Thursday, March 23, 2006

Twilight Struggle (Randy Mauldin)

Randy also helped me tremendously with the Cyberboard kit, and he and I started a game as soon as we could. Randy is playing the USSR, and I am playing the USA. As always, when Influence is shown, the number shown is the total influence after any is added or subtracted, not the amount placed or removed.

Setup:
USSR: Poland (3), Czechoslovakia (1), E Germany (4), Austria (1).
USA: Sweden (1), Italy (2), W Germany (3), Austria (1),

Turn 1

Headline - USSR: Vietnam Revolts places 2 Influence in Vietnam (2). USA: Marshall Plan. USA Influence in W Germany (4), Italy (3), Austria (2), Norway (1), Denmark (1), France (1), Sweden (2).

Card 1 - USSR: Romanian Abdication as Event brings Romania under USSR control (3). USA: Blockade for Influence: Lebanon (1). Event forces US to discard Socialist Governments.

Card 2 - USSR: Asia Scoring. USSR has domination, USA has presence. USSR has 1 Battleground country (N.Korea), USA has 0. Net 5 point shift for USSR. USA: Independent Reds as Event in Romania (3).

Card 3 - USSR: Indo-Pakistani War for Influence: Syria (2), Romania (4). USA: Olympic Games for Coup in Syria. No effect.

Card 4 - USSR: Fidel for Realignment in Lebanon and Romania. USA loses 1 Influence in Lebanon (0) and USSR loses 1 Influence in Romania (3). USA: Formosan Revolution for Coup in Poland. No effect.

Card 5 - USSR: East European Unrest for Influence. USA removes USSR Influence for Event: Poland (2), E.Germany (3), Romania (2). USSR Places influence in Poland (3), Czechoslovakia (3) USA: Defectors on Space Race, and the USA puts a satellite in orbit.

Card 6 - USSR: Europe Scoring. USSR has presence, USA has presence. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (E.Germany, Poland), USA has 2 (Italy, W.Germany). No VPs. USA: NATO for Influence: Pakistan (2), Malaysia (1), Lebanon (1).

USSR lose 4 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: +1 USA
Space Race: USSR:0 USA:1
DEFCON: 5
China Card: USSR

Turn 2

Headline - USSR: Red Scare/Purge. USA: US/Japan Mutual Defense Pact. Japan now has 4 USA Influence.

Card 1 - USSR: Korean War as Event. But the ROK is victorious. USA: De-Stalinization for Influence: Iran (2), Thailand (1). USSR moves Influence from Austria (0) to Romania (3) and Vietnam (1) to Iraq (2).

Card 2 - USSR: Nuclear Test Ban for Influence: Romania (4), Iraq (3), Jordan (2). USA: Suez Crisis on the Space Race, and the USA puts a monkey into space.

Card 3 - USSR: Captured Nazi Scientist as Event. USSR puts a satellite into orbit. USA: Arab-Israeli War on the Space Race, but the USA attempt to land a lunar probe fails.

Card 4 - USSR: Comecon as Event. USSR Influence in Hungary (1), Yugoslavia (1), Bulgaria (1), E.Germany (4). USA: MidEast Scoring. USSR has presence, USA has presence. USSR has 1 Battleground country (Iraq), USA has 1 (Iran). Net 0 point shift.

Card 5 - USSR: DeGaulle Leads France as Event. France now has 1 USSR Influence. USA: Five Year Plan as Event. The USSR discards UN Intervention.

Card 6 - USSR: CIA Created for a Coup in Iran, which improbably succeeds in removing 2 USA Influence (0). USA: Truman Doctrine. 4 USSR Influence are removed from Romania (0).

USA and USSR lose 0 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: 0
Space Race: USSR:1 USA:2
DEFCON: 4
China Card: USSR

Turn 3

Headline - USSR: Nasser, giving the USSR 2 Influence in Egypt. USA: Olympics, and the USA wins!

