In which I blog about my miniature wargaming and whatever else takes my interest!
Wednesday, March 29, 2023
Hotlead 2023 -The Very Big and Very Small, Fun Was Had By All
Hot Lead is done for another year, but what a show it was! There were about 400 people particpating in various ways with 74 particpation miniature games, 3 tournaments and 7 Role Playing Games.
Small Wargamer with a Big Smile having Big fun in the Battle of Hlobane
The Convention Team were all quite pleased to note more youngsters coming to play, ensuring the next generation takes the dice from us. There were more ladies this year too, and not just in the Role Playing Games, but commanding battalions and ordering assaults in the table top battles. I also noted more new Game Masters, which took the pressure off some of my legacy GMs who could relax and have fun. I spotted three of them each playing in a game which they usually ran. They found being a player a novel and thoroughly enjoyable experience.
Bring & Buy, always crowded, always busy. $21000 in sales over 8 hours, generating $2100 for the Soldier On charity.
Head Minion Steve keeping all the wheels on the wagon
Games ranged from the VERY big:
Dick Wood and Mike Manning with 54mm Bedouins vs Foreign Legion
To the VERY tiny:
Chris Nokes debuts Strength & Honour with his homemade 2mm armies
And from the very silly:
What is Saturday night without at least one silly hat Pulp game? Dan brought his immensely popular "Mongols with Mausers" Back of Beyond game again.
Is that young Flashman?
Sunday morning sillies with the annual "Madness in Manchester" game
Yes, that is a canoe tank supporting the Mounties
To the very serious with THREE different tournaments running Saturday.
DBA Tournament had 12 participants (that wooden gladius is the trophy they are competing for)
A 15mm ADLG Tournament had 12 participants
And a Bolt Action Tournament with 8 participants:
The Bolt Action tables were very pretty. The Mad Padre got better shots of them in his video.
And the very whimsical:
Sunday morning saw a game of Mausritter; a Fantasy RPG with the players as anthropomorphic forest animals having adventures like the Redwall novels. Daughter number 2 made the PC figures and set pieces for encounters from toys, sculpy, buttons, random craft supplies and paint for her friend, GM Sandra, who is taking the game to Gryphcon next month.
Mausritter player characters
"Oh frog of the pond, what is your wisdom?"
The participation games ran the full gamut; land, sea, air and outer space. 2mm to 54mm. Ancient chariots to the far future. Chariot races. Ork buggy races! Cartoon superheroes! Teddy bears! I definitely do not have pictures of every game. Some games were already being put away by the time I got around to the table! There was a very pretty Wars of the Roses game using Never Mind the Billhooks and a very pretty English Civil War game that I missed entirely.
Blackpowder Epic ACW
American Civil War
Barnaby with his trademark point in a Triumph of the Will game
Team members Joe and Paul put on a Colonial game
Joe also pointing
Big Epic 40K game
ADLG participation game
Canadian Wargamer Podcast host, and best friend the Mad Padre, about to be destroyed in a chariot era game of ADLG.
Lovecraftian horror game
Kings of War
A very cool true scale 6mm AWI game. 1 figure is 1 man and 6mm equals 2 yards.
Ork buggy races. I'm in the red one, about to comically blow up.
Cynocephalae. Big battle DBM
Teddy bears secure their marmalade supplies
Siege of Louisbourg
Back to Teddy bears
better view of Louisbourg, where they are also wearing tricornes, but do not have marmalade
Sharp Practice in the Penninsula
Sharp Practice in the Penninsula
Roger Chrysler's War of 1812 using Sharp Practice
WW2 naval with Nimitz
Flames of War Great War
The Chariot races returned and were very popular
1/72 scale Kahlkin Gol with Rapid Fire!
Brian revisited Strongpoint Hillman but this time using O Group. I played this scenario last year, AAR here.
More WW2 Air combat
1/72 scale WW1 Air combat
Keith put on a 6mm game of Leipzig using Blucher rules
I wonder if Hot Lead was in fact the Canadian debuts of Never Mind the Billhooks, NimitzandStrength & Honour?
In the week prior, Mrs. Rabbitman was down with pneumonia. She rallied enough to do the pre-show admin and game registrations, but she reluctantly decided that she'd better stay home. This saddened her, because she does like seeing everyone and catching up. She's also much better at putting faces to names than I am. But Chris and Don jumped into the breach and between the three of us, we managed to hold down the sign-in desk, without creating too much of a disaster. Even with this, and despite worrying about passing on Mrs. R's pneumonia, I managed to have a lot of fun this year.
I got to play a round of Speed Freaks!, driving the red Ork buggy and getting blown up in turn 2. Peter and Huw put a lot of imagination into this fun little game, which was popular with players young and old.
Then I got to revisit Matthew Sullivan's Dead Man's Hand game set in the dangerous town of Cremation Nevada, playing against 4 friends; Don Perrin, Chris McCoy, Mitch McCoy and Beca Brayton.
Much hilarity was had, and I managed to come in second place with 12 VPs. But my gang boss absconding with Sherrif Dapper Dan's pomade gave me bragging rights far greater than the 2 VPs the feat earned.
The level of detail is amazing. Playing this game inspired Pottersville.
Lifiting the pomade from the dry goods store
Me (left) shoots rival boss Diego Vargas (on balcony)
This is what it's all about, isn't it?
Didn't do too much shopping. I maintained universal balance by selling $202 (plus $23 to the charity) worth of stuff in the Bring and Buy and purchasing $200.
used Ospreys, 3 for $10
resin castle pieces from Mike for $100
Some Pulp Figures 1066 figures.
Minion Steve brought us a dozen fresh eggs, so I had to have some Monday morning for brunch after I went to the bank and paid the hotel.
The Mad Padre did a 15 minute video report of the show which you can see here:
Lack of Foresight Gaming posted a video review here:
There are more, and better, pictures on the Hotlead Facebook group, or hopefully you've encountered some from your other Social Media connections.
The dates are already set for next year: 22, 23 and 24 March 2024.
Tea is my drug of choice. My idea of a party is a rousingly good wargame with my friends. I finance my tea, miniature soldiers and book addiction by using chemistry to coat precision machined pieces of steel. I am also employed by the Canadian Armed Forces as a Cadet Instruction Cadre Officer.
Best friend? Really?? Awwww. I was really encouraged by seeing younger gamers, from kids to people in their 20s and 30s, so let's not moan and worry about the future of the hobby. I absolutely loved the Marmalade Island game, best all-ages game there. I think you are right that it may have been a Canadian debut for Strength and Honour, Nimitz and Billhooks, but it's a big country ...ReplyDelete
The Louisbourg game got my vote for best looking game, the WW1 air game being a close second.
Really enjoyed reading about the convention and seeing the pictures. I hope your wife is continuing to make progress health wise.ReplyDelete
I enjoy running games at Hotlead. Daughter #2 did an amazing job with the figures and terrain for Mausritter. And I'm so glad I got to play this year, and win one of the Circus Maximus chariot races.ReplyDelete
I'm sorry Mrs. R was feeling poorly, I did miss her at the desk.
I can't wait for next year!
Some great photos. I hope to make it back east for Hotlead some day. I am really curious to see the ECW game so I will have to have a sniff around the interwebs.ReplyDelete
Looks fantastic, and I had planned to be there, but Covid had other ideas. But there's next year to look forward to.ReplyDelete