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Subject: Critique my play of a very difficult T1 (WBC finals) rss

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Michael Patnik
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This weekend I attended the World Boardgame Championships and played in the Twilight Struggle event, which was 6 rounds of swiss and 70 players. This was my first F2F tournament, so I was a bit nervous looking around and seeing some of the faces that go with the names in the top 10 and top 20 of the AREA ratings. I managed to go 5-0 and make it to the finals where I was matched against Randy Pippus, where I was USSR against US+2 with optionals. T1 was one of the more unique T1's that I've ever played and I'd like to hear some opinions on my play as there were a couple ARs that I am still not sure about.

Setup:
USSR - 4 EG 4 Pol 1 Aus
USA - 4 WG 3 It 1 Gre 2 Iran

Hand:
Marshall
CNS
Suez
UN
I/P War
Olympics
ME Scoring
CIA
(Face up China Card)

Headlines: USSR: CNS US: FYP (discards ME Scoring)

The discard certainly could have been worse. That said, I'm not in a great position here at all. If I want to use UN, I must play China or I will skip my last AR. I really don't want to trigger Marshall since that pretty much guarantees that I'll be dominated in Europe, and Asia is totally up in the air. I can't afford to come out of the first round of scorings down a ton of VP. I also really don't want to space Marshall since I'd be so short on ops in that scenario. I'm also at a very high risk of Defcon suicide to CIA. Assuming that I UN Marshall, I've got to get rid of CIA before, or as soon as Defcon hits 3, or else Randy can coup with Fidel (if he has it) and that's game on T1.

For my AR1, I feel that I need to lower Defcon so that Randy doesn't just play into Pakistan, which would result in a coup/counter coup which he has the last coup on, and me banking a whole lot on a 1/3 shot at the I/P war.

If I still had ME Scoring, Iran would be looking really good, but with ME discarded, my primary goal is to make sure that when Europe/Asia score, I'm not down VPs. Here was my analysis:

Coup Iran
---------
Couping Iran will net access to Western Asia if I can make sure Iran is empty or red when Defcon reaches 2. A problem is that if I win the coup, Randy will likely coup back, at which point I need to play CIA. Assuming reasonable rolls, this loses me Asia, leaves me in bad shape in the ME and Europe at an uphill fight.

Couping with UN'd Marshall Plan
Rolls:
1 - Iran 1/0 (bad)
2 - Iran 0/0 (fantastic)
3 - Iran 0/1 (terrible - almost a given that I lose the counter-coup, and I have to play CIA next AR)
4 - Iran 0/2 (bad - same as above, but I have a prayer at the counter-coup)
5 - Iran 0/3 (ok - 50/50 on counter coup, still playing CIA next AR)
6 - Iran 0/4 (fantastic - US probably won't counter coup)

Coup Italy
---------
Couping Italy will give me a puncher's chance in Europe. It will also probably prevent the US from couping on their next AR, even if I roll 1 and he doesn't have to address Europe. With Iran at 2/0, if I have a 4 ops (he knows I'm playing China) Randy will most likely lose Western Asia and be booted out of the Eastern ME if he coups to lower Defcon. The downside is that I don't get Italy just by emptying it since Randy placed into Greece. I'm not sure if I like this setup in general, but here it's a nightmare for me. That said, if I can get an IP into Italy, I'm also threatening France, so that's ok. Additionally, even if I just break control of Italy, that may be enough to distract Randy long enough so that I can take Afghanistan, preventing him from buffering more against the I/P war and giving me adjacency to Pakistan for when Defcon does lower.


Couping with UN'd Marshall Plan
Rolls:
1 - Italy 2/0 (terrible)
2 - Italy 1/0 (bad)
3 - Italy 0/0 (ok - probably buys me the breathing room to take Afghanistan at least)
4 - Italy 0/1 (good - Randy takes back Italy, but now I'm threatening France)
5 - Italy 0/2 (fantastic)
6 - Italy 0/3 (fantastic)

Based on this, I coup Italy. Roll: 1.

AR1: USSR - UN Marshall Plan to coup Italy (Roll 1) Italy 2/0. US - EEU
Afghanistan 2/0, Iran 3/0.