Card 1 - USSR: Mideast Scoring. USSR has domination, USA has presence. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (Iraq, Egypt), USA has 0. Net 4 point shift for USSR. USA: Fidel for a Coup in Egypt. And just as soon as Nasser arrives, he is sent packing. USSR has 0 Influnce, USA has 1. USSR gets 3 Influence in Cuba.

Card 2 - USSR: Indo-Pakistani War as Event. India invades Pakistan, but fails to achieve a victory. USA: Duck and Cover as Event, for 3VP as DEFCON moves to 2.

Card 3 - USSR: Warsaw Pact Formed as Event to remove all USA Influence from Romania. USA: Nuclear Test Ban for Influence: France (2), S.Korea (3).

Card 4 - USSR: The China Card for Influence: S.Korea (1), Thailand (3). USA: Decolonization on the Space Race, to send up a lunar probe successfully.

Card 5 - USSR: Formosan Resolution for Influence: France (2), Iran (1). USA: Arab-Israeli War for Influence: France (3), Egypt (2). The Israelis prevail in the war.

Card 6 - USSR: Five Year Plan for Influence: Iran (2), W.Germany (1). USA: Socialist Governments on the Space Race, puting the first man into space.

USA and USSR lose 0 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: +3 USA
Space Race: USSR:1 USA:4
DEFCON: 3
China Card: USA

Turn 4

Headline - USSR: SE Asia Scoring. USSR Controls Thailand and Vietnam. USA Controls Laos. Net 2 point shift for USSR. USA: Junta. USA Influence in Brazil (2) and an unsuccessful realignment roll in Cuba.


Card 1 - USSR: Allende as Event, USSR has 2 Influence in Chile. USA: How I Learned to Stop Worrying for Influence: Sudan (1), Angola (1).

Card 2 - USSR: Arms Race for Influence: Pakistan (2). USA: Africa Scoring. USSR has no presence, USA has domination. USSR has 0 Battleground countries, USA has 1 (Angola). Net 5 point shift for USA.


Card 3 - USSR: Bear Trap on Space Race, and the USSR successfully sends a dog into space. USA: Cuban Missile Crisis for a Coup in Iran. 2 USSR Influence removed (0), 2 USA Influence placed (2).

Card 4 - USSR: SALT Negotiations as Event. DEFCON to Level 4 and USSR retreives Socialist Governments. USA: Brush War as Event in Pakistan. The Brush War results in a victory, removing 2 USSR Influence (0) and replacing them with USA Influence (4).

Card 5 - USSR: Asia Scoring. A timely result on that Brush War for the USA. USSR has presence, USA has presence. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (N.Korea, Pakistan), USA has 2 (Japan, Thailand). Net 0 point shift. USA: Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for Influence: W.Germany (5), France (5).

Card 6 - USSR: Nuclear Subs for a Coup in Brazil which succeeds, removing 2 USA Influence (0) and adding 1 USSR Influence (1). USA: Sadat Expels the Soviets for Influence: Columbia (1).

Card 7 - USSR: Latin American Death Squads for Coup in Columbia, removing all USA Influence. USA: Camp David Accords as Event. USA Influence in Israel (2), Jordan (1), Egypt (3).

USA and USSR lose 0 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: +7 USA
Space Race: USSR:2 USA:4
DEFCON: 4
China Card: USA

Turn 5

Headline - USSR: Socialist Goverments to remove Influence: W.Germany (4), Italy (1) USA: Containment.

Card 1 - USSR: NATO for Influence: W.Germany (2), Italy (1), Brazil (2), Chile (3). USA: Panama Canal Returned as Event. Influence added to Panama (2), Costa Rica (1), Venezuela (1).

Card 2 - USSR: Flower Power for Influence: Peru (2), Nicaragua (1), Italy (2) USA: U2 Incident for a Coup in Brazil, which succeeds. 2 USSR Influence removed (0), 3 USA Influence added (3).

Card 3 - USSR: Puppet Governments for Coup in Brazil, which fails. USA places Influence in Argentina (1), India (1), and Mexico (1). USA: OAS Founded as Event. Influence in Costa Rica (2).

Card 4 - USSR: We Will Bury You for Influence: Argentine (3), Haiti (1). USA: OPEC for Influence; W.Germany (6), India (3).

