Category: Events

Crisis 2016 event report

This year’s Crisis was pretty similar to last year’s event, with some minor differences. If you’re not interested in my write-up but want to see the full set of pictures right away, then you can check them out here:

The show when I entered, I arrived rather late (about 14:30h I think), so there were already a lot of people leaving but it was still very crowded inside. I made a quick sweep through the two halls, occasionally stopping for a chat with the many known faces (good to see you all again btw). Then I took my camera out and went for a detailed tour.

As you can see from the haze the air was still infused with hot-dog cooking fumes :)

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Most traders were in the exact same position as last year, for example Warlord Games, one of the first booths I encountered.

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Traditionally, Crisis is still a show which mainly relies on historical miniatures.

 

 

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Pretty impressive 40k table:

 

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As always, a good mix of weird miniature lines were available, like these ghostbusters from Studio Miniatures:

 

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Or these clowns:

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Another game system which keeps intruiging me is Dropfleet commander. Check out these cool new modular space stations they are releasing:

 

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Sagas is also a very popular game:

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View from the second hall:

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The Guild Ball booth was one of the eye-catchers in last year’s show. It was crowded and they were constantly selling deals. Guild Ball was the hot new thing in fantasy football town.

This year however the stand looked a lot more empty. Not sure what caused this, but it was very apparent if you ask me.

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Of course many clubs were present. Some of them simply presenting their miniatures and tables, other giving participation or initiation games.

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I was very surprised to see some Darklands miniatures at the show. With their amazing miniatures and skirmish-sized armies this is really the game a painter like me would like. Good to know a Belgian group is now actively promoting the game. I made a long chat with Kristof from Darklands Wargamers and it really sparked my interest.

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Another HUGE table:

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The only thing I really planned on buying at the show (yes I resisted buying actual miniatures!) was a transport system for my little LotR Mordor force I am currently painting. I bought a small box from KR Multicase:

 

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Apart from that, a new brush and some brush soap…

As usual great show, great atmosphere and great people. See you in 2017 ūüėÄ


Crisis 2015

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It’s already been 3 years since I last visited Crisis (you can read my 2012 report here). The past few years I focused more on the figure painting side of the hobby, with Crisis being a wargaming event. But this year’s list of traders and clubs was so impressive that I decided to visit once again.

If you don’t know Crisis, it’s a yearly event now held for the 20th time. It’s organised by the Tin Soldiers of Antwerp, a local wargaming club. The focus has always been on historical wargaming, but there’s plenty to see for sf &¬†fantasy fanatics. I’ve been visiting since 2003, during those years they also held a painting competition at the show. But the last 5 editions or so didn’t have a painting competition and the show was also moved to a bigger venue, the Waagnatie in Antwerp.

The report below contains a selection of pictures. To see the full set of pictures please visit the image provider of your choice:

The entrance fee is still a bit on the steep side: 10 EUR, when comparing this to for example Scale Model Challenge which is similar in size and is being held in a nicer venue. But then again, what is 5 EUR more or less in this hobby? :)

 

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I arrived around 14-14.30, when a lot of people were leaving already. But inside it was still very crowded.

 

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I started my tour from the right. First booth to catch my attention was the one of Warlord games, displaying their SF game Beyonod the Gates of Antares. The box and rulebook looks nice, but the sprues which were on display failed to impress me. The plastics looked thin and the details a bit fuzzy.

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A bit further I encountered Crooked Dice, a game studio which I don’t know very well, but they had some nicely painted miniatures on display.

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It was beg news earlier this year when it was announced that Games Workshop and Forgeworld were visiting. Forgeworld brought a nice stock with them, a lot of people were buying.

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On the other hand I failed to grasp the meaning of the Games Workshop booth. One display cabinet had the Age of Sigmar starter set miniatures on display. And then in the center of the booth there was a display of Sigmar vs Chaos with some scenery. Three representatives were having a chat with visitors. You couldn’t buy anything at the booth, nor was there any information on their other games, such as 40K.

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Of course there were a lot of nice historical tables:

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Custom made dice bags by the Dice Bag Lady:

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Dropzone Commander had a nice booth as well, with box-art quality figures on display and a participation game:

 

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Special guest at this year’s show: the Perry brothers!

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Then it was time to check out hall number two. There was  a bit more room and fresh air there, this was also the hall where most of the clubs were giving their demos.

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But traders as well, like Studio Miniatures. They had their box art zombies on display, paintjobs which I always liked a lot and which are a big influence to my way of painting nowadays.

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But the eye-catcher this year was probably the Guild Ball booth. Their painted miniatures on display were simply stunning. Every single miniature they had was on display (including the alternative Kickstarter exclusive miniatures), all of them with a jaw-dropping paintjob. There were 3 tables with demo games, and they had some awesome show-deals. The little booth was always very crowded. I happened to be at their booth when a delegation of TSA members visited to give them a special trophy for the most innovative game on display. I don’t know how the game plays, but it was certainly very well presented!

