Monday, February 21, 2011
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Note: One bad Jihadist card in my hand, Kashmir, which I can avoid. The really good news is that I can dig out a card from the discards with Oil Price Spike. Otherwise, Special Forces is the only real event. So only one 3 to deal with plots…
J1: IEDs (J1). Unplayable. Travel to Gulf States from Iran, auto.
J2: Al-Anbar (J2). Place cell in Iraq. Not a big deal for me at all.
US1: Special Forces (US1). Remove cell in Gulf States, place Cadre.
US2: Hizb Ut-Tahrir (1). Disrupt cell in India (removed).
Note: Getting the cells off the board. The cells in UK and Italy are targeted next, but hopefully they will attempt plots to make them easier to get rid of.
J3: FATA (J3). Event. Cell in Pakistan (three now, but with two troops it will be a long slog to Major Jihad). However, I can no longer disrupt there, which was a great place to do it because of the troops.
J4: Euro-Islam (US2). Playable. Plot attempts in UK (fail) and Italy (fail). Guess I got what I was hoping for!
US3: Zarqawi (2). Disrupt cell in UK, removed.
US4: Anbar Awakening (US2). Disrupt cell in Italy, removed.
Note: Cadres are all over the place, but at least I’ve knocked them all back quite a bit. I’ve also hit my main goal for the turn, which was to clean up the really dangerous countries for plots and cells. Now I need to seriously consider whether or not to Reassess this turn. Let’s see what the Oil Price card brings…
J5: CTR (US1). Unplayable. Recruit in Somalia (auto).
J6: NEST (US1). Playable. Plot attempt in Yemen, fails.
US5: Oil Price Spike (3). I select US Election!
US6: US Election (3). US Posture stays Hard, unfortunately. No change to Prestige. Disrupt active cell in Yemen, place cadre.
Note: Such a great combo, but no love. I suppose I should have held it and used it for Reassessment instead. Oh well.
J7: Covert Action (US2). Playable. Plots in Pakistan, two cells go active. Both plots are successful.
J8: Iran (2). Event rolls Jihad in Turkey, both rolls fail. Recruit in Somalia, one success.
US7: Sharia (US2). WoI in Caucasus, Soft. No change.
US8: Leak (J3). WoI in Caucasus again. This time, Hard. GWOT track to Soft 2. Making headway again at last.
Plot Resolution in Pakistan: +2 Funding to 8.
US discards Kashmir.
End of Turn: -1 Funding to 7, no change to Prestige.
Note: A better turn for me, no question. I cleaned up the non-Muslim countries, and made a little headway in the GWOT. Next turn I plan to work on the Philippines and whatever other countries the cards indicate. Prestige is still a problem, but better to wait for it to be rolled and hope for a big bump. However, 13 Poor/Islamist countries it too many, but I need better mods before I can start to roll WoI in the Muslim world. I also need to knock down the funding, after forgetting about the plots.
Note: Not a good hand. Most of the cards are Jihadist and while only Clean Operatives is really nasty, a lot place cells for few OPS. No US cards at all, and the three unassociated events only HAMAS is helpful. Also only one 3 card that’s playable. Fortunately, I’m in decent shape, and plan to use most of my cards for WoI plays to shift the GWOT. If that’s successful, I will be in good shape going into deck 2.
J1: Pirates (J2). Playable. This will make it harder to keep Funding under control, and will make Somalia a more likely Regime Change country if it comes to that.
J2: Abu Sayyaf (J2). Playable. I may be deploying troops there this turn, as I probably should in Turkey as well.
US1: Loose Nuke (J2). Unplayable, thankfully. I use this to deploy two troops to the Philippines.
US2: Ansar al-Islam (J1). Playable. Cell is randomly placed in Iran. With my OPS I choose to WoI in India, which stays soft.
Note: I would go for Reassessment if I had more 3 cards than 1 cards this turn. I have been ignoring the benefits of having troops on the board, and there is still one more pair I could deploy. My only ally right now, though, is Turkey, although my first choice would be Yemen.
