Sunday, September 30, 2012

Wargames Illustrated 300th Edition

I've got half a day free to paint today but I feel so ill I don't think I'm up to it which is really frustrating.  Maybe I'll have a Lem-Sip and see how I feel after that!

I went to Dorking Models yesterday as I have been having difficulty getting the plastic model filler I use for the bases of my figures.  Dorking is an excellent old-style model shop but really for plastic kit builders and railway stuff. They do sell 1/72 plastics and have an excellent selection of those as well as AFV models in the same scale.  I'm sort of surprised they don't stock 28mm plastic figures but there is probably no space left for them (and it's probably just as well they don't!).  Anyway, I picked up a couple of tubes of Humbrol's plastic filler, which is my favourite (the Revell one is a little bit too runny for bases).

You know you want it

While there I popped into Smiths and got the 300th anniversary edition of Wargames Illustrated.  This really is an epic issue and reminded me, in a way, of those huge anniversary Playboy magazines from the seventies. As Guy would have said, when he was small, about a large book "Isha fudder!"  Lots of interest for me in there as they have articles on the Spartans at Thermopylae,  Spartacus (part of a series on last stands), Romans in Mona, a truly epic Saxons v British battle, a Dark Ages skirmish, Agincourt, the British Army from 1670-1704, ACW, Isandlwana and much more.  Proportionately, not too much Flames of War, although I think from their advert in this month's issue they have just openly identified their target market for the first time.  I've always had a vague thing about doing WW2 gaming, particularly in North Africa, but, from what I have seen of it, FoW suffers from the Warhammer 40K problem of too many tanks too close together and doesn't even purport to give a resonable recreation of WW2.  I suppose it is directly designed to get children to move on from W40K to historicals and that's probably a good thing but it looks wrong visually for me.  On a normal sized board I would imagine a WW2 game as having no more than 40 figures a side and maybe one tank.


  1. Yes, that ad is a little bit perplexing for an old wargamer like me. I may need more than Lemsip...nurse!

  2. "FoW suffers from the Warhammer 40K problem of too many tanks too close together"... hear hear.... anther one of my (increasing number of) bugbears.... right up there next to hex terrain, painted in eyes, and 1/300 miniatures..... sigh... turning into a grumpy old man....

  3. Regarding your FoW comments, the new plastics in the new starter set, will certainly be easier to assemble and model with for those transitioning from 40k... I did get a reasonably positive reaction when I demo-ed FoW at the local GW club, though while interest of WWII was certainly tweaked, the result was a switch to using 20mm airfix plastic toy-soldiers and tanks, using a yahoo group WWII-40k rules derivative!

    Still, its a start... ;-), and if it unplugs them from their computers and Xboxs and Iphones etc etc, so much the better ;-)

    I know what you mean about the 'FoW visual' - it took me a while to accept it. Reality is you can spread out your tank platoons (command distances being anything from 4-8" between vehicles, depending on platoons command rating) but players often gaggle their vehicle together to hide behind the same piece of cover, and to maximize shooting on one target. The flip side is you can pay dearly if a template weapon knocks out all your vehicles in one strike!

    And I suppose like any wargame the appearance is always going to be abstracted to a certain degree, it just depends on what you are comfortable with.

    Must admit I greatly enjoy the game now, despite rarely winning!

    You mentioned '40 guys and one tank' - I think you may want to check out Bolt Action from Warlord games - seems right up your street!

  4. Scott, that's very helpful. The other think I don't like, of course, is element basing.

    I think you are right about X-Box's etc. My son would never give up his time on Battlefield Bad Company to paint figures.

    I haven't looked at Bolt Action at all. Sounds interesting. Especially of they come up with early WW2 or North Africa supplements. Maybe I need to visit Orc's Nest this week!

  5. I must admit to being a bit of a WI basher over the last months, far too mush Flames of War for my liking, but I'm looking forward to the bumper issue. I did buy and paint up a ton of their Desert wars stuff, read the rules, then sold the lot!