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Bleach Blonde Bad Built Butch Bodies for Biden
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« Reply #375 on: May 08, 2024, 11:52:18 PM »

I want to thank everyone for a great game. Particularly, I want to thank GM for being such a great ally with his mentorship which really taught me how to look at the map from different perspectives and develop my skills as a newbie. And of course I want to thank my best friend Jesse for putting so much time and effort into setting this up for us, and for his patience in the various pitfalls we encountered.

It's been the cleanest best pleasure, gentlemen.
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themaninthejinnahcap
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« Reply #376 on: May 08, 2024, 11:55:41 PM »

With all the votes in, ladies and gentlemen, we have an end to the Great War of 1901-1909. By mutual assent the Republic of France, the German Reich, and the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires have forged a new order in Europe. May peace forever be their lot and to their legacy go the accolades of triumph. Congratulations one and all and thank you for playing!

Just a minor edit on the final move, I made an error with one of Austria's moves. His intent was to have A Mos and A Stp attack Liv and bounce with one another. I mistakenly sent A Mos to Liv and A Stp to Mos. Scott brought this to my attention and it does not change his vote, it is being brought up merely to clarify the mistake.

I hope you will all come together to debrief one another on the minutiae of the game. I got bits and pieces of what was being discussed but very little to show the nuance of the moves.

I do want to congratulate you for volunteering to be GM and hopefully you might be willing to possibly host another.

I do apologize to the community for perhaps occasionally posting PMs which might have been considered a bit aggressive in nature while attempting to negotiate.

Quite frankly, I suspect these might have backfired on me at critical times in the game, where I might have been able to take advantage of a favorable political opportunity structure.
I in fact just told Scott I am willing to host another, although I would like to ask everyone for help gathering more potential players ahead of time for it. It really bites when there are hiatuses.
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themaninthejinnahcap
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« Reply #377 on: May 08, 2024, 11:57:25 PM »

I want to thank everyone for a great game. Particularly, I want to thank GM for being such a great ally with his mentorship which really taught me how to look at the map from different perspectives and develop my skills as a newbie. And of course I want to thank my best friend Jesse for putting so much time and effort into setting this up for us, and for his patience in the various pitfalls we encountered.

It's been the cleanest best pleasure, gentlemen.

If I could host another game right now I would do it. That's how special you are to me and that's how much I love you.

Don't forget; delete your archives.
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Bleach Blonde Bad Built Butch Bodies for Biden
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« Reply #378 on: May 09, 2024, 08:29:13 AM »
« Edited: May 09, 2024, 08:34:34 AM by Mad Deadly Worldwide Communist Gangster Computer God »

With all the votes in, ladies and gentlemen, we have an end to the Great War of 1901-1909. By mutual assent the Republic of France, the German Reich, and the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires have forged a new order in Europe. May peace forever be their lot and to their legacy go the accolades of triumph. Congratulations one and all and thank you for playing!

Just a minor edit on the final move, I made an error with one of Austria's moves. His intent was to have A Mos and A Stp attack Liv and bounce with one another. I mistakenly sent A Mos to Liv and A Stp to Mos. Scott brought this to my attention and it does not change his vote, it is being brought up merely to clarify the mistake.

I hope you will all come together to debrief one another on the minutiae of the game. I got bits and pieces of what was being discussed but very little to show the nuance of the moves.

I do want to congratulate you for volunteering to be GM and hopefully you might be willing to possibly host another.

I do apologize to the community for perhaps occasionally posting PMs which might have been considered a bit aggressive in nature while attempting to negotiate.

Quite frankly, I suspect these might have backfired on me at critical times in the game, where I might have been able to take advantage of a favorable political opportunity structure.

This was going to be a PM, but now that the game is over I see no harm in discussing how things went down publicly.

