wellington  

Updated 11/17/2011

2011 WBC Report  

   2012 Status: pending 2012 GM commitment

Rejean Tremblay, on

2011 Champion

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Event History
2006   David Gantt     28
2007    Ed Rothenheber     27
2008    Henry Russell     20
2009    Peter Reese     22
2010    Peter Reese     26
2011    Rejean Tremblay     26
 Laurels

Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Peter Reese        VA    11    120
  2.  Ed Rothenheber     MD    09     66
  3.  Henry Russell      PA    10     48
  4.  Rejean Tremblay    on    11     30
  5.  David Gantt        SC    06     30
  6.  Melvin Casselberry PA    11     27
  7.  Tracey Casselberry VT    11     18
  8.  Al Hurda           on    10     12
  9.  Jesse Boomer       KS    11     21
 10.  Rob Olsson         MD    10     12
 11.  Francis Czawlytko  MD    09     12
 12.  Rob Mull           CO    07     12
 13.  Robert Vollman     ab    06     12
 14.  Dorian Key         DC    09      9
 15.  Nick Frydas        uk    08      9
 16.  Robert March       CA    06      9
 17.  Ahmet Ilpars       tu    08      6
 18.  Phil Barcafer      PA    07      6
 19.  Frank Morehouse    PA    11      3
 20.  Phil Pendleton     PA    09      3
 21.  Tom Vickery        NJ    06      3

2011 Laurelists                                          Repeating Laurelists:

Tracey Casselberry, VT
2nd

Peter Reese, VA
3rd

Jesse Boomer, KS
4th

Melvin Casselbury, PA
5th

Frank Morehouse, PA
6th

Past Winners

David Gantt, SC
2006

Ed Rothenheber, MD
2007

Henry Russell, PA
2008

Peter Reese, VA
2009-2010

Rejean Tremblay, on
2011

 Al Hurda and Jesse Boomer consider the board in the semi-finals.

 Dave Anderson, Mike Rogonizski, Matt Burkins, and Scott Smith

Battles for the Iberian Peninsula

The forces of Britain, Spain, and France clashed on eight tables in the mulligan and first round of the tournament, a combination that brought 13 new players to the table to face the veterans of past campaigns. The tournament was rich with events of note, including the beginning of a family dynasty in Wellington and even a participant from Wellington, New Zealand. The cards and dice continued to dismay and delight the players in each game.

Beginner's Tournament

We had two demos, and these encouraged five players to participate in a Beginner's bracket. Upon seeing that only four players could play the game, Mike Metcalf volunteered to learn among the experienced players instead. The remaining four met to play and learn the game, competing for best new player. Scott Smith led the southern French army to a single point victory to be named best new player. The winner of the tournament was presented with a shrink-wrapped copy of Wellington to take home. In Scott's case, he already owned the game and graciously presented the game to his ally Michael Rogozinski, who had ably supported this victory playing the northern French army. Meanwhile, at the tables around the beginner's bracket, the initial engagements began to determine who would man the semi-final matches on Wednesday.

Mulligan Round: Paved Road to the Semis

At the remaining four tables, 16 players fought the good fight to liberate or subjugate Spain. For some, the march was less lengthy than others. Michael Casselberry marched to an early victory with his Armee du Nord. Smaller French forces were able to beat the British up in 1812, driving Wellington's forces almost into the sea through a near conquest of Portugal. The Peace roll came up a 6, so the luck of the French was rewarded with a swift victory.

At the next table, France dominated as well, capturing Portugal in Turn 1. Al Hurda's Armee du Sud captured the most keys and duchies to edge out Rejean Trembley by a lone victory point. For Spain, the dice were not co-operating as the defenders rolled 35 dice but were rewarded with only one 6.

Next door, Melvin Casselberry's Armee du Nord crushed the British, so that at the start of 1813 there were no British troops other than Wellington on the board. Ably supported by Frank Morehouse, the French victory was strong.

At the fourth table, returning champion Pete Reese and Tracey Casselberry were able to deliver the first Allied victory of the tournament. Pete's British led the march into France but it was Tracey's Spanish who held the ground and, in the end, won the day for the Allies by a single point.

The Casselberry family brings a lot of Wellington experience to the table at the WBC, and in the Mulligan round, secured three of the four victories.

First Round: First Blood

The following evening three quartets returned for another go at a seat in the semi-finals. Although the event was scheduled to run until 1:00 a.m. the next morning, swift steel and card play brought all three to an early close.

