Flexibility Pays ...
Its all smiles ahead as Bill Burch
seems to be recruiting stewardesses for his flight.
Luke Koleszar, Mike Stanley, Jack
Stalica, and Michael Holmquist prepare for Fare Wars.
Strategy is an important component in a game like Air Baron.
Building your "empire" turn after turn, gathering cash
and market share along the way, requires a cetain amount of planning,
risk-taking, and calculation to succeed. But Lady Luck has a
role as well, for better or for worse, as our tournament Final
Starting with a banker's roll of "3", our five finalists
began the game with decent cash, ranging from $4 to $8. At the
end of the first round, the first Bid for Contract had been sold
for $4, and three players were out of money, having spent all
they had on their initial purchases. They bought West Palm Beach,
San Diego, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, and Seattle, all of which
have been the first steps to victory for many in the past.
Lady Luck took a stand early, keeping San Diego in the cup
and the Green player penniless for the next four rounds. The
second Bid went to Blue for $5. By the time Blue broke the $50
market share barrier, throwing the first calamity in the cup
and clearing the way for $10 loans, he had gobbled up the other
two spokes in Los Angeles on his way. By the end of Round 4,
Blue and Red were both at $50 market share, Yellow was at $30,
and Orange was concentrating on spokes in New York and Miami.
Finally, in Round 5, San Diego and Los Angeles were drawn,
yielding $8 profit for Green. On his turn, he took the first
$10 loan, immediately lost $7 of it to Crash, and plowed the
rest into Minneapolis-St. Paul for $8. As the last player in
the round, Blue went into Fare Wars, drew the Bid for the $3
Contract (which went to Orange for $10), and diced his way into
control of Phoenix and $90 market share before losing his takeover
attempt in San Diego on a tie.
In Round 6, Yellow and Orange both got to $60 market share,
and Blue left Fare Wars to buy Singapore and add one more "plus"
in a future attack on Green's beleaguered San Diego.
Yellow began Round 7 by acquiring Baltimore-Washington Int'l,
which took him to $90 market share. The round ended with Blue
taking the Fare Wars plunge again, winning San Diego, Omaha,
Reno, Anchorage, and Sacremento, stopping only when his money
got low and his market share had risen to $180.
In Round 8, Red bought Birmingham, which took him to $120
market share, Yellow took a $20 loan for Fare Wars but was stopped
on his first attempt, Orange bought the last spoke in New York
to push his market share to $120, and Blue came out of Fare Wars
and immediately pulled the Fuel Cost Hike chit. He sold Seattle
and San Diego to pay the gas bill, then took a $20 loan and bought
San Diego back.
Round 9 saw the purchase of the first Jumbo (Green, placed
on St. Louis), Orange taking a $20 loan and buying Montreal,
Red taking a $20 Loan, going into Fare Wars, and being denied
on his first roll, and Yellow getting to $110 market share still
in Fare Wars.
In Round 10, Orange added Paris to his New York-based empire,
Red, still in Fare Wars, picked up Austin, all of Dallas-Fort
Worth, then was stopped trying to take over Omaha. Yellow left
Fare Wars and bought Columbus outright, taking his market share
to $130. Green sold Kansas City to pay his loan interest.
Orange, who had gotten several nice $20 payouts from Montreal,
started Round 11 by paying off his loan and deploying a Jumbo
Jet on Minneapolis-St. Paul. Blue's purchase of New Orleans pushed
his market share to $160. Red left Fare Wars and picked up Salt
Blue picked up Portland to begin Round 12, taking his market
share to $200. Green paid off his loan and bought Milwaukee,
Red made no purchase but bought down his loan by $10, and Yellow
paid off his $20 loan and replaced it with a $40 one. He went
into Fare Wars with his new war chest, but was stopped on his
first attempt. Orange, still swimming in cash, bought a Jumbo
Blue led off Round 13 (Lucky Thirteen!) by pulling Recession,
which inspired Orange to go into Fare Wars. He proceeded to romp
through Yellow's hubs, taking over all spokes in Detroit, Washington,
and Miami, knocking Yellow's market share to zero and raising
his own to $280. With $55 cash in hand, Orange declared victory.
Each of the finalists had won two or more games to get to
the Final, so their strategies were proven and their skills sharp.
But Lady Luck made the difference, keeping Green's pockets empty,
Orange's pockets full, and Yellow's dice ineffective. Congratulations
to all of our Air Baron players! They play with energy,
passion, and good humor, rarely missing a chance to help or teach
a less-experienced player.
Young Mr. Shea seems to prefer jumbo
jets to cheerios. Better give them a heads up in the Juniors
Champion Chris Storzillo shows GM
Henry Richardson the secret of his success ... a generous draw