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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/24/2020 9:24:46 PM   
Canoerebel


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My congratulatory email to Erik:

Erik,

Darn it! I wasn’t quite ready for it to end. I knew Hakodate would likely be the final straw, but I thought it might take another three or four days, given the six forts.

When I stepped in for Joseph, I think it was Bullwinkle that basically told me that I didn’t stand a chance. To add fuel to the fire, I witnessed your dismantling of Lowpe even while I was trying to figure out a way to get started. As a result, I had serious doubts whether I could survive, let alone achieve some level of victory. The nadir came off the Kuriles, when you hit Death Star pretty hard and there were doubts as to whether the Allies would hold Sikhalin Island. Those were dark days but exciting and fun times.

As a result of my respect for your abilities, I had grave misgivings about taking you on in the immediate vicinity of Honshu as long as you were supplied and had an advantage in the air war. One of your strengths is mixing things up (and good) when in a knife fight in the dark. I also wasn’t sure the Allies could win without taking the big Japanese points centers in China. For all those reasons, once the Allied army from Indochina moved up, I chose to go after China rather than immediately landing on Kyushu and/or Honshu.

I doubt I would do that again in any game, because I know more about Japan’s troubles and the Allies capabilities, and I have more confidence that I can handle good opposition.

I might could’ve won earlier had I invaded the southern Home Islands, but I still have reservations about that. You just might’ve scored so many points that I’d have ended up regretting not going after China.

I do regret that the strategies pursued ended up discouraging you from attacking. You chose the right strategy, given the rules and the numerator vs. denominator dynamics of the game. But it sure would’ve been fun to see a reverse Sikhalin Island around Kyushu.

I’ll send an email later or post more in my AAR about various strategies. Actually, I already posted summaries a few weeks ago, as I knew the game would come to an end…and ofttimes games simply fade away quickly once they end. There usually isn’t a lot of discussion.

You are the consummate gentleman and sportsman. Never a discouraging word. Always courteous.

As for your abilities as a player, you are elite.

Dan

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/24/2020 10:12:55 PM   
Chickenboy


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Congratulations on your and Obvert's game. Going into 1946 was an epic struggle.

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/24/2020 10:24:26 PM   
RangerJoe


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Congratulations.

Now play the Japanese, even against the AI to learn a little more about that side.

_____________________________

Seek peace but keep your gun handy.

I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing!

“Illegitemus non carborundum est (“Don’t let the bastards grind you down”).”
― Julia Child


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Post #: 4653
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/24/2020 11:32:43 PM   
MakeeLearn


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Congrats on the VICTORY!!!

Shenandoah is a good movie. Post WW2 Stewart is sandpaper in his deliverance.


Have you read Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain? It's not one of his more famous books, I find it intriguing... The "grayness" of the main theme plus it's use of the newness of fingerprints.




Attachment (1)

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“WHAT?!”





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Post #: 4654
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/24/2020 11:35:58 PM   
Canoerebel


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Yeah, I've read Pudd'nhead Wilson, perhaps ten years ago. It's full of great quotes that I've used, from time to time, while teaching Sunday school!

(in reply to MakeeLearn)
Post #: 4655
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/24/2020 11:40:05 PM   
MakeeLearn


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mark VII


Would that have been near Somerville at the John S. Wilder Youth Development Center? I remember reports of a disturbance back in September i think.

quote:

ORIGINAL: MakeeLearn

Thanks for asking, Tennessee now. Sitting here watching the snow fall.

The past year I've been with Level 3 juvenile detentions. The institution was just as messed up as the boys. After a 6 hour off and on riot, that I caused,






No. I would rather not say where. I just got too mad at the entire situation. Mediocrity, apathy and denial. It's a money making machine for some people. In was a insight to our society

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“WHAT?!”





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Post #: 4656
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 2:37:15 AM   
CaptBeefheart


Posts: 2210
Joined: 7/4/2003
From: Seoul, Korea
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This epic struggle comes to an end and already you guys are changing the subject to Twain?

Congratulations to both of you gentlemen for a game well played! You have offered insights on late game play not seen anywhere else (that I know of).

One thing I found very interesting is how CR went after resources as the easiest way to rack up VPs from the northern vector and how that actually had a negative effect on Obvert. Since I was reading both AARs I saved my commentary until now.

