by Richard Sharp
1. The 1971 rule of Diplomacy apply except as hereinafter specified.
2. Supply centers become pubs, tied houses or free houses as appropriate. They may be considered to have suitable names, but standard notation will be used. Units become punters, and game years become days, the game starting at Saturday lunchtime. The movement seasons are Lunchtime and Evening, summer and winter being replaced by Afternoon (retreats) and After-Hours (retreats, hairs of the dog for those who have gained pubs, and leaks for those who have lost them).
3. When submitted orders, players should also cast votes as to which pubs they would like to see closed/opened during the coming season. Each player has 4 votes on the first Saturday, thereafter as many votes as he controlled pubs on the previous evening. Votes may be combined/split ad lib. Orders for Afternoon and After Hours should be submitted on the usual conditional basis. The three events receiving the most vote will take place, ties being split at random by the GM.
4. Non-pubs (seas and deserts) are also subject to Rule 3, and are treated in exactly the same ways as pubs.
5. Players should also submit, with each set of moves, a list of up to 3 seas and/or deserts they would like to see become pubs. This list can always be submitted, however many/few pubs a player controls, and takes effect only if pubs are closed under Rule 3, in which case the GM will open new pubs, being guided by the number of nominations, ignoring order. New pubs will be opened so that the number of open pubs at any time is always 34.
6. Anything which has been closed, whatever it was before, is a desert when it reopens. However, opening precedes licensing, so that it is possible for a closed are to be opened, then licensed, between two movement seasons. This would be the result of suitable voting.
7. The effects of closing are dire, as in real life, namely: (i) A punter attempting to enter a closed pub fails, and becomes (understandably) demoralized. His combat strength for the immediately following season is therefore halved – notation 1/2 A or 1/2 F. (ii) A punter attempting to leave a pub which has just closed has the full force of law behind him and is irresistible, for that move only. However, if he meets another equally irresistible punter of equal or greater strength, or if he is attempting to move to another closed pubs, he bounces back in, and Rule 7(iii) then applies. (iii) A punter who is trapped in a closed pub, for whatever reason, is instantly evicted. The eviction is extremely violent, and the unfortunate punter should be considered to be suspended at a great height above the board, looking down forlornly. Eviction is considered to take place before movement in the case of punters who made no attempt to leave but after movement in cases covered by Rule 7(ii). The effects, alas, are the same in either case. (iv) A punter who is forced to retreat in combat, and whose first-choice retreat has closed in the meantime, is a bona fide traveller. He gets a drink at the back door, so that his strength is unimpaired, but must then follow a legal retreat order or be disbanded. (v) Evicted punters all come down simultaneously, no matter when they were evicted. This occurs at the beginning of the following turn, after opening/closures but before moves.
8. Descending punters may meet one of a number of fates, depending where they land, as follows: (i) If in an unoccupied, open pub – become 2A/2F for following season only, having stood unordered as a single unit for the current season. (ii) If in an unoccupied, open sea or desert – hangover for the following season only, i.e. normal strength but unable to move, having stood unordered for the current season. (iii) If in an occupied province of any kind – land on the occupant, squashing it (to death), then apply appropriate rule for province without occupant. (iv) If in a closed pub – evicted again immediately, i.e. before movement. (v) But any punter landing out of his element is automatically annihilated, along with any punter that happens to be underneath at the time.
9. Landings are decided by the GM at random, with the proviso that two (or more) punters may not land in the same province.
10. Hairs of the dog (builds) may be taken in any owned, vacant center (oops, pub).
11. Leaks (removals) may be taken anywhere.
12. Sunday movement – because Sunday hours are so short, punters may move faster than usual. A punter who is attempting to move to a pub (only) may jump over one intervening desert, sea or closed pub, but if he attempts to jump over an open pub he is considered to be obliged to go there instead. Jumping punters must specify the route taken, mid-air collisions resulting in the elimination of the weaker unit, or both if equal.
13. A closure vote which would result in any part of the board, however small, being cut off is invalid. If two (or more) votes which would together produce this effect are cast on the same turn, the least popular is invalidated, tied being split at random.
14. The Caspian Sea, Corsica, Iceland and Switzerland are closed at the start of the game, but may be voted open and may become pubs. If the Caspian Sea is opened, Sev, Arm and Syr become two-coast provinces.
15. Votes cast for opening pubs already open, or vice versa, in the hope of canceling out other votes, are invalid, but it is permissible to vote to license a pub which is currently closed, the vote counting if the pub is opened on that turn.
16. Standard notation will be used so far as possible, the new provinces being CAS, Cor, Ice, Ire and Swl. Notation of a punter with a hangover is a or f. Closed pubs will be blacked out on the map, and supply centers marked with a black dot. (Oh, all then, pubs.) (Why did I ever start this?)
For the benefit of anyone else who is as confused as I am, the sequence of play is as follows: (1) Votes to open/close pubs are counted and implemented. (2) If necessary, nominations to license deserts and seas are counted and implemented. (3) Punters caught in closed pubs and not ordered to move are evicted. (4) Last season’s flying punters come down (they just sit round looking dazed and getting in the way). (5) Movement orders are adjudicated. (6) Retreats are adjudicated, any recently descended punter who has the misfortune to be dislodged being annihilated. (7) Normal adjustments. Any situation arising which is not covered in the above rules will be dealt with by the GM on an ad hoc basis, and is not subject to appeal! And Gawd ‘elp all who sail in her.