Friday, July 18, 2008

Why I love miniatures games

I was going through some old files on an old hard drive today and came across this picture:

That's a shot from a game of Baptism of Fire, a WWII skirmish game. My trusty Russian Naval Infantry is just entering the board and heading towards that shelled house beyond the trees. I love the composition of this shot. It conjures up in me the excitement that comes at the beginning of every miniatures game I play, that "what's going to happen" feeling of anticipation.

It also demonstrates ably the supreme aesthetic appeal of a good set-up. It takes time and a little bit of cash, sure, but the payoff for making the effort to produce a good-looking set of terrain is a one hundred-fold return. To me, it beats the best computer game graphics, the slickest Hollywood movie, and even the good ol' imagination, of which I'm usually an ardent supporter. I really do hope new generations of gamers keep taking the time to break out their paint, glue, Xacto blades, and flocking and put together games that would put my own layout to shame.

(In case you're wondering, I believe I lost that game, although it was a close one. My flamethrower OT-34 [not pictured] almost managed to burn that house down while it was still full of Germans, but it got taken out by a Pak 40 anti-tank gun.)

(That's the same modular terrain you can see in action in my Fantasy Warriors battle reports. I eventually sold it and invested in some Hexon II terrain, which I'm hoping to premiere some time this summer. Pics will follow, of course.)

(Lastly, that picture was taken in my old dining room. Dang, I miss that apartment. Moving from a two bedroom to a one bedroom really cramps your style when you're looking for space to play, you know?)

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