With the club show coming up, I was speaking to one of the committee and he mentioned that this year we were short of participation/demo games. It didn’t take me much time to offer to put one on, with thoughts of large epic battles in my head, worthy of The Hoodling’s Hole himself! There was only ever one game I would be running, my beloved fantasy – 8th edition but not quite realising what i’d set myself up for, I then had to think about everything else that doing this would entail! This serious of posts will cover the run up to the show and the preparation.
Game Size and accomplices
With the game decided I started to look at what I could realistically put on, if using just my own models. With 10 armies in various states, the potential was a lot. However, I had to set myself some parameters for the models and game. This basically boiled down to 2 things
- The armies fielded, must be 100% painted
- They should draw the eye of a spectator
The first is self explanatory. For the 2nd, I wanted to field large blocks of troops and some centre piece models too (such as monsters). This meant that for the game purposes, it was about the story and visual spectacle, not about winning. There would be no small units of chaff in this game (if present, they’d be wielded in one unit). Hordes and buses would be the name of the game!
With these stipulations in place, the first army that would be fielded would be the Dwarves. They are probably my largest and more importantly, most painted army. A quick tally of them put the painted items in the region of 8,000 points. A not inconsiderable tally (especially as the average game has 2.5k per player). This army also contained 6 hordes of at least 40 troops in each and another 4 units of at least 20 troops, not to mention various flyers and artillery pieces. I also had a giant sized Dwarf Golem that I used for Kings of War, that I thought would be good to use too (more on that later).
It was at this point that I managed to draft in some help for the game, in the form of Greg, one of my regular fantasy opponents and Matt (one of my DnD group and former 8th player). With Greg, came the option of also using two of his armies that were mostly painted: Empire or Skaven. This opened up the options, as I owe barely any skaven and my Empire army is mainly unbuilt in boxes! So we had a choice to make, did we run good vs evil (or Dwarf vs Skaven and Beastmen) or Good vs Good?
At this point dear reader, I revert back to my 2 earlier points. Although my beasts are quite advanced in being fully painted, they aren’t one of my largest armies and there are a few elements that are not yet painted, including most of the minotaurs, something that I would want to field. Greg would also have to step up with some of the Skaven too. Not something that couldn’t be done, however, there were other painting considerations that would have to come first (namely scenery) and although both armies contained some big gribblies, it is at this point I refer back to no.2, drawing the eye of the spectator. I had some thoughts on that….Lizards!
Out of all my armies, one of the smallest is my Lizardmen. It is also one where a good chunk lacks paint! However, the elements that are finished are primarily bright coloured monsters and monstrous infantry. What better way than to catch the eye! Knowing that these HAD to be fielded, pretty much nailed the Good vs Bad on the head. This meant that they would be allied with Greg’s Empire troops. Between them, it provided a good number of troops and larger models. However it still meant that the force was around 2.5-3k under the dwarven army. This gave us a number of options. Did we field several smaller forces, perhaps some Bretonnians, High Elves and Wood Elves? or just one further army? In the end I decided to go with Wood Elves, mainly on the premise that it had a good mix of unit types and monsters and also because after the Dwarves, it is my most painted army (running around 5-6k of completed models).
So with the armies selected, club mates drafted in and some thoughts in my head of a number of scenarios, the next thing was to draw up a list of things we needed to complete. This was mainly around:
- What scenery did we have (quite a lot).
- What needed to be painted (quite a bit).
- Did we have enough movement trays (no!).
- Did any of the models need work on them (probably)
- Would the club lend us battle mats (yes)
- Did I need to buy anything else (almost definitely but not at any significant cost).
Each of the above were then split into subsections to make the tasks more manageable and the countdown to the show began!
In the next post, i’ll cover the WIP scenario chosen and progress already made.