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Wilderness War Tournament

The Battle of the Monongahela

Welcome to the 2010 Boardgame Players Association
Play-by-email Tournament Website

GM:  Keith Wixson (
Assistant GM:  Paul Gaberson (paulgaberson@verizon.net)

Status:  Keith Wixson is the Champion.


I.  Format, Scenario and Rules

A.  This will be a seven round Swiss Elimination tournament . Each player who signs up may play in the first four rounds if he or she wishes, regardless of record. Players may drop out of the tournament at any time.

1.  The sixteen (16) players with the highest AREA rating will be seeded. Each seeded player shall maintain his or her seeding until he or she loses a game.


2.  Each of the seeded players in Round 1 will play a random unseeded player and any excess unseeded players will be paired randomly amongst themselves.


3.  Players with the same number of wins in Rounds 2 through 4 will be grouped (a “Bracket”) and paired within such Bracket. The pairings for Rounds 2 through 4 will be determined as follows: 

(a)  In the Bracket of undefeated players, each seeded player from the top down will be paired with a random unseeded player if possible. If there are not enough undefeated unseeded players to match up with the seeded players, then the top unpaired seeded player will play the bottommost unpaired seeded player, the second highest unpaired seeded player will play the next lowest unpaired seeded player, and so on down the line until everybody is paired.


(b)  In all other Brackets pairings will be completely random.


(c)  If there is an odd number of players in any Bracket, then the highest rated player of the Bracket directly below will be bumped up to the higher Bracket to even it out.  Notwithstanding this framework, in the Swiss rounds a player will not be paired with an opponent he has already played in the tournament.

4.  After Round 4 the eight players with the best records will advance to the Round 5 quarterfinals and will be paired top score against eighth best score, second best score against seventh best score, etc. The remaining players will be eliminated from the competition.  The winners of Round 5 will advance to the Round 6 semifinals.  The winners of Round 6 will advance to the Round 7 championship match.  The losers of Round 6 will play in the Round 7 consolation match for third place honors.

5.  There will be no byes. If there are an odd number of players total for any round, then the lowest rated player or random unseeded player with the lowest score will play an "eliminator" assigned by the GM.

B.  All tournament games will be of the Annus Mirabilis Tournament Scenario.  The French player wins if the game ends with VPs at 0.


C.  Sides will be randomly assigned by the GM. However, when at all possible within the protocol described above, the GM will attempt to arrange the pairings so that each player will play each side an even number of times in the preliminary rounds.


D.  The current Living Rules as posted on the GMT Website will be used. All Advanced Rules will be used.

E.  The following Special Rules will be used in all rounds:


SPECIAL RULE #1 - Starting with the Late Season 1757 turn, at the beginning of EVERY turn - after the cards have been dealt and examined but before the first Action Phase - the British player may retrieve one British Regulars or Highlanders card from the discard pile and place it in his hand AFTER RANDOMLY discarding one card from his hand*. He may not retrieve the card that he has just discarded. The turn then proceeds normally.


*  NOTE:  If the Surrender! card is discarded, the French player (only) has the option to declare a reshuffle of the deck at the end of that turn. He may wait until the end of the turn before deciding.


SPECIAL RULE #2 - The French 1-4 Marine Detachment units (only) now have just one step. Whenever one of these units takes a step loss it is permanently removed from play instead of being flipped to its 0-4 side. In addition, whenever a French stack that includes both 3-4 Regulars units and 1-4 MD units takes losses as a result of a battle or an assault, all 3-4 units in the stack must be flipped before any MD units are eliminated.


F.  Each game will be played via ACTS (http://acts.warhorsesim.com/index.asp). All card play, messages, and die rolling will go through here - no exceptions. Players may exchange game files via Cyberboard or ADC2, but this is not required. In sending messages, players must be as EXPLICIT as possible when describing a move. Players may decide on the protocol they will use in their messages, with the default being the complete spelling out of everything (spaces, leaders, units).


