Diplomacy A-Z, Version 6.0

0-9 Entries

1829 [PB:1980]
Hartland Trefoil's game about railways.
1885 (1) [MB:Jun80]
Fred C. Davis' popular 9 man game, having Sweden and Spain as the new great powers, and additional SCs in Iceland, Ireland, Morocco, and Switzerland. Russia is somewhat weakened, even in 1885-II. See Variant (KW).
1914 O Jogo da Diplomacia (1) [MN:Dec92]
The Brazilian version of Diplomacy. See also Brazilian Variant and Grow. See Variant (KW).
1958 DIPLOMACY (1) [MN:Apr92]
The first version of Diplomacy to be commercially distributed. Allan Calhamer paid for 500 sets to be made and sold them through small ads. None of the people who were involved with the setting up of Diplomacy fandom in the early 1960's were aware of the existence of this game -- they had all found Diplomacy through the 1959 and 1962 releases which were a significant revision to the 1958 game. (There is no distinction between the 1959 and 1962 games). Diplomacy fans were not aware of their favourite game's older relative until Rod Walker reprinted the rules in an one-off publication, _Quarmill_, in 1971.

There are a number of differences between 1958 Diplomacy and the Diplomacy game of today. The main differences are in (1) Build Rules, (2) Convoy Rules and (3) the map. In addition minor differences are that the coastal crawl was allowed and the rules for games with less than 7 players are different.

A player may only build armies in his "capital" and fleets in his "naval base". Players may have more than one unit in these provinces, although multiple units does not increase your defensive strength - they have a total defensive value of one. These stacked units may not support each other nor support the same unit outside the stacked province. If a player loses his capital he may designate one of his other home supply centres as a new Capital, where he may build armies. However if you lose your naval base then you can only build new fleets if you recapture it.

There are no convoy rules. Instead an army and fleet may combine to form a stacked A/F under certain circumstances. This A/F unit then moves as a normal fleet unit. If the A/F fleet unit is in a coastal province then the Army may attempt to disembark.

Tunis is not a supply centre, but Switzerland and Albania are. Home supply centres in Germany and Turkey are different and there are more provinces on the board.

The 1958 game is inferior to the 1959 revision as it is neither as dynamic nor as flexible as the modern game. It takes longer to play to completion because there are no quick convoys and there are more provinces. However, this hasn't prevented a number of enthusiastic variant fans from playing in several postal games.

There are actually two different forms of the 1958 game, because the released version had an error on the map -- one of the provinces was omitted. There is also an earlier version, the 1953 game which has several differences in the map; but this was never distributed.

1958 Diplomacy is sometimes called Classic Diplomacy. See Variant (KW).

[SS:Dec02]I happened to notice that the description of 1958 Diplomacy in A-Z is incorrect. The 1958 version was only a prototype. It is true that the 1958 edition had different rules and map. But the first set that Calhammer published on his own in a batch of 500 sets was the 1959 edition, which used the same map still used today. You can find more details on the 1958 and 1959 editions (and much more) in the Diplomacy Boardgame Compendium.

1958 DIPLOMACY (2) [RW:Jun07]
The one-shot giving the rules/map for Calhamer's prototype was Quarmal, not Quarmill. The place in question was a city in Nehwon (I also produced a Lankhmar, another city, same world). Now, Nehwon was originally the setting of a board game designed by Fritz Leiber and a friend of his. This was played by a number of his circle, including Jerry Pournelle and Dan Alderson (about whom more later). Leiber then wrote a number of stories and at least 1 novel set in Nehwon, relating the fantastic and also hilarious the adventures of Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser (2 halves of a complete hero). Some of the best reading I've ever come across. Anyway, now Nehwon is the setting of a role-playing game -- having thus come full circle.

Speaking of going in circles ... the aforementioned Jerry Pournelle and Dan Alderson played Diplomacy in the early years. Neither published. Jerry, whose drug of choice was peppermint schnapps, is better known as a SF writer of moderate note and a rightwinger of the most determined disposition. Not of course the usual religious nut we get nowadays but a genuine Goldwater man. Dan, whose home town rejoices in the name of Tujunga, waw an engineer at JPL -- which (if you knew Dan) rather explained some things about that place. Dan was a Collector (note capital "C"; imagine it's in red). He collected SF/fantasy 'zines and various games (also Dipzines). He got 2 of everything -- one for him to look at, play with, and so on -- the other sealed (SEALED, not just wrapped) in plastic and stored. In addition to his own house and garage, which were stuffed to the gills, Dan rented 3 other garages in his neighborhood. He was a great host and a great conversationalist ... knew all sorts of interesting people. Conrad and I used to go up to visit to play Diplomacy and go on Toad's Wild Rides with Pournelle and his schnapps.

My point here the early Diplomacy crowd was very different from the people who came to dominate the hobby during the 1970s. We weren't gamers. Most were SF/fantasy fans, well educated (graduate degrees and all that), and more than usually literate. Not to mention more than usually eccentric. Way more. This made the first decade of postal diplomacy unique and fascinating. Of course even after that there were some members of the old guard around, and some new people like them (including some really fun Brits), so that there were still some flashes of what the early years were like. From your description of the "Great Feud" (I'm going to have to get Conrad to tell me about it), I would guess it represents a terminus a quo for Postal Diplomacy As It Had Been.

