If you want a cheap Warhammer alternative, look no further than BlokTrek, a free indie wargame that uses spaceships you can build from LEGO set 10696, the ‘Medium Creative Brick Box’. Australian designer Adam Dobbyns wrote the simple game “on a rainy afternoon in pandemic lockdown”.
The rules are simple. You and an opponent build a fleet of ships from LEGO bricks – you’ll find a roster of different designs below. On their turn, players activate two ships, and have the option to spend one of their limited command points to activate a third ship, or reactivate one that’s already acted. Attacks and shields involve rolling some D6, and units have special abilities – and that’s about it.
It’s a very miniature set of rules, “designed to bring the focus back to the table and not to a rulebook”, Dobbyns says. That might appeal if you’re tired of grappling with Warhammer 40k Codexes and want a breather from all the different synergies of a Warhammer 40k faction; or if your children aren’t quite ready for their first Age of Sigmar army but could definitely move on from kids board games.
You can find more of Dobbyns designs on the Super Cheap Wargaming group on Facebook, where the community and page moderators have “always made me feel very welcome”. He calls it a “creative utopia”. Dobbyns is driven by a desire to move onto the next creation, explaining that his designs: “remain there only for a short time before I archive them and move on”.
Dobbyns calls himself “something of a design altruist”, saying: “my designs often use commonly found items and are combined with super-fast game engines that allow gaming to begin as quickly as possible, with both manufacture and financial barriers to play removed”. The final section of the tiny BlokTrek rules gives players a mission: “Write and complete various ‘Trek Style’ scenarios using just one common LEGO set”.
If you reject minimalism in all its forms, we have articles about the most expensive LEGO sets, as well as guides to the Warhammer 40k starter sets. If you embrace it, or like the idea of ‘wargames’ that you can introduce to your children, check out Herding28, a pacifist miniatures game we discovered last week that’s all about herding sheep.