J3: Renditions (US3). Playable. Plot (1) in Philippines (success), then randomly in Iran (fail) and Somalia (fail). All three cells go active, and marker placed in the Philippines, but the troops prevent the extra -1 Prestige penalty if I don’t block it.
J4: Hizballah (2). Playable. Lebanon would go to Poor Neutral, but it’s already there. Recruit in Somalia, then Afghanistan, both auto.
US 3: Uyghur Jihad (J1). Playable. Cell to Central Asia per event. I then try a Posture test in India again (success). Finally. GWOT to 0. Prestige +1 to 2.
US4: Darfur (3). Remove plot in Philippines.
Note: Hate to use my only playable 3 card for that, but not a lot of choices. I have finally gotten the GWOT to have no penalty, and I can start working on getting the Gulf States to Good Governance. With two 2 cards, I should be able to give this a couple of shots.
J5: Predator (US2). Playable. Plots in Philippines (fail) and Iran (success). Cells already active.
J6: Jemaah Islamiya (J2). Playable. Only one cell on the track, so second OPS is for radicalization, and that will be Travel. Indonesia tests Poor, Poor/Islam to 14 (getting a little scary here). Travel to Gulf States from Somalia (auto).
US6: Hamas Elected (1). Event. I discard Clean Operatives and reduce Funding -1 to 6, Prestige -1 to 1. This seems like a bad idea, but I’m going to lose the point anyway in the not too distant future. I may rethink this if a final Poor country shows up.
US7: Zawahiri (2). I take a swing at the Gulf States to try to get it to Good status (fail).
Plot in Iran: Funding +1 to 7.
Note: I am right on the edge here. I can’t try to WoI a Poor country, not enough OPS. I played HAMAS because Radicalization was going to place a plot that I was afraid would be a real problem (like the US), and this gives me the option to discard the card. However, it also gives the Jihadists three card plays before I can really respond, five if you count the next turn. I am on a tightrope…
J7: Wahhabism (J3). Funding to 9. Sigh. At least I won’t care about plots in Muslim countries.
J8: Opium (J2). Radicalization (3). First travels a cell to Gulf States from Pakistan (active). Second lowers Good/Fair governance in a Muslim country by one. That means the Gulf States and Turkey both go to Poor, and I lose the game because my Prestige is at 1 and there are 15 Poor/Islamist countries.
End of Game Notes: Well, that fell apart fast. Oddly, my biggest problem in this game was that I didn’t stay Soft for long. I’m not sure if changing my attitude would have helped by going for Regime Change, although that has it’s own issues. I was definitely happy to have troops in Pakistan, and I think that’s a no-brainer since it makes it that much harder for the Jihadists to travel there by the AI.
My practice of dumping J3 cards rather than playing them and suffering the events may be a contributing factor as well. Certainly my efforts to both bump up my Prestige and lower Jihadist funding was a contributing factor, although had I been able to keep the OPS recruiting down I could have survived the turn (it was Radicalization that did me in).
All in all, I consider this a failed experiment, seeing as I wanted to see how well I could do with a Soft posture. I think a concerted effort to Reassess would have been in my best interest when I had a good hand. I certainly spent a lot of time and failed effort trying to get to a GWOT Penalty of 0, and while I was successful, it was a long and painful journey without enough success to get my Prestige up. Had I not been using all of my 3 cards to stop Plots, I would have been able to do this more easily. Hard has it’s advantages, but if you aren’t going to go for Regime Change somewhere, it’s not in your best interest.
Still, a very entertaining game, and one I’m ready to try again soon with the same parameters (although I will not be keeping a diary).
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Note: Not a great hand, but at least I can lower the funding level again. On the down side, four Jihadist cards, two of which are not great. I also have to decide if Bhutto isn’t going to show up this game, which she probably won’t seeing as I’m trying to do this without Regime Change if I can. Turkey and Yemen will see minor improvements.
J1: Amerithrax (J2). Event. US discards Benazir Bhutto.
J2: Back Channel (US3). Unplayable. Minor Jihad in Gulf States (1), the rest Radicalize. Cell activates, fails, returns to Funding track. Rad places cell in US, Travels cell to Gulf States from Pakistan, goes sleeper.
