AAR: She Double-Crossed Snuzzles!

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AAR: She Double-Crossed Snuzzles!

Postby jay65536 » 29 Aug 2019, 19:39

England: riacheslav (took over from StarkAdder in Spring 1907)
France: jay65536
Germany: DirtyHarry (3way DRAW)
Italy: mjparrett
Austria: Shyvve (3way DRAW)
Russia: AleBelly (3way DRAW)
Turkey: diophantus22

Please add post-game thoughts here.
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Re: AAR: She Double-Crossed Snuzzles!

Postby jay65536 » 29 Aug 2019, 19:40

I hope to hear from others before I post my full thoughts, but this was a pretty exciting game, at least in the opening phase, and so I hope to hear everyone's perspective!
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Re: AAR: She Double-Crossed Snuzzles!

Postby Shyvve » 29 Aug 2019, 22:29

I will get the ball rolling a bit on this one. I played as Austria.

This will be more or less a stream of consciousness recollection of events.

I recall that the very early phase of the game involved a good bit of PP discussion on "what have you been reading lately", and, surprisingly, a bit of discussion about the statistics involved in medical diagnostic testing too! So, there's that.

I do recollect France slipping into Munich on the F01 turn. And I'm pretty sure I decided early on that I was leaning towards an R/A alliance as opposed to an A/T. My early discussion with Italy led me to believe I'd be OK on that front for at least the first year. So, I risked honoring both a Gal DMZ and moving my fleet to Alb in S01. I did go with Vie-Tri to cover Trieste however. I was glad to see no Russian unit in Gal and Italy moving his A Ven to Apulia.
There had been some talk of an AIR vs T during the early phase. In S02, Italy decided his better play was to head west with his new fleet. So, R/A continued on versus Turkey. The board looked like this at end of S02, before the retreats.

Spring '02
Image

Now, fast forward a bit to the S04-F04 time frame. As best as I can reconstruct it after reviewing the messaging a bit, I believe that just after the S04 turn had resolved that Germany floated the idea of a G/R/A alliance. I'm not real clear as to who began pushing that idea though. It could have been any of us three.
However it came about, it was readily agreed. The idea was that Russia would build fleets and press them forwards in both the northern seas and the Med.
So, here is S04 before the RGA alliance formed, followed by the F04 turn after an agreement was in place to pursue it.

Spring '04
Image

Fall '04
Image

From here, it was a matter of gaining ground and reducing Italy and England.

France, played by jay, really worked the presses in this one even as he was reduced to a one or two-center power. I can recall two instances towards the late game wherein he made strong pitches to me to keep Russia friendly, to take at least Munich, and then see if I could get a solo or at the least a 2WD with Russia.
I got the impression though that similar machinations were being proffered to Russia however. And maybe even to Germany as Germany became quite strong once the GRA was in full gear.

Russia had also approached me privately at one point, after the GRA was in place and prospering, if I would be interested in pursuing a 2WD with him. I was and I laid out an optimal supply center split along with some alternative splits. Basically we'd split the board along a north-south axis (Versailles line?). Either Spain or Portugal, or both, could be taken by Russia if Austria were to get Mun and War/Sev in compensation.
Austria would take all the Turkish centers, in any scenario, and Rum.

I got feedback on it from Russia. But, my proposal for an end game configuration sat there for a while too unanswered. So I began to get cold feet on the idea. Plus, by this time, I believe Germany had gotten control of both Mar and Spa so I was a bit surrounded by G/R units. This is how things looked after the F08 turn.

Fall '08
Image

Right at the end of the game, on the last movement phase, I think I kinda irritated both Russia and Germany by supporting myself to Bohemia and also supporting myself into Rumania. I wasn't entirely sure that Russia wasn't going to nab Berlin for himself just at the end. So, I wanted to keep Russia from building. Germany was 'owed' a build I believe due to his having to sit on his home centers.
As this was a DIAS game, we knew we had to wait until England was officially eliminated before proposing any 3WD. I should say that the fact that this was DIAS, also gave me some qualms about pursuing a 2WD.

And just at the very end, as the 3WD had been proposed and accepted by Germany and myself, I sent Germany a message saying that after looking at the board a bit harder, that he and I might have a real shot at 2-way drawing this thing. Russia accepted the draw soon after I'd sent the message though. This is what the board looked like at game end.

Fall '09 Builds
Image
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Re: AAR: She Double-Crossed Snuzzles!

Postby jay65536 » 02 Nov 2019, 20:13

No one else from the West has chimed in yet with their thoughts, so I'll make my first post about the endgame, which Shyvve already discussed.

Shyvve wrote:France, played by jay, really worked the presses in this one even as he was reduced to a one or two-center power. I can recall two instances towards the late game wherein he made strong pitches to me to keep Russia friendly, to take at least Munich, and then see if I could get a solo or at the least a 2WD with Russia.
I got the impression though that similar machinations were being proffered to Russia however. And maybe even to Germany as Germany became quite strong once the GRA was in full gear

...

And just at the very end, as the 3WD had been proposed and accepted by Germany and myself, I sent Germany a message saying that after looking at the board a bit harder, that he and I might have a real shot at 2-way drawing this thing. Russia accepted the draw soon after I'd sent the message though.


Yes, I certainly did. Can't make a comeback if you don't try!

I think it's possible you misinterpreted my strategy in the endgame a bit, if you're saying you think I made the same pitch to everyone. I in fact was not doing that. My negotiations flowed out of the strategy I usually follow when I'm a small power: if no one will let me back into the game, then I prefer to punish those who are holding me down. In this game, that meant Germany. (Italy I knew would be eliminated anyway, as I tried to warn him repeatedly while he was attacking me, and England had already doomed himself with his passive play but we had established good relations once G/R stabbed him.)

I actually took a long time to make the pitch to you that you should try to advance into German territory. I didn't forget how passively you played in 1902, the first time you had a chance to come West. So I was pretty sure that you were playing for a draw including Germany, and not for a win. On that note, one thing that I am surprised to hear you say in the AAR was that you only realized as the game was ending how doable the A/G 2way would be. I had assumed you knew that the whole time! My pitch to you about taking a 2way with Russia was based on the premise that you knew you could get a 2way with Germany, but if you went for it with Russia it would be more likely you could take a solo out of the deal. And in fact, my repeated warnings to Russia that he would be in trouble if he didn't stab Germany were based on how easy I thought it would have been for you and G to carve him up in a 3-power endgame.

My initial strategy was to try to get Russia to stab Germany and make a solo push by only taking northern centers--and thereby avoiding direct conflict with you. If StarkAdder were here, he could confirm I did a LOT of trying in this regard, as part of my plan was to try to line England up to assist a Russian solo push.

Eventually, the Russian window to try to take a solo closed (also StarkAdder being booted from the game did not help). If I recall correctly, that was the point at which I came to you saying you could have a solo or 2way if you put pressure on Germany.

Germany received no such pitch. I wanted him to feel the heat from the opposite side of the board so that he'd have an incentive not to kill me.

In the end, none of this mattered as the 3way push just cruised. A very anticlimactic endgame given what I thought were some fireworks at the beginning. But in retrospect it is clear that the outcome of this game was either set from the country draw, or else determined in the first turn, when I made my biggest mistake of the game and went to the Channel. Once England decided to attack me despite my efforts to repair relations, it was set. No one other than myself (when I struck into Munich and backed off England in Fall 01) made any effort at any point to stop G/R/A from getting their way.
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