Diplomacy A-Z, Version 6.0

G Entries

Richard Sharp's name for the opening: F(Tri)-Alb, A(Vie)-Tri and A(Bud)-Gal. I used it in the first two ftf games I played, but how come I got Austria both times... See Austrian Openings (KW).
A curiosity opening whereby France opens A(Mar)-Spa, and then is convoyed to Kie by French, English and German fleets. See English Openings (KW), French Openings (KW), and German Openings (KW).
GAME DELAY (1) [MB:Jun80]
These are not rare, and are a good reason not to tell any secrets until the zine actually arrives. GMs vary widely on what type of requests will produce this. These include player illness, vacation, or delay of delivery of the zine. Some GMs will automatically delay the game if the NMR rate is too high.
GAMEFEE (1) [TNP/MN:87/Aug94]
Charge made by most GMs to players in a game. Used to offset production costs. Conrad von Metzke claimed to have invented the concept of running a dipzine, charging a subscribtion but *not* charging a gamefee.
The first hardback book (150 pp) ever to appear on the game, written by Richard Sharp and published by Arthur Barker Ltd, London, 1978. (7.50). It provides a highly comprehensive view of the hobby, and although it has some weaknesses, is extremely well-written and highly entertaining.
One of only two books on Diplomacy to be commercially published, it quickly went out of print, it has been an item of desire ever since. Every Diplomacy fan should have a copy, but it has dated and many would argue that the book is not very well balanced; presenting a distorted picture of the game. You can obtain a photocopy of this book by writing Fred C. Davis Jnr (3210 K Wheaton Way, Ellicott City, MD 21043. USA). Within North America the price is $7. If ordering from elsewhere you are advised to ask one of the above for a quote.
One of Larry Peery's less successful ideas. An attempt at forming a set of awards that recognised positive achievement within the International Hobby. Nominees, nomators and voters were to have been anyone, anywhere except in the first year when Larry picked the winner. See also Event of the Year, Hobby Awards (KW), Personality of the Year and Publication of the Year.
Year Winner
1991 Game 21, DipCon XXIV

"I didn't pick this game because I won it. Well, that's not true. I did pick it because I won it. But, not for the reason you might think. When Gary Behnen, Steve Cooley, or David Hood win a Diplomacy game it's no big deal. It certainly isn't news. When Larry Peery wins one; that's news. If I can win a game, anybody can win a game. So this one is for Everyman, not me. It's for the fellow who has made the Top Board at six MidCon's, but has never won. If you play long enough and try hard enough, anything is possible. I proved it." Larry Peery, _World Diplomacy_ 4, Winter 1992.

One of the most important hobby services to people who want to play in games is a central clearinghouse for zines offering games. The first attempt to offer such a service was _Pontevedria_ founded in 1971 by Rod Walker. Published on and off by Rod through the mid 1980's, it was a prime source of publishers offering new games.

Another game opening service was Robert Sacks' _Known Game Openings_. It was active from 1974 to about 1989. Today, the old _Ponteverdia name lives on; Phil Reynolds has been publishing the one page monthly since 1990 and it is the main place for game opening announcements in the hobby. In the Summer of 1993 Andrew York took over as publisher of _Pontevedria_.

