Category Archives: Conventions

Convention reports & photo-essays.

Finally, Trumpeter Salute 2015 Photos!

Realized a few days ago that I hadn’t even taken my photographs from the Trumpeter Salute 2015 wargame show off the camera, never mind looking at them and choosing which ones to publish. This for a show that was at the end of March, three weeks ago and counting!

The whole collection is over on Flickr, as usual. Here’s a couple of highlights.

Whippet Tank vs Zombies

We started off with “Russian Civil War + Zombies” or “The Undead Are The Ultimate Proletariat”, which was fun and silly even if All Things Zombie isn’t my favourite set of rules. I got to blunder around in this great papercraft Whippet tanks, attracting zombies just by leaving the engine idling (thing is LOUD!) and then running them over or machinegunning them. Good fun!

Missiles Away!

Saturday morning and afternoon were both full of Tomcats, MIGs, and other Cold War planes as we ran two sessions of Air War C21, which is a fast, fluid, great set of rules. Tomcats are scary aircraft.

Actual Russian Civil War

Saturday evening I ran my actual Russian Civil War game for four players. I had two signed up as “spares” and had to turn a seventh away, which is always disappointing but it beats having nobody show up for your games! (which I have had happen at GottaCon here in Victoria…) It was a closely fought battle but the Reds succeeded in keeping the Whites out of the village in the end.

Crash and Splash

Sunday at Trumpeter is the long single session, so we get the “big” games out. I participated in the gloriously goofy Lego junkyard race game, with half of the other players under 14. The red-and-yellow pointy looking vehicle at the very back of the photo above is my racing machine. Good fun, I can’t even recall who won, to be honest!

Somewhere near Kursk

Next table over was Thomas’ absolutely spectacular Kursk WW2 game in 20mm, hordes of Russians trying to push the Germans out of the Motherland. I spent a lot of time between my racing turns gawking at this game.

Already looking forward to Trumpeter Salute 2016. I might bring Russian Civil War back, or I might go back to my pulp gaming and run some sort of pulp adventure game. We shall see!

Thanks again to Jon for the ride over, Martin for the hospitality, and the Trumpeter Salute club for putting on another amazing weekend.

Martin’s Photos From Trumpeter Salute

My own photos from the Trumpeter Salute show over in Vancouver at the end of March are still unsorted and unedited, but Martin has gotten his photos uploaded to Flickr, so I’ll happily show them off until I get my own photos sorted out!

He’s got all of his Trumpter Salute 2015 photos in an album, if you want to see all 45 from the weekend.

We did Russian Civil War + Zombies using the All Things Zombies rules on Friday evening, but Martin didn’t have his camera with him. I’ve got some photos of that session – running over zombies with a light tank was a lot of fun…

We did modern air warfare Saturday morning and afternoon, using Martin’s great papercraft jet fighter models.

Air War C:21 - Top Gun

Air War C:21 - Gulf of Sidra Incident

Air War C:21 - Gulf of Sidra Incident

Saturday evening was my Russian Civil War game using Chain of Command/Mud & Blood rules. Four players total, two Red & two White, each side running a platoon plus supporting troops. It ended in a narrow Red victory but was close several times!

Chain of Command - Comrades & Cossacks

Chain of Command - Comrades & Cossacks

Sunday I played in a LEGO Junkyard Race which was a ton of fun; Martin was able to get into Thomas’ spectacular Battle of Kursk WW2 game, with an amazing table filled with great models.

Battlegroup Kursk - First Charge at Hill 252.2

Battlegroup Kursk - First Charge at Hill 252.2

I’ll get my own Trumpeter Salute photos sorted out over the next couple of days and posted here!

Back from Trumpeter Salute 2015

Just got back this evening from a fantastic weekend over in Vancouver for the Trumpeter Salute 2015 convention. Lots of great games, I got 2nd Place Best in Show for the Saturday evening time slot for my Chain of Command-powered Russian Civil War game, which was awesome.