Pete Reese led the victory for France at his table. Frank Morehouse's Armee du Sud supported Pete's Armee du Nord to a dominant victory for France. Holding Madrid and a large number of keys, France was able to conquer Spain on a roll of a 6. When the keys were counted, Pete had a lead, but Frank had earned enough points in his two rounds to help secure his seat in the semi-finals.

Jesse Boomer's Armee du Nord and Larry Burman's Armee du Sud took France to victory at Table 2, but Jesse had one more victory point when the scores were tallied.

For the third game, it looked as though we would be one person short. 2008 champ Henry Russell arrived belatedly to find all tables already filled. Already victorious, Melvin Casselberry agreed to play again, but even with the GM filling in, it would only be a three-player game. Sarah Sparks, who had played two games of Napoleonic Wars the night before, joined to complete the table. Sarah hails from Wellington, New Zealand, perhaps marking the first time in WBC history that someone from Wellington played in the Wellington tournament. With Portuguese Unrest in play near the beginning on 1812 and Wellington's forces wiped out in a 6- and 5-heavy rout delivered from a lucky Marmount, the Allies, down cards and facing an empty Portugal, conceded. With the GM and Melvin Casselberry victorious, there were no new winners from the table to advance. Nevertheless, all participants quickly agreed to a second game, where Sarah's Spain and Melvin's British drove the French back into France.

With two rounds complete, six winners had qualified. Two alternates were chosen to rise from the ranks through victory points to set the semi-final stage with two games.

Semi-Finals: Where Allies are Allies

One of the more difficult aspects of Wellington as a game is that in most rounds, there is only one winner. With two tables of four building the participants for the Final, the victorious team of Allies or French from each team would advance. There was a more genuine esprit de corps among the allies as the semi-finals began with each player now truly expecting his ally to fuel his advance for the first time.

At the first table, Rejean took Britain, Tracey Spain, Melvin Armee du Nord, and Frank Armee du Sud. The allies took quite a beating as the French routed Wellington and pushed the British back into Portugal. But for the French, it is more than just a game of defeating the game's namesake general. With strong card play and favorable dice, the allies were able to push the French back. As the game was called at the end of 1813, the victory points favored the Allies, so Tracey and Rejean advanced.

At the second table, Pete took Britain, Jesse Spain, Michael Armee du Nord, and Al Hurda Armee du Sud. Fortune favored the French who did not lose a major battle until the end. War without End prevented a peace roll and placed the Conquest of Spain roll beyond the reach of France. In 1813, the Allies worked well together to drive the French back, so as time was called, defending champ Reese and Jesse advanced.

Round 3: The Battle for the Three Plaques

Since 2007, Wellington has been but a trial event, but in 2011, it made the Century, so the first three places would win wood. While this did not change the standard level of victory point scrutiny between the opposing sides, it would heighten the attention to how many victory points stood between allies. In the dice roll to determine sides, defending champion Reese turned the first choice into Britain. Jesse used the second highest roll to become Peter's ally, Spain. Rejean chose Armee du Nord leaving Tracey with Armee du Sud.

Britain began the march to Madrid, supported by Spain, but after taking Ciudad Rodrigo, the dice abandoned the Allies. Rejean's Armee du Nord lost Marmount early, but with support from the south, successfully defended Madrid. Wellington went south to see if he could remove the threat of Soult, but in a devastating battle, was routed, making the future look very bright for the French. Rejean's solid defense in the north and Tracey's nimble moves with Soult in the south drove the conquest of Spain roll to +3. Rejean rolled low, so the group moved on to the Peace roll. A 6 brought a very swift victory for the French and Rejean's first WBC title since his Armee du Nord outscored Tracey's Armee du Sud 12.5 - 11. Peter took the bronze with Britain's 5 points over Jesse's 2-point Spanish effort.

Epilogue

Wellington seems to have evolved in play over the past few years. Where Britain and Spain often took victories before, the French stood tall this year throughout. In the last three years, the Final has resulted in quick French victories.

The Wellington field did not change numerically in 2011, but half of the field was new to the tournament. It will be interesting to see how many of those players will return to play again.

As GM for Wellington, I am constantly learning new strategies in the tournament and am very grateful for the veteran players who advise and coach new players, particularly Melvin Casselberry. Melvin took a number of rookies under his wing this year to show them the ropes of Napoleonic warfare on the Iberian peninsula.

 Peter Putnum, Tracey and Melvin Casselberry and Rajean Tremblay.

 Melvin Casselberry and Rejean Tremblay oppose one another in the semi-final

 GM      Rob Olsson (2nd Year)  NA  
    raolsson@yahoo.com   NA

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