Deep in the Deepest Jungles ...
53 gamers slashed their way through the jungles of Tikal over
three heats lasting 2.5 hours each. More players were experienced
at the game than in prior years. There were 19 games producing
16 individual winners. A large, authentic Tikal monument was
displayed by the GM at all heats for inspiration.
were ranked based upon the previously used equalizing formula
of final score divided by cumulative board score. Arthur Field,
John Kerr, Mario Lanza, Allyson Field, Mark Smith, Mike Hazel,
Barbara Flaxington, Davyd Field, Eric Freeman, Paul Murphy, Chris
Terrell, Ross Jones, Frank Singaglio, Stu Hendrickson, Jason
Tighe, and David Wenstrup qualified. There were six runner-ups
listed as alternates. Unfortunately, only 13 people turned out
for the semi-final due to the Saturday morning 9 AM start and
all of the many conflicting games. Next year, the advanced rounds
should be moved to an earlier day to avoid so many conflicts.
13 is the one really difficult number and the GM had trouble
finding an equitable solution to the distribution, since Tikal
is a four-player game and the three player version is vastly
different. A vote of all of the semi-finalists was taken and
their decision was implemented.
Four people who had never made it to a final advanced as a
result of some very bizarre semi-final games. Barbara Flaxington,
David Wenstrup and Eric Freeman each won their table. Due to
the odd number of people, which only permitted three tables to
play, it became necessary to pick a fourth finalist. The GM was
at a loss to determine who to advance to the finals. Four candidates
emerged for a single spot. Each of the traditional scoring methods
(high score, highest percentage, closest score, defending ranking
player) favored a different one of the four eligible players.
Your GM consulted with the powers that be, and agreed to drop
out as one of the candidates. Frank Singaglio, in an act of pure
selflessness, also offered to step down from consideration. As
a result, he was nominated for best sportsman. John Kerr and
Mario Lanza remained. The GM chose the player with the closest
second place score, which turned out to be John Kerr when the
identities were revealed. Mario retired gracefully.
Flaxington won the final with a score of 112, just edging
out Eric Freeman at 110. Newcomer David Wenstrup placed third
with 105 and John Kerr was fourth at 94. Flaxington took advantage
of the fight between Freeman and Westrup for possession of a
large temple and managed to squeeze by both of them. As so often
happens in Tikal, the player who avoids the pitched battle
wins. As a prize for the winner, the GM presented Barbara with
a hand-carved statue Field purchased at the real Tikal and brought
back for the 2003 WBC.