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Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Reading Warfare 2013

So this weekend Oscar and I attended Warfare 2013 at Reading, with the principle purpose of running a few demo games of FSA v2.0 (with SG's permission), and having a bit of fun. We ran a 1200 point game on Saturday after a slightly tardy star due to delays setting off, but Sunday we went for a couple of side-by-side 800 point games - Flamebeast's Relthoza vs Kaptain Krys' Dindrenzi, and Oscar's Aquans vs my Directorate (I should say KK's Dindrenzi weren't played by him, but his brother, as he was whizzing about checking tournament games of BM37k). Here's set up of the forces in progress...

Our game was pretty brutal, Oscar eradicating my Executioners before they'd really done anything, whilst I hosed biohazardous plasma liberally over his fishies. We were playing a "Recover Resources" mission, and Oscar was pretty unlucky with his rolls, lots of Aquans dying to radiation leaks (reducing a Barracuda and a Snapper to 0CP). We both managed to snake-eyes crit a Destroyer each, and Oscar managed a box-car crit on my other destroyer immediately afterwards! However, as it's my blog, here's Oscar's Stingray exploding and critting it's neighbour fo good measure (taking out its weapon systems as it did so....);

We did manage to get a look around the tournaments, other demo games and the trade show, where a few things caught our eye. The first of these were the 15mm figures by Ground Zero Games, which looked quite nice and are pretty reasonably priced - a starter set weighing in at £36 at containing between 60-80 figures plus support stuff - I bought a set of "crusties", some District-9 inspired aliens wich contained 66 figures plus 4 armoured suits very similar to that in the movie - you can see them in the centre of the first picture below. Here's some shots of their stand (I'll do a separate blog entry on the figures I bought another time I think).

As well as the figures are various vehicles at varying tech levels...

Some of the models are not the most refined, but in general they look pretty good, and there are some nice designs in there. They're pretty reasonable, so might be an option in the future - we'll have to see what Spartan come up with for the 15mm Planetfall line to see if there's any mileage here - I imagine some of the stuff will be good as scenary etc even if not for general play use....time will tell!

GZG also do some ships - most of these I've seen online before and not been terribly inspired by, but there are a couple of designs that are quite nice, especially in the civilian line...again, for scenarios and campaigns these could well find a way into our systems....

For me, most of these designs are OK - these being some of the better ones from my POV, but don't really stack up to the FSA ships I'm used to. Of course, having said that, most of the fighters/bombers/interceptors we have are already from these lines!

The civilian lines, however, I quite like - they're what I imagine civvy ships of the future would be like - very functional, no frills where unnecessary. Look at modern day cargo ships, fishermen etc - none of them is going to win the "pretty design" or "cool ship" of the year award!

These ships I do like, however...they look mean!

I also really liked the way GZG had the free figure box (as you can see above) - 15mm figures that failed QC for one reason or another (though no by much, judging by the ones I got), help yourself to try the range. It's a nice departure fom the likes of GW, and shows how business in our industry (IMO) should be done - working WITH your customers, not seeing them as something to be raped of money and left for dead.

Another stand that caught our eye was that of Dark Realm Miniatures - particularly this rather gorgeous drop ship (which is about FSA cruiser size...). Turns out to be from their 6mm Seeds of War game, and it has some interesting minis and scenary.

Some interesting litle ships here, and at reasonable prices - certainly something to bear in mind to add some variety if needed into some future campaigns...

We were hoping to see some demo games of Dropzone Commander, but sadl there didn't seem to be anyone playing it there, but we did find a stand in the trade are selling 2-player starter sets at a discount...that's one Christmas present sorted!

After this, we did a last round of the trade show to finally find some FSA minis...sadly there were only a few at one stand, residing in the "Now half price" bucket, which was a bit sad. On the other hand, it meant Oscar and I both got new Heavy cruisers for less than a fiver each :-).

Overall, had a good weekend, was a great opportunity to meet some of the FSA community in the flesh, and introduce (in many cases, re-introduce) FSA to the gaming community. Now, when's the next show???