The Tides of History ...
Jeff Miller, Wayne Morrison, Joe Collinson
and Carl Adamec
Illustrator Kurt Miller and GM Yope
tend to business.
Another Emperor Crowned ...
For the 17th time in 18 years, we crowned another first-time
champ. The absent Harald Henning remained the only multiple winner.
Heat #1 -
The long, grueling climb to the top of the History of the
World heap began with 30 hardy souls on Tuesday evening.
It was a fortunate number allowing 6-player games all around.
Depending on the players, games can be done relatively quickly,
as was seen at one table which ended in five hours. Or it can
take awhile, which happened when another game was still going
nearly three hours later.
#1 - The early game play is characterized by a careful balancing
of power as all players hang close to the lead. Jon Anderson's
Fertile Crescent pairing of Babylonia/Assyria grabs a tight lead
after two epochs. The Persians non-appearance helped to keep
things even. The third epoch sees Ron Glass's Maurya (seen at
right) build upon earlier Sumerian/Chou Dynasty work to take
the lead. Then the fourth epoch draws result in then second Roberto
Fournier getting the Khmer while leader Glass gets the Goths.
At this point, two players came to the fore. Mike Horn's mid-game
trio of Rome/Arabs/Franks was ultimately more powerful than Christina
Hancock's Macedonia/Huns/Sung Dynasty grouping. Horn built a
sufficient lead to allow him to coast to victory by pulling the
last three pre-eminence markers.
Game #2 - Virginia Harley captures the first epoch lead on
the back of early Sumerian control of the Middle East. The second
epoch success of Greg Wilson's Persians (with Phoenician help)
leads to a back to back empire sticking of the Hsuing-Nu and
Khmers. Michael Mullins' rise to power comes from the might of
Rome and the Byzantines and helps him to maintain the lead through
the sixth epoch. Marc Visocnik closes down on the lead at the
end of the fourth epoch on the basis of the first three Chinese
empires coupled with an early scoring opportunity with the Guptas.
But then the assigment of the Chola and the Incas/Aztecs causes
him to fade from contention. The eventual winner, Nathan Barhorst,
lays the groundwork of victory with the Macedonians and the Goths,
but pours it on with a three-pronged finish of Mongols/Spain/Britain.
Game #3 - Joe Collinson's Minoan/Hittites coalition was able
to match the might of the colorful Jennifer Visocnik's Sumerians
and deny her the first epoch pre-eminence marker. Wayne Morrison's
early power block of Egypt/Assyria gets help from the Phoenicians
to shoot ahead at the end of the second epoch. Joe Collinson
and Jeff Miller use the Macedonians and the Romans respectively
to reel in the leader after three epochs. Morrison pulled three
of the final four pre-eminence markers awarded during the game
by maintaining presence across the globe despite a less than
stellar batch of midgame empires. A very tight end game score
was then blown wide open by the inclusion of his four markers.
This game was a good example of the need to knock down the leaders'
presence every chance you get while still pursuing your own expansion.
By allowing his continued accumulation of pre-eminence markers,
they paid for it in the end.
Game #4 - Early game leaders Dan Overland (Indus Valley/Hittites)
and Ty Hansen (Shang Dynasty/Assyria/Phoenicians) benefit from
minor empire help to take the first two pre-eminence markers.
Ed O'Connor leads through midgame after his Persians/Mayans/Sassanids
set him up with good map presence. Add to that the lack of three
main Mediterranean powers from the early rounds - Egypt, Carthage,
Rome - and you have a real power vacuum in the west. Then O'Connor
gets the Goths and is in a perfect position to exploit this situation.
Raymond Bergeron surges into the lead late in the game based
not on powerful empires but because of presence and dominance
provided by kingdoms, migrants, barbarians, and civil wars.
