I cannot imagine ever managing such a collection but to get close would certainly be an achievement. One thing I have managed to do though is complete my collection of Warhammer Third Edition rulebooks and supplements. In fact, I have started to use them exclusively for gaming. So if you're an interested party whose intrigued by the 'lure of Warhammer3' just what do you need to play? How much would they cost me? What do they look like?
Let's have a look.
1) Warhammer Fantasy Battle Third Edition Rulebook (1987)
These rules come in two forms. The hardback and softback editions. They contain full rules for the game, the magic system, background as well as a card counter based scenario in the back of the book that can be cut out a played. Not that I ever have! My venerable copy is showing its age but my its binding is still holding up (there are many gripes online about the quality of binds of these old books but I have had no problems). The first thing that struck me is the quality and range of the artwork. A huge number of artists contribute and their style and execution can vary but art is is (rather than mere illustration). Secondly, the wordiness of the text. The rules are shockingly complex at times and their a few instances in battle that do not see a rule option. Additionally, there are a great many modifiers to add to dice rolls during the game - from everything to additional magic spells to the stupidity of a troll. Expect to pay anything from £5-20 on eBay, though I have seen mint copies go for much more.
Warhammer Armies (1987)
This book contains the army lists. Yes that is right. A book of lists for every army available as well as additionals for allies. Very little background material though as WHFRP had the monopoly on all of that but plenty of other detail about magic weapons, items etc. Originally, points values were not that important in Warhammer as it was primarily a game run by a GM similar to the roleplaying games of the 80s. This book was published to help gamers construct fair armies for competitive reasons. Not essential to play Third Edition but useful when building larger armies. Expect to pay £5-15 pounds but again I have seen mint editions go for more.
Warhammer Siege (1988)
The most complicated rules you have ever seen involving sieges in the Warhammer world and 40k. Never actually used this rule set so I cannot really comment beyond the fact that the level of detail intimidates me! Expect to pay £5-£20.
Realm of Chaos - Slaves to Darkness (1988)
Well here we have the most important book GW ever published (in my opinion) and an absolute melting pot of crazy ideas and gaming bizarreness. If you've never seen this book you'll be amused and probably a little disturbed by its contents. You have full rules for the daemons of Slaanesh and Khorne, skirmish games, daemonic battles and loads and loads of other things. As balanced as a sunken ship you do not play games using these rules if you are interested in super slick army lists refined to the ninth degree. The armies and characters that you can build using this rule set are truly terrifying. Daemons have stat lines of 10+ for example. It was also the book that outlined the Horus Heresy in more detail and contained rules and background for Rogue Trader (as 40k was then known) as well as WHRP. Expect to pay £25-40.
GW greatest achievement!
Realm of Chaos- The Lost and the Damned (1990)
The follow up. This contains rules for the forces of Nurgle and Tzeentch as well as more material for WHFRP and Rogue Trader. Not as ground breaking as Slaves to Darkness but still packed with monstrous ideas and shockingly powerful daemons. Extensive rules are given to help you create your own narrative campaigns as well as army lists galore. One big difference with these lists compared with FB today is that they are randomly generated using dice rolls on charts. So a warband could easily contain numerable races (humans, chaos dwarves, centaurs, dragons, fimir, dark elves etc) rather than focusing on one. Expect to pay £50+ though I have seen copies go for over £100!