A review of the year shows that both the number of games played and the painted figure output were down to the lowest point since I returned to the area ten years ago.
I only managed to play 22 games this year. Of these nine were WSS, five Ancients using Hail Caesar, three Napoleonic, two each of Wars of the Roses, SYW & The Great War.
This didn't include one of my personal highlights of the year which was the Ramillies game in March where players from the Northwest & Northeast braved the heavy snows and came along to the club. the game was played in great spirit and was a real and genuine pleasure to host and umpire. So much so that I am inspired to do it again this year post the Six Nations. Stay tuned.
Of the games I did play a number were with rulesets that I was either unfamiliar with or uncomfortable with. Hail Caesar looks to be the set that a number of players favour for the ancient period and so I guess I'll have to press on and get to like them. Black Powder for the SYW is not a ruleset that I like but then I'm in the minority there. I also, personally, find it slightly disturbing the way that Warlord Games have managed to infiltrate the same core rules into just about every period of the hobby at the club. For me that diminishes the individuality of different periods and marginalises some of the technicalities that differentiate epochs of history. Just a personal view.
The biggest disappointment with rules is that, given the importance of next year, we still don't have a consensus on a ruleset for the Great War. This has to be a priority for 2014 in order to commemorate the occasion.
Figure painting output was down significantly with only 450 points worth of new material painted. taking foot at 1 point, horse at 2 and gun and crew for 5 this is not good. The vast majority of the new figures were for the 15mm Austrian Napoleonic collection which is finally finished. Other new figures were for the WSS & GNW although no where near as many as I would like.
This low output is tempered somewhat by the fact that I did rebase 20 battalions for these two periods.
On the upside I think my painting technique has improved this year and the current crop of 28mm figures rank amongst my best work. What I did learn is that painting Front Rank figures is easy compared to the latest figures from Paul Hicks (but I love both of the two different styles). Also, using thin layers of paint isn't as difficult as I thought.
So ends a disappointing year made all the worse for the passing of Don Featherstone, a man who truly made his mark on the hobby.