I found out one of my friends has Diplomacy and wants to play. He's never played before, and neither have I, nor anyone else in the group. I'm confident I can explain the rules, but I don't really know a lot about the strategy as I've never actually played. I'll be able to convey the general strategies, like backstabbing at key times and making sure to make their key borders as well protected as possible.
However, I don't really know what to do about the strategies for specific country, and I think we'd all enjoy it more if I didn't end up advising them what to do due to time constraints and its opposition to the spirit of the game. Ideally, I want everyone to be as independent as possible, meaning not relying on other players for their strategies and moves because I think that's more how it was meant to be played.
Does anyone know of some brief, meaning a few paragraphs long, descriptions of strategy for playing each country? Something like this:
Germany: Since you are in the center of the board, you will be in the middle of many other countries' way. Try to make alliances with 1 or 2 of them so you won't be fighting on all sides. [country] is most likely to attack you in [place] because it's critical to their expansion and future development, so watch for this early in the game. If you make friends with Italy, the two of you can proceed to conquer this area of the board and quickly grow in strength...
Your ideal alliances would be with A and B, but if A refuses then you can do this to minimize your vulnerability...
As I said, I know nothing about diplomacy yet, so I don't know exactly how the game develops. But if I could give each player a piece of paper with some advice on it for certain situations, I think it could help a lot, especially in the beginning with answering the question 'what they heck do I do?!?!'.
Does anyone know of some good brief summaries that I can give each player to help them get off to as good a start as possible? Naturally these would be kept secret from other players and I wouldn't read any before-hand except for the one for the country I'm playing.