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Out of moderate respect for ulytau's authority, I am creating a companion thread for people who have been eliminated from his other thread to keep arguing about grammar, ulytau's thread, and how unjust the universe is for disliking how they (yes, *we*... sigh) write.
Would anyone like to join me for some passworded 5 gunboat games? I'd like to get as many people involved as possible for some fun gunboat games not orientated on points but that are still good quality. Add your name to the list if you're interested please. All games will be anonymous and 25 hour phase length, thank you.
It takes a bit of doing to get 7 people to your house all at the same time without anyone bailing. I had another interested party show up as an alternate, in case someone bailed. I decided that, given my pre-existing experience, I would MC and answer questions and explain strategic options to players. After they've played a couple games, I will join the fray myself. Before we got started, I sent out emails to folks with their country designation (which I chose for them), links to strategy guides, and some insight on various options you have relative to the other countries, as well as posted the edi birsan vids. most of the people read the emails and/or watched the videos, which helped. I still went over the rules and questions before we got started.
I set the board up on a high table behind our couch, which is in the middle of what we'll call the great room that is our living room and kitchen. about 24x16. There are two rooms off of this one where people could confer, as well as our porch (which was good for the smokers). We had tons of food and beer and liquor. I decided on a 30 minute first turn, and then 15 minute turns thereafter, except for builds and retreats, where you have 5 minutes. To make everyone's lives easier, I wrote up a handy guide with examples for how to write out every type of order. I even made myself a little shorthand system that somewhat mirrors webdip with arrows for 'move', pluses for supports, and a circled 'c' for convoys. The result is that people wrote their orders properly, and aside from some issues about confusing borders (a denmark-> berlin). players would write down their moves, hand them to me, and then i adjudicated moves using realpolitik.
this next bit i thought was pretty clever: i would take a screencap of the results, rename the resulting image file, and drop it on to my webhost. I would point the wii's browser at that image file, and display the current game map on our flat screen tv! people could also look at it on their smartphones. this was useful to talk about the game in places other than at the board. it was also helpful in updating the board. updating the screen was the big dramatic reveal of who got what. that worked out great.
We got started around 7:30 and played until 1am. We had some delays at the end of some turns because a couple anxious players were stressing their moves. But in that time, we got to 1905 adjustments.
Much of a face to face game is about the people's respective personalities and relationships. England(f) is married to Austria(m), and Russia(f) and Italy(m) had just started dating two weeks prior. Turkey(m) once slept with Russia's sister, and France(m) is the closest thing I've met to a real live Paladin. Germany(m), Austria and Russia and I are in a band together, and France used to be, but left for grad school to be replaced by Austria.
Russia forsook her builds to go straight for germany and turkey, while I/A worked a key lepanto. E/F tore into germany. Turkey barely stayed alive, with his home centers, but surrounded by austria and italy, who were just about go at each other's throats. Austria had gutted russia (who had just gone out at 1905), but italy still owned serbia and bulgaria. Italy stabbed first, but we didn't see the result, due to it being 1:30 am and we were all very drunk and tired. France had just started to push into the med after Germany fell (also right around the same time as russia), while england continued to pressure north and east, eventually against austria.
areas to improve before next game: i need a better looking adjudicator. realpolitik looks like crap. also, i am not sure about its rule system because i saw some moves fail that shouldn't have (a unit moving from berlin to silesia, with no bounce, and he wasn't dislodged or anything, failed.). I just went in and edited the map to do what I think it should have and moved on. I am considering having people make accounts on webdip, and they play a live gunboat game, using the site as the framework for adjudication and whatnot. I could just point the wii at the gameboard and hit refresh. i am concerned that logging in, entering orders and logging out, at a single machine (for some players don't have smartphones) would be cumbersome. i need to use a timer on my phone to keep track of turns, not the microwave. i was often out of earshot of the timer and turns frequently dripped over their limit a little bit. i need to know how to demonstrate moves on the physical game board. how do you arrange and move the pieces to show supports or convoys or whatever? my board has these cardboard pieces that are bullshit, so i can't turn them on their side or whatever.
overall, it went really well, and everyone's eager to play again.
Player dynamics on WebDip are similarly heavy, just not as apparent. Thucydides is married to Eden. Krellin and TC just started dating two weeks prior. Putin once slept with Krellin's sister, and abgemacht is the closest thing I've meet to a real live paladin. FortKnox, King Atom, Krellin, TC, and I are in a band together, and MadMarx used to be, but he was replaced by Eden.
I would never play with my friends F2F.....okay well, I might try, but here's how its going to go.
Two years of mild progress and then "Everyone kill goldfinger, don't listen to what he says" It happens in Risk, it happens in Catan...pretty much any game that involves choosing one side over another.
http://diplomacycast.com/ --> they talk about hosting FtF in some of their episodes (and listening to them is fun anyways) http://www.thenadf.org/ --> homepage of the north american hobby, with all the FtF tournaments listed. JimTheGrey --> PM this guy to get infos about FtF organizers in your area.
What is this I don't even. It's entirely too legit for me to comprehend in this tired stupor, but I decided to try it anyway, so I picked the Huron. The Iroquois finally fall, only twenty years and 50 rebellions later...