Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

2-player tournament using a modified version of the published 2-player rules. TD: rick.leeds. WINNER: thewysecat

Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

Postby thewysecat » 29 May 2012, 01:15

42929. FOC Final Game F5

thewysecat (AGT) defeats Prufrock (EFR)


Part I
This is probably my signature game in this series. For the first time I do some preparation. I decide to play Germany with: F Kie to Den, A Mun to Bur and A Ber to Kie (!)

This is bold in the context since I am sure Prufrock will open A War to Sil and so I am committing from move one to a 50:50 on Mun/Ber in the Fall. Even if that works out, I am still also conceding Sil. I am willing to do this because I am sick of missing my bounce with the German fleet! The plan is to threaten Den to Swe and Kie to Den in the Fall for two German builds. I reason this will compel Prufrock to play GOB to Swe. It does. I also manage to predict that he will play Sil to Ber in the Fall and bounce him. Phew! But – and this still annoys me – for some reason I abandon my actual plan of moving Kie to Hol to bounce the English out and move Kie to Den.

I let the pressure of the Mun/Ber 50:50 get to me and decided the chance of a compensatory build in Scandinavia was needed if I got that 50:50 wrong. This is another failure of courage. Blessedly, I finally get it into my head that Prufrock’s play is such that such compromises are unacceptable most especially as my board position in F6 turns to crap in 1901 (see that report). It is the last one I will commit. It is so annoying. Instead of the tempo gain of bouncing EFR out of Bur and Hol and retaining the Russian fleet in GOB in exchange for losing Sil, I have lost Sil but also conceded Hol. Now I am in trouble again.

Winter 01 resolution

F5 Winter01.jpg

From here out I never put a foot wrong, and Prufrock just miscalculates marginally as I turn this into a win.

I have a plan. I build A Berlin not a fleet. I use it to help dislodge Silesia from Munich (!) I also go for broke and move to Mos and War while risking the bounce chain by convoying Bul into Sev. They all work! I bounce Russia out of Bal. Unfortunately, Prufrock is smart enough to play Sil to Boh to slow my tempo. A move that had just resolved in F6 as played by me in Spring 02 there so I am less sure this time as to whether this is another ‘tribute’ from Prufrock - probably not. Just something to file away as having tremedous utility in the right situation.

Spring 02 resolution

F5 Spring02.jpg

Inevitably Prufrock retreats to Prussia and now it is about how to save Munich for one more phase. The aim is to try and pick up a 2 on 2 bounce in Mun. If he is smart – and he is – Hel will take Kiel to dodge Den to Hel’s attempt to cut support. That means Kiel is dead, but will not be held by an army if I do move Den to Hel. That at least will help in 1903.

He may also move Ruhr to Mun trying to dodge Kiel to Ruhr’s attempt to cut support for an attack on Mun. And although he doesn’t take this option this all adds up to the idea that Kiel is the unit to move to Mun. What should support it though – Silesia or Berlin? Which one will Prussia try to cut? The most obvious is Silesia. I contemplate supporting Kiel to Mun with both Ber and Sil to make sure, but no more compromises. I need one of them to engage in an attack on Prussia as I want to clear Prufrock out of there before he occupies Bal.

In the end, I will support Kiel to Mun from Sil. Attack Pru from Berlin supported by War. I hope to bounce in Mun and have Kiel retreat to the newly vacated Berlin while I retain Silesia and War and capture Prussia. It works!

I know from after-game chat that of all the moves Prufrock regrets - not moving Pru to Sil that phase to cut support is his biggest. It means Munich clings on into 1903. His unit in Ukraine also goes the wrong way in my view in trying to cover Moscow. I use my little naval trick around ION to slingshot the Austrian fleet into TYS

Fall 02 resolution

F5 Fall02.jpg

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Last edited by thewysecat on 01 Jun 2012, 03:03, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

Postby thewysecat » 29 May 2012, 01:16

F5 - Part II

Winter 02 resolution

F5 Winter02.jpg

Prufrock is still favourite here, but AGT is beginning to show her hidden strength. My plan is to destroy Livonia. I figure Prufrock will spot this and take the only option that might prevent it and move Mos to St.P. I plan to take Liv from St.P though and let that Mos move succeed so that he continues to move in the wrong direction with that unit. It is Mos to Ukr (!) that I fear. To cover that I convoy Con to Rum, but my plan is to then be able to divert it to Serbia in the Fall. This works out.

