Tuesday, 22 June 2010

So why Flames of War?

So why Flames of War? This is a question aimed at myself. I've long had an interest in WW2 gaming, having first used Airfix, Matchbox and Esci model kits and figures to refight the battles of the conflict and then moved onto 1/300th. 1/300th scale, was a) cheaper and b) allowed you to build bigger forces, plus no fiddly plastic kits to build!

I gradually moved away from WW2 figure gaming to play the hex based board games. Avalon Hill, SPI and a few others no doubt. Squad Leader was a particular favourite, Panzer Leader/Panzer Blitz also having a few outings. Of course these board games ranged from the platoon/company level right upto divisional/army level. It was possible to play both the tactical and strategic level of the war.
Then a few years ago I decided to return to WW2 and purchased some 28mm figures, and have used them in some games. But having joined the Evesham Wargames Club, I noticed some of the members played Flames of War week in week out (actually we meet fortnightly, but you get the idea). This intrigued me and made me think that there must be something good about it for people to play the game time and time again.
So I decided to investigate. I was certainly aware of Flames of War, but since it was in 15mm I had never really been interested. 15mm was one of those scales I never really 'got into'. I bought 15mm models etc, most people I have known over the years who are wargamer's have 15mm armies, but I had always found the figures uninspiring to paint and there were always lots of figures too or so it seemed.
A visit to the Battlefront website was about to change all that. My first impression had been that Battlefront were to historical gaming like GW is seen by many in the wargaming community as a whole ie in it for the money (NB. I like GW, they almost make wargaming seem cool). My view changed, on the Flames of War site I found modeling/painting articles, gaming articles and most impressive of all historical articles detailing campaigns/battles and unit histories. The fact that time had been taken to research the period, convinced me that this was a company worth supporting. Plus I liked the models.
So a short while latter I had a copy of the rules and the boxed US Airborne Rifle Company set in my hands. Now having actually played a couple of games, I can say that I like the game as well. I'm aware that the rules have a large competition circuit, and are perhaps viewed by some as being a set of tournament rules but that's not what I intend to do or to use them for. More on that later.

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