Sometimes art takes many forms and today I got to see an example of Pyrography which is, to us lay folk, the art of burning images into wood. An ancient and worthy form of art in my opinion. Now to the matter in hand hot as it is! Shani wife of Mark and a fan of The Ion Age made her loving husband a unique present of a dice box as seen in the image above. It was fashioned to match the cover of the coming Patrol Angis rulebook which you can see below.
I think Shani did an excellent job of it. You can see the original post HERE.
Its our biggest code on the Ion Age so far and this little look at it gives you a taste before release day. Our birthday month is heating up and thanks to everyone who has sent in kind words and picked up the figures they missed from the Year One Collection. Read on and dream of a grand space opera setting. Go to the Ion Age blog and excuse me after a massive typing day for not saying more here inside my own head blog.
Have a look at one of the blogs that I run. My baby brand The Ion Age is about to be one year old and its got me really pumped up and happy. There is a lot of 15mm scale science fiction wargaming on the global market. In fact its just about the most vibrant and busy genre and scale as far as I can tell. This means the ideas and therefore the competition is intense. Far more so that back in 2005-6 when I brought Laserburn back to the market and Alien Squad Leader gave my 15mm.co.uk dominance in the marketplace for a few years. Despite and because of this The Ion Age is doing really well with the ethos of fun, afforable, characterful space opera with a more old school look and taste. In fact its going well enough to be occupying more of my own time than I expected. So August will be a month of celebration and offers and gifts as well as new releases.
I will be talking more about this and also addressing my own personal failings to get Patrol Angis to the market within the first year but more on that later. For now its pumped and happy.
Today marked a grand day for me personally. A day I have been working towards since last year. A day that proves if you try hard enough you can actually achieve next to anything. Do not take that as some sort of self improvement propaganda its simply a plan with a lot of hard work. Thousands of hours and admittedly a thousand disappointed people (I do have to sleep and see my children) have taken me to this day. While I will resume my game development and so on soon today is all about the Three Platforms. Alternative Armies on its new website launched Project Darkhelm, 15mm.co.uk on its new website released the second to last re-mastered code for Laserburn and lastly following up on last month’s awesome early supporter deal my baby The Ion Age ramps up for its One Year Anniversary with another great offer on hover vehicles. We are back to the situation of one year ago plus more with weekly releases across three platforms or websites and their connected blogs.
Click on the links for details and forgive me not explaining it all here as I have already typed some six thousand words today plus other tasks.
I would actually be interested to hear if anyone out there manages so many different brands and systems and their support. We could have quite a good conversation I think. I admire other workers in the industry and enjoy the chats I do have with several of them each week. So. A little round of applause for me and a bow, thank you. I would have posed this yesterday in lead in but I was happily attending my old haunt Glasgow University to attend the graduation of my sister in law Kirsten Loy. Congratulations girl and well done. A full post soon on this with my own reflections at returning some 12 years to the day since I myself graduated and not since.
Enjoy the pictures and thanks for all the kind words on Google Plus and other forums too. I adore you all…really 🙂
The Ion Age is continuing to grow in infamy (I like that word more than fame, it suits the world just now rather well) and today I saw my first ‘conversion’ of our miniatures. Above you can see some Shia Khan Pioneers in 15mm scale turned into Galafraxian Black Guards. Yes those are eye stocks!
This made me smile among what is now a truly awesome amount of work which I must carry out. I try not to let customers down and as such I answer every email sent to me and I try to make things run smoothly all the time. I will be working on Patrol Angis full time as of this week along with an overhaul of the Alternative Armies website. That will keep me from posting overly much. I have signed up to follow Allison M the chap who created these images and made the conversions.
The quasi-humanoid, photosynthetic Garafraxians (colloquially called “Chloros”) use heavy armour to protect their fragile bodies during combat. Their long eye stalks give them excellent depth perception and peripheral vision however, so they generally extend them out of their suits except when in immediate danger. The suits are lined with red-LED arrays to maintain their metabolism far away from their home star’s nourishing rays.
You can find the original blog posting HERE. Lastly congratulations to the blog runner…enjoy those coming sleepless nights and demands on your time!
Here be Dragons!
Salute 2014 is over and I am back in Scotland now. I got back on Sunday afternoon but its taken until now for me to take care of all the email and other matters to have time to make this posting. My own blogging comes last on the list and is mainly for my own amusement here on this domain. That being said I hope the three thousand of you who look at it each week enjoy the read. Anyway with the dust settled and some time to muse on it…just how was Salute this year for me and as an event?
Come and look at the table!
For me this Salute was the most easy going ever with the entire event going off without a hitch and even the traffic in London being remarkably light. I was tired sure but nothing like the mad days of 2004-2010 for this wargames show. I met a lot of nice people and in among the praise of how much they were loving The Ion Age and wishing it good growth I also took some flak from Flintloque fans. Did I not know this was the first Salute since the 1990’s that Flintloque did not dominate the trade stand? Well I did and I did it on purpose; sorry guys! Makes me think though Flintloque has been ‘me’ for so long now that it did feel a bit strange not to have it there. We did fine in terms of our sales and I was happy with that and as always we dropped off a stack of ‘collect on the day’ pre-orders. I want to thank all those who supported us and me and I wish them well.
