Italian "Obriani Opening" (Tyrolia Attack)

Strategy discussions for the Milan variant.
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Italian "Obriani Opening" (Tyrolia Attack)

Postby luckythirteen » 31 Dec 2015, 00:50

The Library of Diplomacy Openings describes the "Obriani Opening" (aka Tyrolia Attack) of A VEN - TRL, A ROM - VEN, F NAP - ION as "the single most popular Italian Opening" and says "It gives the player the option of attacking Vie, supporting into Tri or going for Munich, in addition to helping Russia take Vienna."

A literal conversion of the Obriani Opening from Standard Diplomacy into the Milan Variant would be as follows:

A Milan - Tyrolia
A Rome - Milan
F Naples - Ionian Sea

This opening has been used in 4 games (9%) of the 43 "Classic Milan" (full press, no fog of war, build anywhere, etc) games archived on this site. I'm honestly not so sure I see a ton of value in this opening in Milan. I guess it doesn't really upset anyone too much and does give you some influence from Tyrolia, but unless you plan to follow on into Bohemia, it offers little that you cannot get with a different set of orders. IMHO, the stronger version of the Obriani Opening for the Milan Variant would be sending A Rome - Venice, which has been ordered in 6 games (14%) making it one of the more common opening so far. To me this version is more similar to the spirit of the original opening and has similar benefits and risks. Thus, I'd expect to see the following as the "Standard" Obriani Opening in the Milan Variant as:

A Milan - Tyrolia
A Rome - Venice
F Naples - Ionian Sea / Tyrrhenian Sea (doesn't really matter)

Another variation seems to be A Milan S Rome - Venice, which I'd probably name the "Obriani Opening - Lombard Variant" (although is it really an Obriani Opening if you don't move to Tyrolia?). This variant gives up Tyrolia for the certainty of forcing your way into Venice. This opening was only used in 3 games (7%). It doesn't surprise me that we don't see this variant as often. It is unlikely that Austria will move both Trieste and Vienna against Italy, particularly because the move of the fleet is purely defensive in the Milan variant. If both Italian moves succeed, the Italian is sitting in Tyrolia and Venice, giving Austria some tough choices, and suddenly becomes very attractive to Russia, Turkey, and possibly even France or Germany. An army in Tyrolia will give Italy MUCH more Diplomatic power than an army in Milan, and the Pope will have very similar defensive power as if he had supported himself into Venice.

Now a "fun" little variant on this opening that is only possible in the Milan variant would be something like the following:

A Milan - Tyrolia
A Rome - Savoy
F Naples - Ionian Sea / F Naples - Tyrrhenian Sea (either one works)

I'd probably call this the "Obrani Opening - Swiss Variant" because the version of the Lepanto that opens west is the "Swiss Lepanto". Because Savoy borders Burgundy, you'll now have units in position to influence Munich, Burgundy, and Marseilles. France and Germany should BOTH be scrambling to talk with you. From this position you can help France into Burgundy and get his help into Munich, you could exchange support of Munich into Burgundy in exchange for Munich, or support Germany into Munich in exchange for support into Marseilles (and can build a fleet to back it up). You are suddenly a major player in the outcome of the west. Alternately you can build an army in Milan or Rome and work your way into Austria (possibly with Russian support). What I like best about this opening is that it gives Italy a ton of options and also helps protect him if someone (probably Austria) is trying for an early attack. It's a very defensive move, almost like a "Hedgehog" opening of sorts. We've only seen this in one game so far (2%) which is a little surprising to me. Is it really that risky?
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

--Aristotle
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Re: Italian "Obriani Opening" (Tyrolia Attack)

Postby Jegpeg » 31 Dec 2015, 05:08

What about Lepanto openings.

Something like Rom - Apu/Nap, Nap - ION, Mil-Tyr allows you to try to negotiate support into Gre, gives you influence from Tyr or Ven or you can complete the Lepanto with Austria.

Much of this has been discussed in classic opening strategy but the change in map makes what you do with Mil interesting, my thought is Tyr is the better move as Austria doesn't gain from having a fleet in Ven and the Italian army in try is able to influence Mun and Vie as well as Trieste.
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Re: Italian "Obriani Opening" (Tyrolia Attack)

Postby luckythirteen » 31 Dec 2015, 05:24

You must have been peeking at my notes. :geek: I'll have a write up on the Lepanto in Milan tomorrow. Spolier alert, I like the opening of MIL - TRL for the Lepanto in standard dip and even more in Milan. What's weird is that it is much less common in Milan so far. I suspect it's because people are just excited for the new stuff. I also think it is telling that Turkey has been doing better in the Milan variant. I suspect some possible correlation.
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

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