I was kidding myself if I thought for one second that I wouldn't purchase the Island of Blood, I just surprised myself that I was so desperate to buy it this morning!
The GW store I went to was packed with various people swapping either Skaven or High Elves out of the box. I declined an offer to do this but I was surprised at how many people wanted the High Elves because you receive so much less (in terms of a legal army) than if you opted for the Skaven contingent. What could you do with two griffons? And two High Elf sets would only give you 17 swordmasters and sea guards because of the command figures. Each to their own I suppose.
In terms of the contents of the box, as has been seen from the images on the GW website and those in store, the minis look brilliant - even better when they're your own! Furthermore, the rulebook is simply magnificent. It is full colour throughout and comes in at 184 pages. The best thing about it (missing from the rulebook in the Battle for Skull Pass) is the scenario section which will give games many interesting twists.
There is one downside to the box though and that is the 'read this first' booklet. In the Battle for Skull Pass set there were some scenarios to play through (as in the Assault on Black Reach box) but anything like this is sadly lacking. There aren't even step by step guides to painting up the armies. There is simply background for the two armies and a few pictures of a Warhammer battle taking place. It reminded me of those GW booklets that used to come with old box sets which gave details about the various game systems GW offered. I still have a couple of the old booklets from days of yore with a double page spread on Warhammer, 40k, Necromunda, Epic, Warhammer Quest, Talisman, Man O War and other board games (like the brilliant Tyranid Attack). What ever happened to all those great games?! I still think it's a shame that GW limit themselves to 3 main systems rather than expanding to encompass more of their classic games.
After that great reminiscing tangent, I need to get back to reading through the rulebook and getting my head around the changes. I also need to be disciplined and finish the corpse cart sitting in front of me (90% complete) rather than beginning to sort out the first clash between the High Elves and Skaven.