Phil Rodriguez and Al Hurda keep tabs
on the Diplomatic Table.
Brittania rules the waves ...
Brian Sutton and Matt Russell march
Rejean Tremblay, Henry Russell and
sportswoman Emily Wu Allbutt
In all but a few respects I was very happy with this year's
event. Most especially I was happy that the somewhat stale meta-game
we saw a lot of last year where Prussia pacts the Turks then
joins the coalition to grind up France was thoroughly disrupted
as some Prussians decided to break the mould, and some French
exploited just how vulnerable Prussia is if she spends everything
The Duchess of Richmond's Ball on Monday night was mostly
dominated by France. At least in part this was because the split
between people who want to finish within five hours and those
that don't care led to several 4-player games. However I think
the advantages of accommodating that are worth it, though I will
review the results from the 4-player games with a view to tweaking
balance or scoring next year.
Kevin Emery capitulated Austria in Turn 1 and picked up Gibralter
and Lisbon in Turn 2 to get the peace roll with +8
Joe Appel destroyed the British fleet to set up an invasion
of England, but Soult was repulsed by Beresford. Nevertheless,
he finished +9
Llew Bardecki and Lane Hess delivered further victories for
France at +11 and +12
It did not go all France's way though, Brian Sutton's Prussia
narrowly escaped with a win over France on Track order with +3
at the end of Tun 2 and Phil Rodrigues found himself pinned back
to -9 in a game that saw Britain, Austria and Russia all finish
Turn 4 on +7, with Jordan Kehrer enjoying the tiebreaker.
The best result of the night was posted by Melvin Casselberry
who had the good fortune to acquire all of the pact cards at
the start of Turn 2 in a 4-player game. Things went poorly for
the Allies with the rest of the world fighting them and he finished
Turn 3 at +13.
night's Austerlitz heat however firmly belonged to the coalition,
especially Britain. Geoff Allbutt managed the only French win
of the night with +5 at the end of Turn 3. Frank Morehouse managed
a very impressive +8 with Austria to pip Micheal Dauer's Britain
for the win over John Emery's France. Greenville honour was saved
when Bruce Young opened the scoring for Britain with +3. Patrick
Duffy delivered the second capitulating Spain in Turn 2 and getting
the peace roll thanks to Europe Exhausted.
The last game of the night didn't finish till 0415, mostly
because everybody involved wanted an epic game. And boy did we
get one, pretty much everything that could have happened did
and events that would have been the most remarkable thing in
any other game came thick and fast.
Thursday afternoon's Collingwood heat saw a well attended
demo and a full 5-player coached game tended by Melvin Casselberry
and won by Gary Andrew's Britain. Apart from that there was only
one 5-player game where Gareth Williams opened aggressively with
France and secured the win at the end of Turn 2 with him and
defending champion Francis Czawlytko's Prussia invading Russia.
The 4-player games saw Henry Russell deliver a Turn 3 win
for France with +6 and Bill Burtless best Jesse Boomer's Britain
with Russia at +3 on Turn 3. The other game saw Phil Rodrigues
pick up several pacts but be faced Al Hurda's Russia securing
three of his associates. The two then struck a deal to see Russia
join the Imperial Camp but keep it's conquests and finish Turn
3 with +9.
As was the case last year, there four 5-player semifinals.
Unlike last year, when every game saw France selected with the
third pick, that only happened once this year. Al Hurda piloted
that third choice France to a Turn 4 +9 victory against a somewhat
dysfunctional coalition. Bruce Young used his first pick to take
France and secure a Turn 3 +8 win. Bill Burtless and Micheal
Dauer steered their 4th pick Prussia to +3 in both games for
Geoff Allbutt did not enjoy similar luck with his top pick
France; despite being down to two fleets Patrick Duffy launched
an invasion of France and took Paris. Mud caused France to burn
three cards trying to get him out again, finally managing by
one hit and surviving turn end attrition to avoid potential conquest.
Kevin Emery pipped Rejan Tremblay's Austria on the tiebreak at
+3 to get the win.
The GM was extremely grateful to find four other semi-finalists
who agreed to postpone their match to Saturday morning as he
was in the last rounds of Memoir 44 at the time. This
game finished quickly with Austria capitulated and Europe Exhausted
at the end of the first turn and Prussia about to get the "join
me or die" speech. I must remember to find a way to postpone
my semifinal next year also. It seemed to work very well.
And so onto the Final, a game such as the final of TNW
in 2014 deserves to be sung by a great skald to a mead hall of
warriors as an epic worthy of the ages. Sadly however you only
have me, and I am no Snorri Sturluson, I am not even a Homer,
though on a good day I may qualify as a Barney.
