28 BPA members entered the second Brass PBEM tournament. 49 games of Brass: Lancashire were played over three rounds, and in every round each participant played four games. The tournament cut to 14 players in the semifinals and 7 players in the finals, and followed the same format as last year’s tournament.
In the heats, Eric Freeman achieved the tournament’s high score of 185, in a game where he scored all four of his iron works, a port and a shipyard in the canal era. Jason Pytka achieved the largest margin of victory with a 42-point win. Two games were decided by a tiebreaker, with John Emery and Paul Sampson both prevailing over Jack Jung by virtue of higher final income. Defending champion Rob Murray had the best record with three wins and a second, and the other seeds went to Jay Spencer, DJ Borton, and Rob Kircher. There was a four-way tie for the last two spots in the semifinals, and past WBC champions Philip Shea and Bruce Hodgins both barely missed the cut according to the standings tiebreaker, average % of winner’s score.
The semifinals were competitive, with all players achieving at least one second place finish. Ben Scholl won one of his games by 42 points, matching the tournament’s largest margin of victory. Another game was decided by a tiebreaker, with DJ Borton prevailing over Andrew Emerick. Ben Scholl led the pack this round with three wins and a second, and was joined in the finals by DJ Borton, Allan Jiang, Rob Murray, Jason Pytka, Jay Spencer, and Jay Matthews.
The finals were the fastest stage, taking just 16 days to complete. In three games, two players used a cotton strategy, one player used a port strategy, and one player used neither. In another three games, two players went cotton and two players went ports. And in one game, three players chose cotton while one player chose ports, which unsurprisingly resulted in the port player winning. Overall, there was a good balance as cotton strategies won four games and port strategies won three games.
In a repeat from last year, there were three double-winners in the finals. And in a repeat from last year, Rob Murray’s other finishes were the best, with a second and a third in addition to his two wins to defend his championship. Interestingly, Rob’s winning path saw him go for cotton in all of his games.
- Rob Murray
- Allan Jiang
- DJ Borton
- Jason Pytka
- Ben Scholl
- Jay Matthews
30 BPA members entered the first Brass PBEM tournament, including 8 of the top 10 laurelists in the event’s history. In total, 52 games of Brass: Lancashire were played over three rounds. In each round, each participant played 4 games and earned 10 points for a win, 6 points for second place, 3 points for third place, and 1 point for fourth place. The top 15 in the heat standings advanced to the semifinals, which were somewhat seeded; each participant played once against all of the other semifinalists except for two with similar records to themselves. The top 7 in the semifinals then advanced to the finals, where they played all of the other finalists twice. The laurelists were determined by the standings in the finals only.
Highlights of the heat stage included a win by tiebreaker by Antero Kuusi over John Corrado, and the largest margin of victory in the tournament: a 53-point win by Andrew Emerick. DJ Borton topped the heat standings with 3 wins and a second, and the other “seeds” went to Nick Henning, Mike Turian, and Andrew Emerick.
In the semifinals, DJ Borton set the high score for the tournament; he flipped 3 advanced ports and 3 advanced iron works in the canal era en route to 190 points. But it was Andrew Emerick who had the most dominant round, winning all four of his games! Rob Murray, DJ Borton, Rob Flowers, Allan Jiang, Jack Jung, and John Corrado also qualified for the finals.
The finals were well played by all contestants. In four games, two players used a cotton strategy, one player used a port strategy, and one player used neither. And in the other three games, two players used a cotton strategy and two players used a port strategy. In the opinion of the GM, these are the two most optimal balances between the strategies, and make for games in which all of the strategies are highly competitive. And indeed, the finals did deliver the closest game from first to last in the tournament. Andrew Emerick, using a cotton strategy scored 149 points, to Rob Murray’s 148 (port), Jack Jung’s 147 (cotton), and DJ Borton’s 142 (port).
In the end, there were three double-winners in the finals. All three happened to use a cotton strategy twice and a port strategy twice. So it was the non-win finishes that determined the order at the top of the final standings. By virtue of two second-place finishes in addition to two wins, Rob Murray took home the championship.
- Rob Murray
- Andrew Emerick
- Allan Jiang
- DJ Borton
- John Corrado
- Rob Flowers