princess ryan's star marines [Updated August 2001]

PRS  2 prizes Experienced Swiss Continuous 
   9  Round 2 11Final      


Nick Henning, CT

2001 Champion

2nd: David Brooks, TN

3rd: Ashley Collinson, MD

4th: Paul Saunders, VA

5th: Karl Henning, CT

6th: Missy Katano, MD
Event History
1991    None      -
1992    None      -
1993    None      -
1994    None      -
1995    None      -
1996    None      -
1997    John Ellsworth      36
1998    James Stevens      28
1999    Paul Bolduc     19
2000    Stephen Shedden     22
2001    Nick Henning     19

AREA Ratings:

GM: Mark McLaughlin

In a distant galaxy, far, far away ...

The Little Black Guard Has a Question.

"How are you doing?" the GM asked Dan Collinson, who as the Black Guard player in the juniors tournament was fighting off a team of five marines that were closing in rapidly on the cells wherein languished the captive Princess Ryan. "Hmmm," he answered. "The marines haven't lost a single man or battle yet. They have lots of time chips, and I think they all know where the princess is hidden. But, ya, know, I think I'm doing REAAAALLLLY WELL!"

It is players like Dan that make designing and hosting games a real pleasure. If only the world were filled with more little black guards like Dan Collinson.

Fortunately, Princess Ryan's Star Marines attracts a lot of friendly, light-hearted and very good-natured gamers like Dan. Even though his guards were so badly hammered that the marines were able to march straight through in a clean-sweep, he kept trying and kept fighting ­ and did so without a whine, a tear, a curse or a complaint. Everyone who played with him agreed he was the unchallenged nominee for the sportsmanship award.

Many of the other young players also played and fought well, including Jordan Flawd, who won the juniors' tournament, Angela and Ashley Collinson, who placed second and fourth, respectively (Dan's big sisters) , Alex Henning (third place) and Erica Kirchner, a veteran marine/black guard who grabbed fifth place. Four of the top six places went to girls. Nearly half of the players in the junior tournament were girls ­ and everyone who played them noted that they were just as fierce and as determined to win as any boy. A good example of this was shown by Alex Henning, who kept gesturing menacingly with her long, purple-painted press-on nails at any of her marines who did not do her bidding. Alex led her marines into one of the biggest battles in the game's history. Despite losing a dozen marines to the planetary defense battery, she charged in, blew it up and then led the handful of surviving marines into the citadel to personally free the princess.

The "adult" tournament was no less bloody. Cries of "we're dead," and "we're deader than dead" were common, as were "what an a-swhupping we's getting." The favorite marine expression of the day, however, was coined by veteran and former champ Paul Bolduc, who repeatedly remarked "we're getting thwacked!"

The "thwacking" continued unabated throughout the day. In one game the marines lost six battles in a row. In another, they lost three of six marines climbing up the cliffs into the back door of the citadel --- where they were "thwacked" royally. Jeff Riberio's team took many, many wounds in combat ­ only to have the survivors die in sickbay. ("Our sickbay killed more marines than the guards!" Jeff remarked later, noting that 16 marines who went into sick bay wound up in the morgue). Twice the marines were reduced to do-or-die endings. One try collapsed in complete slaughter when the starship was destroyed ­ along with all aboard. The other attempt also took horrific losses, but a handful of battered marines (three, actually) managed to crash into the citadel ­ only to die on the steps of the palace ­ against a guard defense of an unprecedented 156 points (lots and lots of reinforcement cards).

Despite these and other adversities, the marines twice managed to save the princess in the adult tourney. One rescue, led by Nick Henning (who came in first) was made with only one time chip to spare. Paul Saunders (fourth place) also rescued the princess. David Brooks (second place), Ashley Collinson (third), Karl Henning (fifth) and Missy Katano (sixth) also fought well ­ and more importantly, with a smile.

As the marine motto goes "It's better that way!"

 GM      Mark McLaughlin  [5th Year]   280 N. Elm St., Canaan, CT 06018   (860) 824-4774

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