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Author Topic: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring  (Read 9447 times)

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Cal

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Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« on: November 04, 2012, 10:56:37 pm »
+1

Hello everyone. This will be my third report on a game. Unlike the previous two, there is no real gimmick to this report. It's just a standard game that was balanced and went all the way to final scoring. Also in case my previous reports gave the impression of myself as being invincible: I lost this game. It was played against Vatsetis on Vassal, and I received his permission to post this.

Standard Game w/Optional Cards.

USSR: Cal
US: Vatsetis

USSR Starting Influence: 4inf to Poland, 1 to E. Germany, 1 to Yugoslavia. [Standard]
US Starting Influence: 4inf to W. Germany, 2 to Italy, 1 to Austria. [I have played him before, and he seems to prefer this setup despite the vulnerability to Socialist Governments.]

Turn1
Headline
US: Defectors
USSR: European Scoring (Event cancelled.) [A null event anyway. Effectively I just made him throw away defectors for no benefit.]

AR1
USSR: Warsaw Pact Formed, 3ops. Coup of Iran. A 1 is rolled, no change in influence. Defcon degrades to 4, USSR receives 3military ops. [The worst possible outcome for the USSR player. I almost couped Italy instead, but either way it would not have mattered with a roll like that. Ouch.]
US: Nuclear Test Ban, 4ops. Coup of Iraq. A 1 is rolled, no change in influence. Defcon degrades to 3, US receives 4 military ops. [A somewhat surprising counter. Certainly it would have put me in a bad spot if I lost my anchor in Iraq, but coups of stability-3 countries always seem a little like flights of fancy. Not that there isn't a reason to do it to lower the defcon or just try to make a low op card possibly do something, but he spent a 4-op card to do that.]

AR2
USSR: Special Relationship, event first, US 1inf to France 1/0. 2ops, coup of Iran. A 3 is rolled, US 1inf is removed from Iran 0/0. Defcon degrades to 2, USSR moves to 5 max military ops. [Not the best result for a coup that drops the defcon to 2, but at least he is isolated to Israel for the time being.]
US: Comecon, event first, USSR 1inf to Austria 1/1, Finland 0/2, E. Germany 0/5 (overcontrol), Poland 0/5 (overcontrol). 3ops, 1inf to Lebanon 1/0 (control), Malaysia 1/0, and South Korea 2/0. [Smart of him to snag Lebanon. He also fearlessly heads on to Thailand and gets a step closer to controlling South Korea.

AR3
USSR: Indo-Pakistani War, 2ops. 1inf to Syria 0/2 (control), 1inf to Iran 0/1. [I figure I won't need Indo-Pakistani anymore. Iran's more important than Afghanistan at this point.]
US: Formosa Resolution, 2ops. 2inf to Thailand 2/0 (control).

AR4
USSR: Middle East Scoring. USSR has no bg countries, does have presence for 3vp. US has no bg countries, does have presence for 3vp. No change in VP. (0vp total.) [Boring punt of the Middle East Scoring card.]
US: Independent Reds, 2ops. 1inf to South Korea 3/0 (control), 1inf to Laos/Cambodia 1/0 (control). [This gives him Asia Domination.]

AR5
USSR: US-Japan Mutual Defense Pact, to the space race. A 3 is rolled, success. USSR advances to Earth Satellite, receives 2vp. (+2 USSR VP total) [I'm fully prepared for him to play Asia Scoring and score some big vp. There's nothing I have that can neutralize it as giving him Japan would counteract any gains I could make. So I decide to space it and score cheap VP to counteract it.]
US: Arab-Israeli War, 2ops first. 2inf to Jordan 2/0 (control). Arab-Israeli War event, a modified 3 is rolled. Israel wins, USSR already has the max military ops. [Standard move here. Maybe I should have placed 1inf in Jordan instead of Iran.]

AR6
USSR: Blockade event. US discards NORAD. [Sad, but at least he had to discard a US event.]
US: Captured Nazi Scientist event. US advances to Earth Satellite and receives 1vp. (+1 USSR VP total)

New turn. Both sides met military op requirements and suffer no penalty. Mil. ops set to 0, defcon upgraded to 3. The map looks like this:

Ugh.

Let's not mince words: this is one of the worst opening turns I have ever played. Except for Comecon, the only additional USSR influence on the board is in Syria and Iran.  Meanwhile the US is already in Thailand and can be within range of India after one action round. It was a great temptation to play the China Card, especially after the coups in Iran came up so disappointing, but I held it back after seeing he played Formosa Resolution. The only small victory the USSR has here is that I made it to Earth Satellite first, and that's a small consolation. The US' position in the Middle East is also about the best a US player can hope for: Israel almost completely safe, and moves to Iraq and Saudi Arabia feasible. I really should have put one influence in Jordan instead of Iran.

But the game is still young. The US has Asia Domination, but can it keep it before Asia Scoring comes around?
« Last Edit: November 04, 2012, 10:59:16 pm by Cal »
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Matty Defense

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2012, 07:24:30 am »
+1

Not sure if I would have spaced Japan.  Yeah it does neutralize any gains, but its 4 OP.  Maybe control Pakistan and Afghanistan (or somewhere else), which allows you to control India next turn and he still has to worry about Vietnam and the +1 for SE Asia (and you still have China with 5 OP in Asia).  I dunno.... just a thought.  But I agree that is looking rough for USSR after turn 1.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2012, 08:26:28 pm »
0

Turn2
Headline
USSR: Korean War. A 5 is rolled. Success. USSR gains 2 vp (+3 USSR VP total). Influence changed to South Korea 0/3 (control). USSR gains two military ops.
US: Asia Scoring. USSR has presence, 2bgs for +5vp. US has presence, 1bg for +4vp. USSR gains 1vp. (+4 USSR VP total.) [Absolutely horrible timing for him. Korean War was a natural headline with the map how it was and it paid good dividends.]

AR1
USSR: Duck and Cover, event first, defcon degrades to 2, US receives 3 vp. (+1 USSR vp total.) 3ops, 1inf to Greece 0/1, 2inf to Iraq 0/3 (control). [Hate to give the US free VP, but I needed to block him from Iraq. Play into Greece also sets up Brush War of Italy in the future.]
US: East European Unrest, 3ops, 3inf to Saudi Arabia 3/0 (control).

AR2
USSR: NATO, event unplayable, 4ops. 1inf to Greece 0/2 (control), 2inf to Italy 2/2. [I'm going to see if I can make him panic by threatening Italy and France.]
US: Suez Crisis, event first, -1 influence from Israel 0/0, France 0/0, -2 influence from UK 3/0. 1inf to France 1/0, 2inf to Italy 4/2 (control). [Nasty event that leaves me with opportunities in France and Israel.]

AR3
USSR: China Card. 4ops, 4inf to France 1/4 (control). China Card is handed to US face down. [Between Israel and France, France is a little bit more stable, at least with DeGaulle still out there. I decide to secure domination in Europe.]
US: Five Year Plan, for the event. USSR must discard Olympic Games without the event occurring.

AR4
USSR: Truman Doctrine. Event first, USSR influence removed from Finland 0/0. 1op, 1inf to Pakistan 0/1. [Shame to waste 2inf in Finland, but it's better than leaving France vulnerable, or so I thought.]
US: DeGaulle Leads France, event first. France 0/5 (overcontrol). 3ops, 2inf to Spain/Portugal 2/0 (control), 1inf to UK 4/0. [He gives up France to take Spain and partially rebuild the UK.]

