Sunday, November 11, 2012

Are you a Proper Wargamer? Part 2

Dutch Jaegers.  Only three more to do!

The original poster of this brilliant set of questions has come out with a part 2, so I thought I would have a go at this while the bases on my Dutch Jaegers are drying!

* You have reference books on each period / army you play.

Yes. I've never finished a unit of Napoleonic troops but I have 44 books on the period.

 * Having played so many different games you confidently quote rules for a totally different period, scale or ruleset to the one you're playing at that moment 

I've never done this as I can't remember the rules for the game I'm playing let alone another set.

 * You have lied to your partner / spouse about how much you've spent on the hobby.

Oh, dear.  I think my wife reckons that figures cost about 20p each.  The most I ever spent on one item was the Forgeworld Weathertop which was more than £200 I think.  I told my wife it cost £25 and she had a fit at that!

 * You get genuinely excited when a package arrives in the post - then hide it upstairs quickly before your partner sees it. If your partner finds it first, you lie about the contents. 

I do try to hide new stuff but sometimes my wife finds the packages first and comes into my study shaking them and saying "sounds like more soldiers, again!"

 * You have joined a re-enactment society (5 points for this one!) 

No.  I did seriously think about joining the Sealed Knot a couple of times but don't have time at the weekends for something like that!

 * You have played in an unsuitable venue.

No, not really but then I've only played at home, at friends' houses, at school or at Guildford Wargames Club (which uses a nice, modern church hall).

 * You continue to search for the perfect Napoleonic / WW2 / Ancients / ACW etc. rule set (knowing that it doesn't actually exist).

As I don't play that much I don't worry about rules that much either, although I have been searching for some good WW2 skirmish rules and so far like the look of Bolt Action (except for the requirement of putting dice next to units which I will have to find a way to avoid).

 * For that reason you have developed your own house rules for certain periods. And think them far superior to the original author's efforts. 

Well, I did do that back when I was at school and wrote some WW2 rules, which were basically more detailed version of Terence Wise's ones with much more complex statistics for AFVs.  I had loads of Panthers and Tigers and didn't like the way Cess and Bean Kid kept destroying them with their puny Shermans so decided we needed to start allowing for armour thickness differences. 

 * You have returned from a wargames show and sneaked upstairs to hide the stash. 

Oh yes.  Sometimes I even leave stuff in the boot of the car and get it out after my wife had gone to bed.  The best tactic is to brazenly walk in with several carrier bags and then immediately remove half of the stuff in my study but leave a convincing amount in the bags so that when she checks (which she does - the word "Stasi" springs to mind) it doesn't look that bad.

 * You have an irrational aversion to some genres and vow never to play them regardless of how much fun they look. Like Dystopian Wars, 6mm Napoleonics, Warhammer 40k, Malifaux etc. 

Yes.  I think 15mm comes into this category even though battles using 15mm figures look better.  I just think that most of the figures in this scale are anatomic abominations.  I also can't stand anything involving zombies.  I don't like the idea of A Very British Civil War or the Spanish Civil War either, despite there being some very nice figures for both.  

* You have made your own wargames scenery. 

Well, I used to make hills and such like and I keep thinking I might do some buildings.  I made a late medieval house for a project for my daughter for school (well, she was supposed to do it but come 8.00pm on Sunday evening it still hadn't been done, so...) and was surprised how will it turned out.  I did have to paint it badly to make it more convincing.  I started a Rohan house from a White Dwarf article but gave up on it as I get panicky whenever the prospect of teddy bear fur thatch looms.  I did start this paddle boat based on the Gary Chalk one in Wargames Illustrated but, again, haven't quite finished it.  I'm not brilliant with my hands so was particularly pleased at the way the paddle wheel turned out although that was more to do with Mr Chalk's excellent plans than any ability of my own.

Perry Turcomans

* You have reached a painting 'wall' ("If I have to paint another f________ Gaul, I'm going to scream") 

Quite often.  This is why I usually paint no more than half a dozen of any particular figure at a time and often have ten sets of six different periods on the workbench on the go at once.  I'm already weakening on my Prussians and wondering whether I should do some Amazon warriors instead for a bit.  The biggest batch I ever did in one go was Turcoman horse archers for a Dorylaeum battle at the Society of Ancients battle day (which I missed as I was abroad, although my figures did take part).  By the end of this lot I was going mad. One of the reasons I still hate painting cavalry units and try to find armies or rules that don't need them!

 * You have lost - and regained - your wargaming mojo. 

Well I have certainly lost it at present.  I haven't played a game for about two years.  If we are talking about wider interest in painting soldiers or military modelling I really didn't do much between 1979 and 1995.  That period coincided with Catherine, Katy, Cathy, Janet, Veronica, Melanie, Josephine, Sarah, Sally-Ann, Sophie, Fiona, Denise, Ilaria, Paola etc. etc.

