Following the success of my interview with Fabio at TB Line, and the fact that the wargames press give 6mm and 10mm wargaming little...neh! NO! coverage so we wont see our questions answered any time soon in WI or WSS to name but two.I e.mailed Leon at Pendraken to see if he and Dave would like to give an interview,and they kindly said yes. So I sent the questions via e.mail over to Pendraken HQ and here is the finished article in all its glory....Enjoy.
Jason-Hello Leon and Dave, first of all thank you for taking some time out to answer some questions for Grandscale wargaming...
Jason-Okay first things first, why, when and where was Pendraken born?
Leon-Dave started off by building a casting machine, and then contract casting for Wild Geese Miniatures. After 6 months or so, he decided to start our own company, with our first range being a load of Fantasy we got from Iron Brigade. Over the years the whole family has become involved in some way, shape or form! It was 1992 when it all started, so 2012 will be our 20th Birthday!
Jason-Why did you decide on the 10mm scale for the miniatures you wanted to produce?
Leon-Dave wanted to do mass games, but with some personality to the figures, as opposed to figure blocks. The first armies he had were for the FPW, with a couple of thousand on the table. The other benefits were of course helpful, with the figures being more detailed than 6mm’s, and much cheaper than 15’s. Add to that the amount of N-scale railway stuff about, which also fits in quite easily, and it was the ideal scale.
Jason-I know that your ranges are very large but for those that don't know, what ranges of miniatures
are currently available from Pendraken?
Leon-As the moment, we have over 3000 products in 10mm scale. We cover everything from Ancients right through to Vietnam, with almost everything in between. Some of the ranges, like our SYW, AWI and FPW are some of the most comprehensive available in any scale I think.
Jason-Can you say what ranges and products are next and what's the future for Pendraken?
Leon-Our two big ranges this year are the new Napoleonics, and the League of Augburg range. The Naps are being done to cover 1809 (Wagram to be specific) but will expand out from there eventually. The League of Augsburg range is being done by the extremely talented Clibinarium, of Late Roman and AWI fame. Other ranges currently in the works include the 1st Schleswig-Holstein War of 1848-51, a revamp of our Republican Romans, and all kinds of other bits and bobs!
We released 327 new products in 2010, so we’re aiming to beat that this year! We’ve managed 250 so far, so we’re well on the way!
Jason- As I’ve already mentioned Pendraken have some of the most varied ranges available to the 10mm wargamer, what do think makes a good 10mm miniature and how do you decide what range will be next?
Leon-There are a lot of things which make a good figure, proportion, detail, accuracy, etc. but it’s a hard question to answer. Really it just has to ‘look’ right, and be up to the standard we’ve set ourselves in recent years.
The design schedule has in recently been put over to the fantastic members of our Forum. They make the suggestions, other members add their votes, and then the most popular items get priority in the designing queue! Over the past year or so, our Forum has been responsible for dozens of new items being added to our ranges, and the system has proved effective.
Jason-The Pendraken trade stand is a familiar sight at most of the wargames shows across the UK and the show reports that you post on your forum have some renown, so how have you found the shows so far in 2011 and for you which is the most enjoyable.
Leon – It’s hard to pick just one out of the calendar! I like all the Scotland shows, as it’s always a friendly atmosphere north of the border. Derby is cool as a weekend away, and a bit of socialising; Salute is madness, but has a ‘big time’ feel to it; York is a great start to the year. And of course our local pair of Smoggycon and Durham are great events too!
Dave – I like Triples, as it’s not too far to go, we can stay overnight and spend a bit of time with other traders/friends. And this year we had a good curry!
Jason-TB Line have started to produce a set of war games rules 'Anticamente', and Ive heard a whisper Magister Militum may be looking at starting a set. So with rules solely for 10mm gaming a little thin on the ground is this something Pendraken may look at in the future?
Leon-Definitely, this is one of our main aims over the next 12 months or so. We’ve got a rough idea of what we’d like to do, but it’s finding the time to get something into motion.
Jason- With a lot of your time spent running Pendraken do any of you have time to play war games?
Leon-Not so much anymore. Dave does try and visit a friend a couple of times a year for a game, but the business takes up all of our free time!
Jason- For anybody who hasn't seen your miniatures or products can you give us the web details and links where these could be found?
Leon-Our website can be found at www.pendraken.co.uk, where you can see some of our latest news and of course buy all of our shiny goodies! But for all the latest updates, pics of the latest masters, etc. you can head over to our Forum: www.pendrakenforum.co.uk. We’ve got a great bunch of friendly and knowledgeable members who are always willing to help other folk, so I’d definitely recommend it to anyone who is into, or thinking of getting into, 10mm gaming.
Jason-Once again thank you Leon and Dave for taking time out and answering my questions for Grade Scale wargaming.
Leon-No worries, thank you for promoting the 10mm scale through your blog, and for running the ‘Best 10mm Manufacturer’ poll each year. We’re going for the hat-trick next year!