Gem City Massacre

Saturday, November 12th was the 2nd annual Gem City Massacre, a tournament near Dayton Ohio. Last year we didn't officially name the tournament, but it was the same format as this year.  We moved venues hoping to be able to grow the tournament, and were successful in that, adding 25% more players, from 12 to 15!
a nice, clean store
We moved to Epic Loot down in Centerville Ohio.  They have two huge game rooms - one for miniatures with 12 tables, the other for card games that is even bigger.  Plus there is a small side room for board and role playing games.  They also have a video game center at the other end of the strip mall, and have just recently opened a second store in Springfield.  For local players, they have just set up a direct account with Mantic, and can get just about anything (as long as Mantic has it in stock of course) in one to two weeks.  They have just started stocking Kings of War, and sold a lot of the new 'retailer exclusive' releases for October (Naiad Wyrmriders, Earth Elementals, Hellhounds, the historical supplement and a starter set all sold today)

One thing that makes this tournament unique is each player brings a piece of terrain, and then picks three pieces to take with them to each game - so except for two hills none of the terrain is preset.  It adds a level of strategy - what terrain can you use and how to place it for each game (and you can't guarantee anything with it, as it can scatter a bit as well).
Fifteen players from Indianapolis, West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio!
I want to give a special thanks to my son Jon, who took pictures during each round.  With fifteen players I had to jump in as the 'ringer' army - and as such got a bit caught up actually playing my games and forgot to get pictures (especially during the first round).  Unfortunately that also means my ugly mug actually got caught in a few - so fair warning for the faint of heart and weak of stomach (yes there is a reason I try to take the pictures and not be in them :-) ).

Round 1
Everyone selected their terrain pieces, and we got started with the first round only a little bit late.
This round was an invade scenario, with the added challenge of trying to get a messenger off your opponents table edge.
  • Daniel Payne's Night Stalkers beat Amy Stamper's Dwarfs
  • Patrick Cunningham's Abyssal Dwarves lose to Jon Carter's Undead
  • Jesse Cornwell's Goblins defeated Beth Hill's Kingdoms of Men
  • Keith Ambrose's Elves were beaten by Matthew Temple's Kingdoms of Men
  • Felix Castro's Dwarves fell to Joe Cottrell's Basileans
  • Bill Favorite's Empire of Dust tied David Baker's Ogres
  • Kara Brown's Abyssal Dwarves tied Andrew Summer's Brotherhood
  • Timothy Bowie's League of Rhordia tied the ringer (me) with Abyssal Dwarves

Beth watches Jesse plan his move

Patrick looks at Jon's invading army

Joe looks on, while Dave and Bill clash in the background

Daniel and Amy on table 1, with Kara across the aisle on table 7 (and some dude behind her on table 8)

Keith is trying to decide exactly what to do against Matthew's men

A shot of just about everybody playing

Kara and Andrew in front, with me and Timothy in the back.
After a break for lunch and paint judging, Round 2 kicked off with one of the new scenarios from the CoK pack - Control!

Patrick's Abyssal Dwarfs tied Amy's Dwarfs
Timothy's halflings pulled out a minor victory over Bill's dusty skeletongs
Dan's night stalkers defeated Joe's basilean angels
Keith's elves tied against clubmate Kara's evil stunties
Matthew's men lost a hard fought battle to the ringers evil dwarfs
Felix's dwarf took a victory over Beth's men
Jesse's goblins lost to Jon's undead
Andrew's brotherhood got a minor loss to David's Ogres

Jon v Jesse, and Dave v Andrew

Patrick v Amy, and Bill v Tim

Dan v Joe and Kara v Keith

Matthew graciously waiting for me to finish taking pictures, while Beth v Felix

See what happens when someone else is allowed to take the pictures - you get blinded by my bald head!

Dave rolls while Andrew watches

Dan and Joe, while Kara carefully watches Keith roll his dice

Pat get ready to roll against Amy, and Bill counts out his attack dice while Tim watches

Jon's undead not putting up with Jesse's war trombone shenanigans
Round 3 topped off the tournament with a standard loot scenario.
Dan crushed Jon's hopes of winning as his nightstalkers killed (well re-killed) his undead
Matthew's men took one for the team, losing to Joe's Basileans
Timothy's League of Rhordia lost to Dave's Ogres
Jesse's goblins outran my Abyssal Dwarfs for the win
Kara's Abyssal Dwarfs defeated their arch enemies in Felix's Dwarfs
Andrew's Brotherhood rode over Bill's Empire of Dust
Amy's Dwarfs decimated Beth's Kingdom of Men
and finally Keith's Elves lost to Patrick's Abyssal Dwarfs

Dave carefully watches Timothy roll, with Jesse in the background

Dan moves his models forward, giving Jon's undead nightmares, while Matt and Joe battle it out behind them

Beth waits for Amy to finish rolling, while Patrick rolls against Keith

Felix faces off against Kara, while Andrew and Bill play behind them

Joe laughs at Matthew's joke

Beth moves while Amy watches, while Patrick measures and Keith makes sure it is accurate

Felix pauses to think, while Kara plans.  Andrew is checking his measurements against Bill in the back

Dave checks Timothy's movement, while the reflection off my bald head blinds Jesse and everyone in the shop.
There were some very nice armies there, with only a few that weren't quite finished.

