this is a game worth analyze in my opinion. Let me be clear, Mike usually beats me on this template and he is the better player here.
Map: RED and GREEN castles ( you need a castle to unlock the income from other bonus) have a possible double pick. The BLUE castle has none and it's reachable from just 2 sides.
Picks: given the above my priority is to cover the double picks so that I'm sure enough to have access to at least one castle. Then i cover blue castle and then i want to mess with green castle double pick or to have less wastelands around there.
Mike has a more risky approach, hoping to get RED double pick and then the western island which would be with no wasteland. After that he tries to cover the other castles. Between our 2 strategies mine is better.
Turn1 Mike is unable to secure a castle turn2. that said, he can still hope to pressure me until he gets card and could try something.
BUT turn1 he moves all his spots. Therefore turn2 I'm the only one to get card piece. This way I'm not pressured to keep getting pieces and I can simply defend my castle and since a castle gives 1 income, in 3 turns it's GG.
In sum, while the picks were not favorable, the reason he lost is that he made all possible attacks turn1 which resulted 3 turns later that I had reinforcement and he hadn't. The attack turn1 in Hafnaross that seemed totally irrelevant if not for delaying moves, secured his defeat.
Edited 11/23/2022 16:06:22