In the south I am not tempted by Tunis. I take my own slingshot into TYS from Fall 02 and capture Naples. This is key to securing Italy and is also a future vital Austrian build.

What to do about Munich is tricky. I contemplate just going for the risk of a 1 on 1 bounce and that would have worked as it turns out, but I have a plan and instead attack with a force of 2 meaning that Austria is sitting in Munich. That is tricky as I cannot afford a German disband…..

Spring 03 resolution

F5 Spring03.jpg

Ok, at this point I am so close and yet so far. If a German army disbands the small chink of light around Prussia/Livonia will be enough for EGR’s dominance of the Baltic to prize Berlin and Munich loose. This is the inherent strength of EFR and the continued product of my failure to slow his tempo and bounce him from Hol in Fall 01.

This is the play:
A Mun to Tyrol (!)
A Vie S A Mun to Tyrol (I want to hold Tyrol not bounce there and then build in Trieste)
A Ber to Mun
A Boh S A Ber to Mun
If he attacks Mun with a force of 3 it is lost, but here goes because….

A Pru to Ber
A Sil S A Pru to Ber
This guarantees holding Berlin and matches with…

A Liv to Pru
A War S A Liv to Pru (!)

The big idea is that I will bounce in Mun and thus in Berlin. The German army in Prussia will thus be auto-destroyed by the Turko-Austrian ‘attack’ thus allowing me to rebuild it in the vacant Munich in the Winter (!)

Finally,
A Mos to Liv

This is ballsy too as I am walking out of a Russian SC he could then build in.

The whole plan is predicated on the idea that Prufrock will know that Prussia is now my weakness and that I will attempt some sort of ‘shuffle’ to get a non-German unit into Pru meaning that Berlin will be vulnerable and the SC he needs to attack this phase. It also premised on the idea that in that context he will see nothing else to do with St.P other than move it to Liv ‘just in case’ – ready for me to pick up the final bounce I need.

It is perfect!

Fall 03 resolution

F5 Fall03.jpg

I build a German army in Munich, an Austrian one in Trieste and a fleet in Smyrna. The only tiny misstep is I hold F Bla rather than move it to Con in case Mos to Liv goes horribly wrong. It is not a big deal.

Now I cannot lose Berlin as long as I am willing to sacrifice the defence of Munich in order to secure Livonia. A 17-17 tie is tempting given all our struggles but I resolve to pursue the win. For that I must take Livonia from Warsaw and also re-occupy War while not losing Mun.

In the Spring of 1904, I bounce him out of Liv and take no risks with Ber or Mun. I bring Vie to Gal ignoring the temptation to send it towards Italy. I take Venice and ready a convoy to Apulia
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Last edited by thewysecat on 29 May 2012, 01:26, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

Postby thewysecat » 29 May 2012, 01:16

F5 - Part III

Spring 04 resolution

F5 Spring04.jpg

At this point Prufrock has the tempo problem – an interesting parallel of what had been going on in F6 (see that report).

He needs to fill GOB to get superior numbers on Liv, but cannot afford to move Bal to do this as he needs to use it to keep bouncing me out of Liv. He will get to GOB eventually, but it will take him time. While he does that, I mean to act.

Here is my second ‘big idea’ plan:
A War to Liv
A Mos S A War to Liv
A Pru S A War to Liv
A Gal to War
This guarantees taking and holding Livonia in perpetuity. However, it also diverts Prussia away from protecting Berlin. Something in Germany will be left vulnerable.

