Poverty in wargaming can be overcome!

The thoughts and ambitions of a poor wargamer aka Mark Shearwood.. a sad tale which we can all relate to!

The kind of low budget stuff you can expect from Mark
I am, I believe (like a vast number of fellow wargamers) suffering from an over ambitious view of both my financial abilities to sustain my megalomania along with a completely unrealistic view of the physical rules of time and space. Now there is no need to panic, I am not going to delve into Einstein’s theory of relativity, but instead try to share the musings of a humble wargamer.

Apart from a midlife crisis when I hit forty (when I had three games), I am not a competition gamer, nor are the group of friends I normally game with in Derby. We tend to like a friendly evening game with rules that focus on playability rather than the more technical type. The club puts on regular demonstration games in and around the East Midlands area, to which I have a varying degree of involvement from at the top end, the terrain and most of the figures down to supplying a unit or to, or even just my enthusiasm.

The boy and his chums have no ambition.. particularly Parkin
Like most people I know in this hobby I have my favourite periods in history and also a wish list of periods I would like to start, but never do for a multitude of reasons, some I already have hinted at, money and time, but these are not on their own for I can also add the following to the list:

 1. Waiting for a decent range in the preferred scale. 

 2. A set of rules that everyone likes. 

 3. A buddy who is willing or idiotic enough to take on one faction. 

These ideas normally live in the dark recesses of your mind, or for the more organised written down in a journal or blog, these idea’s are sometimes heard in faint whispers with groups of friends on the way to shows or at the bar in your local clubs following a defeat after you have blamed the rules, the dice or your current army.

More poor quality from the poor houses of the East Midlands
Now to delve into my own dark recesses and to reveal my long term wish list and how I can match my interest for obscure periods with the direction of the people I game with on a regular basis.  Over the past ten years or so I have collected and some sold armies for the Middle Ages, Renaissance, Maximillian  War, Crimean,, Russian Civil, War, World Wars One and Two, 1980’s Balkans.

OK, it’s time to take a deep breath and say it: my wish list period is the Monmouth Rebellion 1685, there, I have said it and it’s in the open. My close friends have known about my idiosyncrasy for a long time, a period that only lasted for just under a month (11th June to 7th July 1685) that involves a few thousand men on each side and only one well known battle. For years my close friend Stuart has sent me a multitude of e-mails with any reference to this period.

Ed Note: Mark Shearwood is hiding his light under a bushel somewhat here :) He is part of an extremely skilled and productive group of gamers from the Derby area who have consistently delivered magnificent games particularly at the Partizan Shows in Newark over many years. I have always been a great admirer of their work. He and Stuart Parkin in particular are talented and serious wargamers who have made great contributions to the hobby over many years. Don't let him fool you!

Photos are by Richard Tyndall and taken at the famous Partizan Show in Newark