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The podcast about playing the strategy game Diplomacy and its variants. Visit DiplomacyGames.com for more info.


The guys squeeze a lot in a short time: Rebranding, getting the word out about diplomacy groups around the world, Amby shares his efforts to get a Diplomacy community going in Brisbane & how you can do the same, new variants, site updates, billionaires & the good ol' Australian democracy sausage.


  • The guys stuff up the podcast entry and then get into an argument about pronouncing Toowong before talking a little about the Royal Exchange hotel, known locally as the RE (0 mins 5 secs)
  • The guys introduce their drinks (2 mins 20 secs)

Face-to-face and old school wisdom

  • Amby and Kaner discuss rebranding the podcast to reflect both face-to-face and online Diplomacy (3 mins 40 secs)
  • The website now has a Google Map showing where people can find Diplomacy groups, or can advise their group/interest in creating a group (7 mins)
  • Amby talks about his efforts to get a Diplomacy community up and running in Brisbane, and what you can do to copy their strategy. The guys have almost got enough people who’ve expressed an interest in playing a game face-to-face in Brisbane (10 mins)
  • Playboy board game book - ideal for DiplomacyAmby has finished reading the Diplomacy chapter of “The Playboy Winner’s Guide to Board Games” written by Jon Freeman or… Byjon Freeman. He reads a couple of choice quotes and then discusses its strategies for playing each of the seven players’ countries (17 mins)
  • Kaner reads up the Italian section and after some more drinks they discuss the strategy suggested for playing Italy (22 mins)

New variants, updates & democracy sausages

  • Kaner discusses his anonymous games including the new 1937 A World At War variant by michael_b at vDip. They talk about the imbalances in the game and Amby puts on his history nerd hat. They find the approach to sea territories really interesting (26 mins)
  • While talking vDiplomacy they discuss the coding changes to the site that came across from webDip. The guys both love the changes to the Hall of Fame that now includes a list for people who’ve played in the past 6 months and kick off a run through of the Top 20 (36 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner discusses forum conversation between the merits of sea lanes to break stalemate lines vs stacking. He uses the example of stacking proposed in the upcoming variant Dawn of the Enlightenment by David E Cohen. Amby mentions one of David’s variants - Conquest of the Americas - is currently being proposed over at PlayDip (40 mins 20 secs)
  • After lunch the guys mention they had an off-tape discussion about Amby’s Divided States game. They both mention they signed up for the Funboat game. Amby discusses a story about the ship in the “Love Boat” TV series from the 70’s (52 mins)
  • They talk about the idea of recording players in a game that could be used to give people an idea of gameplay. Kaner suggests doing this in an online game while Amby thought it lends itself to a face-to-face game (54 mins)
  • SPOILER ALERT - The guys talk about the Game of Thrones TV show (1 hr 1 mins)
  • They talk briefly about the similarities and differences between the Game of Thrones game and Diplomacy (1 hr 4 mins)
  • Amby mentions a Forbes article about a Matt Calkins, a US software billionaire, who happens to be a Diplomacy player (1 hr 6 mins)
  • Kaner mentions the upcoming Australian election. They discuss the Australian tradition of getting a Democracy Sausage and a politician promising to “Make Australia Great” (1 hr 11 mins)
  • They then wrap it all up (1 hr 14 mins)

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. And don't forget if you want to help improve the audio equipment... or get the guys more drunk,  you can also donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

Venue: Royal Exchange Hotel, Brisbane

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - James Squire's Swindler Pacific Ale

Amby - Baily & Baily, Jump N Jive Shiraz

Thanks as always to Dr Dan aka "The General" for his rockin' intro tune. Never know, we may get him into a face-to-face game soon!

Play Now
April 12, 2019

Settling back in

Finney IslesKaner & Amby start settling back into the online scene but have started applying their face-to-face Dip ninja skills to online gameplay. Plus their current games and new variants. 


  • The guys introduce the show and reflect the site and podcast album art probably needs to reflect Diplomacy as a whole - online and face to face (0 mins 5 secs)
  • They’re drinking at Finney Isles in Fortitude Valley. They talk about their drinks and settling back in. (1 min)
  • Amby says that family commitments in reflection will prevent him from going to the 2020 WDC in Vermont. Kaner still may go. But neither of the guys can swing Marseilles 2019 (5 mins)
  • Amby brings up his (failed) Montana theory about Kaner’s online handle of kaner406 and talk a little about America (6 mins)
  • Kaner talks about his thoughts on connecting in with local gaming groups and introducing Diplomacy. (10 mins)
  • Amby discusses a little keyword research he’s done about potentially targeting people interested in the game to come along to a social face-to-face game in Brisbane (11 mins 15 secs)

Around the grounds

  • Kaner brings up a now completed anonymous game, "Big Guns" that has just wrapped up where he stabbed Amby. The game ended in a draw with both of the guys surprised the draw passed (13 mins 15 secs)
  • They talk about the decision to stab (15 mins 30 secs)
  • <20:45 edit out pause bit>
  • Kaner asks Amby about his PlayDip games - they talk about the now completed Versailles game (with fog of war) called “We have a Hulk” where Amby survived to the end which was drawn with Sweden, Poland, France, Czechoslovakia and Egypt (which Amby was playing as) (20 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby’s also in a 1900 game which is potentially heading towards the end game. Its public press only where Amby discusses the importance of learning from face-to-face about the importance of communication. But its not working out as a public press game as half of the players aren’t communicating (24 mins 20 secs)
  • Kaner discusses starting a game with grey press, global posting only, fog of war, written in a Newspaper style and then dropped through multiple translations (27 mins)
  • Amby reminds new listeners that the way a Translation game works is covered in episode 4 of the podcast (29 mins) 
  • Kaner asks about Amby’s anonymous Divided States game and how that’s going (30 mins 40 secs)
  • They talk about a new World War IV Sealanes game that has started and why Amby didn’t join (32 mins 20 secs)
  • After fresh drinks the guys talk hops and possums (37 mins 50 secs)
  • They return to the WWIV game and discuss Kaner’s plan. Amby poses two questions to Kaner around this (42 mins 30 secs)

New variants

  • Kaner introduces two new variants to the vDip website, starting with Caucasia... which both he and Amby mistake the name of the variant and get into the usual argy bargy on. Then Professor Kaner gives a Geography lesson (46 mins)
  • Then it’s onto Edwardian (3rd edition.) Kaner bitches about Christmas colors and why can’t Diplomacy maps be like Reader’s Digest maps (50 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner asks what the difference is in this variant to its earlier iteration. Amby discusses creating a big hitters game for Edwardian III and someone PMing about wanting to join. Kaner explains how moderators can force add people to games (54 mins)

Changes at vDip

  • Large amounts of webDip’s code has moved across to vDip. The guys discuss what they like and dislike (58 mins)
  • After discussing some of the changes in ratings breakdown for game types, they talk how Kaner has played more games than Amby and question the math behind total game stats and variant stats  (1 hr 1 mins)
  • Amby discusses how with the changes his ranking seems to have got a bit of a boost. They also talk about removing non-active players from the rankings and Kaner’s chats to Oli about this. They discuss there being zero downside to this change (1 hr 3 mins 40 secs)
  • Amby suggests how can Oli (or other Dip site admins) can reach out by email to non-active players about recent improvements and coming back to the site to play games again (1 hr 8 mins)
  • The guys tease the audience about some prospective interview guests planned for the show (1 hr 11 mins)
  • Amby recalls the Flight of the Conchords episode with their French language song… a MUST LISTEN for anyone going to WDC in Marseilles this year (1 hr 12 mins)
  • The guys wrap up (1 hr 13 mins)

Venue: Finney Isles, Brisbane

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - Windblower IPA

Amby - Ochota Barrels Syrah (Shiraz) from the Basket Ranges in South Australia

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. And don't forget if you want to help improve the audio equipment... or get the guys more drunk,  you can also donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

Thanks as always to Dr Dan for his rockin' intro tune. Used it as a segment segue this time around for something different.

