Game 146580, French solo

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Game 146580, French solo

Postby SimonMH » 27 Oct 2018, 07:38

This is an AAR for game 146580, Fight for your Right, which I was fortunate enough to solo as France. The game contained many beautiful positions; now it has finished (it was anonymous) I see that two of the other players are in the top 10 in the PlayDip rankings, so the quality was pretty high, even with me in it.

Image

I will, therefore, write a series of posts going through the game. I hope people will find it of interest and comment.

How do you start as France? The key provinces are Burgundy and Mid-Atlantic. The first is crucial in the sense that Germany must not get it in Spring 1901; France must ALWAYS move there. This Germany wrote offering a DMZ in order to keep the English army out of the continent. I politely told him I was moving there and after a bit of to-and-fro, we agreed a bounce.

This is obviously good news for England: he must take Belgium unless Germany moves the fleet to Holland. If he moves the fleets North he will get Norway too. It was not hard to persuade England that this was his best course of action. In exchange, I extracted a promise that he would not build a fleet in Liverpool. Italy seemed happy enough to agree to keep Piedmont empty.

So far, so good!

Mid Atlantic is perhaps the most important province in the game. A fleet there is enormously powerful: it can switch North or South or just hold to keep France secure. The problem is that you put the fleet there in Spring and then bury it in Spain or Portugal (ugh!) in the Fall. Surely there must be a better way to get two builds?

If I am bouncing in Burgundy, then why not do it from Marseilles? This frees the army in Paris to go to Gascony (yes, really). From there I can convoy into Portugal and take Spain from Marseilles, keeping the fleet in Mid-Atlantic. If England or Italy do try something nasty, I am still covered.

Image
Last edited by SimonMH on 27 Oct 2018, 10:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby Fatmo » 27 Oct 2018, 10:23

Just looked at the game quickly.

Well played.

Florida man has a very good reputation, though I have never played with him.

I replaced a power in a terrible position in a game with Norlight, so got to see him a bit. He was good, though I didn't have a chance to really work with him in-depth. Pretty much just helped another bigger power fight against him for a while.

Looking forward to seeing the rest of your AAR.
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby SimonMH » 27 Oct 2018, 11:28

Thanks for the comment, Fatmo! Next installment coming up:

So Germany scowls, harumphs and again asks to DMZ Burgundy so that he can deal with the expected English army in Belgium. I am happy to agree to this.

I don't much like the fleet in Tyrrhenian, but Italy is very communicative and I see no reason to be concerned yet. Plus there are rumours afoot of a juggernaut in the East (Russia and Turkey write and obviously know the game). I encourage it, hoping this will give Italy, Germany and England something to think about.

England is exactly where I want him: if that army goes to Belgium then he has nothing to defend the homeland. I have, of course, promised not to build Fleet Brest, but this opportunity could be just too good to pass up.

On with the plan then, convoy to Portugal, take Spain from Marseilles and let's see.

Image

Well, Turkey NMRs, or perhaps it was just a cunning move to allay fears of the juggernaut; it costs him nothing. Russia storms to a strong position, Germany is on course to take Belgium and I am going to try to take England. Russia has made anti-English noises and promises to build a Fleet in St.P; I warn England of this: he has to build in London and Edinburgh...

Army Paris, Fleet Brest, fingers crossed.

Image

Oh, yes! That worked.

NB: for some reason, the image function did not work. Apologies for that. [Edit: working now, thanks to Charleroi]
Last edited by SimonMH on 29 Oct 2018, 09:52, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby SimonMH » 28 Oct 2018, 04:42

England is not happy, but it's too late for him now. I could play it safe: bounce in the Channel and bring the armies back up with a convoy to Gascony or Brest, but I won't conquer England like that. Spain-Gascony, Portugal-Spain, Mid-Atlantic-Irish Sea, Brest-Mid-Atlantic.