US1: Sanctions (US1). Event, Funding -1 to 6.
US2: Bhutto Shot (J2). Unplayable. WoI in Caucasus, stays soft.
Note: Took the chance to drop Bhutto Shot while no cells in Pakistan. Also dropped the funding to try to limit the number of cells coming onto the board, not that this has been working in the past. I have very strong cards left, but want to get rid of the cells in the Caucasus and Turkey before playing Kemalist Republic. Losing a US3 card hurt.
J3: Intel Community (US2). Playable. Plot (1) in US, Gulf States. Plots fail in GF, US, cells removed.
J4: Fatwa (2). Jihadist picks Quagmire, US picks Iran. Event OPS is Travel, to China (tests Hard, GWOT to Soft 1) from Yemen, travel fails. For OPS, cell is available so Recruit in Afghanistan (auto).
US3: Iran (2). A break for me. I use the event to remove the cell from Turkey.
US4: Jihadist Videos (J3).Play event first so I can mitigate it if necessary. Recruit in UK (tests Soft, GWOT to Soft2, fail, cadre), China (fail, cadre), and Iraq (success). I disrupt in the Caucasus, shifting the cell to Active.
Note: Things are going well- to clear the area around Turkey for Kemalist Republic, I will need to disrupt that Caucasus cell again, although I may get lucky and it will move somewhere else. GWOT, however, is going the wrong way again and I need to convert one Soft country before I can start WoI rolls again.
J5: Quagmire (J3). Unplayable. Travel to Gulf States, Thailand (tests Soft, GWOT to Soft 3), Pakistan from Iraq (auto), Caucasus (fail, removed), and Afghanistan (auto), respectively.
J6: Martyrdom Operation (J3). Crap. Two plots in the Gulf States. I will only be able to deal with one.
US5: Saleh (3). Remove one plot from Gulf States.
US6: Kemalist Republic (US2). Event, set Turkey to Fair Ally. Fair/Good to 2, Poor/Islamist to 13.
Plot resolves in Gulf States: +1 Funding to 7, -1 Prestige to 5, no change to Governance (Fair).
Note: Dodged a bit of a bullet there in the Gulf States, although Funding/Prestige is going the wrong way again. Also, I have a terrible card left that I don’t want to play unless I must, and the Jihadists have three left. Ack.
J7: Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (J2). Playable. Cells to Pakistan and India (tests Soft).
J8: Al-Ittihad al-Islami (J1). Playable. Cell to Somalia.
Note: That could have been a lot worse, although my GWOT is going straight down the tubes and fast. That will need to be a focus next turn, especially if I get stuck with a lot of 1 and 2 cards.
J9: Bin Ladin (3). Prestige -4 to 1. Jihadists Recruit three cells in Somalia (auto).
US discards card.
Note: That could have gone much worse, although having my Prestige at 1 just means I need more than ever to get the non-Muslim nations to Hard and quick. That or go back to Soft, which I’m actually kind of hoping for. There are a lot of cards to play in the deck, though, and almost no Remove cards were played, so that could be a while.
End of Turn: -1 Funding to 6, no change to Prestige (already at 1).
Note: Much better hand. Ex-KGB is a bit on the nasty side, but Madrassas is easy to avoid and a 1 card I can use to boot. Backlash gives me some insurance against plots, and two more cards let me remove some cells if I’m worried about them, such as in India. Only two three cards, but no events there for competition.
J1: Jaysh al-Mahdi (2). Playable, but to no effect. Travel to Gulf States, Philippines (tests Soft, of course) from Somalia (both). Gulf States successful, Philippines fails.
J2: Moqtada al-Sadr (J2). Unplayable. Jihad (1) in Gulf States, Rad (2). Jihad fails, cell to Funding Track. Rad sends cell to Iran, Gulf States from Somalia (auto).
US1: Madrassas (J1). Unplayable. WoI in Canada, fail.
US2: Special Forces (US1). Event, remove cell in Gulf States, place Cadre.
Note: I can’t buy a break with Posture so far. I may need to consider a Reassessment as it would be much cheaper and I’m not anticipating Regime Change anytime soon. Maybe the Jihadists will cut me a break.