As to how your PMs factored into some decisions: yes, it is true that some of the messages you sent to myself and GM alienated us a bit. That ultimately did influence our decision to back away from Germany and work against you instead. Germany under Gustaf really had no choice, so he acquiesced to being part of a three-way alliance before he left. I can't comment on anything you may have said to him, but as you can see he called me "unpleasant" in this thread after I had - via PM - politely criticized some poor moves he made as well as missing an important build deadline. I try to choose my words delicately in this game and I still don't know what it is I said that upset Gustaf so much.

Perhaps I should have also agreed to the 72-hour deadline early on. The reason I did not is that these games can go on for quite a while. (Heck, this thread was created on February 20th.) I've never played a game that went past 1907 or 1908. And I've both hosted and co-hosted chess tournaments on the forum before; those somehow went on longer than even this game!

Both you and GM are very smart and formidable players. I would love to ally with either you or GM again (or both!) in future games. But of course, I'm also a believer that what happens in past games should have no effect on what happens in subsequent ones. A mark of good sportsmanship in Diplomacy is acknowledging that every new game marks a fresh start in relations between players.

With all that being said, I think we can all agree that Diplomacy is both a mentally and often emotionally taxing game. So a nice break should be in order. Maybe we can start a new game in the summer, if that aligns with people's schedules and desire to.
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GeorgiaModerate
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« Reply #379 on: May 09, 2024, 09:57:59 AM »
« Edited: May 09, 2024, 10:30:57 AM by GeorgiaModerate »

Thanks to everyone for an enjoyable game, and especially to our GM for creating and managing this.  Having been a GM myself (no pun intended), itís a role where when everything goes smoothly youíre invisible, and when it doesnít go smoothly itís a big hassle.  Not unlike being a forum moderator, come to think of it.

Now regarding the actual gameÖ

As Iíve mentioned before to several people, Turkey is one of my least favorite powers, and I was rather dismayed to draw it, especially after also having it one of muonís games back in 2018 (oddly, that game ended in an FGT draw -- and NOVA was also France in it!)  I think Turkey is rather boring, easy to draw with if you can survive long enough to get solidly established, but very difficult to win with.  I mean, itís difficult to win with ANY power in Diplomacy, but Turkey is especially so because itís so hard for it to get a position across the main stalemate line.

Starting out, my strategy was to ally with either Russia or Austria against the other (because if they both gang up on Turkey, its game tends to be nasty, brutish, and short).  I was open to either one at first, but in the early negotiations, Scott was much more communicative than the Mikado, which inclined me toward an Austrian alliance.  I was still open to either side until the first move, when I was disappointed that the Mikado let Austria walk into Galicia after I had warned him not to (I wanted to play the two of them against each other if possible).  The result left us in a position to eliminate the Russian southern fleet, which is always a thorn in Turkeyís side, so it was an easy choice at that point to commit fully to the Austrian alliance.  And Scott, you were a great ally; I really enjoyed our partnership.  I also do enjoy a kind of mentor role, and found you to be an eager and apt pupil.

We managed to coordinate our moves in such a way that we each made progress, but at least preserved the illusion that we werenít allied for a couple of years -- although once Scott convoyed my army into Italy, that illusion was pretty much shattered.  After that, it was a matter of grinding out the rest of the Russian and Italian centers.  Kuumo defended very well with NOVAís backup, and it took longer to reduce Italy than I would have liked.  Tunis especially was a problem, and I wasnít optimistic of ever getting it; it really was a lucky guess to capture it when I did. In fact, I was prepared to prop up Kuumo myself if France ever put two units on Tunis, as I was quite concerned about the possibility of a French solo if he should get it.  With England collapsing and Germany (under its first two governments) playing suboptimally, it was easy to envision France rolling up everything north/west of the stalemate line, and Tunis would have been his 18th center in that scenario.

