Octopus's Garden

7 x 7 Gunboat Diplomacy House Rules

First Edition, November 2013

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0) The 1971 Diplomacy rulebook will be used except as amended herein. The 1976 rulebook is identical to the 1971, whilst the 1985 is supposedly easier to understand, but unchanged in meaning. Ignore the 1983 American rulebook and the 1984 Rules summary sheet ; they're both wrong in several important details.

1) Ambigious situations not mentioned in the rulebook are dealt with as follows ; 'Unwanted' convoys for moves along the coast are legal, cannot be refused and create an ambiguous convoy route, as per the rulebook. A player may order a fleet to convoy a foreign unit which dislodges one of his/her own units. Fleets may only be built in coastal supply centres.

2) Applications to play shall be made to the Gamesmaster (g.m.). Players' identities will not be revealed by the g.m. until the end of the tournament; but players will be assigned an identifier (e.g. "Player A"), which the g.m. will use to refer to them.

3) A deadline will be set for each season, and orders should reach the g.m. by this date and time. The g.m. may use his/her discretion to accept late orders (but not late order changes). E-mailed orders are acceptable. The g.m. will normally acknowledge e-mailed orders on receipt. Telephone orders are acceptable when the g.m. has access to a phone, but they are not encouraged.

4) NMR! Insurance. The g.m. will attempt to call or e-mail players who do not submit orders by the deadline. However, the onus is still on the player to get orders to the g.m. before the game is adjudicated.

5) Orders should be clearly marked to show which game they relate to, and should include the player's assigned identity (e.g. "Player A") to help the g.m.

6) As these are gunboat games, joint orders are not permissible. Perpetual orders are not normally allowed.

7) As these are gunboat games, a player may not place all or any of his/her units in any game under the control of another player in the game.

8) In game reports, province names will be abbreviated to their first three letters or initials, but Lpl = Liverpool, Lvn = Livonia, NAf = North Africa, NTH = North Sea, NWG = Norwegian Sea, Nwy = Norway, StP = St.Petersburg, TYS = Tyrrhenian Sea. Land provinces in proper case, sea spaces in capitals.

9) Players need not necessarily follow these conventions when writing orders, but should ensure that orders are unambiguous. Implied orders are allowed. Coasts need only be stated in cases of genuine ambiguity [F(Con)-Bul, F(MAO)-Spa, F(Por)-Spa]. A player need not give the correct nationality of a foreign unit involved in a convoy or support. All of these cases will however be corrected when printed in the adjudication. If an order is a deliberate misorder, it's a good idea to say so!

10) The following symbols will be used in the adjudication : - = moves, S = supports, C = convoys, ____ = failed move or cut support, {{ }} = illegal order.

11) Unordered or illegally ordered units stand ; they may receive support. A player who fails to submit orders for a season will have the letters NMR! (no moves received) in the report. Two consecutive NMR!s will result in a player dropping out. The g.m. will hold the game over on the second NMR! and appoint a replacement player, who takes over as the player of record from that point.

12) Players who resign before dropping out will be treated more leniently. The g.m. will find a replacement player. Players may also absent themselves from the game on a temporary basis, leaving the position with a temporary replacement player, with the intent of returning later. The g.m. will ensure that replacement players have not already have been playing in the game.

13) Dislodged units will be marked with a star (*). The g.m. will list the retreat options available for each dislodged unit. Players should include retreats with their next set of orders (i.e. Summer Retreats with Fall orders; Autumn Retreats with Winter Adjustments). Others players may make their subsequent orders (not their retreats, if any!) conditional on all or any players' retreat choices. Dislodged units with no valid retreat ordered will disband.

14) Winter adjustments will normally be taken as a separate turn, with its own deadline. Players who don't order builds won't get them! Unordered removals will be made by removing the furthest unit from home (only counting potential convoys where the fleets involved are the same nationality and in place), fleet before the army, in alphabetical order of province name.

15) Players are advised to report any errors in the adjudication to the g.m. as soon as possible. The g.m. will notify the players of any corrections, but the game may be held over if required. Any errors which go un-noticed for a whole season will have to stand unless they can be easily rectified. In the event of a dispute, the g.m. may seek advice from other g.m.s or ask them to arbitrate.

16) A player or the g.m. may propose a game-end proposal at any time after 1905. These will be put and voted on anonymously. Each surviving player in the game may vote. One vote against will defeat the proposal. Otherwise, the proposal will pass if there are more votes in favour than abstentions. Draws need not include all survivors.

17) Deception and attempted deception of the g.m. is strictly forbidden. Players may not intercept the g.m.'s communications or raid his/her files. The g.m. cannot participate in the deception of another player. If a player is planning an unusual method of taking advantage of another player, it is advisable to keep the g.m. informed.

18) Anyone (including non-players) is welcome to write press for games, but the g.m. reserves the right to edit or omit press at whim. The name of a Great Power may only be used as a dateline by that player in that game. A player's assigned identity (e.g. "Player A") may only be used as a dateline by that player. Geneva, the g.m.'s dateline may only be used by him/her.

19) The g.m.'s decision is final, and he/she may change or waive these rules as necessary.

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