Wednesday, July 11, 2007

A Wargamers' Progress

It was about 1985.

I was of about school-leaving/university beginning age.

Since about 1982, I’d been a fan of Military Modelling Magazine and was buying it regularly. I’d even gotten my toes a little wet by buying (with an IRC) by mail order my first order of RSM Miniatures (Mounted General, Mounted Officer, four fusiliers marching, two “Lorraine Grenadiers” Marching, an Officer a Highland piper and a woodlands Indian) at ruinous expense.

I had discovered my local Mind Games store in town. Mind Games sells to this day all sorts of SF, Fantasy and Historical games, mags, RPSs, chess-sets, Cleudo box sets, you name it. They were also the only stockist for White Dwarf Magazine and GW/Citadels’ products.

By the time White Dwarf had hit the mid 130 issues, I was thinking, wow, could things be any better? There were the earlier amazing issues – ohh – say, 30 to 100 with Dr Who, Judge Dredd, Paranoia, Call of Cthulhu, and too many other brilliant things to mention. Even by 135 or so we were getting neat stuff like Mad Max – err – GorkaMorka, but what really got me going was the Brettonnians.

Beautiful models and great for the 100 Years’ War, too! I’ve still got stacks of them either part or fully painted. I’m sure I painted more men at arms than Knights as I could never get the hang of painting all that heraldry.

Weren't the figures terrific though? The foot knights, the archers (one giving the "two-fingered" salute), the arbalastiers, the gunners and their groovy guns, the cool and (importantly) easy to paint men at arms. I want more and constantly haynt eBay, looking, looking...

At about this time too I also came across “The Courier” a wonderful American magazine which happened to be running a nice little series of articles on the French and Indian War that year. Having read the “Action at La Belle Famille” article and pored over the grainy black-and-white photography, I was lost.


Bluebear Jeff said...

Yes, the Brettonnians had some wonderful figures (I confess to having a bunch myself) . . . but they didn't wear tricorns (and your 18th century French do).

-- Jeff

Bloggerator said...

What was the tipping point that took you from interested observer to active participant, Jeff?



PS, I'll swap you some Prussian Fusiliers (Advancing) for your Bretonnians! Pax Britannia castings, not the current RSMs...

Fitz-Badger said...

I have some Brettonians, too (the older ones, not the new larger ones). I have one unit of squires with bows, they will likely be drafted into the service of the Duchy of Grand Thidwick. Longbowmen aren't that out of place if the stories about Ben Franklin proposing longbownmen for the early U.S. armey are true. Anyway, if it's fun who cares? :-)