Iím sure some of you are wondering why I never stabbed Scott, although there was ample opportunity to do so, as NOVA made sure to keep reminding me. 😉  It goes back to the difficulty I mentioned above about Turkey winning.  I donít believe in throwing over a good alliance unless itís going to significantly increase my chances of winning the game, and at no time would that have ever been true.  At best I could have gotten 17 centers Ė the 18 we held between us at the end minus StP, which would have easily been defended from the north.  At worst it could have enabled a French solo.

In this situation with Turkey, the only way to get an 18th center would be in Germany, or in France/Iberia.  With a viable Germany, there would be no way for me to fight through Austria and get to the German centers before they could be defended; if England had emerged as the dominant power in the West, with Germany eliminated, it would have been a different story.  So my only possibility was to try and pick up at least one, preferably two, of Marseilles/Spain/Portugal Ė preferably the latter two, because with all those Turkish fleets in the Med it would have been practical to hang onto them.  If I had ever managed that, then I would have stabbed Scott and gone for the solo.  But NOVA defended extremely well and made us scrap for every inch of progress in the Mediterranean.  

While Gustaf was playing and in the anti-French alliance, I thought heíd put enough pressure on France to allow us to break through into the Atlantic, in which case the above possibility might come to pass.  But with pressure on his northern front relieved, NOVA got his extra fleets in place just in time to back up his MAO fleet.  If he hadnít moved a fleet into at least one of ENG or NAO last turn, then our next move would have been Lyo-Spa, Wes-MAO, Naf S Wes-MAO, with the result being the Austrian fleet in the Atlantic, and the Iberian dominoes start falling.  But once there was an uncuttable support available for MAO, no further progress could be made against France, although neither could he push us back in the Med.  Stalemate.

So Iím a little disappointed that I never got the chance for that solo attempt, which would have been fun to try, but not very disappointed because my expectations for Turkey were fairly low to begin with. Thanks again to everyone for an enjoyable game!
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Bleach Blonde Bad Built Butch Bodies for Biden
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« Reply #380 on: May 09, 2024, 10:51:01 AM »

I should add that - and I told Jesse this on multiple occasions - GM is a very good coach; his messages to me were so detailed and thought out that, if he were to stab me, I wouldn't have been mad at all. As far as I was concerned, while a stab was always possible, it would have been a well-deserved one.

But indeed, stabbing me would only have made sense if Turkey had a path to solo. If Turkey had taken Budapest or used his resources in Italy to steal my centers and put me on the path to defeat, I would have retaliated by ceding as much of my territory to the Western powers as possible. Then Turkey would be without an ally and up against everybody else. A strong England would have been the necessary counter to this; in that scenario, there would be a path to a successful Crunch - arguably the most difficult alliance with the AT being just a peg below that.

But my sacrifice in my first game was instrumental in allowing Jesse to solo as Italy, when it became clear that the most Austria could do is be at the full disposal of my closest ally in order to deny Russia a win. And it worked out perfectly, with Russia going from being the most dominant power to nonviable; only England and Germany were competitive before it was decided that Italy would solo.
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themaninthejinnahcap
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« Reply #381 on: May 09, 2024, 05:46:37 PM »

Thanks to everyone for an enjoyable game, and especially to our GM for creating and managing this.  Having been a GM myself (no pun intended), itís a role where when everything goes smoothly youíre invisible, and when it doesnít go smoothly itís a big hassle.  Not unlike being a forum moderator, come to think of it.

Now regarding the actual gameÖ

As Iíve mentioned before to several people, Turkey is one of my least favorite powers, and I was rather dismayed to draw it, especially after also having it one of muonís games back in 2018 (oddly, that game ended in an FGT draw -- and NOVA was also France in it!)  I think Turkey is rather boring, easy to draw with if you can survive long enough to get solidly established, but very difficult to win with.  I mean, itís difficult to win with ANY power in Diplomacy, but Turkey is especially so because itís so hard for it to get a position across the main stalemate line.

