PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

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PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby Audacia » 14 Oct 2020, 11:21

ENGLAND - Charleroi (6way DRAW)
FRANCE - hedge trimmer (6way DRAW)
ITALY - Groo (6way DRAW)
GERMANY - Squasher (6way DRAW)
AUSTRIA - stew0610
TURKEY - Audacia (6way DRAW)
RUSSIA - V (6way DRAW)
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby Audacia » 14 Oct 2020, 14:06

The Ottoman Perspective

My first PDL game, and I must say, it was an incredible experience. A late call for subs into PDL in the chat saw me toss my hat into the ring. And wow, look where I landed. Incredible competition and such a great experience. Thanks to Charleroi, hedge trimmer, Groo, Squasher, stew0610 and V.

Spring 1901
Great comms with England, Germany and Russia right out the gate. Italy followed, but Austria was very silent. I’m not sure his heart was in playing Austria as mine would have been (a personal fav or mine as I know a good PDO friend can relate ;) ). With poorer comms and some incredible requests, I set myself up for options, but began working with Russia. Later turn quiet from Italy, coupled with Austrian comms had me thinking IA were closer than is good for the Sultan. Spring Turkish moves saw me in the Black Sea, Armenia and the standard move to Bulgaria. Austria supported into Gal believing me to be onside to KO Russia in fall by putting him into Rum.

Fall 1901
Some surprise on the board I had opened anti-Russian, which I stoked further. This kept Austria believing I would move on Sev, while he took Rum. Serbia was being left for 1902. At the same time Italy asked my views on Greece and I told him I considered it Ottoman territory. Fall resolved and Austria got no builds, while I took Greece and Bulgaria, convoying Armenia across the Black Sea. Russia took Rum and we were on 10 dots.

Now there was some surprise again. Anti-Russian, then anti-Austrian. I build an army in Con and a fleet in Smyrna. At this point I was open to working with Italy if he turned toward France, but all those luscious red dots were so inviting. He naturally eschewed my proposal.

Spring 1902
I began talks in earnest with Italy encouraging him to move on France. We had some good talks. I encouraged him to protect the Western Med from France, and put his newly built Neapolitan fleet into TYS. He expressed his desire for Trieste in fall. I offered to push to Albania from Greece to support him in fall. An offer he originally took then declined.

I took Serbia is Spring, while Russia moved on Austria now nestled up in Gal and Buda. Italy moves into Tyrolia and slips up into Venice as Austria is wide open from the back. F Trieste moves to Alb. I suspected Austria might be feeding his dots to Italy out of spite toward me. Italy pushed his fleet into the Ionian, and there is a bounce in the Western Med.

Fall 1902
I made my displeasure at the Ionian known and we discussed. I insisted he leave to move on France. After some talks, I agreed that if he left the Ionian we would have move room to work together. I request he move into TYS, to at least defend Italian centers. Suspecting Italy would go for both Trieste and Vienna (I may have suggested that ever so slightly) rather than the safer option of Trieste only (with his own support), he was bounced by Russia in Trieste and Austria in Vienna. The last thing I wanted was a 6 center Italy.

I’ve been having some great talks with Germany, but GR are friendly so we’re just conversing on France and Italy a bit. I share my concerns Italy won’t move on France and an outsized France will benefit neither of us. Nothing in earnest between us, because Austria is still being devoured, but really good comms.

France now starts talking to me about the Med. He says he thinks Tunis and Rome are fair for him. I respond “While the Ottomans concede that Tunisian peasants would be more productive under a French overlord than an Italian one, Roman citizens are too hot-headed for a western power to dominate effectively. The strong arm of the Sultan is needed to reign over the Italian peninsula.” We agree to keep lines of communication open.

Turkey takes Serbia and Russia takes Budapest. RT on 12 dots now. Italy requests I build an army, but it is a fleet again. Our talks intensify.

Spring 1903
Knowing France intends on carving up Italy with me at some point, I work toward convincing Italy to move west against France before he can lay down too many units. I don’t want a strengthening France, fed by English centers, barreling into the Med. But a 3 fleet Turkey is not naturally an interesting dance partner for Italy. The board was suggesting to me they were afraid of my solo potential so I think the last thing Italy would think about me was I would content myself with a 3-way. (Little did he know, I’ve never even done as good as a 3-way in standard play…) I’m stoking the solo fears, to get mistaken for somebody else in this game. With Austria on life support, I’m hoping they believe that Audacia is about to exit.

