Monday, 18 November 2013


It seems only fair that having moaned about the downside of Shows in a previous piece I should offer an after action report on my experience at Reading Warfare. It’s an eclectic mix – neither balanced nor unbiased – that no doubt says more about me than the show. But hey, its my blog
First I should say thank you to the organisers. I appreciate that pulling one of these things together takes a lot of commitment. I alluded  earlier to the accusation ‘If you think you can do better....’ well, I couldn’t nor would I want to. You have my admiration. It goes without saying that the good cause – Parkinson’s UK – has more than just admiration.

Second, the catering at the ‘bar’ was every bit as grim as I had anticipated.  My cup of Nescafe was not enhanced by the addition of two micro pots of long life chemical mix and the byzantine till arrangement (I wont go into detail) was not one of best practice. The staff in attendance were a testimony to modern youth.
For the first time in a long while I was able to access a bring and buy stall. I didn’t bring or buy anything as the prices seemed to be rather optimistic/unrealistic depending on your point of view. I thought it was meant to be a jumble sale and I would be reluctant to spend large sums of money on items here. Isn’t that what eBay is for?

Foresight junior said to me before we reached them ‘I like the demonstration games the best’. I’m not sure why some people do them.  There is a sliding scale of enthusiastic shouting to the all too prevalent morose silence. If the demo involves two introspective 50 somethings playing a game without talking then this is the show for you. It’s hardly inspiring. I went up to one table (and I’m not making this up) and asked which battle was being played. I got a one word answer and the demonstrator promptly walked off. Now there may have been many different reasons why he would do this – perhaps he was going to be sick after having had a cup of coffee – but if someone shows interest then surely thats the point of going to all the trouble of setting everything up. But it was not unique – lots of clubs do it. If someone comes and stands by your table then presumably they have a passing interest in talking to someone even if its just to say ‘nice figures’ or some such. I did laugh though.
The traders were as ever the most entertaining part. ‘Dont buy these now’ one told me. ‘There’s a 20% discount in December’. And I would have bought them there and then! The saga figures looked nice – its the LBM shields that sell them really. A masterpiece of rebranding by Gripping Beast, I bought a pack and found the same figures that I bought about 7 years ago. And why do the Vallejo displays never have Iraqi sand or Light Grey on them. You’d think traders would bring extra. And does anyone else think that Warlord are expensive?

We were there for an hour and a half and the afternoon cost me about £100 all in. We came away with products from Perry, Artizan, GB, Victrix, Rendra and Vallejo. Driving home through a grey and gridlocked Reading listening to England lose at rugby I vowed never again. But I said that last year and the year before that........

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