Game No. 378, played last night at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square, nearly didn’t happen. One player, en route from afar, dropped after seeing that we had a seventh without him. But that seventh had never played before and was intent on merely spectating. Meanwhile, reliable standby Christian Kline was stuck at work and uncertain of his status.
“Maybe 50 percent,” he told me at 4:35.
Fortunately, he got out in time to salvage the game, which was another tight match.
Playing Austria, Kline jumped out to eight centers in 1902 but was knocked back to six the following year. Bryan Pravel in Turkey grabbed the lead at eight in 1904, the penultimate year, but Ali Adib in England and Mick Johnson in France were on his tail with seven, and Kline still had six. That set up a classic final year, with all four players scrambling for the top.
The game ended by time limit after the Fall 1905 turn in the following center counts:
Austria (Christian Kline): 7; 20.763 points.
England (Ali Adib): 7; 20.763 points.
France (JP Saucier): 5; 10.593 points.
Germany (Mick Johnson): 8; 27.119 points.
Italy (Tyrone Ferguson): 0; 0.000 points.
Russia (Braden Lenz): 0; 0.000 points.
Turkey (Bryan Pravel): 7; 20.763 points.
The board-top was Johnson’s third in club history but first since October 2016.
Ferguson was coming off a surprise (for us) appearance at the World Diplomacy Championship at Tempest in a Teapot in D.C.. He has played at webdiplomacy.net for several years but had only played a couple of previous league games with the Weasels before making his first tournament appearance at Weasel Moot last month. He’s officially hooked on FTF diplomacy. Finally.
Saucier, meanwhile, is another longtime online player who appears ready to take the plunge into our side of the hobby. And we’re hoping that the observer, Cori, also will be back.
The supply center chart is here. Players. how about some endgame commentary?
Next on the schedule is the next Red Lion on November 14. Can we get two boards? And would someone like to host a house game before then?