BGC Power Grid M’sia Qualifier #2 @ Cassian Kitchen 20/3/2011

By jack208
With two Finalists in the bag, we now move to Subang Jaya where the crocodiles were supposed to meet the sharks. Alas rain and unplanned events drew chaos to crocs plan to descent on shark water, leaving only the sharks to swim by themselves… Find out who were the two top sharks to survive this encounter to join Heng & Alvin in the FINAL.
Participants Qualifier 2
1. Mak Jen Son
2. Eric Ng
3. Lim Chee Long
4. Henry Yeo
5. Matthew Goh
6. Ken Yen (wolfx)
Game Masters (GM): jack208 (Game #4)

Location: Cassian Kitchen, SS15
Date/Time: 20 March 2011 1.30 PM – 4.00 pm (Sun)
After an eventful China encounter at Bangsar yesterday (click here for event report) where we have our first two Finalists – Heng & Alvin – we now move to Subang Jaya to run the rule over these supposedly shark-infested waters. But with slight rain and unexpected events derailing the plans of many who had wanted to attend this qualifier, we were left with a smaller than expected crowd.
Nevertheless we did have six ready to do battle come what may. We skipped the Germany map and proceeded straight to the China map where only two will survive this encounter to rise as the Two Finalists from this Qualifier. Whom shall that be?

