race for the galaxy   

Updated Nov. 23, 2013

2013 WBC Report  

   2014 Status: pending 2014 GM commitment

John Riston, MD

2013 Champion


Event History
2008    Robert Renaud     103
2009    Robert Renaud     139
2010    Robert Renaud       99
2011    Aaron Fuegi       78
2012    Robert Renaud       91
2013    John Riston       87

Euro Quest BPA Event History
2008     Mark Delano     36
2009      Doug Faust     44
2010     Andrew Yao     27



Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Robert Renaud      NJ    12    139
  2.  Rob Kircher        RI    13     54
  3.  Aaron Fuegi        MA    11     48
  4.  John Riston        MD    13     36
  5.  Nick Kiswanto      VA    13     30
  6.  David Platnick     VA    11     27
  7.  Andrew Yao         VA    10     20
  8.  Doug Faust         NJ    09     20
  9.  Mark Delano        CT    08     20
 10.  Jason Levine       NY    13     18
 11.  Pei-Hsin Lin       NJ    11     18
 12.  Don Sutherland     CT    09     18
 13.  Mike Richey        VA    09     18
 14.  Peggy Pfeifer      FL    10     16
 15.  Mark Crescenzi     PA    13     12
 16.  Curt Collins II    PA    12     12
 17.  Charles Hickok     PA    11     12
 18.  David Finberg      MA    09     12
 19.  Eric Brosius       MA    09     12
 20.  Nick Page          on    12     11
 21.  Chris Ellis        FL    13     10
 22.  Alex Bove          PA    10     10
 23.  Scott Anthony      PA    09      9
 24.  Ben Stephenson     MD    08      9
 25.  Richard M. Shay    MA    10      8
 26.  Bob Wicks Jr       CT    09      8
 27.  Chris Kreuter      NY    12      6
 28.  J. R. Geronimo     NY    09      6
 29.  Susan Waterhouse   PA    08      6
 30.  Raphael Lehrer     MD    08      6
 31.  Rebecca Hebner     DC    10      4
 32.  Jeffrey Thornsen   MD    09      4
 33.  Alex Wolford       VA    08      4
 34.  Lyman Moquin       MD    08      3
 35.  Sceadeau D'Tela    NC    09      2
 36.  Kathy Stroh        DE    08      2

2013 Laurelists                                              Repeating Laurelists:

Jason Levine, NY

Mark Crescenzi, PA

Rob Kircher, RI

Christopher Ellis, FL

Nick Kiswanto, VA

Past Winners

Rob Renaud, NY
2008-10, 2012

Aaron Fuegi, MA

John Riston, MD

Ed Ericson and Chris Kizer engages in some intergalactic exploration.

Daniel Hibshman and Daniel Barnes explore the galaxy.

Four Out of Five ...

Fortified by the trials and tribulations of his initial GM experience in 2012, Rob Renaud came better prepared for his second go 'round and ran a much smoother tournament in 2013. The format was changed to Heats Most Wins, and players needed two wins to qualify for the 16-player semifinals.

Heat 1 saw 14 4-player tables of base Race for the Galaxy at 9 am on Wednesday. Previous laurelists Rob Kircher, Nick Kiswanto, David Platnick, and Aaron Fuegi all recorded their first win. Returning champ Rob Renaud suffered a disappointing 3rd place finish to Ed Fear and last year's third place lauelist, Curt Collins. The original RFG GM, Winton Lemoine, also earned a win. In what was the start of a nice streak, Mark Crescenzi won by an impressive 25-point margin.

Heat 2 followed immediately with 13 4-player base game tables still in action. Edward Fear earned his second win in a rather strange game against Aaron Fuegi and Winton Lemoine in which all players built a dev-bonus development on the first turn. Rob Renaud managed a narrow victory despite Alex Bove's monstrous eight cards drawn on produce (via Diversified Economy and Lost Species Ark World). Five others (Mark Crescenzi, Tim Tu, Nick Kiswanto, Rob Kircher, and Peter Eldridge) all won their second game and likely entrance to the semifinals.

Heat 3 put 11 4-player tables in service at 9 am on Friday. This session featured the Gathering Storm expansion, which introduces goals and the infamous Improved Logistics. Previous champions Rob Renaud and Aaron Fuegi both got their second wins and qualified for the semis, along with John Riston, Jason Levine, and Christopher Ellis. Mark Crescenzi won his game to become the only triple winner.

Heat 4 again followed immediately with the loss of only one table and many players seeking that precious second win for the semis. Chris Bert and Jason Long accomplished the task, providing 14 double winners. As a result, four players with only one win but an average finish of second also qualified for the semifinals. Meanwhile, Mark Crescenzi couldn't turn off the victory faucet and racked up his fourth win, with an impressive 17 point margin over double winner John Riston.

13 of the 14 double winners appeared for the semis, with three more lucky (or perhaps, merely present) 1-game winner alternates filling up the remaining slots for the four semifinal tables. The semis were again played with the Gathering Storm expansion. Mark Crescenzi continued his man among boys dominance with an impressive 20-point victory, taking out former champion Aaron Fuegi in the process. Rob Kircher bested Rob Renaud in their semis game thanks to a gutsy repeated blind trade call. Jason Levine beat Nick Kiswanto in their semi, despite Nick's twice-successful blind trades. John Riston won in a close game where the difference between first and last was only eight points.