Play Now

Kaner & Amby fly to play in the Melbourne Open Diplomacy tournament. They get schooled but can they come good in the end?

Intro in the airport

Venue: Brisbane Airport

Drinks of choice:

Kaner & Amby - 150 Lashes Australian pale ale by James Squire Brewery

  • The guys are recording initially at the Brisbane domestic airport waiting for their flight to the Melbourne Open face-to-face tournament (0 mins 10 secs)
  • They discuss their hopes to catch up with players outside of the games (4 mins 20 secs)
  • Kaner talks about his return to the Melbourne “big smoke” talking about growing up in rural Victoria (6 mins 15 secs)
  • Kaner discusses the recently completed Divided States game drawn 3 way’s between Technostar (Kansas - 128 units), EmpireStrikesBack (Vermont - 78 units) and Tobi1 (New Hampshire - 73 units). It’s generally considered this particular game probably had the most SCs/units controlled by a player in any Diplomacy game (7 mins 50 secs - if edited out the bing bing)
  • They introduce their beers - more One Fifty Lashes from James Squire (11 mins 15 secs)
  • Kaner discussed the player positioning on the board (11 mins 30 secs)
  • By drawing the three players all got massive boosts to their rankings on vDip (13 mins 30 secs)
  • They then move onto Amby’s Divided States game and provide a brief update (15 mins)
  • Amby then goes onto discuss an anonymous game he’s in at vDip where he was doing well but has been massively stabbed (16 mins)
  • He then discusses his games at PlayDip including his 1900 game and some of the differences for this variant (18 mins)
  • Finally Amby moves onto his Fog of War game at vDip (25 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner brings up discussions at vDip about points and suggestions (28 mins)
  • They touch on the Russian Diplomacy site moving web address (29 mins)
  • Kaner gives a long interesting story about him and ferrets (30 mins 30 secs)
  • They grab another beer and Kaner discusses how he hates plane flights (38 mins)
  • Kaner flags the search facility at vDip has recently changed (41 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner is waiting on a Newspaper game to get going (44 mins)
  • The guys’ flight gets called but its so quiet they can’t hear the details. They wrap up this part of the show (45 mins 30 secs)

End of Day one at the Melbourne Open

Venue: Hop Sing, Melbourne

Drinks of choice:

Melissa Call - Cockfighters Ghost Pinot Gris

Everyone else - Furphy’s ale

  • Amby introduces the after-party - a table of 9 people at Hop Sing, Melbourne. 8 were players on Day 1 of the Melbourne Open tournament. Due to the size of the table the audio is  (48 mins)
  • People at the table are: Kaner, Melissa Call, Shane Cubas, Peter McNamara, Peter Novacco, Amby, Amelia, Tim Jones (ATinCan) and Brett Chatterton. Everyone is having Furphy’s ale and Melissa is having a Cockfighters Ghost Pinot Gris  (49 mins)
  • Peter is topping the board for Day 1 at 30 points, while Amby is a distant 2nd. Amby discusses the experience of playing face to face (51 mins)
  • Melissa flags how new face to face players who normally play online usually have a lot of trouble with the deadline (52 mins)
  • Amby raises the issue of misorders in face to face and spelling mistakes in orders (53 mins 30 secs)
  • They discuss how the order pace was much faster than any other tournament players had attended (54 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby learns about the importance of drafting your orders at the start of the turn rather than waiting to the end (55 mins)
  • Brett brings up Andrew Goff’s previous Flying Dutchman move in an earlier game (56 mins)
  • Amby asks about people’s learnings from the day (57 mins)
  • Kaner discusses how he managed to pull off a Key Lepanto (58 mins 30 secs)
  • Shane discusses Beer Diplomacy and its impact on the game (1 hr 0 mins)
  • Kaner talks about the stress factor of retreats and builds eating into the normal turn’s discussion time (1 hr 1 min)
  • Shane asks Amby and Kaner about their prior involvement in face to face (1 hr 2 mins)
  • They discuss who got stabbed and who stabbed well (1 hr 4 mins)
  • Tim outlines the Cricket scoring system for the tournament (1 hr 6 mins)
  • Amby and Kaner are asked what they’ll do differently and the prospect of a top board on the final day (1 hr 7 mins)
  • The group discuss the rules and what is ok and what’s pushing it too far (1 hr 8 mins)
  • Amby flags the difference in the two boards he was on with openings and alliances in the games (1 hr 11 mins)
  • Amby’s observations on the dynamics of Tim and Jamal and how they coordinated their gameplay with discussions (1 hr 17 mins)
  • The group discuss Italy’s eventually placement in Denmark (1 hr 20 mins)
  • Amby explains how the gameplay in face-to-face is often totally different to online where the communication lends itself to more dynamic moves. Kaner discusses how relationships in face-to-face games seem faster to form than online (1 hr 22 mins 30 secs)
  • The table talks about stabbing (1 hr 26 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby asks Amelia - as a non player - on what she’s expecting if she plays a game (1 hr 30 mins)
  • The table shares their recommendations to Amelia if she’s to play. Tim shares the best Diplomacy advice he ever received from Andrew Goff (1 hr 32 mins)
  • Mel suggests to Amelia that if she likes the game, to play some gunboat games with a 24 hour phase, to develop her skills and anticipating player moves (1 hr 35 mins)
  • Apologies as for about five minutes there are two conversations going on at the table which may sound a little confusing (1 hr 37 mins)
  • They talk about manipulation of players with Tim being asked his views (1 hr 42 mins)
  • The table wraps up its conversation, only to be followed by a brief addendum from Tim about when he realised mid-game that Amby was one of those podcast guys (1 hr 45 mins)

