I thought that the Derby show this year was the best it’s been for some time. It had loads of interesting games to look at as well as a huge and varied selection of traders. I know a fair amount about gaming, but still managed to stumble on some new (to me) and really cool companies and products to expand my gaming horizons with. I’ll be looking at a couple of them and reviewing samples of their fine wares as soon as I can get them all written up. For the moment I’ll just show you the pile of swag I came back with.
Now, on with the games! Being overexcited I forgot to take notes, so the details of what’s going on may be fuzzy, but hopefully the pictures are sharp (see what I did there?) 🙂
It’s an English convention, so there’s an English Civil War game (or three). There are also other periods such as this particularly pretty battle of Sedgemoor from the Monmouth Rebellion. It developed over two days and the fog (I think that’s what it was) in the background had gone on day 2. One army is deployed behind it and the other is marching into position from the bottom left corner of the picture above, and the top right of the one below. It was nice to see them deploy from march column as it’s something you see so rarely in games.
This is what they’re defending: a beautifully modelled town with a camp of scruffy soldiers on the outside (their tents are nice and clean though).
On a completely different scale of both table and model we had Baccus demoing a 6mm game. ACW I believe. Unfortunately he is conducting the cardinal sin of having rubbish obscuring an otherwise nice display.
And to show that it wasn’t all historical, here’s a fantasy skirmish demo. Their tagline made me smile 🙂
It wouldn’t be a convention without Lutzen in one form or other. This is the 30YW version, all ready to kick off.
WWII was being re-fought in the open desert…
…and the clutter of NW Europe. This was a particularly nice table. Sadly a lot of my pictures came out blurry.
I did, however, stop trembling for this one. Very evocative.
Good grief! This post is going to be vast. Still loads more games to go. This was an enormous Celts vs Roman game of Hail Caesar by the Warlord Games chaps.
Warlord were also showcasing their Bolt Action WWII range with the complete opposite size of game.
Lest you think that SF was completely abandoned, here is a futuristic scrap. These chaps made all the models themselves in 3D and then had them 3D printed. Sounds like it’s a bit pricy at the moment, but it’s the coming thing. Give it a decade…
Aren’t you a bit small for a stormtrooper? More 6mm battles. I really liked the look of this game, in part because the units themselves looked so good. No tiny regiments of 5 models here…
…as you can see below. I do like the tiny model scales for that bird’s eye view of battle and the sense of masses of troops.
And here is another vast 6mm battle, this time I think it’s Towton. Now that looks like a real battle! Vast units.
Enough of the 6mm stuff. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea (though you can’t deny the grand sweep of battle it allows). There were more games there, and even ones I took decent photos of, but I think you get the idea. Loads of stuff going on. Actually, before I finish, there was one last game that particularly caught my eye as innovative:
I think this was the Society of Ancients being entertainingly crazy again (they do it so well). The game centred on a Carthaginian elephant, and the Roman velites that were attacking it circled round it. Looked fun, and reminded me of those games where you are all the crew of a WWII bomber and everything revolves around that as you do your mission.
So there you have it: games at Derby World Wargames 2011. There was lots more, and some will turn up with the reviews of their products, but before I go I have to show you one of my personal favourite bits. Ainsty have new pirate ships and they are lovely.
I left these ship photos bigger so you can see them up close.
you so want the large pirate ship dont you. Pirates are great.
I actually want all 3 because they look so cool together. And what’s the point of having one? I’m not going to board her by swimming there, am I?
For a docks board?
I want the big bugger for just that…
(Would want to meet it in person and try out Hordemachine bases on it first though. And I think I’d have to get the rest of the board done first before actually punting £75 for the thing.)
So you like hanging out in the docks, eh Sam? Hmmm…
Dockyard shenanigans is the other obvious use, though I really like the idea of “proper” boarding actions (by which I mean ship to ship on the open sea).
When I get one I’ll try out some different bases on it and you’ll be able to see. Remind me if I forget.
I been meaning to try out making some prototype ship shapes (and deck furniture) of card and trying out Hordemachine boarding action games. Of course, that the force I’m painting at the moment is gators (all Amphibious, of course) might make that a little biased, but I will say that the idea has been there before I started this project.
A little biased? I was wondering why you’d come over all nautical. Docks would be a cool venue for a scrap though. I always feel that the rules for chucking people about in Warmachine/Hordes cry out for things to be thrown into and off, and few boards offer that option. Being able to chuck folk off the pier would be great fun 🙂
Of course, what you really want for that sort of silliness is lava pools and 4 story drops, but you can’t fit everything on the same board. Maybe. You could have a Pompeii board during the eruption – now that would be dramatic.
Nice review. I had the opportunity to visit the Derby show once a couple of years back, and it is indeed a goody. The venue in the Uni SU makes for a nice, well-light location and there was lots of interesting stuff on offer!
I’m glad to see some nice stuff at the smaller scales. Small scale stuff is oftened sniffed at by gamers who prefer “God’s own 28mm”, but I think it has a lot to offer. It doesn’t offer the same thing as 28mm gaming does, but 6mm and even 2mm gaming do offer something *different*, and I personally like a lot of variety and choice. Some days I feel like a small skirmish, some days like a big battle. Same with genre too. Some days I come over all historical, other days I feel like escaping into fantasy.
I always feel sorry for those that lock themselves into one scale or genre, or even manufacturer as they are often missing a lot of fun. As long as they’re happy though I suppose it doesn’t matter!
Long may the Quirkworthy blog be a haven of choice, and, well, quirkiness! 😀
Whilst the 28mm games often look great at conventions, not everyone has an 18 foot table at home to play on. Some games cater for this, but not all, and the advantage of 6mm (and smaller) is that you can have a great sweep of battle on a realistic table. Personally I don’t design games to be played on anything larger than 6×4 foot table because that’s the biggest I can sensibly use myself 🙂
Too right. It’s like people who only listen to one genre of music, and refuse to accept that music outside their chosen pigeonhole can be glorious too.
I generally focus on 28mm stuff, but 15mm and 6mm lets me get MOAR TANKS, as well as crazy war machines, titans and aerospace, on to the table.
Size isn’t everything, it’s what you do with it that counts.
True in the world of miniature gaming just as it is in any other field that phrase may apply to ;P
Of couse I meant to type “well-lit”… d’oh!
We forgive you 🙂
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