The only question is what to do with Paris. Burgundy seems obvious but must be a mistake for two reasons: you would be breaking the DMZ with Germany and England could then retreat to Picardy. You must assume he will move into the Channel and indeed he has said as much. You do not want his army able to threaten Brest or convoy back to England, and this follows the basic principle of ISOLATING your enemy's units whenever you can.

Paris-Picardy then:

Image

England is in some trouble. I am worried by Italy's fence-sitting (he admitted later that he wanted to attack me at this point, but couldn't find an ally) but the Juggernaut is now plain to see, so he has little choice but to head East.

England retreats to Burgundy, as expected:

Image

Before the next installment, I invite you to consider two things:

1) Is the retreat to Burgundy correct, or should England destroy that army?
2) What are your next moves as France?
Last edited by SimonMH on 29 Oct 2018, 09:55, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby Charleroi » 28 Oct 2018, 23:23

Thanks for the AAR - looking forward to reading the rest of it.

The image function won't work properly if you are using the URL shortcut (instead of the Img shortcut) or if you are copying the url from the order history webpage rather than the url for the image only.
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby SimonMH » 29 Oct 2018, 09:42

Thanks, Charleroi! That works now. As you guessed, I was copying the url from the order history webpage...

Of course, it's Spain-Liverpool! If you didn't do that I'm afraid you have no soul. This is not only a beautiful move but utterly fatal to England, like a knife in the gut; he lingers on for another 8 years but never builds again.

Given that, you have two spare armies in Gascony and Picardy to protect your three home centers. Here I made a very bad play; the summer vacation had just started and I was by the sea, having 7 am swims and pub lunches. Perhaps the beer addled my brain, because I chose to cover Marseilles and Paris!

This must be wrong: you should cover Paris and Brest in order to try to link up your armies and ensure that if he does take a center, it must be Marseilles, as isolated as possible.

This play was deservedly punished:

Image
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby SimonMH » 29 Oct 2018, 13:51

So I've messed up but I still like this position. The great danger though is Germany: if he decides to march in I am probably dead.

Fortunately, Germany has no real reason to want to do this. Russia and the juggernaut are now a pressing concern for him: so far as he is concerned England and I can slug it out while he shores up the East.

Perhaps my play was not so terrible after all: had I been on six centers and crushing England, Germany might be more worried.

I must isolate this English army then take back Brest: Paris S Marseilles-Gascony. He can retreat to Spain but so what?

I must also try to take the Channel: Mid-Atlantic S Irish Sea-Channel.

Liverpool-Yorkshire, obviously. Cut England in two. No English army so I can isolate mine with impunity.

Image

And yes, a retreat to Spain.

Image

What's your next play as France? Why?
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby SimonMH » 30 Oct 2018, 09:56

Taking Brest is not enough; I want to destroy that fleet. A Paris-Picardy then, to cut off his retreat.

I know how England will play: fixated on not losing London he will move from North Sea to cover it and cut my supports from Edinburgh and Brest.

Easy! Let him move into London, then he has no space for builds.

Image

And poor England has 6 centers, 4 isolated units, and 0 builds...

Elegant, I think.

In the East the juggernaut is broken with a deft Russian stab on Turkey.

Now I have the chance to convoy over and finish England for good, but I want to get rid of his army in Marseilles first. Who knows what it could do if Germany does decide to attack? There is no hurry to take England's homeland: he is paralysed.

Image

And here we go: Germany moves against Scandinavia (his share of the England spoils), Russia steamrollers Turkey, and Italy, freed from juggernaut fear, sticks the knife into Austria.
Last edited by SimonMH on 30 Oct 2018, 11:27, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby Jack007 » 30 Oct 2018, 10:54

Thrilling. Can't wait for the sequel. :)
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Re: Game 146580, French solo

Postby Charleroi » 30 Oct 2018, 19:39

Italy got the stab wrong - he should have attacked Ven->Tri supported by ADR. Now he has a fleet stranded in Trieste that can't operate against Vienna/Budapest and he can't build in Venice. He got it exactly right with Greece, though.
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