Day Two Here Day Three Here Gettysburg is by far my favorite battle of all time. First, it is an all-American battle in an all-American war, and myself being an old school nationalist it carries significance that other battles simply don’t; I may find Austerlitz or Stalingrad nifty, but nobody there was my people. More, it was an extraordinarily clean fight. At any point, a soldier on either side could hurl down their rifle and grab some sky and be reasonably assured of having their surrender accepted without reservation, and for that matter their captor could rely on their new POWs to trudge back to the rear under light guard in good faith. Even though much of the fighting took place in an urban environment with embedded civilians, only one civilian died in the fighting. Let me tell you, the more military history you read up on, the clearer it is that massacring civilians before, during, and after a rough fight is par for the course. One might even say that butchering unarmed men, women and children of the enemy tribe is the de facto military objective more than half the time; it might be some weird, half instinctual, proto-game theory going on: “We told them to surrender or else. They didn’t surrender, we won anyway, and now there’s gotta be an ‘or else’ to persuade the next batch of holdouts that we mean business.” In the long run, butchering the first village usually made it morelikely the next three villages would get the message and surrender without a fight, saving the invaders men, materiel, and time. Or perhaps it’s that killing civilians has always been pure bloody-mindedness. But not at Gettysburg. Gettysburg is where the American platonic ideal of soldiers fighting soldiers and leaving the civilians be actually happened. Another aspect to the battle that fascinates me is how utterly unplanned it was. Neither army had intended to fight there, and between the scale of the brawl, the rapidity of developments, the intransigence of their subordinates, and the communications lag, neither the Confederate general Lee nor the Union general Meade had a grip on the situation at all until the second day of the battle, and neither could enact their ideal plans until the third day. It was something of a clusterfuck for both sides, and the course of the battle depended on the initiative and guts of small unit commanders with little idea of what the big picture was. Gettysburg tends to be remembered as the turning point in the war, when it stopped being a gallant passage at arms between roughly equal powers and started being a slow, painful inevitable grind towards Union victory. This is not exactly accurate; only with years of hindsight could anybody construct a narrative that framed this fight as the turning point, for at the time Gettysburg was seen as just another grisly slaughter yard in a long series of them. Still, between this fight and the conquest of Vicksburg out west, this does appear in hindsight to be the high watermark in terms of Confederate progress towards successful seccession. Certainly it was the last time any Confederate army went on the strategic offensive. For diehard secessionists (both during the war and in the years after), this was the last hurrah before the war started being truly hopeless. It is also, I should mention, a place of spiritual significance for me. Myself being secular humanist with a vaccination against Protestantism from my younger days, I don’t have much in the way of codified religion. But when I was a youngin’ visiting relatives out east, I got to visit the battlefield. I found myself standing in front of a monument on the field on the north end of Herbst Wood (where the right flank of Iron Brigade stood and charged on the first day of the battle). It described how a Michigan regiment of about a thousand men stood on that spot and suffered two thirds casualties over the course of the day. I read the details on the monument, and stared up at the mustachioed rifleman staring defiantly to the west. Looking left and right, I saw more monuments every fifty yards or so in a straightish line, spreading out to mark where a human line had once stood and bled. And I turned my back on the monuments to face away, and behold, I saw an opposing line of Confederate monuments stretched out horizon to horizon about a hundred yards away. Two lines, violently opposed but unmoving; courage and horror frozen into place forever. And the world there seemed very big, and very grand, and I felt very small and unworthy. The air was at once colder and hotter than any air I’d ever felt. The wind cut through my clothing and reminded me that flesh was mortal but spirit was eternal. This was holy ground, soil consecrated by blood. Shi’ite Muslims have Karbala. Catholics have the Road to Calvary. Australian aboriginals have Uluru. I have Gettysburg. ———————————————————————— BACKGROUND A brief note- I will be including maps periodically to show the progression of the fighting. These maps must be taken with a grain or three of salt. They are intended to show relations between the armies and the terrain, not to mark the exact positions or dispositions of the units, nor to show an exact proportion of numbers involved. This is because I am not an expert mapmaker, and I thank you in advance for your understanding. First, a map of the northern part of the battlefield. Note how many roads lead there, and note the high ground of Cemetery Hill and Culp's Hill to the south of the town. The Battle of Gettysburg happened because Lee needed to go on the offensive, and Lee needed to go on the offensive because of the big picture. I shall cover the broad outline just so the significance doesn’t pass anybody by. The Confederacy in the Spring of 1863 was in a terrible dilemma. The leadership had two urgent problems, either one of which could (if unaddressed) destroy their enterprise, and to make things worse they didn’t have the resources to solve either of them alone without a miracle. One, the Union was fixing to shove yet another army down Richmond’s throat. Two years of failed invasions into Virginia had been brutal to both sides, but the North had immense reserves of cash, food, industrial output, and manpower with which to replenish themselves, and the South simply didn’t. The Army of Northern Virginia on which every invasion thus far had broken was underarmed, underfed, and undermanned, and if these issues were not fixed then they’d be seeing Union soldiers in the Confederate capitol before Autumn. There had already been a push that year, which Lee had staved off at Chancellorsville. There was plenty of time left before winter for a second attack. And two, Vicksburg, the railway hub that sat on the Mississippi River, was under dire threat. The Union had already grabbed New Orleans at the south end and pushed north up the river, and had been pushing south down the river since day one of the war, but Vicksburg prevented the whole river from falling in to Union hands. Vicksburg alone let the South shift resources and information from its Western half to its Eastern half. Losing it could be a death blow. The garrison of Vicksburg was also underarmed, underfed, and undermanned. The fresh crops taken off the farm and the fresh host of new recruits also taken off the farm were middling at best. Even throwing all the resources they had at either problem and letting the other develop as it would might mean losing on both fronts. Splitting the resources in half to prop up both didn’t seem promising either. Lee, being something of a strategist, developed a third option. There was no point (he reasoned) in trying to prop up Vicksburg at this point- it would take weeks to shift reinforcements that far west, and by then it would be midsummer. If the siege lasted that long, either the garrison would fold or disease would rip through the Yankee army and drive it back home, as it had the last two years running. In either scenario, further support would affect nothing. Therefore, he proposed a bold plan- don’t sit around waiting to get hit in the face. Invade north. Take the fight onto their turf. The more the Confederate leadership considered it, the better it sounded. Northern land hadn’t been ravaged like Virginia had- it would be easy to live off of the enemy’s food for once, thus lessening the headache of their constant supply problems. It was also an election year, and the anti-war Democrats were raging at the ocean of blood and gold being wasted on bringing States back into the fold who very clearly wanted to go their own way. One good, solid victory on Northern soil could tip the balance, drive home the point that that war was unwinnable. Get the Black Republican warmonger Lincoln kicked out of the White House, get a reasonable Democrat in, and next year they just might get a negotiated peace that would lead in time to true and recognized independence. To which end- Lee snaked his newly reinforced army of about 75,000 men up through the Shenandoah Valley, using the mountain range to mask his movements instead of using to well-worn direct route that the Union was camped on. He would end up north of the bulk of the Army of the Potomac, simultaneously threatening Washington D.C., Pittsburgh, Baltimore, and Philadelphia, which for a guy trying to score a symbolic victory to discourage the enemy voters put him in a pretty nice spot. Lincoln freaked out, told Hooker and his Army of the Potomac to go out and beat Lee, to utterly destroy his army, and also not leave any weak point undefended, which are just the kind of orders one enjoys receiving. Hooker, having a bit of an ego and a poor history of getting his ass kicked by Lee, got into a feud with Lincoln’s advisors and impulsively offered his resignation as Commander of the Army of the Potomac following some stupid spat with the bean counters back in Washington. Lincoln called his bluff and fired him three days before the battle, putting General Meade in charge of the whole damn army with almost no prep time. I should cut the narrative here to cast moral aspersions right quick. The Union were the good guys, and the Confederates were the villains. That said, the North made for really terrible heroes, and the South had more than its fair share of virtues. This was not a grand crusade of freedom-loving Yankees tearing down the moral abomination of human bondage. This was a brutal, no holds barred death struggle between the efficient new urban Industrial Revolution and the rural Cavalierlatifundias. Only a smallish segment of New England Puritans and bleeding heart Quakers hated slavery on moral grounds- the rest of the North either hated it on financial grounds, didn’t give a fuck one way or another, or were actively supporting racial slavery. And on the flip side, most Southerners who fought in the war perceived quite accurately that outsiders were coming into their world to demand submission, and had decided to give these invaders the William Wallace treatment. This is a normal and admirable response that every healthy society should have in its toolbox, and in my not-even-slightly humble opinion it is a damn shame that so many people endured so much agony in support of so un-American a cause. For you see, when Lee’s army reached Pennsylvania, they kidnapped every black person they could find, free or not, and sent them all south in chains. There was no attempt to ascertain their status by some legal due process, no splitting of hairs. The bare skeleton of Confederate ideology, the great Truth that would have snuffed out by continued political loyalty to the Union, had been that all men were not created equal. To be more precise, men had white skin, and anyone with black skin was not a man and did not have the rights of man. As such, anyone with black skin was to be sold into slavery and threatened with torture and death if they refused to labor in the cotton fields. The army that invaded the North was, in practice, the biggest slave-hunting gang that had ever set foot on American soil. The side wearing grey were staunch defenders of a country based on the Ideal of Ethnic Supremacy, and the side wearing blue were fighting for a country based on the Ideal of Equality. There were a million nagging features of material reality in the South and the North that challenged both of these Ideals, but there were no Ideals to challenge these Ideals, save only for each other. We know that this is true, because as the war shifted away from a Federal attempt to rein in wayward states to an all out assault on the institution of slavery, more and more Northerners balked at the idea of dying to set niggers free; men who had fought for years to bring the rebels into the fold again threw down their rifles and went home in disgust after they heard of the Emancipation Proclamation. And as it became clearer that poor whites who never owned slaves were expected to die for plantation owners’ right to stay rich, fewer and fewer Southerners were willing to jump into the meat grinder feet first; many of them deserted to go home and form Unionist bushwhacker gangs instead. Speaking of the draft, a higher percentage of southerners dodged the Confederate draft than in Vietnam, yet Vietnam is remembered as a deeply unpopular war while the Lost Cause has painted the South as a unified bloc striving as one against the Yankee oppressor. Also, the Confederacy had a draft imposed upon the states by its federal government. So, yeah, State's Rights. Tell me how that worked out. To reiterate. Both sides are not the same. We are rooting for the Union. Slavery. Etc. Pushing on- The two armies surged northward, on parallel tracks with Lee on the west side of the Appalachians and Meade on the east side. Being critically low on recon drones and spy satellites, the only ways to find the enemy army was to send guys out on horseback to physically look at them before riding back, and to talk to locals whether they’d seen anyone wearing the other team’s uniform recently. Clouds of skirmishers, cavalrymen, and small detachments of infantrymen from either side scattered themselves in all directions, straining to catch a glimpse of the other army. The first side to locate the enemy, amass sufficient force, and maneuver against them would probably win, without regard for right or wrong. ———————————————————————— JULY 1st, 1863 Early Morning General John Buford had a 2,500 strong brigade of cavalrymen patrolling southern Pennsylvania, being one of dozens of detachments sent out to find the enemy army. Using human intelligence from locals in Gettysburg, he learned that there was a column of rebel infantry marching down the Chambersburg Pike. And indeed there was. Advance scouts from Buford’s brigade made visual contact with a column marching south towards Gettysburg. The ball was now rolling. The story goes that the Confederates were looking for new shoes and heard that there was a stockpile in Gettysburg. As far as I can tell, this is a baseless legend- inspired by the true fact that the rebel army didn’t have enough shoes, but baseless nonetheless. The three Confederate commanders marching towards Gettysburg (Archer and Davis with a brigade apiece and Heth as division commander coordinating them), were simply doing what their counterpart was doing- reconnaissance in force, hoping to develop a lead for the rest of the army to follow. 