Didn’t do a lot of shopping, just a couple of Osprey books related to the RCW and a couple of small packs of figures – except for the 40+ fully painted and based WW1 Turks I bought from a friend who has moved over to Vancouver and is downsizing his figure collection! He gave me a fantastic deal on them, too, and I’ll get some photos up shortly. I’ve had a group of British infantry in tropical kit for several years now that are terribly underutilized due to a lack of a proper opponent for them, so the Turks will provide that. I’m sure they’ll also appear in various pulp games, too.

Photos and a proper writeup in a day or three, tonight I need sleep!

Another GottaCon Gone

So GottaCon 2015 was last weekend; I managed to be at the whole convention, and it (mostly) good.

Friday night I ran a Pulp Alley game. The non-tournament miniatures games at GottaCon are perpetually under-promoted, under-supported, and (unsurprisingly) under-attended. The convention doesn’t even have assigned tables for non-tournament gaming, you can just set up whereever the tournament folks aren’t using, basically.

Kind of hard to promote a game to people when you aren’t even sure where in a large venue (Victoria Convention Centre) you’ll be running your game…

I got a grand total of one player for PA, but we still had a good game. His team of Intrepid Reporters completely and utterly beat my skulking group of Foreign Cultists, principally by being significantly more competent than them at the gathering of clues!

Saturday daytime and Sunday daytime I participated in the Blood Bowl tournament with my crocodiles (Lizardmen). Won two games out of five, tied one, had a great time in all five games. Got to face off against goblins (twice), Skaven, Vampires and Norse – these last three were all new teams to face for me and made for interesting games. Both goblin games were full of the usual explosive high-risk stupid awesomeness you expect from Gobbos, the high point of that being a gob Bomber who fumbled a bomb at his feet and blew himself over, as well as every single other player in the surrounding squares, two more goblins and three crocs!

The Handbag Factory – my crocodile’s amazing habit of getting themselves killed or maimed despite being among the most heavily armoured players available in BB – was in full operation. I lost Sauri every game, and even my Krox once. Thankfully it was a resurrection tournament, we started each game with exactly the same roster!

Saturday evening I ran a really good Russian Civil War game using the TFL Chain of Command rules. The defending Reds bloodied the White Cossacks good and hard, the high point being pulling off a series of close assaults on the White armoured car that ended in it being immobilized with both guns jammed in the centre of the hamlet, and the crew being bayoneted by the Red militia!

The VCC is quite a change in venue from the drafty and loud old Pearke’s Fieldhouse of previous GottaCons; it’s got a few issues of it’s own (no coffee before ten in the morning!) but being right downtown is convenient for more people than the out-of-the-way Pearkes Rec Centre. Mind you, I might be biased because it’s a ten to fifteen minute easy walk to the Convention Centre from my front door!

Looking forward to GottaCon 2016 next year, and in the much more immediate future, I need to start getting prepped for Trumpeter Salute 2015 at the end of March, just four weeks away!

Eight Days to GottaCon 2015!

Just over a week until our local convention, GottaCon 2015 starts! I’ve got a ticket already, and I’m doing something I’ve never done before, which is enter a tournament – namely the Blood Bowl tourney with my Crocs. The BB Tourney is morning & afternoon both Saturday & Sunday, so I have Friday evening and Saturday evening free from the rigours of having my ambulatory handbags pounded into the pitch by other teams.

Friday evening I’ve put in to run a Pulp Alley pulp adventure skirmish game. We really haven’t been doing much pulp gaming lately but PA is a nice system and easy to introduce people to.

Saturday evening I’ve put in to run a Chain of Command/Mud & Blood Russian Civil War game. This one is going to require the most prep this weekend and over next week, as I need a batch of new Quick Reference cards for CoC/M&B hybrid and some other gaming aids that I’ve been putting off, mostly because I’ve been distracted by Infinity recently.

I’ll run a fairly simple scenario, and my RCW project is at a nice mature point where it doesn’t really need any new scenery or figures to work as a good-looking convention game. That said, I’m thinking of bashing another Russian-flavoured building or two together after GottaCon to show off at Trumpeter Salute 2015 over in Vancouver at the end of March, which is always the high point of my personal gaming calendar each year.

