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Subject: First time plays rss

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Ole Richard Tuft
Norway
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6 players, base QG new to all except for 2 solo games on my part. Rules explanation went well, except for some initial confusion regarding fleet builds. We used a home brewed rule of exchanging one of your initial 10 cards for a basic build/battle.

Game 1

I drew Soviet Union in game 1, and with an opening hand containing Defence of The Motherland, Stalingrad, Evac Council and General Winter, I was pretty confident of putting up stiff resistance. Unfortunately, the US player discarded Murmansk Convoy.

UK started very slowly, with a navy and McKenzie King, before proceeding to connect to Canada. US was dithering a bit, before deciding to head for Japan. Not good news for the communists, and while Italy happily claimed the Med surroundings, Germany was gearing up. By round 6, the entire trifecta was in effect, and soon the pressure was mounting.

UK turned its attention towards North Africa, but could make little progress, and Italian East Africa had enabled Italy to land in India. Japan was hauling 7 points a turn from China, Australia and a status card, while keeping the US fleets at bay.

By round 12, I was relying on Evac council and an army in Khazakstan to stay alive, having hit the Germans with 2 General Winters and 2 army-saving responses. Blitzkrieg had been Enigma'd, and the Germans were also running out of steam. The UK had finally forced their way into North Africa, but it was too late. Italy had racked up points from statuses, the US had stalled out due to lack of navy cards and unwillingness to discard aggressively, and axis subs put on the finishing touch for a +30 point win.

Game 2

This game saw me running Japan, with everyone except UK switched around. I had a good starting hand, grabbed Australia in round 4, and India in round 6 (Destroyer Transport). The UK player was determined not to repeat his slow start, and starting hitting Western Europe by turn 2! Germany started slowly, and with the UK aided by US Free French & Lend-Lease, things looked grim for the Axis in Europe: The Brits had taken Western Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, while the Soviets stood in Eastern Europe. Both Germany and Italy was confined to their starting spaces at around round 6.

Having picked up China too, I was soon collecting 9 points each round, but now the Allies turned their attention towards me. A Soviet army appeared in Mongolia and attacked China, while the Brits kicked me out of India. I battled away two US fleets in the North Pacific, but I was on the verge of losing control of the seas. At this point, the Allies made their fatal mistake: A time-consuming joint US/UK operation against Australia.

As the pressure on them petered out, both Germany and Italy had gradually unravelled. Bias for Action and Dive Bombers hit the table, with the Soviets being pushed back. UK lost Western Europe, North Africa, and, while battling in Australia, control of the North Sea. Soon, UK proper was empty, and reduced to 0 points. The reds were almost wiped out, a remnant now and then reappearing in Moscow.

I managed to regain China, and the breather provided by allied focus on Australia enabled me to stay in control in the Sea of Japan. By round 16 the writing was on the wall, and on round 18, the allied cause was recognized to be hopeless.

---------

Though I had mentioned in my teaching of the game that most US players tended to go towards Europe, the Japan point-machine proved to be a tempting target in both games. In game 2, I think the US player could be forgiven for believing that the situation in Europe was somewhat under control.

Everybody had a good time, and look forward to new plays of QG.
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Simon Croquet
France
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Thanks for your session report. Just a quick question because it bothers me: how did you manage to play 2 General Winter against Germany in Game 1?

 
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Ole Richard Tuft
Norway
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Wow. Your question made me wonder if there was something wrong with my Soviet deck, and I checked the card list in the files section. I have 2 General Winter, and no Vasilevsky Takes Command!
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Ian Brody
United States
Woodstock
New York
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uh oh. Hate it when I hear about mispacks. Send me an email (ian @ grigglinggames.com) and I'll send you a replacement. I leave for Essen on Friday morning so please email soon!
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Ole Richard Tuft
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Having checked all the decks, there is also 2 x Malta Submarines, and no King Peter of Yugoslavia in the UK deck. Thanks Ian, I'll send you a mail shortly!
 
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Tom Shydler
United States
Las Vegas
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Hmmm, rather unusual for the Axis to win both first time games. Allies are the definite favorites for starting plays.
 
