Deja Vu on the Open Waves
The size of the field this year mandated seven 7-player and
one 6-player game. Gordon Rodgers, the two-time defending champion
trying for the trifecta was done in by his reputation and eliminated
in the first round. The three lady admirals also failed to advance.
One game ended by mutual agreement. It became apparent that no-one
would catch Michael Mitchell. He captured four prizes without
ever playing a Boarding Party and got them back to Port in one
turn. The prizes all came from abortive attempts by other players
to capture one of his damaged ships. Even if the other players
could blast all eight ships in his fleet out of the water, he
still had four more in port and was 62 points ahead of the nearest
player. The eight winners advanced to the final round.
MS drew first blood by sinking the Yarmouth. MM gets
fire on his Constitution which is successfully boarded
and prized by TW. PK follows this example and steals a burning
Essex and declares it a prize. MM and TW teamed up and
fire on the Santissima Trinidada inflicting 4 damage.
PM grabs the dismasted Essex with a burning Macedonia
and gets them both to port his next turn. MS hits PM's port with
a Fireship and sank both the Essex and Macedonia
by rolling two "5"s. TW Breaks the Line (BTL) of MS's
Fleet, who vows revenge. RKil smells blood and sinks MS's Guerrier.
RK draws a Strike card and loses the Thunderer to TW's
Boarding Party. SC uses a Refuse Battle to get out of harms
way as the iron begins to fly. RM captures the Captain.
MM sinks the Agamemnon, while MS does likewise to the
Serapis. SC plays the British BTL on TW's fleet. PM draws
a fire, which is placed on the damaged Santissima Trinidada.
MM, with four remaining ships hits TW's prize for one hull. MS,
under the French BTL, dismasts the Revenge, boards at
1 and misses with a dr of '5'. RKil dismasts the Temeraire,
boards with the Java +1 and declares a prize. PM sinks
the Randolph while MM draws the Weathergauge. The deck
ends with MS having no ships in his line but with 35 points of
sunk vessels. RKil is the vocally declared leader having scored
Second deck action starts with both Weathergauges coming out
in the first five cards. It's stormy weather ahead. Each player
sets his fire protection and a Fire starts on the Africa.
RM adds the Mars to his fleet. Rather than let it burn,
MM sinks the Africa. The Admiralty sends for SC's Serapis.
TW is setting up the Santissima Trinidada with a 3 hit
to the hull. MS hits the Constellation for one and SC
sinks it. RM dismasts the San Justo and boards with Brittania
with a dr of 4+2. RKil plays the French BTL on RM and shouts
"Sharks in the water, eat gentleman eat." MM proceeds
to dimast the Fougueux and takes it as a prize. TW sinks
TM's Java. Not wanting to be left out RK sinks the Guerrier.
MM with MS help put a total of six hits in the hull of the Indefatigable.
RKil has been hammered and is down to one ship. He takes that
ship and attempts a Boarding Party with no grape versus the dismasted
Brittannia with a 3-grape. Even without the -3 he rolls
a 1 and loses his last ship. After a few more exchanges PM's
Europe takes the burning Bahama prize as the round
With new fleets and renewed hopes, third deck action begins.
MM hits the Serapis to his right and immediately gets
another turn as a fire is played and is placed on it. MM sinks
it with a 4-hit broadside. RKil attempts to board the Royal
Sovereign with the San Justo and fails. MS goes for
the same action with the Randolph in the vanguard and
succeeds. TW takes the Fougueux as a prize and RM responds
by placing the Spanish BTL on him. The very next player pulls
the Weathergauge and TW Refuses Battle to get the prize his very
next turn. At this point each player is trying to grab as many
ships as possible. Most ships go down while a few are captured
and turned against their former masters. MS quietly obtains two
prizes (San Justo and San Leandro) for 40 VP. In
his next two turns, TW sinks both the Venguer Du Peuple
and the Bienfaison. SC helps RK who sinks TW Droits
L'Homme. RKil steals the Brittania. TW and RK each
add an additional sunk ship to their VP level. RK tries a Fireship
versus the dismasted Ville de Paris and failing this,
the game ends. This game could have gone another round. However,
TW was too strong in the end to reduce his fleet and there was
no concerted effort on the part of the other players to knock
him down a peg. It was every man for himself. They'll be placing
his statue in Trafalgar Square.
Final Round Scores
||Thomas Wojke (TW)
||Michael Sincavage (MS)
||Michael Mitchell (MM)
||Robert Kircher (RL)
||Robert Kilroy (RKil)
||Randall MacInnis (RM)
||Pat Mirk (PM)
||Steve Cameron (SC)
( ) cumulative score.