I played Hammer of the Scots with Neil on Tuesday evening. He was new to the game (and to wargaming generally) but had conscientiously read through the rules 3 times. I warned him how difficult it is for a beginner to win as the Scots, but ancestral solidarity dictated that he play them anyway. Neil is a veteran Diplomacy player so he has a sound tactical brain - that's my excuse anyway for the fact that he won! Right from the start he was very careful to avoid battles unless he had a good chance of winning them. I suffered from Edward's absence for much of the game. Towards the end a "tipping point" was reached where Scots recuitment overtook my ability to march troops up from England every year, and in the final year my position just crumbled. Very enjoyable evening but a real brain-burner - we both reported "hang-overs" next morning.