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Messages - Merlin_89

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World Cup of Carcassonne Central / Re: 2017 World Cup - Group B
« on: January 22, 2018, 03:10:08 PM »
217  :red-meeple: Merlin_89 - Halfling  :yellow-meeple: 180

I suffered a loss last time against Khalid, I've made some tactical errors, so I really wanted to course correct my game yesterday.

First of all, I knew blocking your opponent is rather a loss of time when playing with Besiegers and The Festival... I wanted to improve my strategy but somehow my game switched from attack to defence completely... I was blocked in at least 3 places, Halfling kept picking Besiegers tiles, undermining my cities one by one. It was a crazy frustrating start! But I knew I'd have had plenty of occasions to rise up. And it happened, Halfling was busy blocking, and I picked right tiles, I kept scoring, and I was ahead in points. It was a good moment for me, but then I picked Cathedral tile, and I used it in Halfling's city, with an idea of expanding it and never allowing it to be closed. It worked for a while... short while... Halfling closed it out! First thought? I'm OUT! I can't win! Second... what can I do to change things... big farm! I used the very first situation to push my big follower into the field, I found one good spot, and just like that, I joined... It was a lucky, quick and effective strike and it left Halfling with very little time to respond. He couldn't respond to that.

Really good round of Carcassonne!

I have one game left in round stage, but What If seems to be hard to catch on Central recently. I hope to play soon!

World Cup of Carcassonne Central / Re: 2017 World Cup - Group B
« on: December 22, 2017, 12:54:25 AM »
I was able to play one very late game with Rosco...

131  :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 - Rosco  :red-meeple: 106

With or without expansions that game was quite special! Rosco started very nice picking special CCCC (with small cities pieces), he chose well, he placed farmer, used phantom to complete 4-points city, and just like that he was off to great start. Few rounds of tiles and that farmer was surrounded by 4 small cities, I couldn't find the way to counteract it. That situation forced me to act aggressively with farmers as well, I needed to win farm on the outside.

And all crazy things have started. From that point, we concentrated on adding farmers and expanding it. I set the pace, but Rosco was not that far behind me. I thought it'd be nice to do sth other than farming and decided to attack Rosco's city with double meeple, and that move nearly turned out be fatal for me, as Rosco very quickly decided to use his to join the farm. It tied us, I had limited supply of meeples but I decided on that crazy strategy, and put more farmers. I had luck, as I managed to join them all, I ended with 8 meeples in farm!!!!!!!!!!!!! Rosco was left with one meeple, he could do whatever he wanted, but he needed to tie the farm to win. He made small mistakes, he was close... But I defended the farm, and I won!

ULTIMATE FARM GAME! And possibly smallest winning and loosing score...

I keep having problems with using twists of expansions to my advantage. Rosco, well played!

World Cup of Carcassonne Central / Re: 2017 World Cup - Group B
« on: December 21, 2017, 03:06:41 PM »
It's crazy how difficult it became for me to find time to play...

I hope to continue with group games... Christmas break, finally!!! How about some games tomorrow?

World Cup of Carcassonne Central / Re: 2017 World Cup - Group B
« on: December 12, 2017, 12:19:33 PM »
My first game of the Cup.

182 :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 - Xanderx12 :blue-meeple: 172

It was hard game for me... long break from Carcassonne. No practice, I felt rusty. And Xanderx12 pushed me hard! I almost forgot that expansions twist this game that much! :D

Xanderx12, good skills!!!

News and Events / Re: World Cup of Carcassonne Central 2017
« on: November 26, 2017, 11:33:42 AM »
I hesitated, I'm quite busy, and I had more than my share of Carcassonne in 2017 but I couldn't miss Cup two years in a row, I'd like to join... Sorry that I waited so long. Representing  :white-meeple: :red-meeple:!!!!

Leagues (including expansion leagues) / Re: Minis League: Final round
« on: October 09, 2017, 02:02:15 PM »
Congrats Dan! But believe me, it was more exhausting for me! I could have had small lead, but Dan had major advantage on map... He blocked my 2 meeples early, and I could only play desperate tactics from then on. But gold tiles preferred you, your golden circle (4 gold bars). And I had little hope... Like that one tile, which would score road, 2 gold bars for me... Didn't happen. My desperate tactic played out on farm but it was not enough, not for a game with expansion.