Now I need Inf in Afghanistan or Randy will coup, since he is assured access to Pakistan.

AR2: USSR - Olympics Afghanistan 2/1. US - de Gaulle - France 3/1

Here was another critical point. I decide to CIA now, showing him Suez and I/P war. In addition to wanting to show him those two cards to try to convince him that Egypt (ahead of Suez) is a safer play than Pakistan, I also am at a point where for the rest of the turn if he coups, I'm stuck playing CIA next AR. Since I don't want to China now, making any other play means that when I do show my hand, I either won't have I/P War to discourage Pakistan or I won't have Suez to make Egypt look more attractive than chancing losing a 33% die roll. I decide to place into France before the action, so that he doesn't just place the 1 op into France.

AR3: USSR - CIA France 3/2 (US coups Iraq, no result) US - Korean War (USSR wins) S. Korea 1/1, Jordan 1/0 (I think? not sure about Jordan)

WOW! Were I Randy, I would have played anything else worth 2+ ops here. (save the war until after I play China, which I have to do, so even a loss doesn't mean you lose S. Korea, or if I take S. Korea with China, a loss only really matters for the VP) I also am shocked that he only placed 1 into S. Korea, instead of placing 2 and preventing me from taking both S. Korea and Pakistan with China.

AR4: USSR - China S. Korea 1/4, Pakistan 0/2

Here the details are a bit fuzzy, but the first 4 ARs are the ones that I am really unsure of my play in.

US AR4, AR5 and AR 6 saw Randy control France to 5/2, play into Malaysia 1/0 and Saudi Arabia 1/0 and coup Iraq on the Final AR. I placed into Iraq 0/3 (couped to 0/2 on US AR6), Pakistan 0/3, India 0/1, Israel 1/1 AND had Cuba go to 0/3 (Fidel). Glad I didn't get to risky with CIA!

From there, I headlined Vietnam on AR2 against D&C and was able to score Asia for 9 VPs, while losing 5 Vps in Europe and 3 for D&C. I wound up winning an interesting game on T9 due to 20 VPs. Randy made some unusual plays, some of which I didn't like and some of which impressed me. I think we play very different styles, so he would probably say the same thing about me.

So, please let me know what you would have done. It's rare for USSR to have a hand management crisis on T1, staring down the barrel of Defcon suicide, being forced into giving up China AND possibly ending T1 dominated or at risk for domination against in all 3 early war regions. I also may have made it more complicated than it really was because I very badly wanted to win the WBC.


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Joe Pilkus
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Michael,

I'm simply appreciative to you for providing such a format, coupled with the analysis. I'm so new to the game, that I continue to find Playdek's digital version a bit of a challenge. While I've read part of the big strategy .pdf on TS, I have to look at the cards and the interplay among the various cards to even perceive the issues which you encountered during Turn 1. again, thanks for the well-written write-up...obviously, I have nothing to contribute beyond my appreciation.

Cheers,
Joe
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Max DuBoff
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70 players? Hasn't been that big in years. Very glad to hear attendance for TS was good.

Interesting situation, and thanks for the write-up. I tend to think playing Marshall as USSR is totally fine, and I think I wouldn't have bothered with France in your shoes. I probably would've couped Iran instead of Italy too (since I would've played Marshall). Seems you like wound up in a pretty good position, though.
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Brad Keusch
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I'm actually pretty happy to see CIA on T1 as USSR, get it the hell out of the deck before it can really make life stressful later in the mid war. The fact that you didn't have to show a scoring card AND that I/P war may have dissuaded his asian expansion sort of worked out for you. I probably would have couped Iran, even with ME scoring gone, simply because I expect Europe to eventually swing the other way anyway, and with his setup even with marshall plan out until at least T3 he is already ahead in country count and likely to stay there. *shrug*, seems like you played it fine to me though!
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Dan
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Both of these replies opt for the conventional play (one I would have probably followed too), but things seem to have worked out for you!

