They said it would be over by Christmas.
They weren't too far out - in the event it was all done by Spring 1915. Dave played his usual game as the Central Powers - short-termist and ultra-violent, he used his cards almost exclusively as OPS and RPs, with one or two SRs as well. Hammering into France with repeated high-odds attacks, he smashed my fort-line and wheeled clockwise across Southern-Central France. My plan was to use the bare minimum of OPS to stop the situation collapsing completely, play events and get to Limited War quickly, hoping to avoid Automatic Victory long enough for the reinforcements in the LW and TW decks to feed through. I was amazed by Dave's willingness to stay in Limited War for the whole game, recycling the same cards over and over again.
In the event my reinforcements told sooner than I expected. I was able to bring 4 Russian armies on at Petrograd. Dave had totally denuded Eastern Prussia of troops, so in they marched. Breslau and next Berlin fell before Dave realised his peril. By then Paris had fallen and my 5 surviving armies in the west were backed up against the Channel ports. Suddenly the pressure was off as Dave sent armies rushing Eastwards to defend the Reich. At this point he was really hampered by only having 2/2 cards left in his hand. It was too late - in spite of German counterattacks a Russian army marched across Southern Germany to render the whole of Austria-Hungary out-of-supply. Nine armies out of the game! I tried to encourage him to play on but Dave had lost heart and conceded.
I've gone on at length because I really enjoyed this game of Paths of Glory. It was very pleasing to prove that it is possible to counter Dave's notorious "Smash France" strategy, which has claimed so many victims (hi Nick!) A great afternoon of classic 2-player wargaming.
I'm looking forward to the rematch, Dave!