I did promise that I would analyze all of the losses I make on Forbidden. Today's loss is somewhat painful to look at, for me at least: I lose on picks (realizing a second too late that Africa's more effective at countering SA than Russia is to Aus) and then turn 1, I brainlessly forget I have second order, and run into the stack countering SA. Nasty. The following position is just bad:
Not necessarily lost yet, but definitely not looking good for me, either. Since it's a coin game, I continue using what limited options I have available.
Turn two, several things are obvious:
1, I must counter Aus.
2) I must keep SA. I must continue to keep SA until I can safely take Australia.
So, I do this. Position going into turn three:
Still playable. My objectives remain roughly the same: hold Australia, hold SA. Keep grabbing card pieces.
I get second order this turn, which is a problem. I should have predicted that he would deploy everything and try to eliminate me from SA, but I did not; I try shift my stack in SA to Argentina while deploying 2 to Aus in case I am wrong. The result is that his stack almost destroys mine, and the leftovers then try to take Argentina. The good news is that he didn't get a card piece. Neither did I.
Going into turn 4, I get first order:
I get first order this turn, which is the only reason I didn't surrender. My moves this turn are easy to predict: deploy everything, stack into a random spot in SA and hope he doesn't eliminate me. I use this moment to send a 3v2 attack into West Australia, because my only hope going forward will be to take Aus when he's not paying attention.
Turn 5, I have second order:
We both have a reinforcement card. I decide I will probably lose SA this turn, so I deploy everything to Australia. Ironically, my opponent forgets to eliminate me from SA. He does manage to hold onto Aus, so in hindsight he could have won this turn.
Turn 6 is nothing special, we both grab Aus and SA, respectively. I'm arguably back in the game, but with my opponent threatening to take Africa & North America, long-term, I'm unlikely to win.
We meet turn 8 in the Middle East, and I try to take Russia. He stacks into the Middle East at the right moment, ending the game.