AR5
USSR: CIA Created, event first, USSR cards revealed to the US player, US plays 1op, 1inf to Burma 1/0. 1op, 1inf to India 0/1. [I realized at this point that CIA Created was not a defcon suicide card since I had no influence in the Mid-War regions and played it before he could play Fidel or something.]
US: Decolonization, to the space race. A 3 is rolled, success. US advances to Animal in Space.

AR6
USSR: Containment, event first, +1ops to all cards played by the US. 3ops, 2inf to Turkey 0/2 (control), 1inf to Iran 0/2 (control). [Possibly could've played this better, but I wanted to prevent Marshall Plan from possibly messing up my domination of Europe. Also controlling Iran to protect against Indo-Pakistani War being reshuffled.]
US: Vietnam Revolts, event first, USSR 2inf to Vietnam, +1ops to all cards with the ops spent entirely in SE Asia for the USSR for the rest of the turn. 3ops, 1inf to UK 5/0 (control), 2inf to Canada 4/0 (control). [This blocks my Europe Domination.]

New turn. USSR met mil. op requirements, but US suffers a 2vp penalty (+3 USSR VP total). Defcon improves to 3. The map looks like this:

The Korean War headline really saved the USSR from a crippling scoring card. From losing 5vp to gaining 1vp. Unfortunately the rest of the turn is only so-so. The China Card has been spent at a time a lot of Asia is still open, and the US ditched Decolonization on the space race and is already at Animal in Space. Meanwhile, although the US missed out on a VP gain, the margin that the USSR is leading by is nothing to worry about. What will happen in the last Early War turn?
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2012, 08:43:36 pm »
0

Not sure if I would have spaced Japan.  Yeah it does neutralize any gains, but its 4 OP.  Maybe control Pakistan and Afghanistan (or somewhere else), which allows you to control India next turn and he still has to worry about Vietnam and the +1 for SE Asia (and you still have China with 5 OP in Asia).  I dunno.... just a thought.  But I agree that is looking rough for USSR after turn 1.
No way would I have given him Japan with South Korea controlled and Korean War still possible to be played. Shame I didn't get UN Intervention or anything, but I'm perfectly fine with spacing a 4-op card.
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tandoorichicken

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2012, 10:07:07 pm »
+1

Using USJMDP for ops gives you Pakistan plus your choice of Afghanistan or, probably better, breaking control of South Korea (and thus domination of Asia), at the cost of a 1/6 reduction in the efficacy of Korean War (which, in this case, would not have mattered since you rolled a five).  Additionally, it removes USJMDP permanently from the game, a potential 8-ops swing in addition to improving the deck composition from the Soviet perspective.  Every US op played into SK before KW has hit is essentially an unrecoverable wager/opportunity cost.  Inducing such an investment is probably worth doing, and may have made opponent's choice re AIW ops into Jordan a little more difficult.  When I am trying to decide whether to space a card in Early War, I always ask myself if I am willing to space the same card again should I redraw it on turn 3 and/or the Mid War.  I generally would not space USJDMP between turns 3 and 7, so why not just play it now and remove that choice entirely?

In this case, I think the benefit of putting 2 IP into Pakistan (especially with IPW accounted for) and 1 into SK outweighs the effect of giving US three IP in Japan.  Given the timing, if he had held the Asia scoring card, he would not have been able to reclaim domination while simultaneously protecting his tenuous Middle East position.  In fact, given that you held Blockade, he could have easily lost WG if he got over-eager in Asia.  Either way, opp is reacting to you, as it should be when playing the USSR.

1/6 decrement in KW efficacy seems a small price to pay for a two-BG swing with one card (that you never have to see again).  Also virtually ensures that you win the race to India.

Can't wait for turn 3!
« Last Edit: November 08, 2012, 10:08:43 pm by tandoorichicken »
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2012, 12:46:02 am »
0

Turn3
Headline
US: Defectors
USSR: Cambridge Five (event cancelled)

AR1
USSR: Formosan Resolution, event first, Taiwan now considered a battleground country for the US for Asia Scoring cards and Final Scoring, cancelled if the US ever plays the China Card. 2ops, coup of Panama. A six is rolled, influence changed to Panama 0/3 (overcontrol). Defcon degrades to 2, USSR receives 2mil ops. [Got a lucky high roll here, but Panama is one of the most vulnerable countries so I'm not too excited.]
US: China Card. 5ops, 4inf to India 4/1 (control), 1inf to Burma 2/0 (control). [Perfect timing for the Formosan Resolution card, but losing India and Burma hurts.]

AR2
USSR: Nuclear Test Ban. 4ops, 1inf to Pakistan 0/2 (control), 2inf to Afghanistan 0/2 (control), 1inf to Israel 0/1.
US: NATO, 4ops, 4inf to Israel 4/1. [NATO was still unplayable here.]

AR3
USSR: Nasser, for the event, influence changed Egypt 0/2 (control). [It might have been to my benefit to play Nasser for the ops and let it come back hopefully in the Late Game after Sadat and Camp David.]
US: Romanian Abdication, event first, influence in Romania 0/3 (control). 1op, 1inf to Israel 5/1 (control).

AR4
USSR: Fidel, 2ops, 2inf to Libya 0/2 (control). [This was a mistake that will haunt me. I should have played this for the event.]
US: UN Intervention with De-Stalinization. 3ops, 3inf to Gulf States. [A sorta desperate move I think because it's his only block of Mid-East domination, but losing De-Stalinization on Turn3 hurts.]

AR5
USSR: Asia Scoring. USSR has presence and three battleground countries for six vp. US has presence and two battleground countries for five vp. USSR gains one vp. (+4 USSR VP total) [This would've been a larger victory if I had domination, but with no Decolonization I got locked out of SE Asia.]
US: Independent Reds, for the event. Influence in Romania 3/3. [Takes him an extra step, and Warsaw Pact hasn't come out yet, but a nice distraction. It steals Europe domination from me.]

AR6
USSR: Red Scare/Purge for 4ops. 3inf to Italy 4/5. [This was played after my earlier reports on Europe Control, so I guess I thought I'd give him reason to panic and try to steal Italy. In retrospect maybe I should have held it and headlined it next turn. Also it lets me regain Europe Domination.]
US: Special Relationship, 2ops, 2inf to Italy 6/5. [Luckily, he doesn't have a high enough card to retake control of Italy! I'll now have a serious chance of taking it next turn if I forgo my opening coup.]

New turn. USSR met mil. op requirements, but US suffers a 2vp penalty (+6 USSR VP total). Defcon improves to 3. Game enters the Mid-War. The map looks like this:

This turn gave me a lot of confidence. Asia was still a positive VP gain for the USSR, four OPEC countries are controlled, and the USSR has a solid chance of taking Italy, and possibly threatening Europe Control down the line if it's lucky. USSR also has good board position in that Thailand is flippable with the China Card, it has sole access to Algeria, and overcontrol of Panama. The US' victories this turn are not from whats on the table but from card control: De-Stalinization was discarded, Fidel was not activated, and Red Scare was not used for the event. Also the US has at least prevented USSR domination in the MidEast (for now) and Asia.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2012, 01:37:53 am »
0

Turn4
Headline
USSR: Brush War. Italy targeted. A modified (-1 from Spain/Portugal) 5 is rolled. Influence changed Italy 0/11 (overcontrol). USSR gains 3mil. ops, USSR gains 1vp. (+7 USSR VP total.) [Brush War delivers Italy to me! The only thing that can win Italy back to the US is another Brush War, something which probably won't happen with my control of France and Greece.]
US: Grain Sales to Soviets. US takes Brezhnev Doctrine from the USSR hand. Brezhnev Doctrine used on the Space Race. A 3 is rolled, success. US gains 2vp and advances to Man In Space. (+6 USSR VP total.) [Honestly, it could've been worse.  Losing Brezhnev to the Space Race is much better than just having the card triggered harmlessly. His space race advantage is worrying however if this makes it to Late Game.]

