zondag 14 december 2014

The year 2014 part 1: From Wargaming to Lego to Army Building

As the year draws to an end, it is that time of the year blogs start to wrap up their projects of the year, look back to how it has all been and evolved and start thinking forward to the next year of manic hobbying and blogging about it, and I am no different.

With less then 3 weeks remaining in what has been a rather good year for myself on a hobbylevel, I`m going to start this annual tradition with looking back on the evolution of myself as a hobbyist, and as such the road the blog has been taken more and more.

And by doing so, let me talk a bit about my further transition from a desk full of brushes and paints to a desk full of bricks and small sketched papers.  While cleaning out some folders last week on the PC, I came along this old picture of a Helm`s Deep me and a compatriot once build for the Crisis 2003 wargame show, he making the Deep, me buying and painting a lot of LOTR miniatures.
Moi, the Ringbearer, and Nemesis, the dice chucker

It was a good time back then, but it also is now 11 years ago, and hobbies come and hobbies go, and this has almost certainly completey died down.  Yeah, I keep `a certain force` in a big box safely tucked away should the urge ever arise again, but seeing the way GW currently is handling things, I fear that hobby part is on a rollercoaster to self destruction.

On the other hand, my Lego involvement has been evolving and getting bigger over the year, my focus settled on a period I truly felt the most comfortable in in building, and I did my first show as an exposer.  And I loved every moment of it, I never thought I would become the kind of person that would love to see `those small people that tend to be annoying` (no, I don`t mean hobbits) actually smile. 

I also started as a back up trainer of a G-team in soccer (sport teams for people with a mental or physical limitation) and I really enjoy that too when I can actually learn them something and carry over my experience in the sports.

I think, on a level of personal evolvment, I could say I build wargame armies to prove myself, and build Lego to share with others... less testosteron involved.

This has in my opinion a lot to do as well with the larger community involved in the hobby, making a bigger field of skill sets out there, and the lesser need to get to that `top tier`.  I`m a MOC`cer of medium skill levels, and I can live with that, while when I was still wargaming, the level of competitiveness was bigger inside myself and I went consistently for the wins and the top spots.

A large Mitgardian force found on Eurobricks

But the blood keeps crawling and wargaming has been part of my DNA for almost 20 years, those same 20 as I was in my Lego `Dark Ages`. Yes, I did quit building with bricks to start painting armies, and I stopped painting armies to build with bricks.  They perfectly evolved into each other over the years.

And as such, I cannot resist the sight of large armies, not even in Lego.  And the Castle theme is one that lends itself to it perfectly, as you are effectively building the equivalent of scenery like houses and trees, man them with civilians and march your regiments through it.

A castle siege in progress, no idea who build it though

The only difference is that you don`t actually `battle` with them... though there ARE rules for those things out there, and maybe one day I`ll first try to convince my Nemesis to join in, and contact my old club to do a demo of a Lego wargame sometime.  Maybe a samurai force like this one by AC Pin might be something for him ;-)

But while wargame armies are always a pretty thing to look at displayed on the tabletop, so are Lego armies, like for example this one AC PIN posted, and recreated a battle from the French Indian Wars and the American War of Independance (for those needing a Hollywood reference, The Patriot is set in that era).

There are many Lego armies out there to be diplayed, mostly going up to the colonial eras with the Pirates theme and before, but of course, scifi forces and such aren`t rare either.  But for me, it`ll be first finishing that force for Mitgardia to take along on the colab at next Brick Mania Antwerp, which reminds me to do an update on the progress one of these days as well...

Oh, and this is how Helm`s Deep looks in Lego btw... build by RK

Part two will be dealing about how the blog evolved and grew over the past year, but that will be for within a few days, until then, brick on!

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