This is the final phase of my game (as USA) against a strong opponent, in which (in large part due to luck) I managed to overcome a poor start and pull out a win.

You can find the Early War phase of this game here and turns 4-6 here.

State of the world after turn 6:

DeDaan - after turn 6

Turn 7:

My cards:

#77   Ops 3: ‚Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You… * (USA)
#50   Ops 4: ‚We Will Bury You’ * (USSR)
#45   Ops 1: Summit
#7     Ops 3: Socialist Governments (USSR)
#58   Ops 3: Cultural Revolution * (USSR)
#19   Ops 1: Truman Doctrine * (USA)
#20   Ops 2: Olympic Games
#78   Ops 3: Alliance for Progress * (USA)
#3:    Middle East Scoring

 

It’s great I got Alliance for Progress back, but overall my hand is below average. There are at least 4 cards I would like to get rid of. Too bad there aren’t five – unfortunately, he got Quagmire, which means good bye NORAD. Since I have so many poor cards and no alternative decent headline, I decide to use „Ask Not…” to dump the ballast. As for planning for this round, too much depends on what will Mr Kennedy get me and how soon will I be able to get out of Quagmire, to make any asumptions now.

** Turn 7 Headline Phase **

Soviet Headline Card: #42  Ops 3: Quagmire * (USSR)
American Headline Card: #77  Ops 3: ‚Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You… * (USA)

USA Headline Event: #77  Ops 3: ‚Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You… * (USA)

The Americans play the following card as an Event:
#77  Ops 3: ‚Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You… * (USA)

** The ‚Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You… card is permanently removed. **

The American player discards the following cards to be replaced:
#50  Ops 4: ‚We Will Bury You’ * (USSR)
#45  Ops 1: Summit
#7  Ops 3: Socialist Governments (USSR)
#3: Middle East Scoring

USSR Headline Event: #42  Ops 3: Quagmire * (USSR)

The Soviets use the Quagmire card as an Event:

** The Quagmire card is permanently removed. **

On the next action round, US player must discard an Operations card worth
2 or more and roll less than 5.  Repeat each US player phase until successful
or no appropriate cards remain.  If out of appropriate cards, the US player may
only play scoring cards until the next turn.

My new hand:

#75  Ops 2: Liberation Theology (USSR)
#58  Ops 3: Cultural Revolution * (USSR)
#5    Ops 3: Five Year Plan (USA)
#43  Ops 3: SALT Negotiations *
#19  Ops 1: Truman Doctrine * (USA)
#20  Ops 2: Olympic Games
#78  Ops 3: Alliance for Progress * (USA)
#1:   Asia Scoring

 

That’s better. Asia Scoring is unfortunate, as this is just a waste of round, but apart from that all is well. Even Liberation Theology – a perfect candidate to discard for Quagmire. Ok, let’s see what mischief will he be up to while I’m asleep.

** Turn 7 Action Phase **

Turn 7, USSR action round 1

The Soviets play the following card for a coup attempt:
#40  Ops 3: Cuban Missile Crisis *
Coup attempt in Venezuela (stability 2):
** USSR die roll = 2 (+3) = 5
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 1.
American influence in Venezuela reduced by 1, now at 2
DEFCON Level lowered to 2
Soviet Military Operations for this turn increased to 3

Alas, no luck… But still, he had only 33% chance to get any influence into Venezuela with his 3 OPs. Ok, let’s roll out of this mess.

Turn 7, USA action round 1
The USA discards the following card because of Quagmire:
#75  Ops 2: Liberation Theology (USSR)
Quagmire ends on a die roll of 1-4: ** Die Roll = 1 — The Quagmire is over!

Turn 7, USSR action round 2

The Soviets play the following card for a coup attempt:
#39  Ops 3: Arms Race
Coup attempt in Colombia (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 3 (+3) = 6
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 4.
American influence in Colombia reduced by 3, now at 0
Soviet influence in Colombia increased by 1, now at 1
Soviet Military Operations for this turn increased to 5

He stole Colombia from me, but I am free from Quagmire and thus able to repel his attack on Panama and/or Venezuela.

