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Queen's Gambit (QGB) WBC 2016 Report
Updated Nov. 26, 2016 Icon Key
30 Players John Pack, CO 2016 Status 2017 Status History/Laurels
2016 Champion Click box for details. Click box for details.

Packing the Force

Attendance in the event’s 15th year dropped to a record low. Paradoxically, increasing the number of scheduled opportunities in the preliminary heats resulted in a significant increase in the number of games played. That, and the lowering tide of attendance in general caused by the venue change was sufficient to return the event to the Century after a one-year absence.

However, a surprising development was a resurfacing of complaints about playing the Naboo. Despite play balance continuing to hover at 50%, it is obvious that some players cannot handle the time limit stress that accompanies playing the Naboo in the elimination rounds. The time limit was imposed after the first year due to an infamous seven-hour game. 

In a replay of 2015, the Trade Federation and the Naboo split evenly in the preliminaries where there is no time limit. However, as the results continue to show, the game remains balanced in the time-restricted playoffs. The results again favored the Naboo as the obnoxious Gungans prevailed in eight of 15 elimination games.

The playoffs were conducted in the Ski Lodge at the high legged table section to get players in a star fighter mindset. Three former champions played and all of them advanced to the Elimination Phase: "Lord Vader" Lingle, Brian "Bossk" Sutton and John "Sebulba" Schoose. Four players were 3-0 in the Preliminaries: Chris "Exar Kun" Kizer, Sebulba Schoose, Vinny "Vornskr" Sinigaglio and Aidan "Arc Trooper" Powers. Three-time Champ Lord Vader Lingle and Keith "Kenobi" Corbino were 3-1 in the Preliminaries. Two years ago Darth Maul and Obiwan Kenobi killed each other in a light saber duel four times. This year it did not happen at all. 

In the round of 16, "Exar Kun" Kizer skewered Phil "Djas Puhr" Shea, John "Sarlacc" Pack sucked the life out of Andrew "Lobot" Long, "Kenobi" Corbino "Force Choked" an "Enraged Wampa" Yaure (Chris), David "Plo Koon" Platnick strafed Aidan "Arc Trooper" Powers, "Vornskr" Sinigaglio shredded Robert "Prince Xixor" Powers, "Bossk" Sutton clawed Marilyn "Mara Jade" Flowers, Lord Vader Lingle decapitated "Whorm Loathsom" McCulloch and Sebulba Schoose drop kicked Rebecca "Night Sister Sith Witch" Rappolo. 

In the quarterfinals, Sutton annihilated Sinigaglio while playing the light side; his Obi Wan left the Generator Core and dispatched 17 Battle Droids and five Droideka. The Federated Pack easily overcame Kizer playing the Naboo; John systematically killed off the Palace Guards and the Queens as Anakin stalled against the Droid Star fighters. Platnick easily bested Kenobi Corbino who forsook his namesake and played the Dark Side; the clincher was a decision by David to dump his whole hand, which he then refilled with a fistful of Jedi Attack cards that polished off Maul. Lingle defeated Schoose as his Darth Maul killed Quigon, Obiwan and all the Naboo characters in the Palace.

The two best career Queen's Gambit players met in the first semifinal.
Lingle playing the light side won a close game vs. Sutton. The Lingle Obiwan and the Sutton Maul were each down to their last few hits. Lingle lucked out and killed Maul, while Brian was holding three recently drawn Maul attack cards. The surviving Obiwan then went into the Palace and eliminated the remaining Droids.

In the other bracket, Platnick played the Naboo versus Pack. This game accentuated the dreaded time limit. David's strategy was to ignore the battlefield and concentrate on killing the Droids in the Palace while simultaneously filling and blocking the Droid reinforcement hexes. David's tactics worked well; however, he had just enough Palace Guards to fill the reinforcement hexes, but not enough to get two others in the Throne Room with Obiwan, who was lounging. Meanwhile, Pack eliminated every Gungan on the battlefield and sent all eight Star fighters against Anakin. Then the time limit started to rear its ugly head. David could not afford to move any of his Palace Guards or John would immediately send over Droids, so David passed over repeated turns, discarding everything but Anakin cards. John could only build Droids on the Battlefield while discarding everything else. David attempted to use the Force on Pack to surrender, but the Sarlacc had ingested a Toydarian ages ago and was immune to the Force. As a result, David lost when the time limit was reached with Anakin on the doorstep. It should be noted that Anakin's dice were terrible as David went through three decks and still could not shut down the Droids. John Pack thus strove into his first championship game after many futile years of failing to reach the promised land.

The Championship game pitted three-time champ Larry Lingle (again) vs. John Pack. Lingle has been in the championship many times - ground hogs day. Despite the previous game,Pack was not afraid of the time limit and played the Naboo; however, he too flirted with it at the end. Pack sent Anakin three spaces towards the Droid Control Ship on the very first turn. Lord Vader was non-plussed as he played all eight Star fighter cards on the last two spaces. In the fight at the Palace, the Sarlacc fared very well, getting both Jedi out of the Generator Core. Thus, the light side easily overwhelmed the Droids while taking control of the Throne Room. John did not repeat the bad dice of Anakin from the semifinal. The Pack Anakin managed to fight his way past the Droid Star fighters with a few minutes to spare on the clock.

Special thanks are in order for Bill “Battle Droid” Morse for his invaluable efforts as an Assistant GM and for his organizational and clerical skills.

2016 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 2
Larry Lingle, PA Dave Platnick, VA Brian Sutton, MD Andrew Long, NC John Schoose, FL
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th

Chris Kizer vs John Pack

Brian Sutton vs Vinny Sinigaglio

GM  Buddy Sinigaglio [9th Year]  NA
 sinigaglio@hotmail.com  303-915-1515