I decided to buy one miniature to paint for fun, so expect to read a bit more about Guild Ball on this website in the future.

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Can you recognize the miniatures¬†below? Does Anastyr ring a bell? When Rackam’s Confrontation disappeared it was one of those miniatures lines which seemed to aim at filling the gap, but it never succeeded in producing only a few miniatures. The line looks unfinished, but the few sculpts they have are very good and I was happy to see these miniatures in real life.

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Scale 75’s booth, where I bought some paints :)

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One of the clubs present was Conect’r Team, this zombie-infested lighthouse was one of their games they were demoing.

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The big table below was also a project by Conect’r in association with another Belgian club: De Witte Ridder from Leopoldsburg.

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After having a chat with some people I decided to complete my tour of the second hall. Alkemy was here as well, although the miniatures on display weren’t the box art ones, in fact they weren’t all that well painted. I think this game has lost a lot of it’s magic since it first appeared years ago.

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Another French company: TGCM Creation, displaying their Briskars line of miniatures. If you’re a regular reader of this blog you might remember I painted some of their pig models last year :)

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Mantic Games’ booth was rather small this year, they clearly focused on Dreadball, although they had some stuff for sale for their other game systems as well.

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Black Scorpion games, good quality miniatures for a good price:

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Warploque Miniatures’ figures on display. I don’t quite get why you want to display so much unpainted figures, and put all the information on hand-written papers, but considering this company is basically run by one young guy it’s still great to see he made it to the show and put up a collection like this.

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Another company I’m not familiar with: Prodos Games. But they had some nice aliens on display :)

 

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That’s all for this report!

I was very happy to have visited the event, since it allowed me to see a lot of nice miniatures in real life for the first time. Especially the Guild Ball game really caught my attention, I will probably buy some more of their figures in the future.

 


Scale Model Challenge 2015

Scale Model Challenge 2015 was held on 10 & 11 October. For the first time it was a two day event, with workshops on Saturday and the main show on Sunday.

Due to circumstances I arrived around 14h¬†(on Sunday) when the event was already well underway. For the past few years I always spent the entire day at Scale Model Challenge, which gives the false impression that there’s plenty of time to check everything out. With only a few hours to walk around the miniature goodness filled halls of the NH Conference Center in Veldhoven I really had to rush!

The usual combination of taking pictures & video, chatting with people and spending time shopping and¬†checking out the painting competition entries proved very difficult due to the time constraint. I basically made a quick tour of the show with my camera, the results can be viewed below. Then I did some shopping and spent a bit more time at the painting competition. I met a lot of people underway, spending way too little time catching up on the hobby gossip. On the other hand I also missed quite a few people as well. So sorry to all of you which I have only spoken very briefly, or wasn’t able to meet at all.

When walking around the club area I noticed it was a lot quieter than the last two years. This was probably caused by the fact that there were some extra halls added. Some wargame demos together with a hosted Warmachine tournament were held in a room in the back, just like some of the RC club stands. Another thing which attributed to this was the fact that the catering area was also setup somewhere else. In a way this was good because there was more room for the crowd, but on the other¬†hand clubs are at the heart of the sociable atmosphere of the event, so it’s better to busy.

The trader’s room didn’t change much. I bought some regular supplies: paints, wooden plinths, some new tweezers, etc. There’s plenty of choice if you’re looking for tools, miniatures or¬†accessories.

The competition area had some layout changes as well, and while still pretty crowded I felt that the traffic of people¬†flowed very well. Of course most of my interest went to the SF & Fantasy figure painting categories. To me they appeared to contain less entries than last year, but that could also be caused by the layout of the display. Anyway the overall level was very high and I really had some regret that I didn’t take part this year. Another trend that I noticed is that there’s less and less 28-32mm miniatures being entered. Most of the entires are larger scale and even busts.¬†Sometimes I go to a show and completely miss out on the best of show miniature. But this year I was able to have a good at them, they were really standing out! So I managed to have a¬†good look and multiple angled photos¬†of these entries, which you can see below.

A way too long prize ceremony (one hour) rounded up this short but intense afternoon. Another succeeded SMC, big congratulations to the organizers to keep improving every year. For me it really felt I missed out on half of the fun, only visiting in the afternoon and not entering in the painting competition. So next year I will try to return for a full day :)

Below you can see a video I made, followed by some selected pictures.

If you want to see the complete set of 140 pictures, please check out one of these links:

One half of the club area:

 

One half of the club area.

The competition area buzzing with activity.

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The fantasy & sf figure categories.

 

 

 

 

The best of show of the figure painting contest. 100% scratch built model.

Scale modeling best of show. Not the hundreds of tiny figures on the ships.

 

Some other highlights from the competition:

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Traders:

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The prize ceremony:

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