Starting out, my strategy was to ally with either Russia or Austria against the other (because if they both gang up on Turkey, its game tends to be nasty, brutish, and short).  I was open to either one at first, but in the early negotiations, Scott was much more communicative than the Mikado, which inclined me toward an Austrian alliance.  I was still open to either side until the first move, when I was disappointed that the Mikado let Austria walk into Galicia after I had warned him not to (I wanted to play the two of them against each other if possible).  The result left us in a position to eliminate the Russian southern fleet, which is always a thorn in Turkeyís side, so it was an easy choice at that point to commit fully to the Austrian alliance.  And Scott, you were a great ally; I really enjoyed our partnership.  I also do enjoy a kind of mentor role, and found you to be an eager and apt pupil.

We managed to coordinate our moves in such a way that we each made progress, but at least preserved the illusion that we werenít allied for a couple of years -- although once Scott convoyed my army into Italy, that illusion was pretty much shattered.  After that, it was a matter of grinding out the rest of the Russian and Italian centers.  Kuumo defended very well with NOVAís backup, and it took longer to reduce Italy than I would have liked.  Tunis especially was a problem, and I wasnít optimistic of ever getting it; it really was a lucky guess to capture it when I did. In fact, I was prepared to prop up Kuumo myself if France ever put two units on Tunis, as I was quite concerned about the possibility of a French solo if he should get it.  With England collapsing and Germany (under its first two governments) playing suboptimally, it was easy to envision France rolling up everything north/west of the stalemate line, and Tunis would have been his 18th center in that scenario.

Iím sure some of you are wondering why I never stabbed Scott, although there was ample opportunity to do so, as NOVA made sure to keep reminding me. 😉  It goes back to the difficulty I mentioned above about Turkey winning.  I donít believe in throwing over a good alliance unless itís going to significantly increase my chances of winning the game, and at no time would that have ever been true.  At best I could have gotten 17 centers Ė the 18 we held between us at the end minus StP, which would have easily been defended from the north.  At worst it could have enabled a French solo.

In this situation with Turkey, the only way to get an 18th center would be in Germany, or in France/Iberia.  With a viable Germany, there would be no way for me to fight through Austria and get to the German centers before they could be defended; if England had emerged as the dominant power in the West, with Germany eliminated, it would have been a different story.  So my only possibility was to try and pick up at least one, preferably two, of Marseilles/Spain/Portugal Ė preferably the latter two, because with all those Turkish fleets in the Med it would have been practical to hang onto them.  If I had ever managed that, then I would have stabbed Scott and gone for the solo.  But NOVA defended extremely well and made us scrap for every inch of progress in the Mediterranean.  

While Gustaf was playing and in the anti-French alliance, I thought heíd put enough pressure on France to allow us to break through into the Atlantic, in which case the above possibility might come to pass.  But with pressure on his northern front relieved, NOVA got his extra fleets in place just in time to back up his MAO fleet.  If he hadnít moved a fleet into at least one of ENG or NAO last turn, then our next move would have been Lyo-Spa, Wes-MAO, Naf S Wes-MAO, with the result being the Austrian fleet in the Atlantic, and the Iberian dominoes start falling.  But once there was an uncuttable support available for MAO, no further progress could be made against France, although neither could he push us back in the Med.  Stalemate.

So Iím a little disappointed that I never got the chance for that solo attempt, which would have been fun to try, but not very disappointed because my expectations for Turkey were fairly low to begin with. Thanks again to everyone for an enjoyable game!

I just had a hearty chuckle at you saying Turkey is your least favourite power, having just played an optimal Turkey run. I shudder to imagine what kind of devastation the others are in for when you draw a power you really enjoy.

Definitely agree with your assessment of a game where Austria and Russia work against Turkey, but you forget "poor" and "solitary."  Wink
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GeorgiaModerate
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« Reply #382 on: May 09, 2024, 07:06:42 PM »

I just had a hearty chuckle at you saying Turkey is your least favourite power, having just played an optimal Turkey run. I shudder to imagine what kind of devastation the others are in for when you draw a power you really enjoy.

