This post was going to be a battle report for AT, but will mostly be a sad farewell to my FLGS. The Hobbytown USA in Auburn, Alabama will is shutting down after 20 years. I didn't realize this would be my last game in the store...
If you have read my blog over the years almost every single post was at Hobbytown with few exceptions. I had started to paint miniatures and play wargames before moving to Auburn for college, but it was here at the Auburn Hobbytown USA that it really developed. I started Flames of War by seeing the miniatures and 1st edition rulebook at HT. Then the owner, Steve, was incredibly supportive of out Flames of War group over the years. He not only gave us a place to play but also provided terrain and even covered our entry fees to tournaments, on occasion. It was the only supportive store for miniature wargaming in the area.
While I have a group of friends that get together and play at each others houses, I only meet them through the shop and it will be so much more difficult to grow any miniature gaming group without a place for people to see the game played.
The reason for the store closing is not a single simple answer, but more of a set of circumstances. The biggest reason is certainly the growth of online shopping, something I am entirely guilty of. If you look at the following pictures of all of my AT models and rules, it totals almost $500 that I could have ordered through the shop... but I didn't, I bought them online through various sources and spent around half that instead. How can a brick and mortar store compete with that? The second reason is that people are spending less on physical hobbies and more on video games and other media. More reasons are, competition in the R/C car market with new stores in the area and just rough patches in the economy in the past decade.
Sorry, this has taken forever, but let me just say that Steve, and the others I meet at Hobbytown USA in Auburn are the entire reason my interest in the hobby became what it is today. I have met some of my greatest friends at the shop, from wargaming to the finescale model meeting to gundam kits, so many firendships started at the shop.
The AT game
On to the game. Robert and I met up at the shop a few Saturday's ago and got in another Adeptus Titanicus game. Like the last AT post, I will just use the picture captions to tell the story. This was my first game using Warhound titans.
|My force of a Warlord, Reaver and Warhound.|
|Robert had a mirrored force.|
|He deployed his group together on the left side of the board.|
|I moved my titans up to take the airfield (with a Salamnders Stormbird).|
|A look at the battle field.|
|From Roberts side.|
|This Valkyrie is not in a good spot, between two titan forces.|
|My Reaver putting fire downrange.|
|My Warhound getting ready for a flanking attack.|
|He found a good location.|
|My Reaver was taking the bulk of the fire.|
|This is going to hurt!|
|My Reaver was pummeled.|
|However, focused fire took out Roberts Reaver!|
|My Reaver survived another round, on it's last leg... literally.|
|But it kept firing each turn!|
|But the enemy Warlord put all its fire into it.|
|Allowing my Warhound to go for side shots.|
|My badly mauled Reaver finally fell.|
|But my Warlord and Warhound quickly took their revenge!|
|Engine Kill. The enemy Warhound then made a hasty withdrawal.|