7,000 infantry under Archer and Davis were about to pick a fight with 2,500 cavalrymen under Buford. The currents of this morning fight would provide the grooves for the next three days to follow. Buford’s men fought as dragoons; the horse let you scoot around to where you need to go, but you got off it and fought on foot. They Union cavalry broke into tiny little four man teams to bloody the approaching Confederates’ noses. The terrain was a bushwhacker’s paradise- plenty of rocks and trees to hide behind, and plenty of low, rolling hills to speed off behind to break line of sight. One man would hold the horses while the other three crouch-ran forward under cover to pop off rounds into the enemy column from the sides of the road. When the enemy infantry redeployed from a fast moving but harmless column formation into a slow moving but dangerous line, the three shooters would run back to their buddy to mount up and retreat to a new position. The cavalrymen were outnumbered nearly three to one, and their carbines had less range and power than the rebel rifles; then again, the terrain was working for them and their breechloading carbines could shoot much faster than the enemy’s muzzleloading long rifles. It was very close to being an fair fight, as long as the cavalry could stay mobile and keep their distance. Buford and Heth both had unclear, contradictory orders- “Push forward aggressively to locate the enemy, but do not enter into a general engagement until we know what we’re up against.” It was an order that must have made sense in the tent when Lee and Meade sent their own versions off. You wouldn’t want to force a battle until you knew the enemy’s location and disposition and the terrain you were going to be standing on, any more than you’d want bet it all on a poker hand before looking at your cards. But to the guys on the front line, it meant “charge forward, but do not charge forward. Attack, but do not engage. Show some initiative, but don’t pick a real fight.” Heth decided they were up against a skeleton crew of skirmishers, and he had orders to check out Gettysburg. He send riders back with a quick report and a request for reinforcements. Buford decided that if the whole damn rebel army was heading his way, he needed to delay their advance for as many hours as he could to give the rest of the Union army time to get to Gettysburg- the high ground south of the town looked like ideal terrain to fight from and he wanted his buddies to get there before the rebels. He too sent riders back with calls for help. And meanwhile, the murderous, hazardous stalking of the rebel column continued as it trudged towards Gettysburg. Meanwhile, in the Rear with the Gear Imagine running a marathon- 26 miles and a bit from start to finish. That’s how spread out a Civil War army is, from vanguard to rear guard. You can’t really concentrate 75,000-100,000 people together that closely. Disease starts killing people off really fast, feeding everyone is a headache, and if you have to march out, the lead element will march all day before stopping for the night, while the rear element hasn’t even left camp yet. It’s unwieldy. So they all spread out to grab some real estate and forage easier and not choke on each others’ dust and crap. The riders from the Chambersburg Pike were spreading the word through the marathon length of the armies. Units were halting, turning around. Captains and colonels and generals were consulting maps to figure out what roads to take to get south or north to Gettysburg from where they were now. Regiments were putting their heads to together to figure out whose company oughtta go in what order. The movements were slow and and ungainly and awkward, but they were starting up. Mid Morning to Noon The rolling hills on either side of the Chambersburg Pike stopped at McPherson’s Ridge, a grand place to make a stand- plenty of cover, steep incline. In any case, there wasn’t much further to retreat to. Archer and David pushed the cavalrymen, Archer on the south side of the road and Davis on the north. Thoroughly annoyed infantrymen backed up on the Pike behind them, eager to get at the enemy but without frontage to occupy. Buford dug in on McPherson’s Ridge, and the full force of Heth’s division slammed into him. Denied their mobility by the necessity of holding territory, the fair fight turned into a meat grinder for the dismounted cavalrymen. When Confederate artillery set up on Herr’s Ridge, it turned into a bloodbath. Buford, at last, got in contact with somebody who outranked him. General John Reynolds, second in command of the whole Union army, rode ahead of his division to get eyes on the situation. The two struck a deal in the middle of a firefight. Buford promised to hold to the last man, and Reynolds promised to reinforce him. It was an exercise in trust; if Buford’s men held firm and Reynolds let them down, they’d be swamped and slaughtered to a man, and if Buford’s detachment broke and scattered, Reynolds’ reinforcements would march directly into a line of hills held by an entrenched enemy force of equal size. Failure on either side would be fatal. Reynolds rode south again, leaving Buford and his dwindling cavalrymen to fend off 10% of the Confederate army all alone. Meanwhile, Buford’s thin line was cracking. Outnumbered, outgunned, and unable to advance or retreat... That which was inevitable to start with was happening now. Davis’ brigade was pressing against Oak Ridge on the Union right, and Archer's was taking Herbst Woods tree by tree. Buford’s men were giving ground they couldn’t afford to lose. Confederate artillery was blasting giant holes in the ranks of the defenders. That’s when the relief came- two fresh brigades of infantry coming up the Emmitsburg road, under generals Cutler and Meredith. Cutler got there first, taking up positions on Oak Ridge and straddling either side of the Pike with cannons. Their massive volleys disrupted Confederate momentum and silenced some of the rebels’ big guns as everyone scrambled for cover. Grateful and exhausted cavalrymen sidled off to the flanks to safety. Meredith’s brigade is still lagging behind- that’s the problem with columns, only the guys in front can do anything. If Buford and Reynolds expected everything to be right in the world once reinforcements arrived, they were very much mistaken. Those men out there attacking up Oak Ridge were some of the finest infantrymen in the world- dedicated, disciplined, contemptuous of death. They did not stop being efficient killers just because they now fought peers instead of the hornet-like cavalry skirmishers. Cutler’s brigade was facing a small tidal wave of battle-maddened Southern veterans, and had no time to dig in and situate themselves before the moment of impact. Davis’ men ripped into them like a pack of starving wolves. Cutler’s men fell back to safety on the top of Oak Ridge. In pieces. Meanwhile, Meredith’s brigade was finally in position to retake Herbst Woods on the south side of the road. Now, Meredith’s brigade were the absolute elite of the Union army. They were the grizzled veterans, the old crew, the best drilled, the most experienced, the hardest of the hard. They were nicknamed the Iron Brigade, and the Black Hat Brigade, because they were authorized to wear dashing black foraging caps to signify their status as the best of the best. With their comrades north of the road falling back, it was imperative that the Black Hat Brigade protect their left flank. To which end, Reynolds frantically snapped orders for them to line up and charge Archer’s men who were occupying Herbst Wood. Their charge was met by a storm of musket fire that churned the Iron ranks into blood and guts. But this was the Black Hat Brigade. For them, taking ten percent casualties in a single minute was just another Tuesday. They got in close to the rebel line to return the volleys with a vengeance, and then charged with the bayonet. Archer’s men saw the distinctive black hats come for them through the musket-smoke. For the first time, they realized that these were no mere cavalry skirmishers, no half-assed militia company facing them. The best of the best of the Army of the Potomac was coming at them at terrifyingly close range. Archer’s men cracked and scattered. The ones who stood firm, died. The ones who threw down their rifles and grabbed sky were allowed to live as prisoners. The ones who ran, lived, but found the Iron Brigade hot on their heels. Meredith’s elites carved through Archer’s brigade like it wasn’t even there. Reynolds was a good leader. A great one, in fact. He was decisive, experienced, competent. Many thought he should have gotten command instead of Meade. As his men retook Herbst Wood, he turned behind him to check on how close reinforcements were, some rebel rifleman did his cause a world of good, and shot Reynolds in the back of the head. Now the situation got pretty weird- Davis’ brigade had kicked the shit out of Cutler’s brigade and was pursuing them on the north side of the road, and the Iron Brigade had kicked the shit out of Archer’s brigade and was pursuing them on the south side of the road. Neither victor was aware of what had happened across from them, and soon enough they would pass each other by almost touching the edges of their lines. The first one to figure out what was happening would get to win. As it so happened, General Doubleday (in command now that Reynolds was dead) saw the danger and the opportunity first. He broke off an Iron regiment from his reserve to swoop in and protect the flank just in time, setting them up in a defensive stance facing the road. That regiment was joined by another broken off from the Iron assault, and yet another from Cutler’s brigade, who had seen the maneuvering and joined in on its own initiative. It was like a ballet, all three regiments coalescing into a single front facing north across the road, as though they’d spent the last week rehearsing. Under their protection, the rest of the Black Hats gave chase to their prey. When Davis finally turned and attacked, they were chopped down by a mass of highly accurate fire from the newly entrenched men. Confederates died by the dozens and were maimed by the score. As they reloaded, the Black Hats were astonished to find that the whole Confederate brigade vanish into thin air, like magic. The firing stopped; no more targets. It was bizarre. The three regiments advanced cautiously. And were gutted by a close range surprise volley by the hidden Confederates as they tried to scale the fences on either side of the Pike. It turns out that there was a cut in the side of road, deep enough for a man to jump down into with only his head able to peek out. Davis’ men had leapt into it as a source cover when the firefight started and found it was a grand place to shoot out of. But it was also a death trap. Once the Union regiments figured it out, they got in close enough to fire blindly down at point blank range into the milling mass of men. Davis’ men surrendered, thousands of them all at once. Unable to move, unable shoot back, it was really the only choice. And with that, the first round of Gettysburg was over. Oak Ridge and Herbst Wood had held, and about 150,000 odd soldiers were converging on Gettysburg to shift the tide of war this way and that. AFTERNOON The rest of the first day was not free of drama, and heroics, and mass suffering. But it was free of surprises. The iron laws of physics had decreed that more Confederate units would be on hand for the fighting in the afternoon, and so it was. Fresh rebel troops swept down from the north and from the west, relieving their exhausted comrades and preparing themselves to assault Oak Ridge and Herbst Woods. Fresh Union troops arrived from the south to reinforce what they had and to extend their line out east, protecting their right flank and screening off the town itself. Hours passed without a shot being fired. Everybody was reorganizing themselves, resupplying, carting the wounded to the rear to let the surgeons saw their shattered limbs off. Two small things happened that delivered a Confederate victory on day one, and a Union victory on day three. Union General Barlow pushed his brigade out to occupy Blocher's hill, and Union General Steinwehr plopped two of his brigades on top of Cemetery Hill. The first created a huge gap in the Union right, and the second secured the invaluable high ground for the rest of the battle. Meanwhile, three Confederate divisions set themselves up for a concerted attack- Heth would press into Herbst Wood on the Union left, Rodes would assault Oak Ridge at the center, and Early would swoop down the Harrisburg road to threaten the Union right. When the big push came at around 2 p.m., it was badly organized and mismanaged. Southern commanders couldn't get it together and attack at the same time. Individual units charged at Oak Ridge alone, like a mob of Hollywood henchmen attacking the hero only to be smacked around one by one. Cutler's men didn't just fight them off; it was closer to mass murder. General O'Neal's brigade swooped down off of Oak Hill only to be cut down by musketry and cannon fire, and they did it without O'Neal, because O'Neal stayed in the rear while his men died. When O'Neal's brigade fell back having suffered heavy losses, Cutler shifted his men to greet the new threat from Iverson's brigade, who also charged without their commander. Iverson's men marched in parade perfect order across open ground, without so much as a molehill for cover. The story goes that during the assault, Iverson looked out from safety and saw half his men lying down on the ground. Iverson was pissed off because he thought his men were surrendering. In fact, he was watching his brigade die in droves. The issue wasn't morale. The Confederate troops were eager to get at the enemy. The problem was purely organizational in nature. The men in charge of telling people what to do were simply too confused and disoriented to work out the solution in real time. While O’Neal and Iverson were getting bloodied, Barlow’s men on Blocher Hill were getting slaughtered. Barlow’s desire to hold the high ground on the defense was understandable- high ground being a grand place to fight from- but he was about one mile ahead of any friendly units. This meant that it was trivially easy to flank and destroy his brigades. Georgia men under generals Early and Rodes linked up to flank and destroy Barlow’s isolated brigades. A thick stream of filthy, bloody, and terrified Union men flowed back to the town of Gettysburg, leaving a gaping hole in the Union line and spreading their panic like the plague. Victorious Confederates whooped and hollered. As the men to the north of town trade massacres- the failed assault on Oak Ridge being roughly balanced by the disastrous dissolution of Barlow’s brigades- Heth finally attacked the Iron Brigade still occupying Herbst Wood in the west. He’d been delaying it all afternoon, stymied by the contradictory orders from Lee. Lee, who was several miles away and not at all in touch with the situation, still wanted to avoid a general engagement. But now, Heth has been let off the chain to avenge Archer’s brigade. Heth’s full division attacked Herbst Wood. It was a slow, hot, gory fight. The attacking rebels are aggressive, but also methodical and well-organized. The Black Hats made them pay for every tree they seized. But there’s only one outcome for a fight like this. The Iron Brigade has the ghastly honor of having the highest casualty ratio of any Civil War brigade, North or South. Out of the 1,885 men in their ranks that morning, 1,153 (61%) were be dead or maimed by nightfall on the first day. The fates of individual units from within the brigade are even more gruesome- in the 2nd Wisconsin regiment, 397 out of 496 (80%) were killed or wounded. But despite the horrific losses, they didn’t break. They gave ground slowly and in good order, but they gave ground nonetheless. Iron does not break, but it does bend. By late afternoon, the dominoes fell as they were always going to. With the debacle at Blocher’s Knoll, any hope the Union had to hold the right was lost. The Black Hats were being ground into sawdust on the left. And Rodes has finally gotten his brigades to charge at the same time, overwhelming Cutler’s defense. Every Union man was running now, some in a blind panic, some withdrawing in good order like professionals. The open field battle turned into urban warfare as the Confederates chased the Union army through the streets of Gettysburg. Companies blocked the streets to hold off the enemy advance long enough for the comrades to scamper. Marksmen played sniper games in the windows, either shooting men in the back as they ran away or ambushing overly aggressive platoons, depending on the color of their uniform. The Union men were desperate to reach Cemetery Hill, south of the town. High ground and the reinforcements already stationed there promised safety. The Confederates were just as desperate to catch them first and seize that invaluable terrain for themselves. Nightfall A great deal of “woulda coulda shoulda” ink has been spilled over the orders that Lee gave to General Ewell, the man in charge of Rodes and Early: “Take Cemetery Hill if practical”. But Ewell saw two brigades with a lot of artillery standing on top of what appeared to be a natural fortress designed by God to repel infantry, and his men were exhausted to boot. Ewell decided it was not practical, and so did not try. Just one of those things, I expect. In any case, the day was a Confederate victory. Every spot on the map the Confederate troops wanted to go, they had went. They had crushed all resistance, had even gone toe to toe with the cream of the Army of the Potomac and won. Their enemies were in flight before them. There was, possibly, a certain amount of disquiet because the enemy had merely been driven from one ridge into another ridge, one even steeper and with more cover than the last. And rumor had it the rest of the Army of the Potomac was coming at them. But that was a problem for the next day.