AR1
USSR: China Card, 5ops, 4inf to Thailand, 2/4 (control). [I don't really have any good coup targets now, so I gamble on stealing Thailand from him.]
US: US/Japan Pact, 4ops, 1inf Malaysia 2/0 (control), 1inf Indonesia 1/0 (control), 1inf Philippines 2/0 (control), 1inf India 5/1 (control). [He panics, forgoes the coup, and takes all of SE Asia that he hasn't already. The extra influence in India confuses me though.]

AR2
USSR: SE Asia Scoring Card. USSR controls Thailand and Vietnam for 3vp. US controls Burma, Laos/Cambodia, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia for 5vp. US gains 2vp. (+4 USSR VP total.) [Probably should have waited and taken the coup here, but I thought there was no real need to coup since I already had 3mil. ops and there were no targets under 3-stability.]
US: Arms Race, 3ops, 3inf to Benelux 3/0 (control). [My jaw dropped when he did this. I don't have influence in W. Germany, so I can't take Denmark to compensate, and it confounds my plans to realign W. Germany. What a loss.]

AR3
USSR: Indo-Pakistani War, for the event. Pakistan invades India. A modified (-1 from Burma) 5 is rolled. Influence changed India 0/6 (overcontrol). USSR awarded 2vp. (+5 USSR VP total). USSR attains the max. mil. ops. [A lucky roll, but matters less when Asia Scoring is gone.]
US: Ask Not What Your Country Can Do For You... for the event. US discards five cards. [I don't remember what his cards were, but they were all soviet events.]

AR4
USSR: Sadat Expels Soviets, event first, influence changed Egypt 1/0. 1op, coup of Egypt. A 4 is rolled, US 1inf removed from Egypt 0/0. Defcon degrades to 2. [Here my opponent remarks that he didn't realize the defcon was still at 3. This coup went better than it could've gone, but it leaves him the initiative to take Egypt.]
US: Arab-Israeli War, ops first. 2ops, 2inf to Egypt 2/0 (control). Arab-Israeli War event occurs. The penalty (-4, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Israel) is enough to nullify any die roll. USSR already has the maximum mil. ops.

AR5
USSR: Marshall Plan, to the Space Race. A 4 is rolled, success. USSR advances to Animal in Space.
US: Junta, for the event. US places 2inf in Argentina 2/0 (control). US realigns Panama. First realignment, USSR +1, US +0, US rolls a 5, USSR rolls a modified 2. 3inf removed from Panama. No more legal targets for realignments. [He removes my gain in Panama with one roll. Simple bad luck? This is a sign of things to come, my friends.]

AR6
USSR: Camp David Accords, event first. US gains 1vp (+4 USSR VP total). US 1inf to Jordan 3/0 (overcontrol), Egypt 3/0 (overcontrol), Israel 6/1 (overcontrol). 2ops, 2inf to Algeria 2/0 (control). [Not as much of a problem when he already controls the countries and A-I War is useless anyway.]
US: Panama Canal Returns, for the event. US 1inf to Panama 1/0, Costa Rica 1/0, Venezuela 1/0. [Fortunate card event for him to move into the Americas, but it also creates more coup targets.]

AR7
USSR: Allende Event, USSR 2inf to Chile 0/2. [Desperation, that's what this play is.]
US: OAS Founded, event. 2inf to Central and/or South America. 1inf to Panama 2/0 (control), Venezuela 2/0 (control). [I wonder about this move. It gets him one more influence than playing it for the ops, but he already has anchors for influence in these countries. OAS is also one of the most annoying cards for the USSR to draw, so why eliminate the event?]

New turn. USSR met mil. op requirements, but US suffers a 2vp penalty (+6 USSR VP total). Defcon improves to 3. The map looks like this:

A net disappointment for the USSR. The wars for India and Italy were fortunate, but being removed from Panama with one realignment roll, letting Egypt be flipped, and watching helplessly as the US gets an advance into S. America and C. America was very tragic. The US also has the China Card, and can possibly flip Thailand just like the USSR did. On the other hand, Panama, Argentina, and Venezuela now make good coup targets. How will Turn5 look?
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Matty Defense

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2012, 08:35:21 am »
0

I think you look in decent shape here.  There is almost no way he is going to retake Italy.  Looks like you have France on lockdown - as well as secure Euro domination for the remainder.  Maybe, if possible, make a run for Africa control?  I am anxious to see how this plays out.  I am curious as to why you dumped Marshall Plan onto Space Race?

On a technical note, how did you do those screenshots?  I have a MacBook Pro.  It would be nice to have those shots as opposed to my text post.
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bsheehan34

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2012, 10:04:16 am »
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I feel like brush war would have been better used in the Americas. You could have just used ops from another card for the italy takeover. You already had Europe domination so south America access seems like a higher priority.
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tandoorichicken

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2012, 12:17:35 pm »
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I feel like brush war would have been better used in the Americas. You could have just used ops from another card for the italy takeover. You already had Europe domination so south America access seems like a higher priority.

Don't disagree, although Brush War for Thailand is also a possibility worth considering, allowing USSR to retain possession of the China Card.  Marshall Plan could then be used to take over Italy instead of space.  With Greece, Turkey, and Spain all controlled already and France over-controlled, the Marshall Plan influence would not be too terribly useful to the U.S... and again, it removes one of the opponent's 4-op cards from the game rather than dump it in the discard pile for the T7 reshuffle.  Can't help noticing that the 4 ops from USJMDP bought the US 3 VP when SE Asia was scored.

A few other points:
I would headline Red Scare with Grain Sales floating around.  Can't afford to have it in your hand if GS is headlined, and you were just super-lucky he pulled Brezhnev instead of something more useful.  Just as an example, I cannot construct a scenario where you are able to control both Italy and Thailand this turn if US pulls RS/P with his Grain Sales.

Sadat/coup Egypt maneuver could have been executed on AR1 to drop DEFCON to 2 immediately.  You are lucky he did not coup a BG on his AR1.

I do not understand the 3 ops into Benelux at all.  Barring a headline of HILSW there will never be a realignment roll for Germany, and even if there were, 3 ops is a lot to pay for a +1 modifier.  Benelux does not break Europe domination.  These would have been the ops to coup Iran/Libya.

You are rollin' like a madman.  KW, IPW, BW all big wins, even with negative modifiers on IPW and BW.  I would like to borrow your red die... permanently.  Apparently the US has been negligent in its exports of weaponry and advisors to its allies this game.

