PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

After game reports for PlaDip Diplomacy League games

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PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

Postby mjparrett » 14 May 2018, 14:35

England (TTBen) SOLO WIN
France (chaserh11)
Italy (gnaah)
Germany (dangerboy)
Austria (Sangramore)
Turkey (joker10)
Russia (Chessplayer)

Another solo!! What is everyone complaining about?! There are more solo's in this league than your average bear of a game. Maybe all the care-bear cursing in other AARs inspired the result??

Either way a massive tip of the hat to TTBen who adds his name to the illustrious list. No doubt earning himself a mention at the end of season awards.

No surrenders which is appreciated, and everyone has turned up for round 3. What more could anyone want?

Please post your AAR here...
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Re: PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

Postby mjparrett » 14 May 2018, 14:42

League table also updated.
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Re: PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

Postby TTBen » 14 May 2018, 21:03

I haven’t tried to write an AAR before so I’m not sure how this will go, I’ll give some general thoughts on each other country and highlight what I feel were important turns but I’m not going to try to do a turn by turn breakdown. Happy to answer any questions and see others thoughts though. Overall this was one of the quietest full comm games I’ve ever been in which I guess suited me well as a player that still plays the majority of their games gunboat.

France (chaserh11) — we had a rough start and he was very noncommittal on opening moves leading me to go to the English Channel in Spring 01 but I was able to convince him to support me into Belgium in the fall so that Germany didn’t get 3 builds only to see Germany immediately support him there in Spring 02. But with Germany still surrounding him and generally being non-cooperating with others I was able to convince him that we would simply lay off each other and he became my best ally the rest of the game until I made my break for the solo.

Italy (gnaah) — Not a lot of thoughts here, probably the one I interacted least with in the game. Early on he was in discussions against Germany and France but once France backed off and he chose to help Turkey against Russia and Austria there wasn’t a lot more to talk about. I wasn’t against him I was just content to let he and France fight while I handled Germany and once I was done with Germany he had basically been taken over by France.

Germany (dangerboy) — one of the biggest surprises of this game to me. I actually went to him first saying I really wanted to work with him over others and I meant it but it became obvious quickly he had totally opposite ideas. He was very vague in his negotiations and seemed to only discuss what benefitted him. The Winter 1901 build of 2 fleets sealed the deal that I wouldn’t be working with him and thanks to a cooperative Russia and France laying off he was relatively simple to take out. Still scratch my head why he took such a strong anti-England stance without having anyone else on board with him.

Austria (Sangramore) — The one exception in this game to everyone being very quiet he was always talking to me about things going on and early in the game he was certainly the player I feared having to face in the endgame the most. I think in the end he just got caught in the wrong spot among alliances where his property became an easy target for Russia.

Turkey (joker10) — I didn’t have a lot of interactions with him but I kept hearing others complaining about talking to him and began to try to use that to my advantage. He kept trying to push me to attack Russia since Russia was leaving his centers open to me and I kept declining waiting for the right moment for maximum impact. At one point where France had basically taken out Italy I tried to negotiate a 3 way finish between, France, him and I and he refused basically solidifying France on my side I feel (more on this in turns breakdown)

Russia (Chessplayer) — A player that I appreciate his knowledge, loyalty and ability to see the best strategy but he had NMRs at least 3 different times in this game and that definitely affected the result. Him leading the anti-Germany messages after 1901 was also a big help to me.
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Re: PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

Postby TTBen » 14 May 2018, 21:04

The key turns as I recall them...

Image
Fall 1901-after I had gone to the English Channel I was able to convince France to support me into Belgium so that Germany wouldn’t get 3 builds. I think I would have bounced instead if I were him but having that 2nd build in year 1 was huge to withstanding the storms of 1902

Image
Spring 1902-I had talked up the possibility to Russia during 1901 that if Germany bounced them out of Sweden I’d be happy to support him in by 1902 once I had Norway, this lead to the beginning of our alliance but when Germany built 2 new fleets in Berlin and Kiel after 1901 Russia was the one leading the charge with messages to Italy, Austria and myself to beware of Germany, it was of course exactly what I needed and coming from another party helped gain traction I think. I honestly believed and convinced Russia that if I supported him to Sweden in spring 1902 that Germany would have it surrounded by his 3 fleets and simply take it away in the fall before he actually got the build. The fact that I actually went through from Norway to Sweden was luck and enabled me to withstand the loss of Belgium to France. Even though France took Belgium I was quick to point out to him that Germany now had him surrounded in Belgium and could take it back if he wanted. I promised not to try to retake Belgium as long as he agreed to no further aggression between us. It probably also helped my case that Italy was moving in on him at the time.

Image
Spring 1904- Russia misses a 2nd turn. While they missed in Spring 1903 as well I don’t feel like that one had a huge impact on the game, this one certainly did. While Berlin and Rumania may have been dislodged anyways he could have been in good position to recover them in the fall had he made his moves to back them up. This moved Turkey into one of the biggest powers in the board and in my opinion should have got Turkey a piece of the result had they been more willing to negotiate early. This NMR led to Russia having to destroy 2 units at the end of 1904 and while I maintained friendship with him after that despite Turkeys pleas to attack, I had the clear upper hand on Russia from this point forward.

