While at AusCON 2011 in
Brisbane, Australia for a short visit I witnessed the power of a really good demo game. My brother came along with me and he does not play miniature Wargames at all but he was immediately interested when he saw an awesome games table set up for a 15mm Viet Nam game. The Game was Flashpoint Viet Nam
and my brother actually had a holiday toViet
Nam and few years ago. Cambodia
The set up was basically the choppers flying in with Air Cav in a recreation of a scene out of Apocalypse Now with rockets screaming down to a river delta. It only lacked the music. Flashpoint miniatures looked really good and may be a good source for those taking up Flames of War
(or any other rule set). Vietnam
After a period of looking around my brother settled in to playing the game. It was very slow as one of the opponents wanted to know every detail of every move, dice roll etc. Bit of a thrill kill person really. The game had a system where it was not really a your turn, then my turn set up that I am used to with Flames of War. But it was really interesting to see how a non gamer took to it. It reminded me of when I was very, very young and being taken along to a Wargames set up. It might have been a tournament or a convention but it doesn’t really matter as it planted the seed in my head. Seeing grown ups playing with toys and rolling dice and the visual experience struck a chord with me and I still recall the wow factor to this day.
A good demo game may not get instant results for the sellers of figures and rules but it may set of a slow burn that simmers for a long time. I discussed this with another fella who had a Demo table set up. It was based on Flames of War with very little tweaking but used 1:35 scale figures. Those Tamiya and other plastic model makers models really made a big contrast to the tiny 15mm games I usually play. So to those that create and run demo games keep up the good work.