One of my best friend got me into miniature wargaming almost a decade ago. I already had a history of wargaming long before that dating back a quarter of a century or so. It was the three dimensional aspect of the game that made it better than cardboard chits pieces. It was both the appearance of models on that table top as well as how the pieces feel in your hand. Chess players would certainly understands this when comparing computer chess to actual chess board games. The games we settled on were from Games Workshop, primarily Warhammer but also 40k and Battle Fleet Gothic. I have also delved into Warmaster and am very much interested in Epic as well.
About a year ago this same friend and i, now separated by a thousand miles, started talking about building the same identical army. The reasons were many. One was so we can directly compare our ability beyond army composition. Second was to share a common platform when talking about tactics. Thirdly so that when we visit each other we can play with an army that was already familiar. We decided upon a GW Warhammer Fantasy Battle army that would meet the requirement of GW Grant Tournaments, as these were the most likely events we could attend together. We scoured the army books for an army that would fit both our expectations and gaming needs. Firstly the army had to be affordable in terms of both time (hordes army like Skaven were thus promptly ruled out) and money (Demon and Beastmen armies were then eliminated). Secondly the army had to be tactically flexible and most of the Chaos armies as well as Dwarves were out. We considered briefly Undead (Vampire Counts and Tomb Kings) but saw them a too favored in tournament settings. We also considered Wood Elves but after several rounds of list buildings we just could not get something that felt right. We nearly settled on a Bretonnian army but were concerned they did not have sufficient resilience against armies such as undead. Finally we settled on Lizard men and after several months of tweaking the list, we agreed.
For Christmas we each bought the battalion boxes for our new army. Last night I assembled my first models.