In the annotated log of the first campaign of Strategic Primer, which I continued last month, we’re in the middle of the third turn, which was dated February 17, 2001. We continue to examine that turn today, starting with the player code-named Arthur Pendragon.
Arthur’s turn starts with Rabble units converting into more advanced ones; as I explained in previous installments, this was how the Rabble unit worked, but in retrospect was a particularly broken mechanic, right up there with free prototypes.
|Player Name||Date||Unit||Attempted Action||Result of Action|
|Arthur Pendragon||2/17/01||Rabble 1 & 2||None||Rabble 1 & 2 have become Paratroopers.|
|Arthur Pendragon||2/17/01||Paratroopers 7-11||Move back to HQ. (104 mi. Ed.)||Bogged down. Moved out of step for 1 hr (20 mi). Moved correctly for 1 hr (20 mi). Moved correctly for 1 hr (20 mi). Moved correctly for 1 hr (20 mi). Bogged down. Bogged down. Bogged down. Bogged down. Bogged down. Moved correctly for the rest of the way (about 1 1/2 hrs).|
|Arthur Pendragon||2/17/01||Rail Cannon 1||Boost Paratroopers 1-9 toward the Fortress just out of sight of Arthur Wellesley’s HQ.||Paratrooper 1: Launch failed. Launch successful. Paratrooper 2: Launch successful. Paratrooper 3: Launch failed. Launch successful. Paratrooper 4: Launch successful. Paratrooper 5: Launch successful. Paratrooper 6: Launch failed. Launch successful. Forced to wait for Paratroopers 7-9 (total time so far: 6 hrs, 20 min.) Paratrooper 7: Launch failed. Launch failed. Launch successful. Paratrooper 8: Launch successful. Paratrooper 9: Launch successful.|
|Arthur Pendragon||2/17/01||Paratroopers 10 & 11||Stay in HQ.||Done|
|Arthur Pendragon||2/17/01||Paratroopers 1-9||Drop into fortification out of sight of enemy HQ.||Total time so far (launching and getting there): 8 hr 45 min. Paratrooper 1: Forced to pull up. Forced to pull up. Forced to pull up. Forced to pull up. Landed correctly. Paratrooper 2: Landed correctly. Paratrooper 3: Landed correctly. Paratrooper 4: Forced to pull up. Landed correctly. Paratrooper 5: Landed correctly. Paratrooper 6: Forced to pull up. Forced to pull up. Crashed. 2 men died. Paratrooper 7: Landed correctly. Paratrooper 8: Landed correctly. Paratrooper 9: Landed correctly.|
In that first campaign, instead of using ‘movement points’ or something like that like most games do, I tried to track how much time actions took, and when they took place. I’ve gone back and forth on that decision in the years of contemplation since then.
And all that verbiage of results (launch failure or success, landing results …) was generated by a program I wrote “rolling” for results on a table. In retrospect, the table was far too simplistic, and the programs should have calculated and summarized the results, but that was a good start.
|Arthur Pendragon||2/17/01||All in Against-Wellington||Recruit 2 men for health of a Paratrooper||Working on it|
In that first campaign, in the initial concept, a unit’s health was precisely equal to its number of men. The addition of lots of units with equipment more important than crew (which I had initially thought of as the exceptions, rather than the rule) complicated matters significantly.
That’s the end of “Arthur”‘s strategy; “George Washington” is next.
|George Washington||2/17/01||Rabbles 1 & 2||None.||Rabbles 1 & 2 turn into Horse-Drawn Catapults|
|George Washington||2/17/01||Horse-Drawn Catapult 1||Continue distilling.||84 more flasks filled with each substance, and weaponry produced. Total of 95 flasks each, or 285 flasks.|
|George Washington||2/17/01||Horse-drawn Catapults 2-13||Gather sand and make it into glass flasks, distilleries, etc.||1 ton sand collected total, divided among the horse-drawn catapults, and made into glass.|
Looking at this after all these years, my first thought is a question of where the equipment and such (catapults? horses? distilleries?) came from, and a mental note to come up with rules and/or statistics covering similar situations in the current campaign.
|Theodore Roosevelt||2/17/01||Rabble 1 & 2||None||Rabbles have become Mounted Longbowmen|
|Theodore Roosevelt||2/17/01||Mounted Longbowmen 1 & 2||Finish moving along Underground Tunnel (about 75 1/2 mi ESE. Ed.)||Moved correctly for 1 hr (32 mi). Moved correctly for 1 hr (32 mi). Moved correctly for almost 1/2 hr (11 1/2 mi), emerged from tunnel, and camped.|
I was playing fast and loose with the “messages” mechanic, as usual in that campaign.
The remaining segments of today’s installment are inactive players—“AI” players (I was having enough trouble running all the strategies I received in time to return them the next day that I couldn’t run the “AI”s properly too) and people who had volunteered but then didn’t participate.
|Napoleon||2/17/01||None||None.||None. His Rabbles are both now Legions.|
|Edward Campau||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles are now both Mounted Longbowmen.|
|Arthur Wellesley, Duke Wellington||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Phalanxes|
|Hannibal||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Phalanxes|
|Julius Ceasar||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Legions|
|Lucius Sergius Catalina||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Legions|
|Panzier||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Mounted Crossbowmen|
|Pape||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Legions|
|Pywll pen Annwn||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabbles have become Mounted Longbowmen|
|Robert E. Lee||2/17/01||None||None||None. His Rabble has become a Phalanx|
|END OF 2/17/01|
The log was divided (I don’t remember why—perhaps writing performance?) into several files; this is the end of the first. And it’s also a good place to end this installment of the annotated log. We’ll move to the next “volume” next month.