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Atlantic Storm (ACS) WBC 2019 Event Report
Updated October 7, 2019
 
108 Players Chad Gormly 2019 Status 2020 Status History/Laurels
  2019 Champion   Click box for details. Click box for details.
 

Admiral’s Edition

Our 22nd event year of Atlantic Storm featured the new Admiral’s Edition of the game, and 8 of 17 former champions came to play. The average number of players at each table was 5.42. Pacific Typhoon was the game of choice for 1/6 of the Heat tables.

Just over half of the 45 games played had close finishes with a margin of 3 or less victory points separating first from second player. Three games were resolved by tiebreaker. In Heat 1 Paul Risner beat John Keating by a single convoy point on tiebreaker. There was a three-way tie in a five-player game of Heat 4 between Dacey Collinson, Chris Geggus, and Matt Evinger in which Dacey came out ahead on convoy points.

Some notable big plays occurred. In Heat 1, Tim Evinger played 5 cards from his 6-card hand (Admiral Donitz, two U-boats and bonuses) as the last player in the round, which gave the Axis a significant advantage. Nevertheless, the Allies rolled a pair of 6s to squeak out a win in that battle. In Heat 3, last year’s champ Tom Bissa started a round by playing Admiral Donitz, U-461 tanker, and three U-boats, but three of the following players fated two of his U-boats and U-461. That outcome may have sealed Tom’s fate because he was not able to advance to the semis. That table also generated the heartiest laughs in the tournament when Steve Scott picked up Jordan Shea’s Surprise to read the event, not aware that Jordan had a face-up play under it, which was thus seen by everyone.

To qualify for the semifinals, a player had to win a game in any one of the four heats. We had 36 qualifiers, including 5 returning champions, but only 32 qualifiers showed up to play. In the semifinal game won by Jim Kramer, he gathered 18 VPs in one battle thanks to spoils from a previous push. Jim’s Bismarck won that battle on a 10-to-9 outcome after another player sank Tirpitz with X-Craft. Stan Buck won his 5-player semifinal match despite facing John Coussis and Pat Mirk who are the top two laurelists in this event.

The random seating order for the 2019 final was Chad Gormly, Jim Kramer, Robert Eastman, Tim Evinger, Bill Place, and Stan Buck. Jim had a small lead after three rounds of Sub battles, but Round 4 brought out big guns: Tim called Surface for a 6 VP full 1943 convoy and sent Admiral Scheer on a Channel Dash. Bill’s Duke of York led the opposition, backed up by Trident and Renown from other players. Robert went last with Pivotal Battle and played Bismarck to make it an even fight. However, Robert’s poor roll allowed Bill to win 11 VPs. That would be the only battle Bill won in the game, but it gave him a strong foundation.

Stan had trouble building a good hand despite using Shadower on Round 1. He reluctantly flushed on Round 6 and called Air for convoy SC 7 in 1940. Jim put Hood on convoy duty but there was no other Allied support, and Tim played Condor 1 to win the convoy and Hood for 7 VPs.

The game’s halfway mark was reached at the end of Round 9. Convoy VPs at that time were Robert 9, Tim 7, Bill 6, Jim 6, Chad 4, and Stan 0. Bill had decent spoils underneath and was in the lead followed closely by Tim. Robert’s advantage was an 8-card hand.

Chad’s mojo started to warm up during the second half of the game. Stan called Combined for SC 122 on Round 12, a 5-VP full 1943 convoy. He played Bogue, Fido, and Allied Minefield. Chad played Tirpitz and did a Fuel Shortage on Robert. Jim supported Stan with Renown. Robert had to discard, but Tim and Bill went with U-boats and an Axis Minefield. It was an even fight, but Chad rolled well enough to keep SC 122 for himself. That put him in the lead.

Chad called Air for Round 13 and played Condor 2 in 1941. Everyone discarded except Robert who played KG 40 and had a 50% chance to grab the convoy, but he failed. Chad now had an 8-card hand and was firmly pulling ahead. Everyone played in the Round 15 sub battle called by Robert, but it was Chad’s wolf pack that rolled high enough to win for the Axis.

Everyone also played in the last battle (Round 18), for which Stan called 1941 sub and played U-552. When it got to Bill, who was the last player, the battle strengths were 8 Axis (with Chad contributing 5) vs. 9 Allied (with Jim in charge of the Allied effort). Bill talked Chad into giving him the 4 VP convoy if Bill played Axis, and Chad agreed because of his comfortable lead. So Bill secured his 2nd place with that convoy spoil by scoring one more VP than Tim.

Through smart plays and good fortune, Chad collected spoils in 10 of the 18 battles. He moved from 3rd place to 1st place in the last half of the game. Well done, Chad, and well done everyone who played in the tournament. Your friendly talk and laughter always adds cheer to the room. Wishing you good health and happiness, and let’s meet again in 2020.

 
2019 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 2
Bill Place Tim Evinger Robert Eastman James Kramer Stan Buck
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
 
A Bystander interrupts the war effort. Admiralty Edition in preliminary round.
Whose side should I join? Finalists with GM Ben Knight.
 
GM    Ben Knight [6th Year]   NA
     benknight7@msn.com    NA