Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery?

Stately Sessions: Liberty or Death, Turns 5 and 6

Tabletop •

We’re back after a long gaming weekend that consisted of playing a lot of old favorites with not one “new” game hitting the table. We had some new players, so game teaching was still in order, but far less stressful than trying to teach games I barely know how to play. That’s all in the past, however, and from this point on we’re going to focus on wrapping this game of Liberty or Death from GMT Games up. I’m hoping turns become faster and faster as I become more familiar with the flowcharts of the AI, so maybe we’ll finish this game before New Year’s? Let’s take a look at two quick turns, Turns 5 and 6.

1775, Turn 5

We begin turn 5 with both the British and Native American factions ineligible and the Patriots and French raring to go. The active event this turn is Antoine de Sartine, Secretary of the Navy who was a real person and is actually a card in this game. I could go into more detail about him, but I can’t even pronounce his name so I’ll just leave it there.

See, I told you it was a real card.

The interesting thing about M. Sartine as it pertains to us is that the French/Patriot event on his card brings French Squadrons from Unavailable to the West Indies. The French (and Patriots) like this, as it will bump up the French Preparations a bit. The French Prep needs to be at 16 for the French to enter the war, and it’s currently at two.

Lucky for us, it’s the French turn. We check the handy-dandy flowchart to see what they’re thinking and, lo and behold, if the event brings French troops or squadrons into play from unavailable, they’re going to jump on the chance. Thus, the French turn is quite simple. They will perform the Antoine de Sartine event and move one squadron from Unavailable to the West Indies. Note that the event would have allowed the French to move two squadrons, but they only had one remaining in Unavailable, so we moved what we could. This bumps the French War Preparations marker up to 3, and the French turn quickly ends.

Slowly but surely…

That brings us to the Patriots who are nursing their bruises from the last British turn, when the Brits came in and took over control of Virginia. Instead of looking at the map for ways to break out from the British, they’re going to look at the next event. In Liberty or Death the event for the next turn is flipped so you can see what’s coming down the pike. In this case the next event is Claude Louis, Comte de Saint-Germain who was the French Minister of War in 1775. His event for the Patriots/French is to bring five French regulars from Unavailable to Available. That would bump up French War Preparations by 5, which is huge and serve to get the French fighting much quicker than if we don’t get to use that event. If the Patriots take an action this turn, they will be ineligible to use the event next turn, so instead of doing anything exciting, they will Pass. This leaves them eligible for the next turn and earns them a much needed resource.

With no more factions in the eligible box, Turn 5 comes to a quick end.

1775, Turn 6

Only the French are ineligible this turn as the Patriots passed last turn and sit in the Eligible box along with the British and Native Americans. The event this turn is Claude Louis, which we mentioned above. Looking at the card’s listed order of play, first the French get to go (they’re ineligible, however) and then the Patriots. The Patriots jump at the chance to pull five French regulars from Unavailable to Available. With all the red and green cubes in New England, it’s really looking bleak for the Patriots now, and they need the French to come in and give them a chance. This event will raise the French Preparations by 5, putting it at 8. That’s halfway to the French declaring war on the side of the Patriots. They just need to hold out a little longer.

Whoa…we’re halfway there.

Next up are the British who can follow an Event with a Command and Special Activity. We take a look at the British flowchart, but it tells us something different. The event was already played, so we skip downward and are asked if the British resources are zero. It just so happens they are, which means the British take no action this turn and instead Pass, gaining two resources.

With Turn 6 flying by, it’s up to the Native American faction to do anything interesting. Looking at their flowchart, we learn that they are going to take another Gather action. They have some resources to spend this turn, so can Gather in 2 spaces instead of only one space as they did in Turn 4. First we need to place one where we have villages, so we put one war party in the Northwest Territory. The other war party could go in either Quebec, the Northwest, or the Southwest. We use a dice to randomly choose which one, and the Southwest is chosen, so another war party is placed there. This uses up the Native American resources, and forces them to move on to their Special Activity.

Once again, we’re going to have the Native Americans trade with the British. The British, however, still refuse to give the Native Americans anything, so the Indians will have to be content with gaining only one resource and activating one of their war parties in the Northwest, where they have their only village.

Claude knows how to get my motor running

Both Turns 5 and 6 were quick, mainly due to both events being used and the British being out of resources. When Turn 7 rolls around the French and British will be eligible with the Patriots and Native Americans, who just acted in Turn 6, ineligible. The event on the table? Edmund Burke on Conciliation which can bring Tories to the side of the British, or move Opposition in favor of the Patriots, depending on which faction fires off the event. We’ll see if any faction fires it off next time.

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