February was the new Oktober last night at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square…for the German players, anyway. On both boards, they played like the evening was a festival and the other players’ supply centers, beer.
We had fifteen show up for our monthly Red Wednesday event at the Red Lion (second Wednesday of every month. Plan to join us on March 8 and April 12!), including two who were specifically there to play only if needed. Chris Kelly won the coin toss to sit out, and games 329 and 330 started about 20 minutes apart. (Footnote: We had enough players to start Game No. 329 by 6:20, but since a couple of them were new, we delayed the start to give them a thorough introduction to Diplomacy.)
Game No. 329
This one started first and included a brand-new player, another playing for the first time since September 2015 and only the second time ever, as well as some grizzled vets from the earliest days of the club. It ended by time limit after the Fall 1906 turn in the following center counts:
Austria (Ali Adib): 0; 0.000 points.
England (Matt Sundstrom): 9; 27.551 points.
France (Mike Weinand): 8; 21.769 points.
Germany (Jim O’Kelley): 10; 34.014 points.
Italy (Bryan Pravel): 0; 0.000 points.
Russia (Pete McNamara): 0; 0.000 points.
Turkey (Sean Clarke): 7; 16.667 points.
Notably, the game featured the rare Koniggratz Freakout opening by Germany and Italy. I’ll write more about it in my endgame statement below, but for those unfamiliar, the Koniggratz Freakout is when Germany opens to Tyrolia while Italy slides his armies to Piedmont and Venice. Then in the Fall, Italy dislodges the German army, which, if Austria defends himself with a guessing game, retreats into the open center. It was good fun and something I had wanted to try for years.
Game No. 330
Meanwhile, Game No. 330 started about 20 minutes later in the backroom at the Lion. And despite the later start and the presence of The Human Rain Delay, Christian Kline, the players managed the same six game-years as their more punctual counterparts in Game No. 329. Just as February is the new Oktober, perhaps Ali Adib is the new Christian Kline? Discuss.
Anyway, the game ended by time limit after the Fall 1906 turn in the following center counts:
Austria (Brian Shelden): 0; 0.000 points.
England (Paul Digiulio): 7; 17.500 points.
France (Don Glass): 0; 0.000 points.
Germany (Brandon Fogel): 10; 35.714 points.
Italy (Christian Kline): 9; 28.929 points.
Russia (John Davis): 1; 0.357 points.
Turkey (Jake Trotta): 7; 17.500 points.
Digiulio and Davis both joined the club and played their first games ever last October. Kline, as a veteran of the club’s third game back in January 2006, represented the other end of the spectrum. Glass, meanwhile, was celebrating his birthday but clearly neglected to share that bit of information with the other players.
The supply center charts are here. Hopefully the players will chime in with their thoughts.