AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

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AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby Iggy » 26 Jun 2017, 03:14

Not sure of the full protocol of an AAR - previous site is was just all done in the game chat when it was over. Also not a full functioning forum for pretty pictures and all. I'll see what I can do. Below is commentary I just added to the after game chat. Hopefully this will expand by others in the game.

PLAYERS

ENGLAND Alman (3way DRAW)
FRANCE StarWatcher009 (3way DRAW)
ITALY I Love Italy
GERMANY Don Juan of Austria
AUSTRIA JonS
TURKEY pinta
RUSSIA Iggy (3way DRAW)

This started as probably the most entertaining game I think I have ever played. The banter, the communication, the "strategizing" were all awesome. I really enjoyed the discussions and the trying to find common ground.

Early on I expected to work with Austria. I would have to look back to recall exactly why I thought he was not true with our discussions as early as the fall of '01 but I had a feeling and that feeling was correct. Made me happy I moved to Galacia in the fall as well as supporting myself into Rumania.

Just after that I disappointed Germany by not building a fleet in STP/nc but I felt like I had built a very good relationship with England and didn't want to antagonize him. I didn't particularly want to move against Germany but he quit talking to me when I didn't build the fleet and pretty much declared war.

shortly after I had AI approach me about going AIR against Turkey specifically but also to facilitate Germany's demise.

At that point I found myself in a rather enviable spot - I had AI wanting an AIR alliance and EF wanting EFR. I was pretty honest with both EF and AI that I was working with the other - EF against Germany and AI against Turkey.

By the end of the spring of 1903 both Turkey and Germany were on their last leg and I had to make a decision - go with AIR or go with EFR. Both should have been successful. I probably actually had a better chance at the potential solo if I went with AIR but also a better chance of losing it all. Add to that the EFR was probably the more sure shared victory and the fact that England was the truest of allies from the beginning and the decision wasn't terribly difficult - I tend to be almost too loyal in games. Sometimes it bites you, here it was a sure victory with little chance of getting stabbed/beaten by a solo.

Here's the map just before I made my decision on which path to take:
Image
In the fall I moved toward Austria and took Rumania from Italy.

At that point it took a bit of time to get Italy and Austria subdued. Both fought well, IMO but the numbers were definitely against them. As it came to the end, Austria came to me offering to help me solo. I didn't think the math would work out but you can't disrespect the game and not try, right? It was close to being possible but just not quite there.

At some point France had asked about going for the dual. I wasn't sure how much was serious verses trying to find a way to get into position for his own solo.

Part of the problem was that came at about the same time the game pause did and real-life intervened. I have a daughter that just graduated high school and another one whose birthday was just before that. The end of may/beginning of June was a pretty chaotic time for me so I was just doing well to keep up with moves and have at least a modicum of discussion in my games.

Anyway, thanks to everyone for an awesome game. I absolutely loved my time in this one. It was quite fun and a great challenge to play against each of you. I look forward to meeting on the field of battle again soon.
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby Iggy » 26 Jun 2017, 03:19

Not sure what all goes into one of these normally but really interested in seeing other people's thoughts on this one. Kind of a bummer the holiday and life got in the way. The game kind of lulled a bit for awhile.

Also note for the others looking in - apparently this was the last serpents and griffin game on the site unless the pieces get a revival at some point. Not sure what I think of the pieces but it was fun having a slightly different look of the board.

Thanks also to JonS for putting this together and letting me take part. This was my first official classicist game to take part in. It was incredibly fun and the participation level prior to the holidays was off the charts. While I've been in several good games here so far and have had many a battle in the past, the most fun game I've played since returning to dip a few months ago. I can't recall a more fun one from back in the day either.

Thanks to all for a great adventure!
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby I Love Italy » 26 Jun 2017, 03:29

Don't have the time for a full writeup ATM, but I'll be sure to get one in at some point.

As for what goes into them: it's just whatever you want. Yours was a fairly typical one.
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby Alman » 26 Jun 2017, 04:03

I want to thank Iggy for opening up this thread and starting the AAR with a good offering. It has inspired me to grab a couple of minutes and jot down some game reflections.

I want to second the sentiment that this was a very fun game with a lot of great communication and strategizing. I really enjoyed this game and as eager as I was for the game to end due to my current RL schedule, I'm a bit sorry it's over. Classicist games are some of the best games you'll see.

