WDC 2008 IN AUSTRIA, PART II:
In part 1 of this series concerning WDC 2008 in Austria, we took a closer look at the host country and everything you need to know about its culture, customs, and oddities. Today we are going into details: I'm going to tell you more about Diplomacy in Austria, what an Austrian DipCon usually looks like, and many more secrets of the Austrian Hobby you need to know in order to participate successfully at next years WDC. (In case you wonder why I don't simply give you the hard facts you need to register and leave it with a few words: I planned to do it exactly that way, but Charles kept urging me to write yet another article over the past couple of months, and somehow I surrendered. Never mind. If you only want hard facts, take a look at our website www.wdc2008.org; you'll find everything you need to know there. Briefly, and without me desperately trying to be funny. Otherwise: read on, but I warned you, right?)
"Tu Felix Austria" is the first (and so far only) Austrian Diplomacy Association. This is the hard core of everything concerning Diplomacy in Austria. In fact, if one wants to say "Diplomacy" in Austria, one says "TFA" instead, and everyone understands. We are a couple of boys and girls (yes) who meet regularly to talk beer and drink business, which means discussing how to organize our next Con. Organizing, by the way, is our second passion, runner up only to Diplomacy. In the five years we've been meeting regularly, we have successfully organized four national DipCons — also known as the FAT (Felix Austria Tournament) — so far, and are now facing the slightly bigger challenge of WDC 2008.
The first Austrian National Cons were organized by a different group of players in the 80s and 90s. They are older than our current group, and none of us ever saw one of them: so we call them "the Dinosaurs" [I apologize if one of them reads this! :o) ].
However in time they obviously lost interest, and by the mid 90s no longer organized Cons in Austria. Ten years later, we took over. We found ourselves a beautiful lodge in the mountains close to Vienna as a venue. The FAT 2004 event was (numerically) dominated by locals and our German friends (we are very closely linked to the larger German hobby). There were only two real international players, Yann Clouet and René van Rooijen — who consequently failed to let some local guy win the tournament, finishing first and second. But FAT soon became well known not only for being a fine place to play Diplomacy, but also for being a perfect location to socialize with new acquaintances, drink, play different games, and drink. Did I just mention "drinking" twice? That wasn't by accident. Given the fine food (full board!) and the quality of wine and beer as well as the unusual guys and girls you meet there, FAT is also known as the "Rivendell of Diplomacy" — an attribution that is beyond my qualifications to judge.
For pictures of previous years' FAT events, please visit http://www.tu-felix-austria.org/fat2004/galerie.php and/or http://img.tu-felix-austria.org/galerie.php?s=30.
What is so different about playing Diplomacy in Austria that this Beer guy keeps writing a whole series of articles about it, you ask? Well, there are a lot of points we attach great importance to when organizing a Con in Austria:
So, I hope you now have a better sense of what it is like to play at an Austrian Con. If you liked this preview, maybe we'll see you at WDC 2008 in Austria. There is more information to come concerning WDC 2008 — I promise to be back next issue of the Pouch for part three!
In the meantime, you can always visit our main site at:
Where the facts about WDC 2008 are all available!
If you wish to e-mail feedback on this article to the author, and clicking on the envelope above does not work for you, feel free to use the "Dear DP..." mail interface.