The Closing Guns?
Todd Treadway and Geoff Allbutt try
their hand at the Great War.
My hero Barrington Beavis and Steve
Nick Benedict and Chris Byrd
Kevin Sudy and Johnny Hasay
The annual PoG-a-thon kicked off mid-day Sunday with 27 players,
down eight from last year's heretofore record low and a 46% decline
from 2009 in what was otherwise a banner year for WBC attendance.
We are not sure what the exact cause of this decline is but the
most likely reason appears to be the increased number of Pre-Cons
compared to prior years. It is also possible that POG is just
beginning to show its age in its 13th year at WBC.
Next year, we plan to start earlier, most likely Sunday morning
(allowing us to finish the preliminary rounds by mid-day Monday)
and possibly tweak the historical scenario (giving us all a new
challenge) we have been playing the last few years: check the
PoG consimworld discussion board during the year to contribute
ideas and playtesting experience. A few of the possible (stress
POSSIBLE) tweaks include using the optional additional card deck
(that came with the players guide) and moving a few victory cities
(one from Russia to France and shifting one in Turkey to Jerusalem).
Regardless of these evolutionary teething problems, the PoG tribe
had a great time as always.
As usual, all PoGers were guaranteed three preliminary games.
One of the highlights was defending champ Stefan Mecay being
upset by new semi-finalist, Kevin Sudy. Another was the number
of new entrants in the field. A side effect of the reduced field
was the elimination of the infamous PoG roll-off to complete
the Elite Eight, since we had just the required number of 2-1
records. The two semi-final games matched Peter Gurneau vs giant
killer Sudy and a pair of two-time champs, Pete Reese and David
Peter won the bid roll in the Final and bid 0 for the AP against
David's AP bid of 1. The early game witnessed an aggressive series
of AP attacks in the West and an early Italian entry, putting
Peter's CP on the defensive and leading to a modified Defend-the-Rhine
strategy. The early mid game (Turns 5-10) witnessed an aggressive
Allied Balkans strategy (combo of Italians, Greeks, Romanians,
French, Brits and Serbs) that eventually required a couple of
reinforced German armies to subdue. On Turn 11, disaster struck
the Allied cause.
The AP, using Allenby had started a spring offensive out of
Egypt. As summer arrived on Turn 10, the Allied player left Allenby
screened by only a corps and ordered AP HQ to address the issue
on the sixth impulse. HQ got distracted, the season changed to
fall and the CP took a 50/50 shot at sending Allenby to the showers.
The CP succeeded and eventually took the three VPs in Egypt.
The AP then responded with a series of hammer blows on the western
front, but, the CP line held.
On Turn 16, the great German offensive began in the east.
Despite a series of Russian entrenchments, the Tsar took command
on Turn 17 and fell on Turn 18, with the revolution and the treaty
following soon after that. The three Egyptian VPs turned out
to be the victory margin difference, resulting in another POG
champion as Peter won his first WBC shield.
Peter Gurneau upsets two-time champ
Michael Ussery and Nels Thompson
Paths of Glory
2011 PBeM Tournament Results
The fifth BPA POG PBeM tournament has ended with with Stefan
Mecay's successful defense of his title as he trimphed for the
third time to pair with his three WBC titles. 64 players composed
the field with 147 games played over five rounds. Nick Anner
was the last man standing between Stefan and his title defense.
In the beginning, Nick was aggressive in the west, threatening
an early breakthrough of the Rhein defense, but the timely play
of entrench in Frankfurt was able to stabilize things. Nick had
used Blockade as ops to allow the aggressive pursuit, but was
able to redraw it on T2 and finished with a surprise blockade,
so both sides got to LW on T3.
On T3-4, the CP got all needed WS cards and was able to get
to TW on the start of T5. Italy was buried and didn't arrive
until T6. The MEF appeared next to Gallipoli and was blocked
with a few corps and Yudenitch arrived to put max pressure on
the Turks. The CP pushed into Belgrade hammering on the Serbs
but not quite finishing them off. Stefan was able to set-up for
a push into Egypt with an early TK army, but was delayed by summer
on T6. The allies got to TW on the start of T7. The CP was able
to kill IT 3rd in Maggiore, but the last card play for the allies
on T6 was IT 5th.
T7 saw Nick with a poor hand, but he was able to race IT 5th
down to help the Serbs, and he had broken through Muncaks to
sneak one RUS army into Belgrade to bolster the Balkans. T7-T9
or so saw great trench rolling with Nick 3 for 3 with the Russians,
including a key trench on the first try in Kovno to save an early
GER breakthrough in the north, plus a couple of Italian trenches
in Sofia and Belgrade. Only GER 11th (who was able to get between
Salonika and Constantinople before Sofia fell to a combined IT/Serb
push) plus 4-5 BU/GER corps were cut off but holding strong in
the east part of Bulgaria with 3-4 BU c's in the NE itself helping
to stabilize things there. Several AH armies, a couple of GER
armies, and several German corps were sent down to try to break
the stalemate. Several big rolls for the CP helped evaporate
the Italians plus the rogue RUS army and several BR/FR/IT corps,
and slowly push down towards Salonika. 2 RUS armies appeared
on the Romanian border and the FR ORT was looming. However, the
consistently good dice for the CP helped dissolve the threat
and convinced the AP to save Romania and FR ORT for use as RP's.
T12-14 saw a cleanup of the Balkans and a rebuilding of Italians/setting
up of both sides for the impending Russian attack. A few light
probes into the Grodno area were held in check by a transfer
of a few Russian armies from the south, including the pair that
had been patiently waiting on the Romanian border. Then T15-16
saw the big push. Again consistently good dice for the CP let
them do lots of damage and eventually burst into Grodno at the
end of T16. Romania entered on T15 or 16 and was quickly overrun
by remnants from the Balkan push, but burned off precious CP
ops. On T17 the Tsar took command and Zimmerman Telegram was
launched. Lots of French hammered away in Italy and a general
mass attrition was done by the AP in the west, forcing CP responses
in SR's/ops when they really wanted to push on Russia. Both sides'
dead piles grew a lot. Allenby tried a push in Beersheba on 6a+1
to 6a, but was denied on a 2-6 roll. (He would later redeem himself
with a 6-1 combo later on T19, but being flipped was unable to
push much in Turkey). Also Yudenitch tried one shot when Kemal
was pulled and an attack on 4a-5c was just barely flipped on
a 3-3 roll.
On T18, the Tsar fell and On T19 Bolshevik Revolution and
Treat of B-L came off with 6 RUS VP's. CP had also gotten off
High Seas Flt., Lloyd George (drawn on the only time in the last
8-9 turns there was a BR MO), and captured Basra for a 12 VP
total. AP tried to counter with an Italian push; good die rolls
let them get to Salonika but couldn't push much farther, while
the CP SR'd GER armies from the east and lots of corps from the
NE to stabilize all lines. Germans tried a late push in the west,
mostly denied by some great AP rolls, but too late to help and
Nick surrendered when it became impossible to get the last two
VP's needed for the win.
Other laurelists were Mauro Faina, David Dockter, Tom Drueding
and Nick Frydas in that order.