Created by: David Cohen
Variant webpage: http://diplomiscellany.tripod.com/id18.html
This variant is meant to be evocative, rather than truly historically accurate. Seven Powers: Denmark, England, France, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden (though players can also choose Poland, Russia and Scotland, the other Powers to have historically had colonies in the Americas), coming in from the Atlantic (and also the Pacific), starting with fleets, attempt to take over the Americas. The variant is considerably less dense than Standard Diplomacy, and places a premium on tactics of maneuver. Stalemate lines should be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to maintain.
Play begins in Spring 1501, with all players having a unit in the Atlantic High Seas. The high seas provinces (Cape of Good Hope, East Indies and Pacific High Seas being the others, listed in relationship of adjacency; i.e., the globe can be circumnavigated) can hold any number of fleets, but fleets in those provinces can neither support, be supported or convoy. In Winter 1501, each player may build a fleet in either Atlantic High Seas or (in this year only) Pacific High Seas. Until Spring 1506, each player can have two fleets which do not require a Supply Center to remain in existence. Except for the special case of Winter 1501, builds may be made in any owned Supply Center, or in the case of Fleets, in Atlantic High Seas (representing fleets built in Europe), provided, however, that a player must have three Supply Centers before a third unit is built, and if a player falls below three Supply Centers before or during Winter 1505, a player may retain only two fleets (and no armies). Beginning in 1506, the special rules concerning "unsupplied" Fleets are no longer applicable, and as in Standard Diplomacy, a player with more units than Supply Centers must remove units of the player's choice until the number of units and Supply Centers is equal. The victory criterion is 19 of the 37 Supply Centers.
In addition, in each game, each player will have the opportunity to name each province they enter first (with GM approval, and the GM will assign an official abbreviation), until then, the province will bear the number on the map.