Sunday, 12 October 2008

Hardly in the beginning

Stephen's Scott's Young Guard crunch into me at the WHC (Sept'08)
By way of introduction:
Here I am, a longstanding wargamer. If you need my history read "Achtung Schwienund" by Harry Pearson. Like just about every late 40 something British wargamer I've ever met its all in there. Read it. it will make you laugh. (providing you are a gamer, otherwise you will think its rubbish)
Anyway, this is more about the future than the past.
So why a blog? Seems to be the way to go, and I want to use it, not only as a record of thoughts, games, figures, painting etc; but also a marker for my progress to my goal. Which is the one wargames accessory I don't possess. Namely; a games room, shed, palace, whatever.

About 16 or 17 years ago I took stock of my wargaming life, I was involved (when I was in the UK) in club gaming. Which was great. I had been a member of the Cambridge club from the age of about 15, and had gone through all the evolutions of a small town wargames club. We had a great time, played everything over the years: Points Ancients, fantasy, Napoleonics, ACW, ECW, Renniasance, WWII, Moderns....I had 25mm, 15mm, 20mm, 6mm armies in all manner of periods. The club was pretty vibrant, a good long meeting time, all sunday afternoon and evening, nice terrain, and, crucially...good people... wasn't enough. I wasn't playing the kind of games I wanted to play.
It took a long while to figure it out. The final crystalisation was when a friend (John Lander) suggested we go to he Wargames Holiday Centre for a weekend to play we went....and there it was... an Epiphany! This was what i wanted! .... A MASSIVE table with THOUSANDS of 25mm figures on it. Like the majority of gamers I thought "hang on, thats all very well...but that requires commitment, money, time, dedication, I just have a hobby involving a few toy soldiers"...but..if that is what you want, then maybe that is what one has to do...But, it didn't happen....I did move away from club gaming, it just wasn't enough for me any more, and I figured that instead of a weekly 3 hour fix an occasional 2 day orgy was a preferable solution, so I played a lot at the WHC, built up my own decent 25mm Napoleonic collection (about 4,000 figs), helped build a big shed in John's garden to put it all was more piddly 3 hour ACW games,it seemed a good compromise.
However, here we are, many years on and now I reach another nexus point. This is no longer enough. John has his shed, Gerry and Mike have the WHC, Mr Marshall QC has his flat, Noel has his garage, Nick Farrell has a business unit (for God's sake!) all of which contain other peoples' fabulous permanent wargames solutions. Not mine. I am a guest at all of these establishments. They are all great, I enjoy visiting all of them, but none of them are mine. They all have their good points that others do not possess, their own individual flavour. It is high time that I joined these ranks, and was able to put on the games I want to for my friends, rather than guesting at theirs.
So we reach another point...Now my games goal is not just to play big,beautiful games, but put on big, beautiful games. Its the next logical step.
Now this is not quite so simple....There is no room in my house...there is no room in my garden.. So a move will be on the cards. I don't know when, but it is likely in the future. It will happen in the lifetime of this blog. That, I promise myself.
In the meantime there will be fun!
A record of games, painting projects (for the first time in my life I now own a decent camera) trips, figures, thoughts, rules, et all et all

We will begin.


Andy McMaster said...

Welcome to the 21st Century! Your WW2 stuff looks very nice. Just gotten back in to figures myself (blog at and enjoying it. Paid a visit to the Holiday Centre myself back in 1980'ish - so long ago I can't remember! - and had a great time with Peter Gilder.

Look forward to following your blog


Noel said...

Welcome to the world of blogging, your time is no longer your own. More napoleonics if you'd be so kind.
So you're going to move house? have you told the other half yet?