I've always enjoyed going to the Derby World Wargames Show, and this year was no exception. One difference however was meeting up with a non-wargaming mate Martin and his son Edward. I'd been regaling him with tales of our jaunts to places like Salute (and of course the Evesham Festival) and he was at a loose end for what to do last Saturday, so we made our arrangements.
The first thing we did was peruse the many games going on to see what may take their fancy. Edward, who is only nine, had expressed a big interest in trying out some Fantasy games. However, after a brief wander he was adamant on having a go on a 6mm WW1 game that some fellow had set up on a small 2x2 tile! The man in charge was a lovely chap who was very patient with him despite an absolute barrage of questions. I then left father and son to get on with it for a while and roll some dice in their first ever Wargame together.
After picking up a pre-order from Timecast for (yet more) 15mm Dervishes and AWI artillery, I spotted Ian Hinds selling a few boxes of books and rules. Snatching a bargain in the shape of the Force on Force "Enduring Freedom" supplement for 8 quid, I then did a turn past the Bring n Buy and new Flea Market addition. This year didn't produce much in the way of secondhand stuff and I only came away with a couple of Osprey books. The thing that did get me reaching for my wallet was Britannia Miniatures/Grubby Tanks 28mm Humvees and Mogadishu Technicals (with gun crews). Great models at excellent prices. After that it was on to Empress Miniatures for more 28mm moderns. Here I bought some extra US Infantry, a SEAL team and some Taliban on motorcycles.
By the time I returned to Martin and Edward they'd resoundingly defeated their opponent and were full of smiles. Being an avid fan of history Martin admitted to the appeal Wargaming had in this respect. Indeed after a quick tea and further discussion about the hobby Edward dashed off again to play 'The Lighthorseman' game I'd checked out at Salute earlier this year. A really cool game with amazing figures and terrain. For some reason I took this moment to go and buy some Frostgrave 28mm plastic soldiers. Now I'm definitely not big into Fantasy gaming, but the conversion some chap had done to these for the WI Lion Rampant Day (going from Fantasy Dungeoneer types into a ferocious unit of Fierce Foot) left me wanting to try something similar.
During this shopping spree I met up with my friend Mark who'd had an unreasonably early start and had to drive all the way up from the London area. He showed me some impressive MDF cut 6mm Napoleonics he'd bought. I'd heard of these previously and on his suggestion I later wandered over to where they were selling these chaps and was bowled over by the painted examples they had on display. Check them out here: http://www.commission-figurines.co.uk/
After this Martin and Edward decided they were going to buy some resin Dragons and paints. So after buying the figures we went over to Colour Party Paints (a growing favourite of mine) to get some. By this time the crowds were thinning and the weight of lead in my backpack was starting to kill my shoulders, so we began the journey home. Just before we parted, Edward talked animatedly about how much he'd enjoyed his first Wargaming Show and Martin laughed about how he originally thought the venue would consist of a small church hall type place full of sullen old men - I was glad to prove him wrong!
Anyway, to finish, here's some pictures of our day :)