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"2nd Largest European Nation in Terms of Miniature Gamers?" Topic


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04 Apr 2011 1:15 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Crossposted to Wargaming in General board

16 Sep 2011 3:39 a.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Removed from TMP Poll Suggestions board

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1,442 hits since 4 Apr 2011
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian04 Apr 2011 1:14 p.m. PST

Assuming that the U.K. holds the crown for most miniature gamers in Europe, which nation has the second-largest number of miniature wargamers?

Connard Sage04 Apr 2011 1:20 p.m. PST

Assuming that the U.K. holds the crown for most miniature gamers in Europe

Does it though?

Diadochoi04 Apr 2011 1:21 p.m. PST

Finland! Get us all together and I am sure we could fill a Winnebago.

Diadochoi04 Apr 2011 1:24 p.m. PST

If TMP statistics are anything to go by TMP link it is France and Germany fighting it out for second, both with less than 10% of UK located TMPers.

quidveritas04 Apr 2011 1:36 p.m. PST

We don't hear much from French Gamers but based on the pictures I have seen, there must be a large and vibrant wargaming community in France.

Rhoderic III and counting04 Apr 2011 1:55 p.m. PST

I doubt TMP statistics are anything to go by. Many European gamers don't frequent English-language sites like this.

Scandis and Dutch are probably over-represented on TMP compared to other non-anglophone Europeans. We're generally better at English, so more likely to gravitate to the English-speaking online miniature gaming community.

(Edited for TMP Bug)

Plynkes04 Apr 2011 1:55 p.m. PST

TMP is an English language forum. That cuts out non-English speaking French and German gamers from the stats. In my experience lots of French people don't speak English, and I've yet to meet a German that didn't.

So I don't think you can read an awful lot into TMP statistics in this matter.

bruntonboy04 Apr 2011 2:02 p.m. PST

Strangely I spent yesterday afternoon in North London amongst about 13000 Northerners who only spoke pigeon-English. (myself included of course)

nycjadie04 Apr 2011 2:05 p.m. PST

I have a lot of German customers. That being said, I have a fair amount of French as well.

Personal logo 20thmaine Supporting Member of TMP04 Apr 2011 2:06 p.m. PST

I think France or Italy, seem to be quite a few fantasy/SF gamers in Germany, but fewer historicals (OSISTMIMI).

The Scandinavian countries all lose because their combined populations are less than greater London :-)

Princeps04 Apr 2011 2:13 p.m. PST

My guess, based on 15 years living in Belgium, is that it is probably France. Very large community of both fantasy/sci-fi and historical gamers. Quite a few francophone rules sets out there as well and a major magazine – Vae Victis. However, the majority do not frequent anglophone sites IMO. Most of my interaction with them has been in French, unlike the scene here in Belgium where I find almost all Flemish and Walloon gamers speak English. Unfortunately, we'll probably never know the answer to the question.

Ken Portner04 Apr 2011 2:27 p.m. PST

Here's a related question.

I assume that miniature wargaming has its origins in England. Does that explain why it seems to be largedly concentrated in English speaking countries?

Why didn't it develop independently in Continental Europe or Asia?

Marshal Mark04 Apr 2011 3:27 p.m. PST

"TMP is an English language forum. That cuts out non-English speaking French and German gamers from the stats. In my experience lots of French people don't speak English, and I've yet to meet a German that didn't."

On the other hand, most wargamers are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. I suspect that most French and German people that fit that description do speak English reasonably well.

If you look at a rules specific forum that has sections for non-English speakers, such as Impetus or FOG, you'll see that there are relatively few posts on these. I suspect that most players for whom English is not their first language still post on the English speaking section of the forum.
Impetus is an Italian game, and is I think relatively big in Italy. Yet the Italian language part of their forum has just over 100 posts compared to about 8000 in the English language part.

Rhoderic III and counting04 Apr 2011 5:00 p.m. PST

On the other hand, most wargamers are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. I suspect that most French and German people that fit that description do speak English reasonably well.

If you look at a rules specific forum that has sections for non-English speakers, such as Impetus or FOG, you'll see that there are relatively few posts on these. I suspect that most players for whom English is not their first language still post on the English speaking section of the forum.
Impetus is an Italian game, and is I think relatively big in Italy. Yet the Italian language part of their forum has just over 100 posts compared to about 8000 in the English language part.

Still, if you go by TMP statistics, Sweden has over half as many miniature gamers as France or Germany, and 3/4 as many as Spain or Italy. Sweden's population is 9 million, France's 63M, Germany's 82M, Spain's 46M and Italy's 60M. I'm pretty sure it's the TMP statistics that are off, rather than miniature gaming being proportionally that much bigger in Sweden than it is in continental Europe (and if you're wondering, most Swedes think of "continental Europe" as something Sweden is not part of).

And it gets much, much more lopsided once you look at the number of TMPers who are from the US, the UK or even Canada, Australia or New Zealand.

Pierce Inverarity04 Apr 2011 5:18 p.m. PST

It depends on the genre, too. There's interest in GW and the like, but historical miniatures aren't popular at all in Germany.

"But they're popular with ME." Sure, but just how many of you are there?

Is there even a single German manufacturer of historical miniatures that aren't either flats (a scene unto itself) or train-modelling-oriented? If so, just how big is this manufacturer?

The reasons are partly historical. Back in the 80s my LGS kept Squad Leader et al. in a special "on request" alcove, out of sight from the regular customers. Bit like the pr0n room in a video store.

Of course, that doesn't explain why premodern wargaming isn't popular either.

