Rules of the game

Diplomacy is a strategic board game. Its main distinction from most board wargames is negotiation: Players spend much of their time forming (and betraying) alliances with other players. Set in Europe just before the beginning of World War I , Diplomacy is played by seven players, each controlling the armed forces of a major European power.
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Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 11:18 am

At the turn of the 20th century, the seven Great European Powers engage in an intricate struggle for supremacy. Military forces invade and withdraw, shifting borders and altering empires with subtle maneuvers and daring gambits.

Form alliances and unhatch your traitorous plots as you negotiate and outwit' in a delicate balance of cooperation and competition' to gain dominance of the continent! In Diplomacy, your success hinges not on the luck of the dice, but your cunning and cleverness.

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 11:23 am

The official rules: Rulebook

Quick Start Guide: Quick Guide

Sample Game and Tutorial
http://www.sff.net/people/jbailey/diplo.htp

......................................................
Quick Rule Summary:
DIPLOMACY is basically a relatively simple game in principle, but complex in execution. Each piece has the power of 1 and can move only one space each move. There is no element of chance. The play of the game combines careful planning as in Chess, with skill in negotiating deals and persuading other players to go with your plan.

DIPLOMACY may be played by any number from 4 to 7 players. The game is best with 7 players but can be played well with less [[not according to most people that have played it, less than 7 is usually considered a distant second best *g*]]. Although the ultimate objective of the game is for one power to gain control of the majority of the board, the game can be played well by deciding in advance exactly how many moves will be played in the game.

The moves in the game are classed as two moves a year beginnning in the year 1901 with Spring and Fall moves. A game involving 8 to 10 moves, or 4 to 5 years, makes a very good game and will take as much as 3 hours for beginners. Knowing when the game will end, each player can then plan to have a maximum number of pieces on the board at that time. The winner is the player with the most pieces on the board.

The rulebook appears ominous because of its length. Most of the book is taken up with careful explanation of the rules. It is necessary for reference but need not be read and absorbed thoroughly before starting the game.

You start the game by putting the pieces (Armies and Navies) on the board as outlined in the beginning of the rulebook [[see first diagram below]], and then begin your negotiations before you make your first moves. Armies may move to any space on land and may be convoyed by the Navy across the sea. A Navy may move to any space in the sea, as well as to any space on land that is adjacent to water.

The number of pieces that a player has on the board is determined by the number of "supply centers" which he controls. The supply centers are marked by black dots on the board. Control of the supply centers is determined by which piece last occupied the supply center in the Fall move of the game. The moves of the game are figured as 2 moves each year beginning in the year 1901. There is a Spring move and a Fall move.

Occupancy of a supply center in the Spring of the year does not mean that you have control of the supply center. You must be the last force to occupy the supply center in the Fall of any year.

During the first year, it is important to plan to occupy as many of the supply centers in neutral countries as possible. It is important to make alliances with players so that you both do not go for the same supply center and waste your energies. If, in planning your moves, there are questions as to where a piece can and cannot move, or how, then consult the rulebook.

After negotiations, each player privately writes down on paper the moves for all of his Armies and Navies. These "orders" are then read off. A unique feature of Diplomacy is that every piece of every player moves simultaneously. Therefore all orders must be read out before it is clear where each piece will end the move. Only one piece can be in one space on the board at one time. If two pieces are ordered into the same space, neither one moves unless it has "support" from another piece. Thus, a move can be wasted. Negotiations before each move help avoid wasting a move in this manner.

An Army or Navy may support the move of another Army or Navy of that country or any other country in making a move, provided it is adjacent to the space into which the move is being made. Support can also be given on a defensive basis to protect a piece from being dislodged from the space it occupies.

If one piece has the support of another in making the move and the opposing piece does not, then it moves into the empty space -- or it may force an unsupported piece to retreat out of a space. To "support" a move, the supporting piece must itself be able to move into the space under attack. Opposing pieces with equal support do not move. An advantage in force of just one wins.

Adjustments in strength are made after the Fall moves have been completed. Each player writes down his desires. If he has increased the number of supply centers under his control, he writes whether he wants an Army or a Navy and if so, where. The piece must be placed in a supply center in his home country. If he has lost strength, he decides which Army or Navy is to be removed.