1962-A (1) [MB:Jun80+Mar82]
The most famous of all phoney games, this hoax was perpetrated by Conrad von Metzke and Rod Walker for the principal purpose of getting John Boardman's goat, since JB was proud of running the first postal game, 1963A. Walker now claims (1982) this was not a hoax, but a real game which did not get beyond 1902; and has produced photocopies of the supposed original zine in which the game was run, _Mongo_.
1962-A (2) [RW:Jun07]
"Mongo". That was a bit of fun. I inveigled Conrad von Metzke into the plot, and we produced several phony issues of the zine, making sure that there were things about it that differed from normal Dipzine practice. I can't recall if we did carbon copies or what. I have a set of copies in a file box somewhere. Boardman was of course furious, and just to needle him more I maintained that Mongo was an actual game and 'zine for a long time -- until now, in fact.
1963-A (1) [MN:Dec93]
The first game of Diplomacy run postally, started in _Graustark_ 2. The players were Dave McDaniel, Derek Nelson, James Goldmain, Stuart Kershner and Fred Lerner. A five player variant! (Turkey, Russian and the provinces of Bulgaria and Rumania were closed.) Highlights include: first ever postal NMR! (Fred Lerner, France _Graustak_ 5), first ever postal elimination (Austria, issue 8) and first ever postal win (Derek Nelson, Italy) in _Graustark_ 15.
1963-B (1) [MN:Dec93]
The first game of Diplomacy, ran in the second-ever diplomacy zine _Ruritania_. Players: Dian Pelz, Fred Lerner, Jack Root, Allan Calhmer, Tom Bulmer, Bruce Pelz and John Boardman. However Dian and Bruce were married, which means that by current standards theh game is 'irregular'! Bruce forced an 18 center win as Russia in 1918, his wife coming a strong second with 16. Another 'irregularity' was that Boardman resigned his position and then picked up the first ever orphan when _Ruritania_ was transferred to Boardman with issue 27. Playing and GMing in the same game is not considered acceptable!
1964-A (1) [MN:Dec93]
The first ever game of diplomacy ran postally! Certainly the first 'regular' postal game. Ran by John Boardman, it started in _Graustark_ 15 (11th December 1963). The players were: James Goldman, Derek Nelson, Stuart Kershner, William E. Christian, Fred Lerner, Richard Schultz and James MacKensie. The game ended in a Turkish win for James MacKenzie in Fall 1911 in _Graustark_ 48 on March 14, 1965.
1993-EP (1) [MN:Mar94]
A game ran by Richard Sharp in _Dolchstoss_ noteworthy for being the only postal game in UK Hobby history that Tyrolia has seen the only Spring 1901 standoff.
# (1) [MN:Oct95]
Symbol used by early BNC's to denote an irregular game eg. #1963A and #1963B. Conrad von Metzke stated in _Everything_ 7 (March 1973) that he would use the symbol to denote (1) Five- and six-man games, if played under the rulebook and (2) Local games, including games in which moves were made in-person provided they were made one season per in-person session and were published thereafter. Conrad announced his intention to move from #1963A to (1963A) to denote irregularity, as the # symbol did not appear on overseas typewriters.

APPENDIX ONE: Summary of Rating Systems used at DipCon

DIPCON XXI RATING SYSTEM (1) [MN:Jun93] Scoring system used at DipCon XXI. To qualify for the awards, players had to play two, or more, games. Any player playing in three, or more, games had their worst result dropped. Games ended in either a concession to a single player or as DIAS. The winner was determined by highest average score of games counted.

(1) Points awarded for type of finish.

WIN 75 pts. 5-way Draw 20 pts. 2-way Draw 50 pts. 6-way Draw 15 pts. 3-way Draw 35 pts. 7-way Draw 10 pts. 4-way Draw 25 pts. Surv or Elim 0 pts.

(2) Add 1 point per center owned at the end of the game.

(3) Add points according to rank by centers within the game. Eliminated players receive 0 pts. 1st 7 points 5th 3 points 2nd 6 points 6th 2 points 3rd 5 points 7th 1 point 4th 4 points Ties split points (ie a two way tie for 2nd splits 11 points).

DIPCON XXVI RATING SYSTEM (1) [MN:Aug93] Don del Grande's rating system for DipCon XXVI. Concession and draw votes could include modifications to the final SC counts for the players in that game (rather than making them go through the motions to get everyone a SC count that they agree to beforehand).

WIN: 125 points regardless of number of SCs (no SC points)
2-WAY DRAW: 45 + SC points
3-WAY DRAW: 30 + SC points
4-WAY DRAW: 22.5 + SC points
5-WAY DRAW: 18 + SC points
6-WAY DRAW: 15 + SC points
7-WAY DRAW: 12.8 + SC points
(if the 7-way draw was voted rather than forced, SC points only)

17 SCs - 23 points 16 SCs - 21 points 15 SCs - 19 points
14 SCs - 17 points 13 SCs - 15 points 12 SCs - 13 points
11 SCs - 11 points 10 SCs - 9 points 9 SCs - 7 points
8 SCs - 6 points 7 SCs - 5 points 6 SCs - 4 points
5 SCs - 3 points 4 SCs - 2 points 3 SCs - 1 point
0-2 SCs - no points

A player's tournament score is the sum of his/her top two game scores


  1. Playing in 2 or more games beats playing in 1 game
  2. High single game
  3. W/D score of two high-score games
  4. W/D score of single high score game
  5. Average opponent's total score
  6. Tournament GM's discretion


THE 1993 TWISTER. Solution appeared in _Dolchstoss_ 182, Febuary 1994.

Suggested reasoning, in brief.

The whole A-Z, in pdf format, is HERE

This page last updated .