But that's not want to talk about today. I do want to talk about Salute. Firstly let me say I have not been able to get two of the ingredients that I would use to make my recipe of chocolate Fudge. So no free food from me this time out. It's a shame, but never mind.
But that's not what I want to talk about either. Yes I still want to talk about Salute. Or more accurately the games that are being hosted at the show. Here's my disclaimer! I have taken all the information from "Miniature Wargames Magazine" issue 360. Not all the information is complete and if you do your own version of this analysis you will also realise that I will have miscounted. I kept getting distracted and losing my place.
Going down the games list I was struck by how many Participation games there were and that's why I did the count up. UK readers will know that there are usually at least one wargames club within reach. So playing games at shows is not as important as, for example the states. In the US because of the size of the country (so I am informed) playing games at shows is more important. A quick count-up informed me there were about 34 demonstration games and 57 participation games. Nearly twice as many, which I found interesting. I, personally, find it easier to run a demonstration game than a participation game at shows. So I was expecting the results to be reversed with more demonstration games than participation games. Well as you already know I was wrong!
Which meant I should look a little closer at the results to determine why I was so wrong. So I broke it down by adding another parameter. How many of each type of games were run by wargames companies as opposed to clubs. 20 of the Participation games were company lead and only 10 demonstration games. This is a little out of skew because some companies (like Crooked Dice) are running more than one game but only on one game table area, while others are getting their associated clubs to run the game for them. I mean no critism by stating this as I am sure I would be encouraging this If I ran a games company. So follow the trend and not get too caught up in the small details. In my opinion many companies are using participation games at shows in preference to Demonstration games as it gets players more closely involved. This should not be a revelation to anyone who attends the bigger shows in the UK but it is still worth stating as it introduces the question "Where will this trend lead?" Given that it would be impractical to run a large, for instance, ACW, game with hundreds of figure on the table top as a participation game and keep all the players interested for an extended period at a show with all the trader distractions and temptations. Smaller games like Saga which can yield a result with many less figures in a fraction of the time do yield themselves more open to public participation. As twice as many participation games are being put on by manufactures this year does that mean that big battle games are in decline and that skirmish games are currently on the rise from a manufactures point of view?
I also broke down the periods being played. I did this because just skimming the list there did seam to be a lot of "Steampunk" games.
Here's a rough list, again I can't be too precise because some games straddle two periods. In Order of numbers.
- Science Fiction 21 (including 7 "Steampunk"/VSF Games)
- Ancients 14 ( Including 8 dark age and Medieval)
- WW2/VBCW 13
- Fantasy 13
- 19th Century 10 (including 5 ACW games)
- 17th Century 5 (Including 2 Samurai games)
- Napoleonic 3
- Modern 3 (including horror and other similar things*)
- Other 2 (Snits Revenge and Those Magnificent men and their flying machines.
- Zombies 2 (Dedicated zombie games and not horror!)
- 16th Century 1
- Wild West 1
- WW1 1
I am most interested in noting what game genres are missing. In the Modern section it's mostly horror and 70's TV shows. No Afghanistan, no Falklands, no Vietnam, no Cold war battle games or Korea or Arab Israeli. If there is a ECW game on the list I must have missed it as well, which is not to say it's not there, but if it is I will have missed it.
I will draw no more conclusions before going to the show, I'll leave that to you.
I would normally post on Saturday this week, but due to the show I will leave it until Sunday. And probably do my show report on Monday. I hope you have found something of interest. Be kind to yourself and hope to blog again after the show. All the best Clint