Rating: The box of Horus Heresy is highly recommended

It is a universally accepted truth that a person of good fortune needs a Space Marine. The problem is that the Space Marines aren’t the only brutally violent and expansionist species in the world Warhammer 40,000 Universe. Despite being the most popular army, they need enemies like the Tyranids and the Eldar out there in the marketplace. That way some other poor guy can buy them, build them, paint them, and send them to their deaths your Space Marines.

But what if everyone at the table could play as Space Marines? Well, then GW would be able to sell a lot more Space Marines, and the good people of the world could buy more Space Marines, and so on and so forth, forever resulting in the murky, dark, capitalist Ouroboros that endures the styrofoam forges in Nottingham illuminated.

more is more That’s the concept behind it The Horus Heresy, a game first released in 2012 and supported by more than 60 novels in the Black Library. A decade later, a reboot for GW’s sub-franchise is on the horizon. Polygon had a chance to try it, and good news: it’s great.

The flagship product in Warhammer: The Horus Heresy is a lavish new box set called Age of Darkness. Inside, Space Marine fans get 52 multi-part plastic Space Marines, 42 of which are brand new designs. Fans of the franchise will immediately recognize the “Beakie” helms on their Mark 6 Corvus pattern power armor – a nod to the original Rogue Trader: Warhammer 40,000 Home page Art released when the franchise was born in 1987.

A Spartan Heavy Assault tank in an Imperial Fist color scheme.

Image: Games Workshop via YouTube

The box set also includes the Age of Darkness rulebook, as well as some necessary items like rulers and templates. But the icing on the cake of this army are the support units, namely a huge tank and a big stomping robot. While thematically everything is designed to form two small armies, Age of Darkness also corresponds to a medium-sized army. It’s pricey – $299, in fact – but it has everything you need to field a competitive force right away. Games Workshop even added faction-independent datasheets for each unit, so you can start creating an army list right away. That’s right, spreadsheets aren’t just for space games, kids.

Standing above the battlefield is a Contemptor-patterned battleship, painted in a bright Sons of Horus green.

Image: Games Workshop via YouTube

One of the characteristics of The Horus Heresy What always put me off was the materials most of the miniatures were made out of – resin. Resin is sturdier than polystyrene, which is great for durability in your finished miniatures. But it’s not the preference of most hobbyists. Resin miniatures need to be washed with soap and water before they can be assembled, and cleaning them up — removing stray lightning bolts and the little knobs left over from manufacturing — requires things like metal files and a lot of patience. It also tends to make the miniatures themselves a bit more expensive.

This new all-plastic model line eliminates the maintenance and feeding required to prepare resin models for the table. It also eschews much of the frills and over-the-top flourishes that made painting an army of for Warhammer 40,000 so boring. The majority of the Marines in this box don’t have small wax sigils hanging from their shoulder pads, or delicate filigree work on their shoulder pads, or raised symbols on their shoulder pads. They just have a flat shoulder pad and an uneven shoulder pad as the gods and Rick Priestley originally intended.

As a side benefit, there are also fewer obstacles to learning the game. While each of the 18 factions starting with this new edition offer wildly different and compelling special tactics, units and abilities, the core of their armies are 100% the same. They are genetically engineered super soldiers, firing armor-piercing missiles from assault rifles all the way down. Bolters go brrr, and everyone leaves the table happier for it.

Due to the breakneck pace of the annual release schedule, I was only able to assemble and partially paint the included Spartan Heavy Assault Tank. It’s my first time assembling a piece of GW armor since the 1990’s and I’m here to tell you it’s been a tremendous experience so far. Everything fits like a glove with some extra-thin Tamiya cement, and while tank enthusiasts will complain that the road wheels don’t spin independently and the tracks themselves look like they were pulled by a toffee machine, it works for me. Thing easily breaks down into five sub-assemblies for easier painting. Magnetization (an optional step that allows you to swap out weapons if needed) has clearly been addressed. There’s even a hollow section along the bottom of the hull to put a bit of ballast in it to give it more weight on the table.

A fully assembled and unpainted Spartan Heavy Assault Tank

Photo Credit: Charlie Hall/Polygon

The same tank broken into five pieces.

Photo Credit: Charlie Hall/Polygon

Are the rules for all 18 factions perfectly balanced? I have absolutely no idea. The meta layer of competition Horus heresy Gaming is one of the most Byzantine constructs in all of gaming. The required manuals are themselves among the largest and most expensive books in the entire Games Workshop product range. But open Warhammer: The Horus Heresy – Age of Darkness feels like turning the page in a great Dan Abnett novel and falling straight into the plains of Istvaan V. I’m hooked and I’m excited to see how this franchise will evolve from here.


Warhammer: The Horus Heresy – Age of Darkness has been verified against a retail copy provided by Games Workshop. Vox Media has affiliate partnerships but not with Games Workshop. These do not affect editorial content, although Vox Media may earn commissions on products purchased through affiliate links. You can find For more information on Polygon’s Ethics Policy, click here.

https://www.polygon.com/reviews/23153625/horus-heresy-age-of-darkness-price-availability-release-date-review Rating: The box of Horus Heresy is highly recommended

Charles Jones

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