Happy Tabletop Day!
March 30 2013 sees the first annual World Tabletop Day! It is the first anniversary of the first episode of the Youtube show “Tabletop” hosted by actor Wil Wheaton (we all know who he is), and encourages gamers worldwide to visit their local store, or host games at home, and promote the social aspect of their hobby.
To do our bit, I was with my good friend Greg at Tabletop Nation in Hockley, Essex in the UK. They were holding a massive event, with intro games of all shapes and sizes, from RPGs to Wargames to Board Games.
The first game we sampled was Avalon, a card game set in Arthurian England where five to ten players compete to quest for the holy grail in the name of the king or enact the evil machinations of Mordred. It’s a very interesting game, very simple to play, and an awesome way to alienate your friends if you accuse the wrong person. I turned up an evil character three games of four, while a young girl of about twelve managed to be Merlin (who the evil players can attempt to kill in the event they lose, in order to win) three times and survived all three games! Still… The game is definitely nifty, a great game to play in the quiet corner of your local pub, and definitely worth the $20/£15!
Following several games of that, during which accusations of being evil were thrown left, right and centre, I took a wander around the tables to see what else was on offer. Infinity, Malifaux, DUST Tactics, Dystopian Wars, Warmachine, and some games I’d never heard of. I steered clear of the X-Wing and Aeronautica Imperialis tables, as I already play both games, but both tables attracted quite a crowd! I was disappointed that Flames of War and Firestorm Armada were not represented among the demonstrations, but I suppose without people who know the game enough TO demonstrate, it gets a little difficult to put one on…
Next, I had a quick game of Space Hulk (who doesn’t love Space Hulk) while Greg wandered off to play Malifaux (I have a warband but don’t like the game mechanics). Following that, in which my Terminators all had catastrophically jamming Storm Bolters, I dove back into the fray trying to find another game, and avoid walking into or bouncing off the Beasts of War people (lovely guys, check them out!) While wandering, I found myself being drawn towards the stock, almost like a moth to a flame, and though I did not buy anything, the experience really opened my eyes to a hobby beyond GW – there are dozens of games with hundreds of players out there waiting for you to join them!
My next game was a quick demo of Dystopian Wars, a Naval based game set in a semi-Victorian era. Britain vs France, with me being the British (obviously!), though I found the rules rather complex, I soon got the hang of it and proved once again why the French Navy has stayed clear of the Royal Navy since Trafalgar! The models are gorgeous, cast in Resin, and decently affordable, too!
My eyes were then drawn back to the stock shelves, this time to Dropzone Commander, a 10mm scale wargame involving, as the name suggests, airborne assaults on an enemy stronghold. The models look interesting, but again, without a demonstrator, I don’t know whether it’s any good, which is a real shame!
That being said, when the day finally came to an end for us, after six(ish) hours of non-stop Tabletop stuff, we were both satisfied that it had been a rather successful event, and would like to offer kudos to the hard-working staff at TTN and the volunteers they called in to assist!
On a more personal note, this blog is now well into its second year and I have only managed fifty posts (this is post fifty, in fact!). That means I post roughly twice a month, but that will soon change! With opening the blog to guest writers, and the occasional video blog article (*gulp!*) I intend to be back to a rate of once a week (or more) by the end of April.
I would like to thank everyone for their continued support, almost eighteen months ago this blog started and here we are: fifty entries, over six thousand views, and a whole lot more hobby to go!
Until next time!