here I stand  

Updated 11/23/2010

2010 WBC Report  

 2011 Status: pending 2011 GM commitment

AJ Sudy, VA

2010 Champion

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Event History
2006    John Wetherell     56
2007    Bryan Collars     48
2008    Jeff Burdett     48
2009    Jeff Burdett     62
2010    AJ Sudy     52

PBeM History
2008    Dan Gallagher     54
 Laurels

Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Jeff Burdett       NY    10    125
  2.  Alan Sudy          VA    10     91
  3.  Dave Cross         VA    10     72
  4.  Bryan Collars      SC    07     62
  5.  Dan Gallagher      MD    08     60
  6.  John Wetherell     PA    06     60
  7.  Chris Striker      PA    09     39
  8.  Ken Richards       SC    07     38
  9.  Rob Seulowitz      NY    08     36
 10.  Allan Hill         MD    06     36
 11.  Dennis Mishler     CT    07     30
 12.  Kirk Harris        NJ    09     24
 13.  Michael Rogazinski NY    08     24
 14.  Steve Caler        OH    08     24
 15.  Charles Hickok     PA    06     24
 16.  Brad Merrill       ME    10     20
 17.  Rick Cambron       PA    08     18
 18.  Michael Brophy     NC    08     18
 19.  Paul McCarthy      NY    10     15
 20.  Nat Pendleton      PA    09     12
 21.  Justin Rice        VA    08     12
 22.  George Young       VT    08     12
 23.  Nick Benedict      CA    10     10
 24.  Dan Hoffman        NC    07     10
 25.  Tim Rogers         SC    09      6
 26.  Jeremiah Peterson  IL    08      6

2010 Laurelists                                               Repeating Laurelists 

Dave Cross, VA
2nd

Brad Merrill, ME
3rd

Paul McCarthy, NY
4th

Nick Benedict, NY
5th

Jeff Burdett, NY
6th

Past Champions

John Wetherell, PA
2006

Bryan Collars, SC
2007

Jeff Burdett, NY
2008-09

AJ Sudy, VA
2010

When you come down to it, it's all in the cards.

The heats moved to Lampeter this year for more space.

Still Standing Room Only ...

In its fifth year, Here I Stand continued to post healthy attendance numbers with 52 CDW players vying throughout the week to battle on the Renaissance battlefield or in theological debates. The Tuesday night heat was more popular this year. With 39 entrants that evening, we again had seven games in a heat. We continued to use the play balance adjustments to the tournament scenario first introduced in 2008. Balance was not a problem with all six powers enjoying victories this evening. Winners included Paul McCarthy (Ottoman), Brian Mountford (Ottoman), Nick Benedict (Hapsburgs), Dave Cross (England/Protestant), Manuel Bravo (France), Jeff Burdett (Papacy), and Brad Merrill (Papacy).

The Protestants were able to reassert their edge in the Preliminaries in the second heat. Luther and his followers achieved four of the six wins that evening. Protestant victories were won by Dennis Mishler, Jeremiah Peterson, Dirk Knemeyer, and Robert Davidson. The other winners were Brad Merrill (posting his second straight win as England/Protestant in a 3-player game) and Ted Drozd (France). All Preliminary games went at least two turns, unlike previous years where we were averaging one single-turn "quick knockout" game per night. To reduce the chance of such an early victory, we're planning on holding Copernicus out of the deck until Turn 5 next year to help ensure all players get to enjoy several hours of fun.

