Thursday, 19 February 2009

Plymouth Wargames Show 2009

A couple of weeks ago I went to the Plymouth Association of Wargamers’ Annual Show - PAW 09. As a resident in the City this is my local show so I was looking forward to it. I only moved to Plymouth last year so this was the first time I’d been to the show having previous lived in York and gone to the Vapnartak show.

This led to the biggest point I have to make about PAW, it’s size. The York show is huge, with dozens of shows and demo games and hundreds of people attending on the single day. PAW was on a different scale with trade stands in single figures and fewer participation games.

I was fully expecting lower numbers of traders at PAW but I was still disappointed to see a little over half a trade stands. I spoke to a few of the traders and people hosting games, who said that the number of traders was lower due to the date conflicting with another show, Cardiff I believe.
Shows are not just about the traders though and the display games on display more than made up for any lack of traders. Some of the sets ups were fantastic, highly detailed, well thought out and just plain pretty!

Baker Company had a fantastic winter snow board of Russians vs Finns. All the figures were from the company and the rules used were home brewed. I’ve not really been too tempted by WW2 skirmish, but this set up had me drooling.

The Torquay Games Group had brought along an excellent board featuring a ruined church. It was being used for a game of 40k, but the group said it was often used games of Necromunda. Battlegroup South had a large WW2 game set up with some wonderful models and it seemed to be getting a lot of interest.

Exmouth Wargames Society were running their boxer rebellion game. I managed to speak to ‘Streetline’ who has seen my posts on The Miniatures Page and said I should pop by to say hello, which I duly did.

However, in my opinion the most impressive display of the day was a large WW2 game featuring the landing at Khota Bahru, stretching from seas to shore to thick jungle, the game boasted aircraft, boats and numerous figures. - very good looking! I’m afraid my photo doesn’t do it justice and I don’t know who put it on! If you know who it was, please drop me a line.

So all the games were very nice, but how was it from the Frugal Gamer’s point of view? I must say it was very good. It was the first time I sold my stuff at a bring and buy sale and was pretty happy withthe experience, getting rid of some of my old items for a little more than I’d expect to get on ebay, plus not having to wrap them and trudge down the post office to send them off is a bonus!

I was hoping to get some minitures to use for Necromunda, but there wasn’t anything suitable in the Bring and Buy unfortunately. However, I did pick up a shoebox full of various flocks, paints and plastic tubing for only £1, which was a great bargain.

I saw Matt at the show and we talked about entering the tournaments. Personally, I’d never have any intention of winning the thing (my luck is terrible when it comes to rolling dice) but 2 days of gaming for £12, sounds like fun. You can always borrow an army, and you never know, you may just get lucky...

Overall, even with the lack of traders, the show was really good and I'd recommend it to anyone who lives in the area, I'll certainly be back next year.

As it turned out I came out with a profit, something that’s never happened to me at a show before. I’m not expecting it to happen often, but it certainly impressed my girlfriend.

So the bottom line is; go with a strict list of what you want and what you don’t want and stick to it. Well, I suppose you could set aside a bit of ‘emergency money’ just in case you see that once in a lifetime purchase, just make sure you stick to the budget!

The next step now is saving my pennies for Salute , as I’m eyeing up some lovely Heresy figures, and then planning for the next local show; Legionary in Exeter, see you there.


BigLee said...

Good show report and some exellent photo's. I'm more of a roleplayer than wargamer but I still drool over a well put together demo game. Whenever I got to a show I always go camera in hand. Like you I'm looking forward to Salute. This is partly because it's where I do the bulk of my hobby shopping but also because of the amazing spectacle of all the display games.

Johno said...

Thanks for the kind words about our show.

There are more pictures on our website:

The date clash was a real pain, and caused by the college Marketing Department pre-empting out regular date back in July 2009 - despite the fact we'd booked it straight after PAW 2008...

PAW Webmaster