I can't wait to see what comes next from both of you gents.

Cheers,
CB

_____________________________

Beer, because barley makes lousy bread.

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Post #: 4657
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 9:36:02 AM   
obvert


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Hi Dan (and all). Just having my first peek in here. It'll be fun to disect certain parts now with the help of seeing the other side's thinking!

Congrats to Dan on such a well played middle to late game. Starting in early 44 in a game where the Japanese had a sizeable VP lead is not easy, and he came up with a good plan and implemented it well. That was some fun gameplay up around the Kuriles and Sakhalin.

We've both learned a lot from this one and I think need some downtime. In the words of Mr Twain:

In America, we hurry--which is well; but when the day's work is done, we go on thinking of losses and gains, we plan for the morrow, we even carry our business cares to bed with us, and toss and worry over them when we ought to be restoring our racked bodies and brains with sleep ... What a robust people, what a nation of thinkers we might be, if we would only lay ourselves on the shelf occasionally and renew our edges!






< Message edited by obvert -- 2/25/2020 10:21:32 AM >


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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 9:51:18 AM   
GetAssista

 

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Congratulations on a memorable game! Well played by both sides

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 5:03:38 PM   
Canoerebel


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Here is the text of another email to Erik. This is the second of three planned summarizes (the first is posted above). The third will discuss the one decision I regret, to some extent, plus the House Rules. But first, email number two:

Erik,

I’m enjoyed this back-and-forth emails. Thanks for indulging.

When we started the game, I made several important decisions that had outsized impacts on how the game developed, from my point of view.

First, I decided to honor your original House Rule requiring Chinese units to remain in China (unless PPs paid, but most units are permanent restricted). That meant sending them back into China. I knew they’d be useless there, in the Himalayas, without supply and the ability to upgrade. But it seemed important to do that from a sportsmanship standpoint, as opposed to building then and using them in Burma. It took awhile to get everything back home. Then they just had to sit. The few probing attacks I tried showed there was no way to get through your MLR. In effect, that took China out of the war until it could be relieved from the east, by the Western Allies.

For some reason (probably weariness, inattentiveness, laziness, etc.) my predecessor had all his Burma armies inland, on trails, poorly supplied, and not upgraded. The Brits and Indians and Americans had ’41 squads! I couldn’t get enough supply inland to upgrade, so those units had to come to the coast to do that. That took a lot of time and helped persuade me that I’d just bide my time until I could land in Malaya or Sumatra.

In the Pacific, Joseph had everything in the world centered in SWPac, around Rabaul, New Guinea, Luganville, etc. He had done a masterful job of concentrating every asset he had there. The problem was the you knew it, and you were prepared for an advance along that vector. Or, so I felt.

I needed some way to get at your economy, which mean striking quick at someplace like the DEI, the Philippines, Taiwan. Those places would permit interdiction. The other alternative was NoPac, where the Allies could begin Strat Bombing immediately.

Of course, you knew all of those possibilities and I knew you knew, and you knew that I knew you knew, ad infinitum. But I chose NoPac and hoped that overwhelming force might be sufficient. It turned out there was enough of a window to get ashore in strength, and then all heck broke loose and we fought like crazy for half a year. That was fun! Especially August, September, October, and November of ’44 – very tense.

But I soon discovered that I couldn’t compete in the air. My bomber and fighter pools were too thin to stand up under sustained campaigning. They got in a few early raids, but you quickly adjusted. Your flak and fighters made that a no-go.

By the end of ’44, I realized I had a problem. I had achieved my goal in NoPac….but now the Allied schwerpunkt was off in a corner, unable to effectively strat bomb, and unable to get my Burma folks into the game. That’s when I made the decision to land in China. Before I could do that, I needed to police the balance of the Kuriles, because I couldn’t take a chance on you counterattacking Sikhalin Island while I had all my ships around China.

You know how it developed form there – how I eventually elected to focus on China until it was re-taken, as opposed to landing at Honshu or Kyushu.

The right call? I’ll never know. But I gave it a lot of thought and felt like it offered a more sure route to 2:1 than did the alternative. The path I chose was less risky, more sure, but slower.

