May 23, 2008

Diplomacy Board Game Resources

Diplomacy50thAnniversary.jpgA few weeks ago GamesByEmail released Politics - a clone of the classic board game Diplomacy [Amazon, Funagain] - and we've been plugging away at it ever since. Tears have been shed, fists have slammed tables, and vengeance has been made for past transgressions. Ever turn is a chess match of lies and military maneuvers. We absolutely love this game.

When we first picked-up up Diplomacy on this 49th anniversary of its original release, we were a bit rusty. It had been a few years since we last played Diplomacy via email (and we gotta say we love the easy of use of the GamesByEmail browser based game), so some of us needed a bit of a refresher on the rules before we could start sliding knives into each others kidneys.

We're sure that at some point you and your friends might need some Diplomatic refreshers, too. So here's a collection of links that will help clarify the rules in your backstabbing noggin. We've also included links to other resources and tools that could help you and your friends with your strategic collaboration, and - of course - well timed subterfuge.

Official Information
The Rules of Diplomacy are trade marked, so you can only get them at the source!

  • Official Diplomacy Website [link]
  • Official Diplomacy Rules [pdf]
  • Quick Teaching Guide [pdf]

Game Clients
People have been playing Diplomacy through email for years But if you're ready to ditch the 1970's listserv technology, then checkout these two great ways to play the game on your computer:

  • GamesByEmail [link] Launched just recently, the GamesByEmail clone of Diplomacy called Politics is the one stop Diplomacy playing shop. The game lets players submit orders through a web browser, and also communicate with private chat rooms all built in-to the game. There's even a Auto Judge that you can use as a tool to test out your moves for a turn.
  • Realpolitik [link]: Before Politics hit the scene we had very good results with using the downloadable client Realpolitik. It comes in both Mac and Windows varieties, and it lets players play with their orders to prototype moves. Once set, a player's moves can be exported and emailed to a judge, who can use the client to import orders, resolve a turn, and send an updated Realpolitik file back to the players - then the whole process starts anew. A very easy clean and easy to use client and tool.


  • Diplomacy World's Video Tutorials [link]: [ A perfect refresher to older players, and a good primer for new players, these videos hosted on YouTube make a great first start for detailing the rules. Part 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
  • Diplomacy Tutorial & Sample Game [link]: For those of you who who'd rather read that watch, we suggested this very detailed tutorial for those who'd rather read than watch. Sure, reading hard and might take longer, but ,ore is covered than in the other two Tutorials listed here.
  •'s Tutorial Slideshow [link]: Batting cleanup is this nice little tutorial. It's a great refresher and brings-hom all the rule's you've just learned.


  • Our Favorite Map (color) [link]: Clean lines, clear text, this is our absolutely favorite Diplomacy map for planning our grand campaign. Hosted by The Diplomacy Pouch.
  • A Two Toned Map [link] Lacks Province Names but great for printing.
  • Crockford Diplomacy Map [link]: A fantastic map that cleanly shows the neighbors of each territory in a block format. Great for when you're tired of looking at squiggly lines, and trying to figure-out which coastal zones neighbor particular territories.

Diplomacy Sites
We've gone through and pulled links to numerous resources from these sites. We tried to pick the cream of the crop, but if you're left unsatisified then beging your search for more information here!

  • The Diplomatic Pouch [link]
  • Diplomacy World [link]
  • Diplomacy's Wikipedia Page [link]

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Posted by Critical Gamers Staff at May 23, 2008 10:01 AM

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