So, I was England and to start things off, I of course pursued peace ideas with Russia, Germany, and France. Things seemed to be going well at first and everyone seemed amenable. Then, before the first turn moved, I got word of a possible Sea Lion. Fearing I was being lied to, I opened into North Sea and English Channel. If it was a Sea Lion, the Channel would bounce and I'd have forestalled things.

It wasn't a sea lion and France was suddenly having heart palpitations. I talked to both Germany and France. France had talked about a western triple but Germany seemed lukewarm to the idea. I was going to land in Belgium and my words to Germany were as follows:
I had gotten word that you guys were planning a Sea Lion (named after Hitler's plan to invade England). I moved aggressively as a result. Now that the danger has passed, we're back on good terms...I think. I am planning to land in Belgium. Support for the unit (from English Channel) will be a sign of friendship. Attempts to bounce me will be a declaration of war. If things work good, I can go after Russia.

And this is what happened
Fall 1901 CourseSelect.png
Fall 1901 CourseSelect.png (80.62 KiB) Viewed 2102 times

So war with Germany it was. He did try suggesting a truce, but the die had been cast and with France being supportive, there was no reason to reconsider or change course.
Germany at this point made a decision that I'm eager to hear the background for. Faced with E/F invading aggressively, he also had continued to antagonize Russia, who I had been keeping on good terms with. His ongoing attacks on Russian interests allowed me to be very sympathetic and supportive to Russia and meant that Germany now was facing a three-front war. By Fall 1903, not only was Germany on his way out, but, as Iggy has mentioned, another larger moment was upon us in the game. Russia had to pick where his next battles were going to be. I believe that part of how France & I won the beauty contest was the fact that I had worked to help support Russia in picking up centers and been very supportive.
Fall 1903 Turning Point.png
Fall 1903 Turning Point.png (87.44 KiB) Viewed 2102 times


With this, the course of the rest of the game seemed pretty well cast. I am a collaborative ally by nature and love to work as a team with loyal allies. We started pressing south, sharing ideas and strategies together. Italy began to crumble and Austria was on borrowed time.
This is where the game got really fun. JonS, seeing the writing on the wall knew the only way out for him was through diplomatic efforts to destabilize our alliance. He was really good in his effort. I was fortunately also really good at reassuring my allies and devising plans for our mutual security and lanes of expansion. We rearranged units so that I could strike into the heart of Austria from the north without being a threat to my allies.
I also, knowing a stab could come, built up a home guard so that I would not be in trouble if a stab came. I worked hard to communicate with France especially, knowing that my build up could concern him if I wasn't careful. I was careful and we stayed solid. I was more worried about a possible Russian stab, and so I had units ready to leap into action should a stab come.
But Russia was saying all the right things, and so while ready, I didn't worry too much. But Pandora Austria was still working and had finally, like the snake in the garden got Eve Izzy to bite the apple stab me.
Fall 1908-the stab.png
Fall 1908-the stab.png (92.35 KiB) Viewed 2102 times

Russia grabs Munich and Vienna. I've got two destroys, he's got builds.
At this point, after lots of good talks with France, I planned the counter-attack which would focus less on my hard-to-defend center line, and more of the failsafe plans I had in place to move into Russian heartland and cripple his momentum.
So the my next moves were:
Spring 1909 Counterstroke1.png
Spring 1909 Counterstroke1.png (86.83 KiB) Viewed 2102 times

And then
Fall 1909 Counterstroke2.png
Fall 1909 Counterstroke2.png (89.25 KiB) Viewed 2102 times

It was a wash build wise, but he no longer had the initiative and I had two of his four home centers. I knew it wasn't a long-term solution, but it would buy France enough time to get into position to start pushing him back in the south. The solo, I believed was dead.
We played around briefly with the idea of punishing Russia by bringing Austria back from near death and destroying Izzy, but it seemed like a lot of work and Izzy was good with diplomacy enough that we returned to the idea of the three-way. France finally finished Austria off and we called it a day.

