by Matthew Wright
An Intimate Diplomacy variant
0. The 1971 rules of Diplomacy will be used, save where modified below.
1.1 At the start of the game, each player should submit a preference list for countries.
1.2 Each country is allocated the following: amount of popularity points;
40 Points to England, France, Russia & Turkey. 45 Points to Germany. 50 Points to Austria and, Italy.
1.3 Each game year, both players put in bids for the mercenary nations. The country which then has the highest popularity in each case secures control of that country for the following year, including the build period.
1.4 Where popularity ratings are equal, neither player controls the country, which is then treated as in anarchy.
1.5 The players are N0T allowed to bid more popularity points than they have.
1.6 All bids (successful or not) are then deducted from the player’s total of popularity points, since a running total is kept during the game.
1.7 After the bidding season, moves are carried out as in normal Diplomacy.
1.8 At the end of the year, the number of supply centres controlled by each player’s home country are totalled and 4 points for each of these are .added to their remaining popularity points.
1.9 Before bidding can commence for the next year, any change in popularity ratings are assessed. The popularity rating in each country can be affected in the following ways:
Popularity can also be affected as follows.
(i) For every home supply centre of a controlled mercenary country which the controlling player takes control of with one of his own units, the controlling player’s popularity decreases by 30%.
(ii) For every home supply centre of a controlled mercenary country which is lost to anyone other than the controlling player, the controlling player’s popularity and that of the player who captures the supply centre both decrease by 10%.
(iii) For every centre captured by the mercenary country, the controlling player’s popularity rating goes up by 10%.
Note: all fractions are discarded.
2.1 Each game year consists of three seasons: (a) New Year bids, (b) Spring moves and retreats, (c) Autumn moves, retreats and Winter Adjustments.
2.2 If a neutral unit is forced to retreat, it disbands. If a home unit is forced to retreat, and no retreat is ordered, it is disbanded. If a mercenary unit is forced to retreat and no retreat order is given, the GM will retreat it, but; a player may order his mercenary units to disband.
2.3 Builds: Failure to order builds for a mercenary country will result in the GM building units on the principle of armies in alphabetical order of name, with the exception of England, which would build fleets.
2.4 If a player overbids, then he will loose half his popularity points and no bids will be submitted for that year.
2.5 The game ends when one player occupies one of his opponent’s home supply centres with one of his own units. If this happens simultaneously to both players, the one with the most popularity points in their bank, plus 4 points for every centre owned, is the winner.
First Published in Life, the Universe, and an Army in Paris No.2 (November 1985)