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Game 113 - Red World
#1
I chose the UN for this game because I wanted to play a 'bad' kingdom and role-play it a bit. I started off making a deal with the GN to split Runnimede with him getting control and me getting the city. I also dealt with the RD (more on that later) so he'd be busy up north and not messing around in region 7. Early turns went well except for the fact that my agents seemed to be particularly unlucky. I think this may also have been the last game where the UN can immediately jack up the rates of agents.
Once the GN and I were secure in our region, we moved north into Torvale. The TR had wandered into 7 with a group a few turns before, stomping on villages, but I really didn't want to take him on – all my efforts were focused on the AN. There was some initial progress, but then a stalemate developed when the TR and the EL both got drawn into it. I settled for holding a town and a village that I had snagged and left it at that.
I'd made deals with the DE, so there was no chance of moving that direction and I really didn't want to go into the Sands. With much of my diplomatic corps in Torvale, and the DW having just taken the Northern Mists to add to the Talking Mountains, I figured he might be getting close to winning, so I should move against him. I divined his pop centers in the Mists; he didn't have Viperhead (the RD did) and so his control was kind of narrow. Because so many of the centers were very high up, I couldn't invade them all in one turn – it was sort of a slow-motion attack. On Turn 16, just as the DW tried a victory check, I managed to cause him to lose control of the Mists by just one village. I strongly suspect that was the difference, though I'm curious to see what the DW has to say about it. I actually felt a little bad because I can just imagine the frustration at reading his turn results.
I continued to push into the Mists and now started moving into the Talking Mountains as well. Must have been perfectly timed as it seems he'd moved his emmies out of the Mountains back to the Mists to get back control there. The end result was that I was able to knock him out of control of the Mountains as well.
I was aware that while the DW was now a long way from victory, the RD must be very close. However, I had made a deal with him not to attack and so I left his cities alone. I felt if somebody else wanted to stop him, it was up to them to organize. I wasn't at all surprised when he won and congrats to him.
I do want address what the RD mentioned about me taking actions against his pop centers. It's quite possible and I can't say for sure if all the ones he is thinking of were things I was responsible for – I only know of two for certain. In every case, they would have been mistakes as a result of not knowing who was controlling the city. I had made the decision early on to do a lot of stealing from cities – mostly this was a role play thing as well as a way to level my (lousy) agents. On turn 2, I hit Zabzanka and the RD sent me a rather pointed note asking if I was responsible and suggesting I should return the money. Well, I had gotten the idea that the DW was going for Zabzanka and I also wasn't expecting anybody to control it on turn 2 – at most, I thought it might be neutral in which case the order would fail. Either way, as I hadn't done it on purpose and the RD hadn't said that he'd have the city, I considered it an accident and simply took Zabzanka off my list of targets. Same with Viperhead when I saw he had that one, too. I hit Evanon several times, but at one point a recon revealed the RD now held it as well, so I removed that one, too. (I believe that may have been when the RD saw me as it was a mega-sabatoge and a couple of my guys got caught – I was still thinking it was the GI or WA and I wanted them to think a land attack was on the way and not move in my direction.) I don't regret stealing from people I was not allied with – I think that's what the UN is supposed to do – but I never would deliberately target somebody I had an agreement with.
As it was, my agents were crappy, crappy, crappy. I think I had a lot of bad luck – I'd really like to play the UN again sometime soon. But again, congrats to the RD in this game! Well deserved victory.
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#2
I played the GI in my first game in lots and lots and lots of years and yes I made a lot of mistakes. The WA and I allied early, took Amberland and felt pretty good. Then we worked with the DW and crushed the WI really quickly, splitting the region pretty evenly. Then the RD showed up at Zarathon and we were like, oh crap, there are other players in the game.
So, we brilliantly deduced he would land next at the WA capitol, so i grabbed all of my forces and the WA got one group and we met at his capitol, and yep, RD showed up there. But two things hurt me greatly. That very turn, the GN did not come through on a trade order, so my troops took a nice morale and attrition hit. (It was a mistake and he made up for it with food later, but that did not help the damage). The second was that I got advice from someone that two groups (8 brigades and 4 brigades) would be better than one group because of the successive negative modifier for multiple fights. Bad, bad advice. The RD hit the 4 brigades so hard, he took almost no damage, and i am sure his morale gain outweighed any multiple fight factor. Then he crushed my bigger group. As he said in his report, this fight was pretty huge for him. Then his other group showed up and we made token fights back, but mostly decided to take his pop centers in other regions. After my 3rd capitol fell and i had only 2 minor emissaries and could not feed anybody, I just ran around trying to help the DW get his victory. That failed because the UN took a village in NM, but that was a turn after the DW had planned to declare, and he knew he was probably a turn too late. An ally had maintained status quo at a pop center the previous turn for some reason after agreeing the DW would take it. That gave the UN an extra turn to get to NM. Oh well. It was fun, and I learned a bunch from the RD and really enjoyed teaming with the WA and the DW. DA was pretty quiet all game, then showed up in the last turn or two to take some pop centers and took a nice podium spot. Grats to RD and DA and all others in order Smile.
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#3
113 Red Reflections

