for the people   

Updated Feb. 23, 2015

2014 WBC Report    

 2015 Status: pending 2015 GM commitment

James Pei, VA

2009-14 Champion


Event History
1999    James Pei    22
2000    Trevor Bender    21
2001    James Pei    22
2002    James Pei    29
2003    James Pei    32
2004     James Pei    35
2005    James Pei    24
2006     James Pei    27
2007     James Pei    30
2008     Riku Reikkinen    32
2009     James Pei    18
2010    James Pei    24
2011    James Pei    33
2012    James Pei    28
2013    James Pei    26
2014    James Pei    28

PBeM Event History
1999    James Pei     24
2002    Stefan Mecay     46
2013    Sean Dolbee     53
2014    James Pei     81

WAM Event History
2003    James Pei     8
2004     James Pei    12
2005    James Pei    17
2006    James Pei     11


Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  James Pei          VA    14    822
  2.  David Dockter      MN    14    244
  3.  Mark Giddings      NY    12    151
  4.  Bill Pettus        MD    14    114
  5.  Mike Mitchell      GA    13     93
  6.  Nicholas Pei       CA    14     84
  7.  Riku Reikkinen     fi    09     68
  8.  Tim Miller         GA    13     68
  9.  Trevor Bender      CA    03     62
 10.  Sean Dolbee        CA    13     60
 11.  Stefan Mecay       TX    02     60
 12.  Jeff Donald        VA    14     44
 13.  Chris Byrd         CT    08     39
 14.  Baron August       PA    02     36
 15.  Henry Russell      PA    12     31
 16.  Peter Reese        VA    04     28
 17.  Tom Thornsen       NY    10     25
 18.  Domenico Lucheri   uk    14     24
 19.  Rob Winslow        NY    05     21
 20.  Dan Hoffman        NC    02     19
 21.  Dominique Marchal  fr    14     18
 22.  Gary Kirk          au    13     18
 23.  Bob Sohn           PA    09     18
 24.  Hank Burkhalter    GA    02     18
 25.  Doug Whatley       MD    00     18
 26.  Tom Drueding       TX    99     18
 27.  Michael Ussery     MD    09     14
 28.  Tolga Corapci      be    14     12
 29.  Taylor Golding     on    04     12
 30.  George Young       VT    03     12
 31.  Paul Risner        TN    02     12
 32.  Tim Hughes         uk    02     12
 33.  Bill Thoet         VA    03     10
 34.  Steve Bucey        OH    99      9
 35.  Lucas Rhodes       PA    14      8
 36.  Don Chappell       TX    10      7
 37.  Doug Mercer        MD    05      7
 38.  Tim Tow            WA    14      6
 39.  Jean Louis Dirion  fr    13      6
 40.  Kevin McCarthy     OH    99      6
 41.  Mike Casselberry   PA    11      5
 42.  Keith Butler       CA    03      5
 43.  Zach Lawrence      NJ    13      4
 44.  John Firer         WI    01      4
 45.  Mike Welker        OH    99      3
 46.  Jon Gautier        NY    06      2

2014 Laurelists
Repeating Laurelists:

Bill Pettus, MD

Dave Dockter, MN

Nick Pei, CA

Lucas Rhodes, PA

Jeff Donald, VA

Past Winners

James Pei, VA
1999, 2001-07, 2009-14

Trevor Bender, CA

Riku Reikkinen, fi

Chris Byrd and Mark Giddings cross swords as the
Master schools Mark Popofsky in the background.

GM Mark Herman checks whether
Pettus or Dockter will be Pei's next victim.

Having "won" his way into the Final,
Bill gets a four-turn lesson from the Master.

Wishful thinking or whistling in the graveyard?
The psych lesson failed to unseat the Master.

The Master .... again

As the saying goes, if it was a fight, they'd have stopped it. For the 14th time in 16 years, James Pei has won again. They don't call him "the Master" for nothing. Our reigning champion James Pei and the opposition share their thoughts from the 16th running of the FTP tournament.

We had another solid turnout with 28 ACW aficionados crossing swords, including several new faces. After being MIA for several years, the ever popular WBC cheerleader, sandman and four-time FTP finalist, David Dockter, returned to battle. Many strong players were also in attendance, including Byrd, Pettus, Ussery, Young, Giddings, Donald and Pei the younger. Geoff Allbutt, who got married last year just before the tourney and rushed back to play also came back for more "lessons". He is shown putting them to work against Michael Ussery at right.

Some highlights from this year's "reinactments":

- A new player, Tom Stewart, who I met playing in his gaming group in Ashburn, played a very aggressive CSA. He formed four CSA armies by 1862! It looked impressive and menacing, but without any real punch as each army only had 4 or 5 SP. I told him later that it's better to have one strong army than four weak ones.