You're becoming master with those expansions Leagues! Good job.

News and Events / Re: National Carcassonne Championships in 2017
« on: October 05, 2017, 07:49:28 AM »
Thanks for comments!! I'm quite happy about my result, I was really close... I only regret I didn't give myself a chance for a fight in the Final. It could have been a different story then... Still it was wonderful experience and great weekend as a whole!

Now I have to look forward... Competitions on Central, I'm not finished! AND... Carcassonne 2018, here I come!  >:D

News and Events / Re: National Carcassonne Championships in 2017
« on: October 03, 2017, 07:00:24 AM »
I owe you recap of the event that took place last Saturday - Polish Carcassonne Championships 2017

It was long and intensive day for me. Fortunately, this year I planned whole weekend in Cracow, I arrived day early, and for the first time, I was reasonably well-rested on big day.

Event was held in Centre of Modern Art "Solvay" and was scheduled to start at noon. I came just in time, and quickly realized that building was full of hardcore Carcassonne fans! I was astonished to hear that 86 from over 200 qualified came to participate! Bard, the publisher was prepared to such a feat, they reserved more space for games, as 22 tables were needed for first round of gameplay.

It took some time to break participants into 4-players tables, but finally we started. I always state how uncomfortable I feel at 4-players game, and nothing changed, especially after my blow out from last year. And first game is tricky, because participants are divided randomly, you can easily find yourself in death table. But it turned out that I had biggest experience at the table, I was also puzzled by one of my opponents who apparently suffered from hangover (or maybe he only posed like he did)... I knew that it was important to start well, and somehow I delivered! 1st place, 3 big points, 81 small points. I was relieved, but pressure was still on, 3 big points meant that I will play 2nd game at the table with players who won their game as well.

And it turned out to be my most challenging game! Things happened that you don't want to happen when playing 4-players... I was sidetracked, my opponents finished city without me. I lost on farm. 4th place, 0 big points (I lost 11 points to tied 1st place, and 3 to the 3rd). Did I mentioned that 3rd place took some 9/10 year old? My self-confidence went down.

I went down in ranking, next game I played at 10th table, which meant, I was well below qualifying 16. However during that round, it was decided that due to large attendance, there would be FINAL 32! It meant huge relief but I quickly realized, that I needed to take grip on myself, and score good places. I don't remember third game that well. I thought I was going well, but I ended with 2nd place, and 2 big points, 64 small.

Fourth game, things got closer to the end. I advanced to 8th table, and I met my dear foe/friend Tomasz Preuss. He was in similar situation, things got complicated for us more than we would have wanted... But game was successful for us, we played and I felt we had understanding to cooperate to some degree. In this manner we finished rather big city, which gave us lead. Then we played separately.  I had lots of luck picking cloisters, but in the end Tomek won. 2nd place, 2 big points, 83 small.

Fifth game, nothing was set, I needed to score some points to advance, I didn't know how many, 1, 2, 3? I played on 7th table - on the edge of success and failure. We started and that game ended up as my calmest. I had lead from the beginning, I scored things. I won, 1st place, 3 big points, 61 small.

I didn't need to check any fixtures,  10 big points guaranteed me FINAL 32. Place was unimportant... It was best moment for me whole day, I overcame my stress and hurdle that cost me that much last year! In the end, I was 14th! Quite safely in 32, but not necessarily... it turned out that 9 points were also enough for Q, and 1 person with 8 points qualified as well (most small points). Crazy how close it is to say goodbye to the tournament... And Tomek Preuss (3-time Champion) was 29th with 9 points... Carcassonne is a tricky game.

It took nearly 5 hours to advance to the Play-offs, Last 32. We took 30 minutes break for dinner. And we returned to play most important games of the evening.

Last 32 match was easy task, I took lead, and drove away... I do that sometimes, and it's the best feeling, when pressure is off, game shapes well, and control is yours. It was that game. 135-98.