Was the rest of the game recorded?
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Grant Johnson
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Were you expecting the USA to play Fidel, or planning something in South Africa or Panama? Otherwise even at DefCon 2 CIA is a safe play for the USSR early, as there are no valid targets for the US to throw the coup.
Nevermind, I missed you mentioned the fear of Fidel above.
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Michael Valentine

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You had a decent hand with enough ops and no problem cards other than Mideast. 5YP hitting Mideast was fortunate. I would've couped Italy on AR1 with Marshall + UN, just as you did. On AR2 I probably would have played 2 influence to South Korea, instead of 1 to Afghanistan. But I see your reasoning there as well and maybe that's the better play. It certainly worked out for you after he lost the Korean War and failed to play 2 to SK. I think I would've played Suez for the event on AR2 instead of risking playing ops to France that might get wiped out by Truman. I'd want to force him to spend ops in Europe to hopefully delay an advance in Asia since you lack a SEA access card. Personally, I'm probably not dropping defcon to 3 even if he plays into Pakistan, so no need to play CIA earlier. Instead of couping with CIA, Pippus should've played to Pakistan, and then in his next AR, move to India and add at least 1 to France to prevent possible Soviet control. Of course, it's hard to say with certainty what USA should do not knowing their cards. Given the way things worked out, playing China was the right move on AR4. The way I would've played it probably would've led to me skipping AR6 and holding China.
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Michael Patnik
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MD1616 wrote:
70 players? Hasn't been that big in years. Very glad to hear attendance for TS was good.


I think the recent release of the Playdek game helped.

MD1616 wrote:
I tend to think playing Marshall as USSR is totally fine, and I think I wouldn't have bothered with France in your shoes. I probably would've couped Iran instead of Italy too (since I would've played Marshall). Seems you like wound up in a pretty good position, though.


I also don't mind playing Marshall as USSR, but would prefer to do so once the battlegrounds are filled. I can see where you're coming from, but I don't like that this makes the US able to score domination with 2 ops, meaning they can threaten domination and make a meaningful ops play elsewhere. I'd prefer they work for their VPs so that if I'm punting Europe I can make progress elsewhere. I also hate turning on NATO so early, esp with Marshall. If I draw NATO, I'm obviously playing it, but not only does it turn off the hope of Brush War to get out from under Europe domination, it also turns Special Relationship into a miserable card that can't even be turned off by breaking UK because it now has 6 from Marshall. The US is going to probably get 2 Europe dominations and a 50% shot (50% that I'm the one who draws NATO) at 2 Special Relationships if I punt Europe and coup Iran with Marshall. That's a 16 VP swing vs if I'm able to claw either Italy or France by couping at least 1 IP into Italy by UNing Marshall.

It's very possible that I have tunnel vision here, but I really wanted to find a way into Asia without making Euro domination easy on the US.

As for the France play, I was worried that my opponent had Europe scoring. If I played CIA and they just filled France, now they have the opportunity to score domination without breaking tempo. I evented second to prevent him from locking me out of placing in France to prevent this. It's very likely that I should have put the op into S. Korea instead to prevent the US from playing and winning the Korean War, then taking S. Korea. That's what I would have done had I let the event go first if he couped Iraq.

anatana wrote:
I'm actually pretty happy to see CIA on T1 as USSR, get it the hell out of the deck before it can really make life stressful later in the mid war. The fact that you didn't have to show a scoring card AND that I/P war may have dissuaded his asian expansion sort of worked out for you. I probably would have couped Iran, even with ME scoring gone, simply because I expect Europe to eventually swing the other way anyway, and with his setup even with marshall plan out until at least T3 he is already ahead in country count and likely to stay there. *shrug*, seems like you played it fine to me though!


I also don't mind drawing CIA early as USSR. The trouble here is that if I decide to UN Marshall, I'm going to be playing CIA no matter what thanks to the FYP headline. Since I don't know where Fidel is, this really limits my options. I can't just hope he doesn't Fidel and play CIA late at Defcon 2 when there isn't much to do with the info and the op, then hold it if he plays Fidel first. There's no way to hold, even with China. That means that if I decide to UN Marshall, I'm locked in to playing CIA at a very uncomfortable time or just conceding if he has Fidel.

As for Europe, I had no illusions about scoring domination. Just taking one of Italy or France scores Europe as +1Vp rather than -5, making one of those battlegrounds worth 6VP each scoring or ~12VP due to the stability of Europe and the chances of a battleground flipping before the second scoring.

oeolycus wrote:
Both of these replies opt for the conventional play (one I would have probably followed too), but things seem to have worked out for you!

