Since 2005

Fun traditions and fierce competition In the Chicagoland Area

An online resource for Diplomacy Strategies

using Sum of Squares Scoring

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facts about us

#Season 13

Our Diplomacy league is the most active in North America. We average more than two league games per month in addition to Tournament play. We score all of our games using the Sum of Squares scoring system, and each player's best three scores count toward the season standings. We are known for our fierce competition, strong traditions, upstanding character and trustworthiness, and the propensity for Turkey to open to Armenia.

 

The Weekly Weasel -- Week of 2/6

THE WEEKLY WEASEL IS NOT A TIDE AD

But people who play variants are 500% more likely to eat Tide Pods.

THE CODCON COMETH
While a formal-er announcement is coming from Tournament Director Bryan Pravel soon, CODCON is coming up April 14-15, which means CODCON puns will likewise be back at full force. Full details and sign up info incoming.

DIP, TABLE FOR TWO
Two games on the docket for next week. On Sunday, we’ve got a house game up in Evanston at Pete McNamara’s place. Then we have a special Tuesday edition of Red Wednesday due to the holiday. Still need two for Tuesday- sign up and bring a date, because nothing says love quite like Diplomacy.

FIVE FACTORS>FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES
Speaking of relationships, WEASTATS has begun a deep dive into the Five Factors, or the five measures of a quality diplomacy measure. The First Factor, Explosiveness, has been published in three parts. Hit up the Wise Old Weasel to find out your league championship compatability.

SOPHOMORIC DUES SHAMING RETURNS
People who don’t pay their dues wear sweaters with stains on them. Mr. Rogers doesn’t even like them.

Pay your dues. Make Mr. Rogers proud.

 

THE WISE OLD WEASEL-- EXPLOSIVENESS PART 3

The Wise Old Weasel's Five Factors

Factor 1: Explosiveness

Part 3

OK, TELL ME ALREADY- HOW DO I GET AN EXPLOSIVE SCORE?
Fascinating question, and a great opportunity for me to expand a bit on the mission of The Five Factors. They are softcore analytics, meant to provide data points that help evaluate players and provide benchmarks on what makes a good (Caboosey) or great (Toppy) player. While TFF should reveal what a player’s strategic goals should be, the mechanisms to make those goals happen are a bit harder to find and require other forms of qualitative research. In other words, the Five Factors are meant to show you WHERE to improve, not how.

SO THE FIVE FACTORS ARE LIKE A REPORT CARD, BUT WITHOUT THE SPECIFIC FEEDBACK.
That’s… actually pretty accurate. This article will show you what Explosive games look like. I’ll throw some suggestions as to how to be more explosive at the end of this- I’m hoping we can discuss further in the comments.

OF COURSE IT WAS ACCURATE. NOW WHAT AM I AIMING FOR?
Well, alter ego, I created a cheat sheet for how to get the score you’re looking for. This will be really handy for people who are on the bubble heading into Weasel Pyle.

Hit the jump to know your target for each type of explosive game.

Winter blasts shithole countries

Winter blasted the shithole countries of pre-World War I Europe Wednesday night at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square as the Ice Queen rolled to an impressive board-top. Two-time defending Weasel of the Year and reigning Bull Weasel Brandon Fogel posted his best result of the young Season 13 campaign in reclaiming his familiar spot atop the league standings.

Game No. 360 ended by time limit after the Fall 1906 turn in the following center counts:

THE WISE OLD WEASEL-- EXPLOSIVENESS PART 2

The Wise Old Weasel's Five Factors

Factor 1: Explosiveness

Part 2

DOES PREVENTING BIG SCORES MATTER?
In our last installment, we established that players that make Royale have some degree of explosiveness- an ability to have good (40+ point) or great (50+ point) games. While league winners and Royale participants are about equally likely to top, league winners are much more likely to have explosive games.

In football, the sport that inspired this series, there are two aspects to explosiveness: having it on offense and preventing it on defense. Both are critical and positive factors in achieving victory.  This installment evaluates whether this is also true for diplomacy- does having an ability to stop big scores make you more likely to win the league?

The data says that Royale participants and League winners are better at preventing explosiveness. As we’ll discuss more later, figuring out the “why” behind that is a lot more difficult than it is on the “offensive side of the ball.”

NICE SETUP, JAKE. CAN YOU STOP TEASING THE RESULTS AND GET ON WITH IT?
Hey, cool it, bolded alter ego! I get metagaming makes you cranky. Just hit the jump and we’ll get into the practical data.

Hit the jump to see just the role of (explosiveness) defense in winning championships.

Scout's honor

The Weasels introduced the South Loop to our brand of bar room Diplomacy last Thursday at the Scout, a popular watering hole at 1301 S. Wabash. The event--dubbed Thunder Thursday in honor of the Norse God of Thunder--was the first offering of our new standing game in the Bar Room Brawl Series. Thunder Thursdays will be held on the fourth Thursday of every month, complementing Red Wednesdays, which will continue to be held on the second Wednesday of every month at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square.

