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Subject: Yielding same space twice in the Negotiation phase rss

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Kristian Thy
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Is it legal to immediately yield control of space that you have only just received, as long as it is in the possession of your power at the instant you announce your deals in the Negotiation phase?

A (contrived) example:

Suleiman the Magnificent: I bequeath control of Malta to the French. (This will prevent Charles from taking it back and using it to attack my corsairs, because Francis has told me he is making peace with the Habsburgs mouwhahahaaa!)

Charles V: I make peace with the arrogant French. In return I get control of Malta (which, it should be noted, at the time of this announcement is controlled by the Turk).

Henry VIII: I am too busy fornicating with my nubile mistress to pay attention to diplomacy.

Francis: I confirm the agreement with Suleiman. I confirm the agreement with Charles. I confirm I am a backstabbing bastard.

It is clear that Francis can't accept the Habsburgian offer while turning down Suleiman. But is it at all legal to announce changes to the game state that are not possible at the moment you announce them?
 
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Paul Schulzetenberg
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Oh that is devious. I have no idea if it's legal, though.
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Jim Henderson
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turbothy wrote:
Is it legal to immediately yield control of space that you have only just received, as long as it is in the possession of your power at the instant you announce your deals in the Negotiation phase?

Yes, as worded in your question, this is permissable. The rules state: "A power may yield political control of spaces it controls (even keys and electorates) to another major power." If it is in your posession, you are allowed to give it away.
However, the example you give is not permissable. In order to give Malta to the Hapsburgs, the Hapsburgs must announce that they are accepting Malta from France, but France does not own Malta yet. This amounts to a conditional announcement by the Hapsburgs: "I will accept Malta from France if they own it when they make announcements". Conditional announcements have been ruled illegal in the past. In another thread, the designer Ed Beach ruled: “The bottom line is that conditional diplomatic agreements are not allowed.” http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/3023592#3023592

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Kristian Thy
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Thanks for the replies.

jrodgersh wrote:
Yes, as worded in your question, this is permissable. [...] However, the example you give is not permissable [...] This amounts to a conditional announcement by the Hapsburgs: "I will accept Malta from France if they own it when they make announcements".


I'm not quite sure I agree with you. Firstly, you say that "I will accept Malta from France" is a conditional agreement equivalent to "I will accept Malta from France if they own it when they make announcements". That would then apply to all cases of yielding space control, as powers are free to negotiate conflicting deals, as far as I know. In my understanding, the Ottoman could offer e.g. Prague to both England and Luther. If England does not accept the deal, the Protestant can accept it instead. This does not constitute a conditional offer as I understand it, and as they are presented in the threads you link to.

Secondly, you're saying that the answer to my initial question is yes, but my example is illegal. This implies that you would accept transfer of e.g. Malta from Ottoman to Habsburg to France, as it happens in impulse order, but not if you go against impulse order like in my example. This seems like an unfair and unnecessary restriction of some powers' freedom of negotiation.
 
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IMO, the example you give is not legal for the reasons given above.
 
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Kristian Thy
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cmontgo2 wrote:
IMO, the example you give is not legal for the reasons given above.


And what is your opinion on transferring Malta from the Ottoman to the Habsburg to the French?
 
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Martin
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turbothy wrote:
And what is your opinion on transferring Malta from the Ottoman to the Habsburg to the French?


That appears to be legal. While it might seem unfair, position in the diplomacy phase was taken into account when determining turn order for player powers, so this condition isn't an accident.
 
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Jim Henderson
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Based on your original example in which the Ottomans own Malta, the transfer of Malta from the Ottomans to the Habsburgs to the French would be legal because it is done in impulse order and the power giving the space posesses it at the time the deal is announced. If the Malta to France to Hapsburg deal were permissible, what would prevent the Ottomans from announcing, for example, "I will cede Calais to France if England will agree to cede it to me." The prospect of such speculative dealing does not appeal to me. If we wait a few hours, however, I am confident that Ed Beach will give us his thoughts on this subject.
 
