Warhammer 40,000: The grimdark tabletop game | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

Warhammer 40,000: The grimdark tabletop game

22 January, 2023

Warhammer 40,000, popularly read as Warhammer 40K, and commonly abbreviated to simply WH40K, or just 40K, is a tabletop miniature wargame set in a dystopian science fantasy universe.

The game was created by the British miniature wargames manufacturer Games Workshop, in 1987 and has since grown to become one of the most popular miniature wargames in the niche of tabletop games. 40K has a relatively large and dedicated player base and an even wider range of fans of the expansive extra content such as books, comics, video games, and other spin offs.

Two players

The core gameplay of Warhammer 40k’s tabletop game involves two players, each taking on the role of generals commanding an army of miniature figures, and engaging in battle on a tabletop battlefield.

The game is played using a combination of dice rolls and measurements with rulers to determine the outcome of various actions, such as movement, shooting and melee combat.

Players take turns moving their figures across the play area and resolving actions, with the end goal of destroying the opponent’s army or successfully capturing specific objectives on the battlefield. At its core, Warhammer 40k is a game of strategy, luck and tactics, with regular tournaments and events held all over the world.

For many players, the most appealing part of Warhammer 40k is the degree of customization and personalization that players can bring to the game. Players can customize their armies, creating their own terrain and build their own models.

There are a wide range of miniature figures to collect and customize, but some dedicated players build their own figures and create their own unique armies. This appeal is so vital to the Warhammer experience that a part of the community prefers it over actually playing the game.


Beyond the traditional tabletop game, there are many more ways to experience and enjoy the world of Warhammer 40k. There are a variety of video games set in the Warhammer 40k universe, such as the popular Dawn of War and Spacemarine series, as well as the recently released Darktide game.

There are also many comic book titles, books, and TV shows set in the 40K universe, with much more to come. Despite being a niche tabletop wargame, Warhammer 40k has found relevance outside of its original medium thanks to its rich and extensive lore. The lore of Warhammer 40 is known for being gratuitously bleak, and is in fact the origin of the term “grimdark”, and there is a lot of it.

As an already story heavy franchise that started in the 80s, the lore has grown so expansive and complicated that many outside of the community cannot even fathom where to begin getting into it. Many YouTube channels are dedicated entirely to explaining the lore of the series, creating hours upon hours of content that only scratches the surface.

However, while this turns some people away, these aspects have drawn many fans of sci fi in, to the point that a large portion of the 40k community have no interest in collecting figures or playing the game, and simply enjoy the lore.

Overall, Warhammer 40k is a rich and complex tabletop miniature wargame that offers a wide range of options for players to experience the dystopian science fantasy universe.

With a vast array of miniature figures, a dedicated friendly community of players both online and offline, and a large number of fans simply enjoying the world of 40k, the game continues to be one of the most popular and enduring miniature wargames in the world.