As with many others my first collection of miniatures consisted of Airfix 1:72 plastic soldiers (in my case mainly Napoleonics). These I purchased during my primary school days in the early seventies. Even then we built fortresses and waged battles, although without a set of rules.
Participating in different kinds of model making for many years, in 1984 I was eventually introduced to fantasy roleplaying games by a Bundeswehr (in those years in Germany you had to attend the army for some time after leaving school) comrade.
This however was a kind of catalyst for all the things that followed!
Knights, Romans and the monsters of old classical mythology had always interested me, but diving into these worlds during the fantasy role-playing games was just brilliant.
A year or so later Bernd joined our group of role-players (at that time already with metal miniatures). We also had plenty of ESCI 1:72 minis that led us into our new hobby and founded our still lasting friendship.
Then in the mid eighties we frantically collected and painted 28 mm miniatures mainly from the Grenadier and Citadel™ ranges. Also at that time the first buildings and terrain were made. Our skills improved due to experience and the ´eavy metal articles in the White Dwarf magazine which for years was setting our standards (at that time only the English version was available, which improved my English skills a lot). Buildings, scenery and terrain were made using experience gained during my model railway days.
The introduction to Warhammer Fantasy Battle™ 3rd Edition (internally known as ‘The Bible’) was exactly the thing we needed to bring all our ideas to life!
For a long time we talked and discussed the possibilities of the games to be played, but without much practise however.
This was due to two important ingredients still missing: a fitting location and even more important, ‘suitable’ players.
In the nineties we attended the FANFOR convention in Mannheim many times with several of our large temporary dioramas. At that time we already had more than a 1000 miniatures and the necessary terrain to set up these dioramas (see pictures in the gallery).
Eventually in 1996 or 1997 we found our missing ingredients:
A nice big room was available in the cellar of the apartment house I lived in and ‘suitable’ players turned up.
There was the second Thomas (Kutscher) who we had known for a long time and 2 other guys.
The battles commenced!
Naturally in my opinion we made the typical mistakes of novices:
- The armies were too big.
- Charakters were too detailed.
- All available rules and extra rules were used (at least tried to use!)
Frankly the issue was quite unmanageable and from time to time even frustrating!
Also, some of us took things too seriously (maybe a German habit).
But step by step we got things sorted out and after moving to the loft of Thomas Kutscher`s house and the changing of some players we were generally 6 sometimes even 8 people attending. Not all of these were fantasy or miniature freaks. Some would probably have done something else in a similar group, but the fun had already infected them.
Another move from the loft to the cellar of the same house supplied us with even more space, so we were constantly able to play on a 2 by 3-meter (sometimes divided) table.
Many house rules were released and then repealed, mainly to limit the (in our opinion) too mighty characters and magic.
A few times we tried other sets of rules like ‘Clan War’, ‘Confrontation’, ‘Pirates of the Spanish Main’ or even ‘Gorkamorka’ but in the end, we always came back to play ‘Warhammer’.
Partly this is because of our own laziness, partly because we are quite happy with the rules of the last Warhammer edition. Although sooner or later we will release a few new house rules we were quite amused to find some memories of our old house rules in the latest release of Warhammer.
We played ‘Warhammer Ancient Battles’ and ‘English Civil War’ several times.
After the end of the FANFOR conventions in about 2000, Bernd and I attended a few others.
The fair ‘Spiel’ in Essen in October is a real thriller even with the miniatures shops in retreat. At the ‘Miniaturenansichten’ in Witten we took part three times, and we have also seen the DUZI in Wesel. But the real big focal point outside England seems to be the ‘Crisis’ convention in Antwerp every November!! Here you get tabletop games in their purest form: demonstrations, traders (many from England) of fantasy, science fiction and all historical periods, in short everything tabletop gamers and collectors need.
In 2005 the demonstrations were so amazing that we were inspired to make new terrain ourselves!
These new modular plates each 1 by 1 meter were made from December 2005 to March 2006 and they are the basis of our 2 by 4-meter table (in local slang: die platt). The results you can see on the other pages of this site.
The homepage we have thanks to our Michael, he was visiting Thomas for something totally different and fortunately Thomas took the chance to show him our gaming room.
Two weeks later he showed up with a box full of e-bayed lizardmen!!
With Matze another guest at Thomas’ house was turned into a tabletop gamer, via this homepage Harri found us and joined for some time.
In 2007 and 2008 Bernd and plus the big collector and sparse painter Klaus-Peter Schneider took part in the Mini-Art-Con a small but neat convention in the Ruhr area.
“Tactica” in Hamburg and “Bitbox” in Mühlheim a.d.Ruhr are todays must attend in the German miniatures
Year, usually a few of us are present.
Alex joined a few years ago, he is a veteran gamer of mainly W40k, but we could interest him in WHFB and The 9th Age.
After many battles and the swaop to WHFB 8th Ed. (even more mins and bigger units – great!), my wife told a colleague of my hobby. After meeting for one evening his latent Warhammerfervour was awoken and we started to plan for a die platt spin-off:
Die Platt beim Roger!
Very quickly we started the first games in the loft of his house, and by now a real gaming room has been established!
Thomas (yes another) a friend of Roger joined and together with Emil we have a real 2nd gaming group.
For some time now, Alex also has a gaming room which includes a bar and therefore is highly popular 😉
With 2 young lads joining the games at Kutschers home all three locations thrive gaming wise!
“Age of Sigmar™” we have weathered out and so still enjoy our “old” system. The term “proper hammer” I read some time ago, lovely describes our doing 😉
Enjoy checking out our photo gallery and feel free to write us if you like!
Cheers Thomas (Woank), August 2017