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HMGS® Awards and GM Recognition Program Specific Information


The “Duke Seifried Game Master of the Year Award"

In 2010 HMGS® honored Uncle Duke Seifried with a Game Master Lifetime Achievement Award, and officially renamed the Game Master of the Year Award to the “Duke Seifried Game Master of the Year Award.”
Awarded annually at HISTORICON® to a Game Master (or GM Team) from among the past year’s “Best of Show” and “Best Theme” recipients. Selected by the Awards Committee, usually for those who won the top awards at multiple HMGS® conventions.

Best of Show:

A GM Award, selected from all of the top Historical Miniatures Games and are usually “PELA” Winners who ran multiple iterations and thus drew recognition from multiple judges.


Best Theme Event:

A GM Award selected from all of the top Theme Events and Theme-related PELA recipients


Pour Encourager Les Autres (PELA)


The “PELA” is a GM Award primarily for traditional historical based miniatures gaming event, and selected during morning, afternoon and evening sessions daily. The “Pour Encourager Les Autres” quote stems from an Admiral from the Age of Sail Admiral, who, after a defeat was executed “To encourage the others.


Bob Watts and "Michael Fijalka Young Guard Award"

One of the stated goals of HMGS® is to “grow the hobby” and introduce the thrill and fun of miniatures war gaming to new audiences.  There is no better way to attain that goal than to introduce children into the hobby.  These awards are presented in recognition of exceptional children’s games. . . with an emphasis on events that are GM’d by children.  All kid’s games where the targeted age group is 12 years old and younger are eligible, and any GM that is 18 years old or younger and is the active, primary GM of an event is eligible.

The Bob Watts award is presented annually at Cold Wars® and the Young Guard award presented at HISTORICON® and Fall In!® 

Legion of Honor Battle Star Award

This award is coordinated by the HMGS® Legion of Honor and is not formally part of the HMGS® Game Master Awards program. All convention GM's, Clubs, events, activities and individuals are eligible. Presented by members of the HMGS® Legion of Honor, who are always looking for a unique event to recognize.
HMGS® Awards and GM Recognition Program Award Criteria and Judging Guidelines
Award recipients are usually selected by a team of their peer GM’s, usually led by a past award-winning GM. Normally, several teams of 3-5 judges cover the various time periods each day, and submit their findings. All effort is made to present the award while the game is still in progress.
The HMGS® GM Awards are intended for traditional open, Game Mastered miniatures events, and GM's are eligible for one PELA or Children's Award per each event. (I.e., if one GM gets two awards for the same event, then there is one less award to give to another deserving GM). However, GM’s have received multiple awards for varied events (or by simple oversight).
Since judging is inevitably subjective, teams are given the following general criteria for reference, and encouraged to see all events, and evaluate them based on:
  • Appearance: Impressive & appealing figures, terrain, models, gaming tools and overall table layout. 
  • Participation: Players are visibly enjoying the game, and all players asked respond enthusiastically. 
  • Innovation: Unique methods, techniques or craftsmanship, GM showmanship and any other exceptional methods evident to produce a high quality event.
  • GM Effort: For a GM going "above-and-beyond" to run many events, and/or large fun games or over a dozen gamers, informative/educational or multimedia efforts such as historical posters, flags, AV etc.


All HMGS® members, convention attendees, and Game Masters are encouraged to join the award judging team and volunteer for one or more shifts (about an hour long commitment). Club groups and previous award winners are especially welcomed and encouraged as judging teams!
To volunteer, or for more information please come to the Awards Desk at any convention or contact the HMGS® Awards Chair at .