Viva la revolution ...
Thirteen unlucky "Militzionares" surrounded two
tables for the fourth running of the Junta Tournament.
Each table had three hours to complete as many turns as possible;
once time was called, play would complete at the end of that
round. The top seven players would advance to a Sunday final.
Play sped along at a good clip, especially with the fear of the
implementation of the fast coup rules. We did use them twice
at Table 1, and though the results were as what the players thought
they should be, it seemed there was too much of a probability
that it could have gone the other way. Perhaps the table should
be reviewed to reduce the chance that a smaller force can defeat
The GM played in a seven-player game at Table 1. At the beginning
of it, Jim Garvey was able to play influence cards that gave
him a whopping 18 votes in the Chamber of Deputies. Even if the
rest of us wanted to oppose him, he would still become El Presidiente.
After Jim's second term in office, Steve Munchak grew weary of
being left out of the annual budget and launched a coup against
the establishment. Others, more out of the excitement to see
how the coup phase worked, then out of a real Casius Belli against
the president, joined in the coup. Shells flew against the presidential
palace and the brigades left their bivouacs. It appeared that
the regime never had a chance until Phil Watkins's, commander
of the 2nd Brigade, suggested they might remain loyal, for the
right price. But negotiations stalled and Phil soon joined the
rebels assuring their success. The succeeding Junta elected Steve
as the new president.
Turn three found Ted Simmons vowing, "Never again will
we have a two-termer" then launching a coup from his headquarters
against Steve's soon to be short-lived regime. Once again the
outcome was certain, and the First Rebel became the next president.
Ted's administration was a period of relative peace in the Republic,
as turn four saw no violence of any kind; this all changed in
turn five, a year with no less than four Presidents! It began
with Ted succumbing to a vote of No Confidence when the GM's
"requirement" of two pesos from the Annual Budget was
left un-honored. Phil was elected as an interim president but
was then immediately assassinated. Bill Lenoir then assumed the
reigns but this presidential neophyte was unable to stave off
a coup and was replaced by a Junta led by Steve, his second successful
Due to time constraints, everyone realized that turn 6 would
be our last. This resulted in a frantic search around the table
for those who still had cash in hand. The outcome was no less
than four assassination attempts, with Jim, Phil and Ron Wuerth
all falling victim. Of course the money flowed down hill, and
in a final coup, the GM and Ted agreed to split the balance of
money from the final victim in a backroom deal. The resulting
finish was: Jim 1st (with 24 Pesos (p)), Ted 2nd(18p), Ron 3rd(15p),
Bill 4th(14p), Trevor (GM) 5th(12p), Steve 6th(8p), and Phil
7th(5p). Several players at this table came up to me later and
said this table played the most enjoyable game of their WBC stay!
The second table during the preliminary round was able to
complete nine turns before time expired and resulted in a much
closer game with the following finishes: Zachary Fietsch 1st(with
28 Pesos (p)), David Weinstein 2nd(25p), Scott Harris 3rd, (24p)
John Elliott 4th(21p), Bruce Bernard 5th(13p), and Steve Quade
6th (5p). Now fewer than four players were able to breach 20
Pesos in this game.
The Junta final was held Sunday and consisted of the
top seven seeded players who showed up for the 9:00am time slot
(with the GM bowing out). The final round began violently and
chaotically, as the initial president's budget resulted in a
coup, an interim presidency from Junta vote, then finally Ted
Simmons becoming the third president on only the second turn
by a crafty campaign speech and unanimous vote of the other players.
Real-life banana republic dictators could have taken a lesson
from Ted, as he managed to hold the reigns of power all the way
through turn 7, which was to be the last due to time limits.
In a final bid for power, former champ David Weinstein flipped
the First Rebel and led a coup that seemed destined to overthrow
the president, but he reckoned not with an opportunistic Air
Force commander, and the people of Los Republic des Bananas themselves,
as peasants, farmers, laborers, and a great number of other rabble
all unexpectedly rallied to the presidents flag, helping him
put down the coup and maintain office.
At the final tally, both David and his left-hand man Phil Watkins
discovered they had the same amount of cash in the bank, the
only means for determining victory in the game. It was determined
however that David should be considered the champ, having both
more money in hand and political influence, as well as having
stayed president for a duration far longer than any other player
could ever remember seeing before. Final results were: Ted 1st
(with 14 Pesos (p)), Phil 2nd (14p), Bill Lenoir 3rd (12p), Bruce
Bernard 4th (11p), David 5th (9p), Zachary Fietsch 6th (7p),
Ron Wuerth 7th (1p). Based on the closeness of the Peso count,
it would appear that Ted's secret to success was his ability
to evenly distribute the dough in order to stave off any violent
reactions against his regime, and still hold on to just the fraction
of money he needed for victory. Bravo!
Alas, the GM cannot guarantee another cross country trip in
2003 so Junta will return to the Orphan List next year. Perhaps
another sombrero-waver can return the attendance to Century levels.