The Final was played with both the Gathering Storm and Rebel vs Imperium expansions. The big goals in the game were 4+ production worlds and 3+ Explore powers. The small goals were first to eight tableau cards, the first to build a 6<?> dev, first to three alien cards, and the first to five VP chips.

Rob opened with Imperium Warlord. He held Imperium Seat, the Rebel 7, and the Alien 8 in his hand, but will need tons of military to get them down. Importantly, he has no cheap military windfalls to bootstrap his military conquest.

John opened with Epsilon Eridani. He has a military hand, including Alien Robot Sentry and Alien Robot Scout Ship, as well as a military dev.

Mark started with Alpha Centuari. Your imperfect GM has no notes about his opening hand, but recalls that it was somewhat weak and lacking synergy.

Jason happily and immediately took Galactic Developers before even looking at his hand.

On the first turn, John called dev to put out some military, enabling a next turn settle. Mark traded, and everyone else explored. Rob found (and built) Imperium Troops, his second Imperium card and potentially set up some possibly big scoring with Imperium Seat. Jason followed the military trend, building Space Marines. Mark missed the development with his weak opening hand.

On Turn 2, John settled Alien Robot Sentry. Mark settled Comet Zone. Jason settled Destroyed World.

On Turn 3, Mark produced, while everyone else trades away their windfalls from the previous turn.

Turn 4 saw a diversity of role selection. John explored +5, Jason called develop, and Rob produced. Jason built Pan-Galactic Research, mistakenly grabbing the 6-dev goal before being informed that PGR does not actually qualify for it. Nevertheless, the GM is a huge fan of an early PGR, because it quickly pays for itself with massive card advantages in explore, develop, and produce. Rob continued with his military strategy, building Space Marines. Mark built a well-timed Mining Conglomerate, drawing two cards for producing the most (and only) Mining good on produce.

At that point, John and Rob both had a decent military, Jason had impressive card flow, but no clear strategy, and Mark had a budding Mining produce/consume engine.

Turn 5 again saw another round of varied action selection. Mark called explore + 5, Jason called dev, John called settle, and Rob traded away his freshly produced windfall good. John built Galactic Imperium on dev, solidifying his military strategy, though with the GM's least favorite military 6 dev. Mark built Terraforming Robots, which fit in well with his tableau. Jason built R&D crash program for free, possibly hinting at a future 6 dev. On settle, John built Rebel Warrior Race, which got a +2 score bonus from his Gal Imp. Mark built another mining windfall, which gave him excess windfall worlds. He could not produce on all his worlds, even if he called produce.

On Turn 6, Jason again developed as his R&D hinted, both military players settled, and Mark produced. Jason built Galactic Survey SETI on his develop, giving him two explore powers and putting him close to the most explore powers goal. Rob built drop ships, upping his military to 7. Both Mark and John missed the develop. John settled Lost Alien Warship, while Rob played a 2 defense uplift windfall world, and Mark expanded his engine with Earth's Lost Colony and has Mining Guild in his hand. By then, the big military worlds that Rob held in his initial hand were gone, so he may not be able to capitalize on his large military.

On Turn 7, everyone traded in their fresh goods, except for Mark, who called consume 2x VP and grabs the first to 5 VP goal.

Turn 8 sees a dev from Rob and Jason, and a settle from John. Mark expectedly calls produce, but must not be happy with the dual build from his opponents, rushing the game towards the end, before he can get many consume 2x VP cycles. Rob builds Research Labs and takes the 3+ explore powers goal. Everyone now has eight cards on their tableau except Mark, effectively earning him -3 VP for missing some build phases. On the settle, Mark builds Gem World for his third production world. Rob settles the Rebel 6. John surprises the GM by placing Smuggling Lair rather than the Hidden Fortress that he has in hand, but he felt the need for more card flow and a quick game end. Jason settles Lost Species Ark World and draws four on produce, but maybe should have been pursuing the explore power goal with his existing good card flow and SETI on his tableau.

Turn 9 again sees a dev and settle while Mark consumes 2x. Mark settles a brown windfall, leaving him still 1 away from the 4+ prod world goal, while Jason ties him in the production world race. In a big and possibly game winning move, John uses the bonus +4 military against Rebels from Galactic Imperium to settle the Rebel 9, giving him both a giant military world and a matching military 6 dev. He showed me he didn't need Hidden Fortress to get the big military world's down and effectively used Galactic Imperium's settle power.

On Turn 10, Mark explores with his mostly empty hand, Rob explores +5, probably looking for some big end game card, Jason devs, and John settles. Jason builds New Economy on dev. Mark and Jason split the 4+ prod goal during settle, probably both of them unhappy with that outcome.

When it ends, John's 40 points make him the new RFG champion,one better than Jason's and Mark's 39 and Rob's 36. Had Mark not found a production world on explore, Jason would have had 41 and would have won. Likewise, Mark would have won if Jason didn't tie him for the goal.

Congratulations to John both for winning the WBC title, and putting an end to Mark's dominant 5-game winning streak. Unlike many WBC attendees, I only specialize in a couple games and I just want to grind out many, many plays of my few specialties. If you are interested in playing lots of expert level RFG at the next WBC, and you probably might if you've managed to read this far, please send me an email and I'll happily oblige you in Open Gaming.

Jeremy Lennert, designer of For the Crown, tries RFG.

GM Rob Renaud and his finalists.
 GM      Rob Renaud (2nd Year)  NA  
    rrenaud@gmail.com   NA

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