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    I have spent the last 3 weeks happily & gainfully employed re-basing my 500+ ACW armies & painting 60 or so extra figures I had lying around to bring them up to strength.

    As one does, whilst going through the assembly line process of re-basing, I contemplated future directions for my hobby.

    And, met with an astounding conclusion: I really don’t need many more figures.

    I have many thousands of painted figures & my armies are either at a size that is either big enough or too big for any sensible game (my 3 Bronze Age armies, my Punic War forces, SYW French & Prussians, ACW, AZW, my 5 Napoleonic armies) or needs a relatively few figures to complete to the same quantity (Dark Ages, Renaissance, the Sudan, WW2).

    This is *not* a “I’m jaded with the hobby” post. I like painting figures. Storage is an issue but it essentially boils down to I have more than enough for any sensible program of games for the years ahead.

    I’m very much addicted to terrain making at the moment & future extensive re-basing is probable but purchasing & painting masses of figures seems ulikely.


    Can you survive in wargaming with such entropy?




    Mr. Average

    “Need” is a very weak word.  It might be accurate to say that I may reach a point where I “don’t want” any more out of this hobby, but I’m not there yet.  As long as I’m enjoying myself in some slim way along the edges of the otherwise austere and somewhat stressful life I live, I don’t consider it entropic.  I think of it more the way people might spend on drinks at a bar or on movies or pizza.  Or on books – that was my father’s great pastime, and mine too, to a smaller extent.  But my relaxation comes from my hobby, and so I don’t think it has that kind of an end for me of “Well, I’ve done all I can here, that’s enough.”

    Maybe one day, but not yet by a long chalk.  And I speak miniatures-wise, as well.  There are always people coming up with new and interesting projects that I think I’ll like, and that keeps me interested in my collection.  Like anything, it can turn into a neurosis or a compulsion, I’m sure, but all things in their proper place, I think it’s fine.

    Norm S

    I would be content  with that situation, especially as painting could be pleasure drive (poshing up command bases) rather than needs drive (need to do 18 units ASAP!).

    My reading has taken a massive hit in recent years, something I plan to rectify as I give hobby balance some thought.

    Steve Johnson

    Over the past few years I have off loaded a lot of figures that I know I would never, ever use. They were bought when I was still a member of a wargames club. They have been replaced with 10mm figures for periods and conlficts that I know I will enjoy gaming. Given my painting rate they will take me many, many years to complete. Hopefully next year I can semi-retire so my painting and gaming rate will increase as well as giving me time to catch up on a pile of books that are waiting to be read.


    As indicated, terrain construction should provide a major avenue of activity. A few years ago, I wrote a set of SYW rules. It took me 18 months of research, play testing & re-writing which was absolutely enthralling. My pals & I use them, not out of deference to my efforts but because we like them. I may well have a shot at writing an Ancients set (probably specifically for Chariot Wars).

    I’m not going to rule out a purchase of newly made figures (especially if HaT gets its act together & makes its proposed MAC SYW Austrians or, better still, SYW Russians) or a new period (Colonial conflicts in the NW frontier if anyone made a decent & complete range of Afghan-types). But, regardless, I will have lots of activity in a hobby that for me, remains an important part of my life.




    I reached that point many years ago. These days I fill in odd missing bits, redo some things which need revisiting, make terrain and rebase…

    I do occasionally get an enthusiasm to extend a period/scale off in a particular direction. I seem to have a thing about 15mm plastic tanks at the moment. I enjoy assembling and painting them, but it is unlikely most of them will get used in a game any time soon.

    "Mistakes in the initial deployment cannot be rectified" - Helmuth von Moltke

    Shaun Travers

    I am not very fond of painting so I do not feel entropy that way.  But about 7 years ago I did but painted figures to round out some collections (mostly Ancients, Medieval and WW2).  I stopped about 3 years ago and have only made minor purchases here and there.  I look forward to using them, and some figures I have in other periods, for a long time in games.  I am in wargaming for the research and the gaming, so think I am (mostly) set for ages!