Daniel Payne's Night Stalkers

  • 2 Regiments of Spectres
  • Horde of Scarecrows w/ Mace of Crushing
  • 2 Hordes of Fiends ( one with Maccwar's Potion of the Caterpillar, the other with Brew of Strength)
  • 2 Mind-screechs
  • 3 Screamers
  • 2 Banshees (one with boots of Leviation, the other with Lightning Bolt(5))

Patrick Cunningham's Abyssal Dwarfs

  • Regiment of Blacksouls (2 handed weapons)/ Blade of Slashing
  • Troop of Abyssal Berserkers
  • Regiment of Immortal Guard
  • 2 Troops of Decimators
  • Troop of Gargoyles*
  • Horde of Lesser Obsidian Golems (Diadem of Dragon-kind)
  • Regiment of Abyssal Halfbreeds (Maccwar's potion of the Caterpillar)
  • 3 Dragon Fire-teams
  • Slavedriver
  • Iron-caster (surge(8))
  • Grater Obsidian Golem
  • Allied Abyssals
    • Horde of Tortured Souls
    • Efreet

Amy Stamper's Dwarfs

  • Horde of Bulwarkers (Brew of Strength)
  • 2 Hordes of Elementals
  • 2 Regiments of Berserker Brock Riders (one w/ Blessing of the Gods)
  • 2 Ironbelcher Organ Guns
  • Stone Priest (Bane Chant(2), Myrrddin's Amulet of the Fire-heart)
  • Warsmith
  • King on Large Beast
  • 2 Greater Earth Elementals

Jon Carter's Undead

  • Troop of Wraiths (Blade of Slashing)
  • Regiment of Mummies
  • 2 Legions of Zombies
  • Horde of Werewolves (Brew of Strength)
  • Regiment of Soul Reaver Cavalry (Maccwar's Potion of the Caterpillar)
  • Regiment of Revenant Cavalry
  • Vampire on Undead Dragon (Ensorcelled Armour)
  • Liche King (Heal(6), Myrddin's Amulet of the Fire-heart

Matthew Temple's Kingdoms of Men

  • Horde of Shield Wall
  • 2 Hordes of Spear Phalanx
  • 3 Troops of Pole-Arms Block
  • Troop of Arquebusiers
  • 2 Regiments of Knights
  • General on Winged Beast (Wnsorcelled Armour)
  • Army Standard Bearer (Healing Charm)
  • 3 Wizards
    • Heal(2), Lightning Bolt(3), Inspiring Talisman
    • Bane-chant(2), Lightning Bolt(3)
    • Bane-chant(2), Lightning Bolt(3)
  • Beast of War (light ballista)

Jesse Cornwell's Goblins

  • 2 Hordes of Sharpsticks
  • Legion of Rabble (Brew of Courage)
  • Horde of Spitters
  • 3 Hordes fo Trolls
  • 3 War-Trombones
  • 2 Flaggits
  • 2 Wizs
    • Bane-Chant(2)
    • Bane-Chant(2)
    • Bane-Chant(2)
  • Troll Bruiser (Healing Charm)
  • Slasher (sharpstick thrower)

Keith Ambrose's Elves

  • Horde of Kindred Archers (Jar of the Four Winds)
  • Regiment of Palace Guard
  • Regiment of Kindred Tallspears
  • Horde of Forest Shamblers
  • Regiment of Stormwind Cavalry
  • 2 Bolt Throwers
  • 2 Elven Mages
    • Bane Chant(2), Fireball(10)
    • Lightning Bolt(5), Scarletmaw's Fenulian Amulet
  • Master Hunter (Sabre-Toothed Pussycat)
  • Tree Herder (Medallion of Life)
  • The Green Lady[1]

 Beth Hills' Kingdoms of Men

  • Regiment of Foot Guard (2 handed weapons, Brew of Haste)
  • Horde of Heavy Pike Block (brew of strength)
  • Regiment of Bowmen
  • Troop of Crossbowmen (Jar of the Four Winds)
  • Regiment of Knights (Helm of Confidence)
  • 2 Troops of Mounted Scouts
  • Regiment of Mounted Sergeants
  • 3 Cannons
  • General
  • Army Standard Bearer (Healing Charm)
  • Wizard (Lightning Bolt(3), Bane-chant (2), Myrddin's Amulet of the Fire-heart)
  • Beast of War (light ballista)

