It was with great sadness I received news from Neil Shuck late on the 20th April 2021 that Mike Hobbs, the Welsh Wizard or the Gamer, had suddenly passed. The many beautiful messages on Twitter about Mike and what impact he had on so many aspects of our hobby of gaming, from writing rules, presenting games, talking about games, reviewing games, playing games, painting, etc. Not just wargames but all kind of games – a true table top wizard, be it wargames, board games or roleplaying games. But the best things with Mike was that he was a good mate to me and many others – to me the tweet by Marshal Luigi, kind of summed it up!
Here are just a selection of some of the many impressions Mike made on me and for which I will remember him.
Mike instigated a virtual painting club during lockdown where a bunch of us have been meeting up on a regular basis getting that needed social interaction and escape from it all. It has really been a morale boost during the hard times we all have had during this period. Mike always would lend you an ear not just for the banter but for some harder more serious issues too.
He also did the Hoblund’s Dragoons as part of the 6mm charity project we did last year, that I hope to be able to take somewhere soon. In our first battle his Dragoons played an important role in stressing the Siarus left that eventually led to the overall victory.
When I was planning on doing the Saga in 6mm project a few years ago I had extensive discussions with Mike on how to base the figures and deal with what in essence became a totally different looking and feeling game. He really gave me a lot of time explaining not just the basic rules but how the various battle boards worked, etc.
I also remember that big order we did from Eureka when they came over to Salute to get the full discount – well believe it or not but there was no need to go together to achieve the required amount for the discount when we had finished our shopping carts. Mike ordered Hawkmoon miniatures from their 28mm range – and we recently discussed them and that perhaps he would put some paint on them – I wish I could have seen those.
And all those episodes of the Meeples and Miniatures podcast – what a backlog of great listening Mike, Neil and the other hosts built up over the years. It still my favourite podcast – you should check it out.
But finally my favourite memory was when he, Neil and a few others came up to see me at Joy of Six in 2019. Mike gave me the nickname “the Godfather of Six” and he told me I more than deserved it for the Poltava battle – I am really happy you liked it mate and would have liked to share more stuff with you.
When I asked Mike, at Joy of Six, what I else he had been checking out, he said “I just came to support you Per”. That was Mike in a nutshell! He made you feel special and always included.
Mike, as you pass over the rainbow bridge to Valhalla (your Glorantha may vary!), I hope you get to see at least a glimpse of all the love that has been pouring out for you over the last 24 hours and I am sure will continue. You did not deserve to go now, but wherever you go you deserve the best.
Hope to see you again one day, I will raise my horn for you! Thanks for all your support to me and the blog over the years! You were brilliant!
Your mate, Per
I extend my most sincere condolences to Mandy, Mike’s family and all his friends, especially to his best mate Neil Shuck (who wrote a really nice blog post about Mike here.).