My humble blog is one year old today. Many thanks to everyone who has posted comments and contacted me offline. One of the most rewarding aspects of blogging in this hobby is the people one comes across, and I am delighted that there are now gamers in various parts of the world who I can meet up with if I'm ever nearby. Incidentally, I will shortly be closing my AOL email account and my new address is with Sky (unfortunately one of those rather silly-sounding joint addresses): firstname.lastname@example.org.
I thought this would be a good opportunity to take stock of my AWI collection and plan out what lies ahead. As mentioned before, I have been painted AWI since early 2003, pretty much non-stop since the beginning of 2004. There have been one or two detours, notably my 1815 Napoleonics in the first quarter of last year, but the AWI has been my focus for the past four years or so and I can't say that I have ever been bored. The period is so rich in variety. As well as being a classic period of military activity, the second half of the 18th century was a time of great music and art; the past few years have coincided with large exhibitions in London of paintings by Reynolds, Romney, Gainsborough and others and I have enjoyed looking at the wider circumstances of what was a very "social" conflict. Much of the wargaming interest is of course down to the beautiful figures that Perry Miniatures release, which alongside those from Eureka, Conquest, Foundry and others mean that 25mm AWI is now one of the best served periods in wargaming.
So where does the collection stand? I track everything on a word document, which lists what I have together with a plan of what I want to paint over the next 4 months. This tells me that I have 29 American infantry units (of which 6 are militia and 4 are skirmish units of only 9 figures each), 27 British and Loyalist units (3 of which, the 2 light infantry battalions and the Queen's Rangers, I have twice over in formed and skirmish order), 3 British cavalry units, 6 regiments of Hessians, 21 artillery crews and a whole load of civilians, staff and various other bits and bobs. That's not too bad (although it would be a drop in the ocean if I was collecting Napoleonics), but there is still a fair way to go. I have no painted American cavalry, no Saratoga artillery and no 17th Light Dragoons. I don't have the any of the formed Loyalist regiments other than the Queen's Rangers and I don't have anywhere near enough militia (luckily Alan Perry will shortly be releasing lots of militia figures, see here). There are some common troop types which I have not looked at yet in the hope that Perry Miniatures eventually release specific figures for them, notably American light infantry in caps and British Guards. Then in the far distance are the French and Spanish....
In the meantime I have 8 American and 6 British regiments in the leadpile, which will keep me going for several months. So I expect to be painting AWI for at least one more year and probably another two, perhaps longer. One advantage of being a painter first and a gamer second is that I'm not always looking at what needs to be painted for the next game and I can concentrate exclusively on one period until I'm satisfied that I'm finished. Happily, I can't see myself becoming bored of this period for a good while yet.
I hope at the weekend to post pictures of the Von Bose musketeers, converted into slightly tattered campaign dress. A couple of pre-basing shots are shown above. I have also just finished one of the new "tumbrells", which again should be posted early next week.