The Ion Age in the ‘flesh’ got a lot of admiring looks
As an event this Salute was rather more quiet that previous years. Less excitement and buzz in the massive hall at Excel and without the bring and buy the gaps between the rows of stands was very wide indeed. I think attendance was down a bit as well. Certainly I tend to notice things like this and my notes from 2013 said the same thing down on 2012. Not to be pessimistic but it seems possible to me with the changing nature of the hobby that such a big show might not continue as it is. A smaller trade stand suited us and other traders had done the same thing perhaps noticing what I had. I have not seen this opinion online elsewhere but then maybe I am wrong on this…when I look back at this post in a year I will know for sure. Just call me Hari Seldon perhaps!
Perhaps this sign will be gone next year?
Now. On with life and with business. Its Malig Madness release week on The Ion Age and its the Maginot Turret kit on 15mm.co.uk and Slaughterloo is back in stock from the morrow on Alternative Armies. Plus the sun is shining. Life is mighty fine by the sea here in Girvan and there is a LOT coming your way over the coming months.
Look for our 18 foot tall banner!
There is a week to go. It might be more than a week in actual time but with the drive down to London to take into account from here in Scotland the Salute 2014 wargame show will begin for me in one week’s time. Three days away from home and family and my one actual convention in person this year. Its been a year for re-structuring for the company and that includes our scale of commitment to Salute. We will be having a smaller stand and no demonstration game this year. Also since its the first time that my own baby The Ion Age has been in existence at this time of year the whole of the trade stand is being occupied by our fantastic 15mm science fiction range. That being said we are well under way for new websites, new resin production plant and some of the most kick ass products on the market.
The ramp up to Salute is one of the most busy times of my year and this year is no different. In fact it looks like its a record year for pre-orders for collection on the day (many of these are from Flintloque players and also fans of Alien Squad Leader) and if it keeps going we might have to leave some of the stock behind here to make room for packages! I am not overly surprised at the Alternative Armies pre-orders as this is the first time in my involvement in wargaming that a show I attend has no Flintloque at it. I got permission to make an excellent offer to fans including the expected discount but also a free brand new character miniature.
I have something a little different in mind too and the company will be making several new product releases at Salute 2014 on the day. These will be new codes which will be previewed just before the show on the relevant blogs and then released during the week following the show. Meaning those there on the day will get the first look and chance to buy. In fact the theme for the day is ‘Malig Madness…15mm Space Goblins’ so that is more than a clue plus for 15mm.co.uk I will have the entire brand new Loud Ninja Games range and two new packs purpose designed for the Human Colonial Army template in Alien Squad Leader 2.0.
I would be the first to admit that I am tired. I work hard, I work all the time but this event stokes it to the maximum. That being said I am super keen on going as I just love to shake hands and see all the people who make an effort to come along and see us or me personally. The day itself is also excellent with all of the traders and games put on with a lot to see. There is no bring and buy this year and I will be interested to see if the attendance is also down on last year. Over the last two weeks I have seen many more comments online than before about wargamers choosing not to attend.
In any event this will be my last posting here for a while and I will have no time for musing before the big day. If you are going along pop by the Alternative Armies stand and say hello…I will be the guy with the big smile and the Ion Age t-shirt on.
There is a lot going on at work just now. Major product releases one after another. This has meant less time for me to do much in the way of hobby or personal time projects but its well worth a blog post here. So what has the week for me been?
Its all been about buildings, vehicles and aliens in 15mm scale. 15mm scale means that a human being of average height is about a centimetre and a half tall as a miniature. Its a great scale as it means very large objects can be modelled affordable and well without a huge expenditure of energy. The aliens were the brand new Prang, alien raiders and soldiers over on 15mm.co.uk. These chaps made by my friend Eli Arndt over in the USA are great fun and suggestions for their use range from pirates to bodyguards. If you are interested in seeing them pop along to the blog for that website. The vehicles, well that was Sam Croes beautiful Skylark Patrol Flyer a resin kit in 15mm scale for The Ion Age. You can see it on top of the tower in the above image. Terrain came in the shape of the landing pad that tops off the tower in the above image. You can read more on the Ion Age blog.
Typically I do the writing, blogging, web work and photo editing for releases and I am not interrupted much by customers or fans while doing it but in the last seven days its been a total opposite. Many have been praising and asking about these new items. This is the focal point of this posting. It makes me smile. Being asked what something will look and what it will cost and if there is a story to it is very invigorating it makes you realise that people care. Frankly it makes me sure that investing my time and efforts into this universe was the right thing to do.
That said I do hope to read my copy of Escape from New York over the weekend..if I have time.
IB52 Muster Female Squad
Quick posting to link over to the Alternative Armies blog. Its been near twenty years since the last new ‘greens’ were released for The Ion Age, at that time Firefight. I have reached another milestone today along with Sam Croes in bringing out new 28mm designs. Four for now but many more to come. A little pat on the back for me today I think! Click on the link if you want to learn more.
Work, work, work. Twelve hour days, long time. But there are moments of utter joy among the hours of trudge and one of those came around noon today. Sam Croes design the Duxis Battlesuit went live today on the Ion Age website in the form of two early supporter bundles. The bundles were my idea, after all, I know how much I love freebies and a saving. At noon the offers went live and within mere minutes the orders started coming in as I sat and watched. Lovely comments too, lots of adoration of this latest miniature in all its variants. Its not about the money in the job I do, it never is, but after a project has been in the works for some time the moment it is public can be nerve racking.
You can read the full blog posting about this over on the Ion Age Blog.
The offers run for two weeks and I have some blog posts planned that will give hints of more new products to come on the heels of the battlesuit and before Salute 2014 in April at Excel in London. What are these products…I will not say so there!
Now back work.