Paul Schulzetenberg
United States
Albuquerque
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Caution: This article contains a way to beat this game almost every time. If you're looking for basic pointers and want to discover a winning strategy for yourself, this is not the thread for you. I'd suggest the other strategy articles instead.

I've played upwards of 10 games with this strategy all on the hard difficulty level. I've only lost one game, and that was because I was on the wrong side of the odds on some truly unlucky rolls. In all but the rest of the games, I managed very high scores. In one particularly lucky game, I even achieved the theoretical maximum score.

All my experience of this game is with the Android version. It's certainly possible that there's a bug in this version, in which case I hope that this article will expose it so that VPG can fix it. I've had a lot of fun with this app, and would love to be proven wrong so that I can find some other winning strategies.

The idea behind this strategy is that Actions are your bread and butter. The more actions you have, the better. There are five ways you can get free actions.
1) You get a free "To the Barricades!" attack when an opposing army reaches Paris.
2) You save an action when a Liberation Army beats back an opposing army.
3) You save an action when inactive armies, armies that have been removed from the map, or the upside-down Prussian army are forbidden from advancing when the card dictates that they should.
4) You (possibly) save an action when Republicanism is at 3, and you don't have to roll to remove disorder.
5) You gain free actions from cards when republicanism is advanced, or when despotism or monarchy are dropped, or (rarely) when armies retreat on their own.

The good news is, these five goals can all be pursued at the same time. The basic way to do this is really quite simple.
1) Prioritize your enemies. First fight armies in Paris to keep you from the instant loss. Then fight the Austrians and the Prussians back to their 5 spaces and drop a Liberation Army on the four space when you can. Finally, fight the British back to their five space. Don't fight the Vendee or Piedmont armies unless they're in Paris or you have nothing left to do.
2) Keep Republicanism at +3, while keeping despotism and monarchy at 0.

The reasoning behind the second is pretty self-explanatory. You want to make sure that Republicanism is at 3 so that you can always get the free disorder removal, and you want to keep the other two at zero so that if you ever have a drop in Republicanism combined with a rise in one of the other two, you still keep the +1 DRM to your military. Further, keeping all of the governments one step away from their maximum allows you to take advantage of the cards that give you beneficial movement to your politics.

The reasoning behind the first is a bit more counterintuitive, but it boils down to this. If you can get the Prussian or Austrian armies to be inactive, and you can take advantage of the free "To the Barricades" attack when Vendee, Piedmont, and sometimes British armies are in Paris, you are getting a ton of free actions. You should be able to use these actions to keep your politics under control. Eventually, if you manage to remove two or even three armies from the map and the cards fall right, you might even be able to spend actions knocking back the Piedmont and Vendee armies all the way back.

My personal feeling is that this strategy is a bit too easy, even on the hard setting. I'd love to see some tweaks to make it harder. Off the top of my head, I'd think some or all of the following might work.
- Only one free "To the Barricades" action per turn, even if multiple armies were in Paris, making this strategy more risky.
- Victory point calculations earlier in the game, punishing people for allowing armies so close to Paris so early in the game. Maybe -5 points for each army in the 1 space during the transitions between phases.
- More punitive events based on the position of armies in the 1 space.

I'd love to hear your feedback, including any other ideas about how to fix this, preferably something easy enough that VPG could put it in their app.
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