Card 5 - USSR: South America Scoring. USSR has domination, USA has presence. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (Chile, Argentina), USA has 1 (Brazil). Net 4 point shift for USSR. USA: Colonial Rearguards as Event. Place Influence in Thailand (2), Vietnam (1), Algeria (1), Morocco (1).

Card 6 - USSR: The Voice of America on the Space Race, without success. USA: The China Card for Influence: S.Korea (4), Thailand (5), Taiwan (1).

Card 7 - USSR: Grain Sales to Soviets for Influence: Iran (1). USA gets to play Summit, and gets the better of the Summit for 2VP. USA: Cultural Revolution for Influence: Mexico (2), Italy (4),

USSR loses 1 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: +3 USA
Space Race: USSR:2 USA:4
DEFCON: 4
China Card: USSR

Turn 6

Headline - USSR: Brezhnev Doctrine USA: Defectors cancels the USSR event. Having the lead in the Space Race and the Defectors card can be a very useful combination.

Card 1 - USSR: Missile Envy as Event. The USSR pulls ABM Treaty from the USA hand, which it uses for a Coup in Mexico after which the USSR has 2 Influence in the country and the USA has none. USA: Missile Envy for Coup in Mexico. Turnabout is fair play and the Mexican people overthrow the pro-Soviet government in favor of a middle-of-the-road government (no Influence for either side).

Card 2 - USSR: Portuguese Empire Crumbles as Event: USSR Influence in Angola (2) and SE Saharan States (2). USA: Europe Scoring. USSR has presence, USA has domination. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (E.Germany, Poland), USA has 3 (France, W.Germany, Italy). Net 5 point shift for USA.

Card 3 - USSR: Liberation Theology as Event. USSR Influence in Mexico (2) amd Guatemala (1). USA: Ussuri River Skirmish for Coup in Mexico. Mexico continues to ping-pong between ideologies and now has 2 USA Influence.

Card 4 - USSR: One Small Step as Event, the USSR puts a man in space. USA: Suez Crisis for Space Race and the USA responds by making a Lunar Orbit.

Card 5 - USSR: Muslim Revolutions for Realignment. Two attempts to realign Mexico fail; the third attempt removes the two USA Influence from the country. One attempt to realign Costa Rica fails.. USA: Kitchen Debates as Event and 2VP for the USA.

Card 6 - USSR: Eastern European Unrest for Influence: Mexico (3). USA uses Event to remove USSR Influence from: Poland (2), Czechoslovakia (2), Yugoslavia (0). USA: John Paul II Elected Pope as Event. Poland now has USSR 0, USA 1.

Card 7 - USSR: Central American Scoring. USSR has domination, USA has presence. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (Mexico, Cuba), USA has 1 (Panama). USSR has 2 countries adjacent to USA. Net 5 point shift for USSR. USA: Willy Brandt for Influence. 1 USSR VP and 1 Influence in W.Germany (3) for Event and 2 more USA Influence (8) in W.Germany.

USA and USSR lose 0 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: +7 USA
Space Race: USSR:4 USA:5
DEFCON: 3
China Card: USSR

Turn 7

Headline - USSR: How I Learned to Stop Worrying. DEFCON is set at 5. USA: Red Scare/Purge

Card 1 - USSR: Arms Race as Event to score 3VP. USA: MidEast Scoring. USSR has presence, USA has presence. USSR has 1 Battleground country (Irag), USA has 1 (Brazil). No VPs. The Middle East is unlikely to get better for the USA, so I was happy to bury this card early!
Card 2 - USSR: Quagmire as Event. USA: South African Unrest is discarded in order to get the USA out of the Quagmire.

Card 3 - USSR: Sadat Expels Soviets for Realignment against Poland. The USA places Influence in Egypt (4) and the USSR Realignment against Poland succeeds in removing all USA Influence from the country. USA: Grain Sales to Soviets as Event. The USA pulls We Will Bury You from the USSR hand and returns it without playing it. Instead, Grain Sales is used for Influence: Algeria (2), Zaire (1)

Card 4 - USSR: We Will Bury You as Event. DEFCON to 4 and the USSR gets 3VP. USA: Africa Scoring. USSR has presence, USA has domination. USSR has 1 Battleground country (Angola), USA has 2 (Algeria, Zaire). Net 4 point shift for USA.

