again we have some weird unit sizes. If you intend to play matched play, be aware that the unit sizes are not aligned with the minimum unit sizes in matched play.

What other items are included in the Soul Wars starter set?

The Big Core Rulebook (320 pages)

 

Warscolls for all units in the box

12 dice

12″ measure stick

1 Transfer sheet

Battle for Glymmsforge 32-page book

 

Core rules and 8 pages of “start here” for new gamers

Soul Wars + Malign Sorcery option:

Note that there is an option of buying the Malign Sorcery box in a bundle with the Soul Wars box. Since that bundle is just the price of the two boxes added together, you are actually not saving anything if you buy it that way.

Pros of the Soul Wars starter set

  1. The set includes the Core Rulebook – a book I think is mandatory if you want easy access to getting into the lore and feel of the Age of Sigmar setting. If you really want to see what this game is about, it is a must buy book and this is the only set you get it in.
  2. You get some solidly sized forces in this starter set, making your first game feel much closer to “real” AoS battles.
  3. This is the set with the biggest saving compared to buying the miniatures piecemeal.
  4. The novel Soul Wars will mention the miniatures you get in the box, making that novel much more engrossing and attractive (and it is one of the better AoS novels).
  5. The miniatures are push-fit (easy to build for beginners), so they do theoretically not need any glue to assemble. This will make it quick to assemble for a quick game. If you are going to paint them though, I would recommend getting some plastic glue so you avoid some of the gaps in the models.

Cons of Soul Wars starter set

  1. The Soul Wars starter set is a lot of money to be investing. If you are not sure about the game yet (but chances are good you can sell the box second hand with minor losses).
  2. If you are completely new to the game, this will be a big amount of models to paint. You could get overwhelmed compared to one of the smaller boxes.
  3. Again we have some weird sized units – so the set is not ready for matched play.
  4. You miss out on the mat and the terrain piece – but this is only a big deal if you do not intend to buy any terrain at all.

Overall verdict on the Soul Wars starter set

This is the starter set if you are serious about getting into AoS – or if you want to get the Core Book and start either of the armies in the box.

Overview of the three Age of Sigmar starter sets


 

Overview of Stormcast units in the starter sets

UnitsStorm StrikeTempest of SoulsSoul Wars
Lord-Arcanum mounted on a Gryph-charger1
Knight Incantor11
Castigators3 3 5
Sequitors3
Evocators23
Sequitors58
Ballista11

Overview of Nighthaunt units in the starter sets

UnitsStorm StrikeTempest of SoulsSoul Wars
Knight of Shrouds1
Guardian of Souls1
Spirit Torment1
Lord-Executioner 11
Grimghast Reapers44
Glaivewraith Stalkers455
Chainrasp Horde1020
Myrmourn Banshees4

Interested in a Start Collecting Age of Sigmar box instead?

No doubt the starter sets are a great value. But if you are not interested in having models from two different forces, you could also check out the different ‘Start Collecting' boxes below.

All are priced at a competitive £50 – so are always a very good bargain if you want the models inside.

Below is the review and comparison of the old AoS starter sets (no longer available for purchase)


Below you can find a comparison of the starter sets from the first edition of Age of Sigmar. None of those are available for purchase through Games Workshop, but it is possible to find them used or in stock at random stores.

The big AoS starter set cannot be bought, but you can get the Stormcast part and the Bloodbound part separate in start collecting boxes.

Note: prices used below are not GW prices but the more competitive prices from ElementGames.

 

Storm of Sigmar (£17 – discontinued starter set)


A picture of the Age of Sigmar starter set 'Storm of Sigmar'

Price of ‘Storm of Sigmar'

Storm of Sigmar is the cheapest option at £17 for a total of £1.3 pr. model. In this set, you get models form the Stormcast Eternals and from the Khorne Bloodbound factions.

If you bought the models separately (which is impossible because of the irregular size of the units in the set), the Stormcast would cost about £21,5, and the Khorne guys would be £17 – so about £55,5 in total. The saving from the box is a pretty good £38,5.

While the saving is quite large, it is important to note that the models found in this set will have no customisation options whereas separate boxes with units will have.

Models included in Storm of Sigmar starter set:

Five miniatures from the Stormcast Eternals faction:

  • 2 Retributors (heavy damage dealing bad-asses).
  • 3 Liberators (sword and board guy troops).

Eight miniatures from the Khorne Bloodbound (also called Blades of Khorne):

  • 3 Blood Warriors (elite Khorne dudes that get to attack even if they die).
  • 5 Blood Reavers (ye standard blood frenzied troops).

The total points of models in  Storm of Sigmar

  • The Stormcast models will comprise about 148 points.
  • Khorne Bloodbound will give you roughly 95 points of models.