    I’m in the opposite situation to entropy at the moment: out-of-control growth. I’ve been making lists of all the figures I still need for all my diverse (and multiplying) projects so I can make better priorities for what to purchase next. Seeing my long-term shopping list in actual writing, the unfeasibility of it all is starting to sink in. Still, I don’t want to give up – I really can’t think of anything on the lists that I’d be prepared to axe.

    This is a somewhat stressful, energy-draining situation, where I’m spending I-don’t-know-how-many hours a week on various webstores or chasing up missing items by e-mail because some seller made a mistake packing my order (this keeps happening far too often!). I would love to reach a state where I’m secure in knowing I have everything I “need”, save whatever new releases might strike my fancy from time to time. With most of the stress of collecting gone, I should have more time and energy to paint figures, model terrain, read rules and reference books, and design scenarios, which is what I actually want to be doing. But I won’t be there any time soon…

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 11 months ago by Rhoderic.
    Guy Farrish

    It depends what your hobby is.

    If it’s collecting and painting you’ve hit a wall and you may get over it or change to something else for a bit.

    If it’s warGAMING (excuse the caps for emphasis) you have almost achieved Nirvana – you can play without the frustration of building armies; go and enjoy! Entirely survivable.


    PS Entropy? Isn’t that the amount of energy in a system not available to do work? Or the movement towards disorder of any system? Sounds more like you have reached an equilibrium point through homeostasis.


    PS Entropy? Isn’t that the amount of energy in a system not available to do work? Or the movement towards disorder of any system?

    Come to think of it, I was thinking of dystrophy, not entropy, when I said I’m in the opposite situation 


    Some years ago, after the aquisition of family and house, I realized that my gaming group was inadvertantly pushing a greater proportion of my hobby time away from primary interests, and more towards secondary interests.  I also started to become aware that I had infinite interests and finite time to pursue them in.  So, I began selling off figures for secondary projects, and focussing more on the core interests.  Since that time, I’ve stayed on that path and made a number of changes in my gaming, selling off a large number of miniatures in the process.  The result is that I still buy figs to expand or add nations, armies, units, and faction to existing projects, but tend to avoid starting new periods, conflicts, etc, unless they were what I call a “core” interest, which is generally something that captivated me since childhood.

    In the end,  over the last five years I tend to buy about 1/3 of the figs that I bought 15-20 years ago, and about half of what I did around 10 years ago.  I expect that as I close in on those core projects, I will buy fewer and fewer miniatures, though I don’t really expect that I’ll ever be done buying figs.  I also suspect that sometime over the next ten years, I may drop a couple of the smaller scales, as I expect that my visiion will eventually become a problem.


    Several posts in this thread must be very depressing to some advertisers.


    Sorry, Mike!




    Mike Headden

    Having retired, paid off the mortgage and the overdraft I find myself with less than 50% of my previous salary but with around 40% of previous outgoings so I have more disposable income now than ever … though given how little I had before that’s not saying much!!

    I find myself enthused by a new scale/ period/ army every two to six weeks and wind up collecting the “basic” stuff needed. Well, for a certain value of basic at least.

    As a result I have six currently active* projects and who knows how many that are currently shelved and am in the process of collecting a seventh … anyone know a good source of 15mm scale Late Pleistocene fauna? 🙂

    *in the sense that elements of them are still on the painting table even though they may not have seen a paintbrush in many, many months!!



    Growing old is mandatory, growing up is entirely optional!


    donald, I am in pretty much the same place as you – the major projects are all completed, or are approaching that state.  I’ll still buy figures and I’ll still do some painting, but it is all little extras.  I am up for slightly switching direction over the next 5 years and working more on the terrain side. http://hereticalgaming.blogspot.com/2017/08/project-management.html


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