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Subject: "How to Win:" Baffling Grand Slam Objectives rss

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John Griffey
United States
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The low reward in Victory Levels (i.e., victory points) for Wacht am Rhein is baffling. My lawyer friend and I puzzled on it for a while to make sense of it. Bigger risks should offer bigger potential rewards. But with the Grand Slam (Wacht am Rhein) gambit, you get high risks with low rewards:

The German player declares victory if at the end of any German player turn, a supplied (3.5) German army unit (a detached corps unit is not sufficient) occupies each of Antwerp or Brussels and Liege or Namur. Victory Levels are awarded as follows:

+1 VL: for each of Antwerp, Brussels (these two only count if the Germans declared victory), Liege, Namur (these two only count at the end of the game if the Germans did not declare victory)if the Germans occupy it with a supplied German army unit.

-1 VL for failing to declare victory.
It says the German player must declare victory when he meets the necessary conditions. Then it says that if the Germans declare victory, Liege and Namur don't add a VL each. "[T]hese two only count at the end of the game if the Germans did not declare victory."

So, if you declare victory with supplied armies in Brussels and Namur, you gain 1 VL. On the other hand, if the game goes all eight turns, you gain nothing for Antwerp or Brussels, but you gain 1 VL each for Namur and Liege, then subtract 1 VL for failing to declare victory; maximum net: 1 VL. So you get the same 1 VL for the less decisive victory of controlling Liege and Namur as you get for the far more decisive victory of controlling Namur and Brussels. You can gain a maximum 2 VL in the Grand Slam by declaring victory by controlling both Antwerp and Brussels, and at least one of either Namur or Brussels.

Case Martin: at game end you can get a maximum of 2 VL, one 1 VL for controlling Luxembourg City, and 1 VL for either Antwerp, Namur, or Liege.

Operation Aachen: at game end you can get a maximum of 1 VL, by controlling Aachen and either Liege, Namur, or Antwerp.

You also get +1 VL with Operation Aachen or Case Martin for bluffing the Allies into bringing in the wrong reinforcements, 3rd Army and the two Allied Strategic Reserve corps, respectively.

Bottom line: Maximum victory is 3 VL in Case Martin, 2 VL in Operation Aachen, and 2 VL in Wacht am Rhein.

For Wacht am Rhein, it would make more sense simply to give 1 VL each for Antwerp, Brussels, Liege, and Namur, either when victory is declared or at game end.

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