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Through the Ages (AGE) WBC 2019 Event Report
Updated February 5, 2020.
25 Players Steve LeWinter 2019 Status 2020 Status Event History
  2019 Champion   & Laurels

LeWinter Is The Fifth Two-Time Winner

AGE switched to an all-day Monday schedule for its 12th annual WBC gathering, but this “wargame style” schedule did not prove popular and attendance was down 15 runners to 25. 12 unique winners all showed up for the semifinal, which consisted of 3 4-player games from which the winners and the closest 2nd-place finisher would advance to the finals. Usual final table suspects Randy Buehler and Allan Jiang won their semifinal tables relatively straight-forwardly while Michael Thiessen and Steven LeWinter wound up in a flat-footed tie (156 points each) in theirs, so no math was required to determine the closest runner-up.

This final marked Randy’s 9th final table in 10 years of attending WBC, but he hasn’t won since 2012 while AJ was sitting down for his 3rd final table in 3 years, having won each of the first two (and parlayed the second into his first Caesar). Meanwhile Steve won this tournament in 2016 and Michael almost win the most recent PBEM tournament, finishing second to AJ.

Randy, in the always desirable 1st seat, built both Colossus and Great Wall in Age 1, as well as Knights (to turn on a Phalanx tactic) so he was the early military leader. He also got the nice combo of Alchemy plus Leonardo Da Vinci late in Age 1 and seemed well set up as Age 2 began. From the 2-seat Michael used Barbarosa to keep up militaristically while also building Library of Alexandria. Steve, playing 3rd, used Alexander and 2 Medieval Armies for his strength while drafting (bit not yet building) St Peter’s Cathedral. Playing last, which is usually the most vulnerable seat to early aggressions, AJ managed to pair Hanging Gardens with Michaelangelo for the early culture lead while building 4 Swordsman to defend himself with.

Early in Age 2 AJ won the Napoleon lottery – seeing the consensus best leader in the game flip on his turn so he was the one who got to draft him for 3 actions. AJ upgraded Michaelangelo right away, but did continue to invest in culture in the form of an Eiffel Tower. With Napoleon keeping him strong, AJ got away with a significant investment in culture despite playing from the normally fragile 4-seat.

Meanwhile Randy got to pull off a nice turn of Robespierre into Constitutional Monarchy, and he stayed the strongest throughout the age, but he never found a way to leverage his military lead into any tangible advantage. Everyone valued military highly enough to keep up and the game saw exactly zero aggressions resolve. In addition, everyone seemed hesitant to seed events and the ones that did get seeded didn’t care about strength.

Steve had a quietly awesome Age 2 as he put together Newton and Scientific Method for a tremendous amount of science. His great infrastructure wasn’t just limited to science as he also built the Ocean Liner and had solid rock production as well.

Michael had a reasonable mix of things going on (and hurt the table pretty badly with the Pestilence and Rats events he had seeded), but did not seem to be winning on any axis.

Once AJ found Defensive Army and was able to deploy some Cannons, he was both the strongest player and also the one with the most culture. This seemed to make him the consensus leader as Age 3 began. He then switched quickly away from Napoleon and into Churchill before the Iconoclasm event could ruin his fun, and when he was able to grab and build the only copy of Air Force that flipped before the last orbit of Age 3, AJ was strong enough to get off a medium-sized war. Randy was 2nd on both culture rate and strength, so AJ felt he was the competition and targeted him with what wound up being an 18-point Culture War.

Randy had Einstein and Computers going for a few turns, but between the War and the Terrorists who showed up and destroyed his Computers, Randy slipped out of contention. AJ’s real competition down the stretch was Steve and his amazing infrastructure. Steve was able to both draft and build Internet on the final turn to position himself within 8 culture of AJ heading into the end-game Impacts and WOW did those Impacts reward him. Between Population, Technology, Architecture, Industry, and Government, Steve scored fully 67 points while AJ managed just 38.

The final score wasn’t particularly close:

  • Steven LeWinter – 131
  • Allan Jiang – 110
  • Michael Thiessen – 83
  • Randy Buehler – 73

Steve won the event for the second time, and actually became the first person to win in using both the original version of the game and the revised edition as well. Perhaps even more strangely, Steve is the 5th 2-Time winner of the event (joining AJ, Randy, Jason Ley, and Joel Lytle) while no one has won the event 3 times (and only 2 players have won it precisely once).

Congratulations to Steve and see you all next year!

2019 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 3
Allan Jiang Michael Thiessen Randy Buehler John Corrado Matthew Thiessen
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
Allan Jiang on his way to the final. Not liking his options.
Deciding what to purchase. Finalists getting ready to battle through the ages.
GM  Randy Buehler [9th Year]  NA
 RandyBuehler@comcast.net  NA