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jrodgersh wrote:
If the Malta to France to Hapsburg deal were permissible, what would prevent the Ottomans from announcing, for example, "I will cede Calais to France if England will agree to cede it to me."


Nothing, apart from the fact that the Turk would be offering two separate deals: "I will cede Calais to France" and "I will receive Calais from England."

I do (sincerely) not believe that this is a condition in the same spirit as expressed by Ed in the thread linked above (and the one it in turn links to). Neither the deal "I agree to loan France 2 naval squadrons on the condition that France does not ally with the Ottomans" nor "I will give you a card, and in case you draft a 1 or 2 CP card, I will give you 2 mercenaries" - which are the examples discussed previously - can be expressed as two separate and legal diplomatic agreements.

EDIT: And to pick up on the other part of my question which I think hasn't been tackled by anyone - is it legal to announce changes to the game state that are not possible at the moment you announce them? Can England for example offer deals to France, the Pope and Luther that include giving more card draws than he has on his hand, so that Luther would only get the chance to accept the deal if one of the others turn England down?
 
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turbothy wrote:
jrodgersh wrote:
If the Malta to France to Hapsburg deal were permissible, what would prevent the Ottomans from announcing, for example, "I will cede Calais to France if England will agree to cede it to me."


Nothing, apart from the fact that the Turk would be offering two separate deals: "I will cede Calais to France" and "I will receive Calais from England."


"I will cede Calais to France" can only occur under the (antecedent) condition that England gives Calais to the Ottoman. It is conditional. Conditional agreements are prohibited under the rules.

Again, I've been wrong about a lot of the rules in this game, so wait for Ed's comment, but I'm reasonably confident that none of your suppositions are legal agreements.

Quote:
[snip] [The agreements cited] can be expressed as two separate and legal diplomatic agreements.


They are not two separate agreements. England must cede Calais in order for the Ottoman to give it to France. Since the Ottoman cannot unilaterally grant both agreements at the time he announces them, the France agreement is conditional upon the English one. They are interdependent.

Quote:
EDIT: . . . is it legal to announce changes to the game state that are not possible at the moment you announce them? Can England for example offer deals to France, the Pope and Luther that include giving more card draws than he has on his hand, so that Luther would only get the chance to accept the deal if one of the others turn England down?


This, too, I would think, would not be permitted.

My understanding (though admittedly not written in the rules this way) is that you have to be able to fulfill all the deals you announce at the time you announce them. I did play one game in which there was a three-way agreement between the Haps, England, and France, but each announced agreement was able to be performed by each power at the time the agreements were announced.

In any case, I suppose you should just wait for Ed to answer your questions.

I am wrong about rules interpretations in this game very often. And I suppose I could be wrong, here, as well. Nonetheless, based on the wording of the rules, it appears that you might be able to theoretically rules-lawyer yourself into having your way.

Did this come up in a game of yours? Because these distended examples of diplomatic acrobatics would seem to me to almost NEVER come up in a game. I'd be interested to hear the story if this is question arose in a real-game - it would have to be an interesting set of circumstances!

Cheers.

Chris
 
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Jim Henderson
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turbothy wrote:
But is it at all legal to announce changes to the game state that are not possible at the moment you announce them?

Allowing deals of that sort would open a can of worms that I believe should be left closed. Based on answers in previous threads I would say definitely not!

As always, we await Ed's definitive ruling.

PS - Do you play "Diplomacy" much?
 
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I agree with Jim and the other posters saying these are conditional deals, and therefore not allowed. I'd say you can't propose deal that includes an item being traded you don't yet possess.
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Ed Beach wrote:
I agree with Jim and the other posters saying these are conditional deals, and therefore not allowed. I'd say you can't propose deal that includes an item being traded you don't yet possess.


Thanks for the answer

Jim Henderson wrote:
Do you play "Diplomacy" much?


Nope, never. Looks too abstract for me, I like historical theme.

Chris Montgomery wrote:
Did this come up in a game of yours? Because these distended examples of diplomatic acrobatics would seem to me to almost NEVER come up in a game.


