12 YEARS, 25,000 MILES AND $34,000 LATER

by Larry Peery

Did that headline get your attention? If not, read on anyway.

In 2002 I achieved my lifeís goal — I equaled Henry Kissingerís Harvard achievement, although I wasnít to learn that until 12 years later.

Henry Kissinger (See my magnum opus in the new issue of Diplomacy World on Henry Kissingerís and Allan Calhamerís years at Harvard; and the ďinterviewĒ that Martin Burgdorf and I did with HAK in this issue) graduated from Harvard summa cum laude and according to his biographer did it with all As and one B!

Thatís exactly what I did at San Diegoís Mesa College when I decided to go back (I originally enrolled in that school in 1964 while still in high school, but thatís another story.) and get a degree in Travel & Tourism. I had promised myself that if I could do that and finish the two year program in a year I would treat myself to ďthe trip of a lifetime,Ē and so began a trip that would last twelve weeks, cover 25,000 miles, cost me $34,000 and result in adding a total of seven (Iím making up the number because Iím too embarrassed to tell the truth.) supply centers to my trophy count at WDC 2002 in Canberra.

I tell that story so youíll understand why Iím plugging Peterís TribeNet. Quite simply, I fell in love with Oz and all things Australian on that trip. So, when a chance comes along to plug something from ďDownunder AbbeyĒ I jump to do it. Besides, Peter McNamara probably feels lonely about now. More importantly, it adds another continent to this nostalgia review of the world of Diplomacy with which weíre closing out the old and dotting in the New Year. So far weíve stopped in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and now Australia.

Hereís the story in Peterís own words:

Hi Larry

I found you on the Hobby Registry.

I run an old style, retro multiplayer PBEM game called TribeNet and I am looking for a couple of new players.

TribeNet is an epic campaign game with historical sensitivity and both a wargaming and diplomatic element. It has its roots in the Diplomacy and Wargaming clubs in Melbourne, Australia.

If you have played civilisation type or Diplomacy style games you will have something of the idea of TribeNet. However, it is text and not graphics based. It is for players who like to ponder their response over a few days and perhaps negotiate with other players during this period. TribeNet has been running for about 12 years but a new part of the TN world are has been opened up which effectively means that new players that start in these areas start a new game.

The game has a stable player base and a high degree of reliability. It enables the player to think in terms of both short term and immediate needs and long-term strategies. Additionally it enables people to forge friendships and connections with like-minded folk from all over the world.

If you think you might be interested you can ask for the FAQS which give you a broad overview (and/or the rules and other info) from me at email:

or simply reply to this message

cheers peter

Thatís it, except for the site address:

I canít vouch for the game or Peter, but I can vouch for Australia and I promised him Iíd plug his project in this issue so there you have it.

And what about South America Diplomacy you might be wondering? Over the years Iíve mentored no less than five individuals who have managed to make the leap from dip to Dip and vice versa. When I first met him years ago Hazriq Nor was a bright young Malaysian going nowhere. After five years of badgering by me and others he was still bright but not quite so young and he was somewhere, in Buenos Aires, Argentina as Second Secretary at the Malaysian embassy. Since then heís served a one-day term as Malaysiaís ambassador to the UN, and has since returned home where heís passing on his diplomatic skills to others that he is mentoring. Hazriq is one of those rare individuals that quickly grasped the ideas behind the game and just as quickly realized it wasnít for him — he was (and is) just too honest to be a good Diplomacy player. Itís a pity we donít have more diplomats like him.

Thatís it. If youíre into Diplomacy-like games in different settings check out TribeNet. If you happen to be heading for Melbourne or Kuala Lumpur let me know and Iíll put you in touch.

Larry Peery

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.