So it's the end of 2019 and the dawn of the Roaring 20's...my son's off at a Hogmanay party with a 1920's fancy dress theme to mark the occasion. I can't help thinking that the last '20s decade brought us financial collapse and the early stirrings of fascism...oh dear...
It's obligatory to post a recap of the year so here goes with a slightly rambling view of 2019.
The blog continues with 45 posts in 2019 (4 more than in 2018) which surprised me...I didn't think I'd posted as much as that. Views and followers continue to grow although these are modest compared to lots of blogs out there. To be fair I've never really chased hits so this doesn't worry me too much and I suspect some of the views are randomly generated by bots but that's fine. By a huge margin the posts that get the most interest are anything to do with boardgames...these seem to attract a much, much larger number of views for some reason
Many thanks to everyone who continues to pop by and to comment.
Gaming this year has really settled on 3 regular places. I haven't managed to get to the Guildford club at all this year. The start times make it a bit of a stressful rush to get there in time to nab a table and get set up. Instead I am lucky enough to have mix of great friends who host games (including Eric the Shed) and it's great to have a lot of variety in the type of games I get to play.
Games have included a lot of Black Powder at the Shed...despite some flaws it's still (I think) one of the best systems for an evenings gaming: everyone understands the rules, it's easy for newcomers to pick up and games generally come to a sensible conclusion in a reasonable time.
I've also played several games of Cruel Seas...I got the starter set last xmas and added a few extra boats to the collection. It's an ok system I think...good for a multi-player evenings game but I think for a 2 player game I'd still go with Action Stations by David Manley
I also put together 2 Jacobite period armies from the Peter Dennis Paper Soldier books and these saw quite a bit of action, either using Black Powder or the rules that come with the books. I'm usually rubbish at seeing a project through to a conclusion so I was pretty chuffed to have managed to get both the Cruel Seas boats and the Paper Soldiers actually on the table and in action.
In the second half of the year I have been busily painting AWI armies which I think will be used with Rebels and Patriots from Osprey Games. Again my work rate has been surprisingly high (for me) and it looks like these will see some action in early 2020.
I bought the first of these back in the summer at the Valhalla show in Surrey/Hants and also bought some Japanese WW2 figures for a Chain of Command project. These have languished in their box, maturing nicely and hopefully I'll get started on these soon but of course that would distract me from the AWI project!
I've also played a lot of boardgames... some good, some ok and some that really made my brain hurt! I think I've finally realised that my days of playing marathon sessions of games that go on for hours and hours with hundred of counters or tokens to set up (yes GMT games...I'm looking at you!) are over. I need something that can be fitted into an evening and is relatively easy to pick up. Without doubt the game I've played most has been Terraforming Mars...and absolutely brilliant game with what seems like an infinite variety of ways to approach the game. Honourable mentions too for Star Trek Ascendancy, Jaws, Twilight Struggle and Undaunted Normandy which have all seen a lot of play. I even managed to beat my son at Twilight Struggle for the 1st time!!!
I didn't get to many wargames shows this year...normally I manage to fit in at least 4 shows in and around the South East but this year I only made it to Salute and a brief pop in to Valhalla. In some cases (like Colours) this was because I was busy but I also couldn't work up the enthusiasm for some of the others. Perhaps this year I'll be more motivated.
I also found my online patterns have shifted a bit as well. I spend a lot less time looking at forums such as TMP and Lead Adventure and more checking out blogs and Facebook groups. TMP in particular is a real shadow of it's former self with a lot less activity than a couple of years ago and the actual content is of little interest (or just annoys me!). Facebook is increasingly a really good resource for fans of particular games systems to share photos, information and documents. FB is by no means perfect...there's a lot of rubbish to wade through to find the odd nugget but it does seem to have taken a place as the successor of things like Yahoo groups
So all in all a good years worth of gaming with lots of variety, fun games and good friends...can't complain! I'll do another post in a few days with ideas ( I would call them 'plans' but that makes me sound too organised) for 2020. I hope everyone has a great Hogmanay and I'll see you on the other side