The Good, The Bad and Origins 2016

So another Origins is done.  This one had some pretty big high points, as well as a few lows.

Our newly formed (forming) gaming club, the Ohio War Kings, ran fourteen events at Origns this year.  My thanks go to Jon Carter, Donnie Harville, Jason Herald, Amy Stamper (with assistance from her wife Kara Brown) and Lee Wygant for helping out this year.  We hope to make our area even bigger and better next year with more events (did someone say Warpath?).  Also thanks to Kyle Przlenski of the Master Crafted youtube channel for the excellent artwork for our banner to help identify our area.  Now we just need an orc warlord facing to the left to give the king something to be staring at.
I really love our banner


I've heard and said it myself, you go to Origins to play games, you go to Gencon to buy games.  The games went great, but some of the organization this year was a bit lacking.  Badge pickup on Wednesday was horrendous - we stood in line over an hour and a half to pick up our pre-register badges.  The print on demand system simply could not keep up.

In previous years, GM's would pick up their badges and packets at the GM Headquarters, so we would avoid lines not just for ourselves, but for our entire group.  This year they put us in "gen pop" - so all of my GM's had to wait in line, and afterward I STILL had to go to GM HQ to pick up my packet.  Preprinting the badges and putting them in the packets should be simple enough, and worked great in past years.

The Greater Columbus Convention Center is undergoing renovations this year, so the construction was a bit annoying (but it did mean we were moved up a bit, so not quite as far away as before.  The most annoying part about the construction was the food court being closed for Wednesday and Thursday evenings, making it much more difficult to get a quick bite.

On Saturday there was a huge gay pride parade right in front of the GCCC.  I generally have no problem with this - however it lasted for HOURS.  My youngest son (though the fact that he is taller than I am and 21 makes that phrase sound weird) wanted to head to the North Market for lunch - but could not because of the parade going on between us and the market.  However much worse was that during this event all the parking for at least a mile around the GCCC was full - so I had one of the top local players (who happens to live in Columbus) have to turn around and go home because he could not get a parking place to attend the tournament.  Not good, not good at all.

The last disappointment was the lack of any vendors selling Mantic product.  Apparently the Game Room from Toledo (the bits guy) had a little bit - but he sold it all by 11 am Thursday (a lot to other dealers on Wednesday before the exhibit hall even opened).  Once again I had several people ask where to buy the game, and were very frustrated that hey could not get it at the convention.

I am not a businessman (and don't want to be).  I don't know the total cost to have a booth (it looks like a 10' x 10' booth can cost up to $1000).  Plus paying for transportation and food for a couple of people (Joe and Pat), and the cost of shipping product can all add up.  It does seem that they should be able to work with an existing store that has a booth to make sure they have product available.  In the past it seems they have pushed the 'next big game' on retailers instead of what is being demo'd at the show, and that, to me, is a mistake.  People who come out of a Kings of War demo are not going to be interested in Deadzone, and will want Kings of War product.

I feel it was a great show.  I still had something of a voice left afterward, which is in itself a success.  In total we had 114 people who played a total of 74 games (combined Kings of War, Dreadball and Deadzone, including the two tournaments) over the five days of the convention (and over the five days I actually did not play a single game myself).  Of course I am already thinking of next year.  And Gencon in six weeks.

I managed to meet old friends, make new ones, and talk about games all weekend.  Even though I'm exhausted, I'm also pretty pumped up.  But enough about this - how about the events?

Kings of War Tournament

We had a great turn out for our tournament - with a total of 14 players.  (Thanks to Mark Zielinski for getting pictures of the winners (though it just reminds me why I try to stay BEHIND the camera).

A motley crew if ever there was one!  Chris W, Roger, Mike, Jason, Kara, Erich, Amy, Lee, Jesse, Jon, Chris C, Travis, Tim and Duane
The event went almost perfectly.  There were some very minor issues with a couple of games not using chess clocks (and both those games ended up running late).  I think I will need to have some sort of enforcement penalty from now on if I find a table NOT using chess clocks (we had the same issue at Adepticon)).
Round one under way with a simple Kill scenario to get thing started

Duane Moore v. Kara Brown

Erich Trowbridge v. Chris Whitehead

Amy Stamper v Mike Moyer

Battle of the pathfinders - Lee Wygant v Jesse Cornwell

Tim Beard v Chris Carmichael

Jon Carter v Travis Huff

Jason Herald v Roger Conner
 Of course we had some beautiful armies, with only two that were not fully painted.

Lee Wygant's Undead army

Chris Carmichael's Undead

Tim Beard played Jon Carter's Undead

Roger Connor's winning Orcs

Jason Herald played my Abyssal Dwarfs

Travis Huff's Elves

Jon Carter's Best Appearance winning Forces of Nature

Mike Moyer's Ogres

Amy Stamper's Dwarfs

Jesse Cornwall's Goblins

Erich Trowbridge's Orcs

Chris Whitehead's Ogres

Duane Moore's Ratkin

Kara Brown's Abyssal Dwarfs

Round 2 (Dominate) under way

Tim v Roger

Duane v Amy

Battle of the Chris's - Chris W v Chris C

Erich v Kara

Jason v Travis

Jon v Jesse

Lee v Mike

Round 3 - Pillage!