There was no way I could conceive of achieving victory prior to 9/1/45, under any circumstances. And if the Allies don’t make it by then, the next “victory level” remains good through 3/1/46. So the victory conditions were the same whether 2:1 came on, say, 10/5/45 or 2/19/46. That gave me the latitude to relax bit, get to work, and to see if you might “come out and play.”

I’ll write next time about the one major thing I did that didn’t feel right, while I was doing it and later.

Dan




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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 5:21:55 PM   
pontiouspilot


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Great thanks to your and your opponent. I quietly followed both sides. I appreciate the enormous amount of work you both put into your AARs. I hope you throw out an early challenge for a rematch. Having followed your predecessor I am sure he would be pleased. Taking over someone else's game in mid-stream is an excellent way to savour dishes you would not ordinarily touch. I think I will give that try at some point.

Cheers

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 5:29:15 PM   
RangerJoe


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You took over from someone who took over from someone else. Those changes also used up time. A consistent strategy from the beginning along with the necessary upgrades done on time should have made the game a lot shorter.

Of course, the sudden loss of half of the KB at the beginning of the game necessitated a Japanese defensive strategy a lot sooner than normal.

_____________________________

Seek peace but keep your gun handy.

I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing!

“Illegitemus non carborundum est (“Don’t let the bastards grind you down”).”
― Julia Child


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Post #: 4662
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 7:04:49 PM   
Canoerebel


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I've been reading Obvert's AAR today, basically from the Allied invasion of Ketoi Jima to the invasion at Wakkanai. It's been fun reading.

In his comments about the Chinese troops filtering into the Himalayas, he makes an mistaken, though understandable, assumption. He assumes that the Chinese units had upgraded. With a couple of exceptions, I didn't allow the units to upgrade, because I felt like that would be taking advantage of the HR violation. So they went into the mountains with '41 squads, which meant they were useless.

(I didn't think this all the way through, when I first stepped into the game, so I allowed a few units to upgrade before making that call to stand down.)

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/25/2020 7:42:51 PM   
Nomad

 

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Canoerebel, well done AAR and game. I am not sure if I would have done the same, but that is the beauty of this game, there are many paths to the ending.
There is no one true path. You chose the path that you felt was the right one and that you were comfortable in traveling.

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/27/2020 5:19:31 PM   
Bif1961


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From: Phenix City, Alabama
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Another epic struggle comes to a climatic conclusion. Always appreciate when these go to the bitter end because there is so much of value to be gleaned by AARs from both sides.Thanks for allowing the peanut gallery to look on and occasionally chime in.

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Post #: 4665
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/27/2020 5:52:02 PM   
Canoerebel


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Thanks, Bif (and all of you). I appreciate you guys reading and encouraging and commenting, as time permits.

I'm not sure how much my AAR benefits the community from an analytical standpoint. I'm more of a storyteller (I think), than a guy who tinkers with the engine and reports how things work.

But it sure was fun to craft a plan on March 1, 1944, to prepare, to implement, and to then see how things played out over the next two years. Basically, the plan for the entire rest of the war was conceived on that date. It worked, though it wasn't easy. :)

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/27/2020 9:30:46 PM   
ChuckBerger

 

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Just wanted to add my thanks and admiration to you and your opponent for a great AAR. I don't know what I can find to replace it in my morning coffee reading routine, nestled right between the NY Times and wargamer.com.

Cheers

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 2/29/2020 11:23:47 PM   
nicwb

 

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+1 -I always enjoy your AAR's Canoerebel. Despite what you think I'm always impressed by the level of forethought and planning that goes into your campaigns.

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/3/2020 1:15:29 AM   
CaptBeefheart


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From: Seoul, Korea
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Canoerebel

Here is the text of another email to Erik. This is the second of three planned summarizes (the first is posted above). The third will discuss the one decision I regret, to some extent, plus the House Rules.



Looking forward to the third summary.

Cheers,
CB

_____________________________

Beer, because barley makes lousy bread.

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Post #: 4669
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/4/2020 1:05:39 PM   
Canoerebel


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Here's the last email I sent to Erik, about five days ago. In it, I didn't do a good job of explaining my thoughts about victory conditions. Any time an IJ player lasts into 1946, it's a victory. That may be tempered by comparative skill levels, mod, House Rules, whatever. But in this game, Erik earned a victory. As of when I stepped in, March 1, 1944, and given the cards dealt, I felt like I held my own against Erik. Our "sub game," therefore, seemed like a draw to me. Against a player of his caliber, I was very happy to end with that feeling.

