Last Sunday, I drove down to Little Wars historical gaming con, just North of Chicago.
Translation: I went to a convention just for the fun of it.
It was a great trip, and although I didn’t actually get to play anything (I was mostly there to meet up with my friends Tommy and Marty, my love of miniatures was completely rekindled. So much so that, though my pals and I live hours away from each other, we solemnly vowed (or at least muttered vague promises) to get together every few weeks to get the lead out!
I’ve many, many painted minis on my shelves and in various drawers, boxes, closts, etc. But of course, I’d rather be painting minis for new rules systems any day of the week than be satisfied with what I already have.A T-34 in the bush is worth two in the hand, y’know.
This outlook is a bit of a problem, as, once I complete a painting project, I immediately move on to another, instead of settling down with a few good games. The upshot is, I have some gorgeously painted Battlefleet Gothic and Silent Death minis that I’ve never actually used.
Though my first love was historical miniatures, my 25 mm Trajanic Roman Army for Armati is most definitely on indefinite hold – there is no WAY I’ll ever have time to paint it in the foreseeable future. Even using painting services, the basing alone would take up more time than I have these days.
Little Wars got me seriously jonesing for historicals, though: specifically, some early war 15 mm action. I’ve got a lot of unbased French and German infantry from the period. 15 mm is a weird scale, for me. Too large for rules better-suited for micro-tanks or 10 mm (Spearhead, Crosssfire, Clash of Armor, et al), yet far too small for skirmish games (Battleground: World War II). The very popular Flames of War looks perfect for this, though. The system has nearly sucked me in a couple of times a couple of times already, I think my Little Wars trip just tipped the balance.
For a long time, though, my main minis fix came through Man-O-War. But I decided to touch up and base my various fleets (I have a huge collection) about a year ago, and so now a full half of it sits awaiting an appointment with the drydock of my painting table for that ill-defined point when my schedule clears up a little.
Blood Bowl and Mordheim are another couple of favorites of mine. I have a Blood Bowl stadium started from six or so years ago. Or at least I have the basic box built for it, and that was about as far as I got. Still, the field grid is pencilled in, which must indicate SOME level of commitment. Cleverly, once/if completed, said field will eventually be able to be removed, revealing a Dungeon Bowl arena underneath. This is if I ever bring it out of my garage and finish the bugger. And by “finish” I really almost mean “start.”
Mordheim is a bit lower maintenance. I have a few gangs that are ready to go (Orcs and Sisters of Wimpmar – I mean, Sigmar), but I also have some cool warbands primed (as they have been for many a month now) and ready for paint: some Dwarves (because lord knows, my Orcs aren’t slow enough), as well as Lustrian Dark Elves (of the hot female variety) and Pizarro’s Lost Legion of explorers.
It seems very cool to dis Games Workshop in some circles, and lord knows, like most companies, they’re not perfect. But if it wasn’t for games like Man-O-War and Blood Bowl, I may never have re-entered the world of miniatures gaming ten years ago.
Now, it’s time to get back in it again.