Post-tournament wrap up at the airport

Venue: Two Johns Taphouse, Melbourne Airport

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - Pirate’s Life IPA

Amby - atnook Founders Block cabernet sauvignon from the Coonawarra


  • The final part of the show sees Kaner and Amby catching up in Melbourne Airport’s Two Johns Taphouse post-tournament. Kaner is drinking a Pirate’s Life IPA and Amby has a Katnook Founders Block cabernet sauvignon from the Coonawarra which he describes as “doesn’t taste like victory but it tastes pretty sweet”  (1 hr 47 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby announces he came 3rd in the tournament out of 18 players. Kaner came in 5th. And they both far exceeded their expectations. They guys talk about what a great time they had and how much of a buzz translating online experience into face to face (1 hr 48 mins 30 secs)
  • They talk about how online players who’ve played for a while know the rules and the game dynamics and makes it so much easier to come into the face-to-face scene (1 hr 50 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby describes the journey towards face-to-face he’s had over the past six months. Both of the guys talk about the lessons they learnt from the open mike table conversation that they implemented (1 hr 51 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner also discusses how Amby won the tournament’s “best novice” award and how face-to-face DAANZ player scoring systems work and Master points. Due to the guy’s strong performance they’ve leap-frogged straight into Intermediate ranks (1 hr 52 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner discusses the face-to-face tactics used - including “sneaky peeks” which he’d never consider previously as an online player (1 hr 55 mins)
  • Amby talks about how he worked up an alliance which knocked Andrew Goff off the board - although he was playing two boards at once, and running the tournament and wasn’t officially in the tournament so he wasn’t playing his normal game - so Amby didn’t get him at his best (1 hr 56 mins)
  • Peter McNamara came first and Melissa Call second - you can read the results online. Kaner talks about the face-to-face tactic of tying up other players’ negotiation time (1 hr 58 mins)
  • Amby talks about how he followed a tactic of supporting his allies to grab SCs to get them onboard and committed into an alliance (1 hr 59 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner discusses the speed of the games and the speed of player’s adjudication on the board (2 hrs 1 min)
  • The guys thank Andrew for organising the tournament and those like Peter who helped (2 hrs 2 mins 30 secs)
  • They talk about attending future tournaments and discuss attending WDC 2020 in Vermont (2 hrs 3 mins)
  • They finally wrap up with a story from Amby about vivid dreaming of playing Diplomacy (2 hrs 5 mins)

Drinks & locations:

Venue: Brisbane Airport
Kaner & Amby - 150 Lashes Australian pale ale by James Squire Brewery

Venue: Hop Sing, Melbourne
Melissa Call - Cockfighters Ghost Pinot Gris
Everyone else - Furphy’s ale

Venue: Two Johns Taphouse, Melbourne Airport
Kaner - Pirate’s Life IPA
Amby - Katnook Founders Block cabernet sauvignon from the Coonawarra

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. And don't forget if you want to help improve the audio equipment... or get the guys more drunk,  you can also donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

Thanks as always to Dr Dan for his rockin' intro tune. Used it as a segment segue this time around for something different.

Play Now

Coming to the end of summer, Kaner & Amby grab some beers and dream about what it'd be like to be a Diplomacy Man of Leisure. They talk the upcoming face-to-face tournament they're attending, Amby's experience with Versailles at Play Dip, their other games, vDip's 5 new variants and using Diplomacy in the classroom. Phew! A lot packed into this episode!


  • Kaner and Amby welcome listeners to the show and discuss their drinks (0 mins 10 secs)

Face to Face talk and being a Diplomacy Man of Leisure

  • The guys discuss their upcoming attendance at the Melbourne Open Diplomacy tournament (0 mins 50 secs)
  • Amby discusses the challenge of playing face to face for the first time in 25 years (3 mins)
  • Kaner brings along some 3D printed armies and navies he’s made (4 mins 30 secs)

Kaner's 3D printed units

  • Amby asks about what the scoring system is for the Melbourne Open (12 mins 15 secs)
  • They discuss other upcoming tournaments around the globe (15 mins)
  • They talk about the concept of being “Diplomacy Men of Leisure”, facial hair and what would a Steampunk Diplomacy variant be like (15 mins 50 secs)

Amby's experience with Versailles

  • Kaner asks Amby about his Versailles games over at Play Dip. One game is anon, the other is non-anon so Amby can talk about that game in more detail: Versailles Virgins. Amby discusses how contacting players varied between his major and minor power. Kaner asks how do things work at the end of the with points for major and minor powers (18 mins 45 secs)
  • Amby then goes onto talking about his anon Versailles game with fog of war, gunboat and age of empires (where you start with one unit). Kaner asks about the dinosaurs and sharks (26 mins)
  • Amby discusses the “lessons for newbies” element of Versailles about what happens when one of your powers captures the other power’s SC (eg minor capturing your major SC, or vice versa) (27 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner asks Amby about the order interface at PlayDip and how he’s finding it. Amby touches on some of the difficulties using your phone with PlayDip and moving around the screen. He discusses how things in PlayDip are different to the php sites like webDip and vDip (29 mins 45 secs)
  • The guys switch up their drinks (34 mins 45 secs)
  • They clash on the ability to place illegal orders (36 mins 30 secs)

Around the Grounds, can Divided States be soloed and Kaner's geography lesson

  • Kaner talks about joining the second Newspaper game and talks about how it works (39 mins 45 secs)
  • Amby discusses a false start excited text he sent Kaner about his anon Divided States game (42 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner asks how he’s going in the game. They go onto show neither of them can count. (43 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby discusses whether the Divided States board can ever possibly be soloed. <That said the guys didn’t know about this game which may be possible! > (47 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby sees the light on using the interactive map in vDip and discusses his own vDip newbie moment using the interactive map (49 mins)
  • They talk about what the end game is for this Divided States game and how long it could go for (51 mins)
  • Kaner discusses his geography lesson from Mrs Kaner (52 mins)

5 new vDip variants!

  • They talk about the new five variants on vDip: Brazilian, Croatia Egypt, Florence and Britain (53 mins 20 secs)
  • First up they discuss the map, unit placement, rule and SC changes in the Brazilian edition of Diplomacy. They discuss who are the winners and the losers on this map (54 mins 30 secs)
  • Next up is Croatia and the changes to that Classic map (1 hr 3 mins)
  • Then they discuss the Florence variant. Amby discusses Apulia vs Apulgia (1 hr 4 mins 30 secs)
  • And finally the other simple map and rule changes is the Egypt variant. They discuss how the corner power mentality is changed with access in the Atlantic bringing England and France potentially into early conflict with Turkey (1 hr 8 mins)
  • The last variant has practically no map changes but a massive game play change. The variant Britain gives the UK 6 SC’s but it starts with only armies (1 hr 11 mins)

Joke time and Diplomacy in the classroom

Venue: The Charming Squire, Brisbane.


Charming Squire

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - 150 Lashes Australian pale ale and the Runaway cream ale by James Squire Brewery

Amby - 150 Lashes Australian pale ale and a Malt Shovel Extra pale ale (XPA) by James Squire Brewery

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. And don't forget if you want to help improve the audio equipment... or get the guys more drunk,  you can also donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

Play Now
February 16, 2019

Interview with CaptainMeme

Amby visits Edinburgh and interviews two-time interviewee CaptainMeme. They discuss deceptive tactics, the Tournament of Time and how Nuclear Diplomacy could work.  Then there's a post interview analysis with Kaner and Amby.


