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Sonntag, 13. Oktober 2019

Show Report: VIVAT 2019!

Where were you on Saturday, 12th October? I once more packed up all the things and paid illustrious Perchtoldsdorf a visit for VIVAT 2019.

It's the 7th time VIVAT, Austria's event for historical wargaming, took place. Usually a mid-November affair, this time it took place in mid-October. I'm all for early VIVATs. Not just because of the weather, but also - at the venue we need the daylight. 

As usual Alexander - das Restaurant was nice enough to provide part of their premises for the "tin soldiers guys", as usual Nikfu and Virago were nice enough to organize the whole thing. 

We had a good mix of games again, ranging from medieval times (late crusades) to WW2. In decidedly un-chronological order:

Mahdist Uprising 1881 – 1899 (rules: Kugelhagel)

Tabletopfreunde Wien showcased parts of their immense Mahdist War collection in this scenario. 

A besieged British fort (outskirts thereof depicted on the table) is to be supplied via convoy. Convoy gets ambushed by Mahdi warriors.

Here's their home setup

Black Seas


S-Games brought not only a large amount of lovely merchandise to purchase on site, but also a very well run demo table of Warlord's latest miniature game - Black Seas. It's set in the age of sail and from what I hear people enjoy it a great deal. 

Austro-Prussian War 1866 (rules: 1866)

I love a good wargames table with lots of tiny figures on it. Especially if they're 10mm sized. This one was done very effectively. The substructure of the table was very elaborate, so they'd get the geography right and credible.

The rules used (1866 - Grand Tactical Rules by Bruce Weigle) are rather unique. Not sure I grasped the concept properly, but it seems like a rather old-school approach, slingshot into the 2010s. There's order chits placed face-down, movement and all of that happens simultaneously and a big whole gentleman's agreement factor. Very, very interesting stuff.

Great little figures by Pendraken too, done in a group effort!

Crusades (rules: Saga) 

Lexman and friends once again upped their game (in this case, one of the few, it's an acceptable figure of speech, because this IS about a game) with this cracking game of Saga (Crescent and Cross).

A classic and colourful match-up, even including very characterful and pretty buildings to visualize the clash.

"Sink the Bismarck! Or the Hood!" (rules: GHQ Micronauts)

Speaking of classic historical match-ups, here's the Battle of the Demnark Strait (May 1941). Well, on the table. All gentlemen involved in the game were very well behaved.

HMS Hood under fire! Even at 1/2400th scale it's a dramatic event.

In this sea battle a force of the battlecruiser HMS Hood and the battleship HMS Prince of Wales tried to blockade Kriegsmarine flagship battleship Bismark and the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen from breaking out into the Atlantic. This resulted in the shocking destruction of the HMS Hood.

As to be expected this is a rather technical affair. It's the nature of the beast of WW2 naval wargaming after all.

After several hours British admiral Cpt.Shandy had to give in and left the helm to Virago, who, in usual form, turned the thing around.

Napoleonic Cosim

Der Fels and company brought something a little different to the table - no flashy miniatures or tons of terrain - just hexes and counters, baby.

Spanish Civil War 1936-1939 (rules: Bolt Action)

Another brilliant-looking table with a slightly unusual theme: It depicts a skirmish set in the Spanish Civil War. This conflict gained a lot of traction in wargaming circles in recent years as gamers converted WW2 platoon-level games like Chain of Command or Bolt Action for this pre-war period. It's almost as if people'd grown tired of 1944 Western Front fudge.

The SCW offers a lot of colourful troops, lots of of the oft-overlooked 'little stuff' in terms of military hardware (when was the last time anybody was proper afraid of a Panzer 1?). Very interesting theme for a skirmish wargame.

The table itself was very pretty indeed, with some great Spanish-style buildings and a lot of different and interesting troops running around between them. 

The Nationlist side bemusedly looks on asthe Republican side ponders their next move.

I did the usual thing with the paints and the painting workshop and the chatting and the showing of miniatures and so on. Here are some shots of what I brought with me, including a shameless amount of Fantasy/Sci-Fi minis:

Some of my larger scale figures

Warhammer 40k Harlequins and Napoleonic Austrians

Perry Miniatures Samurai and Ashigaru

French Chasseurs á Cheval and line infantry

Tried to hide the quite elephand-in-the-room-y Baneblade (very much a sci-fi/fantasy model)
right at the bottom of the showcase. Didn't quite work.

Once again, VIVAT was a great day out. It's always nice to meet the guys, to see new faces, see old old (and older :P ) faces, to meet regulars and newbies of all ages, genders, backgrounds and whatnot and to see them all get along and have a nice time. It's not a huge event, but each year it feels like the bar is being raised in terms of looks, diversity in games played and a feeling of community. Slowik at some point (between pondering how best to heave himself immortalized in oil) proclaimed that VIVAT wasn't a big show, but it would be a big loss if it wouldn't happen. Which is very true.

Many thanks to the organizers, everybody who attended, to the guys who ran demo games and as always special thanks to Wolfgang and Michi, the guys who helped me carry the 'glass coffin'

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