Sunday, November 30, 2014

Good things take time ..

So the saying goes .. and I think that's correct with our wargames hobby too. I've just finished another regiment of 6mm French infantry for 1914 WW1 (Great War Spearhead) games, and made a connection good friend Keith's most recent blog post 'Accessible Wargaming' in which he discusses the trend towards skirmish gaming. Keith discusses Sam Mustafa's podcast suggesting that the rise and rise of skirmish gaming has arisen because we are increasingly a time poor society.

I'm as guilty as the next 'gamer of wanting shorter games that require fewer figures. But existing on a diet of smaller games is to me much like existing on a diet of sweets and cakes: you get the 'gaming equivalent of a 'sugar rush', but are ultimately left hungry and unsatisfied.

My WW1 projects have taken time.  The 6mm French army now has two GWSH divisions to match my two German divisions, and I have enough German figures to complete a third German division as well. The Spearhead games require careful thought and an investment in time to plan and play, but they are the 'meat and potatoes', the three course meal, of 'gaming. They reward the investment in time to paint, and play, with a sense of satisfaction, with the sense that you have indeed crossed swords with an opponent.

The same is true when I field or command armies using Frank Chadwick's Volley and Bayonet rules. My love of the 'Hordes of the Things' rules is no secret, but the project to expand armies for Big battle HotT reflects this desire for something 'meatier', something to satisfy the appetite.

Smaller games like DBA and HotT are great for quick games, and satisfy that immediate urge to build armies, but the rewards players gain from investing time and energy into painting those larger armies, and playing those larger games, are in my opinion where our real growth and satisfaction are produced.

Back to those 1914 German infantry .... three regiments to go.


  1. Nick
    I think most of us do.. personally I can't 'live on it' though.. I need 'meat and potatoes' too LOL

  2. It's good to see I've prompted some discussion.

    I would suggest that a Spearhead or GWSH division, in 6mm, is more accessible than the same as 28mm. However, I'm not seeing people taking up either in great numbers. But in any scale they have more meat, at least for me, than a skirmish game. The same is true for Volley & Bayonet.

  3. I see where you're coming from. At a bit of a crossroads myself, but until I can get off the painting treadmill it's just got to wait.

  4. Yep, my GWSH project (aiming for the Mons scenario initially) is nearly ready to hit the table - it's smelling good. The roast is resting, potatoes are nearly done, but now I've get to sort our the greens (e.g. all the minis painted, working on terrain)! Initially I was hoping to 'eat' on the actual 100th anniversary date - now I'll be lucky if I get my fangs on it in 2014!