Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Salute 2012

Coooo... like the new/updated Blogger interface....

Anyway - here I am, fresh back from my chevauchee to Salute at the weekend with DG - surely one of the highlights of the gaming year, and while not my favourite show (that accolade goes to Warfare at reading in November), it is still well worth going to... a no-brainer....

Like many of my fellow bloggers, there's a shed loads of pictures in the post as I realise not everyone is able to get to the show, but for those of my readers who did get to the show, and by way of some personal thoughts to start, here's my thoughts on the show... be interesting to see if others thought the same way....

First as ever I am always amazed at the sheer size of the show - those who have been will know what I mean - you know you've been walking when you get home at the end of the day!


The Excel exhibition area used for Salute is simply gi-nourmous (I tried to get a view of the whole in the short vid above)..  at least a couple of thousand square metres...  when we first started going (and DG and I have been every year since the old days of Salute at Kensington Town hall) they struggled to fill the Excel - I remember thinking the first year, that it was a little "roomy", but clearly the show has grown into the space and this year my view was that the hall was clearly more filled with games/demonstrations/exhibitors & traders than last year.... there was space still, but clearly less space than last year...

The other thing I noted was that visitor numbers seemed to be up - last year you were able to get to most traders stands without too many problems once lunchtime had passed - this year the traders were one and two deep even at 4 in the afternoon... much busier....  and my impression was more money changing hands....

For the first time ever, I also didn't get a goody bag this year - they'd run out by the time DG and I got there at about 11'ish - clearly more numbers...

..and how was the show for me?? Well I didn't have a shopping list - sometimes dangerous (!), but not in this case, and although I had cash in my pocket it mostly remained there...

Steve the Wargamers loot from Salute - don't laugh...

In terms of who was there traders'wise, Salute is increasingly becoming a fantasy show - and before anyone moans that I'm being dismissive, I don't mind that - it's always seemed to me that for one reason or another (no idea...) the more creative and artistic gamers always seem to gravitate towards the fantasy side of the hobby (perhaps because there are no limits in terms of having to be true to historical accuracy etc??), so Salute is an opportunity to see what they are doing.....  there were some simply superb figures there...  not my cup of tea, but the design quality were just gob smacking... but the prices!!  Some of those 25/28mm's were going at over £5 a piece, but people were still handing over their cash...

So what about my purchases???  Yep picture above shows all of them... that was it....
  • two 15mm lorries from QRF - these are destined to become transport for the French in my WWII Skirmish project...
  • I visited Sean at Newline Designs to see if I could see the new Sudan British 20mm series in the "flesh" so to speak... they were superb...  and after roundly berating him for putting me in an almost impossible situation (I seem to remember calling him the "b" word.. ) I'm now almost certain that the existing 15mm Sudan project will be sold off, and replaced with 20mm....  I just need them to design and make some Dervish before I take the plunge...  Sean's a good egg, he tried to give the pack you see as a free sample but I told him I wanted to make sure he finished the range so I bough them to paint up as a sample..  !
  • The rules were a bit of an impulse buy...  they were only £10, but as I have been playing a lot of WWII Skirmish recently they caught my eye - nicely laid out, lots of examples (which I like), and I'm looking forward to trying them out... DG also bought a set (always a good sign) which means we may be able to get some games in fairly soon...
...and that was it apart from a cup of Costa coffee...! I didn't have any paint needs, the metal piles are largely intact, scenery is good to go, didn't need any books (but was open to the idea if I saw anything)...  just didn't have anything on the list... which was OK....

So a good mooch round.....  these caught my eye so much that, unusually (for me), I took a fair few pictures... these were on the Mutineer Miniatures stand and are from their Indian Mutiny range beautiful figures, backed up by a set of nice looking rules ("The Devils Wind" by David Bickley - same guy who wrote "A Good Dusting", the rules I'm using for the Sudan project)..  very tempting...

Yellow uniforms - lovely..   I'm almost ready to forgive the painter the fact that he painted in the eyes...


It was these that got my first attention - love the guy in the middle with the long white beard..


The sepoys are superb...


Lovely job on the white uniforms...


Naval Brigade - what's not to like?? Look at the wheel ruts..  nice effect...


 So what else...  well I missed Charles Grant unfortunately - he was on the Ken Trotman stand signing copies of his latest book (The rules from The War Game in their own volume to accompany the Wargaming in History series)...

Looks like a new volume in wargaming in History is due - this will be volume 6 and covers Bull Run and the rise of Stonewall Jackson, including other early battles in the Civil War - it may be that I'm "cheap" but I find this series exciting, but expensive...  (and don't even get me started on the Wargames Annual prices, and also the linked Teaser campaign booklets...)...  over £30 for this volume so I doubt I'll partake - as indeed I haven't for the other volumes for the same reason....

So ... roll of drums.....  how were the games???

Well that's the next post....

9 comments:

  1. Glad you had a great day out - and I'm impressed with your purchasing restraint!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. T'was a great day out, I'm still trying to recover????

    ReplyDelete
  3. Have to agree with Ray, I'm still recovering. My feet are still throbbing!

    It was a great show again this year, I just wish it was longer because I struggled to get round it all in a day.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lee/Ray - you're absolutely right... it had never occurred to me until you mentioned it - I had the perception of it being bigger, but when I come to think of it, it took me all day just to visit the traders... something like 6 hours just to give them a check over with the occasional longer stop... last year I think I managed to do it in a couple of hours less... a clear indication there was more there to see....

    Lee - looking forward to seeing your pictures... was pleased with mine this year....

    ReplyDelete
  5. Good point about the size. There was no central demonstration space this year. Also the size of some of the stands is getting larger for the likes of Gripping Beast, for example.

    Looking forward to seeing the 20mm Sudan painted up!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Salute is one of those shows that I know I have to go to but simply cannot justify the travelling cost (£120 for me and my son by train). Happy to see that you had a good show. Sean at Newline is good isn't he? He's the reason I have a chariot army in the big blue box despite me not actually needing it!

    ReplyDelete
  7. If you really follow through with selling off your 15mm Sudan, please let me know I would like to buy the Captain back from you.

    Jeffrey

    ReplyDelete
  8. Prinz Geoffrey - you've read my mind, but trust me, if the collection goes - and Sean needs to put out the Dervish first - the Captain will *not* be going with it...

    B.t.w I've always thought of him as being on "detached duties" so he'll make his way back with nought but an exchange of addresses.. :o))

    PS. If I do go this route and I can find a suitable figure, can I commission a 20mm Captain? :o)

    ReplyDelete
  9. Cool, I would definetly do a 20mm captain, with my lack of wargaming in the past year it is always fun to see the captain in action, I am doing some painting and board gaming again so maybe i can get back to my sudan project this summer.

    ReplyDelete