Great job all and I hope more of you will take the time to share you point of view.
I will mention that my AAR kind of ignores Italy. We had some good communication and stayed in touch, but his game was mostly out of my area and other than encouraging France to move against him as Turkey died so that France kept the upper hand in position, I wasn't really engaged in Italy's story. But good diplomacy from him and it was a pleasure to play with old friends and new friends.
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby StarWatcher009 » 26 Jun 2017, 12:43

I will post my full thoughts later on. However, I first want to say that it was with great reluctance that I agreed the the three way.

My 'grand plan' was to push North sometime around 1908 with Russian and Austrian help. Unfortunately a lack of Russian willingness (or RL business, I'm not sure which) meant that we missed our opportunity. From Russia's stab onwards, I had little choice but to cooperate with England. I thought that maybe I could push for the solo after England and I pushed for the two way; but there was a real lack of appetite for anything more.

Side note: This was defined tu the most fun I had in a game. The public press was superb at times (especially Turnips and Apullia).
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby I Love Italy » 26 Jun 2017, 17:44

StarWatcher009 wrote:Side note: This was defined tu the most fun I had in a game. The public press was superb at times (especially Turnips and Apullia).


I just realized the reason why I cared about Apulia so much.

The region of Puglia, covering roughly the same area in the real world as Apulia does in Diplomacy, is famous for growing turnips, and having them as a central ingredient in much of its cuisine. I just needed my turnips all along ;)
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby StarWatcher009 » 26 Jun 2017, 20:03

Okay; my full thoughts.

The game started normally. As France I was approached by Germany to attack England. He proposed a sea lion; an idea that I warmed to initially. However, communication with England soon told me that the sea lion wouldn't work and I would likely be bounced out of the channel. Thus I began making overtures to England about attacking Germany.
At this point, England was very keen on the Western. I attempted to play along with this (it worked judging by England's AAR) but the triple was something that I definitely didn't want. It was clear that there was already a strong Italian and Austrian alliance. Russia was likely to join them. Thus the western triple would easily be blocked by the eastern triple. Furthermore, it is very easy to stalemate Germany and England in a triple. Stopping France is much harder. Thus I would have made gains faster than the other two, while at the same time over extending myself. A stab would be sure to come.
Thus I tried to make sure that the triple didn't happen, by straight up lying to Germany about my intentions while at the same time ensuring his demise. The addition of Russia to mine and England's alliance also made for a reworked triple that England was happy with. Thus we get to this position. Russia, England and I are onto Germany.
Image
A few interesting things to note about the position:
First, Austria's move on Germany. It was revealed through a leaked message that this was a coordinated attack with Italy and Russia. Thus was highlighted Russia's pivotal role in the game. He would tip the balance to one of the two alliances. (Germany and Turkey being frozen out)
Secondly: The perceived Italian attack on me. To this day I believe Italy in that the move to Piedmont was a mistake. A move to Tyrolia (as he explained he wanted), would have fit much better with the Austrian move to Bohemia. I actually welcomed this move. I was planning an attack on Italy, and this provided me with a Causus Belli. Furthermore, he was likely to retreat, wasting tempi. I thus could guilt trip Italy about his moves safe in the knowledge that I would return the favour (and for real this time) the very next turn.
Thirdly: My fleets. My moves could be seen to be anti-English. In reality, they were defensive; but allowed for flexibility. I could virtually guarantee Tunis by putting two units on it in the fall.

The game thus continued and settled into a familiar pattern. The biggest thing of note came in Fall 1903, after these moves.
Image
Clearly, Russia has stabbed Austria. This was the most important point in the game, and virtually guaranteed me a share in any draw.
Furthermore, I snuck into the Tyrrhenian. This was probably the single move I was most proud of in the game as it involved an elaborate message to Austria detailing plans for a joint attack on Italy, with me moving to the Ionian. The only thing was that I sent it to Italy and suitably changed my orders.

From then on, the take down of Italy was relatively simple. In the alliance, England demanded that Russia hand over some centres. I tried to use this to create some resentment against England, and lay the groundwork for a future stab. Unfortunately that didn't materialise. I also told Austria and Italy of the alliance's plans at one point to prevent the Russian recapture of Bulgaria. In my long term view Russia had to be slowed down.

Thus I tried to create a setting where a stab on England would succeed. My plan was to suddenly pivot North with Austrian and Russian help. However, I'd slow down Russia by telling England of the stab so that I had a head start and would catch up with Russia thanks to England's unguarded underbelly. This was the perfect moment for it.
Image
Russia would have had a build for another Northern fleet. I would have had a build for another Northern fleet and my other fleets were not too far away from coming North. Furthermore, Austria was still alive and could England back through Germany with minimal help.

