Sunday, November 22, 2009

Warfare 2009...

Just back from Warfare (at Reading) and am full of enthusiasm following what I thought was one of the best Warfare's in ages... loads of good traders, games, demonstrations, and everyone (seemingly) enjoying themselves..

On the purchasing front the American Civil war project got the lions share this time round... a good chat with the man on the Newline Designs stand resulted in me picking up four of his unit packs for a very reasonable show price special offer - 3 packs of infantry (24 per bag, two with kepi and one with slouch hat) and one pack of artillery (four 12pd'er Napoleons with crews). I then added in limbers and horse teams to make two of the guns mobile.. all that for just over £40, and 20mm as well! Outstanding value and very recommended for anyone thinking of all dipping their toes in the water.. why would anyone consider plastic Perry when they can have metal Newline???

..and that was mostly it on the purchasing front - just a few more bases, plastic card for the War of the Spanish succession project and MDF (a first for me) for the American Civil War project, and that was it.

I was tempted by another set of American Civil War rules - The Long Road North - in fact I went back to the stand at least three times for a read. I still might indulge if the search continues to deliver the same shoddy goods it has up until now but first impressions are that while it is very clear, and there are lots of diagrams, it has written commands (however simple... yuck..!) and simultaneous movement... so holding fire for the time being..

So on to the games - and I'll be totally upfront and say that this was a clear case, no hesitation, 100%, didn't even have to think about it, clear cut, decision... the winning game was so damned good I'm not even going to make you wait through a countdown.. it was quite simply so brilliant that it made the hair on the back of my head stand up (quite literally, actually - a most unusual feeling!)... feast your eyes on this!

Over twenty one feet long...

All figures by Front Rank..

The Battle of Blenheim...

The chaps doing this had taken five years to paint the figures..

Spent a lot of time at this part of the battlefield - French battalions crammed in Blenheim as the British battalions carry the assault across the stream...

Eugene leads his troops against the Bavarians...

I recognised at least two of 'my' regiments here - Sturler's and Heidebrecht..

Immense game, this might give you an idea for how big it was..!

...and despite all that can you believe this game only got second best game in show...???! They were robbed...

My second best game was the one that took the best game in show competition - very good - but not as good as that first game.. in my humble opinion...

Brilliant looking Vietnam game.. "'Gooks on the wire' - The Battle of Lang Vei"..

This game was put on by Battle Group South..

All figures are 28mm - I especially liked the river craft..

Last of all - this was a Zulu participation game by the South London Warlords - nice simple terrain, nice figures - all contributed a good looking "whole"..

The old chief on the hill...

..and that was it - brilliant show and I'm already looking forward to Salute! Jumping Smileys


  1. Wonderful, wonderful!!! Thanks for sharing...

  2. That is a very useful oveview thank you. Interesting what judges go for.

    I would have put Blenheim first if only for the effort of carrying all those figures in and out. If I was a judge I would have given high marks to the vietnam game but as an individual I could say I much prefer achievable style of the zulu game which looks like something one might actually play one weekend.


  3. Great report and photos, Steve. The Blenheim game is spectacular - were they actually playing it? I think I read somewhere else that it was basically a diorama. The Vietnam game is the sort of thing that makes you want to try the period oneself - very creative use of cotton wool, too!

    Best wishes


  4. I thought the Blenheim game was the best too. Five years to paint the figures? Oh, to have such focus!

  5. Thanks Gents...

    John - agreed - and it looked like they were having a lot of fun. They were playing a soundtrack of Zulu singing on the boom box thingy, which added to the atmosphere no end..!

    Giles - not playing - although it wasn't a diorama either, basically they moved the troops to correspond with the actions on the day..

    W.r.t the cotton wool, yes, very effective - some of it was sprayed with fluorescent colours (orange, pink etc) guessing they were using it for smoke markers and the like??? Having said that I really liked the look of the burning Blenheim as well...

  6. Excellent pictures, thanks Steve

  7. Excellent quality photos of the Blenheim game; thanks for posting those.

    I have probably already said this, But 'Rank and File' by Crusader Publishing would be my recommendation for ACW rules. Covers 1740-1900 with period specific rules.

    Maybe a bit too simple for some tastes but I love them. Worth a look.

    Cheers, Keith.

  8. Wow. That has to be the biggest game I've ever seen :o