  • The guys introduce the show and have moved to The Terrace, a rooftop bar in Southbank, Brisbane  (0 mins 10 sec)
  • Both guys admit to being a bit freaky with heights (1 min 10 secs)
  • Kaner is now drinking a James Squire Orchard Crush cider and Amby has a really enjoyable glass of Rusden Good Shepherd Malbec from the Barossa Valley (2 mins 10 secs)

Interview with CaptainMeme

    • The guys introduce Amby’s interview with CaptainMeme recorded in Edinburgh. This is the second time Cap has been on the show (3 mins 45 secs)
    • They are The Conan Doyle pub where Cap is having a Coke as he has a Java coding exam the next day. Amby is drinking a Lia Fail amber ale from Inveralmond Brewery (5 mins)
    • Cap discusses his accent and the origin of his handle “CaptainMeme” and Amby explains how he got his (8 mins)
    • Cap mentions how one of the top PlayDip players is under a different handle at webDip (10 mins 30 secs) 
    • They also talk about Carebear and how he manages his online versus face-to-face personas (11 mins)
    • Cap mentions his WDC analysis video on Youtube he did with Ezio (12 mins 30 secs)
    • He goes onto say that apparently the organisers of the 2020 WDC are planning on a Bourse game for the top board (14 mins)
    • Amby asks how long phases normally go and how are they managed in face-to-face games (15 mins 30 secs)
    • Cap explains how solos are very rare in face-to-face games (18 mins)
    • He gives Amby some helpful hints on what to watch for with Australian players in face-to-face games, and relays a story about another player’s subterfuge (19 mins 45 secs)
    • Cap asks Amby about whether he’ll be going down to Melbourne for an Australian tournament (22 mins 20 secs)
    • He talks about playing Versailles face-to-face at a convention in the UK (24 mins)
    • Amby talks about his recent joining of PlayDip (26 mins 30 secs)
    • They talk about the forum based Tournament of Time where Cap and Amby played with BigJoe on team Baratheon (29 mins)
    • Cap talks about the Dissolution game he’s playing for the team as at the time of recording (this has since finished) and why he really likes this variant (31 mins)
    • Amby discusses how Dipsy at PlayDip thinks he can bring Dissolution to life online, beyond just forum games. Cap says he would definitely buy a PlayDip membership for that (43 mins 45 secs)
    • Amby asks Cap about how the game differs between face-to-face and online (47 mins 45 secs)
    • Cap gives face-to-face games a big wrap for online players, and where they can find face-to-face games (52 mins 30 secs)
    • Cap talks about changes in his Top 5 variants (1 hr 00 mins 40 secs)
    • They discuss France vs Austria, the major stalemate line in the Diplomacy board and the France vs Austria tournament (1 hr 2 mins)
    • They go onto discuss Divided States and why its not in Cap’s Top 5 (1 hr 5 mins 15 secs)
    • Cap asks Amby about how he’s going in his Divided States game and the importance of getting behind player’s lines (1 hr 9 mins)
    • Cap asks Amby about unobtainable victory conditions (1 hr 15 mins 10 secs)
    • The difficulties of living in an Asian timezone when most players communicate when you sleep (1 hr 19 mins)
    • Amby discusses his Imperial game (1 hr 22 mins 30 secs)
    • Cap talks about variant map design and creating an unrealistic impression of who’s doing well (1 hr 25 mins 45 secs)
    • They talk about magnified regions in a map as a possible solution. Amby talks about this in the context of his proposed variant Nuclear Diplomacy (1 hr 29 mins)
    • Cap and Amby discuss how Nuclear Diplomacy would work (1 hr 31 mins 30 secs)
    • Cap suggests being able to potentially shoot down a nuclear missile, and how to technically code them as neutral units once in the atmosphere. He also talks loss prevention (1 hr 34 mins 15 secs)
    • Amby asks about the Mod space at vDip (1 hr 37 mins)

Post interview analysis and banter

  • Kaner and Amby return post interview (1 hr 37 mins 45 secs)
  • They discuss Cap’s “heads-up” about Australian player tactics (1 hr 41 mins)
  • Next they reflect the idea of a Bourse running on the top board of a WDC and the logistics of managing bourse orders in real-time (1 hr 43 mins)
  • The guys provide an update on Amby’s anonymous Divided States game (1 hr 50 mins)
  • Amby reflects that he’s become more ruthless in his tactics in recent games (1 hr 54 mins)
  • Amby asks Kaner about transforming units and when they can and can’t transform (1 hr 55 mins)
  • Amby has a follow up question on the process in php-style Diplomacy sites for destroying units if the player NMR’s or CD (1 hr 59 mins)
  • Kaner explains his new/old variant idea - a standard Dip map, but every territory - land and sea - have the “sea lanes” functionality added to them (2 hours 8 mins)
  • They discuss the conclusion of the Tournament of Time over at PlayDip. Amby takes his hat off to team mates BigJoe and CaptainMeme. He then discusses how nopunin10did has taken the role of online tournament director up to the next level in concluding the tournament  (2 hrs 10 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby discusses his follow up thoughts for Nuclear Diplomacy and whether it could work in a forum based game at PlayDip. He goes onto discuss issues of balance and why the World War IV map isn’t a good one to use (2 hrs 15 mins)
  • The guys wrap up (2 hrs 23 mins)


Venue: The Conan Doyle, Edinburgh & The Terrace, Brisbane.

Drinks of choice:


CaptainMeme - Coca-Cola

Amby - Lia Fail amber ale from Inveralmond Brewery, Scotland


Kaner - James Squire Orchard Crush cider from Australia

Amby - Rusden Good Shepherd Malbec from the Barossa Valley

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you want to help improve the audio equipment... or get the guys more drunk,  you can donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!


Play Now

Amby visits London and interviews the code guru and go-to man at PlayDiplomacy, Super Dipsy (known at PlayDip just as "Dipsy".) They talk about changes down the pipeline and afterwards Amby's toe in the water at PlayDip.


  • The guys introduce episode 40, recorded the same time as episode 39, their new drinks and Kaner tries to get his head around the name of where Amby interviewed Super Dipsy (0 mins 10 secs)

Interview with Super Dipsy from PlayDiplomacy

  • Amby learns about glass clinking protocol from Dipsy (4 mins)
  • Amby mentions this is the first time we've interviewed someone for the second time, before mentioning who's next up in the interview schedule (5 mins 30 secs)
  • Dipsy and Amby talk about having real politicians play Diplomacy (7 mins 30 secs)
  • Dipsy introduces some of the upcoming changes at PlayDip, including steps to make it better for the players based on their recommendations in the forum such as mobile phone notifications (8 mins 50 secs)
  • He discusses moves to hunt for cheats (13 mins 50 secs)
  • Dipsy talks about the real challenges to keeping the hobby alive and growing (16 mins)
  • They talk about player behaviour (17 mins)
  • Amby asks about whether PlayDip allows you to ban players you have had a run-in with (19 mins 10 secs)
  • After a quick break in recording, Dipsy discusses Friends games at PlayDip (21 mins 15 secs)
  • He then discusses PlayDip's Player Classes and how they try to maintain a certain level of game for hardcore players (23 mins 10 secs)
  • They talk about the size of the PlayDip community (24 mins)
  • Amby reflects on the PlayDip ratings system (25 mins)
  • Amby asks about PlayDippers and face-to-face games (27 mins 45 secs)
  • Dipsy discusses his professional background which resulted in him becoming PlayDip's resident coder. He goes onto discuss his role in the broader PlayDip community (28 mins 40 secs)
  • Dipsy talks about the different types of variants at PlayDip and what goes up (30 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby belatedly does the drink pairings and his time previously living in the UK (34 mins 50 secs)
  • Dipsy teases Amby on a possible artificial intelligence (AI) solution to take over CD'ed positions/surrendered countries or if you have a "friends" scenario but are short of players and AI could significantly help (36 mins 30 secs)
  • Dipsy discusses how player suggestions can help make things easier in the game (41 mins 40 secs)
  • Amby is reminded by the Escalation variant element at PlayDip (43 mins 45 secs)
  • Amby asks about whether adding more and more functionality detracts from the user experience (45 mins 50 secs)
  • Dipsy talks about what new variants may be coming down the pipeline for coding at PlayDip (47 mins 10 secs)
  • Dipsy - wash his mouth out - says the game he'd most likely to see brought online is a railway game! Although there IS a Dip connection (49 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby asks how Dipsy got into Diplomacy, before they discuss Dip in schools and its impact on the community (50 mins 50 secs)
  • They discuss functionality to make it easier for online tournament directors (53 mins)
  • In wrapping up the interview, Dipsy discusses the prospects of using the large datasets on PlayDip for someone to do a heavy statistical analysis (54 mins 45 secs)

