Rod Davidson and Barrett Straub enjoy
a good monster flick occasionally.
Even shark dads like Jim Doughan and
Kevin Wojtaszyck dig monsters.
Steve Huskey and Greg Crowe
enjoy Alex Bell's 3D version of the game.
Cal Doughan is not any older
than Rebecca Hebner was when she first won this event.
Play using the 2005 MONSTERS Menace America edition
rose from 67% in 2011 to 75% in 2012. Winners decided among themselves
which version to play, but Menace became the default.
Attendance rose by 18%.After winning no Menace games in 2011,
Megaclaw came roaring back with the most wins in 2012, including
[SPOILER ALERT] the championship game. Players controlling the
Marines won 41% of the Menace games, a sharp increase over 2011.
Stomp markers were removed to speed up some games that were running
slower. Ravage may need to be reduced from 20 stomps to
16 in 2013.
Menace won by: Megaclaw 7, Tomanagi 5, Zorb 5, Toxicor
4, Gargantis 1, Konk 0.
Ravage won by: Tomanagi 3, Dust Devil 1, Bronacle 1, Konk
1, Ixitpla 1
Menace winners controlled: Marines 9, Army 6, Air Force
4, Navy 3.
Ravage winners controlled: Marines 3, Air Force 2, Army
1, Navy 1.
of the Silver Screen
Franklin Rinko, 13, of King George, Virginia was the 2012 Best
Actor to win a MON-STAR of the Silver Screen award. He was sent
to Hollywood with zero health twice in one Menace game, but advanced
to the semifinals as an alternate, where he once again became
a Hollywood star!
Youth Shall Be Served?
11 of 16 semifinalists were under the age of 30, including six
yet to reach 20. But the only player to win two heats was 64,
and someone who learned it in the demo. The event remained Coached
with demos and therefore drew many new faces.
Jon Anderson's Megaclaw was the biggest Menace MONSTER
with a score of 55, while Alex Bell's Tomanagi was the biggest
Ravage MONSTER with a score of 54.
David Rennert, 16, did a great job teaching Menace to
a room full of Juniors, even filling the 4th position to create
a balanced game.
First Family of MONSTERS
Brother and sister Seth and Erica Kirchner both won heats and
played in the semifinal. Jim and Jack Doughan both won heats,
but couldn't attend the semifinal. Anna Rinko won a heat, and
Franklin Rinko played in the semifinal as an alternate.
Return of the MONSTER Board!
Alex Bell returned with his Ravage board that he created
in 2011. It had miniature cities of varying size to match the
health points in the game, plus miniature MONSTERS on a board
four times the size of the original.
The Semifinals - ALWAYS Check for Alternate Status!!
Pat Mirk of became the top seed as the only player to win two
heats. Only 11 of the 23 unique qualifier winners appeared for
the semifinals - making five alternates very happy: including
four-time champ Nick Henning.
There were three Menace semifinal games and one Ravage
game. A tournament rule requires that a stomp marker be placed
in Hollywood for each turn a player spends there (to speed the
game). GM Mark Love, who created the rule, inadvertently overlooked
it and disappeared from the map, very late in the game. This
transferred control of the MONSTER Challenge to Greg Crowe, who
proceeded to win with Dust Devil, defeating Erica Kirchner and
Alex Bell as well.
Marvin Birnbaum played a Menace semifinal with Toxicor, and had
the lowest health at the MONSTER Challenge, which he did not
control. His Berserk, Armored Scales, and High Octane Blood mutations
saved him as he defeated Seth Kirchner, who took 6th place, Anna
Rinko and David Rennert.
Defending four-time champion, Nick Henning, won a Menace semi-final
with Toxicor and the Army. He collected 10 Infamy extra attack
markers and Son of MONSTER and High Octane Blood to defeat Adam
Nesmith, Barrett Straub, and Pam Gutermuth.
In the third Menace semifinal, top seed Pat Mirk settled
for 5th place as he fell to third alternate, Morgan Wyatt, who
collected It's A Robot, Armored Scales, and High Octane Blood
with Zorb. She also beat Matthew Morgal and Franklin Rinko.
The Menace version was chosen for the Final as Ravage
player Greg got a quick review and handout with the differences
of the two versions. Morgan became the first 12-year-old to reach
the Final since Rebecca Hebner and Joe Sposito both made the
2000 title game. Rebecca won the tournament in 2001 and Joe won
in 2002. Morgan also broke up the All Boys Club by returning
a lady to the last round. All finalists received a military baseball
cap with dog tags for the branch they played in the Final.
Seating positions were determined randomly.
Morgan: Zorb, Marines, start near her Los Angeles lair
Marvin: Toxicor, Navy, start outside New York City
Nick: Megaclaw, Army, start near New Orleans
Greg: Tomanagi, Air Force, start outside Los Angeles
Turn 1: Zorb stomps Los Angeles to collect 7 health
on 3 dice. Toxicor mutates at Three Mile Island and gets Whipped
Tentacles. Megaclaw stomps the Alamo Infamy site (something that
Nick Henning also did early in the 2002 Final, which Joe Sposito
won). Tomanagi stomps San Diego for 1 health point on a die roll,
but also gets 2 Infamy for stomping a Navy and Marine base.
