AAR: 79708. PD Versailles Tournament Game B4

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AAR: 79708. PD Versailles Tournament Game B4

Postby sinnybee » 22 May 2014, 11:29

Game 79708. PD Versailles Tournament Game B4 is the twelfth of 22 PDVT Phase 1 games to finish.

ImageImagesisyphus216 earned 132 points in game B4: SOLO WIN 110 USSR 21 Sweden 1
ImageImagespudboy earned 10 points in game B4: Italy 6 Egypt 4
ImageImagedrfaustus72 earned 7 points in game B4: France 7 Greece 0
ImageImageglacier777 earned 4 points in game B4: Britain 4 Rumania 0
ImageImagetbuchman earned 0 points in game B4: Germany 0 Spain 0
ImageImageWhite_Wolf earned 0 points in game B4: Turkey 0 Czechoslov. 0
ImageImageXorg earned 0 points in game B4: Poland 0 Yugoslavia 0
Their scores are also here.

Congratulations to all 7 players for not surrendering!

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Re: AAR: 79708. PD Versailles Tournament Game B4

Postby glacier777 » 22 May 2014, 15:02

Congratulations to sisyphus216, you deserved that win!

I think you had an advantage because you could invade Rumania and defend Sweden but if I invaded Sweden then you would have invaded Rumania.
And I also persuaded you to stab Poland and Turkey, which opened the door to your solo :|
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Re: AAR: 79708. PD Versailles Tournament Game B4

Postby JonS » 24 May 2014, 13:40

This game ended five days ago so if I write too detailed of an AAR I'll probably mess something up, but definitely want to post a few thoughts. First, thanks to everyone for not surrendering! I was lucky enough to have no surrenders in either of my first round games, and reading the other AARs has just emphasized how disruptive it can be to the flow of a game to have a rotating cast of participants. [note after finishing this post - I wrote a ton after all. Sorry for the novel! Clearly I have too much free time...]

I was happy to draw USSR and Sweden going into this, and in the pre-1931 negotiations my enthusiasm for the game increased when (1) Britain turned out to be friendly and reasonable, assuring a peaceful north, (2) that same Britain controlled Rumania, assuring a peaceful south, and (3) somehow a rumor started (which I certainly encouraged) that Britain controlled Sweden, which lasted several years. Having started negotiations well with Britain, I also reached out to Turkey to openly propose a shameless Juggernaut, which he enthusiastically agreed to. It seemed Italy controlled Egypt and was forming a central powers alliance with Germany and Poland, so before the first turn, I felt like there were rival factions, with Poland as my short term rival and Italy as my long term concern. With a friend to the north and a friend to the south, I went into the game committed to smashing Poland as quickly and relentlessly as I could, and then adjusting as needed.

In Spring 1931, Poland and I disappointingly bounced in all of the DMZs we had both agreed to keep, and I was worried my march westward would stall before it could begin. Fortunately, before the fall turn, I laid all of the charm and outright, total, shameless lying I could on my Polish neighbor. Said I had been warned of a Polish attack on me by other powers, had been afraid for my security, was planning on heading towards Turkey, a fresh start etc etc. Poland has also been warned of an attack by the USSR (good advice, as it happens), so I said clearly others were playing us off of each other! Fortunately for me, Poland bought it, although my level of outright deception was significant enough that I knew I was making Poland an enemy for the rest of the game, so there would be no turning back. (A review of the PP for Poland/Yugo will show that enmity towards me lasted well after his departure from the game - sorry! I also think my consolation convos with him as Sweden after USSR's betrayal didn't help to endear me to him once my control of Sweden was revealed...)

This led to Fall 1931 being probably the most significant turn of the game for me, due to two crucial events: (1) My unopposed movement west into Galicia and Pripyat, which started the unstoppable destruction of Poland, and (2) the NMR of my ally to the south Turkey, which made me begin rethinking my alliance choice.

I feel a bit bad about how mercenary we were in our treatment of Turkey, but an NMR in the very first year set off alarm bells in Moscow and London. When Britain/Rumania proposed a betrayal of Turkey, I readily agreed. Given Turkey's focus on Italy/Egypt and his good relations to date, I think the stab was unexpected, and fatal.

Shortly after (or before? difficult to reconstruct...) my betrayal of Turkey, and during the wholesale slaughter of the Polish nation, I got a very important and thoughtful message from Italy, who I had to date viewed as my chief rival on the board. It was essentially an acknowledgement that neither of our initial alliance structures had quite worked out (his allies, Poland and Germany, were clearly on decline...and I had just sacked the home SCs of my own ally), and Italy proposed an alliance between us. I readily accepted. We kept our arrangement quiet for several years, while planning out a carving up of the Balkans. Eventually, we went public, annihilating Rumania (which was a bit unkind on my part, as Britain was a consistent and friendly ally) and splitting the Balkans neatly between us.

Now I realize I'm writing too much, so I'll speed it up. :) Italy and I worked together well, although I grew more quickly. We worked to try and talk Britain into betraying France to work on a three-way draw, but it never quite came together. Britain (quite astutely) was concerned that it would just give me the solo, and never fully committed to trusting me again after the loss of Rumania.

Near the end of the game, I made the push for the solo, of course. Italy had been an excellent ally and friend, and I think made the mistake of not realizing how much more force I had left behind in the Balkans than he had, which let me quickly overpower him and seize several SCs. Germany was a fun late-game ally, and used his last army in Prague to help me consistently to the very end (and was just fun to talk to). The best thing for me, and really the reason I won, was that Italy and France seemed to always dislike and distrust each other more than they did me, leading to France helping me outright for a couple years as an angry Kingmaker, and then when the anti-Soviet alliance finally formed at the end, I suspect their communication and coordination remained perhaps a bit less than ideal.

I have to admit that for years I did whatever I could to inflame the poor condition of the French/Italian relationship, not always portraying the other in the best light, occasionally leaking inflammatory information, etc. I think the French/Italian dynamic more than any other is why this game ended in a solo for me, rather than a three or four nation draw.

In the end, I really enjoyed this game. Not just because of the solo, but because I think I had a good relationship, or at least fun communication, with everyone on the board (except poor Poland). Often when there's a dominant solo-threatening power, the others sort of clam up, and the game can turn quiet, tactical, and boring. Instead, throughout the entire game and up to the end, I enjoyed my relationship with Britain, France, Italy, and Germany. I hope there are no hard feelings for any lies or betrayals in the last couple years while I was trying to put together the win. Thanks for a great game and the good conversation.
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