Game #5 - Dan Morris's Sumerian/Canaanites control the Middle
East and the first epoch pre-eminence marker. Kurt Miller uses
Egypt/Assyria along with help from the Phoenicians and Etruscans
to jump out to a slim lead over Frank McNally's Persians by the
end of the second epoch. Nick Pei's Roman expansion gives him
dominance in the Middle East, India, and Southern Europe and
it sets up an ongoing presence that allows him to retain the
lead for four epochs. As mentioned earlier, McNally starts a
midgame charge with Persia but that is wiped out and further
hindered by getting the Hsiung-Nu. It is revived by the Arabs
and Mongols, but he is then rewarded with the Incas/Aztecs. Craig
Yope's end game push of Byzantines/Vikings/Portugal/Manchu Dynasty
is matched by Morris's Huns/Holy Roman Empire/Ottoman Turks/France
to cause a seventh epoch tie. The victory goes to Pei though
when his four pre-eminence markers are revealed.
Heat #2 -
The second heat is a time of redemption as more than half
of the 27 players are returnees from the first heat. Usually
this heat brings in more new players plus those who are back
from licking their wounds after the first heat. Normally the
earlier winners take a break and play something else, but Wayne
Morrison is the exception that comes back for some more of the
same. The aforementioned field of 27 cause three of the five
games to be 5-player affairs. This can make for some very different
play as more empires fail to appear and card draw dynamics can
be very skewed.
Game #1 - Mark Visocnik uses the Egypt/Hittites pairing to
become the early target for abuse. John Van De Graaf pounds the
Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean with the double barrel
action of the Greeks and the Phoenicians. This is nicely complemented
by the presence of his first epoch Minoans. Paul McCarthy's Romans
then slide him into a slim lead at the end of the third epoch.
Jim Stanard sandwiches the Hsiung-Nu between the Persians and
the Arabs to catch up and tie McCarthy for the lead at the end
of four turns while Visocnik and Van De Graaf lurk close behind.
Stanard then supplements those forces with the troops of the
Holy Roman Empire and the Timurid Emirates to maintain the lead
for the next two epochs. McCarthy's 42-point Netherlands turn
was enough to return the earlier favor and tie Stanard's United
States for the seventh epoch lead. But even if McCarthy had pulled
the last pre-eminence marker, it wouldn't have been enough to
Game #2 - Ted Drozd's Egyptians expand unopposed and gain
him the early lead. Mark Smith's Babylon/Hittites alliance is
further bolstered by the addition of Assyria early in epoch 2.
A Persian/Rome combo pushes Virginia Harley to a sizable lead
after three epochs. So just as the Hsiung-Nu brought leader Smith
back to the pack in Turn 3, the Khmers are the booby prize for
Harley in the fourth. The late game rise of Jeff Miller is based
on the mid rounds of Macedonia and the Arabs with continuing
efforts by the Sung Dynasty, the Timurid Emirates, and finally
the Netherlands. Too much back biting and infighting among the
many veterans at the table allowed Miller to hold the lead for
the last three rounds and allowed him to gain precious pre-eminence
markers. That was the difference in an otherwise close contest.
Game #3 - Winton Lemoine gets an early lift from the Indus
Valley/Hittites combo, but it inevitably leads to him getting
the Scythians in epoch 2. Dan Overland's Minoans/Greek City States/Macedonians
beginning triumvirate powers him to the top for epochs 2 and
3 and leaves him looking good when no Romans enter the game.
But even prior to his Macedonian expansion, the tearing down
of his Mediterranean dominance was taking place. A continuous
assault from Lemoine's Scythians, Joe Collinson's Carthaginians/Phoenicians,
Ron Glass' Romans, and Lemoine's Celts end up ravaging Overland's
prior holdings. The second half of the game belongs to Collinson
after his Arabs/Seljuk Turks combo set him up to weather the
Incas/Aztecs and the United States in the last two epochs. He
cruised to victory and padded his score by taking the last four
Game #4 - Chris Trimmer rides the Sumerians and Hittites out
of the gate and follows up with the Greek City States to take
an early lead while claiming the first two pre-eminence markers.
Roberto Fournier and Christina Hancock close the gap by the end
of the second epoch with Fournier using the Persians/Phoenicians
while Hancock adds Chou Dynasty to her earlier Egyptian empire.