This was meant to be a review on the Steam Store Page, but it exceeded the maximum character count, so I’m posting it here. Maybe some of the 'suggestions' will be heard eventually, but as the title implies, I don’t give a crap anymore. So here it goes. 700+ hours on this game, so you can reasonably trust this review. Short version: Don’t buy this game, at least on full price. You will definitely become disappointed of it on the long run. It is an unfinished, underdeveloped and frustratingly unloved (sometimes unwanted) creation. The core of this review, or the source of my criticism, relies on the developers. Simply put, they don’t give a damn about the players. They will solely focus on how much they can milk this cow before its unavoidable doom. If you think this is an exaggeration, go read the Steam Discussion board to see unbiased critics and suggestions of the community for this game. There, you will be able to witness by yourself how the community is blatantly ignored by the people at NWI. Not only that, but you will also see how *certain* community managers go out of their way to censor and block people, some of them who have valid views and suggestions. You will see post after post with similar, if not the same suggestions, go completely ignored. I started playing the game little after it was officially released, so I can’t wave the alpha or beta-player flag. Nonetheless, I can safely say I played since the early stages of this game, mainly because just before I bought it, I was hooked with Ins2014, and later with DoD, so I thought this was going to be a sure bet, as well as a game I would remember forever, just like Modern Warfare was. In the beginning, I noticed some changes from the previous Insurgency right away, like the extended TTK. It shocked me a bit, since I was used to go for 1-shot kills on a regular basis, given that shot would land on the upper torso or higher. Not in this case, however, since the bare minimum required shots to kill are at least 2 (torso). Headshots are lethal as always, but this TTK alteration definitely changed the game pace for me. Like many of the points of this review (being entirely subjective), this opinion will vary from one person to another. This does not alter the need for aiming like in the previous game, but it demands more control for the almost-necessary follow-up shot, meaning that you will need to take into account the recoil (granted, it’s a given on this kind of game) and repositioning of the sight. Some things that this game implemented as an option became basic for me, such as the flash hider and the gas mask. For the flash hider, I feel like I have a Landing Zone beacon on my butt when I don’t use it, because whenever you fire, your muzzle flash will give your position away (along with the smoke and the sound your gun makes). This does not apply for Machine Guns, as they use tracer rounds, which you can’t change. Funny thing about this is that the Devs not only give you the option to use Flash Hiders, but also provide the option (which requires points, mind you) to use tracer rounds on almost every gun, which is basically begging the enemy to end your misery as fast as possible. Gas masks (free for insurgents, 1 point for security), on the other hand, not only prevent your character from coughing while inside a smoke cloud, or dying inside a chemical gas cloud, but also notoriously diminishes the sound your character does, as in calling enemy positions, requesting for support, or even crying or cursing under enemy fire, which provides an evident advantage over non-mask wearing players (insert COVID-19 related joke here) when it comes to using sound to determine player position. This is an easy way to spot pro-players from new-comers. By the way, sound is another issue on this game. 3D sound is off, and most of the time it won’t help you pinpoint where the enemy is. This actually took me a while to sort out when I started playing this game, since I couldn’t understand the fact that I was unable to trust my ears. It made me feel like I went deaf, which basically translated into losing a basic gameplay element. Another mayor issue of this game is balance, at least on certain subjects. First, commander support resources. There is simply no comparison. Granted, it’s a game focused somewhat on realism, but simply there is not even the intent to balance them. Security has access to A-10 gun runs, UH-60 Blackhawk minigun and AH-64 Apache gunship (how much god damn money does the company behind Security has?? As far as my limited knowledge goes, Academi, a big player in the Private Military market barely has Armored Personnel Carriers and Transport Airplanes), while the Insurgents get the Rocket Barrage (which used to be lesser rockets, being buffed only in recent updates) (also, where the hell do the insurgents get the damn rockets from, Iran?? Saudi Arabia?? Russia??) and Chemical Gas, both sides having access to the classic Explosive and Smoke Artillery. Even on writing it looks unbalanced, just wait until you experience it. If you hear the blades spinning, you better hide like a possum unless you got a big gun, an RPG and/or good aim. Second balance issue is party system. If you see a rainbow-array of rank colors on one team, and pure orange-brass on the other, you can be sure it’s a stacked game. That is because the game will always put people on a party together on a team, and they can fill the entire team (up to all the 14 slots). This will lead to what is known as a stacked team, and there is a huge chance you will get steamrolled if you’re on the opposing team. Of course, the positive note on this is that it encourages you to get friends or make them while you’re playing. Effective team playing can be deadlier than an experienced lone gamer. Also, rank on this game does not mean squat. It only means that you have spent time on this game, which isn’t, in any way, a synonym of skill. Perhaps it guarantees knowledge of choke points and camping spots, but that’s it, so don’t lose your mind if you see 500+ levels. There’s a good chance they won’t even play the objective. You will even see 1-100 level players being more effective and having better scores than those guys. I’ve gone on for a while on this, so I might as well toss in a personal rant: This is an objective-oriented game. There are different game modes for your liking, but I will rant about Push, since it’s mainly the only mode I’ve played: If you’re going to play this game, on Push, PLAY THE **ING OBJECTIVE. Seriously, either PTFO or GTFO. If you love padding your KD and raking those kills from a spot 100+ meters from the OBJ while it’s being taken, ** you. Go play firefight. If you’re in for a point-based gameplay, then focus on it. I’ve been through games in which at least 5 or 6 guys are sitting on their asses while the point is being capped (on defense), or while the rest of the team is fighting to cap it (on attack). Seriously, it’s infuriating. I get that both on defense and offense there is a purpose to camp and mow down the enemy waves, I truly get it. But there is no excuse or justification to persist on that strategy when your enemy has 0 waves to attack, or the point is being taken on defense. This last one might seem extreme, but the fact is that you will never know for certain if you have teammates on the point that are contesting or blocking the capture, even looking at the map, unless you have teammates that actually communicate, or you are playing with friends (wink). Anyways, the main reason I wrote this whole thing is because I played Rising Storm 2: Vienam yesterday for the first time. This is not a promotion for that game, but it brought tears to my eyes. For those of you who know some stuff about gaming, both games run on the Unreal 4 engine. From Ins2014 to Sandstorm, NWI made the leap from the Source engine to the aforementioned Unreal engine. It was dazzling to see the new features and all the cool things that engine has. And for all this time I thought that Sandstorm could pretty much give you all the possibilities and features that such engine could offer… Until I played RS2:V, and my heart broke. I won’t go into detail as for the differences, but I do have to mention a vital point here: RS2:V was released on May 2017, while Sandstorm did on December 2018. That’s quite more than a year later. And the actions and strategies that you can employ on RS2:V are just baffling. If you’re like me, and the main experience you’ve had on UE4 is Sandstorm, RS2:V will blow you away. On the other hand, if you come from a broader experience than Sandstorm, then you will absolutely feel the lack of features of the game. RS2:V has many things that I didn’t think it was possible to implement, and thought only possible on games like the ArmA franchise (on which I have my fair share of game time), but the one that immediately caught my eye was the possibility to stabilize your gun over or near an object. DUDE. MIND-BOGGLING. Another thing that proved me that Sandstorm is light years from what it could be (or should have been, since I don’t see that the devs care for the game), is how they balanced the command support resources. American and Australian forces get napalm strikes and minigun support. Commies? They get insta-spawn on their squad leader’s location (yes, US forces get insta-spawn too, but on default locations), and half-timer spawn for their dead players. Not balanced enough? They get ANTI-AIR SUPPORT. This is the 1960’s. You mean to tell me modern-day Insurgents can afford Rocket Barrages, but not one AA missile, let alone an AA gun? I would settle for a damned Stinger. But no, you get an RPG and a hail-mary shot. To wrap this up: I’m quitting this game. I spent a hefty amount of time on it that I won’t get back. And I regret it. Every game that I’ve played has left me with something to cherish, or a skill that I could hone for future games. Not this one. This game has left me bitter, chasing for something that I want to believe I can attain, but knowing that never will. Devs don’t care, the community can’t do anything because mod support is basic (that’s an euphemism), and every update and hotfix they release, almost every time screws something that was good or at least OK prior to it. If you like paying for mediocre gun skins and outfits in order to ‘support’ the team behind the game, go ahead. I would have rather donated to a PayPal account. That would have been more decent. But to charge for stuff you don’t need, while neglecting the fact that the game is broken and unfinished is just insulting. NWI, you had the chance to pioneer into a game genre that was otherwise undeveloped: That rare and appealing mix of realism and arcade. But you blew it, and still you have the nerve to pretend that you care and intend to make it the great game it could and should have been. From the bottom of my heart, go **** yourselves. PS: I thought about just posting this on the Steam Discussion forums instead, but I have a feeling *one* of the community managers would censor or ban this entirely. **** that person as well.
By request: My Recap of the Leaked Tell-All video.
A slow descent into madness: an exhaustive recap of the tell all leak Supposedly the leaked video (clocking in at 10+ hours) was the second day filming. I watched the entire thing. This is a rambling list of the thoughts going through my mind while watching, and a fairly comprehensive timeline / summary of events, or at least the juiciest parts. I believe it becomes fairly obvious when my mental state started to decline - I was well into the 5th hour by then. Part 1: David The show begins an hour into the video. A lot of time was spent on David. Asking David the same questions, hoping he’d get a clue. Instead he doubled down on his delusion. David started in this endeavor by going on two trips with a friend over 20 years ago. He states he did not like it - 25 guys meeting 400 women in a big bar. He said it was horrible - he called the women aggressive and professional daters. He went on another trip with 10 guys meeting maybe 40 women in different cities. He describes receiving catalogs of women and selecting specific ones to meet on the trip. A friend he met on one of these trips introduced him to a web site in 2007. Lana does not work for the web site or get paid. According to David, the web sites are US sites, they contract through the agency that vets the “girls”. He insists Lana derives no income from the web site or agency. It’s illegal for him to contact her directly? He pays in order to not be scammed. He has known Lana for 7 years. She was too young at the start - he won’t “date” anyone under 25. He wasn’t talking to Lana for 2.5 years. He’s “dated” 30 girls in Ukraine when he wasn’t talking to Lana. He’s been to Ukraine 20 times. He’s been engaged twice to women over there (and twice in America.) David says Lana is very poor. Has very few clothes and possessions. She only has five pairs of shoes and gets a new pair of sneakers every 3 years or so. She doesn’t speak English. He bought her an iPhone to talk directly but she doesn’t like the keyboard because of her long fingernails. She can’t talk directly to him on the computer because the agency owns the laptop and monitors activity. He’s spent $250,000 to $300,000 on “dating” on these sites. He claims he’s a millionaire so the money is no object. Friends of David appear, say their piece, then disappear. Cesar appears. David had talked to Maria years ago. Said she was high maintenance. Yolanda and Usman join in. Usman has poor connection. Usman leaves. A wild Tom appears. Tom compliments Yolanda’s weight loss. Says he’s not hitting on her, just complimenting her. Tom doesn’t watch much of the show. Says David is his “fast forward couple”. Cesar says he visited Maria. Maria wasn’t happy he showed up. But she met him, they took photos, she asked to see his phone and he realized later she deleted the photos. They spent 10 days together, he got a couple of pecks on the cheek and lips? But no intimacy. Specified no tongue. Maria was “pissed off” that he showed up, refused to meet Cesar if the cameras were there. Wanted him to buy her a $500 pair of shoes and $300 dinner. Tom asks if he packed the chocolate panties. Cesar said he took the beaded candy ones. Yolanda said Cesar DMd her and left his phone number. Cesar says Yolanda is beautiful and that he “loves chocolate” with a Pervy laugh. But he says he was just reaching out as friends. Shaun asks Cesar if he DMs Tom. Tom confirms that he did, and that the alumni reach out to each other. Shaun asks Yolanda if she would date Cesar, she replies with an emphatic no. David went back to Ukraine and met Lana. They kissed, no other intimacy. He proposed, she accepted (they show clips.) Lana is still on the dating sites. David is still on the dating sites because Lana is. Lana is still on the site because that’s where her only friends are, David basically describes her as a shut in with no friends. At one point later in the show he drops the bombshell “love has nothing to do with it.” Ed appears. He’s holding Teddy (against the dog’s will) on his lap. Ed shouts into his mic. He yells repeatedly about David being scammed for the better part of 18 minutes. David gets excitable. Yells about this being bullshit. Yells at Tom that Darcey was still talking to other guys. The current status of the relationship? David thinks they’re not together. He hasn’t communicated with Lana in 6 days. But their engagement hasn’t been broken. So they’re engaged but no longer together? Lana refuses to participate because she’s getting hate mail from guys who have seen the show accusing her of being a scammer. Stephanie appears. Stephanie says she thinks it’s disgusting that Lana is being discussed like she’s a commodity. Points out that their