This game started with some difficulty for me. As the Red Dragon I was inclined to stomp, stomp, stomp, but given that a couple of newer players were located so close to me, I instead decided to try to ally with the Dwarf and the Witchlord early.
I made up my mind that I’d reach an agreement with the Dwarf as long as the terms were near reasonable. I offered either the city + 45% of the region – ceding control to the Dwarf, or the other side – claiming the region while giving the DW the city and the rest. The Dwarf decided on the Region (what I actually wanted), and we agreed to a split. After the original split was proposed the Dwarf was worried that his cut wouldn’t be enough to get control, so I ceded another PC in return for first choice on the PCs that the Red would claim. He came back again with another request to shore up his share, at which I balked and got pretty close to scrapping the deal altogether. I would say that the Dwarf being granted control of the Talking Mountains uncontested by the Red is a pretty good deal and to stop while you are ahead, but I understand wanting to continue pushing for the a better deal.
Things got a little hotter when a Dwarven group landed on and took a PC that I would claim under first choice. I could tell that he wasn’t happy about my enforcing the terms of the deal, but we never touched each other’s PCs and the deal lasted the entire game.

I had also been speaking with the Witchlord and was ready to help him beat off the kingdoms attacking him, but he dropped early, so I continued with the unprovoked assault into Amberland (against the GI/WA) as the deal I had made with the Darkelf didn’t really leave me any other options. I got very lucky early on by finding the original WA capital quickly and moving pretty much my entire military there on the same turn that the Giant had 2 groups at the town. The fact that I had a power 3 in the Red group and the Giant’s forces were split between two groups made the battle outcome very favorable to the Red.

I continued to move big into region 5, and it appeared that the Giant and Warlock continued to make their gains in the Northern Mists and to counter punch in the Talking Mountains. Good idea to stay away from the Red Dragon groups, but it led to quick control of region 5 for me.

I had worked out a deal with the Gnome in much easier fashion than the Dwarf, and although we had minimal communication throughout the game, I found Yorlik to be great to work with. I made an agreement with the Underworld, which I feel was violated through persistent actions against my pop centers, but caught the damn agents only once, near the end of the agreement. Without any way to prove that the earlier actions were done by the Underworld, and being at the end of the agreement anyway, I didn’t pursue anything. But it will color my interactions with the player going forward.

I was feeling pretty comfortable in 5, trading PCs in regions 3 and 7 with the GI/WA when the Gnome complained about the TR/AN which he was facing in Torvale. I agreed to lend a hand, but after initially moving was told by Yorlik that he had reached an agreement with the rest of the Western powers and a truce was in effect. I wasn’t part of that deal, and had already committed, so I continued into Torvale. Beyond the original lay of the land provided by the Gnome, nothing further was said by him about my foray and the early bounties offered weren’t followed up on after the truce.

With a couple of early victories, and the Dwarf taking his second region (!) I checked my SVC and realized that there might be a win for the Red here. The biggest needs were 2 regions, 4 cities and some prisoners. Of course, I had just executed all my prisoners the turn before, so that was going to slow me down. I was able to take the Troll capital (and get his prisoners) but HQ was destroyed by the Troll, and DU was taken by the Warlock, so I moved back to DU as my fourth city (OB, PI, MN the others) and rolled the dice on the victory check. It worked out, just as the Black arrived at my capital and the Elf diplomatic corp started to appear throughout my pop centers.

The Red is a lot of fun, especially with some production under your belt and a chance to get influence up and a couple wizards raised. I ended up with a power 5 which with maxed out morale (160) and nice leaders meant that a division could move anywhere and take pretty much anything.
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#4
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 Lord Diamond

Please do not take any of my comments as a personal insult or as a criticism of the game 'Alamaze', which I very much enjoy. Rather, I hope that my personal insight and unique perspective may, in some way, help make 'Alamaze' more fun, a more successful financial venture, or simply more sustainable as a long-term project. Anyone who reads this post should feel completely free to ignore, disregard, scorn, implement, improve, dispute, or otherwise comment upon its content.





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