advanced civilization [Revised August 2000]

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Eric Gundersen, NJ

2000 Champion

2nd: Doug Galullo, FL

3rd: Joe Gundersen, IN

4th: Pete Rauch, MA

5th: Shantanu Saha, NY

6th: Charles Hickok, PA
Event History
1991    Alan Behrens      24
1992    Dan Vice      48
1993    Dan Vice      37
1994    Ken Rothstein      35
1995    Michael Neal      40
1996    Joe Gundersen      28
1997    Todd Vander Pluym      23
1998    Eric Gundersen      34
1999   Doug Galullo      38
2000   Eric Gundersen    27
AREA Ratings
 1    None      -
 2    None      -
 3    None      -
 4    None      -
 5    None      -
 6    None      -
 7    None      -
 8    None      -
 9    None      -
10    None      -

Archaeologists piece together pieces of an Advanced Civilization

The 2000 tournament had a good mix of veterans (we've been playing this longer than WWI & II combined, and we're aiming to outdistance the Cold War) and welcome new faces. As usual, the level of play improves from year to year and the intensity of play increases correspondingly, especially in the final. Please excuse the brevity of this report. Ben Foy, our GM
simply had too much going on at work and home to file a report and he had all the records. Please forgive any errors I make from memory.

The first two heats featured several games each day with large boards. The eight-player final was played in the traditional manner. We immediately voted Asia out of the game and then randomly drew positions. The grognards feel you're not a real winner unless you take what fate gives and then beat everyone else. In order of finish, we had Eric Gundersen as
Egypt, Doug Gallulo as Iberia, Joe Gundersen as Crete, Pete Rauch as Africa, Shantanu Saha as Thrace, Charles Hickok as Assyria, Ted Mullaly as Illyria and Jamie Tang as Babylon.

As always, the first order of business was to point out past champions and warn that they were even more dangerous now. The major drama of the game revolved around the efforts of Crete and Illyria to drastically cramp Assyria's borders in the interest of play balance. (I can't wait to put them on the Assyrian side of that fronteir.) This led to very early blood letting that saw Assyria and Illyria sink like a stone in the standings. Joe Gundersen's excellent finish (less than 100 points out of first place) while in the middle of this bloodbath highlights his great skills as a player. This is the guy who likes Crete because he can reach out and touch everyone. In the end, it was a photo finish between Iberia and Egypt with less than 50 points separating them as Egypt eked out the win.

Egypt looked like less of a threat and endgame perceptions of that are critical. In a game of veterans, the single most critical factor is building a position of potential game winning strength that looks less strong than two or more other players. Pete Rauch, new to the finals, summed up his game, "I just tried to keep out of everyone's way". He did a better job of that than several veterans and thus placed higher. Neither life nor ACV is fair (although life usually lasts longer).

Some unlucky sap always gets far more than their fair share of disasters. This game, Jamie Tang in Babylon, new to the finals, was dealt this difficult hand to play. She soldiered on but the cards kept pounding her. The cards were also unkind to Shantanu Saha in Thrace -- not en masse as Jamie suffered, but just the wrong combinations of disasters in the end game to hold Thrace to fifth.

One of the great satisfactions of playing in this tournament for so many years is watching the level and intensity of play increase annually. Players are constantly challenged to grow and change their comfortable style of play to win. This year's final was the toughest I've seen since Avaloncon began. Overtime, BPA and its predecessor has raised the standard of play

Charles Hickok, Asst. GM

 GM      Ben Foy  [2nd Year]    12313 Treetop Drive #33, Silver Spring, MD 20904     NA

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