Austria surprises by build a fleet in Trieste to replace his disbanded Gal army. Now, he can have no part in the decision about Vienna and it will become Russian. I am worrying that a crumpling Austria will throw support to Italy though. Italy pushes ADR into Ionian and slips back downward, vacating Tyrolia for Germany. I push fleets up into Greece, so I can support into the Ionian in fall. I push into Rum and Russia takes the Black. It appears we might go at it to the delight of some.

Fall 1903
I am concerned Italy can enlist the support of an Austrian Albania to oust Greece. My goal is to secure Trieste for Russia if at all possible. At this point, Germany congratulates my fleet movements seeing I will secure the Ionian this fall. We discuss Trieste and I encourage him to stay out to the Trieste fight. He is not convinced my dance with Russia is real, but keeps the door open for further talks. In spring he had slipped into Silesia and GR got more tense.

Now is when I believe the threat of RT became very real. Appeals to me that my builds were game changing (if armies then some fluidity, if fleets then RT is afoot). And now some are claiming my actions are determining the rest of the game. I pushed back on this motif stating, “Hell, I'm only one player in seven on this board. Others have the power to determine the direction of play.”

Fall sees me into the Ionian, and Russia takes Trieste. Rum convoys to Con, and the German land forces push east. GR have to fight now. Russia picks up 2 builds and RT are now on 14 dots. Russia builds F St. Pete and A Moscow.

Spring 1904
Now my star is descending. I “let” Russia have all of Austria and respect falls for me now. But Austria is gone and we are pushing west as hard as we can. It at this point talks begin in earnest with Germany. Our comms had been good before, but now we are having some more frank talks. I am being invited to join with the Kaiser and take my much-deserved dots back from Russia. In spring, I convoy back to Rum and push into Budapest (Russia is in Tyrolia and Trieste now, poised on Venice.) To stab Russia in fall (?), to help in the fight against Germany (?). Who knows? My options are open.

Fall 1904
Now its game time with Germany. If I don’t move now, my initiative will be lost to change the game and I’ll not be believed any longer if I don’t abandon RT. And things go very quiet on the board. After a great deal of messaging in which France had been discussing FGT (and possible solo attempts for either he or I), Germany went quiet. For nearly the entire negotiation period. Germany is in Galicia and I could have attacked Russia with him, supporting him into Rum from Buda, while I attempted Sev. But utter silence. Shortly before orders were due a request to at least not push west against him. That would have only benefited FG, so I could not honour it.

But I stayed with Russia. I move Ionian into ADR for 1905 operations, and Russia takes Venice, while I moved into Gal and sacrificed Con to Russia for a northern build (I think the word vassal emanates from this action.) This was going to put the Russian fleet to use in the Med, where the fight was brewing with France.

France did not manage to KO England in 1904 and this was game changing. For the English fleet was very popular in 1905. It is good to be loved. I know, I’ve been that game changing unit before. I congratulate England for his survival.

Spring 1905
Russia built army St. Pete and I am criticized for giving the game away to Russia. I knew it would come, but I don’t play in an orthodox fashion so it just rolls over me. RT pushes further into the stalemate area, while I retake the Ionian and the Russian fleet takes to the Aegean. England takes Norway from Germany with Russian support and I am hopeful he is true to RT. But this is not to be.

Fall 1905
Germany and I are still getting on swimmingly, but of course I think he knows I’m not flinching on RT now. Just good comms despite being foes in this match. That I really appreciated. We never know which side we’ll be on, but it does not have to get unpleasant. I now look back to see why things have gone so terribly with Italy. I just sent a rude note about the continued jabs at being the junior partner in RT. But I recognize the tenor of my response was not who I want to be in a game. So, I apologize, offering a review of where we had been all game. Accepting responsibility to my failings in that relation and apologizing for my harshness. Italy was receptive and took my heartfelt apology. That meant a lot to me. The game is what it is, but I never want to hurt anyone. And it turns out the game would soon end, so I'm glad it got it in before game's end.

I now messaged France about how we should divide Italy, and overplayed (no dreaded 4-way right), and he replied with why not a 5 or 6way, since he knew I’d never leave Russia. My strategy here obviously backfired, and I sensed a real weariness with play. It was prescient given what would come in fall. One hour before fall orders resolved, France proposed the 6way draw.