 * You have the occasional (and short lived) sense of guilt with your wife/children when complaining to them about the money spent in clothes, shoes or toys/Xbox games when you have £200 of unpainted metal stuffed in an upstairs drawer. 

Especially when it's about £8000 worth. 

Peter Pig 15mm. Even in this scale I had to mount them individually

 * You have done armies in different scales for the same period (e.g. ACW in 28mm, 15mm and 6mm). 

Actually, I did paint quite a lot of Peter Pig 15mm WW1 and Romans and Gauls but have subsequently replaced them with 28mm.

 * You have jealously coveted someone else's troops. 

Hmm, I don't think that there are any figures amongst the Guildford crowd I would want either because of scale or because they are old models.  Anyway, I only want to use figures I have painted myself.

 * You have laughed (secretly or otherwise) as someone else's paint job 

Not laughed really, but I do slightly cringe at gloss varnished figures (unless because they have been done that way for some old school effect).  People aren't shiny.

 * You have provided a piece of useless trivia relating to the troops on the table to show off your wargaming knowledge. 

I may be guilty of this one relating to the Sudan!

 * You have contradicted someone elses' trivia - demonstrating your superior knowledge and giving you a warm glow inside. 

I'd never do that.  Well, I probably would but it hasn't happened.

 * You have caused a major disaster on a wargames table (spilling a pint, collapsing the table, dropped someone else's figures on the floor). 

No, thank goodness!

* You have cheered when an opponent's dice lets them down at a critical point.

No, that would be ungentlemanly.  An unseen smirk is enough.

* You have lied to your partner about going gaming "Mothers' not very well - just popping around to see her.  I'll be back in about - oh - seven hours"

No but I have claimed to be going wargaming and then sloped off to see a lady in a wine bar instead.

 * You have lied to an attractive woman (man) about your hobby. 

Hmm, I think I am now "out" about wargaming but there were certainly cases in the past when I didn't mention it even during quite long (for me) relationships.

 * You have made an opponent cry. It doesn't count if they are under 8 years old though. 

No, it's usually me who should be doing the crying.

* You have painted the same army in the same scale more than once.

Not yet but this is looking likely for Early Imperial Romans and I really like those new Empress Miniatures ECW figures...

 * You have reference books on armies you haven't even got. 

Oh yes.  Mexican-American War springs to mind.

 * You have bought figures for a period you have never and will never play - because they were cheap.

Yes I bought a lot of Newline Designs goths and still have them and no intention of painting them.

. * You have inflicted grevious bodily harm on a dice that has let you down. 

No, I love my dice.

* You blog or have a web-page about your Wargaming activities 

A blog?  Surely not?  I spend more time on my girlie ones though, as one of them is now getting 10,000 hits a day and I feel a responsibility to keep putting stuff up on them.

 * Your book collection is almost all war and wargames related 

No.  I have lots of books featuring naked women.

  * You critique 'war' movies (especially Hollywood war movies) for historical accuracy (like the use of American tanks - Pershings I think - to represent German Panzers in the 'Battle of the Bulge'.)

Oh yes.  Why can't anyone get Roman armour right?

* You spend car / train journeys checking out the lie of the land - considering which way you would attack from and whether it would make good wargaming terrain.

That would be really tragic but on the way down to Bath the other week I did think how unlike real terrain wargames terrain is (compared with model railway terrain for example).


  1. Some great answers, I like the look of the Turcoman's.

  2. If you replace "wargaming" with "wine collecting" then most of the questions are still applicable. I'm always trying to smuggle wine into the house and lying about how much I've spent on it!

    Best wishes


  3. Oh dear! That too! My wife doesn't drink and thinks everyone who does is an alcoholic who is destroying their brain. I had a good shop at Waitrose today as she was out for the day!

  4. The Jaegers are coming on well... another fun set of answers ... teddybear fur, LOL, its not that hard to do... just stick it down over the cardstock roof base, then use thinned PVA glue, and paint it on over the fur and use an old pocket comb to get it to lie right. Allow to dry (several days), and trim to suit.
    I must make some more and finish my Rohan village...

  5. all too true, tho not quite £8,000 worth, but I'm working on least my wife now agrees buying metal is better than buying plastic figures and watching me spending hours trying to glue the bits together and cursing over a lost arm or head under the kitchen table..and she likes wine yippeee

    ps are you reviving the gnw blog ?seems musketeer have (nearly) rounded off a reasonable set of horse/foot/artillery to get a bash going.
    cheers mj

  6. Yes on the GNW but I have so many projects. I might get some Swedish cavalry next...