Finished: 09 AM Sat 22 Jun 19 UTC
Private Help Durga get better at gunboat-6
1 day, 12 hours /phase
Pot: 35 D - Autumn, 1914, Finished
Classic, No messaging, Anonymous players, Unranked, Hidden draw votes
1 excused missed turn
Game won by woland (134 D)
05 Jun 19 UTC Spring, 1910: GameMaster: Game was extended due to at least 1 member failing to enter orders and having an excused missed turn available. This has un-readied all orders.
13 Jun 19 UTC Autumn, 1911: GameMaster: Game was extended due to at least 1 member failing to enter orders and having an excused missed turn available. This has un-readied all orders.
20 Jun 19 UTC Spring, 1914: GameMaster: Game was extended due to at least 1 member failing to enter orders and having an excused missed turn available. This has un-readied all orders.
20 Jun 19 UTC GG England.

Sorry I killed you Durga, hope this was a useful learning experience. If you want to swap notes and discuss the game I'm happy to help.

Extremely disappointed in France and Italy. I blew my chance to solo by misordering twice (Vienna and Venice, I swear) and tipping Italy off, but this game shouldn't have ended like this. I have no clue what France and Italy were thinking. France left himself absurdly wide open when it was completely unnecessary to prevent my solo, and Italy basically threw it by continuing to stall me out of retaking Tunis long after I stopped attacking him.
20 Jun 19 UTC Yes you are right, it was extremely stupid of me to attack you, i'm sorry to all of you for allowing this solo!
20 Jun 19 UTC GG all.
I thought that I was just going to stop the Austrian solo moving fleets to the med, but then he allowed me to take LIV which meant the key to stalemate line with MUN included and then he gave me TUN. After that, I just needed to take the French centers. I thought that it would happen eventually but that it would be tough. The French moves towards Austria made it easy. You still have to make sure you don't spoil it with a mistake. I thought Austria never tried the 1% chance stuff (which would be full guessing games in a press game). Stuff like trying to get back PRU or BER could have worked....
20 Jun 19 UTC Well at least we all lost to a World Champion. I'm sticking to press.
20 Jun 19 UTC 1st lesson for Durga: Russia is tough to play in gunboat... So draw another country to get better. ;o)
20 Jun 19 UTC I don't know what to do in a situation like this where I get attacked by almost every player in 1901
20 Jun 19 UTC The only lesson I've learned so far from gunboat is to never play gunboat
20 Jun 19 UTC Gunboat is the key to good Diplomacy (especially FTF). Best way to improve tactics and get lots of experience with strategy. I played more than a hundred gunboat games (C-diplo 1907 games and lots of live games with less than 5 min to write orders) the year i won my WDC. I could write my orders in 30 sec and then focus on diplo. And in gunboat, there is no bullshit, the map is talking : that's the best way to learn to detect a lie, if the map says something and the player says something else, either he is dumb or he is lying. So keep playing Gunboat, it is worth it.
20 Jun 19 UTC Agh! If you say so then I have to. I'm gonna make a thread for more gunboats now then :(
20 Jun 19 UTC You should have a series of 1907 games. Shorter, quicker and a good prep for Marseille.
20 Jun 19 UTC That's what I just did. Please join :)
20 Jun 19 UTC I'll try to get some lives in sometime this summer maybe
20 Jun 19 UTC Hey now, I didn't give you shit! Lol. The turn I retreated from Livonia, you had unbreakable defenses of Prussia and St. Petersburg even if you never tried for Livonia. By 1909 I was never getting Munich or Prussia or Livonia on a permanent basis. If you're seeing something I'm not please tell me, because as far as I can see, by the time I was in position to put any pressure on you in Germany or Russia, you had everything locked up.
And I couldn't defend Tunis either. I only ever took it in the first place to force a disband from Italy.
My vision for the game after I blew my cover by attacking Venice on accident was a 3-way draw with you and France. Then France abandoned his garrison against you and the rest was history.

---

I don't think you could have done anything differently here Durga. I imagine as a press aficionado games like this must be the absolute worst and a testament to why you don't play this format much. All Diplomacy games have a level of variance in how players view their countries and the other countries in the game, but in press you can mitigate that with negotiations. Here you just have to hope for the best to some extent.
I think Turkey failed you both and I think Germany failed you both too. Germany shouldn't have bounced you out of Sweden IMO; some people disagree on the bounce, I've come around to thinking Germany should almost never bounce Sweden precisely because of games like these. He ended up with England cutting him out of Belgium and France taking Munich while burning the bridge with you.
And Turkey just made it too easy for me to clean up the Balkans by committing all-out against you.
Unfortunately there's nothing you can really do about that, but I think you will find these games that are truly bordering on unwinnable don't happen often. You'll see people make dumb attacks all the time, but outside of the most basic gunboat games, people can see when one player's demise benefits someone else more than them, and can figure out how to adjust so the losing player can fight back to parity. Usually when someone gets attacked on all sides, another player has made a mistake.

