Scent of a Gamer

From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.

The gears, they are a-grinding

On Scent of a Gamer, I mainly talk about what I like. But there’s one thing about miniatures games that really grinds my gears – the so-called two-player starter sets.


Take any of these sets available today and what you will find is a set with enough for one player to get started… and a second army to give away to someone else. That is not how you do a two-player set, people!

That almost all of these sets is constructed the same regardless of company or game leads me to suspect mindless copying here.

Let’s look at the contents of basically every set out there today. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:

  • A single small copy of the rulebook
  • Dice, measures and counters for one game
  • A ‘how to get started guide’ or something similar
  • Two armies

What we have here is a single-player starter set with an extra army. If you’re the lonesome nerd type you can play by yourself, but they have computers for that these days, so why bother?

To be a genuine two-player set, what needs to be added is an additional small copy of the book, and enough dice, counters etc. for each person to take away a set they can play with. That would be a two-player set, but there is not a single company today that does this.

What we have instead are a lot of really cheap ‘starter box forces’ for sale on various marketplaces. This is a sign of failure, not success. What this shows is people buying what is really a single-player starter set, and then trying to offload the surplus models that they don’t want and don’t need. Fail.

These are, at best, one-player-and-a-friend-you-invited-over starters. A proper two-player starter would have contents for two players to genuinely start playing the game. Instead the box provides on person with enough to start and a second person with some models.

Will an intelligent company actually sit back and decide to make a proper two-player starter? I won’t hold my breath.



This entry was posted on August 31, 2014 by in Industry, Miniatures, Tabletop and tagged , , , , , , .
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