Dienstag, 17. Januar 2012

How to.... win a Golden Demon (Lesson 3: Obey the rules)

If you are new to this series of articles, make sure to read the first and second article, before you go on here.

Today, I would like to talk about the rules of the Golden Demon competition. I will use the German rules to explain my thoughts because I know them better than rules from other countries and I have also learned (the hard way) how strict these rules have to be obeyed.

Many people read the rules, think about them and recognize that they somehow limit space and creativity. Therefore, they decide to brake the rules on purpose and hope not to get caught with it. International forums are full of topics that flame certain Games Days because entries have been banned from the contest. In most cases, these bans are totally ok, because rules have not been obeyed. Those flaming-threads however always refer to creative aspects and artistic freedom. My advice: stop whining and start obeying the rules.

An artist usually looks for inspiration and then tries to bundle it on some kind of surface. A Golden Demon doesn't work this way. Your inspiration, the background of the GW universe and the rules must come together, to create a promising entry. Leaving one of these asprects away, just because it is easier, will kick you of the pedestal. If you can't think this way, a Golden Demon is the wrong contest for you.

Here is some general advice concerning rules:

  1. Never be late to a Games Day. The jury won't care for your reasons.
  2. Use the correct base (GW only). This rule is handled very strict in Germany.
  3. Don't use miniatures or basing material from other manufacturers (specially scibor) for your entrys.
  4. Be polite.
  5. Are team projects allowed? If not, don't even try. (lifetime ban in Germany, if you get caught)
  6. Don't look for ways to expand the rules, the jury won't like it.
  7. If your idea doesn't fit into the rules, modify the idea (not the rules).
  8. Don't mix LotR-bits with regular GW stuff.
  9. Be polite.
  10. If you go to a foreign GD, ask someone from that country to translate the rules for you.
  11. Never enter a winning miniature on another GD.
  12. Only enter what you have painted yourself, the painting community is rather small and will get you.

In my opinion, it is much harder (and more demanding) to take all these aspects into consideration than just following your "style" and doing a miniature on a base you like. I have seen tons of great entrys getting removed to other categories (Single to Monster and Monster do Diorama most often), just because people didn't care for the rules.

This short article might seem rather obvious and redundant but trust me, it is not. For many painters, it seems to be very hard to follow my advice. In 9 out of 10 times, those people won't win a Demon.

Next time, we will talk about about picking the right miniature(s).



  1. What is with basing stuff, for example bricks from juweela or gras from mininatur (in gemany)in caterogy youngbloods?

  2. How about stuff like miniature bricks? GW doesn't offer any, and they are completely neutral

  3. Hiho Lister and Nordgrot, I don't think there will be any problem with grass and bricks. If you look at Raffas Slayer Sword winner from last year, it consisted of tons of bricks. However, this might change when you use pieces of columns (like heads) that can be easily recognized as Scibors work. Last year, they checked such things on the internet while judging the minis in the contest.


  4. Why especially scibor? Is there some intrigue there that I've not heard about :)
    I was wondering about the bases, only GW bases allowed you say, does that mean no wooden display bases? I think I've seen some GD models with display bases but I might be confusing things.

  5. i confirm that scibor basing material is not a good idea ;-)

    thanks for the tips :-)

  6. Hi Chris

    I really love this series, i am attemping golden demon for the first time this year and need all the help i can get.

    You have "Be polite" taking to spots on youer list, is this normal a problem ? basicly i am always polite any way so it seam stranges to me that you need to stress this so must ??

    Anyway i looking forward to the next article in the series :)

  7. @ Ethelie: lets say the Scibor stuff accidentally looks quite similar to lots of stuff GW does; therefore, GW doesn't like his stuff on a show that is mainly about marketing a product :)

    @ Dexo: I didn't mean to annoy anybody by asking people to be polite. However, I have seen very reasonable people turn to berserks, just because GW didn't share their opinion on the category a miniature should enter. After months of work, things like that happen very quickly. Acting like a lunatic will definitely not rise your chance of winning. That was the main point I wanted to say by pointing to politeness.


  8. Hey Chris, nice Series. I dunno in which group I am categorized, but your thought are really interesting! Greetz Tuffskull

  9. Excellent article and insight. I entered my first Golden Demon competition here in the U.K this year in the Lord of the Rings single miniature. Finished a finalist which I was pretty happy with. Will take into consideration your article when i start to plan my model for 2014.