10 useful things to get started with your Warhammer 40000 army.

So just thought I’d put together a list of things that I felt helpful when I started on my Warhammer 40000 journey, this is by no means an exhaustive list, after all, at this stage, I’ve only been cracking on with this for 4 months so the list may change. these are not just limited to Warhammer 40000, or for that matter Games Workshop products. This post contains some of the things i have picked up from my rocky Warhammer 40000 journey as described in the post ‘How not to pick your army‘.

1. An army- in order to get started in Warhammer 40000 you are going to need some figures, they are really the hub of the hobby from this perspective, your local Games Workshop or indie shop are full of helpful, knowledgeable people that can help you find something to get you started.

2. A codex – if you’re going to play Warhammer 40000 you are going to need one of these, they have all the detail for the particular faction that you want to start collecting. They also come with loads of pictures to help you with ideas, and lore to help you get a feel for the army you want to paint. I bought the Dark Imperium box set which comes with 2 mini sorts of codexes to get started.

Warhammer 40000 Dark Imperium - Mini Codex

3. Glue – ok, so, in the old days of Warhammer and Warhammer 40000 the trick was that you were either trying to get metal to stick to metal or plastic to stick to metal, since I have stopped and come back all of the kits seem to be plastic (which is great, because the old models were a ball ache). This means that unless you are going into complex basing you’ll only need one type of glue to get started.

4. Files – your biggest enemy when you start painting your models will be mold lines, it will be the first or second thing people will notice if you put your pics online for tips and advice, get ahead of the curve and grab some hobby file, they are cheap and last for years. I used these ones.

5. Brushes – Now, you’ve got your models, you’ve assembled them, now its time to get down and dirty with applying some personalisation that makes these plastic heroes stand out a bit, mainly so you don’t lose them. First up you are going to need a brush. Well, in my experience you are going to need about 3. Maybe 4. Mainly if like me you have decided to go down the Warhammer 40000 route you will be painting 28mm scale models. The 3 main ones I use are a big layer brush for large areas of colour, a small layer brush for, that’s right, smaller areas and a detail brush for…. tiny areas.

6. A wet palette – this was the biggest revelation to me. When using the paints you may find that they dry quickly when using small amounts, or if you’re like me you will, on a 50/50 basis splurge out too much paint, with a wet palette the paint stays wet, and you don’t need to worry if you put out too much because you can come back to it later. I got mine from amazon here.

7. A work area – quite important, every hobbyist needs a nerd lair. It stops stuff flying all over the place, which it will, if you lose a bit you only have one area to search, you won’t be getting paint all over the dining table or the couch… it’s a safe place.

8. A colour scheme – now we are getting into it, we have models, we have brushes, we have a lair. Now just what colour are we going to use? There is a never-ending choice. It’s up to you. You want to follow the lore and pick a founding chapter or war band go for it, there are schemes and tutorials, want to make up your own, the same applies. Have a look at Instagram, YouTube, Gamesworkshop’s own site, Pinterest. You spent the money you get to choose whatever the hell colour scheme you want.

9. Paint – Now that you have picked a colour scheme, it’s time to get some paint. If you are following a Games workshop scheme they have loads of tutorials on WarhammerTV on YouTube, with lists of paints. I personally use a mixture of Vallejo game and model colours, citadel paints and shades and Winsor and Newton inks (shiny). But as I said before they are your models, you paid for them; you want to try and use Crayola? Bollocks to everyone and give it a go.

10. Entertainment – while I am painting I tend to be near my computer so I can have music on, podcasts, or YouTube vids. Sometimes it’s nice just to have something on in the background that helps you to totally switch off too, this helps when doing things like space marines that are very uniform or horde armies like Astra Militarum. It’s a good way to brush up on your Warhammer 40000 lore, a topic for another post.

These are the main things that I have found useful, there are more items since that I have found useful, but these are the first ten that I found useful. If I was starting again from scratch this is what I would get. It is not exhaustive and there will be future lists for more specific aspects of the hobby.