This past weekend we were priviledged to host two pilots from Denver - Paul "Sumo" Pasternack and Jerry "Jerdog" Jennings. Sumo and Jerdog translocated to Seattle to check out the Airlock and get in some pod time while they wait for Denver's site to find a new location.
We started things off casually on Friday night with a little Battletech and a little Red Planet. Just enough to whet their appetites before a weekend full of random wackiness tournaments. Both guys were immediately at home in the pods and it only took a mission or two before the reflexes were back.
Since Saturdays are our normal tournament nights, we held the Battletech version of Soto's Random Wackiness first in order to catch any drop-ins who might wander by. This time we used 4 kinds of chips. Each player was given 2 'Mech re-roll chips and one random other chip. The other chips were the popular "same-for-all" chip that put everyone in the chip-player's 'Mech, a chip that allowed the pilot to choose the map (but then get random conditions), and a chip that forced a random game type to be played. That's right, the black chip generated either Destruction, Attrition (the normal game), King of the Hill, or Steal the Beacon.
Oh yeah, and this time yours truely played too. :-)
The usual wackiness ensued. KwikPain and I won the first round missions. Both second round missions ended up being same-for-all missions, Sumo winning the Highlander 732 mission and Justice winning the Locust IIC 2 mission. Round 3's Fire Falcon C same-for-all mission was won by KwikPain while Gurn won the "standard" random mission. Both of the fourth round missions also started out as same-for-alls - mission one in the Argus AGS-4D and mission two in the Raven RVN-3L, but mission one was randomed into Steal the Beacon so several people re-rolled their 'Mechs into... much slower 'Mechs. Gurn ultimately prevailed in his Argus, while Aximili took home the top prize in the Hitchcock mission by re-rolling her Raven into a stock Mauler.
That left 5 people within 4 points of each other going into the finals, with KwikPain holding a 2-point lead over yours truely. The final round was in Gatorbait and there was a lot of jockeying of 'Mechs as people used up their last chips. I thought I had it made because I'd drawn a Night Gyr D (with four LRM-20s) and held the 2nd-to-last chip play, but then Sumo's turn came and he played his hand. He first randomed his own 'Mech into a Huntsman C, then played a same-for-all! The Huntsman is based on the Uziel chassis and has a very strange loadout. 3 different missile racks, an Ultra-5, and a couple of different lasers meant that there was always something to shoot, but nothing really did very much damage. Add to that the Pea Soup Fog at Night, and you had the makings of a narf-fest.
Which is pretty much exactly what happened. It was almost impossible to maneuver because visibility was less than 200 meters. Just when you thought you had a shot lined up, a 'Mech would appear from out of nowhere and run smack into you. KwikPain ultimately mastered the chaos and used it to his advantage, cleanly pulling ahead of the next four and securing another spot on the Risk map. Yours truely finished 5th, 3000 points behind KwikPain but only 1500 behind Sumo in 2nd.
Then on Sunday we held a Red Planet random tournament. To make choices easier, each player received three chips that could be used to re-roll anything that had been randomly determined. As is typical for random RP tournaments, "score suppression" was on all night long. LOTS of big VTVs and LOTS of mines were on the courses, making it difficult to score much more than 12-13k points. Dalkin did manage 23.4k in his 2nd round, but that was followed by Black Mantis's 17.7k and Soto's 15.7k both in round 1. The high score for all of round 4 was RAID's mere 10874.
Most people were pretty conservative with their poker chips in this tournament, generally only using them to opt out of Armadillos or Dragons or to re-roll the course. Soto and Black Mantis won the 1st round missions, Dalkin and KwikPain won the 2nd round missions, Dalkin and Sumo won the 3rd round missions, and then yours truely and RAID won the 4th round missions. Once the scores were totaled, KwikPain and Black Mantis were tied for the lead with 29 points followed closely by Sumo with 27 and RAID with 26. Dalkin, Gurn, Argent, and I rounded out the finals.
The final round started on Paingod's Passage, but that was quickly re-rolled to Brewer's Bane. I had last option for the finals and had 2 chips left, so even though I'm not very good on Brewer's I opted to keep the course so that I could take away KwikPain's Black Speck (giving him a Grunt) and opt out of my own Dragon (getting a Ripper). That left RAID in a Skeeter and Gurn in a Roach, so I assumed one of them would build up a lead and sit on it. Turns out... not so much. Black Mantis rapidly built up an unassailable lead in his Bull, so it was left to Sumo in a Mantis and yours truely in a Ripper to battle it out for second place. I held on at the end, proving that the results of random tournaments really are pretty random.
Congratualtions, Black Mantis!
Also, a hearty congratulations to Sumo for placing in both tournaments.
Stay tuned later this week as I'll be announcing the maps and other details for the Grand Melee that we're holding on 7/16 and then the big one... Gunslinger's on 7/30.
For now... Roadkill OUT!