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Calhamer's "Superpower" opening

PostPosted: 19 May 2017, 03:49
by AlexCrosse
A few days ago I was reading a 1979 review of "The Game of Diplomacy", Richard Sharp's highly entertaining, if somewhat lopsided, diplomacy strategy guide. One of the many things the reviewer bemoaned was the omission of "Calhamer's "Superpower" opening (A Ven-Tyr-Boh)" for Italy, which is not even mentioned in Sharp's chapter on the country. I have subsequently tried to find more information on this opening but have turned up very little - it seems not to be particularly popular. Does anyone know anything about this opening strategy for Italy? How would one play it and in conjunction with which other countries? Off the top of my head, I am not sure how one could really capitalize by having a lone army in Bohemia in Spring 1902. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I would be very interested to hear the communities views on this.

Re: Calhamer's "Superpower" opening

PostPosted: 19 May 2017, 04:06
by WHSeward
I know that opening as the "Bohemian Crusher." There is at least one thread on it in the Forum. There is a nice article on it at the Dip Pouch. And it got a write up at Dip World #103, Fall 2008. Google around and you may find more.

Re: Calhamer's "Superpower" opening

PostPosted: 19 May 2017, 05:48
by AlexCrosse
Thanks for the reply - I guess the reason I didn't find anything when I searched was that I was using outdated nomenclature. I guess even diplomacy has changed a bit since 1979!

Re: Calhamer's "Superpower" opening

PostPosted: 19 May 2017, 09:59
by StarMonkey
This opening is also called the "Rocky," when done as part of an AI. It can be very powerful in countering an RT. It's called "Rocky" because the army "climbs through the Alps."

Another really powerful way Italy can do the move to Bohemia is if he has a lot of faith in Turkey, as part of a strong IT. Italy opens to VEN and TRL, looks like he is putting two on Trieste for the fall. Austria loses a build (or two) covering TRI and/or VIE-- especially if Turkey sends BUL to either SER or GRE, depending on board dynamics, to deny Austria. Instead of taking a shot at Trieste (which should fail) or taking a stab at VIE (which is usually a coin toss) Italy moves to BOH and TRL, and takes TUN, then builds a third army in Venice.

This attack LOOKS powerful but it shouldn't be. Any Russia who doesn't help Austria once he has seen this.... is a very dumb Russian. In addition, French fleets frequently punish italy to death for being so single-minded and hollow back home.