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Veterans will already know these tricks for how to save money on Warhammer 40K, but if you’re new to the game then there’s a lot to be learned because Warhammer 40K is expensive.
There are a lot of little ways you can save money when you buy for Warhammer 40K, especially when you’re just starting out. When you’re new to the hobby you’re in need of everything. The range of things you need to buy is large, so it’s easy to find most of it at a discount.
Anyway, let’s jump in!
This is probably the most obvious, eBay. This is where I do most of my shopping when I’m starting a new army because with some luck you can find some insane deals. Granted, often you’re buying used models in various states of disrepair, but nobody said saving money didn’t require a little work ;)
If you don’t mind having to strip paint, fix damage, or reassemble models, then eBay is where you’ll save the most money for any army – hands down. Also, sometimes you’ll have to settle for older models, like earlier sculpts (often metal). However, if you’re like me, then you’ll find having classic models mixed in with newer ones just makes things more visually interesting.
Here’s a list of specific sellers on eBay worth checking out. Thanks to Dave for providing most of these.
These are listed by country, but you’ll find most will ship internationally.
Hoard O Bits – Same folks mentioned above in the eBay stores. You can save a little more by buying direct from them.
The Bitz Barn – They used to have their own store, but apparently now they’re selling on Amazon. Good selection of bits anyway.
The Warstore – The biggest and best discount retailer in the US for wargaming.
Rulebook & Codex
The major focus on this article is on the models. That’s where you’re going to spend the vast majority of your money in the hobby of 40K. However, new players will need to buy a rulebook and a codex for their army.
Now, the starter sets below will cover you on the rulebook for cheap. However, if you aren’t going that route then your cheapest options would be eBay, as mentioned, Amazon, and the online retailers above.
These starter sets can be rare gems. I say rare because these don’t come out often and they get bought up quickly when they do.
A starter set usually comes out when there’s a new edition of 40K. The starter set will contain dice, rules, and two small armies so you can learn the game.
The models used in the starter sets are unique to the starter set, so you can’t buy them on their own. This makes buying one appealing to veterans, but there’s other reasons veterans like them as well.
The other reason, the major reason, people like buying these 40K starter sets is the cost. Often times these starter sets will save hundreds of dollars over buying the components on their own.
Plus, these tend to include a smaller, more portable version of the rulebook, which is appealing for travel; plus, it saves you from having to dish out $50 just for a rulebook.
If you’re new to 40K then a starter set is a great way to jump into the game, assuming you’re interested in one of the armies in the set that is. A lot of people will go halves on a starter set with a friend who wants the other army. Veterans will buy the 40K starter set to get the few things they want and then eBay the rest for a profit.
You really can’t go wrong with getting one.
This is the 8th edition starter set containing two armies, the Death Guard and Ultramarines. It also contains the rules for the game, psychic powers, and everything you need to get going in 8th edition.
For the Ultramarines there is:
1 Primaris Captain (exclusive)
2 Primaris Lieutenants (exclusive)
1 Primaris Ancient (exclusive)
Two 5-man Intercessor Squads
3-man Interceptor Squad
5-man Hellblaster Squad.
For Death Guard there’s:
1 Lord of Contagion (exclusive)
1 Noxious Blightbringer (exclusive)
1 Malignant Plaguecaster (exclusive)
7 Death Guard Marines
1 Foetid Bloat-drone
The set costs $160, but the value of all of this is $490. That’s $250 for the Ultramarines, and $240 for the Death Guard side. Yep, you’ll save over $330 on this when you also factor in the rulebook and other items in the kit.
It’s a pretty amazing deal. Find someone to split the set with to save money, or put the army you don’t want on eBay and make a profit. You can’t lose!
It does also contain the core rules for 8th, and some supplements to play a campaign featuring those two armies.
The set costs $160, but the value of the contents is around $328. That’s a bit of a guess since the Warglaives are new and not sold separately yet.
Either way, it’s a good deal and has some very cool exclusive models.
This is an old starter set for 40K that originally came out for 6th edition, and was later revised for 7th edition.
So, this will contain a defunct rule book, but it’s still a great buy. It has miniatures for both Dark Angels and Chaos Marines.
For the Dark Angels, it contains:
1 Captain (exclusive)
1 Librarian (exclusive)
10 Tactical Marines
For Chaos it has:
1 Chaos Lord (exclusive)
1 Aspiring Champion (exclusive)
6 Chaos Chosen (exclusive)
1 Helbrute (exclusive)
That’s a $201 value. The Chaos side is worth around $180 retail. So, the value of just the models in the set (seeing as the rulebook and templates are useless in 8th) is $430. You can buy Dark Vengeance for around $250, meaning you’re saving $180.
Again, go-in on this with a friend to save money, or sell off the other army on eBay for a profit.
Start Collecting/Army Bundles
Most every army has one of these, a box that bundles a few units together and offers it at a discount of around 25%. These army bundles, now called Start Collecting!, are perfect for newer players. The units offered tend to be fundamental units to that particular army, so ones you’ll want to own.