The Year of Missing Conventions…

Victoria’s GottaCon is running this weekend, and as I’ve just flown back into town from a work assignment elsewhere in the province, I’m missing the entire thing! I’d go for Sunday, but having been away for five weeks I’ve got too many errands to run and non-gaming real life to catch up on.

Worse, it looks like I’m going to be on a short turnaround and leaving town yet again for another work assignment later in March, so there’s a very good chance I’ll miss Vancouver’s excellent Trumpeter Salute convention this year, for the first time in four years. I was looking forward to doing either pulp gaming or Russian Civil War, too. There’s a great group of gamers and friends over in Vancouver, many of whom I only see at the Trumpeter show.

That aside, I am painting again, both Blood Bowl teams and other stuff. I even took paints and figures with me on my recent field assignment, and got some decent painting done in the hotel room a couple of evenings. There’s a great group of random thugs from Pulp Figures on my desk right now, and I’m going to be stripping the paint off my Amazon BB team and re-doing them from scratch because about half of them had the primer go on sort of rough. It was an old can and I was spraying on a colder than normal day; it’s the first time in years of spray priming I’ve had that sort of finish!

Martin’s Trumpeter Salute 2013 Photos

Martin, an long-time friend who now lives in Vancouver, has been slowly posting his photos from the recent Trumpeter Salute gaming convention. As I mentioned in my writeup, he’s got a significantly fancier camera than mine, a fairly recent Canon DSLR, and he also hauled a lightweight tripod to the show, so many of his photos are really excellent.

Bolshevik forces laid out before setup. Cavalry & armoured car, then the Red Sailor platoon, then a mixed platoon of Red Militia and Red regulars.
The Red’s left flank as the game begins. The sailors on the extreme left have already started to advance.

Martin’s entire set from my Even Whites Bleed Red Russian Civil War game is over on Flickr. He’s also got some good photos from the War of 1812 game we both played on Sunday.

Trumpeter Salute 2013 After-Action Report

Corey has already done a nice report from the field on his gaming Friday evening, with some great photos, but here’s the rest of the weekend from my perspective!

We headed over from Victoria Friday afternoon, making good time and even seeing orca whales from the ferry, which I haven’t seen in years. Friday evening I spent flying in Rene’s perpetual World War One air combat game. I was doing fairly well until a Fokker Dr1 slipped in behind my Camel and blew me away in one savage burst!

Smoked Camel! Attempting to defend a Brisfit bomber, I let a Fokker Dr.1 triplane slip in behind me and he blows my engine clean off it’s mounts! Click to view larger over on Flickr.

Saturday turned out to be “Soviet Saturday” for me! I played the 30mm Dust Warfare skirmish system with Martin (an old friend) and his nephew Riley (this was Riley’s first gaming convention!) and another gamer in the morning, Weird War Germans vs Soviets over cardboard ruins Martin and I had been up until 2am assembling! It’s a fast system with some interesting features, and I want to have another bash at it at some point.

Saturday afternoon it was time for my big Russian Civil War game, with a full set of six players and loads of toys on the table – the White Russians had a SPAD XIII for air support and a field gun, while the Reds had a huge horde of cavalry, an armoured car and an armoured train! The cavalry did better this game than they have ever done before, completely shattering one wing of the defending White force by themselves.

Red forces advance! Sailors on either side of the train and armoured car, and a huge Red cavalry unit in front, heading towards the woods!

We rounded out Saturday evening with more Russian-German action, this time a WW2 Eastern Front scenario of a scratch Soviet force trying to hold off flanking attacks by German panzers. The 15mm figures and vehicles were really well done, and the terrain was elegant. It was a close fight, with the Germans losing a fair number of tanks to Soviet infantry but being positioned by the end of the game to push their untouched reinforced infantry units into the Russian villages with their remaining tanks in support.

