war of the ring   

Updated Nov. 23, 2013

Middle Earth Pre-Con
2013 WBC Report  

 2014 Status: pending 2014 GM commitment

Kevin Wojtaszczyk, NY

2013 Champion

Event History
2006    Phil Rennert     21
2007     Kevin Wojtaszczyk     26
2008     Chris Trimmer     28
2009    Kevin Wojtaszczyk     23
2010     Chris Trimmer     24
2011    Ty Hansen     23
2012    Christopher Yaure     17
2013    Kevin Wojtaszczyk     25

 Laurels

Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Kevin Wojtaszczyk  NY    13    153
  2.  Chris Trimmer      TX    12    115
  3.  Ty Hansen          DC    12     60
  4.  Chris Yaure        PA    12     42
  5.  Andy Latto         MA    13     40
  6.  Phil Rennert       MD    06     30
  7.  Jacob Hebner       CO    12     24
  8.  Jason Levine       NY    08     24
  9.  George Young       VT    07     24
 10.  Alan Sudy          DC    11     18
 11.  Michael Sosa       FL    13     17
 12.  Nick Anner         NY    07     17
 13.  Scott Burns        uk    13     16
 14.  Lyman Moquin       DC    08     16
 15.  Jeff Pattison      MD    13     12
 16.  Lucas Rhodes       PA    11     12
 17.  Scott Marcotte     NY    10     12
 18.  David Pack         CO    06     12
 19.  Hans Kirketerp     dk    10      9
 20.  Mary Ellen Powers  VA    09      9
 21.  John Pack          CO    08      8
 22.  Ted Lange          GA    12      6
 23.  Todd Treadway      VA    11      6
 24.  David Pack         CO    10      6
 25.  Dick Jarvinen      OR    06      6
 26.  Graeme Tate        uk    13      4
 27.  Jim Doughan        PA    07      4

2013 Laurelists                                                  Repeating Laurelists:

Andy Latto, MA
2nd

Scott Burns, uk
3rd

Jeff Pattison, MD
4th

Michael Sosa, FL
5th

Graeme Tate, uk
6th

Past Winners

Phil Rennert, MD
2006

Kevin Wojtaszczyk, NY
2007, 2009, 2013

Chris Trimmer, TX
2008, 2010

Ty Hansen, DC
2011

Christopher Yaure, PA
2012

Chris Yaure vs AJ Sudy

UK's Graeme Tate vs Jason Levine

Middle Earth Revival ...

Using the new second edition rules and Saturday/Sunday scheduling was successful in returning the War of the Ring field back to the middle 20's, with the third highest count to date! In the Mulligan round on Saturday afternoon, 18 people appeared, and thankfully half of them had the new second edition game in hand. Nine games were played to impressively kick off the 2013 march to Mount Doom!

The new second edition rules proved fatal to the Shadow minions in a number of the Mulligan games. Graeme Tate's FP killed off Jacob Hebner's Saruman on Turn 3 with the Ents and followed that up with a Witch King killing Blade of Westernesse on Turn 6 en route to a ring dunk win. John Pack managed similar carnage, killing off Kevin Wojtaszczyk's Saruman on Turn 3 with the Ents and Witch King on Turn 7 by counterattacking Rohan forces. However the DEW line could not hold and the Corsairs assisted in squeaking out 10 VPs the turn before the FP would be pulling hunt tiles for the win in Mordor. Dan Hoffman killed off Joe Yaure's Witch King, but fell to the corruption of the ring. Aragorn was crowned in seven of the opening games, four of which turned out to be FP victories. The Dwarven ring bidding had four zero bids, three games gave the FP one ring and two gave the FP two rings, with four of those five Dwarven ring assisted FP games yielding wins for the FP. After the first salvo of games, the balanced second edition rules did prove true, with five SP victories (three SPMV, two Corruption) and four FP victories (four Ring dunks).

In Round 1 on Saturday night, eight more games were played with a couple mulligan winners joining in to get anothersecond edition game under their belts. The Shadow got the best of this round with six SP victories (three SPMV, three Corruption) to just two FP victories (1 Ring dunk, 1 FPMV). John Pack's FP almost got a win vs AJ Sudy, but the last hunt tile corrupted Frodo just as he was going to throw the Ring into Mount Doom. Jeff Pattison had an epic game vs Tom Vickery going 13 turns with Tom's FP recapturing Woodland realm to break the SP military machine. However a Morgul Wound in Turn 13 corrupted the FP when they were on their trek in Mordor. Andy Latto had a heck of a time attacking Woodland realm in his game vs Kevin Lewis. 22 failed dice in a row, but the FP had a late Turn 8 Gandalf the White which gave Andy time to regroup his forces and grab a SPMV. Chris Trimmer also had an epic 17-turn game vs Dan Hoffman. He managed to recapture Minas Tirth by two legions and held it through the end to break Dan's military push. In Mordor, the fellowship was saved from corruption by Mithril Coat & Sting to grab the Ring dunk victory. Alexander Lange managed the first FPMV in the tournament vs Martin Sample. Five games had 0 Dwarven rings while two had two given to the FP and one had four given to Steve Worrel's FP. However those four dwarven rings could not stop Lyman "Berserker Uruk-hai" Moquin from his SPMV.

