Friday, March 11, 2011

Cold Wars 2011 - Friday

Cold Wars in Lancaster PA this year is a Thursday to Sunday affair, but due to other things going on I only planned to attend on Friday. Since I was not preregistered and signed up for any particular games, and had become boxed in in the morning by a business meeting that I really couldn't get out of, it looked like it would even be a short single day.

My general plan was to get out of work by no later than 1pm and head straight to the show. Since February was a very unproductive month for geocaching due to horrible weather and all the standing snow on the ground, I wanted to take 2 or 3 hours on the way to the convention to grab a bunch of caches in the Lancaster area. Since I only get out that way a couple times a year, the area is still ripe with easy caches, so a few hours could get me a nice bunch of finds. After wrapping up my geocaching I would get to the show in time for an hour or more of browsing and shopping before the dealer area closed at 6pm. Then I would hang around with Chris Parker for the duration of the evening, batting around ideas for Day of Battle 4th edition and pushing some figs around to test those ideas.

The day ended up similar to that, if not exactly according to plan. I didn't get out of work until 2pm and traffic getting out to Lancaster was bad, so it was after 3pm when I found my first geocache. Instead of the 15-18 that I was hoping to get, I found 8 before needing to get to the convention in order to do any shopping at all, and I didn't want to miss that because there were a number of things on my list that I wanted to buy. Nothing urgent, but some odds and ends, mainly for my Crusades project.

The goal for my purchasing at this convention was not to buy anything that required assembly or painting. In other words, only finished game-ready stuff that could be dropped on the table immediately. I stuck to that very well. An hour of power shopping netted me two pieces of swamp terrain and two sets of "narrow muddy rivers" (all by JR Miniatures), a bag of 20 nice little palm tree clusters, two buildings from Miniature Building Authority (a castle wall tower and the Witt house), and two booklets (Extra Impetus 1 and 2 for the Impetus rules). And I still had time to spend 10 minutes or so catching up with my friend Ed Wimble from Clash of Arms Games. He was excited about the impending publication of the new edition of La Bataille de Moskowa, as am I.

After that I got together with Chris, who had remembered his schedule wrong, and was actually running his game at 7pm. I sat and watched his Stirling Bridge scenario, which was a brief and bloody English disaster (historical in other words), after which a number of us sat around and discussed the rules. It was a nice evening, and I think some promising rules change possibilities were proposed. Chris and I both agreed to write up what we think we all discussed and then try them out. I can't wait. I am going to wrap up Crusades game number 1 this weekend, and will use the new rules in the next game.

Leaving the convention at around 9:45pm, I grabbed three more park and grab caches in the new shopping center next to the convention hotel and was home in bed by 11:30pm. So while things didn't go exactly according to plan, it was a productive day. More than half of a work day, eleven geocaches, a little gratuitous spending on hobby stuff and a miniatures game. Now that I think about it, that sounds like retirement if you drop the work part...

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