relationship is transactional. David and Ed are screaming at each other over her. Stephanie Commends David for not worrying about spending $100,000 while Ed freaked out about spending $2. A clip of David proposing to Lana with a prop fake ring shows. David says the jeweler advises not buying a real diamond because he didn’t know her ring size. Says she wants to choose her own ring. Return to Ed and David arguing. Usman appears. David is getting heated. Bottom Line: David’s retiring to move to Ukraine, but started the K1 process. Shaun wraps the segment with David still arguing at the 3-hour mark. Shaun leaves (possibly to drink heavily - I would be if I was her.) I forgot to note that at some point Tom made a remark to Ed about him not being able to see his toes. It was a joke, but went completely missed by everyone else. David, Ed, Stephanie and Usman chit chat. Usman sings a bit. Part 2: Yolanda We resume at 3:30 with Yolanda. Yolanda had the flu at the beginning of December. She was in a coma for a month and was on a ventilator for 3 weeks. Her kidneys and liver were failing. Her doctor now believes she had Covid-19. She did not hear from Williams during that time. She heard from him just a couple of months ago. She didn’t tell him about her coma, he was talking about his aunt dying so it “didn’t come up.” He didn’t reach out directly, he went through “sweetberry” (?) on Instagram to ask if he could contact her again. Yolanda’s daughter and a PI the daughter hired join in. PI says the accounts have ties to Nigerian scammers. Usman joins. He knows nothing about Nigerian scammers, doubts they’re Nigerian. Usman leaves. Darcey joins. She’s wearing a platinum blonde wig, primping a bit, trying to center herself on the bed she’s sitting on. She’s nodding along to absolutely nothing, shaking her head and smiling periodically like she’s involved in a totally different conversation than we are seeing. Daughter and PI leave. Shaun asks Darcey what she thinks about Yolanda and Williams. Darcey goes into a spiel about being a target and people on IG preying on her. Starts talking about Jesse and Tom. Says she spent a lot of money on Jesse, says she helped Tom financially and bought him clothes and gifts. Goes into a tangent of non-specific items, won’t provide a direct answer on how much she spent but finally claims she spent $2000 on Tom. Erika appears. Shaun tries to get back on the topic of Yolanda and Willams. Shaun asks Erika about her opinion on The Williams mystery IG account and the blackmail. Darcey uses that opportunity to talk about being targeted by a “network of people” that was calculated by “people in different countries to target certain people around the world.” “Maybe Nigeria was a part of it, Maybe England was a part of it”. After Tom, Darcey says she met someone who targeted her, says it was a couple she knew and Tom was a part of it, says IP addresses traced to Nottingham and there’s a network of people targeting women around the world. Darcey claims her second time in Amsterdam she was robbed while shopping after Jesse told her to leave her passport if she was going out shopping. Later says pickpocketed. Implies that the robbery was a setup by Jesse. Shaun tries to redirect the subject back to Yolanda and Williams. Lisa appears. Lisa jumps right in with her expertise about Yahoo Boys, G-Men and grooming people. Darcey drops off and Usman reappears. Lisa’s gravelly voice takes on a fake Nigerian accent as they yell “baby love” at each other. Lisa goes on about her social media expertise. Explains the three different cultures of Nigeria. She tells Yolanda to join the Facebook Group SSA: Scamming Scammers Action that Lisa is a big part of. They convince Yolanda to try to call Williams on speakerphone. No answer. Lisa is also an expert in African and Nigerian accents FYI. Erika leaves. David reappears. Lisa dominates the conversation. Keeps recounting conversations and events of hackings and stuff. Lisa starts talking about Blood Rituals. Sacrifices. Money rituals. Voodoo dolls. Kidnappings. Killing people to bring luck in scamming people. They believe in black magic and juju. Lisa and Usman keep interrupting each other. Usman has never heard of this. Lisa insists this is real. Go to SSA on Facebook, all the proof is there. Yolanda, David and Shaun are stunned silent. Usman is trying to fact check Lisa’s completely far-fetched theories. Lisa purses her beak. Finally, Shaun redirects. Yolanda says she’s done. If she hears from Williams again she’s done. Yolanda is getting DMs all the time offering to FaceTime her. David tells her to go get her Groove back in Jamaica. Yolanda and David both get DMs encouraging them to hook up since they’re both in Vegas. We are 5 hours 10 minutes in. Let’s see a clip! We see Lana before she met David. She’s at the gym. She’s walking around Kiev in a silver puffer jacket and Nikes. She using her iPhone (with her short nails) to take pictures. She’s shopping for makeup. She’s sipping a latte in a cafe while typing on her laptop. She’s talking to a friend on her iPhone. She talks about America. She knows that you can get married quickly in Las Vegas. She tells her friend she has an exciting day tomorrow “I’m meeting an American.” Her friend asks if he’s wealthy. Shaun points out the inconsistencies in Lana’s apparent poverty and David’s understanding of her circumstances. David says “that’s not real”. We spent the next 10 minutes or so with Yolanda, Usman, Lisa and Shaun trying to talk some sense into David. It doesn’t work. Shaun leaves for a break. Ash appears. We spend the next while discussing quarantine. Ash hadn’t heard about Yolanda being sick, his eyes get wide when he hears her coma tale. They’re talking about lockdowns and restrictions and being able to go where you want. David thinks they’re talking about Ash being able to visit the US on his Australian passport. Lisa’s ex-husband just got out of prison. David lives in a rental house that’s being sold in a month. Yolanda asks if people read their tweets. Lisa has a stalker with 25 accounts. Lisa now has her phone number and address. She’s going to have her arrested and “put charges against her”. David gets death threats. Back to Yolanda and the Covid. David leaves. Tom returns. He asks how many bottles of lube Lisa and Usman used raw dogging it. She said none - I’m guessing she just peed on him a la Dinyell. More R-rated banter. Lisa tells Tom to ask about Usman refusing to join the mile high club. Ash looks stunned into silence. Maybe a bit frightened. He’s retreated to his nothing box. Usman tries to explain about the 70%, that it’s a B and a compliment. Tom asks why she paid twice the going rate for a goat. Lots of goat talk. Peeing goat talk. Showering the goat. Walking in sandals through mud and goat shit. Tom makes a crack about not being the only cast members showering with animals. Ash asks about Ed showering with Rosemarie’s father? Then his feed goes out. Lisa starts talking about gross food. Tom are goat brain in Albania. Lisa starts everything with “Usman, tell them about the time...” then just talks over him to tell the story herself. Stephanie appears. Ed appears. Usman leaves. Lisa tells them about the armed convoy everywhere they went. Ed wants to know about the goat. More goat tales. 7 hour 10 minute mark. Part 3: Lisa and Usman Shaun is back with Lisa and Usman. We lose Usman. Lisa had surgery. She hurt her baby toe before going to Nigeria. Ruptured a blood vessel. It swelled up in Africa. Returned to the US with a dead/dying toe. Got infected, went gangrenous, was amputated. Usman returns. The next segment is insufferable. Usman says Lisa calls him a N***** frequently. Lisa screams about opening a can of worms. Usman asks if American women are all like this. Lisa and Usman are married but keep blocking each other. Lisa is Usman’s first serious relationship. Lisa freaks out about women on Usman’s comments and in his DMs. Says she’s seen the other girls Usman dated, they’re “3 times my size”. They fight about Trish Playtas. Lisa talks over Usman. Yells, curses, threatens. Enter Giant and Aba (?) after 25 minutes of toxic bullshit. Lisa talks about getting “gangbanged”. (I think she means ganged up on, but she’s so cringe who can tell.) Lisa has a screaming match. Hangs up because she was “mistreated and disrespected”. Enter Lisa’s friend Nikki. Nikki screams about disrespect for the next forever. Lisa returns. There’s endless raspy screeching about bitches, clowns, motherfuckers and more disrespect. Fuck you. Fuck outta here. Shaun loses all control. Aba and Nikki scream at each other some more. Shaun gives up. She is writing something just below the screen. I suspect it’s her resignation letter. Finally Shaun redirects the conversation. She brings up the polygamy. If Lisa has an egg and can tote it, Usman doesn’t want another wife. If Lisa can’t squat and hatch Usman’s offspring, he will take another wife. Cue Lisa’s expertise on polygamy. Clip Roll: the night before the wedding, Lisa storms off and disrespects Usman’s brothers the night before the wedding. Lisa cackles. Avery and Ed appear. Usman and Lisa keep arguing. Shaun asks Avery’s perception. Avery asks “where is the love?” All she sees is them screaming over each other and assert themselves. Before Lisa can respond Ed jumps in. Lisa calls the kettle black and says Avery and Ed aren’t portrayed well. Ed started to watch the show after he decided to be on it. Ed compliments Usman for being calm and respectful and not using any foul words. Lisa Cackles. Ed calls her a bull in a china shop “no disrespect”. Says he thought she was the definition of a narcissist, but says she’s actually the definition of delusional. Lisa interrupts. Usman starts singing. Lisa and Ed scream over each other. Lisa tells Avery to shut up, says she went on Ed’s live drunk and making an ass of herself. Ed keeps screaming “delusional”. Lisa calls Avery a drunk. Avery tells Usman “not all American women are like that”, Lisa rebounds with “that’s why Ash dumped your ass.” Ed tells Usman there are many more nicer women. Ed: she treated you like a piece of shit. She treated you like a slave. Lisa: you are a piece of shit! Ed: you made America Sick! Lisa: Ed Fuck You! Fuck You! Lisa: you abused Rose to go on this show because no fucking other woman would! You fucking used her (x 5). Shut the fuck up. More screaming over each other. Usman begs Ed to calm down. Lisa: you’re going to let this fucking pervert who’s got charges for sexual harassment... you’re going to let this idiot come at me with the fucking charges he’s got? This fucking pervert has been grooming women. The women are coming out of the woodwork saying Ed has molested them, he’s groomed them, and god only knows what the fuck else he did to them. More screaming. Ed: the internet is fake! Lisa: Harry (producer) remove these two right now! Lisa calls them Thing 1 and Thing 2 and demands Harry remove them. Ed gets cut. Lisa continues to scream at Avery about glass houses. Tom appears. Usman is yelling now. Shaun tries to gain control. Tom: I was nervous delivering that letter to Darcey but coming in to this conversation is wild! Shaun brings up the polygamy subject again. Lisa might move to Nigeria for The Other Way. Shaun disappears. Avery drops. Lisa says “Tom, this is all for show. It’s a dog and horse, pony show I call it.” Tom blows smoke up her ass. His idea of love is apparently jealousy, anger and disrespect. He says it’s obvious they love each other because apparently only people truly in love can be that hateful and vicious and angry to each other. Shaun is back. Darcey appears. Usman is singing. Darcey is swaying to Soja Boy, slurring, “do it big! Lisa, Be the queen!” Darcey’s been in the sauce. Usman tells Lisa to cover her bra. More second wife talk. Tom asks a question about what kind of second wife Usman would have. Darcey says something. Shaun asks Lisa a question. Usman freaks out and screams “Tom asked me a question, let me answer the question”. This leads to Lisa screaming at Shaun about disrespecting Usman, screams at the producer “you better tell this hostess to shut her mouth” shut up! Shut up!” Usman keeps yelling. Shaun trying to calm everyone. Lisa: Barb! Barb! Barb! Do you hear me? It’s time to cut her now! Barb! Cut her now! Barb! Cut the fucking thing, cut it now! She’s disrespecting Usman! Fucking stop it! Stop it barb! Fuck off! Darcey looks like a confused bobble head. Lisa hangs up. Usman and Darcey talk about Trish Playtas. Darcey: things are don’t differently in America, I’ve been in the entertainment industry way before Tom, way before Jesse. Usman starts to explain going live with Trish. Lisa returns. Part 4: Wrap Ups and “where does your relationship stand?” Shaun turns to Darcey and Tom, asks where the future of their relationship is. Lisa and Usman respond loudly, not letting them talk. Finally, Lisa and Usman are gone. Tom: friends maybe blah blah blah great mom, good person, wish you the best. Darcey: my journey, my daughters, my brother who passed blah blah blah don’t want toxic negativity Ash and Avery return: same question Ash is worried about his hair being cut off on the screen. Ash started the journey with the intent to propose. Says he loves her. Breaking up was the hardest thing. Future is going to be looking after his family. Ash answers the question in a concise, straight forward manner. Just kidding. He uses a lot of words to absolutely avoid answering anything. Avery says this is a hard question to ask someone who just separated. She trails off. I think... I don’t... I wanted... honestly... Erika and Stephanie return: where do you stand? Not even friends. Can they ever be friends? Stephanie says best case is friends from afar. Erika says they’ve been friends and fought many many times. She came in today wanting to speak and wasn’t able to do that, but doesn’t hold any hate. It’s going to be hard to see any of this in a positive light. Erika didn’t get a change to express that she took a big step coming out to her parents then Stephanie dumped her the next morning. Stephanie came out to her mom too apparently, but it wasn’t like Erika’s coming out (receptive and kind). Pick up lines: Asking what they’ve been doing during the quarantine, will air at the beginning of the show. (Erika makes earrings!) Shaun has to rephrase the question to Stephanie to ask specifically about... HER ILLNESS! Bet you didn’t see that one coming. Yolanda wrap up: no more online dating. She’s going to meet men at the market or the casino. Old school. Ed wrap up: who cares. Ok. I guess we do. Shaun asks about the shower. I just can’t listen to him anymore. Then she asks about the first night they were intimate. I’m going to barf. Ed takes full responsibility for “not the things I did, but the way I did them”. Rose is mad at him right now. She wanted to reconcile February 9. Ed is taking a break from dating (sorry ladies!) but Rose taught him to love again and “she didn’t destroy me like my first marriage did.” His mom is moving in with him. But she’s a nurse so hasn’t moved in yet. Ed’s mom is a nurse caring for a young child with a tracheostomy. Ed sucks, but a round of applause for Mother Ed is deserved. David wrap up: David is going to retire earlier than planned because of the recession resulting from the quarantine. Shaun asks about the first kiss. David says something about bowling. He bowls 4 strikes with Lana. The girls in Ukraine love bowling but don’t get to do that. So he takes them. He bets kisses for every strike he bowls. Lana is upset over the publicity from the show. Gets physically ill in front of the camera. If she won’t come to the US or dumps him, he will live part time in the Ukraine - 3 months at a time - to continue dating women there. It’s over. Thank God.