Fournier is the player who gets Hsiung-Nued after all his hard
work while Trimmer ends up with the Sassanids who go last in
the epoch. Meanwhile Hancock adds to her worldwide presence with
a good Maurya turn that gets her the third epoch lead. Ed O'Connor's
Macedonians and Jon Anderson's Romans help each to climb back
into the game. At this point things get a bit murky. A scoring
mistake goes unnoticed and Trimmer continues along to win pre-eminence
markers for epochs 4 through 6. But the lead narrows prior to
the start of the last epoch, with all players falling within
a 5-points radius. This set the stage for someone to have a good
enough last turn to offset Trimmers' five pre-eminence markers.
Fournier was that someone. He was working off of the previous
three turns that included the Huns, the Seljuk Turks (Fujiwara),
and Spain. He added on a France that netted him 62 points, the
last pre-eminence marker, and the overall win despite Trimmers'
22 bonus points.
Game #5 - After a tied first epoch between Christina Harley's
Sumerians and Craig Yope's Babylonian/Hittites, John Stevens'
bludgeoned his way to the top of epoch 2 with the Persians. Harley's
Macedonians go first in the third epoch and benefit from the
absence of the Greek City States. With presence across the world
and various monuments to her glory, Harley powers her way to
a 45-point turn. But such greatness is fleeting as Jennifer Visocnik's
Romans lay waste to all standing before them and their enduring
presence is the groundwork for a 52-point Gupta that follows.
That is enough to give her a 20-point buffer for the next three
epochs. Stevens' stacks an impressive trio of the Mongols/Portugal/Manchu
Dynasty to finally pass Visocnik in the last epoch. But Visocnik
take the win with her three pre-eminence markers outdoing Stevens'
Nine of the ten heat winners persevered for another go in
the semifinals and the other nine slots were filled by the highest
ranking alternates as per the listed procedure. It pays to understand
the advancement system as two of the alternates from outside
the original top 18 on the list made it to the Final. They appeared,
got the empty slots, and made the most of them.
Game #1 - Jennifer Visocnik flies out of the gate working
the Sumerians with Canaanites along for the ride. Jon Anderson
is right behind her with a balanced Shang Dynasty/Hittites duo.
Next Nathan Barhorst comes along with an early scoring combo
of Assyrians/Etruscans for 27 points to take the second round
lead. Anderson remains strong in the second epoch with a Vedic
City States empire that builds upon the absence of the Chou Dynasty.
Everyone experiences tough times in the third epoch except for
Visocnik's Romans. Her 38 points allows her to surge back into
the lead while Barhorst gets properly shafted with the Hsiung-Nu
and Anderson "the Roman-giver" stoically watches as
his presence crumbles until little is left when his Sassanids
sally forth. Visocnik sails through the next three epochs retaining
a lead that is based on the remnants of the earlier Persian and
Roman expansion. A struggling Huns turn following the decimation
of his Macedonians surely dooms Nick Pei to a fate that not even
a final three of the Mongols, Portugal, and France can escape.
A similar situation befell Jeff Miller as his Celts/Byzantines
midgame combo was too disastrous for a closing trio of the Seljuk
Turks/Spain/Manchu Dynasty to fix. Barhorst was lurking in the
weeds after a poor Vikings turn, but charged back with the Ottoman
Turks and a 64-point Britain turn. His 14 point lead after the
end of the seventh epoch was enough to negate the five pre-eminence
markers that Visocnik collected along the way. The win went to
Barhorst based on his lower total empire strength for the game.
Game #2 - Ty Hansen works the full Monty in the first epoch
by pairing both minors with the Indus Valley. Michael Mullins
adds Carthaginians to his earlier Egyptians to seemingly take
the second epoch lead, but Mark Smith trumps that with a Persian
rampage to take the marker by a point. That kind of showing earned
him the honor of receiving the dreaded Hsiung-Nu. Hansen uses
crack Macedonian mountain troops to great effect to regain the
lead while Raymond Bergeron's Romans use Naval Power to Jihad
themselves into second place. Unfortunately, that kind of success
is always cruelly rewarded. In this case, he (and not Hansen)
earned the Khmers. Hansen was rewarded with the Huns and another
pre-eminence marker, though Mullins kept him close with a good
Goths turn. Epoch 5 sees Bergeron double dip on his holdings
as he scores again early in the turn, right on the heels of the
Khmers. The move allows him to tie Hansen and deny him a marker.