My email to him:

Regarding some decisions I made that I had to live with, the first was how to prep for the invasion of NoPac. My experience had always been that major, massive offensives sometimes didn’t generate the kind of return expected because the player didn’t allow for success. I didn’t want to make that mistake, so a good bit of the Allied amphibious forces were prepped for Korea. Had the Allies prevailed in a one-sided carrier victory en route, or had circumstances otherwise proved favorable, I’d have gone there first or immediately following Sikhalin Island. That’s why I didn’t attend to the Kuriles early on. Once it became clear that Korea was off the table, I switched prep. But that took time. I learned a lot from that mistake. There’s nothing wrong with allowing for success, but first I need to understand the enormity of an undertaking and the quality of the opponent.

Another was the use of Death Star, both early and late. Early, the carriers were focused solely on defense. I knew that you knew I have a habit of doing that, and I wanted to swap out and attack, but the stakes were so high that I seldom felt free to do it. Had the Allies lost a one-sided carrier battle at Sikhalin or at China, my whole armies would’ve been in big, big trouble. Later, after the Allied invasion of coastal China, DS loitered for weeks, then months, near Shanghai. That was a fuel issue and the need to protect my base of operations. When the Burma army and Navy made it into Indochina/South China Sea, my carriers could resume a more normal (for me) role. Again, the quality of the opponent made me play with that asset conservatively.

Regarding victory conditions, we were both playing the game as opposed to a simulation. The rules are pretty good, and we were both using them to our advantage. By that measure, the Allies scored a marginal victory. But we both know there is far more than that to measuring an outcome.

In the first place, any time Japan gets into 1946 has to be some kind of victory. Yeah, the rules don’t say so, but the rules were likely implemented without much play in the late game. No question you earned the right to feel good about the game.

From my perspective, stepping into a match in March 1944, I measured Allied performance from that point forward. There were a lot of hurdles – China was a real problem with no solution short of the Western Allies coming in from the coast. There was no way to come in from the mountains, given unit quality disparity and forts in rough terrain. The night-bombing HR had a serious impact. And the need to re-orient the Allied vector of attack was major – taking more than three months. By August 1945, the Allies had actually achieved more than in the real war (with the exception of China). Given those things and the quality of my opponent, I felt I’d done as well in this game as I had in my previous matches vs. Dave and John. Overall, I felt like the match was a draw, from the point I stepped in. But I won’t throw a hissy-fit over how people feel about it.

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Post #: 4670
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/4/2020 1:58:33 PM   
RangerJoe


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I feel that you both had a victory. He lasted until 1946 which is a victory against a human opponent. You stepped in as the third commander and, as you pointed out, you had to take time to reorient your forces. I am sure that Joseph had to do so as well to a certain extent. But you also had to get your CBI forces to their proper locations and/or refit them to later standards.

But now you know to try and cover all bases. Even smaller units prepped for the important Kurile bases could have started the invasions and then other units prepped for other areas could have joined in. That teaches me to be a prepper for everything. Think suspenders and a belt . . .

_____________________________

Seek peace but keep your gun handy.

I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing!

“Illegitemus non carborundum est (“Don’t let the bastards grind you down”).”
― Julia Child


(in reply to Canoerebel)
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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/4/2020 2:04:55 PM   
Canoerebel


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I agree with all you say.

Since I invaded Sikhalin Island massively, it is now hard to remember my early days in the game, when the primary target was Korea, with Sikhalin the secondary objective. As time passed, and as I got a better grip on reality, I switched priority to Sikhalin. But, by then, a month or two had passed. Too late, I felt, to switch prep (most of the units were probably 60% or better prepped for Korea). I shouldn't have chosen Korea in the first place, and I should've had units prepped for at least some of the Kuriles.


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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/4/2020 5:10:22 PM   
BBfanboy


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From: Winnipeg, MB
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quote:

ORIGINAL: RangerJoe

I feel that you both had a victory. He lasted until 1946 which is a victory against a human opponent. You stepped in as the third commander and, as you pointed out, you had to take time to reorient your forces. I am sure that Joseph had to do so as well to a certain extent. But you also had to get your CBI forces to their proper locations and/or refit them to later standards.