In hindsight, I should have realized that there is a high change he has South America Scoring and just coup Colombia. Instead, I just expanded from Venezuela and prepared realignment in Cuba. Having Alliance for Progress also influenced my decision to go for the American battlegrounds, but still, I should have couped first. I used Cultural Revolution, just in case he decides to play China card later this turn. That’s quite likely since he probably doesn’t have any 4 OPs cards – if he had, he would have used it to coup Venezuela in AR1.

Turn 7, USA action round 2
The Americans play the following card for Ops
#58  Ops 3: Cultural Revolution * (USSR)
They elect to have the Soviet event occur first.

** The Cultural Revolution card is permanently removed. **

VPs down 1, now at 9

The Americans use the Cultural Revolution card to place influence:
2 USA influence added to Brazil, now at 2
1 USA influence added to Nicaragua, now at 1

Turn 7, USSR action round 3

The Soviets play the following card as an Event:
#35: South America Scoring

*** Scoring in South America ***
USSR:  2(presence)  = 2
USA:  2(presence) +2(battlegrounds)  = 4
VPs up 2, now at 11

Yeah, I should have seen it coming. Even if I wasn’t able to prevent it in the long run, I could have at least tried to force him to play some unfavorable card. I have only one problem/obligation on my hand (Asia Scoring), so he is likely to have more and thus likely to lose a coup war.

However, playing the Scoring card means he failed to react on me getting a good realignment position against Cuba. That’s not likely to last for long, so I use this opportunity to try to force him out of there – perhaps I’ll even get control in Central America?

Turn 7, USA action round 3

The Americans play the following card for realignment rolls:
#5  Ops 3: Five Year Plan (USA)

Realignment roll in Cuba: USA modifier = +2, USSR modifier = +1
** USA die roll = 6 (+2) = 8
** USSR die roll = 1 (+1) = 2
Soviet influence in Cuba reduced by 3, now at 0

Realignment roll in Tunisia: USA modifier = +2, USSR modifier = +1
** USA die roll = 5 (+2) = 7
** USSR die roll = 2 (+1) = 3
Soviet influence in Tunisia reduced by 2, now at 0

Realignment roll in Colombia: USA modifier = +2, USSR modifier = +1
** USA die roll = 2 (+2) = 4
** USSR die roll = 4 (+1) = 5

Turn 7, USSR action round 4
The Soviets play the following card for Ops
#22  Ops 2: Independent Reds * (USA)
They elect to have the American event occur first.

** The Independent Reds card is permanently removed. **

American influence in Romania now at 3

The Soviets use the Independent Reds card for a coup attempt:
Coup attempt in Nicaragua (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 2 (+2) = 4
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 2.
American influence in Nicaragua reduced by 1, now at 0
Soviet influence in Nicaragua increased by 1, now at 1

Nice :-) Not only Cuba is red-free, I also managed to get rid of the surprisingly annoying Tunisia. He responded reasonably by regaining access to Cuba while also gaining one more country overall. Helpful if he wants to stop my control in Central America.

Turn 7, USA action round 4

The Americans play the following card to place influence:
#43  Ops 3: SALT Negotiations *
3 USA influence added to Cuba, now at 3

Turn 7, USSR action round 5

The Soviets play the following card to place influence:
#46  Ops 2: How I Learned to Stop Worrying *
2 USSR influence added to Honduras, now at 2

I didn’t remove him from Cuba only to give it back to him on the first opportunity, so I take control of the island. This is a risky move, since any US influence on Cuba makes Ortega a DEFCON suicide card, so getting it and Gunman in turn 8 can kill me. However, I’m going for the auto-win and so I need Victory Points. He responded by taking one more country, denying me control.