G.  British leaders that enter the game will be picked randomly (ACTS die roll) by alphabetical selection of last name. (i.e., 1=Amherst, 2=Bradstreet, 3=Forbes, 4=Murray, 5=Wolfe). This is the default in case players forget to mention the order prior to selecting leaders - players may designate which number is for which leader prior to rolling, as long as it’s random.  Leader(s) are rolled for BEFORE placement of any leader(s) or British unit(s).


H.  After each game is complete, the winner must report back to the GM with results.


I.  TIEBREAKERS - To break ties when determining the eight quarterfinalists at the conclusion of Round 4 and to determine the final standings of those players eliminated, the following criteria in order of importance shall be used:

1.  If two players are tied and they have played each other, then the winner of that game will be awarded the higher ranking.

2.  If more than two players are tied or if the above does not apply, then the players will be ranked by the average of the AREA ratings of the opponents that each such player has defeated.  Unrated opponents will be assumed to have a rating of 5000 for this purpose.

II.  Round Time Limit

A.  Each round will be 12 weeks long. Rounds which fall during the World Boardgaming Championships will be extended a week.


B.  Players must make every effort to get in one card play per day.  There will obviously be times when this will be impossible, though there should also be days when >1 card play per day is possible. If a player’s opponent is playing too slowly, the GM needs to be notified AS SOON AS POSSIBLE so he can assess the situation. Slow play will result in a disqualification and award a victory to one’s opponent if slow play means the deadline cannot be made. I hope to never have to enforce this rule.


C.  If a game does not end by the deadline date it will be adjudicated by the GM and the Assistant GM. If either player in question can be identified as the more guilty party (the slower player), then his opponent will be declared the winner, regardless of the positions on the game's board. Such decisions are final.

III.  Resolution of Response Actions and Cards

A  Interception, including during infiltration (either way below is acceptable):

1.  For each space you enter, you may roll the die for your opponent.  If the roll enables ANY of his units/forces to intercept (using drms), pause to let him make a choice. If intercept is not possible with any of his units/forces, you may continue moving. (This obviously favors the non moving player, but is useful for speeding up play, especially if you believe that an interception attempt won’t happen, even if it were possible) .


2.  For each space you enter where interception is possible, pause and let your opponent decide. Then let him roll the die if he chooses, or else he’ll tell you to continue moving. This method is slower, but in many situations you may not want to tip your hand. 

B.  Avoid Battle and Inside Fortress/Fort

1.  Upon entering an enemy occupied space, send the decision (and die roll) back to your opponent. He will need to make any decisions (and applicable rolls) prior to the battle starting.


2.  Combat Cards and Battles, Sieges, and Assaults


a.  Since attacker plays all combat cards first, he should announce his cards then turn the game over to his opponent. His opponent will then play any battle cards and run the battle.


b.  If the Attacking player wishes to play "Surrender," he would do so before the defending player plays "Coehorns & Howitzers."


c.  In the event of an attacker ambush that is not negated by the defender, the defender still rolls the die, and takes his losses prior to firing back.

C. Response Cards: To speed games up, here are the conventions we will use for non-moving player card plays (combat card plays are handled in above):

1.  General: Most card plays will be retroactive to actual movement.  This does give an advantage to the non-moving player, so take this into consideration when planning your strategy.


2.  Blockhouses - If a player raids, and this card is available to be played, then the non-moving player should be instructed to roll for the raids. If the moving player does happen to make the roll(s), then the non-moving player can play "Blockhouses" immediately AFTER such raid roll(s). Any adjustments to raider casualties are then made.