9 Omds Wyndle. Its not helpful to talk about someone's potential death like that! And suffocation is one of the WORST ways to die! At least I've heard so😬 Haha the small nose description. Lift always makes me laugh! Eek. So the Spren are starting to bond with these prospective skybreakers. Oof will Szeth have his own Spren now i wonder? I mean in the future. But why would the Spren bond to people who clearly are tyrants of the law? So here we get confirmation of the existence of another radiant in the city. And offender suggests that they've already used their power! Well it seems like Lift at least takes on some of the stuff Wyndle tells her if she knows Surgebinders! Wow! Ok wow. This is some fascinating new stuff here. So Ishar seems to know a lot about the bonds, even more than the other radiants. Maybe he was the first to make one? Interesting that Honor is chosen to regulate the knights radiant, i wonder if the other shards have specific roles like that? We also get that the radiant powers could be used to bring the Voidbringers back. From another world, so is this literally another world aka one of the other planets in the Rosharan system? Cus the heralds know about the realms obviously so he would say from the ... realm. And then finally it seems Ishar plays a very important role in the heralds cus he's given Nale at least a mission. I thought Jezrien was head of them all but it seems Ishar has considerable sway and Nale has lesser influence maybe. Is this gonna turn out to be a mistborn kinda deal where we follow who we believe to be the guys doing good stuff and then they inadvertently play into the world's destruction?! Woah, who's this bad boy sneaking in the corner?! Its Szeth! But hang on. I thought this was set after Lift's interlude? Well it has been 2+ weeks i guess. But then where is the everstorm? I thought this was set before the WoR finale but clearly not. Is that white afterglow a sign of the power? Stormlight i mean. I got WoT on my brain cus i just was reading ch 26 of book 4 earlier today. Sooo good. Love fantasy . So the stormform doesn't make them voidbringers. As I've been saying, it did seem to neatly tied up. There is a lot more to this. These are voidbringers but old ones, not returned ones ? I think that's what Nale is saying. What is this power he has now? I'm gonna have to look at the surges chart to figure it out..... Ok so gravitation and division but i can't figure out what Szeth does here. Nin- son - God. Interesting name. Nale is the son of God? Ooh so Ishar is here on Roshar somewhere then. But where? That mad king maybe? If he is as mad as Nale maybe. Man i really wanna figure out what the fuck has happened to these guys. Just a few listeners? Pretty sure its most of them Nale! How is he just dismissing the red lightning? ODIUM COMES FOOL! Oh so everything Ishar says is perfect now? Open your damn eyes up Nale! Ooh i reckon there must be a decent amount of radiants we don't even know about. Surely Kaladin cannot be the first. Five years takes us back to Gavilar's death. Just what the fuck did he set in motion?! Also, why is Nale chasing one/two and not the bunch of them on the plains?! If even your mind cannot be trusted Nale, then surely you should doubt yourself a bit and have checks and balances! Oof. A ticking timebomb. Things no doubt are gonna heat up. Ok so Lift says they all got em, assuming shes referring to powers. But then she says except the girl but we just saw her glow? So how can she not? I feel like I'm missing the point there lol. You would've thought Spren might recognise the heralds more eh. 10 I still can't get over the name the stump😂😂 Huh. What an interesting game to play when you're blind. Boring if you're not😅 Really not selling the clembabread rolls to us eh Sanderson. Sounds like Stump is played by the same actor who voices venli. A weird mix of Australian and british and african. She ain't wrong there Lift. Anyway you should be outta here before sunset! Although i doubt she will be. Yeah why has nobody in Azir pointed out how ridiculously creepy it is to have the Prime watched like that! What if he wants to have sex?! Ewww just eww. Snap Wyndle throwing the sass around here😂 I've noticed though that he takes a lot quite literally. Idk if that's just an cultivation spren quirk. Ooh so we know she asked to stay the same. Or not change. So what happened and why did she seek her in the first place? All mysteries left till book 6 i suppose. Its tough when you feel like you don't know your purpose. It motivates us to get up and do our best each day. Without that, life can feel aimless and that's not a healthy place to be in. Sanderson approaches these issues with his usual tact and grace. Aww yay its the kid! Damn. Pretty horrible to have to tell the kid his mother isn't coming back. I wouldn't want to that's for sure. Aww come on Lift. You can tell him he's ya friend. Wtf. Stump? Not cool dude. She is a witch. :( my theory about Lift not remembering her mother was soooo good. I'm so sad it isn't a thing 😂 Odd cremlings mentioned again. Maybe a coincidence? Haha the description of the old people rising is so true. It makes me think of the ents in LoTR Ooh its this dude again. Hoid. I think. Wow. The secret to being human. Idk what it is about that phrase but i love it. Haha Lift's analogy is perfect. Totally works and is funny! Omds loool. Little nose. This guy is brilliant. I'm not convinced anymore that he is Hoid. But who is he then? Seems worldhopper-ish Wow this guy and his philosophy. I like! Anytime philosophy comes into the books i love it! Ouch wow..that's a deep statement right there Lift. I can feel that inner turmoil and pain. I hope it gets resolved. The humour is just a defence mechanism mostly. 11 Well good to see this plot thread brought up again. If Lift says the second ideal by the end I'm gonna squeal! And his brushing over of the shardblade part is funny! Lift doesn't seem to take notice still though! Woahh. Ok. That's a trippy description. Ahh so she finally admits that she came specifically to help her fellow radiant. She's making progress! 😂😂 wyndle's reaction to the garden is brilliant. Mother's vines! Yes omds thats an amazing curse!😂😂 wyndle you are on fire today. Also, Lift totally threw out the guard timings. What are the bets that's gonna turn out to be important?! Ooh yeah thats a good point. These people are nosy and so someone will have written something. Its a race to get there before Nale! Eww a week! Lift girl, you need to scrub yourself silly soon! Sounds like a right Karen am i right?! The grand Indicium. Thats where Hauka said she went once a week right? So its not police headquarters but a library/archive. Wow Lift. How do you miss a giant structure like that?! 12 Did they not get the everstorm here or something? Nobody seems to be talking about it. Is it cus normally storms die down by the time thwy reach here? Or was that the unexpected highstorm. Damn shame it always seems the farmers hit some of the worst in a crisis. They work so hard too :( I feel that's gonna be important, the fact it all slopes away from here, the central point. Omds Lift😂😂 comparing it to bollocks. Jeez😂😂😬 Ol' white hair talking bout art. Maybe THIS is Hoid? Didn't he talk about spending time inside a greatshell? Book 6 needs to give us that encounter haha. 😂😂 tax collectors. Its always the tax collectors isn't it. These archives. Could they be THE stormlight archives 😉 doubt it but it would be funny. They have so much info too. What are the bets some key information is hidden deep down inside?! Ahhaha yes! Lift gets to channel her inner Wayne! 13 Ooh soft clothing is the best Lift, i agree! Oh my. A fat Lift. Imagine that haha. Ooh a new spren. Cool! I like the image of this grand library kinda deal. Pretty cool. Similar to Taravangian's in Kharbranth! 😂😂 the chair sighed. Love it. And the best thing is, it probably literally sighed in the CR! These names! And Lift says she isn't imaginative!! Uh oh. Time's nearly up Lift! Oh come on Wyndle, you know you didn't really have a choice 😂😂 I wonder who the other spanreeds were to. Well Lift, let me tell you about a little something called Skype😉 or even Seons! Ooh Hauka. Is she the one who's the other radiant maybe? She keeps turning up after all! Jeez Wyndle is really worried about Lift being stabbed in particular. He said it before! Yayy. Lift has been saved from capture! Although such an event as this is sure to draw Nale's attention 😬 Yanagawn. Gawx. Hmm i prefer the original name. Yanagawn makes me think of yawning! Haha food on her mind always. Though i suppose she did just use up a fair amoung of stormlight. 14 Haha i just have this hillarious image of Lift eating pancakes whilst she has a bunch of servants doing her bidding. She gotta be loving this. There we go..there's the mention of the everstorm. From looking at the map, it could hit Yeddaw very very soon. Shoulda listened to them Gawx! 😂😂😂😂😂 whattttt? Your pancakefulness?!!! Amazing. I love it so much. Oh i hope there isn't war with Dalinar. He is an honourable man. well he is now anyway. And why would they warn you of something they deliberately did?! Learn your lesson from not listening to them already Gawx! Flip that's close! Oh Sanderson, don't leave us woth the storm hitting Tashikk and Lift there. Don't do thar to us!! Iove that line. The world ends tomorrow, but the day after that, people are going to ask what's for breakfast. Be careful Lift. Word will get back to darkness no doubt 😅 Aww Lift. They miss you. Come onnnnn. Haha i think the staring contest is the worst of those two statements! Ooh so it is money laundering! Three hours till THE EVERSTORM!!!!!! Hmm. What's up with those spren with the sugar water? Weird Is this luck stuff to do with Fortune in the Cosmere? Which we don't really know too much about. Maybe in TLM? Yeah darkness is an asshole. Poor girl. So young and has such responsibility on her here. 2 hours now to the storm?! Oh my goodness.
full disclosure, this is the point at which i stopped 15 mins before the kickstarter went live for WoK and then for the next hour i watched the kickstarter go mad! I got my tier 5 but omg it was so stressful. First the webpage crashed instantly for me and i thought i would miss out cus the site was overloaded and i had work in 40 mins😬Then the app wouldn't check out, after I'd spent two minutes entering details so at this point i was worried it was gonna be gone!
Then had to go back to the webpage and it worked and i got 1385 in the order! What a whirlwind eh. Hope everyone got what they wanted! Anyway i did plan to do all night but then i got back from work and caught up on the kickstarter progress and scrolled reddit and at that point the livestream was nearly coming up so i watched the stream instead! Anyway its 8.30 am here so back to the book! You know i never realised like this would be such an important event in the SA. I thought it was gonna be a fun little novella but i guess you gotta expect this with Brandon! Ya know, Ghenna just makes me think of.mother Genna from TDR in WoT lol. Ok Lift, i get your concern but they're trying to save your storming life mate! Its not about defying the emperor. A mausolem for trees. That creeps me out for some reason. Gardening boots and chairs?! Honestly he's such a weird one. Yayy our boii Ym mentioned again. Well if shes gonna risk her life out in these crazy storms I'm still gonna root for her and Wyndle! 15 Haha, ain't got that many toes. Love it. Damn. That's nasty but i suppose to them it makes sense to chuck all.the parshmen out. Uh oh. These two on the trail again! I guess the man is from yaezir. Holy fuck. I just realised what a dumbass i am. Its Nightblood. That's why it looks weird and he's listening to it. Interesting it's called Nimi here. What is this strange afterimage? It sorta sounds like a cognitive shadow. But he's alive? Aww Wyndle. This is like a sacrifice himself moment. Even though i doubt he'll die. Ha good at screaming. Is that a reference to the dead shardblades like in WoR? Hang on. Why does it matter if Szeth looks up or not? Wyndle can just choose to hide himself right? Oooh i sense an ideal coming. Hmm. Did Nightblood sense her investiture? Is that how Szeth noticed her? And he's clearly openly defying Nale now. Perhaps Nightblood told Szeth not to attack her. Who knows. Well that was a waste of time then Wyndle if you got nothing! Oof but at least he got info about where they're going! Go Lift go! I'm gonna guess its Hauka. 16 Oh man, if Lift could fly that'd be awesome. Don't think it fits with her surges though. Wait he's not even in the order? I guess maybe you have to complete all the ideals for your order. I wonder what happens when you do. Do you become like turbo charged or something haha. And what's journeyman skybreakers? Do they have ranks within the order? Do we reckon this is just ptsd or is there actually something investitury going on with the voices in his head? This actually makes me feel for Szeth too. Can't wait for bk 5 to hear his past. Ah so my theory was good! Nightblood did stay Szeth's hand! Rip. There goes my theory of it being Hauka. The only person we've met who disappeared sorta in the street was Nale. I think. Damn just when you think its sorted the voidbringer q pops up again. I swear we better get a storming answer soon! Woah. Its the not Hoid but acts like Hoid weird old dude. Surely he's gotta be a worldhopper after this. But who? Go Lift. May the almighty be with you. Failure is a real prospect. But if we fail to try to save, we would lose something of ourselves. 17 This kinda mirrors the beginning for me. When Lift was hitting all the trees. But this time she has a purpose and a timebomb. What's happened to her though? It seems like she's losing control of her powers? That's what I've been saying the entire storming time! Sure they got the channels but will that be enough? Idk about that. Ok I'm certain this is linked to an ideal now. She feels this supernatural call. Welp. She's used all the stormlight. Somehow i think she'll come alright out of this but stormfather this is more epic than i expected! Eek. I hope the scream isn't our friendly philosopher radiant. Oh now stupid Stump is back. Brilliant. Wow. Just this whole emotional revelation by Lift. Its so deep for such a child and its a real gutpunch. Every word you can feel the emotion behind it. I've never had a character feel so real as with Brandon Sanderson. I hope Mik shows up again. He seemed cool. Oof who is the older helper. Someone involved in her criminal scheme?