Gamer since childhood in the late 60s with games like Careers, Buccaneer, Campaign, Risk. Toy soldiers were a fascination, and this naturally led to Airfix figures and wargaming. At age 11 my dad took me to the National Wargames Convention in Leicester, and he bought Napoleon at Waterloo for me. By age 20 board wargames had triumphed over figure games (though I still dream of gorgeously painted miniature armies).
The username is a reference to the subject of my final year dissertation at University: Venice's foreign policy in the early 17th Century. The War of Mantuan Succession of 1629-1631 was the main Italian segment of the 30 Years' War, and one in which the Serene Republic played an ultimately ignominious role. The avatar is the flag of the Gonzaga Duchy of Mantua.
I am a history teacher, and use games and role-play exercises on a regular basis in the classroom.
I now have a fairly massive collection of board wargames and Euro-style games. All my family (wife and four kids) play Euros regularly. My son Lawrence is a fairly committed wargame player. My deepest liking is for long and engrossing historical or quasi-historical multiplayer games, but the practicality of finding opponents with the necessary commitment limits my actual indulgence of this. I seem to be playing less 2 player wargames than in my 20s and 30s, but have to grudgingly admit that CDGs such as "Paths of Glory" probably now score above old-style hex and counter games.
Sufferer of Variants Disease.
My Hot 10 is what I would like to play at the moment.
My Top 10 tries to include many genres so is not really an absolute top ten.