Negotiations for Early Game

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Negotiations for Early Game

Postby Jont828 » 30 Jun 2017, 17:42

Hey everyone! I've been getting into Diplomacy lately, and it's a ton of fun! However, I'm still a beginner and have some questions about negotiations. In the opening negotiation period, do you offer alliances to both of your neighbors (i.e. England must ally with France or Germany, and Russia must ally with Austria or Turkey)? Offering an alliance to both helps assess their intentions, but there is also the risk of both your rivals disclosing your offer to each other, causing neither player to want to help you. What do you usually do? Thanks!
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Re: Negotiations for Early Game

Postby Lane » 30 Jun 2017, 19:37

Have you suggested to both that they form a 'triple alliance', that's a lot more subtle
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Re: Negotiations for Early Game

Postby I Love Italy » 30 Jun 2017, 20:01

Lane wrote:Have you suggested to both that they form a 'triple alliance', that's a lot more subtle

Suggesting to both a triple and then trying to turn the more enthusiastic one against the less is a fun, if risky play. If it works, you've got a tight ally, and likely dealt a crippling blow to your first enemy. But, if you end up on the bottom you're in a tough situation.
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Re: Negotiations for Early Game

Postby WHSeward » 30 Jun 2017, 20:46

In the opening, is probably better to try to make "agreements" with both your neighbors in your triangle rather than "alliances", at least initially. (Of course, a triple alliance is a third option and that is OK to pursue.) If you offer an alliance out of the gate, the recipient will suspect (rightly) that you are doing the same with everyone, and that hurts your credibility, doubly so if both say "yes" and you have to renege with one of them right away. Instead, start with seeking agreements with everyone, ideally mutually compatible agreements, so if both agree, you could deliver. Do paint a picture how your plans can lead to a strategic alliance. Depending on how your neighbors respond, you will have a better idea of whom you want to work with and where to take the diplomacy. Sometimes that will lead to S01 alliances, and sometimes it will be a wait-and-see.
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Re: Negotiations for Early Game

Postby Zosimus » 28 Nov 2017, 03:41

Well, I must respectfully disagree with WH here. While I don't outright offer alliances to my neighbors, I definitely feel them out for an alliance right from the beginning. Nor do I consider the game a matter of "two triangles" but rather one of two squares. In the West you have England, France, Germany, and Russia whereas in the East you have Italy, Austria, Turkey, and Russia. Admittedly, Italy can go west right from the start, but this is unlikely because France is so far away from Italy and anyway, Italy's play is usually dictated by his relationship with Austria. If he allies with Austria, they are going to go after Turkey together whereas if Italy hates Austria, surely he will try to invade him from the get go.

As for what to do if multiple people agree to ally with you, why that's easy! You pick the alliance that requires the least amount of trust! If, for example, you are Turkey and Russia approaches you about a Juggernaut while Austria also approaches you about teaming up against Russia, it should be obvious that trusting Russia requires you to leave the Black Sea open whereas allying with Austria doesn't require anything at all. Austria is not going to threaten to take any home center from the start of the game, that's for sure!
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