Was the rest of the game recorded?


The funny thing is that by rolling a 1, it didn't matter much which option I chose (assuming I was playing UN on Marshall for either). I still think it is an interesting thought experiment though.

Randy actually annotated every play of the match. (I think he does this for all of his tournament matches) I'm not sure if he plans on posting his notes anywhere. If someone knows him and asks him to, maybe he'll post them?

tallgrant wrote:
Were you expecting the USA to play Fidel, or planning something in South Africa or Panama? Otherwise even at DefCon 2 CIA is a safe play for the USSR early, as there are no valid targets for the US to throw the coup.
Nevermind, I missed you mentioned the fear of Fidel above.


Exactly. As stated above, I'm pretty sure that Randy is good enough, that if he has Fidel, he's playing it as soon as Defcon reaches 2. No reason to turn down a possible free win. I wasn't willing to risk it.
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ray donovan
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AR1 olympic game in afganistan
AR2 4SK/ 1NK with china card
AR3 to AR5 fill up Irak and get off cia dont give him any good coup target.
AR6 coup with UN+marshall (Italy>Iran>Panama)

If he drops defcon 2 times during the round play by making -EV coup play UN+marshall for ops AR5 and keep I/P for AR6.

Without any deco card or vietnam i dont like dropping defcon too early, specialy withe ME already (un)scored
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Michael Patnik
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MichaelVal wrote:
You had a decent hand with enough ops and no problem cards other than Mideast. 5YP hitting Mideast was fortunate. I would've couped Italy on AR1 with Marshall + UN, just as you did. On AR2 I probably would have played 2 influence to South Korea, instead of 1 to Afghanistan. But I see your reasoning there as well and maybe that's the better play. It certainly worked out for you after he lost the Korean War and failed to play 2 to SK. I think I would've played Suez for the event on AR2 instead of risking playing ops to France that might get wiped out by Truman. I'd want to force him to spend ops in Europe to hopefully delay an advance in Asia since you lack a SEA access card. Personally, I'm probably not dropping defcon to 3 even if he plays into Pakistan, so no need to play CIA earlier. Instead of couping with CIA, Pippus should've played to Pakistan, and then in his next AR, move to India and add at least 1 to France to prevent possible Soviet control. Of course, it's hard to say with certainty what USA should do not knowing their cards. Given the way things worked out, playing China was the right move on AR4. The way I would've played it probably would've led to me skipping AR6 and holding China.


1 to Pakistan off of CIA, then playing India / France / other would have been really tough. Eventing Suez sounds reasonable. I had given up on Europe enough by that point that I was looking at Suez as a card that read 3 ops. I'm kind of embarrassed that I didn't even consider that as an option.
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Michael,

I watched the game and took notes, so let me start by saying Congratulations again! You played a great game and the game was certainly decided by skill and not luck.

I didn't like the Marshall+UN coup of Italy after Randy's choice of 5YP as his HL. It forces you to play China T1 and puts you in a very rough position for the rest of the turn on a middle DR. With low ops and missing Truman, you are going to have some trouble taking a European BG on anything short of a 5 or 6 and you'll need to overprotect what you take before the end of the turn. You were worried about Randy scoring Dom in Europe, but your sequence actually gave him shot at scoring both Asia and Europe for Domination. You could (and did) survive losing one, but you don't want to lose both. As it played out, Randy got Europe Dom in both Early and Mid War, but he didn't exploit the opening in Asia. He gets S. Korea on a half chance before you get there and he could have played the CIA IP to Malaysia and walked into Thailand before you were able to get Vietnam down on T2.

Even after he failed to compete in Asia T1, Randy could have used the China card to compete in Asia T2, which was when it scored also allowing him to hold either Decol or Destal over to T3. He ended up tossing both of those into the discard pile T2 and was fortunate that you didn't ever get them back.

Italy was at 3IP, with a US reentry from Greece and Iran was only at 2IP. It's true that the actual die roll of "1" made an Iran coup unattractive, but that's the probably what I would have done in the moment. In hindsight, I actually like Ray's suggestion of 2 ops to Afghanistan better than either coup, but I didn't really think of it at the time.

