OSW Survey

By Michael Cannon / November 10, 2010

M. Campbell conducted a non-scientific survey of the members of the Old School Wargaming mailing list recently. Here are his findings:

Well, the numbers are now officially crunched, and I can share the info with you, so without further ado…

QUESTION ONE: How old are you?
The average age of the respondent was 45 years old. The oldest respondant was 71 years old, and the youngest was 20. At 42, I’m a relative youngster 😉

QUESTION TWO: How long have you been involved in wargaming?
The average respondent has been involved in the hobby for a mind-blowing 34 years! This is mind blowing because according to hobby industry experts, the average persons ‘serious’ involvement in a hobby is only seven years….The longest respondent has been active for 54 years. The Shortest, only 5. At 15 years, again, I’m a relative lightweight 😉

On a side note, I crunched a few additional numbers and found out that the average age that a person gets involved with wargaming as a hobby was 15 years old. This is entirely within range of the ‘golden age of 14’ theory in pop-culture analysis, which postulates that for each individual person the ‘golden age’ of anything is the way it was when they were 14 years old…

QUESTION 3: How did you initially hear about the Old-School Wargaming movement?
Someplace on the web: 29.5%
From someone in person: 6.8%
Email mailing list: 25%
Always been ‘OS’: 6.8%
The Miniatures Page (TMP): 13.63%
Old-fashioned dead-tree book/magazine: 9.09%
“I never really considered it a movement”:6.8%
Don’t Remember: 2.27%

Not a whole lot of surprises here, really…

4. Do you consider yourself ‘old school’ first and foremost, or is it part of your overall wargaming interest?

OSW first and foremost: 36.36%
Part of overall wargaming intrest: 56.81%
Declined to answer question: 4.54%
“I’m more Old Fart than Old School”: 2%

In all honesty, I expected the ‘first and foremost’ rating to be higher on this one, closer to the 50% mark than it is…

And last but nowhere near least:
5. What aspect of Old-School Wargaming appeals to you the most?

Social aspects/OSW folks are more fun to game with: 18.18%
Visual appeal/ like the miniatures : 20.45%
Rules are more fun/ more enjoyable: 38%
Nostalgia/Like the old-school writers: 13.63%
“Gentlemanly Charm”: 4%
Creative aspects: 9%
“Not really sure”: 2%

Interesting factoids.

About the author

Michael Cannon

I have been wargaming as long as I can remember. I met my wife when I was 14 and had been gaming long before that so that should give you an indication as to how long it has been. One of the first games I owned was Anzio by Avalon Hill. I drove over to the hobby shop in the snow to pick it up as I finally had the money to get something! I can remember playing with Airfix figures and Roco tanks back in the 6th grade and before.

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