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Openings

PostPosted: 02 Sep 2018, 02:24
by Aurelin
So many of the articles I read out there are about openings. In AARs I read, every power's 01 moves have some sort of name, memorized. How do you remember each opening? Maginot is easy enough to remember, but a Key Lepanto doesn't exactly fit on a Quizlet flashcard. (Side note: I searched on Quizlet and the only Dip-related thing I found was a set on the rules, sadly.) How do you guys memorize the openings?

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 02 Sep 2018, 02:47
by asudevil
100 games...and google. And while there may be a TON of opening names...very few are actually referred to as that. KeyLepanto and Maginot are 2...SeaLion is a big one.
But like there are a ton of Austrian ones about hedgehog...southern hedgehog etc. But I dont need to know the name...and would never need to define it.

So play...google...and eventually you kinda start learning.

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 02 Sep 2018, 02:59
by Pootleflump
Some people read every word of an instruction manual before assembling Ikea furniture. Others just launch in, trust their gut and hope it all works out.

I trust my gut most of the time and hope it all works out.

You find out afterwards that things you did (because they made some kind of sense) had names. Not that I ever remember them. :D

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 02 Sep 2018, 10:15
by V
It can be amusing to read what folks suggest as openings & why, but remember that’s pretty much all it is, amusing.

Diplomacy is about people & communication with those other 6 folks around the table. The moves should become apparent following from the diplomacy & resultant objectives decided upon (not some preset formula with a theoretical outcome).

A player I greatly respect said “Diplomacy is played in the heads of the participants, the board is merely the scorecard”.
I borrow that kind of stuff, cos soon enough it makes great sense.

Good luck & enjoy the Diplomacy.

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 02 Sep 2018, 14:03
by David E. Cohen
The tactics of Diplomacy, which include openings, have a significant place in the game, but overall they are less determinative of victory than strategy, or the most important part of the game, which is communications/negotiation (small 'd' diplomacy). Diplomatic considerations often mean that the "best" order set from a tactical point of view would be a bad choice.

You see a ton of stuff about openings (and stalemate lines) out there because they are easy to discuss in concrete terms and it is easy to improve tactically. Always bear in mind that the best tacticians in the game lose regularly to average players. This is part of what makes Diplomacy the best board game in the world.

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 03 Sep 2018, 05:02
by jay65536
I don't make it a point to memorize the names of the openings. I just figure out what I want to do diplomatically and then figure out where my pieces should go.

I remember a few, but just from hearing them so many times.

It has happened before that someone gives an opening I play a name, and the connotation of the name is different from how and why I play the opening. So don't put too much stock in it.

As far as AARs go, I find the ones that focus on the opening to be boring. The opening is just to get you to the midgame, which is usually where the real game begins (if you make it that far).

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 12 Sep 2018, 09:25
by voidoid
One of the bits of the old DipPouch site that is not Tango Uniform is the openings library. No need to memorize them when you can look through the listings 'til you find something that fits your situation.

http://uk.diplom.org/pouch/Online/Openi ... ctive.html

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 13 Sep 2018, 16:02
by NoPunIn10Did
David E. Cohen wrote:The tactics of Diplomacy, which include openings, have a significant place in the game, but overall they are less determinative of victory than strategy, or the most important part of the game, which is communications/negotiation (small 'd' diplomacy). Diplomatic considerations often mean that the "best" order set from a tactical point of view would be a bad choice.

You see a ton of stuff about openings (and stalemate lines) out there because they are easy to discuss in concrete terms and it is easy to improve tactically. Always bear in mind that the best tacticians in the game lose regularly to average players. This is part of what makes Diplomacy the best board game in the world.


I would agree in part with David. Some rules of thumb for the standard map:

  1. Tactics in the first two turns are largely moot because standard openings are so well-known and analyzed.
    • That doesn't mean that your opening doesn't matter.
    • It does mean that 90% of the time you should pick something boring-but-proven and instead focus your efforts on talking to your fellow players.
  2. As you approach the midgame, unit positioning and tactics matter more.
    • Spend time learning about stalemate lines.
    • If you want the solo, you need to make sure your units are already pushing past the line.
    • If you want to stop someone else's solo, you need to make sure your units are on the line (and that you tread carefully with other opponents holding that same line).

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 13 Sep 2018, 17:49
by Nanook
Yeah, I wouldn't worry too much about opening names--there's a couple that'll stick with you, like Lepanto and SeaLion...but even those, there's different variations of them and whatnot, so the names aren't really necessary to remember. Most of the time, you're better off just figuring out what moves you want to make, and going from there. If someone knows a name for it, great, but the moves themselves are what's important, not if it's called the "Eastern facing southern hedgehog with a Julie Andrews twist" or whatever.

Re: Openings

PostPosted: 14 Sep 2018, 14:37
by Iggy
I've played this game on and off for quite a while. At one point I was a huge junky and read a ridiculous number of articles while painfully waiting on turns to progress. All that in my past, and other than a few rare exceptions, I still have to google almost every time someone references a "named" set of moves to make sure I know what they are talking about.

And that's from a guy that can usually remember stuff pretty easy - for example, I can name you ever starting QB in the NFL after prepping for fantasy football drafts over the last couple months.