Felix Castro's Dwarfs

  • Horde of Ironclad
  • 2 Regiments of Ironguard
    • fire-oil
    • 2 handed weapons
  • Horde of Earth Elementals (Blade of Slashing)
  • 2 Regiments of Berserker Brock Riders (one w/ Pipes of Terror)
  • 2 Flame Belchers
  • Army Standard Bearer (Healing Charm)
  • Berserker Lord (on brock)
  • Stone Priest (bane-chant(2))
  • Warsmith
  • Steel Behemoth

Bill Favorite's Empire of Dust

  • Horde of Skeleton Warriors (Diadem of Dragon-kind)
  • Horde of Skeleton Spearmen
  • Horde of Enslaved Guardians (Casket of the Damned)
  • Horde of Swarm*
  • Horde of Scavengers*
  • Regiment of Skeleton ARcher Cavalry
  • Horde of Revenant Chariots
  • Balefire Catapult
  • Scorpion Husk
  • Bone Giant
  • Ahmunite Pharaoh (Blade of Slashing)
  • 2 Cursed High Priests

Joe Cottrell's Basileans

  • 5 Hordes of Elohi (one w/ Quicksilver Rapier)
  • Jullius, Dragon of Heaven[1]
  • Ur-Elohi (ensorcelled Armour)

Dave Baker's Ogres

  • 2 Hordes of Siege Breakers (one w/ Brew of Courage)
  • Horde of Shooters (Brew of Keen-eyeness)
  • 2 Hordes of Boomers (one w/ Heart-seeking Chant)
  • 2 Troops of Red Goblin Scouts
  • 2 Army Standard Bearers
  • 2 Giants

Timothy Bowie's League of Rhordia

  • Regiment of City Spear Militia
  • Regiment of City Militia
  • Horde of City M ilitia
  • 2 Hordes of Honour Guard)
  • 3 Halfling Volley Guns
  • 2 Halfling Howitzers
  • 2 Halfling Iron Beast
  • 2 Wizards (both with bane-chant(2))
  • Halfling Master Engineer

Andrew Summer's Brotherhood

  • Horde of Villein Bowmen (Jar of the Four Winds)
  • Horde of Villein Martyrs
  • Regiment of the Order of the Brotherhood
  • Regiment of the Order of Redemption* ( Maccwar's Potion of the Caterpillar)
  • 2 Troops of Villein Reconnoiterers
  • Horde of the Order of the Forsaken (brew of Strength)
  • 2 Villein Siege Artillery
  • Forsaken Beast (breath attack(10))
  • Exemplar Forsaker
  • Exemplar Adjutant on Barded Horse (Diadem of Dragon-kind)

Kara Brown's Abyssal Dwarfs

  • Horde of Slave Orcs*
  • Troop of Gargoyles*
  • 2 Hordes of Lesser Obsidian Golems
    • Orcsbain's Amulet of Thorns
    • Brew of Courage
  • Regiment of Slave Orc Gore Riders*
  • Regiment of Abyssal Halfbreeds (Maccwar's Potion of the Caterpillar)
  • Horde of Abyssal Grotesques (Blessing of the Gods)
  • Iron-caster (surge(8), Inspiring Talisman)
  • Greater Obsidian Golem
  • Night Stalker Allies
    • Regiment of Dopplegangers
    • Mind-screech

There was some very nice terrain brought by a few people.  I narrowed it down to four choices, which the players then voted on for the best terrain piece.
Terrain pieces by (clockwise, from top left) Matthew Temple, Joe Cottrell, Jon Carter and Felix Castro

A closer look at Joe's mage casting a spell from a circle of stones

Fitting the time of year, Felix's pumpkin patch was nicely done.
And who won?