I think you were absolutely correct to play CIA early. It always feels bad, but there is no better time to dump it. You had a average-minus starting hand with some serious liabilities (although they were good problems to get out of the way in my opinion), and an initial "1" DR on your 4 coup. Certainly a challenging T1 to play.

Quite impressive to see USSR take South America and Africa T4 without the benefit of ever getting DeStalinization or Decolonization. To me that was the turning point.

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Kris Wei
China
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Considering cards, this Turn 1 hand might be average(14 ops + 2 important neutral events in hand, no scoring) after that 5-year plan instead of a crisis, but Italy coup roll really hurt. Also, lose 1 AR is totally not important if you have China in hand.

I don't think such a coup nice since you had only 1/3 probability of success and didn't have any one of 4 airborne cards, 1 Afghanistan + 1 SK might be more stable(SK should be Israel if Mideast is not out).

Afghanistan is - in Sino-values - shouldn't be controlled in Early War, so I have nothing to say about your moves in Asia, I understand France at 3/2 for he knew you didn't have a 4op in hand (but I might grab it with China); however, Jordan and Saudi are somehow not wise, since Lebanon/Egypt/Libya is much cheaper and closer.

In fact, US is with advantage with every early region if USSR can't break with events(de-cards, Nasser/Vietnam, A-I/KW) or coups, so when you don't have these, being dominated is not strange, but keep DEFCON high might help(especially in Asia).
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King in Green
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Congratulations . I might have considered 2 Afghan 1 WG to threaten Pakistan & France (with D&C or after a coup exchange in Pakistan) + Asia scoring AR1 but I don't think that would have necessarily gone much better than your play.
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Michael Patnik
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It's pretty crazy that there are so many different opinions. Also a bit humbling that none of those opinions agree with my actual play.

I'm surprised that MichaelVal would skip his last AR to hold China, while sankt would not lower Defcon on T1. Those are both plays that I find uncomfortable, suggested by two individuals that I have come to respect a good deal based on the quality of their other posts.

King in Green's play feels a bit more like something that I would do. If they take Pakistan, I can coup there with China, then they need to take France, freeing me to play CIA, and lower defcon to make sure I get both Pakistan and India.

I guess in retrospect, the hand was not a "bad" hand. It was more like a hand that I didn't know how to play. I think that the plays that were within my "comfort zone" just didn't seem very good, while some of the alternate plays were tough to make in a tournament match, because I couldn't envision how the turn would play out. (at least not in a way that seemed good for me)

For sankt, ray or rktscience: once you placed inf, how would you respond to US placing 3 into Pakistan on AR1? That's what I would do as US in that scenario, and I wasn't comfortable responding to that play as USSR.
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ray donovan
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mpatnik wrote:

For sankt, ray or rktscience: once you placed inf, how would you respond to US placing 3 into Pakistan on AR1? That's what I would do as US in that scenario, and I wasn't comfortable responding to that play as USSR.

Considering that i took afganistan AR1, i play IP for event. This is an incredible good risk reward:
- huge domination in Asia (you will likely keep it because you have China card)
-Pakistan already overprotected
-+2VP +2mil ops
-you will likely keep the iron triangle and deny his acces to India for the entire game
-excellent position to realign iran at +1 and +2 once you fill irak with 2 ops.
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Kris Wei
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mpatnik wrote:

For sankt, ray or rktscience: once you placed inf, how would you respond to US placing 3 into Pakistan on AR1? That's what I would do as US in that scenario, and I wasn't comfortable responding to that play as USSR.


3 Paki without I-P war in hand is not a good move in our value, (but much better than 2 Afghanistan),we usually do 2 Paki 1 France/Malaysia/Egypt if have Nasser.

As USSR:
If you have de-cards, coup Italy;
If you have I-P war, play it as event, but make sure you have a free 4 in hand;
If failed, control S.K. to response a US control of India, and do not decrease DEFCON, control Iraq/Saudi and coup Italy in AR6.
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Fred Finkenbinder
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Michael:

Congrats indeed on your "big win" in the tournament! I was the guy sitting near you in the first round. We had a great conversation that included some talk about our local sports teams. I am happy for you that you came out on top - well done!