Pros of Storm of Sigmar:

  1. The set includes rules for the game and rules for the models in the box.
  2. You will get models from the good guys and bad guys.
  3. A Dice and a small book with a bit of background and lore are included in the box.
  4. Assembly of models is easy for beginners since the models are of the so-called ‘snap fit' variety.
  5. You have the option of buying the set as a bundle with paint and hobby tools included.

Cons of Storm of Sigmar:

  1. The cheap price point of the set will also mean you are pretty far from making an actual army.
  2. The number of models in the units is not the same you need for fielding a unit in matched play. This could lead to some frustration down the line, as it is likely these will become ‘spare models' that you can never seem to get on the field.
  3. While you can have a great intro game with this set, a fight between such small forces does not really resemble what an actual battle between armies will feel like.
  4. I think the opposing forces in the box are badly balanced against each other.
  5. The paint bundle is good for beginners, but the small paint pots are not really something to write home about (small and notorious for being completely dry upon purchase).

The verdict on Storm of Sigmar:

If you are a bit on the fence regarding AoS, this can be a great pickup for you. The set can work well for kids since the assembly can be done without glue and the box includes everything you need to play a game.

If you are serious about taking the plunge into the hobby, you are probably better off looking at one of the ‘real' Age of Sigmar starter sets.

Thunder & Blood (£42 – discontinued starter set)


A picture of the Age of Sigmar starter set 'Thunder and Blood'

Price of ‘Thunder & Blood'

Thunder & Blood‘ is the cheapest ‘real'  starter set. It comes with the unique inclusion of a playing mat and terrain.

The set will cost you £42 pounds and net you 44 models in total. This means that you will pay a low price of £0.95 pr. Model. As is customary, this Age of Sigmar starter set will give you models from two different armies or factions. Again we see the Stormcast and Bloodbounds in action here.

If you bought the models separately, the Stormcast would cost about 81£, and the Khorne guys would be roughly £86 – so £167 in total.

The saving from the set is, therefore, a massive £125!

Some notes: The Lord-Relictor, the Bloodstoker and the Khorgorath, are not sold separately. The only way to get them is from this set or the classic Age of Sigmar starter set (or buy used). I have made a guestimate on the price point those models would fall in if Games Workshop started producing them in outside of the set.

The saving is huge(!), but remember that the models are somewhat different from what you would get in a  standalone box. While you do get to make some customisation in what weapons the models have in this set, it is no way near the variety you would get from buying the units separately.

Models included in ‘Thunder & Blood' starter set:

17 miniatures from the Stormcast Eternals faction:

  • 2x5 Liberators (sword and board guy troops).
  • 3 Retributors (heavy damage dealing bad-asses).
  • 3 Prosecutors (flying hammer slinging lawyer-angels).
  • 1 Lord-Relictor (Stormcast priest carrying around his old dead carcase in a banner like he is some kind of lead singer in a metal band).

27 miniatures from the Khorne Bloodbound (also called Blades of Khorne):

  • 2x10 Blood Reavers (standard blood frenzied troops of blood and death).
  • 5 Blood Warriors (elite Khorne dudes that get to attack even if they die).
  • 1 Khorgorath (a big red beast that loves skulls even more than your average Bloodbound brother).
  • 1 Bloodstoker (hero dude that is really stoked about blood and whips his brothers, so they are even more stoked about blood and skulls!).

The total points of models in ‘Thunder & Blood'

  • The Stormcast army will come to 512 points
  • Khorne Bros will give you an army of exactly 400 points

Pros of ‘Thunder & Blood':

  1. The 96-page book is quite good. It has basics about different paints, brushes and painting techniques. Four battleplans (scenario or different objectives of a game) are included in the game. The battleplans are made as a sort of tutorial, where the game gets more and more advanced each time you play.
  2. The box can be folded into a small terrain piece, and the book includes a fold-out playing field. Dice and measure also included in the box.
  3. Assembly is easy for beginners since the models are of the ‘snap fit' variety.
  4. An army of Stormcasts and Khorne from 400 to 500 points is a good starting point for an army.
  5. The Lord-Relictor, the Bloodstoker and the Khorgorath are not sold separately, so this could be an easy way to get your hands on them from the start.

Cons of ‘Thunder & Blood':

  1. The 3 Retributors does not form a complete unit in matched play.
  2. While the map and terrain piece are a unique touch, they are also quite flimsy, and you will wear them out quickly.
  3. While having two small forces of 500ish points is cool, but you might prefer a complete army of 1000 points form a single force instead.
  4. The two forces will give some great intro plays with the terrain and four battleplans. But after a while, you would probably like to buy some more models. Your wallet could be better off buying a bigger start set from the get-go.
  5. If you buy this starter kit to split with a friend, whoever gets the Khorne Bloodbound guys will get the short end of the stick (at least when you consider the number of points).