Fall saw me in Bohemia and my convoy to Apulia succeeding, but St. Pete was lost to England, supported in by Germany. Now we were facing a battle at the stalemate line with little action on either side for many game years. Though RT would not break FG did not either. And in the end, France would not carve up Italy. So just wow. What an ending. The draw was proposed by France (8 dots), accepted by Russia (8 dots), Turkey (6 dots), Germany (8 dots) and somewhere in there England (1 dot) and Italy (3 dots). Fall 1905 and game over for a 6-way draw.

I don’t think FG thought RT would accept the draw. So perhaps that was the surprise ending after all. I think general weariness had set in and some lost the will to go on. I had more fight in me, but I also didn't want to waste time if the board felt we were done.

Everyone signed onto that draw. It was a consensus vote to end it. So we all jointly own the outcome of this game. The lesson to walk away with is perhaps to not discount the power of one small nation to determine the game's end (England, I just gotta love a comeback kid!) And people should not discount the power of any one player, good or poor by ranking to create excitement on a board. And for my part, hiding in plain sight is just so bloody fun I think I'll always do it now.

Regardless, it was a tremendous game for me. In 35 days, I sent/received over 1,000 messages. Great substance, good play, good times. Gentlemen, an honour playing with you all.

But a special thanks to Russia. V, you were incredible. I've never had this much fun in a game before. Thank you, my friend.

Audacia
Last edited by Audacia on 02 Dec 2020, 15:37, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby V » 14 Oct 2020, 16:20

Hi All,

I don’t usually write much in AAR’s but here’s a bit on that one. A remarkable game in many ways, if not the outcome.

1901 started with the usual review of potential allies & everyone was “S01 friendly”, but a strange issue arose.
Austria forbade the Moscow to Ukraine standard opening when pursuing Rumania in Fall. I can’t agree to that, so I said that it’s non negotiable & Austria didn’t like it. The S01 forcing of Galicia (instead of bouncing) became a likely possibility.
Russia has only one recourse (alliance with Turkey) so I raised the issue with Turkey & committed to an RT alliance (if available) before the S01 deadline. I haven’t done that in years.
The moves to Black Sea & Armenia were Turkey’s idea, while Russia takes Rumania in Spring. A daring ruse that worked splendidly. Austria was done by F01. Russia has to be “useful” in the RT alliance, otherwise they get stabbed, so it was full blast west, straight at Austria.

In the north I had just one fleet available in 1901/2, so couldn’t influence much once bounced in Sweden. I saw no gain in getting in the middle of an England/Germany fight for Scandinavia. In the hope of appeasing Germany I didn’t contest Scandinavia.
This backfired because France stabbed England & Germany mopped up Scandinavia without significant opposition from England either. Germany moved east & despite subsequent efforts to fight in the north, as soon as England joined Germany in 1905 it was a lost cause.

Better progress was made in the south as has already been well described & Italy became the primary target after Austria. We got as far as Venice in 1904 which was pleasing, but again French play foiled subsequent progress, by exhibiting zero interest in dividing Italy with Turkey.

In 1905 France can be seen to be in a wonderful position everywhere & Russia was essentially waiting to see what he does?
There’s no northern breakthrough feasible against EG, nor in the south against FI. They hold a 20 vs 14 unit advantage & everyone is committed in battle, except France, who has freedom to act almost anywhere. He proposes a draw?

Well if it’s insincere (as I believed) there’s only one way of calling him out, which is to publicly accept with rationale & if it gets denied then obviously a new (as yet unknown) scenario is on it’s way. Given the status, everyone except France can be seen to have very little motivation to deny a draw, so the finger of blame would have been pointing pretty quickly.
This is what I hoped would occur because I couldn’t believe the draw proposal was sincere & if so, the ruse would back fire on France almost immediately. It passed.

In summary, Turkey was a fantastic ally. I haven’t participated in a Juggernaut alliance that blew through to Venice in F04 for many years. Taking into account this is PDL D1 it was a remarkable attack. Given any assistance (even only the single English fleet in Norway in S05) I believe we had a serious chance of breaking the western opposition. It wasn’t to be.

Diplomacy invariably throws up the unexpected. The superb alliance forged with Turkey, in the unforeseen circumstances of S01, was a joy to play. The draw instigated & engineered by France in 1905 was also unforeseen & brought a most enjoyable game to an unlikely end. PDL has provided 4 splendid games for me in 2020, of which this was the most satisfying (despite the 6-way result). Assuming I regain my Dip appetite again by January, I’ll enjoy meeting you all again in PDL2021.
Meanwhile it’s Dip break time. I never play at Christmas, so that’s it for me this year.

