Escaping the London Gravity Well
So I’ve been hanging out on the Platoon Britannica forums a bit lately and it was there that I learned about a small show called Figure World which happened yesterday up north in Mansfield.
I knew that a load of the PB folks were going to be there so I decided to drag myself out of bed early, for a Saturday, and escape the London gravity well, catching the 9:15 train from London St Pancras. A few hours later I found myself in the “Eye of the Storm” at Maelstrom Games.
This place, I must mention, is a pretty freakin’ awesome gaming centre dedicated to the miniature wargaming hobby.
The shop itself is huge and very well stocked, carrying loads of lines which I only normally see at conventions, plus there’s a huge gaming area and bar/lounge. It reminded me of some of the games shops I found in the US, and I wish we had something like it near us in London. Unfortunately square footage is at a premium in the capital so shops just can’t afford it here I guess.
Anyway, the event itself – Figure World, presented by The Basement forums – was an open day dedicated to the miniature modelling hobby.
The first of the two upstairs halls acted as a trade hall and display area with literally hundreds of amazingly painted busts and miniatures, both historical and SF/Fantasy. It was great to get up close and take inspiration from such incredible pieces of work, and also to see things I wouldn’t normally come across in the wargaming hobby annex in which I loiter.
The second hall – a large gaming area and bar/lounge – had a few tables set aside for demonstrations and workshops by hobby experts. It’s always nice to watch over a pro’s shoulder and pick up some handy tips. Thanks to Conrad (Prawnpower) I learned some cool basing techniques using blu-tac and plaster which I look forward to trying out.
I basically spent the day wandering back and forth between the two halls, chatting to friendly folks from various hobby forums (some of whom I had met previously at Salute), and ogling at the beautifully painted minis.
Foolishly I had forgotten to take out any cash before I got there so my purchasing was curtailed (probably for the better!), instead I had to save my last fiver for a taxi ride to the train station home.
And when I did get home, late evening, I was able to reflect on the day. A most enjoyable event: well organised, in a great venue, with excellent stuff on display, and plenty of friendly folks.
Now, will I be able to make it to the Cardiff PB meet next month I wonder?