Saturday, 25 May 2013

Painting and Gaming Update

It has been a long time since I have posted any of my painting efforts. Everyday life has become more hectic as the kids grow up and want to do their own things, work gets busier and busier, and other things impinge on my precious free time.

I have been slowly getting some paint onto a batch of Norman Knights, so I will start to put those up on the blog in the next few weeks as I complete them. I also have a handful of other half-finished minis that will get my attention in the coming weeks too. I really need to focus and start getting stuff together to actually use in a game. My main aim, originaly, was just to reduce the lead mountain. I have been fairly successful in doing this but I still have several hundred minis to go. I think I need to plan a campaign game in which to use as many of them as I can, and maybe start painting them to a theme in readiness for that game. I must admit my preference is for fantasy games, but all the historicals I have painted should come in handy to some extent to use in that type of world too. Maybe my ePBM plans for AD&D will be the perfect vehicle - now just to get the time to do it.

My only real gaming time recently has been the Wednseday night RPG bash at the club. I am thoroughly enjoying this bit of weekly downtime and look forward to it every week. I enjoy writing up our adventures and publishing them here on the blog for all to see. Primarily it is a reminder to the players of what happened the previous week, but also as a reference as to what went before. I hope the rest of my readers enjoy hearing about the adventures of our trusty band of companions.

For my long-term set of now very remote gaming friends I was due to start a second incarnation of Doggerland just after Christmas. Unfortunately I did not get the chance to polish the rules and create the map (now impossible due to my PC crashing irreparably a month or two back and losing my working copy of Photoshop - I cannot get it to reload onto a Win 8 machine). I was also thinking of getting an ePBM AD&D campaign going but, again, this suffered due to my PC crash and now lack of time. The AD&D campaign will probably be the easiest of the two to run as I have everything ready to go except buy-in from the players.

Looking back over the site for the last few years I have noticed that this year I have not bought anything for my hobby. The last couple of years have seen me spend about £300 per annum; divvied up it comes out as around £25 per month - not a huge sum in the scheme of things. I have seen a lot of old school style minis on a variety of blogs and sites recently which I would like to add to my collection - at a rate of about £25 per month I should be able to get some coherent forces put together when combined with my existing unpainted lead. Lots of goblins/orcs/trolls, dwarfs and humans should give me the basis of a good fantasy campaign. Although I prefer very anthropocentic fantasy (which is why I am anjoying Dragon Warriors so much), I can't run a campaign without a good force of evil baddies from the netherworlds. I think I will have to investigate all the online retailers who sell the old Asgard, Nick Lund etc. style miniatures to add to my forces.

One thing that strikes me as missing from my particular part of the hobby is a decent magazine that covers all aspects of it. Sure, there are magazines aimed at the historical market (Miniature Wargames, Wargames Illustrated and Wargames, Soldiers and Strategy), but I personally find them limited in that they rarely have fantasy content I can use. Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy them for what they are namely - historical gaming magazines. Some of the battle reports and scenarios could be adapted for fantasy but they don't give me the same feeling as the old dungeons I could find in the old White Dwarf or Imagine magazines of the late 70s and 80s. I am unaware of any paper fantasy gaming magazines that caters to my tastes and, unfortunately, I find that the latest White Dwarf is just a catalogue of new releases for Games Workshop plus a battle report or two. Lots of eye candy but, for me, no actual substance since they relegated Lord of the Rings to just a few pages every now and then. I have only bought one or two copies in the last three years as a result. I yearn for the old-style magazines that threw adventure scenarios, new magic items and thoughts on gaming at you every month.

This turned out to be a little more long-winded than I originally set out to write, but thought trains are often like that. Hopefully, I should have more stuff to get your teeth into over the coming few weeks. Maybe I will start my ePBM campaign going by writing up the origins of the adventure to whet my players' appetites? Who knows? This hobby is so changeable for me that I rarely know what I will be doing from one week to the next.

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