Another Battle on Arcadia (game session)
- Peter: a 5-time winner of the trophy; The Risk Master
- Gary: the previous holder of the Risk Master trophy; The Atlantean Champion
- Alan: hasn’t won the trophy, despite his love of nuclear booms; Proponent of “Peaceful Coexistence”
The Game: Risk Halo Wars
It was not an easy battle on Arcadia between Pete (the human UNSC Marines), Alan (the alien Arbiters), and Gary (the parasitic Flood). On the first turn Pete conquered the continent of Mu (which was worth one achievement) and took over eight colonies (worth another achievement). In a three player game you only need three achievements to win. Of course, you can only claim one achievement per turn and, foolishly, Pete chose the achievement for conquering Mu. At least the reward for this was the ability to make a strategic move at the beginning of the turn (which, if Pete remembered he could do, would have made the game end much, much sooner). Both Alan and Gary worked to take colonies and territories from Pete, causing him to lose control (but not the achievement) of Mu, but it was easy enough for Pete to retake those territories back. He always seemed to have six or seven colonies.
Alan was more interested in hurting Pete rather than taking over Pacifica (also worth an achievement) at first and broke up Pete’s continent of Mu and took control of two colonies; this, of course, left Pete and Gary somewhat baffled because had Alan spent a little more time taking over Pacifica he would have had gotten more than seven additional armies on his next turn. In all likelihood, it would have been nearly guaranteed since at this point Gary was not strong enough to break the continent and Pete would most likely have concentrated on restoring his hold over Mu and working his way toward getting his eight colonies.
On the second turn Alan did indeed realize that he could take Pacifica over and by doing so was rewarded with a cannon (which adds +1 to his highest die-roll both on offense and defense on the territory that has the cannon as well as any territory adjacent to the cannon) . This would become a great thorn in Pete’s side. Gary had more trouble at first but would eventually prove that he should not be underestimated.
Soon enough Pete realized that Gary was close to having two continents (also worth an achievement) so when Gary failed to take Avalon from Alan (though technically Alan only held three-quarters of the continent), Pete charged north into Lemuria and secured the continent for himself. Now Pete had two achievements (and a cannon of his own). Though he had failed in taking over Avalon at this time, Gary still had enough strength to wrest control of Alan’s base away from the alien. Despite Alan’s efforts, he would never be able to reclaim his base.
On his next turn, Pete put all of his reinforcements on the border between Mu and Eire and prepared himself to finally take over eight colonies and win his last achievement. Of course, Pete forgot to make an important strategic move and bring his Spartan Hero to the battle. Because of this, Alan’s cannon had a plus one to his die roll that Pete sorely did not. The territory that Pete was invading only had one lone alien and the defensive cannon fire from the adjacent territory. Pete rolled a five and Alan rolled a four, but with the cannon it became a five and Alan won the tie. If the Spartan Hero was there, Pete would have had a six and won the game. Instead, Pete’s army fell to pieces due to the might of Alan’s cannon. Pete would come close to winning a few times, but sadly it was not to be. The humans would not have victory on this day.
Meanwhile, in part a response to Pete’s aggression and realizing just how close to winning Pete had been, Alan took this opportunity to spread his alien seed across the continent of Eire, ensuring his second achievement and candidacy for winning the praise of his people.
It was at this point that Gary came back onto the scene. He had been slowly building up his strength and if it were possible to gain all three achievements in one turn he would have won. Apparently he forgot Pete’s dilemma on the first turn. He had these three choices: “taking over 10 territories in one round,” “controlling two enemy bases,” and “controlling eight colonies.”
To Pete and Alan it was horrifying, especially since Gary chose correctly– he took the achievement for “taking over 10 territories in one turn.” Pete had two choices, either take back control of his base from Gary and try once more to gain eight colonies and ensure his victory or do his best to wrest control of Gary’s own base from his hands; without his own base, Gary’s victory would be delayed until he could get it back. Not knowing what would be the right move to make, Pete chose his own needs rather than the needs of all– Pete tried desperately one last time to get eight colonies… and failed.
On his next turn Gary made sure to get the achievement for the eight colonies and effectively made sure that it would be impossible for anyone else to win. There was nothing else anyone could do, so Gary won the moment he took Pete’s base.