GAME REPORT (1) [MB:Jun80]
This gives the Supply Centers held for each country, the players for each country with their dates, GMs and zines, and the game's outcome. Usually printed when the game ends and is reprinted in _Everything_ or _The New Statsman_.
Written by Rod Walker for Avalon Hill, it is a 36-page professionally printed booklet, covering virtually all aspects of the game and hobby. Well organized, it reflects Walker's personal view of Diplomacy. Detailed review in _DD_ 14/15.
The second edition is dated March 1979 and is still available in the States direct from Avalon Hill. Much of the material in this book really describes how Diplomacy was played in the 1960's. Other parts are rather idiosyncratic. However, every Diplomacy player should own a copy!
A completely new work with this title has just been realeased.
A.k.a. G&P. Founded by entrepreneur Graeme Levin in 1972, and must take some of the blame for the 'explosion' in the hobby in 1973. Featured articles on the game by Don Turnbull and also an advert for the 'British Diplomacy Club' (became the NGC) which brought in an unexpected high number of enquiries for a magazine with 30,000 circulation. Recently went quarterly, ceased to be sale or return. Dying. A pity, because it filled a hole. Near the end, though, Levin's refusal to pay a going rate for writers took its toll.
Shops run by entrepreneur Graeme Levin who is finally making some money. Ask for 10% discount, mention 'the hobby' casually and you might get it.
Annual meeting run by Games Workshop at profit for them. Look for the bar, which is where we will all be. Frequently overrun by eight-year-olds, gives games a bad name. Last one had Frisbee throwers in the middle and massive crowds on the outside.
GAMESMASTER (1) [MB/MN:Mar82/Aug93]
A postal GM sets the deadline, collects the orders and adjudicates them. He writes up the results, and either mails them to the players or makes sure someone else does. He also creates and interprets house rules, makes decisions on season separations, badly written orders, and deadline extensions. He arranges for the correction of errors and may write the headline or other commentary. He also should find a new GM if he cannot continue, assign standbys if he needs them and explains adjudications in complex situations. He also reports changes of address. He should also supply the Boardman Number Custodian with the full names of the players and country assignments, and publish the SC and player charts when the game is completed. Usually also the editor of the zine, but not necessarily in which case the GM is really a GGM (Guest GM).
What the GM types up at the end of a Diplomacy game, including a list of supply centre holdings throughout the game, and players' endgame statements.
A small game company that bought Diplomacy from Calhamer after he was unable to successfully market it for himself (1960), and later sold it to its present owners, Avalon Hill (in 1977). Aside from putting the flyer in the dippy sets, GRI had no role in the postal hobby, though they briefly "sponsored" _Diplomacy World_.
List of names and addresses and starting positions, usually published in a zine, but sometimes players are notified privately.
Produced _Owl Weasel_ fanzine, then Steve Jackson (driving force) couped in on British rights to D&D. Start of business growth. TSR transferred rights of D&D to Don Turnbull in early 1980, to general acclaim. Cut Games Workshop soldiers on with solid base.
See Fortresses, Standing Armies and VariantJargon (KW).
Richard Sharp's name for the pro-German A(Mar)-Spa, A(Par)-Gas, F(Bre)-MAO. This denies France any say in Belgium, allowing him a self-standoff in Mar or in Bre if there are units in Pie or ENC. It does give France the ability to take both Iberian builds and still have the fleet free to enter English or Italian waters in F01 or S02. The drawback is that the armies will be holed up in Iberia in W01, and will take a while to return to action. Known in the States as The Iberian Indecision, name given by Greg Ellis in an article in DW. A(mar)-Spa, A(Par)-Gas and F(Bre)-Pic is the Picardy variation. See French Openings (KW).
Richard Sharp's name for the opening: F(Bre)-MAO, A(Par)-Pic and A(Mar)-Gas. It is more systematic to call this the Gascony Variation of the Picardy Opening. See French Openings (KW).
Run by Robert Sacks, awards were voted in various categories of hobby disservice, serious and humourous, in the mid 70's. Named after Margaret Gemignani, one of the most persistent but maladroit hobbyists. Categories included "Most Infamous Person", "Least Reliable Ally", "Award for Confusion", and "Publication most in need of improvement." See Hobby Awards (KW).
GEMIGNANI, Margaret (1) [MN:Dec92]
First woman to play an active part in the diplomacy hobby. Played in many games and "participated in hobby discussions as well as a functional state of near illiteracy permitted" (John Boardman, _Graustark_ 573... January 1990) See Personalities (KW).
GEMIGNANI, Margaret (2) [CW:Jul95]
Peggy was one of the nicest people ever to play the game. If she happened to come across in print as not overly educated she was quite normal sounding on the phone. She was also the inspiration for the Gemiganani 25-player variant (designed by me) which was one of the first Anarchy-style variants. (Imagine a five-by-five square cut into twenty-five smaller squares with a player in each one. It was introduced in the fake issue of _Runestone_ (_Ruinstoned_) back in the 70s.