Once again Bergeron gets the shaft - Incas/Aztecs - while Hansen
gets the goods - Ottoman Turks. So in a world where no Arabs
and no Mongols exist, the Ottoman Turks do the work necessary
to keep Hansen in the lead. Mullins' Spain once again brings
him just shy of the lead and a much needed pre-eminence marker.
As the seventh epoch dawns, Bergeron's Russia is nowhere near
strong enough to make up for the hit he took in the sixth. Mullins'
was poised for a final push to greatness but was passed the United
States and ended up a distant third despite a respectable 43
points. Mike Horn came charging to the fore with a 57-point Britain
turn that edged Hansen's Netherlands by one point. Hansen's four
pre-eminence markers win him the game but Horn's late game surge
earns him the last seat at the Final.
Game #3 - No Sumerians means that Joe Collinson's Egypt/Canaanites
power block expands unopposed across the known world for an early
lead. John Stevens' stays in touch with that lead by bringing
forth a Babylonian/Hittites combo. Carl Adamec's Assyrians pummel
Stevens' holdings in such a way that once his Greek City States
appear there is little left to add. Collinson's Scythians receive
help from Phoenician allies allowing him to maintain the lead.
This is possible after a particularly weak Persian turn fails
to dominate the epoch. The usual "Hsuing-Nuing" of
the leader brings Collinson back to the pack while the Macedonians
are the springboard for Christina Hancock's vault into the lead.
A very nice Roman turn propels Wayne Morrison out of the cellar
and into contention. Ted Drozd uses Maurya to capitalize upon
earlier Persian conquests and moves into second place. A very
interesting card draw play out at the start of the fourth epoch
sees Drozd getting the Khmers which then allows Hancock to get
the Arabs. Collinson's so-so Byzantines are followed by a dismal
Vikings turn that torpedoes his chances of returning to the Final.
Stevens' Guptas are a distant memory by the time his Seljuk Turks
arise which leads to a weak scoring turn. Drozd's Khmers/Franks
pairing is a death sentence when one has no board presence. Wayne
Morrison turns out consistent turns of low 30's from the third
epoch on to include a nice double dip on the Mongols and the
Ming Dynasty that netted him 45 points on Turn 6. But even getting
France in the last epoch wasn't enough once most of his units
were wiped from the map. Adamec made a late game charge with
solid midgame turns of the Huns, the Sung Dynasty, and the Timurid
Emirates. But he really capped things off with a 66-point Britain
which took the lead by one point and the last pre-eminence marker.
Hancock finished second in last epoch but won the game with the
extra 17 points from pre-eminence markers. Adamec was also able
to advance with his strong showing.
After a day of relative rest, the six cheery finalists convened
in the far reaches of the Kinderhook dungeon to hack and slash
their way to world domination. The mix of contenders includes
a trio of preliminary game winners - Nathan Barhorst and Mike
Horn in the first heat and Jennifer Visocnik in the second. Nathan
also won his semifinal game. Ty (aka: Mr. Fort) Hansen only played
one heat but did well enough to be a top 18 alternate and then
went on to win his semifinal. As mentioned earlier, Christina
Hancock made it into the semis as the 15th alternate after one
winner and six other alternates didn't show. She took the second
chance and ran to victory in the semis. Jennifer Visocnik became
the top non-winner in the Final based on tying Nathan in the
semifinals and losing on the total empire strength tiebreaker.
The last finalist is Carl Adamec who also got into the semis
because other qualifiers didn't show. He came in second to his
fellow "second-chancer" Christina in those semifinals
and was rewarded wih a seat at the Final and a chance to win
Epoch 1 -
Christina - Sumerian stays in the Middle East and fortifies
Egypt fails to rise.
Nathan - The Minoans expand into Western Anatolia and Libya.
Carl - The Indus Valley sends their troops not into the Middle
East but south across the sub continent to Ceylon.
Jennifer - Babylonia moves east into Zagros and gains an ally
to the west in the Canaanites.
Mike - The Shang Dynasty flows southeast across China.
Ty - The Aryans take Persia along with their Hittite allies
and then fort up in the Tarim Basin.
At this point Christina has a slim lead with everyone still
within three points. Ty started a fort heavy strategy that would
greatly influence play.