The verdict on ‘Thunder & Blood':

Thunder and Blood is a great update on the classic Age of Sigmar starter set (Thunder and Blood were released in the summer of 2017). They have cut some of the more expensive models to keep the price low.

The book and battleplans are great for a new player, that does not have a veteran to introduce the game to them. If you are serious about getting into AoS and want to start a Stormcast or Bloodbound army, this may very well be the best deal for you.

With the amount of great beginner stuff crammed into the book, the visual appeal of the map and terrain this is a great pickup if you and a friend are serious about giving AoS a go, but do not want to blow the bank account on a big starter set.

If you are not really interested in the hobby of Warhammer, this set can also serve as a standalone board game. Everything is included, and frankly, you do not need glue or anything and the models actually look quite good unpainted (the gold plastic is especially cool).

I am still a bit bummed about this being another “Stormcast vs Khorne” set, seeing as we already have a one of those. Maybe next time we will get something completely different?

Warhammer: Age of Sigmar old Starter Set (£64 – discontinued starter set)


A picture of the Age of Sigmar starter set

Price of the Age of Sigmar Starter Set

Warhammer: Age of Sigmar starter set‘ is the first starter set released and the classic version. It was released together with the launch of Age of Sigmar back in the summer of 2015. It is priced a bit higher than Thunder and Blood and is the second most expensive option with regards to starter sets.

In some ways, the updated set Thunder and Blood overshines this old Classic edition. The classic set will cost you £64 whereas Thunder and Blood are £42. The main difference is the addition of three extra heroes in the classic set. In this box, you will get 46 models for your £64 so you will pay £1.39 pr. Model. As usual, you will see forces from the Stormcast Eternal and the Chaos Bloodbound factions.

If you bought the models separately, the Stormcast would cost about 101£, and the Khorne guys would be roughly £104 – so £205 in total. The saving from buying the set instead of single models is therefore £141.

The savings are slightly bigger than from ‘Thunder and Blood'. Do remember that the models are somewhat different from what you would get in a  standalone box. While you do get to make some customisation in what weapons the models have, it is no way near the variety you would get from buying the units separately.

A note:

The Lord-Relictor, the Bloodstoker and the Khorgorath are not sold separately. I have made a guestimate on the price point those models would fall in if Games Workshop started producing them outside of the sets.

The mounted stormcast Lord and the Khorne Lord are both special characters so can be used with those rules or as a normal hero.

Models included in Age of Sigmar Starter Set:

18 miniatures from the Stormcast Eternals faction:

  • 2x5 Liberators (sword and board guy standard tank troops).
  • 3 Retributors (heavy damage dealing bad-asses).
  • 3 Prosecutors (flying hammer slinging lawyers).
  • 1 Lord-Relictor (Stormcast priest carrying around his old dead carcase in a banner like the lead singer in a Nordic heavy metal band).
  • 1 Lord-Celestant mounted on a Dracoth (is also the model for the special character Vandus Hammerhand)

29 miniatures from the Khorne Bloodbound (also called Blades of Khorne):

  • 2x10 Blood Reavers (standard blood frenzied troops of blood and death).
  • 5 Blood Warriors (elite Khorne dudes that get to attack even if they die).
  • 1 Khorgorath (a big red beast that loves skulls even more than your average Bloodbound brother).
  • 1 Bloodstoker (hero dude that is really stoked about blood and whips his96-pages, so they are even more stoked about blood and skulls!).
  • 1 Bloodsecrator (a hero wielding a banner that can twist reality via… blood secretion?)
  • 1 Lord of Khorne (is also the model for the special Character Korghos Khul)

Total points in Storm of Sigmar starter set

  • The Stormcast army will come to about 732 points. If you use the Lord as Vandus Hammerhand, you will get to about 792 points.
  • Khorne Bros will give you an army of 660 points. If you use the lord as Korghos Khul, it will be 720 points.

Pros of the Age of Sigmar Starter set:

  1. The two forces are quite big and will not require much further purchase before you can reach the 1000 points mark (which will make for a great AoS game). Out of the box, both armies will feel like a solid force.
  2. Vandus Hammerhand and Korghos Khul are very cool, and their shared nemesis storyline in the Age of Sigmar novel books could be a great entry into the lore of the Mortal Realms.
  3. The Lord-Relictor, the Bloodstoker and the Khorgorath are not sold separately, so this could be an easy way to get your hands on them.
  4. The set includes dice and some solid rulers for measuring
  5. While not as great as the one in ‘Thunder and Blood', the book is still a solid intro to Age of Sigmar game and storyline.

Cons of the Age of Sigmar Starter set:

  1. The 3 Retributors does not form a complete unit in matched play.
  2. If you are looking for something very easy to build for a beginner or a kid, you might be better off with a starter set that includes snap-fit models instead.
  3. The price point is a bit high for a single purchase. You could instead buy ‘Blood and Thunder', and if you later find that you really want the extra characters, you can buy them separately (Vandus is £18, and Khul + Bloodsecrator is £18). Granted in the end, this will be a bit more expensive for you.
  4. You get a lot of models from two different armies. If you share it with a friend, this is great. But if this is a personal purchase, you might find that you would rather have one big army instead of two smaller ones.
  5. No battlemap or terrain piece is included in this set.