Would have given strong consideration to saving Junta for the next turn's headline depending on what else was in hand.  It's one of the few ways for US to get a BG coup after turn 1.  Agree that in general US is being a little casual about triggering his own starred events (PCR, OAS).  Both of those cards can be huge influences on final scoring if they come back around on Turn 10.  Even PCR, which is generally not that strong, at least has the potential in certain scenarios to break control/domination/presence of TWO REGIONS as a US AR7 play on turn 10.  US should try to keep these in the deck if at all possible. 

 
« Last Edit: November 09, 2012, 12:37:43 pm by tandoorichicken »
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2012, 03:19:00 pm »
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I feel like brush war would have been better used in the Americas. You could have just used ops from another card for the italy takeover. You already had Europe domination so south America access seems like a higher priority.

At the start of the turn, there were no countries with US influence in either America.

I would headline Red Scare with Grain Sales floating around.  Can't afford to have it in your hand if GS is headlined, and you were just super-lucky he pulled Brezhnev instead of something more useful.  Just as an example, I cannot construct a scenario where you are able to control both Italy and Thailand this turn if US pulls RS/P with his Grain Sales.

I had already spent Red Scare at the end of Turn3. Also it's highly likely that if I hadn't used Brush War to take Italy, he would have used the ops from Grain Sales to put more influence in Italy and take back control.

Sadat/coup Egypt maneuver could have been executed on AR1 to drop DEFCON to 2 immediately.  You are lucky he did not coup a BG on his AR1.

I was hoping he would coup. Then I would've receive +1 VP from the SE Asia Scoring Card.

I do not understand the 3 ops into Benelux at all.  Barring a headline of HILSW there will never be a realignment roll for Germany, and even if there were, 3 ops is a lot to pay for a +1 modifier.  Benelux does not break Europe domination.  These would have been the ops to coup Iran/Libya.

Headline of How I Learned..., Nuclear Test Ban, or SALT could potentially raise the defcon to 5. I'm already at +2 realignment there so Benelux evens the score, and the only thing I could take is Austria, which would let him take Denmark and maintain balance. If I could've taken Denmark first it'd be slightly better because there's a chance I could take Austria back later with Warsaw Pact, but I couldn't do it.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2012, 03:24:29 pm »
0

I think you look in decent shape here.  There is almost no way he is going to retake Italy.  Looks like you have France on lockdown - as well as secure Euro domination for the remainder.  Maybe, if possible, make a run for Africa control?  I am anxious to see how this plays out.  I am curious as to why you dumped Marshall Plan onto Space Race?

On a technical note, how did you do those screenshots?  I have a MacBook Pro.  It would be nice to have those shots as opposed to my text post.
I dumped Marshall Plan on the space race because, even though NATO was in the discard, I didn't want to activate NATO in the future. Also, the only viable candidate for Marshall Plan's ops is Austria, which would let the US put 1inf in every free W. Europe country plus overcontrol of UK and W. Germany, things which I wanted to avoid.

As for the screenshots, I take the log of the game and bring up an offline game of Vassal. I then go through the entire game adjusting all the influence markers, VP, defcon, etc. manually. At the end of each turn I take a screenshot of the screen, paste it into an image editor program, then crop it with cut&paste. I use Windows, so I don't know how you take screenshots with a Mac, but I'm sure there's a way.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2012, 04:47:00 am »
0

Turn5
Headline
US: Cuban Missile Crisis. Defcon set at 2, any coup attempts (bg or non-bg) will result immediately in Global Thermal Nuclear War with a loss for the USSR. This event can be cancelled by removing USSR 2inf from Cuba. [This is where playing Fidel for ops haunts me. Then again, it's possible he would have realigned me out of Cuba with the other op from Junta, but at the time I cursed myself because I had no viable way back to Cuba.]
USSR: Portuguese Empire Crumbles. USSR 2inf to Angola 0/2 (overcontrol), 2inf to SE African States 0/2 (overcontrol). [I expand to the southern region of Africa and achieve domination with this. Unfortunately it's time horribly because SE African States will give him a good coup target.]

AR1
USSR: Kitchen Debates, USSR controls 14 bgs, US controls 7. Event unplayable, 1op, 1inf to Chile 0/3 (control). [I learned my lesson from this game: http://forum.twilightstrategy.com/index.php?topic=37.msg175#msg175 Not risking a no-presence scoring in South America.]
US: One Small Step... for 2ops. 2inf to Uruguay 2/0 (control). [Nets him South America domination.]

AR2
USSR: Summit, 1op. 1inf to Zaire 0/1 (control). [It's impossible for me to do anything in South America, so I shift attention to expanding my lead in Africa.]
US: Nixon Plays the China Card, 2ops, 2inf to South Africa 3/0 (control). [He responds, distracted from taking Brazil at least.]

AR3
USSR: Olympic Games, 2ops, 1inf to Thailand 2/5 (overcontrol). 1inf to Yugoslavia 0/2. [This prevents Thailand from being flipped with the China Card, and I'm building up Yugoslavia to protect Italy against another Brush War eventually and increase the amount of countries I control in Europe so he can't break my domination easily.]
US: Shuttle Diplomacy, for the event. -1 bg counted for the USSR whenever the MidEast or Asia is scored with a scoring card. [Pretty rare to see the US play this for the event. Should have clued me in, but I was distracted.]

AR4
USSR: John Paul II Elected Pope, to the space race. A 3 is rolled, success. USSR advances to Man in Space. [What a horrible card. I never play this if I can help it, Solidarity is too strong.]
US: Middle East Scoring. USSR has presence and a modified 2bg for 5VP. US has domination and 3bg for 8VP. US gains 3vp. (+3 USSR VP total). [Super obvious in retrospect and I should have reacted better to uncontrol Saudi Arabia or something.]

AR5
USSR: East European Unrest, event first. -1inf from E. Germany 0/4 (overcontrol), Poland 0/4 (overcontrol), Romania 3/2. 3ops, 1inf to E. Germany 0/5 (overcontrol), North Korea 0/4 (overcontrol), South Korea 0/4 (overcontrol).
US: South America Scoring. USSR has presence, 1bg for 3VP. US has domination and 2bg for 7VP. US gains 4VP. (+1 US VP total.) [My instincts about South America were right. Extremely bad timing.]

AR6
USSR: Our Man in Tehran, event first. US discards Liberation Theology, U2 Incident, Muslim Revolution. 2ops, 1inf to Afghanistan 0/3 (overcontrol), Pakistan 0/3 (overcontrol). [This event is so annoying when you see the US threw out good USSR cards. The events of U2 and MR aren't that good, but they're solid high-op cards. This is going to hurt my hand-management.]
US: Quagmire, ops first. 3ops, coup SE African states. A 5 is rolled. Influence changed to SE African States 4/0 (overcontrol). US gains 3 mil. ops. Quagmire event, US must discard a 2+op card and roll a 1-4 to cancel the event. [This ensures I get a VP penalty from no mil. ops at the end of this turn. Plus it steals my Africa domination, plus he now has a large overcontrol. The only good thing from this play is that the US has Quagmired itself and might just roll high next round.]

AR7
USSR: Ussuri River Skirmish, event first, US 2inf to Pakistan 2/3, Thailand 4/5. 3ops, 1inf to Pakistan 2/4 (control), 2inf to Thailand 4/7 (overcontrol). [This is why I went so much out of my way to overcontrol the USSR controlled bgs in Asia. More trouble than it was worth, to say the least. At least the event is gone. The extra op goes to Thailand and not Pakistan because Pakistan can also be affected by Indo-Pakistani War.]
US: US discards Cultural Revolution (3ops). US rolls a 1. Quagmire cancelled. [Good luck for him. In this case it's the equivalent of a failed Space Race. Disappointment for me as that event would've really helped with the US still holding the China Card and both the US China Card manipulation cards either discarded or removed.]

