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Finished: 02 Feb 19 UTC
Featured Private Apocolipstick
2 days /phase (slow)
Pot: 4501 D - Autumn, 1910, Finished
Draw-Size Scoring, Hidden draw votes
Game drawn

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Chat archive

31 Jan 19 UTC Vashta,

There's no way I'm ever moving anything at France from here forward, so I hope you will enter your draw vote as soon as Russia disbands.

Plus, you can bet that Swordsman and I will quadruple-check our orders so there will be no misorders.

Even if you take all of Italy and Tunis, France will still have 5 units left and we have the line set as follows:

A Bur (or A Gas) sup hold Mar
Por sup hold Spa
My EngCh sup hold MAO.

Ruh and Kie sup hold Mun
Bal sup hold Ber
Norw sup hold Stp.
31 Jan 19 UTC Already disbanded.
31 Jan 19 UTC Thank you for those speedy orders, Magnetic. Thank you also for stepping in to sub in this game. Look forward to playing with you again soon.

My draw vote is up.
31 Jan 19 UTC My draw vote is also up.
31 Jan 19 UTC Magnetic, you're a mensch. Thank you very much for picking up this game with us. And thanks to everyone who played. Absolutely a blast, one of the most fun games I have ever played. I would play with any of you again, I may have more to say soon.
31 Jan 19 UTC A lot of stuff happened this game that was beyond my control and I can't take all the credit for getting into this draw. But I do want to point out to any observers of this game the power of my favorite defensive strategy: "Take Yourself Hostage." As chluke wrote me in a private message, the way I encouraged Turkey to come up to the stalemate line (bypassing the Italian centers) did me a lot of good in deterring attacks on me. I've wormed my way into MANY draws with this plan, and in it worked here as well. I will write about this strategy on my blog when I get around to it.
31 Jan 19 UTC holy CRAP did this game last almost 1 year????
31 Jan 19 UTC Well I guess....we had lots of pauses.
31 Jan 19 UTC Yeah it’s onky 1910
31 Jan 19 UTC Only
31 Jan 19 UTC Well played everyone. A well deserved outcome for the three of you.

I do wonder if it would have played differently for me without that giant pauses. Playing as GER in a WT relies on momentum and likability as logic will always say that you end up getting cut out. Its hard to carry momentum over pauses that last several weeks. I don't want to sound like sour grapes, as the game was fun - but to me it changed considerably after that pause. It started as something unique, and moved towards a typical high pot game where careful play leads to an inevitable three way draw. Maybe I was fighting an uphill battle knowing swordsy and chluke are both very strong tactical players (where I am less of that ilk), but I'll keep using the pause as an excuse to make me feel better about the result.
31 Jan 19 UTC Nice game, all!

Thank you for subbing in Magnetic. What you call your failure was actually my own failure of not doing a better job enrolling you from the start, and convincing you that I was the only player who truly wanted you to stay alive (much much longer at least), once Yonni left. Plus, you took over a very difficult position.

Vashta, congrats on making a 3way draw in a game loaded with top players! Your Russia stab totally surprised me, but it worked out for you.

Swordsman, your press style annoyed the hell out of me (but all's fair in love, war and Diplomacy lol ;p. On the plus side, you've got one of the strongest tactical minds that I've ever played with!

Ghug, you may be the funniest player I've played with :D . Sadly, did not get much substance in with you, since you "threw the solo to France" in 1902-1905, perhaps a bit prematurely?? :\

Tom. Mr. Zen! You're definitely the calmest and most enjoyable person I've ever played with. (True, the extended pauses, and the Yonni drop out, really did change the flows several times. But that was also another interesting war element to deal with.)

Yonni, know one works harder than you. You never gave up, kept working every angle no matter what happened, and never let your chin down. I see why you're a top top player!

Ezio, thanks for playing too. Rough being Austria sometimes, especially when Russia and Italy are back-stabbing liars ;) .
31 Jan 19 UTC You know the game lasted a long time when I forgot that Ezio was in it!
31 Jan 19 UTC I think my "throw" to France made perfect sense given the situation. I wasn't making headway with Yonni and really had no other position to negotiate from with Vash, as much as I pretended I did. I succeeded in destabilizing things, and honestly think Swordsman had a better shot sticking with me than he did eliminating me as he did, but such is life. My biggest qualm with the whole thing was doing it despite Swordsman's refusal to even talk to me for the turns leading up to it. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth that someone can play like that and still get their lazy draw in a game of this caliber.

Congrats to our survivors, and apologies to Ezio.
31 Jan 19 UTC For what it’s worth ghug, I deliberately ignored your press in order to make you more desperate and to maintain my credibility. I was messaging everyone else a lot, and it was just you who I didn’t message because I was attacking you.