Well I gave Beth a set of new dice as hers obviously did not like her (because we all know that when you lose, it is ALWAYS the fault of the dice (and when you win it is your excellent tactics and strategy)
Beth Hill - better luck next time
I believe in spreading the prizes and awards around - so no one can win more than one award.  This tournament is the one exception - as I give an award for best scenery which is the only one that can go to someone who also gets another award - as it has absolutely nothing to do with their army or game play.  Joe Cottrell took Best Terrain
Joe Cottrell - Best Terrain
Some people consider sportsmanship one of the most important part of the game.  Winning with grace, and even more so taking a devastating loss with a smile makes the tournament more fun for everyone.  Best Sportsman (out of a four way tie) went to David Baker
David Baker - Best Sportsman
Best appearance is my favorite award (and not just because it is the only one I've ever had a chance to win) (ok, maybe it is).  This is a combination of both judged painting as well as player votes.  While many people received votes, one got significantly more votes than anyone else, to top off the highest painting score.  Matthew Temple won Best Appearance for his oriental Kingdoms's of Men.
Matthew Temple - Best Appearance
I have recently started adding in Best General in my events - for those who value gameplay more than the hobby aspect of the game.  Best General went to Joe Cottrell, to go along with his Best Terrain.
Joe Cottrell - Best General
Of course the top honor is the champion - the winner of it all.  Combining painting, sportsmanship and game play.  Stalking out of the Night from West Virginia, Daniel Payne won the whole thing.
 Everyone seemed to have a great time - the store was clean, open and just a fantastic venue.  I look forward to doing this again next year (and growing it even bigger), as well as setting this up as a Master's qualifier for the Midwest region.

I always like to give a shout out to Bill Robertson and his great piece of software, Warscore.  You can download it for free at  Not only does it make running tournaments easy and simple, but it can also track the results (and if you register on the site) as well all the tournaments you have played in.  The final standings are below - you can also check them out online here.

Gem City Massacre 2016

Final Standings

Place Name Club Army Opponents Battle Bonus Objectives Attrition Paint Additional Painting Best Terrain Players Choice Favorite Opponent Champion Best Appearance Best Sports Best General Awards
1 Daniel Payne West Virginia NightStalkers Amy Stamper, Joe Cottrell, Jon Carter 85 10 9 5740 12 4 116 16 10 94 Champion
2 Joe Cottrell West Virginia Basileans Felix Castro, Daniel Payne, Matthew Temple 75 10 8 3600 20 6 8 1 114 26 11 83 Best Terrain, Best General
3 Jon Carter Ohio War Kings Undead Patrick Cunningham, Jesse Cornwell, Daniel Payne 70 10 8 3545 20 9 2 1 111 31 11 78
4 David Baker Ohio War Kings Ogres Bill Favorite, Andrew Summers, Timothy Bowie 70 10 6 3226 20 3 2 2 110 25 12 76 Best Sportsman
5 Kara Brown Ohio War Kings Abyssal Dwarfs Andrew Summers, Keith Ambrose, Felix Castro 65 10 10 3175 20 9 1 2 108 30 12 75
6 Jesse Cornwell West Virginia Goblins Beth Hill, Jon Carter, Mike Carter (Ringer) 65 10 8 3185 20 11 2 105 31 12 73
7 Matthew Temple Indianapolis Kingdoms of Men Keith Ambrose, Mike Carter (Ringer), Joe Cottrell 55 10 6 2305 20 11 1 6 2 99 37 12 61 Best Appearance
8 Amy Stamper Ohio War Kings Dwarfs Daniel Payne, Patrick Cunningham, Beth Hill 60 10 8 3360 20 7 98 27 10 68
9 Patrick Cunningham Kentucky Abyssal Dwarfs Jon Carter, Amy Stamper, Keith Ambrose 60 10 6 3174 20 0 1 1 98 21 11 66
10 Felix Castro Ohio War Kings Dwarfs Joe Cottrell, Beth Hill, Kara Brown 55 10 9 3185 20 7 7 2 1 97 29 11 64
11 Mike Carter (Ringer) Ohio War Kings Abyssal Dwarfs Timothy Bowie, Matthew Temple, Jesse Cornwell 60 10 6 3465 20 6 96 26 10 66
12 Bill Favorite Indianapolis Empire of Dust David Baker, Timothy Bowie, Andrew Summers 50 10 4 2380 20 7 84 27 10 54
13 Timothy Bowie West Virginia League of Rhordia Mike Carter (Ringer), Bill Favorite, David Baker 60 10 11 3750 0 2 1 1 83 3 11 71
14 Andrew Summers Indianapolis Brotherhood Kara Brown, David Baker, Bill Favorite 60 10 6 3515 4 2 1 81 6 11 66
15 Keith Ambrose Ohio War Kings Elves Matthew Temple, Kara Brown, Patrick Cunningham 40 10 5 3195 20 7 1 76 27 11 45
16 Beth Hill Ohio War Kings Kingdoms of Men Jesse Cornwell, Felix Castro, Amy Stamper 30 5 0 980 20 6 1 1 57 27 6 30 New Dice

Because it is all fun and games . . .


  1. Thanks for the rundown, Mike. I love that Nightstalker monster mash list with 2 banshees!

  2. Thanks for the write up! I appreciate the pictures of the armies and the detailed army lists.


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