But now you know to try and cover all bases. Even smaller units prepped for the important Kurile bases could have started the invasions and then other units prepped for other areas could have joined in. That teaches me to be a prepper for everything. Think suspenders and a belt . . .

Your mention of Joseph (SqzMyLemon) reminds me that he left the game because he was in the last stages of his fight against cancer, and has since passed on.
In a way, playing the game to the end was a salute by Dan and Eric to our passed comrade, and I am very glad they toughed it out when if felt like no progress was being made.
To Joseph, and his successors in our community!




Attachment (1)

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No matter how bad a situation is, you can always make it worse. - Chris Hadfield : An Astronaut's Guide To Life On Earth

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/4/2020 5:23:13 PM   
Bif1961


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Old Soldiers never die they fade away, I guess the same can be said for those who have gone before here and have slipped the bonds of our mortal coil.

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/4/2020 8:03:28 PM   
RangerJoe


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quote:

ORIGINAL: BBfanboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: RangerJoe

I feel that you both had a victory. He lasted until 1946 which is a victory against a human opponent. You stepped in as the third commander and, as you pointed out, you had to take time to reorient your forces. I am sure that Joseph had to do so as well to a certain extent. But you also had to get your CBI forces to their proper locations and/or refit them to later standards.

But now you know to try and cover all bases. Even smaller units prepped for the important Kurile bases could have started the invasions and then other units prepped for other areas could have joined in. That teaches me to be a prepper for everything. Think suspenders and a belt . . .

Your mention of Joseph (SqzMyLemon) reminds me that he left the game because he was in the last stages of his fight against cancer, and has since passed on.
In a way, playing the game to the end was a salute by Dan and Eric to our passed comrade, and I am very glad they toughed it out when if felt like no progress was being made.
To Joseph, and his successors in our community!





I agree.


_____________________________

Seek peace but keep your gun handy.

I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing!

“Illegitemus non carborundum est (“Don’t let the bastards grind you down”).”
― Julia Child


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Post #: 4675
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/5/2020 7:26:06 PM   
Miller


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Belated congratulations my old friend

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/5/2020 7:32:03 PM   
Canoerebel


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Thanks, Paul. I hope you're doing well and playing someone, administering your usual doses of grief.

Your fellow countryman is a tough customer!

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Post #: 4677
RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/5/2020 8:47:30 PM   
Chickenboy


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From: San Antonio, TX
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quote:

ORIGINAL: BBfanboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: RangerJoe

I feel that you both had a victory. He lasted until 1946 which is a victory against a human opponent. You stepped in as the third commander and, as you pointed out, you had to take time to reorient your forces. I am sure that Joseph had to do so as well to a certain extent. But you also had to get your CBI forces to their proper locations and/or refit them to later standards.

But now you know to try and cover all bases. Even smaller units prepped for the important Kurile bases could have started the invasions and then other units prepped for other areas could have joined in. That teaches me to be a prepper for everything. Think suspenders and a belt . . .

Your mention of Joseph (SqzMyLemon) reminds me that he left the game because he was in the last stages of his fight against cancer, and has since passed on.
In a way, playing the game to the end was a salute by Dan and Eric to our passed comrade, and I am very glad they toughed it out when if felt like no progress was being made.
To Joseph, and his successors in our community!





A nice sentiment, BB.

I only spoke with Joseph about this game (the game that Dan took over) a handful of times. He was convinced that the Allies had gone too far too fast in the Kuriles / Sakhalin and that they would get bitten hard. I think he was pleased and a bit surprised that it didn't happen due to Dan's good gameplay.

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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/6/2020 4:16:27 PM   
Miller


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Canoerebel

Thanks, Paul. I hope you're doing well and playing someone, administering your usual doses of grief.

Your fellow countryman is a tough customer!


I had the game going against Mr Kane that got to late 45 but alas he has disappeared with no contact since. Currently having a sabbatical but hope to be back with a game sooner or later.

(in reply to Canoerebel)
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RE: Notes from a Small Island - 3/6/2020 5:07:10 PM   
Chickenboy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Miller
I had the game going against Mr Kane that got to late 45 but alas he has disappeared with no contact since.


Sounds like your opportunity to declare victory, Miller! Congratulations on your win!

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