Cardboard Children – Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower 1

With the release of the new Warhammer Quest from Games Workshop – full name “Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower” – I thought it might be good to do a deeper exploration of what it is to go deep into a new Games Workshop game. Buying something like Warhammer Quest (isn’t it exciting that there’s a new Warhammer Quest?) is not the same as buying your average board game. First of all, it’s a bigger investment. Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower retails for 95 pounds. That’s not a game you buy on a whim – that’s a commitment. And with that commitment comes a lot of work. Because as any fool knows, Games Workshop products aren’t just about play. They’re about construction, and painting, and that’s why the whole Games Workshop thing – encapsulating Warhammer 40K, Age of Sigmar, and many more – is referred to as “The Hobby” by fans of the product.

The Hobby. If you want to play a new Games Workshop game, you’re going to have to dip into The Hobby. Come with.


Having bought your big box full of the new Warhammer Quest board game (isn’t it exciting that there’s a new Warhammer Quest?), your next step is to make sure you are prepped to construct the thing. Look, you’re not taking this thing home and having it ready to play right away. That’s just not happening, and you have to ride with that fact. There are over 50 plastic miniatures in the box, of outstanding quality, and they all come on plastic sprues, needing assembly. So you need tools.

Yeah, tools. But real talk here, all you really need are little snippers, little clippers, that can take the models cleanly from the sprues. That’s if you don’t care about the miniatures being perfect, of course. If you do care about your miniatures being perfect, then you need to have a little modelling blade of some kind, a scalpel-like tool that will let you clean any messy leftover bits away from the plastic, smoothing it off perfectly.

So you have all the stuff snipped off. No, wait! Don’t snip them off yet. Use the instructions in the box, showing you how to assemble each mini. These instructions are beautifully laid out, nicely ordered, and won’t steer you wrong. And you’re going to need them. The dwarf model in the new Warhammer Quest (isn’t it exciting that there’s a new Warhammer Quest?) comes in many parts. Many parts. You have to assemble his beard for god’s sake. But it’s worth the work. Once you do that assembly, you’ll be left with some of the finest looking models you’ve ever seen.

Glue. Let’s talk glue now. Ideally you want a plastic cement that has a narrow dispensing tube or a “needle” that will let you apply it in very fine lines. With models as beautiful as these, you don’t want to make a mess by melting all that detail away with sloppy big blobs of glue. You want to keep it all as clean as possible – so no rushing. Look at the instructions, at the model, see how it fits together, and then apply the minimum amount of glue that will effectively do the job of closing the parts together. Simple, right?

Now, with a game as large as the new Warhammer Quest (isn’t it exciting that there’s a new Warhammer Quest?) you’re going to have to go through this process many, many, many times. So set aside a long afternoon or evening to do it. Again, don’t stumble out and buy this game with the expectation you’ll be playing it with your friends that same night. Not unless you have friends who can crunch some serious assembly with you before you get it on the table.

In fact, no, the hobby demands patience. Assembling a whole load of new Games Workshop miniatures is something to be relished, and something you should really do solo. So set aside the time, gather the sprues, and get constructing.

Once you have all your little grey heroes and villains laid out on the table, the next thing you’re going to have to do is paint them. Okay, real talk again, you don’t actually have to paint these things. But as beautiful as they are? Are you really going to leave them all grey like that? Are you going to take all of that amazing design work (and we’ll go deeper into that next week) and just chuck it all over your table in drab grey? No, you need to paint.

Do you have paints? Okay. Okay. Maybe you need to buy paints. That’s only if you’re painting this stuff, of course. And you are. So you need to buy paints. Luckily for a guy like me, familiar with The Hobby for many many years, I have a whole load of paints and brushes. So I’m not really sure where you should start if you don’t have that stuff. I’m sure someone in the comments section will help.

Or you could go and buy White Dwarf. That’s the other thing about The Hobby. Once you go in, you go all in. I bought Warhammer Quest (isn’t it exciting that there’s a new Warhammer Quest?) and just two days later I was back in the Warhammer shop buying a couple of White Dwarfs that had painting guides inside. Yep, can ya believe it? I believed the hell out of it.

