On a rather delightfully warm Saturday morning, I found myself once again trekking to the hallowed tabletop show that is Salute. Once again the tabletop masses descended unto the London Excel for Salute 2019. Grab a cup of tea and settle in, I’m going to tell you what my personal highlights of the show.
The first thing I’ll certainly compliment the show on is how astonishingly busy it was. Seeing heaving hordes of elated wargamers and tabletop hobbyists dart from table-to-table managed to warm even my cold, dismal heart. It acted as a stark yet welcome reminder. Whilst these hobbies may be regarded as niche, they certainly have an impressive following. Every single time I wandered by the Warlord Games stand it was absolutely packed with people. Kudos to Warlord for pulling in such an impressive crowed!
Surviving the Wasteland Warfare
I was very fortunate enough to find myself by the Modiphius stand where they held demos for Fallout: Wasteland Warfare. I was introduced to a chap named Paul who was very eager to run me through their Fallout tabletop skirmish game. Paul was enthusiastic, light-humoured and visibly excited to run me through the product. Needless to say, his passion made the experience all the more enjoyable and memorable.
The game itself was somewhat difficult to grasp in the short session we had in the middle of the busy show. Having “Survivors” battle against “Super Mutants” with an array ranged and melee weaponry. With four models each my opponent and I performed actions such as running, shooting, charging and interacting with the environment. The bespoke dice system was quite tricky to grasp early-on, but soon made sense after the first few activations.
Irrefutably, the models look fantastic with plenty of cards and tokens fitting the Fallout theme stupendously. Feeling sure that I have the game within my backlog somewhere, the urge to dig it out and give it a thorough try is all too real. Be sure to keep checking back as I’m sure we’ll have something posted for it soon…
Game Over, Man…
By now some of you guys may have seen the somewhat sorrowful news from Prodos Games. It seems that for one reason or another, their Aliens versus Predator (AvP) game and model lines are being discontinued. As a huge fan of the respective franchises along with the incredible sculpts Prodos have achieved, this was an unfortunate bit of news.
Whilst I do own the game and have covered it previously it is always woeful to hear a project that a company has put so much time into is coming to an end. I visited the Prodos Games stall at Salute to tell them my fondness of the work they had done. Their miniatures have some of the most wonderfully detailed sculpts I’ve seen, despite them being a little fragile at times.
We’ll be bringing some content to you guys soon after a chat with some of the fine guys at Prodos Games. It’s not often companies such as this are permitted to set their hands on such huge franchises. With this in mind I’m keen to learn of their experience and share it with you if I can. How was it? Was it more difficult that creating a bespoke IP? What have they learned from it? We’ll also be looking for more information on their brand new game Starcide.
Lay of the Land
Sarissa were also out in force at the show, known for their wonderful tabletop terrain. Their historical terrain items are certainly noteworthy! On display was a new set of terrain/board pieces that were modular and could be shifted around in any number of ways.
The sides that connected pieces together was almost like an odd, wavy, jigsaw-esque cut. This meant that the pieces would fit side-by-side without any unnatural straight lines visible. The sheer amount of options that it present meant that your historical wargames could well be different each time you play. How these guys manage to make MDF increasingly interesting is totally beyond me, but somehow they manage it!
Outright I will comment that it felt as though there were fewer grandiose tables on the show floor this year than in 2018. Whether I’m faintly mis-remembering or my sense of scale is letting me down, I don’t know. However, I’m fairly sure that what displays were there were not as spectacular in size; they were still splendid to behold, though.
Some of the painting competition entries certainly left me feeling floored with the intricacy and skill exhibited. One specifically stood out for me in the cabinet with all the entries. The “Dog Red” submission was a small diorama depicting a landing craft landing at Omaha Beach on D-Day. The sheer breadth of detail and painstaking effort put into the piece had my jaw collide with the floor as I gawked on in amazement.
Whilst there were plenty of worthy entries and fantastic submissions, I saw Dog Red and simply couldn’t resist sharing it with you all. As with some previous shows, find a gallery below of all the photos we took at the show. There’s a lot of images, so it might take a few minutes to load properly!
Did any of you fine hobbyists attend Salute 2019? What were your highlights? Might there be anything you feel warrants a particular mention or commendation? Do let us know and, as ever, be sure to follow us on Facebook for regular updates.