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As L'Art de la Guerre continues it's inexorable advance in popularity right across the world (it's set to be the biggest competition at the upcoming "The Worlds" in Belgium later this month, with almost 50% more players, drawn from more countries than any other ruleset on offer there), the opportunity to take part in an overseas holiday competition was inevitably going to come around sooner rather than later - and where better do do so than the home of the rules, France, and an event held in one of the most amazing wargaming spaces imaginable - the French Tank Museum in Saumur in the stunning Loire Valley.
Another summer trip, this time a guided tour of the Normandy beaches including a stopoff in Portsmouth to see Southwick House where the invasion was planned and where the decision to "go" was taken.
Here are the photos:
Just a random game from the club - buying those buildings sure is addictive...
In July I just happened to be on holiday and staying in Cheltenham when the RAF Fairford Royal International Air Tattoo took place... and so a visit to it somehow snuck onto the week's agenda...
Here are some of the photos and videos from Europe's (or possibly the worlds) best military Airshow.
Given the summer, painting and writing up match reports have taken a bit of a back seat to sitting in the garden and drinking imported session IPA whilst grilling chunks of chicken on the bbq.
However, in the midst of all of this excitement, a Malifaux monster, in the shape of the Slate Ridge Mauler has taken to the tabletop.
Mounted on a 50mm round base and pinned to a chip of actual slate (which was surprisingly easy to drill) he and his 4 arms are ready to appear sporadically when I next get in a game and want to try out what is often regarded as an under powered but potentially situationally useful model.
The Musée des Blindés tank museum in the Loire Valley town of Saumur is one of the world's largest tank museums - and I managed to take a load of photos there a couple of weeks ago!
ADLG has reinvigorated a whole host of previously little-seen armies and figures, and next up on the rehabilitation trail are some Two Dragons Normans (and dubiously Viking-esque Almughavar morphs) who take part as a Feudal Spanish army in 5 games of 300 point large-army L'Art de la Guerre 15mm action at the 2016 BHGS Challenge.
Marvel at how these brave Norman-esque warriors emerge blinking into the light after so many years with flocked (rather than more modern grass tufted) bases.
Leighton Buzzard is not normally associated with Piracy on the high seas, nor is it twinned with any exotic ex-Colonial cities from far flung continents (although being twinned with a town called Titisee is admittedly vaguely amusing).
Here are some shots of e4M's super-cheap plastic Mechs, sized as 28mm stormtroopers but great as monster Mechs for 6mm. They are painted but not quite finished.
Recently, with all sorts of new rule systems coming onto the market and perking up player interest it appears that the UK Ancients competition circuit has been undergoing a bit of a renaissance (geddit?).
Rather than just rely on gut feel, I've pulled together some stats for the rulesets covered in the main "BHGS" series of events (edit 2.6.16 plus the DBA circuit), as these are (I believe) the rulesets that have most takeup in competitions right now. This does unashamedly mean the focus is on mostly 15mm events - so all of the various iterations of WAB and it's derivatives are not covered, but unless I'm missing something I don't believe any of those sets are supporting the same sorts of numbers of players or events throughout the year as the ones I looked at.
The data I did use was collated from several sources - the current BHGS rankings for FoGAM and L'Art de la Guerre, plus the DBMM rankings page (edit 2.6.16 plus the UK DBA rankings) and finally John Graham Leigh's DBM results page, all to look at how many people are playing each system in competitions across the UK.
The main (and I believe fairly safe) assumption is that these sets of rankings & results capture pretty much all of the competitive games played in the past 12 months in the UK across these 5 systems. I also then shared this with the veritable king of stats analysis in UK gaming, Martin from Vexillia who did some validation and additional analysis (thanks Martin!)
What I looked at was numbers of players, number and size of events, and then also how much does each set appear to depend on a "core" of very active players, and finally also how long is the "tail" of occasional players in each ruleset.
So, what's the state of play?
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