Discussion about the interview

  • Kaner and Amby return to talk about the interview, jumping straight into the AI concept - apologies on the wind in the background. Kaner channels his inner Terminator (1 hr 2 mins)
  • Amby discusses the concept of phone based notifications and his thoughts (1 hr 6 mins 30 secs)
  • Between eating they turn to Dipsy's idea about the Dissolution variant being coded up (1 hr 8 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby talks about how he has signed up for a PlayDip premium membership and is waiting on two Versailles games he has joined to begin (1 hr 12 mins 30 secs)
  • He discusses the normal standard press experience he's craving in Versailles and the flip side of Versailles but with other variant options in PlayDip like Age of Empires and Fog of War (1 hr 13 mins 30 secs)

Around the grounds

  • Amby asks Kaner talks about his whole one game he's in at the moment. Kaner ignores this and instead talks about a die-off variant he has kicking around in his head (1 hr 16 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner touches on the gunboat anonymous Youngstown game he's joined. Amby quickly works out he's in the same. They agree to keep mum on the topic (1 hr 20 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner asks Amby about his Divided States anonymous game, before agreeing to talk about that next episode (1 hr 21 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby touches on a standard anonymous Classic gunboat game he's in. Without giving detail about who he is, he talks about an aggressive opening strategy which while it has worked in the past, failed him now (1 hr 22 mins)
  • Kaner talks about improving his Classic experience before they head to Melbourne for the March tournament down there (1 hr 24 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner discusses putting together a Sopwith game. Amby brings up having a Google Translate game (1 hr 27 mins)
  • Amby discovers his unrated Imperial Diplomacy game where he was playing as Russia just finished in a draw (1 hr 28 mins)
  • Amby closes the show with a joke (1 hr 32 mins)

Venue: Museum Tavern, London & Little Big House, Brisbane.

Drinks of choice:


Super Dipsy - Sambrooke's Junction from London, UK

Amby - Greene King IPA & Sambrooke's Junction from London UK


Kaner - Bulmer's cider from United Kingdom

Amby - Tequila from Mexico, fresh lime juice and soda

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you want to help improve the audio equipment... or get the guys more drunk,  you can donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

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Amby visits Seattle and interviews the hosts of the podcast DiplomacyCast, Eric Mead & Nathan Barnes in Seattle. They talk about what happened to their show, their thoughts on why face-to-face Diplomacy rocks and their variant suggestions. Plus Kaner discusses his efforts to get a face-to-face community started in Brisbane and Dip news.


  • The guys introduce the show, their drinks and the venue (0 mins 10 secs)

Interview with Nathan Barnes & Eric Mead from DiplomacyCast

  • Amby introduces Nathan and Eric in what is planned to be a joint podcast (5 mins 30 secs)
  • Eric explains what happened technically to the site for a little while (6 mins 10 secs)
  • Nathan talks about the Seattle Diplomacy scene. Amby reflects how the size of Seattle & Brisbane are about the same, but the community of players' size is radically different. They talk about what you need to do to create a strong community in a local area  (9 mins 20 secs)
  • They discuss how the 50th DipCon (the North American championship) is scheduled in Seattle for 2019 (11 mins 20 secs)
  • They go onto a bit more detail about the hard work needed to create a local community (13 mins)
  • Nathan reflects on his first games with Diplomacy, his initial online play before moved back to face-to-face with tournaments (18 mins)
  • Eric then discusses his first Diplomacy experiences (19 mins 55 secs)
  • They talk about why they no longer player online. Nathan says its due to the core nugget of interpersonal relationships being only achievable in face-to-face games. Eric says he no longer plays online as he found it sucked up too much of his time (22 mins 20 secs)
  • Nathan says he did enjoy the challenge of "pick up" games (taking over a CD'ed position) (26 mins 20 secs)
  • They talk about the high you get playing face-to-face (28 mins 20 secs)
  • They discuss "tells" in face-to-face and how the dynamics are different to online (29 mins 30 sec)
  • Eric talks about how a competitive face-to-face game forces more decisive decision making and considerate of longer-term strategy (34 mins)
  • Nathan discusses how its worth playing a tournament at least once (35 mins 45 secs)
  • They do recognize though that some of the best Dip players are online players (37 mins 30 secs)
  • Nathan puts forward the importance of having a nimble plan, Eric talks about listening to your gut on unit placement (39 mins 30 secs)
  • Nathan also discusses how face-to-face uses far more means to work out what is going on in the game with both body language and who is talking to who (41 mins 15 secs)
  • Amby asks how the guys use their Diplomacy skills in their careers and day-to-day dealings (43 mins 30 secs)
  • Nathan explains the key thing Diplomacy teaches you, which Eric describes as a "super power" (47 mins)
  • Eric explains what happens when players only think about their own agenda & the importance of empathy (51 mins)
  • Amby asks about what happened to the DiplomacyCast podcast while Eric & Nathan explain why they wanted a second Diplomacy podcast to happen. Eric goes into the detail for why the show is having a break (52 mins 45 secs)
  • Eric and Nathan discuss what they enjoyed most from their podcast... their April Fools shows (1 hr 7 mins)
  • They then discuss the shows they are most proud of (1 hr 15 mins 15 secs)
  • Amby learns all about how America is different to Australia when it comes to shift changes, tipping and voting (1 hr 18 mins 40 secs)
  • Amby asks what impact did running the podcast have on how other players treated them (1 hr 19 mins 45 secs)
  • Nathan discusses Seattle street life during a smoke break (1 hr 23 mins 30 secs)
  • Nathan asks Amby what he gets out of playing Diplomacy online (1 hr 25 mins 30 secs)
  • They discuss the dichotomy of players introduced to the game either love it or hate it (1 hr 27 mins)
  • Amby discusses how he likes the challenge and deciding when to stab (1 hr 28 mins)
  • Amby introduces the Divided States variant to the guys - a game with 50 players (1 hr 30 mins)
  • Eric discusses his life long dream - a life size real-time Chaos game... on a basketball court (1 hr 31 mins 40 secs)
  • Eric & Nathan ask Amby why he plays variants (1 hr 38 mins 15 secs)
  • They ask about whether Amby has ever played 1900 - Amby answers by discussing the PlayDip Tournament of Time and the games 1812 Overture and Dissolution (a variant based on the breakup of the Soviet Union (1 hr 40 mins)
  • Eric and Nathan talk about their own variant they created: Diplomacy Winks (1 hr 42 mins 20 secs)
  • Nathan discusses his Roulette variant (1 hr 48 mins)
  • After listening to the way Roulette works, Amby discusses the Versailles variant where you control one main known country and one smaller secret country (1 hr 51 mins)
  • Eric introduces his other variant concept: God Diplomacy (1 hr 54 mins)
  • Nathan explains face-to-face players don't really care too much about variants, as fundamentally they don't care about the board (2 hrs 0 mins)
  • They discuss how much better it is for online players turning up to face-to-face games with a plan are so much better than non-committal players, which tends to occur in online games. (2 hrs 0 mins)
  • Nathan and Eric give their final pitch to give a tournament a chance, if for nothing else but the chance of an intense “high” (2 hrs 6 mins)
  • Eric recommends their Jim O’Kelly episode that outlines what you need to do to build a local community (2 hrs  9 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby gives his thoughts on using digital marketing to target people interested in Diplomacy (2 hrs 10 mins 30 secs)
  • They talk about teachers who introduce Diplomacy to students and how they can create slow-burn players for the future (2 hrs 12 mins 30 secs)
  • They discuss how the game better suits non-gamers, and how it is less about winning and more about playing. Nathan suggests getting psychologists into the hobby before discussing how the game develops your skills for the office (2 hrs 15 mins)
  • They wrap things up, with Nathan and Eric calling for new podcast ideas… beyond Diplomacy (2 hrs 20 mins)

