I shall write about the weekend in Ayton at greater length, but I just wanted to say that yet again, it exceeded all my expectations and was as fine an example of “the spirit of wargaming” in action as one could possibly imagine.
A number of things were at stake here. Would the campaign work out as I had hoped and produce enjoyable games for the players? Would my Shot, Steel & Stone rules from The Wargaming Compendium stand up to another hard pounding from a dozen experienced gamers over two days? And would the weekend produce results that were memorable and inspiring enough to make those gamers want to have another go in the future and inspire me to come up with another pretext for them to have at each other with gusto a couple of years from now?
Of course, I needn’t have worried; the answer to all these is “yes”.
The upshot, in short, is that Grenouisse and its axis of The Gateway Alliance, Altefritzenburg, Aytonia, the Margraviate of Hunmanby, the Duchy of Elland and the Margraviate of Cress were trounced by the Granprixians and their allies, Prunkland, Medetia, the Barony of Darien, Borscht and Whyeydia. General E Pickled of the Gateway Alliance lies dead on the field and King Raoul of Grenouisse is a prisoner, his fate dependent on tough negotiations and, no doubt, the payment of a spectacular ransom. He has, in the meantime, been excommunicated. It had all the excitement and tension you could want in two solid days of gaming, during which three colossal games were played, with thousands of figures on the table. More detail on all this in due course (I have a magazine to produce this week!).
Meanwhile, you can feast your eyes on a couple of short videos I made on day 2 (nothing fancy, just hand-held iPhone 5s with the din of play going on) and a couple of albums of photos, some taken with the iPhone, some with my trusty nearly 10-years-old Fuji S7000.
All images © Henry Hyde 2014. No use without express written consent.
The campaign was entitled “Grenouisse Ascendant”; perhaps it comes as no surprise that the outcome was the complete opposite, with Granprix now restored to its rightful owners.
Special thanks to Mark Phillips, Richard Frost, Mike Whitaker, Dave McClumpha, Ken McGarry, Andy McMaster, Paul Bright, Peter Mark-Smith, Simon Tonkiss, Dave Hall and the redoubtable Iain Burt (who even now is weeping at the loss of General E Pickled) for all their energy, input and enthusiasm. Truly, they are an umpire’s dream.