After many weeks away, I've returned! The long enforced pause from moving house is over, and once more I can get gaming, painting and blogging.
The new house is still a mess of boxes, and most of my miniatures are packed away in storage for the time being, but they'll soon be back in action. I decided yesterday to celebrate a week of tough work by treating myself to something I rarely get the chance to do: attend a wargames show! This year I went to Claymore 2012 in Edinburgh, hosted by the South East Scotland Wargames Club (SESWC.) I had last been about a decade ago, and never managed since - but this time I even managed to cajole/persuade/prod a gaming buddy to go along with me.
The two of us had a great time, although I suspect more me than him (he's more into board games, and the emphasis was very much more on miniatures gaming than I remembered from the past) but the main thing I noticed was the size of it all - the whole thing took up two large halls and also a third bring-and-buy room, which would suggest to my (admittedly naive) eyes that the hobby is in good health north of the border.
So, I treated myself to a few things. Here's the haul!
The main thing I got was a pair of Perry Miniatures' hard-plastic Mounted Men at Arms. This is not really required for WOTR games, as mounted troops make somewhat infrequent appearances and are effectively a novelty on the battlefield. However, I intend to increase the scope of the collection to be a more generic 'Late Medieval' collection, allowing things like Burgundian, Swiss, French & Italian armies to be created - probably as part of my fictional campaign-world.
Beyond that, the next big thing was me buying an entire Baccus army in 6mm. I've looked at it online many a time, but not I own a Greek Hoplite army pack. The single pack holds an amazingly impressive set of 528 infantry and 33 mounted. The brilliant display-bases of 48 figures packed into a dense phalanx on top of a 6cm by 3cm base was the clincher. I also got a pack of precut MDF bases, which actually have black edges (something I've not seen from Baccus before.)
Other purchases were to bulk up my 'miscellaneous' collection of scenery. I got a pack of eight trees from 'S & A Scenics' which will do for both 28mm WOTR games, as well as 1/72 plastic figures in my Waterloo & ACW collections.
Speaking of ACW, the last packs I got were from 'The Baggagetrain' and consisted of half a dozen resin breastworks - each about 6cm long and showing 2 or 3 logs interlocked in a zig-zag, with mounds of earth to the front. For a developing ACW collection and ambitions to recreate the 1864 campaigns, field defences like this will be critical, and I'm glad I no longer have to make them!
Other honorable mentions:
Pendraken, for making the WW2 Eastern Front in 10mm look appealing
Warbases, for their superb bases with penny-sized indents (could the WOTR armies be about to get a new basing system?)
Kallistra, for giving me a chance to finally see their Hexon terrain boards and get what the fuss was about.
Plastic Solder Company, for producing the WW2 ranges that very nearly had me buying models for a company-sized force to do games of 'I Ain't Been Shot Mum' - thank god they'd sold out of the Panzer IV boxed-sets, and I could talk myself out of it!
More blogging, of a more regular nature, will hopefully resume from now on - possibly even more, once I've worked out where to put my new 'Man-Cave!'