I would love to play you on the digital version - my name there is FredF

Again, congrats!

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I agree with Kris. I think I-P war for a 5+ is worth the shot vs 3 US IP on Pakistan. You'll still be have Marshall, UN, and China available in your hand and DEFCON is still 5 with no US IP placed in Europe.
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ray donovan
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sankt wrote:

Afghanistan is - in Sino-values - shouldn't be controlled in Early War

I disagree with that.
-It give/deny 1VP each time you score Asia
-It give/deny protection for I/P war
-You need a no-battleground country to score domination anyway.
-Realignement bonus vs Iran.

I see your point on investing the 2nd OP somewhere else but it is situation dependent.
Without deco/vietnam and with enough OPS in your hand Afganistan is sometime an interesting country to control 1st round as USSR imo.
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Michael Patnik
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sankt wrote:

If you have de-cards, coup Italy;


This is brilliant! Even breaking control of Italy puts the US in a really tough place.

sankt wrote:

If failed, control S.K. to response a US control of India, and do not decrease DEFCON, control Iraq/Saudi and coup Italy in AR6.


I see the strategy here, but it seems risky. How do you respond if the US makes it to Thailand or controls S. Korea and decides to gamble on spacing the Korean War? Do you just accept Asia domination?

Also, with 12 ops in the first 5 AR, couldn't the US end up with India, Pakistan, Egypt, Libya and Thailand? With a really good hand of 15 ops between 5 cards, they could take France as well. By the time AR6 comes around you could wind up behind in battlegrounds in all 3 regions. Thoughts?

As for my particular hand, how would you handle the CIA aspect of it? Won't you most likely be playing that before AR6, meaning that you can't stop defcon from going down before you coup Italy? I guess you could UN CIA, play China and coup Italy on AR6 with triggered Marshall Plan, but I don't really like that sequence.

inimora wrote:

I disagree with that.
-It give/deny 1VP each time you score Asia
-It give/deny protection for I/P war
-You need a no-battleground country to score domination anyway.
-Realignement bonus vs Iran.

I see your point on investing the 2nd OP somewhere else but it is situation dependent.
Without deco/vietnam and with enough OPS in your hand Afganistan is sometime an interesting country to control 1st round as USSR imo.


I can see value in controlling Afghanistan on AR1 as well. I like that it threatens Asia scoring and forces the US to respond to every play in Asia.

I also like that it opens up this line of play for my given hand:

AR1: USSR controls Afghanistan with Olympics, US places 2 in Pakistan, 1 Malaysia
AR2: USSR places 4 in Pakistan with China Card (protecting against this play is why I would have placed 3 in Pakistan as US)

Now the US has a tough decision to make:
- take India and risk an even better I/P war.
- give up India
- place 2 India and try to win an inf war while also taking Burma, and still only being 33% against I/P war

The reason that I like controlling Afghanistan on AR1 in this scenario is:

- if the US places 3 in India, you can I/P war and not be too worried about losing. If you did not control Afghanistan and lost, the US could then realign you in Pakistan at +1 and they already have 2 inf with which to control Pakistan if the rolls go well.
- this also threatens realignments against Iran at +1 immediately which may scare the US into giving up India and fighting for Iraq (great given ME scoring is gone). If the US places 2 India, you can then control Iraq and place 1 in India and be at +2 against Iran with the US still trying to fight for India while securing Burma
- you are threatening Asia scoring at any moment, which may make the US waste ops in the Philippines or Malaysia

All of this can be accomplished while keeping Defcon at 5 without playing CIA, UN or Marshall Plan, which leaves us plenty of time to decide on how to handle those cards.


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Kris Wei
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mpatnik wrote:

I see the strategy here, but it seems risky. How do you respond if the US makes it to Thailand or controls S. Korea and decides to gamble on spacing the Korean War? Do you just accept Asia domination?

Also, with 12 ops in the first 5 AR, couldn't the US end up with India, Pakistan, Egypt, Syria and Thailand? With a really good hand of 15 ops between 5 cards, they could take France as well. By the time AR6 comes around you could wind up behind in battlegrounds in all 3 regions. Thoughts?

