There are so many independent groups across Australia and New Zealand supporting this great hobby. The Spotlight series aims to spread the word about all these groups, from gaming clubs to local miniature producers big and small.
There’s a big demand for miniatures these days, with the means of production now more democratised than ever we’re seeing more and more small independent producers pop up in our own backyard. Slave 2 Gaming is one of these companies, offering unique miniatures and gaming systems to wargamers across the country.
Starting in 1992, Drew Edney first conceived the idea for a miniature manufacturing business when he was offered a unique opportunity as an Engineering Patternmaker at BHP Port Kembla.
Engineering patternmakers work from engineer’s drawings and design and construct patterns that are used to make castings for metal parts for the manufacture of a wide range of products, such as engineering machinery and surgical instruments.
Having already been involved in the painting side of miniatures he saw this as a great way to begin following his dream of creating his own range of miniatures. Despite mainly working on large scale patterns for things such as 100 tonne Slag Pots and Staves for Blast Furnaces, the position gave him great insight into the process of casting and working with metal.
Come the late 90’s, Drew met Mike Broadbent through a mutual interest in wargaming, conversing at conventions and forging the beginnings of what would become a long standing friendship. A miniatures sculptor, Mike’s resume includes companies like Khurosan miniatures, Company B, Eureka miniatures and even Games Workshop. The two really kicked off their story around 2009, when they begun gaming together and meeting on a regular basis.
Over the next six years the pair continued to build a friendship and trust, trading ideas and fostering their mutual interests. This all culminated in 2015 when Drew’s workplace began talks about whether or not to shut the Port Kembla Steelworks. At this time the pair began discussions about a business idea Drew had – the genesis of Slave 2 Gaming.
Initially they worked on not only unique figures that could be used for games that are already available, but also their own original games. Aiming to keep current, they made the active decision to include both traditional sculpting and the newer 3D design and printing in their plans. It’s early days as far as the 3D side goes, but they’re always looking to push themselves in new directions.
Starting out simple, they focused their efforts on two distinct ranges. The Dark World War, an 18mm Alternate History WW1 company scale game and The Skeletal Samurai, a 28mm range of undead Samurai that fit perfectly into Kings of War, Warhammer and other mass battle fantasy games. Keeping themselves as a miniatures company first and foremost, they produced a large number of distinct sculpts for both of these ranges – with more being released to this day and the rules for The Dark World War still in active development.
After establishing themselves and attending events like Little Wars to show off their products, the company has continued to expand into more lines including:
Alien Invasion – Inspired by wargaming forefather H.G. Wells’ novel The War of the Worlds. The 28mm scale models feature a distinct 1950’s pulp style and currently focus on the alien forces themselves. The next step is to develop a National Guard force to battle against the ghastly aliens, but the boys say it’s early days yet for this particular range.
Men of Sherwood – Another 28mm scale range of miniatures, inspired by the legend of Robin Hood and his band of outlaws and associates. The models have been designed to fit into fantasy themed skirmish games like Lion Rampant and Frostgrave.
Cavemen – Designed in conjunction with Mana Press for the release of the Primeaval supplement for their game Tribal, this 28mm range of miniatures features sculpts of primitive cavemen.
Battle of Teddysburg – the latest offering from the boys, this is a range of 18mm American Civil War miniatures with a difference – they’re Teddy bears. Conceived as a more family friendly wargame with not only a cute range of light hearted models, but also plans to support them with a solid ruleset as well. Currently in open Beta testing and receiving a lot of support from overseas players, the game continues to be tweaked and refined and they’re keen on getting more of us Aussie players involved. If you’re keen on giving this a go, you can find the rules available for download on Wargame Vault for a very reasonable price.
Onto the future, Drew has stated they plan on releasing more products for the Dark World War range and maybe even the rules in the near future. Looking further down the line, there is also a plan to release a line of resin bases based on some of Mike’s older designs, along with a focus on some other accessories as well. Mike likes to keep it all under wraps until he’s confident and ready, with a few new lines currently being worked on. Apparently, Drew is hoping for another Fantasy range.
With great talent and a clear vision, Slave 2 Gaming plans to continue bringing out new and interesting products for many years to come. We’ll just have to wait to see what the future brings!
The boys have kindly sent over some examples of their work for us to check out. Keep an eye out for a review of some of their miniatures in the near future.
Images & Information provided by Slave 2 Gaming. All Rights Reserved.
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