Last Saturday saw my annual visit to our local wargaming show here in Reading – Warfare, run by the Wargames Association of Reading.
Even before I started attending Salute (which has now become my other gaming show), I would always attend this one, as it’s really close, gives me the opportunity to see the models up close and, as it occurs just after my birthday, I usually have a few spare pennies to spend.
Now, Warfare takes place in the Rivermead leisure centre, spread over four separate rooms. There’s plenty of space in the competition/club demonstration room, which takes place in the indoor bowling green, but traders hall always seems rather cramped, as the aisles are fairly narrow and some attendees are less considerate than others.
As I arrived rather later than usual and the trader shall was heaving, I headed straight into the competition hall, as sometimes the table are worth looking at. Now, there are usually a few nice-ish tables on display, but nothing that usually makes me want to take out my camera. However, this year, there was, so I did actually take some photos.
First, a rather nice 28mm Pegasus Bridge set-up for Bolt Action, which wasn’t actually being played upon, but I felt warranted a picture because it was so nice.
Not sure where the kid with the 70’s haircut came from…possibly from off the set of The Omen remake…
Next up, one of several 28mm full-size galleons for a (probably) pirate-themed game.
This one was the biggest and loaded to the gunnels with British seamen. The fort they were attacking was okay, but the ships themselves were lovely.
The final table was probably another Bolt Action table, as it appears to be a war-torn city. An absolutely HUGE amount of detail – trains, planes, a crane, plumes of smoke, etc. Just click on the picture and enjoy.
After wandering up and down the aisles for a while, I decided to brave the traders hall. And found it somewhat…lacking. It would appear that some of the standard traders that usually attend had decided to forego this year. And the traders who were there didn’t appear to have very much in the way of new stuff.
A couple of manufacturers did – Sally 4th being one (as noted by Simon over at Fantorical) and Warbases, who have extended their range of laser-cut MDF buildings into several areas that I wasn’t aware of such as sci-fi, ancient Rome and soon to be the Orient. Worth a look on their website if you haven’t visited in a while, as their range has expanded a fair bit, their prices are reasonable and they have a good range of 28mm animals, should you need to populate your British countryside with both farm and wildlife.
And it was Warbases who manged to part me from some of my cash, as they had a set of two MDF handcarts, complete with metal ‘loads’ and attendants. Ideal for adding to colour to your street-scenes and reasonably generic clothing-wise to be used from Victorian up to Post-war, as shown below.
Two metal figures, two loads and two MDF handcarts…for £7.00. Bargain! Unsurprisingly, the handcarts don’t come with instructions, but it’s pretty obvious how they go together, with the T-shaped part being the stand which prevents it from tipping over – which will be used for the vegetable seller.
So, a couple of likely lads ready and waiting to be purvey their wares on the streets of Blackwell.
My only other purchase was the main reason for attending. Earlier in the year, Crooked Dice launched a Kickstarter for their ‘Children of the Fields’ range of figures and programme guide. Obviously, as this is Crooked Dice and 7TV, this was a range of creepy villagers, sinister Morris Men, devious Huntsmen, possibly possessed scarecrows and all the other various accoutrements of a 70’s British village that welcomes strangers, but doesn’t let them leave. I was almost tempted by this KS, but felt that for the models I did want, I’d end up with some models I didn’t.
However, there was one model I knew I had to have. Now, I could have taken advantage of the ‘pledge a £1’ option that allowed you to just select an add-on, but I worked out that if I did this, the model I wanted would actually cost me more, taking into account the postage, than waiting until it was released and picking it up at Warfare.
So that’s what I did…and here ‘he’ is.
This is The Straw Man, an 80mm tall corn/wheat golem and he’s rather bloody cool. A nice three-part model which looks like it will go together with no issues, with nice, crisp detailing. Basically, it does look like it’s made of bundles of hay…or possibly “Shredded Wheat”. And, not being period specific, I can use this for Age of Unreason, Tales of the Black Museum, Ghostbusters, Scooby-Doo and even Doctor Who games should I wish.
Now, it’s not cheap – being £15.00, but I do feel it’s worth it, as there is literally nothing else like it on the market. And if you want lesser minions for your giant Straw Man, Crooked Dice do a Straw Bear (which is a Morris Man dressed in sheafs of straw, rather than an actual bear), as part of the same range.
So, whilst not as good a show as previous year’s, was still worthwhile me going…and I did get to have a nice long chat with Karl from Crooked Dice, where I suggest stuff I want him to make and he laughs at me or says “funny you should mention that…”
Until next time.
10 thoughts on “Warfare 2018”
That straw man is super cool. Quite a villain/monster. And those carts… Yes please! Good finds!
I need to write up my 1st time solo adventure at Fall In! No derth of fantastic tables there. Quite the opposite, many were absolutely stunning. I might give a go at typing something up over the New World holiday we celebrate this week.
Thanks for sharing!
Thanks Harry. I do try to restrict my purchases to things I will definitely use, so usually attend shows with a good idea of what I’ll be buying. Saves the trauma ofrealising I’ve spent money on things that wiol languish in a box for a while.
And you do better than me! I was good this year despite not having a budget going in. Only minis for games I’m playing AND currently painting models for. Only rules for games I play. I did pick up Lion/Dragon Rampant due to a game I played and an idea to use them with all my WFB models.
Great posting, Jez, and I’m delighted to see you picking up some goodies, especially the straw giant from “Crooked Dice”. My fingers are crossed that next year’s “Warfare” is better; albeit I do still like it’s Bring & Buy a good deal 🙂
Thanks Simon. I feel it’s still a worthwhile show to visit, but I might try attending Colours next year as well, just to get a comparison.
Good you had a good time even if the show wasn’t as good as previous years, and you managed to pick up some great bits
Thanks Dave. Yeah, not as good as previous year’s, but still managed to get a few choice bits and get the lowdown from Karl on future plans for 7TV…can you say ‘Pulp Sci-fi’? 😉
I saw that wicker man in Miniature Wargames magazine a month or so ago. It’s super cool, so glad you could pick it up without having to go all in on the KS. I am somewhat envious that you have game shows so close to home, and there are some great-looking tables there! I especially like the galleons. Pirate gaming was something I always wished I could try…
The advantage of living on a small island, Keith, everythings still reasonably close – although people will still complain that the events are “too far away”.
And bearing in mind that the galleon was 28mm scale, that’s a whole lot of stuff to do pirate gaming. Might be better to start with luttle ships, if that’s what floats your boat. (Apologies for the awful pun).
Glad to hear you had a good time, even if the show was down on last year (a common trend all over it appears).