The verdict on the Age of Sigmar Starter set:

After three years on the market, the classic starter set is starting to look a bit dated. In many ways ‘Thunder and Blood' is a better pickup for the beginner. This set only truly shines if you know you want exactly the models in the set.

The second-hand market is filled with the models from this set, mainly because the value was so good when the starter set launched. Many have picked it up and are now looking to sell off part of the set. You might be better off getting the faction you want from somebody else on the resell miniature market.

All that said the old faithful Age of Sigmar starter set is still holding its own. The value is good, very few models are bad, and both armies show of some of the best aspects of synergistic armies in Age of Sigmar. You cannot go wrong with this one, but I cannot help but think you should either go with a cheaper option or buy a ‘Start Collecting' box together with the Generals Handbook 2017.

The two characters Vandus Hammerhand and Korghos Khul are quite cool, and booth are heavily featured in the start of the Realmgate series. If you are into lore, The novel War Storm would be a great pickup for you alongside this set.

Blightwar (£81- discontinued starter set)


A picture of the Age of Sigmar starter set Blightwar

Price of Blightwar

Released in the summer of 2017 ‘Blightwar‘ is one of the newest starter sets. Unlike the other starter sets, this set is not as heavily aimed at beginners.

The price is the highest of all the sets and is more of a premium set. The set will cost £81, and you will get 32 models for your £81. This means you will pay £2,5 pr. Model. This is quite a bit more than the other sets, but some of the models in the box are also quite big. 

This is the first set that replaces the Khorne Bloodbound with something else (Nurgle Daemons). We still see the Stormcast Eternals, but the models are some of the newer released stormcast models.

If you were to buy the models separately, the Stormcast would cost about 80£, and the Nurgle dudes would be roughly £65 – so £165,5 in total. The saving from buying the set instead of buying units separately is therefore £84,5.

Compared with the two other sets of similar size, the saving is actually quite low. Granted, you do get the model for Neave Blacktalon that is still exclusive to this set.

Models included in Blightwar starter set:

17 miniatures from Nurgle Daemons (also called Maggotkin of Nurgle)

  • 10 Plaguebearers of Nurgle (the standard troops of Nurgle).
  • 3 Nurglings (swarms of small Nurgle daemons).
  • 3 Plague Drones (Nurgle daemons mounted on giant flying insects).
  • Horticulous Slimux (the head Gardener of Nurgle mounted on a flipping snail!).

15 miniatures from the Stormcast Eternals:

  • 5 Vanguard-Hunters (a ranged and melee hybrid scout unit).
  • 3x Vanguard Palladors (big angel bros riding bird-horses).
  • 3x Vanguard-Raptors each with an Aetherwings (angel bros wielding big crossbows with bird pets).
  • Neave Blacktalon (a female stormcast hero that causes nerd rage in many neckbeards).

Total points in the Blightwar box

  • The Nurgle Daemons will give you a 640 points force.
  • In total the Stormcast army will be about 660 ( a bit more if you field the crossbow guys and the birds in two separate units).

Pros of the Blightwar set:

  1. The book is filled with lore that starts the next storyline in the Mortal Realms (post the realmgate wars).
  2. Nurgle has recently received a new battletome and is sure to get more releases as we move further along in 2018.
  3. The set includes a battalion for each faction and points costs so they can be used in Matched play.
  4. All of the Nurgle models can be used in Age of Sigmar and Warhammer: 40k.
  5. Most of the models have been released recently, so they will hold more value on the resell market, and it is less likely you would be better off buying them second hand in the first place.

Cons of the Blightwar set:

  1. Since it is not aimed at beginners, the set does not include dice, rulers and other useful stuff for new players.
  2. If you are only interested in the value of the set, this represents the least intriguing option.
  3. While the book is ok, it is a bit on the skinny side. Only about 40 of the pages are devoted to the old story, the new story and the battleplans.
  4. The models from the stormcast are not the greatest starting point for a completely new force.
  5. I feel the set is more aimed a people already playing AoS. But how many people are looking to start two new armies at the same time?

The Verdict on the Blightwar set:

Blightwar is not your average starter set, but can still be an excellent starting point. I am a fan of the move away from the stock standard Khorne and Stormcast dudes, and would be tempted to pick this up if I wanted to start a Nurgle army. That said, I would also be really tempted to pick up a start collecting box instead.

If you want to follow along with every detail in the lore, this set could also be for you (since we see some story progression). While I find the book size slightly lacking, this is still a good value overall for a starter set.