Ok, let’s make him sweat :-)

Turn 7, USA action round 5

The Americans play the following card for a coup attempt:
#20  Ops 2: Olympic Games
Coup attempt in Nicaragua (stability 1):
** USA die roll = 5 (+2) = 7
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 5.
Soviet influence in Nicaragua reduced by 1, now at 0
American influence in Nicaragua increased by 4, now at 4
American Military Operations for this turn increased to 2

Turn 7, USSR action round 6

The Soviets play the following card for a coup attempt:
#6  Ops 4: The China Card
Coup attempt in Nicaragua (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 5 (+4) = 9
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 7.
American influence in Nicaragua reduced by 4, now at 0
Soviet influence in Nicaragua increased by 3, now at 3

The China card! Now that’s some good news. This is a serious overkill on his part (but since Central America Scoring would end the game now I kind of understand his motives), because this is an extra protection for me in case I get too many problematic cards in the next turn.

I know he has Bear Trap and OAS founded, so he doesn’t have many good moves, but I think this is as far as my pressure can get me. I still have to play Asia Scoring and Alliance for Progress would be wasted played for ops.

Turn 7, USA action round 6

The Americans play the following card as an Event:
#1: Asia Scoring

*** Scoring in Asia ***
USSR:  3(presence) +3(battlegrounds)  = 6
USA:  3(presence) +3(battlegrounds) +1(adj. to USSR)  = 7
VPs up 1, now at 12

Turn 7, USSR action round 7

The Soviets play the following card for an attempt on the Space Race track:
#44  Ops 3: Bear Trap * (USA)
** Space Race Die Roll (1-4 needed): = 6 **
No effect.

I released the pressure, so he immediately get rids of an obligation. Good thing he didn’t have Central America Scoring – there is still a chance to scare him with it in the next turn.

As for me, since I’m going for the auto-win, it’s time to score Alliance for Progress – it’s unlikely it will get any better, since I don’t intend to take the two remaining American battlegrounds with Scoring card already gone.

Turn 7, USA action round 7

The Americans play the following card as an Event:
#78  Ops 3: Alliance for Progress * (USA)

** The Alliance for Progress card is permanently removed. **

VPs up 5, now at 17
** The Late War cards are added to the deck **

Turn 7 was very profitable. Due to unfortunate rolls on my opponent’s part Quagmire turned out to be quite harmless. To top it all, I managed to get Central America control, as well as the China card and I am one step from reaching the 20 VP mark.

There is still the threat of Aldrich Ames headline, which could seriously mess up my game if I happen to draw Lone Gunman next turn.

State of the world after turn 7:

DeDaan-after-turn-7

Turn 8:

My cards:

#66   Ops 2: Puppet Governments * (USA)
#13   Ops 2: Arab-Israeli War (USSR)
#95   Ops 2: Latin American Debt Crisis (USSR)
#56   Ops 4: Muslim Revolution (USSR)
#29   Ops 3: East European Unrest (USA)
#19   Ops 1: Truman Doctrine * (USA)
#63   Ops 2: Colonial Rear Guards (USA)
#90   Ops 4: Glasnost * (USSR)
#93   Ops 2: Iran-Contra Scandal * (USRR)
#6     Ops 4: The China Card

 

Which I didn’t, fortunately. Too bad I don’t have any winning Scoring cards, but this hand is still quite good. Only one problematic card (Muslim Revolution) which I’ll happily dump to fix the Latin America Crisis. Glasnost is a -2 VP ABM if he doesn’t play the Reformer, and an easy space race attempt if he does.

As for strategy for this turn, the board and my cards dictate I pressure Central America and Africa. Between Puppet Governments and Colonial Rear Guards I decide to go with the former, since Rear Guards can’t get me anything a Soviet coup in Angola won’t fix. I’ll use two points in Central America, and one to get some access to the remaining batllegrounds in South America – just in case the game lasts to the Final Scoring.