Sunday morning's second round dawned on a perfect 16 qualifiers advancement and the Free People's got back on the winning track. Six of the eight games went to the FP, three each by FPMV and Ring Dunks. Only Matt Bugbee's and Kevin Wojtaszczyk's Shadow forces managed wins via military victories. Michael Sosa achieved the second FPMV of the tournament over Jacob Hebner while Graeme Tate's FP militarily ousted Jason Levine from the tournament. Scott Burns followed them with a Umbar+Orthanc FPMV over Joe Yaure. Lyman "Berserker Uruk-hai" Moquin's SP just fell short vs Jeff Pattison's FP, having his winning VPs sieging the Elves, but Jeff's FP dunked the ring while at 10 corruption just in the nick of time. Andy Latto killed off Chris Trimmer's Witch King on Turn 6 and used that momentum to dunk the Ring. Christopher Yaure's FP hit 11 corruption and survived a final hunt pull by AJ Sudy facing a 65%/35% hunt pool for the win. The FP ended up with three dwarven rings in three games (one a loss), one in two others and zero in the remaining three.

The next round kept the Free People's rolling with all four games going to the FP by Ring dunks!. The only Dwarven rings given were one to the Shadow by Kevin Wojtaszczyk's FP to Michael Sosa's Shadow. Kevin managed some early luck in the hunt, not being found till half way to Mordor and then avoiding any corruption issues. A quick walk through Mordor looked like the plan, but a Lidless Eye play to pump four eyes into the hunt box and a subsequent Eye tile pull caused a big corruption jump and slowed the FSP a turn. In the meantime Michael's shadow completed the capture of six VPs and were in siege on the remaining four, but a low eye roll made a safe passage on the final steps up Mount Doom. Graeme Tate's shadow had the best shot of breaking the Free People's dominance of the round, getting Andy Latto's FP to 10 corruption and then drawing the Shelob tile! However a 1 was rolled which saved the FSP from corruption death and gave Andy a chance to play some character healing cards and squeak out a win. Jeff Pattison managed to get Gandalf the White in Turn 1 vs Matt Bugbee and the extra actions proved critical to slow the shadow military and give Jeff a FP ring dunk on Turn 12. The longest game of the tournament was a monumental battle between Scott Burns FP vs defending champion Christopher Yaure's SP. Scott drew every card from each deck in the game while Christopher almost drew all the Shadow cards. The FP military were thick which really hampered the Shadow military and in the end gave the FP the additional turns needed to dunk the ring.

In the semifinal round no Dwarven rings were bid and the Shadow stopped the FP's winning ways. Andy Latto's SP used the Rage of the Dunlendings to muster forces to surprise attack the Shire for the final victory point and avoid challenging a large Aragorn force protecting Peligar. Kevin Wojtaszczyk's shadow was hampered by a number of high eye rolls, but they did prove damaging in the hunt. Most notably the critical reveal tile drawn on the FSP third move, which had Scott Burns choose to take the longer FSP route than risk additional hunt tile pulls stopping in Moria. Scott's FSP still managed to make it to Mordor and was in a position to draw tiles for dunking the ring on the next turn, but Kevin's shadow squeaked out 10 VPs just in time, with a lone S&E regular holding down Dol Amroth by a sieging Aragon force with no dice left to attack.

