It’s over!!!! The final challenge could have been balanced better, but people played with the fear of the unknown, so it’s fine.

After the second move we had a very clear third-place team.

Derbis Executioners

Artisan Gravy: Erik Dikken
Legless Dogs: Eric “yickit” Schapp

This was a fun team to watch, between Erik’s logic and Eric’s paranoia. Just great stuff, guys. You weren’t near the top for a while, but you were so much fun that I appreciated the fact that you stuck around.

The last two teams went at it as Harmonica, one of the great villains this season, faced off with Ultragrandpa, who played a supervillain character. What can I say? Evil will always triumph, because good is dumb.

Two people actually played Harmonica. Molly Buckrey played the role for the first several weeks but Chris Dykhoff, formerly Lattifer, took over when Molly had some family things come up. A Harmonica by any name would smell as evil, and although I’m exaggerating some, Harmonica was pretty cold throughout. I’d be interested in Chris’s perspective: did Molly’s play in any way have a bearing on your own?

Anyway, I’m rambling. The long and short of it is that Derbis Executioners were in a weird position where they almost had no chance of winning, but were able to choose who won. They did not choose the Harmonica team.

RUNNERS UP

Boen Thugs and Harmonyka

Boby Joens, Spelling Champion: Melissa Diamond
Harmonica Smiff: Molly Buckrey/Chris Dykhoff

This paved the way for a team that took over a few weeks ago and stuck in first, despite the incredible handicap of having Michael Rivet be part of the team. Probably the worst ally ever, Rivet weaseled his way to victory with the help of a God who kept him from an alliance that was going to kill him. I exaggerate as always, of course, but c’mon. MIKE RIVET? GOOD GOD

Seriously, though. Your winners:

Dragging Rivet’s Name Through the Mud One Last Time

Ultragrandpa: Matt Novak
Friph Flipher-Fiph: Michael Rivet

DID YOU KNOW

Matt Novak has played three anonymous games – Diplomacy, Survivor XI and Gods & Mortals – and HAS WON THEM ALL.

“Ultragrandpa” is a metal trance track produced by Leif Bierly, my best friend in high school, and our friend Tim Duggan.

“Friph Flipher-Fiph” has no meaning, though my wife adored it and it’s the only name she wanted more than the one she took.

Novak has an awesome way of socially navigating these games (when nobody knows his name). As such, he’s on the sidebar yet again AND I can still brag about being one of the few people who was savvy enough to destroy him, given the chance.

One last serious note: Matt’s sister has Cystic Fibrosis and is currently in the hospital with pneumonia from these complications. Matt also had a child just days ago and has probably not slept in some time. Though we take swipes at the manipulative elf for no reason most of the time, Novak is one of the CdL’s real treasures and when he bleeds, I bleed for him. I don’t want to get maudlin, but this shit is family to me and I hope you all feel like you’re part of it, because you are.

Even you, Rivet. You Merry bastard. That was some great shit there at the end. If you didn’t see it, folks, well…I wish you had.

I suppose a more “Mortal” mortal should have won this, but them’s the breaks. I loved running this one and it took about the amount of time I thought it would take. I have ideas for the next one and I hope you had fun. If you haven’t joined Survivor XV but wish to do so, please do, as I need two people (or one to quit).

Cheers, all of you. Thanks, as always, for taking part in these experiments.

Final Challenge Results

Grave Robbers moves

Final scoring spreadsheet