Because here’s the truth about Games Workshop stuff. The products are fantastic. Everybody knows it. Sure, we can argue about the quality of the games themselves (and we’ll get to that in the weeks ahead) but the standard of design and production are second to none. The stuff is expensive, that’s a fact, but you never feel short-changed. You’re buying premium quality stuff. And it’s easy to get hooked into buying more, because that high quality stretches across the entire range.

Next week, we’ll look a little bit more at the painting aspect of this business, and we’ll start to move closer into a look at the new game. We have lots to cover – the game itself, the app, and the potential of this game going forward. Be excited. I am. And please, please, share any of your Games Workshop hobby experiences in the comments section below.

Yes, I said there’s an app…


  1. thekelvingreen says:

    I spent about four hours constructing the Silver Tower models yesterday. I’m not done yet.

    Most were okay, but the horns on the big ogre thing were a bit of a hassle, and I’m almost certain I haven’t put them on right. Oh well.

    I look forward to playing it in about six weeks, at this rate!

  2. google says:

    The original Warhammer Quest was the first Games Workshop game I owned. There was no GW in my town at the time (Woking) but there was a fucking huge Toys ‘r us which did stock the non mainline games. There were no Warhammer/40K but there was Epic and WQ.

    What a delight to be 8 years old and have access to all those miniatures, dungeon pieces and cardboard.

    Interested to hear more from Rab on this.

  3. Zankman says:

    The Cardboard Children boob-streak is… Over.

  4. Jediben says:

    No no no
    Paint BEFORE gluing!

    • GrinningD says:


      Honestly I haven’t played or painted in 15 years but even I can remember this golden rule.

      Honestly Rab…

      • TomxJ says:

        NO! Just paint the bits you can see or it will sit on you shelf for 7 years and as many house moves

    • Ragnar says:

      What’s the advantage to painting first then gluing, easier access to areas?

      • noopacity says:

        I’ve not painted a model in about 20 years, but I would say always glue first. Unless you’re really careful, the glue will make the assembled models uneven as they won’t stick cleanly. Also remember using old paint pots with a bit of BluTack on top to make a useful grip for painting.

      • lamontagne says:

        Exactly. I don’t do this tbh, I’m too impatient and seeing the model come together is where I get the most fun. But yeah, for a flawless and comprehensive paint job it’s much better to paint first and then glue.

        But that’s boring.

    • wraithgr says:

      Unless you are painting a show piece for a competition, do NOT follow this advice! The most important thing in this mental illness hobby is to get playing as quickly as possible. Also, for anyone not experienced with painting minis, it can easily end up looking weird unless you can see exactly what you are painting.

      So my painting advice: focus on some simple techniques: basecoat-ink-drybrush (look these terms up, you definitely do NOT need to pay for white dwarf to get painting guides, ffs!). Watch a couple of youtube videos.
      If you don’t yet know if you will like painting, don’t spend masses on hobby paints–water based acrylics are just as good if not better sometimes, go to an art supply store and buy a starter set of tubes.
      Of course, if you have any friends who have the “hobby”, get them to show you and lend you their supplies. Of course, if you have friends with the “hobby”, they probably already tried to give it to you ;-)

    • Kapouille says:

      Worst advice ever (at least for miniatures)
      It may be totally true for scale models (where airbrushing is THE thing and you’re gluing individual parts together), but you’ll be in serious pain to paint your characters on the sprue, and then cut, potentially ruining your paintjob, and the assemble, realise there are massive gaps, fill the gaps, now definitely ruining the paintjob, re-prime, and re-paint.

      What’s the best approach is to partially assemble your miniature, see how leaving maybe 2 or 3 parts out might ease your painting (arms, hats, capes, etc) without requiring bit filling work and then assemble-fill-sand-prime-paint-base.

      For tabletop-standard painting, all assembling first is just fine.

    • Bull0 says:

      Horrible plan. Painting figures is far more enjoyable than painting a bunch of components.

    • aircool says:

      tl;dr – if you’re new to painting, just glue them, undercoat them and get painting. If you’re ok with advanced techniques or use an airbrush for some parts, then you already know which bits to paint before gluing.