Haven't come up in-game, but that's mostly because I asked here first ... you tend to have a lot of time to think about diplomacy when playing over teh intarwebs. EDIT: But the line of thinking is derived from a current game, where I as Habsburg desperately tried to get someone to accept the gift of Graz and Linz in order to curb Suleiman's options for outflanking my army. It then got me wondering what they could or could not do with that gift, including possibly handing it to the Turk.

(EDIT2: "almost NEVER" == "it will happen at some point" )
 
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Shaun Derrick
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The crucial point is when the board is changed! Is it changed immediately after an agreement has been ratified or must ALL announcements be made before any changes to the mapboard can be made?
It would clearer to say that announcements can only include deals which change the state of the mapboard once all announcements have been made.

If the board was changed after each ratfication of a deal then any agreement between the Ottomans and Hapsburgs would change the map at the end of the Hapsburg announcements but before the English announcements. If this was the case, then the original question regarding the double switch of Malta would be allowed.

I assume, and hope, that the mapboard CANNOT be changed until the very end of announcements and that all changes are simultaneous which renders the double switch illegal.
 
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sderrick wrote:
I assume, and hope, that the mapboard CANNOT be changed until the very end of announcements and that all changes are simultaneous which renders the double switch illegal.


You assume wrongly. The rules state (p11) that "if the agreement is confirmed by all parties, the players immediately change the game state [...]"

I think everybody here, including Ed, is in agreement that the transfer of a space from Ottoman to Habsburg to French control, in that order, is legal. (It certainly fulfils Ed's criteria of "you can't propose deal that includes an item being traded you don't yet possess." (my emphasis added))
 
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turbothy wrote:
sderrick wrote:
I assume, and hope, that the mapboard CANNOT be changed until the very end of announcements and that all changes are simultaneous which renders the double switch illegal.


You assume wrongly. The rules state (p11) that "if the agreement is confirmed by all parties, the players immediately change the game state [...]"

I think everybody here, including Ed, is in agreement that the transfer of a space from Ottoman to Habsburg to French control, in that order, is legal. (It certainly fulfils Ed's criteria of "you can't propose deal that includes an item being traded you don't yet possess." (my emphasis added))


So it is legal but it can't possibly happen!?
 
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turbothy wrote:
(EDIT2: "almost NEVER" == "it will happen at some point" )


Let's say six million monkeys are chained to a million tables and forced to play Here I Stand repeatedly for an unlimited period of time...

Actually, you couldn't chain them to the tables because they couldn't conduct secret diplomacy (Hapsburg: "Ooo ooo aah aah!" England: "Aah aah ack ack aah aah!"). Maybe you could lock them in a million rooms.
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Jim Henderson
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sderrick wrote:
turbothy wrote:
sderrick wrote:
I assume, and hope, that the mapboard CANNOT be changed until the very end of announcements and that all changes are simultaneous which renders the double switch illegal.

You assume wrongly. The rules state (p11) that "if the agreement is confirmed by all parties, the players immediately change the game state [...]"
I think everybody here, including Ed, is in agreement that the transfer of a space from Ottoman to Habsburg to French control, in that order, is legal. (It certainly fulfils Ed's criteria of "you can't propose deal that includes an item being traded you don't yet possess." (my emphasis added))

So it is legal but it can't possibly happen!?

Yes, it is legal and yes, it could happen. Each power in this chain of transfers is only giving something that it actually owns at the time that each deal is announced. I have a feeling that you misunderstood turbothy's phrase "It certainly fulfills Ed's criteria . . .". My take on his meaning is "It certainly does not violate Ed's criteria that 'you can't propose a deal that includes an item being traded that you don't yet posess'."
 
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Greg Forster wrote:
Let's say six million monkeys are chained to a million tables and forced to play Here I Stand repeatedly for an unlimited period of time...


Why stop there? Let's take a countable infinite number of monkeys and play at Hilbert's Hotel! You're thinking too small. sauron

jrodgersh wrote:
My take on his meaning is "It certainly does not violate Ed's criteria that 'you can't propose a deal that includes an item being traded that you don't yet posess'."


Yes, that's what I meant - thanks
 
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