198461. Dark Side of the Moon AAR

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Re: 198461. Dark Side of the Moon AAR

Postby edmgrim » 11 Jan 2022, 20:49

’07 and ’08 – Best described as a breakdown of communications

Sorry this installment has been delayed. I’m going to have to make this final installment quick. Going more from memory that from referring to communications A lot happened in the final two years and the final outcome was likely affected more that some of us may have hoped.

What went right -- 07

France and I finally seemed to be getting on the same page. Entering into ’07, we were in agreement that a 2-way was in our future and we were negotiating a “peaceful” transfer of centers so that France could proceed with the domination of The Med and Balkans while I took over Western Europe and the remainder of Russia.

We were hedging our bets by keeping up communication with Austria. And while we are not exactly “lying” to him, we are not being entirely forthright with him. He is sending us proposals and France and I are responding with guarded acknowledgement. We don’t necessarily say we won’t support his proposals but we don’t promise to accommodate him.

France and are, if not incredulous, certainly perplexed that Austria is not seeing through our veiled responses. We both agree that A,I,T need to get their act together and jointly do everything in their power to stall France’s incursion.

Instead, France has his way and takes another Italian center while I take Austria’s Warsaw.

At the same time, Austria takes Venice, but Turkey and Austria are trading centers in The Balkans. The net result is that Austria remains at 7, Italy drops to 1, and Turkey gains a center (and tactical advantage over Austria.

In ’08 Turkey is going to approach us about a 3-way with him.

And Austria is going to send me a furious message accusing me of being a slimy player and one with whom he will never ally with again (if he knows it is me). For my part, well, first of all, This is Dipolomacy. Secondly, for all but three seasons (1 ½ years) we were if not enemies, certainly not allies. And even for the time when we were exchanging strategies the hints of distrust were clear in our messages. Thirdly, I am not the one who stabbed all three of the powers he had, at one point, allied with. First, he stabbed Russia, then he stabbed Turkey, and finally he turned on Italy.

Me, I was always loyal to France. And I would likely have remained favorably inclined to Italy if he had not stabbed France (and then imploded). Austria was always, at best, a means to an end and a possible hedge if France and I became skeptical about pulling off the two-way.

When we last left things off, an incredulous Austria was wondering how I managed to convince Germany to do my bidding. We now see the answer both from my perspective as well as RedCandle’s. Thanks RedCandle!

What went wrong -- ’07 and ‘08

Christmas and New Years rolled in. And France became distracted by real life. He asked for a pause but (at least) one player refused to allow it. (We suspect it was Italy – but who really cares?) In any case, seeds of doubt start sprouting in my mind. Is France being genuine about the distractions at home or is this gamesmanship in an effort to get me to leave myself vulnerable to a stab that will take him to 18 in one turn?

Meanwhile. Talks with Turkey are heating up. We have abandoned Austria now and are stringing Turkey along. Anything he can do to help us (France and I) to 34 is worth trying.

Turkey, on the other hand certainly sees the 2-way forming, but is pointing out that France has the inside track to the solo. He is pushing hard for me to stab France before it is too late. As for me, I am replying that the only way I stab France is if he, Austria, and Italy get their act together. I am not about to turn on my ally in a misguided effort to slow him down if France can get 18 without even paying me more than a second thought.

Spring ’08 proceeds with France begging me to hold off on taking Holland for a season. And this is where things begin to go wrong. Between Turkey’s sweet nothings, France’s change in communication practices, and

  • a move to Gascony instead of Paris (vacating Brest)
  • Marseille to Burgundy instead of Piedmont
  • And Belgium staying instead of moving to Picardy

The doubts from Turkey begin to sprout

Between the spring and Fall turns, Turkey pushes hard. I need to invade The Channel, MAO and take Holland in Fall of the solo will be France’s. I remain cautious and reach out to France, all but pleading with him to give me something to hang my hot on. Instead, I get silence from him until about 5 hours before deadline, when (at about 5:00 local time – about 40-minutes from deadline) I unexpectedly awaken from my slumber and check my messages to see that France is proposing some changes to the orders we had previously negotiated (the orders shown above except for Burgundy are not included in those proposals, I might add).

That does it. I send an irate reply to France pointing out that the timing of his message could not have been more poorly timed. I accuse him of gamesmanship, deliberately waiting to send the message for when he knew I would be asleep so that he could use the excuse of my not seeing the message for justifying an “accidental” stab.

Most significantly, I change my orders and move in to MAO and The Channel Along with making an all-out assault on Holland instead of convoying to Norway for my originally planned progression into Russia.

Then I go back to sleep.

When I awaken, I see a three-way has been proposed by Turkey. I agree to it with the expectation that France will decline – He and I had been talking for at least three years that any talk of 3-ways was dependent on his vote since he consistently had the upper hand.

I send France a message telling him the same – feel free to decline the 3-way and assure him that I am still on board for the 2-way.

Meanwhile, France tells me Turkey has turned on me in messages to him: “England is stabbing you…. He is going for the solo!” (I paraphrase….don’t know the actual message.)

The breakdown in communications has fractured the trust France and I had built for 8 years and in less than 12 hours’ time, Turkey has weaseled his way into a shared victory neither Franc or I had wanted. Well done, Nat20!
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Re: 198461. Dark Side of the Moon AAR

Postby edmgrim » 11 Jan 2022, 21:04


First of all, it was a great game with (mostly) a great group of players. I enjoyed the experience even if I was a little disappointed with the way things broke down in the last 24-hours of the game.

This was one of the few times when I actually saw my way to a solo (on at least three occasions) and made the conscious decision not to go for it, not because I was too timid, but because I felt a true allegiance to my ally. France, I would NEVER HAVE STABBED YOU even if I was doing things to protect myself from your stab. Of course, I also saw France's way to a solo, probably as early as '03.

In fact, I was talking to a friend (not on PlayDip) with whom I play a lot of F2F. I was commenting about this game, (in generalities) about the fact that I am absolutely un-repentant about stabbing everything from my best friends to complete strangers, beginners or veterans, in any F2F game I participate in. The reality is that in F2F games when he and I are both playing, neither of us win because the rest of the powers make it their singular objective to make sure we get destroyed (regardless of where we are on the map). But in games where only one of us are on the board, we have an almost perfect record of winning. (I have a strict policy that in F2F, there can only be one winner).

I hope we meet again some time. Not sure when that will be as I find myself with limited bandwidth at the moment. But if any of you wish to do an "invitational" or are starting a game and want me to look it up, feel free to reach out.

One last thing -- I have reached out to ashower (original Italy) to let him know the game has concluded. Have not heard anything from him. I hope he is OK.

edmgrim -- out (but still around).
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Re: 198461. Dark Side of the Moon AAR

Postby Dinamo » 11 Jan 2022, 21:46

Just a quick final message to round things off. My message a couple hours before the deadline wasn't an attempt on my part to be sly and find an excuse to stab England, it was, unfortunately real-life and the holiday period getting in the way. I'm sure if the pause had been accepted things would have turned out differently.

I also had no plan to stab England as I felt that we had worked well together and both deserved to share the points in the end. Unfortunately I wasn't sure how much time I'd have to focus on the game at the beginning of the year so rather rashly accepted the draw.

Overall an enjoyable game. Good luck to everyone in future games.
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