      That’s good advice if you’re going to be airbrushing some parts. For example, if you wanted to use an airbrush to paint the Chaos dude’s sword in non-metallics, you’d need to do it before gluing it to the model.

      For most mini’s I tend to airbrush on a grey undercoat and then airbrush a base coat onto and large areas.

      However, for the miniatures in The Silver Tower, most of them contain too much detail for an airbrush to be much use, or are mostly one dominant colour, in which case, there’s no need to airbrush separate parts.

  5. Demandred says:

    My copy is sat in my room. Looking forward to getting back into it. Really want to paint but unsure if I’ll stick to it (I always paint a few and stop)

    Its available online for £75.

  6. aircool says:

    Building and painting a few models at a time. It’s a great opportunity to apply some good quality paint jobs for the bad guys and spend a day or so on each of the heroes to make them look awesome(so much better than production-lining units which I hate).

    I would say that, given the quality of the models and other components, it’s well worth the initial price and I can’t wait until they start to sell blisters – it suits my preferred way of painting, which is spending a day or two on each model.

  7. TomxJ says:

    For those new to painting follow these steps until you get more confident.


    Seriously, anything more complicated will bog you down and dishearten. Plus you can always work into a model later when you get better.

    Explanations of the techniques above are in most basic miniature painting books.

    • Spacewalk says:

      Or the fast way:
      Lighten flesh and metal bits
      Matte varnish

      You can get it all done in a day or two and it will look acceptable for table use with the bonus of having minis that can stand up to excessively rough usage.

      • TomxJ says:

        Honestly I’ve always found the dipping technique really hard to get right. There is more control with a wash and its better to get a beginnner used to looking at the model and using a brush.

        You are absolutely correct about varnishing on the other hand thats a must! – Matte though, obvs.

        • Unruly says:

          Most people I know that dip, including myself, basically just use the dip as an all-over wash. They’ll brush it on quick and dirty like, sopping up excessive pools by hand, rather than the old method of actually dipping the figure in it and then spinning off the excess. Then give it a really light drybrushing or even just a few hand picked highlights, a matte topcoat, and call it done.

          • TomxJ says:

            If i still had my Skaven I would try this. Is Army Painter still the go to?

          • Unruly says:

            Army Painter is indeed the way to go. They also sell washes in the same colors as their dips, which will give you the same shading results, and no crazy gloss, but without the extra protection that the dip gives the base coat. After all, the Army Painter Quickshades tins are basically just furniture varnish in the vein of Minwax Polyshades.

          • thekelvingreen says:

            I could never quite get the hang of the dip, so now I use Army Painter washes for the shading, then actual floor wax — Pledge multi-surface — for the varnishing. You do get a glossy finish, but I quite like that as it reminds me of the old John Blanche miniatures in White Dwarf, and your miniatures end up having a nice pine-ish scent.

          • Spacewalk says:

            Yeah, applying with a brush is the best way to go rather than just dunking it into the pot.

            Another great thing about dipping is that you don’t need to clean the sprues before painting your minis. That cuts out another step that takes about an hour or so.

  8. GrinningD says:

    I still have fond memories of the OG WHQ, mainly my Chaos Warrior Perfectly Normal Human Guy, who was the bankroll of our group (can’t use magic weapons so just sell sell sell) who went around bottling the blood of innocent city folk during nights on the town, despite a fear of the dark, having three humped backs but very long legs and being just covered in eyes.

    I hope the expansions for this contain the tiny character rule books on that lovely grey paper filled with charts and story snippets. Each one set the tone wonderfully and I still have my dog eared old copy up in the roof somewhere.

    • Okami says:

      Nope. You get a handful of missions that you have to play in order. There is no exp, no character development, nothing. There is a very simple system for stat increases along the way, but it’s nothing like in the original.

      • lamontagne says:

        Really? I seem to suddenly have lost a lot of my enthusiasm for this, then. Glad to hear it though, I was going to go pick it up on my way home tonight. Will have to wait for the other articles I guess.