The Preliminary winners joined the at-large players with the highest total VP accumulation for the semis. 24 players qualified, but with only 20 appearing for more action, the top two (Brad Merrill and Paul McCarthy) took the GM's offer of a bye into the Final to skip this round (even though they would consequently get last pick of powers in the Final). So three semi-final games were begun; all the winners and one wildcard runner-up would join Paul and Brad in the Final. In the first game, Dave Cross ran his three-year HIS tournament record to an impressive 7-4, achieving the first one-turn win of the week with the Papacy. Nat Pendleton also had a chance to win that same turn, but his cold dice for Hapsburg voyagers prevented him from reaching back-to-back Finals. The next game to finish was also a Papal victory (by Jeff Burdett in two turns). He prevailed over this year's "Group of Death:" a table including the defending champ (Burdett), former champion Bryan Collars, former finalist Dan Hoffman, designer's son Matthew Beach, and four- and three-time semi-finalists Jeff Pattison and Ted Drozd. The last game went the full three turns, leaving the cast of the Final in doubt until the last die was cast. Nick Benedict prevailed with the week's first English win in a 6-player game, narrowly besting AJ Sudy. However AJ snuck into the Final as our wildcard, thanks to amazing siege dice that required him to score first two hits and then three hits on his final two siege attempts. As was the case last year, the last-minute determination of a wildcard finalist would prove to be of critical importance.

Nick Benedict must have great trust in the balance between powers in Here I Stand; he rolled a die to determine which power he would play with his first choice of powers (it came up England). Choosing second, Dave Cross opted for the Ottomans for the third straight year; hoping to improve on his runnerup performance last year. Our full lineup (in order of selection) was:

1: Nick Benedict (England)
2: Dave Cross (Ottomans)
3: Jeff Burdett (Papacy)
4: AJ Sudy (Protestant)
5: Brad Merrill (France)
6: Paul McCarthy (Hapsburgs)

The three-turn Final yielded the following highlights:

* England is reluctant to give Jeff, the 2009 champ (who had played the Papacy for the win that year) significant compensation for a divorce; instead he trusts to Henry's luck alone. But the dice desert him (as he rolls a 1 and gets no male heir on Turn 4). He tries a military path for the rest of the game, but England quickly falls out of the running.

* Hapsburgs declare war on Venice to drive it into the Papal camp, allowing Jeff to finish the first two turns at 19 VP, within striking distance of a win.

* The Ottomans ally early with the French and drive on Vienna. By the end of the game the Ottomans own all of Austria and even march across Germany to take Metz on the last turn!

* VP totals entering the last turn are exceptionally close: Ott: 18, Hap: 19, Eng: 12, Fra: 17, Pap: 19, Pro: 19. Five of the six powers will make a bid for victory on the last turn.

* Brad played Michael Servetus for a VP on Turn 6, pushing his total to 21. Little did he know the random card discarded from the Protestant hand would be Copernicus! But AJ can just retrieve it from the discard pile with his Home card, right? Well not when Luther dies with the Calvin Mandatory Event before his next move. Ouch ... this sequence has cost AJ two VP!

* To further add to AJ's difficulties, Dave Cross plays Mary I as the event to bring her to the English throne for the first time ever in a Final. Dave has tried to time this play carefully to give the Papacy enough time to catch up, but not enough time to surpass his Ottoman VP total.

* However despite these significant obstacles, AJ presses forward with the Reformation. His extremely strong play prevails and as the curtain comes down, he wins on the tiebreaker over Dave's Ottomans (one more VP on the previous turn).

VP at end of turn: Ott: 24, Hap: 18, Eng: 16, Fra: 21, Pap: 14, Pro: 24.

So AJ Sudy wins his first Here I Stand championship in his third Final appearance thanks to making the Final with two incredible siege die rolls during his last move of the semi-finals!

Stats

Question: Which power did people most want to play?

If a power is selected first in a game, I am assigning it a score of "1". The power picked last gets a "6". Based on this scoring, for the whole tournament, the results were as follows (with the 2009 and 2008 numbers in parentheses):

Ottoman 2.60 (2.55, 2.00)
Hapsburgs 3.93 (3.40, 3.24)
England 3.40 (3.50, 3.53)
France 3.87 (3.90, 4.29)
Papacy 3.67 (4.58, 4.76)
Protestant 3.53 (2.63, 2.65)

So the Ottomans were once again the most sought after power (unchanged throughout five years of tournament play). Oddly the English, with the fewest wins over the years, are also popular. But the big mover was surely the Papacy! They leaped from the least preferred power up to fourth. Perhaps Jeff Burdett's Papal championship last year has turned some heads. The trend here is all good; the popularity of the powers continues to even out.