Turn 2: Zorb mutates at the Nevada Test Site, gets
Laser Beam Eyes, and Stabilizer Ray military research. Toxicor
stomps Philadelphia and adds 9 health. Megaclaw somps VLA Infamy.
His Army attacks Toxicor and retreats him to Three Mile Island.
Gets Free Cutbacks research card. Tomanagi stomps Phoenix and
adds 3 health. Attacks with 3 units, which all miss and lose.
Turn 3: Zorb stomps Albuquerque for 1 point and gets
Antimatter research. Toxicor stomps the Fort Knox infamy site
and gets MechaMonster through research. Megaclaw stomps Denver
and his own Army base; gives self a Trophy/Toy. Gets Captain
Colossal research. Tomanagi mutates at Roswell; gets Iron Stomach.
Turn 4: Zorb stomps Royal Gorge Bridge infamy site;
gets AntiMutagen research. Toxicor disappears from the map; gets
Molecular Cannon research. Megaclaw stomps the Corn Palace infamy
site and puts 4 Army units outside St. Louis. Tomanagi stomps
the OK Corral infamy and own base. Greg attacks Zorb for 5 points
Turn 5: Zorb mutates at Experimental Breeder Reactor,
gets Armored Scales. Morgan's Marines attack Tomanagi, with damage
from AntiMatter. Gets Scientific Analysis research. Toxicor reappears
in the northwest lair. Greg's trash talk helps Marvin to decide
to attack him instead of Morgan, who is blocked to stop a northwest
move. Megaclaw stomps Chicago for 11 more health to rise to 27.
Five Army units are south of Mount Rushmore. Tomanagi stomps
a Navy base for Infamy/toy.
Turn 6: Zorb smartly disappears from the Army's approach.
Toxicor mutates at the Nevada Test site; Son of MONSTER. Marvin's
Navy attacks Tomanagi for 1 damage and a retreat, giving Marvin
the Blonde Lure research. Megaclaw stomps Detroit for 5 more
health, raising Nick to 32. Nick uses Cutbacks to eliminate the
Blonde Lure. And sends his Army to the southeast. Tomanagi stomps
El Paso for 1 point and builds Air Force units in the northeast.
Turn 7: Zorb reappears in Florida; Morgan attacks Megaclaw
with 3 Marine fighters, forcing Nick to spend 2 Infamy extra
attack markers in defense. Nick replies, "We still need
to mobilize. There's a giant eyeball in Florida!" Toxicor
stomps San Francisco, after defeating 2 National Guard tanks
defending it; picks up 4 health to give him 6 total. Megaclaw
stomps Paul Bunyan infamy site and Nick moves his Army tanks
next to Zorb. Captain Colossal attacks Tomanagi, extracting 7
health and a retreat. Tomanagi stomps Dallas for 2 measly health
to give Greg 12.
Turn 8: Zorb stomps Miami for the 20th stomp. A rules
question arises and the Ravage rule helps to clarify the written
Menace rule. Toxicor is restored to his starting health of 9
at the moment when he disappears, and not when he returns to
a lair, since he can be off the map and still participate in
the MONSTER Challenge. (Only MONSTERS in Hollywood are excluded
from the Challenge.) So Marvin disappears and uses his Defense
Satellites to take 3 health from Nick, 1 from Greg, and 5 from
Morgan. Nick's Megaclaw goes to the northwest Challenge site,
and uses Chopper Lift to send Tomanagi to face 4 Army tanks,
2 Army missile launchers, and 2 National Guard tanks, and 1 Guard
fighter, or 9 units total. Tomanagi survived with 2 health points
left. Zorb was also attacked by Nick's Guard Commander fighter,
2 Guard tanks, and 1 Army tank.
A runaway victory was in sight. Nick's Megaclaw had 25 health
and 12 Infamy attacks. He chose and defeated Greg's Tomanagi's
2 health, then Marvin's Toxicor, who had 9 health, 2 Infamy,
Son of MONSTER and Whip Tentacles. Megaclaw then beat Morgan's
Zorb, who had 10 health, 2 Infamy and Armored Scales. The last
fight was with Marvin's Mecha Monster, who actually did 13 damage
to Megaclaw before falling. Nick Henning picked up his fifth
championship in this event and he did it as an alternate. And
it all started by winning the first Junior tournament in 1999.
GM Mark Love is always very generous
and supportive of his event.
GM Love with all his properly coiffed
Armed Forces finalists.
Menace America Junior
15 little MONSTERS appeared from their lairs Saturday for
the Junior tournament. Most did not know how to play, but with
the help of David Rennert all were brought up to speed on how
to crush cities. Serge Frydas, age 8, proved to be the most effective
monster. He was followed by Lucas Holmquist (9), Benjamin Waterhouse
(9), Tom Tu (11), Abigail Elliott (9) and Theo Cresanzi (11)
in that order. Only Theo had finished in the top six last year.