  9. malkav11 says:

    I honestly thought this was going to be about a new expansion for FFG’s Adventure Card Game version. And I think I’d be more excited if it were. Warhammer Quest was a really cool thing back in the 1980s, or so I hear, but there have been a lot of fantasy adventuring board and card games in the intervening years and I’m skeptical that Games Workshop provides a more engrossing and satisfying experience for that $115 than FFG’s $35 card game, much less things like Descent, Imperial Assault, Dungeon Saga, Super Dungeon Explore, Mage Knight, Myth, etc. (To say nothing of a few upcoming titles I’m excited for, like the Legacy-style fantasy adventuring game Gloomhaven.)

    I certainly don’t consider the miniatures a selling point – they’re a big part of the expense and I want nothing to do with the hobby component. But I do feel the draw of the Warhammer setting, and maybe the rules are good? Guess I’ll have to wait for next week.

  10. Fulgrim91 says:

    Hey there – first time post. As someone who does the “hobby” professionally (I’ll leave you to speculate in what capacity) there’s a few options when it comes to painting.

    Firstly- you will need some sort of primer. Following the guides in the White Dwarf – you’ll be aiming to get a can of Corax White as a lot of the colours are quite bright.

    In terms of paints there are a few products GW has that can help you get started – its all down to your budget and how much time you’re willing to invest in painting the minis.

    The cheapest option to grab would be the Build + Paint set, which has the necessary tools to put togethet the set as well as a small selection of basic paints to get started.

    Alternatively, there are paint sets you can grab in the store which will save you a few dollars and give you good colour variety. There are 4 to choose from, but for the purposes of this box I’d be looking at the Layer Paint set as well as a pot of Nuln Oil for shading.

    For best results, you could buy all 4 sets but that is a very large investment for a non-hobbyist.

    Finally – go into any Games Workshop/Warhammer store and ask them what basics you need. A good staff member will tell you what you need within a fixed budget if you specify one.

    Hope this helps! Unfortunately I can’t list any UK prices as I am based in Australia.

    • Fulgrim91 says:

      As an addendum – if you’re looking for a good selection of brushes; the three most commonly used ones would be the Small Base, Small Drybrush and Medium Shade.

    • wraithgr says:

      Have to disagree with some of this–keep in mind you are advising starting painters, not even someone who has already researched the hobby and thought they will give it a go…
      Priming in white is good for bright colours but unforgiving. These days most paints have good pigmentation so there’s not a lot of disadvantage to priming in black and it will hide errors better than white.
      Finally, no offense but gw starter sets and paints in general are very, very poor value. You can get much better tools individually for a fraction of the price (i.e. cutters that are actually flat so they don’t damage your models, and don’t even get me started on the flash removal “tool”), and the paints provided are low quality and, much more importantly, much lower quantity of paint for the price than even the already overpriced individual pots…

      • captainparty says:

        GW paints are great quality, the tools are expensive but again, really excellent. I’ve been hobbying for 20-odd years and have tried just about every brand out there but GW is worth the extra cost usually. The major advantage to most new hobbyists is that it’s all in one set and in most high streets in the UK in the same place where you can buy the game and learn how to paint. Convinience is important to new starters.

        • wraithgr says:

          Really? GW’s tools arw overpriced, and some of them are actually poor quality. You can almost always find cheaper and better tools on amazon. And I don’t mean saving a few pennies, I mean getting more tools of better quality at half the price.

      • SebfromMTL says:

        Actually the mold line remover from GW is really good. A bit pricey yeah but most of the time it’s better than using a hobby knife.

        As for paint, yeah Vallejo is the best but around where I live no once carries it and I live in a pretty big city

        • wraithgr says:

          There is literally nothing you can achieve with GW’s £10.5 tool that you can’t already do with your £3 hobby knife. There are a lot of things you can do with your hobby knife, however, that you have no hope of doing with the “mold line remover”.

    • aircool says:

      If you’re colourblind like myself, GW paints are a godsend; you don’t have to mix them and there’s plenty of source material which shows you how to get certain colours and effects.