OK, with that for an opening, I have to tell the story of the greatest game I ever played, and immodestly and arguably, perhaps the greatest game anyone has ever played. Wink

This was an email game in a group of regular players I belonged to a long ago (the group faded away at least 15 years ago).  I had Germany, which actually IS my favorite power.  France was a player I had encountered before, who I knew had a compatible style with mine.  This is not to say that we were automatic allies, but I knew that if we did ally, we'd likely mesh well. 

And so we did.  In fact, we started with an EFG, which can be extremely effective until one of them inevitably gets cut out.  This worked well to start with; England and I teamed up against Russia, taking StP and Warsaw, while France had a free hand to push into the Mediterranean.  On the other side of the board, there was a diehard AI alliance, where Austria had picked off Sev and Moscow, and the two were hard pressing Turkey.  However, the latter (through brilliant defense and/or lucky guesses) managed to keep them barely at bay; as I mentioned in the earlier post, it's tough to eliminate Turkey if it can get a solid footing.

France and I had agreed that England would be jettisoned at an appropriate time, but France jumped the gun and stabbed him earlier than I was expecting.  I had to jump into the attack late, but England was so annoyed at France that he ensured I got the lion's share of his centers before his elimination. 

This left me as a powerful Germany with no Russia, no England, and control of most of the northern half of the board.  This is an extremely strong position to be in.  FG and I resumed pushing east against Italy, but when he overextended, I moved units in to stab him from behind.  It was a sure solo, and he saw it. 

I should mention here that Austria & Italy were being total jerks to everyone else in the game.  So France wrote to me and said something along the lines of "OK, you've got me, but I hate to be eliminated before AI.  How about I become your Janissary and you don't kill me until we eliminate them?"  I believed he was sincere (and of course it was a way to keep himself in the game in case I slipped up and let him back into it), and it appealed to me too.  AI really were being awful.

So I accepted, and we kept pushing east.  We kept whittling away at AI, while Turkey hung on gamely and cheered us on.  I had to be careful not to solo too early, so I had to let France also keep growing, although I was careful to always have the solo in hand if he should change his mind.  But he didn't.

At some point during this, I started wondering how many centers I could solo with.  I once took 24 in a game when it was obvious I would solo and the other remaining powers kept fighting each other, not caring what I did.  But I had seen another game in our group where the winner got 25, so I wanted to beat that.  I started counting up and saw that 26 was a lock, 27 probable, maybe 28 or even 29. 

I wrote to France and said I'd like to shoot for a round 30 centers as something nobody would ever be likely to exceed.  He replied, "Why not try for 34?  Nobody would ever beat that.  I'd love to be part of something that epic, and I bet Turkey would be interested in helping too if we ask him." 

So we asked Turkey, and he was indeed interested, and I started planning for it.  This turned out to be surprisingly difficult.  To end up with 34, you must enter the game's final year with exactly 17, and in that year each one of your 17 units must take one of the remaining 17 you don't have.  Obviously this is impossible without some assistance, since you can't spare any units to support yourself against a defender.  But I worked out a plan that would do it with French and Turkish cooperation.

Meanwhile, AI kept watching us slowly erode their centers, and got more vocally annoying than ever.  Austria wrote a public message to the GM accusing us of "colluding" (which is pretty much what an alliance does) to "violate the spirit of the game" because I kept refraining from finishing off the solo.  The GM responded that in his opinion, attempting to crush your opponents was entirely within the spirit of the game.

The final year came, with everything in position.  We all turned in our orders, and it worked.  I ended up with all 34 centers.  To top it all off, on the final turn I included a coup de grace (at France's suggestion) of a convoy from St Pete all the way around the board to Smyrna using eight French and German fleets.  It was beautiful to behold. Smiley

Postscript: Austria, who had been the most vocally annoying of the AI pair, and I subsequently became good friends in the group and played in several enjoyable games together.
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themaninthejinnahcap
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« Reply #383 on: May 09, 2024, 07:52:10 PM »

I just had a hearty chuckle at you saying Turkey is your least favourite power, having just played an optimal Turkey run. I shudder to imagine what kind of devastation the others are in for when you draw a power you really enjoy.

