Sunday, 9 January 2011

Ramblings from New Cardiff

Working in Cardiff Bay can be a surreal experience; last Friday I walked past three Whoverse fans in fancy dress and there is the outside chance that they were extras. We watched a Torchwood episode being filmed from the office, heck a Dr Who episode was filmed in the office. When the Torchwood HQ was blown up, we walked past the rubble and I spotted that leather clad Govt Agent standing around on the ruins; going for a coffee you see Capt Jack and co waiting for a shoot.

What does this have to do with 15mm sci fi you may ask. Not a great deal really is my reply, except that after you recognise the very set of traffic lights where Torchwood chase a fish headed alien in a sports car, you really stop taking sci fi seriously. Back in school we had quiet serious debates – would the future be Star Trek or Blakes’ 7? I always loved reading sci fi but have discovered that the quite “hard” stuff – where speed is expressed in KPH and whole fleets are ordered to “rotate 125’ and execute manoeuvre Alpha-two-hotel on my mark” really began to make my head hurt. That was annoying because I actually like the Honor Harrington series and The Lost Fleet likewise. Meanwhile, the Serrano Legacy and the Vatta’s War series were both devoured. Lead character female? So what – they don’t tell you how the engines work.

And so to 15mm sci fi. I’m happily looting Xbox games, TV & films, you name it, for ideas for Huw Solo to get into trouble with. Yes, there’s a slight welsh vibe to it but given that most of the Whoverse exists in Wales in some form, there you go. Is it influenced by Star Wars? Yes! But also by “Taff Wars” the brilliant spoof on You Tube. And in Welsh you can hide some quite rude words into place names.

I like a lot of the figures out there but simply cannot be bothered by backstory. If I buy the CMG alien mercs (er, I have, just now) I wont bother giving each a MDRG stat line – they are just going to be Shooty Alien Merc, CQB Alien Merc, scaredy Alien merc etc; from 3 packs there will be a few of each. My games are going to be rip roaring shootouts – plotlines so thin they can slide under a door but when in doubt, have an alien walk in with a large gun.

Ideas include Daniel Graig Agent VII (“licensed to disintegrate”), The Trojan and the awful truth behind the Mullets of Kintyre. Quite possibly Huw Solo will lead a pirate fleet into New Tiger Bay as the Secessionists do something secessionist. Brown coats? Have I got anything to paint as Browncoats?


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