Kickstart Your New Year with These 7 Army-Building Tips

2024's here, and you know what that means for miniature wargaming enthusiasts ‚Äď a new army. The new year is the perfect time to refresh your troops, explore new themes, or even revamp your entire unit. It‚Äôs an opportunity to step out of your comfort zone and experiment with techniques, styles, and strategies you've never explored before. With that in mind, here are seven tips for a brand new wargame army:

1. Follow Your Passion

Not everyone's rolling in cash for miniature wargaming, but with the New Year comes the chance to build a new army, and that's all about choosing what you love. The core idea is simple: go for what catches your eye.

Maybe you're drawn to the historical depth of Black Powder civil war miniatures or the dynamic characters and settings in Warhammer 40K. Whatever strikes your fancy, lean into it. Building a miniature army is about creating a collection that you're excited about every time you bring it out.

Pro Tip: Start small. You don't need to buy a whole army at once. Pick a few figures that you really like and build from there. Starting small allows you to invest in pieces that mean something to you, and it's easier on your wallet.

2. Keep an Eye on the Meta

When building a new army, a key thing to consider is the meta‚Äď basically, what‚Äôs hot in the game right now. Think of it like keeping up with the latest fashion trends, but for gaming. The meta tells you which units or factions are killing it at the moment. But here's the catch: the game's always changing. New updates can totally flip the meta on its head.

Follow online forums, watch tournament reports, and engage with the community to stay informed. It’s a bit of effort, but when you roll up to play, you’ll be ready for whatever the game throws at you. Plus, it's kinda fun to be in the know, right?

3. Build Your Personalized Force

Ever feel like you sort of just stumbled into your miniature wargaming army? Maybe you grabbed a starter set and rolled with whatever was in there, like Necrons in the Indomitus box. But this approach doesn't always let you make it truly yours. As we kick off the new year, it’s the perfect time to craft an army that's really 'you'.

Now's your chance to grab the reins and build the army you've always dreamed of. Forget being limited by starter sets. Want to build an all close-combat Space Marine army or a fast-attack squadron? Go for it. Or maybe, create a Bolt Action army modeled after the regiment your grandpa served in, or a Star Wars Legion army featuring only Rogue One characters.

4. Assemble and Paint Efficiently

Next, consider efficient ways to assemble and paint your miniatures. Use techniques like multi-basing, where you mount multiple miniatures on the same base. Doing this will add a dynamic look to your army.

For painting, using colored primers can save time and still give good results. You can also explore speed painting methods or washes to quickly and effectively add depth and detail to your miniatures. Remember, the goal is to have a playable and visually appealing army, not necessarily to win painting competitions.

5. Balance Your Army Composition

Don't forget the big picture (i.e. composition) when putting together your army. It's all about having a mix that can handle whatever comes your way. Kick off with reliable infantry for your frontline action. Next, bring in your ranged units. Lastly, throw in some special units ‚Äď these are your wild cards for turning the tide in battle.

Your army should match how you like to play. For an aggressive approach, load up on hard-hitting close-combat units. If defense is your game, focus on units that can take and hold ground. Love a tactical approach? Opt for units with abilities that let you control the battlefield, like snipers or units with special deployment options.

Flexibility is key. A well-rounded army means you're ready for different kinds of battles. It keeps your game plan flexible and keeps your opponents on their toes, guessing what you’ll do next.

6. Reverse Engineer Your Army Build

Another tip for building your new army is to think back to the games where you were really put to the test. Maybe there was an opponent with a unit that just kept giving you a hard time, or a strategy that caught you off guard. Build your army to counter those exact strategies.

For example, if heavy tanks were your downfall, load up on anti-tank units or weapons. Or, if it was a fast-moving infantry, consider units that can slow them down or ambush them.

While it’s important to balance this approach with a well-rounded army composition, incorporating elements specifically designed to counter your toughest opponents can give you a strategic edge in future games.

7. Remember the Points System

Miniature wargaming is based on a point system. Each model has its own point value, and that's how you balance out matches with different types of troops. Games can vary from smaller skirmishes to massive battles, depending on the points.

It’s smart to start with a smaller army. This helps you get the hang of the game without getting swamped by too many rules or having a ton of units to keep track of. As you get more comfortable, you can level up, adding more units and taking on bigger point games.

New Year, New Army

2024 is expected to be an exciting year for tabletop wargamers. But instead of sticking with the old, why not step into the battles with a brand-new army? These tips are here to guide you in creating something fresh and exciting. Use these strategies to your advantage, and get ready for a year of epic gaming.

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