David Benito Richards
Hello all, I have seen quite a few posts over here complaining about the "injustice" of this game in some sessions. Well, let me tell you about a session where the game proved to be very fair. Be warned: this was not an example of exactly optimal gameplay.
This was my and my friend's third game of TS. We had never got as far as the Late War. I took the US. We used the Optional Cards.
The score was quite close to 0 VPs on turns 1 - 4. Turn 1 saw a "Scramble for Europe", with both sides centering on this continent, and the Europe Scoring card showing up at the end of the turn. Turn 2 was the "Scramble for Asia". Turn 3, I can't quite remember.
Turn 4 was the "Scramble for the Middle East" (for short, "ME"), where nobody had the ME Scoring Card, but we both thought the other player had it. This was a major turning point in the Cold War, as, by the end of the turn, I managed to secure 4 BGs (Irak, Israel, Egypt and Libya) and a couple other countries, to the USSR's 0 controlled countries in the region.
Then, on the Headline Phase of turn 5, my high-tech satellites read the headlines of PRAVDA before it was even published, and told me the USSR would not Headline anything ME-related. (I was on box 4 of the Space Race, the USSR was on box 1 or 2 by this time). So BANG! the US Headlined ME Scoring, for a massive +9 VPs. (5 for Domination +4 BGs, to the USSR's 0).
The game continued during turns 5 - 7, with the US keeping a 9 VP lead.
Then, the Late War cards were added to the deck at the start of turn 8. We were both entering uncharted territory, as we had never got this far before, and had not studied the decks.
Nothing of consequence occured in the Headline Phase. AR 1 saw the usual Soviet BG coup to lower DEFCON to 2. Then, USSR AR 2, play of WARGAMES to place 4 Influence in several countries. I played something else, but my mind started to race... I thought I was on to something good, but I couldn't quite make it... then USSR AR 3, then US AR 3 and EUREKA!. I had this card called STAR WARS, and still had an edge in the Space Race so: US AR 3, US plays STAR WARS event, retrieves WARGAMES from the discard pile, and wins the game by 3 VPs (9-6 = 3).
I have to say we were both very surprised by this turn of events. Then my friend said, well, OK you've won this game, but... wouldn't you feel more accomplished if we played this very interesting game all the way to final scoring? Don't you think this is bit of an abrupt, cheesy shortcut to victory? Let's assume you played something else and carry on with the game. I admit you won once, let's assume this is a second game.
Initially I thought, hey, this is a bit like chess, where you need at least 2 pieces to achieve a check-mate, though not both need be yours. And the USSR had played a big part in their WARGAMES defeat (lowering DEFCON to 2 and then playing WARGAMES for Ops). But, after thinking for a couple of minutes, I agreed with my friend and played ARMS RACE for 3 VPs instead of WARGAMES.
Thus, we continued through the Late War, with the USSR going all-out for Africa and South America, and me going "for the throat" in Europe. In final scoring, after the dust had settled, USSR Controlled South America and Dominated Africa, but the US Dominated Europe and the ME. I won by exactly 9 VPs. Beautiful. That's Justice! We both agreed this victory gave much more of a sense of accomplishment than the WARGAMES ending.
So now you know how the US won the same game twice.
The Star Wars/Wargames combo is one that will be well known to you after a few more games, like any CDG knowledge of the deck is very important in TS.
Wargames is a card that can annoy the first time you lose to it, or even the first time you win with it if you are enjoying the game, but it should be regarded in the context of the time period TS covers, it represents some of the brinksmanship that went on, and now you know it is in the deck you can prepare for it.
Having said that, I think you probably did the right thing to continue on and win the game the second time. After all what is the purpose of a game but to have fun? Winning can just be a nice bonus
- Last edited Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:42 pm (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:41 pm