Alliances and deals with other players are a major part of the game. It is almost impossible to succeed in play without discussing possiblities with other players and making the best deal that you can. Once having made a verbal deal with a player, it is not necessary that you do as to agreed to verbally. When you come to write your orders, you may wish to do other than you told one or more players. The problem, of course, is that immediately, your credibility in negotiations with those players is lost. The decision as to when to "double cross" one or more of your opponents is one of the most difficult decisions to make in playing the game.
Last edited by Grimbold on Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 11:30 am

Writing Orders - Samples:
One solid rule to always keep in mind:
ONE, AND ONLY ONE UNIT CAN OCCUPY A SPACE AT A TIME, YOU CAN NEVER HAVE TWO UNITS IN THE SAME SPACE AT THE SAME TIME.

Any unit you do not give any orders to will "Hold"

You can give only one instruction to each unit. If you give two (or more) orders for the same unit, all the orders will be discarded and the unit will "Hold".

If an invalid or impossible order is given, the order will be discarded and the unit will "Hold".

Orders are written with either the full name, or the three leter code of the spaces involved.

There are four possible orders:

Hold: The unit does not move, it will remain where it is. (Also referred to as "Defend")

Example: Croaker wants his Army in Ruhr to Hold so he gives the order: "Army Ruhr Hold" or "A Ruh Hold"

Move: The unit will move to the space indicated. Units can only move one space per turn.
If the space is already occupied by another faction's unit, then this is an attack.
If the space is occupied by one of your own units, the move is illegal and the order will fail. (More on resolving attacks in the next post).
If the move is into an area the unit cannot enter (like a fleet into an inland space, or an army into a sea space) the order fails and the unit "Holds".

Example: Raf moves his army in Belgium to Ruhr, so he writes "Army Belgium-Ruhr" or "A Bel-ruh".

Convoy: Fleet units can convoy armies over sea spaces (NOT Coast spaces). This is the only way that Armies can get over Sea Spaces. Each fleet can only convoy one army per turn. You can essentially consider the sea space with the fleet in it an "Extra" space of movement for the Army, so that it starts in one coastal space, crosses the sea space, and arrives at the land space. If a fleet is successfully attacked, the convoy move is stopped.

Example: Phalse Profit wants to move his army from London to Belgium, he has a fleet in the English Channel to convoy it. His order is "Army London-Belgium Convoy Fleet English Channel to Belgium" or "A Lon-Bel C F Eng-bel"

Convoys can be strung together, so you could move across any length of chain of sea squares to get to your destination.

Example: PP wants to convoy his Army from London to Spain, he has fleets in the English Channel and Mid Atlantic. His order is "Army London-Spain Convoy Fleet English Channel-Mid Atlantic Convoy Fleet Mid Atlantic-Spain." or "A Lon-spa C F eng-mao C F mao-spa"

Support: This is the crux of the game, and the hardest part. Units support other units in their actions. This is because only one unit can occupy any space, and any conflict between a single unit vs a single unit results in a standoff and no effect. You need support to win any conflict. A unit can be ordered to support any action in a space it is legally allowed to (so an army may NOT support an order into a sea space, and a fleet may not support an order into an inland space). The support order must be specific and match the order it is supporting.

Support of a Hold: Just order support of the unit in that space and if that unit needs to defend, it defends at +1 strength.

Support of a move: The order must be specific, so if Raf has moved his army from Ruhr to Belgium, and he wants to support that attack with his army in holland, the support order must be "Army Holland Support Army Ruhr-Belgium". . .if the attack was actually "Army Ruhr-Kiel" the support would fail, as the support didn't match the attack.

Support of a Convoy: A fleet can be ordered to support the convoy move of another fleet to make it harder to attack the fleet and stop the convoy. (The order to support must again match the convoy order to work.)
The HOLD order
Format: {Unit Type} {Unit Province} H
Example: A BUL H
This is a sample of ordering the Army in Bulgaria to hold.


The MOVE/ATTACK order
Format: {Unit Type} {Start Province} - {Destination Province}
Example: A BUL - RUM
This is a sample of ordering the Army in Bulgaria to move into Rumania.


The SUPPORT order
Format: {Unit Type} {Unit Province} S {Supported Unit Type} {Supported Unit Province} {Supported Unit Order}
Example: A BUL S A RUM H
This is a sample of ordering the Army in Bulgaria to support the Army in Rumania to hold.
Example: A BUL S A RUM - SER
This is a sample of ordering the Army in Bulgaria to support the Army in Rumania attacking Serbia.
Example: F GOL C A SPA - TUS
F WME S F GOL H
This shows an example of supporting a fleet that is performing a convoy.
Example: A RUM S A BUL H
A BUL S A RUM H
This sample shows how 2 units can provide support to each other.


