Twin Earths Diplomacy III (rm11)

by Lew Pulsipher

1. The game is played on two standard boards, with 14 players, one for each Great Power on each board.  One board is referred to as Y, the other as Z.  Thus there are, for example, two Munichs, Mun-Y

and Mun-Z, each a separate space unconnected with the other.  At game start there is no connection between the two boards.

2.  Each winter, each player may link any two spaces on the boards, subject to restrictions in rules 3 and 4.  A link lasts until destroyed.  Linked spaces are adjacent and units can move between them if the terrain permits.  (Note that if, say, Mun-Y and Aeg-Z (or Y) were linked, Mun-Y would be a coastal space and a fleet could move to it.  If the link were destroyed, the fleet would remain.  If Mun-y is linked to a coastal space, it remains land only.  Rather than link two spaces, a player may choose to destroy a previously established link.  If at same time another player orders the link reinforced, it is not destroyed as the destroy and reinforce orders cancel each other.  A reinforcement, if not needed, does not carry over to the next winter.)

3.  A player may not link any space to a space in any home country other than his own.  For example, Germany-Y could not link Mun-Z and Spa-Y.  He could link Mun-Y (his own country) and Hol-Z, say.  A link such as, say, NAF to Gre or Tun to Spa (either board) is always permissible.

4.  Each winter each player who controls 1 or 2 centers may make no links/destroy orders; one who controls 3-9 centers may make one such order; one who controls 10-19 centers may make two such orders; one who controls 20 or more center may make three such orders.

5.  The game begins with winter 1900.  Players build units in their home centers and may make one link.

6.  There are 68 centers.  A player wins when he has 23 units on the board.  Note that this considerably less than a majority. 

Optional 1 (simplification):  A maximum of 30 (or whatever number agreed to) links can exist.  Make a list as links are made, and eliminate the oldest as necessary.  A link reinforced is written again at the bottom of the list.

Optional 2 (complication):  A player may order the destruction of a “link” between two normally connected spaces, such as Mun-Z and Bur-Z.  In this case no movement/support is possible between the two spaces, until they are linked again.

Optional 3 (simplification):  Players can only connect spaces on different boards, not on the same board.

Comments:  The number of players in an alliance can be as important as the number of units, in most cases, since more players can generally make more links.  The victory criterion is low to shorten the game, and also in hopes that some player might manage to win before the rest gang up on his.  A weaker criterion would be 23 centers.

Don Miller’s TWIN EARTHS I and HYPERSPACE variants are forerunners of this game.