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Monday, 23 March 2015

Nurturing the wargamers of the future

Occasionally we get to babysit a 7-year-old girl and a 3-year-old boy. Each time they visit, the eager cry goes up: "Please can we play in the War Room?" Many happy hours are spent setting up terrain and pushing tanks and soldiers around.

This time was a first. I bought a couple of the relatively easy-to-assemble Armourfast kits, and the kids each built their first Panther (with a little grown-up assistance).
Panther AUSF G
The games so far tend to be of the "no-rules" variety. There are goodies and baddies and sound effects, but none of the conventional apparatus of dice, tape measures etc.

Actually there is one rule: as soon as a tank gets broken, the game stops. We have lost a few gun barrels this way. But my loyal plastic and lead soldiers are willing to accept some casualties as they know that it is in a good cause. I'm sure it won't be long before the kids graduate to playing some actual wargames with me. I anticipate I will lose these fairly consistently for a while, but again, if it gets them interested in the games then it will be a price worth paying ...

The horrors of war
An idyllic scene