While the rest of the country celebrated America’s independence from Britain, John Gramila was busy subjugating Europe as England in Game No. 143, played July 3 at Dan Burgess’ home in Downers Grove. The solo was the third for England in club history and the eighth overall. The victory also punched Gramila’s ticket to the Weasel Royale club championship game.
The suply center chart is here. It, of course, only tells part of the story. For the rest, we’ll need to hear from the players. Please share your comments below!
Next up for the Weasels is another Guthrie’s game tomorrow night, beginning at 6:15. And we’ll wrap up a banner week with a third game at Peter Lokken’s home in Chicago’s Old Town neighborhood on Saturday, beginning at 11 a.m. We need a player or two for that one, so sign up here.
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Throughout the game, I wanted to get armies on the mainland, following the advice of a Diplomacy podcast (DiplomacyCast) on England. S01 Mike( Germany) proposed a Western Triple, and I was happy to agree and securely take Norway. Adam told me Belgium was up for grabs, and whoever was in position should take it. I talked to the board, trying to instigate against Matt (Russia) and give myself a clear direction to head. I asked (Craig) Italy to move to Piedmont, and he told me that he wouldn’t, but then did, which I was happy to see. Adam had no say on Belgium with his armies in Gascony and Spain, and I offered Mike no contest in Belgium if he built 3 armies. He agreed, bounced Matt in Sweden, and built 3 armies. I also built an army, hoping 1) to keep Adam focused on the South, and unconcerned about a threat from me 2) be able to get multiple armies on the mainland in the upcoming year.
Next spring (02) I walked into Sweden unopposed, convoying an army into Norway. In the fall, my second armies walked to Finland and moved into Norway while Mike was pushing into Silesia and Prussia. It took a couple years to push my armies into Moscow, but once I got a third army in StP I felt comfortable and was eyeing my solo prospects.. The East coalesced in the face of the triple around 04, and to counter this Mike and I stabbed Adam in 04, then I stabbed Mike in 05 taking Warsaw and convoying into Belgium. I didn’t have the fleets in position to make a really effective attack, so I struggled with Mike for 3 years. I had been proposing draws from ’05 to ’09, which kept being voted down (I suspect by Matt and Don), or vetoed outright by Don (Turkey).
I had been kicked out of Warsaw and Moscow in 07 by an RT alliance that started out as a non-agression pact, then moved into a solid alliance by 04 to face down Mike’s and my armies knocking on Venice and Sev (with Mike in Galacia!). At that point, I didn’t really see any solo prospects until I got into Tunis with Adam’s blessing in 07, who I hadn’t attacked in a couple years as I was occupied with Germany. I didn’t expect to hold Tunis because there were 3-4 Turkish fleet at that point and my closest fleet was a year away, which I promptly sailed down South. By ’09, Mike was down to three, and I felt confident that I would be able to pick up Munich and Berlin in the next couple years, so I started sending extra fleets South in the hope of holding Tunis. Don’s fleets were not yet in position, and my second fleet had made it to the Tyrhennian in ’09 or ’10, forcing Don to coastal crawl along Italy. Adam started working against me in the fall of 11, but in the spring he convoyed into Tuscany with my support, preventing Don from pushing his fleets forward, and then in F11 Don misordered fleet from Naples to Rome, further stymieing his advance. My third (vital) fleet was able to get into Wes in Fall ’11, so I eventually fell back to NAF, Wes and Tun where I was able to dislogde Adam’s fleet from GoL to Piedmont and not give up Wes. With support from a 4th fleet arriving in MAO, I was able to take Mar, Spain, and finally Portugal for my 18th center.
It was a really fun game, and an incredibly effective Western Triple for a couple of years that broke way across the stalemate lines. GG to everyone!
First off, congrats to John. Really well done. Going in, I should have taken a closer look at the standings. I believe was 8th, John was 9th and Mike was 11th. Like it or not, the standings can matter come July. Craig’s Italy wasn’t happy to hear about this later as he was not competing for the Royale. I’m not sure it would have made a difference, but it may have changed how he played.
Anyway, the standings needed to be considered. At least more than I did when John and Mike were EG to my Russia. I was pretty sure they were coming my way but I wasn’t in a hurry to open north. Not bright. It wasn’t until fall 01 that I made some kind of response with War-Lvn. England landed a fleet in Norway, which made me feel better. But Germany going to six and building three armies did not. EG is obviously on at that point. I got to six by dotting Austria, but I may have done better to throw everything north at that point. Seemed like another gang-up on Russia. Western Triple was happening either by plan or accident (an FI war couldn’t be turned around).
Game went on this way for a while. Turkey left me alone to try and slow down EG. That saved me, but I wasn’t much of a speed bump until England stabbed Germany. At that point, Mike had too many armies too far south to stop it. Timing a stab is never pretty, but I thought John was close to perfect. Waiting another year would have made Germany much harder to take out. That was the first of his good steps to the solo. The second was abandoning Moscow and Warsaw and getting his armies back west. I think he still had some leverage to make inroads in the west, but he wasn’t going to get any further in the east. It was going to take a lot of units to hold those two dots. Germany was still alive and anti-England, but Germany was more spread out. So the English armies backed up and went looking for greener pastures. I thought the solo was lost at this point and I think John did too. But he kept playing. Said he’d vote for the draw if he got to 15. Didn’t. Got France to face east and convoy out of Mar to Tuscany when his 18th dot was going to be Mar, Spa or Por. That and the missed chance to get more Turkish fleets in the Western Med sealed the deal. There was some guessing, but stopping him became a longshot.
Thanks to Dan for hosting and all for playing.
Wow! I walked in as a guest around ’06, to hear John whisper to me “I just need 30[%], and I’ll be happy.” I did the math and he was already at 50%. Then, after watching several draws he himself proposed get vetoed, I never thought the game would have ended this way. And poor Don, I think this would have been his best of the season, but it was all for naught. Was this game part of your quarter-life-crisis Juan?