Question: Did choosing early lead to victory?

For the entire tournament, the winning player chose between second and third on average (the numerical average was 2.6 this year, a drop from the 3.2 of 2009). So getting to play your power of choice was helpful this year, more so than for the past few years.

Question: Did earning a higher seed and choosing early in the elimination rounds help?

Yes! The winning power in the five elimination games had an average choice number of 2.3, lower than the 2.6 listed above. However this year's Final was won by AJ Sudy who chose the Protestant fourth. That matches the average for our five Finals which is slightly over 4; could it possibly be a disadvantage to choose your power early???

Question: Did the player choosing last ever win?

No, not this year.

The breakdown of wins by selection position over the 15 six-player games were as follows (with 2009 number in parentheses):

First choice: 3 (5)
Second choice: 5 (1)
Third choice: 3 (8)
Fourth choice: 3 (2)
Fifth choice: 1 (2)
Sixth choice: 0 (2)

Much better luck for those picking second this year!

Not Laurels but...

This year's Here I Stand event represented the game's fifth appearance at WBC. This longevity has attracted the notice of my contacts at the Elias Sports Bureau, who feel it is time to come up with a special statistic to evaluate the best Here I Stand player of all time.

So with the aid of those good folks at Elias, we have come up with The Here Everyone Stands Evaluation System, or THESES for short.

How do you earn theses? Well a victory in a semi-final game at WBC is worth 10 Theses (with smaller awards of 6/4/3/2/1 for 2nd through 6th place). Appearances in the Final are worth five times as much, so 50 Theses for being the HIS champ (and 30/20/15/10/5 for the other finalists).

Now I'm sure you are all wondering, does anyone have 95 Theses? Luckily I have the answer for you. For here is the list of all players who have "posted" six or more Theses in the five years of the WBC HIS event. Congrats to Jeff Burdett (one of four players to appear in three Finals), but who has an even larger target now been placed on your back???

 Player

Final Appearances

Theses

Semi Appearances 

Semi Theses 

 Total Theses 
 Jeff Burdett 3 105 3 26 131
AJ Sudy 3 85 4 23 108
Dave Cross 3 70 4 33 103
Bryan Collars 2 60 5 27 87
John Wetherell 1 50 2 8 58
Ken Richards 2 35 4 23 58
Chris Striker 3 35 4 17 52
Dennis Mishler 1 30 3 15 45
Allen Hill 1 30 2 14 44
Charles Hickok 1 20 2 12 32
Kirk Harris 1 20 2 11 31
Nat Pendleton 1 10 3 19 29
Mike Rogazinski 1 20 1 6 26
Rick Cambron 1 15 1 10 25
Dan Hoffman 1 10 4 14 24
Brad Merrill 1 20 3 3 23
Nick Benedict 1 10 1 10 20
Justin Rice 1 5 3 13 18
Paul McCarthy 1 15 2 2 17
Tim Rogers 1 5 2 12 17
Rick Byrens 0 0 2 14 14
Peter Card 0 0 3 11 11
Jeff Pattison 0 0 4 11 11
Mark Mahaffey 0 0 2 9 9
Brian Mountford 0 0 3 8 8
Matthew Beach 0 0 4 8 8
Nathan Hill 0 0 2 7 7
Kaarin Engelmann 0 0 2 7 7
Barry Setser 0 0 2 7 7
Manuel Bravo 0 0 2 6 6
Ted Drozd 0 0 3 6 6
John Emery 0 0 1 6 6
Mitch Lake 0 0 1 6 6
Jim Stanard 0 0 1 6 6
Phil Rodrigues 0 0 2 6 6

Nick Benedict and Brad Merrill apparentlly think of the Reformation as a Happy Time.

The finalists glow in the aftermath of winning wood. For two of them it was the first time to the Final.
 GM      Ed Beach (5th Year)  NA 
    ebeach@comcast.net   NA

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