In the Spring, Prufrock attacked Mun from Bur with a strength of 3 hoping I would weaken Munich’s defence. I didn’t, but he is right that if I will weaken one it is Munich since holding Berlin means a 17 v 17 at worst whereas if Berlin falls – Munich will follow for the loss. I cannot be sure he will attack from Bur again, but it is the best I have got. So….

A Mun to Ber (!)
A Sil S A Mun to Ber
This guarantees holding Berlin as the German unit in Mun cannot self-dislodge the German unit in Berlin

A Ber to Kiel (!)
Bound to bounce but at least it cuts support from Kiel for any attack on Munich

A Tyrol to Mun
A Boh S A Tyrol to Mun
Mun is only defended with a strength of 2 in this scheme, but Ber to Kiel might cut Prufrock’s resources to the same level as I secure Livonia. Only an attack on Mun from Kiel will defeat this order set.

A Venice to Tyrol (!)
The strategic idea at play is that I have seized Venice to provide me with the feint of an attack on Piedmont from Venice S by Tyrol. Prufrock will know that if I take Piedmont then Tyrol can be used to defend Munich freeing Prussia to take action in Livonia. I therefore hope to distract him with concerns about Piedmont. He will likely use the French army there aggressively while using his 2 fleets in Tus and GoL to ‘attack’ Pied with a strength of 2 thus ensuring he keeps it due to no self-dislodgement. Long-term, I don’t care if he walks into Venice so I move Venice to Tyrol in case the Austrians capture Munich. As it turns out they do as Prufrock has not spotted my plan.

I felt that Prufrock might spot the plan, but to return to the match-play theme I was sensing in his play and commentary at that point that he was just weakening in his will to win and that he might not look as deeply as he needed. F6 had already concluded at this point with a win for me and a number of dramatic resolutions in a row had all gone my way in both games. I don’t want to make this sound like Fischer v Spassky but playing these games over two months had a certain level of intensity and was a narrative in itself. Anyway, this may all be my imagination but the thought that self-doubt was creeping in for Prufrock was something I was using to spur myself on.

Fall 04 resolution

F5 Fall04.jpg

It all works perfectly. Prufrock actually takes Venice for a 17 v 16 lead, but at this point he resigns. Ber and Mun are safe forever now that Livonia is locked down. My Austrian build from Munich will go in Trieste and Venice will immediately fall. Taking Rome has some nuance, but EFR can never take it given our relative force disposition and accurate AGT play. At worst I win 17 v 16.

This was a very pleasing result and it is hard not to take pride in the work. Ironically it was still not done by playing AGT ‘properly’. My failure to bounce in Holland in Fall 01 ensured that I still do not show AGT’s full strength, but there were a lot of gutsy plays and I feel some highly accurate tactical play in the triaging of competing priorities after that point.
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Last edited by thewysecat on 29 May 2012, 01:29, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

Postby thewysecat » 29 May 2012, 01:16

42930. FOC Final Game F6

thewysecat (EFR) defeats Prufrock (AGT)


Part I
This result is an outrage really. At the end of 1901, my mishandling of the Russian pieces and Prufrock’s excellent play with the AGT pieces meant that his win was almost locked in. The paucity of my position in Winter 1901 in F6 was what spurred me to increasing ‘heroics’ in F5 because unless I could get some sort of a result there it was surely all over. Meanwhile in F6, I basically channelled the spirit of the Artful Dodger and picked his pocket. Twice. My growing momentum in one game fed the other.

