I realised yesterday, with some horror and embarrassment, that I had failed to post my photos from Salute 2014, held earlier in April. This had been very much “one of those things I need to get around to doing” – and which I had duly failed to do. Apologies, all round!
So, somewhat delayed, here are some snaps from some of the cracking games on display at the show. It proved pretty difficult to get around to everything at the show and help with TooFatLardies game. There are, therefore, many better and more comprehensive photo reports of the show on-line. Yet, with that early caveat, here’s some games I really enjoyed seeing, watching and taking about with the clubs and people which brought them.
First up is the truly spectacular Keren 1941 game put on by James Morris, Paul Scrivens-Smith and a host of other fine chaps. What a remarkable and spectacular game! Just when you think you have seen almost everything, something comes along and blows you away. Put simply, it was an amazing game, featuring inspired terrain, wonderfully painted figures and an excellent and informative display. It really could not be bettered!
I got the chance to take plenty of photos, but my favourites are taken from the top of the game, looking down the Keren Heights. You had a real sense of the scale of the action from that perspective, and it’ll be one I shall never forget. Huge thanks to both James and Paul for talking me through the action, and for everyone else who made this such a memorable game.
Pride of place of the historical games in the classic style (namely a flat table!) must go to Simon Miller’s brilliant “C-Day” recreation of Caesar’s invasion of Britain in 55BC. More ships and boats here, accompanied by a Roman elephant on a raft. Local colour was provided by hordes of beautifully painted British, with local sacrificing druids busy carving up an unfortunate goat. Show me a wargame which can’t be improved by an elephant on a raft and a druidic sacrifice – I don’t believe you can find one, and Simon’s game was no exception. Absolutely first class, and a magnificent game.
Next up is a lovely game set on Mars in the late 19th Century. The wonderful terrain set this apart, combining the two things I think always enhance a wargame – namely, boats and trains. The fact that there were also Martian flying boats AS WELL simply added to the occasion. A really lovely game.
One game I wish I had lingered at more was this fine 1944 game from the Eastern Front, featuring some terrific modelling of, among other things, rocket launchers, WWII trenches, explosions and crippled trains. A really excellent looking game, with plenty of wonderful terrain and scenic touches.
Next up, the friendly chaps behind “Crush the Kaiser” put on a fine game of Tannenberg 1914. The game depicted German Jaegers, Uhlanen and a supply column fighting forward against determined Russian resistance. The terrain looked just perfect – a real East Prussian feel to the buildings, woods and local lakes, setting the time and the place of the action very firmly.
Another early Great War game, from Belgium 1914, was brought over by the Tin Soldiers of Antwerp. It had some magnificent, authentic background, namely a small group of Belgian noblemen, driving Minerva armoured cars, holding back the feldgrau tide of German infantry in August 1914.. In addition to lovely Belgian armoured cars, dog-pulled guns (beloved of all Great War wargamers), the game featured the nicest back gardens of any game I have ever seen, plus a remarkable and laudable supply of local bicycles. Local colour maybe, but when your game features a cohort of Belgian noblemen, such attention to detail fits in perfectly. I chatted for some time with the Antwerpers (thanks chaps) and bitterly regretted the fact I’d got to the participation game too late to play. I’m hopeful the Tin Soldiers will bring it to Antwerp, as I shall be first I line on the day to play it.
And last, but by no means least, here’s our very own TooFatLardies game of the action around Le Port from 1944. I can openly say that I thought it looked terrific, with really nicely painted figures – all of which is huge credit to Rich as I did absolutely nothing to help this time! The local pissoir was a particular triumph, as I know this is one of those terrain objectives we have, as a club, hankered after for some time.
And finally, those of a delicate disposition may wish to look away. My photo of the day was Nick demolishing a hot cross bun, with Big Al and Jon standing, watching, in shock and awe. Please add your captions in the Comments section below, please. The best of which (in my wife’s sole discretion) will be awarded a small Salute related prize!