3.  Foul Weather - Play on a force AFTER that force has moved. The moving player can redo the forces movement (he can go 2 spaces in any direction - he is not committed to his original route). If either "George Croghan" or "Amphibious Landing" were played as part of the movement, those cards should be taken back into the moving player’s hand from the discard pile. They are NOT lost due to "Foul Weather."


a.  Sometimes a die will be rolled (as in a raid) before "Foul Weather" is played. If "Foul Weather" means that this die roll could never have been made (because the unit/force could not have reached the space that necessitated a die roll), then ignore all results of the roll.


b.  If the non-moving player makes any die roll (interception, for instance), then that player cannot then play "Foul Weather" during the current action. "Foul Weather" can be played after the moving player makes a die roll.


4. Massacre and Lake Schooner - These cards are response cards.  Even though they are played AFTER the opposing player has moved and/or fought, the player playing "Massacre" or "Lake Schooner" still makes his normal card play.

IV.  Error Handling
A.  If any non-event card (see C and D below) error is made, it is correctable UNTIL the OTHER player plays a card or rolls a die (thus you cannot make an error, roll the die, and get away with it). If the other player plays a card or rolls the die, play on, leaving the error in play.
B.  If a player plays an illegal event or makes an illegal move and his opponent catches the error before his next card play, then the transgressor must redo his action (and may take his card back). If such illegal action is not caught immediately and the non-trangressor takes is next action as if nothing illegal had happened, THE ILLEGAL ACTIONS STANDS.
C. For sportsmanship’s sake, ANY error is retroactively correctable if both players agree. The rule in "A" above is in case players cannot come to an agreement.
D.  If a removable event that should to be “played as operations” is played as an event, and therefore mistakenly removed (or if a removable event is mistakenly played as operations when it should be played as an event), this error can be corrected - and it can be corrected by either player – by drawing the card from the discard pile, and then replaying it as operations (or as an event, as the case may be). Such an error may still be corrected if the deck is reshuffled or if the turn has been advanced, so it can be corrected at any time.
E.  If a card error is not caught by either player before it has an adverse effect on the game, then the adverse effect stands. For example, if Quiberon were to be accidently removed from the game on Turn 1 and the players did not notice until Turn 5 after several reshuffles had occurred, then play would continue normally from the point of the discovery (potentially screwing the British player, who deserves what he gets for not paying attention). Even though the adverse effect in this case would stand, the card could still be put back in the deck and be playable in future turns.
F.  If ACTS mistakenly "hiccups" and makes more rolls than were intended, or if a player rolls too many dice, etc., ALWAYS take the first roll(s), in order. If a player rolls too few dice (i.e. only rolls one in a battle where 2 are called for), use the first roll for the side designated, and roll another die.
G.  If a dispute arises, contact the GM. The decisions of the GM (or the Assistant GM if it is the GM’s game) are final.

V.  Who Rolls the Dice?

A.  A player may make any moves or rolls conditional. He may also request that his opponent roll the die in any situation. For example, a player could activate two Indians on a "1" card (he would need to specify which ones). He could send them both raiding. He could stipulate that the 2nd move is canceled and the Indian moves to Space "A" instead IF the first Indian's raid is successful. He could ask his opponent to roll for the raids.


B.  The following is the default as to who rolls:


Interceptions - Varies (III.A.).

Avoid Battle - Player avoiding (III.B).

Raids with no Militia deployment possible - Player Raiding (though the results may be modified due to III.C.2 and III.C.3).

Raids with Militia deployment possible - Non-raiding player, either after battle vs. Militia or after Militia declines to deploy.

Sieges - Player being besieged (Defender).

Battle/Assault - Defender for both sides (if 2 dice are rolled at once, the first die is the attacker’s die, the second die is the defender’s die, but any text in the message box can override this default).

Leader Losses - Whoever rolled for the combat can roll for both sides.

Smallpox - Player playing card.

Indian Alliance Event - Player playing card. 

British Leader - British player.

Courier Intercepted - Player playing card.

Victories in Germany - Player playing card.

Colonial Recruits - Player playing card.

Louisbourg Squadrons - French Player.

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
Benjamin Franklin, 1759

copyright GMT Games and Rodger B. MacGowan

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