Last 16 match was sort of flashback, I played guy, I won with in Warsaw qualis final last year. He remembered me clearly, and stated that this time, it's going to be different thing... It wasn't! I was in total control, and I blocked 2 of his meeples early, he was vulnerable, and then I didn't leave him any chances. That's the game... 127-73.

Quater-finals... Remember that quy from my first game? The one with hangover? He waited for me here! I was puzzled by him, but he was clearly different Carcassonne player. He played hazardously and it paid off. I played my game but he kept coming back with big completed features, I could do nothing about. In the end he risked all on picking CCCC, he had large city, and he decided to lock it by himself, and wait for the one tile. I knew I had problems, that city would give him 24 points. 50-50 situation. Tile was nowhere to be seen, I could play my best game, but that tile was hanging there. I acquired small lead, when tile has come up... He picked it. OH MY... I thought tournament ended for me. I had under 20 tiles to fix it, and I DID IT. I don't know how but some farms and cloisters probably helped. 121-115.

Semis... Another flashback, veterans practically dominated Play-offs. I played with Joanna Owczarek from Warsaw, we played 2 years ago in quallies final. I won there. This game was a hurdle from the beginning, she blocked my 2 meeples (8 points cloister and road)... Game was full challenge from that point, I fought hard, but she was ahead, she kept closing things, she had advantage. But I closed some of that gap, and luckily took farm with last tile of the game. We didn't know who won... Counting points revealed, she won... with 1 POINT. What can I say, Carcassonne is tricky. I was really close, and still, not enough to clinch final. 102-103.

3rd place game. I still had this game, I wanted to end this day on high note! It was clearly different game to play. It was totally head to head game. None of could grab considerable lead. I blocked him once, but it didn't slow him. In the end game was decided by farms, we splitted them, but if he merged them, he would take it all. Cloisters played well to my advantage and I won. 89-85. I won my last game of the day and it matters for me a lot!

I took 3 hours, but event was over... We could cherish our victories, and mourn failures. But in Poland winner is apparently one, Tomek Preuss. He apparently quite easily dispatched Joanna in final. She made some mistake, Tomek took advantage and blocked 2 of hers meeples, later he could safely control the game. Well done, Tomasz, I applaud!

We were decorated with diplomas and more than satisfactory prizes, Tomek took another trophy. It was after 8pm. Eight hours of gameplay! Longest finals ever! I was so happy I had planned another day in Cracow, and was in no rush... Tomek, Joanna Nitka (Tomek's partner and also great Carcassonne player, 4th after 4-player), Kuba, Ɓukasz and me decided to use the night and have fun in beautiful city of Cracow. We were tired, hungry, so we drank and dined, and celebrated our victories. After all, in the mix, because of Carcassonne you get to know each other and make friends.

Video from the event:


Online Games and Competitions / Re: Elo ratings
« on: September 20, 2017, 03:05:18 PM »
Jere, any chance we'll get update before last round in The League?

I'd very much appreaciate it!  :(y)

Leagues (including expansion leagues) / Re: Basegame League - Round 14
« on: September 20, 2017, 02:53:12 PM »
After short break from The League...

103 :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 (Home) - Leven :violet-meeple: 88 
64 :violet-meeple: Leven (Home) - Merlin_89 :yellow-meeple: 85

Two very similar, highly strategic and defensive games. For most of the time, we were stuck in our positions, we kept our distance... But it favoured me, because both times, I managed to score early lead, that I was focused to keep with me to the end.

Very tense match. Leven left me no room for mistakes. Thanks for that.

I can only laugh and be happy about game that happened between me and JoeSesquipedalian.

144 :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 - JoeSesquipedalian :green-meeple: 144

This game was horrible for me! I was getting no tiles to work with, JoeSesquipedalian played offensive and I had no response. One knight, one monk, two knights, 4 meeples blocked, and I could only look when it happened.

But playing offensive had its downsides... I saw, he kept missing good scoring opportunities to keep hindering my game. On the other hand I used all of my bits and pieces to further my game and score. Game looked strange, I was in awful situation on map but I was continuously keeping my advantage on score-track.

