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Taking the Pith

IMP 2011 - Sunday July 17th - Sheffield

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Quote Originally Posted by Undave View Post
"Come to Irregular Miniature Paintfest, it isn't actually that bad!"

Not the best slogan in the world but after the mounting sense of trepidation I felt wandering round after I first arrived and seeing table after table of teeny 6mm armies I started off feeling rather unimpressed. Now I know 6mm has it's place and as a scale it allows you to field some very impressively large armies but to me anything under 15mm (and that's pushing it) is a counter not a miniature. I knew beforehand that the event was going to be sponsored by Baccus who do nothing but extremely miniature miniatures (though they do them very well) but I wasn't quite prepared for the fact that, at first glance, there wouldn't be much else. The seminar schedule started with a Q&A with Alessio Cavatorre, who, after his recent rules for Mantic, I haven't been particularly impressed with. This was followed by a seminar by Baccus which I wasn't interested in, another by Andy from Heresy and lastly a talk with 6D6, a company doing roleplaying. Mike McVey was also supposed to be there but he didn't turn up (again).
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The battle of Towton
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Towton as seen from a hot air balloon
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Zulus Sir! Bajillions of em!
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Yet another 6mm game...

As eleven o' clock rolled up and I had nothing better to do I decided to go and see what Alessio had to say for himself. It's probably a good thing I did go as it ended up being just Alessio, myself and another guy who I've seen at meet-ups but never got the name of. As it turned out however we all had a rather pleasant little chat about rules, companies and the mini business in general and Mr. Cav has gone up greatly in my estimation as a result. Apparently he agreed with me and the Mantic rules were written like "Warhammer light" because that's exactly what Mantic asked for. The new sci-fi set, which he has more sway over, will eventually have a few more hooks and foibles to give it more of a feeling of being a system in it's own right. To be honest it sounds like quite an interesting background premise with a corporate human empire agressively colonising systems and the original inhabitants fighting back. Almost like the British Empire in space. We also had a very amusing conversation about the Perry brother's convention of playing large games whilst sitting on the floor underneath their gaming table and using umpires to move their troops around. They are only allowed to view the table using a "Perryscope" giving them a general's eye-view of the field. I think that's an inspired idea and I'll certainly be giving it a go at some point.

During the break I took the opportunity to nip up to Wargames Emporium in Orchard Square. It's just as I remember it from ten years ago, the same place, the same stuff and even the same guy so it brought back some fond memories. I picked up a box of Studio's plastic nazi zombies. You can never have enough nazi zombies... Speaking of which I got a nice little game of Savage Worlds in with one of the Irregs. Sorry guys I can never remember which of you is which in real life.
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Savage Worlds with a rather spiffy table from Urban Construct

The 6d6 talk and Heresy Andy's seminar got switched round in the end but it was OK because he dragged Kev from Hasslefree along with him and put on another entertaining talk about the realities of the sculpting business, the mechanics of sculpting itself and the lamenting of dragons.

Actual painting was rather thin on the ground, aside from the Golden Imp and the speed paint there was only a stand put on by Baccus giving tips on how to paint teeny people and a table run by a local commission painting group who came down to show their efforts. The speed painting comp was quite popular and thankfully they did have enough nazi zombies. There were some very fine entries in the main competition with Paul Cox (Prophaniti) taking first in single figure, the speed paint and grabbing the best in show trophy. I somehow managed to get the first place medal in the large scale category ahead of two PB heavyweights Apa and Darkmessiah, you woz robbed guys, seriously. I'm pretty sure Ulfgrimr's kids picked up best implings as well.

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As a first attempt to break into "the big time" it actually went pretty well from my end. Hopefully next year there will be a bit more painting and a greater variety of games and traders but it was a fine start and hopefully it'll continue to grow in the years to come.

"Come to Irregular Miniature Paintfest, it was pretty good actually!"
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  1. Ulfgrimr's Avatar
    Nice write up Undave and thanks to Dystartes, Warhammergrimmace and those who organised the event as well as the sponsors. Although 6mm is definately not my thing I thought they looked very very impressive ranked up on the huge tables and we also enjoyed the Ankh Morpork participation game .

    The kids did well with their painting and have both come on leaps and bounds since last year so thanks for the mention and thanks for taking us to Wargames Emporium.