  11. Mr.Bats says:

    Avoid GW paints. Not the best in the market (certainly not since the reformulation) and pricey. Buy Vallejo Model Color (if youre serious about your painting – but then again you wouldn’t need my advice) or Vallejo Game Color; Warcolours are new and really good, also cheap, although they may require a bit of a better technique.

    GW brushes are complete shit. Buy Windsor and Newton, for 10 bucks you’ll have the best brush around.

    If you want to learn to paint your best bet is to get into the Miniature Sapiens FB group, CMON forums (though the quality differs greatly from poster to poster), and the myriad of blogs out there from good painters. Looking at PuttyandPaint to drool a bit may help you know what a good paintjob is.

    If you only want to play, then disregard

    • Dude (Darloc) says:

      This, 100x this. For anything other than the models/game I would look somewhere else. GW is a rip off when it comes to supplies, £20 for a cutting pincer is really expansive, you can find much cheaper elsewhere. The paint is also not durable, most of my GW paint are dry now while my vallejo will last for ever. Their wash are ok but there are some better alternative (secret weapon washes). As I personal note, I think the concept of GW makes premium better than anyone else is long gone, some other company have very good product (Corvus Belli, Weird, Guillotine Games…) which usually cost less with better rules set.

    • Rosti says:

      This needs to be echoed: Winsor & Newton make the best brushes for hobby miniature painting. Just the best. Much easier to work with, reliable points and easy enough to care for.

      Grab some sable brushes in the 000 – 2 range of sizes and go to town. For “proper” watercolour brushes the sable bristles are comically expensive, but on the teeny brushes this hobby demands it’s close enough to Games Workshop prices that even without care it’ll be better value. These aren’t esoteric objects, either: you can snag them at Hobbycraft or similar.

      Basically, I wish I hadn’t gone nearly 2 decades believing that brushes were all basically the same.

      (For basecoating, drybrushing and painting big blocks of colour you can totally get away with any old rag, mind.)

  12. Spacewalk says:

    You’d need 7500 bucks a month for this hobby.

  13. captainparty says:

    If you think video gamers are weird and hate their hobby which seemingly gives them nothing but misery, you’ve never experienced war gaming.

    If ignore all advise that says go to forums for wargaming help. Firstly, it’s not 2005, secondly they’re generally just populated with the few remaining bitter angry nerds who endlessly complain because of their empty lives.

    • Wowbagger says:

      I think this is a trifle harsh, I’ve recently got back into painting and the forum I now visit is extremely welcoming, despite my terrible painting abilities.

      I agree it can be a horrible experience for a new person if they meet the grognards of the hobby though.

      • Rosti says:

        I’ll agree with this. The table game communities online range from the vilest stereotypes writ large to the warm, cosy embrace of positivity and helpful advice.

        The trick is finding the later before the former scare you off. I’ve found the folk at (heavily curated) Advanced Tau Tactica very supportive in the past, largely because it’s a small and focused group, for one. I’d wager that cheery Rock, Paper, Shotgun spin off(*) Shut Up and Sit Down could support a lovely self-help group for miniature gamers, if they don’t already.

        (*) At least, in the sense of "What Quinns dis next"

  14. Wowbagger says:

    Paints wise I still find GW paints to be the best, But I have also had some success with the Army Painter range: link to and Black Hat minis, who have a terrible website but cheaper paints/more for your money analogous to GW’s old range: link to

  15. Chris Cunningham says:

    So, is it any better than the recent video game? Because the original edition was completely unwieldy once you got into the higher levels (dice instead of cards), which the PC/pad version nicely abstracted away. I’d pay for additional DLC in the form of extra levels / items / characters in a heartbeat.

    Also, Sigmarines. Bah. Part of the charm of the old game was that you could role-play running around the Empire doing, well, early-modern-German things, as opposed to just screaming FOR THE EMPEROR and hitting daemons with swords, which is AFAICS what the background has devolved to over the last twenty years.

    • Chris Cunningham says:

      As for The Hobby, I’ve been mostly cold turkey for 18 years now (save for buying the boxed last-edition-of-proper-Warhammer for someone, and painting one elf). Before that I spent pretty much every waking hour that wasn’t at school either playing the games, painting and modelling, or hanging around the local shop and reading all the books for free. It should have been made illegal, being far more expensive and harmful to a mid-teen than any amount of hooch.