Sunday Martin and I played Colin’s very nice and well-run War of 1812 scenario, a re-creation of the Battle of Crysler’s Farm 200 years after it actually happened. I played the invading Americans with two other gamers, and we got our asses absolutely handed to us by the British/Canadian/Mohawk defenders. Nevertheless, we apparently did better than the Americans had actually done historically – we did manage to drive one of the two big British infantry regiments from the field, but the effort wrecked my brigade, while Canadian militia light troops and British cannon drove the rest of the Americans off!

The Americans advance confidently toward the British-Canadian defenders. A few turns later they’d be lurching backward in a considerably less controlled fashion!

The rest of my twenty photos from Trumpeter Salute 2013 are over on my Flickr account. Corey and Martin (who both have more capable cameras than I do!) both took more great photos, so I’ll try to get some of those up here on the Warbard soon.

An evening in the air at Trumpeter Salute

Trumpeter Salute, the best annual miniatures convention on the west coast of Canada (sorry, Gottacon. Your relentless focus on GW turns me off) is happening again this weekend and I am again reminded of why I come to conventions: to be inspired.

This evening found both Brian and I playing aerial games, although he had considerably less success with his World War One 1/72 than I did in Leviathans, where I fairly handily destroyed a British aerial cruiser and destroyer. Our third member, recovering GW player Sean, was evolving. Or something involving tails. I didn’t ask.

And the spending has begun. I picked up some Saxons for my eventual Dux Brittanium, Sean some ECW/30 Years War and Brian also managed to spend a great deal of money. And we haven’t even hit Pulp Miniatures yet.

But now, pictures:

Leviathan cruiser on cruiser action
German World War One aircraft, 1/72 scale
British World War Two aircraft, 1/300 scale

More photos tomorrow, including of Brian’s RCW game.

GottaCon 2013 Photos

As is often the case at conventions, I got too involved in actually running or playing games to take many photos, but here’s a few pics from GottaCon 2013! These are all over on Flickr in my GottaCon 2013 Photoset.

Friday evening Corey ran and I played his homebrew fast-and-simple pulp racing game. You can read my Friday writeup for details, but basically it was Our Hero being chased by Evil Henchmen down a narrow, twisting country lane. Sheep, other traffic, skunks and an elephant got involved, and pretty much everyone crashed.

Friday night’s pulp racing game. Our Hero in the black car, two Henchpersons in the red & white cars, innocent but explosive NPC fuel truck getting in the way. Click to see larger over on Flickr.

Saturday morning I played a naval board game with a friend I hadn’t seen in at least four years. Great to reconnect with him again, and totally random – I just happened to wander by the board gaming area looking for something to do, because there was nothing in the miniatures or RPG area I was interested in!

Saturday afternoon was, of course, the first running of my Russian Civil War game. See Saturday’s writeup for a few more details; I’m also going to be posting a more detailed writeup on the two games later this week, because from identical starting positions involving identical forces over near-identical terrain, they wound up radically different games! I didn’t get any photos of the second game on Saturday evening, but the terrain involved changed only very slightly, so this overall table view will work for both games.

Looking down the length of my Russian Civil War table. Reds started on the long left edge; the Whites started in the hamlet ahead of the camera. As you can see, I’m a great believer in getting maximum table coverage, even if it’s just open fields with minimal effect on play! Click to see larger over on Flickr.

Sunday morning Corey and I wound up re-running his pulp racing game, with rules slightly tweaked after discussing Friday’s game. We have a draft system for vehicle damage, which is fun and adds to the tension and chaos.

Sunday morning’s racing game, with Our Hero in the blue-and-white truck getting clean away to see the elephant. Best not to ask why an elephant, really. Click to see full-sized over on Flickr.

Sunday afternoon I played a short demo game of Infinity. The system is interesting, but the terrain being used was fairly bland, so I didn’t bother taking photos.

So that was GottaCon 2013! Same again next year, only more of it – as I said in my Sunday writeup, I’m pretty sure we’ll both be running more games next year, just to get the kind of gaming we like represented!