J3: Danish Cartoons (1). Playable. I set Scandinavia as Hard, just because. Plot is placed in India. I have not been cut a break, I needed the plot in a Muslim country. OPS travels to Gulf States from Somalia (succeeds).
J4: King Abdullah (US2). Playable. Plots to Kenya (fail) and India (fail).
US3: Pakistani Offensive (US3). Alert to remove India plot.
US4: Predator (US2). Event to remove cell in Gulf States.
Note: The dance continues. Jihadists keep sending cells to Gulf States, I keep removing them. Amazing it’s remained Fair for so long, although I have no prayer of getting it to Good without a card event for now.
J5: Enhanced Measures (US3). Playable. Plot attempts in Iran (success), Kenya (success), and India (fail).
J6: Schengen Visas (J2). Auto travel to Benelux (tests Hard) and Italy (tests Soft). No change to GWOT. Cells both from Morocco.
US5: Libyan Deal (US3). Alert to get rid of plot in Kenya.
US6: Kurdistan (2). Disrupt cell in Kenya (to Funding track).
Plot in Iran: +1 Funding to 7.
Note: Not getting much traction, and too many cells in non-Muslim countries to use Backlash. I will drive out the cell in India if no other options next turn.
J7: “The door of Itjihad was closed” (US3). Playable. Plots in Iran (fail), Benelux (fail), India (fail).
J8: Homegrown (J2). Cell placed in UK.
US7: Backlash (US1). Disrupt to remove cell in Benelux.
US8: Ex-KGB (J2). Disrupt cadre in Gulf States. Central Asia goes Adversary.
Notes: Too many cells popping up in Good countries, I will focus on removing those as I can next turn, also get my Prestige up if possible. Funding remains an issue, perhaps events will help.
End of Turn: Funding -1 to 6. Prestige still at 1.
The diary continues..
Note: Wow, I found all of the US cards! Unfortunately, that means that the Jihadist will find all of his. I can get rid of the Israel cell, although why bother. I can also get rid of some other cells and reduce Funding, which will be a priority. My 3 cards are all unplayable, but the one 3 Jihadist card I have is not good, setting up more cells in unmarked countries. FREs is not playable. All in all, I should be able to reduce funding and otherwise stay stable, although I’m concerned about Somalia.
J1: Vieira de Mello Slain (J1). Unplayable. A Major Jihad success is possible, so I activate all cells in Somalia, and roll a 3 for a single success. Somalia goes to Islamist Rule, Besieged Regime marker removed, Alignment to Adversary, Funding +1 to 9, Islamist Resources to 2. Not good.
J2: Leak (J3). Playable. Wiretapping is now blocked. US Posture stays hard, Prestige +5 to 9. Pakistan shifts to Neutral, so I guess I’m glad I got the troops in before that happened. The Prestige shift is nice, though, but not enough to counter Somalia.
US1: Sanctions (US1). Event. Time to start killing the Jihadist Funding, -2 to 7.
US2: Al-Ahar (US2). Event. Egypt tests Poor, Funding -2 to 5. Poor/Islamist to 9.
Note: Went after the funding as promised, but there are a lot of cells on the board. I can start wiping them out now, though, and they shouldn’t come back quite as fast. Somalia was an early blow, though.
J3: UN Nation Building (US2). Unplayable. OPS used for Travel to Yemen, Central Asia, from Somalia and Afghanistan, respectively. No rolls made since adjacent countries. Central Asia tests Poor.
J4: Ethiopia Strikes (US2). Playable. Plot(1) in Gulf States, Israel. Cell already active in GF, successful, marker placed. Cell goes active in Israel, fails.
US3: Sistani (US3). OPS to remove Plot in Gulf States.
US4: Special Forces (US1). Event. I remove the cell in the Gulf States, replace with a Cadre.
Note: This was a tough call between this and Yemen, but I decided Yemen was too close to Somalia to block effectively. I’m now mostly concerned about Yemen going Islamist, but it's early yet.
J5: Predator (US2). Playable. Plot(1) in Israel, Yemen. Israel cell already active, plot fails. Yemen cell goes active, plot fails.