      • Dude (Darloc) says:

        The hobby as moved on since then. I have been GW free since 2008, other companies are not as much as a money sink as GW is. They are systems out there which you can play with 10 models with rules available online, which makes it really reasonable if you don’t want to invest heavily. GW stays the most expansive company with the most dreadful communication with their fans. I still like their universe but they have butchered their rule sets in such a way that I am not interested in it anymore.

  16. JimboDeany says:

    Personally I always assemble then paint. Painting, at least the way I do it takes a loooooong time so having them available to play during that time is a good idea.

  17. gimboid says:

    It pains me that GW still produce some beautiful miniatures, but I refuse to buy any of their products on the grounds of their absurd regional marketing strategies (that likely still exists because of their overspending on average-selling properties like LOTR). I just looked at Quest, and it costs $70 (35 quid) more here in Aus. That’s not the issue though, it’s that I can no longer buy from third parties in the EU or US because of said region blocking – it’s basically pay or tough goddamn luck!
    I hate to say it, but WarMaHordes and other more minor game systems need to become even more of a threat to force GW to alter their practices.

    • Bull0 says:

      Didn’t Privateer Press recently adopt similar trade terms?

      Also, there’s a reason for those beyond screwing over antipodeans.

      • gimboid says:

        Perhaps, I don’t buy Privateer Press products either!

        I know it wasn’t just some evil ploy to screw over anyone living outside the US/EU, but given that I enjoy painting as much as gaming, I’m in a position where I can take a stand and refuse to fund a practice that I deem to be unfair.

  18. Phidelt230 says:


    Theyre a terrible company

  19. lamontagne says:

    I know it’s overpriced. I know I don’t have any one to play this with. But the pull of nostalgia is too great. Will cave and buy this and some paint after work I think, thanks for letting me know it existed!

  20. Big Red says:

    Great idea for a series and your absolutely right , there’s a certain amount of love and commitment involved when buying a GW game like this, it’s all about the hobby. I am wondering if I will get past the painting stage myself, I might just stop after the grey primer , their still going look good right ?
    On a slight tangent talking to a GW staff member today about the missing slaanesh in the Age of Sigmar game , the conversation moved onto aelfs in silver tower..take a closer look..what is going on with that mistweaver ? Interesting times ahead …

  21. Bweahns says:

    I ain’t touching anything to do with Age of Smegma. My mate still has the original we were playing back in high school.

  22. Big Red says:

    Age of Sigmar isn’t the olde world but it is telling a different story in its own right , one that might prove to be just as developed as Warhammer fantasy.
    Cost comparison isn’t always helpful as there are other companies selling expensive models as well , at least with AOS you can choose the cheap options if you want to. Rules are free, cheap models can be had, and GW are producing better deals all the time .

  23. apa says:

    Played the first Space Hulk as a kid. When the 3rd ed came out just noticed it on the hobby store window and bought, thinking “great, maybe I can play some space hulk again!”

    I painted the last mini (librarian!) a bit over a year ago, played once (just couldn’t play with unpainted ones! heresy!) with the missus and then the baby was born. Maybe I’ll play it next time in…2034 or so.

    • apa says:

      So yes, don’t go rushing in with the GW games.

    • rmsgrey says:

      I dusted off my old, second-hand copy of Space Crusade that’s been untouched for maybe 8 years and 2 changes of address over the weekend for a rare all-day session at the local twice-monthly board-gaming club. Turns out there are no Orc figures, and the blip token for the Chaos Marine Heavy Weapon guy is missing (or, now, proxied using one of the blank blip tokens that was still present) but it was still surprisingly popular – I played one game myself, then let others borrow it for at least 2 games…

  24. Chris Gardiner says:

    Played my first game of this yesterday, and I think it’s genuinely brilliant. Oodles of surprises, clever design, and it plays very smoothly.

    It’s less about endless random dungeons than the original WQ, and more about handcrafted experiences. I’m ok with that.