Almost Everyone's First Wargame
It is the sixth year for Risk at WBC. 35 players fill
the field in the two preliminary Swiss heats. There is one four-player,
five-five player, and three six-player games.
Eight finalists returned for another shot at the title: Tom
Agostino, Alan Hayes, Rob Lightburn, Matt Mason, Bill O'Neal,
Rob Paul, Phil Rennert, and Ken Samuel. Only two entrants that
won in the first heat, made an attempt in the second for another
win. Although unsuccessful in doing so, both Matt Mason and Alan
Hayes improve their chances of advancing by obtaining a non-last
finish in the second heat. The remaining finalists advance due
to eliminating a minimum of three players in their preliminary
win. The six that make it to the final are: Tom Agostino, Alan
Hayes, Rob Lightburn, Matt Mason, David Rynkowski and Eric Wrobel.
Alan is at odds with Tom for Australia right from the setup
as both put a large number of forces there. Alan starts by attempting
to attack a force in Indonesia from New Guinea, rolling poorly
and losing several units. Rob, the defending champion, with several
forces in North America, starts his negotiations early with David
in South America, by suggesting a truce on the Central America,
Venezuela border. But David with some helpful coaxing from other
players refuses to cooperate. Rob settles for one position in
North America to obtain a card. Eric has established a base in
Europe and takes one territory there for a card.
Tom takes Eastern Australia with ease as it only has one army
David easily takes over the South American continent. Matt
takes over the African continent, but his borders are weakly
defended with his armies spread out in an attempt to cover Africa's
Alan takes one territory for a card.
Rob tries to take a North American territory with a few opposing
forces, but rolls poorly and loses most of his attack force.
Unable to break the offending force of five armies, Rob settles
for a territory held by only one army.
Eric successfully rampages through the rest of Europe, holding
the borders with a few armies. He also moves into Egypt to deprive
Matt of three extra forces for holding Africa. Tom negotiates
tactical movements with Alan and takes Australia. Tom and Rob
swap varying strategy and negotiating opinions. David now shows
Rob that he has no desire for a truce by moving his large force
from Venezuela into Central America. Matt retaliates for Eric's
incursion into Africa by taking one territory in Europe to deprive
Eric of the Eoropean continent bonus.
Alan, no longer in Australia, takes a territory in Asia. Rob,
with only a bare minimum of forces left in North America, decides
to place his reinforcements in the less contested Asian continent,
by placing them in Kamchatka. Eric takes one territory in North
Tom moves his large force into Siam. David takes over the
Eastern US and Matt takes back Africa, promising a treaty with
Eric in Europe once Eric takes it back.
Alan again takes just one territory in Asia for a card. Rob
continues to focus on his new Asian home and takes one territory
there. Eric takes back the European continent and keeps the proposed
treaty with Matt, his African neighbor. David continues to grow
in North America by taking another territory there and Matt takes
one territory in Asia for a Card, keeping his end of the bargain
Alan turns in the first set of cards and receives four extra
armies. He continues his Asian territory conquest to gain another
card and to avoid being in the path of his opponents.
Rob turns in the second set of cards for six armies, honkers
down in Japan, and chooses not to attack anyone. Eric takes one
territory for a card. Tom reinforces in Alaska, setting up a
base to attack from other than Siam, since Asia has become a
base of operations for two other players. David, undeterred by
Tom's move, reinforces Ontario and takes two more territories
in North America. Matt takes an Asian territory for a card.
Alan again takes one territory in Asia for a card. Rob takes
his basic three reinforcements in Japan and does not attack.
Eric turns in a set of cards for eight armies and takes one territory
in Asia. Tom turns his set in next for ten armies. Since Alan
now has three cards, Tom decides to attempt to remove him from
the game. Tom falls short on the final battle leaving Alan with
a handful of forces. Tom fails to realize that he can remove
Alan with his forces positioned in Siam. David turns in the next
set of cards for twelve Armies.
David reinforces Venezuela and North Africa and takes Iceland
to deprive Eric of his extra five armies for Europe. Matt receives
15 armies for the next set and unfortunately for Alan, is positioned
in Asia to finish him off. He receives Alan's three cards, giving
him six for the beginning of Round 7.
Rob continues to take three reinforcements in Japan without
attacking. His unusual strategy seems to be working well, since
he is not a target with only one card.
Eric not in a position to take back Iceland, takes one Asian
territory for his card.
Tom does likewise while his base in Siam grows stronger. David
reinforces Iceland and takes Scandinavia. Matt has two sets of
cards which yield 45 armies. Seeing Tom as both a threat and
a prize with four cards to be gained, he sets up his reinforcements
to take out Tom's power base in Siam and one side force in Alaska.
Matt removes Tom with little consequence, receives his four cards
and ends his turn with a rearmed hand of five cards.
Rob again takes three reinforcements in Japan without attacking
anyone. Eric turns a set into 30 armies. Rob talks him into attempting
to remove Matt, since he is the bigger threat with five cards.
Rob and Tom gladly assist Eric with some tactical movement advice.
The battle is fierce with Eric losing much in the initial battles
but he prevails in the end and relieves Matt of his five Cards.
Now with six cards, Eric must immediately turn in a set for 35
Rob convinces Eric to attack David who has four Cards. Eric
successfully attacks Greenland and stops there. Unfortunately
for David, his four cards do not contain a set. He takes one
territory and awaits what is to come.
To the surprise of no one, Rob continues his hedgehog defense
and slow buildup in Japan without an attack.
Eric's four cards yields another matched set for 40 armies.
He receives a total of 59 armies due to the bonuses for all the
continents he now holds. He rolls well and breaks through David's
major force in Alaska. David begins to roll very well and takes
out a large portion of Eric's forces, but he just does not have
enough to fend off Eric for long. Eric collects David's five
cards for a total of six. He can collect another 45 armies immediately.
Rob's pitiful force in Japan doesn't stand a chance. He concedes.
Thanks to all the Risk players for making this tournament
For a dedicated weekend of RISK play, check out the
official RISK championships at http://www.risktoc.org