About The Diplomatic Pouch

Ry4an Brase, Guest Editor

Who the hell is this Ry4an guy?

With Manus's life having spun wildly out of control in late 1999, guest editors have become the rule rather than the exception. Which is not to say that Manus isn't contributing to the Pouch or the hobby -- he's still doing the work of four men, lately he's just needed help from a fifth to handle some of the scut work on the Pouch.

Usually the folks who step in to help him are PBEM luminaries, hobby stalwarts, and generally strong players, but not this time. Racked with guilt over the gross neglect I've shown the Showcase section this year, I decided to volunteer to guest edit so as to provide myself with a handy excuse. What I failed to consider was that the missed spring retreat issue had resulted in an article backlog the likes of which the world has never seen. Fortunately, the usual Pouch saviors Simon, Matt, and Brandon all pitched in and edited many of the articles in addition to providing general assistance which brought the job down into the manageable range.

And because I'm egotistical enough to think you're all asking the same questions I usually get asked, I'll answer them now:

  1. Yes, that's the number four in my name.
  2. Yes, it's legal.
  3. 9 years ago
  4. Yes, I regret it exactly like my parents said I would.

Enough about you. What's in the Pouch?

Finally, a topic worth talking about. As alluded to earlier, we've got a massive issue. In fact, with twenty-nine pieces in it, we've beat our previous record by five. But don't worry, we've made up for that high quantity by making sure it's almost entirely low quality drek. Kidding, of course. We've got the same great spread of articles ranging from the general to the ridiculously detailed that you've come to expect from The Pouch, and as always we owe it all to the authors who take the time to pen the submissions.

Of particular interest to me were the articles by Chris Martin and Brandon Clarke wherein they try to bring people at my dismal level of play up to a level where we can at least provide them with some amusement before they mop the mapboard with us. Then again, Diplomacy meta-gaming being a favorite pastime of top level players, maybe their advice should be scanned with skeptical eye.

Shouldn't You Mention World DipCon?

Yeah, I guess you're right. It approached quickly. It went smoothly. The turnout was amazing. Simon Bouton won. A good time was had by all, and very few authors decided to submit articles about it. (Manus was going to do so, especially since he got himself charged with hosting next year's North American Championship, but -- as I said -- we'll have to wait until next issue to hear from him.) Tim Miller saw the event from an interesting vantage point, and you'll find his coverage in this issue.

But why are you listening to me ramble when you could head...

On to the articles

Hope you enjoy them,

Ry4an Brase
Guest Editor

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