I read a lot of psychology-type books, and I had recently read that ignoring someone can cause them to bid-against-himself and thus increase your bargaining position. Also, I have read before on many Diplomacy guides that it can be wise to stop responding to the press of someone you are attacking (because you can just anger them, and it is better to say nothing than to lie to someone for no direct reason).

I decided to follow that strategy during this game, and I got the result that I wanted. Once you made the offer to me that I wanted to hear, I started messaging you again. And because our credibility had maintained, we believed each other too (I betrayed you, but you did think I was telling the truth).

Since we started this game, I have done it at least once more and had a similar result. So even though you say it was upsetting and frustrating that I did this to you, I would do it again. I think it is a powerful technique of manipulation to go silent against someone you are at war with until you’re really ready to make a deal.

Maybe you call this draw lazy, but I put an enormous amount of work into ensuring myself a place in this draw. Once chluke all-our attacked me, it was not at all easy or assured that I would make it to the end of this game. To be clear, I might have gone for a solo win hypothetically (I always do when I can), but once I got attacked by chluke I was playing for a draw.

I made all sorts of exchanges with Vashta so that I had the space to defend myself from chluke, and the tactical situation of having to fight England without proper fleet placement was quite a challenge. I also had to make sure I could throw vashta the game if needed and set that up (a strategy that chluke said was a big reason he had to draw with me). I worked with Magnetic to help and encouraging him to attack chluke, to my immense benefit. And early on I helped to set up a western triple that gave me the free hand to eliminate you without any direct help from another player, a feat that I am still impressed with myself over and have been asked about several times by players who observed this game.

So this whole game, a lot of things went my way but not just by coincidence. I don’t consider this draw or anything about this game “lazy” and I think my decision to ingore your messages for a little while was a smart one. I also annoyed the hell out of chluke, but I did get him to leave me alone eventually.
31 Jan 19 UTC Also, Tom, now that the game is over, I can reveal that chluke and I had discussing backstabbing you from the beginning of the alliance and went back and forth about it every turn. Maybe you already inferred that, but I just wanted you to know in case that helps you learn anything.

Also everyone: in autum 1902 when I got Tunis, nobody had leaked ghugs orders to me. I just made a good guess — and then ACTED like someone had leaked the orders (vashta) in order to make it seem like vashta was unreliable and possibly upset ghug with vashta enough that it would mess up their alliance.
31 Jan 19 UTC And I was Turkey
31 Jan 19 UTC For what it's worth, I think it's incredibly stupid to ignore someone entirely.

I chose to work with you out of necessity of the board state, and nearly didn't at all because your press strategy, which struck me as some combination of cowardice and a gunboater out of his depth, irked me more than the lies of my other neighbors. A more vengeful player probably doesn't give you what I did, and it's really not hard to maintain credibility with a player with variations on "no" and "it doesn't make sense for me to change directions".

In my mind, your draw was absolutely lazy. Vash did enough to benefit from the Western Triple, which isn't the most difficult when you're Turkey, but it wasn't particularly easy to get Yonni and I fighting, and he can't be faulted much for failing to break the triple earlier to pave the way for his own solo when nobody else could do that to save himself. Chluke looked in the driver's seat of the triple for much of its existence, and I got the impression that he was always actively angling for more than what he ended up with and doing his best to keep the opposite side of the board in disarray so the triple could advance. You got the draw you played for all game. That's lazy.
31 Jan 19 UTC gg everyone.
31 Jan 19 UTC Eh you just sound bitter ghug. You're criticizing my strategic choices as if they didn't work, and seem not to care for what I revealed to you after the game.

I understand that you felt that way at the time, but there's more to what transpired than what you saw. I exchanged enormous amounts of press -- just not with you. And I obtained everything I desired from our exchanges.

I don't agree that I would have been advantaged by working with you longer; I think I would have been backstabbed successfully by England if I had not finished you off. I wanted the builds to deter or be able to fight off an English attack, which worked.

I wasn't playing for a draw with Turkey until England attacked me, and after that the draw did not just fall into my lap.
31 Jan 19 UTC Obviously I'm bitter, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong. Vash frustrated me thoughout the game as well, but I'm not faulting his play for it.

I don't see anything in your play that suggests you even tried to solo, and you were a France with a strong start and an early foothold in Tunis and Italy. You spent the whole game playing for a three way draw, regardless of who it was with (you've claimed that you wanted the WT draw, but you've also claimed you were planning to stab Tom the whole game), and you were one of the people with the best chance to make something more of the game. There are a lot of ways to play this game, and playing for the safe draw is one of the few where I don't see any merit.

As for the not talking, I'm just telling you it's a bad strategy, and that you shouldn't take this game as evidence that it works. I just wanted you to know in case that helps you learn anything.
31 Jan 19 UTC Thank you ghug that’s very thoughtful. It’s hard not to sound sarcastic when saying something nice in a written message but I mean that sincerely.
31 Jan 19 UTC Good game all.