Christina - 8 Ty - 7 Nathan - 6 Carl - 5 Jennifer
- 5 Mike - 5
Epoch 2 -
Carl - The Assyrians campaign down the Fertile Crescent and
get some treacherous help to sack the Sumerian capital. They
then loop back through Zagros to take out the Hittites capital.
Mike - The Chou Dynasty runs south to the Malayan Peninsula
and then uses Astronomy to gain use of the South China Sea to
return to the Chinese coast. In related news, his shipment of
arms is not helpful enough as the Jewish Revolt is ruthlessly
Ty - The Vedic City States goes south along the western coast
of India and then......builds many forts!!!
The Greek City States continue to bicker among themselves
and fail to coalesce in a united force.
Christina - The Scythians go northeast to cross the Great
Wall attacking into the various Chinese capitals. The Phoenicians
eschew the nautical life and choose to attack inland to take
the Assyrian capital. Affiliated migrants appear in Australia.
Nathan - Carthage expands eastward across the empty Egyptian
sands to eventually ransack the Phoenicians capital and dominate
the Middle East.
Jennifer - Persian weaponry in the hands of a growing population
fuels their gains into India, across much of the Middle East,
by ship to Libya, and finally through Carthage into Southern
Jennifer rides the Persian juggernaut to a slight lead over
Nathan while Carl moves into a solid third. Christina got jammed
with the Scythians and her Sumerians were ground to dust long
before she got to go again, so she was lucky to have some help
from Phoenicians to regain some western presence. Mike is stuck
in the far east and Ty does what Ty does best- fortify!
Jennifer - 27 Nathan - 25 Carl - 22 Ty - 19
Mike - 16 Christina - 14
Epoch 3 -
Christina - The Celts take over Eastern Europe and then shoot
south through the empty Balkans to break down those Cretan walls.
Minotaur burgers anyone?
Again the Greeks are unable to get things together. So no
Nathan - Maurya dominates northern India and then moves east
to dominate Southeast Asia. They then turn north to also dominate
China. Interesting trade talks with the Mayans and the Kush kingdom
develop into a worldwide alliance.
Carl - Reports of natural disasters in Persia and Carthage
filter in during a time of civil war in the Mauryan Empire. The
Han Dynasty drives south through China and crosses into SE Asia
for dominance. The Emperor then orders fortifications to be built
along the full length of the Great Wall as a second line of defense.
Jennifer - The Hsiung-Nu support a less than successful civil
uprising in the southern half of the Han Dynasty and only succeeds
in reducing one fort in their failed attempt to cross the Wall.
Mike - Famine opens an access point in the Middle East for
the Roman conquest into North Africa and then east along the
spice roads to the Hindu Kush. Other legions wielding superior
weapons move north into Western Gaul.
Ty - The "Sassy" Sassanids move northwest through
Anatolia to reach the Danube while leaving a trail of forts behind
them as they go.
Nathan now becomes the leader with Jennifer hanging onto second
after being Hsuing-Nued. Christina and Carl aren't too far behind
along with Mike who finally got some western presence with an
adequate Roman turn. And Mr. Fort is still lurking, just 11 points
off the lead.
The next card draw leads to a bit of drama as Carl shoots
himself in the foot by misreading his pulled card and keeps the
Khmers thinking that he had the Huns. Unfortunately, that had
already been drawn and kept by Mike just before him.
Nathan - 48 Jennifer - 45 Christina - 42 Carl
- 41 Mike - 40 Ty - 37
Epoch 4 -
Nathan - Migrants appear in Africa around the time that the
Guptas emerge to expand across central India into the Middle
East. An adventurous naval expedition sails the Bay of Bengal
to take possession of Sumatra.
With no Goths coming forth, the world is saved from ever having
to deal with pale teenagers sporting bad makeup and drab fashion.
Mike - Barbarians charging down from the Tibet Plateau fail
miserably in their attempt to take China. Meanwhile, the Huns
race across the Russian steppe to dominate Europe. They then
turn east to burst into China and fight all the way to SE Asian
Christina - More barbarians are in the offing, but this time
they attack out of the Alps. They succeed in clearing only the
Central Europe mining region. The Byzantines advance north to
claim the open territory and then turn south. Amphibious operations
to take Levant prove difficult but eventually fruitful. The final
act of their time is to grease the right palms for a way within
the walls of Rome.
