Wednesday, 28 October 2009

There & Back Again.

Well, after a gap of many months, and one momentous life-changing decision, the Poacher has returned, albeit in another form.

This blog represents a move away from the topic featured in my previous one, and will concentrate instead on a wonderful pastime that has remained my principal hobby for as long as I can recall: Wargaming.

I wargame with miniatures and boardgames, although circumstances have now seen a drastic reduction in the eras gamed, and armies used. I have also largely moved away from the historical side, now only gaming ACW and Ancients as historical periods.

The rest of my gaming is now centered around totally fictitious clashes in various eras, 18th century Lace Wars, 17th Centry Musket & Pike, Modern Jungle Warfare and a rather fun World War II era game, based on Charles Grant's Battle, where I happily mix various nations' equipment in my two armies, based simply on the notion of whether I like the look of it.

It is a wonderfully liberating experience, freeing oneself from the strait-jacket of a historical perspective. Gone are all the arguments, internal and external, about who were the good guys and bad guys. Gone are the arguments about the correct colour to paint the tanks and uniforms (in my WW2-era game, one side are Green, the other Brown). Gone are all the worries about the correct OOB for the armies. I make up my own, so I decide if they are correct.

Even with the historical periods that I do play, ACW and Ancients, I use highly stylised and, in the case of ACW, very old-fashioned rules. Purists may well shudder. For Ancients I use Command & Colors: Ancients, the wooden block boardgame designed by Richard Borg, which is fun, fast and furious, and probably not too bad from a historical perspective, if that's important.

My ACW gaming is based around a slightly modified set of Featherstone rules dating from the early 'sixties. Anyone familiar with Games Workshop Fantasy Battles will have no problem with them at all. The figures for the ACW games are old Spencer Smith 30mm plastics, or the newer metal versions, painted in an old-fashioned glossy toy soldier style. These armies are due for serious expansion soon, especially as John Preece (of Flanderkin Serjeant fame), a good gaming friend, passed me a load of wonderful SAE metal figures which have not been available in the range for around 30-40 years.

No comments: