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Subject: Saturday 5er rematch rss

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Dan Freedman
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The players:
Carlos, MikeA, MikeM, Greg, and myself.
The version:
Hasbro/AH version with cool plastic minis.
The setup:
All of us except MikeA had played about a month ago with Carlos getting the win. We all had a great time and immediately planned to schedule another game. Finally the day was here!
Here were the cards I drew:
Greater Events: Leader, Minor Empire: Hittites, Minor Empire: Fujiwara
Lesser Events: Naval Power, Crusades, Migrants: Africa, Treachery, Allies, Kingdom: Thai, Kingdom: Mali
The card draw definitely hemmed me in to playing cards on certain turn. Especially on turns 5 and 6. This was going to be interesting. I won the die roll to go first.

Epoch I: Drawing first I draw Babylonia and keep. Played Minor Empire: Hittites
All the Epoch I empires are about the same so I figured I might as well keep it. It would be positioned next to a capital assuming Sumeria was drawn. Since Babylonia goes 4th in the turn order and is really the last Middle East empire to appear in Epoch I, there was a good chance of some of my units surviving until Epoch II. The battle did not go well for the Hittites. They could not even get out of Eastern Anatolia (their start space). The Babylonians did a little better and were able to sack the Sumerian capital (owned by Carlos). Combine those points with the Hittites and I was able to secure the lead by a few VPs. Woohoo, I earned the preeminence marker.

Epoch II: Drawing last, I was handed the Chou Dynasty. Played cards: None
MikeA had previously played the Shang Dynasty, so he was alone in the Far East. I tried for dominance in the Far East since there weren't many other points to obtain...and was able to secure it. The Chang Dynasty started with only 3 units so I was able to take them out plus send a spare unit into SE Asia. Unfortunately, Assyria was in play this Epoch. They had seen to it (right before my turn) that both my Hittite and Babylonian capitals from Epoch I were sacked. I believe all my Epoch I pieces had already been wiped off the map by Carlos. Karma's a bitch huh? That's what I get for wiping out his Sumerian capital. heh. I scored very little this round and I dropped from 1st to 4th just like that. Luckily, the Chou Dynasty is the only empire that deploys in the Far East this epoch. Now I hope to get an early empire in Epoch III to score dominance again in the Far East...or the Romans. I believe Greg led at this point.

Epoch III: Drawing second, I drew Hsuing-Nu and passed it to Carlos. Sorry Carlos, but Greg already had an empire (from MikeM who drew 1st). I get passed Maurya.
Played cards: Allies
Well I'd like to have the Romans or Macedonians, but Maurya is fine. They go 3rd...right before the Han Dynasty who I know will wipe out my units in China. Also, assuming the Romans and/or Macedonians come out, I can keep the bullseye off me and stay safely in 2nd place. Using Allies, I'm able to minimize losses and score well with dominance in India, China, and SE Asia, and presence in the Middle East. Wow, the Maurya's kick butt. Uh-oh...that was probably a mistake because... Empires not played: Macedonians & Romans!!! I just surged from 4th back into 1st place by several VPs. Nooo, I didn't want the Epoch IV bullseye (and the Khmers that usually go hand in hand w/it). On top of that, as expected, all my armies in China are wiped out by the MikeA's Han Dynasty and Carlos's Hsuing-Nu. Oh well, at least I get another pre-eminence marker.

Epoch IV: Drawing last. It appears luck is on my side. No one has passed me the Khmers. I get to draw for my own empire! And the draw is.....drum roll....the Khmers. Argh! I later find out that both the Arabs and Huns were still in the deck. These are probably the best 2 empires in the epoch. Feast or famine...and I go hungry. No one at the table sheds a tear for me though.
Cards played: Treachery, Migrants: Africa
As most of you know, the Khmers suck!!! They only get 5 armies and go last in the Epoch. So, by the time my turn comes around, I have 1 army left on the map...a lone Mauryian in India. I'm able invade china via sea (treachery) and gain presence there. I'm also able to gain control in SE Asia. Weak. I go from having a 3 point lead to being in 5th place by like 20 points or so. Ouch. Usually the Khmers are needed to so that the Roman player from Epoch III can be reeled back into the pack. Considering I have little to no armies on the board and I'm 20 points out of 4th place, I have my work cut out. Gonna have to get lucky.
Empires not played: Arabs & Huns (or maybe it was Byzantines...can't remember)

Epoch V:
Drawing first. I draw the Seljuk Turks and keep.
Cards played: Minor Empire: Fujiwara, Kingdom: Mali
I debated for a bit on whether to keep the Turks or pass them. I didn't like how they go 2nd-to-last in the turn and they are followed by the Mongols (right on their heels). But there were worse things to get, and I had very few units on the map anyway. So the Turks it is. I go ahead and take all of Japan with the Minor Empire card. And with my 3rd unit in Africa (Kingdom: Mali) secure dominance there. Next, what to do with the Turks? The Mongols (Greg) are coming up and China is worth a ton of points. There must be 4 monuments in China along with 2 or 3 capitals. It's just too juicy a target for the Mongols. So I decide to go for the Middle East so that my units will live longer. The Middle East is worth less as the game progresses and China is worth more. But there were several monuments in the Middle East. Also, looking at the chart, there aren't any empires starting in the Middle East. So later in the game, it would be a sacrifice for a nation to try to steer into the Middle East. I made my sacrifice now and my Turks stormed as far as the Levant before being shut down at Palestine and the gates of Egypt. I was only able to get control in Middle East. It appears the Turks just did not have much fight in them. Out of the 12 units received, I think one-third were taken as casualties during the invasion. But I ended with presence in Eurasia, India, and SE Asia. Along with a mess of monuments and dominance of Africa, I did ok. I scored enough to barely get out of last place and up into 4th place. But there is still a large gap between 4th and 3rd place.
Empires not played: Vikings, Franks?

Epoch VI: Drawing second. I draw Spain and keep!! I had to get lucky and did.
Cards played: Crusade, Kingdom: Thai
The Crusade card paid dividends. As I had the Levant from the previous epoch I was able to land there and take Palestine with ease securing me a city and fort.

When I drew Spain, I wasn't sure if I should keep it. I don't know why I hesitated. It should have been a no-brainer, but I didn't see how good they were until my turn rolled around. They have fleets everywhere! Too bad I didn't have reallocation. They go 2nd-to-last so that's not great. But because I'm in 4th place + my units are in desolate locations, I'm not targetted too badly. Also it becomes obvious that the last place nation isn't in play (Mughals). That means all of my VI units will survive to VII. Sweet. I spread out using fleets to drop units into North and South America. I'm able to beat up on the leader (Greg), knock him out of Northern Europe. He had deployed 9 forts along with his Portuguese units so I couldn't damage him VI units too much. But I think I did knock him out of Portugal (mutual elimination). Most of my focus is in Northern Europe since it is worth so many points. This was a pretty good setup for me going into the final turn. The VPs are totalled and I'm still in 4th place. But the game is much tighter. I'm only a few points away from 2nd. Greg was still riding the success from the Mongols and Portugal in epoch V/VI giving him about a 10-15 point lead over the pack.
Empires not played: Mughals, (not sure)

Epoch VII: Drawing second in the all-important Epoch. MikeM draws first (Britain) and keeps. I draw 2nd and draw the US. Ugh. I decide to give it to the leader (Greg). Carlos draws Manchu Dynasty and gives it to me. MikeA draws Germany and gives it to Carlos. Greg hands MikeA Netherlands.
Cards played: Leader, Naval Power (worthless)
So when the smoke clears, I get to go twice in a row! Spain, then Manchu (no Mughals or Russia in play). This empire matches my needs perfectly. I have no one in the Far East. My units hop over the Great Wall and wreck havoc in the Far East, securing me several monuments. They make it as far as SE Asia before running out of steam. Because I got to go twice in a row, I have presence or better in every area (except Australia). I had control in Far East, SE Asia, Middle East, Northern Europe. Also I still had dominance in Africa. But what really scored me a lot of points were the possession of an insane amout of monuments and capitals. The Epoch VII tally was an obscene 60-something points. Even so, I really felt it wasn't going to be good enough to hold up. It was going to be up to Greg (US) to catch me. Fortunately, I had saddled him with the US. And the US goes next-to-last. His previous turns had seen him already build up in the Americas. So the US didn't match his needs. Most importantly, the US has no access to Europe. And what he really needed was to move into Northern Europe as it scores the most points in Epoch VII. So he was really hamstrung on the last turn. He sent his units to the Far East, SE Asia and maybe Australia. But in the end he fell just shy.
Not played: France, Russia

The final tally:
Dan: 189 + 12 preminence = 201
Greg: (including a couple preminence) 195
MikeA: ~183 + 11 preminence = 194
MikeM: ~190
Carlos: ~175

History of the World is a lot of fun. This game sure gives you a lot of highs and lows. And sometimes a bad play early on can be a blessing in disguise. It seems a player is never really out of it.

 
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Mike Mayer
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How'd you remember so much, Dan?

But you messed up a bit at the end. I drew Britian (not France) in the seventh. I remember vividly because it was the only epoch all game I got an Empire that wasn't in the bottom two strength-wise. I think the game was laughing at me at that point. But win, lose, or suck, it's a great game. Thanks for the report.

 
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Kevin Gonzalez
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Thanks for an excellent report. It makes me want to dig this game out and get it to the table...
 
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Dan Freedman
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Mike Mayer wrote:
How'd you remember so much, Dan?

But you messed up a bit at the end. I drew Britian (not France) in the seventh. I remember vividly because it was the only epoch all game I got an Empire that wasn't in the bottom two strength-wise. I think the game was laughing at me at that point. But win, lose, or suck, it's a great game. Thanks for the report.


Doh, I knew it was either Britain or France because you kept it. I'll edit.

You did seem to get hamstrung by the empires. Strange because you drew early in several epochs.

But at least you get bragging rights with your Minoan (on Crete) Epoch I unit/capital surviving until the end. That unit alone was worth probably 20 points.
 
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