Jennifer - The T'ang Dynasty moves to the coast and sets sail
to SE Asia and India for dominance and presence respectively.
Ty - In the north, Anglo-Saxon ships take to the sea and claim
a fortified Ireland. Gee, really? Meanwhile, back in the Middle
East, an Arab Jihad drives west across North Africa to establish
a Moorish stronghold in Southern Iberia. Unfortunately, a loss
of fervor seriously curtails the carnage that was had.
Carl - Wayward Khmer pilgrims establish a kingdom in the Southern
Andes. The main Khmer empire fails in its attempts to expand
into Szechuan and the Malayan Peninsula.
With no Goths attacking his Roman holdings Mike is able to
use his Huns in other ways, namely to return to China and get
into SE Asia. Jennifer is able to do things with the T'ang that
the Hsuing-Nu couldn't. Nathan stays close with a smartly played
Guptas turn. Ty's Arabs are a bit underwhelming at a time when
he could have used more and Christina takes a beating as the
Byzantines trying to get back into the Middle East by sea. Her
decision to go that route was probably influenced by forts in
Anatolia courtesy of Ty. I knew we would get back to that again.
Carl's self-"Khmering" is a real blow to any chances
he may have in the game.
Mike - 76 Jennifer - 70 Nathan - 69 Ty - 64
Christina - 63 Carl - 54
Epoch 5 -
Mike - Good Hygiene in Central Europe helps the inhabitants
to avoid the Plague. Frankish troops push east to Danubia, down
into the Balkans, and are finally stopped in the foothills of
Eastern Anatolia (Can you say "sassy" forts?).
Ty - Viking siege machines batter their way into Northern
Gaul to establish dominance of Northern Europe while a sizeable
contingent sails to North America.
Nathan - With a fervor of their own, the Crusaders crush the
Arab remnants in Palestine and the Arabian Peninsula. Floods
in Central China and volcanoes in Crete take out certain cultural
landmarks. The Holy Roman knights encounter great difficulties
in trying to dominate Europe.
Carl - Elite Chola armies make all before them tremble in
fear as they win every battle they enter. As a result, dominance
of India and SE Asia is theirs.
Christina - The Sung Dynasty unleashes expert troops in forest
fighting to secure dominance in SE Asia and gain some presence
in India. At the same time they protect their northern flanks
by signing a mutual support treaty with the Fujiwara Empire.
Jennifer - The Seljuk Turks debut new weapons in their powerful
thrust across Northern India, into SE Asia, and then up into
China. Some dissension in the ruling council was observed as
certain units were diverted to dominate the Middle East.
The world was spared the marauding destruction of the Mongols
Mike was able to maintain the lead by going early in the epoch
and banking points based on his scattered presence coupled with
the European and SE Asian dominance. Nathan, Christina, Jennifer,
and Ty were all bunched together within four points and just
six points back of Mike. Carl rebounded with a good Chola turn.
Ironic (or maybe quite shrewd) that Mr. Fort was the one who
pulled out a Siegecraft card and started knocking down every
wall in sight. We shall see.
Mike - 105 Nathan - 99 Christina - 97 Jennifer
- 96 Ty - 95 Carl - 80
Epoch 6 -
No Ming Dynasty to churn the Chinese pot. Or stir the wok.
Ty - The Timurid Emirates is helped in its advances by civil
war in the eastern half of the Frankish Empire. But the domesticated
ancestors of the Seljuk Turks still have some fight in them though
and they stymie Timurid attacks into China and the Middle East.
Maybe they should just build forts?
Mike - A wave of pestilence was less than virulent in India.
From the other side of the globe come wild stories of shining
walled cities built high in the mountains of far away lands.
Nathan - Strong Ottoman leadership puts an emphasis on siege
technology, but the untimely early demise of Mehmed II slows
the advance of the Turkish troops. Nevertheless, dominance of
North Africa, the Middle East, and all of Europe is the final
Christina - The Portuguese roll out their vaunted naval prowess
to dominate China and Southern Europe. Further incursions into
India, Africa, and South America are part of a well orchestrated
"cultural exchange" program. You say exchange, I say
exploit. Eh, semantics.