So, our five intrepid semifinalists were:
~ Al Hurda who had got into the semis with a third pick and
was able to choose France (which I am pretty certain is the only
time France has NOT been 1st or 2nd choice). He was able to take
advantage of a coalition that could at best be described as dysfunctional
to rack up a score of +9 by Turn 4
~ Bruce Young - the top of the laurels table, Bruce took his
first choice of sides in the semis as France to post a score
of +8 by Turn 3
~ Gareth Williams who does not consider himself enough of
a threat at either Memoir 44 or TNW to worry about
the later rounds clashing, but was able to arrange for his Nappy
semi to be played Saturday morning. Taking first pick as France
he was able to close out the game in an hour through drawing
Europe Exhausted and Capitulation to pick up the win at +6
~ Kevin Emery - rewarded in the gene pool and with many a
shellacking by the Greenville formidable 1-2 punch at the top
of the rankings, Kevin was third pick as Russia in his semifinal
and took the win by Movement Track Order tiebreaker at +3 on
Turn 3 in a game that saw Geoff Allbutt's Britain reduced to
~ Bill Burtless was new to the laurels list no more but schooled
in Greenville in Napoleonic tactics and strategy. His semifinal
fourth pick as Prussia qualifed as the best runner-up in the
game Al won.
So, only one prior champion in an event no one has ever won
more than once, three newcomers to Round 3 action and a GM making
hissecond Final appearance.
Al chose to take France, Bruce opted for Britain, Gareth took
Russia and Kevin Prussia, leaving Bill with the ever popular
Al opened with an aggressive stab on Vienna with Davout not even
using the Cavalry from the Ardennes. This looked like a setup
for Capitulation, however after consultation Bill decided to
play the percentages "It's a wargame" and rather than
march Charles to the relief of Vienna attacked Milan.
The Russian forces were hit with Mud when consolidating, and
as we could move no further than Lublin chose to build with our
last 2 CP
Al of course did have Capitulation and took Austria out, picking
up Venice and Prague and moving east and flagging Zhitomir.
Kevin's Prussia meanwhile had made the standard play and picked
The coalition resolved to play for the long game
After we all discarded to ensure Al could not even get a sniff
of a peace roll, some serious discussion then ensued in the interphase.
Austria rejected French offers to join the Imperial camp, Prussia
decided also to stay out of it.
Russia formally considered joining the Imperial camp but rejected
the proposal, deciding to taunt the French into an invasion.
"If I am to rely on numbers, the Greenville Mafia's dice
box does not contain enough. If however I am to rely on valour,
this number is quite sufficient"
Scores end Turn 1: France 5, Britain 2, Austria -2,
Russia 1, Prussia 2
Al deployed Napoleon and Spanish underlings into Austrian Poland,
a deployment the Russians were unable to contest being unable
to enter the subject neutral.
Al then prempted Austria with an in turn declaration of war on
Prussia. We enthusiastically welcomed Kevin to the coalition.
I then remarked that if anyone was wondering this was what it
felt like to be British on December 8th, 1941.
"See, I warned you this guy was trouble, but you didn't
Al proceeded to drive to Berlin via Breslau, flag Leipzig, preempt
Russia and pick up Hannover then play Capitulation again to take
Russia at this point has never had the chance to move troops
out of Russia, has never fought a battle and has not been able
to do anything except build.
We have to look up the rules for marshes because no one can remember
and I defend my decision to build in Pinsk calling it "The
Tyrol of the Pripyat"
The French make no hostile move to the Russians retaking Zhitomir
so that their Home Card is at least an option, though I hold
it back as I will need 6 ops later a lot more than two cards
now if he choses to come at me later in the turn.
The French even make no move against the Russians moving into
ceded Warsaw, though Russia will not press further with strong
forces in Austria.
Meanwhile there is a joint British/Swedish descent on Antwerp
Scores end Turn 2: Al is at the 21 key mark to put France
up 7, Britain 0, Austria -2, Russia 2, Prussia -4
Bill takes the opportunity to rejoin the coalition at the start
of Turn 3, Al having moved forces into Poland causes the loss
of Lublin and Krakow
However, Al deploys out of Poland through Prussia and preps to
hit Vienna again. In a 28 v 28 battle he forces his way in where
Reverse Slopes trump Refused Flank for 30 v 27, and then uses
Spithead to pick up Horse Artillery from Britian. Bagration marches
from Zhitomir to Budapest to take command of the relief force
and then force marches in command of a massive Army Group into
Vienna. In the the resulting 34 v 31 battle Al forgets to play
Horse Artillery and is forced out. Kevin then plays Panic as
Prussia to get the attrition kills needed for the rout and Bagration
picks up a resource
Al has Capitulation for the third time but is unable to play
Bruce meanwhile evacuates Antwerp leaving a Swedish CU there
as rearguard and launches a hit and run on Spain. The coalition
slowly begin to force the French back, with a Turkish Army Group
operating in Italy and Nationalist uprisings returning Leipzig
and Breslau to Prussia
We also perusade Bill to play Down with the Prince in Hannover,
because that will be more expensive for the French to clean up
Scores end Turn 3: At the end of the turn Al is still
winning, but the gap has narrowed: France 4, Britain 3, Austria
0, Russia 3, Prussia -1
For Turn 4 Prussia rejoins the coalition and Russia returns Warsaw.
