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The Best Tabletop Wargames (that aren’t Warhammer!)

I love Warhammer. We ALL love Warhammer, ok?! But hey, there’s so many good wargames out there. Check out some of our favs right here.



The genesis of tabletop wargames dates way back to the 19th century when the Prussian army began training its officer’s a new tactical game called Kriegsspiel. Kriegsspiel was the first wargame system to be used by a military organization as a serious training and research tool. Emphasizing realistic experiences rather than competition, Kriegsspiel has a high degree of realism including changing terrain and weather conditions. Other nations soon began designing similar war games for their own military after Prussia’s stunning victory over France in the Franco-Prussian War.

Gary Gygax (of Dungeons and Dragons fame) took this game, and over the course of a few years, modified it to the point where it became the bedrock for basically every RPG we have played since. In 1983, Rick Priestly released the first core rule set for the now massively popular game, Warhammer. From Warhammer, dozens of new wargames were born. Featuring armies and settings from the past, the future or an entirely different reality altogether, there’s a wargame for everyone at this point.

We’re going to take a look at some really fun, but lesser-known, wargames that are available to play today! Many of these come in stand-alone kits making it easier to purchase and play with a friend (or foe). Let us begin!

Necromunda: Underhive

Despite its name, Necromunda isn’t really about epic conflicts that might wipe out entire planets. Instead, you assume control of various groups vying for dominance. The inclusion of lore and narrative components makes this game perfect for any player who has previously played tabletop RPGs. You may also purchase books that will help you have a better experience playing a certain gang, which is similar to other GW games. You also have access to a slew of new abilities during your fights in Necromunda, as well as the opportunity to complete several quests.

Gangs usually have nine or fewer models, but gameplay may become more detailed as a result. The Necromunda rules also enable players to develop their gangs during fights, gaining experience, recruiting and losing new members or gear according to a specified set of regulations. In a campaign, winning games give you more credits (money) and fewer injuries, allowing you to improve.

Another distinguishing feature of Necromunda is its more three-dimensional table layout, with buildings generally having multiple floors, connecting walkways and bridges. Necromunda is a dystopian future metropolis similar to a hive stretching several miles in height and the terrain is designed to simulate a hive city. An interactive landscape and fewer miniatures to manage make each round move quickly while providing lots of movement options for players.

Gaslands: Refuelled

It’s hard not to think Mad Max when you see this game. Post-apocalyptic imagery and a fight for fuel make it a little on the nose but hell, you’re playing this game specifically because you love the atmosphere of a burnt-out future. Oh, and this is a driving game too! You can drift around corners, smash opponents and change gears to get a leg up on other players!

Gaslands: Refuelled’s price is one of the finest aspects about it. You don’t have to buy any miniatures, and you may drive around the ashes of the post-apocalyptic world using and old dinky cars or trucks lying around. For everyone, especially individuals who are on a budget, Gaslands is a great option since it is simple to set up and provides a lot of surprising thrills and actual tense moments.

A Song of Ice & Fire Tabletop Miniatures Game

If season 8 of the television series didn’t ruin GoT for you forever, this is a game worth checking out. The world created by George R. R. Martin is known for its brutality and subterfuge, as well as epic conflicts. Finally, you have the choice of commanding different armies from George R.R. Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire world. A Song of Ice & Fire sees you take part in medieval-style assaults that include soldiers charging at one another in the middle of battle. Plan your move and locate a flank that will utterly overwhelm your opponent. Apart from the battle map, utilize the most renowned figures of Westeros like Sansa or Tyrion to create power in order to win conflicts.

A note from the games publishers paints a picture of dynamic combat and iconic heroes:

A Song of Ice & Fire: Tabletop Miniatures Game lets players take control of their favorite Houses from the novels — represented by trays of high-quality, pre-assembled miniatures — and lead them into battle against their opponents. Players can recreate their favorite moments from the series or create their own stories. What if the Red Wedding never happened, and Robb Stark assaulted King’s Landing? Now fans can find out!

Battles can range from large-scale wars with hundreds of miniatures to simple skirmishes between a few units without complicating the elegantly designed rules. The game features several unique systems, including alternating activations that keep the players engaged; a Rank System that changes a unit’s capabilities as the battle rages on; a Tactics System that provides strategic powers fueled by a finite resource each round; and, most importantly, the iconic Heroes, such as Robb Stark and Jaime Lannister, that can change the course of war both on and off the battlefield.

Marvel Crisis Protocol

The world of superheroes is full of what-if conversations. Who might beat who in a fight has been a hot topic for many a comic-con debate. Have you ever been curious as to who would win a battle between Spider-Man and Iron-Man? Don’t hesitate any longer because now you can find out for yourself. Clash two teams of Marvel superheroes in the all-new Marvel Crisis Protocol. The interesting aspect is the mechanism to demolish terrain, which adds to the excitement and reflects the spirit of comics and movies. Furthermore, official terrain has ‘modes’ that can be switched to display the devastation of the battlefield.

The Marvel Universe is the backdrop for Crisis Protocol, a tabletop miniatures game set in that world. Paint, collect, and assemble an ever-expanding collection of highly detailed plastic miniatures representing Marvel’s most popular characters. Players assemble a Marvel-inspired dream team from their collections and then compete against one another on an interactive tabletop where the terrain itself may be thrown, collided into, and destroyed during the superpowered confrontation.

Kings of War: Vanguard

In Kings of War: Vanguard, a tabletop fantasy skirmish game, you design a warband of 28mm elite fighters, develop their skills, and compete to the death. This game is the smaller sibling to the massive Kings of War game. Battles will be won by brave acts of small, elite bands of fighters before weapons clash in savage combat before the winner gathers the spoils of war. Commanders count on their loyal warbands to disrupt the enemies’ key supply lines, set off smoke signals to warn allies of enemy approach, and take advantageous ground on the field. The conflict is concluded long before the troops have assembled if the raiding forces carry out their assignments effectively.

Recruit troops from many races and units of this mythical world. Get ready for combat with special abilities provided by cards. Create points and alter the field of battle with famous command dice that are rolled on every turn. Explore the strategic possibilities of wearying your troops for this last effort to achieve victory or face utter devastation. Something which is nice about Kings of War: Vanguard is that instead of purchasing new editions every two years, you may buy tiny packs of cards that upgrade your game to the next version.

This holiday season, if you know a special someone who is looking to get into a new wargame that IS NOT WARHAMMER, point them to this article and watch for their eyes to light up with wonder at the many possibilities out there. I’m going to get Gaslands:Refuelled for my son!

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