AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

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AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby sinnybee » 15 Oct 2014, 08:12

Game 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3 is the 30th PDVT game to finish, being the eighth of 8 semifinals / Phase 2 games to finish.

Major B earned 50 points in game C3: 3way DRAW 30 Germany 20 Egypt 0
AlmanMEin earned 46 points in game C3: 3way DRAW 30 Italy 16 Sweden 0
JonathanSwaim earned 37 points in game C3: 3way DRAW 30 Turkey 7 Spain 0

McGiles earned 0 points in game C3: USSR 0 Yugoslavia 0
SaltySailor earned 0 points in game C3: Britain 0 Greece 0
White_Wolf earned 0 points in game C3: Poland 0 Czechoslov. 0
YoYoDyne earned 0 points in game C3: France 0 Rumania 0

Scores are also listed here.

So close, SaltySailor!
What a game :).

Congratulations to all 7 players for not surrendering!
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby Major B » 15 Oct 2014, 12:26

Sinnybee said it right - what a game. I wish I had kept notes along the way since this game lasted so long. I'll do my best to remember but if I get something wrong please let me know. There is a good chance I will get something wrong since my D game was so similar. I played Poland and Egypt in that one and the game developed in a very similar way.

My first impression and a lasting one was that everyone was way too nice. Really. I was almost resigned to a loss when I saw that I was assigned to play Germany and my next thought was that I could not develop a strategy centered on a plan to attack someone because I would have to wait to see what threat developed first. I was really unsure what to do when that first attack I was waiting for never came.

Although everyone was incredibly cordial, I did develop a close relationship with Britain and Poland almost from the start. Not a 3-way circle but two separate relationships. Britain insisted on bringing France into our relationship. He was slow to come around but we more or less locked in a 3-way relationship by the end of the first year if I recall. Meanwhile Poland lured the USSR so badly out of position that he gained a early decisive advantage. I remember that by the end of year 2 I was so certain that Poland was going to solo that I decided to attack him before it was too late. Thank goodness I did because he fought both Britain and I so skillfully that if we had waited any longer he would have won.

Down in the south, Britain and I were using our minors (Greece and Egypt) to keep Turkey hemmed in. As Germany and Egypt I kept positive interactions going with both Italy and Turkey but ultimately had to sour both relationships to preserve the alliance with Britain and France which soon became just Britain and I when we turned on France. Again if I recall right that was Britain's idea initially but I chose the timing since I did not want to let France get any bigger and have another fight like the one with Poland on our hands.

So it was Britain and I heading toward a 2-way draw that I was happy to share when I became Britain's next victim. I missed the clues of his stab until later when I looked back and he came so so close to pulling off a solo. Luckily, I had not left Italy and Turkey on a bad note because when I asked, both rallied with me to help stop and ultimately defeat Britain. The most incredible moment of the entire game for me was the collaboration of orders to stop Britain at 21. Although I had opportunities after that to betray them and solo, I couldn't after that shared experience.

So, with all that said thanks to everyone for all of the great dialog. Thanks to White Wolf for fighting Britain and I off so effectively. Thanks to Salty for everything up until you stabbed me. : ) But mostly thanks to AlmanMEin and Jonathan for being such great partners in the end game.

And thanks again to Sinny for creating and running this tournament.
Last edited by Major B on 16 Oct 2014, 15:21, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby poorfool » 15 Oct 2014, 13:16

What a tournament Major B, well done!
I guess we may now reveal that everyone between 5th and 7th place was supporting your win so we could get through :D
Looking forward for the Final Board with such a bunch of nice players, and sorry for those who didn't make it, I'm sure they enjoyed the tournament so far as much as we did, thanks Sinny!
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Saved by the Stab: An AAR (or-The Revenge of Sweden)

Postby Alman » 15 Oct 2014, 14:58

I was saved by the stab.

As has already been mentioned, this game started with the most friendliness I think I've ever seen. Based on the warm and fuzzy comms before first moves, it seemed like the game would end in a 7-way draw and a round of singing around the campfire.

Once things started, the comms stayed nice but the knives started flying.
I was of course absolutely delighted to have been assigned Italy (tongue firmly in cheek) and that joy was nothing compared to having Sweden as my minor. I just can't ever seem to keep Sweden alive. You could call it a minor problem. So England very soon destroyed Sweden. Hold that thought, we'll come back to it.