I second woland's suggestion, even if you just try games intermittently as a supplement to your normal press routine. You learn a lot of useful skills for press from here. Just keep it to a slight dabbling for your sanity's sake :p
20 Jun 19 UTC I genuinely think the more I play gunboat the worse I get. But I'll give it another shot
20 Jun 19 UTC Austria,

You played great. You were much faster than me cleaning up your side of the board. But, maybe you focused too much on growing and you let your guard down a little. MUN and TUN were the key centers and you let me have control over both of them. I believe that you could have fought me more on PRU and LIV. PRU and LIV were in danger the turn I would get MUN - I had to cut SIL with PRU.
If I were you, I would not have taken TUN if I could not keep it; too important of a center. After taking TUN, I started thinking about a solo, before I thought a 4-way was the most likley with Italy in TUN and France alive. I was thinking about ways to kill France while keeping you out of the solo. With Germany in MUN, I think that it is doable, that's why I waited as long as I could before taking MUN.
Finally, in my experience, smaller countries lose focus and just count the centers: they thought you were the solo threat even after I became the only one with a chance... But the way you dealt with the east early was impressive. A recipe to follow with Austria.
20 Jun 19 UTC Frankly I just got lucky with my opening. Austria has to gamble on Italy not attacking him, which happened. But it was only a clean mop-up because Turkey committed to attacking Russia so early. If the Russians had another army in the south from taking Romania, and if Turkey's second army were facing me instead of camping in Armenia, then I would have been in big trouble, because France forced Italy to go west. But Turkey committed against Russia and France made sure Italy couldn't balance out the situation to my disadvantage...

I think I blew it in Autumn 1904 and Spring 1905 when I misordered to Venice instead of Vienna.
There wasn't realistically a way to pace myself so as not to appear the solo threat. I had to kill Turkey off no matter how this game was supposed to end for me, and no one could deny that I was a solo threat if I did that. I needed to backstab Italy painfully and quickly, in the window after he committed to a major push to clean up France but before he got builds and could garrison himself--so likely 1905 or 1906. I needed to surprise him, and if I could do that, then I could try to race to Munich and Berlin before you and France could grind Germany out.
But I blew it by misordering and tipping Italy off, and the "quick war" turned into a long slog that made sure I could never contest Tunis in a long game, let alone Munich or Berlin. I signaled to you to take Munich for years before you made the move because I realized it was over for me and I wanted to clean it up.

I gotta say that I'm still just not seeing where I could have contested you in any of the provinces you're talking about. In the abstract, sure, I could have attacked them more and if you had misordered, I could have possibly made progress. But in the game that actually played out, you never misordered and always had the key provinces defended by the time I got there to pressure them. I think the battle was lost before it ever begun; I had to get there earlier. But maybe I am missing something.
20 Jun 19 UTC Fair point on Sweden. Is leaving Sweden standard these days? I haven't played a proper gunboat for a while. Would definitely change that if given the chance -- I wanted to bounce France out of Belgium and signal friendliness to England, but got it all wrong and ended up losing Munich, hurting an already vulnerable Russia (I should have weighed the Armenia move more heavily), and encouraging the E/F all in one turn. Yikes. It's no wonder it was all downhill from there. Only some surprising French moves let me survive as long as I did.
21 Jun 19 UTC So it is done.
To Austria just reading your first comments and reviewing the past turns.
Your right I was supporting towards England because I might survive to a draw that way. I would have turned against him if I believed you were willing to ally. I had no indication that was the case. Just stopping attacking did not communicate that. A support hold might have been enough.

Also, while understanding that you and England were at a stalemate line, the support holds up in Russia looked like you had allied with England.
21 Jun 19 UTC Good game all. Thank you for the game.
21 Jun 19 UTC I am wondering if it is possible to arrange a peace between 2 players faster than two turns. How?
The two turn peace seems to me one player offers a support move to the other but then they both have to not attack next turn as well.
21 Jun 19 UTC You do it by looking at the board, realizing that if you don't stop stalling the other player from advancing to reestablish a stalemate line you both lose, and trusting that they will stop attacking you. You supported England into Ionian Sea long after this happened. There was no time for me to stop using one of my units to try to stall England so I could support hold you somewhere.
21 Jun 19 UTC That still is a two turn peace. It is just the first half of it, ie the offer.
21 Jun 19 UTC This is overly abstract. Gunboat isn't about using supports to make offers and accept offers. That's part of the gig but it's not the baseline by which people do things. It's about reading the board and reacting to what needs to be done and trusting your neighbors to do the same.