This was my worst example of lazy ‘not really paying attention’ play in 1901. For whatever reason, I couldn’t get firing until I had seen two move phases and by then it was often already a disaster. I predicted he would open with an all-out assault on Warsaw as one last attempt to win as AGT (we had agreed that 6 games were enough) but didn’t bother to analyse the best play. It is War to Gal not the War to Sil order I just slept-walked to…. That - by this stage - I had also been diverted from my preference of War to Gal is another tribute to Prufrock. It left me with this position:

Spring 01 resolution

F6 Spring01.jpg

Warsaw is indefensible if he orders A Rum to Ukr. I think his plan is to do that and I fear it might also be to take War from Pru for a devastating second German build, but it isn’t. He coolly takes War from Gal leaving sufficient resources to also take Sev from Rum. It means my Fall order of Ukr to Gal is an air shot and I get a demonstration of how devastating 3 Austrian builds and 2 Russian disbands can be. At least for once I get the Sweden bounce 50:50 right because his plan is to prevent any Russian build from Swe. All I can do is retreat War to Silesia and disband the unit in Gal for this position:

Winter 01 resolution

F6 Winter01.jpg

Prufrock builds F Berlin. This is sound. I have insufficient resources to control the Baltic. Before it can fight, my Russian fleet needs to find a new SC if it is to even survive as a unit! Mos and St.P will be gone by the end of 1902. The tempo loss this represents around Berlin will likely mean Pru and Liv will be lost to EFR before I can even get near them. This in turn likely means that Berlin is secure into the long-term.

At first I had thought – 'well at least I can take Munich from Silesia', but then I realise there is a defence: A Mun to Sil supported by War. In the meantime, Tyrol and Boh and Gal will soon be filled with Austrian units shutting off any pathway to Munich. This is going to be over fast. It is going to be F1, but worse.

Well having almost no way to win can focus the mind. I decide to get cheeky. I will play Prufrock for this defence but play a quiet Sil to Boh to bounce Vienna and create a small tempo loss. I will simply order A Bur to Mun and try and walk in! I will try and take via feint what I could never manage by force (as I don’t have any!) The risk is huge at first glance, but what do I have to lose really? It will mean that Sil will be destroyed in the process and that is not a small price, but again 'so what?' – lose instantly or more slowly but still lose…. I go ‘all-in’

It works!

Spring 02 resolution

F6 Spring02.jpg

You’ve gotta laugh. Note I have another wheeze. I completely ignore Kiel in the hope I might be dislodged there. I am. Or at least, I think long and hard about a retreat to Livonia, but in the end I just cannot make that work in my analysis. The Russian navy sails into Kiel with German help. Meanwhile Sweden has fallen and out of no-where Germany is facing 3 disbands. Madness.
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Last edited by thewysecat on 29 May 2012, 01:34, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

Postby thewysecat » 29 May 2012, 01:16

F6 - Part II

Spring 02 retreat resolution

F6 Spring02 ret.jpg

So now I am playing for the draw that might be possible if I can hold Mun and take Tunis. Berlin I have given up on with my retreat.

How can I hold Munich? Well I can for certain with support from Ruhr this phase thanks to the Russian army’s noble sacrifice in Bohemia, but in Spring 1903 it is dead unless I can get an army into Kiel since it will also take a phase to march an army built in Paris to Burgundy. Likewise, Prufrock can afford to attack Mun from Tyrol in the Spring thanks to new Austrian builds to at least bounce Pied out of Tyrol.

The convoy to Den was meant to help occupy Kiel with an army, but Bal to Kiel S by Ber could bounce that attack 2 v 2 even if Swe moves to Bal. Attacking from Den into Kiel also has some downsides if it resolves.

AGT could attack Munich from Tyrol and dodge an attempted cut from Piedmont, but that would mean a painful capture of Tyrol by Pied. I decide to risk that this threat is enough to prevent Prufrock from trying that play. I therefore decide to make Pied to Tyrol the only defence I will provide Munich. Mun is then free to hit Berlin to protect the Russian fleet in Kiel (though perhaps a move to Boh would have been even bolder in retrospect). It means I will risk A Ruhr to Bur and A Hol to Ruhr to lock down Munich. I hope Bal might move to GOB. It doesn’t, but since Berlin is lost my ‘as you were’ moves in the North are ok. Overall, it works – Mun is saved for the long-term.

