monty's gamble: market garden [Updated October 2004]  

2004 WBC Report   

 2005 Status: pending 2005 GM commitment

Mike Rinella, NY

2004 Champion

2nd: David Long, NC

3rd: Jim Eliason, IA

4th: Bob Jamelli, PA

5th: Walt Garman, MD

6th: Ken Dunn, MD

Event History
2003    Walter Garman     11
2004    Mike Rinella     20

Offsite links:

AREA Ratings


Rank Name


 1. Mike Rinella


 2. David Long


 3. Walter Garman


 4. Jim Eliason


 5. Bob Jamelli


 6. Andrew Cummins


 7. Ken Dunn


 8. Chris Roginsky


 9. Joel Tamburo



Past Winners

Walter Garman - MD

Impulse movement in the low countries ...

After an initial debut as a trial game in 2003, when it was played at the WBC's on the day after it became available for sale, Monty's Gamble joined the Century series of competition games for 2004. A field of 20 players refought the Market Garden campaign of September 1944 to break over the Rhine into Germany, and finish the war before winter. The tournament game covers the first four days of the historical battle and revolves around the efforts of 30th Corps to drive up 'Hells Highway' to link up with 101st in Eindhoven and 82nd in Nijmegen while German forces attempted to hold off the Allied advance and reduce the 1st Airborne division in Arnhem itself.

A total of 16 games took place before the eventual final between the game designer Mike Rinella and newcomer David Long. The players preference for initial side ran 11 to 9 in favour of the Allies, a preference which was borne out in play with the Allies winning the first round 6 to 4, and the second 3 to 1. This trend was only reversed in the third and final rounds with the Germans taking all three. Thus the final scorebetween the sides was nine for the Allies and eight for the Germans. The overall feeling from the players being that the sides were reasonably balanced but that the Allies were more fun to play.

Prizes were awarded for the fastest Allied capture of Nijmegen and German capture of Arnhem. I was personally feeling quite confident about gaining the former, with a 30th Corps capture of Nijmegen on impulse B of the 19th, only to be shocked by my next opponent, Jim Eliason walking away with that prize for a 82nd Airborne coup-de-main, seizing the city on impulse 4 of the 17th, an impressive achievement which wasn't surpassed during the competition.

While Nijmegen was regularly captured by the Allies, strong movement by 30th Corps threatening Nijmegen and Oosterhout often prevented the Germans from gathering the forces to destroy the Arnhem garrison so there were relatively few German captures of the city. Mike Rinella also took this prize for a first round capture on the 19th, impulse 3.

In the final, Mike took Germans and David the Allies, his 30th Corps drive being initially beset with difficulties and falling behind timetable as Rinella's Germans scrambled to block the road. Clearing a critical blockage at Zeeland, David persevered and was in position for an assault on Nijmegen on the 20th which if successful would have given him the game. Rinella had substantially reinforced the city and it was going to require a significant series of bombardments and assaults to clear the defenders. The game broke in Mike's favor with a successful artillery barrage from across the Rhine from Pannerden into Beek where David's 82nd artillery battalions were poised to support the assault on Nijmegen. With these units knocked out for the rest of the day, David's assault forces were significantly weakened and despite multiple attacks failed to clear Nijmegen of its defenders before the day and thus the game ended. All in all, a well deserved victory in a very tightly contested game.

 GM      Andrew Cummins  [1st Year]   NA   NA

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