But I simply knew I couldn't win this game. FARM!! It got HUGE!!!!! And when being 4-meeples down, you can't win farm that important. I contested it! I tied 1-1. I stalled JoeSesquipedalian's game, and made him a little bit frightened. But he's got it (42 points)!

Ending was exciting, all things considered, it was strangely close... One of my blocked cities got considerably big, and I tried to push wizard there (but in the end Joe moved him elsewhere, still 13 points), I had blocked monk (8 points), I had lead (around 15 points), farmer for 6 points... AND GOLD! It was 5-3 (10-3 when counted in points). Gold tiles were fairly distributed, but at the end JoeSesquipedalian got 2 tiles, and grabbed 2 bars out of it, and I got one tile, and managed to complete that golden city, we ended with 7-5 for me, small difference but it transferred into huge score difference 21-10. And it saved me...

Small things could ended that game differently, especially gold, mage and wizard's tiles (JoeSesquipedalian had small chance to grab anothe 2 gold bars). But I can't complain about final result. We played exciting game, we even used fliers! Crop Circles made quite a difference! I couldn't expect better opponent than JoeSesquipedalian, thanks for your level of play!

I've returned from hell, it was JoeSesquipedalian's game to win... And important ONE! We can repeat Flier's Group! If JoeSesquipedalian wins rest of his games, we'll be tied in big points, and Total Score Difference will decide group's winner. This League turned to be awfully exciting! I'm +233, is it enough?

News and Events / Re: National Carcassonne Championships in 2017
« on: September 13, 2017, 03:27:32 AM »
Small update from Poland. Final will take place on Saturday, 30th of September. I've already planned my yearly trip to Cracow. Keep fingers crossed!

165 :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 - Khalidqasrawi  :red-meeple: 144

After the game Khalidq said that he'd never doubted, I'd win... but our match was much more complicated.

I had better start, I could complete some features, and Khalidq got mostly useless tiles - I saw that. It wasn't long until we took all our guns out. We fought for city, we had meeeples in cloisters, I pushed Khalid into building the big city, I rushed into claiming farm... Our free stack of meeples was limited, but Khalidq's became empty for some time. I felt comfortable, but he came back with points and gold that buried points gap between us. We were even, but I was in possession of big farm with 2 meeples and it gave me control of the game. I was afraid, he'd go after it, but he was down on meeples and he didn't make this move.

I won, but final result surprised me! Khalidq scored 65 road points, more than I was able to score with cities! I clearly won that game with farms, but result could be different because of crazy big impact of gold - 2 more gold bars for Khalidq and he'd be dead even with me.

Competitive match. Thanks for the game.

205 :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 - Piet_Agoras :red-meeple: 81

I can say I owned that game! We've thrown ourselves into game from the beginning! We quickly used our supply of meeples... farms, cities, CLOISTERS, we started to run on fumes. But we were in different situations, I blocked few of Piet_Agoras's meeples, and completed few of my features. I could play, and he was stuck. And game looked like that for a long time, I could complete, grab gold, ADD POINTS.

Carcassonne's scenario you dream about. Piet_Agoras, it had to be tough game for you... Thanks!

Leagues (including expansion leagues) / Re: Basegame League - Round 13
« on: August 13, 2017, 11:20:52 AM »
I guess, my game against Dan deserves more expanded summary...

83  :yellow-meeple: Merlin_89 (Home) - Dan :blue-meeple: 88
89 :blue-meeple: Dan (Home) - Merlin_89 :yellow-meeple: 98

Both games looked very similar. We played head to head, chances were there... for both of us, but I felt like I couldn't find my footing.

First game, I blocked quite easily one of Dan's thieves, it was nice sign, but Dan managed well without it. In the end, Dan took control over biggest farm, I didn't find way to join, he won.

Second game, it didn't looked well for me... I wanted to block Dan at the beginning, but this time he escaped quite handily with payoff. I thought it's Dan's game to win. I had meeples locked in cloisters, and Dan once again was in control of farms... I fought but I lost big farm again (4:3)... Ending was a surprise for me, I completed cloisters, I claimed small farm, and strangely enough it gave me victory.

Thanks for the match, it gave me lots of thrills alongside big relief at the end.   :(y)

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