The Real Chris04 Apr 2011 5:41 p.m. PST

>>>>>>>.
On the other hand, most wargamers are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. I suspect that most French and German people that fit that description do speak English reasonably well.
>>>>>>>.
:) What a wonderful statement. I feel part of an elite already :)

50 Dylan CDs and an Icepick04 Apr 2011 6:15 p.m. PST

If you did it per-capita, the USA would be at the bottom, and New Zealand would surely be #1.

In sheer numbers, though, probably the USA.

Grand Duke Natokina04 Apr 2011 7:48 p.m. PST

I would bet on Germany.
Weaselhoffen.

Diadochoi04 Apr 2011 8:47 p.m. PST

I know that some wargames rules & supplements are translated into different languages, but aren't most available only in English implying another English speaking bias for us as a group?

(Phil Dutre)04 Apr 2011 11:47 p.m. PST

On the other hand, most wargamers are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. I suspect that most French and German people that fit that description do speak English reasonably well.

If that would be true, it would imply most wargamers in English-speaking countries also speak another language reasonably well – after all, they also are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. ;-)

Anyway, France has a very large wargaming community with originally-French rulesets, magazines and figure manufacturers. Some people even go as far to say there's a French painting-style and an Anglo-Saxon painting-style for miniatures.

losart05 Apr 2011 7:08 a.m. PST

well this is just my perception as it is very hard to figure real numbers.

The second nation after UK is in my opinion (but I'm almost sure on this) France. France has a good balance of historical and fantasy gamers and among the latter not only GW gamers.

Probably Italy is the third, though I see much more vitality in Spain lately so I'm not sure if Spain has surpassed us.
For sure Spain has bigger clubs and shops have a more important role.
I sold a similar number of Impetus and supplements in Italy and in Spain, but it was harder in Italy than in Spain and if you consider that Impetus is an Italian game…

The Spanish version of Lasalle (in Italy it would be a commercial suicide) confirms that probably there are more gamers in Spain than in Italy or they are more active gamers. It must be said also that Italian wargamers are very conservative and very slow to take new things.

As for the fantasy front Italy is GW addicted, while no idea about Spain, but I know that in Barcelona or Madrid there are clubs of about 100 members or more where no one play fantasy. In Italy bigger clubs are fantasy oriented with minorities of historicals.

Then I think it is Germany, but I think that Germany is more on the fantasy. And also I think that Germany in the future can grow much more than other countries as it has a very important tradition in games and train modellers.

Among countries of East Europe I think in Poland the hobby is growing, with popular forums and activities.

losart05 Apr 2011 7:15 a.m. PST

for sure Italy is the second as per miniature manufacturers:
Aude
Acies Edizioni
Baueda
Mirliton
Legio Heroica
Venexia
Strategia e Tattica
TB Line
Testudo
Camelot Games
Manour House
Waterloo 1815
Italeri

Connard Sage05 Apr 2011 7:18 a.m. PST

If that would be true, it would imply most wargamers in English-speaking countries also speak another language reasonably well after all, they also are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence

Je parle le francais tout a fait bien-ish. grin

woundedknee05 Apr 2011 7:43 a.m. PST

"Strangely I spent yesterday afternoon in North London amongst about 13000 Northerners who only spoke pigeon-English. (myself included of course)"
Brunton Boy, Blow The Bloody Whistle Ref! isn't pigeon English, it's part of the universal language of sport. A great week for Murphy. Lol

Personal logo Dasher Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2011 8:27 a.m. PST

I've only been to one gaming convention in Europe (it was in Italy, and it was FANTASTIC!), but it sure seemed like minis gaming thrives there.

Marshal Mark05 Apr 2011 12:03 p.m. PST

"If that would be true, it would imply most wargamers in English-speaking countries also speak another language reasonably well after all, they also are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. ;-)"

No it wouldn't. Most intelligent and well educated Europeans speak English quite well. Most intelligent and well educated English people do not speak another language particularly well.

(Phil Dutre)05 Apr 2011 1:28 p.m. PST


"If that would be true, it would imply most wargamers in English-speaking countries also speak another language reasonably well after all, they also are reasonably well educated and of above average intelligence. ;-)"

No it wouldn't. Most intelligent and well educated Europeans speak English quite well. Most intelligent and well educated English people do not speak another language particularly well.


I know many well-educated Europeans who do not have a working knowledge of English. It depends strongly on the country and branch of employment. Universities are all fluent in English; government agencies much less likely; for companies it's mixed, depending on how much international contacts they have.

As for wargaming, I know many wargamers who do not have a working knowledge of English. Heck, I even know traders who don't speak English. And I know at least one shopkeeper who doesn't speak English.

bruntonboy06 Apr 2011 12:59 p.m. PST

Good weekend indeed, I won't attempt to write here what was being said in the 95 minute, even TMP's bleep machine would work it out- whatever the language was.

tuscaloosa08 Apr 2011 9:42 p.m. PST

"I suspect that most French and German people that fit that description do speak English reasonably well."

True, but that doesn't mean they seek out or browse English-speaking websites in their spare time.

France has a wargamer's magazine; Germany does not. (Although that is also likely due to the German hobby's self-consciousness, given they are always insisting they are not closet Nazi's, and any kind of focus on war is taboo in German society).

Grand Duke Natokina08 Apr 2011 9:45 p.m. PST

Mein Deutsch ist gut.
Watakushi no Nihongo wa ma ma desu.
Weaselhoffen, whose second guess would be maybe the Russians.

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