Discussion about the interview

  • Kaner and Amby return to talk about the interview (2 hrs 21 mins 20 secs)
  • They discuss Nathan and Eric’s variant ideas - focusing on the Chaos concept (2 hrs 22 mins 30 secs)

Kaner is trying to create a face-to-face community in Brisbane

  • Kaner brought together some Warhammer games & Mrs Kaner to play a face-to-face game… and they had a blast! (2 hrs 23 mins 40 secs)
  • The guys discuss their thoughts further on getting a local community going (2 hrs 26 mins)
  • Amby asks Kaner how he explained how the game works (2 hrs 28 mins)

Amby and Kaner are going to a tournament

  • Amby and Kaner plan to go to the Melbourne Open, a face-to-face tournament planned for mid March (2 hrs 33 mins 20 secs)

Online Diplomacy news

  • DemonOverlord is organising the 2019 championship and is calling for players across the different Diplomacy sites (2 hrs 34 mins 45 secs)
  • Interactive maps have now been coded by Tobi for all variants at vDip to make it easier to submit orders (2 hrs 36 mins 20 secs)
  • New ezine editions are now out for Diplomacy World and Diplomacy Pouch - which includes our interview with Andrew Goff (2 hrs 38 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby gives a belated apology for the gap in episodes, and congratulates Murcanic for winning the 1066 Tournament (2 hrs 40 mins)
  • The guys wrap up the episode (2 hrs 42 mins)


Venue: T.S. McHugh's, Seattle & Little Big House, Brisbane.

Drinks of choice:


Nathan - Gin soda with a splash of tonic

Eric - Pinot Noir from Oregon; Bushmills whiskey and soda on the rocks

Amby - Charles & Charles, cabineret syrah; Washington Hills cabernet; tequila, soda water & lime


Kaner - Balter XPA from Balter Brewing Company, Queensland

Amby - Rightbank shiraz from Margaret River, Western Australia


Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you want to help improve the audio equipment you can donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

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Amby interviews Andrew Goff, winner of the 2018 World Diplomacy Championship in Washington DC. The guys then discuss Andrew's advice before talking about current games and playing small variant maps.


  • The guys introduce the show, their drinks and the venue (0 mins 10 secs)

Interview with Andrew Goff

Warning it sounds like the audio dropped off in a couple of spots in the recording for a few seconds. Amby went back to the original audio and it sounds like it was when recorded. No idea why. Sorry folks!!!

  • Kaner and Amby start discussing the prelude to the interview with Andrew Goff, World Diplomacy Champion for 2018 (5 mins)
  • The interview begins with Andrew setting the scene for where he currently is (6 mins)
  • Andrew talks about the tournament, the experience and how it compared with previous tournaments (6 mins 45 secs)
  • He discusses the benefit of having a round off during the tournament (9 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby asks about the greatest challenge Andrew had during the tournament - Doug Moore's gameplay during the rounds (10 mins)
  • Andrew discusses surprises through the tournament - especially the online players turning up to face-to-face tournaments, and how face-to-face players are increasingly changing their styles (14 mins)
  • Amby asks about the evolution of gameplay in the last few years (16 mins 15 secs)
  • Andrew talks about game theory and broader strategy in the game (17 mins 45 secs)
  • Andrew discusses diversity in the game - with more younger players and women coming into Diplomacy (19 mins 45 secs)
  • Amby asks about other's game play when it comes to excellent stabs (21 mins)
  • They discuss the top board and how things were different on that board compared to the preliminary rounds (22 mins 45 secs)
  • Andrew talks about the process for selecting the countries to play on the top board (the Paris Method) and his experience playing England - his least favorite country to play (25 mins)
  • You can view the top board for WDC on Backstabbr. Andrew discusses the thinking behind Liverpool holding, and why he wanted to be the first player stabbed in the west (26 mins 45 secs)
  • At this top level Andrew discusses the nature of avoiding being the top target, and cultural differences if you present yourself strong (30 mins)
  • The time limit and its impact on gameplay (31 mins 30 secs)
  • They talk about the end of the game (35 mins)
  • Amby asks about Andrew's plans to defend his championship in 2019 in Marseilles (39 mins)
  • Amby asks about plans for an Australian based tournament in the future. Andrew challenges Amby to get things happening in Brisbane (40 mins 20 secs)
  • They wrap up the interview (43 mins)


  • Kaner and Amby return and talk about the interview. Amby asks Kaner about his thoughts on Andrew's insights (43 mins 30 secs)
  • They talk about a more strategic style of gameplay (44 mins)
  • Kaner loves the generalisation from Andrew about what works on Americans and wonders if its true (46 mins)
  • Amby brings up how online players are increasingly getting into face-to-face (47 mins 20 secs)
  • They talk about both going to the March 2019 Australian championships (48 mins 15 secs)
  • Next they talk about putting on a Brisbane based game in the Australian winter of 2019.. Amby discusses the WebDiplomacy Forum thread about some Australian-New Zealand online players playing together (49 mins)
  • Kaner reflects how the time limit impacts the gameplay. Amby suggests a cheeky way Kaner can boost his ranking (51 mins 20 secs)