The final was shifted to Tuesday morning so we could both get in a heat of Hannibal. Ironically, the random pairings from Hannibal had us destined to play against each other that evening! With the under card Hannibal game completed and a bunch of Monday events under our belts, we got back to completing the history of the One Ring. In the bidding, Andy got two Dwarven rings to play the FP. The first set of action dice rolled for the Shadow were a disaster. Kevin allocated one eye and then rolled four more along with one army and one character die. No musters, no events, along with five eyes... Sure enough, with all those Eyes Andy moved safely once to force one allocated eye next turn and started mustering the elves to war. Turn 2 had two Wills and a C for the FP while the SP got two musters and a couple more eyes. Andy moved the FSP twice, being found on the third move and choosing to kill off Gandalf to the 1r and take the one longer northern route to avoid additional hunt tiles from sitting in Moria. He had his eye on a Turn 2 Gandalf the White, but with only the shadow's first two musters of the game, Kevin got Isengard to War and then waiting for his last die to muster in Saruman to deny Andy's Turn 2 Gandalf the White. Turn 3 had Andy use up his Dwarven rings which turned an M->P and a P->C hoping for a Will of the West to get Gandalf the White. The SP haven't rolled an event yet and used a Character die to play Palantir of Orthanc to give the FP the choice of killing that card or promoting Gandalf with the next Will they roll. The Elves got pushed to one space from war as Andy was denying an easy Witch King and Celeborn's Galadhrim got another elite into Lorien. By Turn 4 Mordor forces were outside the forests of the Woodland and Lorien realms. Andy pushed the Elves to war at that point and Kevin sieged Woodland Realm while Lorien built another elite. Power of Tom Bombadil also appeared. The WK was mustered and captured Woodland realm with minimal resistance and Gandalf the White was promoted because Will was rolled. Kevin started hounding the FP last known position with Nazgul to get hunt re-rolls. The Palantir cycled a few cards but the FP managed to get three blue special tiles to no red special tiles played for their future trek in Mordor. Turn 5 had the North and Dwarves start heading down to war and Isengard was mustering many troops with the Voice. Turn 6 got Worn with Sorrow and Toil played while Strider left for Minas Tirth. Misty Mountains boasted Moria troops joined with Rage of Dunlendings and Voice forces to launch an assault on Rivendell while the S&E got to war. With the Elven muster bag down to just one elite left, Andy played A Power too Great in hopes of preventing the attack but Kevin burned an army and character card with an action die to remove the card and Rivendell fell, though damaged the SP forces. Meanwhile the FSP kept moving toward Mordor, taking a stop in Dale to kill WWST. Turn 7 gave the SP an opportunity with the FP using up their Wills/Character dice early leaving just army/muster dice to take a stab at Rohan. Andy had consolidated his force from Edoras to Helms Deep and scouted out of the Fords of Isen. Kevin chose to siege, but not attack Helms Deep, and then capture Edoras and all the Rohan muster spots before grouping his forces back in the Helms Deep siege. Four regulars, the WK and 4 Nazgul then left Rivendell and headed West. Andy got the Dwarves to war and started to look at protecting the Grey Havens and the Shire, along with locking down Erebor. Turn 8 was a critical turning point for the Shadow. The FSP were revealed only two away from Mordor and rolled W,W,P, M,C,C. They hid with the first C, but then a Day without Dawn killed the two Wills. This was followed up with Shadows Gather which triple moved the force outside of Lorien to team up with the 4/0/5 heading toward the Grey Havens, making it an 8/2/5. The lack of dice caused the Grey Havens to fall. The FSP also did not have the dice to get to Mordor after the first move they tried revealed them. The ninth turn the SP rolled four eyes and no character dice, but had Shadows Lengthen to jump the remaining Orthanc forces to Helms Deep to make a 5/5/5 stack and the S&E moved outside of Peligar. However the vacated Orthanc was too tempting for the Ents to avoid, so Saruman was killed. Turn 10 had the FSP declared in Mordor and the SP with seven VPs. The FP rolled four C/W's,P and M, so with an elven ring they could try and run and dunk in one turn. Meanwhile the SP did not roll a C which stranded all the Nazgul leadership in the Grey Havens, far from the looming battles in Helms Deep, not with 0 leadership, and either Peligar, Shire and/or Dale. Andy's first tile draw was a reveal leaving no chance at running the five steps, so he turned to extending the game one more turn and getting half way up the mountain. The SP only had four possible army dice, with using the Mouth to change a muster to an army. To start, Kevin launched the siege in Helms Deep, sans any leadership. Luckily, We Come to Kill got a few extra hits and knocked down the Helms Deep forces. Kevin chose to stop the battle and in the end used three action dice and an elite continuation on the fourth try to finally break behind the walls of Helms Deep to take his ninth VP. The Dwarves in Erebor moved to defend Dale and then counterattacked Woodland. They took heavy losses but knocked down the SP DEW forces so they could not take Dale. Peligar however could not hold to a final die assault to close out the remaining tenth VP just before the FP could have another turn to run the last three steps of Mount Doom giving Kevin the SPMV.

The final tally showed the FP had won 16 games (4 FPMV, 12 Ring Dunks) to the SP's 16 games (11 SPMV, 5 Corruption). The games tended toward the 3-4 hour range with only a few epic battles pushing into the realm of 4-5 hours. No 5+ hr adjunctions were needed. So both the game balance and length seem to be improved with the new second edition rules. With the increase in participaion ttoo, I'm planning on keeping the same format. A thank you goes out to everyone who played in this year's tournamenand a special thanks to those who brought along a copy of the game. With our increasing numbers and 2-player format, we are always in need of people to bring copies of the game and it is much appreciated. Congrats to everyone on a great tournament and I hope to see everyone back for 2014's battle for Middle Earth! For those interested, make sure you check out BoardGameGeek around February/March of 2014 to sign up for the International War of the Ring Online tournament!

Lucas Rhodes vs Matt Bugbee

Finalist Andy Latto cannot deny Kevin Wojtaszczyk his third title.
 GM     Kevin Wojtaszczyk (6th Year)  135 Siebert Rd, Lancaster, NY 14086 
    kwojtasz@roadrunner.com   NA

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