J6: Lebanon War (J3). Playable. US discards Mossad & Shin Bet (US2), Prestige -1 to 8. Sleeper cell to Yemen.
US5: NATO (US3). OPS for WoI in Gulf States. DRM is +1 (Prestige), roll is a 5 so GF goes to Fair Governance. Fair/Good to 2, Poor/Islamist to 8.
US6: FREs (J1). Unplayable. WoI in Canada, Soft. GWOT Relations to 0.
Note: I was thinking I was going to disrupt the cell in Israel, but if I want to play Regional Al-Qaeda then better to test a country and maybe gain a little more Prestige. I will want to use the 3 card for WoI in Gulf States, no question.
J7: Kosovo (1). Playable. +1 Prestige to 9, Serbia goes Soft, GWOT Relations to 1 Soft. Jihad attempt in Yemen, cell is already active there. Attempt fails, active cell to Funding Track.
J8: Iraqi WMD (US3). Playable. Plot(1) in Yemen, Israel, Central Asia. Yemen cell goes active, plot fails. Israel cell already active, plot successful, marker placed. Central Asia cell goes active, plot successful, marker placed.
US7: Regional al-Qaeda (J3). Forced to remove the plot in Israel, which will help Funding. Six possible countries, so randomize Morocco and Turkey (Morocco gets 2 cells, Turkey 1). Both countries test Poor, Poor/Islamist +2 to 12 – I had not counted Somalia and Afghanistan before.
Plot resolution in Central Asia: +1 Funding to 6, no other effect.
J9: Gaza Withdrawal (1). Unplayable as no cells to place on Funding Track. Jihad attempt in Yemen, cell already active. Jihad successful, Yemen to Poor Governance. Poor/Islamist to 13, Fair/Poor to 1.
End of Turn: Funding -1 to 5, Prestige -1 to 8.
Note: I got the funding down, but otherwise a terrible turn. There are two Islamist countries out there, another 11 Poor countries, so I’m thankful my Prestige is good, but that could go seriously south at any time. Every cell is on the board, despite funding. Next turn I need to focus on WoI while I still have a bonus, but the other priority is to get those cells back on the funding track where they can’t do any harm. My other concern is getting the cell out of Central Asia because I haven’t seen the other WMD cards come out yet. This next turn may see me lose the game...
Note: 8 Cards each, so that’s good. I have some insurance against Plots in hand, but some terrible Jihadist cards that will hamper me if I’m not careful. At least they are 3 cards, which will let me do some things, and the Gaza War will help me get rid of one Jihadist card at a cost.
J1: Hijab (3). Unplayable. Travel to Caucasus which goes Soft, adjust GWOT Relations to Soft 2, Pakistan, Gulf States. Travel from Central Asia, Somalia (successful), Somalia (successful).
J2: GTMO (3). Prestige roll lowers -4 to 4. Card to Lapsing box 1. Minor Jihad (1) in Gulf States, Radicalization (2). Jihad fails, cell to Funding Track. Radicalization sends cell on Funding Track to Russia, which tests Soft, GWOT Track to 3 Soft. Second Rad sends cell from Afghanistan to Gulf States.
US1: Foreign Fighters (J3). Play to Disrupt sleeper cell in Pakistan, +1 Prestige to 5.
US2: Saddam Captured (US2). Play to Disrupt sleeper cell in Gulf States, +1 Prestige to 6.
Note: Prestige is an issue, and WoI is out in the Muslim world while there are so many Soft countries. I can get rid of some of these cells, but only having one per country is a pain. Russia will be next as they have WMD that makes me a little nervous, plus they are soft, so I will try to WoI them as well. I’m actually hoping for a plot, too, but just one!
J3: Safer Now (US3). Unplayable (dang). Jihad(1) in Gulf States, then Radicalization (2). Jihad fails, cell removed and no cadre! Rad(1) places cell in Yemen, Rad(2) travels from Afghanistan to Gulf States.
J4: Tora Bora (2). Unplayable. Minor Jihad in Gulf States, Radicalization(1). Jihad fails, cell placed in Jordan, which tests Poor. Poor/Islamist to 14.