Around the grounds

  • Kaner starts discussing his Heptarchy IV game Hep Bros (54 mins)
  • Amby references the History of England podcast he's listening to, where he's currently up to the War of the Roses, and how it could be applied to the HeptarchyIV board (56 mins)
  • They look at the stats for the variant and find its not very balanced at all (58 mins)
  • Amby starts discussing one of his recent games (Salt air and Blood) that he won on the North Sea Wars variant designed by sqrg - a four player variant with some weird whacky rules around the North Sea which connect to economic supply centres. He then goes onto discuss the funny rule where once your unit takes an economic SC, you can't move it back into the Central North Sea (60 mins)
  • He then goes onto discuss his gameplay needed to win the game (1 hr 4 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby then talks about the normal Dip gameplay that also happened on the board (1 hr 7 mins 20 secs)
  • They then look at the stats for the variant (1 hr 9 mins)
  • After some more drinks, the guys go onto discuss their game they played together: Ver-Dunny, using the variant 843: Treaty of Verdun created by Milan Mach. Kaner makes an initial incorrect guess on which player Amby was, although Amby picked Kaner correctly (the game was anonymous.) Respect to the 3rd player in the game, lydiia. This was an anonymous, gunboat game (1 hr 10 mins 15 secs)
  • Kaner-Amby argy-bargy aside, they both agree this was a great map and variant and offered a lot of opportunity as a 3 player map (1 hr 15 mins)
  • They check the stats for the variant finding solos are frequent but the split between all three players is incredibly close, showing a highly balanced map, which would be great for a tournament map (1 hr 16 mins)
  • Amby talks about he's on a roll with 3 solos, bouncing up from 100 in the vDip Top 100 up to the 50's (1 hr 19 mins)
  • Kaner asks Amby's thoughts on the 4 player South America map (1 hr 19 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby brings up another game he's involved in, the 5 player variant Manifest Destiny, created by Morg and coded by Enriador. Kaner doesn't some aesthetics like the covered wagon icons and the blue used for the USA. Amby discusses the gameplay and map (while maintaining the anonymity of the game). Amby gives Kaner a history lesson about the Republic of Texas. Amby asks our Texan diplomacy players to get in touch to correct anything we got wrong - NOTE: since this podcast was recorded the game has actually ended - Amby was playing Mexico if you care to check the result (1 hr 20 mins)
  • Kaner says the map reminds him a bit of the variant Imperium (based on the German invasions of Rome) (1 hr 27 mins)
  • In preparation for his trip to Italy, Amby has been relistening to the History of Rome podcast and has got all excited again about his variant creation idea based around the Crisis of the Third Century (scroll down half way down for previous discussion about this in episode 22). The variant has Roman civil wars, barbarians and the Antonine plague - Amby later checked at it was actually the Cyprian plague. He goes onto discuss maybe having it based around the Fall of the Tetrarchy when there were four competing Roman emperors (1 hr 28 mins)
  • Kaner starts talking jibberish about the variant Fubar with the main player - and totally overpowered - Fatflap. They look into the variant which is totally WTF. Amby curses sqrg - making a great variant with North Sea Wars and then making something as bizarre as Fubar (1 hr 30 mins)
  • Kaner brings up the South America four player variant by Joe Janbu, and ported across to online Dip by Oliver Auth (1 hr 35 mins 45 secs)
  • More drinks arrive and the guys talk about the bank vaults and bathroom in the Boom Boom Room. Amby says he'll put up photos of them, but then when the guys left they forgot! Hopefully a couple of days after the podcast goes live he'll get some photos (1 hr 39 mins)
  • They get back to Diplomacy and talk about Amby's non-rated 5 day constant NMRing Imperial game. He talks about his current gameplay as Russia and his thinking when he decided to stab China - a further NOTE: due to the number of people in the Boom Boom Room the guys started talking really loud to make sure they were recorded. So unlike previous Amby advice to turn the podcast up, this time you might need to turn it down! (1 hr 42 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby then gives an anonymous update for his Divided States game (1 hr 49 mins)
  • Kaner brings up the discussion about having a Newspaper game - a grey press public posting. In this variant you can pretend to be another country without anyone knowing who it really is. Check out the grey press fog of war Classic Newspaper game thread on vDip to learn more  (1 hr 51 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby mentions the previous By Jingo game as an example of how it works (1 hr 55 mins)
  • Amby talks about his world tour with the bank's money. He mentions there will hopefully one more podcast in mid-November, but then radio silence until January when Amby gets back. While he's away Amby is planning to organise a few interviews while he's away (1 hr 58 mins 15 secs)
  • The guys wrap up (2 hrs 2 mins 30 secs)


Venue: Boom Boom Room, Brisbane.

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - 150 Lashes Pale Ale from James Squire, New South Wales

Amby - Terrazas de los Andes, Malbec from Argentina

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you want to help improve the audio equipment you can donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

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Amby and Kaner at Æther Brewing, BrisbaneBoth guys drink beer. Both guys grow luxuriant beards. And most importantly both guys talk Dip: Great discussion on the perfect stab, how to decide what game to play and the Munich Uber driver. Doesn't get better than this.


  • Amby ditches red wine for an episode while Mrs Amby is away and enjoys a beer with Kaner (0 mins 10 secs)
  • They discuss Anglo-Saxon pronunciations and how it relates to the brewery they're drinking in and start  (1 mins 20 secs)
  • Next up is an impromptu chat about the variant Ankara Crescent and how it got inspired but a bit of silliness. Kaner explains how moves work in the variant (4 mins)
  • Kaner moves onto Cataclysm another silly movement rule variant where fleets and armies are amphibious and can move to sea, coastal and land territories (7 mins 50 secs)
  • Amby touches on Kaner's plan to try to work out what variant to play next (9 mins 10 secs)

Around the grounds

  • But first Kaner asks Amby about the 1066 variant Tournament and how it's going (10 mins)
  • Kaner proposes little icons next to player's names for winners of tournaments. They briefly digress to the Known World 901 Tournament and while the tourney is pretty much fell apart, its clear that Eki83 is the clear winner and Amby is officially the worst player of the variant (12 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby tries enticing Kaner to maybe play Sopwith (which we covered in episode 6), Kaner instead suggests he'd rather be game master (16 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby starts talking about his games, beginning with an Imperial game where he's playing as Russia. There have been many NMR's, they discuss the perils of games with long phases.  Amby does a blow-by-blow account of his gameplay and what's been happening on the board. Kaner makes fun of Amby for buying into an unrated game  (18 mins 30 secs)
  • Next up are the anonymous games Amby is in - a Divided States game (33 mins 40 secs)
  • Kaner takes on the role of American geography professor and Amby plays American history professor (35 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby then talks briefly about his anonymous Atlantic Colonies game and his strategy of trying to limit the number of Dip games he has to lessen the impact of sitters (39 mins 30 secs)
  • The guys get new drinks. Kaner discovers the podcast has a Twitter account (41 mins)
  • Next its joke time; warning the joke at 45 mins is a little rude (42 mins 40 secs)

Kaner decides what variant to play next

  • Kaner teaches Amby how to sort the variants table on vDip (47 mins)
  • Kaner decides he doesn't want to play a hot game (49 mins 15 secs)
  • They throw around ideas about playing Imperium, Edwardian and Spice Islands, before he decides on... Heptarchy IV. He then sets up a new game called Hep Bros (51 mins 30 secs)

Variant review: Hundred & timing for the perfect stab

  • Amby talks about a Hundred game called "Want a 3 player game?" - one of the few three player games - set around the Hundred Years War. Amby gives a hat tip again to the History of England podcast (59 mins)
  • He goes onto discuss his game play in the opening, and how he successfully timed his stabs on England (1 hr 5 mins 30 secs)
  • They discuss the positioning of territories, particularly the landbridge between Calais and London (1 hr 7 mins)
  • Amby then works out the timing to then stab France to successfully solo the game (1 hr 8 mins)
  • They discuss what is needed in a perfect stab (1 hr 9 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby talks about why he chose this variant and why it ticked all his boxes before they talk about the two things the guys don't like about the variant (1 hr 11 mins)
  • The guys give a hat tip to the variant creator Andy Schwartz, map designer Derek Carlson and coder Oliver Auth (1 hr 13 mins)
  • They compare how this as a 3 player game compares to 1066 and 843: the Treaty of Verdun. The guys then decide to play a gunboat anonymous game of Treaty of Verdun called Ver-dunny (1 hr 17 mins)
  • Amby gives some tasting notes before talking about a guy downstairs at the bar who looks like a modern day Munich Uber driver with a canny resemblance to Hitler (1 hr 19 mins)

