merchant of venus [Updated October 2006]  

 2006 WBC Report  

 2007 Status: pending 2007 GM commitment

Eyal Mozes, NY

2006 Champion

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Event History
1991    Duane Wagner      24
1992    Kathy Stroh      21
1993    Michael Anchors      41
1994    David Thompson      43
1995    Greg Mayer      56
1996    Tom Stokes      48
1997    Mark Hunter      78
1998    Greg Mayer      80
1999    Steve Crenshaw     67
2000    Debbie Otto     68
2001     Bill Crenshaw     72
2002     Charley Hickok      60
2003     Luke Koleszar      64
2004     Eric Wrobel      64
2005      John Koskl      50
2006     Eyal Mozes      39


Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Bill Crenshaw      VA    06     90
  2.  Eric Wrobel        VA    05     60
  3.  Debbie Otto        MO    00     56
  4.  Luke Koleszar      VA    05     52
  5.  Ed Wrobel          VA    03     52
  6.  Eyal Mozes         NY    06     42
  7.  Chuck Foster       TX    06     42
  8.  John Koskl         NC    05     40
  9.  Lance Ribeiro      NH    05     40
 10.  Charles Hickok     PA    02     40
 11.  Steve Dickson      CA    02     40
 12.  Jeff Bakalchuck    NY    02     40
 13.  Steve Crenshaw     VA    99     40
 14.  Greg Mayer         MO    99     36
 15.  Joe Abrams         CT    06     36
 16.  Rich Meyer         MA    04     16
 17.  Vassili Kyrkos     NY    04     12
 18.  Abby Cocke         MD    02     12
 19.  James Hopkin       CA    00     12
 20.  Frank McNally      MA    06      9
 21.  Tom DeMarco        NJ    03      8
 22.  Gary Dickson       CA    02      8
 23.  Lauren Hickok      PA    00      8
 24.  Ray Stakenas Sr    NC    05      4
 25.  Jim Fardette       AE    04      4
 26.  Lynn Ribeiro       NH    01      4
 27.  Ken Gutermuth      TX    06      3

2006 Laurelists

Bill Crenshaw, VA

Joe Abrams, CT

Frank McNally, MA

Chuck Foster, ID

Ken Gutermuth, TX

Past Winners

Duane Wagner, NJ

Kathy Stroh, PA

Michael Anchors, MD

David Thompson, NE

Greg Mayer, MO
1995, 1998

Tom Stokes, NJ

Mark Hunter, MO

Steve Crenshaw, MD

Deb Otto, MO

Bill Crenshaw, MD

Charlie Hickok, PA

Luke Koleszar, VA

Eric Wrobel, VA

John Koski, NC

 GM Richard Irving (left) on the way to one of his three Heat wins. He should have saved some of his mojo for the Semis where he was one and done.

 Even in a lean year, Merchant drew enough to remain a Century event despite being long out of print. So how long can these old AH classics hold out?

High Flying Profits

This year's tournament started as always with the demo. This year one of the people who came to learn the game was a 12-year-old girl who was exhausted and droopy from a day long car ride to get to Lancaster. Little did anyone know that her droopy state foretold the attendance for this year's event - down 11 to 39 players - its lowest total in the past 14 years. Actually, it seems some other rail events (and Merchant of Venus is often nicknamed "Rails in Space") had conflicting schedules. I hope to get together with the other rail game GM's to form an unofficial "Rail Game Track" to avoid these conflicts in the future to benefit all of these events.

The tournament proper started with the first heat on Wednesday morning with six games and 21 players. Harald Henning won the mythical "Lost in a Fog" Award when early in the game, trying to reach the "eastern" portion of the map, he was derailed by the navigation circle at Shuttlestop. Proceeding to the "NW", he finds a $40 penalty oval hidden in an unassuming asteroid. So he stopped (instead of burning more than half his cash) and waited for next turn. Still trying to go east, he rolled a 2,2,3 that allowed him to travel a grand total of one space, before being stopped by Shuttlestop's Nav circle - with its 2,3 arrow pointing back at him. Undaunted, Harald tried again and this time rolled 3,3,2 and was forced back to the penalty oval! BANG! BANG! BANG! OUCH!

Round 2 featured another exercise in futility when a Mr. X (Name withheld to prevent possible embarrassment) through a combination of fatigue (he left one planet before trading), fuzzy recall of the strategy of the game (he hadn't played for a couple of years) and really rotten luck (he got probably the worst IOU's that are hardly worth using), managed to finish with an all time low final score of $170! (This includes the value of the goods he had on board, a couple of Finest Dusts.) For this dubious achievement Mr. X has been taken to an undisclosed location and where his identity can remain discreet.

Round 3 featured Frank McNally winning "I Knew There Was a Gate Around Here Somewhere" Award for finding a Jump Start on Turn 3 - easily the best Relic in the game IF there are Telegates to jump start to. Unfortunately, for Frank only one Telegate was discovered which greatly limited the ability of the device. Kind of like winning a "Free Gas for Life" card from a certain gas brand and realizing the closest station they have is three states away.

Because of the low attendance, only 15 heat games were played (and only 12 semi-final qualifiers due to repeat wins, notably by the GM, who won all three heat games.), so at least four alternates would make the 16 player semi-final field. When two of the winners failed to arrive at the start, more alternates were needed - allowing possibly the most enthusiastic player to make the semis, Stephen Westerholm. Stephen was there for every heat and his constant upbeat "never say die" attitude in the face of difficult results was a highlight of the week.

In the semis, the GM was denied in his attempt to "coussis" his event, when he was defeated by Frank McNally - the only new Laurelist to make it to the Final. Joe Abrams, Bill Crenshaw and Eyal Mozes won their semis also to reep more laurels and advanceto the Final.

There, Eyal got the Jump Start (and this time three Telegates were discovered) allowing him to comeback from a slow start to win the title. (Bill nipped Joe for second by a mere $14) Eyal is a regular player in the Merchant of Venus tournament and frequent semi-finalist who finally broke through. Congratulations!

I hope everyone enjoyed the event and was able to follow Rule #1 of this tournament: Have Fun!

Thanks for playing!

Final Results:

Finalists (Ranked by score in Final):
1) Eyal Mozes $3002
2) Bill Crenshaw $2561
3) Joe Abrams $2547
4) Frank McNally $1508

Semi-finalists (Ranked by score in semi-final):
5) Chuck Foster $2579
6) Ken Gutermuth $2750
7) Richard Irving $2559
8) Luke Koleszar $2512
9) Rich Meyer $2410
10) Vassili Kyrkos $2324
11) Tom Stokes $2278
12) Craig Dudley $2212
13) Debbie Gutermuth $1816
14) Reiko Brooks $1165
15) Stephen Westerholm $1120
16) Joe Delaney $870

Remaining Players (Ranked by best heat game
17) Tom Browne $2037
18) Ewan McNay $2033
19) Ed Kendrick $1546
20) Paul Bolduc $1481
21) Dennis Mischler $1477
22) Alan Rose $1456
23) Debbie Davidson $1399
24) Tom DeMarco $1375
25) Harald Henning $1246
26) Keith Corbino $1189
27) Duane Wagner $1161
28) Laurel Stokes $1102
29) Richard Jones $1100
30) Priscilla Putnam $1065
31) Mike Brophy $1010
32) Chris Geggus $914
33) Peter Martin $787
34) Roderick Lee $763
35) Claire Brosius $740
36) David Weinstein $707
37) Michael Holmquist $664
38) Strider Putnam $500
39) Mr. X $170

 GM      Richard Irving  [5th Year]   1505 Caceras Circle, Salinas, CA 93906   NA

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