Chris C v Jason

Spouse on spouse - Kara v Amy keeping it all in the family

Duane v Travis

Jon v Roger

Mike v Chris W

Jesse v Erich

Lee v Tim
I decide to splurge and get plaques with our new club logo on them.  My plan was just four awards - but then the organized play pack had five certificates - and if I didn't give them away then they would be wasted, so I used those (and the Blaine of course) as well.

I gave out the prize support as door prizes - so we had eight people walk away with new toys.
Overall Champion Awards
Best General Awards
Third Place certificate
Most Sporting awards
Best Appearance awards
And the winners:
Roger Connor - Overall Champion (and winner of the Blaine trophy)
Amy Stamper - Best General
Kara Brown - Third (battle points)
Jon Carter - Best Appearance
Jesse Cornwell - Most Sporting
You can check out the final results on warscore.

Dreadball Tournament

For the dreadball tournament we had four players.  With this few, we did a three round-robin rounds (so everyone played each other), then ended with an Ultimate game - so again everyone played everyone.

Andrew Wodzianski‎ ended up snatching victory with a big win in the Ultimate game with his Mutant team, squeaking by Geoff who in the bottom for that game, despite winning all three individual games).  He also won Best Appearance.

Jon Carter surprised everyone winning Bloodiest Coach with his Koris team (we all expected Andrew's Mutants to do that).

Geoff Burbidge won Fan Favorite with his Tsudochan team.  

David Baker's borrowed my Kalyshi team to try something different, but didn't manage to win anything, and had to leave before the final Ultimate tournament.

Geoff Burbidge v David Baker, and Andrew Wodzianski v Jon carter in Round 1
Jon v Dave and Andrew v Geoff in Round 2
Geoff v Jon  and Dave v Andrew for round 3
Andrew, Jon and Geoff in the fourth round Ultimate game.
The coaches - Geoff, Andrew and Jon (Dave had to leave unfortunately)
Andrew got a few great pictures of the event:

I don't think Andrew is excited enough about winning his Blaine
Frenzy in the Ultimate game

Geoff also got some great gameplay pictures

Tsudochan v Mutants
Owww - my head hurts
Kalyshi gready to face Tsudochan
Tsudochan are not going to make it easy for the Kalyshi to score
Mutants v Tsudochan
Lone jack facing striker and guard
Tsudochan starting game against the Mutants
Heading through a portal
Koris guards
Ultimate game in progress
Tsudochan blocking the scoring hex up in Ultimate
Mutants putting the hurt on tsudochan

Mega Battle

Once again Origins hosted a Kings of War Mega-battle, and once again Good wins the day.  We had a full house this time with twelve players battling it out and having a great time.

Battle get started, with forces of good on the left and evil on the right

Kara Brown charges the demon lord with her slave orcs
Surveying the situation
Everyone having a great time
We had some people stopping by to watch as well
Good gloating over their victory over evil

Learn to Play Kings of War

We hosted 11 Learn to Play Kings of War sessions.  It seems that no matter what, we always have a session for which no one shows up - but overall attendance was just over last year.  But not only did we have people at our scheduled events, we also had several come by at other times and either ask for us to run our demo for them, or to just get in another game with the demo armies.  In total 82 people played 41 games of Kings of War over the tournament.

One of our busier sessions
Mike Moyer, Origins area manager and Kings of War player
Trying to show all our banners and area
Our biggest session - 5 of the 6 tables full
The convention is just waking up at 8:00 am, but we have players learning the game

One of my favorite players from last year, Erin (in the green) will always be "socks" to me (she had the cool socks showing the signing of the declaration of independence last year) came back to play with her friends (her druid cosplay was pretty cool as well).
A blast from the past - Erin's socks from last year ( )

Jon drew a crowd at his table for during his 8:00 am session on Sunday morning
Lee doing an unscheduled demo
Can we get a game in?

Paint - n - Take

Mark Zielinski, the Counter Charge podcast and the Ohio War Kings did four free Paint-n-Take sessions with Mantic miniatures.  There were elves, dwarfs, ghouls and orcs available for people to come and paint - and then take the miniature home with them.  Several of the sessions were packed, and there were many first time painters who greatly enjoyed their first miniature.
Ready to go!
Painting their first minis after learning to play Kings of War
The level of concentration is intense
Even an occasional experienced painter stopped by once in a while
These sessions can also be good to learn new techniques


I just happened to have my copy of Deadzone with me, and it was a good thing I did.  We ended up doing several unscheduled Deadzone demos over the weekend (and our neighbors, the 40KOrigins folks, were also doing some).  We had several people very impressed with the smooth game play from this new edition as opposed to the last.  One of the demos was to a Canadian retailer that wasn't sure if he wanted to carry the game before he tried it, and is now planning on stocking it now that he sees how quickly it plays and how much fun it is.

Ready go go for a demo
Tim is learning from Jon
And that is Origins 2016 for the Ohio War Kings.  See you at Gencon!

Because it is all fun and games . . .


  1. Looks like you had a cracking time Mike! Looking forward to hearing about your Gencon Adventures soon!


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