GENCON (1) [MB:Jun80]
A wargaming convention which has hosted DipCon (1977), sponsored by SPI, usually in the summer in Lake Geneva, Wisc.
THE GENERAL [PB/MN:1980/Aug93]
Magazine produced by Avalon Hill. Weakened with the advent of SPI because of concentration on Avalon Hill games. Resuscitated by regrowth of Avalon Hill. Once contained a regular column on Diplomacy written by Rod Walker. Has produced several Diplomacy dominated issues.
Player's instructions to the GM on how to create substitute orders in case of NMR. If permitted (not all GMs will bother, or approve) the HRs usually will describe what they must have. GMs often assign the task of translating these into actual orders to an outsider, to avoid the appearance of being involved in the game.
GENZINE (1) [MB:Jun80/Nov82]
A zine which is devoted to dippy but runs no games. Examples include _Diplomacy Digest_, _Diplomacy Review_, _Utopia_, _Ltd_, _Diplomacy World_ and _The National_. Sometimes used more narrowly to include only those zines with a general discussion of Diplomacy matters, thus excluding more specialized zines like _Everything_ and _U.S. Dollars_. The first was Don Miller's _Diplomania_.
1979 national hobby meeting. See also MidCon and PolyCon.
Any Russian opening based on A(War)-Sil. This usually only makes sense as a part of a blitz, or if the players are fairly certain that Germany will be opening anti-Russian. See Russian Openings (KW).
If you want to play Germany you might be interested in reading: Anschluss, Baltic Openings, Barbarossa, Blitzkrieg Opening (Danish Variation), Blitzkrieg Opening (Denmark Variation), Blitzkrieg Opening (Dutch Variation), Blitzkrieg Opening (Heligoland Variation), Blitzkrieg Opening (Holland Variation), Burgundy Attack (Den Variation), Burgundy Attack (Hol variation), Frederich Opening, Gambole Stunt, Holland Opening, Interior Alliance, Jutland Gambit, Konigratz Freakout, McKejo Opening, Munich Gambit, Northern Tier Alliance Opening, Prussian Opening and Silesian Openings.
John Leeder's 8 player variant set in 9th century Britain. There is also a madman type unit, which players can bid to control.
GGM (1) [MN:Nov92]
Abbreviation for Guest GM.
GHOSTZINE (1) [MB/PG:Jun80/Nov93]
Zines which are planned, talked about, etc but which never actually appear (or just have a preliminary issue). Examples include _Overstop_ and _Pressgang_. The most infamous ghost zine of the 1990's was _Ishkibble_.
Janta-Polczynski's 9-player variant using a more finely divided, but only slightly larger, map. It has special rules for straits, canals, and islands, and some intricate "helping" orders. Details in _DW_ Vol 3 #2. See Variant (KW).
GLADYS AWARDS (1) [MB/TNP/MN:Mar82/87/92]
British awards for zines in various categories, usually 10; Best for news, Diplomacy games, best variant, best GM, most efficient, best letter column. Voters choose in each category from a list of, generally, 3-6 nominees. The "Oscars" of postal Diplomacy, originally intended as a light-hearted adjunct to the Zine Poll. Run originally by John Miller in _Mr Gladgrind_ and then by Nick Shears in _Down Alien Skies_ amd in 1986 by Geoff Challinger in _Home of the Brave_. For a few years in the 1980's they also included the Pimley Award. Run from 1991 by John Miller. See Hobby Awards (KW).
GLASCON (1) [MB:Jun80]
A large west coast gaming convention (LA) that hosted DipCon in 1978.
GLOBAL VARIANT (1) [MB:Jun80/Mar82]
One whose map embraces the entire planet. Usually the left and right sides are connected or overlap so that the map is actually a cylinder. The first one was Rod Walker's Imperialism VIII, other examples are Colonia, Holocaust, Mercator, Small World II and 2001. See Variant Jargon.
A novice package produced in 1980 by Pete Birks for the British Hobby. It contained a list of terminology, descriptions of zines and pen portraits of well known hobby members. Some of the entries have been reproduced in this document. See Zine Names (KW).
GM (1) [MN:Nov92]
See Gamesmaster.
GMs (1) [MN:Jan93]
What is the most number of GMs used for one game? 1984H had five GMs in 13 game years!
GO [PB:1980]
A great Japanese game of skill. Not really popular over here, even amongst games players. As chess is a battle, so Go is a war. Takes years to appreciate.
GOLDEN AGE (1) [JM/MN:1992/Aug94]
Also know as the Golden Age of the Hobby. The first 'Golden Years' of the North American Hobby were the period 1971-1973 which saw a large number of Diplomacy zines being launched and some of the most creative articles, commentary and zine design were produced. Noteworthy zines of the time included _Hoosier Archives_, _Impassable_ and _Runestone_. Humor had always been a big part of the hobby, which included fake zines --- the most spectacular being a fake of a Belgian zine, _Moeshoeshoe_, in 1972 by John Leeder, Conrad von Metzke and Michael Liesnard. But along with the hilarity and the growth came the inevitable push for a formal organization. The first Golden Age ended with the rise of prominance of the IDA in the mid 1970s.