New turn. US met mil. op requirements, but USSR suffers a 2vp penalty (+3 US VP total). Defcon improves to 3. The map looks like this:

This turn was a nightmare for the USSR. Low op neutral cards, and four US events, three of which were rather nasty. (The US already discarded a handful of USSR cards last turn, the Our Man In Tehran is really going to stack the deck in its favor.) Meanwhile, the US is able to play two scoring cards and gets domination from both of them. Quagmire is also eliminated with barely any discomfort. US forces the USSR to suffer a mil. ops penalty with Cuban Missile Crisis and miss its opening coup, while simultaneously neutralizing Africa (for the moment) by taking away the USSR's one non-bg. Etc., etc., etc.

Very bad turn. I'm embarrassed with how I handled this one. Too many ops were spent nullifying Ussuri River Skirmish, which was probably a waste of time. Normally spending four ARs not placing actual influence on the board would result in a loss of position, but not for the US here.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2012, 12:11:10 am »
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Long time no update. Sorry I got sidetracked.

Turn6
Headline
US: Missile Envy. US receives Flower Power and may play 4ops without the event occurring. 3inf to Denmark 3/0 (control), 1inf to Costa Rica 2/0.
USSR: Europe Scoring. USSR has presence, 4bg for 7VP. US has presence, 1bg for 4VP. +3VP to the USSR. (0 VP total) [Complete disaster here. My domination of Europe stolen along with Flower Power.]

AR1
USSR: Missile Envy, 2ops. Coup of Panama. A 4 is rolled, removing 2inf from Panama 0/0. Defcon degrades to 2, USSR gains 2 mil. ops. [Not adding any influence is as bad as a failure.]
US: Duck and Cover, 3ops. 1inf to Costa Rica 3/0 (control), 2inf to Panama 2/0 (control). [This gives him domination of Central America with no USSR presence.]

AR2
USSR: ABM Treaty, 4ops, 1inf to Pakistan 2/5 (overcontrol), 3inf to Morocco 0/3 (control). [Secures Pakistan from being flipped with the China Card and gives me domination of Africa, but not activating ABM Treaty's event hurts.]
US: Puppet Governments event. 1inf to Nigeria 1/0 (control), Mexico 1/0, Brazil 1/0. [I think the influence plays into Mexico and Brazil are a bit of a waste. Czechoslovakia and other 1 stability countries in Africa were available, so wasting Puppet Governments to put influence in countries he has direct adjacent access to seems like not taking full advantage of the event's power.]

AR3
USSR: Africa Scoring. USSR has Domination and 3bgs for 7VP. US has presence and 2bg for 3VP. USSR gains 4vp. (+4 USSR VP total.)
US: SALT Negotiations, 3ops. 1inf to Mexico 2/0 (control), Brazil 2/0 (control), Sweden 1/0. [Brings him dangerously close to control of both Americas. The play into Sweden is a signal that he plans to try to take Finland. Whether it's worth fighting for is something I'll have to decide.]

AR4
USSR: NORAD, 3ops to the space race. A 4 is rolled. Success. USSR advances to Man in Earth Orbit. [Definitely couldn't play this after Quagmire was activated and have it be around for the rest of the game.]
US: Decolonization, 2ops to the space race. A 4 is rolled. Success. US advances to Man in Earth Orbit.

AR5
USSR: Colonial Rear Guards, event first, US places 1inf in Algeria 1/2, Botswana 1/0, Thailand 5/7 (control), Zaire 1/1. 2ops, 1inf to Thailand 5/8 (overcontrol), Zaire 1/2 (control). [Hated playing this, but it was of less value after Africa scored at least.]
US: Alliance for Progress, event. US controls 2 C. America countries (Mexico, Panama), 3 S. America countries (Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina). US gains 5VP. (+1 US VP total.) [Massive gain for the US. Better than some OPECs.]

AR6
USSR: Voice of America, ops first. 2ops, realignments of Algeria 0/2 (control), Zaire 0/2 (overcontrol). US may remove 4inf from anywhere except Europe, no more than 2inf per country. Removes USSR 2inf from Pakistan 2/3, Thailand 5/6.
US: China Card, 5ops, 4inf to Thailand 9/6 (overcontrol), 1inf to Pakistan 3/3. [He favors stealing Thailand, which is the smarter play because it's more secure. Pakistan is vulnerable to defcon 4 realignments and the Indo-Pakistani War card.]

AR7
USSR: Five Year Plan, event first, USSR must discard C. America scoring. 3ops, 2inf to Pakistan 3/5 (control), 1inf to Yugoslavia 0/3 (control). [This lets me regain domination in Europe, but not Asia. Ditching a very poor scoring card is also worth having to play those other good US event cards.]
US: How I Learned To Stop Worrying, event. US sets defcon to 3, gains 5 mil. ops.

New turn. US has met the required military ops, but USSR suffers a 1VP penalty. (+2 US VP total.) Defcon improves to 4, the discards are reshuffled back into the deck, the map looks like this:

Another bad turn for the USSR as a lot of good US events were activated and the scoring of Europe was disrupted. US is keeping good pace with VP and the USSR has been unable to get enough of a lead to exploit for Wargames which could show up in the Late War. The only bright point for the USSR was being able to ditch C. America scoring.

Four turns left. To be posted in the future.
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Chimista

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2012, 05:06:17 am »
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It hurts when you have domination prevented like this. I tend not to HL a favorable scoring card for this reason.

I agree US should have played Puppet Govs. influence in 1 stability African non-BGs to contest USSR domination.

Very bold move, to play VoA and send to space NORAD. I believe I would have done the opposite, but I´m not sure if it would have been the right thing to do. You were facing a max. 4 US IP (Less if DEFCON is downgraded during HL). You could have used the 3 OP from NORAD to overprotect sensitive countries and you wouldn´t have lost control of Thailand this way, any thoughts?
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 05:07:35 am by Chimista »
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2012, 03:48:27 am »
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Very bold move, to play VoA and send to space NORAD. I believe I would have done the opposite, but I´m not sure if it would have been the right thing to do. You were facing a max. 4 US IP (Less if DEFCON is downgraded during HL). You could have used the 3 OP from NORAD to overprotect sensitive countries and you wouldn´t have lost control of Thailand this way, any thoughts?
VoA is a very strong card and there were many different plays that could have damaged me (like removing influence from Angola/Zaire), but in terms of how the play went, my opponent only flipped one country and gave up the China Card to do it. That seems like an acceptable trade to me, especially because I still controlled four bg countries in Asia; he would've needed to take Japan and then steal two other bgs to threaten domination.

My biggest concern with NORAD is Europe. Europe was very strong for me in this game, and an active NORAD would mean that any country that was not overcontrolled would be threatened after any AR1 coup. John Paul II was still a threat, and I did not want to risk losing any of the Europe bgs. I still had a slight hope I would be able to use some combination of cards to secure W. Germany and possibly win through Europe Control.

