Over the weekend, I got to go to Gamesfest 4 with my LGS, Wargames Inc. Awesome, eh? So I decide to get a relatively early night for the 5am Saturday start. One of my neighbours has other plans, however, and regales me with shitty R'n'B and pop music via the too-loud speakers in his fucking car. I'd have loved to swing out and pull an inverted takedown on the bastard, but I'm not Batman.
So, 3 hours of sleep later I'm up and staggering down to meet Martin, a customer who had agreed to drive me to the show and sell shit for Wargames Inc and we're off. It's a long fucking way to Watford (my initial hopes that it would be a quick drive were dashed when I learned that the Watford Gap service station is nowhere fucking near Watford). Setup was ok, we had a good spot and I got my demo table out to run Warmachine battlebox demos all day - easy life.
However, I had forgotten Alessio Cavatore (Skaven Army Book, current 40K) was sending his proxy down to demo Shuuro for the store. When his proxy turned out to be Jervis 'Bloodbowl' Johnson I had to pack my shit away. I mean, some scruffy twat Pressganger or a legitimate games design legend? He's a really nice guy too, so I sold some stuff for Wargames, pointed people in the direction of the big Warmachine demo game and cooly chatted to Jervis (monopolised him with my lickspittle fawning, really). I gave up my demo spot and talked about the old days with the guy who created Bloodbowl. Fucking top one, so far.
I also hung out with Dave from Warlord Games. Their new Black Powder rules, written by Rick Priestly (also a really nice and approachable guy) and Jervis Johnson sound really intriguing. No points values and abuse of the system limited by agreement between friends. That's the main thing behind these rules, getting together with your mates to have fun - the rules are very old school in that respect. I will be wanting one of those, I can tell you. But to blag Martin the 'Big Willie' figure I had to make a sale for them. That's right, I had to schill for Warlord Games to get someone a limited run miniature and that someone wasn't me. Dave's a cheeky bastard.
The day took a slightly sour turn for us when another trader turned up and announced he was selling all his stuff at 50% off RRP. Good for the gamer, I know, but not so good for the trader who is scrabbling for margins in what is, let's face it, a niche market at best. And when he announced a further 25% reduction on his 'overstock' (including Grind, a game from Privateer Press released last week), that was taking the piss. Perhaps he didn't realise a Pressganger would know about Privateer's products. We had to refund any profit made thanks to that. The event organisers, Mark and Walter were really understanding and helped us out as best they could, so thanks to them for that.
The event was stacked with authors, including one of the guys who got me into this hobby, Steve Jackson (no, not the GURPS guy), one of the Fighting Fantasy gamebook creators. The most surreal moment for me was when Jervis (his manner is very disarming, you soon forget he's a GW big cheese) said 'I hope Steve Jackson's here with the Fighting Fantasy guys, I haven't spoken to him in ages'. I did a double take until I realised that Jervis is, actually, a GW big cheese and not one of my mates. Steve Jackson (no, not the fucking GURPS guy) and Jon Green were signing books, as were Graham McNeil and the author of the Brethren trilogy, Robyn Young.
I got to make some new friends (well, let's say I met some people who didn't automatically vomit after spending a couple of minutes with me) and had a good time generally. Definately worth going to.
I got to bed at about 10pm, so a long day for me. Then I got up, feeling a bit ill, and went down to Wargames to get some painting done. It turned out really fucking shit. I hadn't used inks in a long fucking time. Basically, I ruined the Kaelyssa model. That's what I get for following Matt DiPietro's destructions. I'll post pictures later on in the week and leave you with this one bit of advice: if you're ill enough to have to turn down a home-cooked meal (I missed chilli and rice, for fuck's sake) you're not well enough to fucking paint.
The real fucking kicker is that on Monday I felt pretty good. Looks like my crappy immune system crapped out on me, but only for one day.
Angry that days off are full of suffering