Kaner is writing an article for Diplomacy World

  • Former interviewee Chris Martin suggested the guys write an article about the podcast for the Diplomacy World magazine. They then brainstorm what should go into the article that Kaner is going to write. Kaner learns about hashtags with the concept of #F*ckingIdiots. Amby plugs Patreon due to a drop off in people donating to the show, Amby learns about audio levels from Kaner. They talk about Brisbane's crappy train network, filming Kaner's knees and talking to players. They discuss what happened to the DiplomacyCast podcast and acknowledge our podcast should get more into the webDip and playDip space (1 hr 23 mins)
  • They touch on the Tournament of Time over at playDip, discuss being Old Farts and what else needs to go into the article (1 hr 34 mins)
  • Amby discusses General Kessad's step learning curve and absence from playing Dip. Kaner talks about playing Dip in the old days, drawing on the walls and passive rage holding (1 hr 40 mins)
  • Amby suggests we have a Random Questions episode where any player can ask a question - ask at the Twitter account, website, email or via the forum thread in vDip. They also suggest alternative means  (1 hr 46 mins)

Is the Munich Uber driver still downstairs?

  • The guys make their way downstairs and Kaner casually walks past the bar to check out Herr Hitler (1 hr 49 mins)

Venue: Æther Brewing, Brisbane.

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - Miso and Honey Pilsner and the Golden Axe cider from Æther Brewing, Brisbane, Australia

Amby - Pitchfork Saison, Hop Skip & Jump IPA and the Mayor of Milton lager from Æther Brewing, Brisbane, Australia


Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you want to help improve the audio equipment you can donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

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September 16, 2018


The guys get together for a good old fashioned Diplomacy chat, but things very much take a recurring theme of the name of the bar: Sabotage! They talk sitters, tournament rule "changes" (depending on your perspective) and alcohol sabotaging Amby's brain twice when trying to remember Diplomacy players' names.


  • After introducing their venue and drinks, Kaner jumps straight into joke time (1 min)

Around the grounds

  • Kaner asks Amby about his Crusades 1201 game and his attempt to get from one end of the board to Jerusalem. When this was recorded the anon game was still going but only 2 days later wrapped up. To make it easier to understand Amby was playing England in "Remove Kebab" (3 mins)
  • Amby discusses the direction he gave his sitters when he went bush, and discusses the intended/unintended sabotage where the sitter ignored Amby's strategy, including this game and another. Amby had been attacking France in this gunboat game, but had made peace so they can all concentrate on the Ottomans. But his sitter ignored Amby's game plan and stabbed France taking a SC off him instead. He talks about his strategy at the end game of trying to get a draw against Ottomans, which was ultimately unsuccessful - congrats to Mephisto on the win  (6 mins 15 secs)
  • Kaner talks about his secret fear about getting a sitter who can play better than him (9 mins 20 secs)
  • Amby discusses the Punic Wars game "Old Med" where he was playing as the Helleni and got eliminated. This was a public press game. Amby discusses his strategy with Puni which fell apart very quickly (10 mins 40 secs)
  • They discuss the default position of Dip players online always referring to each other as males. They ponder why this happens and would love to get the perspectives of a female online player abut this (13 mins 20 secs)
  • They return back to Punic Wars where Amby discusses his next game plan, trying to split Puni and the Romani without success. He discusses how it is an uneven number of SCs so a two way draw is impossible unless a player chooses to NOT take a neutral SC, and Amby's attempts to sway Puni or Romani. Amby was ultimately correct as Puni (LovelyPinkEgg) who was ahead the whole game but got stabbed by Romani (nikhil) who took the winner take all victory (14 mins 30 secs)
  • Kaner touches on the Known World 901 Tournament and asks how that is going. Amby discusses his views on the matter - a bone of contention in the vDip forum thread! (19 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner asks about the process Amby followed to find a sitter, and discusses the country swap tool vs giving login details to a sitter before becoming a little precious. Amby then discusses how he thought one of his sitters had changed his password to screw him over... sabotage! Or maybe not...  (21 mins 30 secs)
  • They get another drink and after moving discuss how Amby thought the bar way have been Diplomacy focused being called Sabotage (26 mins 45 secs)
  • Kaner brings up Amby's slipping rankings before coming up with a cunning plan for boosting your ranking (28 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby brings up the Divided States game he was in where he initially did very well, only to now be eliminated. They move onto his other Divided States game (which is also anon) which he's doing not badly in... for the moment. Amby discusses how everyone, including his allies have started stabbing him like crazy (31 mins 15 secs)
  • Amby mentions yet another game he's been eliminated from (also now just ended) - Foggy 81 where he played as Russia. Congrats to Dr Helmut Kohl - aptly playing as Germany - who won (35 mins)
  • Then its onto Amby's suggestion for a new variant: Shadow Fog. A fog of war variant where the other players' units and SCs are all greyed out. In this variant idea you don't know who is who and who owns what, making it even harder to work out if another player is about to solo. Kaner suggests adding grey press into the mix  (35 mins 45 secs)
  • After a new set of drinks they talk skate boarding (42 mins 30 secs)

Variant chat: Greek Diplomacy

  • It's been a while since we had a focus on a specific variant, but its back! Kaner discusses Greek Diplomacy (44 mins)
  • Kaner talks about the special rules: 4 coin bidding for SC's and what units can be built where. Amby gets distracted by Kaner's "300" efforts and a unique rendition of "Sweet Caroline" (46 mins)
  • Kaner talks hacking the system and why he thinks two wrongs make a right (52 mins)
  • Next he reminds Amby about the Chaoctopi variant (54 mins)
  • They get back to Greek Diplomacy with the amount of sea territories and Amby questions whether armies should be able to traverse small bodies of water (54 mins 30 secs)

Forum etiquette

  • The music goes quiet as Kaner brings up forum etiquette and forum thread management <We had to boost the audio at this point as surprisingly when the music is quieter - or non existent - the recording quality bizarrely get's worse... lesson for the guys!> (1 hr 1 mins)
  • The guys talk about assorted Dip issues (1 hr 7 mins)
  • Some last minute jokes (1 hr 8 mins 30 secs)
  • Amby makes it clear he's not going to WorldDip Con 2016 before the alcohol makes him forget Dip player names the second time (1 hr 10 mins 30 secs)


Venue: Sabotage Social, Brisbane.

Drinks of choice:

Kaner - Newstead Dark Ale from Brisbane, Australia

Amby - Schild shiraz from the Barossa, Australia

Just a reminder you can support the show by giving it 5 stars on iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you want to help improve the audio equipment you can donate at Patreon. Lastly, don't forget to subscribe so you get the latest Diplomacy Games episodes straight to your phone!

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