In most situations I am of the opinion that NORAD is annoying but not game-changing, but with a focus on Europe and with Quagmire already removed, I thought better to activate VoA in this instance.
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Chimista

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2012, 11:43:56 am »
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I see, if you wanted to focus in Europe makes sense to prefer VoA to NORAD. I also as the US player would have considered to get your 4IPs out of Africa, the problem there is that for USSR is so easy to come back to Africa via an AR1 BG coup. So maybe what he did was the best option available, anyway.
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Nightlyraver

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2012, 01:13:47 pm »
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Nice post so far.  Some parts of this game I found very odd, which others have commented on.  But here is my two cents on this turn:

As a general rule I almost never headline a scoring card.  The only time I do is when (a) I have already given up on the region and the opponent can only score more points, and (b) I know for a fact that there is no card that they could possibly headline that will break my domination or control of the region (or give them domination).  It's just really never worth it, IMHO. 

Using ABM treaty for ops would make me want to vomit, in most cases.  I really don't think that was necessary in this case.  Not only would it have allowed you to coup a BG, but it would have gotten you access to places where you had no access previously.

I agree that US using Puppet Gov't to place ops where he already had access was a mistake.  He was probably afraid of you couping if he dropped 1 influence in a non-BG country.  But he could have easily set himself up for realignments by dropping influence in some of the inaccessible non-BG's in Africa and/or S America.

Not sure why he used SALT for ops rather than grabbing ABM Treaty; this is something I almost always want to do.  Nor do I understand why he used HILTSW to raise DEFCON to 3, but I guess that will be more apparent once you post the next turn.

I don't really think that spacing NORAD is really worth it.  You could have used the ops.  I would have spaced VoA.  Ballsy play with that and Colonial Rearguards, but you play what you're dealt...

Great play with 5 Year Plan and getting rid of the scoring card.

Final note, I may have made a run for Nigeria before he got there.  You have Algeria and Zaire.  If you drop one IP in Camaroon and another in Saharan States, he can only coup 1 of them and you get Nigeria, plus a controlled adjacent country to protect against realignment rolls.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #18 on: December 20, 2012, 08:09:02 pm »
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Turn7

Headline
US: Grain Sales to Soviets. Liberation Theology is drawn, and returned. 2ops, coup of Angola. A 2 is rolled, influence changed to Angola 0/0. Defcon degrades to 3, US gains 2 mil. ops.
USSR: Decolonization. 1inf to Laos/Cambodia 1/1, Indonesia 1/1, Angola 0/1 (control), Thailand 9/7 (control). [This is enough to give me domination of Asia.]

AR1
USSR: Asia Scoring. USSR has domination, 4 bgs for 11VP. US has presence, 1bg for 4VP. USSR gains 7VP. (+5 USSR VP total.)
US: Red Scare/Purge, 4ops, coup of Iran. A 6 is rolled, influence changed to Iran 4/0. Defcon degrades to 2, US has max 5 mil. ops. [This gives him domination of the Mid. East.]

AR2
USSR: Bear Trap, 3ops to the Space Race. A 5 is rolled, failure.
US: Middle East scoring. USSR has presence, 2 bgs for 5VP. US has domination, 4bgs for 9VP. US gains 4VP. (+1 USSR VP total.)

AR3
USSR: NATO, event unplayable, 4ops. 1inf to Laos/Cambodia 1/2 (control), Indonesia 1/2 (control), Romania 3/3, Angola 0/2 (overcontrol). [This will maintain my domination of Asia, and sets up to take back Romania when Warsaw Pact finally turns up.]
US: Five Year Plan, for the event. USSR must discard Marshall Plan, and the event occurs. 1inf to Norway 1/0, Sweden 2/0, Finland 1/0, UK 6/0 (overcontrol), W. Germany 5/0 (overcontrol), Spain/Portugal 3/0 (overcontrol), Austria 2/1. [Really unlucky he hit this one. It's not too bad an event at this stage with most of W. Europe settled already, but it's annoying to have to lose 4ops.]

AR4
USSR: Nixon Plays the China Card, event first. US receives the China Card face down. 2ops, coup of Uruguay 2/0 (control). A 2 is rolled, no effect. USSR gains 2 mil. ops. [My opponent expressed surprise that I'd just give him the China Card back. Looking back I think I did it because I wanted to avoid giving him VP.]
US: Warsaw Pact Formed, event first. US influence removed from Finland 0/0, Austria 0/1, Romania 0/3 (control). 3ops, 2inf to Finland 2/0, 1inf to Botswana 2/0 (control). [That's enough to block USSR domination of Africa, and he also maintains notions of taking Finland.]

AR5
USSR: Liberation Theology, for the event. 2inf to Honduras 0/2 (control), 1inf to Nicaragua 0/1 (control). [Low level targets. Influence in Nigeria to encourage him to coup and be vulnerable to Ortega later.]
US: Shuttle Diplomacy, 3ops. 2inf to Finland 4/0 (control). 1inf to Sweden 3/0. [Taking Finland is something most US players think about but don't actually do. Here he's decided to spare the ops to do it.]

AR6
USSR: Nuclear Subs, event first, coups by the US do not affect the defcon for the rest of the turn. 2ops, 1inf to Cameroon 0/1 (control), Saharan States 0/1 (control).
US: South African Unrest, event first. USSR adds 1inf to South Africa 3/1, 2inf to Botswana 2/2. 2ops, coup of Angola 0/2 (overcontrol). A 3 is rolled. Influence changed to Angola 1/0 (control).

AR7
USSR: One Small Step, 2ops. 1inf to Zimbabwe 0/1 (control), Guatemala 0/1 (control). [This steals his domination of C. America.]
US: We Will Bury You, 4ops to the Space Race. A 1 is rolled, success. US advances to Lunar Orbit and gains 3VP. (+2 US VP total.) [This is all kinds of bad news for me. It enables Star Wars, gives him 3vp, and was timed perfectly so I couldn't take advantage of One Small Step.]

New turn. Both sides have met the required military ops. Defcon improves to 3. The game enters the Late War. The map looks like this:

This turn wasn't bad for the USSR card-wise. But losing Marshall Plan to Five Year Plan did alter Europe a little bit. US was also able to steal Angola and Iran. More importantly the US has maintained its VP lead despite being dominated in Asia. USSR has a lot to worry about heading into the Late War.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #19 on: December 21, 2012, 01:58:31 am »
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Turn8

Headline
USSR: Brezhnev Doctrine, +1ops to all cards played by the USSR for the remainder of the turn.
US: Junta. US places 2inf in Haiti 2/0 (overcontrol) and takes a free coup of Nicaragua 0/1 (control). A 2 is rolled, influence changed to Nicaragua 1/0 (control).

AR1
USSR: Solidarity, event unplayable, 3ops coup of Angola 1/0 (control). A 1 is rolled, influence changed to Angola 0/1 (control). Defcon degrades to 2, USSR gains 3 mil. ops. [Few things are more satisfying for the USSR than the Solidarity event being unplayable.]
US: Arms Race, 3ops, 1inf to South Africa 4/1 (control), Sweden 4/0 (control), Japan 2/0. [This steals Europe Domination from me.]

AR2
USSR: Latin American Death Squads, 3ops. 3inf to Austria 0/4 (control). [Brings me back to Europe domination, and Austria is always nice to have for safety against Tear Down This Wall. It also fully protects Italy from Brush War.]
US: The China Card. 5ops, 2inf to Japan 4/0 (control), 2inf to Indonesia 3/2 (control). [This steals Asia domination from me. Personally I think going for Laos/Cambodia instead would have been a bit more strategic for its value as defense against a Thailand Brush War.]