OK, with that for an opening, I have to tell the story of the greatest game I ever played, and immodestly and arguably, perhaps the greatest game anyone has ever played. Wink

This was an email game in a group of regular players I belonged to a long ago (the group faded away at least 15 years ago).  I had Germany, which actually IS my favorite power.  France was a player I had encountered before, who I knew had a compatible style with mine.  This is not to say that we were automatic allies, but I knew that if we did ally, we'd likely mesh well. 

And so we did.  In fact, we started with an EFG, which can be extremely effective until one of them inevitably gets cut out.  This worked well to start with; England and I teamed up against Russia, taking StP and Warsaw, while France had a free hand to push into the Mediterranean.  On the other side of the board, there was a diehard AI alliance, where Austria had picked off Sev and Moscow, and the two were hard pressing Turkey.  However, the latter (through brilliant defense and/or lucky guesses) managed to keep them barely at bay; as I mentioned in the earlier post, it's tough to eliminate Turkey if it can get a solid footing.

France and I had agreed that England would be jettisoned at an appropriate time, but France jumped the gun and stabbed him earlier than I was expecting.  I had to jump into the attack late, but England was so annoyed at France that he ensured I got the lion's share of his centers before his elimination. 

This left me as a powerful Germany with no Russia, no England, and control of most of the northern half of the board.  This is an extremely strong position to be in.  FG and I resumed pushing east against Italy, but when he overextended, I moved units in to stab him from behind.  It was a sure solo, and he saw it. 

I should mention here that Austria & Italy were being total jerks to everyone else in the game.  So France wrote to me and said something along the lines of "OK, you've got me, but I hate to be eliminated before AI.  How about I become your Janissary and you don't kill me until we eliminate them?"  I believed he was sincere (and of course it was a way to keep himself in the game in case I slipped up and let him back into it), and it appealed to me too.  AI really were being awful.

So I accepted, and we kept pushing east.  We kept whittling away at AI, while Turkey hung on gamely and cheered us on.  I had to be careful not to solo too early, so I had to let France also keep growing, although I was careful to always have the solo in hand if he should change his mind.  But he didn't.

At some point during this, I started wondering how many centers I could solo with.  I once took 24 in a game when it was obvious I would solo and the other remaining powers kept fighting each other, not caring what I did.  But I had seen another game in our group where the winner got 25, so I wanted to beat that.  I started counting up and saw that 26 was a lock, 27 probable, maybe 28 or even 29. 

I wrote to France and said I'd like to shoot for a round 30 centers as something nobody would ever be likely to exceed.  He replied, "Why not try for 34?  Nobody would ever beat that.  I'd love to be part of something that epic, and I bet Turkey would be interested in helping too if we ask him." 

So we asked Turkey, and he was indeed interested, and I started planning for it.  This turned out to be surprisingly difficult.  To end up with 34, you must enter the game's final year with exactly 17, and in that year each one of your 17 units must take one of the remaining 17 you don't have.  Obviously this is impossible without some assistance, since you can't spare any units to support yourself against a defender.  But I worked out a plan that would do it with French and Turkish cooperation.

Meanwhile, AI kept watching us slowly erode their centers, and got more vocally annoying than ever.  Austria wrote a public message to the GM accusing us of "colluding" (which is pretty much what an alliance does) to "violate the spirit of the game" because I kept refraining from finishing off the solo.  The GM responded that in his opinion, attempting to crush your opponents was entirely within the spirit of the game.