** Turn 8 Headline Phase **
Soviet Headline Card: #101  Ops 2: Iran-Iraq War *
American Headline Card: #66  Ops 2: Puppet Governments * (USA)

USA Headline Event: #66  Ops 2: Puppet Governments * (USA)

The Americans play the following card as an Event:
#66  Ops 2: Puppet Governments * (USA)

** The Puppet Governments card is permanently removed. **

American influence in El Salvador increased by 1, now at 1
American influence in Dominican Rep increased by 1, now at 1
American influence in Chile increased by 1, now at 1

USSR Headline Event: #101  Ops 2: Iran-Iraq War *

The Soviets play the following card as an Event:
#101  Ops 2: Iran-Iraq War *

** The Iran-Iraq War card is permanently removed. **

Iran invades Iraq…
USSR success on a modified die roll of 4-6;  USA modifer is -0
** Die roll: 2 — no effect **
Soviet Military Operations for this turn increased to 2

 

My opponent made tried to score some VPs by attacking the already Soviet Iraq, but (again) with no luck.

** Turn 8 Action Phase **

Turn 8, USSR action round 1
The Soviets play the following card for Ops
#107  Ops 3: AWACS Sale to Saudis * (USA)
They elect to have the American event occur first.

** The AWACS Sale to Saudis card is permanently removed. **

American influence in Saudi Arabia increased by 2, now at 2

The Soviets use the AWACS Sale to Saudis card for a coup attempt:
Coup attempt in Mexico (stability 2):
** USSR die roll = 2 (+3) = 5
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 1.
American influence in Mexico reduced by 1, now at 2
DEFCON Level lowered to 2
Soviet Military Operations for this turn increased to 5

And yet again his coup fails due to a low roll. I’m starting to get a little annoyed by it. Not that I don’t enjoy a healthy amount of bad luck in my opponent’s play, but this is too much. It doesn’t feel like a victory, if I have this much outside help.

Ok, let’s wrap this up. I fix the damage in Mexico and protect Nigeria from hostile takeover.

Turn 8, USA action round 1

The Americans play the following card to place influence:
#13  Ops 2: Arab-Israeli War (USSR)
1 USA influence added to Mexico, now at 3
1 USA influence added to Nigeria, now at 2

Turn 8, USSR action round 2
The Soviets play the following card for Ops
#84  Ops 2: Reagan Bombs Libya * (USA)
They elect to have the American event occur first.

** The Reagan Bombs Libya card is permanently removed. **

The Soviets use the Reagan Bombs Libya card for a coup attempt:
Coup attempt in El Salvador (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 3 (+2) = 5
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 3.
American influence in El Salvador reduced by 1, now at 0
Soviet influence in El Salvador increased by 2, now at 2

My opponent keeps fighting for Central America. Not that it would help him if I had this Scoring card now, as I am exactly 3 VPs from victory. But in the future, who knows? He just might get enough VP points somewhere to survive Central America Scoring and then comes next turn, new cards – DEFCON suicide is always an option.

In that case, I have to keep fighting for Central America as well.

Turn 8, USA action round 2
The Americans play the following card for Ops
#95  Ops 2: Latin American Debt Crisis (USSR)
They elect to have the Soviet event occur first.
The US player discards the following card to avoid the penalty:
#56  Ops 4: Muslim Revolution (USSR)

The Americans use the Latin American Debt Crisis card for a coup attempt:
Coup attempt in El Salvador (stability 1):
** USA die roll = 2 (+2) = 4
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 2.
Soviet influence in El Salvador reduced by 2, now at 0
American Military Operations for this turn increased to 2

Turn 8, USSR action round 3

The Soviets play the following card for a coup attempt:
#55  Ops 2: Willy Brandt * (USSR)
Coup attempt in Dominican Rep (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 5 (+2) = 7
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 5.
American influence in Dominican Rep reduced by 1, now at 0
Soviet influence in Dominican Rep increased by 4, now at 4

And so does he. Ok, let’s try that again.

