David Bickley's Wargames Blog

The occassional ramblings of an average gamer, journeyman painter, indifferent modeller, games designer, sometime writer for Wargames Illustrated and host of games in GHQ.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Loosing the Will to Live?

Just gathering my thoughts after spending a few hours, and little else, at the 41st WMMS organised by the Alumwell Wargames Society, of which I was once Secretary and WMMS organiser in the 1970's and 1980's. The first event we organised was in 1976 and my last would have been in 1984 probably when a promotion and move away from Walsall left me an exmember. Nevertheless I have attended all but three of the 41 shows I believe; I missed those three due to being out of the country.
Now a days WMMS is held at the Aldersley Leisure Village in Wolverhampton, about a mile or so from my front door, so no excuse for not going really.

Sue dropped Phil and I off at the venue before leaving for a week at her sister's in Lincolnshire. (I'll come back to that later.) Dave Jarman and Paul Yates, who took over from Phil and me as organisers, were manning the entry desk, and once again we were admitted for free. It was about 10.15 when we entered the hall and the show was very busy indeed. Traders are arranged around the outer wall of the hall and in a centrally located block. The games are arranged in rows in the ample spaces in between the two and the ubiquitous B&B is located at the far end of the hall. There's a Costa coffee bar in the entrance space of the centre - hence the Blog title - and an upstairs bar which also serves hot snacks. I never made it to the upstairs bar, I'd been putting up new fence panels in the garden on Saturday, with much help from Gary and Martin, and was finding walking and standing painful! We did grace the Costa Coffee Bar with our custom and it was there I almost lost the will to live while Phil stood in a glacial like queue! I loathe this poncy coffee culture. I want a drink. I want it in a time frame which doesn't age me! Stuff the 'coffee experience' where the sun don't shine! Instant coffee, boiling water and milk will do for me at a Show.

Now, rant over, I promise! To the games now: there were many really good looking games to enjoy or even join in with if that's what you enjoy (gaming with strangers not for we deaf folk though.) In the end I decided to offer pictures of just a few of the many on offer and no order of merit is implied or to be adduced in my choice, the order I present them, or those I omit; it's just how I felt this morning.
Firstly, from the Derby Wargames Society I believe, a game set in Ireland during the Williamite Wars following The Glorious Revolution ~

































































































Next, from the Shrewsbury Wargamers, a real visual treat of an C18th game in my view ~































































































Next, a couple of games set in the Iberian Peninsula I expect (As a deaf person I don't tend to chat to folk I've not met, so apologies for the lack of attribution.}~





































A couple of shots of the Kinver Wargames Group's WWII 20mm game, lead by Dave Page. I've known Dave as long as I've been a wargamer and he always has really interesting games on show and has supported WMMS since our first show I believe. I also like his games because they are full of interest and action and nothing, but nothing,that would be beyond the average gamer ~




































After that visual feast of games on offer a word for the many traders who travel miles in the hope of selling us their many wares, stalwart band of folk in my experience, and some who've supported WMMS since 1976!  We really are so well catered for today in so many periods, scales/sizes and materials we ought to be grateful to have been living in this hobby golden age. Nostalgia ain't what you think it used to be! Saying that, I spent all of £12.00, I'm almost embarrassed to report! No new projects you see. I bought four MDF movement trays for my F&IW Sharp Practice 2 project; three new paintbrushes from Coritani; a Troop of Boy Scouts for my VBCW game from 1st Corps; and finally, I was gifted a 'piddling' dog by Trevor on Redoubt's stand. Hardly the last of the big spenders! Phil, on the other hand, was more lavish in his expenditure!!

So, I mentioned, Sue has gone to visit her sister for a week, leaving me to hold the fort! I don't plan to have a paint-fest, but I do intend to have a basing-fest. At last I will paint and vegetate the bases of my Foundry C11th Normans and Saxons so we can play a few Lion Rampant games if we want! They've only been in GHQ for a year or so waiting their moment n the sun! But not tonight! I'm really tired after yesterday and today, I must be getting old...

17 comments:

  1. Those look like some great games David. Standing in a line for a long time for coffee is indeed annoying!

    Christopher

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    1. I'm glad it's not just me!

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    2. Yes coffee these days is unnecessarily fecky, with extra feck. I confess to carrying a small flask these days. Sometimes it has coffee, and sometimes something better. I also picked up a sabaltern's stool in India. Sounds unpleasant but in fact a decent camp stool with a carrying sling, doubles as a camera stand and v useful. Queuing and viewing games comforably solved.

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  2. I wondered if you were there and should have made more effort to find out. I would have said thank you for your blog in person :0)

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    1. That would have been very kind, but you would not have enjoyed meeting me today, I was far from up to snuff!

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    2. Enjoyed or not, the thanks would still have been meant. I've drawn a lot of pleasure from your blogs and particularly Rhanzlistan. Cheers

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    3. That is very kind and much appreciated.

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  3. David, when it comes to spending, "you must try harder " ;-)

    Don't overdo it with the basing, and be careful who you tell about the troop of Boy Scouts you brought home,er with Sue being away. Sorry, couldn't resist.

    As ever some great photos and we must pencil a date in for the FRW extravaganza.

    Colin

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    Replies
    1. You might say of me, as we sometimes wrote to alleviate boredom in report writing, "Tries hard to be satisfactory but could do better with more effort!"

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  4. Sympathies over the aches and pains of doing fence panels, I did our repairs last week and suffered likewise .... I'm sure they are made of heavier wood these days :-)

    Costa Coffee - great stuff with a muffin to put you back on your feet and get you going, it sounds more like they were overwhelmed. The VERY strict policy on a 10 am start does create a bottleneck at the start of business and if you are bad on your legs / feet then that waiting can be difficult. last year I got there very early and went upstairs for coffee (the hot water and instant stuff :-). ) and stayed there until the queue to get in had gone, even though in reality I was one of the first to arrive.

    My plans to go this year were scuppered at the very last minute ...... so I appreciate your photographs.

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    1. Sorry you missed WMMS Norm, it was a good show as ever! On down side can barely walk today!

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  5. There were some rather splendid games this year, well there are every year but this seemed to be an exceptionally good one. I think I will keep a list of coffee queue times, although it seemed a long time yesterday, ROBIN at half an hour is in top spot this year, can it be beaten?

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    1. Indeed the queue at ROBIN unlikely to be beaten!

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  6. Probably my favourite show. Always plenty to see (and buy) and always an interesting variety of stands, displays and games.

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    1. Well, its on our doorstep Matt so we have to support it, but it is a good show I find.

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