The final year came, with everything in position.  We all turned in our orders, and it worked.  I ended up with all 34 centers.  To top it all off, on the final turn I included a coup de grace (at France's suggestion) of a convoy from St Pete all the way around the board to Smyrna using eight French and German fleets.  It was beautiful to behold. Smiley

Postscript: Austria, who had been the most vocally annoying of the AI pair, and I subsequently became good friends in the group and played in several enjoyable games together.
Your favourite power being Germany has led me to diagnose you as a clinical psychopath.

A German psychopath dominating the whole of Europe is certainly a feat of great renown and terror!

I appreciate the artistry of that long convoy. I pulled off a long convoy once from...I think it was London to Rome and it was one of the most pointless but satisfying achievements of my Diplomacy career.
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NOVA Green
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« Reply #384 on: May 09, 2024, 11:43:34 PM »

Hey Folks,

Now that we are on the autopsy / postmortem phase of the game:

1.) I already gave my shots out to Jesse for hosting, but should be reinforced that he was a clear in communicating with players when it came to move orders doing the delicate balancing act between being attempting to ensure that the intent of the orders were followed, while also simultaneously dealing with software interface issues where sometimes there might have been multiple sets of orders where players revised their moves shortly before the end of the move deadline.

As a GM, I believe he was fair and impartial in all respects and even was willing to accept players modify the rules to continue playing, so long as there was unanimous consent.

2.) I believe all of you already know that although I accepted a faster pace timeline (24) hours for move orders was simply too much.

Proposed the (48) hours as a precondition of entering the game recognizing the difficulties of communicating with players on rapid times lines, especially having all sorts of work-life balance issues.

3.) It does appear that a (72) hour move phase format appears to work better for players, especially for those not in NA time zones (INBU & Gustaf) would certainly fall into the mix.

4.) Am willing to consider another game of Diplomacy and as Scott has mentioned maybe a brief hiatus might be in order as we move towards Summer.

Also second Jesse's motion that we have a sufficient number of back up players willing to replace the "drop outs".

Now to the meat of the matter, which I believe had shared with a couple players in the game via PMs:


A.) Joined the game fairly late in the Early Game after the build phase to replace France, with no Diplomatic Briefing from my preceding player so really no idea what was going on.

B.) Before finalizing my agreement to join the game spent a little bit of time reviewing every movement actions from every player to understand what I might be up against.

C.) GM PM's me even before I had officially agreed to join the game giving me his assessment of the situation. (Thanks GM!)

D.) Naturally (Old Skool Diplomacy style) reach out to everyone and everyone after posting my entry into the game with all sorts cultural activities going on in France at that time... etc...

E.) It becomes pretty clear that England and Italy are non-responsive initially (Naturally I assume potentially hostile intent).

F.) Germany did respond to basically cover up their planned move into Burgundy, but had already built a Fleet in Brest and Army in France, which after all would be a logical build sequence for France at this time.

G.) I already had a hunch that the Ottomans and Austrians were in cahoots from reviewing previous move orders from Day 1 (Before I joined the game).

H.) Bounced the Germans from their attempted movement into Burgundy and instantly make secret communications with the Germans to call off their attempt to conquer France.

Had already reached out to the English and Italians to call off their dawgs, but clearly Spring '02 results showed there was still hostile intent from both powers.

I.) Naturally had to do something fast, since even though Germany had split from the "French carve up scene".

Attempted moral suasion with the Italians that there was a much bigger threat to the East and effectively convinced them based upon multiple PMs indicating the clear nature of the Ottoman / Austrian coordination of military activities even although there was much dissembling to other powers.

J.) Took a little bit of time since both the Italians and the English continue their war plans against France.

Italians eventually realized that their forces should move East to defend their borders against what I was able to demonstrate through movement orders of AO that the threat to the East was real.

K.) Formed a secret alliance FGI alliance to combat that existential threat and then voilŗ, Italy moves all of their forces East with French and German support.

