“Concentrate all fire on that Super Star Destroyer!” Do you remember the scene where Admiral Ackbar utters that line, and it ends up leading to the destruction of the Super Star Destroyer in Return of the Jedi? It’s one great piece of an excellent scene, and one that never gets old for me. I just love it.
Focus and concentration can be hard to come by though, and especially so with wargaming. Show of hands, how many of you are like me: I’ve got over a dozen projects that I really want to get done and on the table, I’ve got a huge backlog of miniatures, and not enough time to get done what I want to get done. I’ve got half assembled minis in one place, half painted minis in another place, boxes of unassembled minis and terrain in three other places… but surprisingly little in the ‘complete’ category! After the craziness of the last two years, I thought a little more planning and organization might be in order for 2022. A little more concentration!
Over the last few years I have done two projects where I had laser focus on a single project. One of them was my American Airborne for Bolt Action, and the other was some 42nd Highland Regiment for Sharp Practice. For the Airborne, I spent nine months assembling and painting them and nothing else. By the time I got through, the idea of doing the basing on all of them was abhorrent to me because I was frankly just tired of looking at them! It took two further marathon sessions to finish all of the basing and, while I’m absolutely chuffed to have them done, I never want to paint more American Airborne again. The Highlanders was a six month stint and, again, while I’m happy they are done, I do not think I want to ever paint another Highlander again. This, to me, is the opposite side of the spectrum. Too much focus can lead to burnout.
What I’m thinking is something more in the middle of these two extremes. I have so far challenged Andrew and Ben to join me, and encourage anyone else to join in too.
The idea is this: Choose between five and seven projects that interest you the most, and focus on those projects until you start completing some. Other projects have to be put on hold, until you are able to cross one off of the focus list. For maximum effect, I am also jumping in on the $25 monthly hobby budget challenge. The combination of the two challenges should help me get some stuff completed!
My Focus List is this, in no particular order:
- Tyranids – Kill Team/40K
- Napoleonic British – Black Powder II
- Desert British – Bolt Action/Chain of Command
- War Chickens with Halfling Herder – Don’t Ask
- Late War Elite Germans – Bolt Action/Chain of Command (a.k.a. The Project of 1,000 Dots)
- Haradrim – Middle Earth Strategy Battle Game
I have all of the models for my immediate force, plus a bunch of options, for all of these projects except the Tyranids. Those I’m doing in a buy-and-paint-as-I-go kind of thing and I will confess that with the limited hobby budget, this could be a little tricky! For all of the others though, this will get me a playable force and reduce or eliminate their accompanying ‘lead mountain’ of models. My 40K Salamanders, Bolt Action Inexperienced Americans, Bolt Action/Chain of Command Fallschirmjager, Dead Man’s Hand Lawmen and Bandidos, Seven Days to the River Rhine Soviets and Americans, Napoleonic French, Harry Potter, Battletech, and a few other projects are all going on hold for now.
That’s it. I have chosen a few projects that I am VERY keen on, with a wide range of easily doable (the Chickens) to will-take-me-forever (the Napoleonic British). Lets see how I get on with these as the months progress! The Tyranids are currently on the painting table, so I’ll have an update on those soon enough.
Stay on target.
– Davish Krail
I accomplished quite a bit in 2021 from a hobby perspective. I built and painted a lot of models and I truly believe I did a pretty good job reducing the number of purchases. But looking back, I didn’t really complete any projects. I started many. My goodness did I start a lot of projects. I love the act of building and painting models. It brings me joy. But, I love completing army projects even more. I’m not entirely sure why I jumped around so much. Whatever the reason, it ends now.
The insane part is, I already own everything I need to get well underway with almost everything on the Focus List.
I fully realize I may be cheating a bit with my Bolt Action projects but I honestly don’t know which one I’ll start! I do promise that once I begin one of those options, I’ll see it through and will not migrate to a different Bolt Action project.
Behold! The Shelf of Projects! In each of those magnetized bins there lies a project – slumbering in various states of completion. In this photo alone there is Rohan, Frostgrave, Tomb Kings, Early War Germans, Late War Brits, Warhammer 40,000, Black Powder and Beasts of Chaos. Let this be a visual demonstration of my need to focus. And that brings us to, Andrew’s Focus List for 2022:
The Focus List:
- Late Romans Warband – Saga
- French Brigade – Black Powder Epic Battles Waterloo
- Gerrek’s Reavers – Warhammer Underworlds
- Moria Goblins – Middle-earth Strategy Battle Game
- Tomb Kings – Warhammer Fantasy 6th Edition
- 8th Army or Jungle Tank Platoon or LRDG or Indian Army or Late War Brits – Bolt Action
And away we go! Focus List and Hobby Budget combo, should make for an interesting hobby year.
2021 was definitely a lackluster year in terms of progress. With the pandemic and being stuck inside more, you would think that would provide a great incentive and a lot of time to work on miniatures! But instead I found myself making very little progress overall. One of my major motivators has always been the tournament cycle, and so far 2022 has started stronger, with major progress being made on Adepticon projects so far and others lined up that I want to work on post-Adepticon.
As with Seamus and Andrew I have a massive number of potential projects in various states of completion, including armies that were started and never completion, forces that were purchased and never even opened, and a plethora of ideas that were barely begun. An entire closet full of boxes of hopes and dreams (in plastic form). My focus list for 2022 intends to knock out a few of the projects that have been started and are causing me the most excitement, starting with Adepticon and then branching out. One of the main ones I have been working on is a table for Bolt Action, as I have never created my own full 6×4″ of terrain, and it is something I have always wanted to have. So let’s take a look at my focus list for the year:
My Focus List:
- Soviet Doubles Force – Bolt Action
- 6×4″ Market Garden/European Table – Bolt Action
- US Airborne Market Garden (Final touches) – Bolt Action
- Black Templars (my forever project) – Warhammer 40k
- Stormcast Eternals – Age of Sigmar
- US Armoured Infantry Platoon – Bolt Action
- British Brigade – Potential project for Black Powder Epic Battles Waterloo
Well there you have it. An inadvertently Star-Wars themed hobby challenge, hopefully bringing some short-term wins along with some long-term progress. Let’s see how we do in next month’s installment!