The CONVOY order
This is a two part order. One for the Army being convoyed and one for the Fleet which is performing the convoy action.
Format:
A {Start Province} - {Destination Province}
F {Unit Province} C A {Convoyed Unit Start} - {Convoyed Unit Destination}
Example:
A BUL - ARM
F BLA C A BUL - ARM
This is a sample of ordering the Army in Bulgaria to convoy via the Black Sea to Armenia. Note that the order for the Army is a standard Move/Attack order.
Example:
A ROM - SPA
F TYS C A ROM - SPA
F WME C A ROM - SPA
This is a sample of ordering the Army in Rome to convoy via the both the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Western Mediterranean to Spain. Note that the order for the Army is again a standard Move/Attack order but it is necessary to enter Convoy orders for BOTH fleets.
Last edited by Grimbold on Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 11:31 am

Retreats:

Retreats are entered at the same time as Spring and Fall movement orders.

You may specify up to 5 potential retreat locations for every unit in the order that you wish them to be evaluated. The first available matching position will be used. This removes the need to have a separate turn to enter and process retreats.

Important Note: If you do not enter retreat locations for a unit that is forced to retreat, it will be removed from the board (disband) automatically.

If two or more units are all ordered to retreat to the same location, all are disbanded. The exception to the rule is if the units belong to the same power. Since potential retreat locations are entered prior to viewing the results this special case scenario will be corrected manually if requested by the player.
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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 11:31 am

Disbands:

Units will be disbanded automatically if forced to retreat and no retreat locations were entered by the player.


Units will be disbanded automatically if forced to retreat and have no available location to retreat to. Potential locations may have been entered but were found unsuitable for one reason or another.


During the Winter adjustment turn, if the player neglects to enter an appropriate number of disbands, or they are invalid, then the system will RANDOMLY choose amongst the players available units and perform the disband operation.
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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:50 pm

Four day rule: As soon as I ask for orders you have four days to pm them to me. If I do not get orders on time, your units will just hold and do nothing else.

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:54 pm

For your information:
I will be using the Diplomacy Game Managment software (dgmwin) which also adjudicates the results (e.g. I fill in the orders and it tells me what will work and outputs the new map). If you find that the outcome is not according to the rules, tell me asap and I will manually check.

I am not sure if it uses exaclty the same rules as the 2008 WOTC version. I guess changes will be minor. I am by no means a veteran or expert on the game (though I have played it about 7 or 8 times) so any help with the rules etc. or comments will be greatly appreciated.

For now, I will just do what the software says. If there is a mistake, tell me.
Last edited by Grimbold on Sun Nov 16, 2008 3:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Fri Nov 14, 2008 5:47 pm

Turns:

Each year has two turns: Spring and Autumn. In Spring you only have to give normal orders (and retreats) and in fall you also have to consider builds and disbands.
If during the year, you win a supply point, you can create a new unit in autumn. It can be a fleet or an army but it must start at one of your three base starting points. Please tell me in your autumn post, where and what kind of builds you do if you win supply points. If you do not state anything, I will randomly choose a build.
If during the year you lose a supply point, you might be forced to disband a unit or two. Also tell me whih units should be disbanded first in your autumn post. If there is no information, disbands will be performed randomly.

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Sat Nov 15, 2008 4:31 pm

Sample Spring orders:

A Par - Bur
A Mar - Pie
F Bre - MAO

Retreats:
A Par (Gas, Mar, Bur)
A Mar (Spa, Gas, Bur)
F Bre (ENG, Pic, Gas)

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Re: Rules of the game

Post by Grimbold » Sat Nov 15, 2008 4:35 pm

Sample Autumn orders:


Orders:
A Par - Bur
A Mar - Pie
F Bre - MAO

Retreats:
A Par (Gas, Mar, Bur)
A Mar (Spa, Gas, Bur)
F Bre (ENG, Pic, Gas)


- To identify armies and fleets when you assign retreats and disbands, you mention the starting location this round
- If a unit cannot be attacked at all this round, you do not need to mention retreats.
Last edited by Grimbold on Mon Jan 12, 2009 9:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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