First of all, the way we play the game is a little different from the standard way at the beginning. Instead of choosing where we want our armies(mods) to start on the board, we pass out the cards, randomly assigning starting positions to each person. Each person then, one at a time, is able to place their remaining mods on any territory they own to reinforce it, just like the classic way. James originally decided to attempt to take over North America(NA), but was thwarted by me(Lane), when I began also placing mods in NA before the game began. James then shifted to placing mods into Europe(EU). So James began the game with a considerable force in NA facing my army, which was twice its size. He also had another army of equal strength in EU. This created a distinct disadvantage for him, seeing as it would have been impossible to take both continents and keep them defended. Here is a view of all the starting positions (represented by initials) and devastations (unusable land represented by DV) in the game.
As you can see, James and I are now both in a bit of a bind. Neither person bids any energy at the start of the first year, and it just so ends up that James goes before me. On his turn he decides to use the force that is in EU to take the cont. and leave the entire remaining force in NA. His hopes for doing this were that I would not be able to get the entirety of NA during my first turn, thus having no bonus. This plan turned out to be a crucial mistake. I was able to amass enough power through a superior force and two 8-sided dice via commanders to wipe out James' entire force in NA with very little casualties. James now has a much smaller force to work with than everyone else. His strategy must shift.
James' Grand Strategy:
- Take and hold EU throughout the game
- Gain a strong foothold in Asia while protect his other borders
- Amass enough strength to move south into Australia
He also makes a strategic deal with Darrin, who has his forces in Africa. They are not allowed to attack one another's respective continent for the remainder of the game. With no threat from the south, and no real forces in Asia to worry about, all James has to do is protect himself from me in the west. On my turn during the second year, I attempt to attack James in EU, but he plays one of the two "cease fire" cards in the game.
This move is very important strategically for both me and James. For James, it means that he must decide to either take revenge on me for making him use his powerful card, or simply fortify further to make sure I can't do it again in the future. He chooses to retaliate.
In year 3, he outbids me and takes the first turn. He attacks NA and takes out 3 of my territories plus my bonus. He then fortifies back to EU to protect himself from a counter-attack. During the attacks, he refused a deal offered by me, but later makes a pact between my NA+North Atlantic Water(NAW) and his continent of EU.
The reason he changed his mind about the pact is very important. Later in the 3rd year, Steven placed a large force of reinforcements into a nearby country in Asia. This country was not thought of as a threat before, but now presented itself as the beginning of the end for James. With a huge threat looming in Asia, James decided it best to form an alliance with me, and no longer worry about the battle happening on his western front. Steven attacks and takes Ukrayina, a key country in EU, and fortifies it thoroughly.
In the next year, James is able to outbid Steven to take a turn before him, but is not able to retake Ukrayina, seeing as Steven had a stealth station and a few stealth mods. The station allowed Steven to roll two 8-sided dice, which put him over the edge. During Steven's next turn, he completely removes James from EU, leaving him only 1 territory in Asia, which is taken by me before James' turn in year 5.
James ends the game with a score of 0.
- Placing forces in two continents ealy in the game
- Using Cease Fire
- Making deals with Darrin, and later Lane
- Being suprise attacked by Steven
- Failing to retake EU