😉 Yay its Mik! Wait what?!!!! She healed him? Man i never even thought of that. So many surprises man. Meh. I'm still pretty sure she's bad. I don't think he's dead. Go save him Lift. Be the radiant you were born to be. 18 Well at least they get a decent level of warning if its slower! Damn. There's fucking libertarians everywhere man😂😂 hiding behind cloth in their shanties instead of following the govt. Red lightning. ODIUM COMESSSSSSSSS!!!! So now Wyndle is feeling what Syl and Pattern did. I wonder why they both warned of Odium and Wyndle hasn't yet. Woahhh. They're dead?! Daaaaamnnn old man. Interesting. I wonder which land that is. Another worldhopping hint? A new soul everyday. I don't agree but nevertheless its an interesting philosophy. Ok this guy is definitely lightweaving with the shifting perspectives. Waaayyy more advanced than Shallan. And who are the Omnithi? Ewww thousands of cremlings around them. Wait they're making his eye and other body parts? Grim. But how can he see out of it if its not an actual eye and same with the arm? Hmm. Doesn't sleep. Just like spren. Refugee. From another world?!!! Surely. Ok ok so he's a reaaaaallllyyyyy old man. Hang on. Isn't that the names the blurb call the characters? Does this dude write the in world back covers?!! That would be exciting. So others like him are watching the new radiants. But only he watches Lift. Hmm. Wait so wtf is he? Is he a cremling himself? I guess Nale knows him and his people from his own time. But who are they? I get the sense these people are very important background players. Also maybe my theory of it being Hauka is still right! A Siah. Not heard of them before. Or if we have I've totally missed it. But that isn't what he is. So a close relative. Oh and these cremlings are called horedlings. Fun name. So we get a name, Arclo. Kinda cool. Sounds like a robot name haha. And they call themselves the Sleepless. The Siah and the Sleepless. Hmmm. Ohh so he knows Axies. Huh. Does that mean Axies is just a friend or is he one of them? Maybe one of these Siah cus he had funny tatoos but didn't look like this. Oh snap. When he said before, sometimes i am .... and sometimes i am .... THIS is what he meant. Well played Brandon. Well played indeed my friend. Ooh so this listening stuff came back around in the end eh. Most stuff usually does! Aha. She's clocked it. She's realised nobody knows what they're doing for sure. She's finally realised what it means to decide. Huh. I feel like that isn't as big of a revelation as Brandon is making out, that stump is a radiant. But she healed Mik. That surprised me. Well i didn't think it was Lift but didn't think much else of it. 19 Man this is so epic beyond what i expected. I love it. THIS is what i wanted from the ends of WoR. I feel much more afraid from it about to hit than i did at the time. Uh oh. Nale is here if the door is open with that slice too. Aww these poor kids. So much trauma in their lives :( Yess i knew it! She's gonna swear another ideal! This is either gonna be genius or result in Lift's death. I'm hoping its the former! Confronting Nale when he wants to kill you, and living to tell the twice event would be quite a story! Yeah he seems pretty hollow inside. Does anyone think Idris Elba would be great as Nale?! Don't talk about being an insult Nale. You're an insult to the Heralds themselves! This book has gone very horror in the last couple chapters. I like the atmosphere created! Great plan Lift, but somehow i think Nale would be prepared for that. He is an Herald after all. Wow. He even has to consider that question? He's well and truly gone. He doesn't care. Ok so Stump has gotta be below right. He keeps blocking Lift to go down. He doesn't want her there. Oh and Honor doesn't have anything to do with it. Of he's mad maybe it isnt Honor but something masquerading as Honor? Light is pure? Sounds like a Whitecloak from WoT!! But he has felt guilt before which is interesting. It suggests something really has changed in him. Oh no oh no oh no. Don't destroy her soul Nale. Woah. Saved by the Stump?! Amazing 😂😂 Rip. I was totally wrong haha. I thought she was below. Good thing she was up top then! Fucking hell. She cracked? Oh snap. Literally! 😬 brutal mate. How the fuck is that any kind of justice? Oh my god he's enjoying it the sick fuck. He wants to taunt Lift. Truly is the personification of darkness itself. You need to say them out loud Lift! Change him? But how you gonna do that in like 30 secs mate?! Ooh yeah if she gets the stormlight from the sphere she could do a lot. Finally he turns into a metal stick! 😂😂 he knew it was coming! Cocky much Mr perfect Herald Nale? Storms. It changes so much aha. Maybe they are voidbringers?! Who knows, who knows. Well. That was unexpected. And if Nale says he's failed, it doesn't bode well for the future of Roshar? So can radiants de crazify Heralds? Or is he still crazy haha. Woah. Where'd he go?! 20 Connection as in cosmere Connection?😉 investiture is already connected to metal on one world. Hmm. Most curious about spren becoming bows. Lol. Saved her life and still these two are at it😂😂 Aww yayy Mik got his mum back. So happy. See! This is what I'm on about! ' OH NOOOOO ITS AN EVIL WORLD ENDING STORM'.... The next day ' IT WASN'T TOO BAD. Uugh. Soo much hype and then it just turned out flat. Obviously it isn't great but then you don't build it up to be world destroying and then just leave it at, oh its bad but not THAT bad. This was my main problem with the end of WoR. Its hyped up as this insanely epic ending, but it fell mostly flat for me because the Everstorm never felt as bad as it was made out to be. Isn't that like Ym's spren? So she's a Truthwatcher as I've been told he is? Oh wow. A Shardfork! That's perfect for Lift haha. Well at least the empire survives for now. Winds not as bad, see see 😉 lightning could happen anytime to someone unlucky in any storm. I heard Oathbringer may change my mind on its destruction. But still. Haha that would be the most annoying problem. Its like Kaladin can't heal his scar. I swear we better find out more about voidbringers in Oathbringer. We need to clear this up for good. 😂😂 damn Lift can be savage. 😂😂 applying the law when she can't get food. Sounds about right for Lift. Ooh so next time we see her she'll probably be in Azimir. Gawx might show up in person again! I think Azirmirian politics and the Makabi region will play a role in things for sure. War seems on the way with the Alethi perhaps. Nice little goodbye to Hauka. And healing the refugees. Too good, too good. Oof i love the foreboding ' something larger was coming'. Lines like that leave me teased with glee. Azir will indeed be important it seems. Aww yayy. She finally is starting to admit the truth about Wyndle! Ok so you can probably tell, but i storming loved this book! So much fun and joy interspersed with moments of real darkness. I gotta say, i really assumed it was just gonna be a fun side novella but i shoulda known with Brandon. We got a lot of cool insight, met some new weird creatures and another few radiants. Their presence is becoming more and more prevalent it seems. I'm keen to see what happened to Nale, where Szeth goes next, what Lift does in Azimir. Only slight disappointment was how epic it was near the end and then the everstorm didn't live quite up to it again. But overall i was incredibly impressed. Emotions hit hard, humour went well, a satisfying ending. 9/10 And now I'm gonna briefly discuss my thoughts on the short story the Traveller which I've been recommended to read and it doesn't have Oathbringer spoilers. Ok so the Traveller is clearly Hoid. A lizard? Is this Frost, the dragon dude? But how can he take human form? Oof. What is Hoid seeking? Talks about him making a choice. Didn't we get info before that Hoid was offered the chance to join the shards in shattering Adonalsium? And is he seeking vengeance for someone he loved that was killed by Rayse? My my, this does raise a lot of qs. A juicy little tidbit. Well my friends. A long journey it has been to this day. Much has changed since i started my Cosmere journey 2 years ago. A naive 18 year old, I've been to NZ and travelled to some of the most amazing places. Always with Brandon by my side. Since i started WoK just under a year ago, the world has changed beyond recognition and we all face it together. These are dark times but we have Brandon to help us through. An escape. And so i go, to my final major Cosmere book of the published works. Life before death, strength before weakness radiants. Oathbringer awaits and i can'twait for you to join me on my journey...... Edit - my current plan is to listen to a couple of edgedancer podcasts and then make my own post about oathbringer predictions and listen to the shardcast episode. Maybe i might start tomorrow evening just the prologue
The year is 2010. The effects of the 2003 poker boom are still being felt and Black Friday [Black Friday is when online poker was forced to shut down in the USA, it hit the industry hard] is a year away. Americans, Europeans, Australians and almost the whole world are playing side by side on Pokerstars and Full Tilt [The two biggest online sites at the time]. Hundreds of people are signing up for poker sites each day. Tournament guarantees are at an all-time high. Poker sites’ pockets are overflowing and sites are offering generous bonuses and promotions. Poker TV is popular worldwide and Poker After Dark just entered its 6th season. The 2+2 poker forums are in full swing, it’s the epicenter of poker communication. Dozens of threads are made on popular subforums like NVG (News, Views and Gossip) or BBV (Beats, Brags and Variance) every day. BBV is a subforum of 2+2 where the moderation is far laxer than the rest of the 2+2. People often create posts showing off their tournament wins or lamenting huge downswings. After the initial post is made, the trolls would descend and replies like this were often seen:
Colin_Piddle: Ur a clown OP Tank Home & Away: Somebody call Donald Trump. OP thinks online poker is rigged. FranFran: Shut up. Idiot. Dave Coulier: LOLLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL OLLOLOLOLOLOLOL
The BBV Post
On 20th Feb 2010 Jared Huggins, posting under RelaxedPrecision, visits BBV to vent his frustration over busting his meager roll playing 100nl HU:
RelaxedPrecision: Beat: HU vs drooler, lost my $100 bankroll ($100 table obv.) He raised preflop every single hand including out of position. Called 75% of my three bets with trash. Only pot bet, regardless of board, his holdings, or position. He is -$1132 in 2000 hands, -33/bb 100 We played 250 hands. This guy was a corpse and I ran so cold it was insane. Only hitting any pair or a decent draw a couple of times. Twilight zone. Brag: Not homeless again till the end of the month. Getting a third job today. This week I've begged for food at fast food joints and have scored two steak tacos and 1 piece of chicken.
[Jared is complaining that he lost the last of his poker bankroll, $100] The usual procedure in BBV is for the BBV regulars to berate the original poster, usually in meme form. Jared’s thread is no exception:
Sobad87: FAIIIIIIL, homeless shelters exist for a reason. SmilingOrange: rock bottom itt Sump: in b4 homeless
However, the thread takes a darker turn when Jared starts to post more details about his living and financial situation.
RelaxedPrecision: I'm 5 peanuts and 2 cups of water into my day. Finding some awesome links about food for broke people in LA. RelaxedPrecision: Last time round, 6 month period, I chose cruising the back streets near my job/sleeping in car, rather than driving hours per day to/from shelter and risking jail/car impoundaments/belongings confiscated.
Jared seems to be not only in dire poverty but also grinding microstakes [microstakes in poker is buying in for $2-10 dollars] for any cash he can get. He posts that the roll he lost was from a referral payment on a poker website but he cant’t withdraw it. The posters start to get a little more sympathetic:
FastPlaySlow: Wow. I feel bad for ya OP. Kidlover: Keep your head up bro. Gimme a call if you want
A user named Airwave16 offers helps in his own way:
airwave16: create youtube vid of you dancing to around the world by daft punk in your boxers with a large sign that says "i love burningbend" and i'll ship you $30
Within 40 minutes Jared accepts this:
RelaxedPrecision: Never thought I'd do something like this, but I don't have much choice. RelaxedPrecision: Don't want to go back to living in my car. Last month some guys tried to break into my car while I was inside of it. Terrible experience.
The next day, to the surprise of many he posts a video on Youtube of him around his room, just as Airwave16 asked. Unfortunately the video is lost to time but this small photo of the video remains. 2+2 posters start to show more compassion when they see how desperate Jared is for money:
mcfals02: Hilarious video. Hope you run good at life soon OP. shikari424: If you've got a ftp [Full Tilt Poker,] account i'll ship something over bro[money could be sent between accounts], made me laugh
Ccuster_911 then offers a little more money for another challenge:
Ccuster_911 : Make a video of you going outside on the streets in LA offering people free HUGs(holding a sign ldo), I will ship you 30$, I want at least 10 random people being hugged
Others start to offer extra money to shoot this video:
cds0699: I'll chip in $10 for this. Greeson08: $20 more here...$30 more if you paint yourself green before doing the hug thing.
Jared is very thankful for the support and lets his fellow posters know:
RelaxedPrecision: I'm really overwhelmed and surprised. Thank you guys so much, you have no idea how good it feels that people on 2+2 would reach out to me like this. I'm totally blown away. Thank you so much. This is one of the best things that has happened to me in a very long time. Talked to the lady who rented me this room for 2 weeks. I got 5 days left here, then I'm back living in my car. I am going to do everything in my power to get back on my feet. I am so close. Every suggestion, I will do. I'll dance for penny. I'll come to your house and clean your toilet. That's where my mind is at
A user asks for him to take a photo with ‘Free Pageh’ on his head, he posts this
swd805: that pic is disturbing RelaxedPrecision: Mission accomplished.
Jared gives an insight into his mood while performing these tasks
RelaxedPrecision: Please do laugh at me. I laugh at myself as much as possible. I cried twice. 1st when Airwave propositioned me and I felt different inside, like "time to get desperate man". It was a nasty feeling. 2nd time I cried, when I finished the video & began to ask myself whether or not I would do various things for $ & heard some of the answers in my head. Both times I fought the tears back & realized I got no choice, need the $. So let's get some more ideas & keep this ball rolling. You guys are helping me, thank you
He also gives insight into his poor mental state and reveals that a 2+2 poster gave him a small stake [someone will send Jared money to play and Jared will split the profits]:
RelaxedPrecision: My friend (who's house I crashed at) is a pro MMA fighter , he lets me attend his MMA/BJJ class once a week. At class today, he yelled at me for doing a takedown wrong. I had a meltdown & broke down in tears in front of the class cuz I've barely eaten in 6 days. Shed 12 pounds this week. Just real drained. Prop update: Got staked to play $5 Sit n Go's [a one table tournament] on FTP. 5 hours of play, up a few bucks. 4 days till I'm homeless again.
Jared tells a story and hatches a plan while working at his new job:
RelaxedPrecision: Today, this big husky girl with linebacker shoulders came in2 my job today to buy shoes...size 11. She looks exactly like a man. She had this big lady with her who told me the size 11 girl liked me. So I gave her my digits. I hope she calls me soon. If she calls me I'm going to try & seduce her & go live with her. Wherever she lives, I'm sure there's plenty of food.