L.) Meanwhile had a gig going on with Ypestis25 involving carving up England, splitting up SC's, etc...

Suddenly am loaded with military units to defend the Southern Front against an Ottoman-Austrian alliance, while it looks like Germany is relatively secure to protect their borders.

M.) Ypestis25 bails and now not only do I have a new player representing Germany (Gustaf), but additionally a player living in an international time zone making it very difficult to coordinate military activities.

N.) Additionally, to add insult to injury he made a major strategic mistake during what was a jointly agreed coalition to defend Italy against the "Ottoman-Austrian" assault.

O.) Naturally I cannot trust a player whose actions appear to be in cahoots with Austria, so best to take a preemptive stab.

(GM was naturally egging me on the whole time while consistently promising to stab Austria if curious minds inquire. Wink ).

P.) Did the German stab to grab an additional SC, just to keep him in check in case he was thinking of making a move on me in coalition with the Austrians and Ottomans.

R.) Made perhaps a huge mistake thinking he was "tamed" and proposed a "fake war", while meanwhile we could perhaps attempt to crack the ruthless juggernaut of the joint alliance between these two powers.

Q.) Gustaf was apparently not amused and perhaps wanted a bit of " Ravache" (Believe that is a Sherlock Holmes ref), so he whacks me back.

Damn! Now am looking at a scene where a "Seven Nation Army" might well sink me...

Taking a few shots and toking a few bowls while I type these words.   Wink

(First heard this song in H-Town but reminds me of the D-Game)




R.) Fine... perhaps time for a bit of diplomacy on the Northern Front with Germany while we carefully discuss potential negotiated withdrawals from potential SCs.

(This is likely why most of you were likely confused about what was going on behind the scenes).

Germany with grudges basically agreed to continue a bit of a "secret fake war" for a few more turns.

S.) Gustaf split the game for some odd reasons of which I am not aware, but when he did his whole Martin Luther scene and accused players of bullying him, naturally I felt guilty since I might have done a bit of diplomatic pressure over various sequences of turns.

Initially, I thought I was the player called out until I had a couple drinks and a chance to reread...

T.) Bit of a break in the game... probably good for any stress levels to decrease.

U.) Kuumo comes back now representing Germany, who is actually a player that I can work with, without pressure, shifting military units to defend my Southern Front, offering him SCs if needed for the War on the Northern Front.

V.) I will leave it up to GM whose spent a lot more time playing this game than the rest of us to answer, but is there a way that FG alliance might have been able to crack the game for a win?

W.) I do appreciate the fact that both Scott and GM consider me to be a formidable opponent, but yet just like Kuumo, I have also played Italy on Atlas Diplomacy, and yes it is a rough card to draw...




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« Reply #385 on: May 10, 2024, 08:42:31 AM »

Just addressing one bit of NOVA's very nice end-of-game statement:


V.) I will leave it up to GM whose spent a lot more time playing this game than the rest of us to answer, but is there a way that FG alliance might have been able to crack the game for a win?


Nope, it's pretty easy for us to defend from the final position.  As previously noted, you guys (specifically Germany) can get StP eventually, but that leaves us with 17 centers that can be protected unbreakably. The south is already locked up; Tus S Lyo and Naf S Wes is solid even if you shuffle your fleets around to get one into Marseilles, and the Austrian army in Pie blocks any land attack from the south.  So that leaves the east, where all we have to do is get a line of armies into Tyr, Boh, Vie, Gal, War, Ukr, Mos, and Sev.  Then Vie S Boh, Gal S War, Ukr S War, and Sev S Mos holds indefinitely.  We can get into this position long before you have enough units in place to block its creation.  If you wondered why I moved Rum-Gal, it was a long-term defensive move with this possible outcome in mind.

The loss of StP doesn't hurt us because Austria can disband his army in Rome, which isn't necessary for the defense. Alternatively, I could let him have one of my centers and disband one of my armies in Italy or an eastern fleet.
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