It was thus a great shame, and my greatest failure in this game, that I was not able to get Russia on board. Instead he went solo and attacked England. It was not a good stab and a Russian solo was incredibly unlikely. I was dominant in the Med and England had sufficient resources in the North to beat Russia back. I even hoped that it might catalyse England to go for the two way; something he'd been reluctant for in the past. However, ideas of stabbing England were shot as my resources now had to be devoted further away from the northern line.

However, he wasn't. And so beyond some eventful Austrian manoeuvring, the game ended in the three way that was destined from 1904.
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby Don Juan of Austria » 26 Jun 2017, 22:24

Appreciation post to the AARs already up, and to JonS for setting up another great classisct game.

I plan to write one up sometime as well... But time is not on my side currently...
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby Iggy » 26 Jun 2017, 22:57

StarWatcher009 wrote:It was thus a great shame, and my greatest failure in this game, that I was not able to get Russia on board. Instead he went solo and attacked England. It was not a good stab and a Russian solo was incredibly unlikely. I was dominant in the Med and England had sufficient resources in the North to beat Russia back. I even hoped that it might catalyse England to go for the two way; something he'd been reluctant for in the past. However, ideas of stabbing England were shot as my resources now had to be devoted further away from the northern line.

On this - real life was intervening at this point. Your messages about wanting to seek the "two way" seemed to be obviously a plan to go for the solo. I'm not quite some "purist" in thinking that everything should end in a solo but I think not attempting to solo if given even a slight opportunity is "disrespectful" to the game. That might not be quite the word I'm looking for, hence the quotes.

Anyway, I was sure your offers were with the idea of taking the solo for yourself. I wanted to sit down and study things more before responding. I needed to do the math and look to see what options I would have for the solo if we did set out on some adventure for a potential 2 way. I just didn't really have time to put in the work to see if I could manipulate things in my favor for the later solo.

Without being sure of it, I wasn't going to enter into a venture that I knew would eventually change to you trying to solo. I knew the 3 way victory was a sure thing. I also was aware that the odds of soloing where slim when I did later make the move - it would have taken a fairly significant mistake by one of England or France. That said, once Austria was crippled, it seemed like bad form not to at least make a token effort if he was offering support to give it a go!

:mrgreen:
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Re: AAR - 130005. Effectively Wild

Postby StarWatcher009 » 27 Jun 2017, 00:31

Iggy wrote:
StarWatcher009 wrote:It was thus a great shame, and my greatest failure in this game, that I was not able to get Russia on board. Instead he went solo and attacked England. It was not a good stab and a Russian solo was incredibly unlikely. I was dominant in the Med and England had sufficient resources in the North to beat Russia back. I even hoped that it might catalyse England to go for the two way; something he'd been reluctant for in the past. However, ideas of stabbing England were shot as my resources now had to be devoted further away from the northern line.

On this - real life was intervening at this point. Your messages about wanting to seek the "two way" seemed to be obviously a plan to go for the solo. I'm not quite some "purist" in thinking that everything should end in a solo but I think not attempting to solo if given even a slight opportunity is "disrespectful" to the game. That might not be quite the word I'm looking for, hence the quotes.

Anyway, I was sure your offers were with the idea of taking the solo for yourself. I wanted to sit down and study things more before responding. I needed to do the math and look to see what options I would have for the solo if we did set out on some adventure for a potential 2 way. I just didn't really have time to put in the work to see if I could manipulate things in my favor for the later solo.

Without being sure of it, I wasn't going to enter into a venture that I knew would eventually change to you trying to solo. I knew the 3 way victory was a sure thing. I also was aware that the odds of soloing where slim when I did later make the move - it would have taken a fairly significant mistake by one of England or France. That said, once Austria was crippled, it seemed like bad form not to at least make a token effort if he was offering support to give it a go!

:mrgreen:


Yes, my point is my diplomacy at that point failed. Of course I wanted the solo as the ultimate dream. However, I thought mutually stabbing England would have both given us options for it. It was a risk I was willing to take that I would give up the guaranteed draw for a chance at a solo. In any case, I was obviously too transparent.
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