A new state of affairs

There’s been a lot happening in the last six months. In the same week I was referred for quick-response cancer assessment, I was told I would be made redundant, along with other people from my workplace, and that the games line I was working on would be wound up. Interesting times!

But things aren’t all black. I’ve had interviews for other jobs, and one is in the pipeline (though redundancy pay has been used up!). Rick Priestley and I (see the Nexus About page) discussed continuing the wargames rules with a new edition outside Warlord Games. Rick also persuaded Warlord to shift the production of existing items in the line to their sister company, Skytrex, so the game would not go into hibernation.

So, Antares 2 was born. Warlor allowed me to work on it whilst I worked out my notice, then Rick and I released it in a free, downloadable format that was designed to be easy to maintain. I also created a new WordPress-based, wiki-like website for the 2nd edition (see What’s New in V2) with free, downloadable army lists and a lot of new material – as well as revamped versions of the existing articles.

Whilst Skytrex is not producing new items apart from those already in the pipeline (a scurrilous reprobatee called Dirag and new versions of the Isorian phase troopers – to be released in July), there is an opportunity: 3D printing and .stls. Whilst Rick and I are not using this as a commercial concern, the prevalence of 3D printers amongst the hobby community has meant we’ve been able to allow players to produce their own 3D prints for items that don’t exist: the free, downloadable .stls mean we can let players print their own…

This is fantastic. The Vorl have been a major presence in the Antares universe since it was launched, but have never been released. We got in touch with Joey Pruitt, a designer in the states, who is an Anatres fan and has already produced some interesting insects. He designed us some excellent Vorl – and very strange they are, too. In fact, so strange, have a look at these speed-painted by Ruben Lopez Catalan. For Rick and I it’s a wonderful sight, one that is likely to give Antares 2 a boost, but it’s also a step along a new paradigm, one in which games are free, models are what players want (some players still prefer plastic or metal, and that’s fine – it’s easier to produce some in those formats, too).

Of course, I now have to design and test the Vorl army list. But it’s all good fun and we’ll just have to see how this new adventure goes!

Vorl speed-painted by Ruben Lopez Catalan