I was off to a good start with Germany and France and worked on moving east. The hornets nest of minors proved to be a bit fractious. Then, things with France suddenly changed. I tried to warn him that I thought he was making a miscalculation to abandon our partnership, but he had fallen out of love with me and the magic was gone. I was not fatally injured, but I couldn't grow and I lost some of my gains.

Then I was saved by the stab. England and Germany turned on France and suddenly I had a friend again. Things started going a little better but I could never gain enough momentum due to having to keep swatting at minors in the Med. Someone should spray! In the meantime, France succumbed to his injuries and Germany began to press south. I could see writing on the wall, started filling out my will and saying goodbye to loved ones. I was also a bit unsettled by the wheezing and dying Turkey to my east. Thanksgiving day massacre, ugly to watch.

Then I was saved by the stab. England suddenly turned on Germany and I suddenly had a friend again. Germany approached Turkey and myself vowing vengeance on the head of England and offering us a place at the table if we would join him. That promise was pretty vital since otherwise we were dead either way, especially Turkey which was down to his last SC. I still had my home SC's and had some life left, but I was a dead man walking until England threw me a lifeline in the form of a dagger in German's back.

From that point on, I knew that as long as Germany stayed honorable, we would be ok. It was amazing to stare death in the face in the year of the 21 and still live to tell about it. Germany was MORE than capital, working hard to keep our alliance strong and trusting. Turkey reclaimed his homeland and I was able to end the game by avenging Sweden, my poor minor, by occupying all of England and sending Rome to Liverpool in the final turn! Militarily superfluous, but fun.

Kudos to all the players for a very respectful and well communicated game. England and Germany deserve a "Excellent and Covert Use of Minors" award for keeping me weakened while maintaining "friendship" on the major level. Even when I was being stabbed, we kept good comms which made the game very fun. I don't think I stabbed in this game but I was definitely Saved by the Stab!
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby JonathanSwaim » 15 Oct 2014, 17:34

So I was Turkey/Spain in this game. One could say I escaped by the skin of my teeth. After all, I went down to one center and wound up a part of the three-way!

I had my own trouble with minors in this game. I went the longest time without a clue who Greece and Rumania were, so I couldn't make board-crossing deals.

But my big blunder in the early game was trusting Germany/Egypt. The plan was to get a triple with him and Poland. I'd help him disassemble France while he helped me in the Med, meanwhile Poland and I would smash USSR (a very easy thing for Poland/Turkey to do, as evidenced by game A5, which I was taking as the ideal Turkey/Spain game).

Obviously, Egypt attacked me and Germany attacked Poland in Spring 1932. And that meant Spain also didn't have any ally against France (who had taken initiative against me, a tactic I imitated in Game D2). So I tried desperately to get an ally somewhere, and who's better than France himself? Answer: I don't know, but he wasn't exactly a good choice.

The ballad of Spain ends with him trying to put pressure on Italy by supporting France in the med. Oh well. Should probably have worked with Italy instead, but I underestimated the strength of minors and still saw Italy as likely to be my chief rival at the time.

Meanwhile back home, there were some brief talks of an anti-EG alliance between Poland, USSR, and me. Poland backed out in Fall 1932 shortly before the deadline. Had I gotten that message in time, I'd have gotten Sevastopol in Fall 1932, and maybe my defense against the minor onslaught would have been a bit stronger. (wouldn't have lost Con in 1933, Poland's defense also would have been stronger.) But overall it was just an acceleration in my decline.

I knew I was on the way out, and would need to wait for some sort of dynamic shift in alliances before I would be viable again. Since most of my attackers were coming from the Mediterranean, I focused my retreat on securing the Black Sea region. I would turtle there for several years, neither sending nor receiving messages.

I managed to stall from 1934 to 1939 (That's a pretty dang long time! I lucked out a couple of times, should have died at least twice). That's a testament to the longevity of the Witch of the East.

That's when Britain stabbed Germany. I actually called it in the shout box, and Britain took me up on discussions briefly. Unfortunately there was another timing error. I guess it's kinda fortunate that I didn't help push Britain further though. Looking back, it appears I accidentally signed a message ~France. Guess I was too in the mindset of D2, which I had higher hopes for at the time.

