BG33 out now – and in W H Smith!

A very happy new year to you all! We’re quite excited here at Battlegames HQ, because the magazine has just gone into WH Smith in its own right for the very first time as part of a trial run in 300 branches around the UK. If this proves to be successful, it could lead to big things, so grab your wargaming buddies and troop them down to the high street!

Battlegames on the shelves of WH Smith in Brighton

So, what’s inside this issue?

Casas del Mediterráneo – wargames widow Diane Sutherland shows us how to quickly create convincing Mediterranean houses using, as ever, the bits and pieces lying around the Wargames Holidays venue in Crete. MDF, balsa, corrugated card and Artex all have starring roles…

Forward Observer – Neil Shuck casts one eye over his shoulder for a brief review of 2012, then plunges into his thoughts about the latest offerings, including Battlegroup Kursk, Hawk Wargames’ resin scenery, 4Ground MDF scenery and a clutch of rulesets.

Making landmarks matter – the other half of the Sutherland duo, Jon, continues his flurry of articles with some clever mechanisms for making objectives in wargames really count for something, including enabling opposing sides to have _different_ objectives. Great stuff!

• In my ‘Win more wargames‘ series, I’ve gone all strategic on you, with a piece subtitled “Think outside the battlefield”. Using the Grenoussian Intermezzo imagi-nations campaign fought last year for analysis, I provide a grounding in basic campaigning, providing general principles illustrated by specific examples.

Telling stories with wargames – Phil Dutré continues the cerebral workout, proposing ways of playing wargames where the players can contribute to the overall narrative by controlling units on _both_ sides, not just one. Intriguing! The appendices to this article can be downloaded FREE here.

Colourama 2 – Tim Beresford continues his magnificent masterclass in subtle miniature painting techniques, providing detailed mixing charts and colour swatches as well as step-by-step pictures and a thorough explanation in the text. Simply superb.

Command challenge – me again (boo! cheer! boo!) and you might be surprised to find me touting a little fantasy scenario (though it could be transposed to historical or sci-fi very easily). The scene? The inhabitants of a small island off the coast of the Empire find themselves infested with rats! The nasty Skaven have taken the local mayor’s son hostage, so the locals turn to a band of adventurers to rescue them. Simples!

Send three and fourpence – Conrad Kinch is a lovely man, proved by himself and a friend trekking 30 miles to the site of the Battle of the Boyne to raise money for a special baby monitor for a hospital in Dublin following the tragic death of a friend’s baby daughter. Whilst very moving, Conrad delivers it with his usual sense of humour and we see him and ‘General du Gourmand’ playing games at the site of the Boyne. The appeal at is still open for donations and has raised a staggering (pardon the pun) €25,000.

Thoughts from the armchair – Mike Siggins is in his comfy chair again, dealing firstly with a pang of nostalgia, before plunging into new boardgames “Pax Porfiriana” and “Polis”. He then reports on correspondence he’s had with Fireforge about their pricing policy, before turning his attention to this month’s big hitter, “Battlegroup Kursk”. All delivered with that silvery Siggins style.

• I gave Recce some extra space this issue, so we’ve been able to look at 15mm AWI figures, Battlegroup Kursk (yes, I know, it may seem excessive, but it’s attracted a lot of attention and there are plenty of views), PSC Sherman tanks, “Waterloo, the French Perspective”, flags from Donnington Miniatures, “Combat Action Command” WW2 rules, “The Raven’s Shadow” supplement for “Saga”, and even Spencer Smith Miniatures’ Normans and Robin Hood 30mm figures. Phew!

We round up with an update for our Combat Stress Appeal, including a heads-up on the next figure auction (which starts next week on 14th January) and a competition sponsored by Spartan games to win a couple of Dystopian Legions starter sets – that’s over £80 of stuff for the lucky winner!

And with plenty of messages from your favourite advertisers, that should keep you busy for a bit!

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