US3: Mass Turnout (US3). Disrupt the last cell in Pakistan, Cadre placed, Prestige +1 to 7.
US4: Former Soviet Union (2). Disrupt cell in Russia to Active.
Note: Not a great round, although I’m starting to make some progress in Prestige and the cell in Russia is going to crack soon. Here’s hoping for a Plot, I could really use the extra card…
J5: Martyrdom Operation (J3). Event. Cell in Israel replaced with two Plot markers. Be careful what you wish for, and my response doesn't work outside the Muslim world.
J6: KSM (3). Playable. Plot placed in Caucasus. Never rains but it pours. OPS used for Travel to Kenya (tests Soft, no change to GWOT), Pakistan, Egypt. From Somalia (auto success), Afghanistan (auto success), and Somalia (last cell, so it goes Sleeper instead of travel to Egypt).
US5: “Let’s Roll!” (US2). Event. Reveal Plot in Israel, draw a card (HEU), and adjust Russia to Hard. GWOT to Soft 2.
US6: Al Jazeera (J3). Playable, Saudi adjust to Neutral. Remove other plot in Israel.
Plot Resolution: Russia – Plot 1 raises Funding +1 to 6. Posture remains Soft.
Note: Be careful what you wish for. I got an extra card, but had to blow a three because so many Plots were out and you don’t want one in Israel or any Good non-Muslim country. Caucasus plot could have gone a little better, but I’ll survive with +1 to Funding. I still need to get that cell out of Russia, and then I will need to start WoIing in non-Muslim countries to get my GWOT up. I may survive this turn yet.
J7: Moro Talks (US1). Playable. Plot in Pakistan, successful.
J8: Adam Gadahn (J1). Unplayable. Travel to Gulf States from Afghanistan, successful.
US7: HEU (J2). Play the OPS before the event – Disrupt active cell in Russia, event now unplayable. Whew.
US8: Gaza War (J2). Discard random card, which is Saddam which would have been very bad for Funding. As it is, Prestige -1 to 6, Funding +1 to 7. I use the ops to Disrupt the sleeper cell in the Gulf States, +1 Prestige to 7.
Plot resolution in Pakistan: Funding +1 to 8. Maybe not that great after all. No other effect.
Note: That turn didn’t go as well as I’d hoped. Jihadists will have nine cards, they have a ton of cells on the board (but no countries threatening Islamist Rule). On the plus side, I am getting the GWOT back to a better division, but it will take some time and luck to do it. At least Serbia is a target so I have something to do with my 1 cards. Also, good to get so many Jihadist cards out of the mix, hopefully I’ll get a good hand this next round.
End of Turn: Funding -1 to 7, Prestige -1 to 6.
This game is intended to let me try out how to play the US as Soft. Since it’s my first game doing this, I choose no nerfs and three decks. Starting hand is not terrible – only three Jihadist cards, one of which is currently playable and it won’t be that bad if Syria shifts to Poor before I play it. However, I only have two 3 cards, and one is Oil Price Spike which I may wish to use for grabbing a good discard. The other cards have good events but only if I choose to use them. Biometrics is a tricky card, but since the Jihadists will be mostly recruiting this turn, probably best to try to avoid the Radicalization it will cause with so few adjacent cells. My initial strategy is to mostly react, and to get one country moving toward Good Governance as quickly as possible.
Deck 1, Turn 1
J1: Quartet (US2). Unplayable. Recruit operation becomes Radicalization. Cell placed in Gulf States, cell travels from Afghanistan to Somalia, which tests Poor. Poor/Islamist marker to 5.
J2: Abbas (US2). Playable. Plot(1) in Gulf States, then Radicalization. Plot tests successful, marker placed, cell goes active. Radicalization places cell in Yemen, which tests Fair. Fair/Good marker to 4.
US1: Libyan WMD (US3). OPS to remove plot in Gulf States.
US2: Kazakh Strain (J2). Unplayable. Use for War of Ideas in Gulf States, -1 DRM (-1 to Good, -1 GWOT, +1 Prestige). 5 rolled, Aid marker placed.
