This year marked the 13th consecutive year for the Commands & Colors: Ancients tournament. Unfortunately we had to turn away some players due to lack of games. We did manage to rally and procure some extra games and game components to accommodate 20 players, thus allowing for 5 pods of 4 players each, to begin the 1st round of play. The five pod winners plus 3 of the next best records would advance to the quarterfinals.
Asculum from the first expansion was the scenario used for the pod round, with players bidding victory medals for the side they wished to play. Four players won their pods with 3-0 records, including Pete Stein, Joe Harrison, Jack Morrell, and Michael Vanya. Marc DePaul won the 5th pod with a 2-1 record on a tie breaker. Brian Conlon, Bob Murray and Derek Landel rounded out the field of 8 advancing to the quarterfinals. The Epirotes proved to be the better army with a 17-13 record. All bids were to play the Epirotes which helped balance things out as 11 of Rome's 13 victories were with the help from the bid.
The quarterfinal scenario was Indus, also from the 1st expansion. Here the Seleucid and Indian armies faced off, with 4 winners advancing to the semifinal round. In match play, Pete Stein won both of his games vs Derek Landel, Joe Harrison took two games from Marc DePaul, Bob Murray split games with Jack Morrell but won on a medal count of 11-9, and Brian Conlon split games with Michael Vanya but won a close tie breaker. The Indian army edged the Seleucids 5 wins to 3 overall.
The semifinal scenario was Cronium from the 1st expansion, with Carthage facing Syracuse. Match play games were: Pete Stein vs Bob Murray; Pete swept both games, 7-5 & 7-6 to advance. Joe Harrison vs Brian Conlon; they split games, but Joe proved to be the better Syracusan to advance to the finals. Syracuse dominated 3 games to 1, winning 25-19 in medal count.
The final game scenario was Po River from C3i, which had 1 time champ Joe Harrison going head to head with 1st time finalist Pete Stein. Would this be Pete's year? Joe chose to start with Rome and won by a margin of 7-3. Pete did not have the same good fortune with Rome in the second game, losing to Joe's Carthaginians 4-7. With the sweep, Joe notched his second championship in Commands & Colors: Ancients. Congrats Joe!
While a drop in attendance from last year was disappointing, we still drew a solid core of competitive veteran players. However, PLEASE remember to bring a copy of at least the base game, or have someone bring a copy for you, if you wish to play next year. If that happens, less will be turned away and more people will be able to play thus increasing our number for next year.
Also, several games had to be adjudicated due to time expiring. So if you're practicing for next year’s tourney, work on your speed of play as the rounds will have similar time limits next year, and no one likes time adjudications, especially me. Special thanks to Andy Lewis for his assistance in a smooth GM transition, and for supplying his personal game collection to allow more people to play, Brian Conlon for carrying Andy's games from the game store to the event (hope the back feels better soon!), and my assistant GM Jack Morrell, for supplying bonus magazine gifts to the top winners.
Hope to see you all back again next year!