Anyway, the dynamic totally changed in Fall 1939 (huh). Germany started up the stop-the-leader alliance, and it worked to keep me alive. Supporting Smyrna to Ankara in Fall 1940 kept Britain under 22, and his momentum was stopped. That support was a last-minute change, the first one that worked for me the entire game. The plan was almost to just support Smyrna to hold, which would have given the game to Britain.

From there on it was a matter of time (well, 1941 was a bit hard in Asia Minor, but you can see the reverse happen in Russia and the west). I'm a little surprised that we actually went all the way to the Isles for the 3-way. My role was largely advisory, since winning in my homeland was pretty much assured, and Britain was contained.

Overall, an unexpected reversal of fortune at the halfway point. The alliance with Germany that I wanted manifested, just ten tears after I wanted it. Good game.
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby SaltySailor » 16 Oct 2014, 08:28

And now, for the AAR from "The Stabber"... It was the Fall of 1940, a year after "The Stab"... I as Britain/Greece was poised to take 2, securing the solo and a spot in the Finals. Massive armies surged across the Continent, clashing with Germans, Italians and the remnants of the French. As the battle raged. it was clear that Britain had taken Belgium... Hamburg... and Marseilles while trading off a piece of the vast Russian plain, Kiev... The net gain of 2 was there! I had reached 22 and the solo surely was mine! The victory march was about to begin... beyond earshot of the music, beyond the bellowing of the massive armies pounding away, there was a little backwater eddy, almost an afterthought to the great European struggle for power. Three minors were also battling it out, in a minor sort of way... Turkey took Con from my Greece, but I took Syria from Germany's Egypt. A saw-off. The net gain of 2 was certainly secured. or, so it seemed, until I noticed a seemingly inconsequential move by Egypt, from Smyrna to Ankara supported by the lone Turkish unit remaining, defeated a Greek unit. It swung the SC count by only 1. Instead of a net 2, I received a net 1... (blink) (BLINK) What? That couldn't be right. Could it? Yes, yes it could. I found myself stretched beyond defensible lines in that final, determined, lunge for the tape. Instead it felt like falling. That weightless, scrambling feeling as you realize you aren't going to achieve your dream? I knew immediately that the dream was dead. That the future would be one of cold and pain. All I could do was shrug and show my back as I knew the wolves would soon turn to eat.

But let's return to a more gentler time. Back when the flowers still bloomed on the European fields. Spring 1931...

I struck up conversations with Germany, Poland and France. All seemed amenable to working with me. Poland and me against Russia. Germany and me against Poland. France and me against Germany. I was most interested in taking the north and working down into Russia. I seemed to feel the tightest bond with Germany so I kept him totally in the loop on conversations with Poland regarding the war with Russia, and both Germany and I kept France pacified with talk of the Triple Alliance between the three of us. But the Triple was only to keep the peace until the Russian bear was dealt with. After that, sights would turn on France for both Germany and I.

First Phase:

It only took 2 years (Fall'33) to finish off Russia with both Poland and me working against him. Poland and I agreed that I would take the north and he would take Moscow/Kiev. In Spring'34 was the first stab. In conjunction with Germany, I turned on Poland and attacked south towards Moscow. Within another 2 years, Germany had made great gains against Poland from the west, and I had taken central Russia from the Pole.

Success against Poland was coincident with the next major stab, that against France in Spring'36. With our fresh builds from Russia/Poland, we were able to catch France with no fleets to defend her Atlantic or Channel interests. So we began rolling into France, first with Brest, then with the French holdings on the Iberian. Germany was moving south at the same time, rolling up victories in Austria, pushing Italy back, and Rumania while was poised to take Hungary. I as England had extended down in the east to the Black Sea and had met up with Greece near Ankara.

Second Phase:

Germany in Fall'38 sent a note discussing how we would proceed to set up a 2 way draw. Italy was back almost to his pre-war borders, France was at 3 centers and falling. Turkey was down to 1 unit. Poland and Russia were gone. The future was quickly focusing in on Italy and the remaining Balkan SC's. We needed to find a way to get ourselves to 21 each leaving 1 for a remaining enemy unit. I looked at the SC rich Balkans and knew that Germany would take most of those. I would have to hurry to take most of Italy. And we would leave Tunisia as the lone hold out for Italy as the 43rd SC.