Note: The plot forced me to be aggressive about keeping the Gulf States in good shape. I can’t afford Islamist Regimes to start popping up in this game, although I do need to start getting some troops to any country that is an Ally. Having a Good Governance country in the middle of all that will improve my odds dramatically of making more allies. I should probably have played Biometrics and FSB to try to nerf the Jihadists, but they will be doing more recruiting than anything else this turn.
J3: Patriot Act (US3). Playable. Plot(1) in Gulf States, then Radicalization. Plot fails, cell already active. Radicalization places a cell in Gulf States, then travels cell from Yemen to Somalia.
J4: Detainee Release (J2). Unplayable. Recruit in Afghanistan, fail in Somalia.
US3: Shroeder & Chirac (J2). Unplayable. WoI roll in Gulf States with 0 DRM (Aid, Prestige +1 each, To Good, GWOT -1 each). Fail Roll.
US4: FSB (US2). Unlikely I’ll use this for an event, so OPS to disrupt the Jihadists in the Gulf States. Active cell to Funding Track, Sleeper to Active.
Note: Kind of a chaotic turn. I should probably have gotten all the cells out of the Gulf States had I been a little smarter, but getting most of them out will prevent Plots, the thing I’m most concerned about. Then Somalia.
J5: “The door to Itjihad was closed.” (J3). Unplayable. Minor Jihad(1) in Gulf States, then Radicalization(2). Screwed this up in the J4 card play, I’m afraid, which should have been the same thing rather than Recruit, but that’s gonna happen occasionally. Jihad is successful. Radicalization places in US, then travels from Afghanistan to Somalia.
J6: Taliban (J3). Playable. Cells from Funding to Afghanistan and Pakistan, Prestige -3 to 4.
US5: Wiretapping (US2). Event. Cell in US removed, no cadre placed, draw card, place marker. I draw Hambali, which is good as a 3 OPS card.
US6: Musharraf (2). Event. Remove the cell in Pakistan, placing a cadre there. Pakistan becomes Poor Governance but an ally, so I will be able to place troops there, which is good. Fair/Good to 2, Poor/Islamist to 6.
Note: Not a great turn. I was going to have the Gulf States drop regardless, as it turned out, and Somalia is getting scarier. At least I can now make some inroads into Pakistan, which is the scariest part of the board because of the WMD. Also, getting to draw an extra card will help a lot too, but I’m losing ground for now.
J7: Tony Blair (US2). Playable. Plot(1) in Gulf States, the Radicalization(1). Plot is successful, place marker in Gulf States. Radicalization places cell in Israel.
J8: US Elections (3). Playable. US Posture goes Hard. Prestige +1 to 5. Recruit two cells in Afghanistan, attempt in Somalia fails.
US7: Hambali (3). Play as OPS to remove Plot in Gulf States.
US8: Oil Price Spike (3). Event. I draw Patriot Act, which is just too important to pass up. Resource spike does not trigger. Card goes to Lapsing Box 1.
Note: US elections surprised me, but I’m not sure I want to deploy into Afghanistan just yet. It may be better to try to stabilize Pakistan first, which is where I’m going with my next plays.
J9: Indo-Pakistan Talks (3). Unplayable. Recruiting in Somalia, three attempts, two are successful. Somalia now prime for Major Jihad.
US9: Patriot Act (US3). Event. Place marker, card removed.
US10: Hariri Killed (J2). Play as Reserves. Lebanon tests Poor, Syria shifts to Poor. On the plus side, the card is removed because you can’t kill the guy twice! Fair/Good to 1, Poor/Islamist to 8.
US11: Biometrics(US1). Play as OPS, using reserves to make it a 3 card. Two troops from Troops Track to Pakistan.
End of Turn: Funding -1 to 8. Prestige -1 to 4 for IR country on board. Hand size for US now 8, Jihadists remain at 9.
Note: I hope my focus on Pakistan pays out long term, because so far the Jihadists are winning. At least they'll have to get lucky to get WMD with a couple of troops holding Pakistan down. Priorities at this point are to improve Gulf State governance to Good if possible, and drive down Jihadist Funding so that they have fewer cards to play and can't recruit as effectively.