AR3
USSR: The Reformer, for the event. USSR may add 4inf to Europe, no more than 2inf per country. USSR may no longer attempt coups in Europe. 2inf to W. Germany 5/2, 1inf to Denmark 3/1, Finland 4/1. [Asia Scoring is already gone so I can deal with taking domination back later. Sad I couldn't get the full 6inf from this. My opponent remarks how strange it is that Brezhnev and Gorby are around at the same time.]
US: An Evil Empire, 3ops, 1inf to W. Germany 6/2 (control), Denmark 4/1 (control), Finland 5/1 (control). [Unfortunately he has a 3op card he can use to regain his position harmlessly.]

AR4
USSR: Che, for the event. 4op coup of Haiti 2/0 (overcontrol). A 5 is rolled, influence changed to Haiti 0/5 (overcontrol). 4op coup of Botswana 2/2. A 2 is rolled, influence changed to Botswana 0/2 (control). USSR achieves max. military ops. [This sets up a realignment of South Africa and allows me access to Cuba again.]
US: Iranian Hostage Crisis, 3ops to the Space Race. A 2 is rolled, success. US advances to Eagle Has Landed. [The easiest way to regain balance in the Mid. East is lost.]

AR5
USSR: Tear Down This Wall, 4ops to the Space Race. A 3 is rolled, success. USSR advances to Lunar Orbit and gains 1VP. (+1 US VP total.)
US: Yuri and Samantha, ops first. 2ops, coup of Zimbabwe 0/1 (control). A 2 is rolled, influence changed to Zimbabwe 1/0 (control). Yuri and Samantha event, all coup attempts by the US will give the USSR +1VP for the remainder of the turn.

AR6
USSR: Chernobyl, ops first. 4ops realignments of South Africa 4/1 (control) at +1/+2. Rolls result in modified: (5/5) (6/4) (5/5) (6/4). Influence changed to South Africa 4/0 (overcontrol). Chernobyl event occurs, USSR may not add influence to Europe by placing ops. [I posted all of the results US/USSR to show that 4 realignment rolls that were in the USSR's favor all resulted in a loss for me. What should have been a move to kick him out of both South Africa and Nigeria (also a +1 for the USSR) instead made things worse and was a waste of 4ops! This is only a hint of things to come. On the bright side, Chernobyl is removed.]
US: Arab-Israeli War, event unplayable, 2ops. 2inf to Norway 3/0. [He's encouraged to pile influence into Europe to stop my domination but can't do it with this one card because the Scandinavian countries are such high stability.]

AR7
USSR: Central American Scoring. USSR has presence, no bgs for +1VP. US has domination, 2bgs for +5VP. US gains +4VP. (+5 US VP total.)
US: Cambridge Five, event unplayable, 2ops. 1inf to Norway 4/0 (control), 1inf to Thailand 10/7 (overcontrol). [This blocks USSR Europe domination and prevents a China Card flip of Thailand.]

Eagle Has Landed allows the US to discard Lone Gunman.

New turn. Both sides have met the required military ops. Defcon improves to 3. The map looks like this:

Overall a bad turn for the USSR and a gain for the US. US had good card management while the USSR had to play a bad scoring card and wasn't able to exploit its advantage with Brezhnev Doctrine very effectively. I put my strategy in realignments where the luck factor plays a bit bigger part and struck out horribly. Still, it wasn't a complete disaster and the US isn't quite in Wargames instant-win territory either. Where will it go from here?
« Last Edit: December 21, 2012, 02:01:11 am by Cal »
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Chimista

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #20 on: December 21, 2012, 05:39:08 am »
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It's amazing the amount of IP's he invested in the Nordic Countries. At the end of the day he's got no hope to prevent Europe Control that way since you could easily beat him investing in Eastern Europe were he doesn't have access. I would have rather used my IP's to take over Africa. With more than 20 wasted in Scandinavia Africa would have been mine for sure.
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Nightlyraver

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #21 on: December 21, 2012, 02:49:01 pm »
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I agree.  Investing over 20IP for a near-guaranteed 1VP (Finland) and MAYBE a 5VP swing (breaking Domination) is a terrible return on your investment at this point in the game.  Europe probably only gets scored once at final scoring.  It's also a little strange, IMHO, that he didn't snag Cuba for CA Control.  I know that Fidel is still in the deck somewhere, but I would take the gamble - worst case you wasted 3 ops.

Did you consider holding on to The Reformer?  Not sure why you played it in this spot since it didn't give you any momentum (he quickly repaired the damage you did in WGer).  Not sure what you ended up holding, but once US used China Card you could have held Reformer, headlined it, and then you hopefully win the ops war in WGer, and hold out for the Euro Control win.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #22 on: December 21, 2012, 09:42:14 pm »
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It's also a little strange, IMHO, that he didn't snag Cuba for CA Control.  I know that Fidel is still in the deck somewhere, but I would take the gamble - worst case you wasted 3 ops.
I would say either he just didn't consider it a priority, or he was concerned he would draw Ortega, which is defcon suicide if the US has influence in Cuba and un-spaceable at this point.

Did you consider holding on to The Reformer?  Not sure why you played it in this spot since it didn't give you any momentum (he quickly repaired the damage you did in WGer).
Generally speaking: if I, as the USSR, get The Reformer in my hand and I haven't yet seen Glasnost, then I get down on my hands and knees and praise god, then play it immediately before the US reveals he's holding Glasnost.

I don't remember what my held card was either, so perhaps I could've tried holding it until I could get a good headline or some such thing, but unmodified Glasnost is just too good a card for the US if they get it that I reflexively play The Reformer immediately to prevent them from avoiding the bad effects.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #23 on: December 23, 2012, 06:33:27 pm »
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Turn9

Headline
US: Brush War, Libya targeted. A modified 2 is rolled, insurgents are defeated. US receives 3 mil. ops. [Unlucky for him, Libya was his best target.]
USSR: SALT Negotiations. USSR retrieves Iranian Hostage Crisis. [This was probably a bad choice and I could've selected something better, but I was committed to the idea of taking Iran back and neutralizing the Mid-East. Also, I wanted to get the defcon to 5.]

AR1
USSR: Wargames, 4ops. Realignment attempts: W. Germany +3/+3, modified 9/8 is rolled, -1 influence removed from W. Germany 6/1 (overcontrol). Spain/Portugal +1/+3, modified 6/4 is rolled, already zero USSR influence in Spain 3/0 (overcontrol). Spain/Portugal +1/+3, modified 4/4 rolled, no effect. W. Germany +3/+3, modified 7/5 is rolled, -1 USSR influence from W. Germany 6/0 (overcontrol). [Another complete and total failure. Emptying W. Germany of US influence was probably a pipe dream, but Spain/Portugal at least had much better odds and still failed to accomplish anything.]
US: UN Intervention with Willy Brandt. 2ops, realignment attempts. France +3/+3, modified 8/6 is rolled, -2 USSR influence from France 0/3 (control). France +3/+3, modified 7/7 is rolled, no effect. [To add insult to injury, he realigns France with the exact same odds.]