Turn 8, USA action round 3

The Americans play the following card for a coup attempt:
#29  Ops 3: East European Unrest (USA)
Coup attempt in Guatemala (stability 1):
** USA die roll = 3 (+3) = 6
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 4.
Soviet influence in Guatemala reduced by 3, now at 0
American influence in Guatemala increased by 1, now at 1
American Military Operations for this turn increased to 5

Turn 8, USSR action round 4
The Soviets play the following card for Ops
#72  Ops 1: Sadat Expels Soviets * (USA)
They elect to have the American event occur first.

** The Sadat Expels Soviets card is permanently removed. **

Soviet influence in Egypt now at 0
American influence in Egypt increased by 1, now at 4

The Soviets use the Sadat Expels Soviets card for a coup attempt:
Coup attempt in Guatemala (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 3 (+1) = 4
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 2.
American influence in Guatemala reduced by 1, now at 0
Soviet influence in Guatemala increased by 1, now at 1

He didn’t roll very high in Guatemala. Ok then, again!

The Americans play the following card for a coup attempt:
#19  Ops 1: Truman Doctrine * (USA)
Coup attempt in Guatemala (stability 1):
** USA die roll = 4 (+1) = 5
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 3.
Soviet influence in Guatemala reduced by 1, now at 0
American influence in Guatemala increased by 2, now at 2

Turn 8, USSR action round 5

The Soviets play the following card for a coup attempt:
#91  Ops 2: Ortega Elected in Nicaragua * (USSR)
Coup attempt in Guatemala (stability 1):
** USSR die roll = 6 (+2) = 8
The modified roll exceeds the doubled stability by 6.
American influence in Guatemala reduced by 2, now at 0
Soviet influence in Guatemala increased by 4, now at 4

Ok, no Central America control for me, I get it – you really didn’t have to shout, you know :-) Good thing Ortega is gone, since that is one less possibility of a DEFCON suicide for me.

Since my opponent rolled so high on his coup, I have to find a new place to cause him trouble. Fortunately, I have just the event to do that.

Turn 8, USA action round 5

The Americans play the following card as an Event:
#63  Ops 2: Colonial Rear Guards (USA)
American influence in Angola increased by 1, now at 1
American influence in Botswana increased by 1, now at 1
American influence in South Africa increased by 1, now at 1
American influence in Thailand increased by 1, now at 5

Turn 8, USSR action round 6
The Soviets play the following card for Ops
#97  Ops 3: ‚An Evil Empire’ * (USA)
They elect to have the American event occur first.

** The ‚An Evil Empire’ card is permanently removed. **

VPs up 1, now at 18

The Soviets use the ‚An Evil Empire’ card to place influence:
1 USSR influence added to South Africa, now at 4
1 USSR influence added to Botswana, now at 3
1 USSR influence added to Angola, now at 2

He fixed most of my damage, but by doing so, gave me one more VP. That means I need only two more, and, as luck would have it, the next space race attempt might get me exactly that. Spacing Glasnost is usually a terrible waste, but since I’m pressing for VPs, why not try my luck?

Turn 8, USA action round 6

The Americans play the following card for an attempt on the Space Race track:
#90  Ops 4: Glasnost * (USSR)
** Space Race Die Roll (1-3 needed): = 2 **
USA progress on the Space Race Track is now at Lunar Probe
VPs up 2, now at 20

And yet again my luck delivers.

Ok, that was fun :-) Certainly more fun than it seemed after I saw my abysmal hand in Turn 1, but my luck intervened in several crucial moments to prevent my opponent from gaining Italy, India, Egypt, Venezuela and several other countries. I sincerely hope I will learn from my mistakes, so that when my next win comes I could attribute it to skill, rather than luck.

DeDaan - game over

 

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2 myśli nt. „Annotated Game #1 part 3 – The finishing touches (turns 7 to the end)

  1. Pingback: Annotated Game #1 – US strikes back in Mid War (turns 4-6) | Zimna Wojna / Twilight Struggle

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