WBC 2022 was the great return of our beloved gaming convention after over 2 years of pandemic. It was great to see friends after such a long hiatus, sitting in open gaming, just chatting and catching up. The best part of the week was renewing the camaraderie with our band of gaming brothers, joking and trash talking. We also remember the handful of fallen brothers, reminiscing the good times together. I actually spent way more time chatting and less playing games than I have in past years.
As expected, attendance was down with some players missing due to a number of reasons. Most notable was Mark Herman, the esteemed designer and titan of our hobby. David Dockter initially said he could not make it. But various texting and photos sent during the early week changed his mind. We ended up with 20 participants including top players Chris Byrd, Mike Mitchell, Michael Day, Tom Drueding and Mark Giddings.
A total of 19 games were played. Box score is 10 Union vs 9 Confederate victories, with USA winning in the final.
Some Notable Highlights:
- In the match between Michael Mitchell’s CSA and David Sherwood’s USA, David got lots of reinforcement as the Union with 17 SP! CSA only received 9 SP through 6 turns. Union used Farragut 3 times to deadly effect, landing behind enemy lines and burning resources.
- At one point, Mark Giddings has 2 CSA armies raiding in the north. Things looked dire for USA. But Chris Byrd played 2 Major Campaigns to allow Union forces to circle behind Rebel positions, and ultimately, burned Richmond and destroyed Lee’s army as it tried to reestablish LOC.
- Marvin Birnbaum, a very good CDG player, returned to FTP after many years. He found a “2nd life” after surviving a major life changing surgery. He easily brushed off the rust and proceeded to use multiple Campaign cards in 1862 to crush Dan Leader’s Union. Marvin told me that he is now training his 13-year old son, Aaron, in FTP, after teaching him Washington’s War (WWR). (Side note: what do you know, Aaron and I met in the 2nd round of WWR. Like father, like son, his Colonials relentlessly attacked my British forces even though it is usually the Brits who are attacking.)
- One long game was played between Michael Day’s USA and Tom Drueding’s USA. Fresh off his championship win in POG, Tom was hoping to replicate his win in FTP. Both players pounded each other hard, with lots of bloody battles. DC fell on T5, but CSA capital was taken on T2 and T10. By 1864, with Confederates were low on troops and its capital taken again, Tom resigned.
- James Pei’s USA was able to pull off a rare tactics, double cavalry raids! With the Wilson’s Raid and Grieson’s Raid cards in his hand, the Master landed a cavalry brigade deep behind enemy lines and proceeded to cut OOS the entire Eastern CSA forces, while also burning Fayetteville NC resource space. Rebel forces took double attrition. Then Grant came on T7 with a full complement of 15 SP to whack the remnants of CSA armies.
- The Final between Randy Buehler and James Pei was a rematch of 2019. Randy’s Union was able to leverage several hands of good cards, including several Campaigns to sack Richmond and raised Blockade to 4. With Grant leading an army on T7, Union used another Major Campaign to launch several successful attacks and encircled around the new Rebel capital, and ultimately, took it and won the game.
I had a terrific time talking with outstanding friends and great opponents. It was especially great on the 2nd Saturday when I joined Bill Pettus, Bob Heinzman, and David Dockter outside at the BBQ fest, listening to the rock bands. We were chatting and reminiscing about all the changes in our lives. This is what a great convention should be like. Finally, I want to extend my gratitude to all the players who take the time to play this game as their friendship and camaraderie keep me coming back to this convention year after year.
|The Civil War rages on in Foggy Goggle.
|Chris Byrd and Michael Day determining
the fate of the Union.
|The Master and his apprentice.
|Finalists for the third consecutive year,
Randy Buehler and GM James Pei