Over the next few hundred posts the mood of the thread becomes caring and many people are asking Jared about his current lifestyle. He tells the thread about his struggles with permanent housing, a bad back, hunger and employment. He posts photos of his car (where he sleeps) and a video of him dancing at work. Jared reveals intimate parts of himself and his passion for writing and music. He also posts that he has encountered problems with substance abuse and has been sober for a while. The trickle of small donations from posters becomes a steady flow:
JeReMyHaSSpoKen: pm me western union or paypal And ill ship you some cash Greeson08: Jared, hit me up on Skype. Sending $11.11 via FTP.
A month after Jared creates the BBV thread, March 9th, Jared posts the long awaited video of him hugging strangers that Ccuster_911 requested. Luckily, the video is still on YouTube. Here is the link. At this point he fittingly reveals his name is Jared Huggins and his nickname in school was Huggy. His fans love the video and let him know:
Doomriders: amazing nice job brothaa cds0699: Very amazing vid and I wish you nothing but the best Talking Poker: Video is awesome. Thread is awesome. You are awesome.
And he really enjoyed the experience:
RelaxedPrecision: I was surprised by the number of people who literally RAN into my arms. It was a day & an experience that I will never forget. If you enjoy the video half as much as I enjoyed making it, I'll be happy.
He tells 2+2 more about his life:
RelaxedPrecision: You guys reaching out to me is very much appreciated. I've had my fair share of obstacles in life. Born in a crack house, father died when I was 9, mother is an alcoholic, one brother a heroine addict, the other a crack dealer who was beaten and left for dead and never fully recovered his mind. Last year ran bad at life...lost my job, ripped my meniscus in two places, had a terrible reaction to prescription stress meds..etc etc. I ended up living in my calosing contact with my family... cuz my cousin is hooked on muscle relaxers & vicodin and it hurts too much to watch people I love hurt themselves.We all have challenges, and obstacles. Life is tough for everybody. I'm healthy, normal, moving in a positive direction
Jared’s birthday comes on the 12th of March and many posters wish him a happy birthday. At this point the donations from 2+2 posters continue and totals $1k. A few weeks later and Jared posts an amusing and NSFW story about living in a car. It’s long and not essential to the story so I won’t quote it. Read it here. Jared thanks the community again:
RelaxedPrecision: I've never had people care about me like this before, let alone strangers. From the bottom of my heart I would like to thank all of you.
The Big Game
Poker TV was very popular in 2010. The WSOP and other TV shows were broadcast across America and other countries. Pokersites were very keen on poker advertising appearing on TV, it was a very effective way to promote online poker sites. Full Tilt sponsored and regularly advertised on Poker After Dark. Full Tilt is even included in the show's title, which for a time prompted players associated with Pokerstars to stop appearing on the show. Pokerstars did not have as big a presence on TV as Full Tilt and they wanted to change that. How better than creating their own show? They would be able to have a majority of Pokerstars pros on TV and have players wearing their advertising patches. Thus, Pokerstars created The Big Game. The Big Game was a televised cash game [a cash game is different to a tournament, the players' chips represent cash explained more here] with a novel concept: each episode featured a loose cannon. The loose cannon is a recreational player, who is given $100k to play 150 hands of high stakes poker. The loose cannon gets to keep any profits from their session and the biggest winner from the season also gets $50k in NAPT tournament entrance costs. Any Pokerstars player is welcome to try to become the Loose Cannon. The line ups consisted of some popular pros who have a lively table presence like Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth and Tony G. It also had some of the strongest players of the time like Ike Haxton and Phil Galfond. Joe Stapleton made his debut on the show as an announcer. He who would go on to do a great deal of poker commentating over the next decade. Each episode aired on The Fox Network and Pokerstars.tv. In the same BBV thread Jared started, one of the posters has a bright idea:
MasterWolf: I think you should apply to be a Loose Cannon on the Big Game. I know you'd get tons of 2+2 support, plus, you are awesome at making videos.
One of the Jared’s strongest supporters on 2+2 takes a keen interest in this idea:
John_Wray: THIS! Is this something we can make happen? I don't know anything about the process.
Rusemandingo: Would be amazing. AyinHara: for the producers of the Big Game, this is an easy one. snap it up! King Fish: PokerStars Steve was looking for 2p2 recommendations awhile ago. I sent him a text nominating OP but have not heard back. I suggest all of you PM him, and point him to this thread. Would make a much better story than anyone on here, and he has the video to back up both the story and personality already shot.
But how can Jared apply to go on The Big Game? Pokerstars run several tournament qualifiers for The Big Game on Pokerstars. These are details taken from The Big Game website:
There are free-to-enter Big Game Round 1 satellites running four times a day. Finish in the top 300 and you’ll advance to Round 2. Make it into the top 1,000 in a Round 2 tournament and you’ll get a seat in the Big Game Final Round qualifier. All players that finish in the top 200 in the final will be invited to send PokerStars a casting video, telling us why you think you should be on TV’s best new cash game show. Impress us with your video and you’ll be heading off to Las Vegas to star on the show as a Loose Cannon qualifier. Once the video is posted, people will vote on the their favourite video.
The freerolls are popular and attract about 5000 people for each round 1 freeroll. Jared would need to finish in the top 6% of the round 1 freeroll then he’ll be in the round 2 freeroll, he would need to finish in the top 15% to qualify for round 3. In round 3, only 200 qualify to make a video. The round 2 and 3 qualifier only ran once a week so Jared had a limited amount of attempts. John_Wray starts a new thread in support of Jared being considered to be a loose cannon on The Big Game. Within 24 hours the thread has over 400 posts, most of them people putting down their support for Jared to be on The Big Game. Boosted J hears of Jared’s story and posts in the petition thread. Boosted J is the screen name of Justin Smith, a skilled professional player. Boosted J offers Jared a potential job, poker coaching and access to his private mental coach. Boosted J would go on to get Jared in a Dr Dre video as an extra. At this point RelaxedPrecision is one year sober and life is looking good for him. He posts a video rapping about overcoming life’s obstacles. Daniel Negreanu notices and tweets about his rap:
RealKidPoker: Homeless guy Jared Huggins rapping about being sober 1 year, powerful lyrics. Guy has an amazing story to tell.
John_Wray reports that Jared has already started playing the freeroll qualifiers [a freeroll is a free to enter tournament]:
John_Wray: Jared's in a hotel tonight grinding the freerolls .
Jared is ready to play all four round 1 qualifiers on days he had free:
RelaxedPrecision: Going to grind as many of these things as humanly possible. RelaxedPrecision: I got out my schedule for the month, there will be for sure be days coming up where I will play all 4 first round games.
Support pours in:
CrazyNL: awsome man gl NomoneyHU: I'd like to wish you good luck man , i'm currently watching your video. Happy that things is going your way from now! I hope that you do qualify for the PS Big Game and ship all the manies. Sump: I hope you win this and double up on Big Game, ship the NAPT Passport
People start to watch him play and offer him advice. Jared found the journey hard at times:
RelaxedPrecision: Watched guys ship all in preflop with 72o for 4 hours straight. I get an above average stack, get it in with 10 10, run it smack dab into KK. And encountered his fair share of bad beats: RelaxedPrecision: Survive that, get it in with. 58 on a 8s7h6d flop vs Js7s, turn and river are spades, and it's time for a cold shower. lol
[Here he is saying that he feels the other players in the tournament are not playing well but he feels when he played well he felt he was unlucky] Jared starts a new day of round 1 qualifiers, ready to play all 4.
RelaxedPrecision: Fresh day of freerolls starts in 20 minutes. Playing more aggressive today. Feeling optimistic.
He starts playing a round 1 tournament qualifier and is doing well. He’s getting closer:
pokernutssss: 322/379! 79 to go GL jared John_Wray: just fold into the win now. you've got enough chips
MicroRoller: Congrats! 1 down 2 to go. RelaxedPrecision: YEEEEEEEEEEHAW!!! Feels good to be out of round 1. Just gotta find a way to run good [getting lucky]!
The next day, Jared enters round 2 and plays this hand in the middle stages:
Poker Stars Freeroll No Limit Hold'em Tournament - t500/t1000 Blinds + t250 - 9 players BSKid (BTN): t47500 M = 12.67 bones_522004 (SB): t119200 M = 31.79 tanwaruw (BB): t59200 M = 15.79 carlo 1959 (UTG): t1500 M = 0.40 mydream4u (UTG+1): t16200 M = 4.32 berdootim (UTG+2): t47150 M = 12.57 dickblow (MP1): t1750 M = 0.47 Life Guru (MP2): t42350 M = 11.29 Jared Huggins (CO:) with 6s6c : t9300 M = 2.48 Pre Flop: (t3750) 4 folds, Life Guru raises to t2000, Jared Huggins raises to t9050 all in, 3 folds, Life Guru calls t7050 Flop: (t21850) TcQh7s (2 players - 1 is all in) Turn: (t21850) Jh (2 players - 1 is all in) River: (t21850)Jd (2 players - 1 is all in)
Final Pot: t21850 Life Guru shows 8dAc (a pair of Jacks) Jared Huggins shows 6s6c (two pair, Jacks and Sixes) Jared Huggins wins t21850 [Jared plays well and wins]
RelaxedPrecision: **** yeah
But then falls:
John_Wray: ugh. You played great though.
After Jared asks about poker training sites, Taylor Caby pops into the thread to offer Jared membership to his training site: CardRunners:
Green Plastic: Hey Jared, if you'd like to try out CardRunners for free shoot me a PM, I'll have someone set you up over there.
After making a few deep runs in the round 1 tournaments, Jared has several round 2 tickets and is putting his newly found membership to good use:
RelaxedPrecision: Won 3/4 round 1 tournaments today. Now I have four round 2 Tokens saved. Watching Cardrunner.com videos all day tommorrow, and grinding more freerolls
A few days later and Jared makes the final round of freerolls:
Amnestia: gg, jared, good luck in round 3 Isitdur?: It would be the sickest rags to riches story ever if you got on The Big Game, Jared. I really hope you do it. Good luck in Round 3 I will be railing along with all of your other supporters!
Jared registers and plays a round three qualifier tournament and encounters this hand:
Preflop: Jared Huggins in MP1 with AcKc UTG bets t1200, Jared Huggins raises to t3000, 1 fold, MP2 calls t3000, MP3 calls t3000, 4 folds, UTG calls t1800 Flop: (t14250) 3c6sKs (4 players) UTG checks, Jared Huggins bets t10000, MP2 calls t10000, MP3 calls t1950 (All-In), 1 fold Turn: (t36200) Ac (3 players, 1 all-in) Jared Huggins bets t25000, MP2 raises to t26050 (All-In), Jared Huggins calls t1050 River: (t88300) 4d (3 players, 2 all-in) Total pot: t88300 Results: Jared Huggins shows AcKc (two pair, Aces and Kings). MP2 shows Js9s (flush, Ace high). MP3 shows KdTs (one pair, Kings). Outcome: MP2 won t88300 [Jared plays well but get unlucky in a large pot and is out of this round 2 tournament]
Jared is out and continues to grind the qualifying tournaments. A week later and he registers for a round three freeroll and is going deep. A fan posts his position:
MasterWolf: Current Stats: 81,262 chips. avg: 142,959. position 247 / 348. Top 200 get in
Jared gets closer…
MasterWolf: 44 left. he's got 7th shortest stack in tourney. BUT HE CAN DO IT! Go Jared!!
Jared gets increasingly close but is very shortstacked [doesn't have many chips]: The railbirds [players who watch online poker] watch on:
__27__: Never been so happy railing [watching] a freeroll, this is some crazy ****.
Hard bubble and the tournament goes hand for hand [this means there is only 1 player left to go out, when they do all remaining players qualify for the video round]:
MasterWolf: 1 person left
Jared posts. He has qualified!
RelaxedPrecision: I can't believe this is actually happening.
Jared has done it. With the full support of his fan base Jared is one big step closer to getting onto The Big Game. The posters go crazy in his sweat thread and dozens of people congratulate him. Afterwards, Pokerstatic interview Jared and he opens up about his difficult upbringing and life. Link to summary here. Jared is very popular on 2+2 and has a keen fan base but not everyone likes the attention and donations Jared is getting. Later on a Jared opposition thread would be created. Here’s an example of opposition towards Jared:
Lchampag: Its just the way everyone here is completely giving this story all their faith. Just reminds me of those old people that get scammed is all. I work in the coal mining industry. Pay starts out at around $20/h for the first six months(for"red hats") and then goes to around 25 after that for a general laborer. There are men hired at my mines everyday, come and get a freaking job! I guess this work is too hard for those that would just rather get handouts...
Some people were upset he was getting so much in donations. In 2010 he received $6k from 2+2 members. Jared’s fans respond with posts like this:
Srkbigdaddy: i dont know why people would bother posting in a thread that actually has a ton of heart with their snide and rude remarks. obviously its okay to post your feelings but if they are not gonna help the situation then they are pointless. you are basically just stepping on someone who is down
John Wray gives an update on Jared and his health:
John Wray: Jared is seeing his therapist again, and has just moved into a new place. He's very happy with it as it is within his price range and his landlord is a former deacon. They plan to attend services together on Sundays. His bad back is still a big problem, one that needs to be addressed immediately.
Grayson Physioc also known as Spacegravy on 2+2 is a SNG [Sit 'n' Go, a one table tournament] crusher who fought his way from from microstakes to highstakes [A common story for skilled players to deposit $100 on a pokersite, fight their way up the ranks and turn it into millions]. He arrives in the thread and offers to fly Jared to Maimi and coach him, Jared flies out and posts this from Miami:
RelaxedPrecision: Spacegravy flew me out here to Miami to learn Sit N Go's, I'm totally blown away! He is an A+ human being! Haven't gone to the beach, haven't gone sight-seeing, haven't gone anywhere, just straight up grinding poker. Grinding as much as possible!
