Monday, 20 July 2015

The Joy of Six, 2015

Set in the Sheffield Hallam University atrium this time, the show this year was quite a bit bigger than 2014 with two very large Napoleonics games present.


Although it was mostly sunny all afternoon it wasn't too hot under the glass roof but this made photography awkward with the shadows of roof trusses on some of the gaming tables.

Luckily I had decided to travel light and only had a mobile phone for picture taking so quality wasn't going to be of paramount importance anyway!

After a quick look around I had a long chat with the gamers at the Gorodetschna 1812 table where they were having a lot of fun with a Saxon flanking manoeuvre around a somewhat swampy central battlefield where the Russian and Austrian main forces were faced off.

Gorodetschna 1812
Having watched a few moves I was dying to ask them about the figures and it turns out they are made from MDF, made by Commission Figurines who had a stand next door, are even cheaper than Heroics & Ros but still look really good on a large scale battle.

On then to the Polemos Napoleonics table where I had an interesting talk with Stewart, the Baccus technology guru regarding rules detail and how it can be pared down and still get a realistic outcome and had a demonstration of the rules app for android and an exciting tool it looked too! The free version is said to be a manual combat calculator whereby the player selects the combatants, ticks the modifier boxes and the app gives you the result. (Even on-screen dice which can be rolled by shaking the device!) The paid version will have (amongst other features) an army generator which will enable the player to select the firing unit and any shaken effects are automatically remembered and applied from previous combats.

Polemos Napoleonics
I got roped in to play on the Milton Keynes' DBMM Battle of Lake Trasimene game but quite enjoyed it once I started routing a some of the Roman cavalry.

DBMM, Lake Trasimene
The rules had been simplifed for participation game purposes, which was just as well as I hadn't had a decent sleep for 24 hours. In the historical battle, the Romans were drawn down the lakeside coast then attacked in the flank by warband hordes and pretty much annhiliated, which was happening on the table as well.

At 2pm I attended the seminar for the talk about Polemos rules design and more chat about the rules app.
The Baccus Panel
Nick, Peter, Chris, Stewart

Then to the Heroics & Ros and Leven Miniatures stands to collect my pre-orders.

That's Mick on the left

It's amazing to see how the Leven Miniatures range has expanded in the last few years and casting improved; it is certainly not the little hobby concern that I once thought it was. Must paint some buildings soon! Got some PerfectSix scenic detailing bits here as well. As for my purchases from H&R, I only needed some A13 mk1s & A9s to reorganize my cruiser squadrons a bit, plus a few other oddments as usual.

Some other eye-catching games:

Operation Bagration, 1944 by MAD Gamers

Hungry Legions by Mailed Fist.
Forest canopies sans bases perched atop tree trunks concealed troops underneath

Ligny, 1815 by The Lead Commanders
"Huge tracts of land!"

Nashville, 1864 by the Legion of Blokes.
Lovely painted-on roads and 'model railway quality' grass

Plassey, 1757 by Russ Fewtrell & Ian Taylor.
Tent City!

Waterloo, 1815 by Lee Sharpe & Ian Willey
Permanent terrain boards, I believe

Finally, I would like to thank the Wyre Forest Gamers and Per Broden, not only for putting on a good-looking game but also for storing my luggage under their table while I wandered about!

The usual amount of handout information from Wyre Forest Gamers!


It was a great show (I only had time for one coffee, a stimulant drink going untouched in my backpack and was too interested in things going on to notice the cafe closing so went hungry) and I can only apologize for not mentioning all of the games. With luck there will be more comprehensive show reports somewhere with more (and better quality!) photographs.

Action plan for 2016:
  • bring a decent camera
  • knock off work early & get some sleep
  • arrive for 'doors open' (4 hours not enough to 'do' all the games properly)