Players (initial turn order): Matthew Goh (purple), Jenson (black), Eric Ng (yellow), Ken Yen (green), Lim (red) and Henry Yeo (blue)
Map: China, with north-east area not in play
GM: jack208
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
(L-R) Matt Goh, Jenson, Eric Ng, Ken Yen, Lim, Henry
Turn 1
The tone of this match was set with a more spirited fight in the auction market from the get-go, and further intensified in the First Build when Jenson-black who built last – instead of dropping into a more comfy area between Matt-purple and Henry-blue – decided to go for the throats by jumping straight into Ken-green’s face at the north-east area of China.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
When four comes into space for three, one will succumb. By doing so, Jenson-black was virtually forcing the four of them – black, green, red and to a certain extent yellow – to fight not to be the unlucky ONE. If Kevin-blue thought it was horrific for him in Bangsar (see event report), let’s spare a minute for Ken-green, Lim-red and Eric-yellow when they saw Jenson-black landed aggressively in China!
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Ken-green (aka wolfx) came dressed in … black! Aargh??!! Remember the fate of the Men-in-Black at the Bangsar Qualifier? LOL
Turn 2
Jenson-black picked #13 (eco) and a few players went into the bidding war to drive the price up until Lim-red won this at $18. Only two other players – Henry-blue (#12) and Matt-purple (#15) – picked up a power plant in this turn. It seemed no one was letting anyone get a power plant for cheap.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Jenson-black (center) started aggressively with his first build in the cramped north-east area.
Turn 3
The fight for power plants continued to be aggressive with most of the good plants going for a premium over their base cost. This was quite different from the Bangsar session.
Almost everyone has reached their 3rd city in this turn.
Turn 4
By this turn, the board started to look nasty. Jenson-black has sealed off Ken-green at the north-east; Eric-yellow was already moving south to avoid the congestion and partly to meet Matt-purple’s expected north incursion.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
If you project the network growth over a couple more turns, you can see even Henry-blue was being hemmed in. Woo… now you can really see the brutality of the China map when you play against players who do not mind playing nasty (on the board of course, and they remain as friendly as ever off-board).
Turn 5
The bidding for the power plant remained strong, with Matt-purple having to dig deep into his pocket to get the #25!
Unlike the Bangsar session, here the yellow region of the map (the most expensive connections) were largely unmolested as the players focussed on depriving their opponents on the eastern side of the maps growth space!
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Ken-green was already shutdown in the previous turn, and now you can see Henry-blue was locked in as well! This game is a very good example of how awful things can turned in China when people are not nice to you. Henry-blue can’t complain though as he chose this map. He’s just having his “dish” served back to him… 😛
Both Lim-red and Jenson-black already had their cities poised ready to jump into the isolated north-west China if need be. It’s interesting to see the fight for control on the China map.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
…. while Ken-green (left) was probably contemplating a long and expensive hop and Henry-blue (right) wondering if Step 2 will come soon enough for him.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Ken-green did make the long hop out of the north-east death-trap by paying a connection cost of $36! You can see his new green city at the top of the map above. Whew….
Henry-blue also promptly did another double-connection to jump out of the eastern choke before it turned into asphyxiation.
Turn 6
Even at this stage, the power plants were still hotly contested. Matt-purple wanted the #26 but was priced out of it when Eric-yellow was willing to pay $39 for this plant.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Four players were now at 5-cities, and Step 2 was likely going to be triggered in this turn. Ken-green was the first to build the 6th city, triggering Step 2 but before the players can catch their breath Step 3 was reached in the same turn.
Turn 7
With Step 3 reached, everyone was now rushing for their game-end plants. Surprisingly this was the 1st time the power plant bidding was subdued. Almost everyone got their power plants at cost. Hmm.. what gives?
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
It’s Calculator time now as everyone’s furiously trying to work out the best-cost built for their power plant cities….
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
The north-west area remains untouched…. even at this late stage of the game.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Turn 8
Again the power plant bidding toned down… I would say this was due to a shift to city building as everyone’s still on 6/7 cities at this late stage with only Matt-purple getting to his 8th city.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
However everyone made grounds in this turn by building 3-4 buildings to haul themselves to within a turn or two of closing the game. At the end of this turn, Matt-purple has 11 cities, Ken-green and Eric-yellow has 10 cities while Henry-blue and Lim-red has 9 cities. Jenson-black appeared to have dropped off the race with only 8 cities. So did his aggressive first build move backfired on him?
Turn 9
The question of course was “Will anyone trigger the end-game in this round?” Only Matt-purple has a realistic chance of doing so as he’s at 11 cities and the board position also favored him even though he’s first in turn order.
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Lim-red finally expanded to the north west and took the last three $10-cities there but it only managed to bring his total to 12 cities.
Henry-blue also did not manage to get his 14th, stopping at 13. Interestingly everyone else (except Matt-purple) then built to 12th, leaving the final call to Matt-purple. Matt-purple did end the game and finished this match strongly with a 14th city build and $33 in cash!
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Final position of Game #4 from Qualifier #2
BGC Power Grid Msia 2011 @ Cassian Kitchen
Matt-purple (1st), and Henry-blue (2nd) shall proceed to the FINAL Day as Finalists. They also win a Rm50 boardgame voucher from for being the top 2 finishers from this qualifier. CONGRATS!
Player’s Name
Matthew Goh
Henry Yeo
Lim Chee Long
Eric Ng
Ken Yen
Note: Both Lim-red and Eric-yellow were tied on Cities Supplied (1st win condition), then Cash (2nd condition) and also Total Cities (3rd condition). The final tie-breaker is the highest power plant and Lim-red’s #50 took him to 3rd position.
Well played to everyone! The China map is not easy (as you would have known from our past sessreps) but this game drew out the nastiness in this map when the players were not afraid to play aggressively. I’m now more piqued to see how the other qualifiers will run this map. 🙂
Special thanks to our host, Cassian Kitchen for hosting this Qualifier.
– No crocs nor sharks. Just family friendly people playing boardgames. But be careful, you might end up in the same board as Addams Family and that might be worse than jumping in with the crocs & sharks. 😛
See you next Sunday in Setapak!
Learn more about POWER GRID board game at Boardgamegeek (link)
Buy POWER GRID from our webstore (link) and its expansion maps:
– France & Italy maps (link)
– Benelux & Central Europe maps (link)
– China & Korea maps (link)
– Brazil & Iberia maps (link)
– Russia & Japan maps (latest) (link)
– Power Plant Deck 2 (link)

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