We proceed to slowly push Al back, The Turks overun Italy but
are then sent home by a broken pact from France
Bruce overuns all but one key in Spain and comes over the mountains
into Southern France
Bagration and Scwarzenberg are sitting in Champagne, but are
outnumbered by the forces in Paris and Picardy. I elect not to
burn a resource for a hail mary on Paris, but instead hope Bruce
does conquer Spain and rolls low on the ceded duchies so I can
win on the tiebreak.
Bruce's last impulse is a Parliament + Europe Exhausted combo
that sees him eat attrition from Bourdeaux to Rome and take it,
but be repulsed from Naples
His other army marches North and takes Brest
Final scores: France -5, Kevin never retakes Hannover
and Prussia finishes -1, Austria +2, Russia has 2 resources and
2 French keys for +4, Bruce does not conquer Spain but has done
well enough otherwise that it does not matter eitherway for +7
and becomes the first to win NW5 a second time.
I'd like to thank all players, especially those that provided
their sets and a special thank you to Melvin for coaching. In
particular I would like to thank Henry and Phil for helping as
Final winners from 5-player games: France 7, Britain
4, Austria 1, Russia 2, Prussia 1
And finally, the AAR of the Tuesday night game that may well
be one of the most epic game of NW5 ever played (by somebody
who took notes for a subsequent AAR)
The 5 players: Henry Russell - France, Francis Czawlytko - Britain,
Llew Bardecki - Austria, Nick Benedict - Russia, Gareth Williams
Everybody signed up to play after midnight, though we did not
know what would happen, everybody knew the game inside out and
just about every reversal of fortune and dirty trick that could
have happened, happened.
Turn 1 began fairly conventionally with a French push into Austria,
Britain taking the Swedes and the Prussians the Turks. France,
Britain and Prussia all finished with +2, Russia +1, Austria
The coalition were being far too friendly, so Prussia decided
to put the strength of that relationship to the test and offered
Tilsit as the event. France and Russia accepted and the Russians
went on holiday in Finland. We asked the Austrians how they felt
about this development:
"Does that make you upset?"
5 minutes later: "Dear Strategy and Tactics, I never thought
this would happen to me. I thought the letters in your magazine
were made up"
Henry seized his chance and made a bid for Vienna while the Russians
were elsewhere. Britain threw in Rally to rout him and Prussia
played Tipping the Scales and obtained a 6. The only valid target
was Spain, so Spain went neutral along with the British expeditionary
force there. Prussia had made it very clear that joining the
coalition was not a sure thing, so the coalition used Duke de
Enghien to keep her out of the French camp next turn
Turn 2 ended thus: Russia & France 3, Prussia 2, Britain
0, Austria -1
Turn 3 opened with War without End. France drew Napoleon Abdicates
and promptly played it as an event allowing a full turn without
any attacks and with her in full control of her own territory.
Prussia took the opportunity to get Denmark and everybody moved
around and built for the coming mayhem.
Turn 3 ended with Prussia & Russia 3, Austria & Britain
1, France 0
Turn 4 saw Prussia join the Imperial Camp. France, Prussia,
Turks and Danes lining up against Britain, Austria, Russia and
Sweden. Wellington tried an amphibious invasion of Oldenburg
but was intercepted and repulsed. The Danish fleet responded
with Admiral Fischer and cut off his route back though the North
Sea killing him. Just about everybody headed towards Vienna and
a bloody series of battles ensued where everybody fought everybody.
Meanwhile the Swedes overran Western Prussia until the second
Stormaktstiden runs out of control markers prompting a stiffly
worded letter to GMT. Russians and Prussians exchange insults,
Warsaw & Konigbserg. Up against the wall Austria burns her
Resource to get British Subsidies and the last Vienna battle
comes down to Hill +1 v Davout
Turn 4 tallies are: Britain 4. Russia 2, Prussia & Austria
0, France -1
Prussia decides to switch back for the last turn. Nappy is killed
off outside Vienna and the coalition make inroads into France.
Nappy came back via Up From the Ranks and heads for Vienna for
the third time, getting there on the final play of the game in
"The Best -4 ever played". Well, maybe one of them
Final Scores: Britain 8, Russia 4, Prussia 2, Austria -1,
Bill Burtless has called in his shock
No wonder the Austrians are gray.
GM Williams and his heavily Mafia-dominated
One of the GM's unique prizes from
the Waterloo battlefield.
Play By Email 2014
A rather ambitious hybrid format consisting of three 3-player
games with each player playing a different side once followed
by the top six engaging in 2-player elimination rounds has ended
with Rob Mull triumphant over Lance Roberts with a French +10
VP win following a Turn 3 Peace die roll. The field of 34 also
provided laurels for Rich Shipley, Michael Day, Rachael Day and
Scott Fenn respectively finishing third through sixth.