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POLL: Has Miniature Wargaming "Shot Its Bolt"?

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SultanSevy writes:

Shrinking? Not by a long shot. Miniatures gaming is surely growing. The number of games available to play, the huge variety of figure manufacturers (both metal and plastic), the emergence of pre-painted games, the ability to buy anything you want off the internet… all of that has increased drastically over the last 25 years.

I spend more on minis and play more today (in my 40's) than ever before.

Generally speaking, I think traditional wargaming is an "older gamer's hobby" by nature simply because of the expense involved. Adult gamers in their 30's, 40's and 50's have established themselves in life and can afford to buy more expensive stuff to support their hobby. Although there are certainly games aimed at kids, the vast majority of teens don't have the money to buy many games/figures/terrain-pieces, nor do most have the attention span to focus on this solely as their main hobby.

It always amuses me to hear about the "graying of the hobby" and the portent of doom that some people love to proclaim. I have several wargaming friends who didn't even get into this hobby UNTIL they were over 30 or 40! Instead of trying to get more kids into the hobby, perhaps we should be enticing 30 and 40-somethings who want to find a fun new hobby and have the money to actually participate in it!

That said, an earlier poster made mention of HeroScape and the new Axis & Allies games. Add to that D&D Minis, and miniature-centric board games like Battlelore, Descent, StarCraft, Zombies!, and Tide of Iron, and you have more & more young people being exposed to miniatures than ever before.

Would there be so many games & toys available if nobody wanted to buy them? I think not.

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Writing on another forum, a wargamer observed:

I don't think there's much doubt that miniature gaming shot its bolt at or before the turn of the century. More mini-gamers are leaving the hobby as costs rise and time to play dwindles. The influx of new mini-gamers has slowed - you can play Call of Duty or Ghost Recon without ever touching a brush, after all.

That said, I think the hobby is pretty stable. There are new gamers coming in and older gamers who leave, often return in a few years with renewed vigor. The days of packed game stores (try to find a game store in most cities) and rulesets/figures flying off the shelves are long gone, though.

Do you agree?