I'd like to thank Sendric for a great job GM'ing the game and keeping it rolling. The game is so much more fun when things run smoothly; not only when there are no NMR's but also when the adjudication is done in a a timely fashion. I don't know about others, but I always wait with great excitement to see the results. (Did things go my way, or did I just get stabbed). I am the type of player who usually obsesses over my orders, even after they are submitted, so seeing the results temporarily relieves some of that obsession, at least until I start plotting for the new round. Sendric kept the game moving at a great pace. Thank you Sendric.

Norrmally, when I begin a new game I write to everyone and often, proposing ideas that are somewhat detailed (often outling my intended moves) and sometimes it works well but mostly I get crushed. As I drew England, which I always find hard to play come year two, I tried a different idea. I would sit back and wait for the offers to come in. I would send out some greetings, but not hash any detaild plans. I would wait and see who to side with let others lead the way. Perhaps, they would provide the right amount of details at just the right time and I would be able to take advantage of the situation. Sadly, it never happend this game.

My diplomacy the first year consisted of getting Russia to agree to not send MOS to STP in return for me not convoying an army to NWY and getting France to open to MAO and not ENG (I'd open to NWG and NTH). With Germany, it was basically, let me know if you want to work together and your ideas. I wasn't even bargaining hard for BEL, thinking if we bounce that's fine or if you let me have it that's good too. THis made Germany suspicous of me (and likely France too) and put us at odds more than I thought it would. While I was willing to work with Germnay if he proposed a good plan to attack France, Germany was the direction I wanted to go. The First year's negotiations worked out well for me and the game proceeded (in the west) as I had expected it would.

Prior to Spring 02 moves, I mostly talked to only France while continuing to have the same type of correspondance with Germany that I had in the first year with him. HE was't proposing any ideas and neither was I. I felt secure in the fact that France and I would roll over him in a few years time. Then the moves were revealed and a French fleet in NAO made me realize how much trouble I was in. It was the single move that pretty much dictated how the rest of my game would go. I had Units in SKA, NTH, NWY and YOR. If I retreated to deal with France, Germany would no doubt just take the spaces I was retreating from and It would be over for me all to soon. This is when I began writing to Russia, pleading for help against Germany. I figured I was in a position to assist in taking out Germany, while prolonging, as long as I could, France from taking over my home centers. I ddin't care how many centers I ended up with, just so long as I could have one to survive (which meant I would finish infinitley better than the last round in which I was eliminated). Lucky for me, Russia agreed------Turkey was eliminated at the end of year 2 and this gave him the freedong to move against Germany.

I tried to persuade France from continuing his attack on me, and instead going after Germany and then meet Russia and Austria together, but he didn't want to leave Germany hanging. Mostly, my intentions were to get him to back off the attack, buying me more time to deal with Germany. Although, if he had wantd to work together, I'm not sure what I would have done---I'm competitive enough to want to do better than just survive, but Russia and Austria were awefully strong, after such a short amount of time. None-the-less, from this point on, it was pretty straight forward for me. Todd and I were pretty much on the same page as far as objectives from season to season, and while I offered some ideas, Todd's ides were far better. He (and Austria) did the bulk of planning, and kept me in the loop from season to season. I was amazed at how well they guessed the moves of Germany and France. As I lost my home centers, I was replacing them with German centers. By the end of year 4 Germany was eliminated and Italy was assisting Austria in attacking France in the South. France basically stood alone against the rest of us, and it would only be a matter of time before he'd suffer the same fate as Germany and Turkey.

Then I received a message from Todd, stating that things were getting tense between him and Austria, and that the game would be ending early. I would finish with one center, but we wouldn't be taking France out. I was fine with that, as I was just happy to survive. Had it not been for Russia and Austria, I would have been eliminated a long time ago.

Russia: You were a great ally and you saved me from being eliminated so I owe you a big Thank you. YOu played a great game and are a strong player, both tactically and strategically. I look forward to future games with you.

Austria: We didn't talk much (maybe not even at all), but I too thank you for coming to my rescue. If you had attacked Russia after Turkey was gone (as often happens), then my fate surely would have been different.

France: It's too bad you didn't side with me from the beginning, as the game might have been different for each of us. You did a great job invading England and I was lucky to get the help that I did. I guess on some level I'm happy that you got to survive as well.

Germany: You initial instincts were correct, I was coming after you. However, I was openminded enough to be persuaded to attack France with you, but I guess you had France already on your side so we weren't really going to be allies this round.

Italy /Turkey: I ddin't get a chance to work with either of yoy and didn't even write (something that I usually do every game is to write each nation at least once). Perhaps we'll get a chance in a future game to work together (or aginast one another).

Good game all, see you on some other battlefield,