The Second Golden Age started soon after Avalon Hill started distributing diplomacy in 1979. Over the next few years some of the best zines ever appeared: Brutus Bulletin, Europa Express, Fol Si Fie, Retaliation, Voice of Doom, Whitestonia/Kathy's Korner and half a dozen others. What separated these zines from their predecessors was not the creative talent that went into their content, but the size of them. Some of them ran over a hundred pages an issue. Advancing technology was reponsible for this more than anything else. The xerox machine was still something of a novelty in the early 1970s, and while available at a place of work it was still prohibitively costly. But by 1980 the cost was low enough to allow publishers to fill a subscriber's mailbox with a product that had long letter columns, volumes of press, reprinting of commercial cartoons, etc. etc. So going into the 1980s, zines got bigger. The Second Golden Age was shattered by the Great Feud.

Given by Jack Masters, the 1980 awards included _Murd'ring Ministers_ as best zine, _Lone Star Diplomat_ as best new zine, _Emhain Macha_ as sophomore zine, Linsey as Hobbyist of the Year, proliferation of fake zines as "event of the year" and "Caruso vs Linsey" as controversy of the year. Discontinued in 1982 due to Masters leaving the hobby.
A kind of typewriter. Editors, dealing with typewriters a lot, may often natter on in technical terms (as they will about printing).
A method of handling S01 NMRs in which the offender is immediately expelled and a new player brought in, and the S01 deadline reset. Commonly used in British no-standby games.
Drew McGee's 22-player variant which uses a standard board, except that who controls the pieces is a collection of rulers of Kingdoms, principalities, etc. Players may defect from alliances, must designate rulers for additional pieces, etc. Won one of the 1976 Variant Awards. See Variant (KW).
The zine archives kept by Elmer Hinton Jr.
The first zine. Started in 1963 by Dr. John Boardman. Still running! (over 300 issues). (Still running, over 600 issues! --- MN Aug 1993) See Zine Names (KW).
GREAT FEUD, The (1) [JM/MN/MN+BL+MB:1992/Dec92/Feb07]
Name given to a long running set of feuds, some interlocking, some loosely connected, between various North American Hobby members which shattered the Second Golden Age. It rumbled off and on throughout the 1980's and at its peak split the US Hobby into two camps, destroyed reputations, drove people from the hobby (including Doug Beyerlein) and burned up enough creative energy, time and money to produce a score of top flight zines (the mass hat mailings by both sides were minizines in themselves).

The extreme level of vitriol this feud generated is blamed by some for the decline in the size of the North American Hobby over this period. The aftermath was a black hole that few people care to revisit.

See Hedgehog, Alpine Variation.
GREY PRESS (1) [MB:Jun80]
Press that is labeled as coming from a particular place (e.g. datelined Switzerland or Malta). Allows press to be anonymous.
See Games Research, Inc.
GROUP GAME (1) [MB:Jun80]
A game in which some or all of the countries are played by groups of people rather than one person. One example is 1977JB in the zine _W&G Bank DipClub_, with different branches playing different countries, and the "computer section" playing Turkey.
GROW (1) [MN:Dec92]
A company in Sao Paulo that used to publish Diplomacy (and other games) in Brazil. Sometimes they even paid royalties on the games they reprinted. See also Brazilian variant.
A variant rule permitting players to build in any of their open home centers, even if owned by another. Adds some fluidity to the game. See Variant Jargon.
GUEST GM (GGM) (1) [MB/TNP:Jun80/1987]
Someone who runs a game in another's zine, usually using the host's HRs. This permits someone to try his hand at gamesmastering without the full commitment of publishing, and permits the editor to expand the number of games without as much extra work, especially if the GM prepares the stencil. Disadvantages include a generally shorter deadline, divided authority over the game, delays if the GM does not get his report in, and possibilities of GM-editor confusion and conflict. Zines which have used GGMs extensively include _Claw and Fang_, _The Mixumaxu Gazette_ and _Dragon and Lamb_. Remember to send your orders to the guest GM and not to the editor, especially if he's playing in the game!
GUNBOAT DIPLOMACY (1) [MB/RE/MN:Mar82/89-90/Jan92]
When played face-to-face a variant played without the intervals between seasons for discussion and hence no diplomacy whatsoever. FTF Gunboat tournaments have been run at several American conventions.

In the postal version the players are anonymous and press may, or may not, be allowed. There are several different versions of postal gunboat depending upon what the exact rules are on press e.g. black press, grey press or white press option; is there a pre-Spring 1901 press turn etc.

Gunboat is an almost purely tactical exercise, it not only emphasizes appreciation of the game mechanics as against the players' communication skills, but also allows a face-to-face game to be played to the finish within a relatively short time--perhaps a couple of hours. In postal play Gunboat is sometimes run as a "Round Robin Tournament" where the seven players play in seven games, one as each power, simultaneously. The first such tournament was run by Vern Shaller in 1980-81 was won by Karl Shuetz.

It's worth noting that in 1980 the term wasn't in use and this variant was not mentioned in Mark Berch's "Lexicon of Diplomacy". Gunboat became very popular in the US postal hobby in the 1980's (interest has now declined) with many games and Round-Robin Tournaments started; the number of gamestarts was over 100. The popularity of this variant stems from the laziness of most players who would rather play in a game with no diplomacy and the fact that this variant requires no special effort on the players' part to set up a map. See Variant (KW).

Those gunboat games which specifically bar the use of press releases for negotiation. The different versions of Gunboat were codified by Fred C. Davis in April 1989. See Variant (KW).

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

This page last updated .