So, as Gwen is fond of reminding me, I play a lot of games. Probably more than is strictly healthy, for my mind or my pocket book! So, I thought it might be a good idea to take a moment and document just which games I actually play. Specifically, this post will be looking at the tabletop miniatures games that I currently own and play. In order to qualify for the list, I’ve established a couple of criteria. First, I have to own enough stuff for the listed game to actually be able to play it, so just owning a rule book and/or an incomplete force for a game doesn’t mean it counts. Second, I’m including games such as Axis & Allies War at Sea, even though they may not qualify as “pure” miniatures games (in that the minis come pre-painted). Finally, I’m inserting a requirement that I need to have played the game at least 5 times, as there are some games I’ve collected that I haven’t played much of. So, here they are in rough order of how much play time they get!
- Dystopian Wars (DW): This is probably my current “main” game. Certainly, I’ve played it quite a bit over the last year! Fun rules, excellent models, and the ability to play land, air, and sea all in one game make this game an easy sell for me. Not only that, I would hazard to say that this is probably the single most popular naval game out there at the moment, so it isn’t too hard to find players or at least people who are interested in playing. I currently have 3 forces for this game!
- Axis & Allies: War at Sea (W@S): As a WW II naval game, W@S obviously had my attention from the beginning! To make things even better, the minis for this game come pre-painted, which is a relief given the number of other games I play that I need to paint the minis for. Given the simplicity of this game, it is easy to play a decent sized match in relatively short periods of time. Not only that, but it is also quite possible to play the game online, which I have done quite a bit in the past. Unfortunately, it sounds like official support for the game has ended, with several historically significant ships not having been produced. However, the rise of commercial 3-D printing services and fan-made card sets seem to promise a future for this game for some time to come.
- Warhammer 40k (40k): This is with out a doubt the most popular and wide-spread of all miniature war games, which is why I got into it in the first place. At the time, all I played was BFG, and I was having a hard time finding opponents. So, I figured that with 40k, I’d be able to find opponents no matter where I went. As it has turned out, that has been true. For a while, before DW came out, 40k was my main game (that is, it was the game I played just about every week). However, since DW came out my 40k playing has fallen off quite a bit. Much of what I have played of the game in the last year has actually been at tournaments, of all things!
- Firestorm Armada (FA): FA is made by the same company that makes DW, Spartan Games. In fact, it was the first game from Spartan that I played, having come out a year before Dystopian Wars while I was still living in San Diego. I really like the game and the setting, as space naval combat games are my first love. Unfortunately, the game lost a lot of steam once Dystopian Wars was released; I was just starting to get some interest for Firestorm built up, but all of the players who had been looking at it almost immediately jumped to DW instead. So, as a result, I haven’t played a lot of this game recently, though I still own 3 fleets for it. I’m hopeful I’ll be able to get back to it one day! One problem, though, is that many of the first wave of models that were released for the game (the ones I own) have been superseded by newer, snazzier versions over the last few months.
- Battlefleet Gothic (BFG): This was the first miniature wargame I ever played, so I still regard it with a certain fondness. Not quite a dead system (the models and rules are still available), the game is certainly less active than it used to be. I own a total of 4 fleets for this game, though I haven’t played in some time. I hold out that this game will one day regain some of the popularity it once had; in many ways, BFG is a vital part of the overall lore of 40k, since all those Space Marines have to get where they are going somehow!
- Flames of War (FoW): This is a WW II land game, focused on the European theater. I got into this game because a lot of people were playing it at the store I went to while I was on shore duty. However, between 40k and then DW, FoW has never really broken through to be one of the main games in my rotation. So far, I have collected and painted a sizable German tank force, and I also have an American tank force “new in box” waiting future painting. I really like the game and the theme, so I definitely want to try and get more into this game in the future.
Whew! There you have it. As I mentioned at the start though, these are only the games that I’ve got fully painted forces for and have played somewhat regularly. There are several other outliers that I either don’t own a full force for, or have not played enough. Discussing those will have to wait for another day, though!
Until next time…