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Thursday, 19 November 2015

Warfare 2015: showtime!

I don't get to many wargames shows - too many weekends get taken up by work, family, etc - but I made an exception for the Warfare show in Reading UK last weekend. That's because it was our first time demo-ing "Bloody Big BATTLES!" at a major show. What a blast! Definitely the High Quality Gaming Experience (TM).

Our Oxford team was there both days, running our demo/participation Franco-Prussian War battle, St Quentin. Altogether we entertained about a dozen participants and many more interested spectators. Not only that, but Pat and Malc of the host club, Wargames Association of Reading, were also running a beautifully conceived and executed Balaclava BBB game, which was extremely popular and in constant and raucous action. Balaclava AAR and photos are in the BBB Yahoo group thanks to Malc. I also posted AARs of the two St Quentin games on the BBB Yahoo group, as well as a thankyou to everyone who made it such a great weekend.


I was really overwhelmed by the scale of the positive reaction to BBB. Caliver Books, the main UK outlet for BBB, had a stand at Warfare and sold out early on the first day.  (I'd warned them we would probably be sending customers their way, but apparently they sold a load at Crisis in Antwerp the week before as well.) Fortunately they were expecting a new shipment to arrive on Sunday. Anyway, as I was saying, lots and lots of really positive reaction, both from people who had never seen the game before and from the pleasantly surprising number of players who are already having great fun with BBB. I spent so much time talking with so many good guys that I didn't get a chance to see the rest of the show.

One important consequence: in response to popular demand, we are now seriously planning to run a BBB event in Oxford some time in 2016. Probably a Sunday (dates yet to be discussed), probably 10 or 12 historical battles to accommodate up to 50 or so players, most likely a mix of major battles like Koniggratz or Solferino and smaller 90-minute games. If you're interested in keeping informed, join or at least monitor the BBB Yahoo group.

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Also just for the record I should note a couple of recent club games. Monday just gone I ran the "Bzura Breakout" WWII KGC game again, as it was minimum effort. It turned out to be as mobile and exciting as hoped. And two weeks before that I played in Mark's excellent BBB game of Isted (1850) from the First Scheswig-Holstein War. I can't do it justice with a full AAR but the scenario and a couple of photos are in Flickr.

As I was on the winning side at Isted, and played in the second (drawn) game at Warfare, my running total for the year, excluding games I refereed rather than played in, is now:

Games played to conclusion - 29.
Won - 13.
Drawn - 6.
Lost - 10.