Card 5 - USSR: Alliance for Progress for Realignment in Panama (no effect) and Brazil (-1 USA Influence to 2). The USA gains 2VP for the Event. USA: Olympic Games for a Coup in Mexico, removing 2 USSR Influence (1). The poor people of Mexico continue to be center stage in Cold War politics.

Card 6 - USSR: Flower Power for Influence: Poland (3). USA: Nixon Plays the China Card as Event to take the China Card from the USSR.

Card 7 - USSR: Shuttle Diplomacy for Influence: Mexico (3) USA: Lone Gunman reveals the USA hand (Junta is the only card left) and then is used for a Coup in Guatemala, which succeeds: USSR 0, USA 2.

USA and USSR lose 0 VP for Military Operations.

At Turn's Start:
VP: +7 USA
Space Race: USSR:4 USA: 5
DEFCON: 4
China Card: USA

Turn 8

Headline - USSR: Aldrich Ames. USA: Soviets Shoot Down KAL-007. USA gains 2VP and places 4 Influence: Venezuela (2), Uraguay (2), El Salvador (1).

The USSR Places the USA cards in the following order: South America Scoring, Marine Barracks Bombing, The Iron Lady, Latin America Death Squads, Junta, Asia Scoring, Ussuri River Skirmish, North Sea Oil.

Card 1 - USSR: Suez Crisis for a Coup in Brazil before South America Scoring is played, which succeeds in removing all USA Influence from Brazil. USA: South America Scoring. USSR has presence, USA has presence. USSR has 2 Battleground countries (Chile, Argentina), USA has 1 (Venezuela). Net 1 point shift for USSR.
Card 2 - USSR: Iranian Hostage Crisis for Realignment: 3 attampts versus S Korea fail, however. USA: Marine Barracks Bombing for Influence: Taiwan (3). The USSR Event Removes USA Influence from Lebanon (0), Iran (0).

Card 3 - USSR: Iran-Iraq War for Influence: Thailand (4) USA: The Iron Lady for Influence: Thailand (6), N.Korea (1).

Card 4 - USSR: An Evil Empire for Influence: N.Korea (4), Thailand (5). USA gains 1VP from the Event. USA: Latin America Death Squads for Influence: Thailand (8).

Card 5 - USSR: Arab-Israeli War for Influence: S. Korea (2). USA: Junta for Influence: S. Korea (6).

Card 6 - USSR: Bear Trap for Influence: S. Korea (4). USA: Asia Scoring. USSR has no presence (due to Shuttle Diplomacy), USA has domination. USSR has 0 Battleground countries, USA has 4 (Japan, India, Pakistan, Thailand). Net 11 point shift for USA and a USA auto-victory!


Conclusions

From my point of view there were two key things in the game that determined its outcome.

The first is Randy's terrible results using realignment. A lot of bad luck went against him there, but realignment carries that risk with it. As yet, I don't use it much for precisely that reason.

The second is which scoring card came out first after the reshuffle: Asia or Central America. My lead in Asia was overwhelming. Randy's lead in central America (especially with 2 BG countries adjacent to the USA was also pretty overwhelming. I got lucky that Asia Scoring came out. Aldrich Ames gave Randy a chance to stave off auto-defeat, but it just wasn't enough in the end.

2 comments:

Jason Matthews said...

Hey these AAR's are great. I noticed though:

"Card 6 - USSR: CIA Created for a Coup in Iran, which improbably succeeds in removing 2 USA Influence (0). USA: Truman Doctrine. 4 USSR Influence are removed from Romania (0)."

Perhaps you implemented it and just did not report it, but the USA should have recieved 1 OP for the USSR play of CIA Created.

Jason

DaveyK said...

Probably just a mistake. But a good catch nonetheless!