I wish you all & your families a Wonderful Christmas. Living in Costa Rica it’s a fantastic time here, with parades, superb food & happy family events. I hope you all enjoy equally wonderful times. Best Regards V
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby Charleroi » 14 Oct 2020, 22:45

I may get around to writing some more detailed comments about this match (a disappointing one for me, to be sure) but in the meantime I'm posting just to keep an eye on the comments from the other participants in the match. Well played folks.
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby another » 14 Oct 2020, 23:32

V wrote:He proposes a draw?

Well if it’s insincere (as I believed) there’s only one way of calling him out, which is to publicly accept with rationale & if it gets denied then obviously a new (as yet unknown) scenario is on it’s way. Given the status, everyone except France can be seen to have very little motivation to deny a draw, so the finger of blame would have been pointing pretty quickly.
This is what I hoped would occur because I couldn’t believe the draw proposal was sincere & if so, the ruse would back fire on France almost immediately. It passed.

Why not do the same thing, but not accept the draw yourself?

Looking from the sidelines, it didn't seem like a game that had come to its strategic conclusion (though perhaps emotionally people had had enough - it did look like it had been a very tense affair!), namely, it looked like there was still something left for F & G to do. So would be interesting to hear what diplomacy had Italy and England employed, as they seem the big winners of this draw.

Also, love the RT opening (Mos H!).
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby Audacia » 15 Oct 2020, 00:03

Charleroi wrote:I may get around to writing some more detailed comments about this match (a disappointing one for me, to be sure) but in the meantime I'm posting just to keep an eye on the comments from the other participants in the match. Well played folks.


Charleroi, your final move decided this game's end. The comeback kid extraordinaire. And the quality of you comms with me was incredible. My AAR had a real eastern flair to it, but know how much I enjoyed playing with you. Thank you, friend.
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby V » 15 Oct 2020, 00:07

another wrote:
V wrote:He proposes a draw?

Well if it’s insincere (as I believed) there’s only one way of calling him out, which is to publicly accept with rationale & if it gets denied then obviously a new (as yet unknown) scenario is on it’s way. Given the status, everyone except France can be seen to have very little motivation to deny a draw, so the finger of blame would have been pointing pretty quickly.
This is what I hoped would occur because I couldn’t believe the draw proposal was sincere & if so, the ruse would back fire on France almost immediately. It passed.

Why not do the same thing, but not accept the draw yourself?

Looking from the sidelines, it didn't seem like a game that had come to its strategic conclusion (though perhaps emotionally people had had enough - it did look like it had been a very tense affair!), namely, it looked like there was still something left for F & G to do. So would be interesting to hear what diplomacy had Italy and England employed, as they seem the big winners of this draw.

Also, love the RT opening (Mos H!).


You have a point that in secret ballot you can lie in public press & not actually accept the draw in reality, but what are the feasible outcomes?
France does accept, but the draw doesn’t pass. Now we’re in a “he said, she said situation” that serves little purpose. If French integrity is believed by his allies then you just look like an arsehole & invite aggression, which wasn’t the purpose of testing the ruse.
France doesn’t accept the draw & you’ve now failed to demonstrate anything because you didn’t either. Doing that is plain stupid & it’s better not to respond to the draw proposal in any way, simply letting it expire.

You’re right there was much that “could” have happened other than a 6-way & Russia was very interested in what France had in mind, because there was sure to be opportunity resulting somewhere. However if what France had in mind was “absolutely nothing” then there’s no mileage in screwing around. Clearly he has board control in 1905, but if he chooses not to exercise it in any way, so be it. I wanted that Juggernaut to go all the way home, but at 20 vs 14 it doesn’t happen unless one participant in the west takes a chance. Realistically that call lay in Paris & he said no.
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Re: PDL 2020 Division 1 Sept C AAR

Postby Groo » 15 Oct 2020, 08:27

Marking for later.

But to answer anothers question, I did yell "jugger" from 02 basically. it seemed crucial because at times G almost bought Turkish story, which I never did because I myself like to open aggro vs R as Turkey and then translate it into jugger. However I probably would have gone for a stab in fall 04 in her place which would open up the game...the decision to stick to the jugg only cemented the board position.

I was very close with G and F the whole game and I like to think I played "glue" in FGI, influencing both not to take their guard down vs RT.
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