Diplomacy Games podcast: Episode 25 shownotes – A Very Diplomacy Christmas

Venue: Osbourne Hotel, Brisbane

Drinks of choice:

Kaner – Boston Lager “presumably from Boston” according to Kaner

Amby – Some Young Punks “Naked on Rollerskates” Shiraz Matro from the Clare Valley, South Australia and The Stag “St Hubert’s” Shiraz from the Yarra Valley, Victoria

It’s Christmas time! The guys exchange Diplomacy related presents, talk variants in development, the Kaner & Amby Book Club and the Colonial 1885 variant.


  • Osbourne HotelThe guys introduce the Osbourne Hotel in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley and their drinks  (0 mins 05 secs)
  • Amby explains the last podcast was late due to work business and then going on holiday. The guys then discuss their planned holidays including Amby’s trip late 2018 to North America (2 mins 50 secs)
  • Kaner discusses how the mobile interface is now starting to get rolled out to webDip. Amby talks about the different nature of the forums across vDip webDip and playDip (7 mins 20 secs)
  • Kaner also talks about zultar’s prize giveaway for Christmas at webDip (9 mins 10 secs)
  • Amby and Kaner give an update on the new variants in development, starting with the massive 50 player Divided States variant (11 mins)
  • Amby then shows Kaner the beta test game of Punic Wars over at the Diplomail Lab he’s playing. The guys then discuss their thoughts on the variant (14 mins 30 secs)
  • Then its onto the early work being done on the Reconquista variant where the Spanish attempt to reconquer the Muslim territories of the Iberian Peninsula. This is being worked on by CCR and Benjamin Hester. Kaner compares the Variant Bank crappy map to the latest map currently in development. They then discuss the mathematics of balance in variants (19 mins 55 secs)
  • Then its onto Napoleonic 1 vs 1 (France against the Sixth Coalition – Britain, Austria, Prussia, Russia & Sweden), the Ottomans weren’t involved but will be on the map with standing neutral armies. Amby announces he’s actually developing this variant after a long break from variant development using the great work done originally by Firehawk. Amby says he hasn’t worked out yet whether it should be based on players choosing the units to build, or whether he sets the units and their location (27 min 50 secs)
  • Amby then says he’s exploring the coding aspects of what is needed to create the variant Sengoku: Ninjas vs Samurai (36 mins 55 secs)

Around the Grounds

  • The guys on to discuss how players are approaching things with whether to build clippers or frigates in Pirates. Amby discusses what’s been happening so far in this anonymous game called “Pirate’s Life“. He flags there seems to be some technical glitch with some moves (40 mins)
  • Then its back to more alcohol talk about making wine and brewing beer and how expensive alcohol is getting in Australia (44 mins)
  • Kaner then talks around a variant concept originating a long while ago from Oli about a Randomly generated map (48 mins)
  • Amby reflects on the mess on the Pirates map where many players are moving in relatively small territories, often making it hard to read. He then makes some excuses why he won’t be changing it though (50 mins)
  • Amby then discusses the now finished 1066 game he played against Oli and Tadar es Darden, won by Tadar. Amby flags how the game could have gone either way but experienced technical problems in trying to convey the message to extend the turn. Kaner makes a suggestion which Amby should’ve done (52 mins)
  • Kaner then discusses his WWIV game that has now started and asks abut the strategy of holding back builds (55 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner then talks about his camping plans (1 hour 5 mins 30 secs)

Variant review: Colonial 1885

  • The guys discuss Amby’s recent drawn 1885 game. He played this anon WTA game as Italy and did well enough to be part of the draw. He talks about his allies throughout the game and his approach to get to the end game (1 hr 6 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby then goes onto discuss the variant itself and his thoughts about it, particularly how Britain can do very well in this variant although he was eliminated in this game (1 hr 12 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby gives Kaner a history lesson about German New Guinea (1 hr 15 mins)

Christmas, Kaner & Amby’s Book Club and other Dip stuff

  • Amby is taking on the role of tournament director for a 9 player 1066 tournament (1 hr 19 mins)
  • The guys exchange Diplomacy related Christmas presents including many evil laughs from Kaner (1 hr 22 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby brings up the Year in Review – by playing a little game with Kaner on who are the top 10 countries downloading the podcast. Warning: bad accent attempts and a very surprising number 10! (1 hr 30 mins)
  • The guys then discuss the books they’ve read this year that have a Diplomacy connection. Kaner suggests “Borders: A Very Short Introduction” and “The Origins of Political Order“. Amby discusses “Theodore Rex“,  “Musashi” and “Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations“. He goes onto to say he plans to read “Guns, Germs & Steel” next year. Kaner recommends “Collapse” by the same author (Jarred Diamond). They also mention “Sapiens” and “Cro-Magnon” (1 hr 37 mins)
  • All this stone age discussion gets the guys thinking about the possibility of a Stone Age variant (1 hr 51 mins)


Don’t forget to give the podcast a great rating on iTunes or Stitcher, it’ll help get the message out about Diplomacy.

And thanks as always to Dan Philip for his rockin’ intro to the Diplomacy Games podcast.

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