The inaugural Thunder Thursday, our club's 359th game, ended by time limit after the Fall 1906 turn in the following center counts:

THE WISE OLD WEASEL -- EXPLOSIVENESS PART 1

The Wise Old Weasel's Five Factors

Factor 1: Explosiveness

Part 1

GOOD LORD THERE IS A LOT OF CONTEXT BEFORE THIS ACTUAL CONTENT

Sorry, rookie Weasel alter-ego, I think its worth it. In 2016, the Sneak decided that one of our club goals should be developing championship-caliber players. That led to a lot of debate this past year over exactly how to evaluate Diplomacy players. This reminded me of Bill Connelly’s Five Factors that he uses to evaluate college football team -- read more about them here. The Wise Old Weasel is going to define Diplomacy’s Five Factors, then look at how important each is to winning championships.

First up, we’ve got explosiveness, aka scoring bigly. In Part 1, we’re going to take a look at how explosive players need to be to make Royale and/or win the league. Part 2 will evaluate whether explosiveness defense is valuable, and Part 3 will look into the mechanics of what makes a game explosive.

For part 1, we take a look at the league (will come back to tournaments at a later date). We’ve developed profiles for your typical Royale qualifier and your typical Top Weasel. As always, all stats pulled are since we moved to the One True Scoring System in 2011.

INTRIGUING. SO WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO SCORE BIGLY?

In a typical season, there are about 35 boards. 54% of games feature a score of 40+, while 26% of games feature a score of 50+. We’re defining 40+ as a good score because in lands you in the upper half of tops (ish). We’re defining 50+ as a “great” score because it lands you in the upper quartile of tops (ish). 

Find out how explosive you need to be to make Royale and win the league after the jump.

Tagged under

Goat, or G.O.A.T.?

Jake "The Goat Lover" Langenfeld made it two for two on the young Season 13, topping his second board in as many chances last night at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square. While his score wasn't quite as dramatic as the one he posted at November's Red Wednesday, the top was every bit as impressive.

Langenfeld drew England in a triangle with his mentor, Ali Adib, in Germany and veteran traveler Brian Shelden in France. The Russian? Only Bull Weasel Brandon Fogel, the two-time defending Weasel of the Year.

The Goat Lover beat them all and now has twice as many tops in his past two games as he had in his first 11 with the club.

"He's enjoying his ascendance," remarked Fogel, who knows a little something about the topic. "He's become rather savvy."

Game No. 358, our second in four days, ended by time limit after the Fall 1906 turn in the following center counts:

Join these guys!

These guys put the We in Weasels. Thanks for paying your 2018 dues! Your dues-paying Weasels are...

The Weekly Weasel Accomplishes New Things

THE WEEKLY WEASEL ACCOMPLISHES NEW THINGS

But, like, for real though guys, the season is picking up and this might actually become weekly again.

BTOAB ESCAPES CARNAGE SHINING SILVER
A contingent of Weasels trekked out to Carnage for Dipcon, the American Diplomacy Championship. Bull Weasel and two-time defending Weasel of the Year Brandon “BTOAB” Fogel came home with the second place trophy, just behind champion Doug "Also the World Champ" Moore. This is a tremendous accomplishment as only one Weasel has ever won Dipcon. 

As a new club policy, Weasels who podium at a Grand Prix event will get their own interview feature here on the Weekly Weasel. Keep an eye out for that, and say congrats to the BTOAB on a job well done!

GOAT CLIMBS HIGHER AS CLOCK STRIKES 13
We’ve had two games this month that both represent personal bests for the toppers. First, goat aficionado Jake Langenfeld broke baaaaad by dropping a 51-point Turkish effort. Then, Chris Kelly broke out with a 13 dot, 62-point Austrian assault. This puts Kelly and Langenfeld as the early front men for the 2018 season.

DECK THE HALLS WITH FLEETS IN HOLLAND
Two games coming up. First on Sunday the 3rd, former World Champ Chris “Dancing Queen” Martin will be joining us at Johnny G’s abode. Then on Saturday the 9th, Matt “Guitar” Sundstrom is hosting a house game. We also usually do a Christmas bonus bar game, which I’m sure will be put on the books for Thursday the 21st if I ask Santa real nicely. Sign up here.

Hit the jump for news on the Wise Old Weasel, scoring system changes, and a crucial change to the way the club asks for dues.

...Progress is optional

As the saying goes, change is inevitable; progress is optional. We're pleased to report that your Sneak just made a change that we believe represents progress.

For the first time since League Play was established in Season 4 (2008-09), we've changed the formula for calculating cumulative scores. Fret not! We'll continue to score games using the greatest of all scoring systems, the Sum of Squares. (We adopted that change in Season 6, 2010-11.) However, effective immediately, we will no longer count only your top three scores. For Season 13 (and hopefully beyond), #AllScoresMatter.

By a vote of 4-2 on November 8, the Sneak adopted the Make All Scores Matter Act (MIASMA), which established the following formula for calculating cumulative scores:

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