- Another new player, Fred Finkenbinder, played a Rd 2 marathon game against the much improved Lucas Rhodes. Lucas' Rebels used FTR card to force AOP forward, isolated it, then destroyed it. The rebels also got off five raids. The Union resigned on T10 with a SW of 17 vs the CSA's 119!

- Another new player, Jeff Cornett, a top player in many block games, made his first appearance on my turf. He told me he is tired of watching me winning, that somebody needs to end the dynasty. I said welcome and good luck, the "beating" line forms to the right! Well, Jeff's Rebels put up a good fight against the now veteran, Jeff Donald. But by T8, the Union had taken AR, TX, LA, and the entire Mississippi River region.

- Mark Popofsky, the now 3-time EOS champ, met James Pei in Round 2. Unlike EOS where defensive units can react to any offensive force within range, Mark's Union learned a painful lesson in not building an early fort defense. CSA used the FTR card to destroy AOP, blew through Frederick and captured DC.

- A very tight Round 3 game occurred between Nick Pei's Union and the returning Sandman marshall. From Nick's own words... Payback is a bitch. Several years ago, I held out as CSA on the last card of the last turn defending Richmond against Dockter. This year, my 9+ hours quarterfinal against him ended with another CSA holdout, when on the last card of the last turn, I played a Minor Campaign for one last assault on Richmond. The dice failed me as I was unable to bring CSA SW down from 17 to 0, or burn Richmond. By this time, all Rebel non-blockade runner resource spaces were destroyed except for Richmond. Blockade was 0, with only 1 CSA raid late in 1864. Richmond was closed off in Fall '64 three times, but reopened three times by fierce CSA counterattacks on 50% rolls to resupply Richmond. Game end saw depleted armies on both sides, with AoNV [7] defending in a OOS Richmond with +7 modifier (win medium battle ties on resource space), even though Jackon & Lee's armies were destroyed by Sherman & Grant.

- Another quarterfinal game pit Jeff Donald's USA against the Master. Jeff played a Major Campaign to isolate and surround all Rebel forces in N VA. Unfortunately, he left a small gap in WV. James promptly pulled out his own Major Campaign to turn the tables. James flanked around WV to re-establish supply, then blew through the defense at Pittsburgh, and raided all the way to Philly. This caused massive isolation and attrition from which the Union was unable to recover.

In the semifinals game to determine Pei's final victim, Bill Pettus' Union atried to save the Dockter from another Jedi mindtrick. The CSA army under Jackson and Forrest failed to dislodge Union corps in Bloomington defended by Curtis and a fort, three times! On Turn 8, Bill then used a brilliant Campaign card to launch Grant's army from Paducah to AA into Dover. This totally unhinged Rebel positions in KY and TN. By this time, blockade level was at 4, CSA SW was at 17 and USA SW was very high at 115. The Union resigned and Pei-Dockter IV was relegated to wishful thinking and returned to Dave's hope chest.

The Final pit Pettus' Union against ... well, you know. Suffice to say that Pei had strong hands that he played to perfection. With the Northern states under the grip of CSA armies the Union resigned on Turn 4 and James carved another notch in his belt.

See you all next year for the finale at the Host. Can the Amish raise a corps to stop Pei's rebels in Lancaster? Not likely ...

Grant LaDue, having recently bested the Master in WNW is emboldened to try again on his own turf if he can get by Bill Peeck.

 Play By Email 2014

The Fourth FTP PBeM Tournament has ended with a somewhat predictable outcome. A total of 81 players participated in 117 games played. There were two swiss rounds followed by six rounds of single elimination. Sides were determined randomly. The USA won a 44-38 advantage in the swiss portion, and maintained an 18-17 edge in the elimination rounds.

The tournament concluded with a match won by heavy favorite James Pei's Union over Bill Pettus. The CSA fought a brilliant defense, stamping out every single Union incursion into the South. Bill kept the Confederacy intact, not losing any states while taking KY. But it was done while allowing the Union to build strength and extended CSA forces from VA to TX. When Pei's Union got the cards, his forces were able to slowly outflank the weakened defense around VA and trap its forces. With EP played, Blockade at 3, and Grant showing up, the writing was on the wall. CSA resigned when AONV was destroyed and Richmond taken on T7. Congratulations to James Pei for his second For the People BPA PBEM championship!

Additional laurels were earned by Domenico Licheri, Dominique Marchal, Tolga Corapci and Tim Tow for third through sixth. The laurelists included players from the UK, Belgium and France in an event with a truly international flavor. Thomas Georgeais and Dave Docktor took honorable mention while finishing 7th and 8th respectively.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this effort. Special thanks to Michael Mitchell and Doug Pratto who generously contributed their time as co-GMs.

 GM     Mark Herman  [12th Year]   NA
   NA  NA

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