Fall 02 resolution

F6 Fall02.jpg

Note Prufrock using the slingshot play in ION and that I am again calculating that I can afford to take out Portugal. Having given up hope of Berlin I am – unusually for me – sending an English fleet south relatively early. I need Tunis for the draw!

There is just time for one last piece of shenanigans from me. Is there any way I can take Berlin for the most outrageous of wins? Prufrock has kept 2 German units alive by engineering that War be held by Germany. Further, by retreating himself he has cleverly made it so that he sits in Prussia. Livonia will be taken without competition this coming phase but he does still have a long-term problem. To totally lock-down Livonia and thus Prussia and thus Berlin he needs a unit in Warsaw eventually, but if he occupies it with anything other than a German unit he has a German disband that….immediately leaves a hole.

Now a weaker player with less appreciation for the intricacies here would likely hold what he has before finally realising why Warsaw is relevant but once EFR is in place. After all, EFR is a long way from threatening Livonia. However, Prufrock is the sort of player who will be thinking about this. I decide that he will attempt some sort of ‘shuffle’ now. I also decide that he thinks I will try to make up for lost time by moving Kiel to Bal and Swe to GOB. Getting Den into Kiel and then having the Russian fleet take Swe to keep itself alive.

I therefore decide that I will not do that. I will go for Berlin this phase! With all those units around it – it looks hopeless, but that is why it might just work.

A Mun to Ber (!)
F Kiel S A Mun to Ber
A Bur to Mun
A Ruhr S A Bur to Mun
A Pied to Tyrol
Convoy A Lon to Hol
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Last edited by thewysecat on 24 Jul 2012, 19:46, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Final Games AAR - Games F5 & F6

Postby thewysecat » 29 May 2012, 01:17

F6 - Part III

Spring 03 resolution

F6 Spring03.jpg

Holy crap it works!

Prufrock is rueful about this in after-game chat, but he has to try something to repair the tiny hole in his line sometime so in my view he need not chide himself about the risk he took. But if he is going to be bold, then perhaps A Tyrol to Mun S by Boh is a risk worth taking rather than the inverse he ordered which allows me also backfill Munich. Surely a 2-strength attack on Mun can only bounce at best so Tyrol cannot be lost to Pied, but it means Pied is useless in terms of cutting support. Further, the signature move is F Berlin hold (!) That Berlin was left vulnerable is justifiable, but surely it must move to Bal confident it will pick up some kind of a bounce. Even if it does not and Ber is lost it means that EFR is less well placed to hold Berlin. With Ber to Bal, AGT will at the very least get a 50:50 to recapture one of Ber or Mun if Berlin is attacked. Instead, there is now a forced win on the board. Prufrock plays on in case I miss it. I don’t.

A Ber to Sil (!)
A Pied to Tyrol
This means he can get no more than a 2 strength attack on Mun

A Ruhr S A Mun
This is therefore enough to hold on in Mun

F Kiel to Ber (!)
F Bal S F Kiel to Ber
This will either defend Berlin from the maximum 2-strength attack on it or auto-destroy the French army sacrificing itself into Silesia. (It does the latter)

A Hol (freshly convoyed in) to Kiel
Covers Kiel from behind

Now Bal can hold Ber. Kiel and Ruhr can hold Mun while I re-capture St.P at my leisure. In the same phase Tunis falls to overwhelming pressure and Prufrock resigns.

Fall 03 resolution

F6 Fall03.jpg

This game is a tribute to tenacity if nothing else I guess, and I am very glad to have won it. I am a little sad that the first time AGT properly taps its strengths in 1901 and shows what it can do with just a small miscalculation by EFR in the early game and…EFR steals the victory anyway through sheer cheek.

Prufrock was a fantastic opponent and a very gracious player. I thank him for his efforts though I was often cursing him at the time.

Thanks for reading. I hope they inform your future play (just not against me!). If anyone has questions or comments for me in these AARs - please refer to the specific game and phase. It will help me respond accurately. I hope Prufrock will contribute his perspective also

Wyse
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