This was where suspicion and doubt began to enter the equation. Germany wanted to make the last hold-out in Naples. But that would give him the advantage with his Egyptian naval forces. I would have a tough time getting to Naples with my fleets being 1 sea further and Egypt already had the Ionian. Whereas I could get to Tunisia, and I could fight my way into position to take Tunisia for the solo.

Did I mention that a 2-way would not help me in the tournament? I needed to solo. I had one solo already, but no draws to my credit. So I needed a second solo to get into the top 7. A second solo would make me the 3rd Seed. So I pushed for Tunisia and Germany agreed to make it Tunisia.

Then comes Spring'39 and Germany's minor, Egypt takes Tunisia. With Egypt sewing up the waters around Italy and Germany racing into the Balkans, I feared that he was setting himself up to take the solo. I was shocked, worried and convinced myself that I needed to go now, Fall'39, for the ultimate stab. The stab to cut Germany's SC's and set the stage to springboard me to 22 for the solo.

So Fall'39 I struck. I took Denmark, Syria, Paris, while Greece took Ankara. The SC count hit 20 and by Fall'1940 I could easily overwhelm the lowlands and the rest of Turkey to gain the solo. (cut to opening scene, above).

That's the story of Britain/Greece/Me. A love story with Germany for the most part. Then Betrayal for the glory of the solo. Followed with the Heartache of falling 1 SC short in the last game of the semi-finals. I pushed myself into striking 1 year sooner than planned because I feared Germany was setting me up just as I hoped to set him up. But it was 1 SC too soon.

I held out as long as I could. Retreating back to my roots, to a field outside of Edinburgh. I died in the Fall of '48, with my face painted blue, mooning my tormentors shouting "Freedom!".

Congrats Major B (Germany) on getting to the finals. And congrats to AlmanMEin (Italy) for getting to the finals as well. I envy both of you the exciting game to come. Both of you accomplished great things in your other games. I can only hope that I gave you enough of a challenge in this one to make you feel your really had a workout. I know your relentless defense denying me the solo wore me out. Thanks for a great game!
Last edited by SaltySailor on 20 Oct 2014, 12:05, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby Alman » 16 Oct 2014, 14:50

Loved this AAR! Thanks Salty! Sorry that little ol' Italy was the source of the souring of such a beautiful relationship between such fine men as you and Germany.....oh wait...I actually don't think I am sorry......nope, not sorry.....actually....I believe they call this feeling...joy.

I love that the ultimate tipping point was the stab that the rest of us didn't even notice; the taking of my fair Tunis. I also want to thank Salty for a great rear-guard action as you retreated. It was fun to be creative in jumping past your early defenses to start an assault on your island before the main continent had been "cleansed." I appreciated your diplomatic attempts to befriend me and scare me of the spectre of a German solo. If the Major hadn't been so careful in reassuring us, you might have gained traction there, although perhaps never again for the solo. :)
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby Major B » 16 Oct 2014, 15:51

Salty,

Thanks for reminding me about Tunisia. If I remember I was trying to break the Italian's expected support for something else but he vacated instead.

One question - how did you get Yugoslavia to support you in your solo attempt? He had promised to help me solo after I recruited what was left of the USSR to help me against Poland. I guess he eventually assumed that I didn't want to solo.

Your final push left you in poor position to defend against us or keep pushing for the last center. You sort of had fleets where you needed armies and armies where fleets would have been more useful. But still you held us back to making slow painful gains and we never really knew what tricks to expect from you. Your retreat was extremely well played sir. Thanks for a great game!
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Re: AAR: 85484. PD Versailles Tournament Game C3

Postby SaltySailor » 16 Oct 2014, 16:14

Major, Yugo was doing it's own thing. He bounced you in Hungary on his own initiative. I had already assumed that you would roll through East Central Europe and the Balkans. So my stab was focused on the lowlands of western Europe.

As for the final push, yes, it was a stretch for the finish line. I knew I either made it to 22, or fell and was trampled by the chariots surging up behind me.

The retreat was bitter sweet. A couple of steps back for every successful initiative forward. It seems once you get that first "destroy" order, you can feel the inevitability of the walls creeping in.
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