As such, it’s a bit less appealing to veteran players, as they often own those units in quantity already. However, sometimes the Start Collecting! sets will contain units of interest even to veteran players.
Below I’m going to attempt to break down each army and the bundles available to them. Note though that not all armies have bundle deals, so you won’t see every army below. Also, all the pricing is in USD, so you’ll have to convert as needed.
Here you can jump to any specific army you’re after:
I’m not sure the retail price, as Games Workshop no longer lists it, but you can get it for $158 on Amazon. That would save you $28, which isn’t a ton, but it’s almost like getting that Dreadnought for free; so, it could be worse!
This is a classic board game from Games Workshop. It’s gone through a few different versions and remains a favorite of many gamers. Oh, it’s also not available unless you find people who stocked up on it; and you will.
Other than being a good board game, it also has some really nice models.
Sergeant with power sword
Sergeant with thunder hammer
6 Space Marines with storm bolters
Space Marine with heavy flamer
Space Marine with assault cannon
Space Marine with lightning claws
Librarian with force axe
The Blood Angels side of this is around $130 in value. For the Tyranids, the value there is around $123. So, the total value in here (models) is $253 and you can buy Space Hulk for around $180.
There’s quite a few ways to save with Daemons.
Start Collecting! Daemons of Khorne
This set has the following:
1 Herald on Blood Throne
As usual, this costs $85. The retail of the units included is $119.
With the changes in 8th, Tzeentch units have improved. This is really a great buy for any fan of Tzeentch.
Chaos Space Marines
There’s quite a few options for Chaos Marines. They’ve often been one of the armies in the 40K starter sets, plus they have a few other bundles.
Start Collecting! Chaos Space Marines
The Start Collecting! set for Chaos Marines has:
1 Chaos Lord in Terminator Armor
10 Chaos Space Marines
The retail value is $118, and you can get the set for $85.
Honestly, it’s not a great starter set. Chaos Space Marines aren’t terribly efficient despite being a core Troop for CSM. The Chaos Lord and Helbrute are good though, so it comes down to what you’re after.
Burning of Prospero
A 30K board game that focuses on the Thousand Sons losing their homeworld to the Space Wolves.
It’s hard to put a value on this since they are all exclusive and not normally sold individually, like a Terminator, Biker, etc. However, I’d wager around $100 for all the models contained, and it costs $65 to buy this set.
Drukhari (Dark Eldar)
Gangs of Commorragh
Another side game of GW’s that people just buy for the models.
6 Drukhari Reavers
10 Drukhari Hellions
This set is only $60 and the value is $130. Yep, this is worth more than twice what you pay for it.
Battleforce Genestealer Cults Insurrection
1 Magus w/Genestealer Familiars
5 Acolyte Hybrids
10 Neophyte Hybrids
11 Neophyte Hybrids (Cadians)
1 Goliath Rockgrinder
This will run you $170 for $245 worth of models.
Depending on your play style, this is a good buy-in. There’s some great support units in there if you’re after a more rounded force.
Overall the units are useful as well. Currently Orks are waiting on a codex, so the true merit of this set is yet to be determined.
Battleforce Orks Kult of Speed
My personal favorite way of running Orks – fast!
1 Big Mek with Shokk Attack Gun
This set will run you $170 and you’ll get $235 worth of models.
I would seriously consider this kit if I were starting Orks again. If you like speed, and want some firepower, then this is a worthwhile buy.
Start Collecting! Space Marines
First up, this can be useful to any Space Marine player, be it Blood Angels, Dark Angels, etc. Of course the models will be generic Marines, so no specific insignias, but if you don’t mind that then it’s a good buy for any chapter.
This box has:
1 Terminator Captain
10 Tactical Marines
1 Venerable Dreadnought.
This is a great way to start off a new Marine army.
You can buy this for $85 and the value on this box is around $116. Modest savings.
Betrayal at Calth
This is a 30K board game. Of course, everyone just buys it for the models.
Now, being that this is set in 30K, not 40K, the Marines are wearing MK4 armor and the Terminators are Cataphractii.
I figure foam trays for your miniatures is worth mentioning as well. Most of us use them to put our models into, and as long as you’re buying models you’ll need foam trays.
There’s no denying that Battle Foam has become the gold standard of foam trays, but it’s also very expensive. I’m not saying it isn’t worth the money, however, if you’re looking to save a few bucks then you can check out my tutorial on making your own foam trays. I make my own for $4 a tray, sometimes less depending on the thickness.
Warhammer 40K is a great game, but it can be imposing to get into when you start looking at the cost. So, definitely look over the deals above, use eBay and Amazon, and you’ll be surprised how much money you can save.
That should cover the major deals on how to save money on Warhammer 40K. I will try to keep this updated and current, but if you know of something I’ve missed then please let me know in the comments.
Also, I feel this is important to mention. Please be sure to also support your local hobby store(s). Getting deals online is great, and we all want to save money, but remember that it’s the local stores that are the lifeblood of the gaming community. Be sure to spread your business around a bit and help support the places you play.
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How to Save Money on Warhammer 40K – A Buyer’s Guide