Tuesday, 9 December 2014

The door opens...

So, another blogging attempt...

I've tried this before and not really gotten anywhere with it. But this time it will be different! Honest. The plan is to write about wargaming - not a specific system, not a particular bit of the hobby but the hobby in general. Maybe I'll even manage to share some photos of models I've painted or reports of games I've played, who knows.

I've been wargaming a long time. I got my start with the Milton Bradey/Games Workshop tie-ins of the late 80s (though it was probably 92 or so when I discovered them). The first one was Heroquest, which was okay because it had wizards and undead things but I much prefered Space Crusade (yeah I know, kids love Space Marines - some rules are immutable). I was amazed to discover that these sorts of games existed - previously I'd only played things like Monopoly or Ludo that had counters and a board. The idea of having these beautiful figures that you could paint was mind blowing.

This is basically crack aimed squarely at children.
The first game I actually owned myself though was another GW spinoff called Mighty Warriors. I found out *years* later that this was a dumbed down version of Advanced Heroquest but me, my sister and my best friend at the time played it over and over again. The models that came with it (4 heroes, some pikemen, some skaven and a chaos wizard of some kind) were used  for years after - they were my first painting projects and, later on, my first conversions.

If you remember this you are a massive nerd. And I love you.
This led to a brief flirtation with Warhammer Fantasy (remember the skaven I mentioned earlier?) and then to 40K (as it always does). Along the way I also acquired Warhammer Quest which was also played to death and later thrown away by my parents. Sometimes, when I'm feeling too cocky, I look at the price of Warhammer Quest on eBay and sob for a while. As most people were at the time I was an avid reader of White Dwarf and remember fondly reading the battle reports and gasping at Mike McVay's amazing painting skills. In retrospect I also had a bit of a crush on Andy Chambers  though it's only looking back now that I realise this - this explains an awful lot actually..

When I was about 13 I discovered Magic the Gathering and a shed load of other CCGs. At one point I could confidently say I'd played at least one game of every game on the market but that hasn't been true for a long time now. After CCGs I discovered RPGs and eventually LARP. 

Don't act like you've never wanted this more than food...

Like most people I dropped out of wargaming while I was at uni and only got back into it when I was older (about 2010 I think). In the intervening years I kept my geek cred by playing a lot of board games, the Raw Deal CCG and roleplaying (tabletop and LARP).

Fast forward to the current day and I'm sitting in the titular Back Bedroom surrounded by books and figures for a wide variety of game systems. My painting queue currently contains:

  • Dystopian Wars (Empire of the Blazing Sun & Covenant of Antarctica)
  • Malifaux (a selection of guild figures - McMourning and Lucius mostly)
  • Bolt Action (SOVIETS! Because if you can play Russians you should)
It is also very likely my head will be turned by some *whispers* Hordes/Warmachine in the near future. The Circle Orboros look really pretty - wood elves and werewolves for the win.

Actually I'm Team Edward...

My partner is going to be working away during the week for at least the first quarter of next year (if not the foreseeable future) and frankly I'm scared of being lonely and bored. My goal is to try and get at least one night of gaming a week in some form or another to keep me social - I'm looking for wargames clubs in Manchester as we speak - MAWS looks like a possibility, there is one in Salford or there is the NWGC if I decide I'm okay with it's leadership (SPOILER: I'm not sure I am).

Extreme political views - not just on the tabletop
So I'm quite enthusiastic about it all really. At some point I will make a list of all my unpainted stuff and try to keep a track of what gets painted. I suspect that will be a very depressing list.

Yeah, it's a bit like that but more so
Join me at some unspecified point in the future where I may (or may not) talk about some more bits of gaming or show some photos of my painting....


  1. I knew you during bits of that!

    1. Yeah! Playing Star Wars with you, Lee, Mick and Neil is one of my fondest gaming memories.

    2. I loved that time too. Brilliant fun.

  2. I remember seeing the adverts for Mighty Warriors, but I already had Heroquest and Advanced Heroquest, so didn't follow up on it...

  3. I seem to think they were a range of simple version of GW games when they were trying to get into toy shops.

    They did Kerrunch (Blood Bowl), a space crusade clone and one about starship combat (which was a bit like Man O'War but in space).

    I think I enjoyed it more than heroquest because the room tiles could be moved around unlike the heroquest board - I used to write adventures for my friend.

    1. I have the Space Fleet box as a gift from a friend who wasn't using it - but I've not gotten around to playing it. They expanded it quite a lot in White Dwarf.

    2. Oh cool. Are the models nice? I've never seen a copy in the flesh.

    3. Is it bad if I admit I haven't really opened it yet? It's just on the shelf...

  4. I still maintain that skirmish/smaller sized games work best.

    I had a room full of mates taking tutns at Blood Bowl and Necromunda.

    We had leagues and campaigns. Best. Games. Ever.

    1. I agree - I like skirmish games too. Bolt Action is a small army / large skirmish game (half a dozen squads, one tank, few heavy weapons) and that's about as large as I'm interested in now.

      Of course none of that stops me looking at Warhammer and 40K wistfully - the models look so good and the numbers add to that.