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Subject: First game - the tears of Maria rss

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Mark Siford
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So this hit the table recently for its first outing. We have a big gaming group but a smaller subgroup likes these heavier war games so after a quick 15 minute recap of the major rules Craig took France, Damon the Prussians and Pragmatics, whilst I was directing Austria.

Austria initially marched Arenberg south and east towards Bavaria which meant Flanders was wide open. France took the bait and pushed hard northwards, taking many of them before the Pragmatics first checked then turned back the French attack stopping an early win for Craig.

Meanwhile Austria danced with Prussia, mostly just careful retreating. I kept losing battles by 1 or 2 and holding onto some of those Silesian fortresses but they gradually fell and with two large French armies also coming in from Bavaria, Austria was in big trouble.

To counter this Austria put some effort into politics and France was -1 card due to some troubles in Italy. Traun was frog marched westwards with a big 7 army stack and he pushed to the south of Bavaria attempting to steal a few fortresses and divert the French. Despite a massive card advantage, the sole Bavarian army defender decisively defeated Traun in battle twice! (they were super strong in spades and clubs) and he was left limping back to Austria with only 1 army.

In the north the Prussians now had all of Silesia and only some clever Hussar positioning and a single army under Neipperg threatening the supply train temporarily halted the Prussians. This allowed Arenberg the chance to take many French fortresses in the south which were undefended, Craig rightly judging that it was better to go for the win than to try to defend on three fronts.

France nearly won it again in Turn 5 (1742) needing to win one more decisive battle and take a fortress. They did neither, winning the battle only by 1 (2 tokens left in the pool). This was also the turn of the imperial election and given Austria could now win (1 left in pool) Prussia threw its weight behind Louis meaning all three players had only one victory token left in their pool at the end of Turn 5 (Prags had 4 I think).

With France spent and Austria behind Prussia in the action stage, it meant Prussia could calmly annihilate the last Austrian force in the north and secure victory in Turn 6. Ignoring setup and the rules discussion it was probably about 3 hours in total which made for a great first outing. I expect the game would flow faster next time although we might spend more time on diplomacy.

Card combat is surprisingly tense and army movement quite subtle. All agreed it looked fantastic on the table and we did feel a bit like European rulers, sipping our brandy whilst weightily deciding the fate of nations.



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Roger Reisinger
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Great writeup of a great game.

We've only logged a few games but also find it hard to compete as Austria. We suffer the same type of fate where either France/ Austria go at it and leave room for a Prussian win, or Prussia/ Austria go at it, leaving the game vulnerable to the French. An interesting dynamic and one that has been fun to try and figure out.
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Jim F
United Kingdom
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Where the heck did this interest in WW1 come from?
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Three's a crowd...
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Marcus
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Not with a lass like Maria.
 
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