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Ole Richard Tuft
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Well, the UK got no early India or Australia in either game, and the US went after Japan in both. I think it may be hard to comprehend just how arduous it is for the US to break down Japan, or even make a dent in the Japanese point generation until you have tried or seen someone try it. To me, going the pacific route as the US, without at least some UK support, looks extremely time-consuming unless Japan has stumbled early.
 
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Ole Richard Tuft
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Two more plays, this time with the correct decks (thanks, Ian!), same crew of 6 as the last time. I'll just stick them in this thread.

Game 3

Played Italy in this one, and didn't have a great opening hand. No point-generating statuses, so I ended up building a couple of armies and laying down a couple of responses. Germany also started somewhat slow, with no part of the trifecta in hand. The Soviets had Guards, Defence of The Motherland and Women Conscripts in play by the time Blitzkrieg hit the table.

UK opened with Increased Commonwealth Support, grabbing India, while Japan went for China. Then things heated up in the east: UK knocked out the Japanese army in China with Ledo and Burma roads, and a smiling US player followed it up with American Volunteer Group Expands, providing the newly recruited Szechuan army with supply. UK Singapore soon followed, and a series of battles for China followed, with a frustrated Japanese player not backing down.

The Germans, now with Bias for Action, and somewhat aided by my armies and responses, managed to put the Soviets on the defensive, but I was soon getting frustrated, with a hand choked by land battles, and no build army in sight. I was making meek plays of 1-point generating statuses, economic warfare, etc. As things were turning ugly in the east, I tried to turn Germany towards UK, but he was (understandably) not keen on hitting the seas.

The China wars against both the UK and the US soon exhausted Japan's land battling capabilities, and he was reduced to playing response cards. The UK had grabbed Australia, and the allies were steaming ahead on points. A final, desperate attempt by Germany to knock the USSR out seemed to be on the verge of success, until Wartime Production enabled the US to march an army into Moscow, propping up the Soviet remnant. That prompted an axis resignation, on turn 12.

Game 4

With a slow start in Europe, I took a wait-and-see approach with the US, getting down Amphibious Landings. The UK went for Australia, and I decided to go for Szechuan, to slow down the Japanese. Soon, the UK were swarming in Asia, with Dutch East Indies, and Commonwealth Support putting them in India.

In Europe, developments were alarming. The UK navy in the North Sea was sunk, and the USSR, though well equipped for hard times with Stavka Evac and Defence of the Motherland, was being pushed back. Italy was racking up point-generating statuses and had taken both North Africa and the Middle East. I managed to prop up a fleet-starved UK, and then proceeded to hit Western Europe for a couple of turns. After further adventures in Asia, the UK also made an appearance in Europe, throwing another punch at Western Europe. Though Moscow briefly fell, General Winter and the D-day attempts enabled the USSR to stabilize.

In Asia, Japan had battled through two of my armies to shut down Szechuan, and he was now creeping towards India. Discarding heavily, he managed to grab it, but an event kicked him out of China, and as he did not managed to replace it, he was grinding to a halt. After a while, he did make a final, desperate feint towards the US coast, but it was just a bluff. The war would be decided in Europe, where standstill had set in: Both the UK and myself were lacking land battles, Western Europe was solidly defended, Jet Fighters and Fortess Europe were down, and the USSR still a bit weak. The Axis were 25 points ahead.

Gradually, the allies managed to put the hurt on Germany and Italy. Enigma whacked Blitzkrieg, the only trifecta piece in play, while US bombers based in Scandinavia pounded Italy to oblivion. King Peter made a sudden appearance in Yugoslavia, causing some supply worries for the axis, and the USSR were building up. A navy in the Baltic enabled me to do an Amphibious Landing in Germany. I was kicked out, but Soviet Frontal Assaults now swept everything before them, and I was soon back in. Italy was completely wiped out, the UK landed in Western Europe, and German supply crumbled, killing off the Africa Corps. US Heavy Bombers hit the now empty and cardless Italy for -5 points, giving the allies the point lead and prompting an axis resignation on turn 18.



 
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