Jennifer - Spanish conquistadors move into Western Gaul and
Western Iberia. Naval expeditionary forces drop into North America,
South America, and Africa to stake a claim for the crown. Heavy
troop concentrations following great leadership end up dominating
China and the Middle East. Seeing which way the wind was blown,
the kingdom of Thai jumps on the Espana bandwagon.
Carl - Stellar Mughal leadership spends his rupees on mountain
training for his troops. This allows them to force their way
through the Irrawaddy area into China and out onto the Eurasian
Mike has finally been cut down to size after leading the last
two epochs and only pulls 18 points this turn. Nathan's 40-point
Ottoman turn puts him in the lead but Jennifer is right there
with her 41-point Spain along with Christina and her 36 point
Portugal. Ty's Timurids weren't quite enough to keep pace and
it was early in the turn meaning he lost a certain amount of
board presence in the interim. Carl's Mughals were fine, but
it he may just be too far back to mount one of his patented late
Nathan - 139 Jennifer - 137 Christina - 133 Ty
- 124 Mike - 123 Carl - 108
Epoch 7 -
The card draw was an agonizing process as it always seems
to be in the seventh epoch of a tight game. Carl pulled and kept
(Netherlands). Mike was next and kept also (Manchu). After that
was Ty, who drew Russia and didn't like his options. He wasn't
going to keep it and didn't want any of the leaders to score
early. He gave it to the leader that it helped the least - Christina.
Next came Christina and boy did she have a tough choice. Eventually
she gave to Jennifer (US). Who picked and gave to Nathan (Germany).
Finally, he pulled and handed to Ty (France).
Christina - Russian naval resources are stripped via reallocation
to power their land campaigns. The elite military cadre is quickly
killed off as the army struggles to dominate Northern Europe.
All hopes of eternal glory die at the gates of Broussa in Western
Mike - The Manchu Dynasty is a powerhouse of leadership and
weaponry that goes straight west to achieve Northern European
dominance. After this surprising turn of events, the focus shifts
back to more immediate concerns - presence in Nippon and a crushing
attack into China for dominance there.
Carl - The Emperor of Japan enters into an alliance with the
Netherlands and takes Korea and the Manchurian Plain. Closer
to home, the Dutch work hard to gain dominance of Northern Europe.
Eventually they send amphibious forces into Western Anatolia
and colonists to North America.
Ty - France fires up under the grand leadership of Napoleon
and the naval power of Villeneuve to dominate Northern Europe,
North America, and Nippon. Presence in South America, SE Asia,
and Australia add to the worldwide expansion. Finally, while
trying to push into Asia on the Korea Peninsula, Napoleon meets
The sun sets on a game in which the British Empire never takes
Jennifer - The United States fights its way across a highly
populated North America to then drop into the Manchurian Plain
for presence and a monument. From there they shifted to grabbing
dominance in SE Asia and India.
Nathan - Germany recruits some minor allies in Zimbabwe to
lock up African dominance. More importantly, the Netherlands
and France fall to the Kaiser while expeditionary forces seize
Patagonia and the Malayan Peninsula. Then a serious power move
is made against the North American East Coast to gain dominance
there. The last move fails when an attempt is made to take out
the Spanish capital in the Pyrenees.
Nathan ends the seventh epoch in the lead to gain the last
pre-eminence marker. After all the wrangling, Christina is two
points ahead of Jennifer. Ty straggles in ten points behind them
with Mike and Carl a good eight to ten points beyond that.
Once the pre-eminence markers are revealed, Mike jumps ahead
of Ty. In an interesting flip, Jennifer's one marker is two points
larger than Christina's sole chit. But because of a lower total
empire strength Christina is still the second place finisher
by tiebreaker. Nathan pads his lead and wins this year's HWD
crown going away.
Nathan - 183+13 = 196; Christina - 179+3 = 182 (57); Jennifer
- 177+5 = 182 (64) ; Mike - 160+10 = 170; Ty -167; Carl
GM Craig Yope (at right) with his
six finalist conquerors.