Nyuck, Nyuck, Nyuck: Kelly stooges board

In the version of history we wrote yesterday at my home in Little Italy, 1901 was the golden age of slapstick comedy. The hijinx started in Fall 1901.

First, my Austria misordered support for Albania to Greece. I ordered the support from Budapest instead of Serbia. Consequently, instead of simply being an irritant that signaled intent, Turkey’s (Chris Kelly) move to Greece denied me the center and a crucial second build.

Then, Italy (Don Glass) ordered Naples to Tunis instead of Ionian to Tunis. That left him without a build.

The final and largest mishap of 1901 came in the Winter. Russia (Nate Cockerill) had secured Rumania and Sweden, but for his builds, he wrote both a fleet and an army in St. Petersburg, so he played 1902 two short.


Larry, Moe and Curly. And Kelly poked all of them in the eye. Game No. 177 ended in Spring 1908 in the following center counts:

Austria (Jim O’Kelley): 0; 0.000 points.
England (Peter Lokken): 9; 25.796 points.
France (Aash Anand): 8; 20.382 points.
Germany (Eamon Driscoll): 0; 0.000 points.
Italy (Don Glass): 0; 0.000 points.
Russia (Nate Cockerill): 5; 7.962 points.
Turkey (Chris Kelly): 12; 45.860 points.

Check out the supply center chart here.

In addition to the misorders in the East, Fall 1901 featured some interesting moves in the West. France had supported himself into Burgundy, while Germany opened to Holland and Ruhr and Italy was in Piedmont. Anand and Driscoll both demonstrated nerves of steel. For Anand, it paid off.

While Driscoll ordered Holland S Ruhr to Belgium, Anand ordered Burgundy to Munich and Marseilles to Burgundy. Meanwhile, Lokken bounced Driscoll in Denmark. Anand’s bold move was rewarded with a second build and good position; Driscoll’s earned him an eventual early exit.

Okay, let’s hear from the players.

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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Jim O'Kelley

    Four more things from me.

    First, while an early Italian attack on Austria can pay off, more often than not, it [i]should [/i]result in both players being eliminated or at least reduced to insignificance. Unfortunately, the lure of all those centers will continue to tempt Italian players into ill-advised attacks.

    Second, while Kiel to Holland allows Germany to make a strong play for Belgium, is that desirable? I see numerous (letterous?) problems with the opening.

    a) A goal of 1901 German Diplomacy should be to get England and France fighting. Unless England opened to the Channel, you’ve reduced his options for the Fall. Bouncing you in Denmark starts to look good for him.

    b) If you do get Denmark, well, an army there is pretty useless.

    c) Also, if you get three builds, there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve united England and France.

    d) If you’re not opening to Denmark, you have no leverage on Russia. In his entertaining book [i]The Game of Diplomacy[/i], Richard Sharp argued that it’s in Germany’s interest to prop up Austria. This game makes a good case for his argument. Austria collapsed and Germany and Italy followed.

    Third, after the game, Nate, Peter and Aash stuck around for a long game of Axis & Allies. It was a lot of fun, but it also reminded me why I stopped playing that game in favor of Dip. Too much down time between turns.

    Fourth, we had a nice little run going of host board-tops. I was sorry to see that end. ūüôĀ

  2. √Čamon Driscoll

    I chose my opening because France & England were both pushing me to Denmark, and concerns about an English army in Belgium (concerns which I felt were justified following the A Mar S Par-Bur) took precedence before the alliance with Russia emerged, then by necessity. Although I seem to be getting a lot of flak about my opening, I stand by my decisions. Had I responded differently in Autumn 1901, I can’t say whether or not I would have fared any better.

    Furthermore, I’ve perused [i]TGOD[/i], and as glorious as it is, it is not a Diplomacy Bible.

  3. Peter Lokken

    [quote]but it also reminded me why I stopped playing that game in favor of Dip.[/quote]
    Well, you’re not kidding about that! The first two rounds you were playing a webdip game on your laptop, then 4-7 rounds you played another one! Next time i’ll bring around some Ritalin for ya.

  4. Peter Lokken

    Also, I want to make my recommendation official; I nominate Aash Anand for the Sam Basset award this year.

  5. Chris Kelly

    Having all of my neighbors hamstring themselves at basically the same time completely redefined the direction of the Eastern part of the game — and gave me a unique opportunity that (fortunately) I was able to take advantage of.

    Had the various moves/builds gone through, a 5-unit Austria and Russia with armies in Rumania/Sevastopol and a fleet in the Black Sea would probably have left Turkey battling for survival in ’02-’03, and possibly eliminated.

    Instead, I was essentially able to dictate terms of an alliance with Russia where I was the more secure partner — taking Sevastopol to remove his leverage/temptation to stab me, then working with him and Italy to eliminate the weakened Austria.

    This left me in the desirable, but also patience-testing situation of having Russia and Italy bear the brunt of front-line battle against England and France, while I essentially sat unthreatened behind them. From ’03 to ’05, Russia/Italy implored me not to stab them, because they needed every unit they had to hold off the E/F duo… and I reluctantly had to agree with them.

    Only when the tensions between England & France caused them to have their units tangled up with each other did I feel it was safe for me to move against Italy/Russia in ’07 without them receiving most of the benefits.

  6. Jim O'Kelley

    There are bad, even incorrect, openings in Diplomacy. The one you played is [i][b]not [/b] [/i] one of them. I prefer the Denmark openings, and my intent was to critique the Holland openings academically, not you personally for playing it.

    Also, in case this was unclear as well, I admire both you and Aash for choosing not to cover your home centers in 1901. That takes guts, but bold moves are often rewarded, as was the case with Aash, but sadly, not you.

  7. Jim O'Kelley

    [quote]Next time i’ll bring around some Ritalin for ya.[/quote]
    Speaking of next time, don’t bring cigars over to my house and then refuse to stay up late smoking them with me. Cigar Tease.

  8. √Čamon Driscoll

    I didn’t take it personally, Jim. This is a game of people, and Aash & Peter played splendidly. I look forward to the next match!

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