The Stormcast are still a sore wound for many in the fandom. Although just about everyone agrees they look cool, they were severely lacking in depth and detail for the first year or two. However, GW did a lot to build a more coherent world and added some lore to the setting... The Stormcast have been developed into a really interesting group.That's interesting- I'd mostly just heard through my friend what had been going on. I wasn't the hugest fan of Warhammer lore, but their throwing the entire setting in the trash and revamping it with "Fantasy Space Marines" as the main heroic army really pissed me off, so hearing that it was all about "Open Play" was the final straw, so I never checked it out.
They are made from mortal heroes of exceptional worth taken away at the moment of their death by the god Sigmar and remade by forging their souls with his piece of Sigmar's own Divine Essence. Then given fancy new weapons and armour made of Uru, I mean Adamantium. Oh, no make that "Sigmarite." They're trained, drilled, and organized into armies and then sent wooshing across the universe by lightning bolts thrown by Sigmar... Y'know that scene in the opening of the first Thor movie when Odin and an entire army deploy by teleportation? Yeah.
Pretty much no one uses any of the MAXIMUM COPYRIGHT! names. No one calls them "orruks," they're still just orcs; No one calls them Ælves or Ældari, they're still just Elves and Eldar; and, nobody calls them the Astra Militarum, they are and always will be the Imperial Guard.Plus, I mean... they changed all the names for the sole purpose of having Copywrite Laws. That's lame. ORRUKS? SYLVANETH?
I fully admit that I didn't give AoS a second look for nearly two years after it was originally released. After the first General's Handbook was released, some friends of friends got into it. On their recommendation, I dipped my toes in the water. I really enjoy the game mechanically and aesthetically. Mechanically, it's a fairly fast playing game, easy to learn, and it scales very well. Most wargames have a "sweet spot," try to play them with too few or too many units and it all falls apart; AoS plays great from nearly the smallest possible level... I've had many excellent games using just one of the Start Collecting! boxed sets per player. I've also played in massive 8,000 point per side three-on-three games. Aesthetically? Well, it's Games Workshop... They just make some really pretty stuff.APPARENTLY it didn't sell so hot at first, according to many retailers. GW made a shit-ton from the Total War game (hilariously, much like DC Adventures, the highly-anticipated game came out RIGHT when the entire setting was tossed in the trash), but Age of Sigmar wasn't so hot. But apparently they're making some money from it- the Aquatic Elves army they have looks quite cool.
If you and a friend have both got about $85 of spare hobby cash, then each of you should grab a Start Collecting! box of whichever faction looks the coolest to you. Glue `em together, clear off the kitchen table, and start chuckin' some dice.