Saturday, 31 October 2015

A Mixed Month

Just a quick "news" item to finish off the month of October, which has indeed been mixed.

First the bad news - Stafford Games is closing as an outlet effective from tomorrow. I would like to thank the proprietor, Roland Hind, for his hospitality, his generosity as an occasional wargames opponent and for relieving me of far too much money over the years on all manner of product!!! He is still continuing on the internet and the show circuit, but no more trips to buy stuff in the flesh is a wrench.

Then there's the Rugby World Cup final without a single northern hemisphere side present...not even making it to the semis was another wrench and I do not even want to consider England's under-achievement.

I even almost felt sorry for the independence-huggers north of the border. Almost.

Then some GOOD STUFF.

I played my first ever game of Lion Rampant last Tuesday and loved it! I have already set aside some 15th Century figures from the Burgundian Wars project the Wyrley Retinue is engaged upon to create my very own retinue of condottieri. I think this setting is ideal for an imagi-nation, so expect to find some Italian derivative of my name taking to the tabletop in the next twelve months. Garrido Capmano? Gariglio Tipuomo? I have the livery sorted, so just to find the time.

Then there is the release of "Dragon Rampant", the fantasy version of "Lion Rampant", which sounds like an excellent excuse to drag the Orcs & Goblins out of hiding after a long time, their exile caused by the travesty that was later versions of the Warhammer rules. I am definitely looking forward to acquiring a copy and, as an added bonus, I already have the figures painted, based and ready to go!!!

To top things off, even Newcastle United finally managed a win (then promptly followed it up with defeat to Sunderland due to a shocking refereeing decision....)

And, finally, I have just one unit to finish painting and another to start and finish to achieve my target unit count for the forthcoming and aforementioned Wyrley Retinue Burgundian Wars bash. The first outing is set to be the "Wargamer" Show at Halesowen on Sunday, 6th December, though Nephew Paul may be absent.

Cheerio October!


Saturday, 10 October 2015

The Loot

Not a pirate game, or the results of said game, but my purchases from the Derby World Wargames Show last weekend.

As I posted earlier, I only needed some Basetex, but it would have been rude not to overspend on so much more...

Left to right from top left: The desired Basetex, the Wargamers' Summer Annual, the "Warband" fantasy rules from Pendraken, some MDF bases, "Frostgrave", some Front Rank medieval pike and shot courtesy of Col Bill.
Left to right front row: three packs of French & Indian War figures (French and British infantry and Coureurs de Bois - I have long had a desire to get some "Muskets & Tomahawks" games going), a Goblin army for "Warband", A High Elf army for the same rules and a Tumbling Dice Napoleonic fleet for Osprey's recent "Fighting Sail" rules, which again have grabbed my interest recently.

And missing from the above photo, two Peasant Ox Carts from 4Ground, which will be making their way onto the games table for anything from Dark Age Ireland to the 30 Years' War (and probably beyond) some time soon.
So, this pretty much covers my latest wargaming thoughts and desires.

I love fantasy games and have long desired something to replace Warhammer, with which I have long since fallen out of love.
""Warband" has "Battle of the Five Armies" written all over it!" claimed Nephew Nick.
"The "Nirnaeth Arnoediad" and the High Elves returning to Middle Earth in the First Age of Man" thought I.
The rules are simple without seemingly being simplistic and I look forward to getting some games in asap.

"Frostgrave" was bought as something else that looked interesting. I loved role-playing games in the 80's and these rules seem like a good crossover from that genre to wargaming. One to watch and I probably already have the figures, so should give these a go soon.

"Muskets & Tomahawks" has been something I have thought on for some time and I bought some British infantry and some Indians a while back. Now I have the French by way of trying to kick-start my enthusiasm.

"Fighting Sail", published earlier this year, rekindled a fondness for naval games of the past. I already had one Tumbling Dice 1/2400th scale fleet, so bought another to build some opposition.

The Front Rank figures will join the ranks of my Burgundian Ordonnance foot, since their predecessors started out from those ranks. You can never have too many Burgundians, though it is a bind putting all those routers away!

And I just love the Wargamers' Annuals, having collected all of them since their inauguration. As someone who still has his "Wombles" annual from 1975 (received as a present on Christmas Day 1974, when young G was just 7 years old), not to mention various Rupert The Bear annuals from different years, I love the format and this issue yet again does not disappoint. I look forward to the Winter edition this Christmas.


Derby World Wargames Show, 3rd-4th October, 2015

After failing to make it to the second Partizan show last month, going to Derby was an absolute must.

I only actually needed one thing - Basetex in green and brown (so two things technically) - but naturally ended up with more.

So, first up, a few photos of games at the show.

"Battle of the Scheldt" game by the Barely Legal Wargames Club - an Allied assault on a German position over flooded ground. Bring out the Buffaloes!

A wonderful Dutch bridge.

The German positions. This game had loads of neat touches and some wonderful terrain, as you can see. Very well presented.

"Marignano 1515" by The Ilkley Lads. Wonderfully painted figures (and lots of them!) on basic but functional terrain.

Gotta love the Swiss! Zug and Basel prominent in this block.

I was going to buy some tents at the show, but baulked at the price they were offered at. Perhaps we won't be doing Morat after all...

French Gensdarmes under Francis I's personal command.

Obviously Hougoumont, but I am afraid this game was guilty of one of my pet hates - no sign or other paraphernalia to say who was presenting it! It turned out to be "L'Order Mixte Club".

Hougoumont in close up. Looked impressive, but not demo'ed...

"Quatre Bras" by the "Like A Stonewall Group".

Derby Wargames Society gave us "The War in Ireland: 1689 - 1691". I believe this is Clanrickarde's Jacobite regiment.

The Dutch Garde te Voet, Kirke's and Trelawney's regiments.

And a starfort, no less.

The Danish contingent made up the left wing of the Williamite army. Will I ever get round to finishing off my own project for this fascinating conflict???

And another windmill, to go with the one on the "Scheldt" game. Like buses, you wait ages for one and then two show up together! This game was my overall favourite - good terrain, an interesting period, decent figures and something to see all over the table.

This was actually a participation game put on by "Old DWA" entitled "Romano-British defend against Saxons". Not the most catchy title, but another good outing and well worth a look. Again, lots to see all round the table. Will I ever get around to painting my Arthurians???

Sort of Hadrian's Wall...

I don't know exactly why it is, but it is only long after the show, when I finally get around to looking through the show pamphlet, that I realise how much I missed! I simply do not recall "Great War 1918" by the Reluctant Conscripts, the Toofatlardies presenting their "Chain of Command: Afghanistan" game or Stafford Games' "The Battle Of Gross Beeren", all of which were probably excellent - many apologies to those I may inadvertently not have given die credit to!

Shows for me, however, are about shopping first and eye candy second I guess. I am truly amazed by some of the stuff I see clubs and individuals laying on at shows, which is why I aim to do something at local shows via the Wyrley Retinue. But I never carry the show pamphlet around in my hand so seem to be missing out on my paltry entrance fee! As with the old school report, "must do better" springs to mind.

Next up for me is the "Wargamer" show on 6th December at Halesowen, where the Retinue should be out and about for the first time with our 2016 offering, whatever that ends up being.

Wherever you are, support your local show and get gaming! And try and see everything on offer, unlike me!!!