AR2
USSR: OPEC, 3ops coup Thailand. -1 for SALT, a modified 1 is rolled, no effect. USSR gains 3 mil. ops, defcon drops to 4. [I decide to cut my losses in Europe and get the defcon down before I lose more ground.
US: Terrorism, 2ops, coup Angola. A modified 0 is rolled, no effect. US gains max mil. ops, defcon degrades to 3.

AR3
USSR: De-Stalinization, 3ops coup of Nigeria. A modified 2 is rolled, influence changed to Nigeria 0/2 (overcontrol). Defcon degrades to 2, USSR gains max mil. ops. [Not a whole lot of good targets for De-Stalinization and I needed ops.]
US: Colonial Rear Guards, for the event. 1inf added to Angola 1/1, Algeria 1/2, Laos/Cambodia 2/2, Sudan 1/0 (control).

AR4
USSR: Glasnost, for the event. USSR gains 2VP (+3 US VP total). Defcon improves to 3, USSR may place influence or conduct realignments as if they had played a 4op card. 4ops, 3inf to Finland 5/4. [Looking back, this was an incredibly short-sighted move.]
US: Kitchen Debates, 1op, coup of Angola. A modified 3 is rolled, influence changed in Angola to 2/0 (overcontrol). Defcon degrades to 2, US already has the max. mil. ops.

AR5
USSR: Europe Scoring. USSR has domination, 4bgs for 11VP. US has presence, 1bg for 4VP. USSR gains 7 VP. (+4 USSR VP total.)
US: Africa Scoring. USSR has presence, 2bgs for 3VP. US has presence, 2bgs for 3VP. No change in overall VP. [What a loss! Even one more influence in Algeria to bring that back to control would've given me Africa Domination. I have nothing to blame but myself for this one.]

AR6
USSR: Iranian Hostage Crisis, for the event. Influence changed to Iran 0/2 (control). Effects of Terrorism against the US now doubled.
US: Ortega Elected in Nicaragua, event first. Influence changed to Nicaragua 0/0. USSR makes 2op free coup of Costa Rica 3/0 (control). A modified 0 is rolled, no effect. 2ops, 1inf to Nicaragua 1/0 (control), 1inf to Laos/Cambodia 3/2 (control).

AR7
USSR: Socialist Governments 3ops to the space race. A 3 is rolled, success. USSR advances to Bear Has Landed. [I've given up on altering Europe by now, so I just try to nullify his Space Race advantage and a potential Star Wars.]
US: Summit, 1op, realignment attempts. Botswana +3/+1, modified 5/3 is rolled, -2 USSR influence from Botswana 0/0.

New turn, both sides have met mil. ops requirements. Defcon improves to 3. The map looks like this:

This turn was a chance for the USSR to score big points, or even win the game if luck had been on its side for realignments, but it wasn't meant to be. The plan to get the defcon to 5 to try for Europe Control was just too ambitious. Meanwhile the US showed very good hand management despite a low-ops hand. One turn left and it's still a very close game.
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Cal

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Re: Close game, all the way to Final Scoring
« Reply #24 on: December 26, 2012, 12:54:29 am »
0

Turn10

Headline
US: Duck and Cover. Defcon degrades to 2, US gains 3VP. (+1 USSR VP total.)
USSR: Aldrich Ames Remix. US hand is revealed for the rest of the turn, USSR forces US to discard North Sea Oil. [Card chosen to prevent him from having eight action rounds, though since he didn't headline it, I suppose playing it for the event would have been self-defeating.]

AR1
USSR: The China Card. 5 ops, 4inf to Japan 4/4. [Another very bad idea of mine. I thought I could steal Japan and secure domination of Asia.]
US: Missile Envy for the event. US receives Pershing II Deployed and may play 3ops without triggering the event. 3ops, 3inf to Finland 8/4 (control). USSR must play Missile Envy for ops next action round. [This also ends my domination of Europe. I saw Missile Envy, but didn't think he'd actually play it for the event.]

AR2
USSR: Missile Envy, 2ops, 2inf to Japan 4/6.
US: Cultural Revolution, 3ops to the Space Race. A 5 is rolled, failure.

AR3
USSR: Iran-Iraq War, 2ops, 2inf to Japan 4/8 (control). [Three action rounds spent taking Japan! In Turn10, this is three too many. I still don't have domination with this.]
US: Soviets Shoot Down KAL-007, 4ops, 3inf to Taiwan 3/0 (control), 1inf to Algeria 2/2

AR4
USSR: Defectors, event first, US gains 1VP (0 VP total). 2ops, realignment attempts. Two realignments of Algeria, influence changed to Algeria 0/2 (control). [Realignments are better than adding influence because there's no chance of the US adding more ops to break control in AR7. This restores my Africa domination.]
US: Olympic Games, 2ops. 2inf to Botswana 2/0 (control). [This breaks USSR Africa Domination.]

AR5
USSR: Iran-Contra Scandal, 2ops, coup of Zimbabwe. A 4 is rolled, influence changed to Zimbabwe 0/3 (overcontrol). USSR gains 2mil. ops. [USSR Africa Domination restored.]
US: Special Relationship, 2ops, coup of Cameroon. A 2 is rolled, influence changed to Cameroon 1/0 (control). US gains 2mil. ops. [And lost.]

AR6
USSR: Latin American Debt Crisis, 2ops, coup of Cameroon. A 4 is rolled, influence changed to Cameroon 0/3 (overcontrol). USSR gains 2mil. ops. [USSR Africa Domination restored.]
US: AWACS Sale to the Saudis, 3ops, realignment attempts. Influence changed to Zimbabwe 0/0. [USSR still dominates Africa.]

AR7
USSR: South America Scoring. USSR has presence, 1bg for 3VP. US has domination, 3bgs for 8VP. US gains 5VP. (+5 US VP total.)
US: U-2 Incident, event first, USSR receives 1VP (+4 US VP total) and will receive one more if UN Intervention played for the event later this turn. 3ops, 1inf to France 1/3, 1inf to Zimbabwe 1/0 (control). [Steals Africa Domination and 1vp from Europe, where I did not have domination. I think this 1inf point would have been better spent in Chile, where it would have denied me presence in South America and 1bg for 3VP total rather than just 1VP.]

Final Scoring

Europe
USSR has presence and 3bgs for 6VP. US has presence, 1bg and one country adjacent to the USSR for 5VP.
Europe: +1 USSR VP.

Asia
USSR has presence, 5bgs, and 1 country adjacent to the US for 9VP. US has presence, 1bg for 4VP.
Asia: +5 USSR VP.

Middle East
USSR has presence, 3bgs for 6VP. US has presence, 3bgs for 6VP.
Middle East: 0VP.

Africa
USSR has presence, 3bgs for 4VP. US has presence, 2bgs for 3VP.
Africa: +1 USSR VP.

Central America
USSR has presence for 1VP. US has domination, 2bgs for 5VP.
Central America: +4 US VP.

South America
USSR has presence, 1bg for 3VP. US has domination, 3bgs for 8VP.
South America: +5 US VP.

US holds the China Card for +1 VP.

Scoring Total: +3 US VP.

Final Scoring Total: +7 US VP.

US wins!

The board looks like this:

A close game all the way until the end. That final South America scoring and the +3VP from Duck and Cover pushed the US over the edge to victory. I did have some bad luck, but Turn9 and Turn10 were badly mismanaged. My opponent had good card management, and while I did offer some individual criticism here and there for his influence placement, it did not lose him the game.

That concludes the report. Hope it was worthwhile reading for those who came this far.
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