Unusually, I went to the show alone as my usual band of misfits and miscreants has provided a series of increasingly unlikely excuses: ‘bad back,’ ‘child’s birthday,’ and least plausible of all ‘social life.’
This meant that I was denied the usual show activity of trying to goad other people into spending money. Therefore I endeavoured to goad myself, which was actually tougher than it sounds as I’m in one of those funny phases where there’s not much I actually want that isn’t already waiting to be painted.
Spending money was also made trickier by the fact that some traders who I’d expected to be there (e.g. Crooked Dice) due to their attendance in previous years weren’t. Also others (e.g. Mantic) seemed to have a smaller presence than previously.
I suspect that this is due to the show being quite small and so close to Salute, which I imagine takes a lot of work to prepare for.
There were however a range of other companies there, including War Banner, who seemed to be sponsoring the show and were demoing Gangs of Rome, and their new Greek game Mortal Gods. In fact the show miniature that I got with my pre-bought ticket is an Ancient Greek. (Top Tip: if you’re going to Chillcon, pre-buy your ticket as it’s cheaper, quicker to get in, and you get free stuff.)
One of the things I like about Chillcon is that there are some small traders that you don really see elsewhere, and the show also acknowledges the fact that role players (and even Larpers!) exist. There is also an awareness that gamers have children and sometimes bring them along.
If I have a gripe about this show, it’s the fact that some features (e.g. the sticker card which you complete with several purchases of £10 or more for free entry to a raffle), although fairly interesting, require you to stay for most of the day to take advantage. To be frank, unless you play every demo game, the show really isn’t big enough to spend several hours at, which means that the spending incentive doesn’t really work.
Having said that, I managed to amuse myself for just over an hour (3 laps) and goaded myself into buying a few things that I’ve pondered for a while:
Kings of War Historical was available at the clearance price of £10, which delighted me as I’d talked myself out of buying it online due to Mantic’s flat £5 shipping.
Campaign: Gigant is the sequel to the Operation Sealion book for Bolt Action, and I complemented this with some Crusader Fallschirmjager from Ainsty Castings.
I also picked up some sabot bases from Warbases for my Sharp Practice force.
Sadly, the free miniature is destined for eBay as I already have a full hoplite army, however, I will add it to some plastics I’m intending to sell.
I also got this chap...
I’ve been hoping to pick one of these up for a while. It’s a pre-undercoated plastic miniature from Wizkids. The detail and casting is excellent, although as you might expect, the gap for that tail will take some filling. It’s also an absolute bargain price given the size of the miniature - drastically cheaper than the same thing would be in resin or metal.
It’s destined for my pulp games, and also a scenario from my supers campaign that I need to get back to.
These purchases, although restrained in the miniatures department, have left the tallies in an even more sorry state. I’m starting to reach the point where I can’t blame Prodos Games for my plight anymore:
All in all it was a good morning out, but I’d hoped that Chillcon would have grown a little in its first three years. I hope it can stay afloat as I like having a local show, and I like shows that are brave enough to try to do things a little differently.