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titan: the arena (TTA) WBC 2016 Report
Updated Nov. 26, 2016 Icon Key
95 Players Charles Squibb, PA 2016 Status 2017 Status History/Laurels
2016 Champion Click box for details. Click box for details.
 

More Medals for More Combatants

While many events were bemoaning lower attendance due to the move, our numbers went through the roof! From a significantly increased 32 Preliminary games (13 in the new 9 PM Thursday slot alone) we got an unprecedented 30 qualifiers including two double winners. The 22 that used those wins, along with three opportunistic alternates, advanced to a full semifinal of five 5-player tables.

Since it was part of a winning strategy a couple years ago, the tactic of using one’s bet action to reveal a secret bet on a dead creature to gain negotiating leverage has been used more often. One semifinal even had two players try it. The competition was fierce at all five tables but eventually five victors emerged and we were Final bound.

Play was conservative in Round 1 with each player making a single bet (plus their secret ones, of course). This made for a few obvious targets in the opening rounds as the Dragon fell followed quickly by the Titan. The other freelance creature, the Cyclops, found some love in Round 2 in the form of a bet by Tim Packwood. Again, in the second round, each player made one bet only, and two rounds passed with no one losing a point. In the third round the players also made one bet apiece, but this time blood had to be spilled. Charles Squibb took control of the Unicorn from Jordan and managed to save it with a prudent use of its power. Meanwhile Jordan Shea tried to show visible support for Chris LeFevre’s Hydra, but it was not enough, and all the heads of the reptile were severed along with Jordan’s secret bet. The fourth round also produced one bet per player. At this point, Tim tried to gain an advantage by using the Head Referee to reveal secret bets on the Ranger, but he got minimal information as none were exposed.  He later managed to end the round, killing the Warlock which happened to have Sharee Pack’s secret bet in addition to her Round 1 wager. Ouch!

The last round was notable in that the Cyclops had managed to survive up to this point, which it rarely does. If it could live for one more round, Tim’s 10 points on it (including his secret bet) would seal his victory no matter what else happened. Unfortunately for Tim, he had a few things working against him.  First, with it known that there were no secret bets on the Ranger, people were more inclined to let it live, since the most anyone had on it was four points (in fact, Both Charles and Jordan had four). Second, with the remaining secret bets of Chris and Charles on the Troll, nearly everyone at the table had an interest in keeping it alive, including Tim with a 4-pointer riding on it. Lastly, no one had much interest in keeping the Cyclops alive (the only other player backing it was Chris for one point.

Generally, in the last round, it only takes three players in a row to decide which creature dies. This time there were four. The Cyclops perished quickly and when the blood stopped flowing, Charles collected his first WBC title with 15 points. No one else could even break out of single digits.

No TTA report would be complete without naming the medal winners. This year I gave out seven, named after seven of the 11 spectator cards in the game (only four more to go!). The Mighty Minotaur (6), given to the player who comes in sixth in the overall tournament - call it the Sand substitute; no Fez included -  went to Jefferson Meyer. Our current champion, Charles Squibb also got the Shining Serpent (0) for betting ten points on the last creature to die in a preliminary game. Theo Crescenzi earned the Weary Warbear (4) with his incredible seven-point win on a tie, smashing last year’s record by two whole points. The Ardent Angel (7) went to Stefany Speck for earning the highest last-place score of eight points in a two-way tie. That’s right, this year the Warbear’s score was lower than the Angel’s score! The Overachieving Ogre (5) went to 2014 champ Carter Waite for earning 33 total points in her Preliminary games. And lastly (for this year), the Greenie Gryphon (3) went to the new player who performed the best in the heats (i.e. highest on the qualifier list). Two such players qualified for the semifinal, but Theo Crescenzi pulled out a second win in the third heat to win the sophomore Greenie Gryphon medal and his second medal overall.

Big news: On the way home from the convention, I thought of the next medal. More news to come! Congrats to all the medalists, finalists, and to Charles Squibb for becoming our 18th champion in 20 years, and our inaugural champ at Seven Springs! Hope to see everyone next year!

 
2016 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 0
Jordan Shea, CT Chris LeFevre, AZ Sharee Pack, MI Tim Packwood, DE Jefferson Meyer, MA
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
 
Michael Shea, Chris LeFevre, Jefferson Meyer, Audrey Payne and Chris Kizer

Ladies Night: Rebecca Melton, Anna Rinko,
Marcy Morelli, Faith Wobbeking and Stefany Speck

GM Gregory Crowe oversees his five finalists
in the 14th year of his Legacy event.
 
GM  Greg Crowe [14th year]  NA 
 ginfeatures@Gmail.com  NA