You're focusing on the wrong things; this has nothing to do with support signals. After England took Tunis and stabbed France you should have recognized England was the only one capable of soloing. For two turns after I stopped attacking you (Autumn 1912 and Spring 1913) you were supporting England into the Ionian Sea. Those actions are manifestly irrational if you are trying to survive to a draw and only make sense if you are throwing to England. If it weren't for the fact that the game is over and I don't see how you'd have any incentive to lie, I would think you were lying to me by saying you were playing to survive to a draw, because all your actions after 1912 only make sense if we assume you're trying to throw the game and none of them make sense from the perspective of trying to stop the solo.
21 Jun 19 UTC I am not sure how a move from PIE - TUS can be not be considered a hostile move in Autumn 12. It is a clear threat to ROM. Reading the rest of your move in that turn provided the message that you want to eliminate me. Will look at spring 13 in a sec.
21 Jun 19 UTC In Spring 13, you invade NAP.
How is that stopping attacking?

In Spring 12, you move into APU. When you did not need APU to feed into ION with that fleet. The interpretation of that move was you were planning to take NAP.

You say that you wanted peace and that I should to when nothing you did indicated that and my read was I had a better chance of survival with England than you. Not a great chance but better than the one your moves indicated.
21 Jun 19 UTC For a minor power, a two person draw is equivalent result to a one player solo (personal preferences differ which is more emotionally rewarding). The best option is a three player draw.
21 Jun 19 UTC At the end of Autumn 1911, you should have known I could never solo and had to fight for the draw. I was at 14 centers and could not take Munich, Berlin, or St. Petersburg, so I would have to take Tunis, Rome, Naples, and another center in France or Iberia to win. That obviously could not possibly happen from this situation.
You should also know that England very well could solo. England was at 15 centers, had guaranteed captures of Paris and Munich, and unless we moved very quickly would be able to take Marseilles and win. Our only hope from that point was to retake Tunis, because with my three fleets and your one fleet, we had enough fleet power to take it and hold it, and because England was unlikely to be able to spare the fleets needed to defend Tunis during 1912, because of France's final efforts in Marseilles and Gulf of Lyons.

Pause here and ask any questions you might have, because all of this is objectively true. There is no room for logical disagreement here if you are truly motivated to stop a solo. Look at the board, ask me anything you might want to ask so we can get on the same page. I'm going to move on assuming you understand everything here.

Now, we move on to the beginning of 1912. Assuming you understand these things, what should Italy and Austria do?
One of us obviously has to go to Tyrrhenian Sea to set up on Tunis. Since I had fleets stuck on the wrong side of the Ionian Sea, it's clear I need to go to Tyrrhenian Sea, and backfill Ionian Sea. It's also clear that the other fleet needs to support the first fleet in. After that, I could have supported myself into Tunis, France probably would have cut a needed support, and we can take Tunis and have a chance. It would have still been difficult, but possible.

Instead, you decided to support England into Ionian Sea, and guaranteed England could never lose Tunis. In that turn, Spring 1912, you gave up the solo. This is beyond rational dispute. Any experienced gunboater will tell you this. They might say it's understandable to give up the solo there, if you think we couldn't succeed and you just wanted to guarantee you survived. If you had said that, I would have understood your motivation. But if you truly wanted to stop the solo, your moves in Spring 1912 (and your repeating those moves in Autumn 1912) were indefensible.

(Also, I didn't move to Apulia in Spring 1912, I did so in Autumn 1911, and immediately tried to move out in Spring 1912.)

As for 1913, by that point the solo was lost, because you blew it, and I assumed you decided to throw it to survive, so I decided to punish you for it.

Start Backward Open large map Forward End

England
woland (134 D)
Won. Bet: 5 D, won: 5 D
18 supply-centers, 17 units
Austria
Survived. Bet: 5 D
16 supply-centers, 14 units
France
tobieee911 (102 D (S))
Defeated. Bet: 5 D
Italy
Defeated. Bet: 5 D
Germany
diplomat554 (2104 D)
Defeated. Bet: 5 D
Turkey
SpaceDip (773 D)
Defeated. Bet: 5 D
Russia
Durga (3609 D)
Defeated. Bet: 5 D
Civil Disorders
tobieee911 (102 D (S))France (Spring, 1914) with 1 centres.
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