Preliminary Thoughts: TRC World Cup

Some recent discussions have started to get me fired up again about TRC.  More specifically, Johnny O. has  proposed a “TRC World Cup” event that will feature the 5-turn scenario.  A few points are probably worth highlighting:

  • Using the 5-turn scenario will allow for quick games, provide good practice for the convention tournaments which all feature the 5-turn scenario, and provide an opportunity for PBEM play of a scenario that is otherwise often only played in the hectic environment that is face-to-face play.
  • Given the proposed “World Cup” format involving play of multiple games per round, this is necessarily going to be an event for experienced and dedicated players.  Initial entry is likely to be capped at 16, i.e., 4 groups of 4 players.
  • We’re targeting a move per week so, with an arbitrary targeting of getting the preliminary rounds done by August 1, we expect to start in mid-April.
  • This will be an OPEN event, i.e., no BPA membership required.  The default PBEM tool will be ATF but both players, if agreeable, can choose to use VASSAL.
  • John will be the GM, I will be the assistant.
  • A key challenge will be the seeding – our current thinking is AREA rating but I suspect we’ll also want some other criteria.  (Tourney records, for example, particularly for those who’ve already demonstrated expertise in the 5-turn scenario.

If folks have comments about the format, feel free to provide feedback – we’ll want to lock it all in by the time we start our ‘recruiting’ drive!


Early Alert: BPA PBEM Tournament XI Forming Up!


Achtung Gamers!

TRC Online! is proud to announce the launch of the Eleventh Russian Campaign Play-by-E-MailTournament sponsored by the Boardgame Players Association (BPA). This is a single elimination ten-turn tournament that will crown a “wood-worthy” Russian Campaign champion. A first place plaque will be provided by the BPA. First through sixth place finishers will receive points towards the 2015 WBC “Caesar” award. All matches will be AREA rated. As Germans, can you succeed where the Wehrmacht and others have failed? As Russians, can you survive the opening onslaught and mount an effective counterattack? Those accepting this challenge should contact the tourney administrator, John Ohlin, at

You must be a member of the BPA with a membership level of “Associate” or higher at the time of the tournament start. (Associate level is ten dollars a year.)   You must register with the tournament adminstrator by December 19th; hostilities will commence on December 26th, 2014.

You can find complete information and details on the Tournament rules and scenario here.

BPA PBEM Tournament X Concludes: Ed O’Connor Comes Through!

After two years of tournament single elimination play, Ed O’Connor’s Russians defeated Pat “the TRC Sensei” Flory in the 10-turn scenario in a hard fought match.  Despite the attrition favoring the Germans, i.e., the Germans lost less than expected and the Russians more, Ed’s tight play combined with the Germans admittedly less than aggressive play at the tail end of the game help Ed land the victory.  While the Germans had a good chance of capturing Leningrad, and possibly Moscow, a German capture of Kursk would have been decidedly an uphill proposition.  The dice favored the Germans early but 1942 saw the luck swing the other way and, combined with lousy (pro-German) weather, gave the Red Army the path to victory.  Stay tuned for the announcement of the tenth edition of the 2014 BPA-Sponsored TRC PBEM Tournament; as the champ, Ed will soon get to enjoy the new experience of being the man with the target on his back!

Final Standings:

1st            Ed O’Connor
2nd           Pat Flory
3rd            John Malaska
4th            Doug James
5th            Bert Schoose
6th            John Ohlin

There were a total of 30 players who participated in 29 matches.  Stay tuned for the start of the next tournament!

WBC Requiem

The week after the World Boardgaming Champtionships is the toughest week of the year.  Not only am coming back to the maelstrom that is work, my sleep tank is usually running on fumes and there is an endless parade of work chores flaunting themselves in front of me.  Part of the healing process is to recount the tales of woe and jubilation, here’s a first cut:

The Good:  Three woods – DBW (1), TRC (4), and POG (6).  Some good matches against some formidable opponents.  Final order of finishers:

  • Gary Dickson
  • Richard Beyma
  • Bert Schoose
  • Tom Gregorio
  • Greg Smith
  • Mike Mishler
A bunch of new names – let’s see if they can keep it up next year!

The Not-So-Good:  The Host was the worst it’s ever been.  The AC went on the fritz, the food was uniformly repulsive, and the facilities themselves were falling apart before my very eyes.  Once I get the pictures of our leaking ceiling room I’ll post them.

Some things to think about for next include:

  • Changing where we stay.  The convenience is nice but perhaps it’s time to decamp from the host.
  • Modifying the tournament scenario — the bids for the Germans are getting outrageous.
  • Less grognard, more new games.

Anyway, enough for now, I’m glad the roughest week is over.

Counting Down…

WBC starts in six days; gamers across the world are packing their games, qualifying their dice, and counting out pairs of underwear.  If you’re playing TRC, you’ll need some extra of the latter!

Meanwhile, I’ve posted the rules summary of the differences between TRC3 and TRC4 along with a copy of the TRC4 rules in the Bootcamp section of this site..



Academy Workout

Updated the TRC site, adding the TRC Ladder rules, PBEM process, and Error Resolution process material.  I can’t say that updating my TRC blog actually cures a hang-over but it certainly didn’t make it worse and was a productive use of time.  (Only from a gaming perspective, of course.)

In other news:  My ladder opponent, Jaakko, is on vacation.  I’m missing him.  Well, at least his TRC turns.  =)  To recap the game situation:

May/June 1941:  The Germans conduct the Massive Odessa Overrun (MOO) that is quite the rage these days.  Flawless execution by Jaakko and he gets good dice.  I respond by having the Red Army build a wall in the south and a full delay in the north.

July/August 1941:  The Germans capitalize on another series of good dice to grind forward.  A particular focus on AVing cavalry is evident – the Russians are now down to ONE unit in the game!  I try to take advantage of a tactical misplay – a panzer stack is susceptible to a 1-1 surrounded attack with sufficient force brought up to conduct another 1-1 on second impulse if a Contact result occurs on first impulse.  Needless to say, the Russians are handily repelled.

September/October 1941:  Clear weather.  Leningrad, Sevastopol, and Kiev all fall while Stalino is put in an untenable due to a soak-off on the German second impulse. The Russian reinforcements pour on.

November/December 1941:  MUD weather.  Terrible result – not only does this ensure that two consecutive snow turns will NOT occur, my counterattacking opportunities are severely limited.  The line stabilizes in the South with Kharkov and Rostov being secured.  The Soviets press towards Smolensk.

January/February 1942:  The Germans retreat to the cities but leave a gap in the middle into which some Russian paratroops go.  This results in some German casualties.  Most importantly, the Wermacht is now at the point where any additional losses will not be replaced.

March/April 1942:  The weather is light mud.  I hope he takes losses attacking and the 1st Guards Tank Army is fully committed to unleashing hell on my part of the turn!

Stay tuned for further updates, I hope to post some screenshots periodically of any interesting situations that develop.  Note:  This is not intended to be a full AAR but comments are welcomed, nonetheless!