David Bickley's Wargames Blog

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

Wednesday 31 December 2014

The Best Laid Plans

Well, you will all know what Burns had to say about them! In terms of the second half of 2014, especially the latter months, he might even be said to have had my hobby in mind! Things have rather tailed off towards the fag end of the year and if I'm brutally honest with myself, they don't show much signs of improvement. Too much real life has raised its head recently: family and personal illness has been rife; wargames chums have had to deal with difficult family issues; the conversion of the garage has ground to a halt due to a bereavement in the builder's family;so, as a consequence, my muse has gone, like my left eye, AWOL for long periods of time. But, 'Glass Half Full' is the only way forward into 2015 if I'm to rediscover the joy and friendship the hobby has always bought me in past years.
I've only managed 27 games in the second half of the year, a very poor total compared to our usual number here in GHQ. The latter two months have been especially sparse as real life raised its ugly head with a vengeance! In truth, the number has been inflated really by a number of short, small games recently, like Monday morning's Ancient game using Neil Thomas' Two Hour Rules and a Wings of War WWI bash after lunch! Of the 27 games I managed to win 15 and draw 2, so only 10 defeats to mull over!
Final moments for Baldinus' forces at Thingswill Pass

Painting has also trailed off in the latter months of 2014 due to a combination of illness, eyesight issues and loss of the muse. I've managed 298 pieces in the six months to today, all of them 28mm and mostly for my Wars of the French Revolution project, interspersed with odd figures for Pulp games and some new figures for the Rhanzlistan Field Force project.
Black Pyramid pieces for The Great Detective game

 The latter collection should grace the pages of Wargames Illustrated sometime in 2015 to illustrate an article I've written for them about imagineering in the Raj. I spent a tiring but enjoyable day with Dan when he came over from their Nottingham HQ to take the photos for the piece, as I mentioned in an earlier post. As a magazine for our hobby WI really does knock spots off the opposition, not just in overall quality, but in sheer number of sales, outselling the other two main magazines put together. For my money wargaming is spectacle, or it is nothing! WI shows that off in abundance every month, so it gets my vote for Hobby Contribution of 2014.
Despite all the outside interuptions to our hobby time, Phil and I have still managed to visit a few shows: Partizan II, Derby Worlds and Wargamer. Sue and I went up to Edinburgh for a long weekend break and I visited Claymore while we were there. Always a grand show; get there, or indeed Carronade in Falkirk, if you've not been! As a bonus I get to meet all of my Scottish chums ~ and I have to add, I'm still really glad that they will be British chums too! I also managed to visit the new Foundry location again in the grounds of Brian Ansell's home, while Sue was in the Lake District with her sister, and top up on paints for the winter, oh and a few new figures too! We also went down to Evesham and popped into Gripping Beast for a mooch about. So, adjusting my perspective, not all doom and gloom in 2014!
So, forward into 2015 it must inevitably be. Who can say what the new year will bring us all? Not me that is certain, given my lack of ability to predict Lottery numbers! I can however say what I hope for hobby wise in the new year. I would like to finish the French for my Wars of the French Revolution project before Sue and I go off on holiday in late February, to New Zealand if anyone is interested. That's two infantry battalions and a unit of Hussars, a really stiff ask given my recent output ~ 22 figures in December, about half to a third of the usual number! That will lead me on then after April to the Austrians I bought from Trent at Partizan and for which I lack many painting references at this point! The 'Lead Pimple' also includes three new units for my Late Romans, another infantry unit for my 1914 BEF collection, more Pulp and Rhanzlistan figures and more besides! I have resolved to buy fewer new figures in 2015; let's just hope I can keep to that and whittle down the backlog as the year unfolds!
I'd like to close by wishing everyone who visits this Blog, even if they never leave a comment on anything, a


  1. Let's hope the new year starts off better, although you will not get many games in Feb/Mar :-) I am sure we will be up and French Revolutionary Warring on your return.

  2. Happy new year to you to. Looking forward to see your output in 2015.

    1. Thanks, Stuart! I hope you won't be disappointed!

  3. All the best for 2015 David, looking forward to your posts.


    1. Thanks for your good wishes! I'll try to post interesting stuff!