Part 2: The History of Warmaster.
Warmaster is a 10mm mass rank and file battles game, simulating titanic battles within the Old World of the Warhammer lore.
Warmaster was written by Rick Priestly and published by Games Workshops specialist games in the summer of 2000.
The Warmaster game was designed to focus on the general’s ability to command rather than just the army’s ability to fight. Warmaster focused on command and manoeuvring to get your battalions into the perfect position to crush your enemies. While magic is used in the game, its effect on the game is limited. Within the rulebook were army lists for the Empire, High Elves, Tomb Kings, Chaos Warriors, Orcs and Goblins as well as a Dwarf list.
In mid-2006, a new online supplement was added to the Specialist Games website, known as Warmaster Armies. This supplement includes slightly revised lists for the six original armies (High Elves, Empire, Dwarfs, Chaos, Orcs and Goblins, and Tomb Kings of Khemri), alongside new lists for eight forces (Dark Elves, Skaven, Bretonnians, Lizardmen, Kislevites, Vampire Counts, Daemonic Hordes, and Araby).
This was followed in 2009 by a fan-based supplement release. This included a large number of alternative, trial or fan designed army lists. The Warmuster publication aimed to promote ongoing development of the game but has since been superseded and refined.
In 2010 Warmaster 2nd Edition was released, which compiled and clarified the siege rules written for the game over the preceding 10 years.
In 2013 Games Workshop stopped producing the miniatures and started to remove them from their webstore as stocks ran out. A freely downloadable “Living Rulebook”, along with supplements and archived magazine articles, are available through the fan-administered site Specialist Games.
Since 2017 a revamped ruleset was released by the Warmaster community called Warmaster Revolution. Bringing together elements of Warmaster Ancients and some extra ‘house rules’, Warmaster Revolution has quickly established itself as the ruleset of choice for Warmaster players. Its release coincided with a marked upturn of interest with the game, due in no small part to the launch of Warmaster Podcast in 2016. With a growing FB community, YouTube videos and more tournaments globally, Warmaster is experiencing a renaissance with an expanding base of new converts and returning players. The new ruleset incorporates many of the 2009 supplement army lists but has a working committee that looks to refine the lists to make them balanced and playable as well as tweak current army lists.
With the increasing interest in Warmaster, many smaller miniature designers are creating and releasing stl files for home printing. Patreons such as Forest Dragon, Greenskin and Warplock miniatures are smashing out 10mm armies.
Coming soon……..Part 3: The Empire.