Image
Fall 1905 - I think it was key I looked at the setup saw an easy path to France, Turkey and England 3 way, I suggested to Turkey that he allow France to get Tunis, France was happy with the idea but Turkey refused saying he’d only let France in if I’d attack Russia. This solidified my friendship with France and made Turkey out as the enemy as he stated this in a group message.

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Spring 1906- Russia turns on Austria making this effectively a 4 player game. I don’t blame him too much, he needed the centers to recover from earlier miscues but it may have been a little shortsighted given he didn’t have a very clear way to work with Turkey and gain more centers going forward. Then again just hanging around would lead to his demise as well. He had asked me to bounce Sweden to keep the final German unit out and I was happy to oblige. Germany I guess in a way to try to get some small revenge decided he would support the Denmark unit forcing it to succeed instead of bounce. Maybe he expected I’d be leaving Denmark/Kiel exposed then but I was prepared. Given that it appeared to be setting up Turkey and Russia vs England and France I was unwilling to give Sweden back even though it was obtained by mistake.

Image
Fall 1907 - The big key to the entire game. I had convinced Russia that he had no path to additional centers working with Turkey and the only way to grow was attack Turkey and break up the 2 on 2 battle. At the same time I had France going through Munich to get to Tyrolia in the fall so he could support himself to Venice. I was not surprised Italy supported Venice to Rome, that I expected but Turkey choosing to take Trieste to Tyrolia and Serbia to Trieste threw our plans for a loop but to my advantage as it turned out. Turkey couldn’t get Rome back but could easily snatch Venice from France. I went to France with the offer that I didn’t care if he kept Munich I’d take Belgium in its place or I could push for Munich and risk destroying his unit if he wasn’t able to get to Tyrolia. I had put my orders in, Bohemia Support Munich to Tyrolia, Berlin Support Ruhr to Munich and Ruhr to Munich and expected I’d probably be asked to just take Munich. But when at the last minutes before deadline France said go ahead and take Belgium I quickly changed Ruhr to Belgium. The thought briefly crossed my mind that he’d still be trying to go to Tyrolia to cut Support for an attack on Venice and it wouldnt hurt to Support that still but honestly I didnt have time to fully analyze it. Once the moves processed and I kept Munich as well as gaining Belgium the opportunity was just too good to pass up to go for a solo. Most of the moves after this were not discussed of course.

Image
Spring 1911- I may have gotten too agressive in jumping to 17 centers and letting France behind me which lead me to think for a good while that I may be stalled out at 17, I didn’t expect to be able to get Spain back here but I rejected talk of a 4 way draw mainly due to the hole in Vienna and Budapest that I could exploit or at least make France and Turkey think I’d exploit, they couldn’t block me without risking taking away a Russian center and line of defense against Warsaw. I told them this turn that I’d accept a 3 way if it came to that but I wasn’t taking a draw with Russia and his NMRs. They agreed and wanted me to back off them and I said not yet, I’m not willing to give up my shot until you make me. I’m still not sure they could have forced a 4 way but losing Spain was careless. Once I did steal Spain back here it was just a matter of time.
Last edited by TTBen on 15 May 2018, 01:59, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

Postby Chessplayer » 14 May 2018, 22:16

I apologize for those NMR's. At the time, I had the ignorance to join THREE games going at once and spread myself far too thin. I won't be making that mistake again. Thanks for the compliments TTBen. You think me a much better player than i do ;) . I would say that Germany was by far the biggest factor in this game. Their messages and moves were interpreted as being overtly aggressive by myself and others and resulted in a coalition against them. This lead to an alliance structure that remained through the game. I'll add more later, but for now I have to go.
-Chessplayer
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Re: PDL 3. Round 2 Game 1. AAR

Postby Chessplayer » 15 May 2018, 00:05

This game, in my view, would best be suited to analyze in three parts:
Anti-German
Shifting Alliances
Armageddon
Let's take these steps one by one.
Anti German-
Here is the very first message Germany sent to me and the beginning of my animosity towards them:

Hey Sir, at the moment I cannot say for sure the disposition of the North. Perhaps you can persuade me in your favor. At the very least, it is my desire to communicate with you to ensure board stability into the middle game. That is not a bad time to make a concerted push.

Germany

Now, this message is not exactly riddled with hostility, but it still rubbed me the wrong way for a number of reasons.
1. Their reference to me as "sir" was a bit odd, but acceptable
2. Their appearance of talking down to me by stating I should be the one "begging" to work with them
3. Their call to immediate action was a bit odd as this message came during spring,1901 (not exactly a time where HUGE and SURPRISING gains can be made
All of this isolated wouldn't have attracted notice, but its combination together as a whole aroused my suspicion. Later, in fall, 1901, Germany bounced me out of Sweden! This upset me as I made DMZ deals with them that seemed to indicate a friendly enough relationship. Soon enough, I called for war against Germany from pretty much everyone under the sun, but mainly allied with Austria and Britain. Austria was the most charismatic of the players in the game and quickly attracted my attention with their kind words and humor. This can be encapsulated in their standard closing of "Archie Duke". Now, it may sound trivial to judge people by the closing to their letters, but to me it is of considerable importance. A player that takes the time to sign their correspondence with a historical reference, joke, or even a simple country name shows their commitment in my eyes. Anyone that signs with nothing to me is indicative of disinterest and boredom in the game. Quickly, Germany was eliminated and the dynamic of the game became up in the air...
(and with that, I leave again to return later :D )
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