While in Miami, Jared’s mind is on making the best video he can to ensure he gets onto The Big Game. John_Wray helped, by the 28th of October it is finished and posted. Jared’s Big Game Audition Tape November the first rolls by and the audition tapes of all the qualifiers are uploaded and ready to be voted on. Jared is looking good and is in second place with 1.1k votes. 2nd November and Jared returns from Miami. He’s up $800 on SNGs from his time playing and getting mentored by SpaceGravy. The weeks pass by. People can vote on one video per day so Jared’s fans are visiting and voting as much as they can:
8Nilor: Voting everyday btw. and got others to also.
The thread builds with excitement. With so many fans in the poker world Jared is sure to be selected to go on The Big Game. In December, Jared posts that all is going well with him. He has two jobs and a room to stay in. Jared gives a few updates:
RelaxedPrecision: When I'm not at work, I am working on my game everyday, grinding 50NL 6 max deep on Stars, going over hand histories, and getting coaching when I can.
[50nl deep is a type of poker played with 6 maximum players on the table buying in for $50-100] 2011 begins. In January the voting closes and Jared can only wait. And then the news that Jared and many 2+2 posters have been waiting for is here. Jared notices an email from Pokerstars. He reads the news from Pokerstars about The Big Game. He receives the results and rushes to 2+2 to share the news:
RelaxedPrecision: I got an email from PokerStars informing me that I was not selected to compete as a Loose Cannon on next season’s PokerStars Big Game. I wasn’t given any specific reason why I wasn’t selected, but I was thanked for trying out. TwoPlusTwo.com, thank all of you for supporting me and showing me love. To be loved was a dream come true for me. I'm convinced that love cures most illness.
Jared was not successful. It's crushing news to the community. All their efforts spent helping Jared onto The Big Game was for nothing. The community reply to the news:
AlienSpaceBat: Wow, Jared, I'm really sorry to hear this Isitdur?: So bummed to hear this news, Jared. 2ndUnit: I am very, very disappointed of this decision by PS. Don't let it bring you down Jared, keep going.
A few weeks pass and there’s not much news from Jared. He settles back into working and improving his situation.
It’s all over
Jared had not made the cut for The Big Game. But it’s not all bad. Jared is in a much better position than he was a year ago. He has a roof over his head and steady employment. The past year was a crazy ride for him and he’s made many friends from 2+2. His poker skill is improving and he has top players coaching him. But no one predicted what would happen next month. In the middle of February 2011, a Pokerstars representative dropped into 2+2 to post unbelievable news:
PokerstarsSteve: The seven Loose Cannons scheduled for the July 2011 showing of The PokerStars.net Big Game are: Gonzales Cannon II - Sacramento, CA Courtney Gee - Vancouver BC Jared Huggins - Los Angeles, CA Massimiliano Martinez - Rome, Italy Cari Bershell - Las Vegas, NV Kenneth Hrankowski - Vancouver BC Anton Dunyushkin - Moscow, Russia
Jared Huggins is confirmed to appear on The Big Game Season 2. This is shocking to the community because there was no knowledge on 2+2 that he was even considered for season 2. The community erupts:
ak47: YESSSSSSSSSSSSS! ROADHEAD: WOW NO WAY, WHAT THE HECK JUST HAPPENED!! MrPowell222: WOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOO! TayWolf55: GO GO GO GO GO Jared!
Almost exactly a year after living in his car and making his BBV thread he has the shot of a lifetime for fame and fortune. But first, Jared needs to prepare for the biggest shot of his life. Jared dedicates four months to preparation for going on The Big Game. He plays as much online cash game poker as he can. He has access to a training site and receives free coaching from top pros. To simulate The Big Game he plays 50,000 hands of 6max deep online [6max deep is the poker format played on The Big Game] and even plays tough opponents who would drop down in stakes to play with him. In 2011 he makes three trips from LA to Las Vegas to practice and get used to live play. He practices chip handling, breathing and getting comfortable going from online to live. He reads Caro’s Books of Tells and would sit at the lowest stakes while studying every player closely. He never parties on these trips, just play and study. He watches all 72 episodes of The Big Game Season 1 and analyzes every hand. While watching he would have seen Season 1’s biggest winner, Bob Ferdinand, win $181,500 and $50k in NAPT tournament entries. In this time Jared remakes his Free Hugs video and once again, wanders LA shores with a sign and offers free hugs to the public. Jared uses some of the money from this video and donates $1k to charity. Reshot video here The line up for The Big Game is announced: Seat 1: Jared Huggins Seat 2: Nick Cassavetes – A recreational player. Cassavetes works in the film industry. Seat 3: Barry Greenstein – Poker legend known for his Philanthropy Seat 4: Vanessa Selbst – An aggressive and skilled player. Won NAPT Mohegan Sun Main Event back to back. Seat 5: Antonio Esfandiari – An accomplished player who would go on to win The Big Drop for $18m next year. Seat 6: Prahlad Friedman – An experienced cash game player. Played under Spirit Rock and used to crush online games Reserve: Phil Lakk - An entertaining professional player. There are certainly some tough opponents on this table. Fortunately, Jared has a recreational player on his left [at the poker table players on the left are more likely to apply pressure than players on the right. Because Cassavetes is a recreational player he should be applying less pressure on Jared than a pro]. The community reacts:
blackjacki2: hard lineup J0hny: Best of luck to you !
Then the day of filming arrives. Jared drives to Las Vegas to play in the biggest cash game of his life. He’s had months of training for this one moment. Hundreds of people on 2+2 are following his progress and Jared will soon be broadcast across the USA playing with seasoned professionals.
Now, the story is almost at an end. You have three options on how to consume the finale:
You can watch all four episodes of The Big Game to see what happens, links below. When you are finished watching, click the spoiler box below and read the end of the story.
If you don’t want to watch all 4 episodes then I’ve posted some timestamped links of Jared’s biggest hands, I’ve linked one hand per episode. There are 12 minutes of clips. When you are finished watching, click the spoiler box below and read the end of the story.
If you don’t want to watch any Big Game then click the spoiler box below and read on. [If you want to watch some of The Big Game it may be a good idea to watch this video I linked in the introduction again]
Jared did not end up profiting on the episode. He played until hand 126 of 150 when he ran his QQ into Cassavetes’ KK. Jared doesn’t hit and is off The Big Game.[KK is the second best hand in poker and QQ is the third best, so it was unlucky for Jared to get QQ and another player has KK. However, Jared was playing poorly and too passively in other hands in the episodes] Posts from 2+2 were mixed, many posts in the thread were not kind towards his play. The community criticized some of the hands he played:
Jazzed23: the dude played like crap. No 3 betting, no bluffing, no floating and turn barrelling. he was playing scared and tight. Blew away $25k just by folding. cobrastatus: How could this guy... get so much free coaching... and be so terrible... trip_kings12: what a waste of a week for this show. Jared, the loose cannon, was almost unbearable to watch. I doubt I've ever seen a tighter, more scared loose cannon in all my years in poker.
[The posters here are saying that he was playing poorly and passively] One fan posts this:
LolDonkamentz: I'll admit I was kind of disappointed with the result of this. I enjoyed all the build up and was really excited for this to be the climax of the Jared Huggins saga but it wasn't to be. His awkwardness at the table combined with his below average performance made for bad television
And Jared replied:
RelaxedPrecision: To you and others Donkamentz, sorry if I wasn't able to do my part to entertain you. It's a big show with lots of people on it, so I don't feel solely responsible for your entertainment, any more than I feel responsible for not hitting a huge hand. Thank you for caring about how I did.
Most of the posts were neutral or negative but there were still some positive posts:
kevmode: Gl to you in the future Jared. You are a nice guy, just block out the negative and think positive.
So, what happened to Jared after The Big Game? After The Big Game, Jared stopped posting so much in 2+2 and he slowly faded from posters’ minds. Shortly after The Big Game, he posted a post show reflection where he thanked the community, he spoke of how he enjoyed playing with the pros and his heartbreak after busting. He wished he had talked more and played some hands differently. He finishes with a final thought:
RelaxedPrecision: I'm happy and grateful for what this journey has been. I made some amazing friendships, saw amazing places, and had my dreams come true. I had amazing experiences, that I will never in my life forget, memories that I will always look back upon with a smile.
In 2012 he posted this post where he shared his battles with health conditions and how he still plays poker. In 2016 he posted this in a thread about poker in developing countries. He wrote about living in China for 9 months.
My Personal Market Research & Statistics in 2020: Countries That Gamble the Most
The gaming sphere is so different and immense that it is divided into many structures and substructures. For example, games can be divided according to their type, capabilities, gambling, devices, technology, etc. But what is more remarkable is the appearance of statistics in games, when you can see and understand many nuances with your own eyes. So, let's talk about gambling research and statistics in 2020. Throughout its existence, gambling has been constantly subjected to various pressures from the law, states, and opponents of this activity. And the first step is to talk about the most important thing in the gaming industry, namely, legality. There are several countries where gambling is allowed. This business is closely monitored by special authorities, subjecting the gambling activities of companies to various frameworks and rules. On the one hand, some laws can be very depressing, but compliance with them allows companies to legally and transparently offer their content to the consumer - and as a result of legality and licensing, the company ensures safety for the user and gains trust from him. There are also countries and their areas where games are partially allowed or have more severe rules. https://preview.redd.it/k3c15lhb7eb51.jpg?width=625&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=c5d00e3ca7c045288c9f4332079ec208a496814d The main countries where you can gamble are:
The United States;
But it is highly recommended to check the legality of gambling for money in your area, the rules and laws change quite often. Often online casinos have a separate page where you can check this. https://preview.redd.it/bwky69rc7eb51.jpg?width=433&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=11ab101087def28200b4ed2c4e31aa6992b395fe The most popular gambling games in the world are casino games (mainly slot machines and roulette), sports betting (mainly horse racing), and poker. It's also easy to see the big difference between playing ages between the United States and the UK. In the first country, young people play more, as in the second, those who are over 55 years old. This may be due to many factors, at least mentality and freedom of choice. Note that the world's most famous gambling capital Macau wins in terms of income per visitor, and the biggest losers are in Australia. Australia More than 6.8 million Australians are considered to be players who play in the country - this is approximately 39% of the total population. Australian people love to play, most of them love to gamble on portable devices that they can take with them, such as a mobile phone or tablet. 78% of players are able-bodied adults 18 years of age or older, and the average playing age is 34. Women and men play equally in the same amount, that is, 50/50, although earlier women players were 4% less than men. Australians play pokies mostly for fun, and some older people play to train their thinking and improve their brain function. Residents are not against betting and consider them very useful for the economy and development of the country. USA As you know, the most common place for gambling in the United States is Las Vegas, but do not forget about Atlantic City and the water casinos, which are legalized in Louisiana and Illinois. Online betting is available for almost all states. Almost 65% of the entire adult population of the country, one way or another, play games, mainly on their smartphones. More than $ 80 billion is the total value of the gambling industry in the country. Most of the people who play are mostly in the 18 to 30 years old area. 15% of all residents of the country play at least once a week. Mostly preferences are for online casinos, but many players love old school and play in land-based casinos. Americans love big win and impressive jackpots, especially progressive ones, which can easily reach up to $ 20 million. https://preview.redd.it/rscu153i7eb51.jpg?width=607&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=876f3cac692bfc81e7d94dee194fa0b24d9e6bcf UK In the United Kingdom, more than 46% of the country's population gamble and at least several times a month. Players prefer different strategies for their pastime and use handheld devices, but there are also a large proportion of those who still prefer a computer for their gaming sessions. The older generation plays more in the country. These are able-bodied adults who are 55 years old and older. Most likely this is due to a large amount of free time and the possession of significant finances, which can be easily used in online casinos. Players prefer online casinos 10 times more than in other countries, but there are still more than 250 land-based casinos in the country. To a large extent, the British know how to play to win significant sums. They use the strategy of maximum possible bets on the same game regularly. Canada More than half of the Canadian population gamble and their percentage is growing every year along with the development of online casinos and the availability of gaming content. The biggest number of residents of the country prefer casual games, they quickly learn how to play in various slots, which also increases the number of new players at lightning speed. Also, Canadians like to use different tips for choosing a game or strategy, for example, such as the one here https://freeslotshub.com/offline-slots/ 78% of the country's online gamblers are male, and the average age hovers 35 and a half, although almost a decade ago, he was with the index 45 years. The legal age for gambling in Canada varies from province to province, some from 18 and others from 19. The average annual spending per average Canadian on betting is over $ 17 billion, and every year the figure is growing by about 5%. Other Countries that Gamble Various forms of the gambling industry are legal and regulated in many places: in the countries of the European Union, Asia, and countries around the Caribbean, but they have much stronger control and rules from the state.
44% of Singaporeans aged 18 and overplay.
Almost every 9th German player.
More than 31.5 million visitors to Macau per year.
Spain registers about 3.9 million new players every year.
Japanese gamblers spend over $ 31 billion in casinos annually.
https://preview.redd.it/47fdp0te7eb51.jpg?width=436&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=5452d58b2a724e846772b57458aa9019b3c530f2 World statistics easily show that approximately 26% of the world's population regularly gamble and more than 17% of them play online. The gambling industry is growing and thriving, over time the income of companies that are involved in the gaming industry will grow at lightning speed. To some extent, the development of technologies provokes this growth, because experienced players have simple and convenient access to gaming content, and new ones have the opportunity to try content for free without any risk of losing real money.
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