As for my particular hand, how would you handle the CIA aspect of it? Won't you most likely be playing that before AR6, meaning that you can't stop defcon from going down before you coup Italy? I guess you could UN CIA, play China and coup Italy on AR6 with triggered Marshall Plan, but I don't really like that sequence.


Respond controlling SK: If you don't have Asia Scoring, Coup Paki with your FREE 4(if you don't have, China then) - I don't think a US player would control SK without Asia scoring.

Will you go Thailand with DEFCON 5, And what is Syria for? If USSR don't have events to break any region, being dominated is a natural result, but US might try to lower DEFCON before entering Thailand, and then their action rounds might be not enough.

I'll play CIA maybe earlier than you, UN Intervention should be only used on 4ops in Early War if you don't have 5-yp or suicide risk. AR6 coup is not that rigid: if DEFCON at 5:Italy; if at 4:Thailand/Pakistan, if at 3: Panama/Iran.

Also, that AR2 move is not tough: US just coup Pakistan, if failed, again, then he still have the priority of Thailand, and with Laos, you can't dominate Asia.
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Michael Patnik
United States
Pennsylvania
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sankt wrote:
And what is Syria for?


Meant Libya. Whoops. blush

sankt wrote:
Will you go Thailand with DEFCON 5


I think many US players would early in the turn, figuring they will get the last coup in Asia. Especially if they already were in Pakistan.

sankt wrote:
Also, that AR2 move is not tough: US just coup Pakistan, if failed, again, then he still have the priority of Thailand, and with Laos, you can't dominate Asia.


I would probably coup Pakistan back as USSR. As USA, this means you're letting the USSR have Pakistan and India with South Korea still up for grabs, all in exchange for Thailand? That seems like a steep price.
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Kris Wei
China
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mpatnik wrote:

I would probably coup Pakistan back as USSR. As USA, this means you're letting the USSR have Pakistan and India with South Korea still up for grabs, all in exchange for Thailand? That seems like a steep price.


I'm very happy to accept this fact as US, since you gave China, and still not dominate Asia, and the only way you put influence now is India/Burma, which have extremely low efficiency. Also, lower DEFCON protects Panama.
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ray donovan
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It's hard to comment on your opponment play without knowing his exactly hand but at least i dislike the way he managed his coups this round.

He couped AR6 with a 3ops card an Irak already controled, that's kind of a waste because he cant take off all of your influences anymore.

Imo it would be better for him to delay his de-gaulle play. He should have instead coup Irak first (add 1 inf in costa rica before if possible) with a 3ops when you had only 1 influence in it, giving him a chance to cut your acces of this area).

By doing this he also dont have to be worry about military points anymore and can do the best moove in AR6 in this situation: breaking control of Korea.
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Michael Patnik
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inimora wrote:
It's hard to comment on your opponment play without knowing his exactly hand but at least i dislike the way he managed his coups this round.

He couped AR6 with a 3ops card an Irak already controled, that's kind of a waste because he cant take off all of your influences anymore.

Imo it would be better for him to delay his de-gaulle play. He should have instead coup Irak first (add 1 inf in costa rica before if possible) with a 3ops when you had only 1 influence in it, giving him a chance to cut your acces of this area).

By doing this he also dont have to be worry about military points anymore and can do the best moove in AR6 in this situation: breaking control of Korea.


I'm coming to see that many good players have radically different priorities. The first time that I played against someone playing "sankt" style, I started a thread about it because it was so strange (to me) AND effective. It's very hard to comment on his side of the game without his hand AND his commentary.

I think he couped Iraq with 2ops (not 3) on AR6. I'm pretty sure this was for mil-ops and defcon reasons, not looking for a result. I suspect that he held D&C, which he headlined, planning on taking Thailand on AR1 and locking me out of a bg coup. The reason that he didn't coup earlier is because I placed 1 inf into Afghanistan on AR2. With him not having I/P war, if he lowers defcon before AR6, I'm free to take Pakistan with a 2ops and cut him off from Western Asia.

As for the first coup with CIA, I wouldn't have lowered defcon there unless I planned on taking Pakistan with my next play and chancing the I/P war. If I had a 3 op, I might have couped, then placed 2 Pakistan, 1 Afghanistan to cut the I/P war to 1/6.
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