Hello! I am happy you arrived in one piece from the Warp. Tough times, they are. Haha. In all seriousness, great to see that the BT 101 guide has helped you. A lot of the traits of the Black Templars lore you mentioned drew you to the army are similar for me. Its why I signed up with them in 2001 and I have not abandoned them since. While our best lists do not entirely play to the “vision” of the Black Templars lore, I always make an effort to keep the theme alive whenever possible. There is a ton of information out there on how to play the game, especially in a competitive sense…but I focus my efforts around the Black Templars and what they can do in such a style. The game is always evolving, and much like yourself, sometimes life gets in the way of a proper update to the website. I’ve tried to keep it as current as I can throughout the years and I am glad that there is still readers out there that get use out of it! The BT 101 guide is not wholly complete though. I am still missing the BT 101: How to build a competitive 8th Edition list page, as well as finishing the unit analysis. With that being said, not all of my army lists are competitive. Sometimes I build stuff just for fun to see how it would work.
Your first purchases are a great place to start, though admittedly, the starter boxes lack the customizable options of the squad box sets. But Games Workshop has done a pretty good job of arming their starter set minis with decently useful weaponry. The best advice I can give you on that front is to simply chip away at them a little bit a day. Even if its only one mini. Once you get to the painting stage, do the same thing. If you steadily make progress over time, you’re less likely to burn out looking at the sea of gray. Let me tell you: seeing your painted army on the battlefield is an amazing feeling. Unfortunately, it will make you want to spend more money. Haha.
Thanks again for reading!