(Sorry if this is a bit preachy, I don't have really that many reactions specific to this game, as in this game's press, moves, etc.)

Most of my story of this game doesn't actually involve me being IN this game; this game is older than my account. I remember when my friend told me to make a Diplomacy account. I looked at the site and found this game. I thought "Huh, wow! Seems like they've got a real community here." and joined the site. This game and the 85,000 word google doc in particular struck me as interesting. If I recall, it was just the beginning of 1905, so Ezio was dead and it was evident swordsman was going to dominate for most of the game. I've spectated since then, and this game has been really fun (and nervewracking.) From the courtcase to the house... this game has really seen a lot of real life stuff!

The game paused over the summer, and it mainly left my mind. I spent a TON of time improving my Diplomacy skills I checked it every so often, and when chluke especially as I recall wanted to restart the game (wasn't it your new year's resolution?), I got really excited! I wanted to see how this game to end up.

Yonni was the one to get the game paused for a long time, I think, so I saw there was some pressure to unpause but he wasn't responding. When I heard that he might be replaced, I kind of got excited. I thought: this might be my chance! This is the biggest game I have beared witness to in my history of Diplomacy. I emailed the mods because I thought I might be able to join! After a bit of back-and-forth, I got the password of the game. I was thrilled when I got in. Absolutely ecstatic, no matter how bad my position was. I knew what I thought I had to do: I thought I had to convince the rest of the players of the imminent solo threat. I chose chluke because he was in the lead for supply centers, and the press I got from swordsman and Vashta were encouraging me in the right direction. So, although I thought there might have been more advantages in doing an ER vs a FT (don't know how it would go), I chose the other option. Although I did not succeed in this game, I have learned a lot since I joined, and I learned a lot from this game.

If there's ever a "second Apocolipstick", let me know. Although I don't like to bet a lot of coins, I'd be happy to take part. And next time, I'll be better.
01 Feb 19 UTC Magnetic, was there anything I could have offered you, or said differently, to get you to ally with me and fight back Turkey, or had you 100% made up your mind before our first press to ally with F/T?

I feel like I maybe took for granted and assumed that you knew Turkey and France wanted to eliminate you for a 3way EFT (like Yonni knew), and that I have should have done a better job trying to figure out how I could have won you over.
01 Feb 19 UTC Vashta, how come you never took my 2way offers seriously throughout the game?

Do you think 2ways are just facades for solo attempts? Did you not think I was sincere about working towards one in a balanced and mutually safe way?
01 Feb 19 UTC That's a good question. I had done some reading up on the 3-way and also obviously I had come in with Rumania lost, and genuinely, you were the first person I really got into press with extensively. I was locked into working with you, but what really convinced me otherwise was the primarily French diplomacy that painted you as a direct solo threat, and you were going to go straight through me and Tom to do so, and without Vashta's help, I was doomed. Maybe the goal was something else from swordsman, but that's what I got. Fear is a much stronger emotion IF it is subtle, so that's what did it for me. And when you told me "Now I let Turkey eliminate you", even though now I totally understand that that kind of stuff happens to people, I know you are one of the best Diplomacy players on the site, so it made me that much warier of you. That's what convinced me to side against you, and coupled with the fact that you were the SC leader on paper since June or something, that was why.

And not my question, but I'm a big fan of two-way draws. I also like to draw. (Your convincing was quite good, especially referencing my draw rate, chluke.)

The issue with two-ways, though, is greed. When I say I want to do a two-way, I stick to it no matter what, but the human condition ensures that you CANNOT predict the other player, and with it being Diplomacy, I can't count on it. That's why I've only pulled off one, and many a time I've been betrayed by my close ally.
01 Feb 19 UTC I reached a 2-way draw as G/A in gunboat
01 Feb 19 UTC gameID=212705
01 Feb 19 UTC Yeah, even though I had the friendly recent moves to give War and Mos back to Russia to back up my argument, I think Swordsman out-Diplomacied and out-pressed me with you, Magnetic. Props to Swordsman there.

Once you went at me and Berlin and Munich on your first move, while removing your front from Turkey, I saw you as too weak to defend from Turkey any longer, so that's when I said I'll let Turkey eliminate you now (which was coming whether I said it or not, and I could no longer do anything about). Before that move, you and Tom could have taken back Tri and/or Bud, and had a fighting chance against Turkey, even if Rumania was lost.
01 Feb 19 UTC That's a good point that I forgot. What inevitably decided it for me, before everything else, was Tom. I wanted to work with you and had it set in to move to Bud because I thought that while you had Tom, he would move to Trieste. However, they were DEAD set on defending themselves.